RachelWatch: Forbidding Planet


Today: Ana Marie Cox, Senator Bernie Sanders, and a terrifying visit to Planet Cheney. Bring oxygen tanks!

The Suspense Is Over

Rachel started us off with the news that after all the foot-dragging and the basketball hoop–raising the outright sabotage, it seems to have finally occurred to the Democrats that Republicans may not be sincerely trying to help pass a health care reform bill.

That noise you heard during this afternoon’s White House presser was not thunder. It was a nation screaming “DUH!”

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) joined Rachel in having had exactly enough of this nonsense.

Rachel Gives a Shout-Out to Civics Dorks

Rachel noted that Massachusetts will have a special election to fill the late Senator Kennedy’s seat in January, but, as may have occurred to you, some people have noticed that it might be useful to have someone in there to help deal with health care reform sometime before that.

Which means that a very big national fight may hinge on local politics and perhaps even some arcane rules.

Rachel was able to keep from swinging from the light grid in her excitement, but you could tell she sort of wanted to.

Planet Cheney

Good Lord. Dealing with Dick Cheney is like the end of Halloween.

You can’t assume that just because you’ve driven a pair of knitting needles through his latest round of lies that you can sit down and breathe a sigh of relief. The minute you turn around, he WILL sit straight up and start lying again.

And yes, both Cheney and Michael Myers are made of pure evil, but there is one key difference: We’re the ones who created Cheney, and we’re the ones who keep him alive.

He and his hellspawn will keep telling blatant, easily debunked lies on television as long as members of the media let them get away with it.

And the media will let them get away with it as long as we keep watching and don’t kick up a fuss.

Letting people tell easily checked lies without calling them on it is not “balance” or “fairness” or “equal time”. It’s helping people lie to the public. And reporting lies as “another point of view” when you know they are lies is just stupid and cowardly. Find your nards, newsfolk.

God, Liz ‘n’ Dick must get home and just dissolve into astonished laughter that they’ve gotten away with it again. And then they bicker over whose turn it is to skin some kittens for lunch.

Rachel? Also not a fan of the lying. And she has nards aplenty.

Rachel brought up another infuriating aspect of this almost in passing: Dick Cheney is the main voice of the opposition to torture investigations.

The guy to whom we’re all pretty sure the investigative trail leads is one of the main guys who gets to register an opinion on whether we should follow the trail at all. And we’re letting him. And people are listening?

How often do criminals get to do that?

If I ever knock over a bank, I am calling Cheney privileges. I will give you five fake reasons why the police shouldn’t even investigate, and then I get to tie up the system for months and months while people actually give my made up bullpuckey legitimate consideration, even if it’s easy to prove that it’s made up.

Also? Bringing up my new mansion in Barbados will be unpatriotic and clearly politically motivated.

McCain vs. McCain

Rachel served up one of the odder political stories of the day: Senator John McCain (R – Arizona), who has very good reasons to have strong feelings against torture, is both arguing against torture and arguing against prosecuting people for doing it.

Ana Marie Cox dropped in for a lively and interesting conversation.

I noticed that Ms. Cox brought up the confusing point that “it’s not useful to have a law if you don’t end up prosecuting it.”

Doesn’t she know that there’s no point in prosecuting crimes that are “old news” now?

That’s what Liz Cheney told me on Sunday, anyway. Care for more kitten?

Ms. Information

Who says that American theatre is dying? Rachel reported that the cap-and-trade bill is inspiring more and more energy companies to explore their thespian sides.

Now the American Petroleum Institute has expanded from busing employees into fake “Energy Citizen” rallies into the realm of indie films, using paid actors to movingly declare “I’m an energy citizen” at the end of their inspirational grassroots film.

How does one get in on these casting calls? Between this and the NOM “Storm” commercial, someone could be developing one heck of a hilarious reel.

Life During Wartime

Rachel reported that Iraq is rebuilding its once-mighty air force by trying to figure out which friends it loaned its old MIGs to and trying to get them back.

Iraq is currently sighing passive-aggressively at Serbia, which took a bunch of planes to repair them during the first Gulf War but totally spilled beer on them and maybe let an old ex use a couple of them and never got them back.

If at First You Don’t Secede

Rachel pointed out that there is still no learning curve about courting the lunatic fringe this year, and now Texas Governor Rick Perry (R, but talks like a Texas Nationalist) may have tough-talked himself into a corner.

Americans, enjoy some more of that footage that you will have to try to explain to your friends from other nations.

Friends from other nations, enjoy some more of that footage that we will never, ever be able to fully explain. I hope you at least get some enjoyment out of watching us grimace and squirm around as we try.

Here’s the thing, Governor Perry. You know that guy at work who’s always jawing in the break room and loves to rabble-rouse and loudly announce that he’s just gonna walk right out of there after every real or imagined slight?

That guy gets to stay Alpha Male – assuming he ever is – for a year or two at most. And then everybody starts to notice that for all his macho mouthing off, he’s still there in the same chair in the same break room and that’s the beginning of the end.

He gets smaller and smaller until he’s just the old guy who’s always sitting in the corner bitching that the Yankee swap at the holiday party should be run differently.

Or at least you think that’s what he’s jawing about, because nobody really listens anymore.

Yes, Governor Perry, even if he has hair just like Magnum’s.

Cocktail Moment

Rachel helped some local artists spread their seed.

You heard me.

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