Tag Archive: bullshit

Don’t you be worrying about Steve Lonegan’s man Rick Shaftan. He’s still got Nick Sacco.

I would say that anybody who employed Rick “Hot Breasts” Shaftan before this happened is in the clear. I presume strategist/pollster Shaftan is good at his job, and I get why people hire him. He’s no dummy. But I have to wonder at a Democrat’s loyalty to Shaftan right now. What message is Nick Sacco sending to the women he represents? The gay people? The Democrat on Wednesday’s ballot?

via The Jersey Journal:

Rick Shaftan, who lost his Lonegan campaign gig after he ridiculed Lonegan opponent Newark Mayor Cory Booker in a lengthy interview last week with political site Talking Points Memo, has made big bucks working for Sacco’s campaigns since the 1990s. And Sacco spokesman Paul Swibinski said that won’t stop.

What a relief. Here I was worried that the mighty righty Rovian captain would be hurting for jingle. But fear not. The brains behind Shutdown Steve Lonegan is the brains behind the Democratic song stylings of Nick Sacco. Look at the choice of words Sacco spokesman Phil Swibinski uses to defend Shaftan’s behavior:

“He [Sacco] wishes that Rick had never made those comments. “They don’t sound like him … I’ve never known Rick to judge anybody based on their sexuality.”

Really. Let me clue you in: The Lonegan campaign has been one long series of clever innuendo implying that Cory Booker is gay, and that there’s something wrong with that.

  • That Lonegan “likes being a guy,” implying Booker is something less than one.

  • If Booker gets a manicure or pedicure (as was reported that the night owl sometimes does at 3am) it’s an unmanly fetish.

  • That it’s weird if Booker “won’t refute” gay rumors (that they pump out)

    It’s all very passive-aggressive. Just the kind of thing a clever strategist would know how to spoon out: Just enough to excite Tea Partiers askeered of teh gays, not so directly that it’s not deniable. Homophobic crap, no less serious because it’s cleverly framed. And Sacco’s never known Shaftan to judge anybody based on their sexuality? Bull. Sacco knows exactly who’s been framing all that homophobic innuendo. Seriously. Keep the guy if you feel you should, but don’t play dumb.

    Saw this coming, right? After the Sacco team’s chat with Jersey Journal, Swibinski called the paper back to insist Sacco “strongly supports Cory Booker”.

  • Dominican official links Daily Caller to alleged lies about Menendez

    So, the sensational story out of the Dominican Republic that purported to link U.S. Senator Bob Menendez with underage prostitutes – launched at The Daily Caller just before the November election and heating up  just as the Democrat was ascending to the powerful chairmanship of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee – turns out not just to have been originally reported by The Daily Caller but to be invented and paid for by The Daily Caller, run by Tucker Carlson, fabricator and bullshit artist, disgraced TV host and current honcho at the right-wing website.

    Washington Post and ABC News are both reporting what will be no surprise to anyone here, or anyone who can smell a rat when faced with one or track back on a shady-sounding story to see who benefits from promoting it.

    The Daily Caller is in denial and damage-control mode. Senator Menedez has always maintained this was a smear job. He’s called for a full investigation by U.S. authorities – but has said he will not appear in person in the Dominican Republic to answer questions of prosecutors there.

    I’m out, so I’ll just link to and quote from the news I’m seeing. I urge you to read through both articles, linked above:

    Christie’s New Telenovela: “Christie Middle-Class Reform Agenda”

    Hasta la vista “Jersey Comeback.”  All Hail “Christie Middle-Class Reform Agenda,” which Charles Stile says will be unveiled at today’s Howell Town Hall fiesta. In some latin countries when people say they will achieve something “ahorita” (now) or “mañana” they often mean it is unlikely to ever be achieved. Such was the fate of Christie’s comeback. Will Christie’s new approach fare better or will it end up like an empty piñata?

    These are are the elements of his brave new telenovela soap opera:

  • “Tax relief” – His 10% across the board plan (great for the top 1%, lousy for everyone else) went nowhere. Now he’s promoting the legislature’s fairer property tax relief plan which we probably can not afford and which therefore the legislature is unlikely to enact.

  • “Closing loopholes” – Does that include Earned Income Tax Credit and increasing fees? He has been successful in that regard, but it shows no concern for the 99%.  

  • “Efficiency” – I guess that includes making jobless people wait months for unemployment benefits appeals. While cutting so many government jobs, he has increased his executive staff by 18 people. Efficiency?

  • “Sick pay” –  Some sick pay has been excessive and should be reduced, but is that help for the middle class?

  • “Good government” – includes reducing transparency and showing little concern for the safety of the general public, as with his two recent actions regarding halfway houses? Does it include investing in a gambling casino and in hedge funds that hold stock in that casino?

  • “Shared services” – Excellent idea, but after three years he has shown little progress.

    “Fighting for families” – Families need jobs and health insurance. He has failed at increasing jobs and vetoed a bill to set up a NJ health exchange – the first step in the Affordable Care Act.

    There are far more examples to suggest these are just empty slogans, not helpful to the middle class, or unlikely to be achieved. However, the drama, starring “El Jefe” Christie, is just unfolding. As his spokesperson said, “We’ll be talking about outlining that agenda for the next few months.” Like a latin telenovela there will be promises, intrigue, teasing, deception, boasting, and arguments, but for however long it lasts there will probably be little resolution. He has shown little concern for the middle class so far. Why should it change?

  • Coptergate Update: Press Conference & Some Math that May Not Add Up

    FYI – CNN is going to cover Christie’s presser live as soon as the Governor steps into the room in Denville. Expect some serious questions to be asked.

    UPDATE post-CNN presser coverage: Well, apparently this is all your fault, New Jersey citizens. Christie just told America he reimbursed because he didn’t like the “distraction” and “political theater” questions about his behavior turned into. He also blamed the press: This is a “fun media story” and you “like to write these things”. He even stood behind his kids, saying he’s Gov 24/7 but he’s also a father (heard that song before with his irresponsible trip to Disney during NJ’s blizzard). He says he was told there was no cost, which I guess means he’s also blaming the State Police. One thing’s for certain, he’s not blaming himself. He’ll continue to use his own judgment when he copters. And might even take it to another ball game.

    Bottom line: I wrote a check. Damn you for making me do it. Now, STFU, because I am Christie and you cannot tell me what to do. People more important than you came from Iowa to promise a shower of money on me. And I’m so down for that. I am what I am and I do what I wanna.



    Okay, I’m just going to completely overhaul and update this diary. Because, wait a minute. Some of this does not add up. Follow along with me:

    (1) Yesterday, State Police Superintendent Col. Rick Fuentes told reporters that his boss’ travel to his kid’s ball game and then to meet Iowa GOP bigwigs didn’t cost the taxpayers anything, and Christie’s little trips are just counted as “training time”. So … if that’s true (and if it was never cover-up bull forced on the State Police by the front office), then what’s Christie reimbursing for, exactly? Yeah, looks like they needed to scramble together a new version of the facts over at Christie, Inc.

    (2) Yesterday, State Police spokesman spokesman Sgt. Stephen Jones said Christie’s trip Tuesday included 1 hour of flight time (Star-Ledger).

    Cost of the helicopter per hour is $2,500/hour (Star-Ledger)

    Got that?

    So …Christie and NJGOP are reimbursing New Jersey taxpayers $2,251 to “cover the cost of all trips,” according to Christie spokeswoman Maria Comella (AP)

    So … if he flew an hour, it costs $2,500/hour to fly, and he’s only paying $2,251 … are the taxpayers picking up the rest of the cost? Or, are the Christie’s getting a cut-rate?

    (3) Another question arises out of numbers not adding up and what may be chaotic information coming from the Christie front office. For example, check this out: AP and Star-Ledger have entirely different versions of what NJGOP is kicking in $919 to reimburse the taxpayers for:

  • Star-Ledger says that $919 pays for a Christie trip to another ball game.

  • AP says that $919 is to pay for carrying Christie to his meeting with Iowa GOPs.

    Hmmm?

    Christie’s behavior regarding the state helicopter use has been troubling. This math, if we’re reading it right, is confusing. Christie’s about to have a press conference that is being carried live on CNN, it should start in a few minutes.

  • “It’s Their Money. It’s Their Money.” Cow Cookies

    At his town hall in NJ today, John McCain says that he doesn’t want to privatize Social Security, but he wants to allow younger people to put a percentage of the money in an account for themselves. (video is after the jump)

    And I, just to let you know, want to preserve the death penalty but not allow anyone to be put to death.

    I also want to preserve dual-office holding, but want to deny elected officials from holding more than one elected position.

    Seriously, didn’t McCain watch Bush get slapped around trying exactly this same thing in 2005?  It was the turning point when his party started going south!

    But the real point I want to make is how stupid it is of McCain to defend the privatization use of private Social Security accounts by repeating the mantra, “It’s their money, It’s their money.”

    This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of our government in general and of Social Security in specific.  Because — wait for it — IT’S NOT THEIR FUCKING MONEY.

    Social Security is built upon a contract between the recipients and the payees, and enforced by the federal government.  It’s a very simple contract, as well, which anyone with an ounce of sense can understand.

    1) Payees pay for payments made to current recipients, including retirees, the aged, widows and widowers, children and the disabled;

    2) When said payees reach a certain age, become widowed, or die leaving a widow(er) or children, then these same payments accrue to them.

    When we send money to Verizon for our cell phone, we don’t think of it as “my money” after we send the check.  Hell, we don’t even think of insurance payments as “my money” after we write the check — but just like Social Security we expect to receive the service after we paid the premium.

    It’s not like putting your money into a savings account, a pension fund, a mattress or anywhere else.  It’s just insurance: if you pay for other people today, you are guaranteed to receive payments when you are in that situation later.

    It’s the same problem as when Republicans talk about taxes as if it is an individual’s money.  It’s not Bob Barker’s money, or Mr. Huntsu’s money, or George Bush’s money, or Sally the Dry Cleaner’s money.  

    We all pay into a fund, and after we pay into the fund it is not any individual’s money.  It belongs to all of us, and we elect people like John McCain to figure out the best way to spend it to make the country even better.  It’s the price of living in the best, freest, most economically mobile country in the world.

    But the Republicans don’t understand this.  They think that the money they pay in taxes is somehow a punishment as opposed to a payment for services to be rendered.  

    Could the payment be lower?  Certainly.  Could the product be better?  Certainly.  That’s not my argument.

    The argument is that taxes — Social Security or income or whatever — are part of a contract we have with our country to pay for the services we are to receive.  Just like our phones, cable, water, electric, insurance and other bills the money is no longer ours once we pay for the product.

    You’d think people who are so into the free market would get this.

    They’re not.