Tuesday, July 17, 2012


                      Governor Bill Haslam (R-Tennessee)

          According to an article in this morning's The Tennessean (motto: "Did we mention we recently won some journalism awards?") eight statewide chapters of the Tennessee Republican Party have passed resolutions calling for unspecified "sanctions" of our governor for his "consistent lack of conservative values". 
          Sometimes I wonder if Joseph McCarthy would be conservative enough to make the average teabaggers of this state happy.  Other times I'm quite certain they wouldn't know "happy" if it crawled up their asses and made their tiddlies wink. 

          When Governor Bill Haslam was elected along with a solid conservative majority in the state legislature, I was worried that the lunatics of the Tea Party would have free reign to pass into law any batshit crazy bills they brought before the General Assembly.  After all, a conservative Republican millionaire oil company executive could hardly be expected to ride herd over the good ol' boys and their legislative agenda, especially since he seemed to embrace most of their ideas himself.
           But while I might be unhappy with many of the positions our governor has taken since his inauguration, he has, for the most part, been one of the few voices of reason in Nashville.  You only have to look at the bills Haslam has refused to sign into law to realize just how much embarrassment he's saved this state.
           But to the teabagger base of the Republican Party, any effort at moderation or compromise is seen as a fatal betrayal worthy of condemnation.  To put it mildly, they're so mad they could just spit! 
          Haslam didn't push for a law to allow gun owners to leave their loaded weapons in their cars while at work, and that put an NRA target on his back.  He also retained a few key Democrats from the last governor's administration, which the GOP zealots consider heresy.  He didn't support efforts to rebuke Agenda 21, a United Nations resolution that was passed over twenty fucking years ago that conspiracy theorists from the John Birch Society believe to be a communist plot.  The Governor has allowed openly gay folks to serve in the Department of Children's Services, and you know we must think of the children...
          But by far, the thing that has teabaggers' panties in a wad is the fact that Haslam hired a Tennessee-born Muslim to serve as the state's Department of Economic and Community Development's international director.  To the wingnutters, this Muslim woman (who was named one of thirteen White House fellows in 2010, served as class president during her time at Vanderbilt University, and who was once employed by the Department of Homeland Security) is ACTUALLY a "financial jihadist" planted at the highest levels of our state government with the intention of bringing Sharia Law to our rural courthouses.
           That's right.  Governor Haslam has a Muslim working in his administration.  And once you let that camel get its nose under your Klan robe, well, you know what happens next.  You end up with camels in the Klan.  And we just can't have that.
           So they've passed these meaningless resolutions to let the Governor know they're keeping an eye on his ass, and that he'd better toe the line during the next session of the General Assembly if he knows what's good for him.  They want sex education out of our public schools, guns and prayer meetings IN our public schools, and they want to make sure homosexuals, Islam, and evolution don't come up for discussion in those classes.  By god.
           If the Governor of the state of Tennessee wants my undying support (and I've never supported a Republican in my life) all he has to do is call a press conference, reference these resolutions of sanction for his lack of conservative values, then calmly extend a double barrel one finger salute to the Tea Party and the jackasses who belong to it.
           Those idiots have done more to bring ridicule to the state than anything since Hee Haw was on prime time, and they don't deserve another minute's worth of attention for their lunacy.



notacynic said...

Hee Haw wasn't that bad, was it?

Kulkuri said...

I didn't think Tennessee when I watched Hee Haw. I kinda did when I watched "The Beverly Hillbillies" when they talked about back home in the hills. Ain't Hooterville around there somewhere?????????????

squatlo said...

Yes, Hee Haw was THAT bad... The Beverly Hillbillies, on the other hand, was pioneering in a lot of ways, as was Green Acres.

Sarge said...

I want to come down to Nashville to hit Prince's Chicken and Trader Joe's. But, you are scaring me.
I have to ask - What can take a whole state so extremely to the right. Some say it is latent racism and Obama. I wonder about that.
I think it is a whole lot more of this evangelical rebirth that we have seen a "the way" is the only way mentality. Now, I know it can't be my beloved Jack Daniels!
Do thumpers drink?

We are looking at doing the Titans -Colts game.


squatlo said...

Sarge, Tennessee's General Assembly was reliably Democratic for almost all of my lifetime, and most of the Governors have been Democrats, as well. The real sea-change started when Gore was Veep to Clinton.
Talk radio hit the airwaves big time, with a station in Nashville providing clear-channel AM broadcasts of right wingnuttery 'round the clock. A local FM station jumped on that bandwagon and a local Glenn-Beck-ish rightie host milked the fears of the rubes for all they were worth.
One thing led to another, and Tenn failed to vote for Gore in the 2000 election, paving the way for the Soupreems to steal the election in Florida. Ever since then the state has been sadly red in statewide races.
Obama's election has given the bigots a rallying point, and while they use everything else as their excuse, the race of the President is the one defining draw for Republican success in Tennessee ever since.
About your visit... good luck finding Prince's Chicken shack, and even more luck will be needed to find a parking spot downtown for a Titans game.
The best deal in town is to reserve a ticket on The General Jackson riverboat out of Opry Mills. You can park at the Opry Mills mall for free, get on board the riverboat at about 9:30AM for a noon kickoff. They serve drinks, beer, food on the boat, take you to a dock below the stadium. The boat leaves for Opry Mills thirty minutes after the final whistle. No traffic hassles, no parking hassles, and if the game's boring you can go back to the boat, sit on the river and watch it inside on the big screen TV while hoisting a brew.
Costs about $10 for the ride, or it did the last time I took the boat.

pttenn said...

Jeez..not sure I want to return to Tennessee or somewhere more advanced than the paleazoic era.
Gotta give this some thought.

Unknown said...

I lived 15 long long years in McMinnville before escaping. I don't ever remember people in Tennessee ever being as pointlessly mean as this Tea Party crowd. The Tea Party folks are worse than the Mean For Jesus crowd. They give off a crazy mean vibe that borders on the rabid chihuahua crazy.

squatlo said...

UNKNOWN: If you lived in Tennessee for 15 years you know folks around here aren't "mean" or selfish or willfully ignorant. But never underestimate the gullibility of the typical American... they can be worked, like puppets, if the message is repeated often enough and from enough sources.
When sheeple get all of their information from talk radio hate mongers and from Faux News, the wholly owned subsidiary of the Republican National Committee, their perspective eventually becomes altered.
People around here are basically warm, friendly, happy campers... until they've been force fed the Kool-Aid.
The only thing that can effectively combat this onslaught of misinformation is a committed effort to bring truth to the table whenever we can.
Speak up. Write a response to hateful, inaccurate emails. Write a letter to the editor of your local paper when bullshit is passed off as fact.
Become the "unknown" oracle.

Anonymous said...

squatlo: I did not say that everyone in Tennessee was that way. But you do have a handful who are and always have been. This handful having risen like scum is making TN look like a meth wonderland.

I still have family living in TN. Some quite elderly aunts of mine who were children when FDR was president and remember how bad things were before the TVA brought electricity to the rural counties like Warren County. They, like me, don't understand this idiot bunch. They sure as hell don't them one little bit.

As for myself, I have moved out to the Intermountain west and currently live under the Beehive flag of Brother Young. We have our own kind of crazy here. But at least it is not the kind of mean crazy you have in TN.

Cthulhu said...

Squatlo, I totally agree. Tennesee is why we left Floriduh in the first place. Whats causing the mean? In my humble opinion, it's a combination of Evangelical hatred, aka the Talibaptists, racism (I'm sorry, but it's undeniable), and the propaganda being pumped out 24/7.

I've found the people in Tn. to be some of the kindest, sweetest, and most caring folks I've ever met.

squatlo said...

Anon and Cthulhu: I don't see the "mean" thing in my everyday life around here. Folks are what they've always been: caring, empathetic, hospitable. What's changed is the political climate, and that's a change for the worse.
Suddenly, it's no longer a bad thing to be openly, willfully ignorant, bigoted, or obstinate in politics. The "I/Me/Mine" mentality normally found only among those suffering from "only child syndrome" and the uber-wealthy is now an admirable trait trumpeted by people who have been told that being selfish is not only the patriotic American Way, but the preferred path for society.
Again, if you get people in one on one situations and get to know them, almost all of us share some basic human understanding and sympathies for others. Where you won't find those admirable traits is in the legislature of the state. Those people ran on a platform of hateful rhetoric spawned by the knee-jerk reaction of a black man being elected President at a time of economic distress. It's a combination of factors that makes their snarlin' junkyard dog personalities look attractive to angry white guys.
We have to remind one another that shitty behavior us still shitty behavior and shouldn't be tolerated, much less promoted as a way of life.