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Saturday, December 19, 2009

THE GIFT FROM AFAR















Santa's FINALLY laughing. "HO! Ho! Ho!", he bellowed. "Can you BELIEVE these guys?" The Republicans had sent me a GIFT!




OK, now that you've fallen off your chairs at the thought of conservative Republicans sending ME, of all people, a GIFT, pick yourself up. What they really sent me was a little yellow envelope that contained their gift of tdistortion and spin, which caused Santa and I to laugh heartily. The yellow (?) envelope contained at top left the return address of "2010 Obama Agenda Survey / Republican National Committee / 310 First Street, SE / Washington, DC 20003". (Not too tough a zip code to figure out: they're now a 2nd rate party, are full of zeroes, and are 3rd in popularity behind Democrats and Independents. I'll remember that one pretty easily). Below their return address was a box containing my congressional district, and, at bottom left, in bold capital letters, was printed the command "DO NOT DESTROY." I thought, "THIS oughta be rich!", so I opened up the envelope.


Inside, I was met with a 15 question survey with questions so skewed in the way they were framed, it almost looked like Lou Dobbs or Glenn Beck had designed the questionnaire. There were circles of YES, NO, or NO OPINION for the respondent to fill in. (Naturally, being a thorough person, I not only filled in the circles, but wrote in comments as well). Here is how the questions read:

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1. Do you agree with Barack Obama and the Democrats that taxes should be raised for the sake of "fairness," regardless of the negative impact it is likely to have on the economy?

2. Do you believe the federal government has gone too far in bailing out banks, insurance companies, and the auto industry?

3. Do you support amnesty for illegal immigrants?

4. Should English be the official language of the United States?

5. Are you in favor of granting retroactive Social Security eligibility to illegal immigrants who gain U.S. citizenship through an amnesty program?

6. Are you in favor of expanded welfare benefits and unlimited eligibility (no time, education, or work requirements) that Democrats in Congress are pushing to pass?

7. Do you believe that Barack Obama's nominees for federal courts should be immediately and unquestioningly approved for their lifetime appointments by the U.S. Senate?

8. Do you believe that the best way to increase the quality and effectiveness of public education in the U.S. is to raidly expand federal funding while eliminating performance standards and accountability?

9. Do you support the creation of a national health insurance plan that would be administered by bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.? (I added these italics for emphasis)--JJ

10. Do you believe that the quality and availability of health care will increase if the federal government dictates pricing to doctors and hospitals? (I added these italics for emphasis)---JJ

11. Are you confident that new medicines and medical treatments will continue to be developed if the federal government controls prescription drug prices and sets profit margins for research and pharmaceutical companies? (I added these italics for emphasis)---JJ

12. Are you in favor of creating a government-funded "Citizen Volunteer Corps" that would pay young people to do work now done by churches and charities, earning Corps Members the same pay and benefits given to military veterans?

13. Are you in favor of reinstituting the military draft, as Democrats in Congress have proposed?

14. Do you believe that the federal government should allow the unionization of Department of Homeland Security employees who serve in positions critical to the safety and security of the nation?

15. Do you support Democrats' drive to eliminate workers' right to a private ballot when considering unionization of their place of employment?

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For those of us who closely follow the issues of the day, it was quite easy to see this was a blatantly transparent effort by the ultra-conservative Republican Party to scare the uninformed and independents into thinking the President and his party are off their rockers, are putting the country in jeopardy, are trying to control business, are encouraging a flood of new illegal immigrants, and are trying to force all workers into joining labor unions. (Geez---I thought sending obscenity like this through the mail was illegal)! It was another in a long and growing list of examples of how the GOP is trying to use fear and insinuation to undermine confidence in the President while offering nothing of substantive value themselves to help the country get past its very pressing problems of the moment. This sneaky and underhanded ploy, of course, is to sow such uncertainty around the President and Democrats in general that voters will fearfully turn to Republican candidates in 2010 and 2012.

This Republican technique of deliberate exaggeration, distortion, insinuation, and outright lie is disgraceful. Party Chairman Michael Steele, who authored an accompanying four page letter of appeal for funds, echoed in his appeal a lot of the same nonsensical charges which comprised the questionnaire. He should be ashamed of himself. No wonder Santa exclaimed, "can you BELIEVE these guys?" I sure can't!

After filling in my caustic comments and completing the survey, I dutifully mailed it back to the RNC. I rather doubt they'll ever bother sending ME another such "gift from afar." Happy holidays, everybody!

15 comments:

Oso said...

Lying bastards.Gee Jack,how did you get so lucky? they never send ME anything.Well, economic issues. I mean nothing to me personally.

Maybe they thought you were Jack Nicholson? and would charge out to attack liberals with a golf club?

Jack Jodell said...

I have no idea how I became the lucky target - er - recipient. The day after they get my questionnaire back, though, I'm sure heads will be rolling in their Demographics Dept.! :-)

TomCat said...

Jack, opinion research was my field before I became disabled, and that is the most obviously skewed "push poll" I have ever seen. It's only intent is to propagandize.

Stimpson said...

What TomCat said about "push poll". The first Q is such a loaded question! It seems to me the second one would produce a meaningless result as there are so many reasons someone might think the govt "went too far" with bailouts. The respondent might be a total free-market type and dislike the govt intervention on principle, or she might think the bailouts were too kind or generous to bandits, just to give two examples.

Jack Jodell said...

TomCat,
A "push poll to be sure, and not very cleverly disguised, either. The GOP has become so deprived of brainpower, they can't even do their mailers skillfully anymore!
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Stimpson,
Loaded questions, indeed! A completely transparent and easy to see through clumsy effort at push poll as well. Hypocrisy abounds in the bailout question you referenced. First of all, their Bush began the bailouts and now they're trying to pin them all on Obama. Second, the industries they mention were all given free deregulation rides and huge tax breaks and subsidies during the Bush years and during previous Republican administrations as well. To even hint that this is a new or all-Obama phenomenon is a big, stinking load of crap. And the hidden racism and underlying fear tactics about illegal immigrants supposedly going to be given preferential treatment is a load of crap too. Lies and twisted, reframed truth, that's all, and neither cleverly nor skillfully done...

TRUTH 101 said...

Jack: I've worked on many campaigns. The biggest ass whoopin one of them ever gave our republican opponent was theone that was 90% beat this clown to the ground. The poor chump couldn't say anything and we were on him with a press release, lit drop or mailer.

When my guy ran again four years later, we went positive. Stressed experience, service and results for his ward. We lost to a kid that for the most part, lied and misinformed.


I'm as outraged as you and everyone else here at that chunk of toilet paper the republicans sent you. Sadly, attack and mislead work. I wouldn't lose any sleep if the Dems put the smackdown on these lying republican bastards.



I hope nobody else from my hometown visits here Jack. I'm not very well received by the Dems in town these days. But should I ever get back in, I don't want the other side to know what I have planned for them.

mud_rake said...

The right-wing 'push polls' are intended to keep the sheep in line so that they don't stray into the Truth Zone all too often.

Jack Jodell said...

Truth101,
I'm sorry what happened to your candidate, and I hope you or your person DOES return to office eventually and can clean house. This country needs compassionate, conscientious, INFORMED and TRUTHFUL people like yourself at the helm, not the Palin and Bachmann wacko types. Good luck!
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mud_rake,
That would explain the ignorance of the teabagers and the far-right nut jobs. They don't want details, truth, or accuracy - all they want are slogans, symbols, and reinforcement of their ignorant, shallow, and errant beliefs.

jadedfellow said...

Dear Mr. Jack

Good tidings of comfort and joy of the season myself and from Harry Reid as well. The Senate Majority Leader has decided that the last few days before Christmas are the opportune moment for a narrow majority of Democrats to stuff ObamaCare, a bill so reckless that it has to be rammed through on a partisan vote on Christmas eve.
Did you ever stop and think about why Dumb black people walk around with their pants below the crack in their ass?
Did you ever stop and think about why Dumb people still believe that this washed up looser Al Gore is an authority on Global warming?
Did you ever stop and think about why Dumb people believe 9/11 was an inside job.
They believe that shit because they want to believe it. I call it willful ignorance.
Did you ever stop and think about why Dumb people continue to believe dumb in Obama the liar!
Is it because of ignorance and lack of common sense?
It may not get better next year, but we can have the humor to hope for better days.
Liberals are infantile emotional idiots. They will believe anything they are told to believe and will repeat the lie with authority. They should be precluded from holding office or even voting.
They just can't help it, because they are all just so fucking dumb.

With My warmest Regards, jadedfellow

Jack Jodell said...

My dear Jadefellow,
You are indeed jaded to think that any bill restricting insurance companies from continually raising rates and excluding people or cutting them off for massive profits is a bad bill, or that their doing so means that 1 in every 6.5 Americans goes uninsured and this will now end, is a bad bill. Far MORE reckless than this bill have been conservative Republicans' obstructionist tactics on virtually every new piece of legislation that has been brought up since 1/20/09. And even more reckless is their support for bogus tea party rallies manufactured by lobbyist groups friendly to and funded by big business and insurance companies, whose effect was to spread fear and lies among the elderly and ill-informed so as to whip them into a frenzy.

You are free to express what you like, but bear in mind that RACIST COMMENTS ARE NOT WELCOME HERE AND WILL NOT BE TOLERATED. PERIOD.

Al Gore is not in the least bit stupid, and has the strong support of, and draws his information from, a huge body of very learned scientists and their works. Not only that, but who died and appointed YOU the expert on climate change, pollution, or global warming? Name-calling and insults aren't empirical evidence, and I see NO empirical evidence of anything on any subject anywhere in your comments. All I see are slurs and unfounded, ignorant, far-right hyperbole.

Some believe 9/11 was an inside job, but most don't. What even remotely does that have to do with what I have posted in this post?

LBJ, Nixon, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and DICK Cheney wrote the text on being liars. Next to them, Obama is a holy altar boy.

Infantile emotional; idiots? Then what do you call masses of conservative teabaggers shouting down their representatives by organized command, or, worse yet, shouting down and even ridiculing those attending town hall meetings who told horror stories about their or their relatives' inability to get badly needed health insurance? Those teabaggers and the ones who worked them up beforehand were hardly acting as mature, reasonable adults! So don't feed me this "liberals are infantile" bullshit---there's PLENTY of immaturity to go around the entire political spectrum! And aren't those who believe every slanted, incorrect, non-factual statement presented by liars, distorters, and exaggerators like Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity, Michele Bachmann, and Bill O'Reilly every bit as gullible as you suggest liberals are? You BET they are! So don't even try to suggest that "liberals are infantile emotional idiots." Not until you've looked at Palin, Bachmann, and the teabaggers first. And as far as "believing everything they are told to believe" goes, that quote fits conservative teabaggers perfectly.

Fondest regards to you as well, sir. But before you comment here ever again, first get your facts straight, and then be able to present them in a substantiated manner. This is not a forum for Fox "News" talking points.

Manifesto Joe said...

Bravo, Jack!

For a period in my life, I remember getting these kinds of "questionnaires" from the RNC, with questions like, "Do you think that criminal-coddling liberals should be elected to high offices where they can make limp-wristed policies in the War on Terror?"

I don't know where the Republicans recruit the people who create these "questionnaires," but they're so crude that I would think that even right-wing Political Science 101 students would know how pathetically stupid they look.

I used to just ignore them and throw them in the trash. Then, one time my wife actually filled one out, with comments.

We never got another one.

Jack Jodell said...

Thanks, Manifesto Joe. I expect much the same result.

MadMike said...

Is this real Jack? You are writing this tongue in cheek right? Actually I would have voted yes for the raising taxes thing. We need to pay for what we get. This Reagan trickle down tax cut bullshit is just that, but that is another issue.

Hey did you know that RNC Chair Michael Steele is not only getting paid big bucks for doing his silly job he is also charging $20K per speech. These Radical Righties put me in mind of Alice in WonderLAND!!

SJ said...

TC's right, another variant of push polls.
You should post a PDF of it in its entirety or at least forward it to msnbc, Huffington Post, The Atlantic etc.
-SJ

Jack Jodell said...

MadMike,
It's definitely for real, and I agree with you on the tax question and Reagan's trickle down nonsense. Yeah, ol' Mr. Steele's been using his position as RNC chair ($200,000 per year salary) as a springboard to make speeches to colleges for $20,000 a clip. Typical greedy Republican---"too much is just right."
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SJ,
Great idea, SJ, but unfortunately it's already back in Republican hands---I mailed it off days ago.