Jan 21: The Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism
Jan 21st, 2012 by Sam

Vanessa Williamson: Vanessa Williamson

Samantha comments on the Tea Party: 2012-01-21-samantha-clemens-p2-commentary-superpacs.mp3

The Tea Party isn’t making the same headlines, but the people are still out there and they are voting. Want to know more? We interview Vanessa Williamson, co-author of “The Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism.”

From a review in the New York Times:

“…the Tea Partiers’ anti-­government ideology is tempered by quiet support for Social Security and Medicare. That’s because the activists themselves tend to be middle-aged or older. Tea Partiers aren’t opposed to government benefits per se, according to Skocpol and Williamson; rather, they’re opposed to “unearned” government benefits, which in practice ends up meaning any benefits extended to African-­Americans, Latinos, immigrants (especially undocumented ones) and the young. A poll of South Dakota Tea Party supporters found that 83 percent opposed any Social Security cuts, 78 percent opposed any cuts to Medicare prescription-drug coverage, and 79 percent opposed cuts in Medicare reimbursements to physicians and hospitals. “So much for the notion that Tea Partiers are all little Dick Armeys,” Skocpol and Williamson write. The small government Tea Partiers favor is one where I get mine and most others don’t get much at all.”

Remember to listen to the Samantha Clemens Show this and every Saturday only on AM 1510 The Revolution Boston and

Video: Woman stomped on head by Rand Paul supporters
Oct 26th, 2010 by Sam

It happened in Lexington, Kentucky before debate between Paul, Jack Conway.

Are these people for real??

Check out the video here

Just a few crazies?  Or glimmers of what could come?

Aug 21: 1/5 think Obama is Muslim?
Aug 20th, 2010 by Sam

2010-08-21-samantha-clemens.Mp31 in 5 Americans believe Obama is a Muslim?? What is wrong with this country? If you oppose his policies, then fine. Oppose them. But this made-up stuff?

The Rev. Franklin Graham Says President Obama was ‘Born a Muslim’

“I think the president’s problem is that he was born a Muslim, his father was a Muslim. The seed of Islam is passed through the father like the seed of Judaism is passed through the mother. He was born a Muslim, his father gave him an Islamic name,” Graham told CNN’s John King in a televised interview that aired Thursday night.

Doesn’t seem to matter WHAT anyone says… The truth about Obama’s birth certificate

In June, the Obama campaign released a digitally scanned image of his birth certificate to quell speculative charges that he might not be a natural-born citizen. But the image prompted more blog-based skepticism about the document’s authenticity. And recently, author Jerome Corsi, whose book attacks Obama, said in a TV interview that the birth certificate the campaign has is “fake.”

Obama a Muslim? Rumors gain steam, defying facts

NEW YORK — “President Obama is a Muslim.” “He’s not an American citizen.” “He wasn’t even born here.”

Blame it on the media, or on human nature. All presidents deal with image problems – that they’re too weak or too belligerent, too far left or far right. But Obama also faces questions over documented facts, in part because some people identify more with the rumormongers than the debunkers.

Are Americans total numbskulls?

God help us. Could so many Americans really be that dumb, ill-informed, paranoid, gullible and goofy? It must be tricky being Barack Obama, winding down the U.S. presence in volatile Iraq, trying to keep Afghanistan from degenerating, pondering war with Iran, even as, according to the latest bulletin, one in five Americans thinks he is a Muslim.

Why not just believe he’s an alien from outer space? Or a Manchurian Candidate, programmed by, say, the Chinese to bring America to ruin?

Crazy times.

It’s also dismaying that so many Americans are opposed to the mosque near Ground Zero. In America you can worship wherever you want, regardless of religious belief. We protect religious minorities here. This isn’t merely the law: It’s a core value. This goes back to the Pilgrims, I seem to recall. The backers of the mosques are the good guys, the ones who preach tolerance. There should be no hedging on this at all from American leaders: If we can’t allow a mosque in lower Manhattan we might as well close shop for good and turn out the lights.

Aug 7: Anthony Weiner, Sherrod video wingnut – Dr Pezzi
Aug 6th, 2010 by Sam


Anthony Weiner smackdown (go Anthony!)

Anthony Weiner get in the faces of the Republicans who were BLOCKING health care for 9-11 responders using RULES while they were SUPPOSEDLY in favor of it – i.e. trying to have it both ways…..  (Anthony is a HERO though the last name is unfortunate, isn’t it?)

Sharrod video wingnut

The guy behind the Sharrod video where she was supposedly a racist – you aren’t going to BELIEVE this…
“Dr Kevin Pezzi…claims to be responsible for ‘over 850 inventions’ and schemes such as a ‘magic bullet’ for cancer, a ‘robotic chef,’ and sexual inventions like ‘penile enlargement techniques’ and ‘ways to tighten the vagina’ (because ‘men like women with tight vaginas’). Pezzi has started multiple websites, from term paper helpers to a sexual help site that answers ‘your questions about sexual attraction, pleasure, performance, and libido’ (Pezzi is qualified to do so because ‘No doctor in the world knows more about sexual pleasure than I do’).
“Pezzi also claims to have ‘beaten Bill Gates’ on a math aptitude test, turned down a blind date with Katie Couric, and says he’s ‘bigger than some porno stars.'”
And these people want to run the country?

Gay marriage judge

Cato Institute:  “Recommended by Ed Meese, appointed by Ronald Reagan, and opposed by Alan Cranston, Nancy Pelosi, Edward Kennedy, and the leading gay activist groups.”  Oh, and the judge in MA was appointed by Nixon.
Surprise!!!  Maybe it really IS a strict constructionist interpretation of the Constitution.
And, did you know there are definitions of the word tea bagger that I can’t even talk about on the radio??  Who knew?
Jul 31: Libs and Cons; Immigration and Morality
Jul 31st, 2010 by Sam


Newsflash!!! Libs and cons view immigration differently!!! We libs are certain that for us, it is a moral issue. Not only is it immoral to let people die of thirst in the desert, it is immoral to not provide healthcare, separate families, withhold a better living standard to people who just out of bad luck were born into a poorer country.

But, is it POSSIBLE that conservatives have their own moral view? That it isn’t just naked self-interest?

We’re going to look at some cutting edge research on the science of morality; studies that have been done globally on the moral intuitions of people and how that effects their stances on immigration and a whole lot of other things.

These guys got together to talk all about it…

Jonathan Haidt has a theory, the Moral Foundations Theory, where he proposes that liberals and conservatives view the world differently:

Moral Foundations Theory was created to understand why morality varies so much across cultures yet still shows so many similarities and recurrent themes. In brief, the theory proposes that five innate and universally available psychological systems are the foundations of “intuitive ethics.” Each culture then constructs virtues, narratives, and institutions on top of these foundations, thereby creating the unique moralities we see around the world, and conflicting within nations too. The foundations are:

1) Harm/care, related to our long evolution as mammals with attachment systems and an ability to feel (and dislike) the pain of others. This foundation underlies virtues of kindness, gentleness, and nurturance.
2) Fairness/reciprocity, related to the evolutionary process of reciprocal altruism. This foundation generates ideas of justice, rights, and autonomy. [Note: In our original conception, Fairness included concerns about equality, which are more strongly endorsed by political liberals. However, as we reformulate the theory in 2010 based on new data, we are likely to include several forms of fairness, and to emphasize proportionality, which is more strongly endorsed by conservatives]
3) Ingroup/loyalty, related to our long history as tribal creatures able to form shifting coalitions. This foundation underlies virtues of patriotism and self-sacrifice for the group. It is active anytime people feel that it’s “one for all, and all for one.”
4) Authority/respect, shaped by our long primate history of hierarchical social interactions. This foundation underlies virtues of leadership and followership, including deference to legitimate authority and respect for traditions.
5) Purity/sanctity, shaped by the psychology of disgust and contamination. This foundation underlies religious notions of striving to live in an elevated, less carnal, more noble way. It underlies the widespread idea that the body is a temple which can be desecrated by immoral activities and contaminants (an idea not unique to religious traditions)

Take the morality quiz to see where you fall…

Jul 24: Ed Buckner, Pres of American Atheists; talks Founding Fathers
Jul 18th, 2010 by Sam


Glen Beck is on a crusade; a self-appointed prophet of God, the Founding Fathers, and anyone else he can think of.

According to him, social justice is wicked.  Collective salvation is what liberals are trying to get by taking wealth from individuals and spreading to the needy. And atheists are to blame for it all.  As reported in the Utah News…

First, though, he asked the audience to visualize a pyramid illustrating his view of how liberals are attacking America’s foundation.

Originally, he said, America was built on God at its base and personal charity (as opposed to government welfare) at its center, with government occupying only the pointy, narrow top, doing only the things people couldn’t do for themselves. Now, he argued, the U.S. government has reversed the equation, insinuating itself into all aspects of life while pushing God aside.

“There is a perversion of faith right now,” he said, “a wicked, wicked perversion. And it is all about social justice. It is all about collective salvation. It’s actually all about Marxism.”

Collective salvation, he said, is a liberal goal meant to force individuals into doing the right thing by taking wealth from them and spreading it to the needy. In his view, he said, salvation only comes when individuals accept God.  Utah News, July 18, 2010.

We’re going to get a real live atheist on the show to explain why he wants to destroy America by imposing Marxism and thus thwarting the Founding Fathers, who apparently weren’t deists or atheists…  except they were.

Interestingly, even faith organizations are protesting Beck’s characterizations – we’ll look into that as well.

Apr 10: What does a tax system say about a society?
Apr 9th, 2010 by Sam

It’s tax time, and the procrastinators are counting down the hours.  When we’ve sent in our tax returns, we can go back to arguing about whether they should be high or low; progressive or regressive; based on income, sales, property, or unearned income; national, state, or local.  We can argue about the economic impact of the tax system – do higher taxes reduce the pie (conservative belief) or could they actually increase the pie (one example, by creating an incentive for companies to put money back into the business thus fostering innovation).

But, tax systems vary from country to country- not only by the level of tax, but how they are structured.

  • Neither Saudi Arabia nor United Arab Emirates have personal income tax.
  • In France, large families pay much less in taxes than do couples or single people.
  • Mortage interest is deductible in the United States, thus heavily subsidizing home ownership at the detriment of renters or those who own their homes outright.
  • There is a church tax in Germany and much of Scandinavia.

How does our tax system reflect our values as a country? What about other countries?

The Samantha Clemens Show: What does a tax system say about a society?

Michael Smerconish: For Me, the Party Is Over
Mar 2nd, 2010 by Sam

Michael Smerconish: For Me, the Party Is Over.

I think President Obama is earnest, smart, and much more centrist than his tea party caricature suggests. He has never been given a fair chance to succeed by those who openly crow about their desire to see him fail (while somehow congratulating one another on their relative patriotism). I know he was born in America, isn’t a socialist, and doesn’t worship in a mosque. I get that he inherited a minefield. Still, the level of federal spending concerns me. And he never closed the deal with me that health insurance is a right, not a privilege. But I’m not folding the tent on him. Not now. Not with the nation fighting two wars while its economy still teeters on the brink of collapse.

A conservative tells the truth about taxes
Mar 9th, 2008 by Sam

I knew Ben Stein was an actor and comedian.  I did not know he was an economist, pro-lifer, and anti-darwinist.  Go figure.

So, I must confess to cherry-picking.  I agree with what he says about taxes and feel compelled to note it here:

“…the Republican Party (my party and yours) has for the last 30 years or so been operating under ademonstrably false and misleading premise: that tax cuts pay for themselves by generating so much economic growth that they replace the sums lost by tax cutting.

This would be a lovely thing if true, and the best of all ideas, the “something for nothing” idea. In fact, tax cuts lower federal revenue and generate federal deficits. It is also true that they do stimulate the economy and after a long period of years, federal tax receipts go back to where they were before the tax cuts.”

Wow!  A grown up says what needs to be said.  And then he goes on to say:

“[tax cuts] shift the tax burden from us to our progeny and add immense amounts of interest expense to the federal budget.”

“…immense federal deficits in modern life are financed largely by foreign buyers of our debt. This means that the American taxpayer must work a good chunk of the year to send money to China, Japan, the petro-states and other buyers of United States debt. In effect, we become their peons.”

We have to spend money in the interest, and the value of our currence declines which makes imports (oil) more expensive which causes inflation.

In other words, there is no free lunch.

Stein’s challenge to McCain is whether he will:

“…keep up the (latter-day) Republican game of make-believe. You can propose still more tax cuts, create still more deficits and add to the debt, and say to yourself, like Louis XV, ‘Après moi, le déluge.’

or do what is necessary: tax the rich.  Why the rich?  Because they have the money.  Again, Stein:

“To put it even more starkly, the government — which is us — needs the money to keep old people alive, to pay for their dialysis, to build fighter jets and to pay our troops and pay interest on the debt. We can get it by indenturing our children, selling ourselves into peonage to foreigners, making ourselves a colony again, generating inflation — or we can have some integrity and levy taxes equal to what we spend. “

No surprise that a Republican wants to balance the budget.  The surprise is that he doesn’t think spending is going to decline.  And, he acknowledges that we have to pay for some social programs.  Nary a mention of ‘starve the beast.’  Nothing about how the old people should have saved for the dialysis machine.  Huh.  Now, I don’t know how far he’s willing to go on this social program thing.  But, this was a bit of a surprise.

Mitt Romney just touched the Republican third rail
Dec 5th, 2007 by Sam

Republicans generally favor a “three strikes you’re out” approach to crime reduction, but I wonder if Mitt Romney is going to get a third strike.

First strike: A year ago, we find out his yard is maintained by a company who employs people who are in the country illegally.  He talks to the company owner who says he’ll do better.

Second strike:  The Boston Globe checks in a year later, only to find out that the same company still has employees working on Romney’s yard who are in the country illegally.

Well, luckily for Mr. Stepford, the voters he’s going for don’t care about immigration, do they??  Oh, wait a minute….  ooopsie daisey for the Mittster… They’re the ones in a lather about it (well, according to the Wall Street Journal)!

Hey Mitt, hope it all goes well at your speech about your faith Thursday….

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