consultants are sandburs

Monday, April 24, 2017

Rob Quist is running against a Mike Pence clone in Montana. The only difference, this creationist is a multi-millionaire wanting to join his Washington DC club of millionaires misdirecting the Congress of the United States, now that the business was sold to Oracle, and he lost his just-ended 2016 dilettante race for governor of Montana. The tires have hardly cooled from driving statewide on that lark, forcing him to seek elsewhere for political mischief. Clearly - more of the Mike Pence same, but with a bigger checkbook. Please contribute to help Rob Quist, the Democrat, who is offering the chance to give the Pence-clone a second well-deserved election defeat, two-years running.

"The Glendive Dinosaur & Fossil Museum proudly presents
its exhibits in the context of Biblical history."

Salon, two years ago published, "Right-wing billionaires, creationism and pseudo-science: Why is a wingnut giving commencement speech at Montana’s best tech college? -- Uproar at Montana Tech as a conservative funder of creationist museums is asked to speak at top engineering school:"

The speaker is Greg Gianforte, a conservative billionaire whose philanthropic endeavors include funding museums whose purpose is to discredit Darwinism and persuade visitors that the Earth is 6,000 years old, that North America’s geology was carved by Noah’s flood, and that dinosaurs coexisted with early humans.

To say the least, Gianforte is an odd choice to address an audience of young men and women who are embarking on careers in the earth sciences, many as mining and petroleum engineers. On the day Gianforte speaks, these graduates will be ending four years of studying how the Earth, and everything in it, formed over billions of years out of stardust.

They will now be sermonized by a man who bankrolled the 20,000-square-foot Dinosaur and Fossil Museum in Glendive, Mont. This museum’s website warns that “when you visit a major natural history museum, you will see wide-eyed children being funneled into an abyss of deception.” The curator of the museum told the Billings Gazette that “there’s no scientific proof whatsoever that evolution ever took place.” Visitors are shown displays and dioramas that explain how the dinosaurs likely died out 4,300 years ago, during the great flood.

Odder still is the fact that Gianforte is no stranger to science at all. He is a computer scientist, who built a massively successful company, RightNow Technologies, that he sold for over a billion dollars in 2011 to the Oracle Corp. And he has donated money to Montana Tech for its computer science program, which is presumably why the chancellor of Montana Tech, Don Blakketter, invited him to be the guest of honor at graduation.

Professors have asked Blakketter to revoke the invite on the grounds that Gianforte is anti-science whereas Montana Tech is pro-science, and students are discussing staging a walkout during the speech. I put in a call to Blakketter, but did not hear back.

The objectors are not only upset about Gianforte, but also the inclusion of his wife, Susan, in the program. She was invited to co-deliver the commencement speech with her husband. Susan Gianforte is a vociferous opponent of laws designed to protect gay people from being targets of discrimination. She believes businesses should have the legal right to refuse service to gay customers, and she has been leading the charge against an anti-discrimination ordinance that is now being debated by the city council of Bozeman, where the Gianfortes live.

[italics added] Being prosperous is not an already punched ticket to a perpetual gravy train, and luckily voting ordinary people will be interposed between ambitious wealth and public disastrous error. May they be guided by good sense.

(And do you get the sense Ms. G might intolerantly judge the civil rights of the former "wide stance" Senator from her State's neighboring State. "Those Idaho types . . . no sense of biblical proportions and proprieties. Let him eat a bologna sandwich in his auto; restaurants are for us, not for his type, or shouldn't be." Perhaps separate entrances, drinking fountains and rest rooms?)

Wikipedia reports:

Social security
Gianforte does not believe that retirement is consistent with biblical teachings, pointing to Noah still working at age 600. He said, "There's nothing in the Bible that talks about retirement. And yet it's been an accepted concept in our culture today. Nowhere does it say, 'Well, he was a good and faithful servant, so he went to the beach... The example I think of is Noah. How old was Noah when he built the ark? 600. He wasn't like, cashing Social Security checks, he wasn't hanging out, he was working. So, I think we have an obligation to work. The role we have in work may change over time, but the concept of retirement is not biblical."[27]

Despite Gianforte's stated belief, RightNow Technologies offered a retirement plan as part of its employee benefits package, prior to its acquisition by Oracle in 2011. In 2009 Gianforte commented on his company's hiring efforts: "Benefits include full medical, a retirement plan and one week of paid time off a year to do community service". [28]

Young Earth Creationism

Gianforte is a believer in Young Earth Creationism, the pseudoscientific theory that the Earth is less than 10,000 years old. He donated to the Dinosaur and Fossil Museum in Glendive, Montana, which teaches visitors that the theory of evolution is false, the Earth is about 6,000-6,400 years old, that dinosaurs were on the Ark and that they likely died out 4,300 years ago during the flood described in The Book of Genesis.[29][30][31]

The guy is a hoot, if he'd only leave government to the less mean-spirited and to capable undeluded souls. Get that: Social Security should be denied everybody needful of it, because of ol' Noah punching a timeclock; but when money's to be gotten from Oracle a retirement plan is part of selling the multi-billionaire yacht racer a competent workforce. Go figure that one. When his food's not on the table, nobody needs or deserves retirement perks? Tune time, a "forever 'til you croak" Pence-clone's story.

Reprinted from an earlier post:

The Quist/Montana page has its email subscription box on the homepage too:

The Quist/Montana contributions page, with ActBlue enabled:

That page also gives the address for snail mail contribution by check:

PO Box 1917, Kalispell MT, 59903

Please contribute to an effort against troglodyte politics. It will make you happy when Quist wins.

____________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
With Quist's opponent having generated a personal fortune out of the computer science industry, one could as well call him a Bob Mercer clone; that way; but the rabid religion stamp puts him squarely into the Mike Pence camp of freedom's great except if it's yours, politics; (I got Jesus on my team and he's no more tolerant than I am; I channel him; I know). Another analogy for Mr. G -- A Michele Bachmann clone, gender being one difference; great wealth being the only other. Also, aside from creationism museums as a hobby, Mr. G appears tighter with his wealth than the Mercers, with eleven million given by them to Ted Cruz; no less, and thirteen million invested in Trump. Presumably, Mr. G is at least largely self-funded, (or does he solicit and use other peoples' money, as one could expect, as part of a Pence-like Gestalt).

Either way, Rob Quist needs small donor love to succeed. So far, so good, (Montana Public Radio reports),but the Republicans can outspend anyone:

By Eric Whitney • Apr 11, 2017

Democratic candidate for Congress Rob Quist today released his first quarter of 2017 fundraising total.

"Just yesterday we crested $1.3 million in contributions," Quist said at a campaign event in Great Falls this morning.

His campaign says he raised nearly a million dollars in March alone, via more than 22,000 individual contributions, with an average donation of $40 each.

I cut my check as a $27 multiple, out of respect for Bernie; but at $40 a pop Quist will need many more individual contributions to gain a victory. He's not getting Norm Coleman's SuperPAC money, the G-man is if anyone is, and that kind of contributor or the "unaffiliated with any campaign" spenders have to be countered.

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