Ted Nugent is back in the news again. He’s making all sort of insane threats towards elected representatives of the government, encouraging his supporters to “ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November.”

Ted Nugent thinks that President Obama is going to take away his gun rights and throw him in jail, despite the fact that President Obama has done NOTHING to take away gun rights.

Perhaps Nugent and his supporters are thinking that President Obama might support the Brady Campaign effort to prohibit gun sales to convicted felons, convicted domestic abusers, terrorists and people found to be dangerously mentally ill??

I suppose that last part might give Nugent a legitimate reason to be nervous.

Ted Nuggent on President Barack Obama, December 2009

“I think that Barack Hussein Obama should be put in jail. It is clear that Barack Hussein Obama is a communist. Mao Tse Tung lives and his name is Barack Hussein Obama. This country should be ashamed. I wanna throw up.”

Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks on President George W. Bush, March 10, 2003

“Just so you know, we’re on the good side with y’all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we’re ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas.”

As the story goes, there was a major backlash against the Dixie Chicks for their supposedly “anti-American” comments.

To date, those that criticized the Dixie Chicks have been quite silent about the comments of Ted Nuggent.

(Here’s an article I wrote 5 years ago for my old E.P. Rants blog. As I read the comments from a friend that “can’t wait” for the death sentence of the woman that’s been arrested for the death of 8 year old Sandra Cantu, I thought this would be a good time to recycle my old words.)

Monday afternoon as I was about to leave the house for an appointment, it was announced that the jury for the Scott Peterson trial had made a decision on his punishment. After deciding last month that Peterson was guilty of murdering his wife and child, the jury decided that he should now be put to death by the state of California.

The San Mateo County courtroom in which this trial took place is approximately 20 miles from my home. Despite the semi-close proximity, I was never once ever tempted to attend the big spectacle that took place so close to my turf, but apparently many other people did. Watching the TV news, one could see a large crowd spectators surrounding the courthouse, hovering around the area like a pack of awe-struck voyeurs. In the hours leading up to the decision, TV news reporters asked some of the bystanders why they were there. One man holding a sign favoring Peterson’s execution was very happy to get his moment of fame on the TV news. Listening to him talk, you’d get the distinct impression that his life consisted of watching the news, surfing the web, and camping out at public spectacles.

One of the major statements that this man made was that the state of California would be saving a lot of money by putting Scott Peterson to death. What this man didn’t realize is the fact that the death penalty is considerably more expensive than life imprisonment. In the state of California, $90 Million is spent annually above and beyond the ordinary costs of the justice system on capital cases. $78 million of that total is incurred at the trial level. This type of price difference is certainly not limited to California. In Florida, an average of $3.2 million was spent per execution from 1973 to 1988, racking up an estimated $57 million for 18 executions. In Texas, the biggest state for executions, every death penalty case typically costs three times more than the price of imprisoning someone in a single cell at the highest security level for 40 years.

I have a lot of problems with the death penalty. My biggest issue is that I don’t like the idea of a potentially innocent person being sentenced to death, only to find out later that they were actually innocent. Since 1973, 117 people in 25 states have been released from death row after evidence was presented to prove their innocence. Of the 117 people that were released, I can guarantee you that each and every one of these people had hard-working lawyers that spent a considerable amount of time to overturn each one of these convictions. Unfortunately, not every wrongly-convicted person on death row has been so fortunate, and mistakes have been made in the past.

Now, I’m not about to make any claims about Mr. Peterson being innocent, as he certainly appeared to act like a guilty man if there ever was one. He had access to one of the most powerful lawyers in the country, so his conviction had nothing to do with being ill-served by inadequate representation. While there was no definitive evidence that absolutely proved that Mr. Peterson murdered his wife, there was substantial evidence that he acted in a manner completely inappropriate to the circumstances.

The message to the citizens of America is very clear- inappropriate behavior can definitely lead to a death sentence.

I could go on about why I believe the death penalty is such a terrible idea, but to bring it home to the “holier-than-thou” conservatives that claim to be in favor of fiscal government spending and the “sanctity of life,” I’ll make it as simple as possible.

Death sentences cost considerably more than the price of life imprisonment, and once administered, they can never be reversed.

A death sentence can never return a murdered loved one back to the world of the living. It merely validates the act of killing. Anyone that claims to be “pro-life” can never ever support the death penalty without appearing like an absolute hypocrite. When you validate the death penalty, you can never ever claim to hold the “sanctity of life” as your absolute guiding principle, as you’ve contradicted your core beliefs.

Ultimately, the families of the murder victims and the murderers are the ones that are most affected by the decision to use the death penalty as punishment for the most heinous of crimes. The pain that these families will suffer cannot be understated, as the murder of a loved one leaves a permanent stain on their lives that can never be erased.

Millions have dollars have been spent on the Scott Peterson case, and the recommendation for the death penalty will ensure that millions of more dollars will be spent by the state of California for the invariable appeals process. As the state of California struggles with massive budget problems, leading to a shut-down of various hospitals, fire stations, libraries, educational programs, and other important public services, there always seems to be plenty of money to pay for the business of death. The prosecution and defense lawyers will be gainfully employed for the continuing process, while the families will endure the trauma of this hellish legal nightmare with each and every new trial.

A simpler solution would be simply to sentence the guilty parties to life sentences, sparing unnecessary grief, and putting an end to a legal process that perpetuates massive overruns of state budgets.

The guilty parties would live out the rest of their hellish lives in a threatened environment amongst murderers, rapists, sadists, and deviants. The government would save a considerable amount of money, and remove the judicial branch from the business of legitimized murder.

Eric Predoehl
December 16, 2004

Death Penalty Information Center
http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org

National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty
http://www.ncadp.org

David Elliot’s blog of the NCADP
http://www.deathpenaltyusa.blogspot.com

Murder Victims’ Families for Reconciliation
http://www.mvfr.org

Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty
http://www.cuadp.org

Sister Helen Prejean, author of “Dead Man Walking”
http://www.prejean.org

Moratorium Now / Equal Justice USA
http://www.quixote.org/ej/index.html

To follow up on this subject, I’d also recommend my blog posting entitled What if we were wrong?, which I wrote in 2007. It mentions Jerry Miller, a man who spent 25 years locked up before DNA proved his innocence. He became the 200th person exonerated through DNA evidence thanks to the organization known as Innocence Project.

Going Social Now shared this little treat:

borrowed from GoingSocialNow.com

… discovered via SomethingChanged.com.au.

I found an odd article in New York Times:

Blowing your nose to alleviate stuffiness may be second nature, but some people argue it does no good, reversing the flow of mucus into the sinuses and slowing the drainage.

Counterintuitive, perhaps, but research shows it to be true.

I fully expect to see an article about why ass-wiping after a dump is also bad idea.

Beer can save the world!

Here’s a message I can get behind:

You probably don’t need another excuse to be thinking about beer on a Friday afternoon, but over at Salon, friend of CHOW Andrew Leonard reports on the fabulous news that Sierra Nevada Brewing Company has partnered with the inventor of a home-ethanol-making system to turn waste from the beer-making process into ethanol fuel for cars.

More information by clicking here.

Crooks & Liars pointed out some frustrating realities with this excerpt from a Washington Post article:

A majority of America’s largest publicly traded companies and the U.S. government’s largest federal contractors — including some receiving millions in federal bailout money — use multiple subsidiaries in offshore tax havens to conduct business and avoid paying U.S. taxes, a new report finds.

The new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, released today by Sens. Byron L. Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.), lists Citigroup and Morgan Stanley as having set up hundreds of tax haven subsidiaries, along with American International Group and Bank of America. Also in the tax-haven list are well-known companies and such federal contractors as American Express, Pepsi and Caterpillar.

GAO, searching publicly available data filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, determined that 83 of the 100 largest publicly traded corporations and 63 of the 100 largest federal contractors maintain subsidiaries in countries generally considered havens for avoiding taxes. Dorgan and Levin said they requested the updated report from one several years ago because they are focused on combating offshore tax abuses, which they estimated cause $100 billion in lost U.S. tax revenue each year.

GAO auditors did not review the companies’ transactions to independently verify that the subsidiaries helped the companies reduce their tax burden. The GAO said only that the companies had subsidiaries located in jurisdictions considered tax havens and that historically the purpose of those subsidiaries is to cut tax costs.

The practice is legal, but Dorgan and Levin are hoping to gain the support of President-elect Barack Obama for legislation that would outlaw it.

To illustrate the problem, Levin said the report found that Citigroup has set up 427 tax haven subsidiaries to conduct its business, including 91 in Luxembourg, 90 in the Cayman Islands and 35 in the British Virgin Islands. He said other havens include Switzerland, Hong Kong, Panama and Mauritius.

It’s a way for people to draw attention. I don’t know what the guy’s cause was. I didn’t feel the least bit threatened by it.”

I didn’t know what the guy said, but I saw his sole.”

G.W. Bush, December 15, 2008 in response to shoe throwing incident

I’m glad President Bush has a good sense of humor about the recent shoe-throwing in Baghdad. This recent recent event has provided a wealth of material for comedians all over the world

Shoes for Bush

Jazarah.net has a great overview on the Bush-Shoes mania: Cartoons and online games
http://www.jazarah.net/blog/the-bush-shoes-mania-cartoons-and-online-games

There’s a handful of Bush-shoe video games you can play by visiting…

http://sockandawe.com
http://readyaimvote.com
http://kroma.no/2008/bushgame
http://www.t-enterprise.co.uk/bootcamp
http://funatsosauce.com/bush
http://flash.vg.no/grafikk/2008/bush/kast_sko.html
http://www.mind360.com/braingames/teasers/bushshoeincident.html
http://www.ridiculopathy.com/crappy_flash_games.php?gamename=bushoes

Boing Boing has a great collection of animated gifs at
http://www.boingboing.net/2008/12/15/iraq-shoe-tosser-guy.html

Bush and the flying shoe

Bush meets the Stooges

Muntadhar al Zaidi, the infamous shoe-thrower, now has a Wikipedia page!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muntader_al-Zaidi

With a tip of the hat to BoingBoing and FightingLiberals.com, folks are encouraged to share their admiration for President Bush by sending old shoes to;

George W. Bush Presidential Library
c/o SMU
6425 Boaz Lane
Dallas TX 75205

Maybe they can be placed on the My Pet Goat shelf?

old dogshit shoes

Nirvana baby grows up

Spencer Elden, the baby from the cover of Nirvana‘s “Nevermind,” recently became an intern for Obey Giant, the company created by Shepard Faiery, the artist responsible for those cool Obama graphics.

http://obeygiant.com/headlines/welcome-spencer-elden

MTV News had a write-up about Mr. Elden:

Now, 17-year-old Elden is a high school student, who told MTV News last year that “it’s kind of creepy [to think] that that many people have seen me naked – I feel like I’m the world’s biggest porn star.”

http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1598985/20081110/nirvana.jhtml

Speaking of Shepard Faiery & Obey Giant, there’s an art exhibit of his work in Washington D.C. that’s ending soon.

Regime Change in Washington DC

You can also get a free Shepard Faiery sticker from MoveOn.

UPDATE: Nerve.com recently posted an article entitled “The 40 Greatest Lost Icons in Pop Culture History,” featuring Spencer Elden, and various other individuals that might have otherwise gone unnoticed.

Paul McCartney as Buffalo Bill?

Here’s an odd one…. Imagine Paul McCartney as the reincarnation of Buffalo Bill Cody. How about George Harrison as Jesse James? John Lennon would be Frank James.

It’s an unusual theory, and that’s just of the iceberg. Brian Stalin lays out the case for this theory, drawing a lot of odd parallels, including the tragic deaths of Lennon and James. It’s a fascinating idea, and you’ve got to see it to believe it…..

http://brianstalin-thebeatles.blogspot.com/

Every year, Project Censored, a media research and analysis group based at California’s Sonoma State University, publishes a list of important stories that were completely ignored by the mainstream media.

Just in case you missed it, here’s a quick summary of the 25 Most Important Stories of 2008. Please share this with others

#1. Over One Million Iraqi Deaths Caused by US Occupation
# 2 Security and Prosperity Partnership: Militarized NAFTA
# 3 InfraGard: The FBI Deputizes Business
# 4 ILEA: Is the US Restarting Dirty Wars in Latin America?
# 5 Seizing War Protesters’ Assets
# 6 The Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act
# 7 Guest Workers Inc.: Fraud and Human Trafficking
# 8 Executive Orders Can Be Changed Secretly
# 9 Iraq and Afghanistan Vets Testify
# 10 APA Complicit in CIA Torture
# 11 El Salvador’s Water Privatization and the Global War on Terror
# 12 Bush Profiteers Collect Billions From No Child Left Behind
# 13 Tracking Billions of Dollars Lost in Iraq
# 14 Mainstreaming Nuclear Waste
# 15 Worldwide Slavery
# 16 Annual Survey on Trade Union Rights
# 17 UN’s Empty Declaration of Indigenous Rights
# 18 Cruelty and Death in Juvenile Detention Centers
# 19 Indigenous Herders and Small Farmers Fight Livestock Extinction
# 20 Marijuana Arrests Set New Record
# 21 NATO Considers “First Strike” Nuclear Option
# 22 CARE Rejects US Food Aid
# 23 FDA Complicit in Pushing Pharmaceutical Drugs
# 24 Japan Questions 9/11 and the Global War on Terror
# 25 Bush’s Real Problem with Eliot Spitzer

For more information, be sure to check out the main webpage at:
ProjectCensored.org

As this little blog takes a well-deserved vacation from the subject of politics with the arrival of a new candidate I actually supported, it’s time to get back to the subject of cool music that isn’t LOUIE.

One of the greatest jazz tracks in the world is “Sing Sing Sing” performed by the Benny Goodman Band, held together by the amazing drumming of Gene Krupa.  Here’s a little YouTube clip of that track…

They Live! - the movie poster

(a posting also shared at Barack Obama NOW!)

Twenty years ago on election night, I decided to go out to the movies. I went to go see a new John Carpenter movie called “THEY LIVE,” which was a story about alien beings taking over the world, converting all of the human beings into docile puppets, and transforming the earth’s atmosphere into a toxic wasteland completely appropriate for visitors from the Andromeda Galaxy.

John Nada, played by Roddy Piper, is a recently-employed construction worker that discovers a special pair of sunglasses that allows him see the true faces of people. When he wears these sunglasses, he’s also able to see all sorts of subliminal messages on television, magzines, billboards, and other types of media- “OBEY”, “CONFORM”, “MARRY AND REPRODUCE”, “CONSUME”, “WATCH TELEVISION” and “SLEEP.” Without the sunglasses, the aliens from Andromeda are completely indistinguishable from the normal human beings. In many cases, political leaders are actually Andromeda aliens, providing leadership for the citizens that follow what they perceive as solid patriotic behavior.

The citizens don’t even realize that that their environment has been transformed into a poisonous toxic wasteland, and they’ve been programmed to believe some misinformation that will keep them permanently enslaved into an economic slavetown.

Some how or another…. don’t ask me why, but the events of the McCain campaign reminded me of this silly little movie.

There’s a lot of really nutty people out there, doing a lot of really stupid things to support John McCain. Idiots are coming out of the backwoods to share lies and misinformation about Obama.

Hunter at DailyKos had some good insights about how John McCain and Sarah Palin are focusing their energies on mobilizing the wingnuts:

Yeah, she’s firing up the wingnut base. Who cares. The wingnut base is the easiest group of people on the planet to fire up. They get fired up when they think gays might steal their marriages. They get fired up when they have to press “one” for English. They get fired up when some black guy gets all uppity and runs for president. They get fired up when their sub-sub-sub-version of Christianity isn’t the dominant religious ideal of the nation. Holding Sarah Palin in front of them is like teasing a dog through a fence, but that’s about it.
_
So ya know, McCain — by all means, if you’re going to throw this Hail Mary pass, then throw it in earnest. Let her pop on out there for interviews with real reporters — you know, as opposed to the biting “journalism” of people like Kristol and Hannity. Have her answer questions on the stump that haven’t been pre-approved in triplicate. Right now, “maverick” seems synonymous with “coward” — if the strength of your convictions extends only to inciting crowds against Obama, and you’ve got nothing else to run with, then I don’t think you can get too snippy when the public just starts laughing at you.

I’d like to believe that the American people are waking up to recognize the nonsense for what it is- nonsense. It is encouraging when I hear about lifelong Republicans deciding they can no longer support what is being called the “Republican platform” in 2008.

I’ve witnessed some really irrational behavior – relatives that tell me how Obama has so many “bad” alliances, yet they get extremely angry when I remind them of the questionable alliances of McCain and Palin. I’m told that “history matters,” but if I bring up certain information regarding the histories of their favorite candidates, then my information is “irrelevant.”

Sometimes, you just can’t talk politics with certain people. You love ‘em as human beings, but their political opinions drive you up the wall. You ask yourself “What planet are these people from?” “Am I actually related to them?”

Me, I’m just hoping for a smart president that has a better understanding of new economics in the 21st century; a leader that recognizes the relevance of an intelligent energy strategy, actual science concepts, and can deliver a coherent international policy. Oh…. I also want a leader with a plan to get our soldiers out of Iraq so we don’t have to spend $10 billion a month for an occupation of a country that doesn’t even want us there.

I wish I could order some of those sunglasses…

Damn, I still love this silly puppet dog!

Can we get a regular late night show for Triumph the Insult Comic Dog? Can he take over Conan’s spot after Conan moves to the Tonight show spot?

Please?

Here’s a Palin I would endorse for president:

Next Page »