I've seen the commercial at least 50 times. The nice woman on TV telling me that "Joni Ernst led our troops into combat."
She didn't. And it pisses me off that people campaigning on her behalf claim that she did.
Joni Ernst should be commended for serving a combined 21 years in the United States Army Reserves and the Iowa Army National Guard. She should be praised for serving in Kuwait and part of Southern Iraq in 2003-2004, where she was in command of a unit that was responsible for running logistical convoys. Her work was important.
But leading our troops into combat? That's an entirely different animal. Shame on her for allowing that bullshit to be spread. For very personal reasons, it really makes me mad when soldiers make cavalier claims that aren't true.
And shame on her for claiming that she knows where the weapons of mass destruction were. There weren't any weapons of mass destruction, Joni.
Joni Ernst is a dingbat, and possibly a sociopath. A sane, reasonable person only needs to watch her for five minutes to come to that conclusion.
And the good, normally intelligent voters of the state of Iowa are about to send her to the United States Senate for the next six years.
Other states have tried the psycho-candidate approach, and it's almost worked. Delaware almost elected crazy "I'm not a witch" Christine O'Donnell to the U.S. Senate. Nevada damn near voted "Second Amendment remedies -- shoot all who vote against me" Sharron Angle into power. In both cases, the Republican Party found the most batshit-crazy woman not committed and nominated her for the United States Senate. In both cases, the woman was just a little bit TOO crazy for even the most disgruntled of voters.
Now, Iowa Republicans are trying the same strategy. The big-name donors like the Koch Brothers are supplying the cash to provide just enough deodorant to cover up the stench of crazy. And, judging by the final polls, Joni is going to win, and is certain to go on to provide massive embarrassment to the state of Iowa for the next six years.
She's been extremely successful at not revealing anything she believes in, is in favor of, or is against, to most Iowa voters. She's filled the air with distractions, about how she once cut the nuts off of pigs, about how she believes in the "Iowa Way," whatever the hell that means, and by claiming to believe in "freedom" and "liberty." One recent commercial has Senator Rand Paul, his eyes like a baby duck's, gazing helplessly into the camera as he informs Iowans that if they believe in "freedom" and "liberty" then they have to vote for Joni Ernst. Because, I guess, Joni is the only person running that believes in those things. Her opponent, Bruce Braley, clearly hates freedom and liberty. For Bruce, it's a matter of what he hates more. Does he hate freedom more? Or is it liberty that he hates more?
Of course, it's been necessary for Iowa Republicans and those lovely, talented Koch Brothers to provide some air support for Lieutenant Colonel Ernst by smearing and slandering Congressman Braley back to the Stone Age.
Braley did not help himself by apologizing for expressing disrespect toward longtime Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley. Braley should have never apologized for insinuating that Grassley was as dumb as a box of rocks, because Grassley is as dumb as a box of rocks, and all Iowans know this.
For 30 years, Chuck Grassley has been the stupidist sunuvabitch in the United States Senate, and it's likely he'll continue to be just that until he retires or kicks the mule goodbye. The very idea of Chuck Grassley -- who recently compared the Ebola outbreak to the time he had whooping cough when he was a kid -- heading any committee is laughable, the guy can barely read, write or speak in complete sentences. It's a damn shame Bruce Braley apologized for insulting Grassley -- he should have doubled down and taken it one step further.
"With all due respect, Grassley is a stupid sunuvabitch," he should have said. "But at least he's not batshit crazy, like my opponent, Joni Ernst."
Batshit crazy like a coyote, perhaps. With all the talk about how crazy she is, everyone's forgotten how she illegally steered about one-quarter of a million dollars in government contracts to her daddy when she was Montgomery County Auditor. Is that the "Iowa way?"
Occasionally, she lets her position on issues slip out, but no one dares talk about them, because to do so would be "sexist." She so very often falls back and hides behind the tried-and-true line, "If my name were John Ernst, you wouldn't be asking me these questions." Because, apparently, a male running for Senate wouldn't be asked his opinion on the issues.
How can we believe she "led troops into combat" when she's too scared to face a room full of reporters?
She has refused to do interviews with any Iowa newspapers, from fear that one of those journalists might actually do the job of a journalist and ask her a question that wasn't about castrating pigs. Even so, over the last year, she has occasionally allowed her position on several issues to slip out.
She wants to do away with the Department of Education. Joni wants to give social security money to Wall Street. Joni wants to end student loans and Pell Grants, even though she went to college on a Pell Grant with supplementary student loans. She believes $7.25 an hour is ample money for Iowa families to raise their children, and wants to get rid of the federal minimum wage completely.
She believes she has the right to shoot and kill government employees who are "coming to get her." No elaboration on exactly which government employees are coming to get her. Perhaps it's her mailman?
She also wants to do away with the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency. She believes in "state nullification" of federal laws. She believes President Obama is "a dictator," like Hitler, and should be impeached. She doesn't believe the government should address the issue of climate change. She is against the recent Farm Bill and the Clean Water Act.
She says she wants to replace Obamacare with "free market alternatives," with no idea that Obamacare is exactly that -- free market alternatives for health care. She supports a "personhood" amendment, which means she is against most forms of birth control, including the pill and IUD. She is against marriage equality.
She believes the hair-brained conspiracy theory that Agneda 21, a 1992 United Nations voluntary action plan for sustainable development, could force Iowa farmers off their land, dictate what cities Iowans must live in, and control how Iowa citizens travel from place to place.
Hell, maybe she really believes she "led troops into combat."
She didn't, though.
Prepare yourselves for six years of embarrassment, Iowans.
Paid for by Koch Industries.