The Party of the Empty Chair

Steven Seagal Loves Vladimir Putin

Speak the inconvenient truth, get sent to woodshed, apologize and Kiss the Ring:

Chris Christie apologizes for ‘occupied territories’ remark
Kenneth P. Vogel / Politico

LAS VEGAS – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in a Saturday afternoon meeting with Sheldon Adelson apologized for stepping on a fault line in fraught Middle East politics during a speech he gave earlier in the day, according to a source familiar with the conversation.

Invoking a 2012 trip he and his family took to Israel, Christie recalled in the speech: “I took a helicopter ride from the occupied territories across and just felt personally how extraordinary that was to understand, the military risk that Israel faces every day.”

While the story was intended to forge common cause with Adelson and the several hundred donors to the Republican Jewish Coalition to which Christie was speaking, his use of the term “occupied territories” set off murmurs in the crowd. The term refers to lands in which Palestinians live where Israel maintains a military presence, including the West Bank.

But the term is rejected by some conservative Zionists like Adelson who see it as validating Palestinian challenges over Israel’s presence. Other supporters of Israel oppose the use of the term as well….

In other words, Christie — fresh off his bullying press conference after being “exonerated” by the million dollar “internal” investigation New Jersey taxpayers paid for to fawn over the Large One — stuck his foot in it again and had to return to “contrite” mode before resuming his Thuggish Political Style.

And, after Steven Seagal decided to praise Putin…

Steven Seagal Backs Putin on Crimea
By Luchina Fisher
Mar 28, 2014 4:41pm

Steven Seagal has expressed his support for Russian President Vladimir Putin over his actions in Crimea.

The action movie star called Putin “one of the great living world leaders” in a lengthy interview with Russia’s state-run newspaper Rossiskaya Gazeta from the set of a film he is shooting in Romania….

… I finally realized what it was about Vladimir Putin that the GOPs love so much: he, like them, is a bullying whiner.

the non sense w clint eastwood

The Empty Chair

No: seriously. I heard the United Nations Ambassador speak when the Security Council went into special session with the Ukranian ambassador presenting the facts of the silent and not so silent invasion of Crimea, and his FIRST words were to petulantly WHINE that he’d been told that only the Ukrainian envoy and himself were supposed to speak, and now somebody ELSE wanted to speak and he was upset.

Those were the first official Russian words on the crisis.


The other morning, on Al Jazeera, I heard and saw (translated somewhat haltingly, but in real time) Putin’s speech to the Duma (the other “news” cable outlets long ago lost their connections to the greater world and were, instead, engaged in O.J. Simpson/White Girl Missing in Aruba soap opera coverage of a missing jetliner ad nauseum) and the one salient impression I got out of it is that Vladimir Putin HAS to go shirtless so often because he’s a whining little wussy.

crybaby wimp

Vyoung Vlad [sic]

Never have I heard such petulant complaining over ANY triviality, and yet, I was reminded of Sarah Palin’s CPAC speech, another masterpiece of petulant complaint and victimhood. With or without the translation, it was, in its essentials, the same speech: the world is so MEAN to me, all the while covering up every attention-grab and power-grab and land-grab that the whiner in question has up his/her sleeve.

Really, Putin and Palin and Christie could almost pass for members of the same party, were questions of language set aside.

This is the new Republican party and the Old Imperial Russia.


The similarities OUGHT to frighten you, but, natually, we are so used to the craziness of the GOP Asylum that we inexplicably act as if this were — not ‘normal’ since that notion is so wildly variable, and if you doubt me, look at any high school yearbook from the 1970s and pay attention to hair and clothes — as if this were ACCEPTABLE and UNOBJECTIONABLE social behavior anywhere outside, say, a biker gang orgy into its second day, or a Viking post-pillage party.

I was watching the pundits on Lawrence O’Donnell the other night, TRYING to figure out who the Koch Brothers were. They don’t seem to have a clue, which is a pity, since I’ve spent the last eight years trying to GET them a clue. And, stuck in some old rut, they attempted to map the nre Political Reality to their old Political Cosmology, Ptolemaic Astonomers positing epicycles long after Kepler figured out that retrograde motion was the MOVEABLE Earth passing the other planets.

The Kochs are a separate, THIRD force, much out of skew with former Republican principles, and –harboring quite too many atheist founders one would think–for the fanatical Religious Right to tolerate.

But, in the new, Keplerian cosmology, they SHOULD have been asking why, when the Kochian Tea  Party bunch took tangible power at the ballot box in 2010 [unlike, say “Occupy”] they turned their newfound state clout to redistricting AND abortion restriction.

freedomworks new logo

For men, they mean …

How could “libertarians” be so virulently anti-choice, and, as it followed, anti-CONTRACEPTION? The obvious conclusion in the New Universe, is that a deal was cut. And one back was being scratched in anticipation of eventual reciprocal grooming.

But this is the party of the Empty Chair, a party that was PRO-choice and PRO-ERA in 1976. (They were also PRO-science and PRO-education.)  Increadingly defined not by what they stand for, but by what they hate.

tyranny HELL no!

Freedom? Not so much for women

And why WOULDN’T that crowd celebrate Putin: a blustering bully who, by the use of KGB infiltration tactics and massive military backup (and “plain wrap” troops who, as he noted, must have all bought their enthusiast’s amateur gear at the same sporting goods surplus store) swallowed Crimea the way a snake swallows a rabbit.

Slow. And painful to watch.

Almost a form of sadism.

And then brags that no one was killed, save a notion of sovereignty?

What Republican wouldn’t applaud that empty chair?

What Republican in their best “Dirty Harry” fantasy wouldn’t cream in their jeans over the sheer gall of it? Brazenly saying one thing and doing another? Most of them remember that George W. Bush campaigned in 2000 on running to the middle, and his “bipartisan” success in Texas. And then LOOK what happened.

Of COURSE these phony macho pricks would think Putin was great.


Because manhood is about display. About constantly braying and trash talking and chest-thumping to show what a dominant … created piece of mud one is.  THAT is the bray of a “Dirty Harry” talking to an empty chair, belittling and putting foul language in the mouth of a straw man.

Because only straw men can debate from empty chairs.

western chair

I do not ever remember a moment in American history–experienced or read about–in which an American President was denigrated and undercut on the home front by alleged “patriots” who openly embraced a totalitarian dictator. The fig leaf of “democratic institutions” in the Russian parliaments are really no longer needed, at this point.

But I don’t care about Putin.

The point here is important: America is not a nation. America is a NOTION.

From sea to shining sea.


And when the “idea” of America contains the overt hatred of the only elected representative of “We, the People,” while embracing the first Eurasian politician since World War II to engage in blatant territorial conquest because of his bullying, his bluster (and, implicitly, his blunder) then there is something desperately wrong with the Notion of the United States of America.

A group of lunatics insanely and untruthfully oppose medical care for all Americans.

Three faces of Evil - Phillips, Murdoch, Novak

Phillips (Regnery Press, etc.), Murdoch (pure evil), Novak (dead)

(Because, one supposes, that these good “Christians” believe that curing people of disease and illness only incentivizes them to keep getting violently ill. Because, as we all know, life with a chronic illness is so darned great.)

These same people oppose real women’s right to make their own medical and life choices because they believe ardently in imaginary babies.

crybaby wimp

These same people are so fearful of any restrictions on guns that they want to lift ALL restrictions on guns.

These same people who embrace Vladimir Putin … perhaps because he’s WHITE?

Stop That Pain!

These same people who spit on the very ground that the President and First Lady (especially the First Lady, since I can NEVER remember one being subjected to the kind of vicious and continual abuse Michelle Obama has been subjected to) walk 0n.

Hell, I don’t think that even the traitors of the murderous Rebellion of the Confederacy EVER abused Mary Todd Lincoln in like manner. But then, I guess THEY had limits.

And always the bullying is launched by an aggrieved and petulant whine. We were MISTREATED!

crybaby wimp

All right. That’s the diagnosis. Easy enough to say.

But what is the prescription?

First: don’t back down to bullies. Period.


Stand your ethical ground. (And don’t carry firearms. All you do by packing heat is raise the probability exponentially that someone’s life will be ruined with a speeding piece of lead striking with lethal force, MOST LIKELY a member of your own family. Be smart. Play the percentages.)

Interpret this any way you want, but it’s an insult to the notion of “We, the People” and a “more perfect union” any way you slice it:

christie not a bully

Much …

The source told POLITICO that Christie “clarified in the strongest terms possible that his remarks today were not meant to be a statement of policy.”

(Also on POLITICO: Kasich bonds with Adelson in Vegas)

Instead, the source said, Christie made clear “that he misspoke when he referred to the ‘occupied territories.’ And he conveyed that he is an unwavering friend and committed supporter of Israel, and was sorry for any confusion that came across as a result of the misstatement.”

Adelson accepted Christie’s explanation, the source said.

The mini-controversy and quick apology highlight both the importance of Adelson as the reigning mega-donor in GOP politics*, as well as the tricky terrain that Middle East politics can pose for American politicians courting Jewish donors and voters….

[* As in, FORGET the specific issue: Just look at “he who pays the piper calls the tune.” If you are rich enough, in other words, whatever your pet issue is will warp the conversation in direct proportion to your wealth. This is the dictionary definition of oligarchy. And THAT is what ought to disturb us. Anyone attempting to discuss Middle East politics on this thread, one adds parenthetically, will be summarily removed. Fair warning.]

sheldon adelson

This is either Sheldon Adelson or the Crypt Keeper — I forget which.

Near as I can tell, a bunch of political whores went to Las Vegas to see how much cash they could score, and didn’t care what they had to say to get it.

That it not a Party of Principle® (Libertarian Party) nor a party of “Ideas” (the Gingrich that Stole Christmas … Twice). No, it’s the party of the empty chair.


If it was “Gingrich” the title would end with “TWICE”

As the old “everything is everything”  baby-boomers exit the Democratic and Progressive moments via coffin, the newer Dems coming up actually show signs of having spines, having relative certitude about many things (as opposed to an incapacity to accept or deny ANYthing, the quicksand that has been the bedrock of Democratic politics for the past thirty years), the notion of vertebrate progressives is starting to gel.

dead fish skeleton

A little spine

Even more hopeful, those who adamantly support and defend the “Brotherhood of Humankind” are showing signs of being willing to cooperate and even work together for the good of all, while the unbreakable union of the anti-union shows signs of cracking as the Bold Individualists falter in their lock-step march ever backwards in time.

We may have headed them off at the Renaissance, having failed to stop them at the Progressive Era, the Thirteenth Amendment, the Enlightenment and the Reformation.


But this idiotic notion that the First Amendment is sacred unless someone is offended, has to end, at least the portion that functionally allows the “We won’t apologize for Paul Ryan dog whistle about lazy “inner city” moochers, but we WILL bash EBONY Magazine for “reverse racism” or “racism” or something, for criticizing a GOP House N-word:

Black Republicans GOP

RNC Statement for EBONY

Ms. Amy D. Barnett
Editor-in-Chief, EBONY
820 S Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605

March 28, 2014

Dear Ms. Barnett:

Over the years, the writers and editors at EBONY have done great work in promoting civil rights and diligently covering issues of race and politics in America. That’s why I was shocked to learn that one of your senior editors, Jamilah Lemieux, repeatedly attacked black conservatives on Twitter yesterday for their political views.

When one of the Republican National Committee’s staff members challenged her assumptions and attempted to engage in a dialogue, she dismissively referred to him as “a white dude.” That staffer, our Deputy Press Secretary Raffi Williams, is black. She went on to deride those who were criticizing her as “a house full of roaches.”

Attacking someone for his or her race, heritage or political views is the very thing EBONY has worked to discourage, and actions like those of Ms. Lemieux are far below the basic standards of journalism. She did not even attempt to show journalistic objectivity. And I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s unacceptable to refer to those who disagree with you as “roaches.”

Raffi deserves an apology from Ms. Lemieux and from EBONY—not just for making assumptions about his race but more importantly for dismissing black Republicans and the validity of their opinions in public discourse.

In their Twitter exchange, Ms. Lemieux said she had “no interest” in a conversation about encouraging diversity of thought. I’m hopeful, however, that she does not speak for the entire magazine and that we can use this unfortunate episode as a catalyst for greater engagement and understanding between the Republican Party and the black community.


Reince Priebus


GOP letter to EBONY bottom

I wonder if they remember where the term “Black Republicans
was first used by Southern pre-secession politicians, circa 1860 …

Even though they SHAMEFULLY claim Frederick Douglass and
Sojourner Truth on their current webpage — as IF they would agree
with the current racist, dogwhistle GOP and their suppression tactics.

This, I might add, is the ONLY time the GOP is in favor of ANY Black rights: when it’s one of their racial fig leaves being criticized for BEING a fig leaf. The outmoded term is “Uncle Tom,” but it ought to be used in its ORIGINAL context, since Simon Legree, were he running for office in 2014, would be AT LEAST as popular as Vladimir Putin in GOP circles.

Notice how the GOP– the most hateful single entity hostile to Black civil rights since the Dixiecrats finally imploded on the George Wallace for President run in 1968–begins their attack on EBONY with White Wisconsonians attacking Black editors. Playing the Black victim to a Black magazine by a White race-baiting hater. (Hater? Sure: anyone who supports voter suppression today is behaving as a de-facto racist, pure and simple. Only children and lawyers are so naive as to NOT think so.)

simon legree beating uncle tom

Simon Legree debating Uncle Tom about his cabin

It is very easy: Those who stand AGAINST racial justice, in favor of  minority voter suppression and in favor of demonizing the poor by using vicious racial stereotypes do not deserve the consideration of a reply.


But EBONY apologized, and the GOP meme that only Blacks can be racists is reinforced.


black republican

click to read the actual pamphlet

This is all the Party of the Empty Chair has (along with the false equivalency and the “you did it too!’ that, as Vladimir Putin’s resurrected Soviet-style propaganda machine reminds us, used to be THE favorite pretence defense against atrocities and villainies; and, the ever popular assertion and repetition of a fact that was never a fact and scandal that was never a scandal from the Ministry of Truth) has left to offer.

But wanna-be thugs like Steven Seagal are sucked in by this crap and WORSHIP the Strong Man. This happened in the USA with Hitler, during FDR’s pre-war Administration, but never with the almost sexual fervor that our “patriotic Americans” now betray the very idea of America with.

scary 1984 math in tour poster

The Koch/Walton edumacashun tour after the 2010 elections, Jan 2011.
Note the Empty Chair

Fiscal discipline?

Unless you were comatose in the 2000s …. uh.

Bob Dole’s “Democrat wars”?

Meet the New Boss.

Party of Business?

American business routinely suffers whenever a Republican is in the White House.


Republican Jesus™

Party of Jesus?

Hating the poor? Really? Not bloody likely.

Party that believes in stuff.

No: they only disbelieve in stuff, mocking it mercilessly with flaccid humor and impotent “wit.”

Foreign Policy whiz-kids?

Seriously? People still actually listen to John Bolton? (He must sound great filtered through a fifth of Wild Turkey®.)

Ritz puttin on

The only thing they have left is the fake “Movie Star” histrionics of a phony vigilante and the memory of another fake Movie Star named Ronald Ray-Gun, whose accomplishments in GOP fan fiction far outstrip his actual accomplishments in real life. Remember: many of these same Reagan Rear-osculators are adamantly against the “War on Drugs” SWAT team mentality, laws and regime that Reagan himself SPAWNED!

Whine and bully. Whine and bully.

That’s the GOP and the new USSR. Red States and Red Czars are united in their hatred of humanity in general and l0ve of themselves and their inconveniences in particular.

So it is logical, fit and proper that these “liberty lovers” would love a bullying thug!

And that goes for Vladimir Putin as well.



Mr. Williams has a lively blog His Vorpal Sword. This is cross-posted from his blog.

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About Hart Williams

Mr. Williams grew up in Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas and New Mexico. He lived in Hollywood, California for many years. He has been published in The Washington Post, The Kansas City Star, The Santa Fe Sun, The Los Angeles Free Press, Oui Magazine, New West, and many, many more. A published novelist and a filmed screenwriter, Mr. Williams eschews the decadence of Hollywood for the simple, wholesome goodness of the plain, honest people of the land. He enjoys Luis Buñuel documentaries immensely.
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