Tag Archives: wingnuts

Guns, Ebola, Torture, and a Sour Weppner

30 Oct

Image Credit: WBFO.org

At long last, Kathy Weppner got her debate against Brian Higgins yesterday. The candidates vying to represent NY-26 in Congress faced off in front of an audience of about 1,000 students and faculty at St. Joe’s. The debate was moderated by the AP Government teacher, and students selected and asked the questions. 

Here’s what Brian Higgins tweeted after the debate: 

And here is what Kathy Weppner tweeted about it:

 

So, the shorter version is Brian Higgins thanking St. Joe’s and its AP Government class, teacher, and students for a lively and fun debate, versus Kathy Weppner denigrating the kids and their questions, just one step away from accusing them of perhaps conspiring with Higgins’ campaign because she had to face tough questions. 

Also, Higgins accused Weppner of missing two recent candidate fora – not three. She skipped the Good Government Club and the Association of Retired Federal Employees events in the last few weeks. She was invited to them both. For someone who’s spent the last few weeks whining about how the League of Women Voters has conspired with Brian Higgins to support only Demoncrats, you’d expect her to attend everything offered to her. 

The Weppner campaign has been one of the best campaigns ever to be run in western New York, but not for the reasons you think. I don’t objectively mean it was “good” or the “best”; instead, it’s the best insofar as it has enabled regular people to hear and consider things that are usually kept in the deepest basements of AM hate radio. It’s rare that malicious and false right-wing misinformation sees the sunlight, and when it’s taken even a millimeter outside of its typical venues, it’s revealed to be so false and dumb that regular people simply dismiss it as “crazy”.  For instance, 

Yesterday, Brad Riter and I recorded an hourlong podcast where we set out to dissect yesterday’s debate. There’s so much there, we only made it through about 15 minutes’ worth.  You can listen to the podcast here

You can listen to the entire debate here, at WBFO’s site. Did you catch how Weppner whined about how Higgins conspired with WBEN to let the entire debate audio to be shared online? Weppner evidently didn’t read the rules, because the prohibition on recording and re-use of the debate was only as to the campaigns themselves – there were myriad cameras and microphones present, and the rules were quite clear that media could share their recordings. Indeed, after spending so many weeks whining about the lack of debates, you’d reckon that Weppner would scream bloody murder if the debate wasn’t shared with voters, right? 

In terms of substance, the student-led, teacher-moderated debate touched on several issues, none of which are trivial. More importantly, they were things that the students themselves deemed interesting. The first question dealt with the apparent epidemic of school shootings – a uniquely American problem. Weppner’s response to this question was typical right-wing pablum; more guns will lead to a more polite society. Weppner said things about how only “good” people with guns – like she – can protect society from bad people with guns, as if there were no other alternatives. Higgins affirmed people’s 2nd Amendment rights, but added, 

Good people should be able to carry guns but the framers of the Constitution could not have imagined this kind of hell,” Higgins said. “If you are a good guy with a gun then what’s wrong with reasonable background checks? What’s wrong with reasonable gun control?

The Weppner plan can be summarized thusly: 

Weppner came out in support of a travel ban from West African countries, while Higgins said we should follow the lead of medical professionals, and not politicians, on these sorts of issues. Weppner said, 

The CDC has spent 6% of its $3 billion over the last few years on silly studies instead of on infectious diseases. We’ve been squandering the money that we do have. So I believe, yes, there should be a quarantine. They’re quarantining our soldiers in Germany for 21 days. 

According to Weppner, if the CDC spent 6% of $3 billion on “silly studies”, then that still leaves 94% to study and prevent infectious diseases. However, typically, she’s got her facts wrong. She seems to be parroting a Politico article penned by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, who claims

Consider the Prevention and Public Health Fund, a new series of annual mandatory appropriations created by Obamacare. Over the past five years, the CDC has received just under $3 billion in transfers from the fund. Yet only 6 percent—$180 million—of that $3 billion went toward building epidemiology and laboratory capacity.

By contrast, the CDC’s Public Health Emergency Preparedness Cooperative Agreement Funding, which helps municipalities deal with outbreaks of disease, has decreased dramatically in the last decade. The CDC’s overall 2015 budget is not, incidentally, $3 billion, but almost $7 billion. That also represents a decrease of 3.5% over FY 2014, and you can see specifically what the administration sought, and what the tea party Congress granted

Weppner got two applause lines – the first when she said that marijuana “kills ambition” and leads kids to sit on the couch, watching TV, and eat Doritos. Not shockingly, teenage kids love the idea of sitting on the couch, watching TV, and eating Doritos, and cheered. Weppner also rejected medical marijuana, claiming,

If there are medicinal purposes that medical marijuana can be used for then we need to study it. We wouldn’t put a medicine on the market without studying it. If there are properties that help seizure disorders then we need to study what properties those are and put it into a little inhaler.  We can’t open pot stores. We need clear thinking young people to attack the problems we have. Not people that are going to sit back with a bag of Doritos and watch television.

Even Channel 2’s Michael Wooten pointed out on last night’s news that Weppner is lying about medical marijuana not having been studied. It’s been studied plenty, and shown to be effective in treating nausea in chemotherapy patients, glaucoma, chronic pain, seizures, and other maladies. UC San Diego has an entire department devoted to the study of medicinal uses for marijuana, a plant that grows in nature

The mic drop moment, though, came when the candidates were asked about the use of torture in interrogation of enemy combatants and terrorists. Weppner claimed, 

I don’t think sleep deprivation or waterboarding is something, if we are going to get valuable information that can save lives, is a horrible thing. I really don’t.

The notion that torture generates valuable information is categorically, scientifically false. While Weppner shocked the Catholic schoolboys with her pro-torture position, Higgins’ one-sentence response resulted in huge applause, prompting Weppner to whine about it later on Twitter (seen above). 

Torture should not be tolerated in any context in any part of the world.

The candidates’ reactions on Twitter aren’t an accident – Higgins’ performance was competent, relevant, and rational. Weppner’s was defensive, offensive, and bizarre. This is the shorthand to describe both candidates and their campaigns, overall. 

You think I hate Weppner or her right-wing followers? I don’t. I feel sorry for them, frankly, because it must really suck walking through life being angry and afraid of everything, always. I hate people who commit crimes and hurt others, I don’t hate people who think differently from me, however misguided I think they are. Part of what I do through this blog is highlight thoughts, ideas, words, and deeds that I believe to be ugly or nice – dangerous or helpful – reactionary or progressive. I pay attention to what my ideological opponents have to say because I refuse to formulate my opinions in a left-wing echo chamber. I read and listen to lots of points of view from lots of sources – so if I see, for instance, that the local AM talk radio station leaves a comment up for over an hour, which calls for the extermination of all Muslims on Earth, I feel it’s my duty as a normal human being to call that to the station’s attention.  It’s not only Nazi thinking, it’s violative of that station’s Facebook terms of service, “… will not tolerate racist, homophobic, sexist or abusive comments”. 

The real hatred comes from those who shut down dissent, and get called out in other venues. The real hatred comes from those who are utterly allergic to scrutiny or criticism of any kind. The real hatred comes from people who cower in their echo chambers, treating as unpatriotic or insane anyone who dares to disagree. The real hatred comes when the local news radio station blocks you on Twitter, because you pointed out that maybe “all Muslims need to be exterminated” doesn’t belong on their Facebook page. 

Election Day is next Tuesday. The tea party point of view is out in the sunlight for all to see. Reject it. 

Vote Brian Higgins in #NY26. Here’s Why.

27 Oct

First: Don’t be a lunatic

Election day is coming up, and I generally give you some BS half-assed “endorsements” of candidates who, in my opinion, deserve your vote.  Typically, I don’t do that until a day or two before election day itself, but the race for the 26th Congressional District is not remotely typical. 

I don’t agree with Brian Higgins on every single issue because he can be sometimes more conservative than I, and because he can sometimes be overly cautious on waterfront issues.  By way of example, I am disappointed that he is opposing the construction of places to live and things to do on certain portions of Buffalo’s Outer Harbor. 

That aside, there is absolutely no doubt that he has been a wildly effective proponent of all things Buffalo and western New York. Sure, as the Buffalo News pointed out earlier this year, he’s not lighting Washington on fire with pointless legislation that is likely to go nowhere in a tea party-dominated body. But when it comes to using his power and clout as a federal representative to help rebuild Buffalo and her waterfront, to restore NYPA funding to do it, to help improve our border and to push for needed changes in air traffic regulation, Higgins is the guy for us. When it comes to using the power of the federal purse to help fund projects and programs that help feed, clothe, house, and employ the weakest in our society, Higgins is the guy for us. Even Republicans recognize Higgins’ value and leadership. Higgins says

My service in Congress is everything about Buffalo and Western New York. I’ve learned that when you do good for your community, you’re doing good for your country, because the most important part of my country is my community.

While Brian Higgins represents the best that western New York has to offer, his opponent is the polar opposite. Kathy Weppner is nothing more than a craven cartoon character.  Her deep paranoia and hatred, willingness to promote and advocate for utter and complete nonsense, ease with which she lies and makes things up, and mindless regurgitation of whatever gibberish she reads on the right-wing internet renders her palpably unfit for public office. 

But it’s not just that. 

Below is a compendium of every post I’ve written about Kathy Weppner since she began her campaign. As a political meme for this season, she has been a bottomless pit of unfortunate material. What Kathy Weppner represents is the absolute worst of what western New York has to offer; reactionary thought, paranoia, a tendency to lie and to promote others’ lies, a provincial and narrow mindset, and above all – ignorance and misinformation. 

When Weppner first announced, this is what I wrote

In the 26th, incumbent Democrat Brian Higgins is likely to coast to re-election, as well. This is especially true thanks to the fact that his opponent is not only going to be a tea partier, but is – quite literally – a low-information WBEN caller. “Kathy from Williamsville” is going to take her fact-free jingoism on the campaign trail. She is a walking, talking anti-Obama chain email, and anyone reporting on her should be sure to have Snopes queued up on their mobile browsers. Seriously – there will be no point covering her campaign if you’re not able immediately to vet her pronouncements and cross-examine her on the inevitable fabrications and fantasies she’ll discuss. After all, she has a list of known communists, doesn’t seem to be ready or willing to represent Muslim residents of the 26th (hint: it’s the primitive blood lust), has declared “white guilt” to be “dead”, warned against a hyperinflation that never came, and – like Ronald Reagan – opposes Medicare

That one will be fun. 

I love it when I’m right. 

Take this for example. This was posted (publicly) to Weppner’s own Facebook page just this week. For some reason it wasn’t good enough for her campaign, but this is a pretty representative insight into the mind of a person who wants to go to Washington and represent the people of a diverse NY-26. 

To start out with, I absolutely detest these sorts of ignorant, uninformed violations of Godwin’s Law. Simply put, the United States is not at any risk of becoming a Nazi state, and anyone who thinks it is, is a moron.

But let’s examine the specifics; most basic is the lie – oft-repeated by demagogues and charlatans – that the Nazis killed capitalism in Germany. Nothing could be further from the truth, as National Socialism was, at least in part, a corporatist movement where the party, the military, and big industry were united in goal and deed. It wasn’t Marxist socialism that drove Nazi ideology – quite the opposite, as the Weimar-era street battles with the Spartacists can attest. Instead, it was a nationalist reaction to Marxism’s internationalism. The goal wasn’t a proletarian utopia, but a pure and strong Germany where the individual was subjugated to the state. Any notion that Naziism is remotely similar – much less identical – to the kind of western pluralist liberalism that people like Weppner so oppose – is as laughable as it is wrong. 

Prayer was taken out of schools? Hitler didn’t just stop there – he was openly hostile to all organized religion, because it represented a singular challenge to Nazi hegemony and the totalitarian deification of Hitler himself. In the United States, we have no such action taking place, and prayer is not allowed in school because of the prohibition against a government establishment of religion; it’s in the Constitution. Students, however, are perfectly within their rights to initiate spontaneous prayer in school at any time. It just can’t be something the school organizes. 

Like all things, under Hitler’s totalitarian state, all school curricula and administrations were subjected to the will of the party. Private and Catholic schools did exist, but were under constant scrutiny. No such thing happens in the US today. 

“Socialized medicine” didn’t lead to the extermination of the disabled – that was the Nazi sterilization and eugenics program – one that was quite popular in the United States in the early 20th century, as well. Every single western industrialized nation has some form of universal health insurance – some of it socialized – yet extermination of the old, sick, and disabled is not part of any of those programs. This is a lie and a scare tactic, used by depraved people to misinform voters. 

I have visited and lived in totalitarian dictatorships in my life. While some may find fault with our government using signals intelligence and other surveillance methods to try and keep tabs on real and suspected terrorists, it is not the same as a government using secret police, informants, and SIGINT to maintain a totalitarian purity of thought. We don’t have political police out there manning checkpoints to make sure where you’re supposed to be, and limiting what you think, say, or with whom you associate. Having experienced true totalitarianism, I can tell you that my possession of a passport, my ability to write this blog, my right to say and think what I please, and my right to express my political opinion all run counter to any half-brained notion that this country has devolved into some sort of fascist totalitarian nightmare. Anyone who suggests otherwise has automatically disproven their own point: if we truly were that totalitarian dystopia, you’d have no ability to express that fact, and you’d be arrested, subjected to a show-trial, and then exiled or killed. 

Government spending in Germany skyrocketed because they were planning to take over the world through endless war. Germans have always been very ecologically conscious – this pre-dates and post-dates Hitler, and is part of the German psyche. While Nazis and Communists alike purported to love and protect the natural environment, that doesn’t mean protecting the environment is a totalitarian aim. 

Finally, Hitler actually eased gun restrictions, but only for non-Jews. The US has a hodgepodge of state and federal gun laws, none of which have disarmed anyone based on religion. 

The copying and publication of that passage above – alone – disqualifies Kathy Weppner from public office. But there’s so much more. Here’s a list of just some of the abhorrent things that this candidate has done and said since announcing her campaign.  She – and the people who endorse her – are an insult to the intelligence of western New Yorkers. 

March 2014: Weppner Deletes It All

Back in the early Spring, the Buffalo News’ Jerry Zremski picked over some of the more malodorous parts of the Weppner mindswamp, and asked her for an interview. She declined, and agreed instead to answer via email. The result was a glorious, factual recitation of some of the things she’s promoted and said, and her weak explanations for them. (Weppner Vetted 3/24/14) Much of it surrounded her very outspoken involvement in the “birther” nonsense, questioning whether Barack Obama was born in Hawaii, or part of some half-century-long conspiracy to overthrow America. 

The candidate’s response to Zremski’s article was jaw-droppingly horrible. (Kathy Weppner Tries to Explain; Fails 3/25/14) I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it myself. The passive-aggressive whining about being on vacation, and the declaration of war on the librul meediya set the tone for the next several months’ worth of self-pitying nonsense. 

Much of Zremski’s piece focused on Weppner’s enthusiastic dalliance with Obama birtherism. Among Weppner’s defenses was that she was just asking questions, like everyone else, about Obama’s birthplace, along with other unpersuasive,  halfhearted denials about being part of some wider birther movement. A quick listen to an online radio show on which Weppner appeared reveals not only that she was more than just “asking questions”, she was an active believer in the lunatic rantings of the fringe dead-ender birther movement. (How Not To Be A Birther, By Kathy Weppner 3/26/14). 

Much of the information that the Buffalo News and I had been using to vet Weppner came from recordings of her own WBEN radio show, as well as materials that she published on her blog “str8talk.wordpress.com”. Up until late March, that site was still intact. After Zremski’s piece, she began selectively deleting certain passages, such as a racist “White Guilt” article she reprinted, verbatim, without comment. Soon, she took the entire site down altogether, and redirected the url to her campaign website. It was, for a time, still visible via the waybackmachineFinally, by 3/31, her campaign had successfully petitioned Archive.org to remove her entire internet archive from its site, and we are now left with not a single piece of evidence that she ever published a blog or had a radio show. Despite the fact that she proudly touts her WBEN radio show on her campaign bio, you’ll be hard-pressed to find any lasting evidence of its existence. (Kathy Weppner: So Proud of Her Radio Program She Deleted All Evidence of It 3/31/14). 

All we’re left with now is transcripts of her several calls to the Rush Limbaugh radio program.  Everyone knows who Rush Limbaugh is – he’s the fascist, racist, drug-addled, misogynist radio troll who spits hatred on a daily basis over the publicly owned airwaves. It was her unbelievable deletion of her entire pre-campaign radio and web history that led me to track down what was left, before she got rid of that, too. 

In 2008, Weppner called in with a particularly dumb theory about how Hillary Clinton was going to get the Democratic nomination because Obama was such a racist who “bathed his children” in hatred of white people.  She also bleated on about a conspiratorial “October Surprise” and other such half-baked nonsense. (Kathy From Williamsville Calls Rush Limbaugh in 2008 3/31/14). That same day, I found a campaign image on her Facebook page that used the House seal, in direct violation of federal law. (Kathy Weppner Violates Federal Law 3/31/14)

April 2014: Kathy From Williamsville’s Calls to Rush Limbaugh

In 2011, Weppner called Limbaugh to vent about how people need to start attending tea party rallies, or else we’d have “nothing left”. Also, her kids are serving in the military to protect things like Chris Lee and sovereign debt. It was a quick and mindless recitation of a couple of dopey talking points generating no discussion whatsoever. (Kathy Weppner: Why Are American Troops Fighting for Shirtless Chris Lee? 4/2/14). 

This one is one of my favorites – Kathy Weppner complaining about how no one from Congress held any town hall meetings in WNY so she and her cohorts could go and disrupt them. Yet she is so deathly afraid of the opinions and pronouncements that she spat when no one was looking, she deleted all evidence of them. Where have Weppner’s town halls been? (Kathy Weppner on Town Halls 4/3/14

Weppner called Limbaugh in July 2008 to ramble off a litany of groups whom she resents.

You know, we have ended up with a society where all the people that work in government, all the politicians, the teachers, the firemen, the policemen, all of our state governments, municipalities, and we are in a very heavily governed area here in western New York, all of them are living inside the castle walls, and all of us, everybody else is living outside of the castle walls. And all of the rules they make protect them, where our people, the public employee, they can retire at 55 here and they live to 85.

Yeah! To hell with our first responders and educators! Good talk, Kathy! (Kathy Weppner on Whom She Resents 4/4/14). 

There was another call to Limbaugh in 2009 – just a month after Obummer overthrew ‘Murrka, and Weppner threatened to go Galt because Barry and his cadres were going to just take everything anyway and give it to the lazy takers, (ostensibly the aforementioned teachers, firemen, policemen, and lazy blacks). Meanwhile, I learned that even physicians who receive Mexican medical degrees can earn a tremendous amount of money here in the United States. Weppner. What a card! (Kathy Weppner on Going Galt 4/4/14). (I posted the actual audio here on April 30th). 

We discovered that Weppner’s rag-tag campaign team includes a treasurer who has . . . interesting taste in caricatures, and “developed” a blatant ripoff of mobile app “Angry Birds”. In this version, we had angry “patriots” killing famous leftists like Al Sharpton and Karl Marx. (Weppner’s Carnival Sideshow 4/9/14)

If you’re looking for a nice yacht, cheap, try Kathy’s! (Weppner Selling Yacht 4/10/14).  We’re also still waiting for Kathy’s Obamacare report with bated breath! (Guns, Mental Health & Fascism 4/11/14)

May 2014: Issues!

Kathy introduced herself to the “girls” of western New York with this amazing video. You see, if women fight for equality, they’re embracing victimhood, or something. (Girls, Can We Talk?(!) 5/11/14)

Mrs. Weppner wrote an amazing piece blasting the Common Core, and calling for the immediate abolition of the Department of Education. Unfortuately, it needed some corrections. (Kathy Weppner’s Common Core Piece 5/23/14).

Here, our plucky tea partyist campaigns quite literally on the graves of our fallen heroes. (Kathy Weppner, Solving All the Problems 5/28/14).

Just hours after a madman went on a shooting rampage in California, Kathy graciously and with utmost sensitivity posted a YouTube video explaining how America was founded on the principle that armed lunatics should have the capability to commit treason at any time. (2nd Amendment and Kathy Weppner 5/29/14)

She then promptly took the video down, without explanation or apology.  She also knows all the things about Ohio fertilizer runoff. (Kathy Weppner’s Clownshoes: Now with Guns and Corn! 5/30/14)

Summer 2014: Infected Poors!

The month of June was pretty quiet.

In July, a campaign volunteer who was also managing some of Weppner’s social media, Laura Yingling, sent an email to the campaign’s list, seeking “not so nice” photos of “vacant homes, urban blight, anything I can use against Brian Higgins on Twitter and Facebook”. (Weppner Campaign Seeking “Not So Nice” Incidental Blight Photos 7/17/14). This led to a hilarious Twitter meme “#HigginsBlight”, showing off all the wonderful things that have happened in Buffalo and WNY since Higgins came to office. 

A few days later, Weppner reprimanded Yingling for this idiotic idea. (Weppner Disavows 912 Blight Exploitation Strategy 7/22/14). 

At the end of July, Weppner inexplicably chose the Peace Bridge as a backdrop to spout a bunch of hate-filled rubbish about a crisis of migrant children crossing the border. She went so far as to Tweet that Guatemala was sending us their “infected poors”. (Kathy Weppner and the “Infected Poors” 7/30/14). 

When the “infected poors” thing made national news and became embarrassing, Weppner blamed the help, (Laura Yingling again), and posted pictures of “Mariachi Kathy” in a sombrero to prove that some of her best friends are infected poors. (Shorter Weppner: #BlametheHelp 7/31/14). 

September 2014: ISIS Fundraising

August was also quiet, but campaign season sort of starts in earnest in September.  The civilized world watched in horror as radical Islamist murderers from the ISIS death cult slaughtered American and British hostages. Not one to let a beheading go by without a fundraising plea, Kathy Weppner displayed her shocking lack of propriety and morality, and did just that. (Kathy Weppner’s Moral Depravity 9/4/14). This insensitive exploitation of tragedy was becoming a pattern for the endorsed Republican candidate. 

Later that month, Weppner touted the fact that she had received a participation award – a prize for just showing up – from some obscure New Jersey-based school choice lobby that no one’s ever heard of. (Kathy Weppner gets Participation Award 9/24/14). The irony, of course, is that right-wing nutjobs like Weppner detest what they perceive to be participation awards and social promotion in our public schools. It makes the kids soft, don’t you know?  

The League of Women Voters put out the results of candidate questionnaires, and Weppner’s was just wonderful.  Any WBEN caller could have written it, right down to the throwaway, casual parenthetical Hitler reference. (Weppner and the Parenthetical Hitler 9/30/14). At least we know she’s a patriot. 

October 2014: Desperation Sets In 

The more desperate Weppner became, the more hateful and odd her pronouncements.

October 1st, Weppner declared that Ebola needed to be dealt with medically, not politically.  In the very next breath, she politicized Ebola. (Cognitive Weppner Dissonance 10/1/14). 

She decided to hammer Brian Higgins for not doing enough to stop the growth or territorial expansion of ISIS. She claimed that you should “change your congressman” because, presumably, she’d be appointed to the very same committees as Higgins, and by gosh, she’d get the anti-jihadist job done! The problem for Weppner goes back to her careful-then-comprehensive scrubbing of everything she ever wrote or said before March 2014. It’s disingenuous, at best, to attack Brian Higgins for past acts or omissions of word and deed, when you’ve deprived everyone of the ability to do the same with you. Certainly if ISIS was such a clear and present danger, Weppner’s own radio show or blog must be replete with warnings and pronouncements about this threat? (How Did Kathy Weppner Warn Us About ISIS in 2013? 10/9/14). 

I highlighted the insanity of some of what Weppner was pimping in this post (Kathy “Purple Penguin” Weppner 10/10/14). She is – and will always be – the Snopes candidate; whenever she mouth some weird nonsense, you have to check Snopes first and determine just how wrong or misguided she is.  Is that who should be sent to Washington as a legislative representative – someone so casually loose with reality and facts that you have to check what she says against an urban legends debunking site

Weppner’s so-bad-they-must-be-joking media allies defamed the League of Women Voters for supposedly succumbing to Brian Higgins’ scary pressure, deciding to not hold a NY-26 debate. The problem is, the local LWV isn’t holding any congressional debates in WNY this season. (The League of Women Voters Would Like Everyone to Stop Lying, please 10/17/14). It’s come to right-wing lunatics denigrating one of the most venerable voting organizations as a bunch of “libtards” and “demoncrats”, because that’s a normal way to talk. 

In a follow-up to the abysmally written “Stop Common Core” piece that Weppner released in May (above), I red-lined an equally bizarre Ebola/ISIS thing she posted on her website. (Kathy Weppner on ISIS and Ebola 10/23/14). 

That same day, as Canada was reeling from a terrorist attack against its Cenotaph and Parliament, resulting in the slaughter of a serviceman guarding the War Memorial, Weppner took that as an opportunity to idiotically discuss Canada’s gun laws. (Weppner Disrespects Canada’s Fallen 10/23/14). It was, for her, typically and shamelessly disrespectful. 

Finally – at long last – we come full circle.  A birther to the last, on  October 26th, Kathy Weppner told the Buffalo News’ Jerry Zremski

But there’s one thing Weppner doesn’t regret: her repeated questioning of whether President Obama was born in the United States.

Nonpartisan fact-checking sources such as PolitiFact dismissed that question out of hand years ago, but Weppner said last week: “I think that was a very legitimate conversation to have.”

There’s only about one week left of this shambolic campaign, and I’m sure we haven’t seen the last dumb pronouncement. But given all of the above, it’s clear that you simply don’t let a low-information WBEN caller run for elected office. What vision has she offered, other than poorly articulated, paranoid hatred? The removal of the “str8t talk” archive tells you all you need to know about a tea party candidate who refuses to answer for the things she’s said or done before she was involved in a campaign.  If the stuff she’s said and written during the campaign, as chronicled above, is as bad as that, you can image what sort of insanity lurked in those archives. 

Brian Higgins deserves re-election because he’s a strong champion for Buffalo and WNY. That, and his opponent is not deserving of consideration, much less support.

Caveat: Artvoice does not do political endorsements. Nothing written in this post should be interpreted, construed, or cited as an endorsement by the owners or editors of Artvoice itself.  This endorsement is mine alone.  In addition, because of how prolific Weppner’s campaign has been in putting out horrible things, some have accused me of being a paid blogger for the Higgins campaign.  This is categorically false and defamatory.  It presupposes, of course, that no one could possibly support a Brian Higgins or a Democrat unless they were on the take – an accusation so despicably sleazy that it requires no response. In any event, I do not know whether Higgins has ever paid for an advertisement in Artvoice, nor would I be in a position to know. I am an independent contractor and have no involvement or employment with Artvoice or its advertising or editorial staff. I can also state unequivocally and unreservedly that Higgins, his staff, and his campaign have never paid me in money or favor, ever. 

The League of Women Voters of Buffalo Niagara Would Like Everyone To Stop Lying, Please

17 Oct

Serious Congress Candidate

Former Higgins challenger and tea party activist Mike Madigan wrote an article for some website, claiming that the “League of Women Voters’ Mission [was] Subjugated to [Congressman Brian] Higgins’ Desires“.  The idea is that incumbent congressman Brian Higgins is so fearful of “debating” Kathy “infected poors” Weppner, that he somehow strong-armed the League into not scheduling a “debate” between the two candidates. 

Firstly, the League of Women Voters of Buffalo Niagara doesn’t do “debates”.  What it does is host candidate forums, which it calls “meetings”.  They’re not meant to be a way for candidates to debate each other, rather an opportunity for candidates to answer questions about relevant issues posed to them by people in the audience.  In years past, the organizers circulate index cards so audience members can write questions down for the moderator to ask.  

Recently, the League has stopped doing congressional forums altogether. There was never a forum scheduled for the NY-27 race between Chris Collins and Jim O’Donnell, nor was one ever set up for the NY-26 race between Higgins and Weppner. 

Weppner partisans have accused Higgins of not wanting to debate Weppner – some went so far on the radio to call Higgins a “sissy”.  Higgins, for his part, has debated his challenger in every available race, and this year is no exception.  There will be a debate at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute later this month, so the Higgins-sissy meme is ridiculous. 

Madigan made wild, flailing claims about Higgins being unwilling to “stand up to a strong female opponent”, and that unnamed “political observers” (read: Madigan) think that this informs Higgins’ “fear of a debate”.  With Weppner’s campaign teetering between non-entity and joke, suggestions of Higgins being a-feared of Weppner is absurd. The notion that he would somehow force the League to not only cancel the candidate meeting for NY-26, but also the one for NY-27 is likewise a complete fiction. 

Madigan suggested that the League was “playing defense” for Brian Higgins, suggesting that it’s trying to placate him as part of some fantastical quid-pro-quo, which would be hilarious if it wasn’t defamatory. So, I called the League and on Friday got a call back from Mary Ann. She was audibly upset over the phone about the Madigan article, and gave this prepared statement: 

The writer of the article in the Buffalo Chronicle didn’t check facts with the League.  The article contains inaccuracies.  We will respond to the article soon.  Thank you for your interest.

Incidentally, I asked the woman at the League with whom I spoke whether it was true that the reason why there is no forum for NY-27 is the same reason why one was never scheduled for NY-26.  She replied that the reason was the same. 

UPDATE: Late Friday, the League of Women Voters of Buffalo Niagara posted this as a comment to Madigan’s written leavings: 

Congressional candidates were not invited to the forum that was scheduled in Amherst and noted on the League of Women Voters of Buffalo/Niagara website. Amherst is located in the 26th congressional district. We have limited volunteers and resources. However, both Congressional candidates have responded to the League’s Online Voters Guide powered by Vote411. We encourage people to go to http://www.lwvbn.org. and read the responses of both candidates to the questions we posed.

The League’s printed 2014 Voters’ Guide will be available in public libraries and throughout Erie and Niagara County early next week. It will have the responses to the first question for each county and state office as well as pro and con arguments for the three New York State ballot proposals on this year’s ballot.

Kathy Weppner’s Moral Depravity

4 Sep

There is depraved, and then there is Kathy Weppner depraved

Leave it to WNY’s most delusional and intellectually malignant political clown to fundraise and recruit volunteers over the severed heads of brave American victims of genocidal terrorists

Weppner is busy accusing Brian Higgins – a minority member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs – for bringing ISIS/ISIL about.  The Committee is chaired by a California Republican. Weppner isn’t just insinuating, but stating in her commercials, that to defeat ISIS you have to “change your congressman”. What self-important and ridiculous nonsense. Is Weppner assuming that she would ascend to the same committee if elected, as if by noble right? What is it, precisely, that she would or could do differently from anyone else on the issue of the ISIS lunatics? 

Also note that Weppner’s commercial is in direct and obvious violation of federal law requiring ads for federal office to indicate that Weppner “approves this message”.  Pursuant to 2 USC §441d(d)(1)(A), any radio communication “shall include, in addition to the requirements of that paragraph, an audio statement by the candidate that identifies the candidate and states that the candidate has approved the communication.”

What part of “shall include” do you not understand? 

So, in one breath, Kathy Weppner, the endorsed Republican candidate for NY’s 26th Congressional District, has outrageously accused Brian Higgins of enabling the rise of ISIS, has disgustingly tried to raise money and recruit volunteers over the murders of two American journalists, and violated federal law. 

That’s pretty good for Wingnut Wednesday. 

Kathy Weppner and the “Infected Poors”

30 Jul

On Tuesday, western New York’s most unintentionally hilarious congressional candidate left her mic’s windscreen at home, and held a press conference near the Peace Bridge to draw attention to things she’s largely made up about America’s southern border.

The entire unseemly episode can be summed up in this Tweet, which is an actual thing put out by an actual candidate for Congress, whom the county’s Republican committee has actually endorsed: 

Again – to clarify – Kathy Weppner is not someone on the nativist fascist fringe of American right wing anti-immigrant agitation polity. She is in the mainstream of contemporary Republican “thought”. 

Here’s a picture that Weppner posted to Facebook and Twitter, showing one reporter – poor Mike Desmond from WBFO had to tread through this manure – and the optics are as stupid as the underlying message. The Peace Bridge has nothing to do with the problem on the southern border, and the influx of Central American tweens isn’t affecting western New York (here’s my article on the subject from a few weeks ago). 

Via Facebook

If you go to the article that Weppner tweeted, it’s from something called the “Daily Signal”.  Never heard of it. It’s apparently the ultra-right wing Heritage Foundation’s “Komsomolskaya Pravda” – the official organ of a powerful PAC and so-called “think tank”. It’s one big right-wing hissy fit, set down in pixels.

Nevertheless, if you read the article, it merely says that Guatemala argues that more American investment and aid would help to stem the country’s economic and social crises, and refugees would be less inclined to go North. A reasonable counterargument would be to point out the concomitant Central American political corruption and graft that renders such aid unhelpful. But there’s no ultimatum there – there is no Guatemalan threat to send more quote-unquote “infected poors” to the US if we don’t pony up $2BN. It takes a special type of horrible reading comprehension to read this article and reach the infected-poors-ultimatum conclusion. 

Here are the words that she strung together and shat from her mouth: 

Seventy percent of our border agents have been pulled off our borders and reassigned to do paperwork processing.  We know this because a border patrol agent is speaking out.

She actually cited a source – “Fox Nation” via Sean Hannity, which is neither news nor legitimate.  There’s absolutely no data or objective evidence to support the allegation, but this ostensibly serious candidate takes it on face value because Fox/Hannity.  

If the breakdown in the rule of law has created societies that are dangerous, and has caused parents throughout Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to send their juveniles away, we should take note of this. We should not become a lawless country.

What does this even mean? What does she mean by “take note of this”? Why the pivot to the “lawless country” crack? 

Of particular importance is the rise of gangs in these lawless countries which bring kidnapping, extortion, human trafficking, drugs and gun violence to every community as their societies break down.

I’m starting to think that she is referring to the influx of Central American tween refugees will cause a breakdown in the US, and render it “lawless”. 

In 2012 there were 20,000 gang members in El Salvador, 12,000 in Honduras, and 22,000 in Guatemala.  According to the FBI in 2011 the United States had 1.4 million gang members.  That was three years ago.  So we have far more gang members in the United States than all of these countries combined.  Why are we perceived to be a safer nation?  We follow laws.  Our country follows laws. Our police officers enforce laws.  When police officers don’t obey the laws they are usually investigated and charged and tried and put in jail.

What we are doing now is lawless and if we continue down this path we will have a society that, over time, will begin to look exactly like these other countries.  We have immigration laws.  The President has decided not to follow them.

El Salvador has 6.3 million residents. Guatemala has 15.4 million. Honduras has 8 million residents. The United States, by contrast, has 317 million people.  These Central American countries are also significantly smaller in area, suffer crippling poverty with non-existent social services, and a history of corruption, dysfunction, and terrible infrastructure. The ways in which these poor countries are different from ours are many – to break it down for even a Weppner, they’re the third world, the US is the first world. 

Weppner is saying that accepting refugee children from these three countries will make the US become a third world corrupt backwater like them. That’s astonishing – look how little faith she has in the American system, and in our country’s 300+ year experience absorbing immigrants from all around the world. 

We have a Constitution that tells us how laws are supposed to be made and a President that puts his hand on a Bible and swears an oath to uphold our laws.  Our President is breaking that oath and our Congress is letting him.  Our Congress is the  body that has standing to stop the President from doing what he is doing on immigration. Selective enforcement of our laws is not allowed in our Constitution.

Actually, it is allowed, up to a point. But here, the President and Congress are enforcing the law that requires that refugees from non-border countries be detained and processed through our court system to ensure that they are not victims of human trafficking. This is the law, and it’s being enforced. 

The gang Los Zetes [sic] is now migrant smuggling as part of its day to day operations.  Coyotes will promise three attempts to smuggle family members with families taking mortgages out on their homes to pay for it.  When the coyotes fail they gain the deeds to the homes either themselves or for the criminal enterprise they work for. This leaves families and children homeless in their countries. Minors are abandoned on their journey or thrown off moving trains when they cannot pay increased demands.  Many girls are raped and abused.   

Horrible. But what’s your point?  Also, is anyone as astonished as I with the 6th grade book report prose?   

We have heard much about the unaccompanied minors.  In 2013 90% were teenagers and in 2014, in the first 8 months 84% were also.  My grandfather was 16 when he got on the boat in Cork, Ireland by himself and came to the United States.  Legally.

I don’t know what year her grandfather came to this country, but if it was before the mid-1960s, it’s ridiculous to compare today’s immigration laws to prior years. 

Of the 51,000 unaccompanied minors 88% have already left HHS custody and  are no longer tracked and free to roam our country.  How will we know if they go to school?  How will we know if they are immunized before they are sitting next to our children?

This is just sheer racism and rank ignorance. 

Immunization rates in El Salvador and in Guatemala are above 90% of children, just like the USA.  In Honduras, it’s right around 90%.  

In 2014   55,000 entire family units have come here illegally and there is still five more months left this year. 

Now the white house has requested emergency funds and Congress may vote on that before recess.  The problem is that emergency funds must meet criteria.  We have laws.  They must be used for sudden, unforseen and temporary problems.  We have known about this problem since 2012 when non governmental agencies and church organizations began reporting this. Texas Governor Rick Perry wrote to President Obama reporting a 90% increase in minors arriving in Texas in 2012. We have had two years to address this and have done nothing.  In 2012 the White House negotiated for temporary housing at Lackland Air Force Base but did nothing to stem the tide.  This is obviously not unforeseen, sudden or temporary.

What would she have us do differently? 

Each person coming here illegally will get taxpayer funded lawyers and have hearings with immigration judges appointed by the President and paid for by us.

“We have laws.” 

Seventy-one percent of households headed by illegal immigrants receive at least one welfare program.  57% of all immigrant families receive at least one welfare program. How will we afford this?

They receive an entire welfare program?! Weppner cites an anti-immigrant group for this statistic. You guessed it – it’s bullshit. From this list

MYTH #3: The nation spends billions of dollars on welfare for undocumented immigrants.

FACTS: To the contrary, undocumented immigrants are not eligible to receive any “welfare” benefits and even legal immigrants are severely restricted in the benefits they can receive.

As the Congressional Research Service points out in a 2007 report, undocumented immigrants, who comprise nearly one-third of all immigrants in the country, are not eligible to receive public “welfare” benefits — ever.

Legal permanent residents (LPRs) must pay into the Social Security and Medicare systems for approximately 10 years

before they are eligible to receive benefits when they retire. In most cases, LPRs can not receive SSI, which is available only to U.S. citizens, and are not eligible for means-tested public benefits until 5 years after receiving their green cards.

A 2007 analysis of welfare data by researchers at the Urban Institute reveals that less than 1 percent of households headed by undocumented immigrants receive cash assistance for needy families, compared to 5 percent of households headed by native-born U.S. citizens.

A 2007 analysis of U.S. Census data by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities makes clear that it is the U.S.-born, U.S.-citizen children of undocumented immigrants who are eligible for programs such as Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program

(SCHIP). The analysis found that, between 1995 and 2005, the share of low-income, non- citizen immigrant children (either undocumented or legally present) who received Medicaid or SCHIP dropped from 36 percent to 30 percent.

Weppner continues: 

They will all be qualified for Obamacare through a loophole that Brian Higgins voted for in HR 3962.

This Obama economy is contracting.  Despite what you read in your newspaper, employment participation is at an all time low at 62.8 %.  Unemployment rates may appear to be lower but it is because people have dropped out of the workforce and no longer plan on working.  If we do not get Americans working again we will not be able to pay the interest on our debt of over 17 trillion dollars.  Last year our Federal Government needed to borrow 680 billion dollars to pay bills and it continues to spend.  How will we pay for all of these new welfare recipients?  

Texas alone will spend 12 million dollars a month on its’ [sic] National Guard effort to try to secure its’ [sic] borders.

We must decide whether we are going to be a country of laws.  If we have no borders then we are not a country. 

A rote regurgitation of fascistic nativist anti-immigrant rhetoric, and let’s throw in a bunch of other nonsense into the stew of words. I’m surprised #Benghazi didn’t make a guest appearance. 

Our Constitution gives Congress the duty in section 8 of our Constitution to “Provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions.”   If you watch the nightly news, you  know that there is an invasion going on in our country. A mass migration that we are not ready for and will have devastating effects on our country.

We don’t have a militia anymore. We have a standing army and National Guard. This is not an invasion, because it’s not a foreign army attacking the United States. It’s frightened, poor kids looking for a job and a better life. Just like Weppner’s grandfather. 

Brian Higgins is on the wrong side of this issue.  He has voted against funding for a border fence in HR 60-61, and HR 26-38.   Mr. Higgins has voted in favor of sanctuary cities in House Amendment 294, and other sanctuary policies in House Amendment 288 to HR 28-62.  He voted for the e-verify system and then voted against an amendment to fund the e-verify system so employers could ensure they are hiring people who are legally in our country, HR 54-41.  Mr. Higgins voted against the amendment to require implementation  of the entry exit system, HR 44-37, and voted against authorizing the use of military to assist in border functions in HR  1815 . He voted for amnesty in HR 24-14.  All of these votes have setup [sic] the problems we face today. This is not even a complete list.

Right. It’s Brian Higgins’ fault that three third-world countries are awful and kids are trying to escape them. 

If violence in your home country is the deciding factor in whether this president allows you to freely come across our border illegally, without consequence, then we need to send a message to every Christian living in a Muslim country to come on ahead, because they are being slaughtered as we speak.   How does one group win the Obama lottery of immigration and another does not?  What about the violence in our inner cities that continues to be ignored? What about our children here in Buffalo who are being gunned down in our streets? 

Well, actually, if a Christian from the Middle East can get on a plane and arrive in this country and seek refugee status, they’re welcome to do so.  In fact, anyone who can establish that they’re the victim of religious or political persecution is welcome to apply for refugee status. It’s even easier in Canada, and they have free medical. So, yeah. 

I wonder what Weppner’s glorious solution to inner city violence is? 

The latest insanity is that we will have a program that will cost 47 million dollars over the next two years, and we will go to Honduras and process juveniles there to give them refugee status and transport them to this country.  This status allows them to go on public assistance immediately.  This doesn’t even make sense in a country that cannot meet its’ [sic] bills. 

If that program is successful we will expand it to the other two countries.  So the President , as a policy, will bring the illegal immigrants here under his orders.  He is breaking his oath of office. 

Doesn’t it make sense to pre-process refugee claims at our consulates abroad, rather than burden the Border Patrol with this? Doesn’t it make sense to issue refugee visas to people who qualify for that status before they get to this country, rather than spending millions to detain and process them in our courts, after the fact? 

We are in a very dangerous time in the history of our country and sitting back and hoping the next two years go by quickly is not going to cut it.  

As Americans we need to have laws that keep America strong and safe and free.

We need to have secure borders.  We need more processing staff so our border patrol agents can do their jobs.   We need to process people quickly that are coming across our borders illegally so they can be returned to their home countries where they can fill out the paperwork to apply for legal entry into the United States.  We need to decide on a number.  Currently it is around a million immigrants that legally enter our country each year.  If we decide on two million we must require self-sufficiency from those immigrants so that we are not adding to the burden of the American taxpayer.  We need to treat all humanely while they are briefly here. 

 Word salad. 

God Bless you,

God Bless Western New York

And God bless the United States of America.

May she be a beacon of freedom and strength for all the world to see.

Except for you “infected” brown “poors”. You all can just stay home and die, for all she cares.  

By the way, since this is a 2 year-old issue, what did Kathy Weppner have to say about the Central American kids seeking refugee status back in 2012 on her WBEN radio show? 

Oh, right. 

She scrubbed from the internet all existence of her radio show, and anything she wrote prior to March 2014

I’ll bet there was a lot of this, though: 

 

UPDATE: WELCOME, WONKETTE READERS!

 

How To Not Be A Birther, By Kathy Weppner

26 Mar

This past weekend, the Buffalo News’ Jerry Zremski brought WNY a wonderful expose on Ms. Weppner’s colorful history, and she responded on her campaign website, complaining about “yellow journalism”

In both, Weppner downplayed any interest she had in the birther movement. 

Zremski writes

Weppner took a keen interest in the “birther” movement, which raised questions about whether Obama was born in the United States and, therefore, eligible to be president.

Weppner hosted Orly Taitz, one of the founders of the movement, on her radio show, and questioned the credibility of Obama’s birth certificate both on that show and on a 2010 Blog Talk Radio appearance in which Weppner said: “What Obama’s campaign has put out is not a birth certificate.”

Weppner was referring to a short-form birth certificate issued by the Hawaii Department of Health and released by Obama’s campaign in 2007. Obama later asked Hawaii for a copy of a longer version of his birth certificate and then posted it to the White House website in 2011 in hopes of quelling the controversy over his qualifications.

Asked about her involvement in the birther movement and whether she still believes that Obama may not have been born in America, Weppner wrote: “That question has already been decided.”

She also wrote: “I believe, at that time, Mr. Obama’s submission of a ‘short-form’ birth certificate was a topic of conversation nationally as there were many lawsuits attempting to see his long-form birth certificate. I found it interesting that there was such resistance to produce this when it should have been simple. Mr. Obama Is our President.”

In her online rant, Weppner addresses the matter thusly

Q1)  You have repeatedly questioned Barack Obama’s eligibility for the presidency. For example, in a 2010 Blog Talk Radio appearance, you said: “What Obama’s campaign has put out is not a birth certificate.” Do you still believe that Obama may not have been born in the U.S. and therefore may not be eligible to be president? 

A1 Kathy Weppner response: “I believe, at that time, Mr. Obama’s submission of a “short form” birth certificate was a topic of conversation nationally as there were many lawsuits attempting to see his long form birth certificate.  I found it interesting that there was such resistance to produce this when it should have been simple.  Mr. Obama Is our President”                                                                                               

Q2 NEWS follow up: Jerry Zremski wrote:
2) Your answer to my question about President Obama’s birth certificate is inadequate. Yes, Mr. Obama is our president — but do you believe he was born in the United States?
Kathy Weppner response: That question has already been decided. I raised three kids that took an oath under this president. Our family’s willingness to sacrifice for this country is clear period.   

Weppner analysis of the NEWS article published:  Please note from  the questions asked by the NEWS that: I was never asked about my involvement in “the birther movement as Mr. Zremski claims. Nor did I ever claim to be a birther.  I am not  exactly sure  what the “birther movement” means or who is in  it”?  What constitutes membership? 

She also complained that this online radio show had “deceived” her, and “ambush[ed] her with controversy”. It was all an extended version of, ‘I read it in a chain email or at some right-wing freakshow of a website, and didn’t really look into whether any of it was true, because it sounded true and jibed with my already hard-wired prejudices’ 

Weppner is not sure what the “birther movement” is? She was never asked about her “involvement” in it? She never claimed to be a birther? 

On January 19, 2010, Congressional candidate Kathy Weppner (R-Cuckooland) appeared on “Reality Check Radio” on an internet streaming service. The show, at the time, was all about the birther movement and questions surrounding President Obama’s eligibility to hold Presidential office.

It was the fad at the time. A right-wing xenophobe’s hula hoop. 

What Weppner likely didn’t realize was that the show existed to debunk birtherism

http://blogtalk.vo.llnwd.net/o23/show/4/214/show_4214691.mp3

Immediately upon getting on the phone, Weppner was asked about her involvement in the birther movement, and she replied,

One of the reasons why I have always been stuck on the eligibility issue is that my husband is a clinical chief of an OB-GYN department, and very early on when the issue  came up, I said, “can you explain to me what a birth certificate is supposed to have on it if you go to a hospital and deliver a baby?” And very early on I came to understand that what Obama’s camp had put out was not a birth certificate.

…the thing about eligibility is, and I think there are three different issues with Barack Obama’s eligibility, and #1 is that the founding fathers said you have to be a “natural-born citizen” and Orly Taitz has done a lot of work in going back and researching what that meant when they wrote that, and that meant that you have to be born in the United States, and you have to born of parents who are citizens, and both of your parents had to be citizens. That certainly is not the case…

…if you go to Orly Taitz’s … and I’ll spell her name for you … she is not only a dental surgeon, but she’s a lawyer. She was from Russia, she has a beautiful accent, and she has taken up the cause of just wanting the President to prove his eligibility.  And remember the hundred lawsuits that have been filed would all go away if he authorized the Hawaiian hospital where he says he was born to release his records. Because when a woman goes to the hospital – like he said his mother did, there is a file that’s created for mom and baby.  After the baby’s born, there’s a piece of paper that has the delivering doctor, that has the signature of the doctor on it, it has the hospital name, the time of birth, and it’s the official document that the hospital puts together that says, “this baby was born here with these witnesses, and here was the doctor.” So that is the proof that you’re born where you say you’re born, and that is absolutely the document that could make all of this go away.  Instead, they’re spending over a million dollars defending lawsuits all over the place, just release the document and it goes away.

Does that sound like someone who isn’t really quite sure what birtherism is? Or that she was just curious or interested in a passing topic of conversation? Or does this sound like someone who was as well-versed on Taitz’s wild conspiratorial nonsense as Taitz herself? The host accused Weppner of being misinformed, 

…I’m really, I’m not misinformed. If people wanna go on Orly Taitz’s website. They – all of this documents are fully there, they state all of the…lemme put it this way, R.C., one judge – just one judge – to order discovery, okay, just discovery, to produce the documents, it all goes away, and it’s settled. Why hasn’t that happened?

The host explains that, in order for a judge to order discovery, there has to be a case.  

…you have to have standing, right? And nobody has had standing. All of the judges have said, “you don’t have standing, you don’t have standing, you don’t have standing”.

The host of the show argues about the validity of the short-form certificate, and that the hospital record is irrelevant. 

…no, they’re legal documents…the hospital birth certificates are sent to the municipality and they certify that the information on it is correct, and you have a legal document. But the municipality is the one, I mean, they pick them up at my husband’s hospital once a week – all the birth certificates of all the births that have happened in this township, and then they take them and they send them to the state.”

 …but it’s not the hospital birth certificate. That’s all they want, because it’s proof that he was born there. If he was born in Hawaii, you only needed one relative to present to – and it’s all in Orly Taitz’s – what what was going on in Hawaii at the time – you only needed one relative to come in and say, “I witnessed the birth at home, and he was born here”, and they would give you a birth certificate that looks exactly like Obama’s. And you had up to a year to produce the child.

 …I’m serious, this…you have to go, and you have to read Orly Taitz’s documents.

The host brings up at this point that he won’t go on Taitz’s website because Google says it contains malware.  Weppner – who doesn’t really know much about this whole “birther” thing, replies, 

I’ve gone there many times, I’ve never had a problem.

She changes it up a bit from there when a caller asks Kathy the sources she consults for this eligibility issue.

I actually call the people involved and I interview them. Orly Taitz was on my show for two hours. I’ve called Nathan Deal, anybody that has actually had a lawsuit, if I’m going to talk about it, I’m going to go online to get information, but then I call them, because I want it right from them.

Let me tell you what I do during the week, ok. I read the Wall Street Journal every day, I’ll read the New York Times, I watch Washington Journal, I watch C-Span, the hearings, because I find the hearings, you get all the information instead of just a snippet of it here and there, and anything that I’m gonna talk about, I usually have maybe an inch stack of stuff that goes into the studio with me.

While Weppner now denies knowing much about this whole birther matter, back in 2010 it was all-consuming for her. 

Here’s what I find is very interesting, okay. I’m a real common sense person. So, as I’m gathering information, I look at the list of things that the candidate Barack Obama said that he was going to release after the election, as well as Michelle Obama. They said that all of their documents would be forthcoming. All of the law school records, all of his college records, and everything would be released after the election. None of it has been released.

When asked if she has a source for that,

You know what, I’ll find this soundbite, and play ‘em on my show on Saturday. I watched him on television say that.,,I will research that and find the soundbite. Because even Michelle said that all of her college records would be released, because they were interested in what her senior thesis was of something, and they would ask her and she said she’d release it after the election.

But here’s the thing. Remember when  President Bush was running, they looked at his college records, he was a C student, they looked at Al Gore’s, he, y’know, he was a C student. They always look at college records. To have no records released about a candidate, to me, y’know, when the Founding Fathers made the press totally have free speech, freedom of the press, they knew that would protect us. Having journalists digging for answers,  having journalists digging things up and being in competition with each other, would protect the American people. Nobody did that this election.

Don’t you remember when Bill Clinton released his medical records, they found out that he had V.D.?! I mean, all of the records are released. We don’t even have Obama’s medical records released. It’s standard operating procedure that a candidate…”

To clear things up – the Obamas didn’t make promises about releasing school or medical records. Bush never released his college records (although somebody did leak them). Neither did Al Gore. Whatever information exists about that came from their autobiographies.  Bill Clinton didn’t have V.D., and he never released his medical records. Michelle Obama did release her thesis in 2008, but The President’s is gone

By this time, the topic had strayed from “eligibility”, and a caller asked Weppner why she needs all of this other documentation.  Weppner claims entitlement to see, 

documents that prove who you are, where you’ve been, what you’ve done, and what you’ve accomplished…

So, if Clinton had VD that’s important to the American public?

No. What I’m saying is if you’re going to be in the public, and you’re going to seek the highest public office, your life kinda becomes an open book.

That must be why we have all of Bush’s National Guard documentation.  Oh, wait. 

When asked to delineate public versus private information, Weppner responded: 

College records? Law school records? Come on. That’s basic.

What’s in the law school record, that has to do with eligibility? 

That he took these classes with these professors, and – oh yeah – the professors remember him being there. That he did what he said he has done, and that he is who he says he is, and that he was born where he says he was born, and just scrutiny of who he was – that didn’t happen this election at all.

When asked to cite independent sources for her assertion regarding Hawaiian law, Ms. Weppner brought up Orly Taitz’s website and lawsuit, and promptly hung up. 

That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you prove that you’re totally unconcerned and not involved in the birther / Obama eligibility movement. 

The Aristocrats

26 Apr

Yesterday, many western New Yorkers received the strangest email from Carl Paladino. Here it is in its entirety: 

I hesitated to click the link because, frankly, it looked like spam. But I did, and it was a portion of the iconic clip of the opening scene from the HBO show “The Newsroom“. In the clip, “Will McAvoy” is part of a college panel consisting of him – a conflicted moderate Republican news anchor, a conservative pundit and a liberal pundit. A ditzy-seeming co-ed  asks the panel what makes the US the best country in the world. The pundits respond with one-sentence platitudes. After eviscerating the pundits, McEvoy assails the questioner’s theory.  He then goes on to assail essentially the last 30 years’ worth of American decline. Much of it is critical of the last 30 years’ worth of Limbaughistic “conservatism”, whereby we used to fight “a war on poverty, not a war on the poor”.  Yet Paladino is one of the most reactionary “conservative” tea party types in the nation, and it boggles to imagine he finds that McEvoy clip compelling. 

The re-election of Barack Obama has driven many on the right quite literally insane. 

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Also yesterday, the George W. Bush library was dedicated. If the Bush administration had been a joke, the punch line would be “the Aristocrats!” 

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What Passes for Humor at WBEN

3 Mar

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Shorter Wingnut Media on Rodriguez-Flamenco

2 Nov

On the alleged stabbing murder of an innocent Wal*Mart shopper in Albion the other day:

Knives don’t kill people. Visa statuses do.

Let’s be clear – the accused Honduran didn’t come to Albion in some vacuum. He came here because there’s a demand for farmhands, and astonishingly, not many people locally want to do that work. Reform the immigration laws to allow for guest workers to come here legally for temporary assignments, and you solve the visa issue.  As for crazy people stabbing women in parking lots, I’m sorry to inform you that illegal aliens don’t have the market cornered on violent crime, anywhere.

Monroe Rising: Complete Lee Silence #NY26

25 Feb

Epic Fail.

It’s now been several weeks since Congressman Chris Lee embarrassed himself and resigned, all in one day.

You may be familiar with Monroe Rising, which is the (one of? who knows) wingnut blog that covers the Rochester area.  For years, they’ve been dutiful regurgitators of Lee press releases and reliable supporters of the well-coiffed, yet sartorially challenged former Congressman.

I am a registered user at Monroe Rising, and have now submitted two benign comments to this article inquiring why they completely ignored the Lee scandal, never mentioned the Lee resignation, never wrote a solitary word about the fact that a portion of Monroe County finds itself unrepresented in Congress due to a sex scandal. That linked-to article is their first mention of NY-26 since Lee’s departure.

The image above shows you what I see when I go to their site; if you aren’t logged in, there are no comments. Note the “No User Responded” heading.

Now, I’m no one to slam someone for being a partisan blogger, but when a huge scandal breaks in quite literally your own congressional backyard, I think you lose a massive amount of credibility by completely ignoring it, as if it never happened.  They were perfectly pleased as punch to report on former Congressman Eric Massa’s own sexual ethical issues, so why does Chris Lee get a complete pass?  Hell, even the local Buffalo Republican bloggers wrote something about it.

Two separate requests for comment sent to the owner of the site have gone unanswered.  I guess Chris Lee only exists when he’s not scandal-ridden.

Fail.