Digby's Hullabaloo
2801 Ocean Park Blvd.
Box 157
Santa Monica, Ca 90405

Facebook: Digby Parton

@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)

thedigbyblog at gmail
satniteflix at gmail
publius.gaius at gmail
tpostsully at gmail
Spockosbrain at gmail
Richardein at me.com


Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic

Denofcinema.com: Saturday Night at the Movies by Dennis Hartley review archive

January 2003 February 2003 March 2003 April 2003 May 2003 June 2003 July 2003 August 2003 September 2003 October 2003 November 2003 December 2003 January 2004 February 2004 March 2004 April 2004 May 2004 June 2004 July 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 December 2004 January 2005 February 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 August 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 April 2006 May 2006 June 2006 July 2006 August 2006 September 2006 October 2006 November 2006 December 2006 January 2007 February 2007 March 2007 April 2007 May 2007 June 2007 July 2007 August 2007 September 2007 October 2007 November 2007 December 2007 January 2008 February 2008 March 2008 April 2008 May 2008 June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 November 2008 December 2008 January 2009 February 2009 March 2009 April 2009 May 2009 June 2009 July 2009 August 2009 September 2009 October 2009 November 2009 December 2009 January 2010 February 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 August 2010 September 2010 October 2010 November 2010 December 2010 January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August 2011 September 2011 October 2011 November 2011 December 2011 January 2012 February 2012 March 2012 April 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012 August 2012 September 2012 October 2012 November 2012 December 2012 January 2013 February 2013 March 2013 April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013 August 2013 September 2013 October 2013 November 2013 December 2013 January 2014 February 2014 March 2014 April 2014 May 2014 June 2014 July 2014 August 2014 September 2014 October 2014 November 2014 December 2014 January 2015 February 2015 March 2015 April 2015 May 2015 June 2015 July 2015 August 2015 September 2015 October 2015 November 2015 December 2015 January 2016 February 2016 March 2016 April 2016 May 2016 June 2016 July 2016 August 2016 September 2016 October 2016 November 2016 December 2016 January 2017 February 2017 March 2017 April 2017 May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 January 2018 February 2018 March 2018


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?


Friday, April 03, 2015


Everybody's wise to Eddie except Eddie

by Tom Sullivan

For those growing up in the 1960s, Eddie Haskell from the sitcom "Leave It to Beaver" was our archetype for the conniving, two-faced schemer. Superficially polite — over-polite — when parents were present, he dropped the facade and became his true, devious self whenever the adults left the room. IIRC, at the end of one episode, Eddie gets his comeuppance. As he is led away, he is still working his Mr. Innocent routine, mystified that it seems not to be sparing him punishment. Wally Cleaver turns to his little brother and observes, "Everybody's wise to Eddie except Eddie."

It's not a new observation that conservative politics often exhibits the same public/private, two-faced quality. This week's sideshow in Indiana over its Religious Freedom Restoration Act bought Eddie to mind again. Protestations that the bill meant to protect religious practice rather than license discrimination were just as transparent.

In the sitcom, Ward and June Cleaver always play along with Eddie's innocent act, never confronting him about being a fraud, and tacitly encouraging him to keep lying. In real life, don't our Wards and Junes of the press do the same?

A radio newscast last night reported that RFRA supporters in Indiana complained that the changes made to the law yesterday under national pressure had stripped the law of its religious protections. That is, the right of business owners to use their religious belief to discriminate against customers.

Gov. Mike Pence's public efforts over the weekend to deny it were damned near comedic, even as more privately, RFRA supporters revealed their true intentions:

But even this week, as Pence called for a fix to clarify that "this law does not give businesses a right to deny services to anyone," conservative groups stuck to the message of same-sex marriage opposition to rally supporters.

A website post Monday by Advance America, led by Eric Miller, sought to set the record straight on "misinformation" about the law by listing purported examples of how Indiana's RFRA could be used.

"Christian bakers, florists and photographers should not be forced by the government to participate in a homosexual wedding," the post said. "Pastors should not be forced by the government to conduct a homosexual wedding at the church." And Wednesday, as lawmakers hashed out language to expressly prohibit using RFRA to discriminate, Micah Clark sent out a message to supporters to urge lawmakers to reject any changes.

Ed Kilgore reminds us that faced with the Civil Rights Act of 1964, conservatives across the country — "not all of them southerners" and certainly many of them Democrats — "executed a strategic retreat, accepting the demolition of de jure segregation but defending de facto segregation via private action." That is, defending the notion that private business owners should be free in public accommodations to select whom they wish to serve. Kilgore quotes Barry Goldwater at length on the matter, concluding:

Like southern “Christian” segregationists in the recent past, today’s politicized conservative Christians are executing a strategic retreat into an allegedly private sphere where they are on stronger ground in resisting anti-discrimination policies. They intensely dislike the parallels on the grounds that hostility to gay rights and/or same-sex marriage in deeply entrenched in their faith, or in the case of conservative evangelicals, in the Bible.

That is exactly what the segregationists said as well, of course. It is not hard to foresee a day when the tortured efforts of religious leaders to stitch together a few culture-bound passages into an eternal condemnation of homosexuality (or for that matter, abortion, which is virtually invisible in Scripture) will look just as absurd and embarrassing as yesterday’s thundering sermons on black people being consigned to submission by the Curse of Ham. And then maybe the strategic retreat into efforts to hang onto discrimination via protestations of “religious liberty” will look less sympathetic as well.

But it is that Haskellish relflex on the right to deny the truth of what everyone can else see that's more infuriating, as well as being more broadly applied than on just religious matters. It is as if they believe that by smiling broadly and speaking earnestly enough, observers will be duped as to their real intentions.

I'm talking about photo ID laws peddled as "election integrity" measures. Or the changes being made in the GOP-controlled North Carolina legislature to how cities and counties elect local leaders, rigging the game in their favor. Expanding some panels and shrinking others by legislative fiat, always claiming the effort is meant to improve representation and, wouldn't you know, always tilting the playing field towards Republicans. As if no one is wise to what they're really up to.

UPDATE: Thomas Mills at PoliticsNC blog this morning reinforces my point. Watch your backs, people:

Now, the flood gates have opened. Republicans all over the state want to assert their authority over the peons who hold local offices. As the state grows and becomes more urban and liberal, the GOP wants to ensure minority rule by rigging the system.