Liberal Values is Clean: The Cuss-O-Meter Proves It

The Blog-O-Cuss Meter - Do you cuss a lot in your blog or website?

Earlier today a conservative site falsely claimed that the “F-bomb…is used several times” on this site. See the comments to the Randi Rhodes post for more. The Cuss-O-Meter has defended the honor of Liberal Values as a clean, wholesome blog. Take that you name calling right wingers who think you can use a trivial matter involving Air America to support your warped view of liberals as “Taliban lefties.”

Our low score is actually for a good reason. Many of the posts here are picked up by news organizations due to our affiliation with BlogBurst, bringing in thousands of additional readers. It seems foolish to throw in a few needless words for shock value which would diminish the chances of posts being picked up by newspaper web sites.

Actually, as I noted in the comments, there were six cases in which the f-word has been present in this blog, but each case was in quotations from another source. The Cuss-O-Meter is smart enough to ignore six out of over three thousand posts.

McCain Avoids Religion in Politics

(The original video is no longer available, with the original clip present at the end of the longer segment posted above.)

For a moment I almost thought we had a winner for the Arnold Vinick Award. The above video clip from The West Wing shows a fictitious Republican candidate refuse to mix religion in politics.  While I give Barack Obama credit for his many statements in support of separation of church and state, he is certainly no Arnold Vinick on religion. Hillary Clinton is the most theocratic of the three remaining major party candidates, with her conservative religious associations often influencing her policy decisions.  With John McCain the Republicans might actually be the party whose campaign includes the least talk of religion. The Politico  discussed this issue:

Traversing the country this week on a tour of places that have shaped his life and informed his values, John McCain spoke in strikingly personal language to introduce himself to the American public.

But missing so far is any significant mention of religious faith.

In an Oprah Winfrey era in which soul-baring and expressions of faith are the norm for public figures, the presumptive Republican nominee, open and candid about much else, retains a shroud of privacy around his Christianity.

Raised Episcopalian, McCain now attends a Baptist megachurch in Phoenix. But he has not been baptized and rarely talks of his faith in anything but the broadest terms or as it relates to how it enabled him to survive 5½ years in captivity as a POW.

In this way, McCain, 71, is a throwback to an earlier generation, when such personal matters were kept personal. To talk of Jesus Christ in the comfortable, matter-of-fact fashion of the past two baby-boom-era presidents would be unthinkable.

In commenting on this, The New Republic contrasts McCain with Clinton noting, “Hillary once carried a Bible everywhere with her, ‘marking in it and underlining as she read,’ according to Carl Bernstein.” 

McCain gets a point for speaking less of religion while campaigning than the Democratic candidates. He also had an aide recently call the religious right a serious problem. The question remains whether McCain would respect separation of church and state should he take office. His record on abortion rights is poor and he has also erroneously claimed that the United States was founded as a Christian nation. I’m afraid that, despite keeping talk of religion off the campaign stump. John McCain is no Arnie Vinick.

Obama Challenging Clinton For Superdelegates And Money

We’ve had yet another day in which nothing big happened but numerous items showed how strongly the momentum is with Barack Obama. Although Obama has dominated Clinton from the start in terms of winning delegates, the race has appeared much closer due to Clinton having a lead in superdelegates. The majority of these came from early endorsements when the conventional wisdom among many Democrats was that 1) Clinton’s nomination was inevitable and 2) anyone not backing the Clintons will suffer once they are back in office.

With a viable alternative present, the vast majority of superdelegates making commitments in recent weeks have backed Obama over Clinton. As a result, Bloomberg now reports that Obama has tied Clinton in terms of  elected officials among the superdelegates:

Barack Obama has pulled even with Hillary Clinton in endorsements from top elected officials, with a surge in support from congressional freshmen and governors from Republican-dominated states.

Obama yesterday won the backing of Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal, who became the sixth head of a Republican-leaning state to come out for him in his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. In the past week, Obama picked up support from first-term Senators Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Bob Casey of Pennsylvania. Clinton, backed by two governors from Republican states, gained no superdelegates in that time.

Obama, 46, is endorsed by 16 U.S. House freshmen to Clinton’s 6, and 40 percent of his congressional allies are from “red states,” or those that voted for President George W. Bush in 2004, compared with one-quarter for Clinton. That bolsters the Obama campaign’s argument that he would have broader backing in the general election.

Clinton still maintains a narrow overall lead of approximately thirty among superdelegates due to having greater support among party officials.  She cannot even count on this edge for long as some of her superdelegates are looking for an excuse to bolt. New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine and Pennsylvania Rep. Jack Murtha have both stated that Clinton cannot maintain the support of the superdelegates unless she wins the popular vote. Corzine also suggested that he might vote for Obama should Clinton fail to win the popular vote. Even accomplishing this might not be enough as the nomination race is really about winning delegates, not the popular vote. Right or wrong, the system is set up so that the candidate who wins the most votes does not necessarily win the most delegates.

Another sign of Obama’s dominance in the race can be seen in the March fund raising figures.  Hillary Clinton didn’t do badly bringing in $20 million, but Obama raised twice as much.

In other political news, John Edwards says he will not accept the vice presidential nomination. I doubt anyone would offer it to him, so he might as well go ahead and say this. After 2004 any presidential candidate considering him would soon figure out that1) Edwards can’t pull in any states for them and 2) Edwards would use the spot primarily to promote his own 2012 campaign.

Jimmy Carter has come about as close to endorsing Obama as someone could without making an actual endorsement:

“My children and their spouses are pro-Obama. My grandchildren are also pro-Obama,” he said at a news conference, according to the Nigerian newspaper This Day. “As a superdelegate, I would not disclose who I am rooting for, but I leave you to make that guess.”

Sounds like another superdelegate for Obama.

Randi Rhodes Suspended For Attacks on Hillary Clinton Using Both the L-Word and the F-Word


Randi Rhodes was suspended by Air America Radio for derogatory comments about Hillary Clinton (video above). She warned the audience at an event sponsored by Air America that “You know she’s going all Lieberman on you.” There were also some less objectionable insults, such as calling her “a big f***ing whore.”

Air America Radio released the following statement:

Air America has suspended on-air host Randi Rhodes for making inappropriate statements about prominent figures, including Senator Hillary Clinton, at a recent public appearance on behalf of Air America in San Francisco which was sponsored by an Air America affiliate station.

“Air America encourages strong opinions about public affairs but does not condone such abusive, ad hominem language by our Hosts,” said chair Charlie Kireker.

My first thoughts upon hearing of this were along the lines of “Air America is still in operation?” and “Randi Rhodes is still on the air?” Beyond that, while I would not have used the same language and cannot agree with everything she said, at least Randi Rhodes does not fall into the mind set of knee jerk support for a Democrat because they have a D after their name, even when their views and conduct are very bit as repellent as the Republicans they seek to replace (and emulate). Maybe Randi Rhodes and Samantha Power can team up and form a successful act.

The Radio Equalizer feels that “In the weird world of ‘progressive’ politics, there are no standards of decency and punishment comes only when part of the lefty base has been offended.” While such a generalization cannot be made based upon how one marginal radio network handles one person, he does support his argument with regards to Randi Rhodes with examples of comparable attacks on Republicans which went unpunished.

Patients Lie

Jake Tapper is shocked that Barack Obama lied about cigarette smoking. If we can trust Tapper’s “unusually keen sense of smell” as much as he does, it is possible that Tapper caught Obama at a time when he fell off the wagon but denied that he smoked.

If he thinks this is worth writing about, Tapper’s sense of people is not as good as his sense of smell. He needs to watch House. As Gregory House repeatedly reminds us, patients lie. For that matter, everyone lies. While there are many aspects of House which are totally unrealistic, in this case Dr. House is correct. I would not be the least bit surprised to hear that somone attempting to quit smoking might both fall off the wagon and lie about it.

This is hardly an example of a character flaw which would affect who I vote for. On the other hand, if Obama had admitted to smoking but also claimed he had to dodge sniper fire while doing so, it would be a totally different matter.