What’s WRONG With These People?

Whatever your opinion of him–positive or negative– today’s Republican Party is no longer the party of Ronald Reagan. Today’s GOP is the party of Marjorie Taylor Green (MTG), the party of “Jewish space lasers,” “pizzagate,” and QAnon, a party that accommodates Senator Tommy Tuberville’s belief that Democrats are an actual “satanic cult.”  The takeover isn’t confined to Congress, where preoccupation with looney-tune theories and efforts to return the country to 1950 (or earlier) have brought governance to a standstill–it has permeated Red state legislative bodies as well.

I just read about yet another example of Republican legislators standing firm against the 21st Century: the new war against—wait for it–lab-grown meat.

The only way you’re allowed to eat a burger is if a live animal first had to burp and die for it. That, apparently, is the battle cry of red-state Republicans, who are working to ban the fledgling “lab-grown meat” industry.

Scientists and entrepreneurs are developing new technologies to create meat from animal tissue cultivated in labs. This is different from Beyond Meat, tofu or any other meat substitute made from vegetarian ingredients. These are cells harvested from actual animals and then grown into edible flesh with the help of nutrients such as amino acids. The idea is to replicate the texture, taste and nutritional content of the delicious meats consumers already know and love.
This process would address a number of longstanding problems, including the need for more humane treatment of animals, less use of antibiotics, and reduction in huge quantities of greenhouse gas emissions. (Livestock agrifood systems are estimated to account for 12 percent of all anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.)
It sounds like a great idea–but it doesn’t exist yet.
As the linked article points out, the process faces  serious financial and technological challenges that must be overcome before these products can become commercially viable. But the fact that this technology is still largely theoretical hasn’t deterred the GOP’s culture warriors.
Republican politicians in AlabamaArizonaTennessee and Florida are considering legislation that would ban the sale, distribution or import of any “cell-cultured food product” intended for human consumption. Depending on the state, penalties could include everything from a million-dollar fine to prison time.
In Florida, both legislative chambers have already passed a bill criminalizing the sale of lab-cultivated meat, and Ron DeSantis has indicated that he’ll sign it, declaring that lab meat is part of an “ideological agenda.” (Evidently, lab-grown meat is “woke.”)

To be clear, this is not about a left-wing nanny state forcing the sale or consumption of lab-grown meats. It’s about a conservative nanny state prohibiting the voluntary consumption and sale of these products (which again, mostly don’t yet exist).

What happened to the Republicans who wanted the free market to choose winners and losers? Where is the party of limited government?

Granted, there’s a “follow the money” aspect to this; GOP lawmakers who are sane and merely corrupt want to protect the interest groups threatened by the prospect of lab-grown meat. But the effort to forestall any change in the way meat is produced is coming largely from the culture warriors who have turned the party of Dick Lugar into the party of MTG.

Today’s Republicans evidently believe that Donald Trump reads the bible. They openly admire Putin’s war on Russia’s LGBTQ+ community. They embrace the anti-sex prudery of the Comstock Act. They are clearly spooked by the very existence of trans people, and enraged by the notion that women and Black people might be entitled to equality, let alone personal autonomy. They believe Jews are working to “replace” them (when we aren’t starting forest fires with our space lasers), and that there really are “Satanic cults.”

They are basically terrified of any and all change, and frantic to reverse it.

We’ve seen this fear play out in Indiana’s General Assembly, where our lawmakers (like those in Congress) routinely ignore actual issues facing actual citizens (housing? gun violence?) in favor of banning abortion, attacking higher education (they just know those sneaky professors are turning out liberals!), and sending millions of our tax dollars to religious schools via vouchers.

I titled this post “What’s WRONG With These People?” My conclusion isn’t particularly kind, but it’s inescapable.

They’re nuts. And if we keep electing them, so are we.


  1. In Indiana, we are exposed to their crazy thoughts on TV in a nearly endless stream of fact free commercials. Nuts and Proud and Loud. Meanwhile, total silence from the D’s who may have gone into witness protection or to a CIA black site. Nothing. I think someone said “You can’t beat something with nothing”. That sounds right.

  2. Have you seen a picture of a piece of lab grown meat? I believe the real reason for production is to turn us in to vegetarians.

  3. When will the Democrats stop being milk toast and act like the adults in the room?

  4. Ah yes, pining for the good? old days, the fifties will do just fine, when gay had nothing to do with sexual preference, when there was a plethora of nasty terms for those non-straight, non-white beings, to keep all of “them” in place, as in closet and ghetto. Women were to be kept at home where there was plenty to do, cooking, cleaning and having babies; no independence as in having a spot in the workplace, having a checkbook, being able to sign for any banking transaction without hubby’s signature, etc., etc. Women’s non-equal pay in 2024 tells us we’re not there yet, as do the not-so-subtle actions of the GOP Congress. It’s fear, simple as that. They are so afraid of us living up to our principles, something we’ve been striving for – and remain striving for – ever since our origins as a country. FEAR. You can smell it. I hated the fifties. The Dems HAVE to win in November. VOTE!!!!

  5. Joanne, the Democrats are using the Obama playbook, “When they go low, we go high!”

    This is why Rs think Obama is running the country for #GenocideJoe. They don’t believe Joe has the cognitive skills to get through the day, so Obama has stepped in and is running for the presidency. They also think Michelle is a man, and so is Emmanuel Macron’s wife (which is entirely possible because the whole thing is creepy).

    It’s a combination of low intelligence and closed-minded people. Conspiracies make a complex world easier to understand. It’s also a lack of trust. Trump used his four years to convince his followers that he is the only trustworthy individual. As a result, they’ve become a cult where they only trust the leader. If he told them to all commit suicide, we’d probably see mass suicides by gunpoint.

  6. no lab grown politicians? im wondering if marjorie trailer queen took to many steroids when she was a gym rat and became the meat from some experiment.
    obviously the red brain meat use any news to slamming any `other idea the world has for maybe good. hense,they want a world of bad.. its free PR for them and the news media like the above gets sucked into it ,and sells ad time,instead of belittling the source and m trailer queens farts.

  7. As a Democrat living in rural Indiana I can assure you that we will continue to lose elections at even the township level unless the State Democrat Party wakes up and chooses to financially help us. We cannot win elections with just hard work! Local Democrats aren’t able to donate enough money to help candidates overcome the republican dominance!

  8. Todd, its a club, the T shirt of. they just want the world to know their best buds. and you can become a billionaire like them by being a liberal..beside the DNC has made a mess and hasnt a stick in any fire.

  9. I like steak. I’m not terribly fond of cattle. If you serve me a steak, I’m not going to ask if it came from a cow as long as it looks and tastes like steak. Now thanks to good old Florida legislators, I don’t have any need to think about anything, but enjoying that old cow.

    If you’re looking for a point, it’s that artificial meat has zero impact or import for me and probably not for most people. Why is it so necessary to waste legislative time and resources? Maybe Oprah Winfrey can tell us? If I recall she has some experience with the cattle industry.

  10. It is obvious! “What is wrong with these people?” is that THEY are the aliens, sliding down mtg’s space laser from Alpha Centauri. All their noise is projection, then. Does that simplify things, or what?

  11. I’m more concerned with the people who are buying the crazy than the people putting it out. They are the ones who are still supporting Trump and planning to vote for him yet again. They are the ones who rioted on Jan. 6th. They bought his Truth Social stock, bought his golden tennis shoes, and more recently bought his bible. They have guns, ammunition, and talk violence.
    Hard to believe that they are Americans.

  12. Hm, sounds like real-life scientists are finally catching up to some of my favorite science-fiction books of the 1950s. In “The Space Merchants”, Frederick Pohl and CK Kornbluth described, among other things, a nightmarish giant “Chicken Little” of vat-grown chicken tissue that supplied most of the protein for the population.
    Now if only some of our politicians could get their heads OUT of the 1950s.

  13. A couple of relevant points:



    Michael Sandel explains on TED the differences between a market economy (socialism & regulated capitalism) as we had and a market society (unregulated capitalism only) that we have.


    The Republican Party has suffered a hostile takeover because those who benefit most from wealth redistribution up advertise 24/7/365 to those who feel left behind that the past they remember fondly can be restored if they vote against Democrats. The advertising effectively replaces freedom for all with power for me.

  14. So now we have De Fascist telling us that lab meat is part of the left’s ideological agenda? False. Telling us what we can eat or wear or think is rather part of the right’s “ideological agenda” to be determined and defined by fruitcake politicians fearful of loss of dominance by the white right (to coin a phrase).

    If politicians rather than the “market” got to call the shots on research and development determined by an ancient sociological and religious worldview we would still be driving a horse and buggy and using kerosene lamps, if that, since we could well be still living in caves. We cannot legislate change in an open society, as our right wing fellow citizens will ultimately discover, hence their attempt to close the society on grounds of need for dominance of the power base, which will also fail since we are plainly and certainly headed for a multicultural society by every current measurement known to researchers.

  15. Thank you Sheila, Pete, and Herald for more explanatory ideas than attack words.
    If we keep attacking others we seem to be going low also.

  16. What’s wrong? They can be perfectly rational about some things like how to earn a college degree or plant a garden AND be completely irrational about other things like believing the Earth is flat and Jews have space lasers AND make the switch without being aware of it. Maybe we all do this to some extent but they just find it easier?

  17. And now Marjorie T Greene thinks the earthquake and eclipse are signs from God that America needs to repent. From what?….Woke? (Whatever the Hell that means!)
    Someone sit that lady down with a science book!

  18. Jim,
    Do you think Marjorie Trailer Queen knows how to Democrat?

    Nancy makes a good point about getting Democrats elected in rural areas. Had an interesting conversation with my son-in-law from Illinois while watching the eclipse. He lives in the rural/red part of the state and says that there are a lot of people like himself who desperately want to have the opportunity to vote for a Democrat, but are afraid to let that be known outside of the voting booth. In other words, threy want the anonymity of the voting process to protect themselves from the threats of the MAGA goons.

  19. CGH,
    Not a big fan of it either. When I was teaching I had a student named Devin who required frequent notes to his parents. Every time I was creating the note the auto correct changed “Devin” to “Devil.” Appropriate, but embarrassing.

  20. It is a real shame that something so essential to our very existence and our health is so poorly understood by most folks – food. The real issues are between sustainable and industrial agriculture, and between real food and ultra-processed ‘foods’ – not between plant foods and animal foods. The conversation on food has been hijacked, and most broadcasts and articles , such as the one quoted above, are based on false premises and narratives. Facts are in short supply.
    I am woke and vote blue, and am firmly against lab grown meat, for numerous nutritional, environmental, and ethical reason – the first two here being based on science, facts; and the third deriving from those facts.
    Some issues are not red or blue; and just because MAGAs may react in extreme ways to some development does not make their protest mistaken. I guessing their reasoning is probably mistaken, and I would not chose their course of action; but I also stand against lab grown ‘meat’.
    There are many resources to support this position.

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