Category Archives: Conservative Thought
Did you ever read something or have a conversation that made you look at long held assumptions in a different light?
An excerpt from his self-penned arrivederci in NY Magazine.
“ “I spent 25 years working hard for the issues I care about. When 30 Rock went into syndication, I sensed that I was going to be on TV for a bit, so I crafted my arrangement with Capital One Bank to fund my foundation for charitable giving. They paid me $15 million over nearly five years. After taxes and accounting fees, I will have given all of it, $14.125 million, to charity. After the TMZ event, Capital One did not renew my contract, although it politely said the two things were unrelated. AT&T had booked me for a paid speech in Orlando—and then canceled. WNYC lost funding for my radio show. Bill de Blasio, who apparently gets his news from TMZ, too, distanced himself from me.
Now I loathe and despise the media in a way I did not think possible. I used to engage with the media knowing that some of it would be adversarial, but now it’s superfluous at best and toxic at its worst. If MSNBC went off the air tomorrow, what difference would it make? If the Huffington Post went out of business tomorrow, what difference would it make? Arianna Huffington accomplished what she wanted to accomplish. She created this wonderful thing. And what have they done with that? They want clicks, I get it. They’ve gotta have clicks for their advertisers, so they’re going to need as much Kim Kardashian and wardrobe malfunctions as possible. The other day, they had a thing on the home page about pimples. Tripe. Liberal and conservative media are now precisely equivalent.
I’m aware that it’s ironic that I’m making this case in the media—but this is the last time I’m going to talk about my personal life in an American publication ever again.
When this whole thing happened, Warren Beatty, who is mystifyingly intelligent and wise, said to me: Your problem is a very basic one, and it’s very common to actors. And that’s when we step in front of a camera, we feel the need to make it into a moment. This instinct, even unconsciously, is to make the exchange in front of the camera a dramatic one. Perhaps I fell for that.
In the New Media culture, anything good you do is tossed in a pit, and you are measured by who you are on your worst day. What’s the Boy Scout code? Trustworthy. Loyal. Helpful. Friendly. Courteous. Kind. Obedient. Cheerful. Thrifty. Brave. Clean. Reverent. I might be all of those things, at certain moments. But people suspect that whatever good you do, you are faking. You’re that guy. You’re that guy that says this. There is a core of outlets that are pushing these stories out. Breitbart clutters the blogosphere with “Alec Baldwin, he’s the Devil, he’s Fidel Baldwin.”
Broadway has changed, by my lights. The TV networks, too. New York has changed. Even the U.S., which is so preposterously judgmental now. The heart, the arteries of the country are now clogged with hate. The fuel of American political life is hatred. Who would ever dream that Obama would deserve to be treated the way he has been? The birth-certificate bullshit, which is just Obama’s version of Swiftboating. And all for the electoral nullification that seems like a cancer on the American system. But this is Roger Ailes. And Fox. And Breitbart. And this is all about hate. It’s Hate Incorporated. But the liberals have taken the bait and run in the same direction—and it’s just as corrosive. MSNBC, in its own way, is as full of shit, as redundant and as superfluous, as Fox.
I think America’s more fucked up now than it’s ever been. People are angry that in the game of musical chairs that is the U.S. economy, there are less seats at the table when the music stops. And at every recession, the music is stopping.
Am I bitter about some of the things that have happened to me in the past year? Yes, I’m a human being. I always had big ambitions. I had dreams of running for office at some point in the next five years. In the pyramid of decision-making in New York City politics, rich people come first, unions second, and rank-and-file New Yorkers come dead last. I wanted to change that. I wanted to find a way to lower the cost of the city government and thus reduce New York’s shameful tax burden. I would have decentralized the schools. My father was a public-school teacher. He always told me that although you could encourage a child to work hard, you could only go so far; that half the goal had to be achieved at home. As progressive as I’ve been in my politics, there are other things I don’t think of as liberal or progressive, just common sense. Of course, another thing I would have done—and this will not surprise anyone—is change the paparazzi law.”
“Christians are being persecuted. (sniff).”
“We are being denied 0ur freedom to discriminate. It says so right here in the Bibl…. I mean owners manual”.
“Oh, it’s not so bad. You can discriminate all you want! But if one of my cousins has a hissy tizzy, you won’t be able to use my Dad this time to get out of trouble. Remember what we talked about?? But not to worry, remember who’s by your side! But from now on, you need to be discriminating in your discrimination, OK?”
“OK. (sniff.) Can I go back to writing my science book now?”
So, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed SB 1062, did she?
Exactly as predicted.
Exactly as she was encouraged to do by an outraged country.
Are you impressed that Jan Brewer bowed to “common sense” and “human dignity” and the US Constitution?
Because you damned well shouldn’t be.
Brewer simply gave in to pragmatism and she deserves no credit for her moral cowardice whatsoever. None.
Brewer, along with Arizona conservatives such as John McCain who called for the veto, deserve nothing but contempt.
Brewer should have signed the bill instead of vetoing it.
Governor Jan Brewer should have put Arizona’s money where conservative mouths are and signed SB 1062 into law and made religious Apartheid a reality in Arizona right along with Russia and Iran.
And then – and then – Brewer and the ideological fanatics of her party should have been forced to live with the consequences.
Oh now, don’t get me wrong.
I’m sincerely glad that the people of Arizona won’t have to suffer for the bigotry of a handful of religious zealots.
I’m relieved that sanity, for whatever reason, prevailed in the eleventh hour and that LGBT people in yet another US state won’t be relegated to even worse treatment at the hands of Evangelical Christianity.
But, Folks, look here, nothing, and I mean nothing, demonstrates the bottomless hypocrisy and the absolute moral cowardice of the religious fanatics who’ve taken over the Arizona legislature than this veto.
Arizona Republican Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake urged Governor Brewer to veto SB 1062, because, according to McCain, implementation of the law would be “devastating.”
Devastating to the state. Economically.
Devastating to business. Financially.
Devastating to Republicans. Politically.
But not devastating to actual people – especially the gay ones who are apparently not John McCain’s concern.
Last Monday, conservative state senators Bob Worsley, Adam Driggs, and Steve Pierce sent a letter to Governor Brewer, asking her to veto SB 1062.
But just days before, all three joined the Arizona Senate Republican caucus in voting for the bill.
That’s right, they voted for the bill, but then asked the governor to veto it.
After Republicans passed the bill and sent it to Brewer’s office for signature, and only after the scope of the resulting national outcry became apparent, Worsley confessed to reporters. “I have not been comfortable with this for some time.”
I have not been comfortable with this for some time?
Haven’t been comfortable with this for some time?
Jesus Haploid Christ, Worsley, what the fuck?
Worsley wasn’t comfortable with it, but he went right ahead and voted for SB 1062 anyway instead of taking responsibility for his own conscience.
He knew it was wrong, but instead of standing up and forcefully speaking out and holding his own party to public account, instead of demonstrating the superior moral conviction he and those like him loudly and repeatedly claim for their religion, he just went along with it anyway.
Worsely, Driggs, and Pierce weren’t comfortable with a bill that they voted for, that would have legalized blatant religious discrimination at their own dirty hands, but they voted for it anyway?
And what were they going to do then if Brewer signed the bill into law? Live with their discomfort?
Ask yourself something: if they could live with that particular discomfort, if their religious convictions could tolerate that discomfort without damning them to Bible Hell, then why can’t they live with the discomfort of being around gay people?
McCain, Worsley, et al, are so, so utterly typical of these hypocrites.
They are leaders in a party and a religion that has done nothing but villainize LGBT people at every turn – and then, what? They’re not comfortable when that same rabid fanaticism attempts to marginalize those self-same people?
This is so, so goddamned typical of John McCain. A man who spent his entire presidential campaign relentlessly demonizing his opponent, and then had the unmitigated gall to pretend that he wasn’t responsible when his own fanatical supporters – and his own running mate – resorted to calling Barack Obama an Arab and a Muslim and unAmerican and a subhuman mongrel in the national media and continue to do so to this very day.
McCain, Worsley, Driggs, Pierce, and Brewer are so utterly typical of this yellow-eyed breed of modern conservative fanatic – who, in the US House, voted last year to shut down the federal government, and then cried foul when they had to live with the backlash. And who, just last month, voted to shut the government down yet again … but then quietly urged Speaker John Boehner to make a deal with Democrats to increase the US debt ceiling in a clean resolution and keep America running so they didn’t have to suffer the consequences of their lunacy yet again.
These people know they are wrong.
They know it. Quod erat demonstrandum.
They know it, they absolutely know they are on the wrong side of history.
And yet they persist – just so long as they don’t have to live with the consequences.
Brewer vetoed SB 1062 for a number of reasons:
– because it could have cost Arizona the 2015 Super Bowl.
– because it could have significantly harmed Arizona’s tourist industry.
– because it could have cost Arizona business, particularly from Marriott Hotels, Apple, American Airlines and Yelp, in addition to hundreds of conferences, seminars, and retreats.
– because it would have inevitably resulted in endless lawsuits, costing Arizona millions upon millions of dollars in litigation.
– because it would likely have cost Republicans their majority in the Arizona state government.
– because it would have negatively affected Republican prospects in the 2014 midterm national elections.
– and because it would have had an impact on the 2016 presidential race.
– and most especially since it might have directly resulted in unintended discrimination againstChristians.
And so, when it came right down to it in Arizona today, rather than do what was right because it was the right thing to do, rather than strike down the bill because it would have legalized religious segregation as if Arizona was a state in Russia instead of America, Brewer at the behest of her oh so smug religion and her oh so morally superior political party vetoed SB 1062 not because it was blatantly counter to everything the United States stands for but rather because it would have cost Arizona money.
When Brewer was forced onto the global stage to very publicly choose between state sanctioned Apartheid and the almighty American dollar, not to mention political power, Brewer did the predictable thing.
She did what these people always do when forced to chose between conviction and profit.
She took the money.
So much for republicans’ vaunted ideals.
So much for the superior morality of conservative religious conviction.
The simple truth is that if these people really believed in the rightness and righteousness of their religion, they would have passed the bill and to hell with the consequences.
Make no mistake whatsoever, Folks, if Arizona republicans could have gotten away with it, if they could have signed this bill into law and only gay people and non-Christians would have been negatively affected, they damned well would have – that was the entire point of SB 1062 in the first place.
Instead, Brewer’s veto lays bare the hypocrisy of this blighted ideology and shows it for what it really is: hate for hate’s sake and nothing more.
Common sense, human dignity, and liberty did not prevail today in Arizona.
Right won out only because these people worship power and money far more than they love their small and hateful God.
They won’t do what’s right, but they can usually be counted on to do what is profitable.
And let that be a lesson for future battles.
This entire post was written by Jim Wright of http://www.stonekettle.com/. He was nice enough to allow me to republish it. Legislating religious beliefs is dangerous. Invoking the name of God as an excuse to hate others is even worse. But as Cluster said, the free market is deterministic. If this passes, I hope the law is used against those who wrote it. As Leon of Curb Your Enthusiasm once said: “turn the topsy turvy on their ass.”
“I think human consciousness is a tragic misstep in evolution. We became too self-aware. Nature created an aspect of nature separate from itself. We are creatures that should not exist by natural law. We are things that labor under the illusion of having a self. A secretion of sensory experience and feeling, programmed with total assurance that we are each somebody. When in fact, everybody’s nobody.”