Catherine Forsythe

Catherine Forsythe
know a bit about computer security, dogs, horses, skiing, medicine and making risotto. My nickname in real life/online is "Noggie" - I'm on Twitter, with the @dogreader account.

Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 31, 2011 11:15AM

Michele Bachmann Proclaims Her Own "Great Sense of Humor"

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Michele Bachmann is trying to explain. On Sunday, August 28th, Ms Bachmann made some remarks at a political rally in Sarasota, Florida. She noted that the recent earthquake and Hurricane Irene was a message from God. She said:

"...  I don't know how much God has to do to get the attention of the politicians. We've had an earthquake; we've had a hurricane. He said, 'Are you going to start listening to me here?' Listen to the American people because the American people are roaring right now. They know government is on a morbid obesity diet and we've got to rein in the spending."

Ms Bachmann explains these comments as humor: 

"...  "Of course I was being humorous when I said that. It would be absurd to think it was anything else," Bachmann said Monday about the disaster comment that attracted much attention.

"I am a person who loves humor, I have a great sense of humor.""

Surely, Ms Bachmann must be aware of the recent headlines. The media has chronicle the deaths and the destruction. A sampling of recent headlines includes: 

There are thousands more such reports. Children have died. Homes have been swept away. Businesses have been destroyed. However, Ms Bachmann does not apologize for how inappropriate her remarks were. Instead, she would like to proclaim her "great sense of humor". 

Apparently, Ms Bachmann would like to step back from the perception that she is God's prophet. Instead, she would rather frame perceptions of herself as a humourist who can joke about death, destruction and the sufferings of her fellow citizens. 

And that is despicable.

Catherine Forsythe
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Oh that crazy funny lady!! I can't wait till she's prez!! Teeheehee!!

~flees further into the thorn bushes~
Call me an absurdist, then.
Diff betw her and Mr. Perry is that he's a dime-a-dozen self-important reactionary and she'd push the Red Button and explain it as God's Will In Her Life.

The only thing funny about her is that people were actually stupid enough to vote for her -- and I mean funny strange, not funny ha ha. Scary, to be honest.
The late Molly Ivins once said - "The first rule of holes: when you're in one, stop digging".

Michele Bachmann will keep going. She has a book for sale in November.
Oh, Michelle, just get it over with and come out and, who?...yesss, that's right....SATAN!
She's right, though. She is laughable.
If she had a sense of humor, she'd long since have died laughing at herself.

P.S. - As a general rule, people who proclaim their sense of humor don't got none.
If we keep talking about the emperor's new clothes enough, maybe they will become the style
I can't wait for "The Michelle Bachman Show" where she will push the boundaries of comedy with her edgy humor...
No shame evidently is a required personality trait for many American politicians.
I thought about your post a lot, and had a comment that you can delete if you think it is too long, because it is, but will leave with you, as you are clearly one of the gems of OS.
Sorry this is long as a response, although I always like your posts, and this topic is an important one, and I value your opinion, and have never intended to offend.
Bachman is not a good vehicle for saying such a thing as an elected official, although I think she has been pilloried about enough as well about now. She probably got the point, and tried to back out of it, and did so clumsily.
Some people don't say things like that very well, and I try to see it that way. I have heard things said at the death of a child about God's will that weren't thought through enough, and I don't know if you have seen that personally, and am sorry if you have, that hurt a lot, when people I think thought they meant well, and instead came across as a judgement on someone who was really hurting, in which the natural response was to want to kill the person; "how could you come here, and say that?" Some people are clumsy with words too.
Like,"Your child died, for a reason of your sin, or your family's sins, " is how some people do that, when maybe the real reason could still be a harsh one, which would be "God allowed Lucifer to take Job's family as a demonstration of faith to last eternity, for people like you who need such demonstrations of His power to keep you in line" or just, "One may not know why until thirty years later, and you still might not get it quite right, but there was a reason, and as long as you can see it that way in the way that gives you peace, that is the purpose, and his judgments you will see then are just in the scheme of things that are beyond any person's comprehension, and which Lincoln alluded to in the Second Inaugural:
"Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God, and each invokes His aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God's assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men's faces, but let us judge not, that we be not judged. The prayers of both could not be answered. That of neither has been answered fully. The Almighty has His own purposes. "Woe unto the world because of offenses; for it must needs be that offenses come, but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh." If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether."
Judge not that ye not be judged being a good rule of thumnb.
It is one thing to see that one can wonder if God is unhappy with us when there are natural disasters, if one believes that God gave life, and so therefore can take it as he sees fit:
Job felt life had been unfair, and many would say it was. YWH responded thus:
Job 38-4 "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the Earth."
God was not super nice to Job in some people's view, others see that as a powerful lesson, along with Micah 6-8
"All the is good is given to you O man. And what does God require of you? To act justly, and love mercy, and walk humbly with the Lord."
That is a very different thing from publicly claiming a particular person understands why God is unhappy.
Some would argue that no one can claim to know that, and just take the warning, if one sees it that way, as a reminder that this is His universe, not ours, and that it never hurts to try to follow His Will more in private life, and also to remember that Christ said,"Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, render unto God what is God's," and that since Christ had to earn his bread like everyone else, he was probably a rather good carpenter.
Thus, by this line of reasoning, if one is an elected official per Ms Bachmann, one should focus on practicalities, if grounded as they must be somewhere, either in act utilitarianism, rule utilitarianism, or natural law, at least of some sort.
Everyone who makes a decision has a rationale, in which the rationale of "If it feels good, do it," is a simple act utilitarian rule, as opposed to ""If on average acting thusly would increase utility by some reference standard," then do it is rule utilitarianism.
Rule utilitarianism is at the base of all scientific decision-making processes, if most people doing science don't pay much attention to that anymore, sometimes at their peril. Ultimately the argument for using scientific decision making process is rule utilitatarian based, because the criterio is: on average, it seems to be useful in some sense. Natural Law theories are different, in that in some sense, they require a divinity, if even a Deist one that provides the logical structure under which the universe unfolds, evolves if one thinks of it that way. That is my view, in which there is a duality in a formal mathematical sense that exists between the two, if not necessarily always a continuous one either, but that is not a standard view, if... .
Our own Declaration of Independence is a curiuous mix of Natural Law and rule utilitarianism as can be seen here:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
Note, one has a claim that one has natural rights, given by a Creator, God in a very, very general Deist sense one could argue, since they weren't all very religious, but not really all atheists either, as it seemed with Newton that there was a natural order one could know. Thus, the state cannot randomly take your life or property, even though one could argue that in some cases it might have "utility" to do so. Just war doctrines often hinge on this per the Catholics, who see the use of nuclear deterrent threats as instrinsically evil, even if they work, and they may be right in the long run. But note the rule utilitarianism in the Declaration as well, "on such principles and organizing its forms as they shall think most efficient" or some such thing. Both Natural Law in a very general sense, but also pragmatism within that context, and they are at least worth listening too, before one unmoors oneself from any tie to Natural Law, and war doctrines per Jonathan's point are highly important here, nuclear weapons in particular, and contra Jonathan's point, although, that is another risk.
In any event, if one detatches from any considerations of anything but act utilitarianism, one can imagine all sorts of ways of using terrorism to get what one wanted, eg, I burn down one of my cities, to demonstrate resolve, and then you either burn down one of your cities to show you want to continue to play this game, or, you do what I want. Natural law people won't do that, although some people think that make them dangerous, since they give away potential threats, the point being that one should be careful to throw away the baby with the bathwater per the religious in politics, although, the religious have to consider very carefully what their duties are if they act in that sphere, especially per "render unto caesar what is caesar's, render unto god what is god's."
She was not being funny.. She sits on the right hand of God does she not?
I think NOT!!!
Accurate and timely piece.
NEVER let this woman learn a single nuclear code. Please. That goes for all those other so-devout believers in "End Times" as well. Seriously, is she the person any sane American wants answering that three a.m. phone call?

The first law of humor: if you have to explain it, it ain't funny. Second law of humor: if you have to explain that you have a great sense of humor, you don't.
Thanks for posting. I missed her "funny" quote. What an idiot she is!
You said it all with the word despicable.
If she becomes President, we're going to die laughing.
Many people don't know of her long and storied career on the comedy circuit. Mostly "observational humor," e.g., "What's the deal with poor people? Are they like that because they're lazy, or because God hates them?" (wait for laughter) "And you know what God hates more poor people?" (wait for it...) "The gays!! Amirite?"

I think she was short-listed to replace Leno, right? If she comes out and says her entire campaign was nothing but a big ol' practical joke, I'll agree- she's hilarious.
And if she comes out and says her whole campaign was just a big ol' practical joke, THEN I'll believe that she's got a great sense of humor.
Oops, accidental second/duplicate post-- not sure how to delete comments on here, sorry bout that!
Don-- You left out the punch line, “...what, and give up show business?!”
I'm very pleased to see this piece on the cover of OS. The more information about Michelle Bachman that people read, the better. If they don't think she's scary now, just wait!
Ms Bachmann would be funny if it were not for the fact that we must "never underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers."
Considering she was called by God to meet and marry her husband as well as to run for office, her marriage and congressional career must also be jokes.
@Don: Didn't read the entire screed, but I suspect that's how Bachmann and her ilk will bring the rest of us down. And that is by ranting and quoting scripture on and on and on until we all want to jump off a cliff. Sorry, dude, no offense, but for the love of pete...
@Linman. You didn't even read it, and yet presume to mock. Who does that make closed minded?
@Linman. You didn't even read it, and yet presume to mock. Who does that make closed minded?
This article didn't come through on the RSS feed. I found it on the main page for the site. The other articles are fine with RSS. You might want to put on your techie hat and check that out, Catherine.

I don't understand why people even listen to Michele Bachmann. She scares me.
She needs to get down on her knees and pray for forgiveness for such thoughtless words. She was using the suffering of others for her own personal gain...trying to get attention. God may forgive her but I certainly hope the American people do not. If this is her idea of Christian love, I think she has missed the point. I did not think that I could think less of her as human being, but in my opinion she has sunk to a new level.
Yup, she's one class act. What ever happened to voting for the smartest person in the room for president? She isn't it, kids.
Great rant with such controlled underlying rage at such outrageous behavior. This woman scares the hell out of me.
Really, this scare you all? I mean,none of you have ever looked at a string of "bad luck" natural events and, certainly without any desire to mock the victims, said something along the lines of, "Wow, Mother Nature is trying to tell us something" or "Is God sending us a message?" in a joking way? If so, I find that incredible and suggest ya all get out more.

Hate this woman all you want, but let's be honest, do you REALLY think she is mocking the dead? Do you REALLY think that she thinks GOD is punishing us? Go spend a little time at any protestant or Catholic church. The image many of you seem to have of the average Christian is like No One, and I mean NO ONE I have ever met in that community to which I am an occassional visitor.

Paranoia is at reign here, to some degree, and it is pretty absurd.
A small correction in my previous letter. "Really, this scare you all? " should have been typed, "Really this scares you all?"