Texas politicians are overwhelmingly Conservative and Republican, which as a liberal often makes me feel like an alien in my own state, despite being born and raised here. In looking at the candidates running for office in Texas, I stumbled upon some propaganda against them. Specifically, Wayne Christian and Todd Staples. Continue reading
Read this article:
By ALYSSA NEWCOMB
The cupcake empire Chloe Stirling built out of her home kitchen has come crumbling down after Illinois health officials said the sixth-grader wasn’t in compliance with local laws.
Chloe, 11, said she was told by health officials in Madison County, Ill., that if she wants to continue selling cupcakes she will need to buy a bakery or build a separate kitchen.
“It bummed me out because I wanted to keep baking,” Chloe told ABCNews.com. “I had a bunch of orders and they said I had to cancel them all.”
Stirling, who is in sixth grade, has operated “Hey Cupcake” out of her family’s kitchen in Troy, Ill., for the past two years. And it appears her success may have invited the scrutiny of regulators.
The cupcake mogul said she’s raked in some serious dough for a kid her age, charging $10 for a dozen cupcakes and $2 each for the more elaborate treats, such as cakes that look like high heel shoes.
“It felt good because with all my money I could buy stuff I wanted and didn’t have to wait until my birthday or Christmas,” Chloe said, adding that she was also saving money for a car.
Her mother, Heather Stirling, told ABCNews.com she’s meeting with officials from the health department and the state attorney next week in hopes of finding a way to help Chloe re-open Hey Cupcake.
“This is her niche. You have kids who are good at baseball and soccer and this is what they pursue,” Stirling said. “Chloe is one of a kind. No one else does this at her age. There are a lot of hoops we’re going to have to jump through.”
Toni Corona, a spokeswoman for the Madison County Department of Health, told ABCNews.com in a statement that the laws are “applied uniformly and without discrimination.”
She said the department “applauds the entrepreneurial spirit” of Chloe and “joins with her many fans in hoping she will find a location for her cupcake enterprise that complies with state laws.”
Do you see something missing in this article? How about any evidence that anyone was sickened by any of the products produced by this girl’s baking business?
Shutting down her business for failing to comply with state health regulations even with no complaint from customers about her products serves one purpose: Eliminating competition with the corporations that dominate our economy and both force people to work for them instead of working for themselves and force them to buy their products instead of creating their own. This is bullying of the worst sort and it goes against our legal standard of “innocent until proven guilty”. The State of Illinois and the officials of Madison County should be ashamed of themselves!
I sometimes do wish there was a hell, but I also think that hell could not be hot enough for some rank hypocrites out there! For example:
People have been screaming about the homophobic and racist comments made by one of the stars of the popular reality show Duck Dynasty.
One of the most hilarious videos I’ve ever seen is this:
In only 1 1/2 minutes, this caller spits out plenty of bullcrap. What is really ironic is that there is also so much bullcrap out there that is Republican party dogma, such as that President Obama is a Socialist, that socialism is bad for America, that Obamacare must be repealed, that ultra-high military spending is good for Americans instead of spending more on our infrastructure, and that keeping taxes low on the rich helps our economy. ALL of those claims are baseless too! So why tolerate any of it? Just because a lie is popular does not make it any less false!
Gerrymandering is the unethical process by which one party which is currently dominant in a state attempts to maintain its dominance by drawing districts for state legislators or Congressmen to favor that party and its candidates. It is the very antithesis of democracy, in which the people are to elect their leaders and representatives; instead, in gerrymandering, the representatives choose what people they want to have voting for them. This allows certain extremist nutcases like Rep. Michelle Bachmann to be elected over and over again without fear of losing their seats to a more moderate opposing candidate.
Illustrated in that Wikipedia entry are some particular examples of gerrymandering, but the most obvious one of all seems to be:
I have come up with an idea on how to identify gerrymandered districts.
Using the circle and the point indicating its center, I propose that any district that touches at least three points 45 degrees apart from each other and also contains the point at the center of the circle may be considered a fairly drawn district. By this test, the 4th Congressional District in Illinois would certainly not qualify. Nor would:
All those districts should be opposed. I would lobby for a bill to be passed by Congress and in every state legislature mandating my standard for all congressional and state legislative districts. I would also ask for the federal courts to intervene. Indeed, I would strongly recommend that only federal courts, not state legislatures, be allowed to draw districts. Otherwise, it is like the fox guarding the hen-house.
- COLUMN – Gerrymandering lies at the root of our political dysfunction (hollandsentinel.com)
- NBC: Time to End Gerrymandering So ‘Ridiculous’ Republicans Stop Getting Elected (newsbusters.org)
- The Difference Between Democratic Congressional Districts And Republican Ones In One Chart (businessinsider.com)
- Why do politicians gerrymander? (economist.com)
- A Visual Demonstration of the Absurdity of Gerrymandering (academeblog.org)
To Barack Obama, the President of the United States of America:
The Affordable Care Act is the LAW OF THE LAND, passed by both Houses of Congress (yes, even the Republican controlled House of Representatives), signed by you, and affirmed as constitutional by the U. S. Supreme Court. Therefore, attempts by Republicans in Congress to DEFUND what is federal law is criminal behavior, just as disobedience to any other law is criminal behavior. We should allow no exceptions here. By engaging in criminal behavior, the Republicans sitting in Congress, even going so far as to shut down the government rather allow what is federal law to be funded have forfeited their right to be representatives of the people, like anyone else who commits a federal crime. I call upon you, as the elected Chief Executive of the United States, to direct the Department of Justice to issue arrest warrants against every Republican in Congress and charge them all with CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT SEDITION! END THE GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN BY REMOVING THE ONES RESPONSIBLE FROM OFFICE NOW!
Dale Husband, the Honorable Skeptic
- Obama: ‘I will not give in to reckless demands’ (myfox8.com)
- US government shutdown: Barack Obama is presiding over the end of America’s superpower status (blogs.telegraph.co.uk)
- Barack Obama, Congressional leaders deadlock remains (dnaindia.com)
August 3, 2013
To the concerned citizens of the United States of America,
The Republicans in the House of Representatives have tried 40 times to repeal Obamacare and 39 times they have failed. They will always fail as long as the Democrats have a majority in the Senate and Obama, or any other Democrat, is President. So why do they bother? If anyone else was caught wasting as much time at their jobs as the Republicans have, they would be fired. So the obvious solution is to vote at least some of the Republicans out of the House next year.
The truth is that the Republicans are living on borrowed time. It is a given that they will never capture the Presidency again; George W. Bush will be the last Republican ever to hold it. But once Obamacare is fully implemented and its benefits become obvious, the insane opposition the Republicans have shown to it will cause them to never be able to hold a majority in either chamber of Congress and their status as a major party in the United States will be finished.
If you really want limited government, vote for Libertarians. Most of them are not hypocrites. They are indeed the only true followers of the U S Constitution left. No, not even the “Tea Party” bigots among Republicans. The Tea Party was just another right-wing scam to get votes from people who were scared out of their wits by the election of a black man to the Presidency. Ironically, I think Obama has not been liberal enough and that we need to push government even more to the left over the next few decades.
Indeed, if we were true to the ideals of the Declaration of Independence (“we hold there truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…..”) there would be absolutely NO place in American politics for Conservatism. Why? Because Conservatism by its very nature is based on trying to maintain some sort of social inequality; some traditionally privileged class seeking to maintain its exalted status as opposed to some other disadvantaged class. It could be rich vs. poor, whites vs. blacks, men vs. women, Christians vs. non-Christians, or heterosexuals vs. homosexuals. Conservatism works by constantly appealing to the irrational prejudices of those who are in power and seek to keep the power to themselves rather than share power with those who do not have it. Both the Democrats in the late 19th Century and the Republicans in the late 20th Century to today were infested by Conservatism.
The Republicans today have caved in so deeply to bigotry that they are not even capable of representing the real needs of the people anymore; they are controlled by giant corporations that have been holding most of our economy hostage for decades and own media outlets like FOX News to lie to the American people constantly. These same corporations that outsourced so much of our manufacturing to China, but blame illegal immigrants for taking jobs from real Americans. Those same corporations that make vast profits from wars overseas and a military budget at least six times greater than that of any other nation while causing us to drown in public debt. Hypocrites! They are the real parasites and traitors to our nation, not welfare recipients or those who dare to blow the whistle on the corruption and abuses of our government!
So let us destroy the Republican Party! The madness must end!
Dale Husband, the Honorable Skeptic
1. Since both the victim and the defendant in the case were male, why was there an all female jury? How is that different from an all-white jury judging a black person having killed another black person?
2. It does not matter who attacked whom first, the fact remains that Treyvon Martin was unarmed and George Zimmerman had a gun, giving him an overwhelming advantage. The fact that Martin was shot in the heart shows that Zimmerman meant to kill him, rather than merely disable him to stop the fight. He should have been convicted of manslaughter, at least.
3. “Stand your ground” laws might as well be called “permission to use violence as a first option rather than a last resort”. What do we call societies in which that is commonly accepted? Barbaric anarchies, which America should be anything but!
4. The jury probably did not want to convict Zimmerman of anything because doing so would have been a virtual death sentence for him. He’d go to a prison, and prisons across the USA are known to have a disproportionate number of African-American men, most of whom would be more than happy to kill Zimmerman. A possible solution would have been to sentence Zimmerman to house arrest for many years instead of prison. Indeed, why not sentence most convicted felons to house arrest instead of prison?
5. Neighborhood watch groups are supposed to call the police and alert them to possible crimes being committed as they occur, not take the law into their own hands like Zimmerman clearly did!
6. I was just as outraged when O. J. Simpson was found not guilty of those murder charges he faced. It makes NO difference to me whether a person of any race gets off after killing a person of any race.
7. Treyvon Martin’s family could still sue Zimmerman for wrongful death of the victim. Unlike criminal trials where the prosecution is expected to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt, civil court cases are decided based on how much the evidence is weighed on each side. By that standard, Zimmerman should lose badly, just as O J Simpson did.
- Treyvon Martin Killed In Cold Blood (charliehustl.wordpress.com)
- The George Zimmerman Treyvon Martin Debacle (waterstreet-press.com)
- Treyvon Martin Case Verdict…. Where is This World Headed? (theadventuresofprincesssophia.wordpress.com)
In the end, Sanford won by nine points, 54 percent to 45 percent, according to the Associated Press’s tally.
In remarks at a victory rally Tuesday night, Sanford tipped his cap to Colbert Busch and her team for a “well-run race.” But the campaign, he said, “was based on two very different ideas on what ought to come next in Washington.”
Sanford also sounded a spiritual note in his address, thanking “god’s role in all of this,” and calling himself an “imperfect man” who was “saved by god’s grace.”
Oh sure, involve God’s grace and you can recover from anything, even things that should guarantee that you never hold public office again! Blasphemous prick!
This is the home state of pro-slavery advocate John C. Calhoun, who threatened to lead his state in a secession from the Union in the 1830s. This is the state that actually was the first to secede from the Union in 1860, starting the Civil War. This is the state that was the home of racist hypocrite Strom Thurmond. This is the state that has now taken back another hypocrite. Ethics and honor mean nothing to the people of this state, it seems. All they care about is being bigoted against non-whites and liberals. After nearly 200 years of arrogance and stupidity, they have learned NOTHING!
Maybe we should EXPEL South Carolina from the Union now?
The right of the people to bear arms, as stated in the Second Amendment, does not mean any idiot should be allowed to have a deadly weapon, just as one that is an incompetent driver should not have a driver’s license. At least cars can be used for things that do not hurt anyone, unlike guns.
Wife accidentally kills husband during gun lesson: Police
Check out this nonsense on the official U.S. Libertarian Party website. I will post the original statements in red and my responses in green.
Tuesday, January 1, 2013
A Libertarian’s New Year’s Resolutions
Last week, the people of the United States dodged a bullet by re-electing Barack Obama to the Presidency rather than accept a hypocritical plutocrat as his successor. Also, some of the strongest advocates for social Conservatism among Republicans went down to defeat in many races. At least two states legalized gay marriage by popular vote, something unheard of until this year, and also marijuana for medicinal and/or recreational purposes was legalized in several states.
And next year it will get even more hilarious to behold, because somehow the Republicans, despise losing several seats in the House of Representatives, still held on to control of that body. And they are about to face a most upsetting challenge.
Puerto Ricans favor statehood for first time
(CNN) — In an overshadowed Election Day contest, Puerto Ricans voted in favor of statehood in a nonbinding referendum, marking the first time such an initiative garnered a majority.
Puerto Ricans were asked about their desires in two parts. First, by a 54% to 46% margin, voters rejected their current status as a U.S. commonwealth. In a separate question, 61% chose statehood as the alternative, compared with 33% for the semi-autonomous “sovereign free association” and 6% for outright independence.
While the results may be an indicator of what Puerto Ricans want, statehood will not be possible without congressional action in Washington, something that is not guaranteed.
Indeed, given their dwindling power in society, the Republicans that still dominate the House may decide to reject Puerto Rico’s bid for statehood, because as a state it is most likely to send two Democratic Senators and several Democratic Representatives to Congress. But if they do this, it will only enrage millions of Hispanic voters all across America. They are already rejecting the Republican Party by a wide margin because of the illegal immigration issue and this will only harden their rejection. The result may be the Republicans finally losing control of the House in 2014. Then when Puerto Rico DOES become a state and sends those additional Democrats to Congress (and can also cast electoral votes in the 2016 Presidental election) then politically the Republicans will be finished as a viable party.
I can hardly wait to see them go down!
A friend of mine, Michelle Parsneau, made the following extraordinary public statement about the issue of gay marriage:
For all those who talk about “traditional marriage based on the Bible”…
Now would that be Abraham and Sarah (half siblings), Jacob, Rachel and Leah, (not only bigamy but also cousins), David who loved Jonathan “better than any woman” and had multiple wives, or Solomon with his 300 wives and 900 concubines, or the one where a raped virgin is now ‘married’ to her rapist? Biblical marriage has never been one kind only, nor are all of them particularly just constructs.
At the end of the day, a marriage in the U.S. is a legal, civil contract. We only give pastors and religious leaders the courtesy of having the power to perform those ceremonies with legal binding. Preventing two adults from entering into that contract of their own accord based on gender is discrimination, and is not Constitutional, nor is it an American value.
In Minnesota, gay/lesbian marriage is currently illegal already. Can’t bring yourself to vote NO on the amendment? Then, I respectfully ask that you refrain from voting on that issue, as it is only mean spirited and discriminatory to vote for it. Utilizing empathy would be a good way to evaluate this issue.
I want to live in a country and a state that practices full equality as well as freedom of and from religion. Nothing in the idea of gay/lesbian marriage will force people of any religious faith to do anything against their faith. Concerned that pastors and clergy people will be forced to perform marriages they don’t agree with? Get over yourself. They aren’t forced to perform marriages for anyone they don’t like now. How do I know? A narrow-minded pastor who didn’t like what he thought were weaknesses in Kevin and my faith refused to marry us. Of course, he was wrong and 15 years has pretty concretely proven that one. Am I saying that religious leaders can be wrong? Um, hell yes I am. They are just as human as the rest of us.
I want that statement to be seen everywhere!
George McGovern, the liberal Democratic Senator who ran for President of the United States in 1972 and ended up losing badly to Richard Nixon, died on October 21, 2012. Two days later, a blog entry was written about him. But is also revealing about the conservative mindset that defeated McGovern and has been a problem for liberals ever since.
I grew up in a family of conservative Democrats who were increasingly at odds with their party, and who mostly abandoned it on election day in November of 1972 to vote for Nixon. They voted for the crook: it was important. None of them liked McGovern’s politics, a dislike that overshadowed anything they felt about him as a man. His personality was lost in the distaste for his political positions.
Indeed, most of the former supporters of Democrats among southern whites would eventually become Republicans. As many of them might have said, “I did not leave the party, the party left me.” But that was because racism is wrong and should have been abandoned in the 1970s by any person with a sense of right and wrong. The stubborn opposition among Conservatives to Barack Obama to this day seems to stem from a racism that is no longer openly expressed by many of them but is still simmering just beneath the surface.
But there were two things that later rehabilitated him in my mind, and brought me to an appreciation of him that has stayed with me ever since. The first was seeing him speak when I was in college. He co-taught a class at the University of California, Santa Barbara in the early 1980′s. As part of that class he gave a lecture at Campbell Hall which my girlfriend (who was later to become my wife) and I went to see. The stereotypes that I had formed over the years were exploded when I saw a man who was incredibly intelligent, witty, and well-informed. This was not the political demon I had been raised to revile. We attended a number of lectures during my junior and senior years, and the three that stood out as truly outstanding were those by Gore Vidal, William F. Buckley, Jr., and George McGovern.
Indeed, ignorance and dishonesty seems to fuel both support for Conservative politics and condemnation of Liberalism.
The 35 missions that George McGovern flew were the maximum number a pilot could fly. After 35, you were done: They sent you home. Very few reached that number. When I read this, I thought back on his opposition to the Vietnam War, a position I strongly disagreed with as a very confident but fairly ignorant adolescent. It took on a completely different color. A man who flew 35 missions in a B-24 over Germany, I concluded, has won the right to say anything he wants to about war and he has earned the right to be listened to.
I would also add that in 2004 the same could have been said about Sen. John Kerry and his opposition to the Iraq War, having fought himself in the Vietnam War. And yet Kerry lost that election for the same reason McGovern lost in 1972: political bigotry and lies by Conservatives.
I have said before that the problem with liberals is not that they’re evil; the problem is that they are good, too good. They are so good they are a danger to themselves and others. As a true liberal, McGovern possessed the fault characteristic of his political tribe: he projected his goodness onto his fellow men and assumed that they would what he would do under the same circumstances.
I would answer that the problem with Conservatives is not that they are evil either, but that they are cynical: taking the corruption of mankind as a given, they assume that the only way to defeat their opponents is to embrace the corruption and use it to their advantage against those who are consistently honorable, perpetuating the cycle of abuse to the next generation instead of trying to make things better for all of us.
We forgive dead men for their badness. Can we forgive them for their goodness?
I do not want your forgiveness for liberals, sir! I want you to recognize that just as you were wrong about McGovern in the past, you are wrong about liberals even now and that the conservative perspective should be abandoned completely. Even Jesus himself would have expected you to return good for evil, as he taught, but that lesson has been totally lost on conservatives throughout history!
- George McGovern hailed as a man of principle – Boston Herald (news.bostonherald.com)
- George McGovern: A Conservative’s Appreciation (conservativeread.com)
To be honest, I did not watch for very long the Presidential debate last night, because I was quite sure I would only hear what I’d already heard a great many times from reading Facebook posts and articles in news sources, hearing personal comments from friends and relatives and seeing political ads on TV. Five minutes of the debate was all I could stand, because Obama compared his economy policies to that of President Clinton before him, which I already knew about. Neither candidate impressed me much.
I was therefore surprised to learn afterwards that most people thought Romney won the debate because he was more aggressive and charismatic than Obama, never mind that before Obama became President he was known for being quite charismatic. So what happened?
I could not care less how slick a person’s presentation may look or sound if it is full of nonsense or lies. You win a debate, in my view, by doing two things: Telling the truth consistently, and having a position that treats fairly the most people possible. And by that criteria, Obama is the superior candidate. If people vote for Romney and not Obama because one of them is better at the gift of gab, why not just elect someone like Hitler, who was one of the most dynamic speakers of the 20th Century?
- Winners and losers from the first presidential debate (washingtonpost.com)
- His Smile Said It All… (msdrocks.wordpress.com)
- Denver debate is a presidential wonkfest, send in the fact checkers (denverpost.com)
- The 10 Best Punchlines from the First Presidential Debate (complex.com)
- Lynn Parramore: Why the Pundits are Wrong About the Debate (huffingtonpost.com)
There are two types of corruption in society: direct and indirect.
Direct corruption is when someone engages in unethical actions to make a gain for himself. An example is a public official taking funds that were paid to the government in taxes and embezzling the money to make himself rich.
Indirect corruption is when someone enables the corrupt acts of someone else by not taking action against the other person or, even worse, taking action against anyone who tries to stop the direct corruption. Like a Catholic bishop who may never molest children himself, but upon learning that a priest under his jurisdiction has done that, he simply moves that priest to a different church and digs up dirt on the accusers of the priest to try to blackmail them. It is easier to do that than do the honorable thing, because the entire system is corrupted and removing all the corrupt members would make it fall apart.
Of course, one might argue that both types of corruption are equally bad. Indeed, if there were no examples of the indirect kind, the direct kind would not be able to do as much damage as it has. Therefore, we must have zero tolerance for either kind. A system with both direct and indirect corruption for too long will eventually rot from within and will have to be torn down anyway.
While the Democrats are firmly united under President Barack Obama, the Republican Party has been badly split among its Presidental candidates. After some of the loonier and less competent candidates have quit, there remain:
- Mitt Romney, a moderate with a genuine track record of success, but also a Mormon.
- Rick Santorum, an extremist appealing to the Religious Right bigots
- Newt Gingrinch, whose instant name recognition and deep well of experience is marred by his hypocrisy and public failures.
- Ron Paul, who professes libertarianism and a strict Constructionist view of the U S Constitution, but he is just too old to be a viable President. His son Rand Paul is a Senator and he might run for President later, and he is indentified with the Tea Party zealots.
Notice what all these current front runners have in common? THEY ARE ALL WHITE MEN! And that is really all the Republicans are appealing to these days, as well as Christian bigots. And these different candidates are engaged in a brutal fight for the nomination that is splitting the party up.
Four years ago, there was a simular fight between Hiliary Clinton and Barack Obama. Hiliary had a slight advantage because of her previous position as First Lady, while Obama was still only serving his first term as a Senator, so by all appearances Hiliary should have trounced Obama quickly. But in fact she did not, because blacks were so eagar to get one of their own as President that they pushed hard for him. Likewise, women wanting one of their own as President pushed hard for Hiliary. Blacks and liberal women are two of the Democratic Party’s strongest constituencies. The result was a battle that lasted for months and threated to severely damage the Democrats’ chances at winning in 2008. And yet in the end the Democrats were so determined to defeat the Republicans who had disgraced themselves so badly under Bush Jr that they were able to put aside their differences and win the election.
So why can’t the Republicans do the same and thus win this year? Because the differences between the front-runners are trivial compared to their simularities, yet they fight bitterly. In addition, all of them are appealing to a core constituency, white males, who are no longer the overwhelmingly dominant segment of the American population, even though they are still slightly more privileged than those who are non-white and/or female. The fact that John McCain lost in 2008 to Obama should have showed the futility of continuing to appeal to a base that is growing impotent. But the Republicans have not learned how to grow and diversify, have they?
So keep losing, Republicans! In a few more decades your party will be irrelevant! Like the Ku Klux Klan is now.
- A growing enthusiasm gap on the right? (midwestaholic.wordpress.com)
- MSNBC/Wall Street Journal Poll: Republican Party and Its Presidential Candidates Hurt by Primary Season as Obama Rises (themoderatevoice.com)
- Ohio voters remain angry about Republican attacks on unions (dailykos.com)
Conservative media activist and trickster Andrew Breitbart died today at the age of 43. As far as I’m concerned, that was simply justice after all the contemptible lies he told using media manipulation to advance his right-wing agenda, which I see as itself dishonorable. He was even responsible for the unjustified downfall of ACORN shortly after Barack Obama became President, which ACORN had helped get elected.
I think we need to do what we can to either reestablish ACORN or replace it with a simular organization. I only regret that Breitbart will not live to see that happen. But there are plenty of other Republican bigots out there we can seek to punish! Their day of reckoning will come if we just have enough backbone to go after them and make them pay!
- Andrew Breitbart Confronts Occupy Crowd At CPAC, Demands They ‘Stop Raping People’ (mediaite.com)
- Say It Ain’t So! – Andrew Breitbart Loses It At Occupy Protesters (occupycyberspace.wordpress.com)
- Andrew Breitbart Goes to War against the left and its “Divide and Conquer” strategy (erickbrockway.com)
- Andrew Breitbart On Dinner With Bill Ayers: He’s ‘A Sociopath’ But A Great Chef (mediaite.com)
During the television broadcast of this years SuperBowl, former Congressman Pete Hoekstra had the gall to put out a ridiculous commercial attacking his opponent in the 2012 U. S. Senate race, Debbie Stabenow. It has since been removed from Hoekstra’s YouTube account.
Fortunately, another person made a copy of that video with an explanation for how stupid it really was:
Feel free to comment there.
Indeed, Republicans have actually been the biggest “spend it now” lunatics since Reagan was President. We had a chance to start paying off the U. S. public debt under Clinton, but Bush Jr ruined it with his absurd tax cuts for the rich! Pete Hoekstra is a LIAR!
Oh, and when he was a Congressman, and even Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, he committed some blunders which should have got him removed from that Committee, if not expelled from Congress outright!
Don’t allow this bastard to come anywhere near the U. S. Senate! We already had a disgusting racist, Jesse Helms, in the Senate for decades. We don’t need another!
The structure of the United Nations (UN) reflects the political realities shortly after World War II. Since that war ended nearly three generations ago, it’s time for a change in the UN, starting with its Security Council. Until such reforms are made, it will only be a laughingstock for decades to come.
There are five permanent members of that Council: The United States, Russia, France, Great Britain, and China. These have veto power over all Council decisions. I would recommend that the veto power within the Council be done away with; it only makes paralysis of the Council more likely than not. I would also recommend that Germany, Japan, India, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and Brazil be made permanent members of the Council, with at least 20 others subject to election. The number of nations on the Security Council must always be a prime number to prevent tie votes. Only the UN Secretary-General could veto a UN resolution, but his veto could still be overridden by a two-thirds majority vote of the Security Council. In any case, no single nation should have the power to veto a resolution, because as the chart above shows, the Soviet Union abused that power more than any other nation in the early years of the UN. One wonders how many innocent people died in wars or armed uprisings of one kind or another because of this.
- Reforming the UN Security Council? ¡Ay Dios Mio! (diplomaticscrutiny.com)
- Russia to veto Western-backed SC resolution on Syria (laaska.wordpress.com)
Liberty means nothing if you are starving, homeless and in rags. Remember that when some right-wing bigot shrieks about socialists taking away your rights. Since socialism is an ECONOMIC policy, it cannot take away ANY rights as defined in the U S Consitution. But a government under FASCISM will! Fascists WILL leave you to starve so you will give up your liberty; socialists will not!
As much as I support the Occupy Wall Street protests and similar movements in America and even around the world, I do have my limits of tolerance to the tactics of protesters. I thought, for example, that Jane Fonda should have been charged with treason for her meeting with the North Vietnamese as a way of protesting America’s involvement in the Vietnam War.
But at least she was classy about it. These women in Ukraine were not!
Mitt Romney is shaping up to be the Republican front-runner for President. By all accounts and
appearances, he should be the ideal President candidate for conservatives: he is a successful businessman, he managed the state of Massachusetts as governor according to consistent conservative principles, and he even managed the Salt Lake City winter Olympics, making it a huge success.
There’s just one problem: he is a Mormon. And for members of the Religious Right, which is dominated by orthodox Christians, that can be a stumbling block. Of course, it would have been better for the credibility of the conservatives if they had never included the Religious Right; using religious matters to judge people and policies in our government violates the spirit if not the letter of church-state separation.
When I was a Baptist, there was a film shown at my church titled “The God Makers” which depicted Mormonism as a cult infested with pagan elements. This is ironic; Jews could say similar things about Christianity itself. Today, having rejected Christianity, I find those arguments about Mormonism pointless, but I do have my own reasons to oppose any political influence the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints may have:
Racism, homophobia, and whatever other forms of bigotry the Mormon Church may endorse should be eradicated from secular politics in America. Nobody who would take the Book of Mormon seriously as scripture should be trusted to run the world’s most powerful democracy. We should have some standards for truth, logic, and ethics from our leaders. Thus, I will never vote for a Mormon for President, even if he was not a Republican.
Imagine my shock when I read this:
Man catches 881-pound tuna, seized by feds
A Massachusetts fisherman pulled in an 881-pound tuna this week only to have the federal authorities take it away. It sounds like a libertarian twist on the classic novella by Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea, but for Carlos Rafael, the saga is completely true.
Rafael and his crew were using nets to catch bottom-dwellers when they inadvertently snagged the giant tuna. However, federal fishery enforcement agents took control of the behemoth when the boat returned to port. The reason for the seizure was procedural: While Rafael had the appropriate permits, fishermen are only allowed to catch tuna with a rod and reel.
It would seem that unlike the fictional New England shark hunters in Jaws, Rafael didn’t need a bigger boat, just a better permit.
In an interview with the Standard-Times of New Bedford, Rafael disputes the claims from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) enforcement division that the humungous tuna was trawled from the bottom of the Atlantic. “They didn’t catch that fish on the bottom,” he said. “They probably got it in the mid-water when they were setting out and it just got corralled in the net. That only happens once in a blue moon.”
And while Rafael is denied the mother of all fish stories, the federal impoundment of his catch also means he’s probably losing out on a giant payday. A 754-pound tuna recently sold for nearly $396,000. NOAA regulators do not share any of the proceeds from the fish’s eventual sale with a fisherman found in violation of federal rules.
“They said it had to be caught with rod and reel,” a frustrated Rafael said. “We didn’t try to hide anything. We did everything by the book. Nobody ever told me we couldn’t catch it with a net.”
Rafael says he has meticulously prepared for a giant catch like this, purchasing 15 tuna permits over the past four years for his groundfish boats. He even immediately called a “bluefin tuna hot line” (yes, such things exist) to report his catch. “I wanted to sell the fish while it was fresh instead of letting it age on the boat,” he said. “It was a beautiful fish.”
Proceeds of the sale from the fish will be held in an account until the case is resolved, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Office of Law Enforcement. “The matter is still under investigation,” said Monica Allen, deputy director with NOAA Fisheries public affairs. “If it’s determined that there has been a violation, the money will go into the asset forfeiture fund.”
This is insane! The only reason to restrict fishing procedures is if they are making fish or other water organisms in danger of extinction. Is there ANY evidence that tuna is endangered? That wasn’t even mentioned in the article above.
Give the man back his fish, NOAA, and don’t ever pull such a despicable stunt again!
Take a look at this video:
There are several issues here that the video does not address.
First, Islamic immigrants who come to a Western nation tend to be more moderate in their views even upon arrival, and their children and grandchildren may become even more liberal in turn. The only reason why some Muslims may become radicalized later is because they are treated as second-class citizens in a country they were born in because they are Muslim.
Second, immigrants are allowed into a European country because its native population is falling or not growing fast enough already, and such a situation results in workers becoming more valued for their labor, thus labor movements become stronger and workers’ wages will increase, making it harder for business owners to get extremely rich. To counter this, corporations that dominate an industry will seek to increase the workers’ population through encouraging immigration. But doing this means introducing new people with different cultures. And this is a problem? Only for bigots.
Third, European nations seemed to have no problem invading and taking over Islamic parts of the world in the past. In particular, France not only conquered areas like Algeria and Tunisia, it legally made Algeria a part of France, not just a colony, and the Algerians had to fight long and hard to throw off French rule.
Note that immigration of Latinos to the United States is also mentioned in the video. Bigotry against Hispanic culture also fuels immigration restrictions in the USA. Also, the USA conquered and still holds land once controlled by Mexico.
You cannot take in millions of people to lower workers’ value, then turn around and scream about those workers being different from you. That sort of crock needs to be put down.
If you expel the Muslims from Europe, then the workers remaining will demand greater wages because there are fewer of them. Are you prepared to pay them more?
If you keep the Muslims in Europe, then treat them as equals, and accept that your demographics will change.
Also, people raised in Muslim families do not necessarily stay Muslim forever. There are plenty of former Muslims:
Need I also mention that the idea that a culture will die out because its population growth drops and reverses itself is bull$#it? You can have a culture evolving and prospering no matter what the size of the families that make it up. You just pass on that culture to the fewer children you have, period.
It has occurred to me that giving letter grades to students in school is a form of rating some better than others that has nothing to do with whether they are successful or not. If the lowest passing grade is a D-, then a student who gets that grade will still pass, just as much as one who gets an A+. So why bother with such grades at all?
I would propose instead that all students be allowed only TWO levels of achievement: P (pass) or F (fail) and that in order to pass, they must score at least 90% on all tests in a certain subject. That’s right; the grade you end up with will be the LOWEST score you make on a test in a six week period. So if you score an 89 on one test, you still fail for that whole period. At the end of a school year, if you fail in a single six week period, you fail the entire course.
Another reform I would make would be to stop graduating students from high school after they complete 12th grade. Instead, I think the various levels in school should be:
Elementary school: Level I through Level V (I’m using Roman numerals for the various levels),
Middle school: Level VI though X,
High school: Level XI though Level XV.
with “college” or “university” levels eliminated because they will be integrated with the high school levels.
For example, in math, basic arithmetic could be Levels I and II, algebra could be Level III or IV, and calculus could be Level X or XI. Similar designations would be made for other subjects.
A student who fails a level would be forced in the next year to retake the course(s) he failed, without exception. Thus if he was at Level II, he would remain at that level until he passes all his Level II courses. Thus, there might be children well past puberty that would still be in elementary school. Students who have finished elementary school but not yet reached middle school may leave school, though their job prospects would be limited. The same is true for students that have finished middle school but not yet reached high school.
ROTE LEARNING MUST BE BANNED! Instead, children of all ages should be expected to express creativity and critical thinking by writing the answers to their tests in essay form, not merely marking “true” or “false” to a question or answering a multiple choice question in which it is possible to get the right answer by accident or by cheating! By causing children to take controversial positions and defend them before their peers, they may soon learn that many things they assumed were absolutely true from their parents and others are not necessarily so.
Here are a series of illustrations I have made to demonstrate why capitalist economies that are supposed to be free markets inevitably degenerate into fascist-corporatist tyrannies that deprive the people of freedom of choice in the end.
Stage one: Here is a free market economy represented by dozens of small circles, each circle representing a small business. Of course, some of them are more successful than others, but no single business dominates the industry and there is plenty of competition. Note that three such businesses have been singled out and designated “A”, “B”, and “C”.
Stage two: After a period of time, many of the small businesses have collapsed and the remaining ones have tended to grow larger and more powerful. Companies “A” and “B” have merged and this soon enables the new company “AB” to becomes more powerful still, and it begins to crush its competitors.
Stage three: Another generation or so has passed. Now companies “AB” and “C” have merged together, forming an even more powerful union. Meanwhile, the forces of competition have served to eliminate most of the smaller companies we saw earlier. However, a new company, named “D” has been established, showing that at this time there is still room for innovation and diversity, which is the essence of freedom.
Stage four: Sadly, company “D” isn’t able to last long, and it is soon bought out and taken over, resulting in company “ABCD”, so powerful that it eventually forms a virtual monopoly, and other companies are at a total disadvantage and will never have a chance to rival what ABCD has gained.
There are four lies that “free market” advocates tell that need to be slammed down.
First, they claim that in a free market it would be a simple matter for people dissatisfied with a company to start and run one of their own. But in the present American system, the vast majority of new businesses that are established fail within a few years. The reason is simple: the already established and larger companies are always able to take advantage of their larger capital and the fact that people are already familiar with them to crush their new and smaller competition.
Second, it is not government action that creates corporatism out of free market economies. Rather, it is the already formed corporatism that prompts government to prop up failing giant corporations due to a recession. Why? Because if those corporations go out of business, millions of people would be thrown out of work, reducing economic activity further. That’s exactly why both Presidents Bush Jr and Obama chose to endorse corporate bailouts; if they had not, we would most likely be in a Second Great Depression now with even less competition than before as bankrupt companies are bought and taken over by bigger ones. A better policy would have been for government to prevent those corporations from growing so big in the first place……but then we wouldn’t have a free market.
Third, socialism or communism as envisioned by Karl Marx was not supposed to be a one-man dictatorship. Stalin and many of those who came after him were responsible for that perversion, not Marx himself. In reality, Marx wanted a collective rule that would actually be more like a democracy, with the workers (which he assumed would be the vast majority in any industrial economy) ruling through elections in both the government and the corporations. This was what would later make possible the gradual dissolving of the state leaving only the worker run companies. The reason “Communism” failed was because after the death of Lenin in 1924, real Communism was never tried. No one-man totalitarian state can be rightfully called Communist or Socialist. It’s Fascism instead!
Fourth, the whole point of democratic socialist, liberal, or progressive politics in industrialized countries is to prevent a disruptive revolution by the workers against the capitalists by gradually making reforms to keep the workers happy. By opposing them, Conservatives like Presidents Reagan and both Bushes, along with their Republican allies in Congress, were setting the stage for the actual long-term downfall of America through their idiotic short sighted policies to disempower labor unions and deregulate Big Business. This in turn, will actually INCREASE the likelihood of a real Communist revolution later! The repeated cycles of economic surges (which enrich those who are already wealthy) followed by recessions (which hurt the middle and working classes the most) can only weaken capitalism until it falls. The outsourcing of manufacturing by American companies to other countries like China for their cheap labor only delays this gradual breakdown, while threatening the independence of America. China’s lax labor, safety and trade policies have resulted in a great many inferior products being shipped over here. Meanwhile, millions of Americans can no longer get manufacturing jobs and end up with lower paying ones, locking them into dependence on Chinese goods. Thus American consumers are forced to keep buying the Chinese made products when they wear out.
Wake up, Americans! We need liberalism, socialism, and progressivism NOW. Free markets in a strict sense are a dream, never a reality that we can have forever.
Professor of History Juan Cole has written “10 Ways Arab Democracies Can Avoid American Mistakes“, in reference to the recent revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt. Let’s look at each of his suggestions, which will be in red, and my responses will be in blue.