Thursday, January 16, 2014

Crazy Candidate of the Day

With the mid-term elections coming up, the crazy candidates are coming out of the woodwork. First up: South Carolina's ironically named Lee Bright.
Lee is mounting a primary challenge to sitting Senator Lindsey Graham, because Graham is basically the love child of FDR and Emma Goldman, you know. And he's got a snappy slogan:
Bright: For Liberty, For Senate. I know.
I wondered who this guy was who was running to the RIGHT of Lindsey Graham, so I looked him up on Right Wing Watch. Here's the first headline that came up:
South Carolina Senate Candidate: Impeach Pro-Equality Judges, Give Teachers Machine Guns
Let's just skip right ahead to the giving teachers machine guns part.
"You look over at Israel, and that’s an armed group of folks over there,” he said. “I mean, they are teachers with machine guns on playgrounds, because you got terrorists over there that would choose to harm children and whose teachers are there to protect them. When you’ve got folks that are armed and able to defend themselves, the threat of terrorism goes down drastically."

And as we all know, there is no safer place in the world to be than ISRAEL! They never have any terrorist attacks in ISRAEL!

 Also, I  very much doubt that that is even true. I really doubt that Israeli teachers are walking around with fucking machine guns. Maybe you're thinking of Texas?
Honestly, how much good would a gun even do against a guy wearing a suicide vest? You know terrorists don't come into schoolyards and punch children or jab them with pointed sticks. Terrorists use explosives. Anyway, it took me all of about 30 seconds to find this article from Israel Today:
There is a picture going around the Internet that I have seen about a dozen times today that claims that Israeli teachers are packing heat. Well, are they? The answer is “NO.”

In the picture, the students are on an outing. While it appears that the teacher is holding a rifle, I have never seen such a thing in ten years of living here. Rest assured however, they are under armed protection. In most cases it is an armed guard or a soldier that will accompany a class, not the teacher. And my guess is that the woman with the gun is a security guard, not a teacher.
Secondly, they are not armed in the classroom. Is that really the image you want to imprint on the minds of six-year-olds? (That would be Hamas) On the other hand. I have never seen a school in Israel that was not fenced in. You must go through a locked gate that is guarded by an armed shomer, a security guard.  . .  And he or she would not let you bring a weapon inside.

So, yeah. Like I thought. You're full of shit.
Now let's go back to the judge part.
Discussing the recent federal ruling legalizing marriage equality in Utah, Bright told Tea Party Express, “Congress ought to stand up and do its job and impeach one of these federal judges. And I think when you do that, being a federal judge is a pretty good gig, and I think if you’ll impeach just one, the rest of them will do the right thing. And they’ll do it out of necessity, because self-preservation is an instinct that so many folks have.”

 You do know that the Judiciary is a co-equal branch of government, right? And you know about separation of powers, right? It's all in that Constitution thing you teabaggers pretend to worship. The Legislative branch is not supposed to intimidate judges into making decisions that they approve of. You can't impeach a judge because you don't like his decision, and you sure as fuck can't impeach him as a threat to other judges. I mean, you can, I guess, but it's a really horrible idea. The Judicial branch is supposed to be independent. That's how it works. This isn't North Korea, you don't punish judges for reaching the "wrong" conclusion.
And here's the most recent Lee Bright headline on Right Wing Watch:
SC Senate Candidate Lee Bright Warned of IRS-Obamacare 'Brown Shirts'; Called FEMA A 'Scam'

Brown Shirts? Really? I expect that kind of rhetoric from guys in tricorn hats holding misspelt signs, but from a candidate for the United States Senate? 
At a speech in August, South Carolina state senator Lee Bright, who is challenging Sen. Lindsey Graham for the Republican nomination, warned that IRS “Brown Shirts” might start enforcing Obamacare with semiautomatic rifles.

Oh, Jeezus Christ! How would that even work? Why would they need assault weapons to, um, do whatever it is you think they're going to do, I don't even get it. Why would you think they're going to turn semi automatic weapons on Americans who, what, don't sign up for insurance? Or something?
Bright cited a conspiracy theory promoted by Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), who started spreading the alarm in June when he witnessed “IRS agents are training with a semi-automatic rifle AR-15.” In real life, this is because the IRS has a criminal investigations unit that has since the 1920s pursued drug traffickers and other criminal organizations, and which during the Bush administration started providing extra support for anti-terrorism efforts – activities which require special agents to be “equipped similarly to other federal, state and local law enforcement organizations.”

But according to Bright, “If that’s true, and they’re going to assault weapons training, the Brown Shirts are next. Because that’s the enforcement group for Obamacare is the IRS. And if you don’t have an IRS, you don’t have Obamacare.”

Ohhhhh! Now it makes sense! A law enforcement agency enforcing the law! Clearly the next step is Brown Shirts!
After Bright presented his theory about the IRS-Obamacare Brown Shirts, an audience member asked him what he thought of various anti-government conspiracy theories, including that “FEMA is training a militia.”

Oh, oh! I know this one! The correct answer is "sir, you are clearly insane and here is the number of a qualified psychiatrist." I assume he must have answered something along those lines, right?
“Most of the federal government is a scam,” Bright said, adding that “FEMA is the biggest scam in the world.”

What? That's not even an answer? I thought this was a Q&A, I guess it was a who can say the craziest thing contest.
So, couple of things. First-if the federal government is, as you say, a "scam," why are you so eager to be a part of it?
Second-FEMA a scam? FEMA?
Does this look like a scam to you?
Does this?
How the hell is FEMA a scam?
To make his point, Bright told a story of the mayor of Charleston, South Carolina asking for private donations to help with the relief from an earthquake and getting so many that he had to stop accepting aid – all without the help of FEMA

Cool story, bro! Did it ever actually happen? I don't have the time to research that, but the folks at RWW, who presumably do have, say this:
We would really like to know what earthquake he is talking about that was small enough that FEMA wouldn’t intervene but large enough that it required a large-scale private donations effort

Yeah, that's what I figured.

Later in the speech, Bright claimed that federal earthquake and tornado relief, along with food assistance, were not the role of the federal government and were just being used to “get votes.”

Yeah, what a scam! What total sellouts!   You gotta just let disaster victims drown or you're just pandering! 
How a real man handles disaster relief.
So, if you live in South Carolina, you may want to consider voting for Lee Bright. I mean, probably not, but you may. If enough people vote for him in the primary, he could become this year's Christine O'Donnell!