Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Senator Franken

And it's about damn time.


We're experiencing a drought down here in South Texas, along with several weeks straight now of 100+ temperatures so, needless to say, we seek relief where we can find it. I'm taking a week off to prepare for guests that are coming this weekend, and, at the same time, taking a break from the news. I'm sick of it, and it makes me mad, and I'd rather just relax by the pool and imagine myself on a picnic under the new pergola that our friend heydave just built. Here's a picture of it that he sent me - isn't it beautiful!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Oh my goodness

This is sad too. I never thought he was an actual pedophile. A sad, overgrown child with a really messed up life, yes. Not predatory in the way that pedophiles are. That's not to say that his behavior with some of his overnight guests wasn't inappropriate, but my guess is that it was not sexually exploitive, and that was apparently the consensus of the court that was more privy to the evidence than I ever was. Still, he was clearly a troubled man, and his wealth and fame were probably more of a curse than a blessing.

RIP Farrah Fawcett

I can't say that I was ever much of a fan, but I found her interesting. She seemed to have a kind of quirky - if not narcissistic in the way that many beautiful people are - personality, and I would probably like her paintings more than her acting.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Update on Sanford

Snark mode off. Really sad. Seems like he did the best he could, under the circumstances.

ENHANCED UPDATE: Freewheel and Mike bemoan the absence of snark. I should clarify that I don't actually feel sorry for the guy, I just heard his speech and it made me feel sad and it seemed to me that he did what he had to do. OTOH, Sandy Underpants expresses sentiments that I totally relate to.

Transparency and why it matters

Greenwald hits another one out of the ballpark (emphasis in original):
Half of the American citizenry is now explicitly pro-torture (and the question even specified that the torture would be used not against Terrorists, but "terrorist suspects"). Just think about what that says about how coarsened and barbaric our populace is and what types of abuses that entrenched mentality is certain to spawn in the future, particularly in the event of another terrorist attack. But even more meaningful is the question itself -- it's now normal and standard for pollsters to include among the various questions about garden-variety political controversies (health care, tax and spending policies, clean energy approaches) a question about whether one believes the U.S. Government should torture people (are you for or against government torture?) That's how normalized torture has become, how completely eroded the taboo is in the United States.
And in this I have added my own emphasis:
Americans are able to perceive torture clinically and in the abstract when they're able to endorse it without seeing its effects. They're able to delude themselves that the extreme abuses at Abu Ghraib were unauthorized aberrations -- rather than the inevitable by-products of the policies they support -- because the photos showing that those abuses were systematically applied at American detention facilities around the world are being suppressed. It's almost certainly true that few pro-torture Americans are aware that the policies they support -- and that were approved at the highest levels of the U.S. government -- have led to numerous detainee deaths, because investigations into such matters are being blocked; court proceedings impeded; and media discussions confined almost exclusively to questions about "water in nostrils." If Americans want to endorse government torture, they should not be allowed to avert their gaze from what they're causing and be spared the facts and details of what is done.
The crappy excuse that releasing graphic evidence of government-sponsored torture would "hurt the troops" is nothing more than self-serving bullshit. It is American attitudes toward these crimes that is directly stoking Muslim rage and desire for retribution. We should be ashamed of ourselves - I know I am.

Those zany Republicans

and their Family Values! If you haven't been following this story on TPM you're missing out on some fun.

UPDATE: Digby comments. I love this part:
I personally have nothing against weirdos. I consider myself to be one. But people with serious, governmental responsibilities can't be this level of weird.
Ha, Ha! Silly Digby! Substitute "shouldn't" for "can't" in that sentence (I think that's what she really means) and she and I would be in complete agreement. I think the Bush administration proved definitively that any level of weird is completely possible in American government.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Rightwing Projection, example #355,973,467......

Hilzoy wonders just who are these "Hard Leftists" Andy McCarthy speaks of:
Leave aside the fact that this is completely insane. And leave aside as well the fact that this was written by Andy "detaining US citizens without charges is fine" "waterboarding someone once or twice is not torture" McCarthy. What puzzles me is this: I have spent a lot of time in places where one might suppose the Hard Left might be found. I mean, I grew up in the Kremlin on the Charles, for heaven's sake. Moreover, I know some people who are fairly far to the left. And yet I'm not sure I've ever met anyone in this country who even remotely resembles McCarthy's "Hard Left".

My guitar teacher might have -- he didn't talk politics enough for me to be sure -- but that was in the early '70s. I might have found one had I ever ventured into Revolution Books in Harvard Square, but I can't recall that I did. There's one other person I knew back in the mid '80s who might have fit the bill, though I'm not sure how much of what makes me think this wasn't just general obnoxiousness, rather than a substantive political view.

But with these possible exceptions, none of the people I have known, in a long life of knowing leftists, has been "fine with dictatorship". None of them has the slightest interest in the "suppression of freedom", or "intrusiveness in all aspects of life". Like most people, they would prefer that the policies they think are best get adopted, but none of them would want to impose those policies by force if they lost the political argument.
Yeah, well. We all remember exactly who it really is that is "fine with dictatorship":
GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH (R-TX), PRESIDENT-ELECT: I told all four that there were going to be some times where we don't agree with each other. But that's OK. If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

There ain't no cure...

UPDATED, by gentle suggestion:

UPDATE: More suggestions! I couldn't pass up The Flying Lizards now, could I?

And now for more traditional fare (I can't help but wonder how many of this group are now balding....):

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Public Option

Ten Million Views:

The GOP Brain Trust

Strikes another blow for freedom.

Speaking of Republican stupidity (and how else are we going to pass the time?), we here at Beginning To Wonder like to keep an eye on the antics of that fine specimen of cracker rightwingism known far and wide as TexasFred. Yesterday, he had a whole post devoted to chortling about how hypocritical the "libtards" are because The Left is so darn outraged that SC Republican ex-operative, Rusty DePass, made a "so-called racist" remark about Michelle Obama comparing her to a gorilla and someone else circulated a picture around cyberspace with a picture of all the presidents except the last one that is supposed to be Barack Obama has only a black space with 2 big white eyes (HA HA! Sez TFred: "Was it racist? Not nearly as much so as some would have you think." Ooooooh, deep!) yet FOR EIGHT WHOLE YEARS libruls and moonbats compared GWB to a chimpanzee and NO ONE SAID A WORD! In the comments to this post, one of TexasFred's astute readers even pointed out that there is a WHOLE BLOG called "The Smirking Chimp" that is all about GWB so how about THAT you moonbat hypocrites, HUH? HUH?

Seriously. How does anyone ever attempt to cope with that level of aggressive ignorance?

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Our Liberal Media

How does the poor, beleaguered rightwing bear such massive oppression? I think I'm going to be sick.

And I missed it.

I was just informed that these guys played at a local joint last night. Maybe I'll catch them next time:

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

The lamest apology

Is when someone says, "I'm sorry if I offended you" especially when followed by, "I was only joking!" It's like a pile-on to the original offense: "I'm sorry you're so clueless as to misconstrue my clearly unoffensive statement."

Friday, June 12, 2009

How it's done

That "pot boiling" that Glenn Beck spoke of? TexasFred has all four burners set on High. Responding to the story that Eric Cantor compared Obama to Putin:
Well how do you like that? A GOP House member has the guts to stand up and say that life in America under Barack Hussein Obama is comparable to life in Russia under Vladamir Putin. I wonder who in the hell he’s trying to impress with that little tidbit?

Long before the nominations process was in high gear, long before the DNC anointed Barack Hussein Obama and the liberal world declared him to be *The One*, long before the GOP lost it’s way and threw up a sacrificial offering to *The One*, CONSERVATIVE bloggers and commentators were preaching long and loud, Obama WILL be the ruination of America.

But did the nation listen? NO, they didn’t. Did the Conservatives of this nation challenge the GOP and their status quo bullshit? Some did, not nearly enough, but some did, some fell into lockstep with the GOP, and voted the McCain/Palin ticket like dedicated little Pubbies.
Seriously, one doesn't know whether to laugh or cry. But it gets better:
The GOP ran one of the weakest candidates imaginable against one of the most charismatic hucksters to come down the line in a very long time. We were ignored, we were told ‘It can’t be done’, we were told that if we didn’t ALL vote for McCain, we’d surely end up with Obama. The final vote tally clearly indicates, Obama was going to win this one even if ALL the folks that voted 3rd party had voted GOP.

Obama was unstoppable. The angry old man and Northwoods Barbie never had a chance. Obama is what we have, and now, even some of the Dems are standing back, shaking their heads and asking themselves, ‘Oh damn, what have WE done?’.

We tried to tell you America. No one really listened. No one really thought that Barack Hussein Obama was actually going to be this bad. No one believed that Obama would show so many indications of his true religious allegiance so soon, his love of Islam, and his desire to placate the Muslims of this world.

We tried to tell you America.
But did America listen? NOOOO! Gee, I wonder why not? According to TFred, it's because America was so damn busy calling him and his fellow patriots bad names:
They called us NEOCONS, they called us racists, they called us NAZIs, hell, they called us a lot worse than that, and they told us how much good *The One* was going to do for America.
This stuff really is World O' Crap-league material. But wait till you see what comes up in the comments:
comment number 1 by: cary - Botan Ichihara
Yesterday at 10:48 PM

How’s about we skip all the TEA Parties and go straight to the Revolution?

It’ll save time, and a few bucks – something that libs don’t seem to understand, so will catch them off guard…

comment number 2 by: TexasFred
Yesterday at 11:19 PM

Nothing like an efficient Marine put things into perspective!!

comment number 3 by: Vincent
Today at 7:52 AM (1 hour ago)

OHRAAA! When do we go?
I don’t remember if it was you or Steve over at MRPE that called it, but one of you sure as hell got it right
It only took one act of violence to “Prove” the we right wingers are a domestic terrorist threat.
What a load of crap. How many violent attacks by islamic terrorists does it take to get them to see that threat?
I am so disgusted with this situation and the American people that brought it down upon us.
When are we going to say “Enough” and actually become that threat to their New World Order?
Locked and loaded and ready to go
Semper Fi
And there you have it.

UPDATE: More commentary on this subject from Paul Krugman, Steve Benen, and hilzoy.

UPDATE: See also Sara at the indispensable Ornicus here and here.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Local Color

Friend, artist, and local gay rights activist Gene Elder sent me a link to this article that came out today in this week's edition of the San Antonio Current.

The Eliminationists

Dave Neiwert at Crooks and Liars has a good run-down on the wingnut response to the Holocaust Museum shooting.

I've just placed my order for his book, something I've been meaning to do:

UPDATE: I guess, when you go around all the time with your head up your ass it's hard to tell left from right.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I'm a cranky old fart

(Now updated with LINKS!)

Watched Revolutionary Road at a friend's house last night. Big Acting. Sigh. I just kept thinking, Aren't all these Issues kind of old hat nowadays? I mean, isn't that what the 60's were largely about - rebelling against all that Repression from the 50's (yeah, okay, among other things)?

It's weird watching young whippersnappers (Winslet and DiCaprio, both actors I really, really like) play out their interpretation of struggles that those of us that actually LIVED during the 50's, 60's and 70's thought were behind us.

Maybe I was just annoyed to see such good, talented actors throwing such passion and energy into a project that was, to me, kind of dumb. The only character I had much sympathy for was the DiCaprio character, Frank, and the wife, April, I thought was just a total selfish nitwit. And I got the impression that I was supposed to feel something else.

And the character of the crazy guy was just way too over-the-top as a ham-fisted Plot Device. Which got me thinking about other movies that have handled the issues in this movie better and these are the movies I thought of:

A Woman Under the Influence
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Five Easy Pieces
Kramer vs. Kramer
and no one can beat Peter O'Toole's performance in The Ruling Class for portraying the Crazy Guy Who Speaks Truth To Repressed Normal People.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Coming clean or staying dirty

How can it possibly be that, on the one hand, there's nothing new or revealing about these photos -- nothing we need to see; just move along -- yet, on the other hand, release of these photos is going to single-handedly prompt mass bloodshed and conflagration in the Middle East? Don't those two claims rather obviously negate each other?

We've already given the Muslim world a fair amount to be angry about: invading, occupying and bombing two countries for 6 years and counting; massive (and ongoing) civilian deaths; a torture regime; Abu Ghraib and Bagram; imprisonment with no charges. Does anyone actually believe that it will be release of these new photos -- which we're told are nothing new and quite banal -- that's going to be some sort of triggering event that causes mass Muslim attacks on American troops? Even if that were true, it wouldn't justify suppression -- for the reasons I've set forth here and which two federal courts have formally adopted-- but, given the painfully contradictory claims being made, who actually believes these fear-mongering scenarios?

Either way: the solution to inflaming anti-American sentiment is to avoid doing bad things in the first place and then, if such things are done, imposing accountability when discovered -- not diluting the long-standing laws of open government in order to cover it all up.

UPDATE V: Regarding the Obama administration's attempt to suppress both the CIA video-destroying documents and the torture photos, The Washington Post's Dan Froomkin writes:

"The president who came into office promising to restore our international reputation and return responsibility to government now seems to be buying into the belief that covering up our sins is better than coming clean."

Obama's repeated actions make that statement very difficult to contest.

Asshole of the Day

Ross Douthat, hands down.

UPDATE: The Mahablog has a wonderful response.

UPDATE: Terrorism works.

This is unbearable.

I was strongly tempted to say "Just Shoot Me" but, this being Texas, somebody probably would. So instead, consider this post a long, slow, drawn-out, high-pitched, gut-wrenching scream.

Action Call

Read this and this and then make the call and/or send an email. Thanks.

Where the dumb go to get dumber

Why, The Liberal Media, of course! H/T Atrios.

Ed Whelan has apologized

It is a hard thing to do, and he deserves credit for it.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Looking Forward

"What kind of person would deny that this is torture? And what kind of person would argue that those who ordered that should be immune from investigation and prosecution?"

On blogging anonymously

Much has been written about the recent uber-assholery of Ed Whelan, most of which is far more compelling than anything I could come up with. That said, I have to say that I am frankly a bit gobsmacked at the need for any compelling argument to be made; to me the proposition is fairly straightforward: Ed Whelan outed the identity of a blogger who had stated his preference for remaining anonymous, and he did so for reasons of personal pique - because the blogger had written things critical of Ed Whelan. Therefore, Ed Whelan is an asshole. Case closed.

But never underestimate the capacity for wingnuts to defy reason, sanity or logic. The various posts and comments I have seen in defense of Whelan have been truly astounding. I shouldn't be surprised. I recall a conversation I had, years ago, in an online bullitan board wherein I was called a "coward" because I didn't use my full name when I posted my thoughts and opinions in a forum that was for political discussion. Hello?? This is Texas, fergawdsake. Our per capita concentration of lunatics armed to the gills is waaaay above the national average. Furthermore, I live in a small town. I once got hate mail for writing a letter to the editor of my little small town newspaper. And talk about cowardly: The writer left his/her little note in my mailbox, no stamp and no signature.

I suspect that those who don't get it never will. But I think hilzoy offers the best explanation I have yet seen, for those who still need it. Here is the crux:
I think there is a presumption that people should be able to decide for themselves what facts about themselves to reveal; and that decent people should respect this, absent some compelling reason not to. Of course, there are compelling reasons: if it turned out that an anonymous blogger on a white supremacist site was in fact the person in charge of the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, that would be worth knowing. But absent some such reason, I think that people's own decisions about what to reveal should be respected.

Thus, if I saw Whelan coming out of a DVD rental store with pornography, or found out by chance that he was HIV positive, I would think it wrong to publish those facts unless there was some very compelling reason to do so. Likewise, I would not publish his address and then, when he protested, write that he obviously wanted to avoid responsibility.

This is especially true when you do not know why someone has decided to keep something private. Whelan seems to acknowledge that there are situations in which someone might have good reasons for writing under a pseudonym:

"But setting aside the extraordinary circumstances in which the reason to use a pseudonym would be compelling, I don’t see why anyone else has any obligation to respect the blogger’s self-serving decision."

By outing someone, you are deciding, on that person's behalf, to incur whatever consequences outing that person might have. If you don't know whether or not the 'extraordinary circumstances' Whelan mentions obtain, you ought to err on the side of caution, absent a strong reason for outing the person in question.

Whelan did not know that no such circumstances obtained. On the contrary: publius wrote him an email saying that he blogged under a pseudonym "for a variety of private, family, and professional reasons". Those could easily include reasons that, by any reasonable standard, would justify the use of a pseudonym. But Whelan did not write back asking for further clarification. He just arrogated to himself the right to decide whether or not publius' name would be public, without having any idea at all what the consequences might be, and, apparently, without caring.

What Whelan did added nothing to his or anyone else's arguments about the law. He had no reason to do this, other than pique. He outed publius as a law professor, but he also outed himself as a petulant bully. I hope he likes the publicity.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

In Which I Disagree With Atrios

Whelan gets the prize as Asshole Of The Day. The Wanking Award should go to The New York Times.

Asshole of the Day

Ed Whelan, yet another Republican with the temperament of a spoiled 6-yr-old.

Friday, June 5, 2009

So, did you like what Wall Street did to the economy?

Then you'll really like what the insurance industry does to health care! So says Dr. Krugman, who is linked to in this post by our friend, Ruth.

More of The Gipper's legacy

It ain't over yet. In this post, Digby links to an earlier article of her own that is well worth reading. It is here, and in that piece, she links to an article by Josh Marshall which is also really good.

This is why I have been so adamant about the need for investigations and prosecutions of Bush administration crimes. These guys are not going to go away just because they lose an election or two. They keep coming back, and each time to do even more damage than the time before - which, considering the horrors that were wrought in this last round under Junior, is something to take into account.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Walk in their shoes

It's not just about the fetus.

Can you say Kick-Ass in Arabic?

Juan Cole, the go-to guy for all things Middle East, gives us a rundown of the Cairo speech including videos and a full transcript. Once again, it's nice to feel proud of my President.

Oh dear

This is very sad. RIP David Carradine.

RIP Koko Taylor

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Oh gag me up one side and down the other:
Reagan, who died in 2004, was the nation's 40th president, from 1981-1989. There was bipartisan agreement that his statue belonged in the Rotunda, the symbolic core of American government. On Tuesday, President Barack Obama created the Ronald Reagan Centennial Commission to plan and carry out activities marking the 100th anniversary, in 2011, of Reagan's birth.

His legacy includes the spread of democracy after his dramatic appeal in Berlin to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to "tear down this wall!" The Berlin Wall that divided East and West Germany fell in 1989, a symbol of the decline of communism and the thawing of the Cold War. Pieces of it are embedded in the statue, according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Guests recalled other elements of the Reagan legacy, specifically the optimism and charisma he honed as an actor, tapped as a policy maker and used to create an outsized but genial presence.
Here are a few other things his legacy includes: A war in Nicaragua that killed hundreds of thousands, an emboldened and radicalized American right wing (According to Wikipedia, "Ronald Reagan reshaped the Republican party, gave rise to the modern conservative movement, and altered the political dynamic of the United States." and "It can also be argued that Reagan is responsible for the elections of both George Bushes."), not to mention the neocons. Gee thx Ronnie!

The capper to this inspiring ceremony had to be the benediction by that beacon of integrity and morality James Baker, III who said of the 7-foot-tall bronze statue:
"It will stand forever as a silent sentry in these hallowed halls, to teach our children and our grandchildren about that which once was and to inspire them with visions of that which can be again - today, tomorrow and unto the generations,"
Pepto Bismol, anyone?

UPDATE: Please check out this very long but excellent post from a guest blogger at Hullabaloo. With a plethora of links, it pretty much tells you everything you'll ever need to know about the legacy of that Great Communicator Illusionist, Ronnie "The Gipper" Reagan. Here's the last paragraph (emphasis mine):
Conservative stances on economics, foreign policy and human rights provide a pretty bleak snapshot of the Republican party. The poor remain faceless to them, as do foreigners blithely bombed and the victims of torture and abuse. Torture, with its dynamics of power and false confessions, actually makes a frighteningly apt metaphor for movement conservatives and obstinate ideologues everywhere. Why do these people ignore data and counsel, inflict suffering on populations foreign and domestic, and fiercely dismiss overwhelming evidence against their favored approach? Just as with torture itself, it's simple - they like the answers it gives them.
Here's The Gip with his Legacy, Bush43:


How much responsibility should Bill O'Reilly bear for the death of Dr. Tiller? Thoughts?

UPDATE: Here's a good discussion of this question.

UPDATE: Thanks to all for your comments. Diane, over at Cab Drollery, also addresses the issue in this post also called "Consequences" (great minds think alike!).

Donna, I completely understand your discomfort with the notion of censorship but, quite frankly, if I were a member of Dr. Tiller's family I would be consulting an attorney and taking a very close look at the Fox Broadcasting Co., esp. Bill O'Reilly's show, and if I were Billo, I would kill myself be very, very nervous. It just seems to me that our country has long accepted that "free speech" has qualifiers, and incitement to murder is one.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I'm sending another $100 to Planned Parenthood today

More links:

From Ann Friedman (H/T TPM) on Why Clinic Violence is Obama's Problem:
It's apparent that we need someone at the federal level who is paying attention. After all, Tiller's assassin was not acting in vacuum. Even if no national anti-choice group directly ordered him to fire that gun, he is a product of a culture that thrives on systematically threatening reproductive health care providers and women who seek abortions. Militant anti-choice groups like Operation Rescue -- which has endorsed intimidation tactics in the past -- released statements yesterday condemning Tiller's assassination.

But after years of sending the message to its avid base that Tiller was a sub-human monster, a press release expressing dismay at the killing does little good. On the sidebar of the Operation Rescue blog, near where the press release appeared, was a small image featuring Dr. Tiller's face, some very sinister-looking flames, and the words "America's Doctor of Death," linking to a detailed dossier about all of Tiller's offenses. Other groups keep databases of reproductive health providers' addresses and phone numbers, all but daring their members to conduct harassment campaigns.
And here's a commenter named "Sarah in Chicago" over at Pandagon explaining her experience as an escort at a women's clinic.

And just to show what we're up against, here's TexasFred explaining his nuanced position on abortion rights:
Personally, I don’t care if I gain readers or lose readers for this statement, abortion on demand is WRONG.
Such a brave blogger!
Certainly there are extenuating circumstances that can make abortion an acceptable practice, but those circumstances need to well defined. Acts of rape or incest, the life of the mother and possibly an absolute guarantee that the child will be massively deformed or mentally challenged, those may be acceptable applications of abortion, but even then, that decision should be carefully weighed.
Don't you love TexasFred's lecture to us on what is and what isn't an "acceptable" reason to have an abortion.
Abortion on demand should not be an option. If a woman hasn’t been the victim of rape or incest then she needs to accept the consequences of HER actions. The use of birth control by those with loose morals would be much better than murdering the innocent life that springs from those indiscretions.

And yes, the father should assume responsibility too, but we all know, in many cases, that just isn’t going to happen.
Got that? "that just isn't going to happen" - get over it!
In some cases it’s because the woman doesn’t even know who the father is.
Of course. In fact, I suppose TexasFred believes this is true in most cases, don't you?
Personal responsibility folks, look into it. Abortion is NOT a viable option and shouldn’t be used as an easy OUT simply because someone didn’t assume any!
And in case he wasn't clear, TexasFred provides some amplification in one of his comments in this thread:
I want these abortion on demand SLUTS to tell me, exactly WHAT has that baby done?? Who has that baby harmed or killed? Why does the most innocent being on this planet deserve an unchallenged DEATH PENALTY simply for being… Nothing more, no crime, no harm to others, just BEING!
Sigh. Can you say I-S-S-U-E-S?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Do something positive

Feministe has some suggestions (H/T Firedoglake) including donations to:

Medical Student For Choice creating tomorrow's abortion providers and pro-choice physicians, and/or

National Network of Abortion Funds, to help low-income women access abortion services.

"inevitable consequence"

"We have a fascist movement in this country":
Hern laid blame for Tiller’s death at the feet of the anti-abortion movement’s encouragement of violence against abortion providers and the Republican Party’s “exploitation” of the extremist rhetoric.

“Dr. Tiller is dead by an anti-abortion assassin, and this is the absolutely inevitable consequence of 35 years of anti-abortion fanatic rhetoric and intimidation and assassination violence and exploitation by the Republican Party of this movement,” Hern told the Independent.
H/T Talking Points Memo

UPDATE: Two excellent posts from hilzoy.