September 3, 2009

o canada


I know I'm on semi-illiterate break here until after Labor Day, but this made me so mad I wanted to throw a pot of capellini through our fucking plate-glass window: school districts in six states are refusing to show President Obama's back-to-school address next week, and in other parts of the country, a rash of knuckle-dragging nimrod parents are keeping their kids home from school so he can't "indoctrinate America's children to his socialist agenda." I realize there are plenty more things to be angry about, especially when it comes to the ethically bankrupt and profanely rotten right-wing faction in this country, but this time, I can't control my rage.

Look, you addled, acid-blooded Republican yak fucks: the rest of us sat through your miserable excuse for a President for eight cruel and unusual years, putting up with his Parkinsonian smirk and wholesale butchering of the English language. We endured his torture panels, his wars, his fearmongering, his vindictive Christianity, his self-righteous denial of science and his prescription-drug-fueled inability to fathom the suffering of others. The last time YOUR guy addressed schoolchildren, he was trying to follow the plot to "My Pet Goat" while New York was on fire.

I'm a guttersnipe, fine, but you people have no decency, no honor, and have no goddamned idea what America is supposed to represent. Your entire lives have been given over to stopping Obama from accomplishing anything, by any means necessary, even when he's trying to inspire kids to better themselves through education. You are fucking deranged. You think you're "taking a stand", but like all dim bulbs who latch onto the first theory that allows unlimited bitterness, you're simply drunk on racism and your own bullshit.

Philosophically, you're no more evolved than baby ducks who imprint themselves on the first thing they see - except your Mama Duck is the venal triumvirate of Coulter/Malkin/Limbaugh, and you carry guns. It sickens me that you are part of the national conversation in any way. It's an abominable taxation of the First Amendment that your voice is heard at all, but hear it we must, I guess.

I have an idea: if you don't like President Obama so much, and you hate the Federal Government with such a passion, why don't you actually, you know, move somewhere else? God knows us progressives contemplated it every day under your regime. You should move somewhere that has a similar view of the rottenness of humanity, somewhere where the guy with the biggest gun makes the rules, where you actually get to kill people who aren't in your tribe, and where you won't be trifled with faggy liberals and their faggy ideas... how about Somalia?

Because I can take the shrill lunacy of your message, I can occasionally fathom the blind conviction of your terrible ideas, and sometimes I can even endure your crazy rationalizations for being racist, but I simply can't stomach the overriding fact that you are all so motherfucking rude.

Posted by Ian Williams at September 3, 2009 11:12 PM
Posted by: Anne at September 4, 2009 4:52 AM

YES, Ian.

This would be a cathartic rant but for the fact that I'm still nauseated by what is happening in MY/OUR country.

Posted by: dean at September 4, 2009 5:16 AM


It is all about trust. The knuckle-draggers that are against the school address don't trust anything Obama or the government want to do. The mouth-foamers from the liberal side don't trust or believe anything that Bush did.

The 80% of the public that stands in the middle trust LITTLE of what EITHER side proposes to do. The partisanship and rancor that exists within both parties has only led to the general public's distaste of anything that comes from Washington.

Yes, it is so easy to blame knuckle-dragging Republicans or racism for the failure of Obamacare to captivate the public. That is so easy and so inaccurate. EVERY poll (even MSNBC's) show that the general public, not just the GOP'ers, are against it. Plus, not to be a dead horse, but the Dems don't friggin' need the GOP -- if the plan was so superduper, pass the damn thing with your 60 votes.

Both sides suck. For every knuckle-dragging GOP'er, there is a whacko Demo praising Castro or Chavez as a great leader. Both parties should be ashamed of themselves for abusing the trust of the American peole for so many years that now the American people are going to be sooooo skeptical of anything that it proposed.

The status quo will become the status quo.

Posted by: Anne at September 4, 2009 5:21 AM

"For every knuckle-dragging GOP'er, there is a whacko Demo praising Castro or Chavez as a great leader."

W. T. F.

On what planet do you spend most of your time? Also, the term "Obamacare" has a sneer built in. Ah, words....

Posted by: Salem at September 4, 2009 5:32 AM

Lillie-Anne brought a note home from school yesterday. It was a request slip for me to sign if I did not want Lillie-Anne to be exposed to the words of the President of the United States.

My heart hurts.
I remember getting goose bumps as a child, whenever our teacher's showed us a Presidential address.
I am trying to brush off this insanity. I don't remember ever feeling anger and hopelessness, together, about my country.

Wait a minute, maybe their right? What if this is just a conspiracy, planned by those race mixing mudd-people? What if his message is so profound and sincere that racial prejudice fades just a little bit. White women might stop locking their car doors on the highway, when a black man drives by. I, for one, will not have my daughter raped at a highway rest stop because this President wants to control our children's minds! Quick, everyone, we have to destroy the TV transmitters before this happens. Be sure to put on your aluminum foil hats, so they can't read your minds before our mission is complete!

I will be in my daughter's classroom today at noon and I might teach myself to play "Hail to the Chief" on a $%#@$ trumpet before I get there.

Breathe Salem, Breathe

Posted by: Salem at September 4, 2009 5:37 AM

Say what you will about trust.

This objection to a President encouraging school children is UNPRECEDENTED and unhealthy.

Posted by: Cris at September 4, 2009 5:58 AM

The pendulum has always swung back and forth between the parties, which means there have always been citizens unhappy with the goverment at any given time. But I have never heard of school systems refusing to "expose" children to the words of the President of the United States. It is absolutely shocking to me.

Posted by: CM at September 4, 2009 7:02 AM

Since when does the president give a back to school address, though? I don't remember getting one from Jimmy Carter.

Obama's photo is above the blackboards, right?

Why not let him give the address on tv and parents can watch it with their kids?

I see that the states shouldn't be all up in arms about this, but I didn't know presidents gave addresses to be broadcast in schools. Maybe I'm just out of touch. (And I'm out of my head when you're not around.)

Posted by: jenx67 at September 4, 2009 7:14 AM

with you, ian. it's incomprehensible.

Posted by: josie at September 4, 2009 8:12 AM


Posted by: kate at September 4, 2009 8:19 AM

CM - Reagan and George H.W. Bush both gave similar addresses during their time in office. Might be other examples, too.

Posted by: Salem at September 4, 2009 8:49 AM

Hey Cris, In fairness to my school system, they didn't use the word "exposed". I was offended that they felt obligated to extend me that option. To me that came with the implication that encouraging words from our President, represent a perceived threat that requires special parental consent.

There are a lot more things being taught in History classes every day, that should require parental consent.

Posted by: xuxE at September 4, 2009 9:34 AM

this is just a totally overt attempt to portray Obama's presidency as illigitimate and questionable, for *some* reason - of course it is racist.

this is the commander-in-chief, the same person who can send these schoolchildren into battle in a few years. the same one who can send their parents to die in a foreign country. spokesperson for the U.S. and "leader of the free world".

exactly whose approval and blessing does THIS president need to speak to people? maybe he can just speak to the kids via radio with a fireside chat.

Posted by: Kevin In Philadelphia at September 4, 2009 9:36 AM

Ian, I started reading your blog way back in 2004 with the epic, and possibly famous, "American Coastopia" entry. Unfortunately, even with the return of a competent President and sensible policy, things are not getting better, and actually getting worse. At least with Bush, the knuckle-dragging mouth-breathers were relatively quiet. Now their racism, bigotry, and fear are doing double the damage of the past 8 years to drag this country down into the gutter. I thought things would get better starting this past January, but they are not. 16.8% real unemployment (myself included), homes in foreclosure, out of control personal debt, an uninformed electorate, etc etc etc. In fact, it has gotten so bad over the past 8 months that people that I have known for 15+years have had to have been eliminated from my is still not enough to keep me sane. Yesterday, I researched immigrating to another country, any country, where the social contract is in tact, and the basic issues of social morality and human decency are sacrosanct.

Posted by: wyatt at September 4, 2009 10:20 AM

Every August my wife and I bargain over who has to attend that year's version of the "welcome parents to Ms. Smith's 2nd grade class" meeting, which we affectionately refer to as the "figure out which kid's parents are the biggest reactionary assholes" night. These are the ones who demonized Obama well before the 2008 election based on the spew of their AM radio overlords. (At least I had years of "does not meet expectations" performance evaluations to support my household demonizing of GWB. But hell, he was still the PRESIDENT.) Those asshole parents generate a school board candidate with unfortunate frequency, and they go on to pull stunts like fucking with the science curriculum or this seditious nonsense with the presidential address. I really hope somebody loses their job over this.

Frankly I think ClearChannel and whoever else is responsible for the blah that is FM radio now deliberately makes it unlistenable, to drive more of us to the AM propoganda.

Posted by: Piglet at September 4, 2009 11:38 AM

so many thinking people are upset at the latest example of the fucktards throwing hissy fits. They throw hissy fits because gays are coming to steal their marriages. They throw hissy fits when they have to press "one" for English. If the PResident put out a forest fire single handed, they'd throw a hissy fit and claim that he wasted water.

Get used to it. They hate America and 75% of the people in it. They will NEVER be happy.

the beautiful thing is, the fucktards are not in power. And as long as they make spectacles of themselves acting like the doofuses they are, they never will be.

We will make history, and they will complain. I can live with that. We can point them to the special fit-throwing room and tell them to come out when they are prepared to behave like mature adults. Which will be never.

Then Nancy Pelosi can spank them with a hairbrush and send them to bed with no pot roast.

Palin-Americans are a bunch of toothless, spineless, irrational, screaming, whining, puking, contemptibly small babies. And they prove it every time they throw baby-tantrums in public. Build a natural history museum around them with barriers to prevent the dung they throw from hitting any visitors who come to point and laugh.

They have no power.

Posted by: guest at September 4, 2009 11:57 AM

Agree with piglet. The crazier these kooks act, the longer they'll be out of power. While they're talking about birth certificates and indoctrination, we'll be running the country.

Posted by: Zel M. at September 4, 2009 12:21 PM

I am a public high school administrator and our school, and in fact our district, is struggling to deal with what I believe is an irrational response to this speech.

However, I will try to make sense of it from a different perspective and without resorting to name-calling and broad generalizations:

1. Somehow, somewhere, the idea was put forth that viewing the president's speech in school was *mandatory*, or at least *expected*. Parents and students generally rise up in arms is something is presented as mandatory, whether it is sex ed, school prayer, or the Pledge of Allegiance. At home, parents can turn it off if they don't want kids to see it, but schools make for a captive audience.

2. I'm sure some of the backlash has come from the fact that this president has already had more prime-time press conferences and addresses to joint sessions of Congress in 8 months than his predecessors had in 8 years. (OK, that was taking license for effect - don't go quoting numbers)

3. The hyperbole surrounding the speech from the White House itself is making this a far larger issue than it should be. The DoEd site twice calls the speech "historic" (like he's the first president to do this), making it seem like more than just the rah-rah it is being made out to be.

4. Lesson plans are being presented by the Department of Education to support the speech and many of the items in them focus on the president himself and not the message. Excerpts include: "Teachers may post in large print around the classroom notable quotes excerpted from President Obama’s speeches on education;" "Create a 'concept web', asking students to think of the following: How will HE inspire us? How will HE challenge us?" (emphasis mine) (

In the end, people on both sides of the aisle will find plenty to either celebrate or complain about. I'm not asking you to agree; in fact, I again say I think the fear of this stupid speech is pretty irrational.

But for what it's worth, presidents making remarks to schoolchildren has been called political haymaking before. I cannot comment on whether or not opposition to previous speeches was racist... (

Posted by: Zel M. at September 4, 2009 12:33 PM

"'For every knuckle-dragging GOP'er, there is a whacko Demo praising Castro or Chavez as a great leader.'

W. T. F.

On what planet do you spend most of your time?"

Maybe he spends it on the one where America has 58 states and Rosh Hashanah starts in August.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, check out this article from The Progressive where Greg Palast compares Chavez to FDR (

I'm just saying...

Posted by: Zel M. at September 4, 2009 12:36 PM

FWIW, I wrote an earnest, non-partisan piece about the speech in which I called this response irrational, but for some reason I was queued for moderation, so I did try to contribute to the discussion first without snark.

I must have unintentionally made a spammable reference... [now it's published -ed.]

Posted by: Leah at September 4, 2009 12:52 PM

Good for you for speaking your mind. We were reasonable and calm throughout the 8 years of neo-con misrule. Now that the tables are turned, we've tried being reasonable with these pitiful, frightened people, but there really is no point. Ignore when possible, rant when you simply can't stand it anymore. And keep an eye on them, just in case they go McVeigh on us.

Posted by: Schultz at September 4, 2009 8:04 PM

I'm all for it and want my kids to know and hear from the POTUS no matter who it is. For the record, Will (7) loves Obama and Wake Forest. Go figure.

This is being blown up by the media because they have nothing better to do. Don't forget that when GHW Bush did it....democrats called it a brazen political ad and went total apeshit.

So just chillax and don't let the wackos get you down. It's a good thing our kids get this exposure to the President. All I ever got was pictures of Nixon frowning a lot on the front pages of the newspaper.

Have a great weekend!

Posted by: Susan at September 5, 2009 5:30 AM

My son's school is closed Tuesday. It was a scheduled day off, as luck would have, before this nonsense came about. I don't understand all the ruckus. Just tape it and let little Johnny or Susie watch it when they get home if it's that big of deal. You have to understand mt perspective. I have 6 year old who would rather play with his physics set than listen to some guy talk about education on tv. What age groups are they targeting exactly?

Posted by: JohnH at September 5, 2009 12:31 PM

I'm a supporter of limited federal government, low taxes and personal liberties. That makes me, by most definitions, a conservative. These people make me embarassed to call myself one.

Posted by: Neva at September 5, 2009 12:41 PM

I'm disgusted by this and all the other craziness that has inhabited the brains of Americans.
To me there is such a racist undertone in it all.. like they are saying "he's not my President".
I always felt that way about Bush for sure but I was careful to give him the respect that I believe the President deserves when I talked about him around my child. And, if he had given an address it would never have occurred to protest that. He was the President and now it's Obama and they need to get over it.

Posted by: Zel M. at September 5, 2009 12:57 PM

Honest-to-goodness question, here, and one ACC and UNC football fans will appreciate:

I can't stand Ron Cherry. The thought of him calling a UNC game makes my skin crawl. I think he is a horrible official and I wish he would no longer occupy the position of ACC referee that he now holds.

By the way, Ron Cherry is African-American and I am white. Is my criticism of Ron Cherry racist, or can I just not like the quality of his work, disagree with his calls and just leave it at that?

Posted by: Neva at September 5, 2009 1:12 PM

You can dislike Ron Cherry all you want but if he was our President and he was elected by the majority, your kid should have to listen to him speak.

Posted by: Zel M. at September 5, 2009 3:24 PM

I agree with your principle, Neva. I think the uproar over this simple speech is ridiculous.

But you were the one who said there were "racist overtones" and I am truly puzzled why those on the left characterize disagreement with the president as having a racial motivation.

Posted by: Salem at September 5, 2009 9:30 PM

Zel M.-
You have taken time to describe your own comments as "earnest, non-partisan", as well as describing your own last question as "honest to goodness".

I cannot escape the feeling that I'm reading comments from a masquerading "birther" who has chosen calm, though patronizing strategy to influence the pinko commies that support Obama. It reminds me of political discussions with a former Mother-in-law. We had too much affection for one another to be rude, but each of us wasted a lot of time trying to prove how objective we were, when we really should have bagged the affection, showed a little respect for one another's intelligence, and had a no holds barred Texas cage match*. (* read: vigorous debate)

O.K., "masquerading birther" is a bit harsh. I apologise in advance. It's just,'s this word "earnest". I don't think this word means what you think this word means.

Posted by: Ian at September 6, 2009 1:20 AM

Zel, I'm as sensitive as anybody to playing the race card too quickly - if someone is going to cry "racism!" they'd better be able to back it up quickly, or else they do their own movement an incredible disservice.

That said, I think Neva's comments are dead-on. After a while, you just can't get it out of your head. These birthers/deathers/right-wingers are OVERWHELMINGLY white, OVERWHELMINGLY over 45 years old, and yes, fairly specific to parts of the country that have an undeniable historical link to race problems. They're not ALL racists, but, I mean, come on...

This is obviously another blog...

(P.S. I have a historical problem with Dick Paparo)

Posted by: Zel M. at September 6, 2009 6:06 AM

Earnest: sincere; serious in effort, purpose, or intent. Is there another definition?

Let me be clear: Birthers are obnoxiously stupid. Even on the right, all but the survivalist, black helicopter crowd have disavowed that preposterous idea.

Likewise (and back to the original post), the uproar about this stupid speech is ridiculous. My original intent was to try and show the folks on here what I have heard as a public school administrator as to why parents in certain parts of the country are upset. But apparently I am a "masquerading birther" who doesn't know what "earnest" means.

So thanks, Salem, for proving my point. Is this where we are in political discourse in late 2009? I agreed that the controversy over Tuesday's speech was ridiculous, but yet I am a "masquerading birther", which is code for "racist."

Ian, you also paint with a broad brush. Over 45, overwhelmingly white, and specific to parts of the country with race issues... you just described a Rams Club meeting, Binkley Baptist Church, and the U.S. Senate. Seems to me that, at least the over 45 part, these are the people with the most vested interest in health care. But I digress...

So let me again ask the question: why is it the default position of the left that disagreement with the president is inherently racist? I mean, if David Duke prefers, well, his namesake university and the president is (as we all know) a fan of UNC, then is the nature of the disagreement racist by default because David Duke is over 45, white, and in fact is (or was) a known racist?

Posted by: Salem at September 6, 2009 7:24 AM

falling short of funny, my comment came accross more biting than intended.

I do not object to anyone posting opposing comments. I was lighlty, slightly, vaguely, insulted that you were trying to call your clear "sales pitch", as an objective report from the school admin perspective. I like sales pitches, even for stuff I'm not buying.

I also admit that I have low tolerance for any incarnation of your "referee" arguement about racism. I don't really think you are a birther. That remark was, well, it was not earnest of me. Your "referee" defense just feels so much like what Ian used to refer to as my "I'm not a racist, but..." comments when I was 19 in Chapel Hill. I do jump to judgement when I hear those arguements, because I used to use that logic and now reject it.

Posted by: JOsie at September 6, 2009 5:24 PM

What the feck is a "birther?" Am I missing out on a tasty insult?

And, for the record, I dont think this has anything to do with race - it's poltical.
The link above is a great opinion piece on the same topic.

Posted by: Zel M. at September 6, 2009 7:12 PM

Fair enough, Salem. No harm, no foul. I did not mean it as a sales pitch; I was truly trying to share what I had encountered that could be taken as possible objection to the speech that was not flat out ridiculous. Trust me, I have heard plenty that was just plain stupid (and frankly, some of it I would consider racist) and I would not insult those on this board by posting such garbage.

I am not so naive as to think that all opposition to the president is free of racial motivation, but I am also not so jaded to think that all opposition is racially motivated, either.

Posted by: tregen at September 7, 2009 7:37 AM

Folks, turn off your cable; you will be a lot happier.

Posted by: Greg T. at September 7, 2009 8:21 PM

JOsie - "Birthers" are the conspiracy-theorists that believe Obama was not born in Hawaii and is not eligible to be our president.

Posted by: Josie at September 8, 2009 1:32 AM

Thx, GT I would not have guessed that.

Posted by: John Galt at September 8, 2009 10:25 AM

"... but I simply can't stomach the overriding fact that you are all so motherfucking rude."

Reading through your little rant, with that little postscript is a bit like the pot calling the kettle black, iddnt it? And because you had to sit through eight years of Bush means that nobody can complain a bit about anything that Obama does? I sure don't recall eight years of "reasonable and calm" from the left... If this essay of yours is defined as "reasonable and calm", it seems the threat of anyone going McVeigh is greater from the left.

And if I do have the temerity to complain about Obama's policies, I'm a racist... That's rich. You call us 'teabaggers' and 'birthers', yet many who agree with you on matters of politics cozy up to the nutjobs who say that the 911 attacks were staged. Do you have cute little pet names for them too? Didn't think so.

Was Neil Boortz right in saying that leftists are brain damaged? I used to think that was just schtick, but doggone, mebbe he was right.

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