A study in contrasts

A few days ago, I posted a Facebook update about http://www.rescuemarriage.org/ (it’s not available as I’m writing this; probably got too much traffic and the web host suspended the account). It’s a clever satire site pointing out the hypocrisy of people who supported California’s Proposition 8.
The reactions on Facebook are testimony to how different my life is now from the way I grew up. The two people who liked this post whose names are not blurred out in the image below are current liberal friends who clearly got the satire of the site. The third person who liked the post is someone I knew in high school. She regularly posts updates about rabidly conservative politics, so I’m 99.999% sure that she would not agree with the site if she had actually visited it. And the one person who says she has the same tacky painting of Jesus in her house is also someone I knew in high school. Ugh.

Support the 2010 California Protection of Marriage Act

Support John Marcotte, a Sacramento man who has filed a petition with the California Secretary of State to get a voter’s initiative onto the 2010 ballot in California that would make it ban divorce.

We are a Christian nation. Jesus said, “What God has put together, let no man separate.” Divorce is a sin….
People who supported Prop 8 weren’t trying to take rights away from gays, they just wanted to protect traditional marriage. That’s why I’m confident that they will support this initiative, even though this time it will be their rights that are diminished. To not support it would be hypocritical.
We can return this country back to it’s [sic] proud, traditional Judeo-Christian roots.

(Quotes are taken from Rob Cockerham’s interview with John)

“Death panels” = Political DDOS attack

Unfortunately, I’m afraid that this MeFi comment is right on target. The heart of the matter:

You may scoff at the stupidity of “death panels”. You may laugh and criticize in a thousand ways the stupid idiotic memes propagated by the right wing forces. But it is you who is missing the point. You are not getting it. Of course the memes are stupid – but that is the point. You get no brownie points for spotting the obvious absurdities. You are missing the point.
The point is to so flood the political discourse with stupidity, that it lowers the IQ of the debate across the board. THAT IS INTENTIONAL. Why?
It bogs down the thinkers – by depriving the thinker – of the very tools which give him/her an edge. When even simple facts are in dispute, when the absurdity of the claims is so huge, it reaches a critical mass – and intelligent discourse is impossible. All the intelligence in the world won’t help, because the discourse is not amenable to the tools of intelligence. Notable example: the Barney Frank controversy re: “dining room table”. People here were crowing on behalf of BF. I took a different view – you are missing the point. Barney Frank lost. How? He was sidetracked. His intelligence was beside the point, because the discourse did not lend itself to intelligent debate – and he was reduced to snark, reduced to the level of insult – exactly what was wanted. He lost. Time was wasted, energy was drained, progress was stopped. Instead of discussing details of implementation, he had to address a dining table. A sick and dying patient was waiting – do you think he’d be more gratified to hear about the dining table, or details about how to pay for his treatment?

God, that’s depressing.

Playing by the rules

The New York Times recently ran an article about Brooklyn judge Arthur M. Schack who readily throws out foreclosure motions if the lenders do not have their paperwork in proper order. The depressing part of the article is this:

“To the extent that judges examine these papers, they find exactly the same errors that Judge Schack does,” said Katherine M. Porter, a visiting professor at the School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, and a national expert in consumer credit law. “His rulings are hardly revolutionary; it’s unusual only because we so rarely hold large corporations to the rules.”