Friday, May 11, 2012

...and put this deck chair over there.

I was going to make some comment about what a master stroke of electioneering it was for Obama to use his bully pulpit to get the GOP to pull its teeth out of his economic Achilles' heel and go chasing off after the gay marriage issue, but then I realized it didn't really take any kind of political genius at all. I mean, if you know the dog's gonna chase the stick, you don't have to be Machiavelli to throw it in front of the bus.

And when it comes to chasing sticks, the Republican elephanthound is constant as the northern star; if it ever has you treed up some tricky unemployment numbers, just fling something about the 'bortion or the gays as far from you as possible, and it will bark happily off after it, leaving you free to regroup.


Carteach said...

Coffee, spewed, MkI, Mod 0.

Skip said...

Definitely not a masterstroke, because by the time the election rolls around it will be long forgotten. I mean, everyone knew this was, more or less, his position, and that his previous utterances were lies, for political positioning. In fact, everyone knows his position isn't as moderate as he's making it out to be now.

Tam said...


Really? "Everyone" knows that?

I posit this: Obama doesn't give much of a damn one way or the other about gay marriage. He probably thinks it's okay in a vague civil-rights-y sort of way, but he's also probably a little personally squicked out by the idea. But he had to make these mouth noises for the LGBT crowd, who are the Democrats' NRA.

Or maybe he's a secretly gay Nigerian-born Muslim communist who's a Manchurian Candidate tasked by the KGB to implement Sharia Marxism in the US and destroy marriage and the church.

Noah D said...

he's a secretly gay Nigerian-born Muslim communist who's a Manchurian Candidate tasked by the KGB to implement Sharia Marxism in the US and destroy marriage and the church.

See, he's incompetent at that, too!

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

The one part about what Skip said that is probably correct is that this issue was raised far too early for it to affect the general election. Another six months of continued malaise will undoubtedly erase it from memory.

The rest of it, well, let us read from the book of St. Robert the Curmudgeon: "If 'everybody knows' such-and-such, then it ain't so, by at least ten thousand to one."

Anonymous said...

Argue about the impact all you want but Tam is right about the stupid. On this and 10,000 other things. What matters is liberty and fiscal prudence but the Republican wing of the statist party just can't help themselves.

The Great and Powerful Oz said...

The Republican leadership is screwing up so much on this election that I'm now referring to them as "The Other Committee to Re-Elect Obama"

Divemedic said...

You must admit that it exposes the hypocrisy of the Republican party: Nothing says smaller, less intrusive government like telling people who they can marry.

Yrro said...


It's so funny how once the state has invaded a part of private life, any attempts to *not* extend that interference to everyone are seen as being more intrusive... The actual thing we are talking about is extending thousands of government-provided legal benefits to people who did not previously have them... that is an *extension* of government.

And I'm entirely for it ;-) But I just find it amusing how it all gets twisted around once the state becomes the sole provider of a right (marriage) that is essentially a non-state activity.

Joseph said...

I do believe this is called politics and I am certain it is why I detest it.

He's actually doing the GOP a favor in that if Romnibot 2012 actually stayed on topic of the economy between now and November, the populace would be so utterly tired of him that they'd vote for Obama in spite.

perlhaqr said...



I mean, if you know the dog's gonna chase the stick, you don't have to be Machiavelli to throw it in front of the bus.

Goddamn. How do you come up with this great stuff day after day? :D


Nathan: It may be that people will have forgotten about this in six months when November rolls around, but our Lord and Master raised something like a million dollars in one day after he made the announcement. And I suspect that money is more useful now than 6 months from now, especially since it's not like the vast majority of homosexuals were going to even contemplate voting for anyone other than Barry anyway.

Even though, if they wanted a candidate who really cared about getting them married, they'd be voting Libertarian.

Jay G said...

Can we bring back James Carville and "It's the Economy, Stupid" now, please?

Hell, I'd settle for "Are you better off now than you were four years ago"...

SGB said...

http://seriousgun.comObama is playing the other wing of the Master party (Repubes) like a violin. It's easy when everyone is in the same party. But partisans really believe there is choice in American politics.

rickn8or said...

Yep Tam, you pretty much nailed it.
Now excuse me while I go carve this particular blog entry in stone.

Boyd K said...

Shared this with the borg (facebook), really excellent Tam.

Anonymous said...

Still a few months left to go. Don't get too excited. I'm not. I'm voting against Obama, not for Romney.

If it comes up in conversation, I bring up stuff like what Obama's done to promote domestic energy production (jack all) or the result of his stimulus spending (enriched Democratic scum) and the like.

Besides, the abortion and gay rights stuff might actually have the effect of solidifying support for a Mormon on the part of evangelicals who ordinarily might not be so enthusiastic, but who can be significant if they will turn out. At least I think it would be funny if it bit Obama in the arse in such fashion. I'm taking my pleasures where I can, in this season of spoiled milk for the masses.

Mike James

Anonymous said...

North Carolina voters prohibited gay marriage by more than 20 points.

Prohibiting gay marriage has won popular votes from Maine and California.

Why is it assumed that culture issues are losers for Republicans?

Shootin' Buddy

Tam said...


"North Carolina voters prohibited gay marriage by more than 20 points."

Uh, duh. During a GOP primary election.

99% of the voters in North Cackalacky were at the polls that day to vote for Mitt, Newt, or Rick. A chance to hate on some queers while they were in the booth was just a bonus.

I would bet that, were this a Dem primary year, it might have squeaked by on a 5% margin. And, frankly, every poll and study out there shows that its most ardent opponents are worm food in the next ten to twenty years anyway.

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

Of course, he was sure to clarify in his statement that it was his “personal” opinion. Meaning that while Barack Obama (claims he) supports gay marriage, that does not necessarily mean that President Obama supports it. In other words, it’s nothing but lip service.

I even pointed that out on one of HRC’s multitude of Facebook posts, but strangely enough my comment seems to have disappeared down a memory hole.

Bubblehead Les. said...

One of the news reports I read is that this time, it's Biden's Fault. Barry was going to make his "When Mary met Sally" speech "Spontaneously" during an "Interview" scheduled for this upcoming Monday, but "Joe the Dumber" escaped from the Reservation, so the Anointed One had to speed things up. But that's okay, because it turns out that he got $15 Million or so from Clooney's Lovefest because of his "Enlightened Stance" towards Gay Marriage.

Next up, Barry's "Evolving" Attitude towards Gun Control.

Anonymous said...

Rasmussen poll has Romney 7 points over Obama. Shouldn't coming out for gay marriage shoot Obama to a landslide if the cultural issues are forbidden?

Gay marriage, the ultimate "I hate my parents for making me wear itchy clothing on Sunday", was shot down in flames in California of all places? Only saved by gay federal judges.

Every time it is put to the popular vote, Republican or Democratic election, gay marriage loses. It is media, which is solidly pro-gay marriage, wishful thinking that cultural issues hurt the Republican party. Just ask Senator Brown.

Shootin' Buddy

Kristophr said...

We should congratulate Obama for finally reaching the same position Vice President Cheney reached years ago.

And then ask them when they are going to take the same position on racial equality that another great Republican, the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr?

We need ( as Republicans, if you are one ) to be turning this crap around, and forcing it down their throats.

Shootin' Buddy:

We can take this entire issue from them by just getting government out of the marriage business. Have the government only recognize civil unions with a filed ( or a default ) contract. What you call your religious ceremony is none of the .gov's business.

Anonymous said...


I do not disagree but I do not run in circles when a Democrats starts talking about gay marriage. It does not help them with the population as a whole.

Shootin' Buddy

Tam said...

Shootin Buddy,

"...if the cultural issues are forbidden?"

Who said they were "forbidden"? You?

I said that they were ultimately a sideshow. Keep this shit up and the GOP will be the minority party trying to block 2016 legislation allowing domestic partners from being able to share bread line ration coupons.

"Every time it is put to the popular vote, Republican or Democratic election, gay marriage loses."

...only because its most enthusiastic opponents are also the most enthusiastic voters. *coughshuffleboarderscough* Hardly anybody other than serious fundamentalists who grew up post Will & Grace gives two shits about it one way or the other.

Frankly, it sounds as odd to my ear as anti-miscegenation laws, (which were also wildly popular in North Cackalacky once upon a time, if I recollect aright.)

re: Rasmussen poll. I've got a crisp Andrew Jackson says the Bamster gets a second run at screwing up the oath on January 20th. If I'm wrong, I'll only take a Hamilton from you. Are we on?

Tam said...


"We can take this entire issue from them by just getting government out of the marriage business. Have the government only recognize civil unions with a filed ( or a default ) contract. What you call your religious ceremony is none of the .gov's business."

You stop making sense this instant.

RL said...

I don't know any "republicans" or "Republicans" who are against gay civil unions. It's just the Marriage thing the homosexual lobby keeps insisting on that is really at issue.

Marriages are religious (church) ceremonies joining a man and a woman, and the idea that .gov and the legal system would be able to force churches to marry whoever to whomever, to an eventual whatever, does not sit well with a significant majority of Americans...Or me...Whether they attend church or not.

Anyway, whatever happened to the sacrosanct lefty firewall separating Church and State? Would Federally sanctioned polygamy somehow not be an official civil right in gay marriage world? And why is it that the default lefty position always seems to be to break the hell out of the old in order to introduce something new?

The Jack said...

Kristopher, sad part is that's about the most unpopular setup.

Not only is the whole "please submit for government romance/sex/cohabitation/whatever approval" creepy, but the demands of "We wanna be regulated too!" is just depressing.

And the other side fears deregulation of marriage as a "Scheme by those gays to destroy marriage!"

There's plenty of people that WANT a boot to their neck, and when seeing someone else getting pressed will be jealous that *that* boot's a prettier color.

Divemedic said...

@RL- Do you really think that the government is going to force the church to marry two particular people? That makes as much sense as outlawing Jewish marriage because you are afraid that the law will require the Catholic church to perform the ceremony.

@The Jack: It isn't so much a desire to be registered as it is recognition of the legal rights of being married:
The right to "next of kin" visits at the hospital.
Survivorship rights: For example, a gay couple spends 40 years together, and when one dies, the other has no right to inherit the things they bought together. A person related to the deceased partner has a stronger legal claim, even with a will saying otherwise.
There are many things that come with that "registration" that an unmarried couple can't get.

It is wrong to deny them the rights that the rest of us have. To me, the best way to solve it is to change it from a license to a registration- IOW make it "shall issue"

LabRat said...

Marriage doesn't belong to "the" church. Its existence as a basic social concept predates organized religion and a state large enough to be meaningfully distinguished from the village elders alike.

Church and state are both johnny-come-latelies to marriage.

RL said...

RE: The issue that shall not be named.

Exactly. It makes no sense other than the imposition of their collective gay will upon the religious consciousness and practices of unwilling subjects.

There is a difference between "Marriage" and civil unions which offer all the legal advantages/disadvantages of marriage except the services of unwilling churches and priests. Even then, there are churches and priests that will happily 'marry' them...Just not all of them there churches. So why the insistence on defining their legal union as specifically "Marriage" at the federal level?

Since they can't seem to win any democratic referendum in even the most liberal of states - In pushing for marriage over civil unions, gay marriage enthusiasts essentially seek to use lawfare to force all churches to conform to their will.

Anyway, did you think that would sign into law a massive [unread] 3000 page bill forcing everyone -except a few chosen exempted supporting orgs- to buy federally mandated insurance coverage or face fines and incarceration?...And in the same act try to compel Church-owned hospitals to supply abortions and abortificant drugs?

...Or force gun shops to keep meticulous permanent records on customers and run potential customers through a national database for approval.

...Or force businesses to collect taxes for them?

...Or have Departments openly work hand-in-hand with groups who sue them, pocket the taxpayer-funded winnings from the ruling that 'forces' said department to implement some new regulation they both wanted, and then use said taxpayer cash to finance yet more lawsuits to force even more onerous regulations?

Never let a government mule poke its nose into the people's tent.

Buzz said...

RL beat me to it.

Like forcing Catholic institutions to pay for contraceptives, the end game is forcing religion, ALL religion, to accept homosexuality. Marriage, spousal insurance benefits, the whole nine yards, shoved right up organized religion's arse, like a gerbil at Haight street rave.

el polacko said...

RL said...
I don't know any "republicans" or "Republicans" who are against gay civil unions.

let me introduce you to mitt romney...and the voters of n.carolina.

el polacko said...

@kristopher: your solution is exactly what we already have now.
all marriages are civil unions. marriage licenses are issued by the state, not the vatican. there is no requirement for a religious ceremony. we legally register our couplings with the government. it's unconstitutional to deny that registration to millions of citizens because of the religious beliefs and biases of some others.
marriage equality means naming, for legal purposes, the person who is your spouse. nothing is being 'redefined'. all the same rights and responsibilities apply regardless of whether the couple is straight or gay. hasn't eight years of experience in this country (and others) with marriage equality debunked all the hysterical objections? nothing has come of it but happy, legally-wed couples.

RL said...

el polacko: "let me introduce you to mitt romney...and the voters of n.carolina."

I don't know Romney or the voters of either Carolina, and am not quite convinced he [Romney] is much more than another warmed-over statist do-gooderer with an "(R)" after his name...But geewilickers, at the very least, he's not actively making gurgling noises about using the force of a bifecta to undemocratically compel church congregations in States from sea to shining sea to piss on their religious convictions.

Disagree? So be it.

RL said...

...Oh, and there is a way to have your Twinkie and eat it too...Convince the people of the various States and draft an Amendment to the Constitution.

benEzra said...

Shootin' Buddy, NC didn't vote this week to ban gay marriage, even though a lot of gullible pew-sitters thought they did. Amendment One made it illegal to recognize any domestic partnership, straight or gay, that is *not* marriage.

It banned civil unions and a lot of domestic partner benefits for straight and gay alike. It will hurt a lot of people who don't even know yet that the boulders are rolling down the hill at them, including friends of mine and perhaps me in a couple years (and yeah, I'm very hetero, even if I do carry a Lady Smith). :-)

It passed because every conservative church I know of told their members from the pulpit that they weren't right with Gawd if they didn't go to the polls and vote for A1 yesterday, on a day that might otherwise have seen <5% turnout. I met an old guy that morning who had never voted before (or at least not recently enough to know where) who was up early to go vote for A1. Meanwhile, a lot of those who *would* have opposed it didn't bother because they just thought it was a ban on gay marriage, which is already banned in NC. I voted against and convinced a coworker to do so, but most just felt it didn't affect them.

I think this will prove to be the "Christian" authoritarian equivalent of the AWB, though. The backlash may take a decade, but it will come.

Kristopher, religious conservatives *want* the government in the marriage business, aggressively so. It's easier for church leaders to coerce us heathens via the police power of the state than it is to persuade us/them to adopt its views voluntarily.

Kristophr said...

el polacko:

In most states, it is a bastardization of church and state.

People who just go to the .gov for a civil marriage are rare.

Pastors send the state a notice that the marriage has happened, and the state sends everyone paper afterwards.

Only in a few states are churches not involved.

Kristophr said...


Not all Republicans are religious bigots:

Barry Goldwater:

On religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both.
I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in "A," "B," "C" and "D." Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me?
And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of "conservatism."
Speech in the US Senate (16 September 1981)

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

Kristopher: Please name one state in which one cannot get legally married without the intervention of a religious official. Because unless I am mistaken, it is an option in every state to have a legal marriage without involving a priest/minister/rabbi/whatever. It generally involves a "justice of the peace" or other civil official with no official religious affiliation. You sign the papers, in most cases speak a vow, and you're married. No church involved.

The fact that people who just go to the .gov for a civil marriage are rare in no way invalidates el polacko's statement.

benEzra said...

Kristopher, good point, and good quote. Any chance you could bring zombie Goldwater back to talk some sense into Santorum, Dobson, the AFA, and whoever is advising Romney?

RL, I just noticed this:

"I don't know any "republicans" or "Republicans" who are against gay civil unions. It's just the Marriage thing the homosexual lobby keeps insisting on that is really at issue."

Look at the constitutional amendment the Republicans just put on the ballot in NC, which mostly Republican voters just passed, and get back to me. It doesn't just ban gay civil unions, it bans *straight* civil unions.

Parallel said...

Gay Marriage activists want the government to call their civil unions "marriage" because either (1) they retain guilt from their childhood about having sex outside of marriage, and/or (2) they hope that getting "married" will cause their traditionalist (e.g.) parents to accept their preferred lifestyle choice.

Too bad neither of those things will actually come to pass

Anonymous said...

99% of the voters in North Cackalacky were at the polls that day to vote for Mitt, Newt, or Rick. A chance to hate on some queers while they were in the booth was just a bonus.--Tam

There are some counties in North Carolina that are 2/3 black. They voted overwhelmingly for BHO in 2008.

These same counties voted 2-to-1 to adopt Amendment 1.

Obama is badly out of touch with a large element his constituency.

This blunder will cause heretofore uncommitted social conservatives to flock to Romney. Defending the indefensible is bad politics, as this little dust up clearly demonstrates.


Ian Argent said...

When two opposite-sex, atheistic, serial adulterers and serially divorced, who are provably sterile (medical records) can get married under the aegis of law; why in the world do we care if two same-sex folks can?

(That covers most, if not all, the arguments I've heard made about not letting "those folks" get married in the eyes of the law.)

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

Well, it looks like they're doing a good job of running after that stick. I wonder if they'll avoid the bus?