This post first appeared on Pharyngula. Matt Taibbi is one of my favorite political writers, and he's perfect for scrutinizing the Tea Party movement — he's a gonzo swashbuckler who specializes in exposing the inanities of American culture, so plopping him down in the midst of the teabaggers is like opening the henhouse door for a wolf.
Scanning the thousands of hopped-up faces in the crowd, I am immediately struck by two things. One is that there isn't a single black person here. The other is the truly awesome quantity of medical hardware: Seemingly every third person in the place is sucking oxygen from a tank or propping their giant atrophied glutes on motorized wheelchair-scooters. As Palin launches into her Ronald Reagan impression — "Government's not the solution! Government's the problem!" — the person sitting next to me leans over and explains. "The scooters are because of Medicare," he whispers helpfully. "They have these commercials down here: 'You won't even have to pay for your scooter! Medicare will pay!' Practically everyone in Kentucky has one." A hall full of elderly white people in Medicare-paid scooters, railing against government spending and imagining themselves revolutionaries as they cheer on the vice-presidential puppet hand-picked by the GOP establishment. If there exists a better snapshot of everything the Tea Party represents, I can't imagine it.
Read the whole thing. Who are the teabaggers? Cranky, ignorant old racist hypocrites who are all about me-me-me-me, deftly manipulated by the big business establishment.
This post first appeared on Pharyngula. There should be a law ... Something like, "The probability that a religious leader is a sex offender is directly proportional to the the virulence of his homophobia." It's happened again.
Two young men in Georgia said Tuesday that the pastor of a 33,000-person Baptist megachurch, Bishop Eddie L. Long, had repeatedly coerced them into having sex with him. In two lawsuits filed in DeKalb County, the men said that Bishop Long, a prominent minister and television personality, had used his position as a spiritual counselor to take them on trips out of state and perform sexual acts on them.
It's gotten so I can't see any of these crazy god-wallopers and not assume they're going to leave the podium and run off to a back room to do exactly what they've been railing against. It's sort of like a Dorian Gray scheme: they've got a lilly-white sanctimonious face for the public, and what they reveal when off-camera and out of sight is something sickeningly depraved. What Pope Ratzi does behind closed doors must be nightmarish.
You can now download the latest issue of Awake, the Jehovah's Witness's strange little magazine. The theme of this issue is those marching militant atheists, so it's a little bit personal.
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Unfortunately, I was only able to read as far as the second sentence before I was blinded by the irony.
A new group of atheists has arisen in society. Called the new atheists, they are not content to keep their views to themselves.
That's right. The door-knockin', rabidly proselytizing cult is rebuking atheists for not keeping their views to themselves. I guess that's fair. Twice now I've watched in anticipation as the local JWs do their thing, working their way up the street, only to see them look at my house, check a piece of paper they carried with them, and turn around to leave. There was also a third time when a couple actually knocked on my door, started their little spiel, and I interrupted them to tell them I was an atheist, would they like to come in and talk about freedom from religion? And they ran away. So it's true, I suppose, that they do have limits on the expression of their views.