Joe Wilson is a Triple Jerk

By now I assume everyone has heard that South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson heckled President Obama during the latter’s big health care speech on Wednesday. When Obama claimed that there was nothing in his bill that would extend health insurance to illegal aliens, the congressman yelled out “You lie!”

By doing so Wilson showed that there are at least three different ways in which he is a jerk. First, there is the sheer, childish rudeness of heckling a President. This is really what it’s come to? We can not agree anymore that when the President addresses a joint session of Congress you should wait until after the speech to express your disapproval?

The really dismaying thing is that quite a few normally sensible people are taking the “We have a President, not a King!” line on this. This took its saddest form in an amazingly dumb statement from Glenn Greenwald:

Eugene Robinson today absurdly calls the GOP’s disrespectful behavior at Obama’s speech “un-American.” Right-wing contempt for Obama is often petty, deeply emotional and ugly — just like right-wing leaders themselves. But the demand that the President be venerated and treated as royalty is far more “un-American” than disruptive transgressions of etiquette. Wilson’s heckling was juvenile and dumb, but that’s all it was.

“Un-American” is a word I try to avoid, but it is not half so absurd as suggesting that expecting people to be civil when attending a Presidential speech is the equivalent of asking for veneration and royal treatment. I’m pretty sure the royal treatment involves more than just not being heckled. Wilson’s outburst was more than just juvenile and dumb. It was one further step in our decline from deliberative democracy to one of those countries where legislators routinely break into fist fights. It is proof that even at the highest levels of government the idea of civil discourse is no longer valued, at least among one of the two major parties.

Make no mistake, Joe Wilson is a hero among Republicans today. He has secured his reelection (don’t be fooled by the temporary fund-raising spike for his opponent), and he has a bright future ahead of him if the Republicans ever retake Congress. Which they are likely to do before too long given how worthless and ineffective the Democrats seem determined to be.

Secondly, he is a jerk for being wrong on the facts. The bills under consideration by the Congress contain explicit language stating that none of the benefits of the bill would extend to illegal aliens. Keith Olbermann, as usual, expressed it well:

Of course you let your emotions get the best of you. At a figure of $435,296 in campaign donations from the Health Sector, of course your emotions would take over when your gravy train was threatened.

It isn’t about “inappropriate and regrettable,” Sir!

Your comments were inappropriate and regrettable and…. **wrong**! You got up in front of the world, embarrassed your district, embarrassed your state, embarrassed your party, embarrassed your nation, shouted at the President like he was a referee at a ballgame and you were a drunk in the stands, and you were wrong.

House Bill 3200 specifically says, Sir, in language made precise and binding — in section 246 — under the heading, quote:

“NO FEDERAL PAYMENT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS”

Look, Congressman! All capital letters! For the benefit of the factually-challenged!

“Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.”

You got it wrong! There is no ambiguity, Sir. There is no disagreement!

The bill says those here illegally will not be covered; yet whether through stupidity or a willful attempt to mislead the gullible, you decided to spend whatever credibility remained to you on a position in which you are utterly, inarguably, and — in a manner obvious to newborns and the more sophisticated of farm animals — wrong!

You apologize for your lack of civility?

When are you going to apologize for your lack of… being right?

And, of course, we can hardly forget the immortal words of Richard Dawkins, directed towards a comically clueless reviewer of his book The Selfish Gene: “We are in danger of assuming that no one would dare to be so rude without taking the elementary precaution of being right in what she said.”

But the biggest way in which Wilson was a jerk was in his bizarre obsession with illegal aliens in the first place. We have forty-six million uninsured people, exploding health care costs, and an insurance industry that does everything it possible can to avoid paying out on its policies, and people like Wilson are worried that a few pennies might go to illegal aliens? That’s what he cares about?

How mindlessly venomous do you have to be to have your priorities that out of whack?

The Democrats, always eager to look craven and spineless, have already found a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. The White House, fresh off their big caves to Glenn Beck on the subject of hiring decisions, seems to be going for a bit of the bigot love:

The White House strengthened its stand against health care coverage for illegal immigrants Friday, and a pivotal Senate committee looked ready to follow its lead.

The developments reflected a renewed focus on the issue in the days since a Republican congressman’s outburst during President Barack Obama’s health care speech to Congress on Wednesday night. Republican Rep. Joe Wilson of South Carolina shouted “You lie!” as Obama said illegal immigrants wouldn’t be covered under his health plan.

Apparently fearing that other Democrats were looking weaker than she, Nancy Pelosi has decided to rain down a little hell on Congressman Wilson:

Democratic leaders initially showed mixed interest in punishing Wilson. But they decided at a meeting late Thursday that they probably will propose a resolution of disapproval early next week if he doesn’t apologize to Congress, said Brendan Daly, a spokesman for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

While not a formal censure or reprimand, the resolution, if passed as expected, would put Congress on record as condemning Wilson’s conduct.

A resolution of disapproval? Let’s not do anything hasty here. This calls for immediate discussion.

All of this focus on Wilson does, at least, distract from the fact that Obama’s much praised speech was actually one big cave to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries. It was basically saying that the health industry owns enough Democrats to make sure that meaningful health reform can not pass. Robert Reich explains things well:

Where’s the White House? For months now, it’s been straddling the fence — reassuring the Dem base that the President is with them (he did it as recently as Monday with a rousing speech to organized labor), while at the same time nodding and winking in the direction of the private insurers and Big Pharma. Last spring the White House agreed to Big Pharma’s demand that Medicare not be permitted to negotiate low drug prices in return for Pharma’s agreement to support the health care bill emerging from the Senate Finance Committee. Since then it has quietly told private insurers that it will work with Senate Finance to find less potent alternatives to the public option, such as Kent Conrad’s “cooperatives” or Olympia Snowe’s “trigger” mechanism, in return for the private insurers’ support of the compromise. And it has told the private insurers and Big Pharma that it will not support a surtax on the wealthy.

Obama’s Wednesday night speech reassured the Democratic base that the President is deeply committed to getting universal coverage. But the speech also made clear that the White House has decided to side with the Senate Finance Committee and against the Democratic base on the details.

Charming.

Comments

  1. #1 Tyler DiPietro
    September 12, 2009

    “All of this focus on Wilson does, at least, distract from the fact that Obama’s much praised speech was actually one big cave to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries.”

    Thank Dog someone besides me is saying so! The “reform” plan outlined by Obama the other night was a pile of crap. It doesn’t contain any explicit caps on premiums, but rather relies on the idea that if you call a menu of existing insurance options an “exchange” and encourage (note: not require) companies to participate, the magic of the market will suddenly cure all the problems private insurance has with adverse selection and bring down prices. The “public option”, rather than being something sensible like an optional medicare buy in for people of all ages and income brackets, is a minor peripheral available to almost no one. Even the modest reforms that are sensible (for instance, banning the use of preexisting conditions to deny coverage) can easily be weakened or outright reversed given a few years of lobbying effort in a sympathetic congress.

    At this point it would be better that nothing pass. The Democrats need to learn that there are long term political consequences to selling out like this.

  2. #2 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    September 12, 2009

    Right with you on that, Tyler. I am not in favor of “Half a loaf.” It would only serve to make people think that Obama “did something” about health care, and they wouldn’t have to “do anything” more for another 20 years.

    Single-payer or bust.

  3. #3 NewEnglandBob
    September 12, 2009

    Dreamers, tyler and Mike. It will never happen.

  4. #4 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    September 12, 2009

    Thanks, Buzzkill Bob. And the reason it won’t happen? It’s because the fight has been taken away by “our own side.”

  5. #5 Phaedrus
    September 12, 2009

    I think History will judge harshly the Democrats who sat politely while the most monstrous President in history lied to them. How much better off would we be if someone, anyone, would have confronted President Bush when he constantly linked 9-11 and Saddam? Or when he said that he always gets a warrant when he listens to conversations, or that the US doesn’t torture?

    The story here is two fold – that Wilson was rude over the subtext of Health care reform, pretty far down on the priority list, I would think. The second is that he was wrong on the facts.

    The proper response would be ridicule, perhaps the headline, “If you’re going to be rude, be right”.

  6. #6 John Bache
    September 12, 2009

    All this hullabaloo about Joe Wilson is a classic diversionary tactic of those who can’t stand to defend their position with facts but lower themselves to name calling to avoid facing the REAL issue. The truth is that Joe Wilson was correct in saying Mr. Obama was lieing because that is exactly what he was doing. While it may have been ill advised to express his feeling in the way he did, he did apologize for his method. This is classical Obama trying to fool everyone with words. The very simple fact that the Health Care Bill being proposed by the House and supported by Obama does not specifically say that illegals will or will not be covered by the bill but by failing to include a provision that requires proof of citizenship in order to apply for government healthcare it certainly is not eliminating them from doing so. There was an amendment offered in the House to say exactly that but it was killed in committee. Now why would you suppose they would not want that amendment in the bill……seems to me it is pretty clear they want to allow illegals to apply without the embarrassment of saying so. This is not about Joe Wilson, (he happens to know that amendment was killed since he was on the committee that killed it), it is about whether or not this president lied and in fact he nearly did by electing to say the bill does not include illegals but did not add that neither does it eliminate them. This is typical and they expect us to be dumb enough to believe that illegals will not be covered. Well, if that is the case, why in the he.. don’t you say so in the bill, why did you choose to eliminate the amendment that specifically excluded them? Pull the blinders off America, this President thinks you are all just as dumb and illiterate as those that elected him and you keep falling for his false rhetoric just like the voters did last November. Sad, very sad indeed.

  7. #7 Blue Swan
    September 12, 2009

    Obama has a chance to prove that he is not a liar.

    He said he could save 500 million in Medicare cuts through “efficiencies” — with no cuts in service.

    I say, why wait? Go ahead, right now and make these cuts that your espoused, Mr. President, right now!

    Show us that you’re telling the truth?

    Where are the cuts?

    Save us the 500 million.

  8. #8 Galen Evans
    September 12, 2009

    John, do you honestly believe that illegal immigrants just walk up and demand government services if they don’t have to prove they are a citizen with verified amniotic sac fluid that has been notarized in one of the 50 states at time of conception?

    The fact is most illegal immigrants (who are people, why do republicans always forget that. all the “illegals’ are people just like you and me.) do their best to stay away from government programs because that is where they are most likely to be found out as illegal immigrants and shipped home. the more restrictions you put up against “illegal immigrants” the more genuine citizens you keep out the more barriers you place to keep certain people out makes it harder for a service to help the people it is meant to help.

    Also, we are as dumb and illiterate as the people who elected him. remember AMERICA elected this president. we are the people who elected him, just like we were the people who elected George W Bush. (and i think a literacy comparison between Obama voters and Bush Voters might show the subset of america that is illiterate is not the one who voted for Obama, but thats just speculation)

  9. #9 Galen Evans
    September 12, 2009

    I almost forgot to say to jason, that if this is the kind of post we get after you taking a break (again glad to hear you are feeling better), we really don’t have any cause to be mad at you for not posting for a bit.

  10. #10 your name
    September 12, 2009

    Joe Wilson is a HERO at least he spoke the truth Obama doesn’t know how to speak the truth

  11. #11 Jason Rosenhouse
    September 12, 2009

    Galen -

    You’re very sweet! Glad you liked the post.

  12. #12 NJ
    September 12, 2009

    John Bache @ 6:

    The truth is that Joe Wilson was correct in saying Mr. Obama was lieing because that is exactly what he was doing.

    yourname @ 10:

    Joe Wilson is a HERO at least he spoke the truth Obama doesn’t know how to speak the truth

    Here is the actual text of Obama’s speech:

    There are also those who claim that our reform efforts would insure illegal immigrants. This, too, is false. The reforms — the reforms I’m proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally.

    Here is the actual text of the bill:

    HR 3200, section 246, Page 143, Lines 3- 7:

    SEC. 246. NO FEDERAL PAYMENT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS.
    Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States.

    So, now what do you say to the nice people, children, when you are proven to be too stupid for words?

  13. #13 John
    September 12, 2009

    Mr. Evans…don’t know about you, (but I must wonder) I AM NOT THE SAME as them. I am here legally and so are many others who immigrate the right way. They came into this country breaking our laws and you think they are just like you and me?? Speak for yourself my friend! And yes I indeed do think that illegal immigrants will just walk up and ask for government services if they do not need to prove their citizenship. Isn’t that why they came here, to take jobs illegally because no one checked their papers? If illegals are the way you portray them, we would not even know they were here. Don’t they take jobs where they don’t have to show a green card, why on God’s green earth would you think they wouldn’t do the same to get healthcare? What planet are you from? I might also remind you that we Americans did not elect this thug, YOU did and a small majority at that, most of whom, certainly not you though, are kicking themselves in the posterior for doing so, as indicated by his sinking approval ratings. There are consequences for all our decisions, even those we make when we vote. I think it is wonderful that you have self analyzed the respective intelligennces of Bush and Obama voters but quite frankly at this point I could care less about who voted for Bush, I don’t live in the past like so many Obama supporters who continually complain about Bush and those who elected him and then turn around and can’t accept the same criticism whem it is directed at Obama or his supporters. Hmmm… seems to me like that same old double standard reeling its ugly head once again…don’t you dare blame my guy but let me blame yours. Ridiculous to say the least.

  14. #14 G.D.
    September 12, 2009

    Well, I don’t think you completely nailed the most obnoxious part – neither does Galen Evans, although he comes pretty close in one of his parentheses.

    Why on earth shouldn’t we want health care to extend to illegal immigrants? Oh, yes, it’ll cost a couple of extra dollars, to be sure, but what else do we really want – and not the least, what does Wilson want? That sick, illegal immigrants should go die somewhere out of sight? I WANT free health care to extend to illegal immigrants, even though I’ll have to pay for it. And I want that for the very childish, simple-minded reason that I want illegal immigrants not to suffer and die needlessly. I am perfectly aware that I probably won’t get anything in return except for the knowledge that I am contributing to the well-being of others. And yet, somehow, I think that is reason enough. Thus, I do also think that people like John Bache above are morally deficient assholes – “hey, that Mexican kid spent a couple of my dollars to save his life, outrageous.” Wtf?

    In most Western countries, this is after all taken as self-evident – no health care system in an country in the developed world (i.e. Europe or Canada) would, to my knowledge, turn away illegal immigrants; at least not if their conditions are sufficiently severe – usually even that is no requirement, however. And the reason has to do with something as simple as moral decency, that ‘just let them suffer’ sounds wrong to most Europeans. The discussion, in most civilized countries, concerns rather whether hospitals ought to be free zones where illegal immigrants can stay without risk of being apprehended and shipped out of the country (so as to insure that they actually seek help when they really need it). It kinda puts the discussion in the US into context. I don’t like to claim that European countries (and Cuba) are morally superior to the US, but the fact that Wilson’s outburst failed to constitute his political suicide – exclusively due to the very inhumanity it implied – makes it really hard to get around that conclusion.

  15. #15 SLC
    September 12, 2009

    Re John Bache & your name

    Joe Wilson is a redneck, peckerwood, white trash piece of filth and a lousy liar to boot.

  16. #16 John Bache
    September 12, 2009

    G.D. you are a fool and an idiot. Why not just take the 8.4 billion he gave to Acorn in the stimulus package (we see now where that got him) and use it to provide healthcare for illegals. You could even throw in your measly taxes to the pot as well since you feel so strongly. Stupidity simply sickens me.

  17. #17 BaldApe
    September 12, 2009

    the 8.4 billion he gave to Acorn in the stimulus package

    OK, if there was any doubt, that proves you are just too stupid for words.

    But by all means, don’t let reality get in the way of a good Obama conspiracy theory.

  18. #18 NJ
    September 12, 2009

    I’m not sure that it’s a “good Obama conspiracy theory” that is motivating our buddy John here. It’s more likely that he feels that Obama is guilty of PWB* which is driving him around the bend.

    *Presidenting While Black

  19. #19 Brittancus
    September 12, 2009

    No more Mr. nice guy from the general public, who must demand that E-Verify becomes a stable, in-perpetuity federal immigration enforcement tool for everybody? No half-measure, but full implementation across the country. For new workers and those who have been on the payroll forever. Why has it taken so long to coordinate this computer illegal immigrant recognition software? The answer is evidently politicians who have been manipulated by campaign money, special favors from lobbyists. They are like a Monarchy buying and selling favors for distracting the unknowing public from strong enforcement, from the border line and enforcement in the working locations throughout our nation. Significant pieces of law have been reduced to weakened, insufficient laws that do nothing for the American people. The stimulus package was compromised, with no terminology to reduce illegal workers from applying for jobs in construction and other industries. ACORN is an undesirable organization that has been headlined lately in the national press. Under surveillance and being investigated by numerous state attorney generals for possible violating voting laws and other nefarious activities? Surely the Obama administration is not contracting them to perform serious counting of the population in the 2010 US census after these accusations?

    To me this is premeditated and likewise with public access to health care, because there was no restrictions to identify illegal immigrants in the package. Until yesterday the Democratic committee members realize they had been discovered and added amendments blocking illegal persons from applying, by running their names through Social Security. It’s common knowledge that illegal immigrants receive free treatment in emergency hospitals, which have for decades have been exploited for any minor ailments. The main conspirators within the Democratic leadership are Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada and Nancy Pelosi House Speaker. Both represent states of mass illegal immigration. Reid for his abandonment of the American worker may soon be ousted from office? He was the main contender in the near disintegration of E-Verify. On one hand Democrats saliva over millions of extra votes if another Blanket Amnesty is enacted, while the alternate party status quo are wanting to keep an unceasing supply of illegal labor.

    Running scared Pelosi and Napolitano have changed sides and displaying a different attitude towards the millions of jobless Americans, whose work has been appropriated by foreign labor. In many cases large companies have clearly knowingly hired cheap labor, in placement of citizens and legal residents. In ICE raids its positive proof that mega- businesses built their labor force on foreign nationals? Yet the majority of companies isolated themselves from major penalties and only the lesser management was punished. E-verify would have remained non-existent if it was not for the adamant pressure of bloggers comments and articles on the internet that enlivened public attention.

    Believe me when I say the bombardment of American voices over the switchboards in a harassed Washington, made a extraordinary difference? THEY ACTUALLY LISTENED and the Special interest organizations couldn’t even delay the courts, in ordering the en-masse contractors and sub-contractors from obeying federal law. Years of neglect by previous administrations on both sides of the aisle, has allowed the unregulated droves of foreign illegal aliens along with families into our neighborhoods. TODAY! RIGHT NOW! We must have millions more bona-fide Americans calling this number 202-224-3121 in the muck hole at the Capitol, really do have the ultimate power of changing things.

    For me health care reform is a priority because family members have suffered too long under the umbrella of shady insurance companies, as being declined of pre-existing condition was a factor in my daughter’s coverage dying of cancer at an early age. But any kind of public health care must not be rationed and must not give access to people who should never entered our country illegally. E-Verify a composite of the SAVE ACT must—NOT–be devalued by the corrupt politicians in the Democratic Party, nor the 287 G. cities, county and state police training to question and apprehend foreign nationals. In conclusion, the President wants to push another path to citizenship for those who came here through the back door? Awarding people for wrongdoing is not in my book?

    If it’s anything like the 1986 Simpson/Mazzoli bill it was overloaded with fraud and ended up costing taxpayers billions. New immigrants must come in orderly, signing documentation that they will not be public welfare charges. Without mitigating circumstances anybody who violates this law must be deported.It makes more sense, if such legislation exists in DC to only approve entry visas, for new immigrants with heavily vetted credentials of highly skilled engineers and professional career individuals. After all, they are unlikely to become an unemployed welfare recipient? The 1986 immigration law was intentionally engineered from the beginning, but already contains important factors in enforcement of laws.

    Strengthen the same 1986 laws with amendments, instead of starting again. This legislation is already on the books? The truth is that it’s not broken, but heavily under funded from the beginning and bloated with fraud. Guest worker programs and special visas for skilled tradesman has remained a nemesis. This includes fraudulent partnership of businesses entities, attorneys in hiring agricultural workers for the fields? Many have lied to the government authorities and who have been instrumental in its corrupt notorious character. If new guest workers programs enacted by a Nancy Pelosi’s AGjobs bill are eminent, the applicants must be carefully screened with the knowledge that working visas on expiring, that those individuals must return to their original place of residence. That they cannot qualify for a legal resident visa, nor can America anymore accommodate their family members with chain migration?

    Another anomaly is the border fence? It was—NEVER BUILT—to Rep. Duncan Hunters original specs? His short fence expanse in San Diego remains a strong classic example of following the law. Currently along our international border we have a single line fence, not a two tier fence, with a no-mans land for patrolling border patrol vehicles in between. The previous administration shall ever be haunted by the fact they installed a virtual barrier in many places, with malfunctioning cameras, sensors, obsolete vehicle barriers that could easily be maneuvered around, that cost millions of dollars in taxpayers backing. Expenditures to support illegal immigrants through corporate welfare, over generation would leave a trail of hundred dollar bills from Earth to the Moon and back again. We need to repair our collapsing infrastructure, stop the erosion of bridges, tunnels and dams. Even our water supplies are compromised by the irreversible course of OVERPOPULATION A documentary has been playing on the History cable channel entitled “The Crumbling of America” It illustrates the complete and utter disaster that awaits us in the future, as mandatory infrastructure starts to collapse. Yet we still find money to aid other countries and underwrite the living conditions of 20 plus illegal immigrants occupying our nation?

    Federal legislation must be written to correct and heavily fine states that promote Sanctuary Alcoves such as Los Angeles and San Francisco. Warning them that no funding will be appropriated who violate federal law, instead of purposely looking the other way.
    The majority of these enforcement laws have been weakened, many left to rot in a dormant state at the National Archives. Immigration laws have been compromised time and time again by lobbyists offering favors to our public servants. Facts not fiction can learned at NUMBERSUSA & JUDICIAL WATCH.

  20. #20 Galen Evans
    September 12, 2009

    To Brittancus and John:
    I think you both fundamentally fail at grasping the causes and effects of illegal immigration. you want to blame everything on the people who for sound economic reasons, had to move to this country to support their large extended families in poverty stricken areas of South America. Firstly, as the US economy has tanked, there has been a sharp decline in illegal immigration as it is no longer as lucrative as it once was, as citizens are willing to work worse and worse and lower paying jobs, there is less need for a company to run the very minor risk of hiring an illegal immigrant.

    But should we really blame the person who left terrible conditions to live in still terrible conditions here in the United States? or instead should we blame the cooperate assholes who decide to hire illegal immigrants for minimal wages and call in the INS if the immigrants ever get the smallest sense that they are human?

    John especially seemed to miss my point about Illegal Immigrants being “just like us” what i meant by that is that they are People, with feelings and thoughts and basic human rights, and it is important that we treat them as such. blaming and persecuting them does not help stop the problem of no jobs for american workers, it is merely a good scapegoat that the corporate managers use to have the people who are living on the margins hate each-other than unify and speak with one voice for economic justice.

    The reason places like San Francisco decide to become sanctuary outposts is that they understand that the issue of illegal immigrants is an issue about people with common human rights and who deserve to be treated with he dignity you are supposed to treat all people with.

    you want to get angry because you job went to an illegal immigrant, don’t get angry at the immigrant, get angry at the asshole middle manager who decided to hire an illegal immigrant and fight for and force economic justice on all companies. support the efforts of the Unions and build a powerful alliance of the workers to demand economic justice. Don’t punish the kid who will work for 1$ an hour picking avocados

  21. #21 magicshoemonkey
    September 13, 2009

    “The Democrats need to learn that there are long term political consequences to selling out like this.”

    LOL! Long term political consequences? Like what’s really going to happen or what you imagine happening in your mind?

    Reality: If the Democrats don’t pass real health care then next election the voters are going to be so despondent they either vote Republican or vote for an independent. If they vote independent, since Americans can’t imagine such a thing as a viable “third party,” enough of a chunk of liberals will still vote Democrat to keep Republicans from winning that Republicans will still win since the sizable group that voted independent was enough to give them the majority. If they vote Republican/Democrat, and enough people are dumb enough to think that switching to vote Republican will fix anything, the outcome is still the same.

    Either way, the Democrats will be back in power after another 4-6 years when people are fed up with Republicans. And the cycle continues.

    In your and my fantasy: we all get so fed up with the useless politicians we vote for independents and vote not based on party name but on true progressive philosophy. The conservative Democrats and sellouts who destroyed health care reform are forced out and replaced with people who bring real change.

    I so hope I’m wrong.

  22. #22 NewEnglandBob
    September 13, 2009

    Yes, the xenophobia runs rampant here.

  23. #23 mark
    September 13, 2009

    This was not the first time the Hero of the Confederacy has shown himself to be an ass. Among other examples of misbehaving, Wilson in 2002 ranted against California representative Bob Filner for suggesting that the US gave Saddam biological and chemical weapons, accusing Filner of hating America. Wilson was oblivious to published documentation of Filner’s claim.

  24. #24 Damien
    September 13, 2009

    It sickens me that there are people out there for whom having a few dollars more in their own pocket are willing to ignore the pain and suffering of millions of people. This is directed not only to those on this thread who so viciously oppose illegal immigrants having access to basic and decent health care but to all inconsiderate pricks who have collectively decided to treat something which should be a fundamental human right as a commodity.

    No person should be forced to choose between paying an insurance bill or eating; no person in the United States should be turned down for a necessary medical procedure because their insurer won’t cover it; no person should feel fear of getting even remotely ill because it will bankrupt them.

    Facts are pesky things, especially for those who hold a position dogmatically and irrationally, and these particular facts do not support the idea of postponing or failing to reform health care because illegal immigrants will have access also.

    As someone whose immediate family has had to go to France and Canada for care, I am glad those countries don’t share the disgusting moral attitude of “let ‘em die, I need my HDTV.”

  25. #25 That Other Guy
    September 14, 2009

    Might I recommend the song Crosseyed & Painless, by Talking Heads?

    “Facts are simple and facts are straight
    Facts are lazy and facts are late
    Facts all come with points of view
    Facts don’t do what I want them to
    Facts just twist the truth around
    Facts are living turned inside out
    Facts are getting the best of them
    Facts are nothing on the face of things”

  26. #26 John Kwok
    September 14, 2009

    Galen Evans -

    Your comments ignore the fact that there are milions of us – including yours truly – who are descended from those who emigrated legally to the United States.

    While I understand Joe Wilson’s exasperation with the President, he was wrong to interrupt the President, but, to his everlasting credit, he did apologize to the President approximately an hour later, by sending a message to the President’s staff.

    Wilson’s behavior stands in stark contrast with, for example, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (who has yet to apologize to the CIA for accusing them of lying when she denied receiving classified reports on waterboarding at Gitmo) or Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (who, on numerous occasions, accused President George W. Bush of being a “liar”.).

    I think you and others, including, regrettably, my fellow Brunonian, Jason Rosenhouse, have erred in your criticism of Wilson’s behavior.

    Respectfully yours,

    John Kwok

  27. #27 Galen Evans
    September 14, 2009

    Re: John Kwok
    No, my comments do not ignore legal emigration to the US but rather view it at irrelevant. how you got here has no baring on your status of being human or not, the way you got here is irrelevant to the w you are and should be treated as a human being. for example, my fathers family came here legally in the early 1900′s whereas my mothers family came here in what could only be considered illegally in the mayflower taking land from the indigenous people here. if you want to stop Illegal Immigration i claim you should stop it at the causes (corporate corruption and corporate disrespect for the rule of law) not the effects (impoverished people trying to support their families)

    Im also not one to be swayed by disingenuous apologies,”Joe wilson you are a lying douche-bag who deserves to be dragged into the street and shot. oh wait, I let my emotions get the better of me, and i am sorry about that.” You see, not exactly the most convincing apology, an apology means nothing if it is not heartfelt and true. Representative Wilsons apology annoys me more than his outburst, if he was a serious thinker he would have either not done the outburst or not given the hollow apology (i also get annoyed by hollow apologies on the left the least people can do is stick up for their convictions.)

  28. #28 Sabrina
    September 14, 2009

    I haven’t read the other comments or Jason’s article (I skimmed) but as a constituent of Joe Wilson’s, I would like to say I WILL BE VOTING. I’m voting his sorry and rude ass OUT OF OFFICE. SC – we never make good news, just see Jon Stewart’s Daily Show, he did a bit on SC and the bad news we make. There’s our Governor and the dude who was caught having sex with the same horse, twice!

    Which brings me to:I have this overwhelming urge to MOVE out of this stooooopid state…Tampa, FL sounds nice. Anyone from Tampa on here?

  29. #29 John Kwok
    September 14, 2009

    Sabrina,

    I wouldn’t be so dismissive of your Congressman. At least he’s not the unrepentant liar that Speaker Nancy Pelosi is (By still insisting that she didn’t see classified reports on Gitmo waterboarding, when the CIA has stated that this was presented to her and other senior Congressional leaders back in 2002 and 2003.). But I reserve judgement as to whether or not he is capable of doing more than accusing the President of being a “liar”.

    John

  30. #30 Sabrina
    September 15, 2009

    John,
    I am being that dismissive. What Joe Wilson has a history of is not paying his printing bills. That much I do KNOW from working in printing here for almost 20 years. He’s screwed one company so bad they are out of business now. Do you think he apologized? Again, I won’t be voting for him. I believe that politicians are 98% filthy weasels, he’s near the top. Wilson is still a liar…back to that 98% bit. Thanks for your 2 cents John.

  31. #31 John Kwok
    September 15, 2009

    Sabrina,

    That’s news to me and thanks for sharing it. In light of what you’ve written, were I a conservative Republican voter in his district, then I’d have to think seriously of either sitting out the election or voting for a Libertarian opponent. Your disgust with Wilson is quite understandable IMHO.

    Appreciatively yours,

    John

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