The death of a taboo

big jonny, concurring…

The RNC ran with it as only they could.

One of the most enduring taboos in American politics, the airing of graphic images from the September 11 attacks in a partisan context, died today. It was nearly seven years old.

The informal prohibition, which had been occasionally threatened by political ads in recent years, was pronounced dead at approximately 7:40 CST, when a video aired before delegates at the Republican National Convention included slow-motion footage of a plane striking the World Trade Center, the towers’ subsequent collapse, and smoke emerging from the Pentagon.

The September 11 precedent was one of the few surviving campaign-season taboos. It is survived by direct comparisons of one’s opponents to Hitler.
Source: www.boston.com

I find myself in agreement.

Keith Olbermann apologizes to viewers for the graphic imagery and exploitive nature of the RNC’s tribute to the victims of 9/11.
Video: www.msnbc.msn.com

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

24 thoughts on “The death of a taboo

  1. I’m voting for Obama. That said, if McLame wins it, you folks that voted for him deserve him. I’d be tickled pink to see how he plans on cleaning up the crap that’s been left on the plate. It feels, to me, like we’re living in a country that’s on the edge of bankruptcy.
    Stop voting for the people that allow big businesses to vacuum the money out of your neighborhoods without some sort of reinvestment plan in your community. A healthy economy is a circle, an engine of perpetual motion, and our circle has been broken for awhile. Our dollars have been on a one way trip outta here for a long time. Now we’re riding on debt and the dollars that are left are worth less than ever…Think about it and listen to the candidates. Perhaps even more importantly, listen to what they don’t say.

  2. You know, there are two factors that contribute to debt. How much you make, and how much you spend. How much we make has increased every year that’s not a problem, how about controlling how much we spend?

  3. And exactly who killed the budget surplus we had 8 years ago? Your guy. Republicans want to starve social programs into failure so that they can convince the public to scrap them. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that that isn’t their game. And don’t dare talk about financial responsibility with the mess those goat fuckers have made of things.

  4. KG, you just plucked that little quip straight out of your ass. It only sounds clever to you because you have no idea what your goverment has been spending my money on for the last eight years.

  5. I’ll tell you right now… Bush spent too much.

    And the budget surplus didn’t disappear because taxes were cut… revenue still increased… but spending increased faster.

    What saved the 90′s was a hot economy that ended being a what? A bubble. It burst before Bush got in office, but even after the burst, no recession came, and contrary to what you believe, we’re not in a recession now, the economy is doing well.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122039890722392873.html

    Don’t act like Bush spent all that on his own though, and don’t think that it’s all war spending either. The vast social programs that the democrats have founded and refuse to cut back on dwarf military spending.

    So did Bush spend a lot, hell yeah, but don’t try to convince me that Gore would have spent less.

  6. C’maon “don’t ty to convince me Gore would’ve spent less?” Why do the present neo-cons continue to ask people to proove the impossible? How is it possible to argue with someone who makes statement slike this?

    Another example: Find weapons of mass destruction that don’t exist.
    Another agrument: From Bush “You can’t tell me democracy is a bad thing.”
    Nope, I can’t argue with that either. But I could argue that the present administration is hurting democracy.

    Oh yeah, it’s been historically proven that the country does better financially under Democrats.

    My counter argument for “Gore wouldn’t have spent less.” He would’ve spent less because Gore isn’t stupid and would’nt have surrounded himself with people that wouldn’t ignore such warning as “Bin Ladin determined to strike within America” therfore no Iraq war. Gore wouldn’t have lied to the American public about weapons of mass destruction. Gore wouldn’t have sold us out to big oil. So yeah, Gore wouldn’t have spent as much.

  7. Gore wouldn’t have surrounded himself with such people? I kinda doubt that, when considering the way he has immersed himself in a populus which propagates the global warming myth…he’s just a figurehead and a pawn…and a fat one at that. Worse than that…he’s a freakin’ polititian who jumped on a movement that would panic the world into lining his pockets. The ultimate “Do as I say, not what I do” guy, if you will.

    As for the vaunted “budget surplus”…do you know that it NEVER REALLY EXISTED? It was a spin-job by the Clinton government to make you think we were operating on a profit margin. This country hasn’t EVER made a profit!

    I’ve said on here before that I won’t (and can’t) defend Bush or all Republican actions for that matter, but the Obama “change” movement smells a bit too much of socialism for me. And I’m not referencing William Ayers or anything stupid and propagandist like that…I’m talking about his proposed changes in the tax code and the redistribution of wealth. For instance…he wishes to reinstate the inheiritance tax Bush has repealed. I find this to be on the podium as one of the worst taxes ever created…c’mon…your dad busts his balls to provide for a great family life for himself and his children, and when he passes, the gov’t gets a huge cut? WTF?

    If you want to see success in this country again, small business is the key. Protect small business with tax breaks and incentives, and use American inginuity and work ethic (if there is such a thing anymore) to KEEP some base production HERE!

    Sorry I’m all over the map this morning…eating my Apple Jacks as I type and thinking about the ride I’m going on…right…now!

  8. OK, the fact that you even said “the global warming myth” means that I probably shouldn’t bother to respond, but your statements about the tax code are demonstrably false.

    First, Bush didn’t repeal the estate tax. It is still in place, and only affects estates larger than $1.5mil. Second, even estates larger than (a small fraction) only pay an average of 17% of their value in taxes. Anyone with any amount of estate planning can get around this anyway. Don’t even try to say something about family farms being sold to pay the tax. The Farm Bureau could not find a single example of a farm being lost or sold because of the estate tax. The Republicans propogate this myth by convincing people that it may someday affect them, but in reality it only affects those already rich. The extreme concentration of wealth is bad for both a society and an economy. That was the situation when the estate tax was created in the days of the robber barons, and that is where we find ourselves today.

    Why should the children of rich parents never have to pay taxes on their income? How is it that income from work is fair game, but income from just being lucky in your birth is not?

    The same could be said from the current tax structure with respect to investment income. The majority of Americans do own stock, but we are not paying dividend taxes on it because the overwhelming majority is held in retirement accounts. Meanwhile, hedge fund managers, simply by the nature of their job and the fact that all of their income is from investing, pay less taxes than I do, and earn literally 100 times more than the average American. Are they working 100 times harder than us?

  9. Global climate change is not a myth. There isn’t a well respected scientist who thinks so. The details might be debatable, but it’s happening, and we are having an impact on it’s severity. Give up on that argument. It only works in circles of head in the sand Republians. I suggest you check out RealClimate.org. These are the scientists that actually run the models and publish on the subject in peer reviewed journals. I must warn you though, they aren’t going to dumb stuff down, and they will hand you your ass if you go in there talking about how it’s a myth. Read up on the subject instead of parroting the Republican talking points.

    I think you are confusing budget surplus with debt. The second Clinton term ran a budget surplus. There was a small budget surplus between Johnson and Nixon. We still carried debt. But lets look at debt. Since Ford (so Carter forward = the past 30 years), debt has increased for every president (really it has at least since Truman). During Democratic administrations, federal spending has gone up 9.9%. During Republican administrations it’s gone up 12.1%. Now for the kicker, the federal debt has increased 4.2% under Democrats, and 36.4% under Republicans. Yes, the federal debt has risen about 9 times more under Republicans than Democrats. Fiscal responsibility my ass. Additionally, GDP has increased 12.6% under Democrats, but only 10.7% under Republicans (these are all from the CBO). It is well documented that the economy does better under Democrats. Everyone does better. Under Republicans, the rich don’t think they are doing better, because they don’t think they are getting far enough ahead of the poor.

    I agree that small business is important. Why do people believe that the Republicans care about anything but big business? They haven’t done anything to support that view. They’ve sold that line, but that’s all it is. It has nothing to do with reality.

    Anyways, back to the original topic of this post… It is morally reprehensible that the Republicans are using 9/11 for political purposes. The jackasses who thought that was o.k. should be forced to go to Iraq themselves and lose their citizenship. They should have to expose themselves to the same danger that my sister-in-law does on a daily basis. They don’t deserve any of the protections which this country deserves. Talk about un-patriotic. Goat fuckers.

  10. sommerfliesby – you are most assuredly a moron. this is your official cease-and-desist letter.

  11. That would be that this country provides. They’re still goat fuckers. Always will be. Don’t deserve anything more than a kick in the flump.

  12. el jefe is right. This place has been crawling with goat fuckers up until about two years ago, a point at which they began choking on their own corrupt method of capitalism for capitlism’s sake while being booted out of office.
    sommerfliesby-what a cynical ass. Try pulling that shit on the guy watching your back in the battlefield.

  13. taboo?
    wtf?
    giuliani, as far as I can tell, can do 2 things in his whole life.
    dress up in drag and quote 9.11
    9/11 nine elelevin ni nalevin nina levin 911 september the leventh too thoosand one
    breaking a taboo?
    it’s all they’ve done since 9/12
    it’s the logo on the bags of popcorn at all republican events.

    BTW, obama’s news conf on fannie & freddie was spot on.
    it’s gonna be weird to see what it’s like to have a president again, and not just some guy in the top chair.

  14. Hostile- Ain’t gonna do it. Bite me. No reason for all the name-calling…honestly, I come to this site because the discussions are usually well-spoken and informative. Excuse my misstatement on the climate change issue…I do believe something is happening, I DON’T believe there is a human cause…and I have read up on it…try reading “The Chilling Stars” and let me know what you conclude.

    I live in Illinois…the Republican party does not EXIST in this state…it is routinely laughed at in the Chicago area…and look for this state to be dropping RAPIDLY to the bottom of the list as far as economic indicators due precisely to this. Barack Obama (and need I remind you where he’s from?????) ain’t done SHIT, I’m glad you guys are so sure that he’ll be able to do something, cuz all I see is a stuffed shirt.

    Cynical- you fucking BET I’m cynical! Cynical, jaded, and LOST. I don’t see McCain as a solution either…what we need is a whole lot LESS government.

    As for the topic at hand…yup…taboo all the way and should’ve stayed that way…it’s absolutely shameful.

  15. Jason…go over how many times you are taxed on every dollar you make. Do you enjoy this? Good to know that you’ll be taxed even when you are dead, isn’t it?

  16. If my estate is worth more than $2 million even after estate planning then my kids can handle paying taxes on everything above that. (the exemption is scheduled to rise to $3.5 mil next year) Estates are composed of unrealized capital gains, and thus taxable. The estate tax is nothing but a red herring that affects less than 1% of estates.

    The fact remains that someone has to pay for the services of government. A higher percentage of that cost should be borne by those most able to pay, which is not the case today. Those that currently own the capital pay much less than those of us that work, since their top tax rate on capital gains is 15%. Most of us pay a bigger chunk in payroll tax than we do in income tax, and the payroll tax only applies to the first $100 k.

  17. sommerfliesby- You boldly predict that IL is going to rapidly go to the bottom of the list of economic indicators. Well I have news for you pal, the fact that it’s not there now speaks volumes. Have a looksy here. I live 3.5 miles from the Cleveland zip code with the highest rate of foreclosure for 2007Q3. My sister and her husband live outside of Detroit, another area that currently has some really strong economic indicators. These areas are suffering NOW!

    KJ- You may say that the US is not in or headed for a recession, which is debatable. I read the WSJ OPINION piece you linked to, and I would recommend others read it as well just to understand how twisted some people’s views are. I’ll give a couple of quotes from the link you posted:

    “The cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has been largely absorbed in a relatively small increase in the defense budget (to 4.1% of GDP in 2006 from 3.8% in 1995). A much higher proportion of U.S. income was devoted to the military during World War II and the Korean War.”

    I can’t even comprehend comparing the current conflicts with WWII and Korea (although I think it’s pretty ironic that a comparison wasn’t made to Vietnam). What is made to sound like a measly 7.3% increase in military spending by taking it against the GDP, is in reality closer to a increase of 150billion dollars anually or a 34.5% increase in spending. Those numbers don’t sound as rosey, do they?

    “The U.S. unemployment rate averaged 4.7% from 2001-2007. This compares with a 5.2% average rate during President Clinton’s term of office, and is well below the euro zone average of 8.3% since 2000.”

    Now read this: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122061757763903639.html

    “A jump in the unemployment rate to 6.1% in August, the highest in nearly five years, underscored the economy’s fragility and deepened political debate over whether a second stimulus package is needed.

    The jobless-rate jump, from 5.7% in July, was larger than anticipated, reflecting how energy prices and problems in the housing and financial sectors have radiated outward to slow overall economic activity.”

    I am sorry to say that I supported Bush & Dick in ’04, largely because I didn’t think Kerry could lead during a time of war. Well banging the 9/11 drum will not fool me again. Heck if for some reason McCain does get elected, will the GOP bang that drum in ’12???

  18. sommerfliesby- You boldly predict that IL is going to rapidly go to the bottom of the list of economic indicators. Well I have news for you pal, the fact that it’s not there now speaks volumes. Have a looksy here. I live 3.5 miles from the Cleveland zip code with the highest rate of foreclosure for 2007Q3. My sister and her husband live outside of Detroit, another area that currently has some really strong economic indicators. These areas are suffering NOW!

    KJ- You may say that the US is not in or headed for a recession, which is debatable. I read the WSJ OPINION piece you linked to, and I would recommend others read it as well just to understand how twisted some people’s views are. I’ll give a couple of quotes from the link you posted:

    “The cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has been largely absorbed in a relatively small increase in the defense budget (to 4.1% of GDP in 2006 from 3.8% in 1995). A much higher proportion of U.S. income was devoted to the military during World War II and the Korean War.”

    I can’t even comprehend comparing the current conflicts with WWII and Korea (although I think it’s pretty ironic that a comparison wasn’t made to Vietnam). What is made to sound like a measily 7.3 increase in military spending by taking it against the GDP, is in reality closer to a increase of 150billion dollars anually or a 34.5% increase in spending. Those numbers don’t sound as rosey, do they.

    “The U.S. unemployment rate averaged 4.7% from 2001-2007. This compares with a 5.2% average rate during President Clinton’s term of office, and is well below the euro zone average of 8.3% since 2000.”

    Now read this: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122061757763903639.html

    “A jump in the unemployment rate to 6.1% in August, the highest in nearly five years, underscored the economy’s fragility and deepened political debate over whether a second stimulus package is needed.

    The jobless-rate jump, from 5.7% in July, was larger than anticipated, reflecting how energy prices and problems in the housing and financial sectors have radiated outward to slow overall economic activity.”

    I am sorry to say that I supported Bush & Dick in ’04, largely because I didn’t think Kerry could lead during a time of war. Well banging the 9/11 drum will not fool me again. Heck if for some reason McCain does get elected, will the GOP bang that drum in ’12???

  19. The theory presented in The Chilling Stars is potentially intriguing, but really in it’s infancy and not very well supported. The book is sensationalist popular literature. To see how the actual science behind the theory was accepted, I skimmed the primary literature. The authors haven’t published much more than notes or comments in the scientific fields (on this topic), and much of it has been in smaller journals. There have been a couple of papers debunking the theory in Nature and PNAS. The biggest problems with the theory are that there has been no discernible trend in either cosmic rays or solar intensity since 1950 (the time in which there has been the largest increase in CO2, and largest increase in global mean temperature); their modeling doesn’t fit the observed trends anywhere near as well as that based on green-house gasses; and they can’t identify a physical mechanism whereby it actually works. They want to use single factor modeling and a lack of statistical power to claim that their theory explains all the trends. Could cosmic rays or solar rays have an effect? Conceptually, sure, but they are a long ways from having any sort of well supported model. Maybe someday that info will be added into our other models, but for now, green-house gasses are the best supported cause of global climate change. One of the biggest flaws in their cloud nuclei formation is that it doesn’t work in the levels of the atmosphere which most effect warming/cooling trends. Maybe someday we’ll come up with some additional theories. That’s the thing about science. There really is only so long that you can hold onto a flawed theory. They tried that resisting plate tectonics and evolution.

    I know it’s uncomfortable to accept that we are changing something as large as the entire earth’s atmosphere, but that’s the case. Sorry.

  20. oh jesus stop it. frick….frick frick frick.
    No, frack i say, frack frack frack.

    Now I know I’m correct, sane (ish) and educated. and those who disagree with me are incorrect, nuts, and ignorant. and nobody cares.
    Has any blue convinced any red of anything? Has a red got one blue to change a mind?
    someone watches a newsmodel announce some BS, and occasionally an opinion will change.
    But the rational power of persuasion?
    forget it, the greeks are long gone.
    the socratic method is now…quaint.
    discourse and cable news.
    bueno.

  21. “Why should the children of rich parents never have to pay taxes on their income? How is it that income from work is fair game, but income from just being lucky in your birth is not?”

    Jason-

    I pay income taxes in the mid-20 per cent range, THEN invest and pay 28% on gains, then pay again when I die. Taxes will crush the middle class.

    “It is morally reprehensible that the Republicans are using 9/11 for political purposes. ”

    el jefe-

    Why? Because you’re not a republican? The terrorist attack of September of 2001 is perhaps the most significant POLITICAL event in the lifetimes of young American voters. It SHOULD be remembered and it SHOULD be discussed as national politics.

    The current crop of repmocrats (GWB et al) are an embarrassment to republicans. Tax-and-spend should be the exclusive domain of the Dempublicans, and the current don’t-tax-and-spend paradigm is just plain stoopid. Hear that tinkling sound? It’s the sound of our urine falling on our children’s heads.

    It’s bewildering to me that people feel so polarized, when the repmocrats and dempublicans are so nearly identical. Here is Mikey’s bold prediction: taxes are going up and the environment is going to hell. Welcome to the nanny state. Enjoy your pablum. Jared Diamond is right: we’re facing a centuries-long slide into a Blade Runner-like future.

    Mikey

  22. Of course our taxes are going up – a certain party keeps “forgeting” to pay the bills…

  23. Tax dollars out to bomb infrastructure in other cuntries. Tax dollars out to rebuild infrastructure in those countires. Tax Dollars into private american corporations to do the work in those countries.

    What is worng with tax dollars into private american corporations to rebuild american infrastructure?