Todd Akin: a lucky break for Republicans?

Sometimes I wonder. Out comes the provisional party platform which is completely against reproductive rights for women AND glbt rights, and all the republicans are up in arms against Akin. Like, they might even look like there are limits to their war on women:

From Andrew Rosenthal:

Since the 1980s, the Republican platform has been a test of how far the mainstream of the party is willing to move toward the right-wing fringe. Judging from the draft circulating this week, the answer is, pretty much all the way over.

The draft is more aggressive than any I have seen in its opposition to women’s reproductive rights and gay rights. It calls for a constitutional amendment outlawing all abortions and one denying gay men and lesbians the right to marry.

Judges who have supported laws allowing same-sex marriages, the platform says, are guilty of “an assault on the foundations of our society, challenging the institution which, for thousands of years in virtually every civilization, has been entrusted with the rearing of children and the transmission of cultural values.”

As you might guess, the rest of the news about gay and reproductive rights is really bad. Contraception could be a casuality, for example, according to Rosenthal.

In the meantimes, let’s get that meanie Akin out of the running. Heaven forbid the mainstream party should get associated with theories from outer space.

The TSA revises itself, sort of

From the NY Times:

Transportation Security Administration officers who are in a behavioral detection program designed to spot terrorists at airports have been ordered to undergo special training after officers in Boston were accused of racially profiling passengers.

All officers at Boston Logan International Airport, where the profiling is said to have occurred, and managers of similar programs nationwide must attend a four-hour class on why racial profiling is not acceptable and why it is not an effective way to spot terrorists.

Not to criticize Janet Napolitano, but it takes a lot of optimism to think you can change anyone’s mind on anything much in 4 hours. Beliefs are not like jelly beans that can be scooped out and through away. They get invidious connections with all sort of other things, and they tend to reoccur. Just think how “Obama is not a US citizen” connects up in people’s heads. For example, producing a birth certificate is not going to move it.

I hope they add in a good bit of behavior modification along with the facts and figures. E.g., here’s what racial profiling looks like; keep it up and you’ll be fired.