Tuesday, January 18, 2011 Open Thread

As promised, an open thread for all of you to use as you see fit. You can post a new topic, continue a conversation that you were having on the last thread (because I know that it becomes a pain to continue scrolling down to resume the conversation and it also slows way down in loading the longer the thread gets), or even write an article that you want to post. Once I have recovered from my surgery I will be back at writing all the things that either delight or infuriate you! In the mean time you will just have to infuriate each other! But remember to keep it fairly civil as we discuss our differences with respect. I am also going to add a cartoon or two each day. These have no other purpose than to chuckle at. They are nothing more than cartoons that I saw at some point and never used.

.

Advertisements

Comments

  1. I sure hope you feel better soon!

  2. Ray Hawkins says:

    Its too quiet in here…

    Beck’s Incendiary Rhetoric Has Motivated Threats, Assassination Attempts

    “During an interview on MSNBC’s Hardball, Media Matters President and CEO David Brock accused Glenn Beck of being “responsible for three thwarted assassination attempts this year.” Indeed, in each of the three examples Brock cited — Gregory Giusti, Charles Wilson, and Byron Williams — the incendiary and often violent rhetoric spewed by the Fox News host and elsewhere on the network was said to be a motivating factor, if not the inspiring factor, in the men’s actions.”

    http://mediamatters.org/research/201101130002

    Most of the references I checked looked very good. Maybe the FBI should consider arresting Glenn Beck? Thoughts?

    • No, Ray,

      If I shout fire in a crowed theater and people get trampled to death, it’s their fault for reacting the way they did. I was just being a rodeo clown.

      Obviously.

      I agree.. it’s quiet.. too quiet. Let’s see if we can’t stir things up a little. 🙂

      • Mathius,

        Not true.

        You violated the terms of your contract with the theater owner – that is, in trade you were to enjoy the show provided and not provide a distraction or disruption to others.

        • Yes. True. I violated the terms of my agreement with the theater owners. If it is explicitly laid out, I may owe the theater owners some fine or penalty, or be banned from future attendance. That does not make me responsible for any actions performed by others as a response to my words, however.

          Words are just words. Only actions matter. I didn’t trample anyone to death – other people did that and they should be held responsible. And trampling each other to get to the exits is clearly an irrational behavior.

          So are you arguing that I am responsible for the irrational behavior of other people because my speech might have inspired a mindset where they behaved in a dangerous and potentially lethal way?

    • My thoughts? That is one of the most absurd accusations I have ever heard.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        @Terry – did you read the article and any references?

        • I did read the article. The accusation is built on assumptions and statements taken out of context…SURPRISE! If you have ever watched the man, he preaches PEACEFUL resolution of issues. If his pointing out possible problems with the government leads some crazy person to vilolence, then IMO, he is not culpable.

          • Nicely put.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            @Terry – peaceful resolution of issues?

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              More…..peaceful resolution of issues

              • Again, do you watch the man, or do you pull selected tidbits of information with a slanted view to attempt to illustrate your point?

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                @Terry – so you are arguing that his words are peaceful?

              • Ray…watch him sometime. I have never walked away from one of his shows thinking that “Wow, now I need to shoot someone!” He pounds the peaceful solutions drum.

                I don’t watch him as much as I used to, but enough to know that a hate monger he is not.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                Terry – I’m not able to normally watch his show – I frequently catch him on the radio – like the recent show where he took potshots at Philly (said some rather nasty things actually). Understand the backstory is that 1210 AM recently dropped him and now he’s pissed. I’m just shocked he didn’t start blubbering and crying.

              • OK, I get it. You don’t like the man so you will accept anything negative about him as gospel. I know how you feel, I suppose I am the same about the POTUS…the Senate Majority leader, the House Minority leader, and many others.

    • Good Morning Ray,

      Is it possible that a few paople got pissed off because of what Beck had said? Sure is. Beck is a media hack. Should he be arrested? Only if it can be proven, as the article stated, that he is “casting spells” 😆

    • Time magazine asked a panel of 16 experts to answer the question “Are We Becoming An Uncivil Society?” While Time’s selected Republicans and conservatives (including Glenn Beck) stayed civil and didn’t point explicit fingers at liberals for trying to smear the Tucson shooting on conservatives, leftist Daily Kos blogger Markos Moulitsas rudely predicted (again) that one side of the aisle, inspired by people like Beck, Sarah Palin, and Sharron Angle were going to get Americans killed:

      We have always been an uncivil society. Just ask John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. But being harsh and passionate in one’s political discourse isn’t the same as walking around with guns intimidating the opposition, or using apocalyptic and Armageddon-style rhetoric to paint your opponents as terrorists and enemies of democracy and freedom. Problem is, we now have a side that is gun-obsessed, whipping people up into a frenzy with lies about Obama taking their guns away and interning conservatives in FEMA concentration camps (to name just two conspiracy theories).

      When Sarah Palin tells her followers not to retreat, but to “reload,” when Sharron Angle says people should resort to “Second Amendment remedies” if they don’t get their way at the ballot box, and when Glenn Beck spreads the latest insane conspiracy theory, well then, it’s only a matter of time before people start getting killed.

      This is not an April Fools’ Day joke. Time invited Markos Moulitsas to speak of civility in a civil tone. Were they shocked he just kept frantically slinging mud? Is the Kos Kommandant incapable of decorum even as his bete noire Beck accomplishes it?

      Fox News host Glenn Beck didn’t say one discouraging word about the left in his submission to Time, even as he praised the country : “The fact that a vast majority of our society is miraculously civil might not make for exciting headlines, but it’s absolutely true. I think that if you asked Adams or Jefferson to compare the discourse of today to the campaign of 1800, they’d be amazed at how civil we are.”

      Read more: http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/tim-graham/2011/01/17/time-forum-civility-markos-moulitsas-repeats-line-palin-angle-will-event#ixzz1BOjNI2GX

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Interesting LOI – I’ve frequently heard the “we’ve always been blah-blah-blah”. I guess I was hoping that after a couple hundred years we’d be a little better with things. Perhaps not.

        While I can dispassionately appreciate Beck’s words – I’m aware enough that misery still loves company. Its what drives ratings.

        • Honestly, I have not seen a lot of evidence through history that mankind is becoming more civil at a very rapid pace. A couple hundred years is nothing.

          We have actually come pretty far in the last couple hundred years. No slavery is accepted anymore in most places, sexism is looked down on in at least some places, racism is also looked down on in many if not most places. We have things like the geneva convention that most coutries abide by. I think that is about as much as we can expect in 200 years from our species.

          Unfortunately, like many things, civility is cyclical. We have lost honor and respect that we used to have. We have reverted to many uncivil acts. And we have, most of all, stopped thinking for ourselves. If we continue on this trend, we will land ourselves in another dark age. The first one was a result of theocracy, this one will be more a religion of political correctness and socialism, but it is rotting the soul of society none the less.

    • Ray

      The history of Glenn Beck will be written when it is all over.

      If freedom wins he will be raised as a hero who may be most responsible for saving the Republic.

      If the “Utopian” slave state wins, he will be relegated to the ash heap as a conspirator of insurrection and witchdoctor.

      As for “all the references”, they are essentially a single reference being referred to in multiple articles and locations.

      Now for fun, lets just assume all these accusations are true for a minute. Beck’s speech, and others, is causing lunatics to fall off the tracks. So what?

    • Damn inflammatory rhetoric of politicians. There should be some way to stop these people………

      “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” — Thomas Jefferson

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        @JAC – I always wanted to think of Jefferson as more statesman than politician.

        Thankfully he did not mean “blood” literally.

        • Ray

          Actually he did mean it literally.

          He was very “politician”. Remember, this is the guy who decried political parties while lending his support to organize the Democratic Republican Party. But I would trade in our current models for those of 1800 any day. At least back then you could identify their true colors a lot easier.

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            How do we know he meant it literally? So when modern-day baggers quote it then they mean it literally also?

            • Ray

              I have no idea if they really mean it. They certainly know he did and I suspect they think they do.

              But then they have never been tested.

              Ironically, neither was Jefferson. They got him out of the country so he wouldn’t be captured and killed.

              We know he meant it from all his other writings.

              If you don’t think so, then what do you think he could have possibly meant?

        • Blood was not literal? WTF? What was he referring to? We fought a bloody revolution against our very brothers in the name of freedom, because freedom is that important. How could blood not be meant literally by one of the philosphical leaders of that revolution?

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            So its always meant to be literal?

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Remember Jon – it is qualified as “from time to time”

            • ?
              How did you make that leap? I state that blood was meant literally because of the nature of the statement, the context it was said in, and the nature of events surrounding it. That does not mean that I think Jefferson was incapable of metaphor.

              It was qualified “from time to time”, meaning it is not viable to constantly be in a state of revolutionary war. The time is determined by the severity of tyranny and the resolve of the oppressed to be free. The point is that blood may be required to maintain freedom, and that freedom is worth such a price. It may not be worth such a price to you, but it is worth that to me, and it was worth that to Jefferson.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                You’re confused Jon – how do you assert it could never be metaphor? So when a bagger marches into a demonstration with a sign bearing that quote it can only mean “literally”? I think not.

              • Perhaps I was unclear. I certainly believe that some things Jefferson said were not literal. I think many things that are said then and now are not literal. That does not mean that NOTHING is literal. I believe that this particular statement: “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants” was intended to mean “blood” literally. In other words, freedom will, at times, have to be won via bloodshed because of the nature of tyranny. Power is not given up willingly by those who weild it.

    • Sick Ricky Gervais on him …

  3. OBAMA COAL CRACKDOWN SENDS MESSAGE TO INDUSTRY

    A move by the Environmental Protection Agency to revoke the long-standing permits for a mammoth coal mine in West Virginia sends a strong signal that President Obama plans to implement key parts of his agenda even though newly empowered Republicans can block his plans in Congress.

    In the aftermath of the November elections, many political pundits predicted that the once-unchecked Obama legislative machine would turn it’s energies to federal rulemaking as a way to circumvent Republicans on Capitol Hill. And the EPA’s decision last week suggests that those forecasts were spot-on.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/01/17/obama-coal-crackdown-sends-message-industry/

    Obama did say he “would bankrupt the coal industry”.

    • And…that energy prices would NECESSARILY skyrocket.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @G-Man – so if the mine operation was certain to violate another Federal law you still allow it to proceed? How do we assume that prices would skyrocket?

      • Prices would skyrocket if this becomes a domino effect.

        Environmentalists fight coal plants, nuclear plants from being built, Conversationalists fight solar (http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/01/17/conservation-group-sues-stop-california-solar-plant/#) and wind plants from being built. They both fight hydroelectric plants.

        What will be left to create power these same groups want?

        If they want electric cars, how will power plants be able to produce enough power to fuel them if they can’t power California during the summer already?

        NIMBY will always be the biggest problem to any solution.

        • I think the Eco-Nuts just want everyone to live in caves and go back to the hunting/gathering days of the neanderthals. Maybe Beck can use his voodoo doll and cast a spell 🙂

      • From the article : Environmentalists also claim that the rock and rubble from the mines kills fish, wildlife and pollutes water.

        Indeed, it was a violation of the Clean Water Act, that prompted the EPA to revoke the permit at the Spruce No. 1 Mine.

        “The agency took this action because this proposed mine would use destructive and unsustainable mining practices that jeopardize the health of Appalachian communities and clean water on which they depend,” read the agency’s statement

        So, after the whole permit process, done years ago and approved, with millions invested by the company, the EPA yanks the permit. Actions like this cause companies to step back from investing in new coal mining operations, which will at some point lesson the amount of coal made available. The cost of coal goes up, which makes our electric bill go up.

        If companies do “gamble” and invest in new sources, the “gamble will be protected with higher coal costs. For the coal companies, it’s about money, for the EPA and left wing environmentalists, it’s about agenda. Maybe we can look at it that way and figure out the course.

      • Those were President Obama’s words…

        “You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know — Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.”

        • Holy shit! Let’s all blast Obama for telling the straight truth! BOO! HISS!

          Good thing he didn’t play it down like it was no big deal. Then we’d all have to blast him for lying! BOO! HISS!

          • I believe Terry was “quoting” Obama. How you perceive that as blasting is mind boggling 🙂

          • I am not blasting the man…I am quoting him. If you find that a problem, perhaps you should take it up with him. For what it is worth, he is correct. His cap and trade system would make energy prices skyrocket. Personally, I would prefer the energy prices not to skyrocket…perhaps you prefer they do. That is what is great about this country…we can agree to disagree.

      • Ray,

        Coal represents the majority of energy production.

        It is only replaceable by oil.

        Oil is 3x to 5x more expensive.

        Energy prices will skyrocket.

  4. Ten thoughts to ponder!

    Number 10 Life is sexually transmitted.

    Number 9Good health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one
    can die.

    Number 8 Men have two emotions: Hungry and Horny. If you see him
    without an erection, make him a sandwich.

    Number 7 Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day.
    Teach a person to use the Internet and they won’t bother you for weeks.
    Number 6 Some people are like a Slinky….not really good for
    anything, but you still can’t help but smile when you shove them down
    the stairs.

    Number 5 Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in
    hospitals, dying of nothing.

    Number 4 All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no
    attention to criticism.

    Number 3 Why does a slight tax increase cost you $800.00, and a
    substantial tax cut saves you $30.00?

    Number 2 In the 60’s, people took acid to make the world weird. Now
    the world is weird and people take Prozac to make it normal

    And The Number 1 Thought

    Life is like a jar of Jalapeno peppers–what you do today, might burn
    your ass tomorrow.

    – – and as someone recently said to me: “Don’t worry about old age–it
    doesn’t last long.”

  5. LOI

    Butler Shaffer has this comment regarding “UnCivil”

    When our self-directed, self-serving undertakings are forcibly interfered with by others [e.g., the state], our purposes become frustrated, a consequence of which is often a resort to aggression.

    A number of contributors to the study of aggression tell us much of the dynamics regarding aggression.

    Two such commentators observe, “[a] person feels frustrated when a violation of his hopes or expectations occurs, and he may then try to solve the problem by attacking the presumed source of frustration.”

    In words that seem to have particular application to our present world, another adds: “I believe we are witnessing at all levels of our social network a conflict based on dualistic thinking, the polarities of which are personal or individual freedom as against social structures maintaining the functions of regulation and control.”

    Another scholar expresses the point more succinctly: “[w]hen our drive to master the environment, or take from it what we need, is obstructed, we become angry.”

    As two others observe: “the feeling that one has little control over his own destiny may lead to attempts to restore oneself as an active agent. This may involve attacking those who appear to be influencing and controlling the individual.”

    • He is entitled to his opinion as am I. What he/they are speaking of are possibilities…there are many things that are possible. While I do not totally disagree, it seems to me as though he is strictly speaking in extremes.

      • Terry,

        I do not agree with you.

        If one argues that theft is wrong, then one presents a contradiction that theft is “ok” if you redefine it as taxes, the core of person’s mind is not fooled.

        You -by that perversion- have agreed that theft is “OK” depending on who is the thief.

        Easily, everyone defines that “who” to be themselves.

        Thus, theft is “ok” as long as “you” are the thief. With no surprise, everyone slowly becomes a thief.

        That is Butler’s point – if we agree violence on non-violent people is “wrong” – but then contradict ourselves – then the only result that is possible is a contradiction – violence is “o”k on other people, but not “ok” if I am that “other people”

        So we have a nation that willfully slaughters innocent people – but will not accept the consequences.

        This -over time- infects all inter-relationships and eventually erodes the fabric of that society.

        • If you do not agree with me, then you partially disagree with yourself…as I stated “I do not totally disagree”. That implies that I do agree to some extent.

          Don’t take that the wrong way, I know you are convalescing, so I hope you are back to 100% soon.

          • Terry,

            I am wondering what part you do not agree with.

            (Deserves you right for using double-negation)

            • I don’t necessarily disagree with any of it, I just think they are speaking in extremes…any of it is possible, and anything short of what they say is possible. Their statements include “This may involve…”, “I believe we are witnessing…”, and “…consequence of which is often a resort to aggression” lead me to say that they are speaking of possibilities rather than absolutes.

              • Terry,

                possibilities rather than absolutes

                This is probably my fault – I “clipped” from Butler’s essays, and left out a lot of supporting materials.

                As an aside, his book:
                Calculated Chaos: Institutional Threats to Peace and Human Survival, by Butler D. Shaffer ….

                …is outstanding.

  6. V.H. & G-Man,
    Last night you were all worked up because Chris Matthews pointed out the obvious about a bunch of angry old white guys…
    Maybe it just fits the demographics of SUFA a little to close? 😉

    And then the jokes with Michael Steele? Yes, very offensive…

    And the “Crack Pot” Birther comment…I’d say he’s just calling it like it is… 🙂

    But you seemed pretty excited about the Governor of Maine who told the NAACP to “Kiss My Butt”…

    Oh wait, the Governor of Maine caved in and attended the NAACP’s MLK morning breakfast Monday. He even danced to the pounding rhythm of an African drum act…now that image is REALLY funny!!

    A Puritan Descendant,
    Guess LePage isn’t has tough as you thought. 😉

    • First of all-I made no comment about the Governor’s actions-I think he should have acted in a little more dignified manner but at the same time it was a refreshing moment of straight talk. So I simply had no, sincere desire to condemn his actions. As far as the rest-I don’t see his saying one is a racist was a fair evaluation of the comments. He didn’t say crack pot-he said cracker. I think we all know exactly what that means, just another way to say white people on the right are racist. I didn’t take his remarks as Joking and I was surprised and disappointed that Steele laughed.

      • At least opinion is confirmed. The left shit themselves over “hate speech” as long as doesn’t apply to them. F#$%^ng Hypocrits 😳

      • If LePage’s comments are a “refreshing moment of straight talk”…

        Why aren’t Chris Matthews’ comments a “refreshing moment of straight talk”?

        Sorry – Cracker not Crack Pot – my mistake. But it still fits the Birthers.

        I’m not sure how you could take the comments with Steele as anything but joking around…

        • I suspect to some people they are. I’m just not one of them.

          I don’t think he was joking because he started out the conversation by declaring that he was an Expert. And then he went on to call white people on the right racist-again. Just because the people around him laughed does not mean HE was joking.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      LOL! Please show a video of him dancing, this I gotta see 🙂

      • A Puritan Descendant says:

        ok, I found it. He actually went to Waterville but feel free to spin it however you like Todd. He is still the man (for now). Here is a link to Bangor Daily News, BUT it freezes some browsers. Google Chrome works good >

        http://new.bangordailynews.com/2011/01/17/politics/lepage-makes-unscheduled-visit-to-king-day-breakfast/

        • A Puritan Descendant,
          Not trying to spin it. What is the significance of Waterville vs somewhere else?

          • A Puritan Descendant says:

            He had been going to the same Waterville event for years as mayor.

            He was never invited by the NAACP to go to Waterville. read here >
            “But on Saturday, a day after the controversy erupted, LePage decided to attend a King Day breakfast in Waterville that he regularly attended while he served as that city’s mayor. His decision to attend was not made public, however.”

            • A Puritan Descendant,
              I saw that line, but didn’t understand the context.

              So why the big stink about attending / not attending the NAACP event?

              When invited simply say “Sorry, I’ll be at the Waterville event”?

              • A Puritan Descendant says:

                “So why the big stink about attending / not attending the NAACP event?”

                Ask the NAACP. LePage laughed when he told them to ‘kiss my butt’, after they in so many words said Lepage was being politically incorrect. So no big stink from him.

                “When invited simply say “Sorry, I’ll be at the Waterville event”?”

                He still was not sure he was going to the Waterville event? You have to ask him, maybe he had to check with his family? His dog? I dunno

  7. SUFA

    Wrap up on the TWO questions.

    I want to apologize for not providing the wrap up on my questions regarding whether you would act or not act, if you believed the potential sacrifice of 100 would save (defined loosely) 10 million. I was called away most of the day.

    The purpose of the questions was simply to satisfy my curiosity regarding a hypothesis I had come across last week. That and to cause each of us to do some hard thinking, of course. I was curious, after these past years of discussion, how folks at SUFA might respond to the dilemma created by the hypothesis.

    The hypothesis goes something like this. If politicians and other public leaders have a personal belief that a certain program or initiative is critical to meeting some perceived goal of grand importance, like saving lives or restoring freedom, and they believe that fiery and colorful rhetoric is required to muster the public support they need to pass the program, then it would be irrational for them to stop that speech, even if there were proof that it caused some people to go postal. Therefore, it would be illogical for us to expect such inflammatory speech to actually subside.

    I want to point out that the concept of “rational” or “irrational”, included in the hypothesis, is in reference to an individual’s personal perception of desire. I would argue that any action that could knowingly or deliberately result in the death of someone, without their permission, in order to gain something else is irrational on a grander philosophical scale. That is because it is destructive towards the extension of humanity in the long run.

    In fact, the notion that to stop violence is irrational if it benefits enough people is the ultimate manifestation of the moral ethic of Altruism itself.

    Now might be a good time for everyone who answered the question to think about how you came to your conclusion and whether that fits your own philosophical principles.

    Looking back, and after seeing D13’s response, I realize I left one crack in the door, so to speak. I forgot to specify in the problems that the 100 at risk were “innocent”. That is they were unaware of the situation and did not personally decide to be part of the situation. The military related decision was not part of the problem. I didn’t think of that one when constructing the problem statements.

    So now if you still have questions or comments I will try to respond. I hope everyone is having a great day. I am willing to bet that USW is floating around the room about now.

    Best wishes to all.
    JAC

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      Even when I was a child I felt strong that it was “better to let 100 guilty men walk free than to wrongly convict an innocent man”, all this while my mother tryed to correct me and see the error in my thought process. She failed, I am still warped 🙂

      • Puritan,

        All “real” crime is an attack on an innocent person.

        Thus, how can a “justice” system be moral if in its exercise of justice it commits the very crime it attempts to mitigate???

        Thus, in a moral justice system you are right and your Mom is wrong.

    • Have you drawn any conclusions from the answers you received here on SUFA?

      • V.H.

        Perhaps about where I think certain individuals are in their thinking. I expected you to struggle with the problem for example. That is because of the discussions we have had about “Altruism” and “moral standards” imposed by society.

        But part of your struggle was the result of me messing up in describing the problem. By missing the fact that the 100 were “bystanders” so to speak, it caused some discussion and answers that might have changed with better description. You, for example immediately changed your answer to NO once you understood this. Telling me you are more clear on your position today than I expected.

        Other conclusions:

        BF is much better at using the question format to push thinking than I am.

        I need to be more direct in my comments and responses.

        I need to stop responding to rabbits and strawman arguments. It enables others to push the conversation away from the main point of the discussion.

        I don’t think we can conclude anything about one side or group due to the way I constructed the questions. If my goal were to categorize, rather than force thought on the dilemma itself, I would have asked the two questions of everyone and left out the mention of “affiliation” or “orientation”.

        I did find it interesting that after I offered that Ray, Todd or anyone could answer either or both questions that nobody did so, from either camp.

        I also learned that the weekend is not the best time to pose such a question. Might have gotten a larger response on Monday.

        I do have one other rather broad conclusion but I had already reached this one. The answers simply confirmed it. I think that a year or two ago that many on this site who considered themselves Republicans or Conservatives might have answered the questions differently. I think they have moved to a more solid philosophical foundation. At least one I believe is more solid.

        I would not say it is rock solid yet, but certainly better than it was and moving in the right direction. Hows that for the old, “Great honey, you got three A’s, but how about that B in Algebra”. 🙂 🙂

        How about you?

        • I still need a little more time to think about it based on your hypothesis-will get back to you.

          I do however have an example I would like to put out there and get opinions. Let’s say a country-puts a very clear threat out there, that they are going to use their nuclear weapons to attack us-and we decide we have to bomb their facilities. But there is a high probability that innocents will be killed and we can’t come up with any better way that would reduce this to a maybe(because you cannot ever totally rule out hurting innocents IMO) but unlikely -do we bomb them? I am having a problem answering this question so maybe I am not so firm on my position, after all.

          • V.H.

            When it comes to survival, would you change your philosophy to live, or stick to your guns and possibly die?

            • Possibly die-but first I have to determine what defines being an innocent. Read response to JAC.

          • V.H.

            That is why the “Clear and Present Danger” criteria BF presented is so important.

            Although I still think that both Clear and Present are a little foggy themselves.

            So in your example, a threat by the other guy is not enough to act by itself. The bar needs to be pretty high I think before we pull the trigger, so to speak.

            This “moral dilemma” is one of the reasons I so strongly supported Reagan’s “Star Wars” program. Although I was also concerned it could turn offensive. Our tech efforts should be on defense from such a scenario as you describe.

            But as you say, absent such a certain defensive capacity, at what point do we have “clear and present”?

            Do we allow ONE to be launched, or even hit us, before we react? I hope the great pirate joins in on this one.

            • that is a very interesting perspective and discussion would be great. But I was aiming more at the question of war-In my example I was thinking and should have said that we were officially at war with these people. Does being at war change the basic definition of innocent?

            • And even if we have a clear and present danger-I don’t see where that answers the question of killing innocents in order to respond to that danger

            • V.H.

              JAC is right – Clear and Present Danger doctrine can be invoked.

              But to your scenario as you outlined – contains a fatal assumption that simply is not true

              we can’t come up with any better way

              This is a lie.
              It is a common lie.
              It is a convenient lie of the immoral and the lazy.

              The truth: there exists -always- in the human experience – a better way that does not kill innocent people

              Yes, it may be hard.
              Yes, it may be expensive.
              Yes, it may entail personal risk.

              But there NEVER exists “no other way” that ends up killing innocent people.

              • There is always another way……but it is not always necessarily the best way.

              • D13,

                Define “best”??

                Mine is: “Don’t kill innocent people”.

              • Real tough one to describe, sir, but right now, I see it purely in a military or health application. Of course, all things have to depend upon circumstances. Fortunately, I have never been put into a situation that calls for such…but I can see applications where the innocent would be among the damage or the solution.

                Militarily, I would not hesitate to take out a target if said target used innocent civilians as a shield and IF said target poses a greter threat that could result in greater innocent deaths.

                A movie comes to mind, can’t remember the name, where a brand new strain of some sort of virus was so devastating and the research to kill said virus prior to spreading, does not exist and cannot exist for years and maybe decades. But the prospect of killing the virus that would prevent millions from dying would be another example.

                Perhaps extreme but not unlikely. I would have no problem making those types of decisions.

          • A Puritan Descendant says:

            Yes, we bomb them into the stone age.

          • VH…you cannot answer the question from a military or survival point of view.

    • Bottom Line says:

      My logic for my response the other day:

      A situation exists independent of me that I bear no responsibility for, and I am therefore not obligated to act.

      If I choose inaction, nothing changes.

      By action, I am taking responsibility for something that isn’t mine and altering the circumstances so that 100 people are in danger, thus CAUSING risk to others.

      Why would I want to risk lives, that would otherwise not be affected, for something that isn’t my problem?

      This train of thought doesn’t exactly fit the mold of a moral/ethical dilemma of a public figure regarding rhetoric.

      In the hypothetical, we(the questioned) have control as we can choose to or not to put others at risk, and when compared to your real life scenario suggests that public figures are in the same control and are responsible for the actions of those who might be influenced.

      They have no control and are therefore not responsible. It doesn’t equate.

      Just sayin’.

    • Two questions, sir. (1) Am I in charge and (2) Does the decision rest with me?

      • D13

        I don’t think you are in charge in the way you are asking. Now there is a guess for ya.

        You are in charge of your decision. In the problem as in the hypothesis, you believe that some collateral damage could occur. Not necessarily will but you think probable. And those who might be killed are completely innocent.

        The hypothesis was presented due to the lefts howling that speech “caused” these lunatics to kill many people. The point the guy was making is that with most modern politicians (Altruists) they would deem this a good tradeoff if they felt the gain would save more lives than were lost.

        Yes, the decision to continue the action rests with you.

        • I replyed on this earlier, it’s in cyberspace somewhere, which is a good thing, I think! JAC, I just don’t see politicians as Altruists (I had to look up altruism, damn CRS). One willing to give of himself for the benefit of others is as far from politician and left wing liberal as I can think. I’m now wholly confused with your original question(s).

          Altruism (pronounced /ˈæltruːɪzəm/) is selfless concern for the welfare of others. Applying this to the Liberal left and/or politicians is a f#@$ing joke. They want to take from one and give it to another, selfless my ass, that’s theft. They claim that they want to give of themselves to benefit others, then demand that everyone else do the same, f@%k them. The closest group(s) I can see, based on the above definition, is our troops and veterans. Now maybe I’m wrong (please correct me if I am), but your questions were putting innocents at risk, not the individual, and selfless is an individual trait. Help me out here!

          G!

          • G-Man,
            How can you say those MEAN things? You hurt my feelings!

            The only reason we’re here on SUFA is our selfless concern for the welfare of all you crazy right-wingers!

            We are selflessly giving of our time to help you see the light and enjoy the Kool-Aid!

          • G-man

            You are using the “revised” version of Altruism.

            Notice how it seems so noble?

            Selfless = Without self

            Altruism “requires” the sacrifice of the individual for the good of society. It is the key concept embedded within the word.

          • G-Man

            Here is some stuff from Wiki. I think you will see what I am saying included here. I do agree that politicians are not completely Altruistic. Very few are. Which is further proof of the bankrupt nature of the ethic in my view. But politicians do use Altruism as their shield for the evil they do upon us.

            “Altruism (also called the ethic of altruism, moralistic altruism, and ethical altruism) is an ethical doctrine that holds that individuals have a moral obligation to help, serve, or benefit others, if necessary at the sacrifice of self interest. Auguste Comte’s version of altruism calls for living for the sake of others. One who holds to either of these ethics is known as an “altruist.”

            The word “altruism” (French, altruisme, from autrui: “other people”, derived from Latin alter: “other”) was coined by Auguste Comte, the French founder of positivism, in order to describe the ethical doctrine he supported. He believed that individuals had a moral obligation to renounce self-interest and live for others. Comte says, in his Catéchisme Positiviste [1], that:

            [The] social point of view cannot tolerate the notion of rights, for such notion rests on individualism. We are born under a load of obligations of every kind, to our predecessors, to our successors, to our contemporaries. After our birth these obligations increase or accumulate, for it is some time before we can return any service…. This [“to live for others”], the definitive formula of human morality, gives a direct sanction exclusively to our instincts of benevolence, the common source of happiness and duty. [Man must serve] Humanity, whose we are entirely.”

            The Catholic Encyclopedia says that for Comte’s altruism, “The first principle of morality…is the regulative supremacy of social sympathy over the self-regarding instincts.” [2] Author Gabriel Moran, (professor in the department of Humanities and the Social Sciences, New York University) says “The law and duty of life in altruism [for Comte] was summed up in the phrase : Live for others.” [3]

            Various philosophers define the doctrine in various ways, but all definitions generally revolve around a moral obligation to benefit others or the pronouncement of moral value in serving others rather than oneself. Philosopher C. D. Broad defines altruism as “the doctrine that each of us has a special obligation to benefit others.” [4] Philosopher W. G. Maclagan defines it as “a duty to relieve the distress and promote the happiness of our fellows…Altruism is to…maintain quite simply that a man may and should discount altogether his own pleasure or happiness as such when he is deciding what course of action to pursue.” [5] Some philosophers reject altruism, most notably Ayn Rand who advocated the moral philosophy of rational egoism.

            [edit] As consequentialist ethics

            Altruism is often seen as a form of consequentialism, as it indicates that an action is ethically right if it brings good consequences to others. James Fisher, in his article “Ethics” in the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, states the altruist dictum as: “An action is morally right if the consequences of that action are more favorable than unfavorable to everyone except the agent.” Altruism may be seen as similar to utilitarianism, however an essential difference is that the latter prescribes acts that maximize good consequences for all of society, while altruism prescribes maximizing good consequences for everyone except the actor. Arguably, however, since the rest of society will almost always outnumber the utilitarian, a genuine utilitarian will inevitably end up practicing altruism or a form of altruism.
            [edit] Criticism of the doctrine

            Friedrich Nietzsche held that the idea that to treat others as more important than oneself is degrading and demeaning to the self. He also believed that the idea that others have a higher value than oneself hinders the individual’s pursuit of self-development, excellence, and creativity. [6] However, he did assert a “duty” to help those who are weaker than oneself. [7]

            Ayn Rand held that one should pursue rational self-interest, and viewed altruism as an evil moral philosophy. She states that:

            What is the moral code of altruism? The basic principle of altruism is that man has no right to exist for his own sake, that service to others is the only justification of his existence, and that self-sacrifice is his highest moral duty, virtue and value.

            Do not confuse altruism with kindness, good will or respect for the rights of others. These are not primaries, but consequences, which, in fact, altruism makes impossible. The irreducible primary of altruism, the basic absolute, is self-sacrifice—which means: self-immolation, self-abnegation, self-denial, self-destruction—which means: the self as a standard of evil, the selfless as a standard of the good.

            Do not hide behind such superficialities as whether you should or should not give a dime to a beggar. That is not the issue. The issue is whether you do or do not have the right to exist without giving him that dime. The issue is whether you must keep buying your life, dime by dime, from any beggar who might choose to approach you. The issue is whether the need of others is the first mortgage on your life and the moral purpose of your existence. The issue is whether man is to be regarded as a sacrificial animal. Any man of self-esteem will answer: “No.” Altruism says: “Yes.”[8]

            David Kelley, discussing Ayn Rand’s views, says that “there is no rational ground for asserting that sacrificing yourself in order to serve others is morally superior to pursuing your own (long-term, rational) self-interest. Altruism ultimately depends on non-rational ‘rationales,’ on mysticism in some form…” Furthermore, he holds that there is a danger of the state enforcing that moral ideal: “If self-sacrifice is an ideal – if service to others is the highest, most honorable course of action – why not force people to act accordingly?” He believes this can ultimately result in the state forcing everyone into a collectivist political system. [9]”

            DID YOU NOTICE THAT LAST SENTENCE?

            • Thanks for the knowledge, JAC! Altruism does sound somewhat noble in it’s simplest forms, but quite shitty thereafter. That I should have seen, knowing the progressive agenda is based on LIES. PRICKS! I’m pooped, need to rethink after some sleep!

              Peace my friend!

            • Ray Hawkins says:

              Maybe what is so unfortunate JAC is that you can resist the temptation to label others – it would seem that everyone to you must fit into a “altruistic” or “not altruistic”. Those that are not “not altruistic” become the target of some rather hateful vitriol you have been spewing for sometime (my philosophical viewpoint as being ethically bankrupt – a rather severe assessment in that “my” altruism affects you not one bit). Even in the posting you present some variances as to what the supposed experts say altruism is or should be. They are irrelevant to me. What is relevant is my own philosophy and how that philosophy is enmeshed with that of my wife and how we apply it in our lives and relationships. I can call it altruism (and in combination with many other things). I can call it many other things. Heck, ask a monk or a nun. Maybe I can ask a good friend with a child with Down’s how they feel about altruism and how ethically bankrupt they all must feel.

              Is this making sense yet?

              An issue I have always had with folks who wrap themselves so closely to a particular school of thought (when you can quote Rand freely then you’re probably pretty damn well married to that school) is that when the originator of the philosophy and her most avid followers cannot even themselves follow what they espouse – maybe there are some deeper questions we need to ask about the foundational elements of the philosophy. Is it actually a philosophy if no one can actually follow it? Is it then just wishful thinking?

              • Ray,

                Is it actually a philosophy if no one can actually follow

                Ask the 2 billion Christians this question….

                I believe they will say “It is the optimum goal, and the measure of the goal is NOT where we are but where we want to be“

              • Ray,

                I can call it altruism (and in combination with many other things). I can call it many other things. Heck, ask a monk or a nun. Maybe I can ask a good friend with a child with Down’s how they feel about altruism and how ethically bankrupt they all must feel.

                I think you are missing a lot of JAC’s points, Ray.

                Altruism –as a philosophy is morally repugnant and destructive – for it demands the destruction of the individual for the unjust benefit of others.

                Altruism is embedded in the roots of all institutions – that is, an abstraction (organization) whose own existence becomes more important the real humans beings who abstracted it (or organized it).

                Organizations are created to benefit the members – but with the aspect of Altruism philosophy, the organization morphs into an institution – where the existence of the organization or abstraction is more important than any benefit to the members “sacrifice yourself for the (country, company, entity, church, etc.)”

                Your understanding of Altruism is merely Charity – and this is -again- why definitions are so important.

                You have been a victim of a “Revolution within the Form”, where a revolting philosophy has been made pious by redefining it to be something that is pious, while maintaining at its core its vile.

                Thus, Altruism has been equalized to be Charity – as you described above. Now, a vile concept has been painted with piety – giving the vile a voice.

              • Taken to the extreme any principal can be dangerous.Actually your statement sounded a lot like the definition of nihilism I recently read.
                Being in an organization or believing in something does not automatically make in individual unimportant-it might however point out the importance of others.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                @Black Flag – so says you eh?

                Whether you’re quoting Comte, Rand, Fisher, Moran, JAC, yourself,…… the critical point is that any particular definition of a philosophical school/tradition/whatever-you-want-to-call-it is a varied as those who claim any particular allegiance to it. This again is where words matter. You may find altruism repugnant because of how you yourself have elected to define – that your own view it may find congruence amongst others does not make it any more valid than how I embrace and view it. There is no law of altruism that any one particular authority holds sway over. Its akin to claiming definition over concepts such as Freedom…..or Liberty. You can define these concepts at will and embrace how you view and internalize them, and you can surely find agreement in others, or in literature or in practice – but that does not and cannot hold sway over how another may view Freedom and Liberty.

                I view my altruism very simply as my selfless concern for the welfare for others. There is nothing about demand in there and I get to define what I mean by concern, by welfare, by others, by selfless,…….

                It would disappoint me if others view that as vile…..or repugnant…..or negative.

        • Ok JAC…that helps. Risk assessment, is what I/we call it. There are always circumstances. You cannot ultimately decide that if innocents are involved that inaction is the correct answer….especially if that answer means that a greater amount will die if not. Leadership is tough.

          I gave a couple of examples as asked from BF. Many will say hypothetical…but are they?

          So, there is a risk assessment that is involved. I can make a decision using risk assessment.

          • D13

            Yes sir, and that is the same thing I used.

            The assumption or given was that you had reached the point of acting based on your belief and/or conviction of what would or wouldn’t happen.

            And I guess what you say does fit the hypothesis and my problem in that you have reached a point where YOU believe B is acceptable to create A.

            But I think we set ourselves up for disaster in the long run when we allow this type of choice to be accepted.

            If we allow ourselves these types of choices and make them acceptable then we run the risk of spreading that ethic/moral standard to the broader culture and set of problems. Especially relative to our government.

            It is this ethic that supports the corruption and overreaching of government that has everyone’s tail in a knot. This is the rot that contributes to the illness that allows fringe folks to suddenly decide it is OK to murder in revenge.

            Using evil to solve problems only perpetuates the evil.

            • Very astute and I agree with your assessment of same. The crux comes whether it is acceptable. To order innocents caught in the crossfire is not something that can or is easily done….but that is me speaking and, to add to your hypothesis, if the circumstances to warrant that decision are allowed to perpetuate into other circumstances….wow.

              But I answered you on the basis of a one time decision that I would hope would never rise again. Just making war time decisions that resulted in deaths…I still live with it. I would hope that any decision likewise would not be common place….but in your hypothesis. I think that you are correct in that if it becomes easy…then I see evil.

              • D13

                I think that you are correct in that if it becomes easy…then I see evil

                It is easy thus it is already evil.

                It is very hard work in some circumstances to avoid killing innocent people while defending one’s own life.

                But you already made a decision:

                You have already said :
                “My life is more important doing what I am doing, then an innocent person’s life who – not by their choice – got caught in your choice

                That, sir, is an easy decision.

  8. The Supreme Court has overstepped its authority, undermining the basic tenants of the Constitution.

    Says who?

    “My construction of the constitution is very different from that you quote. It is that each department is truly independent of the others, and has an equal right to decide for itself what is the meaning of the constitution in the cases submitted to its action; and especially, where it is to act ultimately and without appeal. I will explain myself by examples, which, having occurred while I was in office, are better known to me, and the principles which governed them.”

    For full letter that includes the above quote:

    http://press-pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents/a1_8_18s16.html

  9. D13

    Members of the Raptor Air Corp turn out to be much larger than previously thought.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41134828/ns/technology_and_science/

    I might need a 10 gauge for these.

      • Matt…Matt….Matt……………do you think for a minute that you can handle this little weapon? You think you can stop my Raptor force with this popgun? (D13, sending dire warning to Raptor Contingent that current body armor is not sufficient)….Damn….thought I had your tunnel blocked. You got another one?

  10. As a practical matter, is there really much of a difference between Philadelphia during a zombie apocalypse and a normal day in the Democratic People’s Republic of Congo?

    • Mathius

      I don’t know as I do not have a point of reference for either.

      I can tell you that as a practical matter I see little difference between a zombie revival and a convention of one of our two major political parties.

      I also think that last Democratic Convention was evidence that mass hypnosis is entirely possible. Now if we could just figure out how Karnack pulled it off.

      • Zombies = very interested in brains

        Republicans = not interested at all in brains

        Democrats = think they already have all the brains

        There’s your difference.

        • Democrats = think they already have all the brains

          That’s the best conspiracy theory I’ve ever heard, at least it will never be proven true. 🙂

          • Ray Hawkins says:

            They think therefore they do.

            • They think ? Not very well if last week is an example

              • Ahhhh….in the great world of god giving out brains….the dems were standing behind the door when god spoke and said Rain……..the dems thought the great one said brain and got a head full of water.

                @RAy….you are really trying to stir things up with all this rhetoric crap and Glenn Beck….must be too cold to go out.

              • Q. What do vegetarian zombies eat?

                A. Grains.

              • Ohhhh……bad.

    • Mathius,

      I watched a very interesting video – I will post later….

      …but one of the points he stressed regarding the inevitable collapse of the US and West was the key was in the time between the collapse of one paradigm and the beginning of another was to maintain the physical infrastructure.

      I was in the Congo.

      Kinshasa is a city of millions with no power, water, lights, etc. All the copper has been -literally- ripped out of the ground and sold as scrap.

      To “bootstrap” a crush-infrastructure country is nearly impossible.

      To build a road you need a machine.
      The machine needs fuel.
      Fuel needs to be transported to the machine.
      You need a road to transport the fuel.
      There is no road.
      You need to build a road …

      For my project, this was the dead-end loop….

      For a cellular tower, you need electrical power.
      There is no “grid”.
      Need electrical generators.
      Generators need fuel.
      Trucks need to carry the fuel.
      Trucks need roads.
      There are no roads..
      (go to first example).

      Conclusion: no hope for generations.

  11. Life sucks when your tooth aches and the dentist appointment isn’t until tomorrow (been battling this for a week now). 😦

    However, life will get better just as soon as the Percocet kicks in. 🙂

    • An old Yiddish curse: May all your teeth fall out, except one. And may that one give you a toothache.

      Feel better, Plainly.

      PS: What is with everyone on this blog? Are you all falling apart? USW’s groin, Flag’s eblow, D13 is senile, and now Plainlyspoken’s tooth.

      • You forgot Todd’s psychotic dillusions 😆 and your dimentai 🙂

        • Adding in Todd’s psychotic delusions (I guess he shouldn’t watch Glen Beck, then), my dementia, and G-man’s creative spelling (“dillusions” and “dimentai”?) 🙂

        • Shhhh, don’t tell him about his dementia, the Colonel uses that to his advantage when heisting the grog since Mathius can’t recall how much he has or where he hid it all. 😉

        • Dread Pirate Mathius says:

          Y’AARRGH!

          And Mathius also may have a split personality disorder, too..

          • Mathius in real life actually likes Glenn Beck and has all his books and a poster of him on his wall….then he cant remember who he is.

        • Considering the source, I’ll take that as a complement!!! 🙂 🙂

      • Mathius, we’re older, our warranties have expired and we’re getting ready (as good baby boomers) to raid as much of the social security and medicare systems as we can. 😉

        • HA! Good luck.

          I heard that they locked the box.

          • Yep, to hide the emptiness after they plundered it.

            • I gave my little brother a present one year for Christmas. It was a very large box (maybe 3 1/2 feet cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 3′ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 2.5′ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 2′ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 1.5′ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 1′ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 6″ cube).

              Inside were packing peanuts.

              Once he removed the packing peanuts, he discovered a smaller box (maybe 3″ cube).

              Inside were cuff links.

              ———

              Social security is kind of like that, except that instead of cuff links, the smallest box contains a tiny slip of paper.

              And that paper is folded into an origami crane.

              But if you unfold that origami crane, you will see words written on the paper that read as follows: “IOU. Sincerely, Uncle Sam”

              ———

              But no one ever gets that far because the raptors invariably eat them first.

          • we built the lock for them. 🙂

          • Worse than that…they robbed the box…left IOU’s and then locked the box so you couldn’t see.

      • Senile???? You called me Senile???? Why that is perposterous. Senility has not set in…it is impossible because……..because…………………………………………………………………….because……….what were we talking about?

    • Hope you feel better 🙂 I read in the Federal Benefits for Vets book today that I have 6 of 13 symptoms of Gulf War Illness. That sucks 😦

      • I have 6 of 13 symptoms of Gulf War Illness.

        I am sorry to hear that. What treatment programs are offered to assist you in dealing with this?

        • I’m just getting into the system. Should get an appointment soon. At this point I’d be happy with some good pain killers, Joint pain is a “pelosi”. 🙂

          • Just getting into the system, huh?

            That sounds like evil socialized medicine to me!

            • It is! But with respect to service related issues. Just pay your taxes and take care of those that went off and did the dirty work.

            • Why are they special whereas other people serving their country in other capacities are not?

              A guy who paves highways for a living is serving his country’s vital interests (infrastructure), is at risk of death (cars, at least as much so as, say, a supply clerk in the States), he is exposed to potentially harmful working conditions, chemicals, etc. Yet you get lifetime medical care and gets called a parasite on the system.

              Explain.

              • The parasites have not proven themselves worthy. They are only here to pay taxes to care for those that are worthy, why, the government said so. The very government that you willingly support and fund. College boys are not worthy and will be arrested for questioning the government’s decisions. Silence, you fool!

              • Matt,

                I hope you can see that I’m joking! I have no idea why the government makes decisions. But, to be clear, it’s not totally free healthcare, there is a copay, unless you are totally unemployed and broke. Also, the medical care must be service related, it won’t cover a newly broken arm or a bad cut that needs stitches. If you want, take this to todays thread.

              • Of course I could tell you’re joking.. I usually assume that unless explicitly told otherwise. It’s interesting to know that it only covers service related care – that makes me feel somewhat better.

              • Glad your feeling better. Hate to ruin your day again, but, just about any ailment or disease not related to an accident, is usually causily related and treated 🙂

              • Grrr

  12. This could be interesting.

    Supreme Court Considers No Warrant Searches

    Mike Hughes
    High Times
    January 18, 2011

    The U.S. Supreme Court is considering how much leeway police have in entering a home without a warrant. The case, Kentucky v. King, centers on “exigent circumstances.” These are situations that allow police to enter and search a home without obtaining a warrant – sort of the exceptions to the warrant requirement (i.e. if authorities suspect criminal activity but believe that time is a factor due to a life being endangered, a possible escape or the destruction of evidence).

    The case reached the nation’s highest court after the Kentucky Supreme Court overturned Hollis King’s conviction. King was busted and sentenced to 11 years in prison when officers, who were chasing an unrelated suspect, stumbled upon King and some friends smoking pot. Police say they smelled marijuana and feared that evidence was being destroyed. Thus, they entered King’s home and obtained evidence without a warrant.

    Read entire article

    http://hightimes.com/news/mike_hughes/6911

    How much leeway should the cops have?

    • How much leeway should the cops have? Very little.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

      The word “unreasonable” might be the way they are allowed to search without a warrant. Or ‘It was not an Unreasonable search because of the time factor’. But right or wrong precedent may have already snuffed that idea.

      Very interesting, indeed.

      • I read the Amendment as: even with probable cause a warrant must be issued, supported by oath or affirmation (to a judge) and describing the place to be searched, ect. I don’t see room for excuses to NOT get a warrant to enter someone’s home.

        • A Puritan Descendant says:

          I still see a loophole but I was not to exceptional in English class. LOL

          • “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

            I broke it down to it’s intended meaning (I think). The Right to be secure, against unreasonable search and seizure. Simple, then it explains what is reasonable search and siezure, which says to me, provide good cause to a judge with all the details, obtain a warrant. My thinking is that the Founders were limiting government and ensuring that the Judicial branch was involved to absolve abuse of power by the police, which after reading what I wrote, has been a huge failure.

        • Bottom Line says:

          A man wearing a shiny piece of metal and a gun gets a piece of paper from another man that has said magic words, and this gives him the “right” to break into MY home and possibly kidnap or kill me, or steal my stuff?

          F&#K THAT!

          Is magic paper bulletproof?

          🙂

        • Exigent circumstances is not – as we can clearly see – embodied in the Amendment itself, but has come about as case law. You can get more information on exigent circumstances at http://www.lectlaw.com/def/e063.htm

          The concept is one that a truck could be driven through when cops decide they must act. After all what alleged criminal isn’t going to dump the evidence if they know the cops are coming?

          Heck, cops would argue that the suspect was smoking up the evidence so he just had to act.

          I’ve always felt exigent circumstances should apply only when it is used to protect the life of one in danger.

          • Case law doesn’t make it right, just makes it exploitable. Example, the cops get a call of a women screaming in an apartment, cops arive and sure enough, there’s a women screaming. Should it be OK to break the door down and enter without a warrant?

            • Case law doesn’t make it right, just makes it exploitable.

              Agreed.

              Should it be OK to break the door down and enter without a warrant?

              More information needed to determine if there exists an exigent circumstance. Screaming what for instance?

              Initially I would say knock and try to get her to open the door.

              • They knocked, no answer, women still screaming. Cops break down door and enter, only to find an elderly guy had fallen asleep while watching porn and he forgot to put in his hearing aide.

                I think it’s easy to see that the 4th Amendment requires warrants for all police action involving search and siezure, and we agree there is no loophole. I think the intentions of the Amendment are clear and concise.

                Good discussion, I was tired of Beck’s gay lovers complaining 😆

              • I’m not that up on these types of laws but I don’t believe they are supposed to search in these situation. And the only seizing or whatever that is allowed is something that is out in plain sight.

              • V.H.,

                You are reasonably correct, but once they enter and seize what is right in front of them then they’ll go through every room in the house and seize anything in plain sight while they – as they’ll tell the court – insure there is no one hiding in those room who could be a danger to the officers or who may be in some peril. The courts will let them get away with that as well when cloaked in the safety concerns argument.

            • Is she screaming words at someone in anger-NO-then they should knock. If she is just screaming-Yea knock the door down and come save me.

          • A Puritan Descendant says:

            This from your link is how I think the Amendment could be at least partly interpreted. >

            “A search is reasonable, and a search warrant is not required, if all of the circumstances known to the officer at the time, would cause a reasonable person to believe that entry or search was necessary to prevent physical harm to the officer or other persons/the destruction or concealment of evidence/the escape of a suspect, and if there was insufficient time to get a search warrant”.

            Or in other words the search is reasonable because of the time factor.

            • In other words, the Amendment has become useless in protecting the rights it was intended to protect, by using “time factor” to remove the checks and balances of the originally designed system, thereby opening the door to total tyranny by the State!

              I think that’s what you just said, but you can verify!

              • A Puritan Descendant says:

                I am saying that the original meaning of the Amendment could mean that a search is reasonable without a warrant under the right circumstances (such as a lack of time to get a warrant)
                AGAIN, I am not an English language expert. So I could be WRONG.

              • No problems with your interpretation at all. I actually agree totally. It’s that interpretation that we seem to live under, my statement above was just my view as to the end result of that interpretation. My English skils have much to be desired as well!

              • A Puritan Descendant says:

                If your interpretation is correct, then precedent or case law has indeed ruined the original meaning. But what else is new? 😦

              • Not new, but notable, the Framers used a system of checks and balances in writing the Constitution, and this seems clear in the 4th Amendment. Should be interesting as to how the SCOTUS will rule on this.

              • I would agree that the Amendment has become pretty much nothing but empty words. The final nail in the coffin of the 4th was the Patriot Act “legalizing” illegal searches and authorizing the swearing to secrecy of those providing the information to the government.

                To me there was no wiggle room written into the 4th. And societies “modernization” and “technological advancement” isn’t an excuse to changing that view either.

    • I know this isn’t the point but 11 years for being busted for smoking pot. 😯

      • 😯

      • I give up-it should have worked 8-0

        • V have you been smoking some pot? I believe you’re looking for 8 right parenthesis like this 8)

      • Bottom Line says:

        V.H.,

        Pot is evil and VERY VERY dangerous, didn’t you know?

        If you legalize it, it’ll be like opening Pandora’s box.

        ROFLMAO!

        • People always forget how violent and dangerous individuals under the influence of marijuana are. Stoners are a serious threat to our society and the should of course be locked up for more than a decade.

          Anyone caught selling should probably be summarily executed.

          Anyone advocating for legalization should be stripped of their citizenship and classified as an enemy combatant.

      • Better late than never 🙂

      • Awww, cmon – what’s a bit more overcrowding in the state prison?

        We must remove these criminals from society to prevent further contamination of the population. 😉

        (/sarcasm off)

  13. Bottom Line says:

    USW,

    I wish you good luck and a speedy recovery.

    Flag,

    Quite whining, cry-baby. (just joking)

    I wish you the same, Flag.

    Y’all take care.

  14. Mathius is simply speechless.

  15. WARNING AND DISCLAIMER:

    The poster known as plainlyspoken is currently operating his keyboard under the influence of Percocet (this is pretty good stuff).

    Plainlyspoken retains the right to alter, change, modify, or outright deny anything he’s written due to violating the principle that one shouldn’t type under the influence…….

    That’s a law ain’t it?

    • I think you can change, alter, or modify but you can’t deny that which is written-hence the law. Well, I suppose you could claim someone was using your name but you just killed that option. 🙂

  16. @ Ray…..Californian Democrat this morning said that any republican interference in Halth CAre repeal WILL result in deaths. Is this caustic?

    Jon Summers, spokesman for HArry Reid, said this morning that NO VOTE that results in the deaths of people will hit the Senate floor. Is this caustic?

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @D13 – in terms of a cause & effect relationship – there is not one. Is it caustic? Absolutely.

      The Jon Summers comment is also interesting – not sure again how tight cause & effect can be established – usually not. If we open it up big – then I guess most any vote can be linked in some way to someone’s death. Caustic? Maybe not as much as the first. Stupid? Absolutely.

      What these folks keep forgetting is their continued behavior just exponentially undermines their credibility and increases our mistrust of them.

  17. To the House and Senate Republicans….. Take the vote and force it to the Seante…..as many times as it takes. Make the Senators vote BY ROLL CALL…..yea or Nay…….send the bill to the President and MAKE him veto it…and then make the over ride vote a public vote on yea or nay. As many times as it takes.

  18. Are We Sure ‘Civility’ Will Help the Democrats?

    During the debate over welfare reform that consumed much of 1995 and 1996 in Congress, those who generally supported the Republican approach (ending the welfare “entitlement,” imposing work requirements) had a very strong hand. Polls had consistently shown voters hated no-strings welfare. Even the Democratic president blamed welfare for sustaining a “culture of poverty.” It would have been a minor feat of parliamentary skill for Republicans to somehow not reform welfare in this situation.

    Yet they almost pulled it off. One reason was politicians like John Mica. During one of the early debates, Mica, a GOP representative from Florida, brandished a sign reading “Don’t Feed the Alligators” to illustrate his argument that “unnatural feeding and artificial care creates dependency.” A Wyoming congresswoman promptly compared welfare recipients to similarly dependent “wolves.” You could debate the aptness of these attention-getting zoological metaphors, but they gave Democratic entitlement-defenders such as Barney Frank an opening to portray reformers as inhuman, disrespectful, possibly racist nutcases. Fortunately for Republicans, by the time the welfare debate resumed in 1996 they’d learned to leave the animals out of it. Reform passed convincingly.

    Shorter version: Republicans toned it down, and that helped them win.

    Which leads me to wonder: if the current frenzy for “civility” means Republicans have to take the sharp edges off their Tea Partyish rhetoric, will that really help Democrats? Democrats may think so. Byron York speculates that they’re quietly congratulating Obama for raising the civility issue in his Tucson address even as he denied that incivility had anything to do with the shooting—a strategy Obamaphile Jon Alter had advocated before the speech. Boy, did it make Palin look bad! What’s more, just when the number of GOP representatives is about to dwarf the number of Democrats who’ll be listening to the State of the Union address, there’s MSM momentum behind the idea that the parties should sit in an interspersed jumble so viewers won’t be able to tell. Brilliant! Republicans are in a position to be mean to Democrats, and there’s suddenly a campaign against meanness. What a happy coincidence!

    But, like many seemingly clever, intuitive MSM/Dem strategies—”Let’s nominate a Vietnam war hero to run against President Bush!”—this one may prove to be a dud, or worse. There’s a reason, after all, why the White House has consistently attacked and therefore elevated relatively intemperate Republican figures such as Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck—making them the public faces of the GOP. The reason is that wild Beckish rhetoric turns off independent and moderate voters. For the same reason, the White House has always seemed to kind of like having the Birthers around. They’re a great foil.

    Why would Republican politicians ever fall into this “too hot” trap? Because hot rhetoric gins up their base. But now that they’ve won the House in an off-year election, GOP pols don’t need to please the base so much. They need the middle. They need swing congressmen to vote for their bills and they need supportive poll numbers to encourage those congressmen to do so. If a “civility” crusade succeeds in getting the most volatile Republicans to cool it and stop irritating the center, it won’t be doing Obama’s work for him. It will be doing John Boehner’s work for him.

    You could easily see a rhetorically modulated GOP achieving much more in the way of health-care reform rollback, Social Security cuts, immigration enforcement, and educational choice than a GOP that insists Obama is a liar, a socialist, and un-American, that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme, that illegal immigrants are mostly gangbangers, etc. There’s a reason the slicker Tea Partiers (Ron Johnson, Rand Paul) won in 2010 while the jagged ones (Sharron Angle, Christine O’Donnell) lost. It’s not because Rand Paul is moderate in substance. It’s because he’s not a John Mica.

    True, none of the GOP’s current issues is precisely analogous to welfare. Welfare reform was a political slam-dunk, and, once it passed, the paleoliberals who’d defended the old AFDC program seemed to vanish into the mists like mastodons. In contrast, GOP immigration enforcement measures (e.g., requiring businesses to check new hires) and education reforms (like charter schools) have stronger opponents who aren’t going to go away. But that only makes it more important for Republicans not to give them any extra lines of attack.

    P.S.: Civility = Triangulation? It’s also true that Obama and Boehner aren’t playing a zero-sum game. In 1996 the net result of passing welfare reform was a big win for Newt Gingrich and a loss for congressional Democrats—but also a big reelection victory for President Clinton. Similarly, civility may both make Obama look good and give Boehner a legislative edge. The result: Obama winds up signing new laws that are more conservative than he might like, just as he wound up signing a lame-duck bill that preserved the Bush tax cuts. As with the lame-duck tax bill, these concessions to Boehner (and Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell) are likely to boost the president’s poll numbers while leaving Nancy Pelosi and the relatively liberal congressional Democratic caucus seething.

    Civility won’t hurt all Democrats, then. It could help Obama. But don’t expect congressional Democrats—or all the liberal bloggers and columnists currently demanding that “partisans … think twice before over-heating their rhetoric”-—to be happy about it … 3:56 a.m.

    http://www.newsweek.com/blogs/kausfiles/2011/01/17/are-we-sure-civility-will-help-the-democrats.html

  19. @ Ray and @ Flag (with elbow probs..btw, speedy recovery)….Referenceing JAC’s question. Do you see the same type of decision in economic issues as JAC put into life or death issues? Economic decisions that may adversly affect “innocent people”?

    • D13,

      The old saying:
      War is an extension of Politics by a different means and Politics is an extension of Economics by a different means.

      Economic decisions (which at this point, I mean Free Market Economicsvoluntary choice) only affects “innocent people” by abstraction.

      My refusing to sell you an apple at the price you demand may adversely affect you – you don’t get the apple to eat.

      But that is an abstracted theory of affect – since I have done no actual action upon you. No force has been applied upon you to create such adversion.

      So there is “no adverse” effects other than your subjective attitude of disappointment – which, though severe, is your value and not an objective value whatsoever.

      Certainly, you can change the game and move to Politics and like Buck often does, redefine words that are not violence to be violence and claim -by Politics- you deserve my apple.

      This has massive adverse effects over all society – but we can discuss that in a different thread.

  20. The “I need to get re-elected cycle begins”

    Obama Launches Rule Review, Pledging to Spur Jobs, Growth

    By ELIZABETH WILLIAMSON

    WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama plans a government-wide review of federal regulations, aiming to eliminate rules that stymie economic growth.
    Journal Community

    President Obama plans a government-wide review of federal regulations, aiming to eliminate rules that stymie economic growth. Jerry Seib has details. Plus, what is Apple’s succession plan?

    In an article published in the opinion pages of The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Obama said he intends to issue an executive order initiating a review to “make sure we avoid excessive, inconsistent and redundant regulation,” focusing on rules that “stifle job creation and make our economy less competitive.” He also suggested future regulations must do their job “while promoting economic growth.”

    The move is the latest effort by the White House to repair relations with corporate America, hoping to spur investment by the nation’s largest multinationals and reduce unemployment.

    Business leaders say an explosion in new regulations stemming from the president’s health-care and financial regulatory overhauls has, along with the sluggish economy, made them reluctant to spend on expanding and hiring. Companies are sitting on nearly $2 trillion in cash and liquid assets, the most since World War II.
    More

    * President Obama: Toward a 21st-Century Regulatory System

    In recent weeks, the administration has made new efforts to push stalled free-trade agreements with Korea and others through Congress, and signaled its eagerness to consider an overhaul of the U.S. corporate tax code. The president invited chief executives to the White House last month, where they formed task forces to work on specific issues, including export growth and taxes.

    On Feb. 7, Mr. Obama will visit the U.S. Chamber of Commerce—a chief opponent to his administration’s regulatory approach—for a discussion on how the White House can work with the group to create jobs. The efforts are designed to give companies more confidence in the president’s stewardship of the economy, and bolster his re-election prospects among a wealthy constituency not traditionally allied with Democrats.

    In Tuesday’s article, the president defended his administration’s efforts to strike “the proper balance” between protecting the public and not interfering with economic growth.

    The president said the government sometimes failed to meet its “basic responsibility to protect the public interest,” citing the run-up to the financial crisis. He also acknowledged the cost of regulation and said that sometimes “rules have gotten out of balance, placing unreasonable burdens on business—burdens that have stifled innovation and have had a chilling effect on growth and jobs.”

    View Full Image
    obama0117
    Zuma Press

    President Obama talks on the phone with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R, Va.) and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D, Calif.) on January 5.
    obama0117
    obama0117

    He also said: “Where necessary, we won’t shy away from addressing obvious gaps: new safety rules for infant formula; procedures to stop preventable infections in hospitals; efforts to target chronic violators of workplace safety laws. But we are also making it our mission to root out regulations that conflict, that are not worth the cost, or that are just plain dumb.”
    Journal Community

    * discuss

    “ This is good news if in fact he delivers. It should help remove some of the anxiety that business owners have felt and add jobs. ”

    —Ed Teixeira

    For close to a year, the White House has been asking leading business groups in the capital to identify regulations they believe are obstacles to job-creating private investment. But these efforts are being dwarfed by complaints about the administration’s unfriendly rhetoric toward the financial industry and large corporations, and regulations stemming from its legislative agenda.

    Even some of the president’s corporate allies have joined criticism of the White House’s regulatory and tax policies. The Business Roundtable, an association of chief executives of many of the largest U.S. corporations, last year compiled a 54-page report that includes proposals to streamline rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Federal Communications Commission, among scores of others. It was accompanied by public criticism from the Roundtable, whose members have frequently advised the White House on the economy.

    At the same time, the administration faces pressure from the left not to appear to be too close to Wall Street and corporate interests. Liberals were irked most recently when Mr. Obama tapped political veteran and J. P. Morgan Chase & Co. executive William Daley as his chief of staff.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703396604576088634252904032.html

    • I would like to point out that based on my experience EVERY Administration does this:

      “He also said: “Where necessary, we won’t shy away from addressing obvious gaps: new safety rules for infant formula; procedures to stop preventable infections in hospitals; efforts to target chronic violators of workplace safety laws. But we are also making it our mission to root out regulations that conflict, that are not worth the cost, or that are just plain dumb.”

      And the RESULT is more and more regulations.

      Also please note that he put environment first in what seems an equal consideration with business and economy. You can not have your cake and eat it to. Tradeoffs are almost always required. By placing environment first in his statements his Administration will place environment first in their enforcement.

      That will be their view of what is needed, not necessarily what is acceptable to the people.

      • I agree that every administration does this. The problem is that it works. A large percentage of our population only hears the sound bites and sees the headlines. Obama is against finger pointing, Obama has found his voice, Obama is going to cut regulations, Obama allowing more drilling. Well, Obama has done a lot of finger pointing, Obama never lost his voice, Obama has signed into law a lot of new regulations, and Obama has done everything possible to stop drilling. I simply do not buy that he has suddenly changed his ideology-I am past giving him a chance-I do not understand why people let the noise of the election cycle blind them to the actual policy decisions a President makes during his term. After the election cycle, if he is re-elected, he will return to the same ideology that his actions supported but it will be worse because he will not have to worry about being re-elected. This is true of every president-why don’t the people learn this-Why are they swayed by the talk when it is the actions that count.

        • V.H.

          Because they do not actively think.

          They are told how to feel and what to think about everything.

          It is hard work to sort through the Bull to find the kernels.

          Decades of “acculturation” is very effective. Just be thankful that the number of awakened is increasing.

          • I’m going to agree because you said actively think. 🙂 But while I’m ranting I’m gonna add a few things. 🙂 It isn’t just the actions that are taken it’s the reason behind the actions. The far left being angry at Obama just floors me. The man is doing his best to get their policies instated and still get re-elected so he will be able to pass more. They seem to think he and they would be better off if he fell on his sword to get it all done quickly. But the moderates need to take note that he is not really moderate. He is just smart enough to try to go slow and set things up to get what he wants. I suspect if the left hadn’t been pushing him so hard-he would have been much more successful at their agenda. So I’m glad they are mad at him.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              The far left is angry at Obama because he has failed to push forward the agenda that they had elected him to push forward.

              I’ve said before and I’ll say it again — you can disagree with Obama’s agenda all you want, but this is not a far left agenda.

              To name a few things the far left had wanted but has not come to fruition:

              1) Closing Guantanamo
              2) Pulling out of the wars
              3) Gay Marriage
              4) Universal health care (or, at the very least, a strong Public Option)
              5) An end to Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy
              6) A reinstated estate tax at a lower level and higher tax rate
              7) Stronger financial reform/regulation
              8) Stronger environmental reform/regulation
              9) Need I go on??

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Why does my 8 look suspiciously like BF playing poker??

              • on environmental reform no less..LOL..Look out I see a pirate in the distance.

              • Not really interested in arguing over whether these are far left ideas-My reason for saying far left-is that they yell the loudest. I get that the democrats had a majority and they probably could have gotten even more passed-and they got a lot in my opinion-but even what they passed has cost them a lot of seats. Lost seats mean lost power-and bills that have been passed can with enough power be overturned. Slow forward movement works best if you want your achievements to last. But it really isn’t in my best interest to talk you into Not being mad at Obama-so I think I’ll shut up. 🙂

              • Didn’t notice your 8 before-very funny!

  21. Texas steps up. The Legislature yesterday got a good look at the budget shortfall…..and made the decisions in one day. There will be no tax increase and there will be a 16% cut in spending and that includes the elimination of 197 State Jobs….as a beginning. Hard decisions made in one day…now to work out the details. Health, Education benefits, public sector jobs are not protected.

    • It’s not easy.

      But it is simple.

      • Good morning, sir. Kudos to still having a secret tunnel that I we have not found yet. You are really good….although, I think sneaking extra grog to DPM to keep him occupied is a hitting below the belt BUT all is fair in love and war, they say.

        One thing else that was said after I posted. Texas has a rainy day fund that has a few billion in it….it is off limits as well as the Governor AND the LT Governor and the House Speaker have all claimed…the rainy day fund is not to be robbed or used for pet projects or balancing the budget,,,,,it is an emergency fund only. (Hurricanes, Floods, Nuclear War, DPM’s grog supply….things like that.)

        How are you, sir. We have some yankee weather coming in tomorrow. 17 degrees…maybe a little frozen precip.

        ****Urgent Request**** Please keep it. We do not want it. it is time for water skiing…not ice breaking.

  22. The first “victory” for House Republicans. This bill passed 399-0.

    But the real question is, how the hell did this not pass when proposed last year under the democrats, and the bigger question is why only in 2011

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/01/18/house-considers-proposal-stop-mandatory-printing/?test=latestnews#

    The House of Representatives on Tuesday unanimously approved a bill to stop the mandatory printing of congressional documents — unfortunately for the sponsor, the government had to print another 1,000 pages in order for the House to consider the proposal.

    In yet another example of how unintentionally amusing Washington can be, the Government Printing Office was required to provide Congress with 325 copies of the three-page bill, according to the office of author Rep. Chris Lee, R-N.Y. The GPO typically prints between 325 and 475 copies of any bill or resolution, and this one was no exception.

    Lee spokesman Matthew Harakal acknowledged the frustration in having to print more copies in order to stop the printing of more copies. But he said if all goes well, the practice should soon draw to a close. The bill would order the GPO to stop the excessive printing and instead provide digital copies to Congress via the Internet.

    “This is just common-sense legislation,” Harakal told FoxNews.com. “Businesses everywhere, families everywhere are going paperless. It’s cheaper, it’s better for the environment.”

    The rest of the House agreed, passing the bill in a 399-0 vote.

    If the proposal makes its way through the Senate, it will also mark the first victory for House Republicans’ YouCut program, an interactive website through which members of the public pick programs for Congress to eliminate. The GOP started the program last year and watched every one of their proposals, including an earlier version of Lee’s government printing bill, go down during the last Congress when Democrats were in charge.

    But the New York representative earned some bipartisan support for his idea Tuesday.

    “Too many bill copies wastes time, trees and taxpayer dollars,” Rep. Susan Davis, D-Calif., said on the floor.

    Republicans have previously estimated the bill could save taxpayers $35 million over 10 years. According to Lee’s office, the GPO has allocated $7 million for congressional printing costs in 2011, meaning the annual savings from the bill could not be more than that.

    But Lee said the proposal would nevertheless lead to “significant savings” every year and should not be dismissed just because it doesn’t identify billions of dollars to cut.

    “Every dollar counts, every cent counts,” he said Tuesday.

    According to his office, nearly 3 million paper copies of bills and resolutions were delivered to lawmakers last year. He estimated the government printed about 750,000 pages for the health care law alone.

    Lawmakers were careful to note that the bill to do away with these copies is not an indictment of the normally innocuous Government Printing Office.

    No offense taken. GPO spokesman Gary Somerset said in a written statement that throughout the agency’s history, “GPO has transformed itself numerous times to be as cost-effective and efficient as possible.”

  23. Ray Hawkins

    I finally got a chance to check out the video you posted on Glenn Beck yesterday.

    Innocuous at best Ray. Nothing in these videos even comes close to violence or inciting violence.

    Did you notice how Media Matters puts up words to help you “interpret” what it is you are hearing. Same goes for the guy interpreting the other one.

    The narrator states that Beck is right. Nobody heard of Tides and it is group that gives to various “Progressive” causes. But then he avoids any mention of what those “causes” are and how the money moves around. Something that was documented by others before Beck by the way (Shadow World by Robert Chandler).

    Then I love this one. The guy tells Beck he has to be more responsible and not go around telling folks the Govt is being taken over by a bunch of nefarious Progressives.

    This is why efforts to stifle this type of speech are so dangerous. Beck is not calling for violence. He is speaking his mind and providing what he thinks is evidence. The other side can counter with theirs. But instead their ploy is to tag him as crazy and inciting violence. It is a classic strategy that is decades old. Destroy the messenger instead of dealing with the message. And it is evil at its core.

    • Good Morning JAC! 🙂

      I did a search on Beck, Geez, he is one hated person. Back in 2008, I watched alot of election coverage stuff, I really didn’t like the way some presented themselves, so I stopped watching them. Seems pretty simple. Yet, the left seem to love to hate to a point that they are infatuated with hating Beck. I don’t watch Beck. Why the hate?

      PEACE!

      G!

      • G-Man

        I have a theory.

        Beck was pretty much invisible to them when he was just another “Conservative Republican” radio host.

        But then he made a turn towards the Libertarians and started raising hell with both sides. He became a voice for those who were upset and wanted to know what happened.

        Then the Tea Party happens and Beck fit in perfectly. With his new positions he becomes their biggest supporter and helps them get national attention. So as the Tea Party became something more than just a summer exercise in anger, it became a real threat to the left.

        Once a threat you are fair game for the hate machine. The left has thrived on building hate for years. This was just another natural addition to the list. Palin had already been on the list so when Beck started supporting her efforts it was a natural for them. Twice the hate at half the price.

        Keeping hate inflamed makes it easier to manipulate your sheep. Nothing more dangerous than a herd of berserk sheep on a stampede. 🙂 🙂

        As we are fair and balanced, I want to point out the same applies to the Neo-nazis, skin heads and other fringe groups on the left. It just seems to be a disease that exists on that side of the border.

        Stay right my friend and you will live long and prosper. (yes that was a little bait fishing) 🙂

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @JAC – change any assumptions lately? Listen to the videos again and tell me how is Beck offering a “peaceful resolution of issues”. You’re attempting to sidetrack the discussion with your own assumptions that Terry and I were not using.

      • Ray

        And just how am I changing any assumptions?

        It was your claim that these videos somehow contradicted Terry’s claim that Beck offered non violent action as the path.

        If your intent was not to offer them up as proof of Beck “inciting” in some way then what was the purpose?

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          I offered they were not indicative of man seeking peaceful resolution. On some level they may be considered inciting. Or they may simply be “not peaceful resolution”.

  24. ALTRUISM——–Follow Up from Yesterday

    More information on the topic. Following are some selected paragraphs from an article evaluating another person’s criticism of Ayn Rand’s view on Altruism. You may notice a similarity between Bass’ criticism and that which has been leveled here at SUFA. Namely that those of us who see it as the underpinning ethic of socialism, fascism, etc have somehow misunderstood the meaning.

    A Dialogue on Ayn Rand’s Ethics
    Reply to Robert H. Bass, “Egoism versus Rights” (Spring 2006)
    Altruism in
    Auguste Comte and Ayn Rand
    Robert L. Campbell
    Robert H. Bass (2006) emphatically rejects Ayn Rand’s wellknown
    argument that altruism in morality is inconsistent with respect
    for individual rights in politics. His article raises a multitude of issues.
    As much needs to be said about its treatment of egoism as its
    treatment of altruism. A good deal could be said, as well, about Bass’s
    insensitivity to the ancient ethical tradition to which Rand’s moral
    theory largely belongs. But here I will target a single point of
    controversy: Rand’s interpretation of altruism, which Bass declares
    is such a gross distortion as to invalidate her entire critique of it.

    Bass’s criticism would carry a good deal
    more weight had he deemed it worthwhile to mention Rand’s
    response to a real person named Auguste Comte (1798–1857). Comte
    might be thought to merit a little attention in this regard, since he
    actually invented the word altruism (1973a). Here is what Rand (1961,
    36) had to say about him:
    Auguste Comte, the founder of Positivism, the champion of
    science, advocated a “rational,” “scientific” social system
    based on the total subjugation of the individual to the
    collective, including a “Religion of Humanity” which substituted
    Society for the Gods or gods who collect the blood of
    Campbell — Altruism in Auguste Comte and Ayn Rand 359
    sacrificial victims. It is not astonishing that Comte was the
    coiner of the term Altruism, which means: the placing of
    others above self, of their interests above one’s own

    What Did Comte Think?
    It has been pointed out, on more than one occasion, that Rand’s
    one or two paragraph treatments of Western philosophers in For the
    New Intellectual are less than charitable, and in some cases substantially
    distorted. I’ve complained myself about the way she ran Herbert
    Spencer over (Campbell 1996). So our first order of business is to
    assess whether she got Comte right or not.
    She did, as an examination of Comte’s later writings will confirm.
    Comte was so devout a collectivist that he denied there could be a
    science of psychology—on moral grounds, for it would be too
    individualistic! And although Comte (1966; 1973a) was squeamish
    about the death penalty, and reluctant to discuss the use of force, the
    exquisitely planned and directed social order that he pined for had no
    chance of coming into being without massive compulsion. By
    addressing his personal appeals to the Tsar of Russia rather than, say,
    the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Comte (1966) implicitly conceded
    this point.

    Here is a link to the entire article, for those interested.

  25. Sorry. It didn’t take on first try.

    http://hubcap.clemson.edu/~campber/altruismrandcomte.pdf

  26. Buck the Wala says:
    • I skimmed it but found myself thinking of other things…imagine that 🙂

      This MAY put some arguments in check. BUT.. the folks still aren’t buying the package as a whole and that’s the bottom line.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Whether or not the majority of Americans want this is a very different argument than the constitutionality of the mandate.

        • One question, by what Constitutional authority, can Govt. tax a citizen for NOT engaging in interstate commerce?

          • Buck the Wala says:

            Commerce clause, aided by the Necessary & Proper clause.

            By not engaging in commerce (purchasing insurance) you are having a substantial impact on interstate commerce (the health care system as a whole).

            • So, under your interpretation, if I don’t own a car and drive it, I’m also having a substantial impact on interstate commerce. Therefore I can be forced to own a car, be insured to drive, buy gas and oil, ect. That, my friend, is ludacris.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Absolutely not.

                How does you not owning a car have a substantial impact on interstate commerce?

                But health insurance is much different – you not having insurance directly impacts the government’s regulation over the health care industry. Or are you disputing that any regulation over health care is valid?

              • by not owning a car, it is disturbing jobs in other states that make the car, make spare parts for the car, refine the oil for the car, etc.

              • I’m disputing the govt has the authority to force me by law to engage in ANY form of commerce. They do not! If it applies to one regulated industry, then by virtue, it applies to all regulated industry.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                The health industry is a very different industry than other industries. I don’t see how the same argument can be applied to forcing individuals to purchase a car.

              • You may not see how your interpretation of the health care issue effects other industries but I guarantee you-if this stands as Constitutional you will find out how it applies because your government will teach you through the years of your life-by forcing you do and buy other things that you do not want or can not afford.

            • By not engaging in commerce (purchasing insurance) you are having a substantial impact on interstate commerce (the health care system as a whole).

              By not engaging in commerce (owning and driving a car) you are having a substantial impact on interstate commerce (the oil industry, auto insurance industry, auto parts industry, auto industry)

              Apply common sense and you shall be saved!

            • You have a point-I just think you have the cause wrong-if commerce is affected it is because government pays for people to get heatlh care(which I agree with on moral grounds) but people not buying insurance isn’t what affects commerce-I think government involvement does that.

    • Buck,

      Why do you think that every American should be required to buy health insurance via Govt. edict?

      • Buck the Wala says:

        The majority of Americans support a bill requiring insurance companies to insure those with pre-existing conditions. This results in a very serious problem — why buy insurance if you can obtain insurance at a reasonable price upon becoming ill? One way of avoiding this result is to mandate everyone carry insurance.

        How would you address this problem?

        • Buck.. You’re a cost/effect kinda guy. How can you support a bill that will cost trillions to covers millions..I’m no math professor but doesnt that equal billions per person? Or at least something close.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            As I’ve said in the past – I have many serious problems with this bill.

            But that is a very different issue as to whether or not the mandate is constitutional.

            • Buck

              Until the early 1940’s there was no chance in hell this would ever be considered Constitutional.

              So how is it that such a radical change in “interpretation” could occur in such a short time period? That is if it is really just interpretation as you so often claim.

              Funny how precedent didn’t bother the new courts but now they want to argue precedent in defending an obviously UNCONSTITUTIONAL requirement to purchase insurance.

              As for the issue of “public option” by the states, while I do not support such a thing it is entirely within their authority to pass such laws. Depending of course on the State constitutions.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                In 1792 Americans were required to purchase a musket.

              • Buck

                By STATE law Buck. Not Federal Law.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                I believe the musket requirement was federal law, no?

                I disagree that the states should be resolving this issue on a state-by-state basis. To me this is a national issue that should be addressed nationally.

                And can we knock it off with the ‘obviously unconstitutional’ talk? Clearly there is disagreement on this issue.

        • They would address this by using the free-market approach: ie, it’s problem, not mine – screw ’em.

        • Buck…you are assuming that it is a problem. I still have to get over that insurance is a right instead of privilege. And I still have to get over the hurdle that it should be a mandate. It does not affect me in that I have coverage…but mandating it, to me, is non constitutional but I am not a lawyer….it will be interesting if it does reach the SCOTUS. I am not in agreement on any mandates and I am not in agreement that government is the way out. But….ok. I will have to live with the result.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            We’ve been down this road before. I am still surprised that so many on this site view adequate health care as a privilege set aside for only those who can afford it.

            • No, Buck, I think you still misread me. I do not believe in MANDATED health care. There are plenty of charities out there and plenty of county hospitals for emergencies. There is no one, to my knowledge, that cannot get health care when needed. Even the 20 million uninsured can still get health care when needed. They just need to walk in the door to get it.

              To force an insurance company into coverages and mandates is where you and I do not agree. AND, to MANDATE health coverage on the premise that it will lower costs is absurd. To force a company to provide it, either by private or public is just plain wrong. If I choose to not provide coverage….that is my choice as a company owner. It is NOT YOUR CHOICE OR RIGHT to tell me that I MUST.

              Create greater incentives through charitable giving or charitable health giving….I guarantee you will solve the problem.

            • I have no health insurance. I could find a way to afford it. I choose not to, it is a risk I choose, and I should have a right to take that risk. I run my own business. It is a huge risk. I should have the right to take that risk. I lift very heavy weights and do martial arts. Both forms of excersize involve a fair amount of risk versus other forms. I should have a right to take that risk. I drive a car to work. Driving kills thousands every year. It is risky, jumping on the road driving 50mph or more with a lot of other people doing the same, some are good drivers some are not. It is a risk. I should have the right to take that risk.

              Insurance is not a right. Even if you could make the argument that it should be, lack of insurance should be permitted if it is the choice of the individual to take that risk.

              If I get fined for failing to purchase insurance, I might just go revolutionary and starting taking out federal officials, you think that would affect interstate commerce? The law is bullshit, and a federal judge in Virginia already ruled that it is not constitutional. There may be disagreement, but, at least to some federal judges, it is indeed “obviously unconstitutional”.

              • Jon Smith,
                And you agree that if you need medical attention for any reason, you will pay the estimated cost of those services before you are treated.

                If you do not have the cash in hand to pay, you will be left to die on the sidewalk.

                Sound good?

              • Todd,

                If that is a risk you have identified it is up to YOU to mitigate that risk and NOT the hospital.

                You are the one in demand, not them.

                Therefore, it is important to you to be able to satisfy your own needs and not depend on a distant third party!!!

                That’s the point. You have your onus of responsibility backwards.

                I am NOT responsible for YOU.

                Do not come to my door demanding that I am responsible for you!!

                So do not come to a hospital’s door demanding they are responsible for you either.

              • Black Flag,

                You have your onus of responsibility backwards.

                What do I have backwards?

                It sounds like we agree?

                I have insurance to cover my medical bills.

                Jon does not.

                If he needs medical care, he better have cash to pay for it.

                Otherwise he gets no medical care.

                Jon should not expect the hospital, you, or me to cover his medical bills.

              • Todd,
                does it “sound good”? Of course not, but it sounds precisely like the risk I have chosen to take, with full knowledge, for the last dozen years. Winning the lottery or winning big money at the track or the casino “sounds good”, but that does not mean I should spend a significant portion of my income on lotto tickets and other betting. You speak as if medical expenses are inevitable. They are not. There is always a risk of having them, and of dying if you cannot get medical attention. But then, there is always a risk of death regardless of medical attention. There is always risk in any life. A free life has greater risk, but it also has far greater opportunity. You cannot remove risk without also removing freedom and opportunity. I will take the bad with the good. I will take my risks, and it should be my right to do so. If that means I die an early, sad death, so be it. At least I die free. You are not responsible for mitigating the risk in my life. You have no right to restrict me from taking a risk, any more than I have the right to ask you to pay for my downfall if I take the risk and lose.

        • Sounds like the agenda is forcing personnal responsibility to those who lack in it, at the expense of those that are. It won’t work, because the tax for not getting it is far less than the cost of insurance, and the cost of insurance keeps going way up, actually making the problem worse.

          How I would fix it is simple. Each State could offer an insurance policy for those who have been denied in the free market. Far less intrusive, far less expensive and solves the problem.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            So….a public option?

            • Like flood insurance. It’s out there and available if it’s needed.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Flood insurance is very different from health insurance.

              • Let me redirect you back to the point. The States can offer health insurance to those who have been denied due to pre existing conditions. Flood insurance came to be because insurance companies wouldn’t cover for flooding, much like health insurance won’t cover pre existing conditions. Sounds like they have alot in common to me.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                So state governments should offer health insurance to those that cannot obtain in the private market due to preexisting conditions?

                This sounds very similar to the public option that had been so criticized and even villified…maybe I’m missing something?

                Also, by opening up a public option to these individuals with preexisting conditions (and only to these individuals), how do you propose this is paid for?

              • Buck…a question. You seem to be stuck on pre-existing conditions. Why do you feel that a pre-existing condition should be given special treatment?

                As to the States…yes sir. Let the state handle their own problems and open up the markets across state lines. Really easy to do and a problem solver.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                As for preexisting conditions – not really stuck on it, but this has led to a lot of the calls for health insurance form and the reason for either instituting a mandate or a public option. Without either, why purchase insurance before you are sick?

                As for the states – this is not a state issue in my opinion. Also, simply allowing the markets to cross state lines without anything more could have the unintended consequence of all insurance companies rushing to states with the weakest requirements. I could get behind allowing markets to cross state lines AND establishing a national baseline of minimum coverage. But this would still leave open the question of what to do with those uninsured.

        • What the majority of Americans support has no bearing on a law being constitutional. But if a true majority support something, an amendment passed will be constitutional.

        • Easy, eliminate the law requiring insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions. It is a bad law, you do not fix a bad law by passing another bad law, you get rid of the friggin’ bad law.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            And the consequence of doing so?

            If you simply force insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions, why would you purchase insurance now?

    • One need go no further than this statement in the first paragraph to conclude this is a work of CRAP.

      “The national market in healthcare insurance and services,
      which Congress found amounts to over $2 trillion annually and consumes more than 17% of the annual gross
      domestic product,”

      I love the approach. 100 lawyers agree. Oooooooooooooooooooo. Is this the beginning of a “the law is settled” because there “is consensus” argument?

      If any of these people actually practice law they should have their license revoked.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        How does that statement make it a work of crap? Why should they have their license revoked? Because you happen to disagree with their analysis?

        Many of these individuals are considered top scholars in the field of constitutional law. Does this make their word ‘final’ or ‘correct’? Of course not. But it should be considered.

        • Because they are twisting the law and logic for political purposes. They are hacks and should not be allowed to practice. Those who teach should be reassigned to the salt mines as well. Perhaps a little real contribution to society would make their minds right.

          I did consider their thoughts. It is CRAP. Pure rationalization of a pre-determined Progressive view point and political agenda.

          If you start your argument with blatant lies then what is your defense? Are you claiming these esteemed scholars were just ignorant of the truth? I thought ignorance of the law is not an excuse, so why should it be for truth in general?

          If this statement were not bad enough it is amplified by the absolute nature of their claim that this is in fact a TAX. Horseshit Buck, and you know it.

          This is a FINE, a PENALTY. It in no way comports with any other tax assessed by the Federal Govt nor envisioned by the Framers. A TAX on an asset you don’t own and assessed only if you don’t acquire that asset. Even a head tax has an asset value attached.

          Heaven help us if this is found Constitutional. But of course, thanks to the hate mongering of the left, heaven help us if it is found Unconstitutional. Thus is the effect of the moral rot introduced and spread by the Left in this country.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      I don’t want to rehash past arguments with you Buck over this mandate being unconstitutional.

      I will just say I still can’t believe that in 1942 some guy growing wheat for his own chickens, was forced to destroy his wheat crop, with the USSC using this same commerce clause as the excuse.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickard_v._Filburn

      The government interferes with the free market and creates a ‘crisis’ and then uses the crises to interfere with our constitutional right to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

      What next? We can’t grow lettuce in our gardens because California lettuce growers need price supports to compete with Mexico? Where does it end? I know the answer, it doesn’t end.

      Now we must purchase an ins. product at whatever price to comply with the Insurance mandate.

      Your Utopian dreams for all, actually destroy dreams for all.

  27. JAC, JAC, JAC,

    Flashback to the GZM/Rauf discussions we have had.

    Disclaimer: I have repeatedly said that I cannot put into words what my brain is thinking sometimes or I just dont think that deeply. But at the time you cast Rauf as a peacemaker. I called him a wolve in sheeps clothes. But my shallow brain couldn’t articulate why. I just don’t trust him.

    So look what I just came across. I have also heard that Rauf has pulled out of the GZM project. Juat curious what your thoughts are on this and GZM going forward today.

    BF I can’t argue with you either. You guys will bury me and I know it. I will just say that I agree with this article.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/257438/wrong-rauf-andrew-c-mccarthy

    • Anita

      I don’t remember our exact discussion but as I recall I was just trying to show that the guy wasn’t necessarily the devil he was being portrayed as. He makes a good example of how people with strong bias can interpret otherwise truthful or helpful statements as negatives.

      Let me use one of his quotes in the article which the authors use as “proof” he is an “apologist”.

      “Nor is Rauf exactly full-throated in his rejection of terrorism, offering only this: “The issue of terrorism is a very complex question.” OK, NOTICE HERE THEY SET YOU UP WITH A NEGATIVE THOUGHT AND THEN USE HIS STATEMENT AS PROOF. BUT HIS STATEMENT IS FACTUAL. TERRORISM IS A VERY COMPLEX QUESTION.

      “While he cannot quite bring himself to blame the terrorists for being terrorists, he finds it easy to blame the United States for being a victim of terrorism: “I wouldn’t say that the United States deserved what happened, but the United States policies were an accessory to the crime that happened.”” ONCE AGAIN, THEY TELL YOU WHAT TO CONCLUDE FIRST BUT HIS STATEMENT DOESN’T FIT PERFECTLY. IT IS A FACT THAT IN THE MINDS OF THE TERRORISTS THAT OUR POLICIES JUSTIFIED THEIR ACTIONS. SO TO TELL US THIS IS NOT TO SUPPORT OR APOLOGIZE FOR TERROR ACTS. IT IS AN EXPLANATION OF WHY IT HAPPENED. ALTHOUGH IT IS A VERY BROAD GENERALIZATION.

      Here is another way to look at these types of comments. Think back to the past week as many of us tried to explain the lack of connection between inflammatory rhetoric and some crazy person shooting people. Some here accused us of rationalizing the violence, of being “apologists for the murders and those that fueled them” (my quotes for effect).

      I do not know what this guy is all about, or the true motive of the GZM. I do know the whole thing smelled badly. Especially the issue of how he came up with so much money, and why did the investors give it to him. But, I also know it is not really at ground zero and it does not violate any of the city/county/state codes. I also know that many folks who have decided that all things Muslim are evil are mis-characterizing many of the statements this gentleman has made, as well as others.

      So quite frankly, I don’t know who to believe or what the truth is regarding the whole thing. In the meantime the reactions against him make for very good examples of how “bias” or “prejudice” can affect our ability to decode and understand what someone is trying to tell us.

      Needless to say, I disagree with the conclusions about Rauf in this article. But that is based solely on the quotes they provided with their commentary. I do agree that the guy attacking Palin, etc did nothing to address the points. You can’t defeat slander with more slander.

      • I understand JAC. And you’re right I see how they give a conclusion first then throw in the quotes. One thing I am sure of though is that I do not trust Rauf or the rest of his cronies.

        • Anita

          And I concede that your gut instincts may be right on target.

          Like I said, there has been a bad smell around the whole affair.

          I hope your week is going well. Are you an official home school teacher yet?

          • Not just yet. I would be very happy if someone would just plop a curriculim in my lap. I have run more circles online looking for a hard copy than I’d like to admit. I will also admit to a minimum of 20 hrs in the last two weeks of 7th grade(catch up) Math. Care to know the definition of the Associative Property of Multiplication?

            • Antia

              One of the best teaching tools around.

              Have him teach you the math to get you up to speed.

            • Anita

              Do not rush or worry about any “curriculum” – the world is your school room now and “it will all come together” naturally.

              It is also very common to “take a break from school” when a child who has been in school for a time comes home for home schooling.

              There is so much garbage that needs to be purged out of the kid due to school that usually leaping right into home school causes lots of unintended problems.

              Give the kid a break.

              Let him hang around the house doing normal kid things – helping out with the housework, mowing lawns, shoveling snow, reorganizing the store room….but don’t push the school stuff…even a hour of video game/internet hours is ok too. Just let them “hang out” and “chill”.

              He will have “attachment” disorders – he has been away from you for 8 hrs a day every day, now he is going to be with you 16 hrs a day every day. If you launch right into “school” he will take a lot longer recognizing you as his “Mom”.

              He will learn that being “home” with “mom” is “cool” – and a lot less painful.

              Don’t worry about him “falling behind”. It never happens. He will get bored. He will “heal”, and when he is in a stronger place, he’ll plow right through whatever “unschooling” goal you both want.

              • Cool BF..Never thought about that. I’ve been trying to wait this semester out so I can just easily transition to a curriculum at a 1/2 way point. Not worried about the ‘home with mom is cool’ angle. He’s excited and willing. But a cooling off period makes sense. I need a cooling off period myself. Been at it continuosly with the school for a couple weeks. Would there be any harm or law broken if I just yanked him out today or would you suggest I wait til the end of the semester 1/28?

              • Anita,

                When I said to let him “hang out” – I do mean having him do valuable stuff like helping the household out by working in the home.

                Do not allow him to “laze” around – an HOUR (no more) of video/internet during the day is ok, but NOT “hourS”…. his education right now is that one must earn a living – and right now, that earning is improving the living household – organizing, cleaning, repairing…whatever…NOT! ‘sleeping in’, ‘watching TV’, ‘playing video games’. He must be doing “something” that is valuable to him and you, and doing “nothing” is not an option.

                Would there be any harm or law broken if I just yanked him out today or would you suggest I wait til the end of the semester

                I would answer this way:
                My son has been freed from his jail sentence!

                BF, should I wait until the end of the year to get him out, or should I go and get him out of prison today?

                Run, do not walk, and get that boy home – today!

                And no, I know of no law that stops you – you are “home schooling” right now – you do not have wait on a time table of some stupid institution to do that.

              • Anita,

                During the “cooling off” period, both of you should investigate and articulate your goals.

                As I said once before, do you want a “diploma” or a “degree” when by the time he is 18?

                If your goals is a College degree, then you can start right now to work for it.

                College degrees DO NOT require a High School diploma.

                Imagine your son having a four year head start on his economic competition AND be debt free (no student loans).

                As I said, he will NOT be falling behind doing home schooling 🙂

              • I get it BF. He’s a computer /video game player but not like most kids. He’d really rather be outside anyway.

                Then dangit all what am I waiting on. I hearby announce that:

                MY SON IS NO LONGER A STUDENT IN PUBLIC EDUCATION EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                I further admit that I’m scared to death of the challenge but it’s better than the alternative! Wish us luck and I can’t thank you enough for your support! 😉

              • Anita,

                Your “fear” is not the same as “afraid” – it is your internalization of the excitement and anticipation one would feel at the shores of discovering a new continent!

                Email USWep for my email address, and you can send directly any questions you may have regarding the UNschooling/Home Schooling stuff –

                and Ray is a good resource too as he is at the cusp of diving in too!

                It is a positive thing to have two-like, near-drowning people to keep each other afloat! 😉

              • Same here Anita, you are welcome to my direct email. And congratulations on your most excellent decision. You will not regret it, at least not in the long run, and neitehr will your son.

              • Thanks to you Jon.. I did settle on a package curriculum which should be arriving within 7 days. Now off to tackle the school board and whatever grief comes with that!

  28. Buck,

    We’ve been down this road before.

    I am still surprised that so many view that an adequate motor car is a privilege set aside for those that can afford it.

    I am still surprised that so many view that adequate potato chips is a privilege set aside for those that can afford it.

    I am still surprised that so many view that adequate grass seed is a privilege set aside for those that can afford it.

    I am still surprised that so many view that adequate beer is a privilege set aside for those that can afford it.

    Buck, your failure.

    To provide an economic good to someone who does not pay means someone else has to pay without receiving any economic gain.

    When this is voluntary, it is called Charity

    But you abhor voluntary action, so you demand the use of force.

    This is called Theft.

    Thus, to promote something you think is important – and others not so much – you have no problem attacking people and taking their money to fund your whims.

    Thus, you destroy the fabric of society as you give justification to use theft to fund anyone’s idea of what is “important” to them

    • Buck the Wala says:

      I knew you were lurking somewhere around these waters…how’s the elbow doing? Your post seems shorter than usual!

      There is a huge difference between potato chips and adquate health care. One is necessary for life and the other is a tasty treat that is probably not very helpful towards life. Adequate health care impacts our society as a whole; it is a problem that must be addressed nationally.

      You boil everything down to the same ‘economic good’ refusing to see shades of gray. If we as a nation provide heatlh insurance to someone who does not pay, this means that we must pay for those individuals’ health insurance without receiving any economic gain. But we are seeing economic gain as it spreads out the cost of having to pay for those individuals’ health care down the road (who pays for someone’s emergency visit to the hospital?)

      Or are you suggesting that we shouldn’t treat these individuals at all — no health care nor ability to pay? Oh well, glad I’m not them!

      • “this means that we must pay for those individuals’ health insurance”

        Why do those on the Left feel they have the right to speak for everyone! Who gave them this new right?

        • It is not a right for them, but a privledge. Only the left can do it…just ask them!

          • Obama must have issued a secret Preidential Order in the middle of the night on a holiday and we missed it. Darn the bad luck 🙂

      • Buck

        There is a huge difference between potato chips and adquate health care.

        False.

        They are both valuable economic goods.

        The only difference is your value.
        YOU, Buck values one MORE than the other.

        But that does not mean everyone values one more than the other

        When I am healthy, I do not value “health care” that much. I value “beer” a lot more.

        But you do not care what I value – you are self-centered ego that believes you know the value of all things for all people at all times and you get to choose how to spend MY money.

        So, I value beer more than health care, but you don’t care – you will steal my money anyway.

        One is necessary for life

        False.

        There are millions of people alive who have no health care.

        and the other is a tasty treat that is probably not very helpful towards life.

        So what?
        I want beer and chips. You have no right to decide for me which one is more valuable to me then the other.

        Adequate health care impacts our society as a whole;

        No more or less than any other economic good impacts society –or else it would not be an economic good

        it is a problem that must be addressed nationally

        What you are saying here is if you get a large enough theft ring, you believe you can justify your actions to your victims.

        • Truthseeker says:

          BF, I really love it when I am on your side! You cannot debate clear logic.

        • You are free to value whatever you value-but a bag of potato chips is not as important as getting medical help when your child is sick or hurt.

          • V.H.

            of potato chips is not as important as getting medical help when your child is sick

            to who????

            Move up an intellectual abstraction level.

            There is a child sick in Africa.

            If your argument is true, why are you not selling your house, car, furniture, etc. and helping that kid in Africa????

            Answer, please.

            • Believing in a principal does not mean I am incapable of seeing the difference between a want and a need. The fact that you should have the right to choose doesn’t make a truth untrue.

              I am not selling my house, etc. Because I am important too. You see being a member of a group doesn’t mean I am selfless-it might just point out that others are important too-so I am encouraged not to be selfish.

              • V.H.

                Believing in a principal does not mean I am incapable of seeing the difference between a want and a need. The fact that you should have the right to choose doesn’t make a truth untrue.

                There are Universal Truths and there are Individual Truths.

                Those of the ilk like Buck confuse the two…. that an individual’s Truth must also be a Universal truth.

                So, your individual truth between beer and medical care is yours to hold – but just because you hold such carries absolutely zero merit to my truths or anyone else’s for that matter.

                If we as a People promote Individual Truth over Universal Truth, we shall not survive.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                BF do you disagree that, given our current health care system, the lack of insurance by one individual does, in fact, affect you?

              • Buck,

                do you disagree that, given our current health care system, the lack of insurance by one individual does, in fact, affect you?

                It affects me the same way two, unknown, people crashing their cars into each other.

                They indirectly raise my car insurance rates – but do I care about their driving??? …No…..

                I am NOT responsible for their driving, though their driving affects my car insurance.

                But just because their driving might impact my costs does not justify government interference in the marketplace of auto insurance or driving skills.

  29. January 19, 2011
    NASA’s Muzzle Hustle
    Randall Hoven
    Just a bit over a month ago, December 14, we ran a blog piece on a NASA web page that said the sun is primarily responsible for climate change, and that whatever warming is caused by man’s contributions to greenhouse gases is swamped by the effects of the sun and other natural variables.

    “The Sun is the primary forcing of Earth’s climate system… According to scientists’ models of Earth’s orbit and orientation toward the Sun indicate that our world should be just beginning to enter a new period of cooling — perhaps the next ice age…Other important forcings of Earth’s climate system include such ‘variables’ as clouds, airborne particulate matter, and surface brightness. Each of these varying features of Earth’s environment has the capacity to exceed the warming influence of greenhouse gases and cause our world to cool.”

    In commenting on my own blog item, I said, “The likely outcome is that NASA will either withdraw this statement, or ‘clarify’ its position ala the American Physical Society. I wouldn’t be surprised if the NASA link stopped working.”

    Well, the NASA link stopped working. Here is the link that used to work: http://science.nasa.gov/earth-science/big-questions/what-are-the-primary-causes-of-the-earth-system-variability/. If you try it now, it says “page not found.”

    Jim Boot looked into this. Luckily, he was wise enough to save a screen shot of the original NASA page. He notes that there is still a NASA page that has some of the same words, such as, “The Sun is the primary forcing of Earth’s climate system… the Sun drives almost every aspect of our world’s climate system and makes possible life as we know it.”

    But gone is the prediction of coming cooling. In fact, it now says, “Earth is currently in a period of warming. Over the last century, Earth’s average temperature rose about 1.1°F (0.6°C). In the last two decades, the rate of our world’s warming accelerated and scientists predict that the globe will continue to warm over the course of the 21st century.”

    Compare the before and after NASA web pages.

    * Before: “our world should be just beginning to enter a new period of cooling — perhaps the next ice age.”
    * After: “the rate of our world’s warming accelerated and scientists predict that the globe will continue to warm over the course of the 21st century.”

    Do you want to vote on why the old page was removed and the message changed from cooling to warming?

    * (a) “NASA headquarters had ordered the public affairs staff to review… lectures, papers, postings on the Goddard Web site and requests for interviews from journalists.”
    * (b) “That’s not the way we operate here at NASA. We promote openness and we speak with the facts.”

    Those were the choices when James Hansen claimed he was being muzzled. Dr. Hansen is the head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Did the muzzled become the muzzler?

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2011/01/nasas_muzzle_hustle.html

  30. Mathius,

    using the free-market approach

    You are wrong, as usual.

    The free market is not “not my problem, screw them” – for that is not a market decision

    A market decision is “not my problem, but your problem – let me trade my solution to you for something I need”.

    Because you have no idea what a “market” is, you are wholly confused and befuddled by it.

  31. Meltdown: MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell goes into attack mode against Arizona GOP congressman
    By Jeff Poor – The Daily Caller

    Remember all the talk about turning down the volume in our political discourse? How about the idea that in the wake of the Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, there were going to be efforts to hold a more civil dialogue going forth? Perhaps those rules only apply if you hold a particular point of view.

    On Tuesday’s airing of MSNBC’s The Last Word, host Lawrence O’Donnell badgered Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks over answering a hypothetical question about gun laws and whether, if tougher ones were in place, less blood might have been shed earlier this month in Arizona.

    “I’m asking you to entertain another hypothetical, and that hypothetical is, imagine this event occurred in 2003 when Jared Loughner, by federal law enacted by the Democrats 10 years earlier, would not have been allowed to get his hands on a magazine that held 30 bullets,” O’Donnell said dramatically. “He only would have been able to fire 10. Then he would have had to reload, and those heroes who stopped him when he tried to reload would have stopped him after firing 10, and more citizens of Arizona would be alive today in your state if that magazine held only 10 bullets. I’ll ask you again, do you wish Jared Loughner’s magazine only held 10 bullets instead of the 31 that he fired?”

    That led to the start of the tense exchange between the MSNBC host and the Arizona Republican, showing that the so-called “volume” hasn’t found its way down yet.

    FRANKS: And I will tell you again, sir, that I wish he had not had a gun at all.

    O’DONNELL: So, you’re not going to answer that question about the magazine? Will you answer the question about the magazine?

    FRANKS: I will on one basis, on one basis. Will you answer the question — you said that the police officers miss all the time — will you say that you’re glad there were no police officers there that day?

    O’DONNELL: No, I will not say that.

    FRANKS: All right. And I will not say, I will not say that –

    Franks didn’t answer the question to O’Donnell’s satisfaction, so he made another run at it.

    “I will not entertain your hypothetical,” O’Donnell shouted. “Your hypothetical might have been helpful, might not have been not helpful. But now, consider my hypothetical – it’s 2003. He can only fire 10 bullets. Arizona would have been better off, right? Your constituents in Arizona would have been better off if Jared Loughner, by law, could only fire 10 bullets?”

    Watch: Video is worth watching.

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/01/19/meltdown-msnbcs-lawrence-odonnell-goes-into-attack-mode-against-arizona-gop-congressman/#ixzz1BWibebqO

    • America, don’t repeat Australia’s gun control mistake

      By Ben-Peter Terpstra

      After the Port Arthur massacre in 1996, media hysteria and bipartisan political support for punishing gun owners increased. As a consequence, our gun laws were tightened.

      We could have all responded like rational human beings and grieved for the deceased (35 in all). Instead, militant anti-gun activists viewed the massacre as an opportunity, and set out to punish freedom.

      Hitler supported gun control. So did Stalin. Still, our activists were bent on portraying the gun-tolerant United States as the real menace. “Australia doesn’t want to end up like the Wild West,” went one common argument.

      Yet, in 2011, I’m compelled to ask: When will we learn from our mistakes and admit we were wrong? And I ask this question because many Australians are victims of violence. In contrast, for criminals and their enablers, “gun control” is the gift that keeps on giving.

      Take Melbourne, Australia’s second most populous city. Between January 16, 1998 and April 19, 2010, 36 criminal figures or partners were murdered during the Melbourne Gangland Killings.

      Alas, family environments, from businesses to parks, were drawn into the mess.

      The passage of gun control laws fueled our illegal arms market, and gun-hungry gangs multiplied. The significance: many gangland deaths/wars involved bullets. The tribal fights exploded after the Port Arthur massacre-inspired gun laws, against mainstream media predictions.

      To concerned Victorians, too, it felt like our criminal class was running the state. The problem though (in Australia at least) is that campaigning newspapers and television networks are never wrong — no matter how many people are killed or threatened by guns, there’s always a “complex” excuse.

      The odd thing about gun control is that a culture of censorship often increases after anti-gun laws fail to deliver. So, it would be hard for an Australian writer to submit a piece on Switzerland’s pro-gun ownership culture and low gun crime rate because our media isn’t “ready” to accept opposing views. Only a “thought control” culture can sustain a “gun control” culture.

      When one punishes law-abiding citizens for the sins of criminals, good intentions will backfire. By criminalizing productive citizens, we have made life easier for criminals, and wasted precious police resources on policing farmers.

      Moreover, Australians were wrong to exchange scare stories about the “Wild West” because few understood that the Old West was not so wild, according to modern historians. And, we’re still too quick to report on massacres in firearm-welcoming America and too reluctant to report on bigger massacres in firearm-restricting Mexico. We’re quick to report on shootouts across the U.S. but unwilling to report on thousands of Americans who were saved by pointing their easy-to-access guns at criminals, a.k.a. would-be thieves, murderers and rapists.

      Also lost in the emotion is the fact that the alleged Arizona killer, Jared Lee Loughner, adored Mein Kampf, by the National Socialist/gun control dictator Adolph Hitler (not More Guns, Less Crime, by John Lott). So, do we need to reward and/or excuse society’s killers?

      At times like these, it’s easy to fall prey to post-massacre opportunists. Still, reason and not emotion is our best guide. The facts (to quote the Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia) are as follows:

      * Between July 1 1997 and 30 June 1999 nine in ten offenders of firearm-related homicide were unlicensed firearm owners.

      * Raw data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reveals that while suicide by firearms is continuing to decrease from a high in the 1980s, suicide by hanging steadily increased throughout the 1990s and increased for three consecutive years after the 1996 buy-back.

      * In the year 2002/2003, over 85% of firearms used to commit murder were unregistered. Recent legislation introduced by all states further strengthened controls on access to legitimate handguns by sporting shooters.

      * The AIC’s ‘Homicide in Australia: 2006-07 National Homicide Monitoring Program annual report’ stated that 93 per cent of firearms involved in homicides had never been registered and were used by unlicensed individuals.

      Gun control is a myth, or rather a mountain of myths sustained by campaigning elites in secure buildings with armed bodyguards: the myth that if law-abiding citizens hand their guns over to the big government to burn, then we will enter a new peace; the myth that if we feel that we are gun controllers, then we are humanitarian citizens even when statistics undermine our self-praising image; and the myth that punishing thousands of farmers and sporting shooters, for the crimes of others, will bring healing. But we (meaning anti-gun Australians) were (and are) wrong.

      Ben-Peter Terpstra is a freelance writer based in regional Victoria, Australia. He has lived and worked in the Northern Territory, Melbourne, Kyoto and London (England).

      This is the complete article.
      Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/01/19/america-dont-repeat-australias-gun-control-mistake/#ixzz1BWjTIiWc

      • Great article-“The passage of gun control laws fueled our illegal arms market, and gun-hungry gangs multiplied.The above line-make me think-all the arguments against drug laws causing more crime than it stops. Obviously you can argue the same about gun laws. It seems that many who argue for one, argue against the other. Why?

        and this line- “When one punishes law-abiding citizens for the sins of criminals, good intentions will backfire.” This line applies to the discussion on rhetoric. Because when I listen to the talking heads in the parties or in the news they aren’t just talking about language they are talking about censoring ideas. Do we really want to determine the amount of freedom that we have on the lowest denominators in our society.

    • “He can only fire 10 bullets. Arizona would have been better off, right? Your constituents in Arizona would have been better off if Jared Loughner, by law, could only fire 10 bullets?”

      Another left wing hack making poor assumptions again. Had only ten round clips been available, the shooter, with his desire to kill many people, may have became a suicide bomber and killed many more than he did with a gun. There, I macth their assumption and raise 3X. Jackwagons!

      • ARRRGGGHHH! I’m shooting this keyboard! match not macth!

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        @G-Man – when is the last time a suicide bomber blew him/herself up in the US? Not really a realistic “alternative”.

      • the 10 round clip size was only limited to new manufacture. Larger capacity clips that were made before the ban we not illegal, and were availible for purchace.

  32. USW: You’re on day three..We demand an update! BF is double crippled and he still checked in. Just have Mrs. Weapon throw us an update.

    UPDATE!
    UPDATE!
    UPDATE!

    • Maybe the surgeon slipped?

      • And pulled a Lorraina Bobbit???? OH NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO 🙂

        See USW you better hurry up and check in.. this could get outta hand quick!

        • Yup, If he had an accidental sex change, we can call him USWeaponette 🙂

          • I see how quick this can get out of hand. Rest assured, there was no slippage that I am aware of. All my pieces are where they are supposed to be. However, I am extremely sore and taking some good drugs. Tough to move around as I walk around hunched over like a 90 year old. But at least I am on the recovery side of the equation now rather than still waiting for surgery. And I have found that sitting here reading on the computer makes me nauseous after a while. But I am checking in here when I can!

  33. We have discussed the effect of the Govt protected monopoly on health care costs.

    So lets take a look at the legal profession. I thought this article from electric city quite timely.

    What’s wrong with law schools
    Written by Rob Natelson on 10 January 2011

    Here, as promised, are some quick observations about the law school bubble, chronicled in a recent article in the New York Times:

    * As my friend, law professor Andy Morriss points out in the article, the federal government is partly responsible for the law school bubble. Its system of subsidies has driven up prices (sound like health care?) and left thousands with crushing debt loads. The federal system is, as he says, “more scandalous than payday loans.”

    * The Times is right to suggest that the US News and World Reports rankings are deeply flawed. By and large those rankings do not rely on measurable outcomes — such as how well students learn to practice law — but on a school’s reputation among other academics and “inputs,” such as money spent (or wasted).

    * One point the Times doesn’t mention: To an astonishing extent, the professors who teach students how to practice law are unqualified to do so. Few have practiced law themselves for very long or in circumstances similar to those their students can expect. So they are supposedly teaching skills they never mastered themselves. (I’m happy to report that The University of Montana School of Law is an exception to this rule.)

    * Law schools get their money from students, families, taxpayers, and donors, and they waste far too much of it on useless, or harmful, projects of political correctness.

    * The ABA-AALS certification system, backed by state entry barriers, has propped up an anti-competitive oligopoly. Years ago people could become lawyers by routes other than attending law schools. Now in most states the law schools have monopolies on who gets trained for the Bar.

    * Legal educators talk a lot about ethics, but legal education as delivered today has serious moral flaws. Most influential in legal academia are two broad groups: (1) so-called “legal realists” and (2) doctrinaire leftists. Both are fundamentally at war with the Rule of Law, as traditionally understood.

    Illustrative of the moral point is the former student around whom the Times built its article. He and his girl friend live together nearly rent free, but he seems to have no interest in paying off his debts. He excuses himself by saying, “Sometimes the banks will threaten to sue, but one of the first things you learn in law school, in civil procedure class, is that it doesn’t make sense to sue someone who doesn’t have anything” and “I’m not really good at keeping records.”

    Law school either taught him some very bad things or it was unsuccessful in improving his values. Lawyers in a better age – before the universities dominated legal education – generally understood two moral principles he obviously never learned: (1) Find every legal way to pay your debts and (2) take legal responsibility by marrying before moving in.

    • Ahaa! So that’s where Buck got derailed! One down..Now find one for Matt…….

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @JAC – funny you’d pick out a bunch of points you can neither prove or disprove. Convenience eh?

      • Ray

        I did not pick out the points Ray.

        It is NOT my article Ray. I simply brought it here for folks to see what a Professor of Constitutional Law thought of Law Schools.

        Based on his evaluation I am proposing that it looks like the legal profession suffers some of the same maladies as the medical profession. And those can be tied to the monopoly created by government/guild protection schemes.

        If you dispute this then I suggest you make your case.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Haven’t had much time to check in today, but there is one huge fallacy in your proposition that law professors are ill-equipped to be teaching the skills required of students:

      Law school does NOT teach you how to practice law.

  34. How many of you can see a new open thread for Thursday posted? JAC messaged me that it was there this morning and now he cannot see it. I can see it when I go to the home page. Right now there are only 6 comments posted on it, 5 of which are from D13. So I am afraid that not everyone is able to see it.

  35. http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/01/report_card_on_obamas_first_tw.html

    January 20, 2011
    Report Card on Obama’s First Two Years
    By K.E. Campbell
    Two years ago today, Barack Obama was inaugurated as president of the United States. Are you better off today than you were two years ago?

    Numbers don’t lie, and here are the data on the impact he has had on the lives of Americans:

    January 2009

    Current

    % chg

    Source

    Avg. retail price/gallon gas in U.S. (regular conventional)

    $1.83

    $3.104

    69.6%

    Sorry, won’t post right.

  36. Alright, here we go!

    http://www.usnews.com/news/washington-whispers/articles/2011/01/20/house-gop-lists-25-trillion-in-spending-cuts

    House GOP Lists $2.5 Trillion in Spending Cuts
    By Paul Bedard

    Posted: January 20, 2011
    Print
    Share ThisMoving aggressively to make good on election promises to slash the federal budget, the House GOP today unveiled an eye-popping plan to eliminate $2.5 trillion in spending over the next 10 years. Gone would be Amtrak subsidies, fat checks to the Legal Services Corporation and National Endowment for the Arts, and some $900 million to run President Obama’s healthcare reform program. [See a gallery of political caricatures.]

    What’s more, the “Spending Reduction Act of 2011” proposed by members of the conservative Republican Study Committee, chaired by Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, would reduce current spending for non-defense, non-homeland security and non-veterans programs to 2008 levels, eliminate federal control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, cut the federal workforce by 15 percent through attrition, and cut some $80 billion by blocking implementation of Obamacare. [See a slide show of the top Congressional travel destinations.]

    Some of the proposed reductions will surely draw Democratic attack, such as cutting the Ready to Learn TV Program, repeal of the Davis-Bacon Act, the elimination of the Energy Star Program, and cutting subsidies to the Woodrow Wilson Center. [See editorial cartoons about the GOP.]

    Here is the overview provided by the Republican Study Committee:

    FY 2011 CR Amendment: Replace the spending levels in the FY 2011 continuing resolution (CR) with non-defense, non-homeland security, non-veterans spending at FY 2008 levels. The legislation will further prohibit any FY 2011 funding from being used to carry out any provision of the Democrat government takeover of health care, or to defend the health care law against any lawsuit challenging any provision of the act. $80 billion savings.

    Discretionary Spending Limit, FY 2012-2021: Eliminate automatic increases for inflation from CBO baseline projections for future discretionary appropriations. Further, impose discretionary spending limits through 2021 at 2006 levels on the non-defense portion of the discretionary budget. $2.29 trillion savings over ten years.

    Federal Workforce Reforms: Eliminate automatic pay increases for civilian federal workers for five years. Additionally, cut the civilian workforce by a total of 15 percent through attrition. Allow the hiring of only one new worker for every two workers who leave federal employment until the reduction target has been met. (Savings included in above discretionary savings figure).

    “Stimulus” Repeal: Eliminate all remaining “stimulus” funding. $45 billion total savings.

    Eliminate federal control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. $30 billion total savings.

    Repeal the Medicaid FMAP increase in the “State Bailout” (Senate amendments to S. 1586). $16.1 billion total savings.

    More than 100 specific program eliminations and spending reductions listed below: $330 billion savings over ten years (included in above discretionary savings figure).
    Here is the full list of cuts:

    Additional Program Eliminations/Spending Reforms

    Corporation for Public Broadcasting Subsidy. $445 million annual savings.

    Save America’s Treasures Program. $25 million annual savings.

    International Fund for Ireland. $17 million annual savings.

    Legal Services Corporation. $420 million annual savings.

    National Endowment for the Arts. $167.5 million annual savings.

    National Endowment for the Humanities. $167.5 million annual savings.

    Hope VI Program. $250 million annual savings.

    Amtrak Subsidies. $1.565 billion annual savings.

    Eliminate duplicative education programs. H.R. 2274 (in last Congress), authored by Rep. McKeon, eliminates 68 at a savings of $1.3 billion annually.

    U.S. Trade Development Agency. $55 million annual savings.

    Woodrow Wilson Center Subsidy. $20 million annual savings.

    Cut in half funding for congressional printing and binding. $47 million annual savings.

    John C. Stennis Center Subsidy. $430,000 annual savings.

    Community Development Fund. $4.5 billion annual savings.

    Heritage Area Grants and Statutory Aid. $24 million annual savings.

    Cut Federal Travel Budget in Half. $7.5 billion annual savings.

    Trim Federal Vehicle Budget by 20%. $600 million annual savings.

    Essential Air Service. $150 million annual savings.

    Technology Innovation Program. $70 million annual savings.

    Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program. $125 million annual savings.

    Department of Energy Grants to States for Weatherization. $530 million annual savings.

    Beach Replenishment. $95 million annual savings.

    New Starts Transit. $2 billion annual savings.

    Exchange Programs for Alaska, Natives Native Hawaiians, and Their Historical Trading Partners in Massachusetts. $9 million annual savings.

    Intercity and High Speed Rail Grants. $2.5 billion annual savings.

    Title X Family Planning. $318 million annual savings.

    Appalachian Regional Commission. $76 million annual savings.

    Economic Development Administration. $293 million annual savings.

    Programs under the National and Community Services Act. $1.15 billion annual savings.

    Applied Research at Department of Energy. $1.27 billion annual savings.

    FreedomCAR and Fuel Partnership. $200 million annual savings.

    Energy Star Program. $52 million annual savings.

    Economic Assistance to Egypt. $250 million annually.

    U.S. Agency for International Development. $1.39 billion annual savings.

    General Assistance to District of Columbia. $210 million annual savings.

    Subsidy for Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. $150 million annual savings.

    Presidential Campaign Fund. $775 million savings over ten years.

    No funding for federal office space acquisition. $864 million annual savings.

    End prohibitions on competitive sourcing of government services.

    Repeal the Davis-Bacon Act. More than $1 billion annually.

    IRS Direct Deposit: Require the IRS to deposit fees for some services it offers (such as processing payment plans for taxpayers) to the Treasury, instead of allowing it to remain as part of its budget. $1.8 billion savings over ten years.

    Require collection of unpaid taxes by federal employees. $1 billion total savings.

    Prohibit taxpayer funded union activities by federal employees. $1.2 billion savings over ten years.

    Sell excess federal properties the government does not make use of. $15 billion total savings.

    Eliminate death gratuity for Members of Congress.

    Eliminate Mohair Subsidies. $1 million annual savings.

    Eliminate taxpayer subsidies to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. $12.5 million annual savings.

    Eliminate Market Access Program. $200 million annual savings.

    USDA Sugar Program. $14 million annual savings.

    Subsidy to Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). $93 million annual savings.

    Eliminate the National Organic Certification Cost-Share Program. $56.2 million annual savings.

    Eliminate fund for Obamacare administrative costs. $900 million savings.

    Ready to Learn TV Program. $27 million savings.

    HUD Ph.D. Program.

    Deficit Reduction Check-Off Act.

    TOTAL SAVINGS: $2.5 Trillion over Ten Years

  37. Ray Hawkins says:

    Off topic – anyone here knowledgeable on herbal meds?

    • Herbals, not meds.

      What do you need?

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Hmmm – I guess to learn then. Am looking for herbal supplements to complement existing exercise and martial arts regimen. Is this your specialty Kathy? If you’re on FB please connect to me via others who frequent SUFA if you’re connected to them (USW, TexasChem, others….).

        Tired of dumping $$$ on GNC and getting no help from the people there.

  38. Ray Hawkins

    @Black Flag – so says you eh?

    Exactly! So says I!

    the critical point is that any particular definition of a philosophical school/tradition/whatever-you-want-to-call-it is a varied as those who claim any particular allegiance to it.

    I hold no allegiance to any “tradition” other than Reason.

    But your point is correct –definitions matter– which is why I make a point about them almost all the time.

    If you think “Altruism” = “Charity”, you need to define it that way and remain consistent so that when the use of Altruism has nothing to do with Charity you must remain honest to YOUR definition, and not “Bait and Switch”

    But the problem becomes the “Bait and Switch” that I point out often (in defining “government” as my common example…People define “Government” as “Peace and Good order” and others use “Government” in its real form …death and destruction… but point to the People’s definition as the justification…. Death and Destruction to create Peace and Good Order)

    You generally define Altruism as Charity, and others use your word “over there”, with its “real” definition in play, while pointing to your definition as the justification.

    You may find altruism repugnant because of how you yourself have elected to define – that your own view it may find congruence amongst others does not make it any more valid than how I embrace and view it.

    As JAC has tirelessly pointed out, the definition of Altruism that I use is NOT merely “elected” or based on some skewed point of view. It is the specific definition to a sharp point from the very derivation of the word.

    Because of the implications of such a definition, the dialogue around the definition has co-coupled it with “Charity” – a Revolution within the Form.

    If you embrace the skew of the definition, does not change the topic – the topic is: sacrifice the individual for the unjust wants of others – make up a new word for it, I don’t really care.

    But since we have a word for it already, why should we make up a new one simply because you have accepted the skew of its definition!.

    • Even more clearly.

      It is the definition used by the man who INVENTED the definition.

      This whole thing resembles someone arguing with Newton that it really isn’t “gravity”.

%d bloggers like this: