Monday, May 7, 2012

Monday Mishegas - May 7th 2012

I just finished analyzing a recent Politico/GWU Battleground Presidential poll and I was struck by what appears to be an eye opener in the demographic analysis:

When thinking about politics and government, do you consider yourself to be:
Very conservative: 21%
Somewhat conservative: 37%
Moderate: 3%
Somewhat liberal: 25%
Very liberal: 12%
No answer: 2%
Generally speaking, do you think of yourself as a Republican, a Democrat, or an Independent?
Republican/strong: 24%
Republican/not strong: 10%
Lean republican: 6%
Independent: 16%
Lean democrat: 6%
Democrat/not strong: 9%
Democrat/strong: 28%

The above breakdown leads me to wonder if ALL Independents are conservative, are some democrats conservative, and it could be true that moderates are going the way of the dinosaurs: extinct.

Did you know that the Pledge of Allegiance was written in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Socialist Baptist Minister?  The National Education Association requested the pledge be written to demonstrate the unity of our growing diversity in public schools.  A believer in the absolute separation of church and state, it is safe to say that when his ubiquitous pledge was modified in 1954during the Joseph McCarthy led anti-communism, anti-atheism, anti-enlightened histrionics to include the words ‘under God’ he would have been mortified.  It seems that “one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” has a history of being quite controversial because the catholic Church opposed it during World War I because it was making American Catholics, more American than Catholic. 

Good thing for Hate radio that we have the ACLU.  If Rush Limbaugh used the same tone and words to describe President Woodrow Wilson in 1918 (yes I know the EIB wouldn’t be broadcasting in 1918, humor me) he would have been arrested and charged with unpatriotic behavior, like the thousands who were arrested.  However, freethinking civil libertarians organized in 1920 and formed the American Civil Liberties Union with the specific goal of protecting 1st Amendment rights for ALL Americans.  So the next time a Fox bobblehead says that Rush’s 1st Amendment rights are under attack because listeners or interest groups are calling for a boycott, remind the low wattage bulbs that the ACLU is why they’re on the air, and that the free market they love so much is why they may be off the air.  Remember, popular speech doesn’t need protection, it’s when someone speaks out as a tiny minority against all odds and the forces of the majority that protection, the RIGHT to protection, must be unwavering and unyielding.

Attention Wal-Mart shareholders, how did that haircut feel last week when word got out about potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, by officials at Wal-Mart’s Mexican subsidiary Walmex?  The company already lost $10Billion in market capitalization and could be facing fines that would exceed Siemen’s $800Million fine in 2008.  Further, several senior company officials may be heading to the chopping block.  Wal-Mart joins KBR-Halliburton, BAE, and other companies that have been captured in the DoJ’s anti-corruption net.  Of course, free market conservatives push back with the tired argument that the law needs to be relaxed because international business requires a the necessary evil of bribes.  Yes those pesky laws keep getting in the way.

According to the Pew Research Center, public approval of the U.S. Supreme Court has fallen from 80% in 1994 to 52% today.  Justice really isn’t blind, it’s bought and paid for.  Nice call on Citizens United.  The good news, they still have a long way to reach Congressional levels of disapproval.

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