Thursday, August 03, 2006


Now I'm not claiming to know anything about this guy, and I'm certainly not gonna weigh in on his politics, his party, his personal life, or even his chances of reelection. But after skimming through this AP piece on Montana Senator Conrad Burns, and the latest of what seems to be an embarrassing string of verbal gaffes, I will say this is the kind of utter cluelessness that once again allows me to say, "Kick These Bums Out in November."

Apparently, Senator Burns told firefighters -- firefighters who came from Virginia to help put out wildfires east of Billings -- that they "did a piss-poor job." Apparently, those particular fellows weren't up to the standards of firefighting demonstrated by Burns, after he spent three days sweltering amidst the flames, digging ditches and spraying water.

Yeah, right.

And you know what? This isn't the first idiotic move by Burns. In addition to the conspicuous fact that Burns is "already facing questions about his ties to convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff," he has a history of opening the hole in his face in the most inappropriate manner. To wit:
* In 1994, while noting that living among a large black population in the nation's capital constituted "a hell of a challenge," Burns repeated a tale including the word "niggers."

* He asked a woman wearing a nose ring what tribe she belonged to.

* In 1999, while giving a speech regarding oil prices, Burns referred to Arabs as "rag heads."

* Although he denies it, a flight attendent claims he told her she could "go home and be a mother" if she lost her job.
Now I'm the last person to get all up in arms over language. I think we, as a nation, take way too much "offense" at every verbal slight. The nose ring comment -- in a vacuum -- is almost funny. But with this Burns idiot we have (a) a pattern of verbal foolishness which, more importantly, (b) indicates an obtuse man not worthy of a seat in the federal government. We all laugh at Senator Stevens and his silly comment about the internet's "tubes." But that, alone, ain't the problem. The problem is that the very same moron senator seeks out -- and receives -- pork barrel money to build bridges to nowhere.

Laughable cluelessness masks real cluelessness about the responsibilties of public office.

So as to Senator Burns? Kick him out. He's too doltish, too out-of-touch, too unconcerned about the working, tax-paying people he supposedly represents. I don't care if he's a Republican. I don't care if his opponent's a Democrat. All I know is that any adult over the age of 20 (let alone over the age of 30, as required for service in the Senate) who says this crap is unfit to hold office.

While we worry about Israel, Mel Gibson, Iran, Fidel, and Bush's vacations, the nation's purse strings (and ostensible checks on Executive Power) are in the hands of self-interested, insulated clowns who think the internet's made of tubes, who build bridges to nowhere, who insult firefighters, who have nothing better to think about than whether we can start calling "Freedom Fries" French Fries again. Why do want these people representing us? Why do we keep sending them back to Washington to waste our money, to continue leading the country into disaster, to keep ceding power to the real monsters in the Adminstration?

And we are now Three Months away from midterm elections that will all-but serve as a national referendum on where we've been, where we are, and where we're going.

Kick The Bastards Out.


Anonymous Barry said...

As a former Montana native (S.D., too - now transplanted), I've had the opportunity to hear Burns in verbal action. He is a LOUT! How the hell he ever made it DC can only be testimony to how desparately in need of real news folks in Montana must be. A republican state they may be . . . but, to elect this fool demonstrates either desperation or stupidity.

10:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every time one of those buffoons opens their mouth to speak I wince in anticipation of the pain that I know is soon to be inflicted upon my intelligence. I do not deserve to be represented by clowns, others may, but I sure the hell don't.

I did some digging into corporate welfare yesterday. Nauseating, that's all I can say. The congress and the president give billions and billions (I sound like Carl Sagan, I know) of dollars to the corporate sleezemasters who in turn give it back to them. What a scam!

I really hate that guy from Alaska too. What a putz. What am I talking about, I hate them all. Oh well, thanks for pouring salt in the open wound of government corruption and incompetence. ;-)

11:15 AM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Hey, the salt shaker's always handy.

12:43 PM  
Anonymous Jorge said...

And the bad thing is it's only going to get worse.

The system started cannibilizing itself back in the '80s when the Gordon Gecko types of the world found it more profitable to tear companies down than actually making stuff. The process continues accelerating as sure as 32 feet per second squared will make you fall flat on your ass and feel it.

It is no surprise we get buffons, crooks and bigots in Congress. As Congress's specific weight grows smaller and smaller vis-a-vis the Presidency and the federal bureaucracy many good people will steer clear from a futile political pursuit. Those remaining are already corrupt coming in or become corrupted by the demands of expensive campaigns and the ability to sell themselves off to the highest bidder like the high-priced whores they are.

Some comic relief from Puerto Rico: a few weeks ago a well-known narco was gunned down and died from his wounds in hospital. The resulting investigation started revealing close ties between the drug kingpin and three or four members of the Puerto Rican Senate. This guys were so cozy with the narco that he was even a member of one of the senator's advance party investigating conditions inside Puerto Rican jails.

That's what I call inside expertise, pun intended, given that many of those jailed worked for the aforementioned narco.

The senators, of course, profess innocence to the four winds and the PR Department of Justice promises a 'full investigation'.

Thought I'd provide you guys with a bit of needed schadenfreude.


1:00 PM  
Blogger Otto Man said...

Luckily, Burns' opponent, Jon Tester, is kicking ass and taking names. It would be amazing to replace a douchebag like Burns with a ballsy Democrat like Tester.

1:05 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

a ballsy Democrat

I heard about them once. Was a guy named . . . Truman, was it? Who else . . . ?

1:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

when the Gordon Gecko types of the world found it more profitable to tear companies down than actually making stuff.

I seem to remember reading a book about world economics in grade school that said something like raw materials + labor = value added. "That is the equation that makes a country prosperous." I guess they were wrong. Today it goes: trade goods for money, then give me back the money. Repeat as necessary. Nice work, if you can find it.

2:19 PM  
Blogger DED said...

Truman! Quite the maverick, he was.

Burns has been on my Congressional Asshole list for some time. I hadn't heard about this one though. He'd better hope that his house doesn't catch on fire. There might be a bit of delay in the response from the local fire dept.

He comes from Cheney country so I'm not gonna rule him out yet. Though I'll certainly hope that he will be.

2:39 PM  
Blogger Thrillhous said...

Burns is certainly a pile.

I have the happy coincidence of living in VA and having also spent a week last summer in the area of MT that got hit so bad (the wife's uncle's ranch got burned up a little, neighbors much worse).

The ranchers didn't have any problem telling us how lousy a job they think the feds do with fire control. However, they sure as hell knew the difference between the people on the front lines and the bureaucrats who make the decisions.

My sense was that the dumb stuff Burns says usually endears him even more to his base (eastern MT), but these comments are in a whole 'nother category.

2:54 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

What's the divide between Eastern & Western Montana all about? Simple red-blue, or it more complicate.

The state doesn't have that many people (and it always goes GOP), so I'll admit I had no idea there was a divide, like you'd see in NY or NC or Fl, for instance.

3:17 PM  
Blogger Otto Man said...

Maybe it's like Kansas, where the divide for so long was between Sane Conservatives and Batshit Crazy Conservatives. Gov. Sebilius has done a good job exploiting that division to revive the Democrats (largely through defections from SC's).

Maybe the same thing's now happening in Montana and, hopefully, the rest of the Mountain West. The crazies have taken hold of the GOP, and the sane ones have no choice but to jump ship.

4:21 PM  
Blogger Aly said...

well as a montanan..burns is not well respected here and has been slinging mud since the day after the primary. thats how scared he is of Jon. Because Jon is a 4th Generation Montana.. Connie moved here in his 40s. Sen Burns just recently disparaged firefighters which you are all probably aware. Someone asked about the West/East Divide in MT. WEll its cuz Eastern MT is really really rurual like less then 1.3 people psm. SO they tend to be a bit conserative. buts its more along the lines of a few cities(Missoula, Great Falls, Butte) are democrats/liberal and a few cities ar econservative(Billings, Kalispell, Helena).

7:37 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Now this is good. We've got not one, but two, Montanans and someone from Kansas on board today.

Getting the inside dope from the source. I'm liking this.

And you have to understand: where I live, folks from India or Nigeria or Bolivia are standard. It's the bona fide Americans from places like Montana & Kansas that are exotic.

Man, NY's a weird place.

7:50 PM  

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