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In lieu of dealing with deficit, Senate Dems demonize House GOP

On Tuesday, via the New York Times blog (but not, at least according to this google search, their print edition), we learn:

Moments before a conference call with reporters was scheduled to get underway on Tuesday morning, Charles E. Schumer of New York, the No. 3 Democrat in the Senate, apparently unaware that many of the reporters were already on the line, began to instruct his fellow senators on how to talk to reporters about the contentious budget process. . . .  Mr. Schumer told them to portray John A. Boehner of Ohio, the speaker of the House, as painted into a box by the Tea Party, and to decry the spending cuts that he wants as extreme. “I always use the word extreme,” Mr. Schumer said. “That is what the caucus instructed me to use this week.”

Can you imagine how much media it would have gotten if Schumer’s Republican counterpart, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, was caught on a similar call insisting that Republicans call Democratic proposals “extreme”?

Now, what makes all this interesting is that given candidate Barack Obama’s concession to conservative ideas in the presidential campaign and the bipartisan agreement President Obama entered into last falls to extend the tax rates established by his Republican predecessor, the only way Congress can reduce the deficit is by cutting federal spending.

The Republican House, attempting to finish the work left undone by the preceding Democratic Congress, passed a budget for the balance of the current fiscal year, cutting $61 billion in federal spending.  The Democratic Senate has yet to pass a budget.  So, instead of trying to reach a compromise with his partisan adversaries in the other chamber of Congress, Mr. Schumer, under marching orders from his caucus, is seeking to demonize Republicans who have started making tough decisions on spending. (more…)

Left using anti-gay whisper campaign in WI Supreme Court race?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:00 am - March 31, 2011.
Filed under: Misrepresenting the Right

Sending me a tweet from Wisconsinite Beacher Grrl, Bruce alerted me to a post suggesting that a disingenuous ad by the liberal Greater Wisconsin Committee to attack the state Supreme Court’s Chief Justice David Prosser (facing off against assistant state attorney general JoAnne Kloppenburg in an election next week) represents an effort “to perpetuate unfair stereotypes and use anti-gay bigotry to help their cause“:

The ad relates to a criminal investigation over 30 years ago. A criminal case wasn’t prosecuted because of a lack of sufficient evidence. Interestingly, the case hasn’t been raised against the incumbent during 30+ years of public life since then, but its being raised now. That should make you suspicious off the bat. The ad perpetuates bigoted stereotypes that connect homosexuality with pedophilia. It’s 2011. Let’s lay it out there for those who don’t get it. Pedophiles are bad because they are pedophiles, regardless of whether they abuse children of the same or the other gender. For years, bigots commonly attacked homosexuals by suggesting they were pedophiles. In reality, abuse of perhaps millions of innocent, little girls by predatory uncles or male neighbors over the years is just as abhorrently wrong. . . .

Here, the left is playing on an age-old, despicable and unfair stereotype used against gays for years. It is dependent upon ignorant (or just evil) bigots having an inability to distinguish between homosexuality and pedophilia. Archie Bunker himself could have written the ad. The ad accompanies an organized whisper campaign about the incumbent . . . .

Here is the Archie Bunker logic: The candidate is not married. The candidate didn’t prosecute a case 30 years ago against a male priest accused of pinching a boys rear end (literally). Candidate doesn’t appear to be taking orders from the Church, therefore, said candidate must be “one of them” and we can’t have “one of them” on the State Supreme Court (where candidate has served admirably the last ten years).

Now, I’ll grant there is some circumstantial evidence here, but the case for a whisper campaign is compelling.  And you can bet we’d be hearing a lot more about it if a social conservative group had released a similar ad against a liberal jurist. (more…)

Inapposite comparison of world without ENDA to era of Jim Crow

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:18 am - March 31, 2011.
Filed under: American History,Big Government Follies,Freedom

Every now and again, a reader will make a somewhat critical comment which helps make our point. And yesterday, in commenting on my piece chiding Log Cabin for backing the Employment Non Discrimination ACT (ENDA), Vast Variety did just that:

Unfortunately, when the majority of society finds it acceptable to discriminate then a business that discriminates will not suffer in the marketplace. Ask any African American you lived through the Jim Crow laws in the South if the businesses that discriminated against them suffered in the marketplace.

Southern businesses which discriminated against blacks in the era of Jim Crow didn’t suffer in the marketplace because those heinous and unconstitutional (as per Justice Harlan’s “Great Dissent” in Plessy v. Ferguson) laws mandated that private enterprises discriminate.  If a businessman tried to gain a competitive advantage by dealing with black people the same way he dealt with whites, a rival could turn to state institutions to prevent that entrepreneur from acting in the interest of his own enterprise — as he saw it.

So, let’s contrast the Jim Crow era with the past forty-odd years, the era when gay people started becoming increasingly open about their sexuality.  While many companies did indeed discriminate against “open homosexuals,” the state did not mandate that they do so.  Indeed, as more and more gay people started coming out, private companies began to reach out to gay people, adopting non-discrimination policies of their own accord, developing marketing campaigns to reach out to our community and offering domestic partnership benefits to same-sex partners of their employees. (more…)