Cognitive Dissonance

"Democracy! Bah! When I hear that I reach for my feather boa!" - Allen Ginsberg

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DC Decoder Glossary: Under the Bus

dcdecoder:

By Meg Lanker-Simons
-Meg follows @DC_Decoder and is the writer of the popular political blog, Cognitive Dissonance. Find her on Twitter at @meglanker or email her at meglanker@gmail.com

USAGE: “President Obama has thrown allies like Israel under the bus even as he has relaxed sanctions on Castro’s Cuba.” -Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, August 30, 2012

DC DECODER DEFINITION: The first use of the phrase “under the bus” can be traced to a 1984 article in the Washington Post headlined, “Pensive, With Orange Hair; Cyndi Lauper & Her Tunes on Tour.” Reporter David Remnick wrote: “In the rock ‘n’ roll business, you are either on the bus or under it.”

Originally, the phrase was used to describe someone in show business or athletics who was past their prime and was sacrificed, essentially thrown under the tour bus. 

In a political context, the definition has shifted to describe a trusted ally or supporter who is undeservingly cut loose from a campaign or scapegoated out of spite, embarrassment, or personal gain.

The phrase certainly qualifies as a cliché. On an April 2008 edition of NPR’s Fresh Air, linguist Geoff Nunberg reported “under the bus” was used over, “400 times in the past six months” in news stories describing the primary and candidates.

That same election cycle, Washington Post writer David Segal pleaded for fellow correspondents to stop using the phrase, writing:

“Waiting on a sidewalk or already onboard — either way, ‘thrown under the bus’ fails to capture a key dimension of all this road rage. For the candidates, the point is not to inflict pain. It’s to ditch a problem that is a drag on momentum, to regain speed.”

Unfortunately for Nunberg, Segal, and the rest of us, the use of “under the bus” shows no sign of abating, but accelerated in the 2012 campaign season – much like a metaphorical campaign bus speeding away from its latest émigré.

See other terms in DC Decoder’s glossary of political vocabulary, jargon, and clichés.

Want something decoded? Leave a comment or Tweet @DC_Decoder!

Check out my entry for The Christian Science Monitor's DC Decoder project! “Under the bus” is one of the most irritating political clichés in existence. Hence, me choosing to define it. Thanks to DC Decoder for the opportunity!

Filed under campaign politics politics and government Romney obama congress

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I’m in a three-way primary for the US Senate. I’ve gone to people and asked for their support, their help, or their endorsement, and some people say yes. They write me a decent check. I remember that. The people that I thought were friends that tell me to go away because they are supporting someone else, I remember that. You know, I can remember back to 12 years ago. You remember who’s helping you. That’s one way that people get to know congressmen and senators.

Rep. Todd “Legitimate Rape” Akin, answering a constituent’s question on the best way to get the congressman’s attention.

Seriously: http://thinkprogress.org/election/2012/09/24/902481/todd-akin-constituents-who-want-my-attention-should-write-me-a-decent-check

So… thanks for the honesty?

Filed under Todd Akin Missouri politics Republican Election 2012 bought and paid for campaign seriously

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Dear Beyonce,

Actually, you’ve NEVER emailed me, much less often. Never a “Hey girl, playing a concert in Denver!” or “You should totes check out my semi-racist new hair dye advertisement lol!”

Just another ask for money on behalf of your friends, Barack and Michelle. At least you referred to them as the president and first lady, versus the other overly chipper celebrity-endorsed emails I’ve received.

*Sigh*

Tell you what – maybe I’ll chip in to hang out with you, Jay, Barack, and Michelle once my overdue rent and utilities are paid, and I can afford to buy my books for the semester. After I get some groceries, maybe we’ll see how much is left. I care less about meeting you and Jay than I do about keeping the electric on. 

You must not know about me, or else you’d know that. Truth be told, the Barack Obama celebrity campaign asks are getting irritating – especially when there’s so many of us in the same boat that it’s in constant danger of capsizing. 

Cheers, 
Meg

Dear Beyonce,

Actually, you’ve NEVER emailed me, much less often. Never a “Hey girl, playing a concert in Denver!” or “You should totes check out my semi-racist new hair dye advertisement lol!”

Just another ask for money on behalf of your friends, Barack and Michelle. At least you referred to them as the president and first lady, versus the other overly chipper celebrity-endorsed emails I’ve received.

*Sigh*

Tell you what – maybe I’ll chip in to hang out with you, Jay, Barack, and Michelle once my overdue rent and utilities are paid, and I can afford to buy my books for the semester. After I get some groceries, maybe we’ll see how much is left. I care less about meeting you and Jay than I do about keeping the electric on.

You must not know about me, or else you’d know that. Truth be told, the Barack Obama celebrity campaign asks are getting irritating – especially when there’s so many of us in the same boat that it’s in constant danger of capsizing.

Cheers,
Meg

Filed under Beyonce Barack Obama fundraising election Election 2012 politics campaign celebrity

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BREAKING: John Edwards jury reaches verdict.

According to CNN, the verdict is expected to be read shortly.

Update: The verdict is on only one of six counts. Edwards was charged with six felony counts related to alleged improper use and acceptance of campaign funds

Update 3:24 PM EST: The judge has instructed the jury to resume deliberations after denying the defense’s motion for a mistrial on counts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6. The jury reached a unanimous verdict on count three, which pertains to whether Edwards illegally received more than $700,000 in donations from wealthy heiress Rachel “Bunny” Mellon to cover up an illicit affair and subsequent child with mistress Rielle Hunter. The verdict has not been read.

Filed under John Edwards politics corruption campaign scandal

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Crowd at Santorum Rally Horrified When Two Men Kiss

There’s nothing more patriotic than shrieking “USA! USA!” at two men who kissed in front of you:

Rick Santorum was well into his speech during a campaign rally in Arlington Heights, Ill., on Friday when two men in the crowd embraced in a rather passionate kiss, prompting a “mic check” and two guards to escort them from the rally.

The crowd reacted with audible screams, gasps and wagging fingers. Another man jumped up and followed the pair out as the audience began chanting “U-S-A” until they left the gym at Christian Liberty Academy where Santorum was speaking.

Kirsten Boyd Johnson brings the snark over at Wonkette:

What’s this, two men interrupting Rick Santorum’s banal rambling to lock lips in a simple act of protest against homophobia? ACTION TEAM FORCE PATRIOTISM TO THE RESCUE. Watch the excitable wingnuts spring into action and holler “U-S-A” over and over in a heroic attempt to ward off decency and tolerance from their midst. How about some finger pointing, would finger pointing help, too?

This lady is on it, oh boy is she:

Dear God no! Look at those men! Look at what they’re doing! It’s so, so, SINFUL

(Source: cognitivedissonance)

Filed under Rick Santorum Mic check politics homophobia conservative conservatives Republican Republicans Christian Liberty Academy Illinois Election 2012 Campaign

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Ron Paul fans and Citizens United present Election 2012™

Seriously, hear me out.

I realized this when answering nice Anon. I’m just sitting there typing, when it hits me!

Inspiration for an explanation!

They’re chaotic neutral. For reals:

A character of this alignment is an individualist who follows his or her own heart, and generally shirks rules and traditions. Although they promote the ideals of freedom, it is their own freedom that comes first. Good and Evil come second to their need to be free, and the only reliable thing about them is how totally unreliable they are. Chaotic Neutral characters are free-spirited and do not enjoy the unnecessary suffering of others, but if they join a team, it is because that team’s goals happen to coincide with their own at the moment.

They invariably resent taking orders and can be very selfish in their pursuit of personal goals. A Chaotic Neutral character does not have to be an aimless wanderer; they may have a specific goal in mind, but their methods of achieving that goal are often disorganized, unorthodox, or entirely unpredictable. An unusual subset of Chaotic Neutral is “strongly Chaotic Neutral,” describing a character who behaves chaotically to the point of appearing insane.

This was submitted to me several weeks ago by a reader named David L.

He writes, “Though you could debate whether or not Harvey Dent truly has the alignment of chaotic neutral, does it not stand to reason the libertarian philosophy could be debated as one looking at chance as the only fair option in society? Government is unfair, social support is unfair if the individual is not self-sufficient… etc. The libertarian champions chance and freedom until their freedom is pissed upon via an imaginary or real injustice. Then SOMEONE must DO SOMETHING. In primary school, these little miscreants never learned to share their toys. Perhaps I’m over-simplifying, but over in the UK, it appears American politics and American society as a whole has gone entirely bloody mad. Ron Paul would never be voted into parliament. Even under Cameron, a man of his caliber and ideas would be relegated to preaching in a park or a street corner. Your election is a reality show, a Dungeons and Dragons for the easily bored.”

Trust me, I’ve thought the same thing about the political scene being a freak show. Perhaps politics is just a role-playing game.

But then who the fuck is throwing the die?

Riiiight…. And let’s not forget the top ten list of corporate donors. Ron Paul fans frequently support the Citizens United v. FEC (2010) decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. This decision opened the floodgates to corporate cash in the election process. Interestingly enough, I spoke with many Paul fans months ago who insisted their hero needed no corporate or PAC cash because that money is tainted, comes with strings, etc.

In any case, Ron Paul’s rise is perhaps not as meteoric as predicted. However, don’t tell his chaotic neutral fans:

Filed under Ron Paul fans election 2012 Ron Paul politics government seriously election campaign campaign donations Citizens United money chaotic neutral alignment

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You’ll be happy to hear that I do wash my hands regularly so that as I shake your hand today you won’t have to worry if the germs I got earlier today in Florida are going to be coming to South Carolina.

Mitt Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee, answering a question about shaking hands on the campaign trail in South Carolina.

Of course he washes his hands frequently. He wouldn’t want to catch the poor from anyone, now would he? </sarcasm>

You guys, I just had a capitalist marketing idea… Want to protect yourself from germs carried by the underclass on the campaign trail? Get yourself a pair of germ-fighting Mittens by Mitt:

They’d be carefully knitted by downsized victims of Bain Capital. Each mitten would be lovingly crafted from luxurious Huacaya Alpaca fibers and lined with cashmere pre-washed in the tears of orphans. 

BRB, going to copyright this…

(Source: cognitivedissonance)

Filed under Mitt Romney Mittens GOP Republican Republicans germs you disgust me Election 2012 campaign 2012 ew sarcasm Mittens by Mitt©

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There are so many possibilities for this sweater vest. They have &#8220;Santorum 2012&#8221; stitched across the front. As Santorum says, &#8220;Don&#8217;t let sleeves slow you down!&#8221;
It&#8217;s odd though, that they&#8217;re only available in gray from a candidate who sees the world in nothing but black and white.
A pal of mine said (while slightly intoxicated), &#8220;Me and Jared [his boyfriend] are gonna get two of them, wear them to walk down the aisle to &#8216;Express Yourself&#8217;, and send that dipshit a wedding video!&#8221;
I will give someone a dollar to do this - but unfortunately, the vests are $100 each. And it involves giving Santorum money.

There are so many possibilities for this sweater vest. They have “Santorum 2012” stitched across the front. As Santorum says, “Don’t let sleeves slow you down!”

It’s odd though, that they’re only available in gray from a candidate who sees the world in nothing but black and white.

A pal of mine said (while slightly intoxicated), “Me and Jared [his boyfriend] are gonna get two of them, wear them to walk down the aisle to ‘Express Yourself’, and send that dipshit a wedding video!”

I will give someone a dollar to do this - but unfortunately, the vests are $100 each. And it involves giving Santorum money.

Filed under Rick Santorum Those vests Sweater vest politics Republican Republicans GOP lulz campaign

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Jon Huntsman destroys Ron Paul in 60 seconds over his racist newsletters in New Hampshire. I love the music - so ominous! 

Huntsman is polling higher than before, but is still polling fourth in New Hampshire. I’m curious if bringing the claws out might help that. Current averaged national polling:

  • Newt Gingrich: 27.2%
  • Mitt Romney: 25.4% 
  • Ron Paul: 12.2%
  • Rick Perry: 6.6%
  • Michele Bachmann: 6.2%
  • Rick Santorum: 3.8%
  • Jon Huntsman: 2.0%

Oh, and progressives shouldn’t forget something very important: Ron Paul is not all legal weed and no war. Click for why he’d be a disaster.

Jon Huntsman is still the grownup in the room. I’ll give him an award for classiest attack ad of Election 2012 - thus far.

(Source: cognitivedissonance)

Filed under Ron Paul Jon Huntsman attack ad political ads campaign politics Election 2012 2012 GOP New Hampshire Republican Primary

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From the &#8220;shit you can&#8217;t make up&#8221; files indeed&#8230; Matt Ortega of AMERICAblog on Rick Perry&#8217;s Brokeback Mountain moment:

Rick Perry launched an anti-gay ad called, &#8220;Strong.&#8221; In the ad, he attacks gays openly serving in the armed forces. As it turns out, the gays get their revenge&#8230; the jacket Rick Perry wore in the ad? Heath Ledger wore it in &#8220;Brokeback Mountain.&#8221;

This is just fantastic. I know others who have the same jacket, but seriously. This is rainbow sprinkles on a shit sundae right here.
According to Ortega&#8217;s post, the divisive ad even caused conflict on Perry&#8217;s staff. You know it&#8217;s bad when your own staff thinks it&#8217;s slightly to the right of Attila the Hun. Here&#8217;s my take on the ad from yesterday and discussion on Scumbag Rick Perry&#8217;s hypocrisy. Hint: Slam Obama for excluding Christmas. Exclude Christmas.

From the “shit you can’t make up” files indeed… Matt Ortega of AMERICAblog on Rick Perry’s Brokeback Mountain moment:

Rick Perry launched an anti-gay ad called, “Strong.” In the ad, he attacks gays openly serving in the armed forces. As it turns out, the gays get their revenge… the jacket Rick Perry wore in the ad? Heath Ledger wore it in “Brokeback Mountain.”

This is just fantastic. I know others who have the same jacket, but seriously. This is rainbow sprinkles on a shit sundae right here.

According to Ortega’s post, the divisive ad even caused conflict on Perry’s staff. You know it’s bad when your own staff thinks it’s slightly to the right of Attila the Hun. Here’s my take on the ad from yesterday and discussion on Scumbag Rick Perry’s hypocrisy. Hint: Slam Obama for excluding Christmas. Exclude Christmas.

Filed under Rick Perry GLBTQ Strong ad campaign campaign ad politics lulz bigotry conservatives republicans Election 2012 2012

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Ah, yes, the halcyon days of 1994 - I remember when Romney drove the Bronco in which OJ attempted to flee police. Thanks to my dad, I also remember thinking Newt Gingrich’s first name was “goddamn.”

All this ad really does is remind us of how much of a dick Newt was back in the day and how much of a dick he still is now. You wanna do the wayback machine, Newt?

Infidelities aside, here’s another gem from his past as then-Rep. Newt Gingrich. It’s a letter from 1982 wherein Gingrich endorses the use of medical marijuana in the Journal of American Medicine, and discusses legislation he co-introduced to legalize its use. Now he’s against it, and claims he withdrew his support within a year of introducing the bill - 1991. Well, he was endorsing its use and bringing legislation forward in 1982.

Long year, I suppose. I have a feeling much of the ’80s might be lost to Newt.

Filed under Newt Gingrich Hypocrite GOP Republican republicans politics election election 2012 campaign campaign ad dishonest medical marijuana marijuana weed Conservative conservatives