Saturday, July 2, 2011

The Untold History of John Quincy Adams

Michele Bachmann acknowledged Tuesday that she misspoke when she claimed yesterday that actor John Wayne was from her hometown of Waterloo, Iowa. But the 2012 GOP hopeful refused to dial back on another one of her notable gaffes: Her claim that the nation's Founding Fathers "worked tirelessly to end slavery."
In an interview with ABC's George Stephanopoulos, the Minnesota congresswoman insisted she was right on the slavery claim and pointed to the career of John Quincy Adams, the nation's sixth president who was not yet nine years old when the Declaration of Independence was drafted with the help of his father, John Adams.
Bachmann insisted John Quincy Adams, who later worked to end slavery, should be considered a "Founding Father."
"He was a very young boy when he was with his father serving essentially as his father's secretary," Bachmann told ABC. "He tirelessly worked throughout his life to make sure that we did in fact one day eradicate slavery."
But Stephanopoulos interjected, insisting that the younger Adams had never been considered one of the Founding Fathers.
"Well, John Quincy Adams most certainly was a part of the Revolutionary War era. He was a young boy but he was actively involved," Bachmann replied.

A little historical research reveals that not only was John Quincy Adams "absolutely part of the revolutionary era," he is, in fact, Michele Bachmann's grandfather. Here are a few more surprising historical facts about America's favorite Founding Child:

After introducing the telegraph to Native American tribes in Minnesota, John Adams settled with his family in Iowa where they founded the University of Iowa and established the Iowa primaries. At the age of nine, a precocious John Quincy Adams, already an accomplished flutist and gifted baseball player, made significant improvements to Jefferson's muddled and rambling first draft of the Constitution, which J.Q. then signed in extra-large block letters so Pope Anastasius IV could easily read it without his contact lenses.
After the Constitutional Convention, J.Q. traveled to Vermont, where he was instrumental in helping cheesemaker and patriot Paul Revere fire guns and ring bells in order to warn the Spanish not to tread on the battleship Maine.
Having successfully liberated the peoples of Arizona and Hawaii from Spain, J.Q. set his sights on finally ending slavery as Jesus had told him to do during the drafting of the Declaration of Independence. After Admiral Nelson fired on Fort Apache, J.Q. led the first all-Christian Navy SEAL team - which included Sgt. Alvin York, most famous for being Michele Bachmann's other grandfather - into the Washington Beltway, where they easily defeated the liberal elites who were desperately trying to preserve slavery.
Following the Civil War, J.Q. changed the course of science and history by suggesting to Albert Einstein the addition of the "m" to his famous equation. After delivering the first atomic bomb to Hiroshima as the pilot of the B-29 christened "The Gipper," J.Q. led the quiet life of a retiree and gentleman factory farmer in rural Indiana, and died peacefully in his sleep in 1973. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Dick Cheney Undecided on Heart Transplant. Dick Cheney has a heart?

Cheney's heart receives its daily feeding of baby bunny blood.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney said on Sunday that he hasn't yet decided whether to seek a heart transplant. Cheney, widely expected to become the first real-life Darth Vader, told Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace that his health is improving thanks to a battery operated device that helps his heart pump blood.

Cheney's statements are surprising: A highly-placed source, speaking on the condition of anonymity (Scooter Libby), told totallyunspooled in 2006 that Cheney's shriveled, blackened heart was being kept in a beaker in a top-secret government lab at Fort Detrick where it receives daily feedings of fresh baby bunny blood.

We were sure our anonymous source was credible, but then we found out he nearly went to prison for perjury, so we decided to contact some of our other, unindicted highly-placed anonymous sources. It turns out that an undisclosed Halliburton subsidiary (the CIA) has arranged for Cheney to receive a heart from a Romanian orphan, and Cheney is waiting for his physician to clear him for travel so he can fly to Romania to personally rip the orphan's heart from his chest. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Microsoft Buys Skype for $8.5 billion...

...Skype immediately crashes.

The Annotated 10 Most Important Things Newt Gingrich Has Ever Said

    Chris Menning at Buzzfeed has posted a list of sage and insightful observations by scholar, raconteur, and philosopher-king Newt Gingrich, who announced his 2012 presidential bid Tuesday.
     Gingrich has the advantage of name recognition and being an colossal ass, so he's definitely a contender for the GOP nomination, but with a field of contenders that already includes Rick Santorum and Ron Paul and will likely include Mike Huckabee, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, and Donald Trump (!), Gingrich will have to play the full-lunatic press right from the tip-off if he wants to out-crazy the crazies.
     Since we at totallyunspooled are innately generous and helpful, we put together an annotated version of the list for those of you who don't speak batshit:

"The idea that a congressman would be tainted by accepting money from private industry or private sources is essentially a socialist argument."

Because you can’t be “tainted” by money if you’re only in it for the money.

•"I raised so much money over the years, from so many different people that … I don't owe anyone."

Besides, I already paid those people back in pork.

 •"I love the environment, but I'm cheap on the environment."

I also cheated on the environment when it was in the hospital with cancer.

"I think one of the great problems we have in the Republican Party is that we don't encourage you to be nasty. We encourage you to be neat, obedient, loyal and faithful and all those Boy Scout words, which would be great around a campfire but are lousy in politics."

Fortunately, none of us believes that Boy Scout horseshit anyway so we don’t need the encouragement.

"I'm not a natural leader."

But I am a natural hypocrite, which is much better.

"The fact is, we can afford a fairly ignorant presidency now."

Which actually makes me waaay overqualified.

"In every election in American history both parties have their cliches. The party that has the cliches that ring true wins."

For example, “black people can’t resist fried chicken and watermelon” is one that rings true for me.

"We should replace bilingual education with immersion in English so people learn the common language of the country and they learn the language of prosperity, not the language of living in a ghetto."

Yo, peep this shit: Crackers ain’t even tryin’a hear that ghetto joint. You gotta holla back that ofay ish if you wanna get yo’ benjamins! Ain’t no thug-ass gangsta fidda stack no chips, you feel me? Aight.  

"It may just be because I get homesick, but I have concluded Washington's cherry blossoms are just plain overrated."

I really miss the strange fruit back home in Georgia.

"It's going to be a bummer if Mars turns out to be like us."

And it’s going to be absolutely apocalyptic if Mars turns out to be like me.

Osama bin...Lonely?

Oh, these things are so awkward.
Um, my name is Osama bin Laden, but  my friends just call me "Holy Sheik Warrior," or just "O-Dogg."
Gosh, I'm not sure what to say. I haven't done anything like this since I met my seventh wife. I guess I'll start with my family. I had fifty-three brothers and sisters, so, you know, I grew up in a big family. My dad had a small construction business and made a pretty good living building barracks for the Saudi Arabian army, and castles and stuff in Mecca.
I had a pretty typical childhood. My parents got a divorce when I was young, and my mother remarried. My stepfather was a great guy. He was a letter carrier, and he did beheadings for the Saudi royal family on the weekends, you know, for fun. Um, I went to university and studied various things. What I really loved was football, or, I guess, "soccer," if you happen to be an American infidel from The Great Satan. Ha ha. But, uh, a good friend of mine from Kuwait, Khalid, uh, maybe you've heard of him, Khalid Mohammed - of course "Mohammed," all my friends are named "Mohammed." Ha ha. Anyway, he accidentally kicked me in the knee while he was trying to score, and, uh, there went my pro football career.
So, um, after that I decided to join the Mujahideen in Afghanistan, because one of my uncles said he could get me a job with them, so I figured I'd give it a try. Oh, this is so- I'm sure this is really boring. Long story short, I did pretty well with them, and eventually I ended up in, uh, more of a corporate role, management and long-term planning, that kind of thing. More recently, though, I've been semi-retired. I don't get out much, just kind of putter around the house.
Hmm, what else? I'm pretty tall, and I have a longish beard, but I guess you can see that from the video - duh! Ha ha. I've been thinking about shaving, though, because of th-, well, just to change my "look," I guess. Maybe get some highlights or something.
Um, I used to like to travel, but I don't get to do that anymore. Some friends of mine who work for the government in Paki- I mean, uh, some friends of mine built me a really nice little house. It's in a really safe neighborhood, and a lot of my, well, you might say a lot of my co-workers live close by and the schools are good. It would be nice if there was a Starbucks nearby, or maybe a bomb factory or something. Ha ha ha.
Umm, I like reading, making videos...jihad, you know, the usual stuff. I'd really like to find a woman wh--
Hold on.... There's a ton of racket going on outside. Lots of shouting and, it sounds like a helicopter or something. I guess I'd better go take a look. I'll finish this in just a minute.
Be right back.

Friday, May 6, 2011

John Yoo, Armchair Commando

    In an op-ed piece published in the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, former Bush legal counsel, torture memo writer, and all-around tough guy John Yoo chastised President Obama for killing Osama bin Laden.
    Yoo, Jack Bauer Distinguished Professor at UC Berkeley School of Law, claims that finding bin Laden's suburban hideout represents a vindication of Bush Administration policy, but by failing to capture bin Laden alive Obama squandered "one of the most valuable intelligence opportunities since the beginning of the war."
    Yoo, whose combat experience includes both memo writing and the Yale Law Journal, also argues that Obama's reluctance to torture detainees "may have dissuaded Mr. Obama from sending a more robust force [perhaps one the size of that which surrounded Tora Bora in 2001?] to attempt a capture," and that "[s]pecial forces units using nonlethal weaponry might have taken bin Laden alive, as with other senior al Qaeda leaders before him."
     So, in summary:
  • Osama bin Laden, who was not found, captured, or killed during the Bush Administration, was only found during the Obama Administration because of intelligence gathered during the Bush Administration which did not lead to bin Laden being found, captured, or killed.
  • Once found, bin Laden - the most-wanted fugitive in the entire world and the man responsible for the deaths of thousands of Americans on 9/11 and even more deaths across the globe - was killed because President Obama is too squeamish order torture. 
  • The members of the team who risked their lives in the assault on bin Laden's compound - and took fire during the mission - should been issued Tasers for their confrontation with the world's most notorious terrorist.
    No word yet on whether John Yoo has volunteered to accompany Navy SEALs on future operations.

Department of Human Resources and Death to America

Al Qaeda issued a statement Friday acknowledging the death of Osama bin Laden, portions of which are shown here. After careful examination of the statement, our team of highly-trained intelligence analysts here at totallyunspooled has reached two conclusions:
1. That's a really weird font choice.
2. Al Qaeda may be facing a recruiting crisis.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Who will pick up the crazy torch?

Osama bin Laden's death earlier this week has left the world wondering who will take up the madman's mantle. Thanks to unprecedented access* TotallyUnspooled has examined a vast trove of intelligence documents and offers this look at the select few who are most likely to pick up the crazy torch and run with it.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

U.S. Navy Travel Agency

Department of Oh, THAT Enormous Walled Compound

Pakistani intelligence service officials failed to find Osama bin Laden's sprawling, million-dollar, three-story walled compound located less than two miles from a prestigious military academy in a neighborhood heavily populated by current and former members of Pakistani military and intelligence establishment
A senior official with the ISI, Pakistan's government intelligence agency, assured reporters Tuesday that a thorough search of the area was recently conducted.
"It's extremely difficult to see," he said. "It's only eight times the size of all the other houses in the area, and the barbed wire on top of the walls makes the house almost invisible."
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton cabled Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari to inform him that Pakistan would no longer be allowed to use the words "prestigious" or "intelligence."

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Department of Well, OK, But What About...

Unconvinced despite the release of President Obama's long-form birth certificate, birthers continue to press for proof.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

The day when Christians across America celebrate the, uh, "miracle" of their savior's death and resurrection by watching their children scramble to see who can collect the most hidden candy.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Department of Not Even Remotely-Surprising Statistics

Possibly related: 46% of Mississippi Republicans shocked to hear The Civil War is over, man has walked on the moon.

Department of Don't Even Have to Make This Up: Tea Partiers, Conservatives Don't Want Government Shutdown, Rally to Shutdown Government

Addressing hundreds of Tea Party activists rallying on Capitol Hill Wednesday, Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) warned that Democrats would blame the Tea Party if an impending government shutdown occurs.
"It appears that they have decided that they're going to take both feet and be stuck in the mud and not negotiate one tiddly wink," Bachmann claimed. "Because their goal, as they've already stated is to shut the government down."
"That's their stated goal. And you know what they want to do? They want to blame it on you! They want to say that it's your fault," said Bachmann to a crowd of Tea Party activists chanting "Shut 'er down!"
"I'd prefer not to shut it down," said rally attendee John Oltesuig, holding up a sign that read "Shut 'er down."
"I'd rather have our politicians act like adults," said Oltesuig, who was dressed in a colonial-period costume, "and make some real cuts because they should realize we can't continue."
Representative Mike Pence (R-IN), who, in a March interview said, "Nobody wants a government shutdown," also addressed the crowd.
"If liberals in the Senate would rather play games in this process and force a government shutdown rather than accepting what is a small down payment on fiscal discipline, then we should just shut it down," Pence said.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's Analysis of State Supreme Court Election Results: Some votes are more equal than others

Gov. Scott Walker said this afternoon that the spring election results show there are "two very different worlds in this state."

"You've got a world driven by Madison, and a world driven by everybody else out across the majority of the rest of the state of Wisconsin," Walker said at a press conference in the Capitol.

In an election widely viewed as a referendum on Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's controversial collective-bargaining measures, unofficial results show union-backed challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg ahead of incumbent Republican State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser.
In a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Walker offered an explanation for Kloppenburg's apparent victory.
"Clearly, Madison voters have too much power," said Walker. "Their votes should not count the same as those of people who agree with me, like Wisconsin's rural voters. And the Kochs."
Walker called for immediate changes to what Walker called "fundamentally anti-democratic" election procedures currently in place.
"I plan to propose a series of reforms to the state legislature," Walker said. "including a measure based on the 3/5 Compromise originally enshrined in the Constitution."
When reminded that the 3/5 Compromise was superseded by the 13th Amendment, Walker stood firm.
"If it was good enough for Jesus and our other Founding Fathers, it's good enough for Wisconsin," said Walker. "The 13th Amendment was forced upon Americans by an activist president and Congress. I will not compromise on the 3/5 Compromise."

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Bachmann's United States

Inspired by Chris Rodda's excellent (and thorough!) dismantling of Michelle Bachmann's claims to an Authentic Iowan Heritage over on Dispatches, we whipped up a map more accurately depicting our new, uh, "Bachmannian" understanding of United States historical geography.
Thanks to Ed Brayton for posting and to his readers' excellent comments, two of which - including a New England history unmuddled by facts, and how 50th state became the home of America's Heart of Darkness (and surfing) - are incorporated into this version of Michelle Bachmann's *shudder* America.
Stay tuned through the course of the upcoming presidential campaigns for more updates as Bachmann corrects more of our historical and geographic misconceptions.