FairAndUNbalanced's podcast (political news)
Lincoln Denial

Well the reason that the slaves were eventually freed was the Constitution. I mean, it was like the conscience of the American people.

Unfortunately there were some court decisions like Dred Scott and others that defined some people as property, but the Constitution kept calling us back to "all men are created equal and we have inalienable rights" in the minds of God.

Former Senator Jim DeMint, Heritage Foundation, April 3, 2014

Sometimes I have to search my heart to know why I react as I do. I confess I don't really know for sure why that interview is so irritating.

It isn't the first idiocy uttered about slavery. In fact, it is similar to earlier presentations by others.

But we also know that the very founders that wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States.

Representative Michele Bachmann (R-MN), January 21, 2011

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Direct download: Lincoln_Denial.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 9:20pm EST

Columbia, Tennessee promotes itself as the mule capital of the world. Every year around the end of March and beginning of April, they hold an annual celebration. Thousands of people come from all over to join in bluegrass, gospel, country music, with dancing and events. This year they tried a sort of take off on a rodeo, with guys riding sticks made up to look like heads of mules. It was like Monty Python for mule lovers.

They also have an annual mule parade. Four years ago, a local Republican candidate for Congress, a tea party favorite, was scolded by a parade organizer for some sort of safety violation committed by his campaign the previous year. The candidate, Zach Wamp, got really steamed. He was reported by the Nashville City Paper to have said a couple of things that make campaign managers attempt to fly from tall buildings.

"I make my own rules!" and "You can’t tell me what to do!"

Yikes. Way to go, Zack.

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Direct download: Lessons_from_the_Columbia_Mule_Parad.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 9:31pm EST

Republican Tipping Points

When Bill Clinton won the Presidency in 1992, conservatives looked for whatever comfort they could generate from his low share of the vote. It had been a three candidate race, and Bill Clinton won with 43 percent.

George Will reacted with some degree of scorn, not toward Clinton, but toward Clinton's critics. He mocked the"delightful Republican attempt to build confidence on a rickety scaffolding of little numbers."

He stated two obvious facts.

One was that the President-elect would have won with a substantially larger share of the vote had the third candidate, Ross Perot, not engaged in a campaign that was self-financed by equal parts big money and big ego.

The other was that Clinton had ... well ... won.

"Clinton`s strong number is: He won 100 percent of the White House."

Unless you are Chris Christie making a ruthless run toward national Republican prominence, that 100 percent of any elective office means you would not be willing to block lanes or break heads to get a few more points past 60 percent. As long as you get enough past half to avoid a nail biting recount, who cares?

That's why it was hard for me to take seriously the Huffington Post headline a few days ago:

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Direct download: Republican_Tipping_Points.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 11:15pm EST

Will Massively Wealthy Elites Save the Republican Party?

Voters in their mid-twenties will remember just one presidential campaign in which the Republican got more votes than the Democrat. That happened in 2004 as President George W. Bush was cast as the anti-terrorist President.

Elections in which the Democratic candidate got more votes:

 

  • 1992
  • 1996
  • 2000
  • 2008
  • 2012

Elections in which the Republican candidate got more votes:

 

  • 2004

A trend can be seen in non-Presidential races. The line is not straight, but it wobbles along, generally in one direction. The oscillation does continue. Republicans are victorious, then Democrats win. But Republican victories are becoming narrower over time. Democrats, when they win, achieve greater margins.

What began happening in 1992? Why is it continuing?

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Direct download: Will_Massively_Wealthy_Elites_Save_t.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 12:56am EST

My Defense of Bill O'Reilly

Bill O'Reilly's comparison has to be taken in context.

The O’Reilly haters are pretty much the people that have no idea what I do. And I like that — I mean, I don’t have any problem with people disliking me, and I’ll tell you why. I’m not comparing myself, but who was the most hated person in Judea 2,000 years ago?

Many, many loved him, but just as many despised him. They’re always going to do that. If you speak your mind, you’re going to have some who like you and some who hate you.

Bill O'Reilly, March 21, 2014

I happen to disagree with O'Reilly about the cause of the crucifixion. His opinion has been shared by antisemitic bigots for centuries. It has caused much suffering among persecuted Jews. I don't think Jesus was killed because he was widely hated. He was targeted, at least in part, because he was way too popular in the nation of Israel.

That does not detract from the point Bill O'Reilly was attempting to make. 

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Direct download: My_Defense_of_Bill_OReilly.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 10:12pm EST

Ted Nugent - Impolite Name Calling

Well, that was bracing.

In the month and a half since one time rocker Ted Nugent characterized the President in terms most familiar to those who lived in the days of Jim Crow and lynchings, he has semi-sorta apologized. Between those slurs and his revised and extended remarks, he was greeted joyfully by a candidate for Governor of Texas, was endorsed by a former Governor of Alaska, and was the subject of a host of reactions by public conservatives.

His own remarks were controversial, but not entirely unexpected. They comprise a small part of a massive pattern of longstanding behavior.

More instructive was the disapproving reaction of mainstream Republicans.

Direct download: Ted_Nugent_-_Impolite_Name_Calling.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 1:14am EST

Economists Stumbling Toward an Airplane Propeller

What's the most boring thing imaginable?

Watching paint dry? Watching grass grow? Waiting for the History Channel to show history?

How about a news account of a series of meetings by a group of economists?

Except this group of economists is staggering like an inebriated passenger stumbling toward an airplane propeller. The propeller is we now know as the economic crisis of 2008. The combination of innate cluelessness and lack of information combines with the ability to see things retrospectively to form a horror show of policy.

It's like watching a television drama with little kids playing with dynamite and matches. You hold your breath, knowing this won't be good.

 

Direct download: Economists_Stumbling_Toward_an_Airpl.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 9:27pm EST

Why Prosecute the Loud-Music Killer Again?

The man who killed a teenager over an argument about loud music will likely spend the rest of his life in prison. Still, it was not a verdict consistent with common sense.

The interview with the one juror who has stepped forward provided confirmation of what many of us have suspected. A majority of the jury wanted to convict the defendant for outright murder. Three holdouts refused.

At issue was whether the shooter was acting in self-defense. The definition in Florida seems to be looser than in most of the country in two respects.

  • He did not actually have to be in any danger from the teenager he shot and killed. He only had to reasonably imagine the danger.
  • Justifiable homicide in Florida is not an affirmative defense in the same way it is in most parts of the world.

An affirmative defense shifts the burden of proof...

Direct download: Why_Prosecute_the_Loud-Music_Killer.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 10:37pm EST

For the most part, mainstream media outlets have ignored the obvious coverage. They are, for once, just too responsible to get the job done.

I suppose that, in my heart, I have always known of that ageless quality within. I am too old to be young, but I'll never be too old to be immature. So it's time to take up the slack.

 

Direct download: Unknown_Investigation_into_Denied_Un.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 9:46pm EST

Hillary Clinton Too Ruthless to Rule

Before the President was killed, Robert F. Kennedy had earned a reputation for toughness. When John F. Kennedy encouraged Americans to work at physical fitness, it was his brother Bobby who responded with fifty mile hikes, his exhausted staff in tow.

But the tough image had not been developed on the hiking trail...

Direct download: Hillary_Clinton_Too_Ruthless_to_Rule.mp3
Category:Political News -- posted at: 10:27pm EST