Saturday, February 06, 2010

Negroes, Colored People, Retarded People and political correctness.

Media Matters is a media watchdog group that watches the conservative end of the media, looking for outrageous utterances from Rush Limbaugh or inaccuracies on Fox News. I seldom think they have anything of substance to report but I subscribe to Media Matters so you want have to. The following from Media Matters is interesting.

Media Matters: The politically motivated selective-victimhood of Sarah Palin
From Media Matters

You've got to hand it to Fox News contributor Sarah Palin. After all, there aren't many people who can make news with a single Facebook post. Her status updates are like catnip for journalists and media types.The Wall Street Journal reported this week that, in a private meeting, Emanuel called plans by liberal groups to run ads targeting conservative Democrats "F-ing retarded."

Following news of the hurtful comment, Palin, the mother of a child with Down syndrome, took to Facebook to demand Emanuel's firing in a post she titled, "Are You Capable of Decency, Rahm Emanuel?"

The deservedly stern comments of an offended mother or the hypocritical nonsense of a political opportunist? First, it's worth noting that Emanuel has apologized for the comment at least twice now. It's also worth noting that just a few short weeks ago, Palin fretted that we were becoming a nation where we -- I'm guessing all the Joe the Plumbers out there -- couldn't use words that were "politically incorrect."

Far from consistent, Palin has exposed herself as someone who deploys selective-victimhood as a politically motivated weapon. How else can one explain her harsh rebuke of Emanuel and near silence when it comes to eerily similar language used by conservative radio talker Rush Limbaugh and her Fox News colleague Glenn Beck?

Last January, during an interview with Mary Lynn Rajskub, a star of Fox Broadcasting Co.'24, Beck laughed at the idea of artwork produced by children with Down syndrome, asking, "What do the paintings of the retarded children go for?"

Then there was the time right after the 2008 election when he went after Newsweek over a story on Palin that he found objectionable. Purporting to offer the magazine's view of the former governor, he played the role of an unnamed Newsweek staffer saying, "When it's really, truly about Sarah Palin and how stupid, she's practically retarded. Yes. I think that's appropriate word to use for Sarah Palin, retarded. I t hink that's an... if you would like a retarded person running the State of Alaska, just higgeldy-piggeldy."

So what did Palin, then the newly minted Fox News contributor, have to say about these comments during her first hour-long sit-down interview with Beck? Nothing. Nada. Crickets.

Responding to the controversy surrounding Palin and Emanuel, Limbaugh said liberals who complained about health care reform "are retards." Sure, El Rushbo went on to say that he was just using the term in "quoting Emanuel," but it wasn't the first time the language had appeared on his radio program. Almost a year ago, long before the Emanuel gaffe, while discussing the flu, Limbaugh appeared to mock those concerned with the use of such language, saying, "[a]nything you can do to stop it or to arrest it or to retard -- sorry -- to 'Special Olympic' its duration, then it -- you should do it."

On Thursday, Limbaugh addressed his controversial comments and suggested that Palin wouldn't "denounce" him because she "knows I do this kind of" thing. Just four hours later, responding to a request for comment on Limbaugh's comments by Greg Sargent of Washington Post Co.'s The Plum Line blog, Palin's spokesperson provided a broad statement saying in part that use of the word constitutes "crude and demeaning name calling."

How long would Palin stand up to radio's reigning king of radical right-wing vitriol? Not long at all. The following day on his radio program, Limbaugh told listeners that a Palin representative had called him in a "panic" to explain her criticism. Heaven forbid she should offend Boss Limbaugh. During the 2008 Democratic presidential primary, Palin offered then-Senator Hillary Clinton advice on dealing with the pervasive sexism Clinton faced in the media, saying essentially that she should stop whining. If Palin can't be consistent in her criticism, perhaps she should take her own advice.

I think Media Matters is right this time. There is gross hypocrisy on the left and the right when it comes to being offended. Since the left has made victimhood and being offended into an art form and a powerful weapon, the right has had to fight back with the same nonsense. It is unfortunate.

I really don't see what is so terrible about what Rahm Emmanule had to say. Insensitive? Yes. Impolite? Yes. And definitely with the use of the F-word, it was crude. But I do think Palin's making a big deal out of it is a little bit excessive. Actually, I don't know why "retarded" became such an offensive word. I think the preferred term now is "intellectually disabled." At one time, I think "retarded" became an acceptable word to replace "slow" and other terms we no longer use.

I also do not see what was so offensive about what Harry Reid said and his use of the word "Negro." The National Council of Negro Women and The Negro College Fund use the word. I know it is no longer a popular word and I don't use the term, but I am not sure when it became a slur. For that matter, I still don't know why the term "colored people" is offensive. The National Association of Colored People haven't changed their name. Can some one explain to me why "people of color" is a good term and "colored people" is a bad term?

I work in the non-profit housing sector and for many year we in the field here in Nashville had a loose association of people who routinely met to stay informed and to network. The name of the group was The Low Income Housing Forum. A few years ago we changed the name to The Affordable Housing Forum. Now, the term "affordable housing" is falling out of favor and people are using the term "work force housing." It all means the same thing. I guess it is time to change the name again. I think as soon as people discover what you really mean by use of word or term, it is time to change it.

I couple years ago I attended a conference on housing for people with mental illness (I am not sure "mental illness" is still an acceptable term). This conference was at one of our state park's conference centers. The buffet one night featured "crazy chicken," which was a choice of chicken cooked several different ways. One could have baked chicken or fired chicken or other chicken choices. Some attending the conference complained and had the leader of the conference write a letter complaining about the use of the term "crazy chicken."

I am not going to go out of my way to offend people but I think people should go out of their way not to be so sensitive. If I know someone finds the use of the word "retarded" offensive, I will avoid using it around them. Since I know many Blacks are offended by the use of the word "Negro" or "colored people" I won't use it. I will not however use the term "people of color." There are limits to how far I will go not to offend.

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Friday, February 05, 2010

A green Tennessee benefits everyone

by Kathleen Williams, Guest Editorial, The Tennessean, Feb.5, 2010

Do only greenies and tree-huggers need clean water, clean air and abundant food? Supporting policies that safeguard our environment is Christian and it's patriotic. It's for people who love their homeland and this beautiful world. It's also for people who want a strong economy, white collar jobs, tourism to thrive in our state and a stable tax base. (link)


Kathleen Williams is the Executive Director of the Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation, a non-profit conservation agency. She is also my sister and I am very proud of the work she is doing.

TPGF has saved thousands of acres of land in Tennessee and convinced land owners to put conservation easements on thousands of additional acres. TPGF has also made grants to other agencies that have used the money to enhance trails and make wilderness land more accessible to hikers and other outdoor enthusiast. In my view, as important as is the amount of land that has been saved, it is what has been saved that is important. Due to Kathleen’s efforts, beautiful waterfalls have been saved for public enjoyment and beautiful vistas have remained beautiful vistas.

Two years ago, the revenue from a State real estate transfer tax which was supposed to be dedicated to a conservation land acquisition fund and related purposes was diverted to the general fund. The legislation that created the tax over 20 years ago specified how the funds generated from the tax could be used.

Kathleen has been working tirelessly ever since the fund was raided to have that fund restored. I thought she was titling at windmills. I did not think she would get the fund restored. One should never underestimate Kathleen. She is charming and passionate and persuasive and determined.

Of course, the fight is not over. The governor has only restored the funds in his proposed budget; the legislature has not acted. The state of Tennessee is in dire straights as are many states in these hard economic times. Services, including TennCare, are being cut and over a thousand state employees will loose their jobs under under the proposed budget . This year, Governor Bredesen was able to craft a budget by making strategic cuts and by using federal stimulus funds and “rainy day” reserve funds for reoccurring expenses. The legislature very well may make changes to the proposed budget and the land acquisition fund could still be at risk. In the next budget cycle, the next governor will have even a harder time developing a budget. The temptation to take money from where ever it can be found in order to hammer together a budget is tempting.

I can understand the temptation to raid a fund like the land acquisition fund in order to balance the budget but I think it is unwise. I love Tennessee. Our state is beautiful. As the population grows however and has coal companies and timber companies start selling off their holdings, that beauty is threatened. To keep Tennessee beautiful and green, there need to be funds available to save threatened natural treasures. When a beautiful vista becomes doted with houses the wilderness experience will never be the same. I want to save Tennessee’s wild and scenic beauty for future generation.

Not only is raiding the land acquisition fund unwise in my view, but I think it is immoral. When a tax is passed for one specific purpose it should not be diverted to another purpose. If the purpose is no longer worthy of funding, repeal the tax.

Some years ago Governor Bredesen was Nashville’s Mayor Bredesen and he was trying to find the funding to build the football stadium that became home to the Titans. To put together the financial package to pay for the bonds to build the stadium, he diverted funds generated from a fee that had been added to people’s water bill. The purpose of this fee was to combat non-point source water pollution and clean up the waste water discharge into the Cumberland River. The Nashville community was so gung ho about building the stadium that no one objected to diverting these funds, including the environmentalist community. I was not in the Council at the time the stadium was funded, but I was in the Council when the fee was passed that increased peoples water bill. I thought it was necessary at the time and I voted for that fee. I was misled and the people were robbed.

I hope that our legislators and future Governor are wise and moral and leave the land acquisition fund in tact. We can trust Kathleen to work to see that they do.

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Tax Tips for DemocRats had some very kind words to say...

Tax Tips for DemocRats had some very kind words to say about my blog in his post Four Blogs Making America Better, You Must Read Them. I really am a modest guy and I am appreciative, humbled, and honored. All I can say is, "Thank you."

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Welcome back The Tampa Pirate

pirate_shipThe Tampa Pirate is a conservative, well-written, thoughtful blog that just disappeared a few weeks ago. I know lots of blogs come and go. People get it out of their system or they get discouraged or they find other hobbies. I was afraid The Tampa Pirate had just gone away. Make Spence, the Tampa pirate, emailed me yesterday and said that his blog had been attacked by hackers and virtually destroyed and he is in the process of rebuilding. Welcome back, Mark.

Please help Mark rebuild by visiting his blog and giving him a link. Glad to have you back, Mark.

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Taxpayers pick up Nancy Pelosi's $100,000 bar tab

Taxpayers pick up Nancy Pelosi's $100,000 bar tab,good booze
Maker's Mark whiskey, Courvoisier cognac, Johnny Walker Red scotch, Grey Goose vodka, E&J brandy, Bailey's Irish Crème, Dewars scotch, Bombay Sapphire gin, Jack Daniels whiskey.

A well-stocked liquor cabinet is one of the finer things in life. If you are Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, you let the taxpayers stock your liquor cabinet- your liquor cabinet that you have stocked for those private jet flights between Washington DC and San Francisco. Nancy Pelosi's charges for "in flight services" over the last two years came to $101,000. This was a part of the $2.1 million for her Air Force jet travel over these last two years. Despite regular commercial service between San Francisco and D.C., the speaker flies Air Force jets and travels in style. No cheap booze for the Speaker. And, no entertaining at her own expense- charge it to the taxpayers. The bar tap for the Speaker was made public by Judicial Watch and was obtained though a Freedom of Information act request. (link)

I am sure Nancy Pelosi finds being a public servant very rewarding.

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Old Hickory Eggs and Bacon Summit


"Eggs & Bacon Summit"
(Dutch treat)
A meeting to strategize, organize & unify

Sponsored by the Davidson County Republican Party
Saturday, February 6, 2010 at 9 a.m.
Black Jack Cove Marina
2001 Riverside Road
Old Hickory, TN 37138

(See link below for map link)

Guest Speaker: Debra Maggart
State Representative, (R-Mt. Juliet)

Debra Maggart
& Introducing Charles Williamson, GOP Candidate House District 51

Special Guests: Councilman Eric Crafton; Former Councilman Rod Williams

Davidson County Republican Party

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Why do intellectuals and celebrities think that mass murderers are so cool

A shout-out to Amid Clutter for lowering the boom on those who think Che Guevara is cool.

Why do intellectuals (so called) and celebrities think that mass murderers are so long as they're the "right" mass murders? i.e. Mao, Marx, and Che. Hitler isn't as cool apparently because he was just so damn obvious about his atrocities. Plus he lost this brutal war, you know.
Great post.

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Monday, February 01, 2010

Are Green Power Programs a Scam?

"Are Green Power Programs a Scam?" ask journalist Laura McCandlish in the pages of left-wing journal Mother Jones. She concludes that if they are not exactly a scam, they do virtually nothing to produce green energy. McCandlish examines the green power program of Pacific Power and finds that for every dollar spend on green power, about 33% does not go to purchase power produced by windmills and solar panels but goes to support staff and publicity for the program and 19% goes for marketing. The remainder mostly goes to purchase renewable energy credits (REC's) which may or may not be double sold and double counted. It is a very expensive way to subsidize green energy. To learn more about why one may conclude that Green Power programs are a scam, follow the link above.

We have our own Green Power program here in Nashville and I have family members that pay higher than necessary electric bills in order to purchase green power. I don't know if our green power program is a scam or not but I would assume they all operate pretty much like Pacific Power. Those purchasing Green Power may not be doing much to promote green power, but they are making themselves feel virtuous and that may be worth the extra money they are paying for their electricity.

It is not easy being green. There is so much nonsense, suggestions for meaningless symbolic feel- good measures, green washing, and out and out scams that it is hard being green.

As I have said in a recent post, I don't know if global warming is real or not. The climate gate scandal, glaciergate, and recent reputable dissenting voices have caused me to become more skeptical. So, while I don't know if global warming is a hoax or not, carbon off set markets, green marketing, and green power is pretty much proven to be a scam.

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First Tuesday:What is new in State Legislature w/Lt Gov. Ron Ramsey

First Tuesday Group Meetup
Date: Feb 2 Tue 11:30 AM
Location: Waller Lansden, 511 Union StFloor 27Nashville, TN 37201

1ST TUESDAY attendees:
Some of you have had the chance to hear Lt Gov Ramsey before at 1ST TUESDAY. He has been a good friend to 1ST TUESDAY and has visited with our group after the last few Legislative sessions. This is a VERY different year politically --- in several ways --- so I have invited Lt. Gov Ramsey to visit us a little earlier this year --- and to tell us what to watch for in the State Senate this session .... [ oh -- you may also know Ron is also one of the top candidates to be our Republican nominee for GOV of Tennessee this fall ]

This is a most exciting time in Republican politics in Tennessee -- as well as nationally. Few people in our state know as much about how national politics and policies are affecting Tennessee as our Lt Governor. Let me encourage you to make a special effort to attend our meeting on FEB 2nd. You will learn a great deal !!! As usual, we will meet at The Law Offices of Waller/Lansden - 511 Union Street - 27th floor. Lunch from Alexander's Catering will be available at 11:30 and is $15 for members and $20 for guests [ or those who haven't had a chance to pay their 2010 dues -- dues for 2010 are still only $20.] - Our meeting will start promptly at NOON. Ron knows 1ST TUESDAY attendees to be a very savvy group. He tells me he is looking forward to the insightful Q&A session our group is becoming known for in political circles. Bring your questions and come prepared to learn a great deal about how 2010 will unfold politically on many fronts.

Thanks, Tim

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