New Open Mic

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  1. The Media Research Center’s Culture and Media Institute studied network news reporting on the GOP candidates and religion from Jan. 1-Oct. 31, 2011, and compared it to coverage of the Democratic presidential primary candidates over the same period in 2007. The discrepancy, in both the amount and tone of the coverage, was striking. Network reporters, so disinterested in the beliefs of Obama and his rivals for the 2008 nomination, took every opportunity to inject religion into their coverage of the GOP field.

    Networks Get Religion 7 times more for GOP: ABC, CBS and NBC mentioned GOP candidates’ religion 143 times in the first 10 months of 2011. By contrast, Democratic candidates’ faith was brought up only 19 times in the same period of the 2008 election cycle.

    Journalists Confront, Criticize and Question Conservatives on Faith: In 2007, reporters accepted at face value liberal candidates’ statements about religion. Not so for 2011’s conservatives. The networks were nearly 13 times more likely to be critical or challenging of conservative candidates’ faith than liberals’. And more than half the religion mentions in 2011 sought to create and exploit controversy over how many Christian denominations regard Mormonism.

    Grilled about God: The media have already targeted three of the top Republican candidates for scrutiny of their beliefs, and the primaries haven’t even begun. Networks covered Michele Bachmann’s beliefs, her husband’s Christian-based therapy practice and her interpretation of wifely “submission” 15 times. Journalists found Rick Perry’s unapologetically public faith worth noting 10 times and asked most of the candidates what they thought of Mormonism.

    Networks Create more than 100 “Mormon Moments”: The three networks brought up Mormonism more than 100 times in 10 months. The Church of Jesus Christ and Latter Day Saints is the fourth largest religious denomination in America. Yet network reporters clearly think having two Mormon candidates (Romney and Huntsman) of the nine in the race is newsworthy. Before October 8, they mentioned the candidates’ Mormonism 61 times, and 13 times wondered if conservative Christians would vote for them. When an evangelical pastor and Rick Perry supporter said Mormonism is “a cult,” the networks brought up the incident 40 times over the next 22 days.

    Incurious About Democratic Faith in ’07: The networks had plenty of opportunities to question Democrats about their beliefs during the 2008 election cycle. Several candidates were Roman Catholics whose voting records on abortion were at odds with their church. None of the three networks mentioned that. Questions about Barack Obama’s pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, surfaced in early in March 2007 and were covered on Fox News and in newspapers, but it took an entire year for any of the networks to mention Wright. Out of 11 mentions of Obama’s religion, not one challenged, criticized or took his statements at anything other than face value.

    Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/matthew-philbin/2011/12/05/baptism-fire#ixzz1fg2eU9sT

    • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

      Do not ever be surprised. At the moment, bringing up Romney’s religion seems harmless. In the world of disinformation and doublespeak, there is a reason and it is simple. They want to get the word out and get the public aware of the differences between mainstream Christian Churches and the Mormon Church.

      Should Romney be nominated, the groundwork will have already been laid for a full bore attack on him and his beliefs. Since the campaign of disinformation started well over a year before the election, the Media will be able to do their usual “who me?” BS routine when it is correctly pointed out that they were behind the issue. The vast majority of Americans will not remember how it started and only conservative talk radio and perhaps Fox will bring it up. As usual, the remainder of the media will denigrate talk radio and Fox and convince the populace that both are up to their old tricks crying about “bias”. .

      Somebody, someplace should probably write a simple readable book about Joseph Goebbels. Like Saul Alinsky, the man had ideas far ahead of his time on propaganda and disinformation. Goebbels and the Nazi’s actually convinced the vast majority of the German people of their cause while the Communists had to use brute force to get the majority in line.

      As an old guy, I remember that the media up here in the North East clearly used JFK’s Catholicism in a manner to shame people who may have questioned his religion and paint them as bigots. While pointing out his religion, they tended to down play as morons anyone who would make using religion a criteria for not voting for someone. Years later I thought that it actually had a positive effect on his campaign since there were probably fence sitters who went with Kennedy just to show they were not bigoted. I think the far west and mid west did the same. It was only the South that was painted as, well, redneck troglodytes. Which, the rest of the country took as a given in Bull Connor days.

      It would be fun to trot out the old Huntley Brinkley-Walter Cronkite stuff from 1960 and run it alongside current reporting. That would make to all but the most devoted stooges the bias clear.

    • And along those lines comes one of the major headline stories at HuffPo this morning.

      It seems that Newt’s new found religion is now deserving of detailed analysis.

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/05/newt-gingrich-catholic_n_1127152.html

    • And when the media decides to use his Mormonism against him, then he should get out the reflector and shine those comments on his fellow Mormon – Harry Reid!

      • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

        Ahh, but that will be “different”.

        • Yep, probably.

          I think the issue needs to be dropped. Religion shouldn’t be a part of the debate at all. I don’t want candidates dragging it out as a selling point, nor anyone else as a “problem”.

          I have been in another discussion elsewhere on this very subject and one poster made a comment that pointed to Matthew 6. How right that is when it comes to our relationship with God.

  2. Just for the record.

    In MY opinion the BCS ranking system and Bowl Game arrangements are BullDookey.

    Those doing the voting in the polls that drive this system should have their votes rescinded.

    The AP got it closer but still some major reveals of the inherent BIAS.

    TIME FOR A PLAYOFF.

    OK, Rant over, bank to our regular programming.

    • Good morning, JAC…….yeppers. Do not forget that the voters are east coast voters by large……the best two teams are not playing but until the BCS gets it act together, it will always be this way. If they continue, the BCS will fall.

      • d13

        I agree and it can’t some fast enough for me.

        Now, time to put it all on the line. Your top 10?

      • Oh contraire product of the ole green machine, they got 1 and 2 exactly right. I see you are still sore from the little spanking Texas got 2 years ago. That said let us go to a playoff system as most of the bowl match ups this year suck.

        • Oh BamaDad….you did not get the A game becuase of the cheap shot (hit in the back) that put our QB out but that is part of the game. LSU and Bama have already played.A rematch would be boring but that is not the issue and a game that I will not watch. The match up was already made and will be made as long as eastern writers make the votes…..it is an SEC world and will be. The record that I see shows OSU beating 5 top 20 teams….Bama beating 2…..but it was laid out already. When Bama lost the first game to LSU, it was decided then that a rematch was made. I watched a BCS show say that a 7-3 SEC team is better than the rest of the conferences. That is what I am upset about. I am upset at the bowl match ups…My school, Texas 7-4 got a higher bowl bid than TCU at 9-2. That is not right. TCU gets a bowl payoff of 750 grand and several schools with worse records are in bowls with millions. The BCS is ALL about money,,,,,,,not the best teams and most everyone knows it. Look at the bowl match ups and the money then you will see. Sorry but OSU is getting hosed.

          The computer ratings are bullshit and subjective.But, I recognize that it is the way it is for now. I predict that the BCS system is short lived.

  3. Mathius™ says:

    JAC,

    Law of Identity A=A, or A if and only if A.

    I am that I am.

    This is nihilism in the purest sense. My actions are neither good nor evil, they simply are. Things are what they are and they are now what they are not.

    • I thought it was more-I am what I am?

    • Mathius

      A=A YES

      A if and only if A NO. Well at least I don’t think so because this makes no sense. Unless you are simply trying to make A=A seem complex when it is not.

      A=A is NOT nihilism in any sense.

      “My actions are neither good nor evil, they simply are. ” FALSE This violates the Law of Identity.

      Start over.

      • Mathius™ says:

        A if and only A, this is logically nonsensical, but more accurate in the strict sense (A is bound by A, it is only A insofar as A is A, etc). Just an interesting circular reference, I thought – no real baring on this discussion.

        The Law of Identity states that things are themselves. So how do you get from there to things have this other attribute of good-ness or evil-ness?

        • Mathius

          How do YOU determine if something is good or evil?

          Not the criteria but the process you use to make the judgment.

          Now, how does that relate to IDENTITY?

          • Mathius™ says:

            The only solid way I can see is that all is good.

            There is no evil. The Natural Law, before humans, and outside of humanity, is simple: Might makes right. Or, survival of the fittest.

            The universe does not care about you. It does not care about me. It does not care what I do to you. But we exist because our ancestors killed or and out-competed everything else on this planet. It was their violence which gave rise to us. The universe did not care that they were violent, that they raped pillaged murdered and stole. The universe only cared that they were strong and their competition was weak. And they became us.

            Humans who learned to cooperate using the rules which you may think of as “human law” were the ones who were most successful due to their ability to cooperate. But that is just a tactic and holds no true relevance to Natural Law and I define it. It is completely ancillary.

            For Natural law by my definition, the only thing that matters is that we have the might to execute our will (and if we do not, that someone with more might will execute their will in spite of us).

            Such is nature, red of tooth and claw.

            • Mathius

              You gave me criteria. I asked for the process.

              Don’t worry about good and evil yet. You say that the universe does not “care”. Why? How do you know this?

              What is the NEXT logical extension of the Law of Identity as it relates to humans?

              HOW do you know?

              Hint: You injected “will” but you used it out of sequence.

              Another Hint: “But we exist because our ancestors killed or and out-competed everything else on this planet. It was their violence which gave rise to us. ” BOTH ARE FALSE.

              • Mathius™ says:

                How do I know the universe does not care: because it has never shown an interest in any observable way. In fact, it has never shown the capacity to “care” in any observable manner. Because the Bubonic Plague killed 1/3 of the population of the planet and The Universe did nothing. I have seen nothing that qualifies as even the slightest bit of evidence that the universe is even “aware” of our existence, let alone cares.

                Law of Identity: The next logical step is that everything that isn’t me, isn’t me, and is what it is.

                Ancestors and Violence: Sorry, what? Out ancestors didn’t kill and eat other animals? They didn’t defend themselves with force against other animals (other animals, including other humans)? They didn’t horde resources and deny them to other animals (say, by protecting crops or killing scavenging animals), mercilessly leaving them to starve?

                What do you think our history looks like? What? We magically grew out of the oceans and developed these (biologically expensive) brains because we wanted to? And, for our entire history, we were surrounded by such bounty of inert food (food that didn’t fight back or, in fact, even try to preserve itself at all) that we simply coasted to the present? And in that time, nothing tried to kill and eat us, either? What dream world is this?

                Our past is savage and brutal. We killed, we stole, we ate and we lived. Those we stole from and killed died off, and their progeny died with them. It was the ruthless survival-of-the-fittest humans which made it through the gauntlet to become you and I.

                The meek did not inherit the Earth – the meek inherited a stone axe to the back of the head, while the aggressive ones dragged the meek men’s women by the hair back to their cave and made copies of themselves.

                Evolution is not pretty – it is violent and nasty.

            • Mathius

              Your off chasing irrelevant rabbits again. As usual, you divert from the primary question to argue about all the extensions, before you have discovered the fundamental.

              Start AGAIN.

              Step 1: The Law of Identity (Man qua Man)

              Step 2: ??????? please fill in the blanks. Hint: It is all tied to the Nature of All Living Things.

              • Mathius™ says:

                Step 2:
                All living things are all living things.
                All non-living things are all non living things.
                Each living thing is itself and nothing else.
                Each non-living thing is itself and nothing else.

            • Mathius

              Restating the same thing in different way isn’t going to get you anywhere.

              My God Man……….THINK

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Mathius,

                I think the direction JAC wants you to take (although inartfully put – I am low on coffee today) is as follows:

                A is A
                I is Mathius
                Mathius is human

                So…natural law as far as you and I are concerned only revolves around HUMAN action. This is why it does not matter as to what cows think, nor do your actions against cows impact your HUMAN rights as a HUMAN.

                JAC – is the above where you wanted to go with this?

                But I will say that, where Mathius gets it absolutely right and where you ignore and argue that Mathius is once again chasing an irrelevant rabbit is WHY you immediately jump to A = Mathius = Human. Why do we not stop at Mathius = Living Organism (much like a cow)? Why do we not continue to say Mathius = White Male? There is no reason to immediately jump to Mathius = Human and stop there, except for your desire to conclude with human rights.

                By the way JAC, you can ignore that last paragraph if my earlier statements did not match where you were trying to get Mathius to go. 🙂

    • “My actions are neither good nor evil, they simply are.”

      But you are Matt and I have determined all of your actions are evil (or at least annoying), therefore A=evil!

      • Mathius™ says:

        Ah, but how did you get there from the law of Identity?

        I am Matt, therefore I am Matt.
        My actions are my actions, therefore my actions are my actions.

        But where did this concept of Evil come into play? How did you derive it?

        For that matter, how did you derive the concept of “annoying”? 😉

        • Anyone want to play a game? Pick out the verse you think will be most helpful to Matt….

          Sometimes I can’t help the feeling that I’m
          Living a life of illusion
          And oh, why can’t we let it be
          And see through the hole in this wall of confusion
          I just can’t help the feeling I’m
          Living a life of illusion

          Pow! Right between the eyes
          Oh, how nature loves her little surprises
          Wow! It all seems so logical now
          It’s just one of her better disguises
          And it comes with no warning
          Nature loves her little surprises
          Continual crisis

          Hey, don’t you know it’s a waste of your day
          Caught up in endless solutions
          That have no meaning, just another hunch
          Based upon jumping conclusions
          Caught up in endless solutions
          Backed up against a wall of confusion
          Living a life of illusion

          I have to go with “Pow! Right between the eyes”

  4. When the ordinance was debated in September, backers warned against the needless deportation of poor migrant workers ticketed for speeding one day and expelled from the United States the next. Instead, ICE spokeswoman Gail Montenegro told TheDC, the new law has quickly become associated with vicious criminal aliens released back into Chicago communities as soon as they can post bail.

    Among them:

    “A 32-year-old Mexican national charged with a felony and traffic offenses after running a red light and then punching the police officer who arrested him, sending the officer to the hospital. On Sept. 7, 2011, he was released from Cook County despite an immigration detainer.

    “A 28-year-old Mexican national arrested in September and charged with criminal trespass to vehicles (misdemeanor), aggravated battery of a peace officer (felony), and battery-cause bodily harm (misdemeanor). She was released from Cook County two days after her arrest despite an immigration detainer.

    “A 33-year-old Mexican national arrested in September and charged with felony possession of cocaine. He was previously deported by the Border Patrol on Feb. 27, 2009 under an expedited removal order; that removal order would have been reinstated by ICE. He was released from Cook County on the day after his arrest despite an immigration detainer. Re-entry after deportation is a felony punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison.”

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/12/03/countys-protest-against-federal-immigration-law-turns-criminal-aliens-loose/#ixzz1fgRtznMO

    • Boggles the mind, eh LOI?

      • I saw someone claiming thousands of citizens are killed each year by illegals. Without research I’m inclined to say it’s right wing hype. I also KNOW of illegals not being charged for crimes, such as traffic accidents. It seems to be a can’t win situation, they commit a crime, have no insurance, but no one wants the expense of keeping them lock up while ICE dithers and/or avoids dealing with them. But it makes me think, Rudy supposedly reduced NY’s crime rate by going after petty criminals, they were also committing the big crimes….

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          Again, this would be an interesting study. Reporting on the issue of crime by illegals seems to be based on the bias of the reporter or media outlet. I have seen numerous NY Crime reports that indicate the perp was probably an illegal. Occasionally the fact makes it through by accident but follow up reports drop it. It is only when it is a horrid story that goes on for days and weeks that you usually find out. So when a drunken illegal mows down a 98 year old great grandma pushing a baby stroller, then you will find out. A Bodega hold up where the owner is shot and only paralyzed does not make it and is gone from the news cycle in less than 24 hours. .

          I feel I should do some research on this and see if immigration status shows up anywhere in uniform crime reports. In a City such as New York when a City employee can be fired for merely asking immigration status it is going to be darned hard to find, especially for the small crimes. which are unfortunately precursors to large ones.

          • Mathius™ says:

            So when a drunken illegal mows down a 98 year old great grandma pushing a baby stroller, then you will find out

            Because legal citizens don’t drive drunk with catastrophic results?

            As for them deliberately committing crimes, might there be anything to be said for the fact that we’ve set up a system where they cannot gain meaningful employment due to their status, thus relegating them to second class status and leaving them no real opportunities for advancement other than illegal activity?

            • The gentleman earns a plainlyspoken silver star.

              • Mathius™ says:

                WOW! I- I never thought I’d actually win one of these.

                I mean, you know, you hope and hope, but you never think the day will actually come.

                There are so many people I’d like to thank for making this moment possible. I’d like to thank USW for hosting the best blog the world has ever known. I’d like to thank Bob Cesca for first linking to it. My parents, of course, for having me and giving me an education. My wife, Emilius, for always supporting me. To Buck the Wala, for being my compatriot in this madhouse, to Todd, Charlie, my other allies.

                To Black Flag and JAC, two of the most frustrating and enjoyable arguing opponents I have ever known.

                And to PlainlySpoken, in whose honor this award is named, I couldn’t have done it without you – all of you, fellow SUFA-ites.

                Thank you, thank you all, and I humbly accept this great honor!

                PS: Please deposit the accompanying prize money in my Swiss bank account – I’ll send you the wire instructions through channels.

              • ROFLMAO!

                Excellent response. I chocked on my coffee while laughing! Thank you, these days I could use all the laughs I can get. 😀

            • To be clear, the gentleman is Mathius. 🙂

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              So my friend, let me get this straight. They, who have come here by an other than legal means and who are residing here without authorization, are in fact what, not guilty or perhaps guilty with an explanation when they commit a crime because we have in a certain perverse, twisted logic, caused the problem because we did not allow them to come here legally? Wow!

              An interesting perspective which under the Trynosky Law of begats (as found in Genesis) would then lead one to the following statement. “Since so many uneducated and untrained people have settled in the US after the Mathius-Black Flag open borders Bill was approved the number of crimes committed by native born Americans has increased dramatically since there are no more real opportunities for advancement caused by the excess labor pool leaving them no other option than to engage in illegal activity.”

              • For me, using the term “illegal’ is a way to demonize the individual and ramp up emotions against illegal immigrants with a “see, I told you they are bad, dangerous people” kind of attitude.

                It has been the same in the past with others as well. Substitute “illegal” with “black”, “Jew”, “Mick”, “gook”, etc in that sentence and you’d get the same emotional response. The idea is to try and legitimize that the group is evil and a danger to society.

                What I am saying, and maybe Mathius is too (at least in part), is that drunk driver could be anyone and the fact that they are an illegal is irrelevant to the incident.

              • Mathius™ says:

                Plainly is right on!

                More than legitimizing a sense of “see, they’re a danger to society,” the concept is also, somewhat, dehumanization. It’s a way to distinguish yourself from them. And as we have learned, humans have knack for denigrating and being hostile toward external groups. It’s easier to justify actions which would horrify us if they were applied to members of our own groups, but it’s fine because they’re “others.”

                And, while I absolutely was saying what PS suggests, that a drunk driver could have been anyone, I would go even a step further. That, because of the way they are treated in society, the opportunity to get a license is not available, therefore they do not take driver’s ed where it would be pounded into their skull not to drive drunk. This is not to say that they shouldn’t have known not to do it or that it’s necessarily our fault, not his, but we are exacerbating the situation by forcing them underground.

              • Wait a minute-you are equating the word “illegal” which is describing an action and is a qualifier which denotes, simply by it’s use, that it is not inclusive of any one group of people but only those who meet the descriptive qualifier -to words such as black or Jew which are personally descriptive of an individual and with just flat out racist misnomers.

                You claim people are using the term to foster a bad image for illegals-but your claim fosters justification for illegal activity and makes using descriptive words based on actions as out of bounds-sounds too PC to me-much to likely to foster justification and limit ones ability to tell the Truth.

              • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

                Thank you VH. Matt, I never took drivers ed. I took my driving lessons from the old man, a bartender. I don’t think he ever even told me that driving drunk is a bad idea. It’s just one of those things that if you haven’t figured it out fro yourself you are probably too damn dumb to live.

              • Mathius™ says:

                V.H. equating the word “illegal” which is describing an action and is a qualifier which denotes, simply by it’s use, that it is not inclusive of any one group of people but only those who meet the descriptive qualifier -to words such as black or Jew which are personally descriptive of an individual and with just flat out racist misnomers.

                There’s a difference between calling someone who is here an “illegal” and an “illegal immigrant.” Illegal is an adjective in one and an adverb in the other. In other words, the word “illegal” is either describing their immigration status or them as a person. The person isn’t illegal, their presence in the country is. That’s a significant distinction.

                “illegal” is just shorthand, but it is dehumanizing. “They aren’t people like you and me, they’re just illegals.” And once they’re a group of “others,” human psychology tends to lose it’s ability to empathize. And bad things happen when that happens. See, for reference, what happened when people stopped thinking of Jewish men and women as “Jewish men and women” and started thinking of them as just “Jews.”

                I’ve said this before, but I strongly suggest you try it. If you really want to see why such subtle distinctions in language are important, Google “Jewish jokes” and “Jew jokes” and see if you notice a difference.

                Illegal immigrants are human being who are in an unfortunate situation. “Illegals” are dangerous criminals who should be hunted down like dogs and throw over the border where they belong.

              • Think about the holocaust-heavy stuff-certainly brings your point in a big way. But it takes a lot more than a word to dehumanize people.

                I’ll use the ongoing attack on Christianity-I don’t like it-I see the potential for danger-but I do not think people adding the word, woman or man or person to Christian will lesson the effects of the attacks.

                Anymore than calling someone an “illegal immigrant” vs. “undocumented immigrant” vs. “undocumented worker”, or just “illegal” will take away the danger. In fact, I think claiming racism based on the use of words like “illegal” has just as much potential to demonize a group. I think using the term right-wing Christian does too. I suspect there are terms used against Democrats that you think are dangerous. It really boils down to-are the statements true and Balanced. In politics they rarely are.

                So what do we do-disallow words with negative connotations. Scream racism every time someone doesn’t use the approved PC word-if there is an approved word. Personally, I don’t think so-I think we call people out when they LIE in their statements. The truth cannot be disallowed in order to never say anything negative about people.

                We allow people to make words that are true, bad, on the basis that they have negative connotations-just not a good idea..

              • The original statement:

                So when a drunken illegal mows down a 98 year old great grandma pushing a baby stroller, then you will find out

                What is the impression (I am not assigning intent) does that statement give to people?

                It ain’t a good impression, IMHO. Why does the word illegal have anything to do with the incident? We (Mathius and I) are trying to point out that it only inflames emotions against a segment of society and harden negative attitudes.

                The Nazis did a danged fine job of that against the untermenschen – making (in there case) the murder of millions politically and socially acceptable in Germany.

              • I see your point Plainly-BUT It can be looked at in a different way-it hardens the negative attitude towards the governments continued refusal to enforce our laws, which is the point being made, IMO. It points out that illegal immigrants are not only breaking our laws when they come here-but they are breaking our laws after they arrive, mostly because they are forced to- to survive. But the fact that they are illegal does matter. They shouldn’t be here-they shouldn’t have a license and they shouldn’t be driving without one. Bottom line-if the government would enforce our laws -this wouldn’t have happened.

          • With one department I worked for as a dispatcher when I first left the military I was responsible for filling out the UCRs and sending them off to the state and feds. As I recall immigration status was not reported.

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              I think that you are a bit over agitated by the term illegal. To me it merely denotes doing something contrary to the law. Referring to illegal aliens as such is not an ethnic pejorative unless you make it one. In parts of the North West Bronx, it usually refers to those of Irish extraction who have overstayed their visa.

              My whole problem with the issue derives mostly from an on the ground position. Things that I have seen and experienced. Matt is anti-border, we got that one going a few days back. He is of the, “who am I to tell people where they can live school”. I just see a whole lot of chaos that does not have to exist.

              I kid you not when I say I an a promoter of the “Law of Begats” or as some would say the law of unintended consequences. Almost 50 years of fighting hunger and poverty and we have more hunger and poverty. Does anyone stop to ask why? Could it just possible be because of the constant influx of poor people who cannot be readily absorbed. I possess no great insight nor am I either the sharpest tool in the box or the most knowledgeable history buff around but seems to me one of the things which forged this immigrant laden country into the superb dynamo it was during the Second World War and thereafter was the closing of its doors to immigration during the depression and the concurrent opportunity for the society to “Americanize” folks like my parents, uncles and aunts.

              Some may argue against “Americanizing” anyone (how dare we!) but we have seen that Yugoslavia does not work. The re-conquista in California is a harbinger of future things and you are delusional if you think it is not.

              From a totally foolish perspective, the analogy of the 98 year old woman killed while pushing the baby carriage is pretty much what happened a while back on Queens Blvd. Could the driver have been an drunken unlicensed, uninsured, unregistered (the vehicle) citizen? Sure, but he wasn’t. If he had not been here, she and the baby would be alive. Again the begats, if the cops were not so busy dealing with the illegal crime, maybe they could take all the citizen hooples off the highways. Maybe there would be money for more traffic lights or crossing guards. Maybe a lot of things.

              • I think that you are a bit over agitated by the term illegal. To me it merely denotes doing something contrary to the law. Referring to illegal aliens as such is not an ethnic pejorative unless you make it one. In parts of the North West Bronx, it usually refers to those of Irish extraction who have overstayed their visa.

                I refer you to my reply to VH below.

                Almost 50 years of fighting hunger and poverty and we have more hunger and poverty. Does anyone stop to ask why? Could it just possible be because of the constant influx of poor people who cannot be readily absorbed.

                1. Is there any support for that theory, or just a personal feeling? 2. How do you know whether we can’t absorb them? When was the last time we tried?

                Some may argue against “Americanizing” anyone (how dare we!) but we have seen that Yugoslavia does not work.

                The why is America held up as the great melting pot? I think we have done better than any nation in crating a nation of many cultures, customs, races, religions, etc., and than other.

                From a totally foolish perspective, the analogy of the 98 year old woman killed while pushing the baby carriage is pretty much what happened a while back on Queens Blvd. Could the driver have been an drunken unlicensed, uninsured, unregistered (the vehicle) citizen? Sure, but he wasn’t. If he had not been here, she and the baby would be alive. Again the begats, if the cops were not so busy dealing with the illegal crime, maybe they could take all the citizen hooples off the highways. Maybe there would be money for more traffic lights or crossing guards. Maybe a lot of things.

                And, as I tell my daughter at appropriate times – IF worms had machine guns, birds wouldn’t mess with them.” That’s what you’re saying there – IF. IF autos weren’t invented drunks would run people over with horse and carriage. IF, IF, IF………….we could do this all week and it means nothing in the end.

              • I wrote a mess here:

                The why is America held up as the great melting pot? I think we have done better than any nation in crating a nation of many cultures, customs, races, religions, etc., and than other.

                Let me fix it:

                Then why is America held up as the great melting pot? I think we have done better than any nation in creating a nation of many cultures, customs, races, religions, etc., than any other.

                I blame it on those defective keyboards DCU has that he said are made by Mathius in the US. 🙂

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              Melting pot implies that we have forged a new alloy composed of us all and have taken the best of what has come here and turned it into something new within the guidelines of our Constitution. E Pluribus Unum. You on the other hand describe a mosaic, something that was NEVER described when I was a kid. Something that will resemble Yugoslavia. What we have done differently is that we have through trial, error and two world wars taught ourselves to respect everyone. I always when traveling get a kick that people who here at home would have described themselves as Irish, Italian, Polish, Puerto-Rican – Americans abroad simply describe themselves as “Americans”. That is food for thought.

              Facts are facts, why the poverty? why the hunger? What are those things different now from before which may be causative factors. Prior to 1965 bi-lingual education did not exist. Personal experience with people educated under that system tells me it does not work. School standings and academic rankings tell me it does not work.

              I dunno, maybe I’m crazy but I think that it is incredibly hard to absorb people when there is no time out. Perhaps the old I love Lucy episode is relevant. The one where she works in the candy wrapping factory and the conveyor belt just keeps speeding up. I see parts of NY City like that today. My friends who are teachers or social workers just throw up their hands. It is one hell of a lot easier to teach a class where 95 % of the kids walk in the door already speaking Spanish and only 50% speak English in Spanish. Does not help those kids. Not one iota. I actually applauded when Gingrich was asked about English being the main language in the country. If I remember correctly he said “English is the language of success, Spanish is the language of the Ghetto.” Of course all hell broke loose and his choice of words was bad he should have at least said barrio instead of ghetto but in truth could have said “Spanish is the language of failure”. Now before you accuse me of some type of racism let me remind you that my parents aunts and uncles all grew up speaking Slavic dialects at home and English in school. My eldest uncle’s (born here) English was so poor that the Grammar school teacher came to the house circa 1920 and told my grandparents that they had to try to speak and encourage more English usage at home otherwise he would be doomed to only live and work among his own for his whole life. My grandparents got it, my father got it when he passed the story onto me and I get it. Unfortunately I have worked with too many American born kids of Caribbean or South American extraction who are woefully unprepared to deal with the larger society.

              The last time I think we tried it (assimilation) was after WW 2 when a large number of refugees were allowed in the country. The difference between then and now was that the bulk came educated and no attempt was made to coddle them. We were as Theo. Roosevelt said, going to make them Americans. The time before that was the late ’20’s when the economy caused us to shut the doors. This worked well also.

              My Queens Blvd. victims are not so iffy unless you are a fatalist. If their killer had not been there they would have not died. period!

    • LOI and d13

      OK, you guys have me lost here. What the hell does their “immigration detainer” status have to do with the fundamental issue of releasing alleged criminals until trial?

      Now I could see an argument that they should be held over for trial due to one strike on the immigration violation. Risk of flight would seem reasonable in these cases.

      • I think the article explained it as Cook Co. voted 10-5 to release illegal immigrants unless ICE/fed gov would pay for their detainment….. How they decide anyone except the person committing the crime should pay I can’t explain, and where they also put that above protecting their citizens is mind boggling…..OH, but elections are coming up, keep the voters on the streets!!!!

        • Couple of thoughts to add.

          1. I believe that immigration detainers placed on an individual by ICE/CBP at the jail are no bail. They are holds to keep the immigrant in custody and ultimately turned over to CBP for transfer to one of their detention centers. At least that is how it worked back in the day when I worked the jail – it could be different today.

          Once all local charges were dealt with the individual became a federal hold and we started the clock on charging the feds for holding the individual (I forget the daily amount we agreed would be paid to the SO for holding them). Just about all agencies were – supposedly – reimbursed, though count on the fact that the feds took their own sweet time paying up.

          This slow reimbursement would cause some agencies to say that they would not hold on the I-247 action (detainer) and would release the individual at some short point in the future if the Border Patrol didn’t get there to pick them up and take them away (I recall at one point we gave Border Patrol 72 hours to arrive after we notified them that all local charges were finished). Basically, piss us off and we ignore the hold (which was legal for us to do if we chose to).

          Those on detainers were the ones Border Patrol found and detained who were already in custody. They were in the jail regularly checking for illegals. When Border Patrol caught them on the street they didn’t bring them to the jail. They were taken to ICE detention facilities, or to contracted facilities, directly.

          I would say that of roughly 100 inmates who could be suspected to be illegals in our jail, there were about 25-35 on immigration holds (besides their local charges) at any one time in our jail. This was the time period 90 through mid 97.

    • I think the media and Obama are trying to eliminate opponents that they don’t want to face. Obama did not want to debate Cain, ever. I don’t think he wants to face off with Newt either. They are using the primaries to pick off the strong, hoping they can beat a weak Romney, with poor independent appeal. Wonder if a Mitt maid will pop out of a closet at a convenient time?

      http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/2011-11-09.html

      • Obama did not want to debate Cain, ever.

        LOI, you’re on drugs. The only person Obama fears in a “DEBATE” is Gingrich … Gingrich will destroy Obama in a debate. Cain was a joke from the start. Get over it. He was never a serious contender. If he was, then the country really is headed for the abyss.

        Our political system (owned by big money) is the joke it needs to be to finally get overturned … that’s coming … down the road, but make no mistake, it’s coming.

        If there’s a conspiracy theory I believe in it’s this: Big Money is so happy with Obama, they are orchestrating the GOP’s absolute clown act presidential primary … so Obama wins and keep big money flush …

        That’s what capitalism has brought us …

  5. tea partiers have been looking for someone who will fight to empower individuals and turn back the wave of growing federal power.

    Governor Gary Johnson is a candidate who fits that bill perfectly. Johnson — like Herman Cain — supports fundamental tax reform. Like Cain, Johnson believes we should scrap the current tax code and replace it with the Fair Tax. The Fair Tax, a national sales tax, would get the government out of picking winners and losers, end the grip lobbyists have on our tax policy, and treat all companies, people, and families the same. The Fair Tax would also unleash the entrepreneurial power of the American economy — freeing businesses from the burdens of an out-of-date tax code.

    Like Herman Cain, Governor Johnson takes spending seriously. Johnson has a plan to slash federal spending 43% in his first year in office. Instead of offering a plan that balances the budget in 15 or 25 years, Johnson is offering a plan that would immediately end Washington’s addiction to spending money it does not have.

    Governor Johnson is also an outspoken advocate for truly limiting the power of the federal government. Unlike other cafeteria conservatives, Johnson consistently supports returning power to the states and the people without exceptions.

    Unfortunately, most Americans and most GOP primary voters have been denied the opportunity to hear from Governor Johnson. Despite his significant record of accomplishment in his two terms as governor of New Mexico and despite his serious and thoughtful plans for America’s future, the major networks have repeatedly shut Johnson out of debates. Indeed, they’ve even refused to include him in the polls they claim are necessary to establish “viability” for inclusion in these debates.

    Tea partiers and other limited government conservatives don’t need the media selecting our candidates. We let that happen in 2008 and the results were disastrous. As a result of the media blackout, some are suggesting that Governor Johnson bolt the GOP and seek the Libertarian Party’s nomination. It doesn’t have to end this way.

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/12/05/why-cain-supporters-should-consider-gary-johnson/#ixzz1fhBXLeEu

  6. It’s all such a sick, corrupt, incestuous relationship! The same names over and over.

    http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=47938

  7. 😐

    • gmanfortruth says:

      I’m slowly getting back to my normal life, LOL 🙂 Six deer and counting!

      • Go GMan!

      • A Puritan Descendant says:

        G-man, do you ever bow hunt for deer?

        One year i got serious about it. Now try not to laugh here………
        The first shot was about 20 feet away, the arrow deflects so far up into a tree, when my brother found it he thought I was smoking weed…..
        My second chance I aimed from my portable tree stand but somehow forgot to rest the arrow on the front rest, and TWANG!!! Buck looked at me like WTF?
        My third chance the Buck is so close to me on the ground i could smell his breath. Perfect aim and my lower limb of the bow hits the gound.
        My last and final chance this little 6 pointer buck is walking away from me at 30 yards at an angle. I aim perfectly! BUT the arrow hits a twig and deflects and SOMEHOW enters the Buck from the opposite side and goes through his heart (impossible BUT it happened). Found him a short distance away.

        Have Fun, out there! I quit! I should not be in the woods with a BOW! (rifle, shotgun and I am Wyatt Earp especially on birds but I leave the Bow at home now. 🙂 TRUE STORY!

      • I am so jealous as there have been no deer taken yet in Bama land.

        • I think we have a handicap over our northern brethren. With our warmer season, deer are just no active during daylight, too easy to feed at night. I have taken two so far, first a button buck with a F-150(can be an expensive way to hunt….got lucky, ran into tire only).
          My second was just at sunset, could barely make out the rack from the tree’s until he came into range. 7mag, Hornady A-Max entry hole only. The 200#, eight point took maybe two steps and gave it up…..

  8. More trouble making. Credit to Ted Nugent’s Facebook posting:

  9. Colonel, T-Ray – to continue our discussion over here if we could????/

    @ Plainly……no disrespect taken whatsoever. I can only speak intelligently about Texas and New Mexico, since they have asked us to help them set up the same thing there. There are a couple of points to be made to both you and T Ray.

    Thank you sir. I will add “and New Mexico too” to your resume. 🙂

    1). ICE no longer accepts nor deports illegal immigrants from any nation UNLESS they were involved in felony activity at the time of arrest or unless they have a known criminal record. This is a change that was implemented last year. Example, if we catch a “coyote” leading a group of illegals across the border 20 miles outside of town, ICE will not come and pick them up. We are to detain the “coyote” and do what we want with the others. So, we get what identification we can on the spot, finger print them, run the prints through a satellite hookup to verify that they are not wanted previously in the United States or Interpol (Interpol because it is not only Hispanics we catch), notify and document that we called ICE and their response, check them for snake bite, scorpion stings, cactus projectiles, etc, escort them back to the same spot that they crossed and make them cross the river into Mexico, and we are done. The impact that this has is that we do not take them into the nearest town and turn them loose or jail them unless their prints show up. The word is getting around that if caught, they are turned loose in what is called the frontier and that is usually not a very good thing. They are miles and miles from any civilization on the Mexico side without ample food and water. This is a great deterrent. The only exceptions we make are visibly sick or snake bite reaction. This is because of the governments refusal to pick them up anymore. It is fact.

    Yes, I can believe ICE won’t come and take them. Politics pure and simple, with a lot of the agents caught in the middle. And surprisingly the politics aren’t only at the federal level,. For years our very liberal/progressive County Board of Supervisors prohibited the jail from tipping off Border Patrol to suspected illegals we had in custody. If Border Patrol figured it out on their own, so be it – but we couldn’t help them. So when the BP agents stopped in there would be this pile of inmate files sitting on the desk and as the booking supervisor I would decide it was time to go get a cup of coffee (as I laid my hand on the pile and exclaimed something along the lines of “I need to get these southerners classified soon” and walked away). Usually I’d come back to find several of them flagged with holds. So it isn’t hard to believe at all Colonel.

    Now, as for sending them back over where they entered – Texas Catch and Release Program huh? I have two different feeling on this – one, okay. The adults can look out for themselves and must live with the consequences of their choice. The other, would be my hope that no child would be endangered by forcing them back over at the crossing point.

    Once in Mexico, it is a Mexico problem. Cold heart? Maybe…..but it works and that is the way of the frontier.

    I can’t object to that.

    2) The economy in Texas really does not have much to do with the less flow from Mexico. Texas has a robust economy, especially in the lower wage area…..but we are finding that once people get off unemployment, those 8-15 dollar an hour jobs are being taken by citizens. Isn’t that amazing? Let unemployment and food stamps expire……jobs get taken by citizens…….what a novel concept.

    No heartburn there from me either. I will reiterate my feelings, the welfare system does need reform – all aspects of it. We have many able bodied workers on it who should be compelled to get work, whether or not it is in their “specialty” area. Earn what you can while looking for your “specialty” work.

    The other issue that is overlooked in the numbers…….the Obama Administration knows how to manipulate the numbers….(.ie….don’t arrest and the numbers fall.).The same way they manipulate the unemployment numbers. They show an 8,7% U/E based on the fact of low unemployment applications…whereas….it does not take into consideration those who just quit looking and whose U/E has run out. The same applies to border arrests and deportations…..they change the rules and affect the numbers. You, especially, knows how the L/E administration works to show arrest numbers. The L/E that works in the field knows the real score just as we do on the border. I can guarantee that the lower numbers in Texas is not due to the economy nor the Feds but they will do their best to take credit for it.

    Yep, it is a big numbers game and they can be made to show whatever the one using them wants it to show. What the pencil pushers do seldom reflects the truth known by the front line personnel.

    I might add, that fences are not the answer…..boots on the ground are the best. Along with some really great technology and our ranchers.

    Now you’re preaching to the choir (me)! The only true way is to reach any hard physical security is to have the boots on the ground – and a lot of them. Yes, sensors and cameras can help, but nothing controls territory like the troops holding it. As long as US society demands border restrictions then this is what the country will have to do – and pay for it without whining. Along with revised/reformed entry requirements/procedures we can get a lot of the illegals off the border crossing and then the bad boys of the cartels and smugglers can have some intense full time attention paid to them.

    3) Gangs……..this is a sticky wicket.

    I bet they are and I know that there is no one description to fit all gangs and their activities. I know law enforcement has to adapt their strategies all the time to deal with the uniques of what gangs do in Texas versus Chicago. It’s a tough job for all.

    The gangs that operate in Mexico do so under the watchful eye of the Mexican Government which is under the watchful eye of the Cartels. You have read the reports of the killings at Weddings, funerals, picnics, and schools. I do not need to elaborate.

    So, knowing the extreme violence occurring on the border and the spill over onto the US side, it leads me to ask the following and open a discussion point.

    Does this problem directly affect the security of the US that would justify US military action in a limited zone south of the border to act against the cartels and their criminal enterprises with swift, strong, military action? Is this a defense we – as a nation – have a just right to order our military to accomplish?

    In closing, as Plainly knows, there are great differences in the facts and figures reported than what is on the street. The same applies, greater fold, on the “frontier”…..known as the border. The border is nasty and it is mean. It shows and takes no quarter. It is not civilized. The “behind the scenes” mantra is deadly. Miranda means nothing here. White flags of peace means nothing. It is lawless and it is threatening. It is violent. If any of you know people that live on the river on the US side……ask them about playing in the parks. Ask them how many gunshots they hear at night. Ask them how many spent bullets go through windows or hit cars. Ask them about going to movies. Ask then about schools. Next,ask the mayors of Laredo, Eagle Pass, and McAllen, Texas why the population is moving. Ask the vendors on the Mexican side where the tourists have gone. Ask the anglers at Del Rio why it is necessary to carry weapons while bass fishing on the US side. Ask the hunters why they get written warnings from the Big Bend Parks Department that hunting is at your own risk and to be aware of the smugglers. Ask the campers in Big Bend why the Sheriff and the Parks Department advises to go armed when camping on the US side. This is a different world than it used to be. When fighting rats…….you have to be a rat.

    To a degree, I won’t argue with this at all. I will say that there is the need for actions on multiple fronts that need to be ongoing to confront and reform these problems on our southern border. I would also say we don’t have to be rats, just danged smart rat catchers. 🙂

    • @ Plainly……..hmmmmmm…..cannot support action below the border yet as I see no National Security issue as it stands now. The Hezbollah training camps are only interested in guns right now and we are watching them closely. They are training cartel and gang members. If it extends to other forms of training, I would say they are a target.

      As to the cartels and gangs, if they spill across the border on a larger scale, I would say yes…but, we are handling it pretty well if the Feds stay out of our way. One thing the Feds will do is trace a non Hispanic crossing the border. To date this year, we have captured 11 non Hispanic types and all were detained.

      But, right now, no.Let the states handle the issue but you are correct that there needs to be an identifiable method that is consistent thoughout….Until then, we are going to act.

      • Colonel,

        Nor can I. What happens on the south side is not territory we can act in. It is, and should remain, a law enforcement issue for problems on this side of the border. What I see happening – if it gets worse – is the US declaring the cartels as terrorists and opening another “war” on terrorism.

  10. T-Ray,

    Below is the link to the report I referenced on the other thread:

    http://www.fairus.org/site/DocServer/USCostStudy_2010.pdf?docID=4921

    • The numbers they report here are the same ones (Total = $113B) I quoted several weeks ago. I do not recognize the format but they probably have the same origin.

      I statred an inventory of what I have learned from you, the Colonel and readings over the weekend. I will post it in hopes that we can correct and add to it. Logically I would approach this by ascertaining the facts, developing goals for the proposal and then develop a proposed solution.

      1. Illegal immigration is falling while voluntary departures are increasing. Could be correlated to bad economy
      2. Some illegal immigrants are former deportees trying to get back to family in the states
      3. Mexico’s economy is improving and on a whole is approximately equal to China’s on a per capita basis
      4. Texas has about a 70% reduction in migrant crossings due to increased surveillance put still has a large drug and human traffic problem.
      5. New Mexico is following TX’s lead
      6. CA is considering amnesty on their own
      7. Unfettered immigration is not good as labor, although a commodity, is not equal to goods since in a down turn goods can be discarded but labor cannot. (It’s the tractor/horse thing, you must feed the horse in the winter even though it is not working)
      8. Large scale immigration is not the prime growth factor in the economy
      9. Immigration does improve the economy but the improvements are almost equal to the additional costs
      10. The growth rate in our education system is primarily due to the immigration rate
      11. Educational expenses grow even faster than the immigration rate since the new immigrants have language and cultural issues that must be overcome
      12. Unfettered and poorly dispersed and integrated immigration can lead to balkanization and political division
      13. Immigration must be looked at from a long term labor need rather than a short term. Immigrant labor should not be used to extend the life of dying industries since this leads to surplus labor when the industry finally does die
      14. There is a positive correlation between the number of legal immigrants and the number of illegal immigrants. Theory is that the legals attract friends and relatives.
      15. Long waiting periods for green cards are not helpful as immigrants frequently apply and then enter illegally to live with relatives until the green card is available.
      16. Border security must come first. Without border security any other solutions will be politically untenable
      17. Voluntary cooperation with the illegal population is desired since the problem is so large. Hence there must be sufficient rewards/punishment to encourage new immigrants to come in legally. Illegals here must have an incentive to come forward and register
      18. Approximately ¾ of the immigrants are nonworking family members
      19. Mexico has no good electronic criminal database so rapid screening based on Mexican legal records in a no go
      20. The US is calling for better treatment of foreign nationals (non-Mexical) in Mexico who are trying to immigrate to the US
      21. By executive order, the US is no longer deporting people without a criminal background
      22. The 19 9/11 hijackers had over 60 US issued driver’s licenses
      23. Many local law enforcement groups are accepting consular metricula cards as IDs
      24. Anything that smacks of amnesty will not fly.
      25. The Constitution grants citizenship to all individuals born here, no exceptions
      26. The Constitution requires due process for all legal proceedings including deportations
      27. A hitch in the military is an acceptable path to citizenship
      28. We are not a nation of immigrants. 85% native born
      29. Unfettered immigration is not a solution to the worker/retiree SS problem. It just kicks the can down the road
      30. We cannot save the world
      31. Economic growth is a combination of labor and capital and may actually benefit from a tight labor market as this encourages capital based innovation and efficiency improvements

      • T-Ray,

        I’ll be commenting on this one later today, or this evening. 🙂

      • 1. Illegal immigration is falling while voluntary departures are increasing. Could be correlated to bad economy
        2. Some illegal immigrants are former deportees trying to get back to family in the states
        3. Mexico’s economy is improving and on a whole is approximately equal to China’s on a per capita basis
        4. Texas has about a 70% reduction in migrant crossings due to increased surveillance put still has a large drug and human traffic problem.
        5. New Mexico is following TX’s lead
        6. CA is considering amnesty on their own
        7. Unfettered immigration is not good as labor, although a commodity, is not equal to goods since in a down turn goods can be discarded but labor cannot. (It’s the tractor/horse thing, you must feed the horse in the winter even though it is not working)
        8. Large scale immigration is not the prime growth factor in the economy
        9. Immigration does improve the economy but the improvements are almost equal to the additional costs
        10. The growth rate in our education system is primarily due to the immigration rate
        11. Educational expenses grow even faster than the immigration rate since the new immigrants have language and cultural issues that must be overcome
        12. Unfettered and poorly dispersed and integrated immigration can lead to balkanization and political division
        13. Immigration must be looked at from a long term labor need rather than a short term. Immigrant labor should not be used to extend the life of dying industries since this leads to surplus labor when the industry finally does die
        14. There is a positive correlation between the number of legal immigrants and the number of illegal immigrants. Theory is that the legals attract friends and relatives.
        15. Long waiting periods for green cards are not helpful as immigrants frequently apply and then enter illegally to live with relatives until the green card is available.
        16. Border security must come first. Without border security any other solutions will be politically untenable

        My argument here is what constitutes border security? One may say a fence, another may say improved entry requirements, etc. It’s not like putting an ADT alarm system in your house, there are many elements that must be incorporated into the “border security” scheme since we (as a nation) insist on a restricted border.

        17. Voluntary cooperation with the illegal population is desired since the problem is so large. Hence there must be sufficient rewards/punishment to encourage new immigrants to come in legally. Illegals here must have an incentive to come forward and register

        18. Approximately ¾ of the immigrants are nonworking family members

        I must of missed it somewhere. How did this figure get arrive at?

        19. Mexico has no good electronic criminal database so rapid screening based on Mexican legal records in a no go

        Again, why do we rely on foreign records? No one has answered my basic question on this. Do we trust the records of Iran, Syria, China, Somalia, etc? Say no just once and you acknowledge that a discriminatory system ins being put into place.

        20. The US is calling for better treatment of foreign nationals (non-Mexical) in Mexico who are trying to immigrate to the US
        21. By executive order, the US is no longer deporting people without a criminal background

        Okay, technically inaccurate. The cases are being considered low priority and not acted on with any urgency. Is that right? Politically – probably not. Yet, who would you prefer gets the most attention, them or the illegal individual with the criminal (US criminal) background making them more of a risk to society? (And please stop saying things that forces me to even appear to be supporting the government like this! 😉 )

        22. The 19 9/11 hijackers had over 60 US issued driver’s licenses
        23. Many local law enforcement groups are accepting consular metricula cards as IDs
        24. Anything that smacks of amnesty will not fly.
        25. The Constitution grants citizenship to all individuals born here, no exceptions
        26. The Constitution requires due process for all legal proceedings including deportations
        27. A hitch in the military is an acceptable path to citizenship
        28. We are not a nation of immigrants. 85% native born

        We are historically.

        29. Unfettered immigration is not a solution to the worker/retiree SS problem. It just kicks the can down the road
        30. We cannot save the world

        Yet the government has tried to be, and still is trying, since the end of WW2.</b

        31. Economic growth is a combination of labor and capital and may actually benefit from a tight labor market as this encourages capital based innovation and efficiency improvements

        • 22. The 19 9/11 hijackers had over 60 US issued driver’s licenses

          I fail to understand the point here T-Ray. While they had all those licenses, all 19 entered the country (initially) legally and almost all of them had legal visas on 9/11. So what are you saying here that relates to illegal immigration?

  11. Okay, so an US drone is now, according to the USG, in the hands of the Iranians – though the government says there is no evidence of the drone being shot down as the Iranians say it was.

    Does this matter? What really matters is why a US drone was potentially used to violate the airspace of a sovereign nation? That is the answer that should be provided?

    Is our government intent on getting into yet another war in the region?

    http://thehill.com/blogs/defcon-hill/operations/197227-rep-kucinich-downed-drone-a-step-toward-war-with-iran

  12. gmanfortruth says:

    Puritan, Yes, I bow hunt. 🙂 I have many of the same stories and laughs as you, except i keep making them! I just love being in the woods (saw a huge bobcat a few weeks back and got to watch for a long time).

    Bama, keep your head up and get in them woods. You will harvest one soon!

  13. Buck the Wala

    Re: your question about the discussion of natural law.

    I am trying to get Mathius to think about the foundation level concepts that would be considered Natural Law. His question was “what” laws lead to the various statements made about Human Rights, etc.

    So while your first paragraph is true, man is man and cows are cows, thus man rights are of no concern to cow right, that is not what I was searching for.

    I was looking for a line of thought, logic if you will, that moves from the Law of Identity towards Human Rights.

    So in a sense, your second paragraph is closer. But just keep it simple for now. We don’t need to go chasing after the various types of rights. We are still trying to identify Natural Laws that might be applicable and might help us explain Rights later.

    • Buck and Mathius

      Buck: Your comment from above: “But I will say that, where Mathius gets it absolutely right and where you ignore and argue that Mathius is once again chasing an irrelevant rabbit is WHY you immediately jump to A = Mathius = Human. Why do we not stop at Mathius = Living Organism (much like a cow)? Why do we not continue to say Mathius = White Male? There is no reason to immediately jump to Mathius = Human and stop there, except for your desire to conclude with human rights.”

      I did not stop, as you suggest at Mathius = Human.

      I stopped at the Law of Identity.

      That is a Natural Law if you will, applicable to ALL things in the Universe.

      The next step is determining WHAT this means with respect to the questions asked.

      • Mathius™ says:

        And for those of us who don’t know what answer you’re looking for, would you care to fill in the next step(s)?

        I’m looking for a straight line from:
        Law of Identity
        Therefore: I am that I am
        Therefore: ???
        Therefore: Killing a human is evil, but killing a cow is not.

        I’m too slow (and a little burned out from yesterday).. maybe you could connect the dots?

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Either one of the following:

          A) Law of identity = I am what I am = I am a human = I must respect all humans = a cow is not a human = yummy cow!

          B) Law o fidentity = I am what I am = I am a human = A human is a living organism = I am a living organism = A cow is a living organism = hippie vegan

          Which goes back to my point — there is no reason to stop at ‘human’; it is done completely arbitrarily to make the point you wish to make in regards to natural law and human rights. It is nothing more than a human construct.

          • Mathius™ says:

            I’m not even sure how you got from

            “I am human”
            to
            “I must respect all humans”

            But I suppose that’s a different question.

            ————————————————

            By the way, there’s no reason this can’t go the other way, or to an even more ridiculous extreme:

            C) Law o’ Identity = I am what I am = I am a collection of atoms = A rock is a collection of atoms = … Insanity?

            D) Law o’ Identity = I am what I am = I am a white Jewish male from California who works at a hedge fund = JAC is not a white Jewish male from California who works in a hedge fund = JAC-steaks tonight (the other-other white meat)

            Buck, you’re a better chef than me, how would you suggest seasoning JAC-steaks? What is the best cut? I assume sides include fava beans and a nice Chianti?

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Nah, the fava beans and chianti would only go if we were dining on JAC liver. For JAC-steak, I have a wonderful Cab Franc I’ve been waiting to open. Should go perfectly!

              So…”I am human” to “I must respect other humans” — I guess I did skip a step or two, but basically the gist of that step is that if I am human I respect myself so I must also respect those who are like me, other humans.

              The real problem with this whole debate is that it is completely one-sided — I will wait for either BF or JAC (or someone else) to walk me through their specific steps, one by one, to follow through their logic of the law of identity and natural law and human rights.

              • Mathius™ says:

                Seems there’s already a logical fallacy in here..

                You respect yourself. Therefore you must respect others who share your identity (let’s go with human for now).

                Yes.. but…

                It’s one sided.

                What if I do not respect my myself?

                I do not respect myself, therefore I do not need to respect you.

                But if I am not due respect (according to my view), then how can I be due respect (according to your view). I am and am not, simultaneously, due respect? (Schrodinger’s identity?)

                So either the Law of Identity breaks down (I am what I am AND I am what I am not), or we’ve just proven that the class is too broad a place to assign these qualities, that is, you and I share a class (human), but are not a shared identity (obviously, you and I are separate entities).

                So buck respects Buck, therefore Buck must respect other Bucks (of which there are none), but this speaks nothing about Mathius.

                Meanwhile Mathius does not respect Mathius, therefore Mathius does not respect other Mathiuses, but this peaks nothing about Buck.

                Oooh boy.. I guess we’ll let JAC of BF sort this out for us..

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Did we just disprove the law of identity (at least as it applies to whatever it is we’re supposed to have applied it to here)?

              • Mathius™ says:

                Yes and No. But fortunately Yes and No are the same thing and also not the same thing, which is good though it is also bad, since everything is what it is and is not what it is and is what it is not and is not what it is now all at the same time, but the same time is the same time and also different times, hence night is day and day is night but night is also mid-afternoon tea time because there is no difference between the US (where we do not drink tea) and England (where they do), but since we are them and they are us and now is also the distant past where the US was a colony (and thus did drink tea), so mid-afternoon tea time is whenever it is except when it is not (though it can purportedly be both simultaneously as long as it is placed in an unobservable box), and you can enjoy your tea except if you are not you, because if you are me, then you do not like tea, but perhaps I do like tea since I am apparently also British.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                You just had to bring Schroedinger’s cat into this discussion, didn’t you!?

              • Mathius™ says:

                I had to. And also didn’t have to. And also, there is no cat. And also there is a cat, but it is a dog. And also the dog drinks tea.

              • Mathius™ says:

                And also the tea is Red Bull.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                So the dog is British?

              • Mathius™ says:

                It is an English Bulldog.
                And also a Welsh Terrier.
                And also an Irish Setter.
                And also a Scottie.

  14. Report: Obama, UN to tax US for Green Climate Fund
    byJoel Gehrke Commentary Staff Writer
    Follow on Twitter:

    President Obama’s team of negotiators at the United Nations Climate Change Conference may agree to a tax on foreign currency transactions, designed to pay for a “Green Climate Fund,” that would fall disproportionately on American travellers and businesses, according
    to a group attending the conference that is skeptical of the UN position on global warming.

    Negotiators at the conference are considering “a new tax on every foreign currency transaction in the world,” according to the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT). “Every time you travel abroad, you’ll have to pay a climate tax,” explains CFACT, the group that released the “Climategate” emails. “More importantly, every time we import goods, every time we export our fine products (think jobs) we will do so with a climate tax skimming off the top.”

    European countries would evade much of the tax burden, however, because “transactions within the Eurozone won’t have to pay this new tax.”

    CFACT suggests that Obama is open to implementing this tax and similar policies in the absence of a full climate treaty, which would require congressional approval. “We have learned that while many have discounted this conference, knowing that a full climate treaty is difficult to achieve especially with a U.S. Senate that will not vote to ratify,” CFACT says. “Obama and his fellow climate travelers are working around the Senate and planning to stick America with the bill.”

    http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/report-un-tax-americans-green-climate-fund/237466

  15. OK, first my BCS rant now my Heisman rant.

    This guy DID NOT make the final cut

    B Kellen Moore, Boise State- 4th in passer rating, 2nd in completion percentage. Loses his top two WR to the NFL, and still throws for 41 TD to just 7 INT. 11-1 this year, most career wins in college football history with a record of 48-3. Never lost to a BCS school, just twice to TCU and once to Nevada. Total margin of defeat in the 3 losses: 5 points.

    And let me add that in two of the three losses, Nevada last year and TCU this year, he took his team down the field in under 2 minutes and put them in position to win. Only to have the field goal kicker miss. Oh and one more thing. His BCS win record include the SEC east champion this year.

    And one more thing. He didn’t play the 4th qtr in many games or most of the 3rd in two games. The coach likes giving his young guys play time when its not close.

  16. Seventy years ago today Dec. 5, a young man turned in his sidearm, helped remove the machine guns and ammo from P40s and P36s, and park them on the apron in front of hangers #2 & #3. The planes were parked with military precision a precise distance between wing tips. The propellers were aligned using string. The orders were to prepare for a General’s and Admiral’s inspection the next morning. The young man had been on a presidentially ordered full war time alert for over a month. Until this day the planes were dispersed around the field, some in netted bunkers. They were armed and warmed up periodically. The men had been issued sidearms with ammo and told to load and chamber a shell. No one had been on leave for over a month. The local papers had warned the previous weekend that war was coming very soon. Everything was calm in paradise.

    • It’s a wonderful Saturday morning in paradise. The young PFC is dressed in Class A uniform in preparation for an inspection. Typical of the military, it is hurry up and wait time. Wait they do but no inspection is held. By late afternoon the rumor is that passes will be available for a night on the town. The young man heads for his first sergeant to receive his pass. Finally a break from the constant work and drilling of the last few weeks. The young soldier doesn’t drink so he plans on taking in a movie. He gets a ride into town and sees a double feature, both forgettable. Double features then came with a cliff hanger serial. Tonight’s serial is “Don Winslow in the Navy, The Attack on Pearl Harbor.” What a hoot! The soldier returns to base sometime around midnight. His quarters are in a tent area between Hanger’s #2 and #3 just across the street from street from the precision aligned planes. In fact, his tent is right next to the street. The tents are 6 man platform white canvas tents with army cots inside. Under his bunk is his rifle and helmet. There are no rounds for his rifle; they are locked in the ammo bunker in Hanger #3.

      The outfit is the 72nd Fighter Squadron which is waiting for new planes from the states before shipping out the Philippines. The air base is Wheeler Field, next door to Schofield Barracks and just down the road from the Dole pineapple farm. Wheeler Field is the primary fighter base for the Hawaiian Islands. SSE is Hickam Field, the bomber base, and Pearl Harbor, the Naval base.

      It’s a typical calm fall night in paradise.

    • “Translation: It was great publicity while it lasted, but I can no longer remain the Republican Party’s token African-American presidential candidate. Obviously, there are too many women out there seeking to take me down at this critical juncture in the primary process. That and yes, bitches be crazy …”

      Charlie, Charlie, what a class act you are……

      ” the Republican Party’s token African-American”
      So you don’t think Republicans accept blacks or other races as equal? Have you ever read US history??? As a southerner, I know a little about Southern Democrats and their efforts to keep blacks second class citizens. The early concealed carry laws were to deny them the ability to defend themselves.

      Or, do you think any black that doesn’t support the Democratic party is a traitor or been bought off? A few are very outspoken, like Bill Cosby, that the American dream is there for those who work for it, like Herman Cain. Or Charles Paine on FOX Business, who confronted OWS’ers, tell him he didn’t earn what he’s made!

      Sorry Charlie, either way you look at it, you are the racist here, not the Repugs…..

      • LOI, make no mistake, Obama was the Democratic Parties, African-American/White token presidential candidate. Look at what he’s done for African-Americans … two things: Jack and squat.

        Once again, you jump the shark. was it cold between landings?

  17. Let Europe fall…..I want to see what happens.

  18. A fresh narrative of the financial crisis of 2007 to 2009 emerges from 29,000 pages of Fed documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and central bank records of more than 21,000 transactions. While Fed officials say that almost all of the loans were repaid and there have been no losses, details suggest taxpayers paid a price beyond dollars as the secret funding helped preserve a broken status quo and enabled the biggest banks to grow even bigger.
    ‘Change Their Votes’

    “When you see the dollars the banks got, it’s hard to make the case these were successful institutions,” says Sherrod Brown, a Democratic Senator from Ohio who in 2010 introduced an unsuccessful bill to limit bank size. “This is an issue that can unite the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street. There are lawmakers in both parties who would change their votes now.”

    The size of the bailout came to light after Bloomberg LP, the parent of Bloomberg News, won a court case against the Fed and a group of the biggest U.S. banks called Clearing House Association LLC to force lending details into the open.

    The Fed, headed by Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, argued that revealing borrower details would create a stigma — investors and counterparties would shun firms that used the central bank as lender of last resort — and that needy institutions would be reluctant to borrow in the next crisis. Clearing House Association fought Bloomberg’s lawsuit up to the U.S. Supreme Court, which declined to hear the banks’ appeal in March 2011.

    $7.77 Trillion

    The amount of money the central bank parceled out was surprising even to Gary H. Stern, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis from 1985 to 2009, who says he “wasn’t aware of the magnitude.” It dwarfed the Treasury Department’s better-known $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP. Add up guarantees and lending limits, and the Fed had committed $7.77 trillion as of March 2009 to rescuing the financial system, more than half the value of everything produced in the U.S. that year.

    “TARP at least had some strings attached,” says Brad Miller, a North Carolina Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, referring to the program’s executive-pay ceiling. “With the Fed programs, there was nothing.”

    Bankers didn’t disclose the extent of their borrowing. On Nov. 26, 2008, then-Bank of America (BAC) Corp. Chief Executive Officer Kenneth D. Lewis wrote to shareholders that he headed “one of the strongest and most stable major banks in the world.” He didn’t say that his Charlotte, North Carolina-based firm owed the central bank $86 billion that day.
    ‘Motivate Others’

    JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon told shareholders in a March 26, 2010, letter that his bank used the Fed’s Term Auction Facility “at the request of the Federal Reserve to help motivate others to use the system.” He didn’t say that the New York-based bank’s total TAF borrowings were almost twice its cash holdings or that its peak borrowing of $48 billion on Feb. 26, 2009, came more than a year after the program’s creation.

    Howard Opinsky, a spokesman for JPMorgan (JPM), declined to comment about Dimon’s statement or the company’s Fed borrowings. Jerry Dubrowski, a spokesman for Bank of America, also declined to comment.

    The Fed has been lending money to banks through its so- called discount window since just after its founding in 1913. Starting in August 2007, when confidence in banks began to wane, it created a variety of ways to bolster the financial system with cash or easily traded securities. By the end of 2008, the central bank had established or expanded 11 lending facilities catering to banks, securities firms and corporations that couldn’t get short-term loans from their usual sources.
    ‘Core Function’

    “Supporting financial-market stability in times of extreme market stress is a core function of central banks,” says William B. English, director of the Fed’s Division of Monetary Affairs. “Our lending programs served to prevent a collapse of the financial system and to keep credit flowing to American families and businesses.”

    The Fed has said that all loans were backed by appropriate collateral. That the central bank didn’t lose money should “lead to praise of the Fed, that they took this extraordinary step and they got it right,” says Phillip Swagel, a former assistant Treasury secretary under Henry M. Paulson and now a professor of international economic policy at the University of Maryland.

    The Fed initially released lending data in aggregate form only. Information on which banks borrowed, when, how much and at what interest rate was kept from public view.

    The secrecy extended even to members of President George W. Bush’s administration who managed TARP. Top aides to Paulson weren’t privy to Fed lending details during the creation of the program that provided crisis funding to more than 700 banks, say two former senior Treasury officials who requested anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak.
    Big Six

    The Treasury Department relied on the recommendations of the Fed to decide which banks were healthy enough to get TARP money and how much, the former officials say. The six biggest U.S. banks, which received $160 billion of TARP funds, borrowed as much as $460 billion from the Fed, measured by peak daily debt calculated by Bloomberg using data obtained from the central bank. Paulson didn’t respond to a request for comment.

    The six — JPMorgan, Bank of America, Citigroup Inc. (C), Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC), Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and Morgan Stanley — accounted for 63 percent of the average daily debt to the Fed by all publicly traded U.S. banks, money managers and investment- services firms, the data show. By comparison, they had about half of the industry’s assets before the bailout, which lasted from August 2007 through April 2010. The daily debt figure excludes cash that banks passed along to money-market funds.

  19. Yo Plainly…down here………..

    You stated: “Now, as for sending them back over where they entered – Texas Catch and Release Program huh? I have two different feeling on this – one, okay. The adults can look out for themselves and must live with the consequences of their choice. The other, would be my hope that no child would be endangered by forcing them back over at the crossing point”

    This, sometimes, is a very hard thing to do. But, I feel, that it is necessary. Understand that we do not force them into swollen rivers or gunfights….we simply watch them cross back into Mexico at the same crossing. If we have extra water, we give it to them. What we do not see on the other side……well, let us say we just hope they make it. As to the children and women……you just have to adopt the position that some elder put them there. Their care giver knew the risks. This is the sad thing about life’s lessons. Sometimes, the innocent get hurt. I hate it…..but that is the way of the frontier.

    The good thing is that the word is getting around and we are seeing fewer children and fewer young mothers.

    It is hard to explain the things here until you see it. There are many on here that have probably been to a border town where you could just walk across the border and shop or drive into the commercial zone. But that was then…now you are in danger. Do NOT take a car across anymore…..50/50 on getting it back. Do not be caught after dark in what tourist areas are left…..and ladies,,,,DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE go shopping without male escort. Dad’s, be careful when you take your daughters across…if they are blond and/ or auburn, the risk of kidnapping and sold overseas is great. ( I personally know of blond twin 14 year old girls taken at gunpoint from a dad and mom in the tourist mercado of Nuevo Laredo…..never to be seen again.) This is the way of the frontier.

    Even now, when you go to the popular areas of Cancun, etc…..there was a time that you could rent a 4 wheeler and explore…..now, they will not even rent to you without a severe warning of straying off the main highways.

    • I do not believe you would be forcing them to cross dangerous waters or into any type of ongoing violence. I’m glad you hand out water when you can (and hopefully that is often) and I acknowledge that you simply observe them return to Mexico. All that is fine – as I said adults live with the consequences of their choices.

      I’m concerned about younger children, even under adult care. They are at risk (depending on how far the nearest “civilization” is) regardless of the adult supervision. Dehydration and exposure are serious problems they face on either side of the border. I understand you find it difficult, but also sir – regardless of the circumstances children are to be protected as much as possible, irrespective of their nationality. I guess I am saying don’t lose your humanity (which I am not insinuating you are by any means).

      I have made a couple of trips to Mexico in bygone years – and it was safe. Now, I wouldn’t go anywhere near going over the border. Just way too much violence and I suspect that will continue for quite some time to come.

      • Plainly…..I can understand the concern of the children and we are concerned to a point. If the crossing areas are too far out and we have resources, we will put women and children in transport and take them adjacent to the closest border city or village in Mexico. We attempt to contact local authorities…..usually Federales. However, we also run into the problem of them not accepting their own Nationals. It is really a tragedy. But we turn them loose and they cross the river and we are done. Many times, we have seen the Federales fire into the air in an attempt to turn them back….their own people. We have witnessed executions on the river banks where the cartels will drag innocent women and children and men down and simply shoot them in the head and take their home and establish a base of operations. We are powerless to stop it.

        But, that is the way of the world…….and like very many on here have said…..we are not the world’s policeman. Times have changed and there was a time that the border was wide open and pretty safe…..now……………………………………………………………..!

  20. Buck the Wala and Mathius

    When the student acts like fools the teacher must first check to make sure he has not failed the student.

    So let me try this from the beginning.

    Law of Identity: A=A

    Now this is a very simple statement, which you two seem hell bent on turning into the ridiculous and illogical, but it involves a myriad of more complex realities. The Law can be expressed in very broad terms or very specific.

    Similar to your comments about organisms in general or white jews specifically.

    The law includes much more than a label or name of a thing. Expressed in similar form as above:

    Things are that which they are OR Things must be what they are, OR Things must exist according to their NATURE.

    To understand how this Law leads to Natural Rights and then to Human Rights you must flesh out the complete nature of what the Law of Identity entails.

    Buck: It doesn’t matter if you go backwards to “all organisms” or to “all atoms”. As you move forward in your review of REALITY you eventually get back to HUMANS vs COWS.

    So I suggest you both start there. And I will give you the question you need to explore in depth.

    WHAT IS THE NATURE OF ………………… insert Humans, Cows, Chickens or whatever you wish at this point.

    • Mathius™ says:

      Nature of Humans: Brutal, violent, greedy, selfish, nihilistic, sociopathic, manipulative, egotistical, tool using, predatory, opportunistic, omnivorous animals.

      Nature of Cows: “Moooo… mmm.. grass…. MOO!” Also, delicious.

      —————————–

      Ok, your turn again, teacher.

      • Do you guys have to microanalyze EVERYTHING?

        ANITAVISION: Nature of Humans: We are not cannibals therefore we do not eat humans or we end up like Jeffrey Dahmer..DEAD. God made cows out of beef..humans eat beef.

        THE END

        • Mathius™ says:

          Yes. I need everything microanalyzed. Step by painstaking step.

          And some humans are cannibals. Let’s not pretend that since YOU aren’t a cannibal, that no humans are cannibals. Let’s not pretend that your nature (as you interpret it through the haze of the society in which you grew up) is somehow universal to all humans.

          Dahmer was a human, too. So, by the way is Armin Meiwes.

          God made cows out of beef..humans eat beef. Cows are make out of beef. Humans are made out of “long pork” – by many accounts, just as tasty.

          the cannibal Armin Meiwes. Having eaten an estimated 20kg of his victim, Meiwes is something of an expert on the subject, and in an interview from his prison cell he was more than happy to explain the taste: “The flesh tastes like pork, a little bit more bitter, stronger. It tastes quite good.”

          Source.

          So if cows are made out of meat and humans are made out of a different, but still tasty meat, where does that leave your argument?

          • Mathius

            It makes her answer correct, but incomplete.

            But lets stay on track. See my comment to Buck below.

            • Mathius™ says:

              No, it makes her answer inane.

              Nature of Humans: We are not cannibals

              False. Anita is not a cannibal. Many humans are cannibals. In Papau New Guinea, the practice is common place. In other parts of the world, the placenta is regularly consumed. This seems disgusting to me, but not to them.

              So her assumption that “we (all humans via human nature) are not cannibals” is demonstrably false.

              therefore we do not eat humans

              Again, Anita does not eat humans. Other humans do eat other humans.

              If some humans do X, then it is inaccurate to say that humans (in total) do not do X. The only thing she can support is that most humans are not cannibals. But even then, she has nothing to support that this idea is intrinsic to human nature rather than societal conditioning. If the practice is widely accepted in Papau New Guinea, is there something different about the human nature of those humans, or it it just that they grew up in a society which does not consider this a taboo? If a different culture is the determinative factor, then how does she support the claim that it’s against human nature rather than just western culture?

              or we end up like Jeffrey Dahmer..DEAD. Dahmer was killed in prison by another human. His decision to engage in cannibalism didn’t kill him. The decision of another inmate to attack him with a broom handle killed him.

              Are you going to argue that he engaged in cannibalism which got him into prison which got him beaten by a criminal which killed him?

              God made cows out of beef..humans eat beef.

              First, you have no evidence of God’s involvement, and if you want to prove something to me, leave Him out of it or have something I like to call “evidence.”

              Second, humans are made out of long-pork, (some) humans eat long-pork.

              So how does this statement prove anything, unless you want to suggest that human nature is to eat whatever is edible?

              —————–

              Anita’s whole construct seems to be, we don’t approve of it (understandably) in my culture, therefore it’s not human nature.

              Huh?

              • Your trouble is you always want an escape route. If you can’t accept the fact that humans are not cannibals by nature, regardless of what some tribe somewhere does, then maybe you need an intervention. Otherwise, you make no sense. And then you want to leap from there to trying to solve the problems of the USA? Nonsense.

              • Mathius

                “If some humans do X, then it is inaccurate to say that humans (in total) do not do X. ”

                You fail to recognize the difference between Humans “do” X and Humans “are” X.

                You want to use “do” by some to classify what Humans “are”.

                Some Cows eat meat. Does that make a cow a Carnivore or an Omnivore?

              • Mathius™ says:

                A cow which eats meat is an omnivore by definition.

                Humans have a long and storied history of the behavior I have described. In all of human history, the “nature” with which you are acquainted only just showed up in the last tiny fraction. During this time, society and condition holds our natures at bay.

                Before this, and showing through the cracks every time the veil is lifted, we killed what and who we wanted. We raped and stole. We did not care about ethics. Do you know how we found out about the most primitive of human weaponry? We found dead humans who were victims of them.

                We’re so violent, we had to invent better ways of killing each other because arms and legs weren’t good enough.

                The pattern is long and clear.

                Q: You will now answer to the charge of being a grievously savage race.
                Captain Jean-Luc Picard: ‘Grievously savage’ could mean anything. I will answer only specific charges.
                Q: Are you certain you want a full disclosure of human ugliness? So be it, fool.

                (good thing this was a TV show, because it would have ended very differently)

      • Mathius

        Dig DEEPER. Start at the base and then work up, instead of jumping to the end.

        At the moment we are wandering in the realm of Metaphsyics Matt, not in the realm ethics or politics.

        We are searching for Natural Laws that “might” lead to “Natural Rights”. Correct???

        If so, then can you think of any elaboration or expansion of the Law of Identity that might apply?

        Are there “laws” or possible “rights” that might apply to ALL things that then form the basis for those that are unique to each thing?

        • Mathius™ says:

          If so, then can you think of any elaboration or expansion of the Law of Identity that might apply?

          Nope.

          How ’bout you?

          Are there “laws” or possible “rights” that might apply to ALL things

          Sure, why not?

          that then form the basis for those that are unique to each thing?

          Possible, but what forms the basis of why you get Right X while I get Right Y? I guess we’ll get there eventually. Answer your own question first, then we’ll go from there.

      • A Puritan Descendant says:

        Desires self preservation, works towards self interest, spiritual, loving, intelectual, Creative….

        And if you want ‘spiritual’ removed, then you remove most of your list first…….
        Not all humans are Brutal, violent, greedy, selfish, nihilistic, sociopathic, manipulative, egotistical.
        Mathius, Why do you seem to hate man so much. That is like hating oneself is it not? Or don’t you fit with your own definition of human nature?

        Or maybe you are just being Mathius and enjoy clowning around…. 😉

        • Mathius™ says:

          I wouldn’t remove spiritual, necessarily. It’s a very real part of our nature to ascribe the things we do not know or understand or control to some greater power.

          Why do I hate man so much. I don’t. But I am realistic about what we are. We are animals. Predators who out-competed everything on this planet to become top dog. We are ruthless in the pursuit of our goals, whether those goals are simple survival or empire building. Our history is filled with causal and indifferent brutality beyond your comprehension.

          Take away the guise of civility, and see what happens. How long after Katrina did New Orleans descend into looting anarchy? Every man for himself by whatever means necessary. Looting and raping were rampant. It took days, if not hours, if not actually starting BEFORE the storm.

          By the way, what happened to Rome, the light of civilization in the ancient world? Who destroyed the Roman aqueducts? Visigoths bent on rape and pillage, that’s who?

          So how do you assume our nature is in line with the (“civilized”) Romans rather than the barbarian horde?

          And, further, what makes you think Rome was civilized rather than a military empire enslaving millions and threatening millions more with catastrophic violence for the slightest infraction?

          ————————-

          No. Like wolves, raised from pups to be family pets – we’re all fun and games and friendly. We’re trustworthy and loved. But then, something happens, a perceived threat, or a goal you’re in the way of, and ::snaps for effect:: vicious killers who clamp down on the jugular with unimaginable tenacity and ruthlessness.

          Society masks our true selves.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Sorry JAC, but I’m going to need you to walk through you steps, one by one, on this.

      You say you are trying to teach us, so do it — teach me how you arrive from point A to point C. What are your steps? How do they logically follow from one to another? Lay it out in black and white. Then we can debate this further.

      • Buck

        I was looking for you guys to do some hard thinking. I did not want to just give you an answer. That usually results in chasing silly little rabbits.

        I might add that Anita has come pretty darn close to dealing with the original dispute of human vs cow.

        So for the sake of time, and the sanity of everyone at SUFA, I will construct a proposal for you to consider.

        But first, I would like to make sure you both identify the key questions you need to have addressed in this matter. Right now, the only substantive one I got was that you claim you don’t understand why human rights are different than cow (non human) rights.

        Is this correct?

        Are there other questions at this point?

        • Mathius™ says:

          There will be others, but that should do for starters.

          And, for the record, I do understand why human rights are different from cow right – it’s you who doesn’t.

          But I anxiously await your construct.

    • Mathius and Buck

      OK lets start.

      I maintain that the Law of Identity is a Natural Law.

      A=A

      But the meaning of this equation/statement extends beyond labels.

      But first lets eliminate the issue of “human labels”. A cow is a unique identity in the universe. The “label” or “name” could change depending on the perspective of the observer (Plutonian vs Human) but it remains a unique identity. For purpose of OUR discussion we will call it a Cow and we will call Humans, human, and we will call tigers, tigers.

      Each identity exists according to the nature of that identity. That includes a wide range of considerations, from type of and method of securing food, method of transport, ability to think, method of acting, etc.

      Thus each identity MUST act according to its nature. Cow MUST act like Cows and Humans MUST act like Humans and Tigers must act like Tigers. It’s nature is part of its identity.

      So here is a good place to stop for questions if needed.

      Agree? Disagree? ?????

      • Round and round the mulberry bush
        the monkey chased the weasel………………..

        I’ve been following along the best I can……..and I admit it – I have a headache……whew

      • Buck the Wala says:

        DISAGREE!

        The law of identity is NOT a natural law. If it was, no humans would be cannibals (or vegetarians, for that matter). Not all humans act in the same manner.

        But again, you immediately jump to ‘human’ and I ask again: WHY? The only reason in my opinion that you jump to humans is because you want to make a certain point, not because it is a logical step. We (humans) are also primates — so we must act in accordance with the nature of a chimp, no? We (humans) are also mammals — so we must act in accordance with the nature of a cow as well, no? Some humans are cannibals – how do you explain their nature?

        • Buck

          Good grief.

          I did not assign ANY particular behavior to Humans, or Cows or Tigers.

          If a Human is not a unique identity then are you claiming that Humans can be Tigers???

          If Humans can be cannibals or carnivores or vegetarians then is this not “part” of the nature of humans???

          Primates are a group of different Identities, but each Identity has its own Nature in totality.

          Similar characteristics between identities does not make them the SAME identity. Unless of course you are saying Human = Chimp = Cow. Is that your claim?

          If you want to evaluate groups of similar Identities then we can do that. But what you will find is that the Nature of Primates vs the Nature of Ungulates to be less revealing to the question originally asked.

          But in either case, the Law of Identity only requires a certain Nature relative to the particular identity you are considering.

          Why not go back to All Living Things vs All Not Living Things?

          It doesn’t change the Law of Identity. Living has a nature that is separate from Not Living.

          So do you still maintain that the Law of Identity is not a Natural Law?

          If so, you are going to have to do a better job of explaining why.

      • Mathius™ says:

        Minor point of order.

        A “cow” is a class or category which contains a whole set of independent entities, each of which is unique to itself. Though Cow 1 and Cow 2 have many traits in common (an affinity for mooing, a dislike of being tipped), they are by no means “the same” any more that you and I (by virtue of being subsets of ‘Human’) are the same.

        So, to say cows must act as according to “cow nature” is invalid because there is no perfectly unified “cow nature” only the nature of Cow 1 and the nature of Cow 2 (though they are similar, they are different, imagine two nearly overlapping circles in a Venn diagram). I remember reading an article about a cow which was killing and, yes, eating chickens – this is apparently very rare behavior, and belonged to the nature of Cow 24601, but not to the natures of Cow 1 or Cow 2.

        For comparison, consider that some humans are more generous than others, some are more thoughtful, some are more aggressive, et cetera – you could never pin down a true “human nature” as applicable to all humans, just as it applies to each individual, fair?

        So, I agree, provisionally, that Cow 1 must act according to the nature of Cow 1, and Human 1 must act according to the nature of Human 1.

        Fair? Proceed.

        • Mathius

          Fair. But you are splitting hairs long before we need to get there. I am trying to work with the larger group context because you asked for Natural Laws as opposed the Human constructed laws.

          COWS, as a group identity, have a certain Nature (in totality) that ALL Cows must follow to continue their existence.

          The cow who killed and ate chickens either starved to death or also ate plants of some kind. Because the nature of Cows would not allow it to survive on a meat diet. By the way, cows will also eat their placenta. But that does not make cows into carnivores.

          Just as humans, group, are not cannibals but some humans could practice cannibalism. But they could not survive by eating other humans just as they could not survive on a meat only diet of any kind.

          Make more sense now?

          • Mathius™ says:

            I don’t think I’m splitting hairs before I need to, I think it’s essential to make this distinction BEFORE we proceed and build a house of cards on top of it.

            The problem, of course, is what I’ve been saying all along: why draw your distinction at the species level? There is a “mammal nature” (class level) in this sense as well. Conversely, I could insist on a more narrow definition which is isolated to “Mathius Nature” and “JAC nature.”

            If, for example, I wanted to go with the order level, I would suggest that there is a “primate nature” in this sense. So I’m not going let you skip straight to species level natures without justifying why that is the point at which you might draw your future distinctions.

            So, if you want to bypass this point, feel free to talk about “Primate Nature” and “Artiodactyla (bovine) Nature.”

            • Mathius

              I really don’t understand your obsession with these different classifications. The concept either holds for ALL classifications or it does not. I maintain that it does. The only thing that changes are the details that comprise the “Nature” of the particular group or class you are looking at.

              So lets try this exercise to explain. Please insert the name of whatever group/class/identity you want in the following sentence. BUT, you must use the same identity in both spaces. Cow to cow, primates to primates, animals to animals, cabbages to cabbages, etc etc.

              “_______________, as a group identity, have a certain Nature (in totality) that ALL ________________must follow to continue their existence.”

              Now please notice that the label in the blank does not change the outcome. The LAW remains unchanged.

              The LAW does not specify the Nature of any particular group or identity. It only states that the Nature in its totality exists and that the identity must act according to that nature. Thus Humans are mammals. All mammals have a nature. But not all mammals can act according to human nature. For example, We have discovered how to feed our babies without breast feeding.

              • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

                OK, I’ll bite…..

                “___GroupA__, as a group identity, have certain requirements/needs that ALL (members of) Group A__must meet to continue their existence.”

                I think it reads a little better my way.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                So to continue with you statement, using HUMANS in both blanks, please provide this Nature that all humans must exhibit to continue its existence.

              • Mathius™ says:

                My obsession with this will come into play, I think, further down the road. So let’s go with “Mammals.”

                “____Mammals___, as a group identity, have a certain Nature (in totality) that ALL ____mammals___ must follow to continue their existence*.”

                *to continue their existence as living creatures. They would continue to ‘exist’ as dead meat, then as scattered atoms, then as energy, etc, but I assume this is beside the point (I know I’m being neurotic, but specificity is vital in this).

                …. OK, proceed.

  21. gmanfortruth says:

    Good Morning in the woods as deer #7 was put down at 9 :45.

  22. DisposableCarbonUnit says:

    I keep losing my “Post Comment” button every time I try to reply so I have to interject down here.

    In regards to generalizing the debate between living vs. non-living, there is room to debate even that since we humans classify viruses as non-living while they share more in common and “behave” more like living organisms than say, rocks.

    I will agree with JAC, a specific identity is a specific identity! Doesn’t BF claim that all action is ultimately individual?

    So we’re left with, a human is a human and (apparently) MUST behave like a human (behaviour range approaches infinity however).

    What’s next professor, I’m actually learning a great deal from these debates.

    • Carbon

      Since you accept the Law of Identity as a Natural Law, the next step is to determine if there are any Natural Rights that might be associated with Identity.

    • Disposable-Have you lost your mind! 🙂 Do not encourage including a discussion of living vs. non living, right NOW -good grief man-this one is complicated enough already. 😆 Interesting point though.

      As far as your problem with the button-someone on here helped Buck, I believe with how to fix the problem, but unfortunately I don’t remember the answer.

      Buck!! Disposable needs your assistance. I least I think it was you 🙂

      • Buck the Wala says:

        DCU — I’ve been having that problem today as well. The only way I can get around it is to right-click on the reply button and then click ‘open’.

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        Thanks Buck, seems to work.

        V.H., NEVER say I’ve lost my mind! Mathius will retroactively abort me since I would no longer have any human rights 🙂 !

        He’s already prejudiced against us peaceful Canadians, I’m not giving him ANY opportunities.

        • Hee Hee-I apologize for endangering your continued existence. 🙂

        • Mathius™ says:

          Caribou,

          Did I ever send you this link?

          And, meanwhile, everyone knows Canadians aren’t real people. By the way, I hear this country has a real problem with illegal immigrants – I think we’re going to have to build a double electric fence along the border with barbed wire on top and shoot anyone who tries to cross it. Consider yourself warned.

          • Dang, that’s mighty harsh………..you, you…..right wing extremist!

            Free access for all, it’s just a line on paper! The Greater Good demands it!

            • Mathius™ says:

              I’m sorry.. D13 is busy on the southern border, I’m patrolling the northern border. I mean, if secure borders are important, we ought to secure all of them, right?

              The order is to issue a warning in English and French, then shoot on sight anyone who doesn’t surrender immediately.

          • Four Royal Canadian Navy ships are in town at the State Ports Authority’s Union Pier.

            The vessels, docked in downtown Charleston, are on the southernmost leg of a training exercise, said Jeri Grychowski, a Canadian Navy spokeswoman in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

            The Royal Canadian Navy frigate Charlottetown (left), destroyer Iroquois and two other Canadian warships are docked at the State Ports Authority’s Union Pier during a stop in the southernmost leg of a training exercise. A navy spokesperson denied any supposed anti-piracy operations near US coastal waters, although the crew were heard cursing Thor’s Hammer in several local bars.

            They left port in Canada on Nov. 21 and probably will stay here through the weekend before heading north, she said.

            “It’s just a way for the sailors to keep up their skills and to put the sailors through their paces,” Grychowski said.

            The vessels are the destroyer Iroquois and the frigates St. John’s, Montreal and Charlottetown, she said.

            At sea, the vessels run through a number of scenarios, she said.

            Fully loaded, the destroyer carries 250 sailors and the frigates 220 sailors, she said.

            Grychowski said she was not sure how many sailors were on board the ships.

            Canada has 33 warships, submarines and coastal defense vessels divided more or less evenly between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The home ports of the fleet are in Halifax and Esquimalt, British Columbia, according to the Canadian Navy website.

          • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

            Fences work in both directions.

          • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

            I have now finally been to Canada and can say that it does exist. I have still not been to Wyoming and doubt it’s existence. Most of my life I have believed that Wyoming was created as a ruse by Idaho, Utah, Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota and Montana to get extra Federal dollars. I still have not met anyone actually from Wyoming although I have met a few who think that they were stationed there in missile silos.

            When you realize that Dick Cheney supposedly grew up in Colorado (but as born in NEBRASKA) you can smell the rotting fish. His so called “election” to the house five times was obviously engineered by Halliburton. Say….. does that mean that perhaps those other states don’t exist either?

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              Wow what a mistake. It is supposed to say, “Dick Cheney supposedly grew up in WYOMING”.

              I always blow the punch line.

    • Mathius™ says:

      I still think there is no “human nature,” just the Nature of Human A and the Nature of Human B.

      Then again, there are generalizations we can make such as the ones I’ve been making elsewhere..

      What do you think, DCU? What is the generalized “nature” of humanity? Are we (generally) good, moral, peaceful creatures, or are we (generally) vicious, greedy, killers and thieves kept in check only by our society and our cultural upbringing?

      Which on seems more likely from an evolutionary perspective?

  23. DisposableCarbonUnit says:

    @JAC

    I never said I accepted the Law of Identity as a Natural Law. I’m still sorting out what Natural Law is (never been down that rabbit hole before!)

    I am accepting YOUR premise to try and follow your logic with the hope that I may understand your position and learn something in the meantime.

    I still say that human rights are an artificial construct of humans for dealing with other humans.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      The problem is JAC is trying to get us to follow his logic, but he’s refusing to just put it out there in black and white. I understand he is trying to make this a learning exercise, but it would be much more conducive to discussion if we could see exactly how he is approaching this question, the steps he is taking and the conclusions he is reaching.

      I agree with you — human rights are an artificial construct of humans.

      • Buck

        I am not trying to get you to follow my logic. My argument is either logical or it is not.

        Logic: A means of thinking designed to eliminate contradictions.

        I say that those things that exist in the Universe do in fact exist.

        That they are what they are. A=A

        That there identity includes their nature. A=A

        To claim that cows are humans or tigers are humans is a contradiction to REALITY.

        Thus since the Law of Identity is consistent with reality anywhere in the Universe, it must also be a Natural Law.

        • JAC,
          Why don’t you just lay out your entire argument so we can discuss it?

          From the “Universe” to “Human Rights”…

          • Todd

            Because if we can’t agree on step one the rest is a waste of time.

            I have tried to respond to a question from days ago as to whether a Natural Law or Natural Rights exist that could then form the root from which other Human Laws or Human Rights are derived.

            So this in essence is THE argument. If the first step is NOT true then the answer is No. If it IS true, then we can move down the path.

            I have proposed that the Law of Identity is a Natural Law.

            I have also proposed that it forms the base from which to identify Natural Rights and eventually “some” human rights.

            I have also proposed that there is a Natural Right for living things to pursue their existence consistent with their nature. The goal of all living things is to continue living. Living must be consistent with the Nature of the Identity. Thus there is a Natural Right to pursue living consistent with its nature. NOTE: This Natural Right applies to ALL living things.

            This really is the point to discuss at this time. I pointed out that BF and I disagreed on this concept the other day. That is the idea of Natural Right to pursue life.

            He was more in line with your human rights are created by humans to deal with humans, although I think his position is in between the two.

            I am open to criticism and argument on my concept of Natural Right at this point. We need to determine if it is true or false.

            If the Law of Identity is False then my concept of Natural Right fails from lack of a foundation.

            If the Law of Identity is True but my concept of Natural Right is false then there is no need to go further.

            Does this make sense to you?

            • JAC,
              This is really hard to follow when you are explaining it and defending it at the same time.

              So, is this where you are in the process:

              Thus there is a Natural Right to pursue living consistent with its nature.

              If so, I agree.

              What’s next?

              But I’d also like to see all the steps laid out in a simple 1-2-3 pattern.

              • Todd

                Yes, that is where I am.

                I am proposing that it is this Natural Right that supports the right to exercise our Free Will, as proposed by BF the other day.

                The Freedom to Exercise Our Free Will would then be a basic Natural Right from which other “Human Rights” or “Natural Rights” are derived.

                Right to Property, for example could be argued as a Natural Right in the sense of the Right to retain the fruits of your effort. What is the point of using free will to sustain life if you can not reap the out come of the action?

                I am going to stop here because the farther we get into Rights the muddier the water.

                I just wanted to discuss this hypothesis and see if there was possible agreement.

                At least for now.

              • JAC,
                It seems like a big jump from “Natural Right to pursue living” to “Right to Property.” Can you walk thru the steps to get there?

                You could live as a hunter-gatherer and/or fishing. Many early societies did not lay claim to specific property.

                But if we assume there is a “Right to Property”, is there a limit to how much property one person can own? What happens if I accumulate so much property that it impacts your ability to survive?

                What other “Human Rights” or “Natural Rights” are derived from our “Freedom to Exercise Our Free Will”?

    • Carbon

      Natural Law, as I am using it refers to irrefutable truths (laws) that are consistent with and derived from the Universe. While we humans create labels and categories for these things, they would still exist if we did not know of their existence or if we did not exist.

      The Law of Identity states that A=A.

      It includes the nature of A as part of A.

      What Matt and Buck keep arguing about is the “nature” itself. But this is not relevant to determining if the Law is a Law and if so, whether it is a Natural Law or purely a Human construct.

      • Mathius™ says:

        I’m arguing no such thing. I agree that a thing is itself and the nature of a thing is the nature of that same thing.

        I am Mathius, therefore I am Mathius.
        My nature, therefore, is my nature.

        I’m waiting for the next step. But please use “mammals” instead of “humans” unless you want to skip ahead in the lesson plan.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Fine, I am willing to concede that, insofar as the Law of Identity states that A=A (that the nature of A must be a part of A) is a Law. But that in and of itself is not saying anything. Let’s continue with your analysis — what is the essential nature of ‘Humans’?

        • Buck

          Is the Law of Identity a Natural Law?

          • Buck the Wala says:

            Please see my response immediately above.

            For purposes of continuing this discussion I am willing to concede that the Law of Identity is a Natural Law insofar as the Law of Identity states that the nature of A must be a part of A. Now, can we move along?

            • Buck

              Is it the nature of living things to live?

              In other words, to pursue their existence?

              It is a given that their existence must be consistent with their nature, since that is part of their identity.

              So if YES, then is this not the basis for a Natural Right to pursue existence according to its nature?

              • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

                Could not, then, pursuing one’s existence be defined as a goal as opposed to a “right”.

                Law of Identity: I concede, as well, that a specific entity is, in fact, that specific entity and must include the specific operating parameters of that specific entity.

                Those specific entitites now pursue a “goal” to maintain that identity, I do not see that as a “right” however.

        • Buck

          I don’t care what the essential nature or the general nature of humans is. At least not with respect to the question I was trying to address.

          I have been trying to explain that all day as you guys keep arguing about mammals, humans, cows, reptiles etc etc.

          Natural Laws to be Natural and any Natural Rights derived therefrom would be applicable to all things. At least at the core level. AND THAT IS WHERE THIS DISCUSSION STARTED.

          I have moved along below.

    • DCU

      Yours from above:

      “OK, I’ll bite…..

      “___GroupA__, as a group identity, have certain requirements/needs that ALL (members of) Group A__must meet to continue their existence.”

      I think it reads a little better my way.”

      NO!

      Nature includes much more than just our “requirements” or “needs”. For example it includes our means of achieving these needs. It includes our means of determining what we need. It includes everything in its totality that defines us as Humans.

      For example, we must ACT to sustain our lives. Plants do not have to ACT. The need to act is part of our Nature.

      • Mathius™ says:

        Plants do not have to ACT.

        Plants absolutely do act.

        They grow.

        They move toward the light.

        They reproduce.

        They emit pesticides.

        They (somehow) pass traits onto the next generation based on their experiences.

        Some can summon predators to attack insects on their behalf. Literally moving them around to specific targets based on chemical emissions.

        They share resources.

        They compete for resources, actively smothering competition.

        They respirate.

        Some hunt flies.

        Some hunt other plants.

        Some even hunt small mammals.

        … plants absolutely do act.

        • Mathius

          They do not act in the context of my statement. But I think you knew that before you posted this stuff.

          Just in case you really don’t let me use a very simple comparison.

          Humans: Must ACT as in TAKE ACTION.

          Plants: Shit just happens.

          OK now?

          • Mathius™ says:

            Plants: Shit just happens. No.

            For decades, scientists thought that the acacia tree had a beautiful and beneficial partnership with a certain species of guard ant: The ants get to eat the sugary plant nectar and live in special hollowed-out thorns that provide safety, and in turn, they defend their kindly plant host from predators. But recently, researchers found that’s not the whole story — the nectar the plant produces isn’t just sweet, it’s like a drug that turns ants into an army of desperate addicts. And that’s not all the acacia tree produces: It also secretes the single most effective ant repellent in the region. By providing or withholding one or the other substance, the acacia tree actually steers the ants around — toward areas that need defending, or away from tender flowers during pollinating season — with a combination of drug cocktails and ant-crack.

            That’s right: This tree has specific wants and needs, and it somehow communicates those to its ant-addict commandos. If you’re a plant competing for sunlight, the ants cut off your leaves; if you’re a stem-boring beetle, get ready for an ant battle.

            Sometimes even giraffes come for the acacia leaves. But the immense, ridiculous size difference is not enough to deter the ant hordes: If that giraffe steps to the wrong tree, the zombie ants attack, stinging and biting its face until it is forced to flee. As desperate as you think human addiction might be, ant addiction is a whole other bag (not many crackheads would happily fistfight something 10 times the size of Godzilla for another rock).

            Link

            • Mathius

              “That’s right: This tree has specific wants and needs, and it somehow communicates those to its ant-addict commandos. ”

              BULL SHIT!!!

              Can’t put it any simpler than that. Do not assign Human or other warm blooded traits of cognition to plants.

              Please don’t waste your time or mine on this kind of argument.

              • Mathius™ says:

                I would agree that it’s anthropomorphizing to suggest that the tree has wants. I think “needs” is a fair statement.

                But the idea that a tree can “summons” and “control” insects based on directed chemical production is real.

                GM corn can summons nematodes to protect it from pests.

                The writer of the article is trying to tell an interesting version of the story. But the facts are unchanged – the plant emits attractant and repellant to control ants to act on its behalf.

                Now, my assertion is not that plants are “thinking,” but that they are “acting.” You said “Plants: Shit just happens.” And I reject that as FALSE. Plants actively compete with threats and work to gain access to resources. Think, no. Act, yes.

  24. DisposableCarbonUnit says:

    @Mathius

    The only “general” human “nature” is self-preservation

    The answer to your questions are yes and yes.

    The evolution of the species depends upon the environmental challenges; civilization arose because there was a yes to your first question and “evil” arose 🙂 because the answer to your second question was yes.

    Thinking out loud…..Did human evolution (as a species) stop when “human rights” began?

    • Mathius™ says:

      No, certainly not! It’s still going on (note that people today are (even adjusted for changes in nutrition) slightly taller than they were 200 years ago). But the idea that we could leave behind our most fundamental selves from several billion years of evolution in the space of a few thousand seem.. unlikely.

      Mutation: it is the key to our evolution. It has enabled us to evolve from a single-celled organism into the dominant species on the planet. This process is slow, normally taking thousands and thousands of years.

      But every few hundred millennia, evolution leaps forward.

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        Stop reading Stephen Jay Gould, your brain will rot!

        My question was more for amusement than anything.

        You must admit though that the lack of Darwinian selection, through our interference in the process, in our current society has produced some interesting results (regression towards the mean)!

  25. The problems of A=A are over…..there is no longer a valid argument. Obama, himself, today claimed………………………..there is no longer an A.

    • I need a little additional information. How did he go about claiming such?

      • VH….you obviously did not listen to his,,,,,”nationalization” speech today.

        • No, I haven’t -been reading along here and trying to get some work done-which is hard to accomplish-at times. Luckily, I have the freedom to work at night too-so usually I can do both. But I will read it, later. Or you can give me a synopsis 🙂 Your choice.

  26. Dit dit dit dit……..NEWS FLASH…….Dit dit dit dit.

    Off the coast of Texas, a recent satellite passover showed a pitched battle between the Canadian Navy and a vessel believed to be Thor’s Hammer operating out of Laguna Madre. In the crow’s nest, there was a figure wildly flying the “rigid digit” (third finger of right hand, for those of you who do not know jargon) sporting a brand new nifty Jack Sparrow hat and a John Roberts Cutlass and screaming y’aaarrrrggggggghhhhhhh at the top of his lungs. Expert seamanship of SUFA’s own DPM had the Canadian Navy firing at each other. Their sophisticated radar and homing devices failed to register on the copper and wood hull and soft cotton sails of Thor’s Hammer and, thus, each of the Canadian ships sunk each other without an ounce of even ballistic “grape shot” being fired. Last reports saw Thor’s Hammer sailing south towards Laguna Madre and the figure at the top throwing empty RB cans into the ocean….singing YO HO………………………………

  27. VH, down here please.

    Wait a minute-you are equating the word “illegal” which is describing an action and is a qualifier which denotes, simply by it’s use, that it is not inclusive of any one group of people but only those who meet the descriptive qualifier -to words such as black or Jew which are personally descriptive of an individual and with just flat out racist misnomers.

    Yes, I am. “Illegal immigrant” has become to be accepted in a large way to mean the Hispanics of Mexico, Central and South America. Call it a generic term racism if one must. Does everyone carry this attitude? No, but enough do that it is a valid comparison. It is much the same when Hispanics use the generic term “gringo” towards us. It ain’t a complement normally.

    You claim people are using the term to foster a bad image for illegals-but your claim fosters justification for illegal activity and makes using descriptive words based on actions as out of bounds-sounds too PC to me-much to likely to foster justification and limit ones ability to tell the Truth.

    No, I do not say it justifies illegal activity at all. It has become to be used to vilify a group a lot of the time.

    • The qualifiers are not what is wrong-they are what give us the ability to discuss issues without condemning a whole group of people based on whatever the issue is. It is when people do not use qualifiers that they can be accused of condemning based on nationality, race, etc.

      Allowing the actual qualifiers to be called Wrong-does nothing but stop the ability to communicate-makes speaking the Truth racist, etc.

      It must never be allowed to happen-if it ever is-Freedom of speech is dead. Hate speech is a good example- Is the word “illegal” suddenly a hate word-just because some people are stupid.

      • Mathius™ says:

        What is the difference between saying “black” and “black people” when talking about their demographic? Especially in a negative manner?

        What is the difference, to you, between these two statements:
        1) The murder rate amongst blacks is twice as high as other groups.
        2) The murder rate amongst black men is twice as high as other groups.

        Does this feel somehow different to you? I know “felling” is somewhat wishy-washy, but I’d be interested in your response.

        • I see one as more respectful -but I do not claim disrespect just because one uses one or the other-it could be and it could just be lack of thinking. Black is not a qualifier-it is a characteristic. If I was quoting a statistic based on the black race as a group-the qualifier is the statistic.

      • Well I could use the term “broads” to define a group then and I wouldn’t have to be concerned that you were insulted that I was denigrating women as a group?

        • I suppose you could but without a qualifier-you are calling all woman “broads”. Are all woman broads-I think not 🙂 ?

          I call someone an “illegal” -Are all illegals-illegal?

          • The point is freedom of speech-of truth vs. being purposely derogative based on some distinctive characteristic vs. actions.

            • Didn’t do a good job of that-The point is losing our freedom of speech. The argument is being able to speak the truth without being derogative to a whole group of people.

          • So you deny that “illegals” is short for “Illegal immigrants” which has been jaded to a large segment of the country to apply to those Hispanics from south of the border?

            You’re telling me that when Rick Perry speaks of illegals – he means those Irish in the south Bronx SK speaks of?

            “Broads” was an accepted term for woman at one point in our society, but became to be understood as a derogatory term for women. I find it unacceptable based on that alone.

            Is the term “illegals” always being used in that descriptive you speak of? I think not and I think we are all adult enough to tell the difference.

            I am all for free speech. I’m tired of the PC world, but that doesn’t mean I have to accept unacceptable meanings for any speech. I hate the “n” word and won’t accept its use without making my thoughts known to the user of what I think about it.

            • I’ll get back to you-Plainly-have run out of time to do both-must work now 🙂

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              Northwest Bronx and, he should be speaking of them. The Irish left the South Bronx a long time ago.

              I don’t think broads was ever an acceptable term. I don’t remember my dad or uncles ever using it unless they were talking of a woman of questionable virtue. In most cases though it was a slang term and never used in mixed company.

              • Eh….it’s New York – I was close at least. 😉

                Okay, ::sigh:: for the sake of debate I’ll rephrase.

                Broad was an acceptable term for women used among men amongst themselves, until it was dropped from manly talk (for the most part) due to the the unacceptable nature of the term – even with men.

                Or some such. Hopefully you understand my intent.

              • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

                I would equate the use of the term broads, when used as a pejorative with the use of the term negro when they draw out the end as in negrooooow. I do get your point though.

  28. gmanfortruth says:

    A nun was sitting on a train opposite a Muslim man wearing a
    > >>> turban who was eating some fresh shrimp.
    > >>> Everytime he ate one he spat the tail at her and she had to throw it out
    > >>> the
    > >>> window.
    > >>> Eventually she got pissed off and pulled the Emergency Cord.
    > >>> The turban wearing Muslim looked at her and said, “You’ll get fined
    > >>> $250 for doing that you stupid Catholic slut.
    > >>> She laughed back and said, “When I cry out rape and they smell your
    > >>> fingers,
    > >>> you’ll get 10 years, you towel headed camel-fucker.”

  29. SK< down here good sir.

    Melting pot implies that we have forged a new alloy composed of us all and have taken the best of what has come here and turned it into something new within the guidelines of our Constitution. E Pluribus Unum. You on the other hand describe a mosaic, something that was NEVER described when I was a kid.

    I describe a nation forged with many cultures under one common belief of life, liberty, freedom and the US Constitution. That is the American lifestyle I was taught melting pot meant in school as a kid.

    Americans abroad simply describe themselves as “Americans”. That is food for thought.

    And in my foreign travels have been shamed by the arrogant behavior of those “Americans” too. Definitely, as a nation of peoples, we don;t have the best reputation – anymore than groups here in the US from other nations have the best of reputations.

    Facts are facts, why the poverty? why the hunger? What are those things different now from before which may be causative factors.

    Umm…the only facts you’ve given is that we have poverty and hunger (which I don’t dispute), but you haven’t shown me any facts tying this to illegal immigration.

    Prior to 1965 bi-lingual education did not exist. Personal experience with people educated under that system tells me it does not work. School standings and academic rankings tell me it does not work.

    Ok, do you want to have a discussion on education then? It’s likely to be a short one because I suspect we will agree to a great extent on the problems with education in the US.

    I dunno, maybe I’m crazy but I think that it is incredibly hard to absorb people when there is no time out.

    The last “time out” occurred in 1986, if I recall correctly. The problem was that the reform was not implemented in all areas like it was suppose to have been. Who do we blame for that? The politicians who refused to follow their own “program.”

    Perhaps the old I love Lucy episode is relevant. The one where she works in the candy wrapping factory and the conveyor belt just keeps speeding up. I see parts of NY City like that today. My friends who are teachers or social workers just throw up their hands. It is one hell of a lot easier to teach a class where 95 % of the kids walk in the door already speaking Spanish and only 50% speak English in Spanish. Does not help those kids. Not one iota. I actually applauded when Gingrich was asked about English being the main language in the country. If I remember correctly he said “English is the language of success, Spanish is the language of the Ghetto.” Of course all hell broke loose and his choice of words was bad he should have at least said barrio instead of ghetto but in truth could have said “Spanish is the language of failure”. Now before you accuse me of some type of racism let me remind you that my parents aunts and uncles all grew up speaking Slavic dialects at home and English in school. My eldest uncle’s (born here) English was so poor that the Grammar school teacher came to the house circa 1920 and told my grandparents that they had to try to speak and encourage more English usage at home otherwise he would be doomed to only live and work among his own for his whole life. My grandparents got it, my father got it when he passed the story onto me and I get it. Unfortunately I have worked with too many American born kids of Caribbean or South American extraction who are woefully unprepared to deal with the larger society.

    My maternal great-grandparents came to the US at the turn of the 20th century from Germany. I acknowledge what you are saying and don’t disagree. And it applies to many here now. English is the primary language and to succeed – for the most part – English is necessary (sorry Mathius – we part thinking on this).

    The last time I think we tried it (assimilation) was after WW 2 when a large number of refugees were allowed in the country. The difference between then and now was that the bulk came educated and no attempt was made to coddle them. We were as Theo. Roosevelt said, going to make them Americans. The time before that was the late ’20′s when the economy caused us to shut the doors. This worked well also.

    In 1921 the first immigration act instituting quotas was aimed at “Europe, Australia, Africa, New Zealand, Asiatic Turkey, Persia, and certain islands of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to 3 percent of the number of foreign-born of such nationalities residing here when the 1910 census was taken… This law accomplished two things. (1) It reduced the total number of immigrants coming to this country… (2) It favored and stimulated the immigration of Protestant northwestern Europeans and excluded most of the Catholic southern and eastern Europeans.”

    My Queens Blvd. victims are not so iffy unless you are a fatalist. If their killer had not been there they would have not died. period!

    Which is true of ANY crime – period! Show me one society (past or present) without any crime and I’ll grant you have an argument.

    • Yikes. I beg pardon. I forgot the link to the quote on the 1921 immigration reform.

      http://immigration.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=002690##3

    • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

      Having been a follower of the Gestalt school of Psychology back in College and Grad School I can see inter-relations between many things. Just as there is no “one” solution, there is often not “one” cause. The problem I see today as I pointed out initially in the fence argument is that it seems many routinely throw up their hands up because there is no quick, easy fix which guarantees 100% results. Consequently, collectively as a society, we seem to sit around sucking our thumbs. .

      Let’s talk poverty and hunger. Seems to me that there are root causes. I welcome your input. The things that come to mind at 8:43 in the AM are:

      1. Education

      2. Health (Physical & Mental)

      3. Employment opportunities

      4. Intelligence

      5. Drive and ambition

      6. Prejudice (those people)

      Now my own biased personal experience over the past 25 years dealing predominantly with South and Central American immigrants legal and illegal, and with those from the islands is that only # 1 and # 3 are major problems in the NYC environment. I cannot speak of elsewhere but I would think that in places like California who have a huge population from the same background, things would be the same.

      So, the question becomes what can be done about it. How can we improve education where the bulk of poor students are ESL students and how can we provide additional employment opportunities which are not bare bones, subsistence, dead end jobs.

      This is the challenge. Find me a workable solution which does not involve massive new government programs (which won’t work) and does not include slowing down the influx of new unskilled labor and allows the labor surplus to dry up.

      Being the grandson of those PA coal miners, I am not fond of this total Dickensen capitalism that other contributors on this site seem to think ok, nor am I a fan of excessive government involvement, that’s where unions come in. As a somewhat religious man I believe that man is flawed and that he has free will. Sometimes that free will result in the abuse of one man by another and that he will by his individual nature do harm to his fellow man to advance himself in any number of ways.

      Last week I proposed shutting the door as a form of triage to allow some to survive and prosper but at the expense of others clamoring to get in but prevented from doing so. This was an alternative to what I see as large scale guaranteed failure that we have now. Matt said, “who gets to make the decision?” I see no decision needing to be made. If 500,000 are needed, let the first 500,000 who have a clean record in the door. First come, first served.

      Thanks for the info on the 1921 door shutting. Whether ethnically inspired or not, it served the purpose of allowing the assimilation of my relatives and others which I suspect was in the back of the mind of some sponsors and I am sure is mentioned in the Congressional record at the time.

      • SK, I do intend to reply, it will just take me a bit.

        To start I would also add another item to the list:

        7. Government (welfare, unemployment, entitlement programs, etc)

        I promise more later.

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          7. works for me. I see them though as inter related to Education, and some of the others. They also strongly affect Drive and ambition especially as it is related not so much to new immigrants but to subsequent generations who are by nature of their birth and irregardless of their parents’ status, citizens. .

          Keep in mind that my entire argument relates only to illegal immigration not legal immigration. I have never had a problem with the legal more or less planned for one.

      • Just as there is no “one” solution, there is often not “one” cause.

        I agree completely.

        The problem I see today as I pointed out initially in the fence argument is that it seems many routinely throw up their hands up because there is no quick, easy fix which guarantees 100% results. Consequently, collectively as a society, we seem to sit around sucking our thumbs.

        That may be, I certainly can’t argue otherwise. However, I am not one of those people. You want a fence – by all means have at it. Just don’t expect me to accept that it will be necessary to complete this step before doing anything else, because that’s pretty BS in my view. It just a roadblock to getting reform accomplished, just like the “amnesty first” crowd on the other side.

        No matter what actions get taken, there will never be a solution that can guarantee 100% results.

        Now my own biased personal experience over the past 25 years dealing predominantly with South and Central American immigrants legal and illegal, and with those from the islands is that only # 1 and # 3 are major problems in the NYC environment. I cannot speak of elsewhere but I would think that in places like California who have a huge population from the same background, things would be the same.

        I also lived in a part of the country at one time where #4 applied to the local, legal resident and citizen population too. These issues, as well as the government one I proposed, are basic problems for more than just the immigrants in our society. Solve the repairable ones for immigrants (or vice versa) and we would likely solve them for all segments of our society.
        How do we fix them? Not easily. I am sure we could have long and detailed further debates on each area. In many cases I wonder if we’d end up as deadlocked as the debate on immigration.

        I don’t want more government to “fix” the issue – if anything I want less. But, there are a lot of areas I want less government applied to (which puts me at odds in many cases with Mathius, Buck, Todd, Charlie, and company). There are areas where I believe, whether we like it or not, we must have some government (which puts me at odds with BF).

        I see no decision needing to be made. If 500,000 are needed, let the first 500,000 who have a clean record in the door. First come, first served.

        A quota only system was enacted in 1965. How has that worked out for us in your opinion?
        Like you said at first, there is no “one” solution. To me there is also no taking it one action at a time either.

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          It depends on who you talk too. The ’65 idea was to supposedly deal with past injustice. Cynics might say that after the Johnson landslide of ’64 it was designed to guarantee Democratic control of congress forever. That idea fits in with my opinion of RFK, Mr. bi-lingual in my book.

          It certainly made things interesting and opened up the door for a whole bunch of new laws and interpretations designed to cater to the new population. Sometimes I think that a society can become too mature and sophisticated and enter into the realm of self destruction. As accommodations were made for the new immigrants I kept asking why this was not done for the Italians, Poles and others who came before. I never could get a coherent answer from anyone other than we had become “wiser”.The influx from the 3rd I think, almost guaranteed that there would be a good sized group of illegals from those countries following in their wake. It is actually perfectly logical. It becomes easier to hide and you have a built in cheering section when you arrive.

          Wish I could continue on this but Christmas approaches and there are things to be done according to the spouse.

          • Take all the time you need, I’ll be around when you have time to answer.

            Sometimes I think that a society can become too mature and sophisticated and enter into the realm of self destruction.

            We’re on the same page here. I often consider this very idea.

            I could argue that the 86 reform was another instance of taking a time-out of sorts. Then I would have to argue that the enforcement portion of that reform was – to be polite – insufficiently implemented to any reasonable standard.

            I don’t know that I would agree that the 65 change bolstered one party to any great significance over another. Maybe it did. Maybe any reform done today would be of boon to one party (we know we’re talking about the Democratic Party), but that is not any acceptable reason not to act.

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              Sometimes I get the impression from my democratic friends that they feel anything which is not a boon to them must be a boon to the other guy. They seem to have a very hard time understanding that there can be a neutral solution.

  30. Jac-I hope you don’t let your frustration stop you from continuing to discuss Natural Rights-now or later-or even by writing an article. I would like to have a better understanding. 🙂

    • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

      As would I. There has been too much that I have been learning to stop now.

      I know we are frustrating, but we (I) are trying to understand or at least come to a common fundamental agreement.

    • V.H.

      No worries.

      Just got tired from chasing rabbits. I didn’t want to give a full presentation because we often get lost chasing side issues of some remote concept instead of staying with the meat. But as you can see, my effort to go slow was almost as equally frustrating.

      When I started this effort I was trying to answer the question as to whether natural rights actually exist. This is because the phrase, “Certain inalienable rights granted by our creator” is a reference to Natural Rights as opposed to Political Rights or Human Rights.

      Although we all get them mixed up quite often.

      Will continue the effort once my brain is recovered.

      🙂 🙂

  31. Didn’t we have a discussion once on SUFA about this scenario?

    http://nation.foxnews.com/fire-fighters/2011/12/06/home-burns-firefighters-watch

  32. DisposableCarbonUnit says:

    Anyone else here wonder what USW is going to think with all the logic bombs going off on this blog the past few days?

    I must say I do appreciate the mental challenges of all you folks.

    Apparently my Canadian taxes have just been raised because of some “accident” with our naval ships down your way; anybody see anything? Our nuclear-powered skidoo has broken down and the local town crier has been unable to pass on the news throughout the country.

    • Apparently my Canadian taxes have just been raised because of some “accident” with our naval ships down your way; anybody see anything? Our nuclear-powered skidoo has broken down and the local town crier has been unable to pass on the news throughout the country.

      According to a Texas newspaper out of Houston there is some crazy story reported by Gulf fishermen of a sailed pirate ship containing some futuristic rail gun that allegedly sank several illegal ships approaching the Texas coast. When the Department of Homeland Security and the Texas Rangers were questioned about the incident the reporters were hustled off to a secret FEMA detention camp……………..

      Seems like one of those Flying Dutchmen legends to me……………..

  33. A little background on our young airman. He grew up on a Midwestern prairie farm. As a young boy he farmed with horses, then graduated to tractors and other mechanized machinery. His granddad owned and operated a steam tractor and thrasher. The boy often operated the steam engine with his Uncle Ray who was only six months older and more like a brother than an uncle. The young boy learned to repair engines for his Dad, not only the tractors and other farm engines but also the Model Ts and Model As. He hunted and trapped and was a crack rifle shoot. He preferred using a rifle for rabbit hunting over a shotgun. His grandmother had taught him how to shoot chickens through the eye. One of his hobbies was photography.

    In 1939, jobs were still scarce. He apprenticed with a local Swedish blacksmith and was learning that trade. War clouds and news of the war was an everyday event on the radio. While working in the blacksmith shop, he took both of his Dad’s two row John Deere corn planters and combined them into one four row machine. He had an innate sense of engineering that he would demonstrate the rest of his life.

    In the fall of 1940, he talked to an Army recruiter and decided to join the Air Corps. Uncle Ray had been in the Navy for three years now and was somewhere in the Pacific on the West Virginia. He asked the recruiter if he could go to Alaska or Hawaii. When asked why, he stated that he wanted to be there on day one. In early November he took the oath and was shipped to Jefferson Barracks, MO. About one week later, the first Roosevelt draftees arrived with a gaggle of reporters. The volunteers were displaced from the barracks and their boot camp facilities so they were shipped to San Francisco and then to Hawaii without boot camp. He celebrated Thanksgiving that year somewhere between Hawaii and San Francisco.

    When they arrived at Pearl Harbor, the recruits were loaded on a narrow gauge train called the Pineapple Express. The engine was smaller than granddad’s steam engine. It huffed and puffed its way up the mountains to Wheeler Field. They where marched to an empty block between Hangers #2 and #3 and told to bivouac there. Guards were posted with orders to shoot. Two men on the ship had died of meningitis and they were under quarantine. The spent their first month in Paradise doing nothing. An old master sergeant, an odd duck who wore pilot’s wings, advised the young man to read and memorize the Army Manual which he did. It would prove to be good advice.

    After the quarantine was lifted, the men were given aptitude tests. The young GI had requested photography school but his test results were anomalous. He was asked to retake the tests. The results did not change; he had an exceptionally high aptitude for mechanics. He was told photography school was filled so he was assigned to mechanic’s school at Hickam. He flew through mechanic’s school, finishing number one in his class, setting school records. On his return to Wheeler Field he was assigned to fighter aircraft maintenance. He again requested photography school but his request was denied. Had he flunked it would have been approved. Army life has its peculiarities.

    The first year recruits still had limited access to passes so there was not much opportunity to go to town. Our young GI asked for a pass one day to attend a special event in Honolulu. The pass was granted. He left base in a Class A uniform. At the event, there were a few other soldiers there but most of the attendees were in tuxedos. Afterwards, a distinguished middle aged gentleman dressed in a tux approached him and offered a ride back to base. Since a car was much faster than the Pineapple Express, he accepted. On approaching the gate, he asked the driver to just stop and let him out. Instead the driver drove up to the guard shack. The guard snapped to attention, saluted and said, “Welcome back General.” His chauffer was Gen. Davidson, the base commander. This was the first of many contacts he had with the General. This young soldier would soon meet and know many of the top air corps brass in Hawaii including Col. and later Gen. Flood, who he eventually served as flight engineer, Gen. Tinker, KIA Battle of Midway, Capt. and later Maj. Beckwith, commander of the 72nd Sq., Lts. Daine, Taylor, Welch, Rogers, and Grabbeski. The first four Lts. all got wheels up that Sunday morning. Lt. Daine was shot down; he had no guns in his P40. Grabbeski was Polish and later transferred to England to lead the Polish Exile Air Force.

    Being ambitious, the young GI learned all he could about aircraft with the goal of earning his wings as a flight mechanic. On the side, he still took pictures, including portraits of other GIs. His photographs were good, in fact as good as the expensive ones downtown by the professionals. They were also a lot cheaper The requests were numerous enough that he asked for permission to set up a photo lab. Permission was granted as well as permission to carry loaded uncased cameras on base. Connections to generals have rewards. In late November, with his imminent transfer to the Philippines, he packed up over one thousand still photos and mailed them home. They never arrived. The mail boat never made it out of the harbor.

    In early November, the USS West Virginia came into Pearl. The airman went aboard to see Uncle Ray, who was a cook in the Admiral’s mess. When Ray finished his normal duties, he cooked a couple of steaks, which were consumed at the Admiral’s table. A few days later the pair met again and visited another hometown friend, Bub, at Schofield Barracks. This was the first the trio had been together since their school days. Most people would not find this remarkable that three friends, each in a different branch of the service would meet up on a distant island in the Pacific. But then most people went to schools with graduating classes bigger than 7. A few days later, Uncle Ray shipped out. His hitch in the Navy was over. He would be back home on the farm by the first week in December.

    Life was good in paradise.

    • It was a little after 0700 on a Sunday morning sevnety years ago today when the young soldier woke up. This was late for a farmer turned soldier but then he was out late at the movies the night before. He dressed in his Class A uniform. The plan was to meet a friend, Len, whom he would name his first son after, get some breakfast, and then attend church. That afternoon he planned on meeting another friend to work in the photo lab. His quarters was a 6 man platform tent between Hangers #2 and #3. The same area he bivouacked in his first day in Hawaii. These tents were nicer. His five tent mates were still in their bunks. Most likely they had a livelier time in town than he did. A little before 0800 he stepped out of the tent into the bright dawn light of paradise. He walked to the middle of the street just feet from the fighter aircraft he had help line up Friday for the never held inspection on Saturday.

      He heard planes approaching the field and looked up to see who was practicing. The aircraft had a strange silhouette, and then the early dawn light revealed the red insignia on the wings and fuselage. Stunned, he watched for a few seconds as a plane headed straight for him. Then it released something from its belly and pulled up. The object continued on the plane’s previous trajectory straight towards him. The soldier turned and ran for tent for the helmet and rifle under his bunk. As he dove into the tent, he yelled, “Hit the deck boys, it’s the Japs!” The only reply he heard was “Your nuts, you’ve been watching too many movies!” A couple of this tent mates jumped out of bed. There was an explosion outside and the paradise went black.

      Sometime later, a few minutes, an eternity, who knows, the soldier woke up, probably somewhat confused. The tent was on top of him, he was bleeding from the nose and ears. His teeth were loose. He crawled out from under the tent with his helmet and rifle. Devastation was all about, fires, exploding ordinance, wrecked planes. He no longer had tent mates. The three neighboring tents were also gone. Of the 18 men in those tents, his name would be the only name that did not appear on a casualty report.

      He saw one friend laying in the street, at least half of him was there. The friend requested a .45 but he didn’t have one. It was in the ammo bunker with the 30-06 rounds for his useless rifle. He lit the friend a cigarette and walked away. Later he would name his third son for that boy. The first order of business was to get some bullets for the rifle. He trotted over to Hanger #3, found the bunker locked. Locating a crowbar, he went back to the bunker. Several men were now behind him understanding his intent. Then from nowhere, a 2nd Lt approached and ordered a halt to the operation. No orders had been given to open the ammo locker. Someone grabbed the crow bar from the airman’s hands and the Lt. crumbled to the floor. The crowbar was passed back and the job completed.

      The NCOs and enlisted men knew their jobs. Get as many planes ready for combat as quickly as possible. It would have been easier on Thursday. Several men grabbed .50 caliber machine guns and started for thr few intact planes still on the flight line. One pair consisted of a large Swede and a much shorter man. There were two P40s parked at the far end of the field that would be intact. The two trotted off down the runway in that direction when another flight of Japanese planes appeared overhead. This was the beginning of the second raid. Shorty mumbled something about needing a tripod. The Swede swung the 50 up to his shoulder. The pair got their plane but the Swede had burned hands and a broken should.

      Our young airman now realized that being near the hangers and all those parked planes was not a good idea. So he ran for base housing a few hundred yards up the street. Before he could get there, a Zero came up the street strafing. He and one other GI jumped behind a tree only half big enough for one. A third GI was caught in the middle of the street. He dropped to his knees and started praying. Bullets splattered off the cement on both sides of him, but he was unscratched.

      The raid ended shortly but the destruction of Hangers #2 and #3 and nearly all of the carefully lined up fighters in front of them was completed. Heavy black smoke rose up from the flight line, the hangers and the tent area between them. Paradise was turning black.

      The rest of the morning was a blur. The first order of business was to get the wounded to the infirmary at Schofield. However, the infirmary was full so they just placed them on the lawn. Fire fighting and salvage operations began immediately. All was chaos. As dusk approached, they had 4 operational fighters.

      Word circulated among the men that Lt. Daine was one of the first to get airborne from Haleiwa Air Field in his unarmed P36. He took off crosswise of the runway and climbed straight for the leader in the Japanese bomber formation. He rolled over and came down on one of the enemy craft with his land gear and rode it into the sea. Then repeated the maneuver. He had no radio, his fate after that was unknown, presumed shot down and lost at sea.

      Lts. Welch, Taylor and Rogers had been partying Saturday night and into the wee hours of the morning. They raced to Haleiwa still dressed in tuxedos. All three got airborne. Rumors reached Wheeler that Welch and Taylor had made ace. Lt. Rogers had disengaged from the enemy and returned to base. Rogers was not liked by the men at Wheeler because he often would sneak up to them on guard duty and disarm them using intimidation and bluff. Of course, the enlisted men were then reprimanded for failing to do their duty. Lt. Rogers tried this one night before the war on our young airman. It did not work and he ended up with his hands in the air for one hour waiting for the Corporal of the Guard. The young airman was treated as a hero by his colleagues. Rogers and the young soldier would cross paths numerous times over the next three years but Rogers always came out second best.

      As dusk approached, work stopped on the planes, black out conditions were being enforced. The men were given guard duty around the airfield. No one slept. Our young soldier was called aside by Col. Thorpe for special duty probably from advice by Gen. Davidson. He was requested to pick three trustworthy GIs and to follow him to the Officer’s Housing area. They arrived at Col. Thorpe’s house and the soldiers were introduced to eight very pregnant officer’s wives including Mrs. Thorpe. All non-combatants had been evacuated to the mountains, but there were no medical facilities for these women so they remained behind. They were to guard the women with their lives.

      Then Col. Thorpe pulled the young airman aside. He removed 8 rounds from his pocket and handed them to the airman giving him explicit instructions that they were to remain in his shirt pocket and to be used only as a last resort. The young soldier was stunned. He questioned the orders. They were confirmed and emphatic. There was only chaos in paradise. Hell this was no longer paradise.

      He soldiered on. At one point during the night, one of the women became hysterical. The young man tried reason to no avail. Finally he applied a non-PC technique that shocked the pregnant woman into listening. He informed her there was an army of men out there that would die first before any harm came to them. He ended by asking the women to make some sandwiches and coffee for his men as they had not eaten for 24 hours. Hell he was still in his Class A uniform. After the men had eaten, the women called him in for his sandwich. He refused being scared of the events of the day and more scared of the events of the night. They finally persuaded him to eat. To drink a cup of coffee, he had to slide it up a door post he was shaking so badly.

      Everybody that night was trigger happy. Sporadic gun fire could be heard around the airfield. One poor Army mule was mistaken for a saboteur.

      So ended the first night in paradise lost, seventy years ago today, Dec. 7th at Wheeler Field the Territory of Hawaii.

      • Dec. 8-12, 1941 Wheeler Field Territory of Hawaii.

        People were apprehensive about the possibility of invasion for several days. The mechanics worked all day to repair planes and then stood guard duty at night. Very few slept the first four days after the bombing. Wheeler Field was a mess. Wreckage all over, hangers mostly destroyed. But everybody pitched in. Pilots came through the work areas constantly asking the mechanics when a plane could be test flighted. Finally the men had enough of the constant interruption, and replied that it would go faster if they pitched in. The pilots readily admitted they did not know what to do. So the NCOs found them jobs cleaning parts, running errands, etc. Imagine, a Lt. up to his elbows in grease taking orders from a corporal.

        Each day the number of available planes grew. They would scour the wreckage for usable parts. Months later they were still removing bailing wire from some of the planes. By the fourth day they were running out of parts. They were down to a P36 fuselage and set of P40 wings. Both planes were built by Curtiss so they were similar. The farm boy/blacksmith/soldier/mechanic put his engineering talents to work. By the end of the day, they had an ugly duckling P36-40. It flew.

        At this point the men started to relax. The felt they had enough fighter planes to ward off another attack. They finally got some much needed rest.

        Remember the old master sergeant with the wings on his chest. He too had run afoul of Lt. Rogers and had no love for the man. A couple of weeks after the bombing, the M/Sgt walked up to Lt. Rogers and received his first salute. He was wearing Captain’s bars. The next day he was a Major and the following day a Lt. Col., a reserve commission he held from WWI. Justice can be sweet.

        Our young soldier remained in Hawaii for three more years. He helped engineer and rig belly tanks mounted in the bomb racks of P40s in preparation for the Battle of Midway. The additional fuel allowed the planes to fly straight from Hawaii to the battle. He earned his wings as a flight engineer and eventually was chosen as Gen. Flood’s chief engineer on his C47. Flood was the Inspector General of the 7th Air Force. With his photography experience, our airman also became the official photographer for the IG, thus photographing any wrecks and other investigations. He often flew copilot on the C47 since there was a lack of pilots. In June 1944, with the Battle of Saipan raging, they flew the C47 into the island to delivery material and flew wounded out. On takeoff, the far end of the runway was held by Japanese forces. Back in Hawaii, they counted 140 small arms bullet holes in the cockpit of the ship. No one was scratched.

        Uncle Ray was back in uniform within days of the attack. He served out the war in the Aleutians and completed his 20 years.

        Our young soldier, now 26 and a Staff Sergeant finally got to come home in November of 1944. A year later he was at Sedalia Air Base in Missouri serving as crew chief of five C46s. As he was loading them for a trip to the South Pacific to collect wounded, his discharge orders came through. After five years of military life, he was going back home to farm. All was right with the world again, the Illinois prairie was a calm paradise compared to the tropical chaos of the previous five years.

        Follow the link below and inspect the photograph on the right end of row two. Four GIs are removing parts from a wrecked P40. This photograph was probably taken within 4 days of the bombing. The soldier behind the propeller is the young soldier of this story. He was my Dad.

        http://hawaii.gov/hawaiiaviation/aviation-photos/1940-1949/december-7-1941/wheeler-field/ha_photo_album_view?b_start:int=12&-C=

        I hope you enjoyed the tale. Every bit is true. My brothers and I are preparing his actual first hand accounts for submittal to a suitable museum dedicated to PH survivors. Unfortunatley be died before was able to write down all of the tales. One very signficant story involved the development of gasoline bombs that originated in the belly tanks rigged for the Battle of Midway. Have any of you former military men ever wondered why or how napalm, supposedly developed by Dow Chemical in fridged Michigan contained naphtha and palm oil?

  34. Todd

    Your comment:

    JAC,
    It seems like a big jump from “Natural Right to pursue living” to “Right to Property.” Can you walk thru the steps to get there?

    You could live as a hunter-gatherer and/or fishing. Many early societies did not lay claim to specific property.

    But if we assume there is a “Right to Property”, is there a limit to how much property one person can own? What happens if I accumulate so much property that it impacts your ability to survive?

    What other “Human Rights” or “Natural Rights” are derived from our “Freedom to Exercise Our Free Will”?

    Don’t limit you concept of property to real estate. In human history that would come later that say, the meat you killed and the roots you dug.

    Hunter gatherers did lay claim to land, but not title. That old human contrivance, right of occupation.

    I think I gave the connection between property and right to live. Namely that without the right to the fruits of you efforts to live then trying to live would be pointless.

    So in this context I would think those rights that can be similarly linked would be considered as having root on Natural Rights.

    But I need to spend a little more time fleshing this out in order to give a better and more concise presentation.

    I’ll review everything and see if I can’t put together a better discussion for tomorrow or the next day.

    • JAC,
      I agree with Personal Property. I can also see the need for the “right of occupation”, which implies some ownership of property. But should the “ownership of property” be limited to the amount of property you can occupy? And not just occupy, but actively “use” or “utilize”?

      But I don’t really see a “Human Right” or “Natural Right” for the unlimited accumulation of property and wealth.

      I think I gave the connection between property and right to live. Namely that without the right to the fruits of you efforts to live then trying to live would be pointless.

      Oh JAC, I know you wouldn’t give up that easy!! And neither would most humans. Look around the world – what percentage of humans actually enjoy the Human Rights and Natural Rights you’re talking about?

      And yet our numbers continue to grow…

      • Todd

        I have given much thought on the idea of “right of occupation/use”. I think it is a Natural Right. What we consider “property” as in real estate is based on Human invention of Title to land and perpetual ownership/control. It does not violate the Natural Right but does create some interesting discussion.

        I could see a “society” or “civilization” functioning quite well under this rule alone. But of course, we would have to eliminate Federal and State LANDS. So I am not on board with jumping to that model in application, just yet.

        I would only argue that IF a Right to Property exists, then the amount of property is irrelevant.

        Lastly, Natural Rights exist for all Humans, regardless of their current condition in life.

        Perhaps the better question that would address your points is whether Natural Rights can be impeded upon by other Human Action.

        We know that while we have a right to property others can act to take that property, via theft. Right does not dictate success.

        But is this the same for natural rights? Hmmmmmmmmmm Time to think some more. Any help you want to provide would be appreciated.

  35. T-Ray,

    In our discussion of immigration was the topic area of incarcerating repeat illegal border crosser for a period of time.

    Just a bit more to ponder. According to a blurb on the US Courts web, the cost to the Federal Bureau of Prisons for keeping a inmate in custody was $28,284.16 per year in 2010.

    A new article at cnsnews.com said that in 2010 the Border Patrol apprehended 447,731 illegal immigrants crossing the border.

    Lets say that 10% of those (44,773) would be incarcerated as a repeat offenders each year. That makes the annual cost of imprisonment to be over $1.2 billion dollars per year. Or, lets say it costs only half that much per inmate each year, that’s still over $600 million per year.

    And that doesn’t count the costs of building the facilities in the first place.

    Does it still sound like a fiscally smart thing to do for just crossing the border illegally?

    • Sorry Plainly, I have been a little distracted by history the last couple of days. I still have at least one more installment to write.

      Re: incarceration. $1B/yr sounds cheap compared to $113B/yr. As D13 has noted, playing nice has not worked since taking them to a bridge and sending them back does not have a downside. Walking miles through a desert or sitting on your butt not earning money for a few weeks means something. I do not know the quality of the facilities they use now but I would suspect they are over built. I would go the minimalist route. If the method works, the numbers will decrease with time.

      • No problem T-Ray, I was captivated with the story of your Dad! As an aside, you know there is a group (I’d have to hunt it up on the net) that is putting together the stories of WW2 vets to preserve them before all the vets of that era are gone?

        Okay, to business now. The report I passed along from FAIR is where the $113 billion figure comes from. I have already stated my problem with that report – they’re picking numbers/percentages out of the air as far as I can tell (just as I did with the “lock em up” costs). So, that number is suspect. It could be accurate, it could actually be a lot more, or it could actually be a lot less.

        Plus, keep in mind that the 40+ thousand figure I used is just the first year of incarcerations. Each year will bring more (granted I would think on a declining scale over time), so that $1.2 billion per year grows.

        Incarceration has stopped the huge drug addiction/use problems in America either, why should I believe it’ll work on this issue?

        • Okay, I admit it – I have made so many typing errors in the last couple of days that I should be forced to have an editor look over my writing before I am allowed to hit the post button!

          ::sigh:: To that end, where I said “Incarceration has stopped….” it should read, “Incarceration has not stopped….”

  36. T-Ray,
    The “story” you posted about “Joe Legal” and “Jose Illegal” is another example of that “whole alternative knowledge system, with its own facts, its own history” that conservatives have built.

    I know you said “there is much wrong with this but there is some truth in it as well. A web search will find many counter arguments,” but then why post the story? Why not get the actual facts and post that?

    Most people are going to read your story and just assume most of it is true, which, given your attitude toward illegal immigrants, is probably your goal anyway.

    • I posted Joe/Jose because Matt claimed he had not seen it. I prefaced it with the caveats hoping that all would do their own research and find the flaws. I think the second time it was sent to me, I googled and found the counter arguments. It does point out one of the primary emotional issues of this problem, that is fairness.

      The more reading I do, the more I learn that neither side is immune from having “their own facts”. Then you add emotion from both sides. I certainly would not trade my life for that of an illegal. My goal is to return to the rule of law. To enforce the laws we have, add any that are necessary to make that happen, bring those in the shadow economy out into the open, stop the balkanization and return to the melting pot system that has built a common US culture.

      This is all a juggling act of what meets our political prinicples, what’s fair, what’s just (legal), what’s morally right, and what’s economically good for all.

      Plainly and D13, I certainly do appreciate the discussion over the last few days. I have learned a lot as I hope others have to. I would like to see the discussion keep going along the lines of finding a solution that could be proposed to legislators. The solution would need to address issues from both sides, be true to our principles and be fair to all parties. I am a bit disappointed that we three are carrying most of the discussion. I would hope that others would jump in more actively. My SOP at this point would be to develop a common set of known verifiable facts followed by a set achievable goals and objectives. From that a plan can be built.

      • Before we go forward, then……it appears that the word “fairness” is going to have to be defined. Fair to me is going to be far different from Todd or you, I would believe.

  37. Right to Property, for example could be argued as a Natural Right in the sense of the Right to retain the fruits of your effort.

    I believe this was JAC with Todd … and Todd’s response was more to my way of thinking (i.e., what happens when your right to own property infringes on another’s ability to live … therein lies the rub.

    When do the fruits of “your” labor end? BF argues that the market determines this. If a man designs a computer system (Bill Gates) and it is mass produced, at what point do “his” fruits come to a halt. The market argument says when the market no longer needs it. Where does the market come into play in Natural Right, I wonder? The workers who actually put the computer system together (whether it is the guys behind the robots that weld, etc. or the guy sweeping the floors, etc.) have a measured value, even if it is their labor that the computer system is now dependent on? Why aren’t they making the $650,000 an hour? Or better, why isn’t the $650,000 an hour being divided equally?

    And this is without getting into the inheritence (maybe not Gates but others) … a child is born into wealth he or she had nothing to do with; no fruits of its labor certainly. Why does that child’s “natural rights” supercede everyone elses?

    • Charlie

      My right to property does not create an obligation on anyone that could then infringe upon their right to “pursue continuation of their existence according to their nature”. To shorten this I will refer to this as life and/or living from this point forward.

      So my right to property can not infringe upon your right to pursue you life.

      The Right to property, like all Natural Rights are negative rights. They allow for action without interference, they DO NOT guarantee any particular outcome.

      None of us have a Right to Property…………..unless we EARN it.

      Your fruits end when your effort ends. By the way, markets do not “need” anything. They simply reflect the desires of those humans who participate.

      The guys making the computers get to keep the fruits of their effort, just like Gates. They decided to take “wages” as their reward. That is what they get. Now if the Govt would simply not steal it they might have a better chance to become the next Gates.

      What they make, or their “value” as you put it, is between them and Gates. What YOU think about that is irrelevant. They have a right to pursue as does Gates. Their voluntary agreement is their agreement.

      A Rich Child has the SAME Natural Rights as anyone else.

      • JAC,

        My right to property does not create an obligation on anyone that could then infringe upon their right to “pursue continuation of their existence according to their nature”.

        You haven’t PROVEN that you have a Right to Property.

        You also haven’t defined “property” as personal or real?

        And if I acquire all of North America, that’s going to infringe upon the right to “pursue continuation of their existence according to their nature” for some other humans.

        • Todd

          I am not sure whether my “proof” is required because it it the proposal itself we are debating. Thus proof comes via argument.

          Property = real and personal as both are REAL. NOT Intellectual Property however. At least for now, lets keep it on tangible things we can see.

          OK, lets assume your example holds true and you OWN North America.

          This would simply make the rest of us Renters or Squatters. You owning the land under me does not prevent me from pursuing my life nor impeded my right to the property I acquire. You can claim the absolute absurdity that you OWN everything if you want. But that would be a big absurdity.

          Or……….You could kick us all out and we would move. Any particular location is not a condition of our Identity/Nature nor our right to pursue life. My location does not impede on my right to pursue my own life. It might impede my ability to do so in Montana, since you evicted me, but not my life in the general sense we are discussing. It would not impede my right to property where ever else I move.

          • JAC,
            The more I think about it, the more I think the only “Natural Right” is the Law of Identity. We exist, so it’s hard to argue against that one.

            And I suppose because we exist we have a “Natural Right to pursue living,” but that could be taken away at any moment by any one of many things in the universe.

            So we have a “Natural Right to pursue living” from moment to moment, but only as long as the universe allows it. Since that right can be terminated at any moment, is it really a right?

            So I guess you are going to have to provide more arguments to “prove” these rights exist… 😉

      • …………..unless we EARN it.

        Therein lies the rub … define earn?

        I think we have very different definitions. Mine includes the greater good; no one can attain much without the help of the public (whether it be school or the roads one travels to get to school, etc., etc., etc.) … for those who lived on their own, never dealt with another human being, never had to travel alone and managed to amass a fortune … how?

        Let’s agree to disagree (as usual) … I don’t see how anyone “earns” what they don’t produce (i.e., investments, for one) … the sweat of the brow argument just doesn’t hold, my friend.

        I do agree we need a much smaller government, by the way … and I’m not a proponent of an absolute welfare state … I want things brought to a level of fairness that doesn’t allow big money to rule the roost. I don’t know the answer to that and I know big government means big corruption … but think about who does the corrupting? In a capitalist sysem, money talks and idiology walks.

  38. @ Charlie…….I would have to answer “And this is without getting into the inheritence (maybe not Gates but others) … a child is born into wealth he or she had nothing to do with; no fruits of its labor certainly. Why does that child’s “natural rights” supercede everyone elses?”………..

    If it is my money that I earned….I have the absolute right to give it to whom I wish….and it should be tax free. So, let’s take your side and say all money was divided equally…..and I am a floor sweeper and I saved all my life and I wish to give it to my son…you are saying that I have no right to do that?

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Oooooh, an estate tax debate!!!

      • Oh, Buck…….what is to debate. There is an estate tax in both Federal and some states. I am against it. No one can argue intelligently for it….it can be avoided. No debate.

        • BTW, my barrister friend…….why did you deem it necessary to send your “yankee” weather down here? It is 26 friggin’ degrees…..do you not understand that this Texan has thin blood? Do you not realize I had to take some of DPM’s grog and heat it and combine that with DP to get warm? Do you not understand that a concoction like that could lead to hallucinations and talking to Elvis?

      • Mathius™ says:

        Buck, you stay out of this.. you don’t know anything about estate taxes.

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          I have always had this conflict about estates. not the small family farm ones but the huge blockbuster Kennedy-Ford-Rockefeller ones. The jealous, envious, guy in me, ( right below the surface), hates it when people inherit huge amounts of money they did not work for and proceed to screw things up for other people. Always wonder how far the Rockefeller or Kennedy boys would have got on there own. I can see JFK as an aluminum siding salesman and Teddy as a fallen down derelict. I could see Bobby giving Ken Lay a run for the money.

          Anyway I guess I come down now on the side that says if the taxes were paid on it when it was earned and taxes are paid as it accrues interest, then it is right to pass it on without any additional tax. Maybe, just maybe, the filthy rich and untalented will eventually fall by the wayside through their own excesses sort of like the Vanderbilts.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          In a way you would think free market capitalists would support an estate tax — after all a robust estate tax would require every individual to earn their own way in life.

          But you’re right, what do I know on the subject…

          • Now Buck….you are in estate planning, correct? Your job, is to lessen or eliminate the burden of estate taxes, if you are a true estate planner…….do you argue with yourself over the principal of your position? The principal of your position is helping people as stated above and you earn, through the free market, a salary for your services…….do you find yourself in conflict but do it anyway? Inquiring minds would like to know…….

            And I will ask once again….please….take your yankee weather back.

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Yes, I am in estate planning. Sometimes I feel like Mathius must feel constantly arguing with DPM – it gets confusing at times!

              As for the weather, no thank you! It may be raining by me, but I’m enjoying the relative warmth.

              • Damn….an honest answer from an attorney. 🙂

              • Mathius™ says:

                Is there a Dread Pirate Wala sailing around somewhere?

              • Buck the Wala says:

                There just may be. Its why I drink so much coffee — keeps him at bay.

              • So you have formed principles but you choose to live contrary to those principles.

                Possible Outcomes.

                1. You will go mad, for there are consequences to living in contradictions.

                2. You will realize your principle is flawed and abandon it.

                3. You will realize your principle is flawed and create an “improved and more efficient one”, and then return to choice #1.

                Buck

                Capitalism does not demand that everyone “work” for what they receive. It demands FREEDOM.

                Freedom to give my kids money is MY CHOICE.

                TAXES are antithetical to FREEDOM and thus to CAPITALISM.

                This of course makes your argument MOOT.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                “Possible Outcome: 1) You will go mad.”

                Who said I am not already mad?

                Re: Capitalism and ‘work’ and taxes — JAC, you yourself above (to paraphrase) said that it is a human right (derived from natural law) to pursue and EARN one’s living. By that logic, inheritances are antithetical to Natural Law! And I’m not going down that rabbit hole of taxes being theft once again. Just don’t have enough time in the day for that one.

              • JAC,

                TAXES are antithetical to FREEDOM and thus to CAPITALISM.

                We hear this type of argument so often on SUFA. So a couple of questions:

                1. How are you going to fund VLDG?

                2. If the USA is such a TAX and ANTI-FREEDOM hell hole, how come it is the most prosperous nation in the history of the world?

                3. If you view of Freedom, Capitalism, and Rights is so great and obvious, how come it has never existed as a nation?

  39. @ anyone…….I watched an interesting piece this morning on the news. It centered on Tim Tebow and his faith. He is literally being attacked and ridiculed for giving his faith the credit for his athletic skills……to the point that the NFL is being petitioned to censor his after game praises.It was said that it is ok for a receiver to cross himself after a touchdown or a kicked to cross himself before a kick but not to praise ones faith in an after game interview.

    Ok….I do not get it. (Remember, I am just a dumb old retired Colonel who knows nothing). What am I missing?

    • They have been after Tebow from day one and I do not get it. How many athletes, when interviewed, first praise God, then go on to answer the question. I have never heard any backlash from this kind of talk.

      Now here comes Tebow, and that’s all we hear about. I know he appeared in that pro-life commercial with his mom awhile back. Is that it? He’s white and most of the athletes I’ve heard praising God in the past were black. Is that it?

      Something’s going on here and I can’t figure it out.

      • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

        You are onto something with the race thing and I will go no further. It all has to do with how the liberal white power structure looks at minorities and blacks in particular. Malcolm was right. That’s why he had to die. Had he lived, there never could have been a Sharpton or Jesse Jackson

  40. Comment from my parents this morning…..Dad is 93…mom is 90…..

    ” After listening to Obamas speech yesterday, if we go back to the days of T Roosevelt….we need to check out early. According to dadster…….there were only two good things to come out of the Roosevelt era……he led the charge up some obscure hill….and he built the US Navy” . Other than that……..nothing.

  41. Mathius™ says:

    OK, JAC, let’s pick it up.

    I agree that I am what I am.
    I agree that “____Mammals___, as a group identity, have a certain Nature (in totality) that ALL ____mammals___ must follow to continue their existence.”

    Proceed.

    • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

      I have a feeling this is going to be another Excedrin kind of day here at SUFA.

      I’m ready for Day three.

    • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

      Cogito ergo sum!

      That’s all that needs saying.

    • Mathius

      Where do you want to proceed to? I have already stated that ALL things have a Natural Right to pursue their existence according to their nature.

      The problem with your efforts to work backwards in classification from human is that these classifications are “entirely” human and unnecessary to the discussion of Natural Laws and Rights. Because such Laws and Rights MUST by definition apply to ALL THINGS in order to be a CORE Law or Right.

      So while we recognize “mammals” as a class, there are obvious distinct group Identities within this class. You can use “primates” if you wish. But again there are unique identities within this group. Humans happen to be one such Unique Identity.

      So, humans are mammals, cows are mammals, therefore mammals include cows AND humans.

      To argue that Man is something other than man, regardless of how you choose to describe man, is ridiculous.

      Within the Group we call Human there are obvious distinctions based on those factors that affect the individual. Such as cultural norms, brain function, physical status, etc, etc,. In short, Humans consist of “individual humans”. But ALL Humans have certain characteristics, or NATURE, if you will that set the sideboards for our continued existence. Our Nature, or the means by which we pursue our existence is PART of being human, along with our physical characteristics.

      And since Man has “decided” to cast off the “might is right” or “survival of the fittest” as a means of survival, and since this has actually increased Man’s survival rate, the “might is right” ethic can not be considered part of our core Nature. For if it were, would could not act against it.

      Now your comment about “survival of the fittest” DOES apply in my view. But “fittest” does NOT mean brute force or speed. This is accurate IF it refers to Man’s need to THINK and TAKE ACTION. Those that do this best, will be the most successful at pursuing their lives.

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        IF “might is right” was once a part of our Nature and we “cast it off” so that it was no longer part of our CORE Nature…. is our Nature then mutable?

        If it is our Nature (core or not) should it not be fixed and unalterable?

        I’m having a little trouble resolving this.

        • Carbon

          If it was part of our behavior and then we decided to change then it WAS NOT part of our Nature as humans. If it is part of our identity then we are stuck with it.

          So the argument that “might is right” is part of Human Nature is FALSE.

          This does not mean that this behavior has not or does not occur. Only that it is NOT our inherent Nature necessary for our continued existence.

          • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

            So behaviours (a function of biochemistry) are not a part of our CORE Nature since they can be changed or modified?

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        I will agree, first that the Law of Identity, is a Natural Law. (finally, after much thought).

        However, you state “I have already stated that ALL things have a Natural Right to pursue their existence according to their nature”, and I would tend to disagree that this is a Natural Right.

        “Things” may pursue their existence, but there is no “right” associated with that that I can see clearly. If we were to isolate, say humans, from all other biological interactions you may be going down the correct path, but we live with network interactions. Other predators do not grant us this “right” to pursue our existence; we just do until we become food for another organism pursuing its’ existence.

        • Carbon

          Natural Rights derive from the existence of Nature. Or God if you choose.

          They do NOT derive from other identities within Nature, but Nature (Universe/God) itself.

          So we have a right to pursue life as do lions, tiger, bears and cows. But that pursuit is governed by Nature of each thing. For example, some are carnivores and others herbivores, and some omnivores.

          Competition between species is Natural and how that competition manifests itself is part of the Nature of each specie (identity). What makes Humans different is our NEED to Think and Take Action. We have the capacity to REASON and thus to make choices, to change. The extent of change is governed by our core nature however. For example, we can not decide to live on air alone.

          Not only do we have this capacity, but it is part of our Nature in that it is essential to our pursuit of living.

          I think the conflict for some is because humans can impose upon this “Natural Right” of cows, for example. But lets use different OVER SIMPLIFIED examples to clarify.

          The cow has a natural right to walk around eating grass. The Lion has a natural right to eat the cow. Humans have a natural right to domesticate the cow, milk it and eat it or just look at it. Humans have a natural right to defend themselves against Lion attacks.

          None of this is “might is right” as I have tried to explain above. It is part of “survival of the fittest”.

          Here is another thought to consider. That which perpetuates Human Life is RIGHT. So now put that in context of this barbarian theory of “might is right”. Will “might” by itself, without constraint help perpetuate each Human’s life, or the life of Humans in general?

          Sorry to jump around on you there Carbon Unit. This was rattling around in my head and thought I better get it out before it slipped back into the closet.

          Hope all is well my Canuk friend.

      • Mathius™ says:

        I was nodding along right up until this little chestnut.

        And since Man has “decided” to cast off the “might is right” or “survival of the fittest” as a means of survival, and since this has actually increased Man’s survival rate, the “might is right” ethic can not be considered part of our core Nature. For if it were, would could not act against it.

        Who- wha- huh?

        Man decided to change it’s nature?

        Was this unanimous? Did we take a vote? Make changes to our genome? Maybe it was following some concerted soul searching?

        Your next paragraph cleans this up a little, but not enough. “Fittest” does indeed refer to more than just brute force or speed.

        It means brains, and talent, and skill, and physical abilities, and resources, and drive. Collectively, these establish “might” within a society. It is why some men can execute their will over the objections of others. It doesn’t matter what I want, if Carl Icahn wants something in opposition to me, he will probably win.

        ….

        But this is a good example of why I felt it was important to establish what level you are drawing your distinctions at. If “mankind” somehow “changed” its nature, unless this was unanimous – and I’m sure you’d agree that not everyone has left this behind – then this “nature” is not specific to the species level – it is at a more individual level. (by the way, I don’t concede that even a tiny fraction actually “left this behind” – I think they’re just covering it up with a pretty illusion of civilization and a cultural upbringing which teaches them to suppress their more primitive selves – but their true nature is not changed one iota.)

        So a better way of putting your statement would be:

        And since some men have “decided” to cast off the “might is right” or “survival of the fittest” as a means of survival, and since this has actually increased theirs survival rate, the “might is right” ethic can not be considered part of our</strike those people’s core Nature. For if it were, would could not act against it.

        But for the rest, the ones who did not “decide to cast off” their nature, as if this were even possible, what about them? What about thieves and rapists and military dictators? What about sociopaths like my older brother? Are they not human?

        Go on..

        • Mathius™ says:

          To Clarify:
          I said: If “mankind” somehow “changed” its nature, unless this was unanimous – and I’m sure you’d agree that not everyone has left this behind – then this “nature” is not specific to the species level – it is necessarily at a more individual level.

          I am referring here to the aspect of our natures of “might makes right” – not human nature in its entirety. That is, if there is a human nature to, say, breathe oxygen, that may well be a trait of all “human nature,” but if some humans are “might-makes-right” types and some are not, then the quality of might-makes-right is not defined at the species level for all humans.

          It is not possible that a class contains a “nature” which defines an aspect as true or false, but that subordinates to that class diverge from that. This is programming 101, but class inheritance requires that what is true at a higher class is true at the subordinate level – thus if “humans” are not might makes right types, then ALL individuals MUST not be might makes right types. If even one is, then either he is not human or it is not the case that this is an aspect of “human nature.”

          I hope this helps.

          • Mathius

            I just realized what is giving me so much heart burn with your proposition, and also why it is not applicable.

            You are making a value statement. One of ethical or moral determination when you state that “Might is RIGHT”.

            Even in the context that that which perpetuates life is “right” your statement then restricts that which is available to ONLY “might”.

            Now if you want to say that strength, speed, agility, etc are part of human nature then that is correct.

            For example, it is part of Human Nature to secure food. Humans do this by various means, including KILLING other species. It is NOT Human Nature to hunt down and kill other Humans for food. Your second condition applies. Behavior among some but not all indicates it is NOT a nature of the whole. However, Humans can decide to eat other Humans if needed to survive. But it is not Human Nature in respect to the standard means of continuing our existence. It would be counterproductive.

            It is part of Human Nature to defend oneself against being killed. Humans do this by various means, including KILLING other species AND other Humans if needed.

            • Mathius™ says:

              I still assert that if *some* people kill without reason, and those people are human, then it cannot be human nature to not kill people. You are conflating the idea of “most” with a rule.

              You’re saying, for example, most birds can fly, therefore it’s bird nature to fly. Well it’s not. Because penguins and ostriches do not. If it’s bird nature to fly and penguins are birds, then it is penguin nature to fly. But it is not penguin nature to fly, therefore this is demonstrably untrue.

              So it’s not fair to say it’s human nature not to hunt down and kill other humans – it’s nature for human A and human B and human C, but not human X. Therefore, it’s not “human nature.”

              • Mathius

                If hunting down and killing other humans for food is part of human nature then all humans MUST must hunt down and kill other humans for food.

                That is the context in which the phrase “according to our nature” is used. As in it can not be extracted from our identity.

                You once again construct an illogical, fallacious, argument in your defense.

                One human is a human.

                One penguin is a penguin.

                All Penguins are birds. All birds are NOT penguins.

                Penguins DO NOT fly ( in the air ). Therefore, ALL birds DO NOT fly.

                Therefore, FLIGHT is not a Nature of All birds.

                NO FLIGHT is part of the nature of being a Penguin.

                LAW OF IDENTITY.

                Humans do not hunt and kill humans for food.

                Some humans do hunt and kill humans for food.

                Some humans are humans.

                Not ALL humans are some humans.

                Therefore, hunting and killing humans for food is NOT in the Nature of Humans.

                It is however, possible that it is the nature of Some Humans.

                So lets now test this hypothesis.

                For it to be part of this subgroups “nature” the subgroup can not escape the behavior. They must hunt and kill other humans in order to maintain their existence. Since we know this is FALSE, the notion that hunting and killing other humans for food is part of their inherent “nature” is also FALSE.

              • Mathius™ says:

                If hunting down and killing other humans for food is part of human nature then all humans MUST must hunt down and kill other humans for food. DING DING DING DING DING!

                And and if SOME humans do hunt down other humans for food, then it cannot be human nature to NEVER hunt down and kill other humans for food.

                Therefore, the nature “setting” for “hunts down and eats other members of the class” is set at “N/A” for the species level.

                .. put another way:

                Therefore, hunting and killing humans for food is NOT in the Nature of Humans.
                Agreed… also,
                Therefore, NOT hunting and killing humans for food is NOT in the Nature of Humans.

                See what I did there? It is not in human nature TO do it, but neither is it in human nature NOT TO do it.

                If it’s not 100% or 0% of them member entities which conform, then it’s not applicable at the class level.

              • Mathius

                True. It is NOT part of our nature to NOT kill.

                I would point out that that is an entirely different matter than the one we have been chasing.

                Namely that we must pursue life within our nature.

                If not killing is NOT in our nature it does not require that we kill to live. It only leaves open the possibility that we “might kill”.

                But here is the kicker. Indiscriminate killing seems to me to be a contradiction to our more basic Human Nature. The need to THINK which leads to the need to think RATIONALLY, which leads to identification of moral and ethical standards, which proves that cannibalism and murder are in fact antithetical to continued human existence. In the long run.

              • Mathius™ says:

                True. It is NOT part of our nature to NOT kill. GREAT!

                If not killing is NOT in our nature it does not require that we kill to live. I guess. I mean, we have to kill something to eat.. but I suppose you’re referring to other members of the class (ie, our nature does not require us to kill other humans) – to which I would agree.

                The need to THINK which leads to the need to think RATIONALLY, which leads to identification of moral and ethical standards, which proves that cannibalism and murder are in fact antithetical to continued human existence. In the long run. I think you’re getting ahead of yourself here.

                So,
                1. Identity
                2. I am that I am
                3. Humans must act (in some manner) to consider to exist as living humans.
                4. Human nature does not require us to kill other humans, though neither does it forbid it.

                And… go!

              • Mathius

                Yes I am. It was a teaser. Or “trailer” if we were making a movie.

                Like say, Atlas Shrugged.

        • Mathius

          In order to argue against me you must use a different meaning of “might”. You also seem to be going beyond the meaning of “nature” as I have used it. Behavior at any point in time is NOT Nature. That makes comparison impossible.

          “Might is right” is a doctrine of brute force to get what you want. It is commonly used to describe the nature of mankind in his interaction with others of mankind. It has and remains a rationalization for violence against the non-violent. It is NOT part of our core Human Nature as I have used the term in these discussions. How do I know this? Because much of mankind has rejected this behavior as “uncivilized”. Furthermore, the archeological record you claim as your defense DOES NOT support your claims that this was the means of human survival and expansion.

          Our Nature in the context of continued existence means the “means” by which we continue to exist, including the limitations on those means. We can’t live on air alone. Cows can not survive on a meat diet. We must think and then take action to exist. Cows must move and eat to exist. The amount of thinking is slight among cows. I am an expert in this so don’t go there. Only Sheep are more stupid.

          Let me address one other point you raise. ALL characteristics that we assign to “Nature” are not unique to an Identity. It is the accumulation or collection of characteristics that comprise a species Nature. For example, giving birth to live young is not just part of Human Nature. Drive to procreate is not restricted to Humans.

          Now, regarding the choice to change. I am maintaining that our Core Nature is the requirement to think and take action (simplified version of much more). We MUST think and take action to exist.

          This does not mean that every individual human will utilize thinking to its potential at any time. You can trick mother nature some of the time, but not all the time. The fact that some humans act in a violent manner towards other humans most of the time does not make it a core nature of humans. It make it a behavior of those particular humans.

          And because we have to think and because we ARE individuals, we do not all think the same nor reach the same conclusions. HOW we think and then HOW we adapt our behavior is the subject of PHILOSOPHY we have been kicking around here.

          Let me add one more thing to your might theory. Ever notice that even among those groups you think would fit this criteria that the ethic is not practiced among their own group? If your ethic was in fact inherent to human nature it would apply to ALL human interactions. So if your hypothesis is true, at a minimum it is tempered with other human nature. That of compassion and protection of family/clan/tribe.

          • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

            OK, to summarize…..

            Humans are humans (accepted!)
            Humans must think and act to continue to be humans (accepted!) Stipulation here is that how humans act is completely irrelevant to the fact they just MUST do something.

            I’ve made it to step 2, I’m not sure about Mathius though.

            I will NOT stipulate that Step 1 + Step 2 = “rights” as of yet though. More discussion is necessary.

            The hardest part is overcoming the initial inertia, then things get easier 🙂

            • Mathius™ says:

              I’m right with DCU so far!

              I’m excited to see what step three is. I fear that it’s his “changed their nature” bit, though. But we’ll see.

            • DCU

              One stipulation. HOW they act is important, as they must act in a way that perpetuates their life.

              They can not Just Do Something. I am sure you meant this but just wanted to make sure we had clarity. Our actions must be consistent with REALITY in the long run. One more thing on the horizon. Because of our “nature”, we humans GET to DECIDE what LIVING means to each of us. 🙂 🙂

              As for the concept of Natural Rights, it is a hard nut to crack. And as I have said the past two day, I go back and forth myself.

              But where this started was trying to determine IF a Natural Law existed that supported the notion that there are man rights vs. cow rights. Hopefully we have established that there is in fact such a law.

              If there are Natural Rights of all things then they apply to man and cow. But beyond that they become man rights and cow rights, as long as they comport with the broader Natural Rights.

              If a Natural Right does not exist, whether for all or each, then ALL rights become EITHER Man rights of Cow Rights. In this case each gets to decide what its rights are and how they relate to the rest of the universe. But once again, if they do not comport with the other laws of the universe, bad things are bound to happen.

              If you notice, the end outcome is not different in any meaningful way. I have only made an argument in defense of a concept that Natural Rights do in fact exist. That there are some “rights” that simply come from the fact we exist or “We are endowed by our Creator………..”.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                So now you are stipulating that human nature is to act in a way that perpetuates one’s life.

                How do you explain suicide?

              • Mathius™ says:

                Point of Order:
                One stipulation. HOW they act is important, as they must act in a way that perpetuates their life.

                Please explain suicide.

                By the same logic that human nature does not require killing humans, but does not forbid it, I would assert that human nature does not require action to preserve the self, nor forbid it.

                As with killing humans, elsewhere, for a characteristic to be the nature of all humans, it must be (as a boolean) 100% or 0%, true or false for all humans. Since SOME humans kill themselves and some humans do not, then this trait is necessarily defined at a subset level.

                I therefore retract my acceptance of point three:
                1. Identity.
                2. I am what I am.
                3. Humans must act to perpetuate their lives
                3 (version 2). Human nature neither requires nor forbids action to perpetuate their lives.
                4. Human nature neither requires nor forbid killing other humans.

              • Mathius

                Instead or retracting #3 simply restate it better.

                3. Humans must act in order to perpetuate their lives.

              • Or, perhaps:

                3. In order to protect their lives, humans must act. Non-action and/or adverse action, while permissible by nature, will result in death.

          • JAC,
            First you define the right to life, the right to live, the right to property. You don’t get too specific because that might burst your bubble.

            So, where’s next? Maybe the right to defend that property you just claimed?

            Which of course leads us to the “right to bear arms,” right?

            After you’ve established guns as a natural right, I guess all that’s left is Wealth and Inheritance without taxes?

            Even though you tried to cast it off , it seems we’re right back at “Might is Right”…

            • Todd

              “You don’t get too specific because that might burst your bubble.” Not at all. I stay general because if the general is not true then the specifics are irrelevant. If the general is true then we move to the next level. Such as guns vs defense.

              Right to defend property? I would consider a Natural Right tied to Right of Ownership.

              Bear Arms? I would consider that a “political right” because it deals specifically with the interference of Govt in the means by which I can defend property.

              But bearing arms has much broader meaning as in giving me the power to overthrow a tyrannical govt or to align with my fellow citizens to defend against attack. It allows WE THE PEOPLE to defend against attack without suffering a Standing Army. But ALL of these reasons are tied to Political Rights in my view and thus are Human Rights in the sense that they are invented by Humans to deal with interaction of other Humans only.

              Inheritance? Yes, this is a right that extends from my Natural Right to property.

              No Tax? Not a right but an obvious requirement for NOT imposing upon my ability to exercise my right in full.

              And NO, this does not bring us back to Might is Right. Not in the least.

      • JAC,
        You got here faster than I thought you would…

        And since Man has “decided” to cast off the “might is right” or “survival of the fittest” as a means of survival, and since this has actually increased Man’s survival rate, the “might is right” ethic can not be considered part of our core Nature. For if it were, would could not act against it.

        Now your comment about “survival of the fittest” DOES apply in my view. But “fittest” does NOT mean brute force or speed. This is accurate IF it refers to Man’s need to THINK and TAKE ACTION. Those that do this best, will be the most successful at pursuing their lives.

        Has man really cast off ‘might is right’?

        This is called “Evolution”. Man has evolved from “might is right” to “survival of the fittest” (physical) to “survival of the fittest” (mental). But all of these are really the same – they’re just a different version of “might is right”. And they are all needed, in varying degrees, depending on an individual’s unique situation.

        All of these and none of these are our nature. As man evolves, this has all changed. We don’t even have a right to exist, as some are killed just before they are born.

        All of these “rights” are human creations. They exist only because we think they exist. When we change our mind, these change as well.

        “Survival of the fittest,” in all its forms, is the only thing that applies as a Natural Right. And it applies across species and classes. It works for the entire planet – and the entire universe.

        Nothing else does.

        • Todd

          See my discussion with Mathius above about why Might is Right is not appropriate here as a law, right or human nature. Being a value judgment rather than characteristic.

          “Survival of the Fittest” on the other hand could be considered a Natural Law. Correct? It describes a general condition that would be applicable to All living things.

          Those species and things that are the most adaptive will survive, UP TO A POINT. That being if the exterior world changes beyond their capacity to adapt. IE., Meteor and Dinosaurs. Also, it would not apply to NOT-Living things. So a Natural Law of Living Things????

          But how is this any different than the Natural Law of Identity? I see none. All living things strive to continue their existence. This effort, sure that will cause problems, is made within the limits of the very nature of each specie and individual within that specie.

          I do think that the view Mathius and you are expressing regarding Human development is not consistent with the entire picture of the record. Seems you are both focusing ONLY on the violence associated with our history and not the rest.

          I also do not assign the term “evolution” to historical changes in human behavior or accomplishment. The question is whether Humans have changed into Human 2.0. Only then can our nature change, because Nature as I have used it in these discussions is TIED to our Identity as Human.

          So I guess that leaves us with determining; What is our unchangeable Nature.

          I suppose it is possible that RIGHTS are purely a Human invention. But your argument is dangerously close to a contradiction of the Law of Identity. It can lead to the claim that things exist only because WE humans think they exist. This leads to reality is NOT real.

          I guess I could argue that the whole concept of “survival of the fittest” as well as “might is right” is also a human “concept” or idea. And thus neither exists in reality. It the REAL Universe things are just what they are and nothing more. Lions eat humans and humans eat cows. That is just the way it is. Each specie surviving according to the construct of their bodies and the tools available to their survival.

          If you accept that Survival of the Fittest is a Natural Right then Natural Rights exist and are not creations of human conception. We know of them because we conceptualized their existence. Just as we conceptualized the existence of Black Holes long before we could see evidence of one.

          • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

            Wow! So you mean there is a possibility that I, meek and humble DCU, may have been correct?

            Who’da thunk a Canuck could compete at this level 😉

          • JAC,
            Ok, “Might is right” is not a right or human nature. But it is a law of the universe. See “Meteor and Dinosaurs.”

            So is “Survival of the Fittest”. It’s not a Human Right, it’s a Natural Law. It’s just how the world works (and maybe the universe too, but I can’t be sure of that).

            I do think that the view Mathius and you are expressing regarding Human development is not consistent with the entire picture of the record. Seems you are both focusing ONLY on the violence associated with our history and not the rest.

            I’m not focusing on the violence, but the world and the universe is a violent place. It seems you’re trying to downplay the violence?

            I also do not assign the term “evolution” to historical changes in human behavior or accomplishment. The question is whether Humans have changed into Human 2.0. Only then can our nature change, because Nature as I have used it in these discussions is TIED to our Identity as Human.

            I think Human 2.0 is definitely a possibility. It would be hard to put a time frame on the change, but our knowledge and understanding of each other, our world, and the universe has definitely grown. Not done yet, but we’ve made huge gains.

            I suppose it is possible that RIGHTS are purely a Human invention. But your argument is dangerously close to a contradiction of the Law of Identity. It can lead to the claim that things exist only because WE humans think they exist. This leads to reality is NOT real.

            Oh no, things exist whether humans think they exist or not, or whether humans observe them or not. But our RIGHT to exist is not that clear cut to me.

            I guess I could argue that the whole concept of “survival of the fittest” as well as “might is right” is also a human “concept” or idea. And thus neither exists in reality.

            I think “survival of the fittest” is a fairly well documented theory. Not a human concept.

            “Might is right” is a little murkier…

            It the REAL Universe things are just what they are and nothing more. Lions eat humans and humans eat cows. That is just the way it is. Each specie surviving according to the construct of their bodies and the tools available to their survival.

            This is true when viewed at any point in time. But of course there’s more to it in the “big picture” we’re talking about.

            If you accept that Survival of the Fittest is a Natural Right then Natural Rights exist and are not creations of human conception. We know of them because we conceptualized their existence. Just as we conceptualized the existence of Black Holes long before we could see evidence of one.

            “Survival of the fittest” is not a Natural right, it’s a Natural Law. The “fittest” do not have more of a RIGHT to exist, it just works out that they have a better chance of existing – or existing for longer periods of time.

            • Todd

              ““Survival of the fittest” is not a Natural right, it’s a Natural Law. The “fittest” do not have more of a RIGHT to exist, it just works out that they have a better chance of existing – or existing for longer periods of time.

              I thought you used “right” above so that is why I commented. I would say it is a Law also, although it needs some clarity.

              However, your next conclusion reflects the difference in view of a Right so to speak. Remember, the Right to Pursue existence carries with it the requirement of Identity.

              Lions have a right to pursue their existence AS LIONS. Humans as Humans.

              This means that Lions have a Right to eat Humans and Humans have a Right to defend themselves against Lion or to eat Lions………..If humans Choose to do so.

              So this in effect brings us back to a primary question, the one you created yesterday.

              WHAT IS A RIGHT???

  42. I wanted to share a comment that I heard the other day from Bob Boekel. Bob is a life long Democratic Party “Operative” and has swallowed the kool-aid completely. At the time he was participating in a panel discussion on the show FIVE, which is on Fox Business Channel. His comment actually stopped the discussion. To say the “conservatives” on the panel were shocked would be an understatement. But first lets look at the comment. It was in response to a discussion about how bad things are in Detroit.

    He stated that Detroit as so dysfunctional and corrupt that it should be Federalized. That is the Fed Govt should TAKE OVER the city, oust the elected officials and establish a new govt, all the way down to the schools.

    Now the reaction from the other panelists was disturbing as well. It was simply, WOW….That IS radical.

    Not a one of them said “That is Unconstitutional” or anything along those lines. Instead they started discussing the “effectiveness” of such an action, the Feds being equally incompetent and the such.

    For those that cherish Freedom, Liberty and Justice……….this should be a wake up call as to the state of MIND among the American population.

    This comment should have been met with open indignation and rage. It was NOT.

    We are all FROGS sitting in a pan of warming water.

  43. I think T-Ray did a great job with his fathers Pearl Harbor story, so I have posted it whole.

  44. Oklahoma Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), declared victory in his fight against the “global warming movement,” California Democratic EPW Chairwoman Sen. Barbara Boxer reaffirmed her commitment to fighting global warming and the “climate change deniers.”

    In a video played at a Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) press conference at the Summit of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa on Wednesday, Inhofe eulogized the Kyoto process and the end of the global warming movement.

    “For the past decade, I have been the leader in the United States Senate standing up against global warming alarmism and cap-and-trade, which would have been the largest tax increase in American history,” he said. “This victory is especially important today, as families in America and around the world continue to face tough economic times. Tossing out any remote possibility of a U.N. global warming treaty is one of the most important things we can do for the economy.”

    According to Inhofe, nobody cares what is going on in Durban now, and President Barack Obama and the Democratic leadership in the Senate are ignoring the happenings at the U.N. framework this year.

    “The message from Washington to the U.N. delegates in South Africa this week could not be any clearer: You are being ignored. And you are being ignored by your biggest allies in the United States: President Obama and the Democratic leadership in the Senate,” he said, noting that just two years ago Obama traveled to the climate change conference in Copenhagen to “tell the world that the United States was ready to join the United Nations efforts and implement costly global warming regulations through cap-and-trade legislation.”

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/12/07/inhofe-sends-taunting-video-to-un-climate-conference/#ixzz1fsXFKv32

  45. VH, down here please (I keep getting lost trying to find the right area of the thread to reply in. 🙂

    I see your point Plainly-BUT It can be looked at in a different way-it hardens the negative attitude towards the governments continued refusal to enforce our laws, which is the point being made, IMO. It points out that illegal immigrants are not only breaking our laws when they come here-but they are breaking our laws after they arrive, mostly because they are forced to- to survive.

    Which also further hardens the attitudes against those here illegally. A vicious circle isn’t it?

    But the fact that they are illegal does matter. They shouldn’t be here-they shouldn’t have a license and they shouldn’t be driving without one. Bottom line-if the government would enforce our laws -this wouldn’t have happened.

    So, you be less indignant if that drunk driver was a US citizen or legal resident? It would be less of a tragedy? The driver should face less sanctions? Etc. IF this was a perfect world then the government would stop all illegal entry into the US, but it isn’t so even with intense efforts it could still happen.

    Lets ask D13. Colonel, do the intense efforts undertaken by Texas stop ALL illegals from entering the US through the Texas border?

    • Of course not……it does not stop it at all but we are putting a significant dent in it. I will try to find the study and post it…but DWI’s in Texas have reduced by 30% (actually 29.75%). Is it related? Maybe. Violent crime is also down in the cities by 14%. Related? Maybe.

      But there is nothing that will stop it in its entirety. The answer lies in having a workable and enforceable immigration policy. But, for now, it is out of control and the border criminal element and our penchant for drugs and prostitution does not help any.

      • But there is nothing that will stop it in its entirety.

        Agreed. This is the point I was looking for you to confirm. I will agree to that the reductions from the enforcement the state is doing like does have – among other things – an impact on the lower crime rates.

        The nation does need to implement a coherent, workable immigration policy put into practice. It will involve many elements, as have been discussed in this debate. The problem we are facing now – in addition to the immigration issue itself – is the lack of any compromise from the hardened positions the two sides have taken. As long as this refusal to move remains, there will be no resolution to the problem.

        • BTW – for the record. SK stated that Mathius and BF are of the open border persuasion, which he firmly disagrees with. I place myself with Mathius and BF, if I could have my druthers.

          But since we – as a society – demand restrictive borders, I compromise and work with that premise in my discussions of immigration.

        • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

          Gingrich I think has it. Legalize everybody who has a clean record and comes forward. Everybody who passes muster gets the Green card. The compromise? No path to citizenship. That’s the penalty for breaking the law. The ability to live here, work here, go home from here to visit and re-enter all guaranteed. The opportunity to marry, raise a family who will have citizenship as a birth right and for the members of my own church the answer to, “they just want to come here for a better life”.

          Those who want deportation rather than the above won’t compromise. Those who demand citizenship or else, won’t compromise. the hell with both of them. Let’s get this show on the road. The legal resident solution involves give on both sides. Time for a spirited public debate with facts and, even if by poll, a plebiscite.

          .

          • I see that as a reasonable beginning for those 11-20 million (depending on whose number you believe) already here. We need to make a move in a positive direction. The citizenship aspect can be debated at a later time. Lets first get them into the open and producing for society, paying taxes, etc.

            Now, that is also a different problem from those trying to cross.

            • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

              That is where the fence comes in, after the legalization so we don’t have to go through it again in 20 years. Be careful when you put off the citizen debate. I tend to come originally from the “throw ’em all out” school. Years ago I decided on my own that the legal permanent status I could live with, that’s my compromise. The “let ’em all in” school has to give up something too and publicly and fast.

              Compromise cannot be the old Soviet model, “What’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation”.

              • Okay, I understand your point – heck, at one time I was like you, out they go. I have no illusions that both sides must compromise. There will be a future time, regardless, that the citizenship issue will be taken up – but that is for another day.

                Compromise cannot be the old Soviet model, “What’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation”.

                This is the general problem with the political atmosphere today.

  46. Yes, it is a vicious cycle-and yes there are dangers anytime anger is involved-but it isn’t just limited to a danger to the illegals-the debate creates dangers for all of us. We need to fix the problem-as long as the government picks and chooses which laws will be followed and we all refuse to reach some agreement on what to do with the people who are here illegally-the battle will continue. The danger will remain. I’m simply not willing to make telling the truth-a taboo.

    • We need to fix the problem

      Agreed, but lets do without the emotional pot stirring.

      as long as the government picks and chooses which laws will be followed and we all refuse to reach some agreement on what to do with the people who are here illegally-the battle will continue.

      The government will always pick and choose what law to enforce, as it does in all areas it has mandated some law for. Look at the medical marijuana issue, states legalize it – in violation of federal laws against marijuana – and the feds pick and chose who to harass (CA) or not (CO for instance).

      The refusal to reach agreement comes from the politically motivated demands to do A first, then B. It comes from both sides of the spectrum. Where is the common sense approach to this? And, it is that political motivation which insures the emotional responses as well. It is more than the human factor which is being denigrated by this behavior.

      <blockquote.I’m simply not willing to make telling the truth-a taboo.

      I have no problem with the truth being told in this or any other circumstance. I have a problem with the way that we choose to turn people into some kind of bogeymen.

  47. TODD

    Yours from above:

    “JAC,

    TAXES are antithetical to FREEDOM and thus to CAPITALISM.

    We hear this type of argument so often on SUFA. So a couple of questions:

    1. How are you going to fund VLDG? CONTRIBUTIONS AND USER FEES.

    2. If the USA is such a TAX and ANTI-FREEDOM hell hole, how come it is the most prosperous nation in the history of the world? THEFT CAN BE PROFITABLE FOR THE THIEF. RIGHT UP UNTIL THE VICTIMS DECIDE IT IS THEIR TURN. ALSO, WE SHOULDN’T EVALUATE THE “EFFECTIVENESS” OR “RIGHTNESS” OF A POLITICAL/ECONOMIC SYSTEM ON A FEW DECADES OF EVIDENCE. WE ARE SEEING TODAY THE RESULT OF THIS SUPPOSED PROSPERITY. AND DON’T ASSUME WHAT WAS WILL REMAIN SO. IS IT SUSTAINABLE???

    BY THE WAY, I WOULDN’T USE “HELL HOLE” TO DESCRIBE THE USA. AT LEAST UP UNTIL NOW.

    3. If you view of Freedom, Capitalism, and Rights is so great and obvious, how come it has never existed as a nation? IT IS NOT OBVIOUS AND THEREIN LIES THE REASON. THE VAST MAJORITY OF PEOPLE DO NOT SPEND THE TIME TO DO THE HARD THINKING NEEDED TO MAKE THE MOVE. BUT I THINK THE MOVE TOWARDS MORE FREEDOM IS THE TREND OF HUMANITY. YES, IT WILL BE INTERRUPTED FROM TIME TO TIME AND THE TRIP CAN GET UGLY. BUT IN THE END, I SEE NO ALTERNATIVE UNLESS WE WANT TO ACCEPT THAT HUMANS WILL LIVE IN A PERPETUAL STATE OF VIOLENCE AND COERCION UNTIL THE SUN EXPLODES.

    I TRULY BELIEVE THAT THE NEXT MAJOR STEP IN HUMAN ENLIGHTENMENT AND DEVELOPMENT WILL COME WHEN WE GRASP THESE CONCEPTS AND LIVE CONSISTENTLY WITHIN THEIR TENANTS.

    THE INSTITUTIONAL USE OF FORCE MUST BE ELIMINATED. I SEE NO OTHER WAY TO DO THIS EXCEPT VIA FREEDOM, LIBERTY AND JUSTICE. CAPITALISM IS SIMPLY THE OUTCOME OF A FREE AND JUST SOCIETY.

    Sorry there Todd, forgot to turn off the caps. Not yelling 🙂

    You know, you among others have criticized many of these ideas, concepts etc. But it seems to me that all of you, except perhaps Charlie, have agreed that the “Picture” is pretty ideal. Your arguments seems to center on the possibility of success or the exceptions in behavior rather than on the principles themselves. Yet the same problems and exceptions exist within the other systems. The difference is the magnification of the bad that occurs with those systems having strong, centralized Govt.

    • OK jac, CALM DOWN!! 😉

      Yes, the “Picture” is pretty ideal. Just like “Fantasy Island.” Remember that show? De Plane – De Plane!!

      But it’s also kind of funny…because I’m the one who is often accused of wearing “rose colored glasses” or “drinking the kool-aid” because I believe in the future of the USA.

      But you think you can restructure society and have it turn out better than it is today…who’s wearing “rose colored glasses” or “drinking the kool-aid”???? 😉

      Back here in the non-reality-tv-world-of-everyday-life, the problem is there are Humans involved. And they don’t all have the strong moral character displayed by most here on SUFA. Humans range from “good’ to criminals, ruthless businessmen, people that just don’t know any better, don’t care, or are just too lazy.

      Even as a small percentage, the “bad” humans have a huge impact on society. They cause massive spending on protection, make everyone suspicious, and cause others to think “maybe I can get away with that too…”

      These problems do exist in all societies, and are one of the main drivers of where we are today.

      So if you implemented VDLG, you would force a huge hardship on many and create an even “easier street” for the wealthy and powerful. And we’d pretty much end up back where we are today – or maybe worse.

      So if you want to try it, feel free to go somewhere and set up VDLG. You can pick any particular location you want, as location is not a condition of your Identity/Nature nor your right to pursue life. But the property in the USA is already spoken for!! 😉 😉

      • Todd

        What you say is true……..TODAY.

        But mankind has changed over time. For the better and sometimes back again.

        I have never said that even VDLG is attainable in the short term. Remember, even that crazy old lady in my closet said it would take “decades” of learning, thinking and learning some more before we could get back to the fork in the road that led us here instead of there.

        And yes, this opens the door to debate over “teaching” others what I or WE think is the proper thinking. But while I provide a new approach and then push people to eliminate the contradictions, I don’t tell them to simply abandon x in favor of y. Although given our media driven society that might be much easier than getting them to “understand”.

        In the meantime, if we could at least work together to clean up the moral corruption in the system we have, I think it would be a great improvement. Don’t you??

        So I propose your side 🙂 just stop trying to take more that what you have now. That means dumping national health care. Then lets try to clean house and fix the rest. This means STREAMLINING and DECENTRALIZING. I see no other way.

        Because the corruption we complain about in business and society as a whole, also exists within Govt. So the more decentralized the less disadvantage to US and the greater the chance to skin em’.

        P.S. You don’t have the whole country. WE have Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and Texas. Well parts of Montana. But we have all the rest.

        • Yeah…what JAC said..

        • JAC,

          In the meantime, if we could at least work together to clean up the moral corruption in the system we have, I think it would be a great improvement. Don’t you??

          Yes, I can agree to that.

          So I propose your side 🙂 just stop trying to take more that what you have now. That means dumping national health care.

          Sure, as soon as “your side” gives back all the loot they have stashed away, we can talk. 😉

          P.S. You don’t have the whole country. WE have Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and Texas. Well parts of Montana. But we have all the rest.

          You can claim the absolute absurdity that you OWN all those states if you want. But that would be a big absurdity. 😉 (remember, I own all of North America!)

          But go ahead and try setting up VDLG there and see how that works out! 😉

    • JAC,
      1. Do you really think CONTRIBUTIONS AND USER FEES will be able to fund VDLG? An aren’t USER FEES just another term for taxes? I’ve seen that argument here many times.

      2. Again, that word “THEFT” is just an emotional plea. The private sector has been much more prosperous than the government. It is sustainable if we has sound fiscal policy.

      3. Haven’t you pointed out the fallacy of past periods of “ENLIGHTENMENT”?

  48. Todd, SUFA

    Todd has raised a most important question. One I had hoped to tackle some other time but it looks like that is approaching. His comment to me:

    “JAC,
    The more I think about it, the more I think the only “Natural Right” is the Law of Identity. We exist, so it’s hard to argue against that one.

    And I suppose because we exist we have a “Natural Right to pursue living,” but that could be taken away at any moment by any one of many things in the universe. I AGREE.

    So we have a “Natural Right to pursue living” from moment to moment, but only as long as the universe allows it. Since that right can be terminated at any moment, is it really a right? IN MY OPINION YES.

    So I guess you are going to have to provide more arguments to “prove” these rights exist… 😉 SEE FOLLOWING COMMENTS.

    What has been missing from our entire discussion, and has been adding to the confusion, is the definition of RIGHTS. What is a RIGHT and what does it mean? I might add, what level of Right as well. Are there Core Rights from which others are derived? Or does each stand alone?

    Just let me say that the entire subject of RIGHTS is very nebulous, obtuse and hard to get a solid grasp on.

    Notice how many people assume that a Right is something that MUST happen. So if it can be stopped it must not be a right. Yet not a single RIGHT expressed anywhere in our founding documents or the underlying philosophies express rights in this way. The concept of “unalienable Rights” does not even assume this. It simply means those rights can not be taken or divided. But those same Rights can be violated. We all know that this has happened before. But the violation does not eliminate the Right itself. Only our ability to exercise it. So in the case of our Natural Right, I would lose the ability to pursue my life, but the right to do so is not lost. I may die, but THE right remains for all humans, and in fact all living things.

    We have a lot more to discuss. 🙂

    Anyone else want to dive in please feel free.

    • zzzzzzzzz…I’m ahead of you guys..up at the fork in the road between good and evil. Just take a right at the fork JAC 🙂

      • Anita

        If you keep going you will find a nice camp and tent with your name on it.

        I left it there for ya when I came back to get the rest of SUFA.

        🙂

        • Sweet. Let’s go doggies..we have to catch a bunch of fish, then get a fire going..we’ll get these steaks ready…they’ll be here as soon as they get unstuck from the mud….hi ho hi ho….

  49. @ Bama Dad………but everyone has to watch this……..

    • ROTFLMAO.

      Wonder which one was the Boise State guy. Maybe the one sweating at the end?

      Too nervous to bring up the Bronco’s instead of the Cowboys perhaps.

      LMAO…………..

  50. JAC said: “And yes, this opens the door to debate over “teaching” others what I or WE think is the proper thinking. But while I provide a new approach and then push people to eliminate the contradictions, I don’t tell them to simply abandon x in favor of y. Although given our media driven society that might be much easier than getting them to “understand”. ”

    I think this article shows clearly what JAC is talking about. Plus it’s just interesting.

    December 8, 2011
    The Milgram Economy
    By Larrey Anderson

    In the early 1960s, an infamous series of psychological experiments was conducted at Yale. The tests are now known as the “Milgram Experiments.” The tests were an attempt to determine if person X, who is in a position with power over and control of person Y, can be persuaded by a third-person “expert” Z to harm person Y. The Milgram Experiments also provide an insight into why our economy is being voluntarily destroyed by our elected representatives. Our current fiscal insanity can be described as a “Milgram Economy.”

    The parallels between a Milgram experiment and a Milgram economy are not exact. However, the differences between the two concepts are also enlightening. We start with the procedures and results of the initial experiment. The following chart portrays the basic setup of a Milgram experiment.

    The ostensible purpose of the experiment was to determine whether or not a student (Y) would learn more quickly when the student was punished with an electrical shock (red arrow) after he gave a wrong answer. The voltage was increased by the instructor (X) as the experiment continued. The shock administered for an incorrect answer started at 15 volts and climbed to 450 volts — a level that could have been lethal to the student.

    Unknown to the instructor (X), the student (Y) was not the real subject of the experiment — the instructor (X) was. No electrical shock was administered to the student. The expert (Z) conducting the experiment was in collusion with the student (Y). Pre-recorded sounds (blue arrows) of the student crying out were timed with the flip of the switches that, supposedly, delivered the shocks. (See the red arrow and red box with white switches.)

    The real purpose of the experiment was to determine how susceptible the instructors (X) were to the verbal persuasion of the experts (Z). The expert urged the instructor to “correct” the student by administering electrical shocks that increased in voltage with each wrong answer. No coercion was involved in the test.

    The results of the test were stunning. Approximately 60% of the participant instructors were convinced by the expert to take an action that, if real, would have seriously injured or even killed the “student.”

    The ramification of the Milgram Experiment is: in an ethically dubious situation, a majority of human beings will trust the word of an expert — rather than follow his or her common sense or moral compass — if, and this is a crucial “if,” the resulting harm falls on some other human being.

    We turn now to the current economic crisis. It has been projected that for the years 2009 through 2012, the federal government will spend five trillion dollars more than it takes in. This massive squandering cannot be blamed solely on President Obama and the Democrats. The GOP has controlled the House — and thus the federal budget — for almost one year. It takes 60 votes (out of 100) for the Senate to approve a motion for cloture and, thus, pass a bill. Those 60 votes equal 60% of the senators. This is about the same percentage achieved in the Milgram experiments — where approximately 60% of the people tested were convinced by “experts” that harming another human being was actually helpful.

    Narrowing the subject to the present, the 2011 federal deficit is over 1.3 trillion dollars. That amount represents 8.6% of our GDP. This year, our Congress has overspent an amount equal to one in every twelve dollars created in America. But deficit dollars do not exist for the congress to spend. Deficit funny money must either be borrowed or printed. We are approaching the four-year mark of at least a trillion-dollar deficit each year. One would think that politicians might have figured out that such extravagance is not good for the economy.

    All the while, the story sold to the masses by the mainstream media is that the economy will be saved if just one more deficit “jolt” is administered (like Obama’s $447-billion “jobs” bill). This oft-repeated narrative is always based upon a consensus from “experts”; the media’s rosy representation of the current economic crises is another part of the ongoing fiscal scam.

    A “Milgram Economy” resembles a Milgram experiment gone mad, an economy that is devoid of common sense and moral purpose. The argument (blue arrows) for “helping” the economy is framed by experts (Z) and filtered by the media (blue circles). The message is recycled with each new piece of legislation: government spending will save the economy. CBS News reported the following from President Obama’s first press conference:

    “It is absolutely true that we cannot depend on government alone to create jobs or economic growth,” [Obama] said. “That is and must be the role of the private sector. But at this particular moment, with the private sector so weakened by this recession, the federal government is the only entity left with the resources to jolt our economy back to life.” [Emphasis added.]

    Notice that, similar to a Milgram experiment, the self-proclaimed expert Barack Obama described government spending as a “jolt” or an electrical shock.

    Each repetition of the argument uses the same logic coupled with a different set of factors: new legislation, new spending, and more debt. (See that red arrows leading to red concentric circles = expanding deficit.) All participants (X, Y, and Z) in the economy either are trapped in an informational feedback loop or are intentionally keeping the public trapped in the reiteration of that informational loop. In a Milgram economy, real and cumulative harm is inflicted on the citizens with each new spending spree in the form of creeping inflation, recession leading to depression, or stagflation.

    This cycle is perpetuated for one major reason: many of the individuals involved in all three aspects (X, Y, and Z) of a Milgram economy have been convinced that the harm caused by deficit spending will fall on someone else.

    Democrat politicians are much smarter about selling and keeping the reiterated message alive than are politicians in the GOP. Most new legislation proposed by the Democrats is supposedly paid for by a tax on the rich. A significant percentage of the population still believes the Democrat mantra that taxing the rich will end deficit spending — this despite the fact that all the income and all the property of every millionaire and billionaire in America is insufficient to cover an ever-expanding national debt.

    The citizens of the United States (Y) occupy the isolation booth — like the “student” in the experiment. The isolation booth is a vital element of the Milgram economy. Unlike the students in the experiment, the citizens are not disconnected from the pain inflicted in a Milgram economy. The booth holds over 300 million people, each person with different economic interests. These people are led to believe that government spending might hurt some other person in the booth — but it will not harm them. The hard truth is that a majority of Americans have been co-conspirators to their own economic demise. They have elected and reelected the politicians who continue to pass legislation based on the logic that the economy can be saved only by the federal government spending ever-increasing amounts of money.

    Like the instructor in the experiment, the members of the Senate and House (X) are in charge of “jolting” the citizens. They are responsible for the amount of voltage in each shock that is administered by the legislation they pass. Unlike the instructor in the experiment, the members of Congress have real power. If our representatives are dupes in a Milgram economy, they are willing dupes. (Recall the number of times that Speaker of the House Boehner has scrambled to make excuses for the GOP’s need to compromise. This year’s $1.3-trillion deficit was not forced on America without the consent of the GOP leadership in the House and votes from GOP members of the House and Senate.)

    The place occupied by the “expert” (Z) in a Milgram economy is composed of the current administration, lobbyists, and economists — as long as the economist agrees that more federal spending will save the economy. These are the people who decide which citizens (Y) will take the voltage from each new legislative shock administered by the Congress (X). While big banks, auto companies, and huge corporations (like GE) are among the members (Y) in the isolation booth, these special interests are insulated from the deficit jolts by their lobbyists and “experts” in Z.

    There are two other points of distinction between a Milgram experiment and a Milgram economy. First, in the experiment, turning on and off a series of isolated switches created the impression of an “electrical shock.” The economic jolt in a Milgram economy is both real and cumulative. The process of creating a deficit is not controlled by a switch. The method of deficit-creation is like raising a thermostat. Every new layer of deficit spending turns up the heat on the economy.

    Second, about 40% of the instructors in a Milgram experiment refused, at different times during the test, to continue to follow the admonitions of the expert. At some point, after hearing the student cry out in pain, the instructor’s humanity kicked in. The instructor realized that, regardless of the advice of any expert, he had a moral obligation not to inflict harm on another human being. For a minority of the instructors, the outcome of the experiment was an eventual awakening to the fact that harming another person is not equivalent to helping that person.

    For very different reasons, but from the same sense of humanity, both the right and the far left are waking up to the reality of the corruption of our current political system. Members of the Tea Party and a few of the spokespeople for OWS have this in common: they are beginning to understand that we live in a Milgram economy — and that this is not a good thing.

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/12/the_milgram_economy.html#ixzz1fx9erD2c

    • Mathius™ says:

      “The ramification of the Milgram Experiment is: in an ethically dubious situation, a majority of human beings will trust the word of an expert authority.”

      • Mathius

        TRUE, that is more “accurate”.

        Of course, perceived “expertise” is one of those different types of “authority”.

        Not sure though what the out come would be it the person of authority had gained that authority ONLY be declaration. IE., “I am your leader and you will do what I say”.

        • Mathius™ says:

          If memory serves (and it usually does), there was a variation on the Milgram performed where they tested just this.

          It turned out that it was the appearance of authority. Specifically, when the experimenter wore a lab coat or a suit, there was a higher rate of obedience than when in casual clothes. I’d find it very interesting to see what the response would have been to an experimenter in military uniform.

          But, “authority” is one of those complex things in human societies. The point of Milgram, really, was just that humans will turn off their moral compasses if they can write off their actions as the responsibility of someone else.

          They concluded that things, like the holocaust, where the populace engages in evil could very readily happen in America because so many people will just blindly follow authority, regardless of what they are asking us to do.

          • And what conclusions, government wise, do you reach from this information? You seem from past conversations-to believe that the decisions should be made by the experts or governmental authorities. Because people are stupid. 🙂

            • Mathius™ says:

              You seem from past conversations-to believe that the decisions should be made by the experts or governmental authorities.

              Close.

              I seem from past conversations-to believe that the more decisions should be made by the experts or governmental authorities.

              • You mean the people who wear white lab coats and spew $10 words right and left???

                Or the guys in pinstripe suits citing tombs of legalese while explaining why we “just don’t understand” why this new law is needed?

  51. “Thomas Jefferson, in drafting the Declaration of Independence, enshrined a particular political philosophy congruent with man’s nature; that individuals were, by right of their nature as rational animals, endowed with inalienable rights to the destiny of their own lives. From that axiom grew corollaries like the right to be free of compulsion (liberty), to engage life as one sees fit (happiness), and to keep that which was rightfully earned (property). Thus, “government was instituted among men” for no other reason than to defend man’s natural right to his own life from any corner that may wish to infringe upon it. It was with this philosophical understanding that government was inconsequential to all rights-respecting individuals who kept to themselves or made voluntary agreements with their neighbors. Government’s role was negative in nature; to stop injustice, so justice itself could remain.” 🙂 🙂

    December 8, 2011
    Obama’s Kansas Declaration
    By J.K. Gregg

    Invoking former President Theodore Roosevelt, President Barrack Obama has endorsed a political philosophy antithetical to Jeffersonian liberty.

    Declaring that the debate over how to restore our economy is the “defining issue of our time,” President Barrack Obama invoked former president Theodore Roosevelt’s progressive reforms of the early 20th century as a template for economic recovery today. “Roosevelt,” the President said, “… knew that the free market has never been a free license to take whatever you want from whoever you can. It only works when there are rules of the road to ensure that competition is fair, open, and honest.”

    From there, the President made the regent argument that the “rugged individualism” that characterizes laissez-faire capitalism has “never worked,” and that we should echo Roosevelt’s call for a New Nationalism. “Our country,” Roosevelt said, and as Obama quoted, “…means nothing unless it means the triumph of a real democracy…of an economic system under which each man shall be guaranteed the opportunity to show the best that there is in him.”

    This argument — that free-market capitalism is incongruent with “a real democracy” — stems from the most profoundly insidious premises.

    Thomas Jefferson, in drafting the Declaration of Independence, enshrined a particular political philosophy congruent with man’s nature; that individuals were, by right of their nature as rational animals, endowed with inalienable rights to the destiny of their own lives. From that axiom grew corollaries like the right to be free of compulsion (liberty), to engage life as one sees fit (happiness), and to keep that which was rightfully earned (property). Thus, “government was instituted among men” for no other reason than to defend man’s natural right to his own life from any corner that may wish to infringe upon it. It was with this philosophical understanding that government was inconsequential to all rights-respecting individuals who kept to themselves or made voluntary agreements with their neighbors. Government’s role was negative in nature; to stop injustice, so justice itself could remain.

    This philosophical foundation was reassessed however by the Progressive movement beginning in the late nineteenth century. The Progressive “consensus” was born by discontent with the first ‘big business’, the transcontinental railroad. Soaked in government subsidies by the passage of the Pacific Railways Act of 1862 [1], the railroad industry was encouraged to over-produce railways so much so to the point where supply far exceeded demand. Yet, instead of prices reflecting this new equilibrium, the monopolistic status granted to railroad corporations by the government assistance, allowed them to arbitrarily set prices.

    From this experiment of meddling in a free market, grew general discontent with the railroad industry in particular and laissez-faire capitalism in general. It seemed at the time to many that the rich were getting richer at the expense of the poor; that unregulated capitalism had led to monopolistic conglomerates in the industries of rail and oil and now consumers were paying the (higher) price.

    A call for reform echoed across the American landscape in favor of regulation at the Federal level, instituting welfare programs for the poor, and price controls in the forms of laws and tariffs. Herbert Croly, a Progressive intellectual and editor of the magazine The New Republic wrote in his seminal treatise The Promise of American Life:

    …the traditional American confidence in individual freedom has resulted in a morally and socially undesirable distribution of wealth. [2]

    How, one might ask, could a country in the span of a century go from such staunch individualism as exemplified by the writings of Thomas Jefferson, to varying flavors of Progressivism exemplified by author Herbert Croly?

    This fundamental change came from the redefining of liberty as a concept. With the backdrop of the late 1800s, capitalism had seemingly left a majority of the people behind. Liberty as defined as the freedom from force seemed to lose favor. After all, went the narrative, it was the hands-off approach which led to monopolies and wealth inequality. Liberty then seemed not so passive; it required adjustment, adaptation, and progression to deal with changing realities of time. “Life is complex;” Woodrow Wilson would put it in 1912.

    [T]he individual is caught in a great confused nexus of all sorts of complicated circumstances, and that to let him alone is to leave him helpless as against the obstacles with which he has to contend; and that, therefore, law in our day must come to the assistance of the individual. [3]

    Liberty became a state of being, a standard of living. It became not just the ability to be left alone, but the ability to employ one’s own energies successfully. Wilson likened liberty to a perfectly operating machine, contending that liberty was achieved only when all parts were “associated most skillfully with the other parts of the great structure.” Thomas Jefferson’s “chaotic individualism,” as Croly put it, was far too focused on the wrong side of liberty’s equation. Paradoxically, according to the Progressives, the results of liberty, as opposed to the mechanics and architecture of liberty, defined liberty itself.

    From this fundamental assumption (that individuals were entitled to equal results) came a series of policy prescriptions which included the promotion of the poor through welfare programs and the subjugation of the rich through regulation and high taxation; in other words, wealth redistribution. This was completely justified under the holistic reasoning; in order to save the many, a few needed to be sacrificed. To the Progressives, wealth was not tied to productive effort, but was a zero-sum game. The rich could only be so at the expense of the poor, and so these policies were justified in the new definition of liberty.

    The year 1913 saw a wave of Progressive reforms on the national level take place; the establishment of the national income tax, direct election of U.S. Senators, and the establishment of the Federal Reserve system just to name a few. During World War I, the Progressives nationalized industries such as railroads and banned alcoholic beverages, two initiatives that would be overturned later by popular discontent — all in the name of fine-tuning the “great structure.”

    The Federal Reserve would go on to artificially inflate the money supply which led to speculative bubbles throughout the rest of the century. The direct election of Senators largely removed the states’ ability to check the federal government. The national income tax, despite being reduced after the end of World War I, remained higher than before the war and remained the federal government’s primary source of income. [4]

    Some of the consequences of this new chapter of government activity were obvious, like higher taxation and the meddling of natural economic forces. Some of the lesser known consequences however were the introduction of the apparatus for the state to choose winners and losers. By adopting the premise that the government could morally redistribute wealth, competition emerged to secure government favors, benefits, and privileges. J. Brian Phillips writing for The Freeman magazine put it perfectly.

    In a capitalist society, in which the government has no control over the economy, there is no benefit to be derived from pressure group politics; in a collectivist society, in which the State controls the economy, pressure groups are a matter of economic survival. [5]

    To illustrate this, consider the influx of lobbying in Washington between 1900 and 1920. During this decade known as the Progressive era, the U.S. saw the most interest group organizations form, including the US Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers, and the American Medical Association. [6] Moreover, and in particular, the growth rate of non-profit interest groups was greatest during this period. [7]

    Progressives, by expanding the state into the business of handing out taxpayer money, would cement the domination of capital to reign over and iniquitously influence politics (which they would later come to despise) giving legitimacy to bribery, blackmail, and cronyism.

    These consequences have come to define the recent political discontent with Wall Street and Washington. Despite diverging policy prescriptions, the Tea Party movement and the Occupy Wall Street movement have a general agreement that over the years, the government has picked winners and losers, whether they be the petroleum or the “green” industry, and that such behavior is no longer desirable. But I digress.

    The Progressive era reforms that came about during this period marked a tragic scene for liberty’s cause. Now subject to the premise that we were all our brothers’ keepers, that the individual lacked the rational faculties to navigate the complexities of life, and that capitalism was a force to be contained through regulation, liberty’s torch was drenched in a sea of taxation, wealth redistribution, and regulation. The American family would find its hard-earned wealth taxed away, now less free to invest in their future. The poor were rewarded with federal-assistance programs funded by taxes meant to pay for the legitimate roles of government, like a military and the police. Businessmen were now expected to burn the candle on both ends — to increase wages and benefits while simultaneously increasing employment, regardless of economic realities. They were now less free to operate their business as they saw fit.

    Egalitarianism inherently circumvents liberty. By ignoring the natural heterogeneity of the human race, Progressives sought to impose equality where it naturally could not fit. Humans are unique in talent, skill, and culture. This uniqueness has allowed a division of labor into specialized groups that has brought untold wealth and prosperity to the entire race. It is this uniqueness, along with our rational faculties, that makes our race what it is. Circumventing that uniqueness has a substantial cost: the liberty of others.

    Jeffersonian liberty, the bedrock of America’s founding, rests on the idea that individuals are means to their own ends, never the ends of others; that individuals should be free to engage in voluntary acts of mutual agreement with each other; and that they deserve that which they produce. Progressivism represents the antithesis of these simple concepts. Its dawning on the American polity during the turn of the nineteenth century brought about structural changes that gave rise to iniquitous lobbying that dominates politics even to this day; to the administrative state that continues to circumvent natural economic forces; and to a fundamentally new and perverted definition of liberty and America’s founding philosophy. President Obama has endorsed this Progressivism, and should be held accountable for those ideas.

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/12/obamas_kansas_declaration.html#ixzz1fxDasQTX

  52. I have tried to post this article several times-it will probably show up sometime today(several times) Sorry 🙂

    But I’m gonna try just posting the address-see if that will work.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/12/obamas_kansas_declaration.html

    • V.H.

      EXCELLENT !!!!

      A Must read for everyone.

      A lot of that sure did have a familiar ring to it, don’t you think? 🙂

    • “Thomas Jefferson, in drafting the Declaration of Independence, enshrined a particular political philosophy congruent with man’s nature; that individuals were, by right of their nature as rational animals, endowed with inalienable rights to the destiny of their own lives. From that axiom grew corollaries like the right to be free of compulsion (liberty), to engage life as one sees fit (happiness), and to keep that which was rightfully earned (property). Thus, “government was instituted among men” for no other reason than to defend man’s natural right to his own life from any corner that may wish to infringe upon it. It was with this philosophical understanding that government was inconsequential to all rights-respecting individuals who kept to themselves or made voluntary agreements with their neighbors. Government’s role was negative in nature; to stop injustice, so justice itself could remain.”

      Man’s natural right, man’s natural right…… I think I was born as an individual, which may explain my nature, what, why and how I see the world. I was not born one of thousands or millions, even though there are millions of Americans and billions in the world. All of us act and think as individuals, as is our nature. The ant and bee have a very different nature, that of a collective. Even there, their “nature” is not pure collective, hives will wage war rather than share territory or resources. Nor are we like lemmings, willing to follow one leader blindly. Some may drink the poisoned kool-aid, but most will refuse and reject the very ideal.

      There are times you put another opinion above your own. I pay my doctor or lawyer for their professional advice. It is my choice to loose the weight or to cease popping Matt right between the eye’s. I do not see or think of those we elect in that same way, they asked to represent us, not to command or dictate. Seems to me, many out there don’t understand what human nature is really.

      • “endowed with inalienable rights to the DESTINY of their own lives” I particularly like that part-my translation-we have the right to, and the responsibility for, our own destiny.

  53. Good Grief-after the socialist programs pay for your house, your education, and makes sure you aren’t in any debt-show your appreciation by: “go see the friggin’ world, or tinker around in your garage a la the two Steves, or start a band. Enjoy life, discover, explore, experiment, find your way. Anything but the assistant manager at Taco Bell.”

    Two Face Palms!!!!!

    Michael Moore: ‘A Roof Over One’s Head Is a Human Right’

    By Noel Sheppard | December 07, 2011 | 11:52

    Did you know it was a human right to have a roof over your head?

    So says schlockumentarian Occupy Wall Street supporter Michael Moore in an absolutely hysterical call to arms published at the Huffington Post Wednesday entitled “The Winter of Our Occupation”:

    Sorry, banks, a roof over one’s head is a human right, and you will no longer occupy our homes through foreclosure and eviction because well, you see, they are our homes, not yours. You may hold the mortgage; you don’t hold the right to throw us or our neighbors out into the cold. With almost one in three home mortgages currently in foreclosure, nearing foreclosure or “underwater,” the Occupy Movement must form local “Occupy Strike Forces” to create human shields when the banks come to throw people out of their homes. If the foreclosure has already happened, then we must help families move back into their foreclosed homes — literally (see this clip from my last film to watch how a home re-occupation is accomplished).

    Fascinating. So if you stop paying your mortgage, you should be allowed to stay there anyway.

    Does this work for all of us or just those that support this silly movement? Can Tea Partiers also stop paying their mortgages and continue to live in their homes?

    And what about renters? Why should this privilege – oh, I’m sorry…right – apply only to delinquent homeowners? Shouldn’t the millions of our nation’s renters also be able to shirk their financial obligations?

    After all, their landlord is probably a greedy one percenter that doesn’t need the money anyway?

    On the other hand, what happens to all the banks and savings institutions when all of their customers stop paying their mortgages? And what happens to the debt securities that are based on such mortgages? Won’t this create another financial crisis leading to runs on banks and savings institutions resulting in another recession that increases unemployment thereby exacerbating our current problems?

    Moore’s socialist dream doesn’t concern itself with such realities.

    More importantly, we can now see what happens when one political Party tries to make health insurance a “human right.”

    As many opponents of ObamaCare said during the debate, just where does this end? Once you start down that slippery slope of naming things “human rights” that the government has to mandate, the list is sure to grow.

    As far as Moore is concerned, it already has. But he didn’t end there, because he also believes college is a “human right”:

    Students should spend this winter doing what they are already doing on dozens of campuses — holding sit-ins, occupying the student loan office, nonviolently disrupting the university regents meetings, and pitching their tents on the administration’s lawn. Young people — we, the ’60s generation, promised to create a better world for you. We got halfway there — now you have to complete the job. Do not stop until these wars are ended, the Pentagon budget is cut in half, and the rich are forced to pay their taxes. And demand that that money go to your education. We’ll be there with you on all of this! And when we get this fixed and you graduate, instead of being $40,000 in debt, go see the friggin’ world, or tinker around in your garage a la the two Steves, or start a band. Enjoy life, discover, explore, experiment, find your way. Anything but the assistant manager at Taco Bell.
    Story Continues Below Ad ↓

    So we’re – and when I say “we’re,” I mean the 53 percent of Americans who pay all the federal income taxes – are going to be required to pay for everyone’s health insurance, their homes, and their college tuitions.

    Are you foolish enough to think the list isn’t going to continue to grow?

    And now you know what happens when government decides that people have to have something whether they want it or not.

    Hopefully the Supreme Court is going to reassert the tenets of the Constitution before creeping socialism starts its sprint toward the finish line.

    Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2011/12/07/michael-moore-roof-over-ones-head-human-right#ixzz1fxHIkhgS

  54. Don’t know whats up today-but can’t get anything to post .

    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2011/12/07/michael-moore-roof-over-ones-head-human-right

    Unbelievable-just unbelievable -TWO Face Palms and a lot of disgust.

  55. DisposableCarbonUnit says:

    Alright…..Day 4

    So far we agree that the Law of Identity is a Natural Law.
    I think we agree that, as humans, we are free to act in pursuit of the continuation of our existence, if the individual so chooses.

    Up for debate….Is “survival of the fittest” a Natural Law?

    Next, to extend into “human rights” we must first define what we believe a “right” to be.

    My view, survival of the fittest applies to all “living” organisms (my brain just can’t handle the non-living today!) and is independent of thoughts, wants, wishes, or behaviours, so I would believe that it is an “irrefutable truth” of the Universe (as the Universe applies to living things) thereby making it a Natural Law.

    Points of dissent?

    • Carbon

      Disagree with your second summation. My version:

      2. All living things must pursue their continued existence according to their nature.

      Question: Is this PART of the Law of Identity or is THIS the Natural Law we call “survival of the fittest”??

      “Survival of the fittest” as stated is too sloppy for me to consider as a Natural Law. First of all, it is NOT JUST the fittest that survive. Even if we consider “best adapted” as fitness, there are still organisms which are not “best” suited but will continue to exist.

      NEXT: So my next proposal for your consideration is a refinement particular to humans.

      3. The continued existence of Humans depends upon Humans “thinking rationally” and then taking action “accordingly”.

      I think we can hold off on what a Right is for now. Perhaps if we flesh out the immutable truths those things we consider Rights will be more evident.

      Besides, the sun is out today so I must hang lights and do some work I have put off during our cold, foggy, damp period this past week.

      I will be checking in so please don’t stop sharing ideas. Just might take me longer to respond today.

      Best to all
      Happy Thinking
      JAC

      • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

        If an organism is not killed or out-competed it WAS/IS the fittest and most adapted to those particular circumstances. Anything else, I say, is a subjective judgement call.

        @ Mathius….DCU corrects:

        I think we agree that, as humans, we MAY act in pursuit of the continuation of our existence, if the individual so chooses.

        Better?

        @JAC
        3. The continued existence of Humans depends upon Humans “thinking rationally” and then taking action “accordingly”.

        Rape is not rational but may lead to continued existence.

        • DCU

          Actually it would be destructive to human advancement in the long run.

          Rational thinking………………….recognizing REALITY and all its implications.

          Acting accordingly……………making choices within reality.

          Word of caution: As these types of discussions move from the Universe to the more specific they need to focus on the normative behaviors. For example, a psychotic may be able to survive as an individual. But being psychotic is not normal or part of the average human condition. It would in fact be destructive to humans existing according to the nature, in the long run.

          The other danger is considering a violation as proof of anything when that violation is short term or due to some exceptional situation.

          • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

            OK. Just needed clarification.

            I agree it would ultimately be destructive to civil/social advancement of humans.

            Rational thinking…..recognizing REALITY (agreed) and all its implications(too big a leap here for me). I am pretty sure that normative behaviour for humans does not involve thinking of all implications of reality. Humans (statistically speaking) can be pretty short sighted.

            Acting accordingly….making choices within (their perceived) reality(agreed)

            Some humans, you know the Plutonian kind 🙂 , can have a pretty distorted view of reality!

            • DCU

              Plutonians are NOT Humans!

              When I say “implications” I am talking about the evaluation of cause/effect and alternatives. All grounded in reality.

              There is an argument that continued human existence DEPENDS upon REASON. We may “perceive” reality, but in the long run we MUST make effort to discover reality. We must operate according to truth and so me must continuously strive to validate our assumptions, to prove that we are in fact operating within the bounds of truth.

              Humans tend to be short sited on the avg. BUT……..they do not HAVE to be. They are capable of long term thinking. The more they do this, I propose the greater the chance they will live a “flourishing life”.

              Add another idea to the concept: Continued existence for Humans means much more than just the biological function of staying alive. Because our Nature “requires” that we be more than just a robot or a plant, or a cow. 🙂

              • DisposableCarbonUnit says:

                Charlie please remember it was JAC who said you’re not human! I merely said that you had a distorted view of reality. I do, however, consider you human.

          • Mathius™ says:

            JAC,

            NO!

            As these types of discussions move from the Universe to the more specific they need to focus on the normative behaviors.

            NO! ::rolls up newspaper:: NO! ::swats JAC on the nose:: NO, bad JAC!

            If we are attempting to derive rights, and you are insisting we use normative behaviors, then there are two major problems.

            1. You assume there is some kind of normal, and that rights vary with it, such that “human rights” would have been different 100 years ago from what they are today. If so, then how are “human rights” anything other than a construct based on human society when/where they are applied?

            2. If “normative” behavior leads to a defined set of “human rights,” then people who do not exhibit those behaviors are missing a piece of the logic structure necessary to define their rights. In other words, if you aren’t “normative” then you don’t have “human rights” – you have “abnormal-human rights” which may be completely different.

            • Mathius

              Don’t get tied in a knot, and put your newspaper away.

              My warning applies to aspects of philosophy but not all. So lets explore slightly.

              Human rights, as in those rights simply constructed by humans could be normative, and thus changed over time. Again this begs the questions about what are Rights, what purpose do they serve and what affect do they have.

              However, a Natural Right would not be normative. But the principles invented by Humans within these rights might be normative. For example, the concept that humans have almost infinite resources available to them, because of their inventive and productive nature would apply to the norm. But it would not apply to two humans stuck in a raft in the middle of the ocean.

              Normative seems to come more into play as we move towards issues of morality and ethics. I just wanted to give a heads up, something to consider as everyone works through these various ideas.

              • Mathius™ says:

                I’ll consider that, but I’m keeping my newspaper out (it’s the only thing print media is good for anyway).

                Meanwhile, I’ll give you enough rope to hang yourself – let’s see where you go with it.

                Proceed.

    • Mathius™ says:

      I think we agree that, as humans, we are free to act in pursuit of the continuation of our existence, if the individual so chooses.

      I’m not sure where the got “free to act”.. I certainly see that we “do” act, and I will agree that our tendency is to act. But “free to act” speaks to rights, not our natures, so I don’t know that we’ve earned this point yet.

      Up for debate….Is “survival of the fittest” a Natural Law? I think it may be the only applicable natural law. The fit survive, the unfit die. How this might tie into “rights” is something I’d be interested in seeing.

  56. I thought some of you might find this very interesting. In total, it shows just how hard it will be to deal with program cuts.

    http://www.dailyyonder.com/geography-disability/2011/11/29/3619

    • Very interesting! I wonder why Arkansas is #2, that our general work environment is not as bad or worse than most. Makes me think fraud, enabled by some factor I don’t know. I do know of a family that is now into second generation of living off their “crazy checks”. I have seen people with chronic back pain pursue enough doctors until they are declared disabled. The three or dozen that told them to lose 50-75#’s that they ignored meant nothing. Some even had back surgery done, and of course, never fully recovered.

  57. If you’re into court-like drama, skip the TV shows and tune in to the real stuff!

    Dem Blago sentenced yesterday; Dem Corzine testifying today (I know nothing!); and Dem Holder attempting to CYA again. (that should probably be CHA?).

    http://www.therightscoop.com/fireworks-issa-grills-holder-over-witholding-documents-fast-and-furious/

  58. Now that it is being acknowledged that the nation’s most sophisticated drone craft has fallen into the custody of the Iranians, the Chinese and Russians can thank us for the improvements they get to make in their unmanned drone technology.

    Maybe, like a destroyed helicopter in Pakistan, we should just ask for it back and get mad when the Iranians don’t keep it from prying eyes?

  59. Matt…some humor…I’ll do it this way..careful at work

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