Sunday, March 31, 2013

I really, really had to post this today.

No, really.

Today is Easter, which is a big deal for a large segment of the population. Not as big as Christmas (although liturgically Easter is the more important holiday), but a big deal nonetheless.

Maybe it's because it isn't as consumer driven as Christmas that we haven't heard as much about the "War on Easter" as we have about the "War on Christmas", but that's apparently all changed.

Today, thanks to those assiduous conspiracy-spotters at Breitbart, we now know who's at the heart of the War on Easter: Google!

March 31 marks the birthday of National Farm Workers Association (later United Farm Workers) co-founder Cesar Chavez. Chavez, who was trained by Saul Alinsky in the tactics of community organizing, has become a cult figure in California due to his organization of agricultural workers. March 31 also happens to be another important date this year: Easter. So, naturally, Google’s current logo features a graphic of Chavez’s face, rather than anything having to do with Easter.

Set aside the fact that apparently Google never observes religious holidays in its doodles, the Breitbartniks know better. In the cultural war, when you really want to know what's happening on the front lines, where else would you go to find out?

Oh, and why did I absolutely have to post this today?

It's pretty simple, really. If I'd waited until tomorrow you would have bet money that it was an April Fool's prank. Fortunately, though, the people at Breitbart are fools every day of the year.

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Friday, March 15, 2013

And the Republicans stand for what, exactly?

It's been a revealing day, I guess.

First off, we all learned that Rob Portman, the conservative Republican who spent most of last year campaigning for Mitt Romney, has decided he's in favor of marriage equality, and all it took was learning that the issue personally affects his son, who is gay.

We also learned something important about other Republicans.

You might have seen the story in the New Yorker about Paul Cantor, the nasty piece of work in charge of the Republicans in the House (actually, he's only Number Two, but he doesn't take a back seat to anyone in being a nasty little prick).

What I thought was very striking was this line about Ramesh Ponnuru: He argued that too many voters believe that the Party’s economic agenda helps nobody except rich people and big business.

Read more:

Wait. "Too many voters believe"? So they believe they have an image problem? Well yes, that's exactly what Cantor believes. Or, as he explained it with an analogy to Domino's Pizza, when Domino's realized their problem was that their pizza sucked they decided to fix it so it wouldn't suck so bad.

If the Republican Party is the pizza, here's Cantor's solution:

Since the 2012 elections, the Republicans have been divided between those who believe their policies are the problem and those who believe they just need better marketing—between those who believe they need to make better pizza and those who think they just need a more attractive box. Cantor, who is known among his colleagues as someone with strategic intelligence and a knack for political positioning, argues that it’s the box.

Maybe today was the day for the new box, and what better packaging to prove that people are wrong, that the Republicans are not just for the rich people and big business. The vote was to increase the federal minimum wage, surely an opportunity to show whether the Republicans are purely on the side of rich people and big business.

227 Republicans voted against raising the minimum wage. How many voted in favor of it? Well, that would be none. Zero. The Republicans were unanimous in opposing an increase in the minimum wage.

Where's that new pizza box?

And using Rob Portman as an example, I guess we know that none of the Congressional Republicans have kids trying to live on minimum wage.

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