Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Abandoning superstition

Rep. Pete Stark (D-Ca) is apparently the highest ranking atheist in the American government. One might hope that such a person who had abandoned ancient superstitions would be a model of the new enlightened scientific man. Rep. Stark, however, does not seem to be such a model. In 2003, the San Francisco Chronicle reviewed his behavior:
Stark, 71, added to his legend of buffoonery last week when he called Rep. Scott McInnis, R-Colo., "a little wimp" and a "little fruitcake" -- and suggested the two should step outside. Capitol police were called to the hearing.

It was reminiscent of the 2001 debate when Stark made a reference to the children of Rep. J.C. Watts, R-Okla., all being "born out of wedlock." It was not only insulting, it was -- as Watts pointedly told Stark in a face-to-face confrontation -- not true.

And there was the time he accused Rep. Nancy Johnson, R-Conn., of being a "whore for the insurance industry." Stark once brought up President Bush's personal battles with alcohol during a debate on federal funding of faith- based programs.

Yes, this is the same Pete Stark who in 1990 suggested former Health and Human Services Director Louis Sullivan, an African American, was a "disgrace to his race."

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