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Week In The News: VA Scandal, Primaries And The Tea Party, Chinese Hackers

The President and theVA scandal. Establishment Republicans win over the Tea Party. US Cyber-theft charges against China’s military.

Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell addresses his supporters following his victory in the republican primary Tuesday, May 20, 2014, at the Mariott Louisville East in Louisville, Ky. (AP)

Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell addresses his supporters following his victory in the republican primary Tuesday, May 20, 2014, at the Mariott Louisville East in Louisville, Ky. (AP)

Primary election votes this week, with establishment Republicans across the board turning back Tea Party candidates, but not so much Tea Party politics.  GOP eyes now on the Senate.  Democrats bracing for a fight.  The VA scandal draws tough talk from President Obama this week.  A promise of accountability.  Russia and China do a big energy deal, as the US brings charges against hackers in the Chinese military.  We’ve got a coup in Thailand, soft pushback on the NSA, and “Happy” dancers arrested and freed in Iran.  This hour On Point:  Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Ken Rudin, host of Ken Rudin’s Political Junkie podcast. (@kenrudin)

Bryan Monroe, Washington Editor of Opinion and Commentary for CNN. (@BryanMonroeCNN)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst.

From Tom’s Reading List

USA Today: Tea Party challengers fall short in primaries — “McConnell’s primary victory over businessman and Tea Party challenger Matt Bevin was one of several for the mainstream GOP Tuesday in primary races around the country that have at times suggested the party is at war with itself. In Georgia, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Idaho, Tea Party-backed candidates also lost to establishment favorites.”

CNN: Obama: Shinseki stays for now, but VA misconduct will be punished — “President Barack Obama promised accountability, but he made clear Wednesday he won’t fire Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki — yet — over excessive and sometimes deadly waiting times faced by veterans seeking government health care. The controversy has mushroomed since CNN first reported the problem last November in a detailed investigation examining several VA hospitals.”

The Wall Street Journal: U.S. Charges Five in Chinese Army With Hacking — “The Justice Department indicted five Chinese military officers, alleging they hacked U.S. companies’ computers to steal trade secrets, a major escalation in the fight between the two superpowers over economic espionage. The indictment, unsealed Monday, marks the first time the U.S. government has publicly accused employees of a foreign power with cybercrimes against American firms. It also marks the most extensive formal allegations by the government of the kind of hacking that American corporations have long complained about, but until now have rarely acknowledged.”

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  • Zack Smith

    I see Tom once again has three progressive-leaning establishment guests on to provide NPR listeners with their comfortable echo-chamber. How unfortunate.

    • Michiganjf

      Maybe once the righties get someone with a brain in their head… or at least find a rightie with something pertinent to say.

      • Zack Smith

        How about independent or libertarian-minded guests? Nope. We just get the usual insiders.

        • SteveTheTeacher

          The guests can be characterized as left of center. But the center is way far to the right these days.

          I would not characterized these guests as truly progressive.

          How about inviting Sharif Abdel Kouddous, Lola Adesioye, Amy Goodman, Juan Gonzalez, Barbara Ransby, or Arhandahti Roy as a guest?

          • X Y & Z

            “But the center is way far to the right these days”. (Steve the ‘teacher’)

            That’s a fine example of a poorly written, grammatically incorrect sentence.

            You call yourself a teacher?

            It’s not surprising that so many parents are pulling their children out of America’s failing public schools and home-schooling them instead.

          • SteveTheTeacher

            How predictable.

            Those incapable of soundly presenting their opinions often resort to ad hominem attacks.

          • Don_B1

            Ad hominem is the best you can do?

            And conservatism, particularly in its latest Libertarian form, has never failed to make its case with the people who count, the legislators, again mostly from the Republican Party. See:

            http://www.princeton.edu/~mgilens/Gilens%20homepage%20materials/Gilens%20and%20Page/Gilens%20and%20Page%202014-Testing%20Theories%203-7-14.pdf

            for the details. I hope On Point has them as guests for a program on that subject.

          • Jill122

            Grammar alert! Pay attention folks. Of all the problems in the world, we can add grammar as one of the biggies right up there with AGW. Silly troll.

          • X Y & Z

            Keep swallowing all the lies and propaganda that keep coming out of this criminal, Obama Administration. It saves you from having to think on your own, which is clearly a problem for a liberal like you.

          • Don_B1

            You might not be so off-putting if you didn’t make such off-the-wall, unproven and likely unprovable claims as calling the Obama administration “criminal.”

          • TFRX

            I don’t know that “the center is way far to the right” lately. The right’s center, yes.

            And guests who are left of center don’t get to make the narrative on NPR.

            NPR does seem to be trapped in the Beltway. Anything that’s spouted by Rove and Drudge and Limbaugh courses through their veins as something they need to cover because “it’s out there”.

            But folks like you and I don’t get to hear a left of center guest say something in an interview and then hear it in the big news programs. That’s whether it’s Amy Goodman doing her stuff about liberty and human rights or a Brad DeLong talking about the failure of austerity.

          • olderworker

            Are you kidding? That’s why he has Jack Beatty on there, to provide the progressive point of view, at least, as progressive as he can tolerate. People like Amy Goodman would be way too leftist for Tom Ashbrook.

          • Zack Smith

            Exactly. They are just establishment hacks and they add nothing of
            interest to the discussion. They merely reinforce corporate conventional wisdom
            that we’ve already heard ad-nauseum on NPR. I would like to see principled progressives
            (Amy Goodman, Dennis Kucinich and Ralph Nader are a few of my favorites) and
            principled conservatives libertarians, not partisans or journalist hacks.

          • SteveTheTeacher

            I agree.

            No doubt, NPR loyalists would argue that there have been occasional segments featuring more progressive and more libertarian personalities.

            But I haven’t heard such perspectives highlighted, for their insights, on the weekly roundup.

        • olderworker

          Interesting that that’s your perception. I think Tom usually has more centrist speakers on his show (maybe not today — I didn’t listen that closely)

      • TFRX

        They’ve tried everyone, haven’t they?

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        Might I offer:

        http://youtu.be/ZiK1GGsxsjo

        I am always available when Tom calls.

    • jefe68

      You can change the station or turn it off.
      In my opinion this is a pretty centrist panel.
      Amy Goodman or Juan Gonzalez are progressive.
      Jack Beatty, not so much.

      I hardly think of CNN as progressive, if you think they are then that might say more about how far right you are than anything else.

      • Zack Smith

        Perhaps you’re right. Instead of “progressive” I should have used the term “statist”. The guests typically love the state and its corporatism. I’d like to hear Amy and Juan G on the show.

  • Zack Smith

    I would like the panel to address Rand Paul’s opposition to David Barron and more generally the administration’s assertion that it can unilaterally kill US citizens NOT engaged in combat against the US without due process in court. This behavior and attitude makes Watergate veritable child’s play.
    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2014/05/excerpts-from-rand-pauls-critique-of-judicial-nominee-david-barron/371392/

    • SteveTheTeacher

      I would like to hear mention of the fact that, instead of raising opposition to drone attacks, Senator Elizabeth Warren voted to support Barron’s nomination.

      I asked Senator Warren if she would support a call to end President Obama’s drone killing and crowd killing (killing by computer algorithm) programs. Her response was the following:

      ” Drones cannot and should not be used to kill Americans in the United States who are not engaged in combat. I am pleased that Attorney General Eric Holder has clearly stated that the President lacks this authority.”

      • Zack Smith

        Warren has been very disappointing to me. She seems to use a lot of heated rhetoric to garner support but there’s no follow-through. I doubt she’s motivated by principles – seems to be just another partisan.

  • X Y & Z

    One Million People Dropped Out Of Labor Force In April: Participation Rate
    Plummets To Lowest Since 1978

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-05-02/one-million-people-dropped-out-labor-force-april-participation-rate-plummets-lowest-

    • Ray in VT

      Oh yes, the “BLS is back to its old data fudging”. What a load of bull. People rant and rave about how the LFPR is “plummeting”, usually is a part of some anti-Obama rant, without looking at the decade long trends that have been in part responsible for driving it down.

      • HonestDebate1

        When has the LFPR ever plummeted 3 points in 5 years?

        • Ray in VT

          When have long term trends that have been going on for years combined with the worst financial crisis in 80 years?

          • HonestDebate1

            There is no long term trend. The rate dropped 1 point after the Clinton recession and was stable from 2004 to 2008. Then it plummeted to the lowest point in 35 years.

            The financial crisis should have been a blip.

          • Ray in VT

            Continually repeating your lies until you believe them does make them true. Fools often seem to fool themselves first and other fools if they can.

          • HonestDebate1

            See for yourself:

            http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS11300000

            Prove me wrong.

          • Ray in VT

            I’ve looked at that, moron. You know there is stuff that goes into those numbers:

            http://www.stlouisfed.org/publications/re/articles/?id=2419

            BLS was looking at a decline back in 2000, and factors going on for years, like young people staying in school longer and aging Baby Boomers:

            “The BLS lists the following factors as primary drivers of the decline in the LFP rate since 2000: (1) the aging of the baby boomer cohort; (2) the decline in the participation rate of those 16-24 years old; (3) the declining LFP rate of women (since its peak in 1999), and (4) the continuous decline of the LFP rate of men (since the 1940s).”

            Be a rube and blame it all on Obama if you like, which is the easy, simple-minded and wrong way to look at this issue, but being totally wrong never seems to stop you from putting forth a lie that you believe in, so why change now.

          • HonestDebate1

            The rate dropped 1 point after the Clinton recession and was stable from 2004 to 2008.

          • Ray in VT

            During a debt fueled credit boom that all came to a crashing halt starting in 2008. Look at the long term factors. I know that it doesn’t help you to attack the President, but it is at least intellectually honest, but that is not something that you’re known for, so I won’t hold my breath.

          • HonestDebate1

            Obamacare, energy policy, higher taxes and a gazillion new regulations have had far more of an affect on the LFPR than the financial crisis 6 years ago that should have been a blip.

            But at least you now see that there was no trend starting in 2000.

          • Ray in VT

            Blah, blah, blah, blah. Just repeating the same sort of non-factual b.s. about how the financial crisis should have been a blip doesn’t make it true.

            Try reading what I wrote and what the BLS lists as factors affecting the LFPR. What was the trend line on it during Bush’s presidency? Up, right? Even during the boom?

          • HonestDebate1

            I already told you what happened under Bush. The rate dropped 1 point after the Clinton recession in 2000 and was stable from 2004 to 2008.

          • Ray in VT

            What you tell me rarely, if ever, lines up with reality, and the overly simplistic of merely looking at the numbers, who was President during the times which the numbers occurred and what factors were driving those numbers is again noted.

          • HonestDebate1

            I’m not the one who brought up Bush or invented a trend.

          • Ray in VT

            What trend did you invent? Passing off racist “research” as supposedly being from the FBI? I think that you did start that here, but it’s still only a trend of one, as far as I know, so maybe that’s not a real trend.

            Your inability to understand even basic facts is astounding. It’s probably what drives you to air heads like Rush and Palin.

          • HonestDebate1

            The 10 year trend that wasn’t.

          • Ray in VT

            Wrong. Try reading what I wrote and what the BLS says around factors affecting it as well, if you are capable of comprehending anything that does not conform to your preconceived notions.

          • HonestDebate1

            Did I blame it all on Obama? Who knew? How much blame do you give him?

            The LFPR has dropped a point since the 2 year old BLS publication which for some reason your link does not link to. And what did the BLS say it would be now back in 2000?

            You’re flailing.

          • Ray in VT

            Did you blame it all on Obama? All it ever seems to be is “look how the LFPR is plummeting under Obama. Obama bad” (I am paraphrasing of course).

            Oh, so age demographics and people staying in school for longer periods of time stopped two years ago? Good to know. I don’t know as they said back in 2000, just that they foresaw a decline, as while demographic changes can be seen quite a ways off, changes to how long young people are staying in school may change.

            Flailing from the greggtionary (as far as I can tell): making solid points which I cannot counter based upon the facts, so a dismissive comment must be made (probably best to declare victory despite being wrong and move on).

            Your inability to command facts and research is stunning.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, no one in 2000, BLS included, predicted a LFPR of 62.8%. The decline because of aging baby boomers and other factors is one thing the Obama plummet is another.

            2 years ago Obamacare was not implemented to the extent it is now. Two years ago there was still hope. Two years ago they had to explain away only a 2 point drop since Obama took office, now it’s 3.

            Look up the report by BLS your hack link cites. I did. It’s far more nuanced than your fed opinion.

          • Ray in VT

            True, they didn’t predict where it would go. They also didn’t predict mass outsourcing of blue collar jobs, increased productivity or an economic crisis. That failure is probably also Obama’s fault somehow.

            Ah yes, the specter of the ACA, despite research that does not show any sort of significant impacts upon employment or the trend in part time work. That doesn’t matter, though. Just make a b.s. claim and stand by it. You’re good like that.

            It’s funny that you would call a researcher from the Fed to be a hack, considering your basic problem recognizing facts. Hack in the greggtionary: some pinhead with a fancy degree who is smarter than me, which isn’t hard, and says stuff that doesn’t line up with whatever Rush told me must be true, so that person needs to be attacked.

          • jimino

            Employment-Population Ratio, 2000-2014
            2000 ( 81.5) * (High)
            2001 ( 80.5) Bush
            2002 ( 79.3)
            2003 ( 78.8)
            2004 ( 79.0)
            2005 ( 79.3)
            2006 ( 79.8)
            2007 ( 79.9)
            2008 ( 79.1)
            2009 ( 75.8) Obama
            2010 ( 75.1)
            2011 ( 75.1)
            2012 ( 75.7)
            2013 ( 75.9)
            April
            2014 ( 76.5)

            * Employment age 25-54

          • HonestDebate1

            The population and the labor force are two different things.

            But I’m curious, what was the population the last time the LFPR was this low in 1978?

          • Don_B1

            The population, aged 25-54, is the labor force.

            Just how dumb do you think readers here are?

          • olderworker

            I do have to differ with you on your age range — the vast majority of people aged 54-66 are still working (if they are able to find jobs, that is)

          • Don_B1

            I understand why the average person would well think that the work force should be as you indicate.

            But while even the “majority” [and that only means >50%] of people aged 55 to 65 are working, there are a lot of occupations, from Armed Services to police to coal miners and others with heavy manual labor components where a significant percentage do retire within that window.

            Certainly the 25 – 54 age window is not perfect, but there is not much in this world that is, and it has been determined by the BLS that using that range leads to less distortion in the statistics than other possible ranges.

            But thank you for your interest.

          • HonestDebate1

            There are many people in that group who are not part of the workforce.

          • Don_B1

            Sorry, the full description should have been the “potential labor force,” meaning that it is the demographic which is used to determine the participation rate. Typing too fast, apparently.

          • Don_B1

            The financial crisis was almost a repeat of the banking part of the Great Depression and was avoided by strong aggressive government action. But there was no comparative action to help overleveraged homeowners, many underwater on their mortgages through no fault of their own.

            But the Great Recession was always going to be more than a blip because of the huge amount of debt that had been accumulated by homeowners and siphoned off by the big investment banks to sell CDOs and CDSs of faulty mortgages.

            You have made that glib statement about the financial crisis before and never given a coherent story about why you even think it is true, which it is definitely not.

          • HonestDebate1

            The great Depression should have been a blip but FDR put it on steroids. That’s what Democrats do.

          • Ray in VT

            Hahahaha. Good one. You really don’t know anything about much of anything, do you?

          • HonestDebate1

            It’s well established that I’m an idiot.

          • Ray in VT

            Yes it is. You can’t even read the dictionary and honestly relate its contents to others.

          • keltcrusader

            Finally, something we can agree on wholeheartedly

          • Don_B1

            I would characterize your condition as ignorance, not idiocy.

            But then to determine the cause of your ignorance is more an open question;

            1) Just never took an economics course or read anything academic about economics.

            2) Learned the little (wrong-headed) economics from non-economic political ideologues or those academics in thrall to conservative money.

            3) Maybe a little of both.

            But economics is not about balancing a checkbook or running a business. Note that there has never been a great businessman who was a great president. And probably not one who was a good economic advisor to a president.

            And then it could come full circle as refusal to recognize when one is repeatedly wrong is what some call insanity (or maybe idiocy?).

          • Don_B1

            So you are just doubling down? It was NOT FDR, but President Hoover’s Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon who pushed the Depression pedal-to-the-floor with his voracious austerity:

            “Liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate the farmers, liquidate real estate.” That, according to Herbert Hoover, was the advice he received from Andrew Mellon, the Treasury secretary, as America plunged into depression. To be fair, there’s some question about whether Mellon actually said that; all we have is Hoover’s version, written many years later.

            For a succinct start at understanding that austerity in a recession is NOT EXPANSIONARY try reading this:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/01/opinion/01krugman.html?_r=0

            although you will probably have to go back to real basics of macroeconomics and with a good tutor who is not a “conservative.” After all, your strong conviction of the contrary should stand up to the explanations that you will get there; but communicating with someone not of your conviction is the ONLY way you will EVER learn anything.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Gee, you injected Obama into the conversation.

        Obama bears no responsibility? Did he find out about the LFPR in media reports or on the links?

        • Ray in VT

          Because some people like to always blame this, as well as anything else that goes wrong, on Obama. I suspect that no one here ranting about the LFPR had ever heard of it more than two or three years ago, and certainly little effort is taken to look into the issues affecting it.

          • HonestDebate1

            Fast and Furious, the IRS scandal, the NSA scandal, the Benghazi cover-up, the lowest LFPR since 1978, pitiful anemic GDP, Iran getting nukes, Assad gassing his people, Israeli/Palestinian talks in the toilet, Russia taking Crimea, gas prices through the roof and a country more divided than ever: does Obama bear any degree of responsibility for any of it?

          • Ray in VT

            Yup, you’ve hit on all of the scandals, the real and the faux ones. Of course with a lifting of his finger he could have solved these issues. Pay no mind that some have not been solved by any previous President. That doesn’t matter. Blame Obama. Why, he’s even responsible for the irrational hate that people direct at him. How awful. Maybe he should have just implemented Michele Bachmann’s plan to give us all $1/gallon gas, I mean they can do it in Saudi and Venezuela with the vaunted “free market”, so why can’t Obama do it here? A real tragedy.

          • HonestDebate1

            I’ll take that as a “no”.

          • Ray in VT

            Obviously Obama is responsible for Assad gassing his people, as well as Yanukovych not wanting to join NATO and every other thing that the haters want to lay at his feet.

          • X Y & Z

            You can’t blame Obama for any of that, he’s been to busy golfing and hanging out with Jay-Z to worry about leading the country.

          • olderworker

            The IRS “scandal”, in my opinion, was no such thing. So they went after people who publicly declared they were against paying taxes! That’s a scandal?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            No. It appears that they used IRS power to go against their political enemies. Further, there is evidence that they used government power (via audits from multiple government agencies) to punish their enemies.

            This need to be fully investigated with complete transparency.

            Too bad Obama didn’t act like Reagan and Bush and ORDER government employees to fully cooperate and fully disclose all actions.

          • Don_B1

            The workers, required to issue yes or no to groups with political agendas that requested 501(c)4 status in a short time with limited manpower, improperly chose to prioritize the order of examination by looking for political words in the groups’ names.

            And groups of both left and right persuasions were equally subjected to this criteria, and, in fact, the ONLY group denied status was a LIBERAL group.

            And then, lo and behold, it comes to light the law says that none of them should be granted status, it is a misbegotten I.R.S. regulation written to implement the law in 1959, that changed the meaning of “exclusively” to “mostly” and it the real scandal.

            But for conservatives who like to demonstrate their lying ways, there is never an end to pulling this “tired, false chestnut” out of their bag of slanderous tricks.

            So everyone should expect to hear it over and over until the 2014 elections have passed.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            When Nixon was accused of similar behavior (it turns out without basis) it rose to a level to be included in articles of impeachment. What has changed in the last 40 years? Only the names of the parties.

          • Don_B1

            The difference is that this error of judgement did not come from the White House or any Democratic Party political functionaries.

            But again, the radical right just loves to show their lying skills as they depend on may voters to not take the time to really investigate what happened.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Seeing attacks on Obama where they don’t exist could be a symptom of PTSD.

          • Ray in VT

            Indeed, just because I’ve seen Obama attacked for the LFPR here for months and just because this particular poster attacks the President with just about every post should in no way have led me to conclude that he(?) was attacking the President. How silly of me.

            If dealing with TEA Party lies, distortions, over simplifications and cherry picking can cause PTSD, then I surely have it. Thankfully I only have to deal with it when I’m online, as Vermonters have too much sense than to support such nonsense.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            My view is the country would be better off if his own team would hold him accountable. The same is true with the media.

            Watch Jay Carney any day. It is truly a Bagdad Bob situation. The regime clearly “believes” they can get away with it.

            IF the media and the Dems pushed back on Obama’s misdeeds and incompetence two things would happen. 1) he would be forced to fix things 2) the other side would back off the criticism.

          • Ray in VT

            I think that the President gets plenty of criticism from the media and his own party members, although maybe not as much as figures who want to blame him for everything would like. Take drones for instance. I think that much of the criticism there comes from the left, but also a good deal is contributed by some on the right, just like with the issue of domestic surveillance, where an interesting left/right coalition of progressives and libertarians have taken aim at the President.

          • X Y & Z

            Can you get PTSD from milking cows?

          • Don_B1

            If your hand is too cold, the cow could give the milker a real good kick in the head.

            Do you want to try it with your cold, unthinking, unsympathetic, calloused hands?

          • X Y & Z

            “Unsympatheic”, “calloused”?

            That’s a good way of describing Obama’s illegal drone strikes which have killed approximately 2,400 people.

          • Don_B1

            I don’t like the scale of, and certainly some of, the choices made in the use of drones, but I have doubt that they were made just callously or unsympathetically.

    • hennorama

      X Y & Z – zerohedge.com is the same source that [twenty_niner] used to last week, to claim there was “a nice upward trajectory is the number of brand-new cars sitting fallow in a parking lot somewhere.”

      One tiny problem: the images were from a Jan. 16, 2009, article in the Guardian.

      You might want to use more reputable sources in the future, and to research the Greater Fool Theory.

      See:
      http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2014-05-19/the-truth-about-auto-sales

  • Yar

    In Kentucky the poorest county in the state turns out at 60%. Giving McConnell 1010 vote and Grimes 249.
    They feed the hand that bites them.
    If Republicans win control of the Senate their country will be insolvent.
    http://results.enr.clarityelections.com/KY/Owsley/51068/129706/en/summary.html

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      ” their country will be insolvent.”
      The country is close to being insolvent.
      http://www.usdebtclock.org/

      I suspect you meant “county”. Is this a coal county? Reid and Obama have been hammering coal for six years. Sometimes voters aren’t stupid.

      • Yar

        Fixed, but country as well, those that hate government should not run for office. Ask any small government politician which of the one in three jobs in America which requires a license to do would they deregulate? It used to be only one in 25 jobs required some sort of certification.
        Owsley county is on the bust cycle of coal and has been for a long time, it is not a problem created by Obama. It is one of the poorest counties in the nation despite coal reserves. If coal is so great why are coal regions so poor? The resource curse!

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          “those that hate government should not run for office”

          From my observations, Mitch McConnell loves government. But many of us believe that government services should be as local as possible because that is where the accountability is located. The pendulum has swung way too far and now the Fed government is too big and out of control. And somehow you think that those who want to correct that wrong shouldn’t run for office? I don’t understand that logic.

          • Don_B1

            Many services are appropriately chosen locally.

            But, for example, local control of schools means that a city can have the wealthy leave for the suburbs, taking the revenue needed for good schools to the suburbs and leaving the poor to fund their own schools at much lower per pupil rates. And where the need for school breakfasts and lunches is a costly addition but when provided, demonstrate better student performance.

    • TFRX

      All I know is that McConnell is the “mainstream” one and NPR isn’t going to say boo about how out of the mainstream the GOP is now, no matter who wins.

      • Don_B1

        They might report what others are saying, to that effect, though!

  • SteveTheTeacher

    I’d like to hear discussion of the audacity of the US government in charging 5 Chinese nationals with electronic espionage in light of Edward Snowden’s revelations that the NSA engaged in “economic” espionage.

    According the NSA spokesperson Vanee Vines:

    “The intelligence community’s efforts to understand economic systems and policies, and monitor anomalous economic activities, are critical to providing policy makers with the information they need to make informed decisions that are in the best interest of our national security,”

    I’d also like to hear discussion of the recent USA Freedom Act. The act allows the NSA to continue much of its Universal surveillance program relatively unhampered. As Harely Geiger, Senior Counsel for the Center of Democracy and Technology says:

    “The USA FREEDOM Act leaves open the possibility for the government to engage in broad surveillance of cities, regions, or even entire states under a single court order, and to obtain records on the Internet traffic of large numbers of people,”

    • northeaster17

      I just looked through the U.S. Governments official Dictionary of Chutzpah. I couldn’t find irony anywhere.

    • Acnestes

      The fact is that every country in the world does exactly the same thing as far as they’re capable. In a society of thieves, the only sin is getting caught. I once asked Admiral Wm. Crowe, in the wake of something that came up regarding, the French spying on us, if our intelligence agencies should share their product with our industrial sector as happens in many other countries. His reply was that we collect so much material that the real problem was figuring out what would be useful to them.

  • Ray in VT

    The TEA Party: 18th century solutions for 21st century “problems”:

    http://www.salon.com/2014/05/21/gop_rep_ted_yoho_voting_should_be_limited_to_property_owners/

    • Acnestes

      I’m sure Rep. Yahoo actually means white male land owners.

      • HonestDebate1

        Ray’s projection is silly enough, why inject race?

        • Ray in VT

          How did I project anything? And considering how measures pushed by white conservatives have disproportionate impacts upon minorities, who were targeted in at least one state in an attempt to dissuade them from voting, then I think that raising the question of racial bias is valid:

          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/26/jim-greer-florida-voting-laws_n_2192802.html

          • HonestDebate1

            There is no Tea Party, there is no proposal and there is no one saying it’s a solution.

            No one can dissuade someone else from voting.

          • Ray in VT

            Sure, you can’t shorten voting days or hours, provide so few machines that people have to wait in line for hours, require people to travel great distances or spend what might be limited funds to get something that they have never needed in perhaps decades of voting. One can’t do any of those things.

            How’s that TEA Partyer sponsored plan to resegregate the Raleigh schools going?:

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/11/AR2011011107063.html

          • HonestDebate1

            That’s silly.

          • Ray in VT

            That’s sick.

          • HonestDebate1

            How so?

          • Ray in VT

            Lame.

          • HonestDebate1

            That doesn’t answer the question.

          • Ray in VT

            Bizarre.

        • Acnestes

          Google “white male landowners voting”. This is the first thing that comes up:

          U.S. Voting Rights

          When the Constitution was written, only white male property owners
          (about 10 to 16 percent of the nation’s population) had the vote. Over
          the past two centuries, though, the term “government by the people” has
          become a reality. During the early 1800s, states gradually dropped
          property requirements for voting. Later, groups that had been excluded
          previously gained the right to vote. Other reforms made the process
          fairer and easier.

          You bags are all crazy for, “original intent”, no?

          Alrighty then!

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      One of the things that the Worcester Tea Party is doing:

      http://youtu.be/MymjotgtgIE

  • John Cedar

    I am bored with the VA fiasco coverage. it ranks up there, with the lead story for 3 weeks being, the 777 that they didn’t find and don’t have any new information about. I get all my news from Fox (fair and balanced) but may have to tune out for a few news cycles.

    In summery, what happened, everyone new would happen…the federal government did a terribly horrific job at providing single payer veteran healthcare. And even a worse job than usual under the Obama administration.

    Now I would not be surprised if it comes out that the Obama administration targeted Conservative veterans to purposely delay their health care services. When that story breaks, I will tune in again.

    • Ray in VT

      Of course. This is just a harbinger of things to come in Obama’s America. Remember when the private sector got in, broke up this big government grip on health care to service members and vets and cleared it all up?:

      http://www.rawstory.com/news/2007/Bush_Administration_push_for_privatization_may_0303.html

    • anamaria23

      Any judgment reserved for the 25 year Senator from Arizona who, it is reported by some vets, that when called re: delays in care replied that they would look into it?
      Or is John McCain too busy running to Georgia, Syria, and Ukraine offering up our young military rather than serve his constituents here at home.
      The Repubs and Fox will lavishly assign blame for issues that that have gone unresolved for generations on this POTUS while Congress engages in a fifth investigation of Benghazi while 40 veterans die for lack of care in a state with two Repub Senators.

      • John Cedar

        It is unfortunate that McCain had to insert himself into foreign policy to such an extent, because of Obama’s incompetence in that field. But without the constitutional authority, there is only so much that McCain can do to pick up Obama’s slack.

        I judge McCain to be a great patriot and less flawed than most.

        • anamaria23

          John McCain would have our young sent off to every upheaval on the planet, yet ignore them when they return home.
          His ignorance of the conditions at the Phoenix V.A is inexcusable and deserves to be investigated.

        • anamaria23

          John McCain can do more harm than good as in Ukraine providing fodder for Putin’s propaganda.

    • TFRX

      You need to summarize better about the VA.

      And that conservative persecution complex is really whiny on you.

  • X Y & Z

    CNN Host: Obama Keeping VA Sec. to ‘Catch the Harpoons for a While’

    http://www.cnsnews.com/mrctv-blog/barbara-boland/cnn-host-obama-keeping-va-sec-catch-harpoons-while

  • John Cedar

    Last night watching Fox news I learned that Canada requires ID and proof of residency to vote. Racists, the whole lot of ‘em.

    I also learned that Europe has a much stricter time limit on late term abortions than the one that Texas passed. Darn war on “womyn’s health issues” extremist right wing Europeans.

    • pete18

      I had to show my ID at the doctor’s office the other day before getting treatment. They said it was to prevent against identity theft. Obviously, it’s the Jim Crow medical profession now. Will Al Sharpton be protesting over this trend?

      • John Cedar

        I had to show my ID at the doctor’s office the other day too. I never had to do that before. Either they are addressing a problem that doesn’t exist, like voter ID laws do, or more patience act like democrats than they can afford to risk.

        Did you notice that none of the leftutopian erudite hypocrites could be bothered to condemn the voter ID requirements and restrictions on late term abortions enacted in other socialist societies which they aspire for the US to emulate? But when the Tea Party promotes these things they are rabidly attacked by these lunatics and labeled as extremist and far right.

    • northeaster17

      I love the Canadian example. I would trade voter ID for a decent single payer healthcare system anyday. We could stamp out a crime that barely exists and save lots of money on our healthcare system at the same time. What’s not to like?

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        I’m glad you said “decent” since we certainly wouldn’t want to treat the American people like we treat the American Vets.

    • J__o__h__n

      Does Canada have a history of poll taxes and literacy tests to keep blacks from voting?

    • TFRX

      Please study up on voting in Canada. They don’t have multiple hoops for people to jump through to get these IDs.

      And what you don’t know about Europe and birth control and sex ed and not playing “hide the clinic” could fill a book.

      They’re not a bunch of calculating bigots and racists trying to get the likely Democrats to not be able to vote like the GOP in this country.

      • jefe68

        I’m not sure what Europe has in terms of voting ID’s as it’s not a nation. The laws in Great Britain are very different than in France or Germany.
        The French have a completely different legal system than us and most of the world that does not use Anglo-Saxon law as it’s base.

        As to racism, well I would say there’s a lot of racism in Europe and one should note the rise of far right political parties and extreme nationalist parties throughout the region.

        • Don_B1

          Hard economic times does tend to bring out that kind of thing.

          For a good summary of what has happened in Europe over the last 5+ years, see:

          http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/23/opinion/krugman-crisis-of-the-eurocrats.html

          And then go to Professor Krugman’s blog and search in the “Search this blog” box for Hungary. Another Princeton professor has posted there on the return of fascism to Hungary as a result of the economic disaster that was part of the 2008 crisis in Europe.

  • John Cedar

    Mark Rubin is in trouble for saying essentially what I believe I recall Jesse Jackson say before.

    • OnPointComments

      GIVE MARK CUBAN A PASS — THIS ISN’T BEING A BIGOT
      http://nypost.com/2014/05/22/cuban-was-just-being-realistic/

      Excerpt:

      Jesse Jackson once famously acknowledged, “There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery and then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved.” Former Spelman College President Johnnetta Cole has written that in her many conversations with black women, “One of the most painful admissions I hear is: I am afraid of my own people.”

      No, Mark Cuban. You’re a rational person making a set of reasonable calculations about your safety based on available information.

      The tragic fact is that blacks commit a disproportionate amount of violent crime. They are about 13 percent of the population, but between 1976 and 2005, blacks committed more than half of all murders in America.

      Sometimes, people who are wearing hoodies — or, say, baggy pants with no belts — are dressing to send a message. It’s an aggressive message, one glorified every day by rappers and other arbiters of black culture. And whether young men who dress in ghetto attire may intend that message for their friends or neighbors, they’re also sending a message to other folks, black or white, who don’t know them.

  • HonestDebate1

    Poor Obama, he’s trying so hard.

    OBAMA MAY 15, 2013: It’s inexcusable, and Americans are right to be angry about it, and I am angry about it.

    OBAMA OCTOBER 21, 2013: Nobody’s madder than me about the fact that the website isn’t workin’.

    OBAMA OCTOBER 18, 2011: It’s very upsetting to me that somebody showed such bad judgment, that they would allow something like that to happen.

    OBAMA APRIL 15, 2012: If it turns out some of the allegations that have been made in the press are confirmed, then of course I’ll be angry.

    OBAMA MAY 13, 2013: I’ve got no patience with it, I will not tolerate it, and we’ll make sure that, uh, we find out exactly what happened.

    OBAMA JUNE 3, 2010: I am furious at this entire situation. I would love to just spend a lot of my time venting and yellin’ at people.

    OBAMA MAY 15, 2013: We’re going to hold the responsible parties accountable.

    OBAMA MAY 16, 2013: The minute I found out about it, then my main focus is making sure that we get the thing fixed.

    OBAMA MARCH 18, 2009: I think people are right to be angry. I’m angry!

    http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2014/05/21/montage_obama_just_found_out_about_insert_scandal_here_and_he_s_really_mad

    • Coastghost

      Obama is trying, he’s very trying . . . .

    • jimino

      Replace “angry” with “this is awful” and he sounds a lot like you. To bad he isn’t a real liberal with some guts or we may have made some progress. That is what’s truly awful.

      • Coastghost

        “Gutless progressivism”: isn’t that what we were discussing when considering “trigger warnings” for post-secondary course content?

      • HonestDebate1

        I am not President. In my world, the things I am in charge of, I have to handle. Saying I’m mad then doing nothing doesn’t cut it.

        • Ray in VT

          Except where you get to blame Obama when a CFL bulb breaks in your stable?

          • HonestDebate1

            Dude, when did I ever do that? I blame Bush, he was the one who did it. I am not a fan to the CFL bulbs. You are really reaching.

          • Ray in VT

            A while back, probably when you were whining about EPA regulations on skid steers.

          • HonestDebate1

            I never ever blamed Obama for CFL’s. Never. I do blame him for EPA regulations that caused me to bellow white smoke for months. I put in a new motor a few weeks ago.

          • Ray in VT

            My bad. It went through under Bush, so it’s on him, right?

            It must be a real shame having to comply with clean air regulations and such. Why can’t we just lit the free market take care of this?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I have a “new” Obama EPA lawn mower. It has the new EPA spark plug that supposedly runs at a higher temperature. The only problem is the thing fouls and now spews black smoke after a few months. I have to replace it annually and for that pleasure I pay twice as much as the old spark plug (that never needed replacing).

          • Ray in VT

            I hate my catalytic converter too.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Something went wrong. Maybe it isn’t directly the EPAs fault. I’m not sure. Briggs and Stratten?

            EPA was the catalyst and the result is MORE pollution and higher cost.

            A win-win.

          • Ray in VT

            So if the manufacturer screwed it up, then it is the EPA’s fault?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            The EPA could be partially culpable. Its possible that they had to rush it market due to unrealistic deadlines set up by the EPA.

          • Ray in VT

            I’m sure that someone would be willing to start a class action suit for/with you.

          • Don_B1

            It is standard to replace the spark plug annually on all small engines. Just because your didn’t doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have.

            And the reduced pollution that results from the spark plug change means that someone else’s healthcare bill did not go up.

            That is a win-win for everyone.

          • jefe68

            That’s what you get for buying a cheap lawn mower. Or maybe it’s the manufactures fault. You could get a goat…

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            There was a scary story on last nights news about a goat breaking into someones home. No thanks.

          • jefe68

            That was most likely a goat from a broken heard with a meth problem.

          • Ray in VT

            I find them to be a bit like dogs. Personable, smart, quite curious, which can make them troublesome.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            It looked dangerous but a local farmer eventually came to the rescue and wrangled it. Here’s the video.

            http://www.wcvb.com/news/goat-caught-on-tape-running-through-sterling-home/26132588#!PRXy7

          • Ray in VT

            They can bunt, kick and maybe nibble, but, I think, far less dangerous than an aggressive dog of reasonable size. I used to own a few of them as pets when I was a kid.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Those horns looked nasty. The hoofs too.

          • Ray in VT

            They probably can be when used with ill intent, but nothing compared to what a grown cow can do. All relative I guess.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I believe it. However, to this layperson cows don’t seem as “quick” and therefore seem less of a threat.
            I’ve had some experience with horses and you have to be careful where you stand.
            I guess the goat seemed so unpredictable because he was trapped and therefore was threatened.

          • Ray in VT

            Cattle are surprising quick in the short term, and they can keep up a pretty good sprint for several hundred yards. Cornered animals rarely behave well in my experience. When rounding up cows it is always a balancing act between not wanting to crowd them and not wanting to give them enough room to bolt, as well as giving them time to settle down but wanting them to keep moving.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I believe that it is difficult. Of course, my “expertise” is watching old Westerns.

            I spent some time riding in Wyoming as a kid. We ended up ‘chasing’ some cattle on the range and yes they could move. We got a pretty good scolding from the rancher because we cost him a lot of cattle weight with our antics. I can’t remember how much weight he claimed but it seemed incredibly high.

          • Ray in VT

            It’s tricky, and it takes practice. One needs the right number of people, and they need to know what they are doing, and some obstacles that limit their movements (fences, stone walls, buildings) also helps.

          • HonestDebate1

            At one time I had 47 goats. They’re great.

          • HonestDebate1

            What part of “I blame Bush” don’t you get?

          • Ray in VT

            Oh, so you finally blame Bush for something? Now, did his administration spy on the phone calls of Americans without warrants?

          • HonestDebate1

            I’ve blamed Bush for lots of things including the CFL’s from day one. I blamed him for spending like a drunken sailor back when the context didn’t include Obama. I hated his immigration policy. I think TARP was handled poorly. I didn’t like Harriet Meyers. And much more.

            “Now, did his administration spy on the phone calls of Americans without warrants?”

            I never said he didn’t but that is a loaded question.

            Bush is irrelevant, why are you so obsessed? I think you are just trying to make it about me. It’s not about me.

          • Ray in VT

            It isn’t about you, just your blatant lies and distortions.

            “No one paid because no American was spied on without warrant.” you http://onpoint.wbur.org/2013/10/29/nsa-spying-world-leaders

            Alberto Gonzales disagreed when he spoke about how they did spy on conversations without warrants, didn’t get them after the fact and in the administration’s view didn’t need to go through the FISA process.

          • HonestDebate1

            First, if you are going to link my comment then link my comment not a page with hundreds and hundreds of them.

            I said it was a loaded question. I stand by my answer. I noticed you are now saying “conversations” instead of “Americans”. I was quite clear 7 months ago. Here is the comment, I invite anyone to read it and the thread for context:

            http://onpoint.wbur.org/2013/10/29/nsa-spying-world-leaders#comment-1101569409

            The fact is your framing is inaccurate and silly.

            Look at how you bounce around from the 2nd Amendment to CFLs to the EPA to the NSA. You’re all over the place. My comment was abut Obama’s long record of claiming outrage and doing nothing. I can see why you’d rather die than address it.

          • Ray in VT

            It’s not about me.

            Blah, blah, blah, blah. More spinning to get away from the facts and how you have trouble getting them right. I find your long history of being befuddled by basic facts to be entirely relevant when evaluating your frequently bizarre anti-Obama comments. Everything is that dude’s fault. Ukraine not going into NATO, factors affecting the LFPR that were trending a decade or more ago, whatever else suits your fancy. I get it. Hate away.

          • HonestDebate1

            Now NATO? And no the trend was flat from 2004-8 as I said.

            My comment was about Obama’s long record of claiming outrage and doing nothing. I can see why you’d rather die than address it.

          • Ray in VT

            Yes, I find your long history of incredibly stupid comments to be relevant when evaluating whatever stupid comment you’re making today.

            Of course he has done nothing. The man never does anything. How silly of me not to see that. Perhaps a true conservative would have done something, like fixing the Middle East, if only Obama wasn’t in the way.

          • HonestDebate1

            I take it back, he didn’t do nothing. He passed out promotions.

          • Ray in VT

            Did he give out the Goerge Tenet Medal for Outstanding and Accurate Service, or the Condaleezza Rice Promotion Award for Outstanding National Security and Intelligence Service?

          • HonestDebate1

            Those fine people did not work for Obama silly.

          • Ray in VT

            I guess that f*ck up or screw up and get either rewarded or promoted is only bad when it is alleged that it happens when Obama is President.

          • HonestDebate1

            Not really.

          • Ray in VT

            So it was bad that they got rewarded and promoted for doing bad jobs? I am glad that you agree.

          • Don_B1

            I hope you at least got one that was more efficient that the “burned out one”?

          • HonestDebate1

            Yes, it’s smoke free and runs like a champ.

        • jefe68

          Running your home or business is nothing like running a country, let alone one the most powerful and one of the wealthiest nations on the planet.

          I’m not sure where this meme stems from, but it’s pretty dumb.

          • HonestDebate1

            I didn’t say it was, Jimino did.

        • keltcrusader

          “I am not President.”

          thank god for small miracles!

    • OnPointComments

      Uh oh. President Obama is outraged again. But don’t fret, he gets over it within a couple of weeks, then declares the scandal to be a witch hunt.

      • Ray in VT

        Sure, because he has to distract people from his plans to destabilize Mexico in order to crack down on the 2nd Amendment as well as to create the whole video line of intelligence regarding Benghazi. The man is so busy creating these vast conspiracies. I don’t know how he does it.

        • pete18

          Straw man alert. There isn’t much of a conspiracy behind his motivations to feign outrage and avoid responsibility. It’s all political survival from one of the most ineffective presidents in our lifetime.

          • HonestDebate1

            Bingo.

          • Ray in VT

            Of course. I’m sure that none of these things bother him, because he is just that terrible of a human being.

          • pete18

            Different argument of course. Whether these things actually bother him or not is unknown. We can only judge him by the actions we see. The initial outrage followed by inaction and appeals to being helpless in the face of outside forces, as well as acting like a victim, is a consistent Obama pattern, deserving of critique.

          • Ray in VT

            I think that your evaluation of his actions and responses inform your position, but I don’t think that they accurately reflect his actions and responses.

          • pete18

            How would you describe them?

          • Ray in VT

            Measured. Deliberate.

          • pete18

            You have a skill for euphemisms.

          • Ray in VT

            I thought that I was using them as adjectives.

          • pete18

            Yes, I agree, euphemistic adjectives. Very skillfully done.

          • Ray in VT

            In what way are they euphemisms?

          • pete18

            Don’t be so modest.

          • Ray in VT

            That doesn’t really answer my question.

          • pete18

            Now you’re just pulling my leg.

          • Ray in VT

            Not at all.

    • anamaria23

      I do not listen to Limbaugh, but I assume he has been right on top of the treatment of veterans at the V.A. advocating for them and all that as has the 25 year Arizona Senator John McCain who would not hesitate to send our young military to any place on the planet, but has never once publically expressed concern for their care at home.

      • HonestDebate1

        Yes, absolutely he has.

    • TFRX

      And he went back in time to screw up the Walter Reed Hospital, too.

  • HonestDebate1

    Flashback: in 2009 Obama wanted to make veterans pay for treatment of service-related injuries with private insurance.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/03/10/veterans.health.insurance/index.html?iref=24hours

  • Matt MC

    Wow, the spammers came out early today!

    • TFRX

      Spammers?

      They’re not offering me a slice of a Nigerian prince’s fortune in exchange for my credit card number. Or even an honest game of three card monte.

  • JONBOSTON

    Jack Beatty:
    Last Friday you described Karl Rove’s questioning of Hillary Clinton’s medical event as a “smear” . Now just yesterday Senator Jay Rockefeller called opposition to Obamacare as “racist” and Rep James Claymore , 3rd ranking Democrat in the House, compared Reconstruction opposition to opposition to Obama. Just two weeks ago Rep Steve Israel of NY ( head of the Democrat Congressional Campaign) alleged that Republican opposition may be racially motivated . I could also include Howard Dean’s calling Republicans un-American or Harry Reid’s slime campaign against Charles and David Koch , private US citizens. Or the disgraceful comments made by leading black Democrats against Justice Thomas or conservative black Republicans like Sen Tim Scott . Putting aside that it was past senior members of the Democrat party that historically supported slavery, opposed Reconstruction, supported segregation , Jim Crow and the Klu Klux Klan, opposed efforts to de-segregate schools in the South, had a very recent past Senate majority leader ( Sen Robt Byrd) as a former Klan leader, filibustered the 1964 Civil rights act ( and numerous prior civil rights bills) as well as the Voting Rights Act , and now engages in a disgusting racially polarizing race baiting campaign that is destroying this country.
    What say you now Jack Beatty? Will you call out today the smear campaign that continues unabated by Washington Democrats against Republicans and those who oppose in good faith Obama’s failed policies and failed presidency or are you part of the problem?

    • TFRX

      Gawd, the derp is deep in this one.

      Too much stupid in this post to dignify it with a real conversation.

      • JONBOSTON

        It must be very frustrating to have absolutely nothing substantive to reply with.

        • Jill122

          There are plenty of substantive things that could be said, but it would take a post much longer than yours and even then you wouldn’t believe.

          In short, it’s a waste of time. You’ve made up your mind that the republicans have been martyred (once again) to the MSM or some other entity that doesn’t understand how awful white republicans are being treated. (sniff! sniff!)

          We’ve got it. “White republicans are being mistreated and no one is noticing . . . AND they are not racists.” (riiiiiight!)

          • TFRX

            “Finally the white man gets a break!”

            (h/t Family Guy)

          • JONBOSTON

            Very deep thoughts. How long did it take you to figure out the spelling?

          • JONBOSTON

            It must be awfully frustrating to not have the intellectual capacity to respond with anything substantive. Spare me your straw man argument that it isn’t worth your time to respond because I wouldn’t believe anything. I get enough of these straw man arguments from our Staggeringly Incompetent Leader.

          • Don_B1

            You won’t know a strawman argument if you saw one, or at least you won’t admit it.

    • Don_B1

      The other parts are equally off-base, but I will take on your silly attack on the Democratic Party, although probably not in enough detail to convince you (quite possibly because you do understand the false (strawman) argument that you use).

      Following the Civil War, the Republican Party largely supported rights for former slaves and, generally all Blacks. And the Democratic Party consisted of all those who had supported the Confederate States.

      But with the end of WWII, Blacks throughout the country began organizing to end discrimination, in particular the two forms that dominated in the (old) South, access to public facilities (lunch counters to hotels to concert halls, etc.) and the right to vote.

      It took a combination of Democratic Party providing leadership (from President John F. Kennedy from the North and culminating in President Lyndon B. Johnson — from the South) and getting strong support from Republicans, notably Everett M. Dirksen (R, Il) who worked hard to get Republican votes in the Senate, to pass first the Civil Rights Act (1964) and the Voting Rights Act (1965). President Johnson noted at the time that since Democrats had led the effort, they would be blamed for those steps removing legal barriers for Blacks to have better lives by generations of Southern voters.

      And just what President Johnson predicted has come to pass. Then along came Republicans, like President Richard Nixon who wanted to build a Republican Party in the South, gave political support to civil rights opponents like Alabama Governor George C. Wallace. Both Blacks and whites switched allegiances over about a decade or so, although I think Blacks had been moving to the Democratic Party for some time before, from when President Harry S. Truman made the initial moves for civil rights (integrating the Armed Forces being the most remembered). This is well documented by Kevin Phillips who popularized the term “Southern Strategy.”

      While you will reject the source (messenger) don’t ignore the accurate content (message):

      http://www.forwardprogressives.com/the-truth-about-republican-racism-and-the-southern-strategy/

      that gets to the reasons your claim is just so much BS.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    The VA news is deplorable and should be a cautionary tale for everyone — especially those on the left.

    The VA health care system IS single payer.

    I can hear the reprise now: but, but, but in our utopian wet-dreams we can design a single payer system that improves health care outcomes for all at half the cost.

    • Ray in VT

      How did the private sector handle Walter Reed? Really well, right?

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        The private sector solution includes but is not limited to the numerous charities that attempt to fill the gap between the needs of our veterans and the empty promises of government apparatchiks.

        http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/mission.aspx

        • Ray in VT

          Oh, private charity is going to take care of it? Good to know. Another 19th century solution to a 21st century problem.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            So you would you classify the deaths of our service men as a twenty first century success?

          • Ray in VT

            I would classify the notion that we can let private charity take care of a problem for which it is not equipped to handle to be a 19th century solution. I also think that seeing as how our nation owes our veterans a great debt, then we should be doing as much as possible to serve their needs.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            Off Topic Personal Comment.

            You seem not your usual self today. You seem to be less rational and more argumentative than I ever recall you being. I am hope I am wrong, and all is well with you. While we disagree on politics I am still looking forward to visiting VT and sharing a sundae with you.

          • Ray in VT

            Perhaps today I am just a bit more sick of dealing with the same old lies and distortions, but I’m otherwise fine, thank you. Should you ever be up this way, then perhaps something could be arranged. I like to meet people, and I do have a sweet tooth.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            I am glad to hear that.

            You could bear in mind that everyone is dealing with their own frustration at “the same old lies and distortions” and all while “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.”
            19 th century solutions still may be of value.

          • Ray in VT

            Some things, however, are, I think, either objectively untrue or based only upon the flimsiest of conspiracy thinking.

            I think that there are likely many good things from 19th century thinking, but to attempt to deliver social services or medical care based upon the framework that was used then is highly inadvisable.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            One of the greatest difference I have experienced between “them” and “us” is the belief that everything is subjective. I reject that belief. I believe in practical solutions to the problems facing our republic. The answers are knowable and do-able if we resolve so. But that is too simple for some people. And it doesn’t leave room for notoriety and graft for others.

          • Ray in VT

            Some things are objective and some are subjective. For many things I don’t believe in absolutes, as many of those seem to stem from religious beliefs that cannot be factually verified. That does not mean that some of those notions are not very good and noble, but their qualities do not make them absolutes. I like practical solutions, but I don’t see workable solutions offered by those who seem to want to push “market-based” solutions, because I think that the market often fails, or at least it fails to provide outcomes that are in line with the needs of all who may need to be served.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            I favor new solutions as well but since the solutions offered have been tried before and failed I see no reason to play a part in that farce. Since the Pharos of Egypt their answers have been the same, “Be my slave, build my pyramid, and you shall not want.” That command economy didn’t do much for the many back then and does little more for them today. On the other hand free markets have propelled our small and silly nation to the top of the list of producers in the world. In China and Egypt they teach their children American English and hope to send them here to breath our free and flourish.
            All will never have enough of what they want. But today more have more than ever before in the recoded history of this world and because of free markets more have what they need than ever before as well. But that contradicts the works of Marx and Engels and other dead white guys from the 19th century.

          • Ray in VT

            As imperfect and flawed as many 20th and 21st century approaches may be, I find them to be far less imperfect and flawed than the laissez-faire solutions and approaches that preceded them, to which many recent “solutions” offered by the Right many seem to be harkening back to.

            You cite the Pharaohs rather dismissively, yet fail to note that what they offered and how they did things made them a great power of the ancient world. What Rome or ancient China did made them great powers that endured for centuries. The limited government model certainly helped us in many ways in the 19th century, but it also produced slums for many, poor working conditions, rampant pollution, and we, as a nation, we aided by vast stretches of land on our borders that were only lightly populated by militarily weak peoples.

            I favor a sort of mixed economy, as the market can do many things well, but some things it does not do. It did not provide adequate relief to the poor or the unemployed during hard times. It did not provide electricity to all areas, or adequate access to health care for the elderly or the poor. There is not really profit there, so for profits don’t do it, and the non-profits haven’t been able to meet the needs either. Now, if one wants to construe such an approach as something akin to a “command economy” such was as seen in the Communist Bloc of the Cold War, then one can, but it is incorrect to do so. No one is trying to destroy the free market or free enterprise.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            There in lies the contention between us. As imperfect and flawed as many the Age of Enlightenment solutions were I find them to be far less imperfect and flawed than the top down solutions and approaches that are offered by the Progressives and seem to be harkening back to an earlier and I would say inferior age.

            You chide me about my reference to the Pharos citing them as a great power in the ancient world. I readily acknowledge that and the magnitude of their contribution to the world. What you are forgetting is the cost. What would Hittites or others have contributed if not subjugated? We will never know.
            You claim that the limited government model produced slums for many, poor working conditions, and rampant pollution. But such things where never limited to our system and today they exist in every nation even those that claim the mantel of workers’ paradises. We have advanced at a remarkable rate technologically and materially as well as a society. You underestimate the role that free people and free markets play in that advancement.

            Entrepreneurs today are making profits in the poorest parts of the world by providing water and other basic services that governments don’t. That is not to say that there is no need for government. Just that there are so many things that government does poorly and should be left to others. So I too would like a mixed economy just a different ratio than you seem to prefer.

          • Don_B1

            And what was ever more “top down” than the Kingdom of Egypt, or Imperial Rome?

            Progressives offer a mix of ways to accomplish goals. When a goal is threatened by “races to the bottom” in areas such as cutting taxes to the bone so as to limit government’s power to finance the means to achieve that goal, then the goal must be legislated at the highest level of government. And that will not happen unless the goal is widely perceived as necessary.

            The goals of a social safety net, necessitated as the economy moved from an agricultural one, where a person could usually pick up a handyman job on a farm for food and shelter, to a manufacturing and now service economy, where the employer has to account for every penny at the bottom line, there are no “easy ways for private charity” to make unemployment go away, particularly when the financial system is being mismanaged as it is today, with austerity being pushed when the private sector has insufficient demand for its products to encourage businesses to invest to grow.

            The case for top level government action to level the playing field between subsidized fossil fuels which do not pay for the external costs their wastes inflict on the rest of the world versus the new sustainable fuels which need some help to rapidly achieve economies of scale where their costs will make them economically viable as well as necessary to avoid the externalities of fossil fuels.

            On most other issues, progressive are happy to support more local solutions to human problems.

          • Ray in VT

            Yet the Progressive ideas succeeded the “Age of Enlightenment solutions” that had ceased to provide adequate solutions to a variety of social conditions and experiences that existed in the late 19th century. “Solutions” that worked in a nation of a few million people where the largest cities numbered perhaps 40-50,000 did not address the problems of cities that ballooned into millions of inhabitants, where merely shipping excess populations out West to get free land from the government was no longer an option.

            I enjoy historical what ifs. They can be fun and intriguing when posed and elaborated upon by those with great knowledge of the subject area. However, I was not aware that we were going to go down the road of having a nation level cumbaya and sit around a campfire maligning nations for doing what nations do. Such is out of line with historical facts and experience throughout most of recorded history. If we are going to do that, then we should also be acknowledging how the American “free market” was built on the back, in part, of slave labor, the preying upon of the weakness of Native Americans and beating up on Mexico, Spain and a number of Third World governments during the post World War II era.

            I did not claim that the things that I cited as problems that our system has produced are limited to our system. Some of them are, at least at the scale that we have seen over the past 150 years, a result of industrialism. I have merely pointed out that some of these things the “free market” either does not handle well or addresses almost not at all.

            We also see in some of the poorest parts of the world inept, corrupt or primitive governments that are not fulfilling the needs of many citizens. Let us look closer to home for better looks at what governments and the markets do. In this country we had wealth, a robust private sector, ample institutions and such, yet the private sector failed to bring electricity to all people, because there was no profit to be made. Should we then merely accept that some regions shouldn’t get such a service, or that the elderly or the poor should lack access to health care. The “free market” failed to provide solutions there, and to deny that in areas like that the market has failed to provide the sorts of services that we expect in a modern nation is to deny history and fact.

          • Don_B1

            I will think of that when I am on Grand Isle in July!

          • Ray in VT

            It’s pretty nice out in the islands. My great aunt used to camp there all summer, and my sister in law was born in her parents driveway out in the islands.

          • TFRX

            Where do you get that inferment?

          • TFRX

            Here’s a link for you. But I would not be surprised if you’ve already read it.

            http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2013/10/09/no-private-charity-cant-handle-it-alone/

          • Ray in VT

            No, I had not seen that specifically, although some of the information regarding the challenges being faced by things like food pantries I am familiar with some of the facts on.

        • HonestDebate1

          Obama has tried since day one to eliminate the charitable tax deduction.

    • Human2013

      No, you missed the point. The point is that this country could NEVER afford to go to war. War is immeasurable, so the next time a congressmen attempts to quantify it, pay no mind to him or her.

    • hennorama

      WftC — let’s see if I understand your “theory.”

      From your comment, I infer that you believe the following:

      1. President Obama, and all of “those on the left” really wanted single payer and not the private insurance/Medicaid combo that is the PPACA.

      2. The VA was running perfectly prior to President Obama’s election, and his administration, knowing that it is an example of single payer (actually single provider as well, which is far different, but the details don’t matter, right?) decided to “let the VA get out of control because that was ONLY for those who made sacrifices for the country,” as you wrote.

      In other words, the Obama administration purposely crashed an example of their desired outcome, in order to get their desired outcome, and also to screw over “ONLY … those who made sacrifices for the country.”

      Please correct any misinferences.

    • Don_B1

      I don’t know of anyone that thinks the VA admissions system is not a real mess, and I second that opinion.

      But the admissions system is not the whole VA health system. Those who have gotten into the system generally rate the system highly, and it provides services for at least certain injuries that are not duplicated in the general healthcare system. It preforms some of the cutting-edge research in trauma surgery, which the E.R.s of our hospitals have benefitted from greatly.

      Ever since the Vietnam War, with the large numbers of veterans needing care from napalm and agent orange injuries which threatened to overload the VA treatment facilities, which led both the Armed Services and the VA to deny the toxicity of those contaminants, there has been a huge backlog of waiting servicemen. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Gen. Eric Shinseki opened the VA to those claims from Vietnam era veterans as well as trying to improve the service for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, with highly disappointing results, at least so far.

      It is likely to be a much better result if the exact nature of the reasons for this failure are determined before a solution is crafted. Some have been studying the VA for some time and maybe they do know what this problem is, but they may well be advancing solutions to problems of the past more than problems of the future.

  • Ray in VT

    Disgraced former officer and Congressman questions the loyalties of Representative who lost two limbs serving her country:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/22/allen-west-tammy-duckworth_n_5375138.html

    • HonestDebate1

      The headline reads: ”
      Allen West Says Rep. Tammy Duckworth, Decorated Veteran, Not ‘Loyal’ To America”

      He said no such thing, that’s why HuffPO is a rag.

      Here’s my favorite Duckworth moment.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jr1kwC0je1Y

      We just set the all time record for people on disability.

      • Ray in VT

        Seeing as how I did not quote the headline, and I said that he questioned her loyalties, then your comment upon the headline, as it pertains to my comment, is pretty irrelevant.

        We have also set the all time record for people in this country and the number of people employed. When one looks at the year over year percentage increase of the number of people on disability, the numbers don’t really show some sort of explosion, as is often claimed.

        • HonestDebate1

          HuffPo is a rag. You should try Fox and Rush.

          • Ray in VT

            Why? I get all of their lies delivered to me by you.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            Didn’t Doonesbury just do a strip about lame HuffPo click bait titles?

          • Ray in VT

            Maybe. It does have a fair amount of things that are designed to grab attention and generate clicks. There’s not much news value in its celebrity skin page, but I’m not going to complain about the content.

          • HonestDebate1

            I thought you got the lies from Media Matters. Will you condemn HuffPo for the headline?

          • Ray in VT

            What lies does Media Matters tell, except for all of the conservative lies that they repeat and expose for the sewage that they are.

            I’ll call out the Huffington Post headline, although he is questioning whether or not she is going to be loyal to her oath of office or to her party. Her nation or her party, is it not?

          • HonestDebate1

            For one they made up racist quotes never uttered by Rush. So there’s that.

          • Ray in VT

            Which one was that? I think that Rush can utter enough racist tripe without anyone needing to make up anything nearly as foul as what he spews.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Never thought of you as a Rush listener, Ray. Can I call you a dittohead?

          • Ray in VT

            I take in the stupidest bits of his blather when it amuses me to do so.

          • HonestDebate1

            Dude, there isn’t a racist bone in Rush’s body. It’s a shallow accusation. MM never apologized and when they were called on the facts, just said what you said. Basically that he would have said it. You should not listen to MM.

          • Ray in VT

            You have still listed what you claim is an inaccurate quote. Sure, Rush isn’t bigoted, he just says a lot of stuff that is.

          • HonestDebate1

            Look it up. It was during his bid to buy the Rams.

          • Ray in VT

            Was it when he said that the players just looked like a bunch of gang bangers? I wonder why NFL players wouldn’t want to play for guy with a history of bigoted comments directed at African Americans. I liked how he insinuated that Obama was somehow a part of the whole affair because “the Obama people have got their hooks in the NFL now.” Hilarious.

          • HonestDebate1

            No he said that about the crips and bloods. He was totally correct was he not? Are you saying that was somehow racist? That’s nuts.

            I think it had something to do with him saying (not) that slavery had it’s merits or something. There was another quote too. Let me get this straight, are you saying MM didn’t attribute false quotes to him? As I recall it may have been someone else that made it up and MM that parroted it. They never apologized they just said he would have said it. It’s the way they roll. You shouldn’t read them, they are a disgrace.

          • Ray in VT

            Yeah, but you seem to think that pushing “research” from a white nationalist group (not the FBI) is valid and counts as “honest debate”, so what you consider to be “nuts” matters little to me.

            That still isn’t providing a quote, I mean it’s not like they found a fake thesis that supposedly Limbaugh wrote, pushed it, and then when it was found to be a fake they just said something like “well, this is how he thinks anyways” and just went on their merry way. I’m sure that they are really hated by the sorts of dimwits that idolize bottom feeders like Limbaugh and the other sources so much favored by those who seem actively opposed to accepting even the most rudimentary of facts not in line with whatever they have set in their feeble minds. Not even the dictionary can be accepted in the face of ardently believed in ideology.

          • HonestDebate1

            Bizarre.

          • Ray in VT

            Yes, your tendency to promote and stick by positions that are obviously factually inaccurate is incredibly bizarre. I guess that that is what gets when dealing with TOP dittoheads.

          • Steve__T

            So they edited the live feed with the words coming out of his mouth, that, that, never mind.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, they made them up out of whole cloth.

    • JONBOSTON

      Your mischaracterization of Alan West’s comments are what is truly disgraceful. What he was arguing is something that I happen to agree with and find truly disturbing -namely that today’s Democrat party places party loyalty over doing what’s best for the country. Who are the statesmen in the national Democrat party? Barack Obama, Harry Reid , Nancy Pelosi? I throw up at the thought.

      • Ray in VT

        Your inability to read my comments and other dippy notions are noted.

      • TFRX

        Pathetic riposte.

        At least you remembered to say Democrat Party. Twice.

      • keltcrusader

        yes, I throw up too when reading your posts

        • JONBOSTON

          Good–but be careful about dehydration

    • OnPointComments

      4 DEMOCRATIC ATTACKS ON MILITARY VETERAN CANDIDATES
      http://dailycaller.com/2014/05/17/4-democratic-attacks-on-military-veteran-candidates/

      1. New York first district congressional candidate Lee Zeldin

      The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) called Iraq War veteran Zeldin a “coward” and DCCC northeast regional press secretary Mark Brumer tweeted an image of Zeldin’s face photoshopped onto The Wizard of Oz’s Cowardly Lion. The DCCC even ironically remarked that it was sending Zeldin a “badge of courage.”

      2. Arkansas Senate candidate Tom Cotton

      Incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor said that his Republican challenger Cotton has a “sense of entitlement” from his military service that makes him think he should be “let” into the U.S. Senate.

      3. Maryland gubernatorial candidate Anthony Brown

      Brown, a Democrat who served in Iraq and who still serves as a Colonel in the United States Army Reserve, took a slap in the face from his Democratic primary opponent, Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler.

      “I’m running against somebody who has never managed anybody, never run anything, his ads are about how he’s a lawyer in Iraq, and that’s all fine and good but this is a real job,” Gansler said in a speech. Veteran groups were understandably outraged.

      4. Republican Nevada Rep. Joe Heck

      Democratic Nevada congressional candidate Erin Bilbray accused her opponent Heck, an Iraq War veteran and currently serving Army Reservist, of engaging in “un-American” activity by sending out a fundraising email accusing Bilbray of supporting candidates that would be a “rubber stamp” for President Obama.

      • Ray in VT

        The first is definitely unacceptable. The second is, I think, pretty weak. The third may be insulting, but not really up to the level of #1, #4 or the attack on Duckworth.

        Let us also not forgot the despicable tactics used against Max Cleland or John Kerry.

        • HonestDebate1

          Are you talking about the swift boat heroes telling the truth regarding Kerry?

          And Cleland was a hack.

          • Ray in VT

            I am talking about the lies told about Kerry, and so Cleland was, in your judgement, a hack, so that justifies running down a guy who lost limbs for his country? Good to know.

          • HonestDebate1

            Yes he was hack. What on God’s green earth does his non-combat injury have to do with it? It wasn’t an act of heroism, it was an act of fate. But it wouldn’t matter either way.

            I remember when he was defeated fair and square for his voting record and the libs screamed foul play because he was an amputee. WTF?! This is what you guys do.

          • Ray in VT

            Got is, so such disgusting tactics are okay as long as one judges the person to be of poor quality. Good to know.

            How did that West re-election go? Has he officially conceded or congratulated his opponent yet? I shall recall your stance on the ads in question the next time you cry foul regarding an ad attacking a TOPer.

          • HonestDebate1

            Where do you get this stuff? Citing a voting record of an opponent during an election is not a disgusting tactic.

            I have no idea what you mean by poor quality. It’s just weird.

            West was gerrymandered out by his own party. He is a war hero, why do you call him disgraced?

          • Ray in VT

            I think that West’s history of terrible comments did quite a great deal to undermine his time in office. I call threatening to shoot an innocent person to be disgraceful, but that seems to be a selling point in some circles.

            I call chucking pictures of Saddam and Bin Laden up as a way to go after a guy to be disgraceful.

          • jefe68

            Wow, you really are a bottom feeder of the worst kind. Max Cleland is a recipient of the Silver Star and the Bronze Star for valorous actions in combat. And his injuries were from a grenade accidentally going off. Which happened while he was on active duty in a war zone.

          • HonestDebate1

            What, no purple Heart?

            The press (Al Hunt and others) said he was on a reconnaissance mission or that he was injured by enemy fire.

            But what do his valorous actions in war have to do with his voting record? Why should his record of legislative prowess be off limits because of it? It’s crazy.

          • jefe68

            What the press has said about Max Cleland is not his fault and yes he has a Purple heart as well. You might want to stop being an a_ _ hole now as you are starting to look very foolish.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, he did not receive a purple heart said he didn’t deserve it.

          • Don_B1

            In other words, you see no problem in attacking a U.S. veteran running for office as long as the attacks are not vile?

            Most Americans would agree, I hope. And without examining the detailed platforms and other evidence that might show their actions inconsistent with their platforms, I cannot claim the attacks are justified. But having seen many Republican “platforms” and their inconsistent actions in office, I can see why scrutiny is required.

          • TFRX

            The ones telling the truth about Kerry aren’t the ones you think.

            You didn’t always have such delusions.

      • TFRX

        Hahaha.

        Tucker the Fncker time starts earlier and earlier every week.

        Please stop pretending your media hero’s site has a handle on this. Max Clelland and Tammy Duckworth would give an arm and a leg to knock some sense into you.

    • MrNutso

      West’s comments make no sense. How are Duckworth “loyalties” questionable. Why should she not serve on the committee if asked?

    • keltcrusader

      This was even more disgusting than I could ever possibly imagine. A “man” who got his butt kicked out of the service has the audacity to smear the loyalty of a decorated veteran who was injured while in the line of duty?? You just can’t make crazy up on a level like this. ((violently smh))

  • X Y & Z

    Senator Wyden: “Every American Has The RIGHT To Know When Their Government Believes It Is Allowed To KILL Them!”

    http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/05/senator-wyden-every-american-right-know-government-believes-allowed-kill.html

    • X Y & Z

      Try telling that to President Obama, Senator Wyden.

      • Shag_Wevera

        Oh Jeez.

        • TFRX

          But what about the entertainment value of watching some poster have a conversation with themselves?

          • X Y & Z

            That’s because none of the rabid Obama supporters like yourself will discuss Obama’s illegal drone killings.

          • MrNutso

            Happy to discuss them. See my post above. This will never stop unless the electorate (read those who vote, not americans as a whole) vote in a Congress that will enact legislation curbing presidential power, and act if the President ignores the law.

          • TFRX

            Yawn.

            Rabid? You think every lefty is as pusillanimous as Joltless Joe Lieberman?

          • Ray in VT

            I do not think that that is the case.

  • Ed75

    This week the U.N. Committee on Torture cited and Catholic Church and requested that it change it’s teaching on abortion, because it is torture. And (don’t read if squeamish) pulling the arms and legs off an unborn child without anesthesia isn’t torture? (Evil eventually shows that it goes against reason also, and becomes ridiculous.)
    When the UN leaders met with Pope Francis, he clarified the situation for them.

  • Ed75

    Pope Francis is going to Israel today or tomorrow (?). At a Mass in Jordan 14,000 children will receive their first Holy Communion, beautiful. And he will say Mass in the building where the Last Supper was held. (The tomb of David might be on the first floor, it seems its location was known in the time of Christ but there isn’t enough archaeological evidence to pinpoint it now.) It will be played on EWTN.

  • OnPointComments

    The House passed the Veterans Affairs Management Accountability Act by a vote of 390 to 33, which would give the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs authority to remove employees of the Senior Executive Service, whose performance the Secretary believes warrants removal, from the government service completely or transfer them to a General Schedule position within the current civil service system. The ability to remove such an employee is modeled after the same authority that Members of Congress have to remove their professional staff members who work for them.

    Senate Democrats, led by Bernie Sanders, blocked the bill.

    “As we head into the Memorial Day weekend, I am disappointed, and – frankly – shocked that Senate Democratic leaders chose to block legislation that would hold VA managers accountable, which passed the House with strong support from both parties. This bill is not the whole solution to the systemic problems plaguing the VA, but it is a crucial first step – and there is no substantive objection to it at all. None. As we head home to honor the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedom, it’s fair to ask why Senate Democrats won’t stand up for more accountability?” –House Speaker John Boehner

    • Don_B1

      I think that this VA scandal could easily be a case of good intentions leading to bad law. That is most likely the reason that Democrats opposed this permanent “fix” to a bad problem which could be abused in the future.

    • MrNutso

      It seems like Sanders is merely following the rules of the Senate.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        I thought Harry Reid simply makes up the rules.

        • MrNutso

          All rules in the Senate have been made up by the Senate.

    • Ray in VT

      First of all, Bernie Sanders isn’t a Democrat. Secondly, he had this to say about the bill:

      “Your legislation has many important provisions which I happen to agree
      with. There are some I think need work on, and we are going to hold a
      hearing on that legislation and other legislation in early June,”
      Sanders said.

      http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/207026-wh-fears-va-bill-could-mean-significant-litigation

      Senator Sanders has a pretty strong record on veterans issues, so I think that if he has concerns regarding merely rubber stamping the House bill, then I’m willing to wait and see what changes the Senate may want to make.

  • Shag_Wevera

    What would you call an attorney who gave up his possibility of a lucrative practice to fight against government corruption? What would you call a doctor who gave up the possibility of a lucrative practice to fight for those less fortunate than he? Their names are Fidel Castro and Ernesto “Che” Gueverra. Have this for breakfast, America.

    • X Y & Z

      How many innocent people did Fidel Castro and ‘Che’ Guevara kill between the two of them?

      • Ray in VT

        Likely far fewer than any number of people whom we supported in the region.

    • OnPointComments

      Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      “Crazy with fury I will stain my rifle red while slaughtering any enemy that falls in my hands! My nostrils dilate while savoring the acrid odor of gunpowder and blood. With the deaths of my enemies I prepare my being for the sacred fight and join the triumphant proletariat with a bestial howl!”

      Does not sound like the words of a skilled healer to me.

  • JP_Finn

    I’d love it if you’d take a moment to discuss the confirmation of Judge David Barron to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit. He is the person who wrote the memo permitting President Obama to extrajudicially kill noncombatant Americans overseas.

    I don’t agree with most of Senator Paul’s policy positions, nor his legal interpretation of the 2nd Amendment (among other things), but he made a rousing and principled stand against this travesty yesterday on the Senate floor. Unfortunately, Judge Barron was confirmed, with only Democratic and Independent senators voting in favor: http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=113&session=2&vote=00162

    • MrNutso

      These killings will continue on forever or until every terrorist is dead (which is the same as forever). The President (collectively all Presidents) will not stop because they are afraid of Congress. Congress will not reign in Presidential power on this issue, because they are are afraid of the electorate, especially if there is another terrorist attack. The courts will not stop it, because there is no way to get the issue into court for lack of standing.

  • OnPointComments

    An example of the absolute lunacy from one of the most unaccountable government agencies.

    YET MORE LUNACY FROM THE CFPB
    Employee performance reviews go out the window–and top performers get the shaft

    http://www.bankstocks.com/ArticleViewer.aspx?ArticleID=6712&ArticleTypeID=2

    Excerpt:

    There really is no end to the insanity that goes on at the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau. Now the agency says it will no longer perform personnel reviews, on the grounds that the results of earlier reviews appeared to show that it discriminates against minority employees. In particular, on a 1 to 5 scale, whites got higher scores than Hispanics, who got higher scores than blacks. To remedy this, the agency will now proceed (and pay everyone) on the basis that all of its employees are 5s. Everyone’s a winner! Only rather than a trophy, everyone gets cash money. Welcome to cloud-cuckoo land.

    One wants to burst out laughing, but this is actually yet another sign of what a messed up bureaucracy the CFPB really is.

    “By self-identifying and self-correcting these [performance review disparities],” CFPB head Richard Cordray told American Banker, “we are holding ourselves accountable to the same standards of fairness that we expect of our regulated entities.” No. Treating the agency’s highest-rated employees the same as its lowest-rated ones is the opposite of fairness. Hard-working, conscientious workers (and, yes, the federal government does have those) deserve to be treated better and paid more than workers who, say, persistently show up late and turn in shoddy work. Instead, in its pathetic bow to political correctness, the slackers are being rewarded. Worse, Cordray seems oblivious to the fact that he’s giving his most valuable workers the shaft.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Re: VA Scandal
    Barack Obama: All talk; No Arugula.

  • X Y & Z

    Detroit motorists under siege in ‘Carjack City’

    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/detroit-motorists-under-siege-carjack-city

    Detroit: liberal, democrat controlled, crime infested, bankrupt
    Coming to a city near you.

    • Don_B1

      Correlations, not causes.

      Widespread discrimination, white flight destroying the tax base with not enough (if much at all) help from the state, are all much more important factors in how Detroit got where it is today.

      This is well documented elsewhere, but not subscribed to by Republican politicians, and, apparently, you.

  • TFRX

    Republican establishment, Tom? The “grown ups” back in charge?

    How much cover has the Tea Party given to the extremeitization of what passes for “mainstream Republican” policy and rhetoric?

  • MrNutso

    But Boehner says there’s no difference between Republicans and the Tea Party.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      Interesting…

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Yeah! Bring back 40 Mule Team Dementia Guy.

    • Steve__T

      Why we got you

  • Yar

    The Tea Party and Republicans are a same sex marriage. Should the conservative “tea party” republicans capture the Senate will they really elect Mitch McConnell majority leader? He has to win for this to even be a possibility.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Keeping HRH Hillary from forming a Clinton monarchy is always in the country’s best interest.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    I can’t believe this conversation.

    CNN- “Reagan wouldn’t survive in todays GOP” Really?

    Media elites delight in talking about how “right wing” the GOP has become. How much time to they talk about the moderate purge from the Dem party?
    What’s that I hear? Crickets.

    • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

      Reagan, the Forest Gump of presidents, would do well in any GOPerocracy. Hoober Doober

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Reagan would have the guts to tell the Chamber of Commerce to go pound sand.

        • TFRX

          Really? Tell me more about dead people. What would my great grandmother say?

          • Guest

            Sorry but I don’t know your grandma. Was she a “typical white woman”?

    • Ray in VT

      There are still blue dog Democrats. Who are the moderates in the GOP these days? The ones who accept that climate change is real? It sure isn’t people like Broun or Rand Paul.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Let’s compare the leadership of the two parties. It is very telling.

        Boehner and McConnel are squish moderate GOP.
        Reid and Pelosi are radical left wingers.

        • TFRX

          Radical left wingers?

          You need to get out more.

        • Ray in VT

          This would beg to differ:

          https://www.govtrack.us/about/analysis#ideology

          It puts McConnell and Reid midway ideologically. House leadership is a bit harder to pick out. Perhaps your place on the ideological spectrum affects your view of who is a “radical left winger”.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I question their methodology.

            Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer are ideologically in lock step and yet they are on two ends of the spectrum and both in leadership.

            Barbara Boxer is on the far left (in the chart) and she is a clone of Nancy Pelosi.

          • Ray in VT

            Sure, their methodology only looks at particular things, and ideology can be fairly squishy in some regards, however I like their methodology far more than yours.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Of course you would.

          • Ray in VT

            They at least are looking at voting records and such, whereas yours is based upon what exactly?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Reality.

            You should know that voting records are manipulated with phony show votes for exactly this purpose.

            The Dems vote in lockstep for every meaningful vote with very few exceptions (like manchin) during the Obama era. Schumer and Reid are in lockstep. Boxer and Pelosi are in lockstep.

          • Ray in VT

            Well, it’s a good thing that you settled that one for all of us. Perhaps you’d care to evaluate the lockstep of the GOP in the Senate, for instance, where it is next to impossible to pry a single one out of line to advance much of anything to the floor.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Your blaming Senate inaction on the GOP in the Senate?

            That’s rich.

          • Ray in VT

            How is that majority rule thing working out when it takes 60 votes to move stuff to the floor now.

            http://www.senate.gov/pagelayout/reference/cloture_motions/clotureCounts.htm

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/02/15/how-unprecedented-is-the-hagel-filibuster/

            How many of Obama top appointees been filibustered? Remember when a President was supposed to be able to pick his team?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Reid doesn’t allow debates or amendments. It really isn’t complicated.

          • Ray in VT

            I thought that the majority was supposed to rule? That was the cry when the Republicans were in the majority and Democrats caused delays for far fewer bills and nominees.

          • Don_B1

            Amendments to a bill approving the nomination of a person for an office?

          • TFRX

            If only Obama was more conciliatory…like conceding when he’d won on two election nights…the senate minority would be some undifferentiated “nicer” to him.

          • HonestDebate1
          • Ray in VT

            And your point is what? That for one year Obama took the top spot? Whoop dee doo. Here is the most current list, and I do not see Harry Reid on there:

            http://www.nationaljournal.com/pictures-video/the-15-most-liberal-senators-20140206

            I see neither Senator Reid nor Representative Pelosi on the lists.

        • jefe68

          That’s hilarious. Reid and Pelosi, radical left wingers…

          You are so far to the right that Attila the Hun would look left wing to you.

        • Steve__T

          Why, your comparison is of two pairs of socks. Both sides are in need of new everything from the top down.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            YES!!!!

        • nj_v2

          “Reid and Pelosi are radical left wingers.”

          Hahahahahaha!!

          Kinda like the way Kenny G is real jazz music.

          Gotta love the deep, insightful analysis here.

        • HonestDebate1

          I am amazed at the commenters below who don’t think Reid and Pelosi are radical. Unbelievable.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            This is the same crowd that thinks the Tea Party is “radical” because they want to get to a balanced budget. Amazing!!

          • Don_B1

            There are a lot of things much worse than a unbalanced budget, and one of them is a balanced budget in a depressed economy.

            It is the attempts of Tea Party radicals to cut the deficit now, now, now, that have slowed the recovery from the Great Recession. This can be seen by looking at the GDP growth that, every time it looked like the economy might begin to improve, something like the “compromise” to pass raising the debt ceiling would cut spending and the economy would turn down.

            You really do need to take some time off and learn about aggregate demand, and how lack of it can slow an economy.

          • Ray in VT

            I am amazed by commenters who think Reid and Pelosi are radical. Unbelievable.

          • HonestDebate1

            Try to be more original.

          • Ray in VT

            It’s not about me.

    • hennorama

      WftC — you misheard what Bryan Monroe said.

      He asked “Would Reagan survive in today’s GOP?,” then answered his own question with “Probably not.”

      Which is, of course, not nearly as definitive as what you “heard” and wrote.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Thanks for the parsing.

        But it doesn’t change anything. Just raising the question either shows his ignorance or his desire to propagandize on behalf of the Dems.

        • hennorama

          WftC — TYFYR.

          If parsing = accuracy, you’re welcome.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, your parsing does not equal accuracy.

          • Ray in VT

            So accurately stating what someone actually said does not equal accuracy?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Obsession with precision is useful when it adds clarity. In this case it doesn’t. I can only assume it was done to distract from the point. We can call it OffPoint.

          • Ray in VT

            I think that there is a difference in the two statements, and I think that someone proposing the sort of top tax rate that the late President Reagan found at least acceptable throughout most of his time in office wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell in today’s GOP.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Yes, I could have inserted the “probably” modifier in my original post and it wouldn’t have changed the point I was making. Notice we are talking about trivia and not the original point.

            Mission accomplished.

          • Ray in VT

            Notice how I made a comment upon what factors I thought might impair Reagan in the modern GOP? Is that not relevant?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Fair point, I was blinded by the NEW topic. See my comment above.

          • pete18

            That is what’s called irrelevant accuracy.

            Talking head, “Reagan didn’t tell the truth!”

            WfC, “He said Reagan lied!”

            Hennorama, “You misheard what he said!”

          • hennorama

            pete18 — TYFYR.

            There is a difference between what Mr. Monroe said, and what [WorriedfortheCountry] “heard.” If you feel that’s irrelevant, please enjoy your feelings.

          • pete18

            A difference unworthy of noticing, let alone actually opening up a laptop and typing about.

            I always enjoy my feelings, regardless of what is parsed or not parsed here.

        • hennorama

          WftC — is it really “ignorance or his desire to propagandize” about Pres. Reagan vs. today’s Republican/TEA Shindiggers, when one takes the following into account?:

          Reagan:

          Raised taxes when he needed to

          Supported tougher environmental legislation

          Flip-flopped (early in his career, he was a Democrat)

          Raised gas taxes

          Enacted tariffs to protect American industries

          Was initially pro-choice

          Supported huge government spending projects

          Took on massive government debt

          And so on…

          Imagine a Republican candidate trying to win the GOP nomination with these outrageous beliefs today. The man would be howled out of town!

          Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/ronald-reagan-could-not-win-2011-11#ixzz32Yj3t9a9

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I am simply gape-jawed at how the left changed their stance on Reagan from right wing soulless monster to meek squishy moderate.

            Facts:
            Reagan is still a hero to conservatives.

            There are still too many big government Statists in power positions in the GOP.

          • hennorama

            WftC — TYFYR.

            Not being an expert on Republican/TEA Shindigger politics, I must yield to others with superior knowledge and experience, and therefore ask a question.

            Isn’t the following a sort of an automatic disqualifier for support from current Republicans/TEA Shindiggers?:

            Ronald Reagan was a union boss. It was not a one-time fluke either, as he was elected six times to be president of the Screen Actors Guild. In addition, he led a five week strike in 1960.

            Ronald Reagan also said the following (emphasis added):

            “[The Polish government] has even broken the Gdańsk Agreement of 1980 by which the Polish government recognized the basic right of its people to form free trade unions, and to strike.

            And

            “By outlawing Solidarity, a free trade organization to which an overwhelming majority of Polish workers and farmers belong, they have made it clear that they never had any intention of restoring one of the most elemental human rights—the right to belong to a free trade union.

            Sources:
            http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2011/11/what-reagan-did-for-hollywood/248391/
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orwN4WKhriw

            http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=43110

            Thanks again for your response.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            NO, not a disqualifier but good try.

          • HonestDebate1

            No one ever makes the distinction between public and private sector unions. It’s very shallow thinking or purposeful disingenuousness,

          • Steve__T

            Hahahaha that’s funny

            Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. Quick look over there.

          • HonestDebate1

            Well look at the comments Steve.

          • hennorama

            WftC — TYFYR.

            Again, as I am not an expert on Republican/TEA Shindigger politics, I must yield to others with superior knowledge and experience, and therefore ask questions.

            How do you come to this conclusion?

            Are there any examples of prominent Republican/TEA Shindigger politicians who are former union presidents, and/or who proclaim that “… one of the most elemental human rights [is] the right to belong to a free trade union.”?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Here’s a hint. Reagan didn’t go directly from union leadership to the leader of the conservative movement.

            Have a good weekend.

          • hennorama

            WftC — thanks again for yet another unresponsive response.

          • Don_B1

            What other current “highly rated” Republican would think of taking those steps and then run for president?

          • HonestDebate1

            Again, that’s another gross misrepresentation. Republicans don’t have a problem with peoples rights to form unions in the private sector.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            OK, let’s try this another way.

            Who is more conservative, Romney or Reagan? McCain or Reagan? Dole or Reagan? McConnell or Reagan? Boehner or Reagan?

            Reagan wins on all counts. So the argument that Reagan couldn’t find a place in today’s GOP PROBABLY doesn’t pass the basic sniff test.

          • HonestDebate1

            Reagan didn’t raise taxes because he needed to and it’s highly misleading to paint him as anything but a tax cutter.

            http://dailycaller.com/2012/06/06/ronald-reagan-raised-taxes-11-times-the-real-story/

            Republicans support tough environmental legislation. That’s a canard to say otherwise. Democrats are crazy on the issue.

            Reagan repented:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zh2DeQtVyJM

    • hennorama

      WftC, et al — for the record:

      From the show’s audio, beginning about 4:30 in:

      Tom Ashbrook: Bryan Monroe, what do you see here? Is this a kind of swan song for the TEA party? Or is it fully incorporated into what, uh, Ken’s there calling the Republican establishment now?

      Bryan Monroe: Well you know, we had a conversation this week on CNN, about, uh, you know, is this, with McConnell’s win and a few others, is this the grownups in the GOP back in charge? Have they stepped back and reclaimed the party? Or, have in fact, the TEA party, have successfully – they’ve won. They’ve pulled the Republican party so far to the right that, as John Boehner said, there is no daylight between the establishment Republicans and the TEA party. Was it a process to, sort of co-opt the far right, and bring them in, or the whole party shift so far to the right that there’s really no difference any more?

      Tom Ashbrook: So what’s the answer, oh guru?

      Bryan Monroe: Oh, well … I think it’s a little bit of the latter. The Republican Party – you look at somebody like President Ronald Reagan. Would he have survived in today’s Republican Party? Probably not. With the exception of what Jeb Bush said. Reagan was a winner. And Republicans desperately, desperately want to win. And they’ll do whatever they need to do to adjust the party so they can puit together a winning team. And, um, if that means shifting fdar to the riught, to appease the TEA party wing, So be it.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        He could have finished his statement more accurately as thus:

        “we had a conversation this week on CNN” …. and no one watched.

        Talk about beating a dead horse.

        • hennorama

          WftC — thank you for your unresponsive response.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Republicans! The party of NO.*
    * IQ

    • Guest

  • Human2013

    So, when their best effort to get lethal drug cocktails failed, TN will bring back the electric chair. That the bible state is bringing back the Electric chair is yet another indicator that America is starting to get a little scary.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Utah is talking about bringing back the firing squad (as an option if they can’t get the right “cocktail”).

  • X Y & Z

    More than 2,400 dead as Obama’s drone campaign marks five years

    http://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/2014/01/23/more-than-2400-dead-as-obamas-drone-campaign-marks-five-years/

    The article goes on to report that a 2009 drone strike in Yemen left 41 civilians dead, including 21 children and 12 women – five of them were pregnant.

    Barack Obama: War Criminal in Chief

    • Ray in VT

      Someone, possibly Thom Hartmann, said that in his estimation every President at least since Kennedy, with the possible exception of Carter, was a war criminal.

      • X Y & Z

        Leave it to you to defend one of Obama’s illegal drone strikes that resulted in the deaths of 5 pregnant women.

        • Ray in VT

          I accept that if we want to go after terrorists, then drones are an imperfect weapon, but likely a better one than the alternative than putting boots on the ground.

          • X Y & Z

            When did Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen give President Obama the right to violate their air-space and arbitrarily kill their citizens?

          • Ray in VT

            Afghanistan and Yemen in some ways assented, given our relations with those governments and the desires of those governments to combat terrorism there. The others, probably not. Pakistan is ostensibly an ally, but they are either unwilling or unable to act against terrorists within their borders, and it is not acceptable to me, from a national security standpoint, to allow them to them operate with impunity there. There isn’t much of a government to speak of in Somalia. Large tracts of land are under the control of a militant Islamist group well known for carrying out terrorist attacks. In all cases, if we are going to act against terrorists, then I prefer targeted drone strikes versus boots on the ground. I see it as the least bad option.

    • hennorama

      X Y & Z — you need to learn how to comprehend what you read.

      From the article in the link (emphasis added):

      Drones were not the first weapon the administration turned to when it started to attack the country. On December 17 2009 a US Navy submarine launched a cluster bomb-laden cruise missile at a suspected militant camp in al Majala, southern Yemen.

      The missile slammed into a hamlet hitting one of the poorest tribes in Yemen. Shrapnel and fire left at least 41 civilians dead, including at least 21 children and 12 women – five of them were pregnant.

      And, from earlier in the same article:

      Although drone strikes under Obama’s presidency have killed nearly six times as many people as were killed under Bush, the casualty rate – the number of people killed on average in each strike – has dropped from eight to six under Obama. The civilian casualty rate has fallen too. Strikes during the Bush years killed nearly more than three civilians in each strike on average. This has halved under Obama (1.43 civilians per strike on average). In fact reported civilian casualties in Pakistan have fallen sharply since 2010, with no confirmed reports of civilian casualties in 2013.

  • TFRX

    Elsewhere in the carrying water for the right news, Jonathan Karl not even trying any longer:

    White House Contacted YouTube During Benghazi Attack, Darrell Issa Says

    • Ray in VT

      Breaking news that was reported over a year and a half ago.

      • MrNutso

        And counters Issa’s arguments by implying as the White House has said that at the onset of the attacks they were concerned it was in response to the video.

        • Steve__T

          No I was actually talking about current news not bring discussed.

          The Thai army has summoned more than 100 political figures, including ousted Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, after taking power in a coup. On Thursday, the military suspended the constitution, banned gatherings of more than five people, closed schools and imposed a curfew, saying it had to restore order following months of anti-government protests. The Obama administration says it is “reviewing” its military aid to Thailand, a top regional ally.

          You know real, should be considered, maybe looked at a little closer?

          http://www.democracynow.org/2014/5/23/headlines#5232

      • Steve__T

        Breaking news about the takeover of the Nation of…Oh not talking about that

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Mitch McConnell as Senate majority leader. Electric chairs in Tenn’see. Noah had baby dinosaurs on the ark. Welcome to the 21st century. No worries.
    –Alfred E. Newman for President

  • OnPointComments

    As I heard someone say last night about the Iranian “Happy” video: can you imagine a country putting someone in jail for posting a video on YouTube? Let’s ask Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.

    • Ray in VT

      It’s a real shame when felons go to jail for violating the terms of their parole.

      • OnPointComments

        If you don’t believe that jailing Nakoula was selective political prosecution (or more likely, persecution), you are hopelessly naïve.

        • Ray in VT

          Indeed, only super geniuses like yourself have been able to see through this vast conspiracy. Congratulations. What do you want? A medal or a chest to pin it on?

        • pete18

          Could you imagine what they’d be saying if the Bush administration had jailed somebody under similar circumstances?
          Nothing but calls for impeachment and perp walks out of the White House.

          • Ray in VT

            It’s a good thing that you’re all up on what “they” would be saying.

          • Steve__T

            Ha ha If Bush had you’d never know, if you knew you’d never tell.

    • jimino

      It’s not a surprise that a hateful, criminally fraudulent liar is somewhat of a hero to the right. You think he might parlay his “victimization” into a candidacy?

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    There in no problem facing the America people that can’t be fixed by me on the back 9 at Andrews AFB.
    –Barack H. Obama

    Look for the president’s new book: Thoughts Are Actions.

  • Coastghost

    Why, Jack Beatty might be on to something: Obama fatigue breeds Obama fatigue.

    • TFRX

      By quoting a bunch of Beltway Inbreds, like Dana (Never a Fan) Milbank?

      Jack should do better.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Jack Beatty says Dana Millbank is not really an ally of Obama.

    So that is now the description if you are not a 100% cheerleader of the regime.

    • TFRX

      Dana Milbank has been a Beltway Inbred since before Obama won his first delegate in 2008.

      Milbank has always been there to “newswash” (provide fake credence to) about any baseless right-wing meme, or to buttress up some pulled-out-of-their ass thing which ended with the phrase “…spells trouble for the Democrats” or “…is good news for the Republicans”.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        I thought he was a Glenn Beck stalker.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Bernie Sanders, Chair Senate VA committee. And, of course, he’s not a veteran. Surprise!

    • Human2013

      No, but he’s a democracy loving, healthcare aiding, truth telling Senator — he’s a gem in a pile full of debris.

      • Enuff_of_this

        You wish

        • Jill122

          There’s plenty of proof of what Human wrote. If only you could read.

    • jefe68

      You could say that about most of the members of Congress and the committees they are on.
      Nice straw man argument.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Put recently-retired NCOs and USN Chief POs in charge at all the VA system facilities. They’ll kick the deadwood out. Start first with the political appointees.

    You can’t trust the officer and flag corps dinks. They’re too tied to the political classes.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Obama’s Dilemma: If wishes were horses beggars would ride.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Elections are coming, my head is getting fat
    Please put a penny in the VA’s hat
    If you haven’t got a penny a ha’ penny will do
    If you haven’t got a ha’ penny
    What in hell’s wrong with you?
    –Barack H. Obama, Philosopher Poet Prince

  • James

    Really this is what qualifies as plagiarism these days?

  • Stan Russell

    I’m a vet who has used AZ VA hospitals and others around country and still do. This blowup is too over the top and being used for politics. Compare care and deaths in hospitals to private section and talk to vets who use VA. I talk to vets at VA hospitals all the time and we all can’t understand where these problems are found. I and others think VA care is on par with private drs and wait times no different at the VA. My wife waits longer to see her doctor. Stop listening to pols and those who don’t use VA; talk to vets.

    • hennorama

      Stan Russell — Thank you for your service.

      One hopes you never tire of reading/hearing that very small repayment of the debt we all owe to those who serve our country so directly.

      Thanks also for sharing your valuable experiences and perspective.

    • TFRX

      Stop listening to pols and instead talk to vets?

      But you’re not on the media’s Rolodex!

  • rexhenry

    Led Zeppelin lifted The Blues for half of their songs. Isn’t there a common sense statute of limitations after 40 years?

    • HonestDebate1

      Interesting, can you clarify?

      • jefe68

        Because like every British band form the Beetles onward, Led Zeppelin were listening and copying Blues and R & B.

        • HonestDebate1

          I disagree. There is no doubt about the influence of blues but it wasn’t copying. The Beatles were unique, so was Zeppelin. The I IV V progression is not owned by anyone.

          I sometimes work with an 85 year old authentic blues player. Pop Ferguson has been honored by the Smithsonian as a true American blues player. All his songs are the same chords.

          • jefe68

            That’s not what I’m talking about.
            Bands like Cream and the Stones copied the blues musicians such as Howlin Wolf and Muddy Walters, there music is hardly what I would call all their own. And by the way, they would all be the first to admit that and have done. What do you think the Fathers and Sons album was about?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I suspect Randy California would be very upset with what lawyers are doing in “his name” posthumously.

          • jefe68

            I agree. He was more interested in Page just giving him some due, and had said so.

            By the way parts of Stairway were also partly taken from another tune from The Chocolate Watch Band called “And She’s Lonely”.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            The STH ripoff kerfuffle reminds me of this scene from Amadeus when Mozart changes Saleri’s tune.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FnZTUADpJOk

          • HonestDebate1

            So many songs are based on other songs but they are still different.

            Procol Harem’s “Whiter Shade Of Pale” was based on Percy Sledge’s “When A Man Loves A Woman”. Percy was honored not angry. He even did the song and spoke fondly of his friends in Procol Harem.

          • jefe68

            Again, that’s not the point in this case.
            As is Muddy’s and Wolf’s relationship with the Stones.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3Or7huOK7o

          • HonestDebate1

            That’s why I asked rexhenry to clarify. Again, I don’t question the influence. I am asking what did they steal? I would consider the music of Cream and the Stones as theirs. If you say this song is a direct copy of that song then I’d see your point.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            refresh your browser. jefe changed his comment w/ more details.

          • jefe68

            So do I. But there are direct covers by both bands. One needs to be clear on that. Also none of them would exist without Muddy Waters and artist like him.
            Spoonful is a Wille Dixon tune.

          • HonestDebate1

            Maybe it will make more sense to me after I hear the show tonight and the comment in context.

            I am not aware of Cream or the Stones doing other peoples songs without it being clear. Or Zeppelin. I am quite sure it happens but I just don’t get the context as it applies here.

            And as much regard as I have for the blues, I can’t agree they wouldn’t exist without Muddy Waters and artist like him. Music evolves. Chick Corea would still exist without Dave Brubeck. Chopin would have been great without Listz. Musicians have no choice but to create.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            You can listen to the clip here (and read about the silly lawsuit). It is no surprise they didn’t sue when the musician was alive.

            http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/05/20/314256004/led-zeppelin-sued-over-stairway-to-heaven-guitar-line

          • HonestDebate1

            Thanks, that does help. I don’t see it as the same at all. That same descending chord progression is in many songs. The melody of it is also different as the Spirit song goes back down where the Stairway melody goes up.

            100 years ago we used to play Spirit’s “Animal Zoo” and “Mr. Skin” then later “I’ve Got A Line On You”. And of course at every naked hippie party we sang “Nature’s Way”. Spirit was a great band.

            Sometimes I wish I could upload audio.

          • Steve__T

            An Ya know I could probably listen for hours or join in, AS long as we leave every thing that doesn’t have anything to do wit music out.

          • jefe68

            You have to be kidding. The Blues is a music born and developed by Black Americans, as is Jazz and R&B.

            There would have never been British bands playing blues without them hearing it.

            Chick Corea has nothing to do with Dave Brubeck, he coms out of Bud Powell.
            And there is no way he would be Chick without Bud Powell. The same way Roy Eldridge would not be Roy without Louis Armstrong.

          • HonestDebate1

            Is the race angle what you’re getting at?

            I agree about the influence, as I said, but the british invasion was not the blues, it was something new. I am not prepared to say it would not have existed.

            And Chick was heavily influenced by Brubeck, he told me so.

          • 1Brett1

            Google Jake Holmes and ‘Dazed and Confused.’ Jimmie Page ripped that song off, note for note. People who played with Page can trace when and where he first heard it, when he started playing it, etc. He ripped it off. Plant put a few different words to it, but…Page ripped off Howlin’ Wolf/WIllie Dixon too. There was a financial settlement and writing credits given later. So, another example of direct rip offs…I do agree with you about general blues progressions and the difference between influencing and plagiarism, though. Some of the complaints about Page/Led Zeppelin are not justified.

          • HonestDebate1

            I agree with you and certainly don’t condone stealing music. I was thinking about transcribing Taurus to see exactly how close the short segment is. Maybe I will. I know personally as a songwriter that I live in fear of stealing something unintentionally. Everything I’ve ever heard is in my head but there is no filing system up there.

            As you know, a song has many elements beyond a chord progression. To me the two songs, in totality, are night and day.

          • 1Brett1

            I have written so many songs then have heard where I got some piece from later and realized I lifted it unconsciously. I happens all the time. And, to reiterate, I don’t think Page’s rip off of the Stairway intro (and it’s clear to me he did rip it off as he only started playing it after they toured with Spirit) amounts to pagiarism; as you say the songs are different. Most of the structure of Taurus is nothing like Stairway.

            However, Page and Plant had a history of stealing music. Another one that just came to mind is “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You.” Their song is note for note like the original, including the lyrics. So many of their songs went far beyond just being influences or inadvertent borrowing.

          • HonestDebate1

            I saw them in Tampa in ’77. They did 3 songs before a huge rain storm deluged the stadium. They opened with “The Song Remains the Same”. I don’t remember the second song but the third was “Nobody’s Fault But Mine”. That was when the storm was gathering in a really spooky way, the wind was howling and Plant’s hair was horizontal. It fit the song perfectly. Page was cool as can be in a white silk jumpsuit with a dragon down the side. He burned. He is such a badass when he’s holding a guitar, otherwise he looks like a sissy.

            At first they said they were going to take a break but the storm drenched everything to the point it was impossible for them to come back. Then it was announced they would be back the next night, keep your ticket stub. No one would leave. At one point a lone cop walked out on the stage and puffed a few puffs of tear gas at the 80K strong crowd. He looked silly and as he was walking back someone pegged him with a liquor bottle. We were already in the stands because the field was too intense. It was like having a square foot to stand in but that square foot was moving all over the place. Fall and you were trampled. We could see the cops gathering behind the wall in front of the stage which by now was almost down from the crowd pushing it. All of the sudden hundreds of cops jumped the wall and started swinging billy clubs indiscriminately. It was a huge debacle. People were hospitalized, property was damaged, it was awful. So bad that the city of Tampa banned them from returning the next night or ever again. I paid $15 for the ticket and was refunded $10 after sending back the stub. It was a really cool looking check. I cashed it. I wish I had kept it.

            No point really.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    NOFORN = No Foreign Nationals. That was stamped* on all of our documents back during the Vietnam days of the US Navy’s nuclear power program. Seemed to work just fine.

    A great pity civilians & manufacturers, like Westinghouse, don’t care enough to give a sack of dog turds re: protecting US secrets.

    It was George Walker Bush who allowed China into the WTO at the beginning of his first disaster/term.

    * In addition to the classification of the item.

  • Scott B

    Didn’t anyone else catch Jon Stewart’s piece last night on how the members of Congress, complaining about the VA is run, and “Head’s gotta roll!”, and how our veterans deserve the best care, etc… just voted to further screw the vets over?

  • keruffle

    GM should either bring back the early Saturn and the Oldsmobile or quit selling cars outright and just rent them out when not in shop for repairs.

    • OnPointComments

      If there had been a private equity firm that acquired a bankrupt company, maintained a controlling interest while the stock price went up, then sold the stock at or near its highest point shortly before the company made an announcement that damaged its stock price, the SEC would swoop in with insider trading charges in the blink of an eye. If the equity firm claimed it didn’t know anything about the problem that damaged the company and its stock price, no one would believe them.

      I haven’t heard anyone asking whether the U.S. Treasury knew, or should have known, about GM’s recall problems before it sold its stock.

      • hennorama

        OPC – you might have a point, except that the U.S. Treasury did not sell all of its GM stock at the same time.

        Instead, here is how it unwound the GM common and preferred stock investment (all loans to GM had been repaid prior to all of the following). Emphasis added:

         On November 18, 2010, Treasury recovered approximately $13.5 billion in conjunction with the new company’s IPO. The IPO reduced Treasury’s stake from approximately 61 percent to 33 percent, or 500 million shares of GM common stock.

         On December 15, 2010, GM repurchased all of the preferred stock Treasury held for approximately $2.1 billion. Treasury’s remaining investment consisted solely of GM common stock.

         On December 21, 2012, GM repurchased 200 million shares of common stock for approximately $5.5 billion in net proceeds to taxpayers. At that time, Treasury announced its intent to exit the GM investment in 12-15 months through a series of pre-defined trading plans that began in January 2013 and sold shares into the market daily.

         On June 6, 2013, Treasury sold 30 million shares of GM common stock when GM was included on the S&P 500 index for approximately $1.0 billion.

         In total, Treasury launched four pre-defined written trading plans, completing the sale of its shares of GM common stock on December 9, 2013. The proceeds from the four trading plans totaled $9.2 billion.

        Source:

        http://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Documents/GM%20Timeline.pdf

  • wgp2

    I think the guests confuse Obama’s unwillingness to be pulled back and forth from one emergency to another emergency as being blase. Perhaps Obama takes the long view that the problems facing our country can’t be fixed in the time cycle it takes to become an internet meme. Methodically moving forward without fake outrage is preferable to the head-imploding umbrage expressed by John McCain.

    Every talking head and political critique I’ve heard of what Obama hasn’t done in the ME haven’t given any reasonable alternative to what should or could be done.

    Regarding the VA system, that’s a long-term structural failure spanning presidential administrations dating back to Kennedy. Obama wound down our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan which means an influx of new vets seeking treatment on the order of 3 million new patients on top of the aging Vietnam vets already in the system. Fixing a system that has been broken for 40 years isn’t going to be magically fixed in 5 years but Obama has attempted to make a start at fixing the system.

    Even the Rand corporation finds the VA system vastly superior in outcomes and medical services to the inefficient private system the rest of us are relegated to. http://www.rand.org/blog/2012/08/socialized-or-not-we-can-learn-from-the-va.html

    • anamaria23

      It is interesting that some V.A, hospitals function well, such as in the Boston area, where they consistently receive high praise while others fail. There is testimony even by physicians of the high caliber of the system when properly supervised from within,.
      President Obama has done as well as possible by veterans
      including nearly doubling funding and signing the Veterans Skills Jobs Act, working with industry to hire 125, 000 veterans. He also designated increased funding for mental health services for vets. He also gave them greater access to such as EMT jobs by allowing credit for service related training.
      There has been progress under the present V.A. Director and I believe he should be allowed to further prove himself. He is dedicated.
      He certainly has received no help from supposed reps of the people in the U.S. Congress who are entrusted with the well-being of their constituents.
      The fixes should be the result of evaluation deep within the system, not just some firings though that is imperative also.

      • wgp2

        I agree. I think the VA scandal is that the public has amnesia about these long-standing issues until a big problem becomes apparent like the wait lists. I recall the Walter Reed fiasco a while back that was the result of consistent underfunding and bureaucratic malaise.

        Our elected officials and a lot of the public seem to forget that providing healthcare to veterans costs, like you know, money. And the long term care requirements of vets surviving from multiple amputations and severe PTSD from Iraq and Afghanistan is more expensive than it was to care for Vietnam vets from 40 years ago.

        Maybe to help relieve the dearth of healthcare professionals serving in the VA system, the VA and DOD should provide incentives like medical school loan reimbursement for those that commit to a 5 year service contract for VA hospitals, and the medical school system needs to expand the doctor pool to meet the growing demands for services.

        We have a doctor shortage that will have negative impacts for decades to come if it isn’t addressed sooner rather than later.

        • HonestDebate1

          But the current VA scandal is not a result of underfunding and the Walter Reed thing was about nasty conditions, not people dying while waiting to get an appointment while they played loose with the rules and created a secret list for the list.

          • wgp2

            The current VA scandal is a red flag alerting us to all of the structural issues that the VA faces.

            1. A sudden influx of vets from Iraq and Afghanistan into an already underfunded and understaffed system.

            1b. Walter Reed (while separate is a reflection of the system) suffered from mismanagement, lack of consistent funding, political lip service, etc. until the conditions were exposed in an outdated medical facility that was finally closed in 2011.

            2. A VA system with a byzantine system of paperwork and processes that require vets to apply for benefits, get in the system, wait to be approved, wait for specific claims to be accepted or denied, etc. Repeat as needed.

            3. The double wait list scandal is a result of a specific VA center and its immediate administrators papering over a problem that isn’t new.

            Here in New Orleans, there hasn’t been an appropriate VA med center since Katrina. A new one is being constructed that will be world class in services, function and staffing. The sad fact is that it took a natural disaster to muster the political and bureaucratic will to build a new facility. That new VA facility will service the greater NO metro area and surrounding parishes.

            Is the VA system perfect? No. Do those imperfections excuse the ‘double waiting list’ scandal in Arizona? No. But ask yourself this, what more will it take to fix the system so that this doesn’t happen again?

            Does the VA need more doctors and medical staff?
            Does the VA need to go fully digital?
            Does the VA need to streamline enrollment and claims procedures?
            Does the VA need adequate budgets to maintain and update facilities and not wait for natural disasters or delayed maintenance to force upgrades?
            Does the VA need better support from Congress beyond lip service?

            In my mind, the answer is yes to all of the above.

            I don’t think privatizing the system would improve much of anything. Vets, by and large, are satisfied with their care (once they’re in the system) and receiving the care they need.

          • HonestDebate1

            I have not heard proposals to dismantle the VA. I agree it’s a bureaucratic nightmare and I do think Shinseki should go.

          • wgp2

            I suspect you’ll begin to hear some in the GOP making hay about the VA’s failures as “this is what we’ll be expecting from the ACA. Deathpanel wait lists, blah, blah, blah.” Which doesn’t fix anything. But you and I know that. Somehow the talking heads in D.C. don’t know that.

            Shinseki could go but I doubt he will considering that any proposed Obama cabinet nominees are currently delayed and if he were replaced, it would be an interim director until after 2016. Which would essentially further delay administrative overhauls. Shinseki has a strong track record of reform and forward-thinking operations in the Army. I think he’s attuned to what vets need and if anything, he needs to start by firing the AZ admin staff and keep working to expedite the VA reforms needed until 2016.

          • HonestDebate1

            Shinseki was a great soldier but a horrible administrator.

            As I recall it was the press who made the comparisons between Obamacare and the VA years ago.

          • wgp2

            Yeah. I’ve read a few recent “retreads” of the ACA/VA comparison come up again in light of the latest VA scandal in the media. They have to have something to talk about right?

            As for Shinseki, I would assume, his head is in the right place, a great leader isn’t always a great administrator. And leading a distinct division in the Army is very different than heading up the 2nd largest Federal agency with each region operating like its own fiefdom. It’s certainly NOT a job I would like to have. Thankless in every way.

            BTW. Have a great Memorial Day weekend.

          • HonestDebate1

            Thanks, back atcha’.

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    Jason has a very important point – the last three countries that tried to buy and sell oil in something other than dollars – became known as “The Axis of Evil”.

    • northeaster17

      I read somewhere that Kadaffi was trying to do the same with other African oil exporters

    • tbphkm33

      It is only a matter of time until oil is no longer quoted in US dollars. A truly international and legitimate electronic currency will become the norm for international trade. Pressure is mounting, increasingly the US economy is being propped up by being the dominant currency, at the expense of other currencies. Soon even European allies will no longer be able to support the US.

      The day after oil stops being quoted in US dollars will not be a good day in the US. It will be a massive devaluation that will take the US economy years to recover from.

  • Coastghost

    Is Boston, Inc., being beset by this “trigger warning” nonsense for post-secondary course content? None of the area universities or colleges are being plagued? (Only an isolate Left Coast phenom thus far?)

  • James

    Where’s Government Banking Serf at? Because the (true) libertarian right has been freaking about what Jason said for years!

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Aide: Nice shot, Mr. President.
    Obama: I believe in taking the club to the ball at the best possible moment.
    America: Is it time to work on our problems now, Mr. President?
    Obama: You need to learn patience. It’s the silvery virtue that is my pole star.
    Aide: Nice shot, Mr. President.

  • TFRX

    Jack, quoting first Milbank and then Ross Douthat?

    If you’re providing news, quote actual journos.

    If you’re quoting opinionators, get out of the Beltway and also find someone leftwards of the NPR comfort zone.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      Trotsky was not available for comment.

  • Steve__T

    Led Zeppelin: Caller Shaun Nailed it.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      Was it Shawn Mullens, maybe? He lives in NO, I think?

      • Steve__T

        Neil……shut up

  • James

    Recognizing the right’s tough on crime, tough on terror fetish, why would Jack Beatty be surprised that the party of powerful government is supporting a more powerful government?

  • OnPointComments

    A PUZZLE – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?:

    Dinesh D’Souza violates federal election campaign laws with $20,000 in contributions, and faces fines and possible jail time.

    Harry Reid violates federal election campaign laws by giving $31,000 in campaign funds to his granddaughter (for whom he conveniently omitted her last name “Reid” on campaign finance reports), and he simply repays the money after he was caught. No jail, no fine.

    If you answered that being critical of President Obama results in government retaliation, and being a toady for President Obama results in getting a pass, go to the head of the class.

  • hennorama

    From the Thinking About The End Of Life Dept.:

    L.A.-area healthcare providers to issue guidelines for end-of-life care FTA:

    On Thursday, a coalition of Los Angeles-area healthcare providers — caring for millions of Angelenos among them — will endorse some groundbreaking guidelines designed to help patients like the Sales take more control over their final months, weeks and days. The hospitals will urge their doctors and nurses to help patients specify their hopes for the end of life through advance-care planning, and understand how to seek palliative care if a patient wants it.

    The participants include Cedars-Sinai, HealthCare Partners Medical Group and Affiliated Physicians, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Keck Medical Center of USC, Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, MemorialCare Health System, Olive View-UCLA Medical Center, Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center Torrance, Providence TrinityCare Hospice and the UCLA Health System.

    The guidelines call on doctors to explain clearly to patients when a medical treatment under consideration — including interventions such as feeding tubes, intubation or dialysis — “may deprive the person of life closure (the ability to say ‘forgive me,’ ‘I love you’ or ‘goodbye’) or preclude a peaceful death.”

    “We see a lot of harm at the end of life,” said endocrinologist Glenn Braunstein, vice president of clinical innovation at Cedars-Sinai and a leader of the guideline effort. “We said, ‘We have to fix this.’”

    See:

    http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-end-of-life-guidelines-20140517-story.html#page=1

    AND, then there’s this, from Tennessee:

    APNewsBreak: Tennessee Brings Back Electric Chair FTA:

    Republican Gov. Bill Haslam on Thursday signed a bill into law allowing the state to electrocute death row inmates in the event the state is unable to obtain drugs used for lethal injections.

    Tennessee lawmakers overwhelmingly passed the electric chair legislation in April, with the Senate voting 23-3 and the House 68-13 in favor of the bill.

    See:

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/tennessee-signs-bill-electric-chair-23836338

    Good to see that people are planing ahead, right?

    • northeaster17

      As far as planning your death goes, that is great. Adults and anyone else should be having that conversation at the appropriate time. It should not be a big deal. Just a matter of course. As far as the electric chair….I love watching God fearing christians parsing the first commandment. It can actually bring clarity.

      • hennorama

        northeaster17 – thank you for your response.

        Indeed, end-of-life planning can save a great deal of heartache and confusion. It is a difficult topic for many, but making it more routine may make some of the treatment decisions, especially those that, as the article indicated

        “may deprive the person of life closure (the ability to say ‘forgive me,’ ‘I love you’ or ‘goodbye’) or preclude a peaceful death”

        much easier on everyone involved.

        As to Tennessee’s reviving a mostly abandoned method of execution, there’s not much to say, other than it points to the fact that lethal injection is becoming much more problematic.

        Thanks again for your response.

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        I am no theologian but the first commandment is:

        I am the LORD your God. You shall worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve.

        • northeaster17

          Whoops I meant the thou shall not kill part..Lazy.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            I appreciate that you left your original comment as posted and accepted the correction. I would call that the action of an adult that is comfortable with their own humanity. Thank you for your response.

    • anamaria23

      End of life issues are complex in this age of capability of extending life even if quality of life is poor. It should be the patient’s decision if mentally competent and after being thoroughly informed by M, D. in end of life counseling.
      Tom Ashbrook is talking with Dr. Atul Gawande in early June, I believe on air. The doctor has written much on this very issue.

      • hennorama

        anamaria23 — thank you for your response.

        I agree completely, and look forward to the show you described.

        Thanks again for your response.

      • 1Brett1

        HD1 agreed with you, anamaria — Wha?! He must’ve thought you were saying (in between the lines) that the ACA should be repealed and death panels should be shut down. Like when you said, “It should be the patient’s decision…” he interpreted that as, “it should not be the decision of government death panels…” and so on.

        • HonestDebate1

          Really Brett? Are you that obsessed with telling me what I think?

          I do agree with what Anamaria wrote, it’s not the first time. I think it was well stated as is.

          • 1Brett1

            No, “obsessed” is your misperception.

            You have claimed that there are “death panels” on several occasions. You have also claimed that the ACA means bureaucrats will interfere with the patient-doctor relationship and will dictate what the doctor’s treatment will be and what the patient’s wishes will be.

            It’s not unreasonable to assume you agree with decisions being between a patient and doctor, but it is an oblique way of saying you think the ACA interferes with this relationship in a way not interfered with prior to its implementation.

            Do I have something wrong? No, this is just another example of your being manipulative and of you desiring to paint yourself differently than you actually are.

            I don’t think anamaria is fooled in any way, so let’s make that clear, but I do think you are doing the same thing you have done with all liberals on this forum (you even did it with me early on, hennorama, Ray, etc.) You start out being friendly and saying how much you like the person, then, over time, you get a case of the a$$ toward the person.

          • HonestDebate1

            That has zero zip nada to do with Anamaria’s comment. It had nothing to do with Obamacare. End of life counseling is important and noble.

            I am always friendly until I am called a racist. I’m not a doormat. But again, what does this have to do with Anamaria’s comment?

          • 1Brett1

            “End of life counseling is important and noble.”

            So, should end of life counseling be covered with one’s insurance under the ACA’s guidelines?

          • HonestDebate1

            No, the ACA should not have anything to do with end of life counseling. That has nothing to do with whether is its a noble endeavor. It has nothing to do with Anamaria’s comment. Rescuing baby ducks from alligators is noble too but I don’t want it in Obamacare.

            I can guarantee you I have always been civil until attacked over and over and over again.

            I have never said a racist thing on this blog, ever. If your zeal to be nasty through a shallow lens gives you comprehension issues that’s not my problem.

            The words you used were, you are a racist. I’d say that’s calling me a racist.

            So now facts can be misleading? I thought that notion was laughable. Make up your mind.

  • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

    The cryptocurrency situation on Earth is the biggest story there is and it’s not getting nearly adequate publicity.

    This story is bigger than climate change, and FAR BIGGER than the petty squabbles of Washington.

    The gas deal between Russia and China was NOT IN U.S. DOLLARS!!!
    The caller reported it was in Rubles and Yuan. NOT TRUE!

    BITCOIN!

    WAKE UP PEOPLE!

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Tim Geithner says he doesn’t understand Bitcoin but cautions people to not buy.

      http://fusion.net/america_with_jorge_ramos/story/treasury-secretary-tim-geithner-explain-bitcoin-dont-buy-700305

      • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

        If Tim Geithner doesn’t understand Bitcoin, he had no business being Treasury secretary.

        This is how simple Bitcoin is:

        1. Bitcoin is an online currency. It has no physical medium.

        2. Bitcoin is derived by satisfying a set of parameters within an equation, kind of like finding a square root, but much more complex. When a solution to those parameters is discovered by a computer doing those computations, it has found a Bitcoin. Because the number of solutions is very large, but limited, Bitcoin has an eventual ceiling. Although it may take hundreds of years to reach that ceiling. The reason Bitcoin is RELATIVELY stable is because if a person or institution tries to hoard Bitcoin, any computer can be set up to do computations to “find” new Bitcoin and new bitcoin are thus “created”.

        3. Bitcoin is traded via an open ledger, making it very transparent (aside from mishaps like Mt. Gox)

        4. Bitcoin is subject to market fluctuation because of its novelty value, and investment value.

        5. With Dark Wallet, Bitcoin is TOTALLY untraceable.

        Now, was that really so hard to understand?????????

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Have you ever mined bitcoins?

          • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

            No. Mostly because it requires MASSIVE amounts of computing power to make any real headway mining it.

            But I know people who do it. And there are commercial operations who’ve dedicated entire IT departments exclusively to mining it.

            Like anything, the more leverage you have (in this case computing power) the more you can compound that leverage.

    • HonestDebate1

      I don’t get the whole bit coin thing and you certainly may be right with your concerns. But what I see here is Russia now has a buyer for the natural gas they are selling to Europe. That clears the way for them to shut off the valves to their west.

    • tbphkm33

      … and why would a deal between Russia and China be quoted in U.S. dollars? Over the past 20 years, more-and-more international trade has been quoted in currencies other than the US dollar. The dropping influence of the US dollar is one of the most pressing problems facing the USA.

      • http://alchemicalreaction.blogspot.com/ Alchemical Reaction

        I would argue the problem is compounded by the emergence of Bitcoin.

      • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

        It was the case that ALL oil sales occurred in US dollars, between all countries. That is why the caller Jason (?) said that this will affect the US dollar and our bond interest rates, etc.

  • andy

    Lets recognize this for what it is: an attempt by “conservatives” to discredit anything done by the government.
    As many respondents have pointed out, satisfaction with the VA is quite a bit higher than with civilian health care, but the narrative is that nothing that is done by “government” (citizens who care enough to take a pay cut to serve their country) is done well.
    This assumption is having extremely destructive consequences in our society.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      The Nine Most Terrifying Words
      “”I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.”
      - President Reagan Aug. 12, 1986
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhYJS80MgYA

      • Ray in VT

        How does that work out in the wake of a natural disaster or maybe when the venture capital firm that bought your company decides to outsource all of your jobs right before Christmas?

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          I thought it was apropos to remind the revisionists about the “squish” that is “too far left” for the modern GOP.

          • Ray in VT

            True. The modern GOP is very much motivated by Reagan’s anti-government stances. Government can’t do anything right, and when they GOP is in charge they set out to prove it.

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            He sold weapons to a terrorist state, to support other terrorists.

            He raised taxes 11 times.

            He caused the deficit to balloon nearly 3X.

            He gave “amnesty” to about 3 million immigrants.

            He helped create the Taliban and Osama bin Laden.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Neil, this isn’t about hating on Reagan. You’ll be excused if you missed the prior conversation about Bryan Monroe’s laughable assertions.

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            It is about truth-telling.

          • tbphkm33

            Well said!!!

          • jimino

            And he used to head a (gasp!!!) union.

            He would have zero chance in today’s tea party steered GOP. Zero.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I said this earlier in a discussion about Bryan Monroe’s laughable assertion. A little thought exercise for the leftists who don’t seem to understand that Reagan is STILL a hero to conservatives.

            Who is more conservative, Romney or Reagan? McCain or Reagan? Dole or Reagan? McConnell or Reagan? Boehner or Reagan?

            Reagan wins on all counts. So the argument that Reagan couldn’t find a place in today’s GOP PROBABLY doesn’t pass the basic sniff test.

          • 1Brett1

            From what I can tell, Romney lost a presidential election (albeit he tried to convince people he was “severely” conservative). Also, didn’t McCain lose a presidential election? Dole also lost a few presidential bids (not to mention he hasn’t held public office since? When was it, ’96?) Boehner WAS a moderate and a “deal maker” who now kowtows to the Tea Party…Do you think these men lost elections (to Democrats) because they weren’t as conservative as Reagan? That doesn’t make sense, does it? Or did people vote for Democrats because they wanted someone MORE conservative?

            And, as far as Boehner is concerned, is he an ineffectual Speaker because he is not conservative enough? Or is it because he is being lead by Tp’ers who won’t let him do what he is good at: compromise to get something? Do you think he would be more successful if he were more conservative?

            …As ridiculous as your straw man is (comparing apples and oranges then claiming some kind of victorious point after shooting down the very thing you built on proverbial toothpicks), it proves one thing: that you’ll engage in such absurdities just to refute a point that is actually quite valid. Well done.

            Also, nice way in cherry picking a few Republicans as being representative of the current Republican Party itself (as they certainly are not). One can’t certainly accuse you of being afraid to look foolish.

            What seems most telling is the smugness with which your tone indicates how clever you feel you are [NOT].

            ***(I said “NOT” just so you could tell with some certainty that I consider your stunt as having no resemblance to cleverness, whatsoever, unless, of course, you consider silly, irrelevant comparisons to be clever…to each his own, but I think you’re better than that, Worried.

            Jimino’s point seems to be that the Republican Party — while still mythologizing Reagan in some iconic way — stands against many of the things he stood for/implemented if those things are presented in a stand-alone way. And you go out of your way to make some stupid argument claiming this isn’t true? Isn’t this in the “LMFAO” category, there, Worried?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Did you listen to today’s show?

            Here is Bryan Monroe’s laughable assertion:

            “The Republican Party – you look at somebody like President Ronald Reagan. Would he have survived in today’s Republican Party? Probably not.”

            So no, not a “ridiculous straw man”. I simply picked the most recent leaders and standard bearers of the party and compared them to Reagan.

            To me this is part of the concerted effort (since 2010) by the Dems and the MSM to label the Tea Party extreme. And since they appear to be successful they want to do the same to the GOP.

            The Tea Party wants to balance the budget. That is NOT extreme. What is extreme is running huge deficits year after year.

          • pete18

            You obviously misheard him.

          • 1Brett1

            Romney is the standard bearer for today’s Republican Party? Dole is a standard bearer for the current Republican Party? McCain is the standard bearer for the current Republican Party? Okeyly Dokely…

            Have you been drinking?

          • HonestDebate1

            The Republican party does not stand against unions in the private sector. They do not stand for a dirty environment. Reagan did not stand for tax hikes. He did not stand for amnesty.

            To come to your conclusion you must redefine Republicans and Reagan.

          • 1Brett1

            Republicans are great champions of environmental issues…sure, whatever. Nixon was the exception there…Reagan may not have “stood for tax hikes” but he certainly raised them enough times…And, no, he didn’t “stand” for amnesty, he just granted it to millions of immigrants…on and on.

            So, no, one doesn’t have to redefine Republicans or Reagan to believe he was moderate by today’s Republican Party standards. You can contort, distort, stand on a soapbox, play obtuse, or whatever else you want to do using your bag of nonsense; Jimino had a point.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, you are redefining both Republics and Reagan. If you want to live in with that kind of shallow thinking then it’s fine.

            http://dailycaller.com/2012/06/06/ronald-reagan-raised-taxes-11-times-the-real-story/

            And were you paying attention during Simpson/Mazzoli? It was a grand compromise, and the Democrats totally reneged on their promise.

            You have no point. You have a talking point.

          • 1Brett1

            You say so, so it must be so…

          • HonestDebate1

            That’s my point Brett, I’ve made it a gazillion times before. Facts can be misleading as hell. It’s not the facts I have a problem with, it the conclusions drawn from them. Reagan cut taxes big time. He was a proponent of lower taxes not higher. Classifying ending a deduction as a tax hike that overshadows lowering the top rate from 70% to 28% is just silly. Or a temporary gas tax hike.

            The rates were lowered dramatically, that doesn’t happen in a vacuum.

            But I’m wasting my time. If you think it’s funny to say that facts are misleading and get stuck there then you are not up to this level of discourse. you just won’t understand.

          • 1Brett1

            Don’t tell me what I think…as I said, put a fork in you, you’re done.

          • HonestDebate1

            I said “if you think” based on this:

            “And [chuckle] the Daily Caller?! …I especially loved the part where it said (about Reagan raising taxes 11 times), “while factual this is misleading…”

            I don’t care how much of a dishonest debater you are, that’s funny!”

            Where am I wrong?

          • TFRX

            More Tucker the Fncker?

            Please.

          • HonestDebate1

            What sources do you trust?

          • ExcellentNews

            I think the American people are seeing for themselves that the Republican party today stands for the profit and inherited privilege of a handful of global billionaires. Everything else is dust and noise to detract the public attention from this sad fact.

            Reagan stood for the 99%, whatever his other shortfalls. The Democratic party of 2014 has a lot more in common with Reagan than those sellouts to the Kochs and King Abdullah.

          • HonestDebate1

            Alrighty then.

          • ExcellentNews

            We know that Reagan is a hero to conservatives. God knows you have few other heroes to line up in the last 30 years.

            What you seem to ignore is that Reagan is also a hero to many non-conservative Americans. If you bother to read his biography, you will see someone who was profoundly pacifist, and quite connected with the lives of the 99% (of which he was one by birth).

            “Conservative” is a meaningless label. All the names you invoke above are shills for (or junior members) of our billionaire oligarchy. Reagan was not part of that club at any time of his life.

          • HonestDebate1

            He’d be a Tea Partier.

          • HonestDebate1

            Those are talking points. Who told you to think them?

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            I lived through it, so I know them to be facts.

          • HonestDebate1

            Sort of, but to boil it down to those talking points is propaganda. Do you really remember the dynamics of Simpson/Mazzoli? Have you analyzed the tax hikes? I gave a link about it down the page a ways.

          • Steve__T

            That’s comedy

          • nj_v2

            And don’t forget ignoring the early stages of AIDS development.

            Pat Buchanan, bigoted worm who was Raygun’s Communications Director, called AIDS, “nature’s revenge on gay men.”

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            Oh, and the 241 Americans killed in the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1983_Beirut_barracks_bombing

            And the Savings & Loans crisis when almost 1/3rd of the S&L’s in the country failed:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savings_and_loan_scandal

      • jimino

        For conservatives they are “only pay attention to what I say, not what I do”, without which neither Reagan or any other of their icons would exist.

      • ExcellentNews

        Well, I count 11 words. Then again, spelling was not a Reagan forte. Who was one of the greatest Presidents of our times, BTW.

        I don’t know what Reagan was doing in the party of pinheads like George W. “Mission Accomplished” Bush The Third, Michelle “I don’t believe in Science” Bachman, or Tom “The Redistrictor” DeLay.

        If Reagan was alive today, he would most likely be on the Obama team, working to rebuild infrastructure, put down predatory bankers, and stop the export of our technology to slave-labor totalitarian dictatorships.

    • OnPointComments

      Where do you draw the line at it being something more than “an attempt by ‘conservatives’ to discredit anything done by the government”? Obviously, for you, the line is somewhere more than the 40 reported deaths (including 23 deaths that the VA admitted were caused by delays) and keeping duplicate admissions records to get a bonus and falsify reporting.

  • Jim Foster

    How great to hear two of my favorite people together, Tom Ashbrook and Ken Rudin!! Hope you do it again soon!!

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Paul Erhlich is at it again. Plays the Soylent Green card.

    Does Stanford check for senility?

    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/sean-long/2014/05/22/alarmist-paul-ehrlich-predicts-need-eat-bodies-your-dead

    • TFRX

      Newsbusters?

      Hahahaha.

      Proving, once again, that “conservative media crit” is an oxymoron.

      • HonestDebate1

        What sources do you trust?

        • pete18

          BALLOON JUICE!!!!

    • nj_v2

      ^ Got Sophos virus-threat warning on this link. For real.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    “A Democratic War on One Woman

    Democrats resort to character assassination in the Senate race against Dr. Monica Wehby in Oregon.”

    Not just a Dem war on women but the media. Excuse my mistake. Dems and the MSM — one in the same.

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303480304579578320997005270

    • ExcellentNews

      I thought that all right wing shills were working hard creating jobs and paying taxes. What are you doing online, spamming the forums with Republican propaganda? Or is THAT your job?

      We have nothing against Dr. Wehby except that she is a willing shill for the handful of oligarchs who gutted the USA from the inside – exporting the jobs, voting themselves an inheritance tax cut, dragging us into very profitable wars, and deregulating banking, energy and the media for the benefit of their cronies.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Not my job and I’m not a Republican. But thanks for asking.

        • ExcellentNews

          Well, if you are not a Republican, why do spam OnPoint with the scripted talking points of the Koch Brothers and the Tea Party? Because only someone on a rich diet of Rush Limbaugh and Hannity uses terms like MSM…

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            You need an update. If I was parroting those legends I would have used “lamestream media” not MSM.

            I take it from your response that you endorse the treatment of the good Dr. from Oregon. (remember this isn’t about ME).

          • HonestDebate1

            Democrats have no trouble being nasty to women. Ask Sarah Palin, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Condi Rice.

          • ExcellentNews

            LOL. I doubt any Democrat did more damage to these ladies, than they did to themselves opening their mouth on live TV.

          • HonestDebate1

            Thank you.

          • 1Brett1

            So, by your definition of what it means to be “nasty to women,” you are “nasty to women.” You’ve said some pretty “nasty” things about Hillary…but, then, you don’t have a problem with being a hypocrite.

          • HonestDebate1

            Hypocrisy doesn’t bother me much, true but I deny the charge. I’ve never called Hillary anything that had squat to do with her sex. She’s a horrible role model for women and she was a horrible Secretary of State. That’s not nasty, it’s the fact.

            Meanwhile Sarah Palin has been called a c&nt and a $lut on national television. Condi was called a House Ni@@a and Aunt Jemima. Those are not facts.

          • 1Brett1

            I suppose when you were saying Hillary was a drunk, that didn’t count? -No, wait, that isn’t gender specific, so, it’s okay…sure.

            Also, what were the actual quotes about Palin and Rice and who made them? Your initial comment (not surprisingly a distortion) characterized the name calling as being done by Democrats, as if most Democrats are calling both women those names.

            You say these things were said about both women on national TV. I doubt that; censors would have bleeped them out.

          • HonestDebate1

            Exactly! And we certainly know she knocks back a few. Speculating (all I did was speculate) she got drunk and bopped her noggin is not a stretch.

            Bill Maher called Palin a C%nt. David Letterman caller her a $lut. Washington Post cartoonest Ted Rall called Condi a house Ni@@a.

          • nj_v2

            [[ David Letterman caller her a $lut. ]]

            Not exactly, but facts have never been DishonestMisDebatorGreggg’s strong suit.

          • HonestDebate1

            As I recall he said she looked like a $slutty stewardess (or something) and then said her 10 year old daughter got knocked up at a baseball game.

            So, I guess it’s not too bad.

          • 1Brett1

            Two comedians (who have a history of saying derogatory things about all sorts of people, both men and women) and a political cartoonist (who also has a history of offensive cartoons, and not with the intent of targeting women, necessarily) and this becomes
            “Democrats…[are]..nasty to women”? Yeah, that’s typical of your hyperbole.

            And, you are just “speculating,” so your derogatory stuff is okay..yep, .put a fork in you; you’re done. Are you no better than Maher, Letterman or Rall? Do the offensive acts of others justify your offensive “speculations”? You have an arrogant double standard toward morality, but one would expect nothing less coming from your [dis]honest debate.

          • HonestDebate1

            Don’t defend that crap Brett.

            Obama pays women less than men. There are ads for Obamacare that portray women as $luts and gays as deviant. James Carville said of Paula Jones, if you drag a hundred dollar bill through a trailer park you can find anyone to say anything. Bill Clinton told Juanita Broaderick, you should put some ice on that lip after he raped her. Linda Tripp had the full weight of the government attempting to make her perjure herself in federal court. John Walsh said laundry is a women’s job.

            It’s not about me.

          • 1Brett1

            I’m not defending men who behave badly toward women; you know that, so why imply that I am defending bad behavior toward women?

            Your blanket statement that “Democrats have no trouble being nasty to women” is mean-spirited. Plenty of Republicans have said and done bad things toward women. I would never accuse you of defending those behaviors. Quit being more of a jerk than you already are.

            …Show us the ads for the ACA that portray women and gays in the ways you claim.

          • HonestDebate1

            You have accused me of defending racism and lots of nasty things. You have treated me like dirt, You’ve called me every name in the book too, Get off your high horse. The proper response to my comment was to condemn those comments, you did not, still haven’t. Anything less is a defense. That’s my opinion, sue me.

            Here’s the gay ad and if you hang out with gays you know full well this is not how they act.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azoWedQH8zQ

            And here’s one of the $lut ads:

            http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2013/11/20131112_unbelievable.jpg

            And just to reiterate:

            Obama pays women less than men. There are ads for Obamacare that portray women as $luts and gays as deviant. James Carville said of Paula Jones, if you drag a hundred dollar bill through a trailer park you can find anyone to say anything. Bill Clinton told Juanita Broaderick, you should put some ice on that lip after he raped her. Linda Tripp had the full weight of the government attempting to make her perjure herself in federal court. John Walsh said laundry is a women’s job.

            These are not comedians or cartoonists.

            It’s not about me.

          • 1Brett1

            I’ve called you every name in the book? Hardly. I believe you are bigoted, based on the things you’ve said on this forum. I believe you have said racist things on this forum. To borrow your words: “sue me”! And, “it’s not about me.”

            The ads, while one might argue they are in bad taste or that they are being flippant about a serious subject, they are intended to be cheeky/humorous and to be directed at a young audience who responds to ribald humor (just look at the stuff that is on Comedy Central).

            What I think is happening with your perceptions here is that these ads making fun of women wanting to just have sex for the sake of having sex/being the sexual aggressors and intending to be humorous to a young audience), is being distorted on your part to say that Democrats treat women badly. You exploit the tone, tenor and intention of these ads just to throw something to see if you can make it stick/get some traction out of it.

            Also, you said last week that you didn’t get MIchael Sams kissing his boyfriend, that there was something wrong with that (I don’t remember your exact words). I thought that was telling, that if you see two men kissing you feel this is being deviant. Men dancing around in shorts and hugging each other is not deviant. It might be risque (in the same way some may see men and women dancing and hugging while being scantily clad is risque). It may be inappropriate, especially to a prude or to someone who thinks homosexuality should not be displayed in public, but “deviant”? If you saw a group of woman dancing in Santa outfits that were skimpy (in a comedy skit), would you think that was, seriously, portraying women as deviant? If you saw men and women dancing in scantily clad outfits together in a comedy routine would that be portraying them as deviant, would that mean the writers of the comedy were saying women/men/homosexuals were being deviant? No, Gregg, this says more about you than these ads. They have served as a kind of Rorschach test for you, more showing that you think women should neither initiate sex nor be the aggressor in any way. It also reveals that you feel homosexual men should not hug and kiss each other in public, and that’s all your opinions reveal (aside from the fact that you are intentionally distorting all of this out of a desire to do a little partisan mudslinging)…It doesn’t surprise me that you feel men hugging and dancing with each other is deviant. (I also belief you are homophobic; sue me!)

            As I said I don’t condone women being treated badly. I’m not going to go down your laundry list and comment on every example you have listed. and engage with on your level. Just because I won’t, it does not mean I defend women being treated badly; that’s just your trying to be manipulative. Go play that silly game with someone else.

            To reiterate, I believe you are bigoted (based on many things you’ve said on this forum), that you also say racist things on this forum, and I believe you are a homophobe. Sue me! I stand by my opinions of you. Sorry, no undue disrespect, there.

          • HonestDebate1

            Not literally (depending on the book) but you have flat out called me a racist. Punk, idiot (fair), moron, jerk, A-hole… the list goes on. Cool, I don’t care but get off your high horse.

            Do the ads insinuate $lutism or not? They do. Do they portray gays as sexually obsessed deviants or not? They do.

            And no, you don’t remember. I merely pointed out I have never seen any draftee kiss their mate, I think it was staged. It is NOT deviant for gays to kiss each other. Where do you get this stuff? And yes, it is offensive to show scantily clad women dancing in their underwear with cod pieces kissing and admiring butts of men. There is no difference. And it wasn’t a comedy routine it was an Obamacare ad.

            I love women initiating sex. What the hell are you talking about? I love sexually aggressive women. Please don’t tell me what I think. I just don’t think it is anyone’s business and is not appropriate commercial material.

            Your interpretations are truly bizarre. My problem is with portraying gays in a way I know is not true. Gay people just want to live life like anyone else. The ad played into stereotypes that are not reality. I can only assume you have no gay friends. And by friends I mean real friends.

            You are entitled to your opines. God bless you.

          • ExcellentNews

            Well, unlike you I actually have a real job and need to get back to it. I took money from my pocket to do my civic duty, and have no more time for a conversation that sound like arguing with my wife – questions deflected, debate shifted sideways…etc.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            You make a lot of assumptions in your spare time.

          • ExcellentNews

            When no clear straight answers are forthcoming, one has to make assumptions.
            But I guess you like being mysterious. Just like the origin of the big money that funded Ms. Wehby. After all, the Republicans have a nearly bottomless pit of “dark money” to spend on local elections, thanks to the recent rulings of Bush’ Supreme Court.
            I wonder how many Saudi petrodollars or donations from the Sovereign Fund of The People’s Republic of China have gone into her campaign and the rest of the Republican candidates…

          • pete18

            Oh oh, WFTC, another one has seen through the charade. All the gobs of dark money that is being spent here might have to be cut back now that the curtain has dropped. I mean this forum is one of the centers of influence right? No doubt you’ve converted thousands of voters with your posts here. If I were the Koch brothers this would be the most effective place to put my money to spread the propaganda.

            You’ll have to come back with a new moniker or they’ll be no foolin’ them. How about WTF?

          • ExcellentNews

            A conservative with a sense of humor!!! All is lost !!! I better run back and alert Obama’s headquarters that the Republicans have a viable candidate to line up… Seriously, I doubt that anyone here takes money from the Kochs. Vladimir Ilych Lenin had a name for people like that – “Useful Idiots”. I don’t really think much of communist ideology, but he had this one down pat. How else can you characterize ordinary people cheering for our job-exporting CEOs, predatory bankers, and science-bashing coal barons?????

          • pete18

            “How else can you characterize ordinary people cheering for our job-exporting CEOs, predatory bankers, and science-bashing coal barons?????”

            An excellent, “have you stopped beating your wife yet?, I’m incapable of seeing two sides of an argument,” question.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            It is part and parcel of being such a bellicose bigot. But while there is life there is hope.

      • JONBOSTON

        Seriously–Is your post a put on or do you believe such garbage?

        • ExcellentNews

          I’m totally serious. We’ve heard from Republican luminaries ranging from Joe The Plumber to Mitt “47%” Romney that the Republican party is the party of “job creators”, of those who “work hard making wealth for themselves”, of true Americans, of life, liberty and kittens, of the flag, and of kittens (again). So I was wondering when exactly WFTC has the time to “create the jobs” and “make the wealth” given that he and few of his pals are posting dozens of comments daily here and there. Unless, like the mythical John Galt, he can do a days worth of work in 30 minutes or less…

          • HonestDebate1

            Where do you get this stuff?

          • JONBOSTON

            I guess you do believe such garbage. Since I’ve never heard anyone , let alone Romney , ever say that the Republican party is the exclusive party of job creators, where do you get your information from? The Republican party supports policies that promote economic growth and sustainable decent paying jobs. Sorry but I’m still waiting for our Great Incompetent Leader to offer economic policies that promote growth as opposed to income redistribution. Opposing the Keystone pipeline and the jobs it would create or having the NLRB block Boeing’s opening of a manufacturing plant in South Carolina that would employ thousands in decent paying jobs is sheer idiocy. Raising the minimum wage and increasing unemployment compensation does nothing to promote economic growth but it does convince economic illiterates that he feels their pain and “is trying hard”. Truly sad that in times like today we have such staggeringly incompetent leadership.

          • ExcellentNews

            You keep avoiding my question. But let me answer yours. I get my information from the Republican party primaries and electoral debates. Occasionally from Fox News or talk radio, but that’s hard to listen to for long without puking.

            Case in a point – “The Republican party supports policies that promote economic growth and sustainable decent paying jobs” (your words). No. The Republican party policies have led to the export of 25,000,000 high-wage jobs from the US, and deregulation that has perverted the very structure of our economy. The only thing the Republican party stands for is tax cuts for the oligarchy – especially inheritance tax cuts. The latter are the reason why there is such hate of Obama amongst the moneyed elites.

            I am not sure who is the Great Incompetent Leader, but our President has generally the right policies (1) raise revenue because we need to re-invest and re-build. Private industry has proven itself incapable of that. (2) reverse some of the worst privateer excesses in the financial, energy and healthcare sectors because they are dragging our overall economic competitiveness down.

            On Boeing – the move to South Carolina has NOTHING to do with job creation. It is designed to replace high-wage jobs in WA with low-wage jobs in NC. The “savings” will go in the pockets of the executives, as proven by 30 years of history.

            Keystone – the pipeline will create few hundred transient jobs. Oil and coal are basically “job-free” industries. The industries are old and highly efficient. They can do what they do without creating many jobs. On the other hand, retooling for renewables will be much more labor-intensive (that’s jobs in plan English). And much less profitable of course… which is why the Massies, the Kochs and the sheikhs hate it.

            Jobs are the enemy of profit. This is what our economy has been for the last 30 years. Obama wants to do something to reverse the trend and has some good ideas.

          • JONBOSTON

            Your resort to cartoon characterizations, gross distortions, and evident profound ( or willful) ignorance of the global economy and the private sector is disturbing. You are apparently troubled by what economists refer to as ” comparative advantage” , i.e. money and investment flowing to those who can produce a product or service at a lower marginal cost in order to produce an efficient and productive economy.

            First , I have no idea what question you’ve asked me that I haven’t responded to . What does “WFTC” stand for?

            It would help if you identified the Republican party policies that have led to the export of 25.0m jobs. The US is the wealthiest country in the world not by accident but because of 250 years of national support of capitalism and free -market pro-growth economic policies. What you’ve conveniently ignored are the millions of jobs created in the US by foreign companies who invest here because of their judgement about our country’s institutions, policies,human capital, and prospects. Considerations of taxes, regulations, trade openness, access to skilled workers, infrastructure , energy policy , and dozens of other policy matters factor into decisions about whether, where, , and how much to invest here. In the past , as the world’s largest economy, the US has been able to attract the investment needed to produce the innovative ideas , new technologies , new products , and new industries that have made the US the wealthiest nation in the world. However, ever since our staggeringly incompetent leader took office and began his systematic war on the private sector, both internal and foreign investment has declined. Unlike ever before, the world’s producers have a wealth of options when it comes to where and how they organize product development, production, assembly, distribution, and other functions such as product conception and have decided to invest elsewhere. Why that’s the case is no mystery as investors perceive the current US business environment as becoming increasingly less hospitable.

            Lastly, your ideas may resonate with economic illiterates, union members , Marxist professors and the like but they would lead to economic ruin. Witness the former Soviet Union, North Korea , and China’s wholesale abandonment of communism for unbridled capitalism. Attempting to close the US economy to global economic forces didn’t work with Smoot-Halley which led to the Great Depression and won’t work today.

            PS–Boeing’s building of a plant in South Carolina did not “replace” jobs in Washington. It was a new production line for the assembly of aircraft. You support investment in infrastructure so what do you call the Keystone Pipeline? Putting aside increased energy independence, the Keystone pipeline represents billions invested in infrastructure that creates decent paying jobs. ALL INFRASTRUCTURE work , whether private or public, creates transient jobs. You build a bridge , tunnel or new road permanent jobs are not created. Obama is an unmitigated disaster, who, if he wasn’t our first black president, would be universally regarded as one of the worst presidents ever. Ironically those unfortunates who still support this incompetent are the one’s most suffering from his policies.

          • ExcellentNews

            Wow. That long rant would have worked in 1995 or 1999 (or even in 2004, aided by the Swiftboat shills), but in 2014, the DATA is here to show that the unbridled rule of the oligarchy you so nicely wrap in economic jargon does NOT WORK. Even most of the peons can see it.

            It’s nice of you to mention the wealth of the U.S. Certainly, free enterprise has a lot to do with it. However, there are tons of other complex factors that are just as important. A wide-open, resource rich continent. Young population. Attracting the best and brightest in science (yeah, the college professors you seem to dislike). No war or destruction on US land for a century. Massive government investment in infrastructure, science, energy and education. Social programs. High taxes to fund the latter. Regulation of monopolies. National economic policy. Trade barriers. And so forth.

            It is these factors that worked hand in hand with the “free market” to create a prosperous America. Western Europe copied that recipe, and in less than 50 years, rose from the ashes into a society almost as prosperous as us.

            Countries that let the oligarchy rule (the real deal behind the “private sector” “job creator” BS of the Republican party) found themselves sliding in mass poverty, often followed by revolution and totalitarian dictatorship. Just look south of the border.

            Last, I did not ask YOU any question. It was directed at a regular Tea Party shill who is posting 1000s of comments here. I was wondering how a “hard-working” “job-creating wealth-maker” has the time to spam these forums with the Grover Nordquist party line.

          • ExcellentNews

            And ahem… The Boeing plan is to CLOSE the production lines in Seattle and move them to NC as they phase out production of the 737/747 and ramp up the 777/787. No net jobs created. But then again, don’t let the facts get in the way of corporate propaganda.

          • JONBOSTON

            You sound like a union organizer. Only a staggeringly incompetent president has the NLRB union stooges file its complaint against Boeing during a period of 8.5% unemployment after Boeing has invested billions$ to build the plant and hired thousands of workers for good paying jobs that were probably comparable to Seattle hourly wages. If if that’s not case then the union fools have no one to blame but themselves if Boeing was shifting jobs to other parts of the US -places where costs are lower, unions less cantankerous, and politicians make Boeing feel more welcome.

          • JONBOSTON

            Your first sentence to me was ” You keep avoiding my question” , so I asked what question.

            Also, don’t put words in my mouth. I have no issue with college professors, be they scientists or otherwise. My disdain is with Marxist professors who close their eyes to reality and peddle their garbage to unsuspecting impressionable young students.

            recommendation#1 drop your constant refrain to oligarchs. Either you’re TomKfromBoston under a new handle or an ideologue. In any event it makes you sound like a left wing loon –unless you are one.

            Recommendation #2 get exposed to the dreaded private sector. You haven’t a clue as to how it operates .

          • ExcellentNews

            It’s probably the way Disqus posts things. The question was not for you.

            Marxist professors? Haven’t met many of those. Marxism IS garbage, but we are not talking about Marxism here. Of course, the moneyed interests behind the tea party want to label anyone who does not agree with their view as Marxist, but labeling things does not change their true nature.

            Which brings me to point #1. Why? We should call a spade a spade. Oligarchy is a perfectly appropriate term for the rich donors behind most republicans and quite a few democrats.

            How do I know it? This brings me to your point #2. I have some modest exposure to the “dreaded private sector”. For nearly 20 years, I consulted to the rich and non-famous (mostly executives, owners and a few bankers). I know personally some of the people who probably are writing fat checks for the Tea Party. And the experience left me so profoundly disgusted with their hypocrisy and self-serving delusions that it will be a cold day in hell when I support anyone who tells me “tax cuts for our job creators”. I know how these slogans get designed and market-tested.

            And last, no I am not a union organizer, I am actually a small business owner today. Unions are my last worry. Living in an English-speaking version of the Philippines or Russia is my first. Because this is where we are headed under the direction of our oligarchy. Sorry, but I have to call the spade by its name.

    • HonestDebate1

      I saw some ads by her a while back on Hot Air. She is very impressive.

      http://hotair.com/archives/2014/04/23/gop-senate-candidates-ad-meet-the-doctor-who-saved-my-babys-life/

  • ExcellentNews

    It sounds like the global oligarchy is winning the war on the middle class globally. Because this is what China and Russia are – totalitarian dictatorships owned and ruled for the benefit of such a small club of insiders that 0.01% sound inclusive. Russia is OWNED by 1000 people, and the rest are little better than peons. China is a communist country, owned and run by the kids of the senior party officials.

    And who is helping them? Our own conservatives. An unlikely coalition of fundamentalists, Confederate romantics and Ayn Rand delusionals has been co-opted and funded by our own billionaire club. They have been gutting the US middle class since the mid-90s and giving themselves tax cuts on the proceeds.

    Wake up people – we, and our true allies in Western Europe are the last hope of social democracy and the Enlightenment. We must make our voice heard over the sponsored noise from Pox News and the Tea Party. We brought freedom and prosperity to millions in the 20th century, and we cannot let the new feudal lords take them back.

    • spiral007

      I agree with your sentiment. The question is how to go about it. We have created a system where most regulatory bodies at federal and state level have been captured by our oligarchy and their corporations. The supreme court and other courts are increasingly at their service. The legislature no longer needs the public thru Gerry-mandering and media manipulation, where the MSM is owned by the same oligarchs. The executive branch has become increasingly opaque and might I add even misleading the public with lies and half truths. There are no consequences for lying to the public. The nation has been cowed by the fear of terrorism; the entrenched bodies have un-ending wars on terrorism and drugs, both have systematically robbed us of our privacy and we have willingly traded security for liberty. The police has been militarized, younger people are afraid to protest for the fear of being arrested and thus ‘screwing’ their future.

      Any ideas on how to reverse the trend!!

      • ExcellentNews

        Well said. We need to step forward – with a clear plan, clear message, and strong organizations to deliver them. This is what the oligarchy has been doing since the 80s. Slowly and patiently they have been “framing the debate”, planting their ideas, and building powerful organizations to distribute them. We need to the same:

        – Smart government (not small government)
        – Public finance of elections
        – Term limits
        – Simple progressive tax code
        – Tax on “destructive” businesses
        – Claw-back tax on executives and financiers
        – Massive investment in R&D, infrastructure
        – Public education and healthcare
        – Free trade only with countries meeting our labor and environmental standards.
        – Alliances only with countries sharing our democratic values

        In 2008, Obama looked like the candidate who could do this. I guess, running a country on the verge of economic collapse while being sabotaged by the likes of Rupert Murdoch and the Koch Brothers has put this on the back burner. That leaves people like you and me. Speak. Make yourself heard. Ask your friends. Spread the word. Vote. Call all your local candidates and ask who is paying their bills. Do not be silent.

        Or else, there is always the revolution… and we know how these turn out.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      The biggest obstacle you face is that you don’t know who your enemies are and you spend your efforts harming your friends. When you get over your hate, (and I am sure you will) meet with some members of the Tea Party Movement and start working on any issue you agree about. The results will surprise you.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYUxpr3pnuc&list=UU_5XQWWtrRyryGpXgZDFO_A&feature=share&index=4

  • Dee

    Once again, it seems to me Jack Beatty finds himself struct in the
    GOP playbook of the Bush Cheney era and now with the GOP ex-
    tremists as he blames Obama for something the GOP created and
    uses this to blame and exploit the down turn in the economy…….
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/10/opinion/krugman-obstruct-and-exploit.html?_r=0

    Well, what BS from the hawks in Washington establishment and
    their enablers in the Senate and cheerleaders and apologists in
    the WSJ and New York Times. Just when are they going to get it? Americans are fed up of their man made wars and want no part
    of them today…

    And as Dennis Kucinich notes in a speech in 2011 “These wars
    are corrupting our nation” and short changing the middle class
    & poor http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_57809.shtml.

    He suggested doing away with the National security state and
    containing the bloated Pentagon and The Defense INdustry.
    Eisenhower had warned against this also in his farewell speech.
    ( http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/14/opinion/14ledbetter.html )

    https://www.truthdig.com/report/item/dennis_kucinich_on_the_ndaa_and_war_without_end_20111219#

    I think the former US Historian Howard Zinn hit the nail on the head when he urged Americans to look beyond their corrupt government
    officials and their lies and propaganda and map out a life of accept-
    ance and respect among the nations of the world. How wise he was.
    http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0321-20.htm

    • JONBOSTON

      What no Israel bashing?….I see you’ve returned from jihad. Tell me -how are you able to get beyond HSA’s watch list?

      • Dee

        Hello there….

        Israel is finished as a political entity today..

        It is immoral for Jews to promote themselves
        on the backs of the Palestinian people and their state. (Or any group for that matter)

        People today will never accept this from Israel
        It will not be upheld. See the UR below.

        Dee

        http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/the-war-s-seventh-day-1.51513

        • JONBOSTON

          Interesting that you link an Israeli citizen in a leading Israeli newspaper imploring his people to find a better way to find peace with the Palestinians. Now link for my and everyone’s benefit a Palestinian imploring in local media his fellow Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank to condemn the senseless violence against innocent Israeli men , women and children, and the deliberate and continuing effort by Palestinians leadership to educate from birth Palestinian youth in an atmosphere of religious and nationalist incitement, with no trace of anything positive regarding Israel, thereby deepening their hatred towards Israel. Cite for me articles addressed to the Palestinian people by Palestinians condemning acts that fan the flames of violence and encouragement and justification of terrorism against the State of Israel and against Jews. Cite for me the commentaries by Palestinians to their people condemning Hamas, a terrorist Islamic group that engages in hate speech and calls for the elimination of Israel . I doubt you’ll find such an article. Instead they elect Hamas to govern Gaza
          and begin a reign of terror on neighboring Israeli settlements. The Palestinians will get peace and a homeland when they want to live in peace with Israel.

          • Dee

            Many people today do not feel Hamas fits the definition of an international terrorist group (however much they

            may disagree with their violent acts

            against Israeli civilians ) and should

            be taken off the Terrorist list.

            Hamas as a nationalist group has no ties to international terrorism and has never targeted other groups other than Israelis.

            Thus one can conclude Israeli lead-
            ers and their apologists in the United States and around the world have jumped on the bandwagon of the
            phony US “War on Terror” to dis-
            credit national groups who are de-fending the assult on their people
            and their sovereign land today by
            the powers to be.

            This has been documented widely
            by the their Palestinian victims (See
            below) and others in the media and
            human rights and advocacy groups.

            Geography of Occupation eye witness
            https://archive.org/details/Salman_Abu_Sitta

            An Israeli soldier , Refusing to serve
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTAvst5mxW4

            The Middleast Peace Scam,Siegman
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_0bRwkgsJ8

            Israeli Lobby, note its apologist warn-
            ing of “next” to Syria. J. Mearsheimer
            http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n06/john-mearsheimer/the-israel-lobby

            Is it any wonder many Americans and
            others around the world are boycott-
            ing Israeli goods and protesting Israeli officials and their apologists appear-
            ence from their Halls of Justice and academic institutions today?

            Indeed, it is beyond shame what the Zionist Movement and their Jewish supporters have done in Palestine today and their continued assault on the Palestinian Peoples’ sovereign homeland and human rights.

            (Especially, in light of the fact it was
            their former leaders who petitioned
            the World body of the UN following World !! and asked for “a special dispensation of mercy” in the form
            of a homeland….. noting that their
            property was taken by the Nazis
            and their human rights grossly vio-
            lated. Now, they have turned around
            and committed many of the same
            kind of war crimes and human rights
            violations against the Palestinian people. How shockingly atrocious
            this all has been! And what a crime
            this is against the victims of the
            Holocaust and the Jewish people
            they claim to represent today. )

            Jews ought to keep coming out say-
            ing NOT IN OUR NAME as many
            Americans protested during the Viet-
            nam War and today against the US phony “War on Terrorism” (see the URL on this also ) Dee

          • Dee

            The 9/11 Commision Report, David Ray Griffin , Omissions & Distortions
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmuYgP7-RfU

            Blueprint for Truth, Richard Gage
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vb7o-OOe20

            The Other 19 suspects in the 9/11 event
            http://www.amazon.com/Another-

            Nineteen-Investigating-Legitimate-Suspects/dp/1489507833

            (The author advises reining them in and charging them accordingly for their part in
            this war crime which has
            beeh used to justify US war crimes around the world to-
            day. And the continued as-
            sult on their liberty & rights today as well as other and
            groups they claim are re-
            sponsible.)

          • JONBOSTON

            so where are your cites of Palestinian citizens of some importance imploring fellow Palestinians to refrain from violence against innocent Israeli men, women , and children? Typical refrain of all left wing loons to label terrorists as “nationalists”or “freedom fighters”. Calling Hamas anything other than terrorists is enough to make me vomit.

          • Dee

            Jon, you need to save your vomit for
            the criminal mindset in the Israeli Est.
            and Zionist Organization world wide
            go on supporting this shocking injust-
            tice to promote the Jewish cause in
            Palestine.

            As Slaman Abu Sitta pointed out in
            his eye witness account their land
            theft and trickery will never be ac-
            cepted by the Palestinian people
            nor by the world today…They can
            take that to the Bank today too….

            Their days in the hay are over …
            And I can assure you they are
            not coming back…..

            I predict the Israeli Lobby and
            Zionist organizations will be ban-
            ned from petitioning the US gov.
            as a corrupting influence……

            People will demand it…

            Especially .after pulling the US into
            an illegal war on Iraq, and the ex-
            pansion of that war into Afghanistan
            and Libya….Then the Bomb, Bomb Syria Campaign. And of course, the madness for a war on Iran too.

            Americans are over the top today
            on their outrage & disgust towards
            Israel and could oppose upholding
            it…based on the status quo. Dee

            Ignoring History, Accusing Iran
            http://zcomm.org/znetarticle/accusing-iran-ignoring-history-by-ted-snider/

  • HonestDebate1

    My comment was not about McCain, I’m not a fan.

    Yes, Rush has been a stalwart for veterans. His Harry Reid letter alone raised over $4 million. “His “Two if by Tea” brand sends profits to veterans. He’s been tremendously supportive of veterans.

  • HonestDebate1

    Picketty is a fraud. He can’t even do math. But we already knew that.

    http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/e1f343ca-e281-11e3-89fd-00144feabdc0.html#axzz32YyPT9uj

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Errors, smerrors!! He’s a rock star.

    • Steve__T

      Na, on second thought ….its not worth it

    • ExcellentNews

      Absolutely! He is just one of the conniving scientists who claim the Earth is round and rotates around the sun.

  • hennorama

    From the Oops! Department:

    Los Angeles Times: U.S. officials cut estimate of recoverable Monterey Shale oil by 96%

    Reuters: U.S. EIA cuts recoverable Monterey shale oil estimate by 96 pct

    From the articles:

    Federal energy authorities have slashed by 96% the estimated amount of recoverable oil buried in California’s vast Monterey Shale deposits, deflating its potential as a national “black gold mine” of petroleum.

    Just 600 million barrels of oil can be extracted with existing technology, far below the 13.7 billion barrels once thought recoverable from the jumbled layers of subterranean rock spread across much of Central California, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said.

    The new estimate, expected to be released publicly next month, is a blow to the nation’s oil future and to projections that an oil boom would bring as many as 2.8 million new jobs to California and boost tax revenue by $24.6 billion annually.

    The Monterey Shale formation contains about two-thirds of the nation’s shale oil reserves. It had been seen as an enormous bonanza, reducing the nation’s need for foreign oil imports through the use of the latest in extraction techniques, including acid treatments, horizontal drilling and fracking.

    The energy agency said the earlier estimate of recoverable oil, issued in 2011 by an independent firm under contract with the government, broadly assumed that deposits in the Monterey Shale formation were as easily recoverable as those found in shale formations elsewhere.

    See:
    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-oil-20140521-story.html

    AND

    “The EIA concluded that the technical recoverability of Monterey shale did not look as strong in 2014 because of the industry’s difficulty in producing from the region,” EIA head Adam Sieminski told reporters in New York.

    Technically recoverable reserves are often a moving target, changing as new drilling techniques develop and the price of oil fluctuates. Further drilling will likely provide clearer evidence of the Monterey’s true reserves, the EIA said.

    Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which involves cracking open shale rock using water, sand and chemicals, has unlocked vast amounts of oil and gas in recent years from other shale plays like the Bakken in North Dakota and the Marcellus centered in Pennsylvania, transforming the estimated amount of recoverable oil over the last decade.

    But fracking alone has failed to produce the same results in the geology of the Monterey shale in central California, dampening expectations for a resource once thought to rival other giant U.S. shale deposits and seen as an economic boon for the state. Some drillers have turned to other methods, including using acid to help melt rock, though progress has been slow and met with strong environmental opposition.

    See:
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/21/eia-monterey-shale-idUSL1N0O713N20140521

    BTW, the company that performed the 2011 estimate study is named Intek, Inc. This was their comment:

    Christopher Dean, senior associate at Intek, said Tuesday that the firm’s work “was very broad, giving the federal government its first shot at an estimate of recoverable oil in the Monterey Shale. They got more data over time and refined the estimate.”

    Personally, I enjoyed Mr. Dean’s use of the term “refined” in connection with an estimate about oil deposits.

    One wonders how large a reduction in the estimate would be needed for it to be termed a >ahem< “bottomhole choke” (which, per the source below, is “generally removable with slickline intervention”), or an “error.”

    See:
    http://www.glossary.oilfield.slb.com/en/Terms/b/bottomhole_choke.aspx
    http://www.glossary.oilfield.slb.com/en/Terms/e/error.aspx

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Given the impact on our energy security, Obama now has yet another reason to approve the Keystone pipeline.

    • HonestDebate1

      They should increase off shore drilling.

      My curiosity is why the EIA was involved at all. Fracking is done on private land despite the government not because of it. Why would the Obama administration get involved?

      • Steve__T

        No they shouldn’t We’ve had enough water pollution, thank you

        • HonestDebate1

          Tankers are hauling oil around the globe either way. It’s an accident waiting to happen.

          Obama exempted BP from oversight.

      • ExcellentNews

        LOL. EIA is not the EPA. It’s just a rather small statistic agency, the reports and databases of which are widely used by every energy company worldwide for business planning. Among many others, it compiles data on the various classes of petroleum reserves.

        But of course, that’s the THIRD agency which Ricky Perry was going to abolish if he could remember the name thereof…

      • nj_v2

        As if fossil fuels are unlimited. Typical deep thinking from Troll Posse Land.

        • HonestDebate1

          Not unlimited, I’d say only a few millennias worth is left.

          • nj_v2

            What’s unlimited is this clown’s cluelessness.

            Conventional crude oil has already peaked. Frack gas is a few-decades bubble. Shale oil, tar sands oil, etc., will get increasingly expensive.

            And all these have increasingly dire environmental consequences, both local/regional (air and water pollution, earthquakes, etc.) along with the obvious exacerbation of global climate disruption.

            For idiots like HD1, the “solution” is drill and extract every accessible bit of sequestered carbon until what’s left is so exorbitantly expensive that it’s no longer viable.

            Rather than use our limited amount of time left to redesign our large, societal systems to simplify and localize, following the maximum-extraction path reduces our options; puts faith in magical, as-yet-demonstrated, techno fixes; and creates ever-more-serious crises stemming from climate disruption, for which there will be increasingly fewer resources to deal with.

            Industrialized society, built and sustained (until now) on the incredibly energy-dense, relatively cheap and plentiful carbon fuels, is simply a historical blip; a bubble that there is no way to sustain without increasingly catastrophic damage to the biological/environmental resources needed to sustain life itself.

          • HonestDebate1

            What’s so hard about addressing me in reply to me?

            Oh please, no one knows what peak oil is. No one knows what peak frack is for that matter.

            No, the solution is an all of the above approach. Please don’t tell me what I think… but you were right about the the idiot part. I don’t even know what “redesign our large, societal systems to simplify and localize” means but it sounds like communism to me.

            Here’s the thing, Fossil fuels run the world, period (to borrow an Obama term). If they all disappeared tomorrow the death and suffering would be unfathomable. Technology will advance and energy sources will be discovered as older ones like nucular, solar and wind are made more efficient and safer. One day they will be able to handle the load they are not capable of handling now. I posted a cool link earlier about solar roads. Until then we have plenty of oil/gas and no choice but to use it.

            I happen to be a proponent of hydro and bringing back online the gazillions of small dams built in the early 20th century that are sitting idle.

        • hennorama

          nj_v2 — the entity to whom you replied is not only a “deep” thinker, but also a foolishly fact-free one.

          Thousands of wells are drilled on public and Indian land annually, the vast majority (an estimated 90%) of which use fracking techniques for extraction.

          Per the NY Times:

          “The Interior Department estimates that 90 percent of the 3,400 wells drilled each year on public and Indian lands use hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking.”

          This means that about a quarter of all new wells that use fracking techniques are drilled on public or Indian land.

          So much for the “idea” that “Fracking is done on private land despite the government …”

          Of course, this is not surprising in the least.

          • HonestDebate1

            Why no link?

            You cannot be serious. First, I did not say there was no fracking on public land. The Obama administration has not made it easy to frack on public or private

            land.

            It is very clear that Fracking is done on private land despite the government. To suggest otherwise in disingenuous.

            Back to my first question, you will say the sky is blue and give a source link. It’s mighty odd (almost unthinkable) for you to quote an article and not give the link. So here it is:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/05/us/new-fracking-rule-is-issued-by-obama-administration.html?_r=0

            You quoted: “The Interior Department estimates that 90 percent of the 3,400 wells drilled each year on public and Indian lands use hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking.”

            90% of 3,400 is 3060. We don’t know how much of that is public land and how much is Indian land which is not public land, so the number is smaller than 3060.

            FTA: “A majority of the 13,000 wells drilled each year by fracking are on private lands…”

            But wait…. the NYT piece is 2 years old. That means the 13K per year applied up to 2011. In 2012 there were 22,326 new cracked wells. That does not include TN, OK and MS so the number is much higher. (Page 20)

            I don’t know what the numbers are for 2013 but I’d wager they are significantly higher yet.

            Fracking is done on private land despite the government. Not only is it true, your devious disingenuousness is outed once again. You can run but you cannot hide.

          • HonestDebate1

            I was making the point to Brett that facts can be misleading. That is your specialty, irrelevant misleading facts. You have illustrated it perfectly with the above comment. Brett has an excuse (intelligence) but you don’t… or so I’ve thought.

    • ExcellentNews

      My worry is not that we will run out of oil and coal. My worry is that we will NOT run out of oil and coal. Because we are priming the planet heat engine with CO2 emissions the likes of which Earth has not seen since the Permian Era. And you should research “Permian/Triassic Extinction” to see how that turned out.

      • nj_v2

        Running out won’t be the problem, at least not the first one. Well before that, prices will start to rise, likely dramatically, as supplies become increasingly constricted, extraction methods become increasingly expensive, and demand continues to increase.

        All the resources spent on extracting ever marginal fossil fuel resources represent an opportunity cost missed to develop alternatives and to modify infrastructure and use patterns to reduce consumption. Thus, the sh*t will hit a fan whirling at an even higher speed.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      You have often chided me for posting in this fashion. Have you changed your mind about this as a method to spark debate?

      • hennorama

        RWB – Thank you for your response.

        I generally consider the concerns you expressed before posting lengthy block quotes, and try to balance an item’s newsworthiness (IMO) with some modicum of commentary, which was included with this news item.

        This is obviously a significant change in recoverable oil resources. The Monterey Shale formation contains about two-thirds of estimated US shale oil reserves, which means that the recoverable part of those reserves has been reduced by nearly two-thirds.

        What this ultimately means is unclear, but certainly it implies that any projected economic and employment boom in CA related to the Monterey Shale is unlikely in the foreseeable future.

        Thanks again for your response.

        • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

          I am not commenting on the story you posted as such. But I am curious about the style of your posting. This seems to be a change for you. Does it represent a dabbling in a different style or do you now believe that this is an effective way to communicate?

          • hennorama

            RWB — TY again FYR.

            The vast majority of my comments (87 of the last 100, not including this one) are replies to others. I don’t think this has changed much, if at all, over time. If there are some news items that come up during the week that are not appropriate for the daily forums, and that don’t get much mention in the WITN forums, I pop them in, along with a little commentary.

            This is not really new, though.

            Perhaps you simply notice the few threads that I originate, as they are much more rare than replies to others, combined with the fact that you “follow” my postings.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • HonestDebate1

            Exactly! You spend most of your efforts chiding people, correcting grammar, reminding people of the rules, asking silly irrelevant questions to distract from the point made, handing out homework assignments and generally being a schoolmarm. And if OP doesn’t correct a spelling error you will chide them too.

  • HonestDebate1

    John Conyers came up 400 signatures short to make the ballot. State election officials declared him ineligible. No problem, a Federal judge stepped in and put him back on the ballot. Republicans don’t get such treatment, nor should they. So much for the will of the people.

    • ExcellentNews

      Ever heard of George W Bush “hanging chad” The Third???

      • HonestDebate1

        No, I haven’t.

    • JS

      I think he got enough signatures, but some were considered invalid. Who decided that the signatures he got were invalid? People signed, but the person collecting wasn’t registered. Seems like the people who signed are not having their”Will of the people” heard.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Rules are only for the little people.

        • HonestDebate1

          Exactly, ask Thad McCotter.

      • HonestDebate1

        Election official decide as they always do. If there are name that are not registered voters or names that don’t match the address then they are invalid. It’s the same rules for all candidates. He’s been in Congress for 50 years.

        • JS

          So election official are above reproach and oversight?

          • HonestDebate1

            Absolutely not.

          • JS

            So, its proper for a judge to oversee heir actions in some cases?

          • HonestDebate1

            Sure but It’s not proper for a judge to insert his or herself and legislate from the bench.

          • JS

            Ah, “inserting himself” and “legislate from the bench”, classic, but meaningless terms for when someone doesn’t agree with a Judges’ ruling.

          • HonestDebate1

            No, not at all. He inserted himself and changed the law. No one asked him to. It’s what happened and has nothing to do with my opinion of the ruling.

          • JS

            You seem to be woefully uninformed about this case, despite your strong feelings:

            1. You don’t seem to understand that there are two groups of invalid signatures, only one of which is being challenged.

            2. That Mr. Conyers’s lawyers argued that the law violated the First Amendment. The US Constitution, so using a case form a different state is valid. You have stated several times that no one is challenging the constitutionality of the case.

            3. Mr. Conyers’s lawyers mounted a challenge in federal court, so a Judge didn’t just “insert himself” into the case, but the case was brought before him.

            Just curious, do you consider Bush v. Gore a case of judicial activism and a court inserting itself where it didn’t belong?

          • HonestDebate1

            1) True, I did not know that but it may not matter at all as I spelled out in my last reply above.

            2) I know that but as I understand it that was in the appeal which Conyers lost. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

            3) Ditto #2. He lost, it was over and a federal judge inserted himself after the fact. I’m pretty sure about that so again please correct me.

            And I have avoided bringing up Bush v Gore, something I know much more about, even though I did consider it because of the parallels. It’s just so last decade and I got tired of debating that years and years ago. i suppose I would revisit it but it’s really just a futile argumentative exercise. I will however answer yes with 110% conviction. But be aware I am being precise in my answer to your specific question:

            “Just curious, do you consider Bush v. Gore a case of judicial activism and a court inserting itself where it didn’t belong?”

          • JS

            LOOK IT UP! They lost at attorney general, secretary of state, so then took it to a Federal Judge, and HE made the ruling reinstating the signatures. A case that was brought before him. He did not insert himself.

            My god, are you really that clueless about a topic YOU BROUGHT UP. (Capitals not in place of italics).

            So, to be clear, you consider Bush v. Gore judicial activism?

          • HonestDebate1

            I already addressed your mistake above.

            Yes Bush V Gore was Judicial activism, thank God for the SCOTUS.

          • JS

            They lost at the clerk, lost at the State, took it to Federal Court where an injunction was issued as the case is decided. The case was brought to him, he didn’t “insert” himslef.

            So, as to BvG, are you saying “Thank god” for judicial activism? Or maybe my question should have been clearer: Do you think the SCOTUS decision in BvG was judicial activism?

          • HonestDebate1

            It took longer than .39 seconds to dig it up but after some experimenting with wording and some date sensitive searches I found a local report and it’s still sketchy. Conyers and his lawyers did not take it to federal court. They did not appeal it. The judge issued the injunction at the request of a citizen (I think 2 women). So, I was wrong about the judge not being asked to step in but that had more to do with my understanding of what an injunction is. I had to read up on it. However I stand by my claim that he inserted himself. He did, that’s what an injunction is. He was just asked to insert himself.

            I will note that despite your being wrong about it being appealed, wrong about Conyers initiating the “appeal” and wrong about the assumption it was unconstitutional, I am not taking that and saying you don’t know what you’re talking about. That’s not the way I roll. I could appreciate your input if you weren’t so damn nasty.

            B v G: Bingo. It was clearly the Florida Supreme Court who were the judicial activists. Judge Sanders Saul had the thing wrapped up nicely until they inserted (yes inserted) themselves. The SCOTUS merely cleaned it up.

            I see you have a couple more replies which I will look at later.

          • JS

            Duly noted. I’ll try to be less snarky in the future. And I was as wrong about the “appeal” as you were about the “insertion”, it wasn’t appealed in the leagl sense, but they went to a Federal Judge to argue (or appeal in a non-legal sense) the opinion.

            Conyers is listed as a Plaintiff on the judges decision. The two women were the women who collected the signatures on behalf on the Conyers campaign, not just two random citizens.

            How am I wrong about the assumption that it was unconstitutional? That is what the judge is deciding.

            Proof that Judicial activism in in the eye of the partisan beholder.

          • HonestDebate1

            Insert isn’t a legal term, appeal is. In an injunction a judge inserts a ruling outside the appeal process which stands until challenged. I did imply (and believed) he did it on his own and I was wrong about that.

            The judge was asked by citizens not Conyers. They were invested in the process but you or I could have done the same… if we lived in Michigan. Maybe you do.

            It is Constitutional until otherwise ruled. The only reference I know of was the judge saying a similar rule in Ohio was ruled unconstitutional but that’s apples and oranges. BTW, if it is unconstitutional I hope the law is struck down. We agree on that.

            I really don’t want to argue B v G but I don’t agree with your last sentence. Judicial activism is a quantifiable dynamic, a red line gets crossed. It’s not an opinion.

          • JS

            I was wrong about an official legal appeal, but stand the the word as as non-legal term for what happened: ie. they appealed to a higher power.

            Conyers is a plaintiff in the case. My use of the word “initiate” was to counter your claim that the Judge initiated the process (not sure of your exact words, but that was your gist).

            I am confused at you saying that you hope the law is struck down if unconstitutional, since you have been saying A rule is a rule is a rule, and they need to be upheld, even after i mentioned that it was being challenged as unconstitutional. You would have saved us both a lot of typing if you had said earlier on that if unconstitutional you would hope it was struck down. Your earlier comments had me thinking otherwise. (when I mentioned it may be unconstitutional, you replied that MIchigan is free to make up its own rules)

            Judicial activism is a buzz word, nothing more.

        • JS

          He collected more than the required amount, but a portion were rejected. Do you even know why the signatures were rejected? And do you know that the law cited in rejecting the signatures is being challenged as unconstitutional?

          An honest question for you: shouldn’t the people who in good faith signed their names have there voices heard?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Thad McCotter was kept off the ballot in 2012 for signatures being invalidated. The only difference was his party affiliation.

            Try again.

          • JS

            Why were the signatures invaildated?

          • hennorama

            JS — a significant number of the McCotter signatures were forged and otherwise fraudlent. The facts of the two cases are completely different, but that doesn’t matter to those who posit “The only difference is party affiliation” and “This is more likely about Democrat power.”

            McCotter even sued two of his former staffers, and four of them faced criminal charges in the matter.

            Nothing of the sort is even hinted at in relation to Rep. Conyers.

            As stated previously, it’s clear that one of those you have engaged with does not know the facts of the matter.

            See:
            http://hoh.rollcall.com/mccotter-sues-former-staffers-for-forged-ballot-signatures/

          • HonestDebate1

            Before you go off into disingenuous distraction mode (too late I guess) it is irrelevant why the signatures were invalid. The rules require 1000 valid signatures. McCotter did not produce them and neither did Conyers. They were both disqualified. That is the issue. That is the similarity or better yet, the equality of the issue.

            Conyers appealed and lost, a judge stepped in and put him back on the ballot. This may not be over if his opponent(s) challenges it. The judge made his ruling quickly to allow sufficient time for that eventuality.

            It makes no difference if the signatures were forged, duplicates, invented, imagined or made by martians. If they are invalid then they are invalid. But look at you pathetically trying to make the case one invalid signature is more invalid than another as a way to condone this disgraceful circumstance.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Judge Lietman called it “an exceptionally difficult case”. Wink, wink!!!!

          • JS

            “it is irrelevant why the signatures were invalid”. Why is that? Just so you can make a case? The signatures for Conyers that were forged, duplicate, or unregistered where thrown out and remina thrown out. The signatures in question are valid registered voter signatures, collected by someone who was unregistered.

            So, I ask you again: are you ok with those registered voters, who in good faith signed the petition, NOT having thier voices herard? What about the “will of the people”?

          • HonestDebate1

            It is irrelevant because the rules are the rules. They were legislated by the Legislature, signed by the Governor and enforced by Michigan’s Secretary of State. The law of the land stipulates what constitutes a valid signature. There are specific criteria to be met, it’s spelled out. If a signature is not valid per the rules then it makes no difference whatsoever which rule is violated. None.

            Now to your question which is a completely different one with an honest premise this time. Substituting “Should the people” with “Are you ok with those registered voters” changes it dramatically. I don’t understand why you wrote, “again”.

            But I’m still not sure I can answer it. That would require me to examine the Michigan rules as set in a law I am not very familiar with. The best I can do is say I am okay with Michigan’s right to make their rules through the legislative process and enforce them accordingly. The rules say 1000 signatures are required.

            There is no right to be heard. The will of the people is expressed via a representative republic not a democracy.

          • JS

            So, if the criteria to validate signatures violates the constitution, it doesn’t matter, and the rules supercede the constitution?

            So, people in good faith sign a petition, are valid registered voters, fill out everything correctly….BUT the person collecting the signatures had a few days gap in their voter registration status, so those hundreds of people have their signatures thrown out .. and you are ok with that? My question wasn’t “was it legal” or “Doe sit comply with local laws”, it was simply asking if you agree that peoples voices should be silenced due to a technicality based on the person collecting the signatures.

          • HonestDebate1

            If the rules, after a 50 year incumbent fails to make the ballot, are suddenly thought to violate the Constitution then someone can challenge it in court.

            The rules say 1000 signatures are required, it’s the same for everyone…. except Conyers. So yes, I’m okay with Michigan playing by the rules. But take your logic to the extreme. What if only one signature was obtained instead of hundreds? Should anyone be able to get on the ballot with just one signature? If not, are you okay with throwing it out? Should there be a threshold at all?

          • JS

            Conyers IS challenging it in court.

            Please see my other response as to the two groups of signatures being declared invaild.

            I don’t think that otherwise valid signatures should be disallowed due to a technicality on the part of the person collecting them.

            If only one signature was obtained, it’s not enough. But if 1,000 signatures were obtained, all valid registered voters, and 999 were declared invalid because the person registering them didn’t sign with the right color pen, then I would have a problem with that.

          • HonestDebate1

            With all due respect, it would help if you could source your information for context. I understand that Conyers appealed but he lost. The judge subsequently ruled in his favor so why would he challenge the rule?

          • JS

            Wow, there’s this thing called Google. Use it, it works wonders for looking things up.

            I’m sorry if I was under the mistaken impression that you knew what you were talking about. Obviously you didn’t, despite it being YOU starting the conversation.

            http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/24/us/judge-rules-conyers-can-be-on-ballot.html

            Can I ask you were your “understanding” comes from? Is it solely from Rush? Hannity? Do you only look at other sources to confirm what you already believe?

            In case you didn’t know, appeals can be appealed, all the way up to the Supreme Court if necessary. This case was appealed up to Judge Matthew F. Leitman of Federal District Court.

            In the future, please know at least a little about what you are talking about when posting. Commenting on a post without knowledge is one thing, but starting a post without knowledge is quite another.

            And you wonder why people get on you for your posts. Here’s a tip: this post should be hint that it’s not about them, its about you.

          • HonestDebate1

            Google is not knowledge. I did not get any of this from Rush, I don’t listen to Hannity and I get my news from a wide variety of sources including NPR. That is such a lame and typical accusation.

            Conyers appealed and lost. Yes I know the judge’s name. He issued an injunction. THAT IS NOT AN APPEAL (yes I’m shouting). It was not appealed by Conyers who would have no reason to appeal yes for an answer. So you’re just flat out wrong.

          • JS

            You have, in the past, claimed to be an avid Rush listener. You lack of any facts supporting the Democrat’s position in this issue make it an honest assumption that you got your facts from a biased source. So, I’ll ask again: where did you get the information for this issue that lead you to post here?

            He first appealed to the Wayne County clerk and lost

            Then the Michigan secretary of state rejected an appeal.

            That’s two No’s.

            Mr. Conyers’s lawyers THEN mounted a challenge in federal court.

            So, The Judge NEVER told him yes until after two people told him No. I never said he appealed the Federal Judges injunction.

          • HonestDebate1

            Yes I like Rush, you are assuming he is not reliable or trustworthy. I disagree and maybe sometime we’ll get into it but he is irrelevant here. You are just being insulting and implying I must be a brainwashed ditto head. The Rush/Fox monster is evoked out of the blue all the time around here. I learned about it here as well as the links within and a few other news reports.

          • JS

            I listen to Rush for a few minutes at a time almost daily. I think he’s funny and a master manipulator.

            But Rush is partisan and only gives a one-sided view point. I mistrust anyone who cannot clearly enunciate the other sides position as that side sees it, even if they disagree with it.

            As to your link to HotAIr, I have no experience of them whatsoever, but read the Headline and last sentence of the second paragraph: words like “natch” and “, or something” should give any thinking person (especially an honest debater) pause and an indication that what they are about to read is not an unbiased look into the subject.

            If i read something with those words and that connotation, I would immediately realize that the author already has animosity towards COnyers side and that his opinion should be taken with a grain of salt, if at all. I would then consider his “cut and paste” commentary suspect at best.

            another quote from the article: “… preventing him from doing whatever the hell he wants whenever he wants to?” – again, any “honest debater” would realize the partisan slat on this “opinion piece”, not a new report.

            As to manipulation, it seem that the Hot AIr report got you to see the story exactly the way they wanted you to see it, facts not withstanding.

          • HonestDebate1

            I agree that Rush is a partisan which is not a bad word IMO. Certainly Tom Ashbrook is a partisan. Ideologue is a bad word. Partisans can be fair. I disagree in the strongest terms that Rush gives a one-sided viewpoint. I’ve listened since 1991, almost as long as I’ve been listening to NPR. I am not going to debate about it now, I got tired of that decades ago. My only stance nowadays is that I refuse to shy away from embracing the harmless lovable fuzzball out of few of being labeled this or that.

            Hot Air is a highly reputable blog. My favorite blogger there is Allahpundit but they are all extremely fair. The “or something” thing is a regular phrase that is used both ways. I use it too, you may have noticed. It’s just a device. The blogger in question here was the ACU’s blogger of the year last year. If you want to talk about headlines or the tone of the verbiage then you have a lot to defend with any source out there. They make no effort to hide the fact they are Conservative. What kind of idiot overlooks the facts of the matter and is smitten by a headline? I don’t know how much you know about Conyers but his record is chock full of things to legitimately criticize… big time. It was not an opinion piece at all, it was a news report. All the facts were there. There is enough respect for the readers to not assume they can be manipulated so easily as you suggest. What did they get wrong? I’d recommend them try it. I frequent many liberal blogs.

            Look, I’ve made clear, very clear, I don’t think it matters a bit which rule was broken to invalidate the signatures. I never did. It’s not an excuse for me conflating the two rules into one, fine sue me. I was never interested, my concern was the rules were broken and it didn’t ultimately matter to Conyers. But don’t blame Hot Air. They cited the facts. The earlier link was linked in the piece I posted and t is clear.

            http://hotair.com/archives/2014/05/03/conyers-to-miss-primary-ballot/

            And there you go again. Why don’t you just say I’m a brainwashed idiot who can be told what to think; that I’m incapable of thinking for myself? Oh wait… you just did. It this kind of BS that is an anathema to honest debate.

          • JS

            A simple question, based on what I hear Rush saying almost every time I tune in: Is speaking in a mocking, whiny baby voice when describing the Liberal position giving fair voice to the other side, or is it one-sided? I have yet to hear Tom Ashbrook mock conservatives in that way.

            And if you don’t see that the Hot Air piece was one-sided and biased, then there nothing to say. But know that something can be one-sided , bias, and RIGHT, so If i say something is biased, I am not necessarily saying that it is wrong.

            I know almost nothing about Conyers and don’t care if he gets on the ballot or not, and see no reason to criticize him in a report about signatures. If a writer choses to include unnecessary criticism, it makes me think they are biased, and I look at what they write in that light.

            Hot AIr cited some facts, leading readers down the path they wanted, which is what I would expect from a conservative (or liberal) blog, that’s why I don’t go to conservative (or liberal) blogs for news.

          • HonestDebate1

            You are falling for the meme. He’s playing you. The tone of his voice is irrelevant. He is proven to be almost always right 99.6% of the time by the Sullivan auditing group, as he reminds us.

            He plays their exact words, he has liberals on the air and treats them civilly, he quotes exactly what they say. He gives background and context. Those who he thinks deserve mocking he mocks and that includes bookoos of Republicans, Have you ever hear him do John McCain? Or Joe Scarborough? Or any number of them.

            It would not benefit him in any way to distort what liberals say or mean. If he did that he would just be another failed radio guy. The liberal graveyard is full of them. So unless you believe his gazillion listeners are all mind-numbed robots it does not stand to reason he could garner and keep so many listeners for such a long time. You can’t do that with lies and distortions. Ask Chris Matthews, Ed Shultz or Randi Rhodes (to name a very few).

            Tom Ashbrook said the “consequence” of Sarah Palin’s words were a bullet in the brain of Gabby Giffords. He just did it in a regular voice but it’s just as one-sided and vile. Rush doesn’t do that. I could give you 1000 examples of Mr. Ashbrook’s one-sidedness but I’m a guest here.

            What did Hot Air leave out? What path are you so afraid they will lead you down? What path did they lead me down?

            I have followed Conyers for decades. He’s slimy as hell and I made that determination long ago all by myself.

          • JS

            So, talking in a mocking baby voice is a valid way to present the other side of the story? Would you deal with a fellow adult in that way, or accept it from someone else? Is that really the type of person you are?

            He gives the background and context that he wants to give, to (as you admit he does) “play” the audience.

            He mocks those who deserve mocking? So every single liberal deserves mocking? every single democrat deserves mocking? Is that really what you believe?

            Mocking Republicans in that way is just as distasteful as mocking anyone else.

          • HonestDebate1

            You’re making a leap by assuming he presents the other side of the story in a mocking voice. He plays to the audience by making sure he gives the entire context, up front in a truthful way. Now, you don’t have to believe it and that’s cool but if he was what you are describing then he’d have been toast along time ago. Personally I would not listen to him.

            Resisting the urge to say your logic is faulty, I would just point out, again, he mocks Republicans too. He does not by any stretch of the imagination mock “every single democrat”. He shows respect to many democrats. It’s not about party, it’s about ideas and policies. I get the same thing all the time and I never understood why some people think I hate democrats or Obama, just because. I don’t hate them and my issues are based on policies and ideas.

            So many people get bogged down by his bombast to the point they never hear what he says. he knows that and milks it. You don’t have to agree with his tactics but you’re comments are a perfect example. Your main expressed beef is his mocking tone which you have now projected every single democrat as being a victim of. You have not said a single thing about anything but the tone. You have not listed a single example of anything said. And be reminded, you have no problem mocking me.

            Meanwhile I give an example of Tom Ashbrook flat out blaming Sarah Palin for Gabby Giffords being shot and you ignore it. And as I recall he said it twice in that show. But hey, he’s smooth. He made his vile and completely one-sided accusation nicely.

            Now I’ll give you some credit. You did not take the bait about his being almost always right 99.6% of the time. He says it all the time and people go bonkers. I had a commenter here flip his lid about it never realizing it was a self-evident joke.

            To be sure, I don’t want to debate about Rush more than I already have. He doesn’t need me to defend him. I’m happy to debate an issue he raises, if I happen to agree with him on it, that you may question but even then I’d rather keep it current and topical.

          • JS

            What Ashbrook said about Palin was wrong. OK.

            Does he regularly mock people? Insult the intelligence of all liberals or conservatives? These are all things I hear form Rush on a daily basis, not something I project.

            I HEAR rush using the mocking baby voice to give the other sides view, so how is that assuming anything? (not every time, but enough that it’s common, since I only listena few times a week for a few minutes at a time)

            To paraphrase what I hear him say almost every time I listen:”You see, thats how these liberals think” and “Liberals aren’t interested in the truth” (he says that second one a lot). “the democtars aren’t going ot tell you the truth, they don’t want you to know the truth”.

            You point out when you think someone is “telling you what you think”. I take it you do not like it, yet you seem to have no problem when Rush does it to Liberals.

            I don’t care if he’s right or wrong, I don’t like his style. It’s childish and simplistic. I’m not interested in commentators who “play” the audience, or are “bombastic”, and “milk it”, or who “bait” others.

          • HonestDebate1

            I think you are talking about thee “new castrati voice” which isn’t necessarily a party thing. I don’t agree at all that he insults the intelligence of others ever, much less on a daily basis. I really think the opposite and that it is his secret to success. He respects the intelligence of his audience and many others don’t. I can’t listen to Hannity. And to be honest Tom Ashbrook does insult my intelligence on a regular basis. I think the man bashing show the other day insulted my intelligence. The guest the first half hour was ridiculous and tying it all to a mass murder is hideous. Whatever, to each his own but I don’t agree with you.

            I do care if a host is right or wrong. I do care if they are intellectually honest and consistent. Rush mostly is and I have called him out when I thought he wasn’t. And remember how I defined “play to the audience”, that doesn’t bother me. If someone is playing me for a fool, it bothers me big time. The other stuff just rolls off my back, I’m much more interested in substance. We won’t agree about Rush and that’s fine.

          • JS

            He respects the intelligence of his audience, by saying they are smart and those who disagree are dumb. I am not pulling this from other sources, from others opinions, but from what I myself hear him say almost every time I listen “See, the problem is, liberals don’t think these things through”, stuff like that.

            I missed that interview. Like I said, I listen in small bits from time to time, not usualluy for long sttetches.

          • HonestDebate1

            With all due respect, I think I have a better handle on Rush than you after listening for over 20 years. That’s not his MO at all. But again, think what you want.

          • JS

            You talk about his “MO”, I am talking about what he says.

          • JS

            Now that you have a fuller understanding of the situation, care to retract any of the above post, with possible apologies to Hennorama?

          • hennorama

            JS — thank you for the support, but Sir Nobler Than Thou, like Mitt Romney, is of the “No Apologies” school.

          • HonestDebate1

            What in the world are you talking about? What is wrong in the above? What should I retract? My last paragraph is particularly on point as it is the issue. The rules were not met.

            And as far as Hennorama’s lie below goes, I guess it’s time to revisit this (I am Gregg):

            http://onpoint.wbur.org/2012/11/06/internet-trolls#comment-701926634

          • JS

            You had no understanding about the signatures being discussed.

          • HonestDebate1

            I just told you why they were rejected. And I know what the judge said based on another state and different rules. I am not aware there has been any constitutional challenge to Michigan’s rules. I don’t know how long they have been in effect but they’re not new.

            Conyers appealed and lost. A judge inserted himself. This is more likely about Democrat power.

            If Conyers doesn’t make the ballot and loses his write-in bid, it would represent another blow to Michigan’s congressional seniority. The state could lose roughly 190 years of congressional seniority at the end of this year.

            Democrat John Dingell, the Dean of the House, is retiring after nearly 60 years in the House. GOP Reps. Dave Camp and Mike Rogers, with a combined 38 years of seniority, aren’t seeking reelection, either.

            Democratic Sen. Carl Levin is retiring after his sixth term in the upper chamber. Rep. Gary Peters, who has served six years in the House, is locked in a difficult race to succeed Levin.

            Conyers isn’t the first Michigan congressman to run afoul of the state’s laws regarding signature collectors: Then-GOP Rep. Thad McCotter failed to qualify for the 2012 ballot after his signatures were found to be fraudulent.

            http://www.politico.com/story/2014/05/john-conyers-detroit-michigan-ballot-appeal-lose-secretary-of-state-107049.html#ixzz32g6CQGpM

            I don’t agree with the assumed premise of your question. We have no idea who signed in “good faith”. Further, if the rule say the signers must be registered voters then that’s the rule. If a person supports a candidate in good faith then they should at least bother to register to vote.

          • JS

            Except many were rejected because the person collecting the signatures wasn’t a registered voter. These are the signatures in question.

            I thought you would know that, seeing that you brought up the topic.

            And this case itself is a constitutional challenge to Michigan’s rule, which you should know, since you brought up the topic.

          • HonestDebate1

            “If there are names that are not registered voters or names that don’t match the address then they are invalid.” -me

            That’s what I said JS, what am I missing? That’s what happened, many weren’t registered voters and others addresses didn’t match. There are sure to be other factors as well but those are the ones cited as of now.

            You asked: “And do you know that the law cited in rejecting the signatures is being challenged as unconstitutional?”

            And I answered: “And I know what the judge said based on another state and different rules.”

            Didi you even read my comments?

            Yes, I am familiar with the aspects of the issue. A case that nobody brought is not a constitutional challenge. And as i pointed out to Hennorama below an opponent may indeed challenge it. Who has challenged the law in Michigan as is was challenged and ruled upon in Ohio? Not even Conyers.

          • JS

            What you are missing is that those names still remain invalid. That is not what the case is about. The judge agrees that those names are invalid. So you, me, the Judge, Conyers, and his opponents ALL AGREE that those names you mentioned remain invalid.

            The case is about names that were ruled invalid simply because the person registering them was not a registered voter.

            Do you see what you were missing now? If you don’t, there’s no need to go further with this discussion.

          • HonestDebate1

            I actually don’t but I’ll try. I was referring to you asking me if I knew why the votes were ruled invalid after I had stated why. I didn’t get that at all.

            Maybe you were asking why the rule was in place that made them invalid if they were not registered. Is that it? If so, I see no need to debate it other than to say I could certainly make a very strong case. Instead I’ll answer this way, it doesn’t matter. That’s the rule that was legislated by the Legislature, signed by the Governor and enforced by the Secretary of State.

          • JS

            I think you might be confused as to who was “not registered”. There are two groups of signatures ruled invaild.

            The first group consists of signatures of people who are unregistered voters, wrong names, wrong addresses, illegible, etc. These have been thrown out with no complaints from Conyers.

            The other group consists of signatures of registered voters who signatures conform to all rules and regulations …. BUT the person COLLECTING the signatures was not a registered voter. These are the signatures “in question”,

            Conyers would have enough signatures with the first group out and the second group in.

            (BTW, I use CAPITAL LETTERS because I don’t not how to italicize in this forum, not because I am shouting)

          • HonestDebate1

            I did not realize that, thanks. So two questions: 1) if those signatures were counted would it have been enough to get to 1000, and 2) what do the rules stipulate about the petitioners?

          • JS

            I’ve only been saying it all along.

            1. Yes, like I said already

            2. They must be registered voters, like I already said.

            This really would have been easier if two things had happened:

            1. You knew what you were talking about when you make an initial post, instead of jumping on the anti-democrat bandwagon fed to you by Rush et.al

            2. You actually listened to those you claim to be “honestly debating” were saying.

          • hennorama

            JS — please pardon the interruption.

            [Debates?NotHe.] keeps spouting off about facts, thusly:

            “Facts matter a ton to me” and “Facts matter,”

            yet clearly, as you know, and as I stated, and as he admitted, he did not know the factual details, and didn’t care enough about them to find out, despite some very loud hints.

            Also, here’s some help from DISQUS, regarding highlighting text using HTML tags:

            http://help.disqus.com/customer/portal/articles/466253-what-html-tags-are-allowed-within-comments-

          • JS

            TYFYR! And thanks for the tip.

          • hennorama

            JS — you’re most welcome, of course.

            I recommend playing around practicing with some text in an older forum, until you get the hang of it.

          • HonestDebate1

            Oh please, realize this, the only reason I am not shredding you to bits with insults and personal attacks is because I am more interested in honest debate. Give it a rest. if you want a pissin’ match I’m not interested.

            If the rules say the petitioners must be registered voters and they were not then the signatures are invalid. If the signatures are invalid per the rules then it does not matter which rule was violated. I have been clear on that. I support Michigan’s right to make their own rules. I have been consistent on that too. That is the overriding issue. That has been my point all along.

            And don’t expect me to take your word for anything.

          • JS

            If you were “shredding me to bits” it would need to be with “insults and personal attacks”, since you do not have the facts on your side.

            FACT: You did not know what you were talking about

            FACT: You did not listen to what I was telling you.

            Two Points:
            1. Michigan can make it’s own rules as long as they do not violate the Constitution.
            2. I think a valid signature should be a valid signature. What happens after an honest citizens signs, or what the person collecting the honest citizens signatures does, shouldn’t matter.

            I don’t expect you to take my word, I expect you to understand what I wrote, and take 0.39 seconds to look it up and see that I am using the correct facts. That;s what “listening” means.

          • HonestDebate1

            That’s my point JS, I am not reciprocating the insults and personal attack you are levying.

            Look, I did confuse the issue of the registered voter. I apologize. But your vitriolic claim that I didn’t know what I was talking about is off base. I know the signatures by the rules were invalid. As I have made clear more than once it does not matter which rule was violated. Now I understand your compunction to get hung on an irrelevant detail and scream insults but to your points:

            1) As a practical matter, the law is Constitutional until a court rules it is not. That is not what this judge ruled. he did not preside over an appeal.

            2) It doesn’t matter what you or I think, it matters what the rules are.

          • JS

            You didn’t know what you were talking about. That is not an insult, that is a fact.

            The Judge did not rule anything yet, which you should know by now. The law is being challenged as unconstitutional, and the judge is considering that.

            From you: “I support Michigan’s right to make their own rules.” – it doesn’t matter what you think (also from you)

            A rule is a rule, unless that rule is unconstitutional. Then that rule has to go.

          • HonestDebate1

            Accusing me of jumping on anti-Democrat (I’m not anti-democrat) bandwagons, evoking the Rush monster and more such nonsense is insulting. So is saying I didn’t know what I was talking about because I didn’t get one factor. You got things wrong too, but I’m not saying you don’t know what you’re talking about. Whatever, insult away, think what you want and I mean that sincerely, not intending snark.

            I was answering your question. You asked me what I was okay with. I don’t claim it matters what I think about it. Would you rather I didn’t answer your question?

            At the risk of being told I don’t know what I’m talking about and resisting the growing urge to level the accusation at you, I kindly ask for your source that the law is being challenged Constitutionally. What judge is considering it? As I understand it, Michigan’s Secretary of State has not yet decided whether to appeal. She has reinstated the signatures per the injunction which, until challenged, stands. The injunction is not about the Constitutionality of the law per say, it’s about whether to count the signatures. That part is over, the ruling has been made. And incidentally, the law is still in effect. I am happy to stand corrected.

            Unfortunately, we are at the mercy of the courts regarding Constitutionality. If the court says an unconstitutional law is Constitutional the it’s Constitutional and vice verse. I think it’s obscene that Kelo, Obamacare and a few others are ruled Constitutional. Others would say the same about Citizens united. Just an observation, not a tangent.

          • JS

            http://www.freep.com/assets/freep/pdf/C4221516523.PDF

            This is the PDF of the Judges decision granting the injunction. As I understand it no final decision has been made, so of course the law is still in place.

            From Judge Leitman “The public interest favors the enjoining of the likely unconstitutional Registration Statute,”

            and from the PDF: “At the motion hearing, Secretary Johnson argued for the first time that the Court should consider separately the constitutionality of the first sentence of the Registration Statute … and the second sentence
            … The Secretary suggested that even if the registration requirement in the first sentence is unconstitutional, the second sentence should be upheld as a valid “disclosure” provision under Libertarian Party of Ohio, supra.”

            So it is clear to me that Judge Leitman will be considering the constitutionality of the statute.

          • HonestDebate1

            I don’t think you are correct. That was the motion hearing for the injection which is over. The final decision has been made regarding the injunction. Ms. Johnson made her suggestions and lost. The last I heard she has not decided to appeal. I have been swamped with hay coming in and a music project coming down to the wire so I may have missed it. But as I understand it there is no Constitutional challenge to the law unless there is an appeal which I suppose could be brought by on of Conyers’ opponents as well.

            But thanks for the link, it’s only 22 pages. I may read it if I get time and am so inclined. Or I may ask our resident big time lawyer Jonboston on Friday to clear up the legalese.

          • JS

            I think we are caught up on semantics again. I hold that the Judge is looking at the statute to see if it is constitutional. I think you might be saying that there is no specific challenge to this law based oin it’s constitutionality. That is not my assertion, and if i gave that impression I apologize. When i used “constitution challenge” i meant that the plaintiffs said the statute was unconstitutional, and that the judge was looking into it.

          • HonestDebate1

            I think the judge has ruled and moved on. The best I can tell there will be no further ruling. That’s my understanding. Could I be wrong? Sure.

          • JS

            I couldn’t find any news earlier than 5 or 6 days ago. I think the Judge issued an injunction, and is still decided on the statute. I cold be wrong. We’ll talk in a few weeks I guess!

            Will there be a Triple Crown this Year?

          • HonestDebate1

            Sounds good.

            Maybe so, I’m root in’ for it.

          • TFRX

            So this is a feature of some new voter-suppression crap in MI, not a bug?

      • hennorama

        JS — good luck engaging with Sir Nobler Than Thou along this line of logic. He clearly does not know the details, and likely doesn’t actually care about them.

        • HonestDebate1

          Please don’t tell me what I think. Quit responding to me.

        • JS

          He had a great line the other day, in a single thread, about two posts apart:

          “The unions screwed things up”

          and a few post later, in the same thread, on the same topic:

          “I’m not saying blame business or the worker”

          Funny if it wasn’t so sad

          • hennorama

            JS — TYFYR.

            Indeed. [Debates?NotHe.] also claimed (paraphrasing) that Republicans support private unions, despite the clear Republican oppositon to unionization of the VW plant in Tennessee from earlier this year.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • HonestDebate1

            Whaa? You guys are strange. A union is not a business. A union is not a worker.

            JS, if you have a beef then debate it in context at the time. Going back and making up quotes is not honest debate. If you right-click the time (top right0 and choose “open link in new tab” then copy that URL and paste it to your comment it will link the specific comment. If you are going to quote me then link me. I’m not going through 920 comment to find it and explain myself to you.

            I searched “I’m not saying blame business or the worker” (with quotes) and it yielded zero results. So I didn’t say it. To be sure I might have said something close but grow a pair and give the context if you are going to quote me. I will defend anything I write unless I’m proven wrong in context.

          • JS

            When it comes to GM, the workers are the Union.

            Which quote did I make up?

            And i apologize for not including the link, which is more due to my unfamiliarity with the inner working of the forum, but here it is (and before you start the discussion all over again, the only point in showing this is to prove you said what I said you said. Whether your right, wrong, or whatever is immaterial to this discussion, so no dodging):

            http://onpoint.wbur.org/2014/05/20/antarctic-melt-carbon-tax#comment-1400039550

            “I think I agree. In the real world GM would not be bailed out buy a corrupt government no matter how bad the unions screwed things up. I’m okay with that.”

            and

            “I am not arguing that GM isn’t to blame for agreeing to union demands. You seemed hung on that, maybe I misread.
            You still seem to be. I’m not saying blame the business or the worker. I’m blaming the government for not letting the market cast the blame and mete the punishment.”

            Still think you didn’t say it?

          • HonestDebate1

            Thanks for the link but it still didn’t contain the phrase. However, from your link and with the help of the extended copy and paste the link, it got me close enough to find it. Maybe you don’t get my beef. Hennorama regularly butts in saying nasty things about me, using rather absurd logic and telling me what I think. It adds nothing and she will not debate me. She should either put up or shut up IMO. We already had that debate. You replied to the comment at the time and did not address that portion at all. And then address it here in a reply to Hen and evoke something out of the past, out of context and gratuitously insulting about me, I don’t appreciated it. If you want tho challenge something I wrote the you really should do it while we’re engaged on the subject and the context is clear. And really JS, I would hope you would agree or at least see my point on it.

            Now you say what your only point is (I’m getting to that BTW) and you don’t want to revisit it (neither do I) which leaves the last word on this different thread as you frame it. I just think its poor form. All I will say about you charge is there was nothing contradictory about my comment. There is nothing contradictory in the two statements you quoted especially if you consider the entire sentence of the first rather than the fragment you posted. At least use ellipses between the first quotation mark and the first word. You also capitalized that first word. That makes it look like the quote was my complete thought. If you read the entire paragraph it is clear the unions screwing things up was not the point I was making. Or if you insist on trashing me out of context then link it so the context is available. Or better yet, just address it to me in context at the time.

            The reason the quote did not show up in a search is because It’s not what I wrote despite your quotation marks.

            “I’m not saying blame business or the worker”.

            I wrote “… blame the business…”. That was enough to foil the search. Of course it’s nit-picky, but say someone with no life is actually interested and reading all this. Not only is there no link for them to find it, they can’t even search for it. That’s not playing fair IMO.

            So again, my point was not to insist I didn’t write it, my beef was the above. This is proven by my having written (above), “To be sure I might have said something close…” I obviously was not running from the sentiment and know I had previously expressed said sentiment.

            Having said all of that, it was a bit over the top for me to accuse you of making things up. With all due respect, and I’m really not trying to be a jerk about it, I do not apologize. You have employed the same out of context tactic in the past, you have misquoted me in the past and you have been very adversarial since day one. I try to start afresh with every reply to anyone who has said nasty stuff about me. I will try to be civil and not personal no matter what… only to a point. There are only 3 or 4 commenters who have such a record of nastiness that they have poisoned the well. I don’t feel compelled to engage civilly with those but even then I sometimes do. You are not yet in that group and I have taken the time to explain myself thoroughly. I hope you read this far.

          • JS

            I apologize for leaving out the “the”. It was not a direct quote, but there is no change in meaning with or without the the.

            I also apologize for snarkiness. I will try to be more restrained in the future and will refrain from calling you out in unrelated posts.

            I have not been adversarial since day one, thats just your persecution complex. Almost since day one I have noticed that you sometimes use faulty logic, and I have not hesitated to call you out on that, and you almost consistently do not see where you logic is wriong and almost always take it as an attack on your position, as opposed to an attack on your logic.

          • HonestDebate1

            As I said, that wasn’t my beef.

            Snark is fine. Vitriol is fine. Bringing up sentence fragments disguised as sentences from the past, out of context, unlinked, just to be nasty is not honest debate but do what you gotta do. Just don’t expect me to sit back and take it forever. I have no complex but I will point out these tactics every time.

            Here’s our first ever conversation (day 1), it looks adversarial to me. Scroll up:

            http://onpoint.wbur.org/2014/04/10/women-workplace-equal-pay#comment-1330457084

            Again fine, I’m just saying you are defining yourself and you are defining the way I regard you, not that it matters. You are entitled to your opinion about my logic, I know it’s lost on you. If you think it’s faulty, God bless you. But “calling me out” doesn’t mean you’re right and I’d rather not debate about me. That’s why I always state up front that I’m an idiot just to get it out of the way.

          • JS

            Your logic isn’t “lost on me”. I merely pointed out a few times where your logic was faulty. Not the opinion you formed using that logic, but the logic you used.

            If you admit your an idiot, and I question your logic (not your argument, but the logic you used to get there), why fight it? why not use it as an opportunity to learn where you might have erred?

            then, maybe, using your new found knowledge, you might view the information in a different light. MAybe, maybe not.

          • HonestDebate1

            I think it is. Just because your logic tells you my logic is faulty doesn’t make it so. I think, and I’ll take a bit of blame here, we talk past each other.

            And with all due respect, I’ll decide for myself who to believe regarding my errors. You did indeed show me an error I made and I appreciated it but I don’t need you to to be my sage.

  • HonestDebate1
  • nj_v2

    Corporate subversion of organic-food standards:

    http://prwatch.org/news/2014/05/12480/organic-standards-jeopardy

    Are Organic Standards in Jeopardy? Watchdogs Say Yes

    “Organic pioneers and watchdog groups like the Organic Consumers Association and the Cornucopia Institute allege that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is capitulating to corporate interests and reversing 20 years of precedent by removing the ability of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) to effectively decide the working definition of the organic food production system as well as what synthetic and non-organic materials are acceptable to include in organic agriculture and food on a temporary basis. Examples of non-organic materials that have been exempted include the use of antiobiotics like tetracycline on apple and pear trees; and algal and fungal oils as sources of DHA omega-3 fatty acids and ARA omega-6 fatty acids in infant formula and other foods, as The Progressive/Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) has reported.”

    (excerpt)

  • X Y & Z

    The Toll Of 5 Years Of Drone Strikes: 2,400 Dead

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/23/obama-drone-program-anniversary_n_4654825.html

    Obama’s drone strikes are illegal and constitute a war crime. No country has ever given President Obama the right to arbitrarily kill its citizens. Make as many excuses as you Obama supporters want, you are simply giving Obama the red-light to commit murder.

    • JS

      It’s rare for the other side in a conflict to give the other side the “right” to kill it’s citizens, don’t you think?

      • X Y & Z

        Due to the fact that the US has the most powerful military in the world, the US has given itself the right to kill the citizens of other countries.

        • JS

          All countries kill citizens of other countries.

          • X Y & Z

            That’s a total lie and you know it.

          • JS

            For it to be a lie, I would have to know that it is not true, and I don’t know that. They may be some countries that don’t kill people from other countries, but I doubt it.

          • HonestDebate1

            Believe it or not there is at least one commenter here who would argue your first sentence as unassailable as it is.

          • X Y & Z

            You got the Neo-Con, ‘HonestDebate1′ to agree with you (he gave you a thumbs up).

            Drone attacks are illegal, as well as being a violation of international law.

            Have you ever heard of Japan or Switzerland launching drone attacks against the citizens of other countries?

          • JS

            I try not to ascribe labels to individuals. Being wrong and lying are two different things entirely, and he is a wise man to realize that.

            I heard of Japan killing citizens of other countries. Not sure about the Swiss actually killing anyone, but they probably bankrolled a few killings, so I will edit my remark to say, “Almost all countries kill citizens of other countries, or have done so’

            Not sure about Drone attacks being illegal in all circumstances either.

          • X Y & Z

            Tell me what US or international law allows one country to execute the citizens of another country, without at least a trial?

            No such law exists. The US only carries out drone attacks against countries that cannot defend themselves or fight back.

          • JS

            I’ll look it up and get back to you. I am not a fan on Obama’s Drone War, or Bushs’ war before that, or Iraq, or Afghanistan after it became not about Al Queda, or the various overthrowing of foreign governments, etal. …

            but I am not convinced it’s a war crime either.

            So if I find the law that the administration is using, don’t confuse my providing the excuse as condoning the exercise.

            And I still belieev most countries kill whoever they damn well please, either directly, or through proxies. (like the British using Loyalist to kill Irish during the Troubles)

    • tbphkm33

      Lets not forget the 300,000 to 500,000 dead Iraqis that GW Bush is responsible for. He really should stand trail for crimes against humanity – invading a sovereign nation.

      • HonestDebate1

        Get better news sources.

      • X Y & Z

        I agree, whether they be democrat or republican, let them all give account for their actions that resulted in the deaths of innocent civilians, in a court of law.

    • hennorama

      X Y & Z — are you an expert on international law, especially international law involving the rights of nation to defend themselves, and the laws of war?

      Please lay out your case that “Obama’s drone strikes are illegal and constitute a war crime,” assuming you can, of course.

      And don’t worry, as no one will be holding their breath waiting for you to do so.

  • jeanabella

    Listening to On Point this Saturday morning, I am again upset with the programs guests & moderator for ignoring facts on VA scandal even though 3 callers in a row, all vets, get to the point of the huge problem at VA. Number one problem is attitude of “government doesn’t work” & money! Even the great Jack Beatty doesn’t know or didn’t care to share how VA has been underfunded as recently as a few months ago! What would NPR do without money? I couldn’t take care of my family without money!
    Blaming PBO for not enough energy is laughable!!! The gop has been busy dismantling the middle class for last 30 yrs. Our roads are a mess, banking is a wild west scenario, corporations buying legislators, and the guns killing our kids can’t be registered!!! Jack Beatty sounds so biased & like he’s repeating same talking points put out by corporate America that I’m almost convinced that the Koch Bros. money got hold of public radio & tv to the point of influencing perception. After years of enjoying & supporting PBS & NPR, I’m disgusted.

    • jeanabella

      But it’s a complex scandal that’s decades in the making. It’s a scandal in whichRepublican rhetoric doesn’t match their voting record. And it’s scandal that ultimately forces us to consider the foolish mistakes we’ve made sending soldiers into wars of choice, often without proper body armor.

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        The debts we owe the men and women that have served are disgracefully unpaid.

        • JS

          You go into Veteran health care with the VA you got, not the VA you want.

          • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

            Your tasteless attempt at humor not withstanding there is a point to what you claim. If I were to correct the problem I would remove private health care plans from senators, congress people, and their staffs. If they need healthcare they should seek it at their local VA hospital. I would bet that the quality of care would improve dramatically.

          • JS

            It wasn’t an attempt at humor, just a juxtaposition between the soldiers who died due to lack of body armor and those who died due to lack of services.

            No hue and cry about the former from the GOP, and no increase in services to deal with all the increase in veterans due to the two wars started under GOP leadership.

          • hennorama

            JS — has there been any evience that any of the veterans who may have died while waiting for VA care actually “died due to lack of services”?

            In other words, assuming there was a delay in receiving care, did this delay contribute to or cause their demise?

            Unfortunately, the implication in the coverage seems to be that any delays caused these deaths.

          • JS

            I don’t know of any evidence, and I was thinking along the same lines as you: would these people have died anyway.

            I would also like to know how many people die in the private health care market due to waiting for services, or no access to services, and compare the rates to those of the VA.

            That being said, there is no excuse for falsifying records, and those people and their supervisors should be fired.

          • hennorama

            JS — thank you for your response.

            I’ve seen one or two anecdotal reports from family members, who said their loved one’s health worsened, but nothing from independent sources that has pointed to deleterious effects of any delays that may have happened, and nothing as to cause and effect.

            If what has been alleged actually happened, there should be significant repercussions for those involved. It seems an unfortunate aspect of laudable goals — to reduce waiting times. It also seems that the stats were linked to performance reviews, and/or compensation, which sometimes leads to unethical behavior, e.g., skewing the stats.

            I agree also that a comparison between private providers and the VA data would be valuable. Of course, many of the VA patients have physical and mental health issues, oftentimes in combination, that are not seen as frequently in the general populace, which might make comparisons difficult.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • hennorama

            JS — here’s something that’s a bit more “on point”: claims against the VA for delayed care as a factor in patient deaths, since 2001. It doesn’t speak to the latest controversy, but adds some perspective.

            See:
            http://www.stripes.com/news/us/delay-in-treatment-a-factor-in-more-than-100-deaths-at-va-centers-1.283701

          • HonestDebate1

            “… an internal review at the VA has found nearly two dozen veterans passed away in numerous states while waiting for treatment. The review found deaths linked to waiting times occurred in states such as Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Iowa, and Arizona – though at a different facility in Prescott, not Phoenix.”

            http://rt.com/usa/161136-veteran-affairs-admits-deaths-delays/

          • HonestDebate1

            I agree. I think Congress exempted itself from Obamacare as well.

  • X Y & Z
    • JS

      How much did their client base expand?

      • TFRX

        I understand that the Iraqis would treat them. Or welcome the US as saviors. Or that the oil would pay for the war.

        Can’t keep it straight? Neither can I. There were so many promises made in the runup to the war that nobody in our press corps now cares who said what then.

        • JS

          ANd deficits don’t matter,…

    • tbphkm33

      Lets just be thankful that that GW Bush incompetence is gone… although, look for the not-so-Grand-Old-Party to nominate more incompetence in 2016.

      • HonestDebate1

        Every President can’t be as competent as Obama.

    • jefe68

      Hmmmm… Maybe because we had over a decade of war. Right wing BS again.

      • X Y & Z

        Obama’s 5 year drone war, that have killed 2,400 people,

        (21 children, 12 women – 5 of them pregnant, in one December 2009 Yemeni raid that Obama ordered)

        hasn’t been done on the cheap either.

        http://www.thebureauinvestigates.com/2014/01/23/more-than-2400-dead-as-obamas-drone-campaign-marks-five-years/

        • hennorama

          Hey X Y & Z — can you read?

          Repeating, from an earlier reply to you:

          Your own source clearly indicates that the attack in question was not a “drone strike.”

          From the article in the link (emphasis added):

          Drones were not the first weapon the administration turned to when it started to attack the country. On December 17 2009 a US Navy submarine launched a cluster bomb-laden cruise missile at a suspected militant camp in al Majala, southern Yemen.

          The missile slammed into a hamlet hitting one of the poorest tribes in Yemen. Shrapnel and fire left at least 41 civilians dead, including at least 21 children and 12 women – five of them were pregnant.

    • TFRX

      A whole decade? Wow, way to time-travel.

  • hennorama

    Dammit. Another mass shooting.

    A gunman went on a drive-by shooting rampage in a Santa Barbara student enclave and at least seven people were killed, including the attacker, authorities said.

    Investigators believe a 22-year-old named Elliot Rodger driving a black BMW acted alone in the shootings around 9:30pm Friday night near the University of California, Santa Barbara.

    Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown confirmed at a news conference early Saturday that that seven people were killed, including the gunman, and seven wounded.

    This happened in the very densely populated town of Isla Vista, adjacent to UCSB, and a few miles west of Santa Barbara. Finals ended this week, and this also being a holiday weekend, there were many, many students and others out on an early Friday evening.

    The shooter was not a UCSB student; he attended Santa Barbara City College in Santa Barbara, but resided in Isla Vista.

    There’s much more, including a video this guy posted the day before, here:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2638049/7-dead-drive-shooting-near-UC-Santa-Barbara.html

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    The MSM is at it again. This is what the AP and ABCNews thinks is priority coverage. Distraction from a failed Presidency?

    ” Obama, 6 years into life in “the bubble,” fights a bad case of cabin fever”

    A few gems:

    “One woman squealed with delight”
    “”It’s good to be out,” Obama said.”
    “But every once in a while, the golf course just doesn’t cut it.”

    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/years-obama-fights-case-cabin-fever-23853698#disqus_thread

  • nj_v2

    Glimpses of the future.

    http://www.trust.org/item/20140523110407-xj352/?source=fiHeadlineStory

    As mountain snow fails and glaciers melt, Pakistan faces water threats
    Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation – Fri, 23 May 2014 02:00 PM

    GILGIT, Pakistan (Thomson Reuters Foundation) — Farmers in the valleys of northern Pakistan fear for the survival of their summer crops after a short winter of low snowfall altered the flow patterns of mountain streams, potentially robbing the farmers of water they rely on to irrigate their fields.

    Experts at the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) and senior weather observers posted at stations in Pakistan’s Upper Indus Basin (UIB) say last winter’s snowfall in most of the valleys of the Gilgit-Balistan province was as much as 70 percent below that of previous years.…

    (snipped)

    http://news.yahoo.com/mexico-city-residents-battle-police-over-water-144815836.html

    Mexico City residents battle police over water

    MEXICO CITY (AP) — A confrontation between 1,500 police and residents of a village on Mexico City’s western outskirts left more than 100 police injured in a battle over a water spring. Three police remained in intensive care Thursday, the city government said, and five people were under arrest.

    It was the latest in a series of clashes over increasingly scarce water in the city of 9 million people, which must draw much of its supply from surrounding states.…

    (snipped)

    http://www.salon.com/2014/05/06/texas_drinking_water_shortage_has_gotten_so_bad_one_city_is_turning_to_toilets/

    Texas’ drinking water shortage has gotten so bad, one city is turning to toilets
    Welcome to the new reality of extreme droughts

    As three years of ongoing drought take their toll, Wichita Falls, Texas, is on the verge of becoming the first city in the country where half of the drinking water is recycled from wastewater — including the water flushed down toilets.…

    (snipped)

    http://kdhnews.com/news/texas/texas-suppliers-face-drinking-water-shortages/article_bc2ea0b2-e169-11e3-bc48-0017a43b2370.html

    32 Texas suppliers face drinking water shortages

    LUBBOCK — More than 30 small Texas public suppliers could run out of drinking water in 45 to 90 days as the state’s drought worsens.No residents will go without water, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said Wednesday, and if a supplier runs out, then water will be trucked in.…

    (snipped)

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    European press starts coverage of breaks in the ranks of the climate science “consensus”. Harsh accusations fly.

    “A Heated Debate: Are Climate Scientists Being Forced to Toe the Line?”

    “After joining a controversial lobby group critical of climate change, meteorologist Lennart Bengtsson claims he was shunned by colleagues, leading him to quit. Some scientists complain pressure to conform to consensus opinion has become a serious hindrance in the field.”

    “Respected German meteorologist Hans von Storch of the Institute for Coastal Research at the Helmholtz Center, described the justification as “scandalous” and accused the journal of politically motivated decision-making not based on scientific standards. ”

    Gavin Schmidt a US Federal government climate scientist defends the consensus and denies the harassment. Why is a Federal employee weighing in?

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/climate-scientists-mixed-over-controversy-surrounding-respected-researcher-a-971033.html

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      More coverage here:

      Dr. Judith Curry:

      “I have heard that a number of leading scientists are pretty disgusted with the way Bengtsson has been treated and see the larger issues of concern about the social psychology of our field. People are talking about writing blog posts for professional societies, trying to get signatures on a statement, etc. I hope that these individuals follow through, and that the ‘climate’ for climate research can improve.”

      http://judithcurry.com/2014/05/24/are-climate-scientists-being-forced-to-toe-the-line/#more-15598

  • OnPointComments

    An article that disproves some of the myths being perpetrated about the VA scandal.

    VA SPENDING PER PATIENT EXPLODED AMID DEADLY DELAYS
    http://news.investors.com/052014-701560-va-budget-exploded-amid-chronic-treatment-delays.htm?p=full

    Excerpt:
    The VA’s budget has been exploding, even as the number of veterans steadily declines. From 2000 to 2013, outlays nearly tripled, while the population of veterans declined by 4.3 million.

    Medical care spending — which consumes about 40% of the VA’s budget — has climbed 193% over those years, while the number of patients served by the VA each year went up just 68%, according to data from the VA.

    From 2008 to 2012 alone, per-patient spending at the VA climbed 27%. To put that in perspective, per capita health spending nationwide rose just 13% during those years. And per-enrollee spending for Medicare went up only 10%, government data show.

    Some will argue that the increase in health spending was the direct result of all those wounded warriors coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan. But these vets aren’t driving VA costs higher. A Congressional Budget Office report found that they cost $4,800, on average, in 2010 compared with $8,800 for other veterans who used the system.

    It also found that while these Iraq and Afghan vets account for 7% of those treated, they were responsible for only 4% of its health costs.

    Iraq and Afghan vets, the report found, “are typically younger and healthier than the average VHA patient and as a result are less expensive to treat.”

    A separate CBO report found that while “veterans from recent conflicts will represent a fast-growing share of enrollments in VA health care … the share of VA’s resources devoted to the care of those veterans is projected to remain small through 2020.”

  • davecm

    To all our service people, thank you for your sacrifice for our country.
    I am ashamed by the mess with the VA. Who is important, who serves,
    who do we value in this country of ours.
    If true, the VA has done some terrible things to many honorable people.
    Why?????
    If the reason is too many patients and too few medical staff. that is a pile of crap!
    There are roughly 150 terrorists being housed at Gitmo prison, they have all they need and want, including roughly 100 member medical staff to tend to their ills, where is the priority?????
    The house passed a bipartisan bill this week that would hold VA people accountable for any wrong doing, requires their firing if found guilty!
    Great idea I think, not so for the Senate Dems. who said no.
    Way to go Harry, VA jobs over medical care for our service people.
    Press secretary states Obama had no clue until heard about on news, sure??? come to find out he was informed of condition by his transition team back 2008.
    The horrible effects of the sequester on our country. Obama and Dems. stated jobs would be lost, airline delays, fiscal Armageddon would happen. In a report by GAO on the effects, 1 govt. job was lost, Wow!
    Okay people! it is time for accountability and not loyalty to ones party!

    • anamaria23

      If you Google ‘effects of sequester”, you will find more effects than the 1 govt job loss” Actually, the accumulated effects are quite stunning.
      Rhetoric that serves only to support your agenda does little to enable real solutions.
      The Senate wants to guarantee more than just some firing of management. There needs to be deep changes in the system.

  • hennorama

    The Isla Vista, California murder spree has gotten even more bizarre.

    The local sheriff just stated that 3 of those killed were in the suspect’s residence, and were all repeatedly stabbed, prior to the shooting and automotive assault spree.

    It has also been reported that the suspect sent a 141 page “manifesto” to a local TV station, which reportedly makes his mental disturbance apparent.

    3 handguns were recovered from his vehicle, as were 41 fully loaded 10-round magazines. All of the weapons were legally purchased, and all were registered to the suspect.

    There are also reports that concerned relatives reported their concerns about the mental health of the suspect, several weeks earlier. Deputies had interviewed him due to these reports, and they determined that he didn’t meet the criteria for a mental health hold.

    Hooboy.

    • HonestDebate1

      Was the campus a “gun free zone”?

      • jefe68

        The murders did not happen on campus.
        What is it with you gun nuts?

        • HonestDebate1

          Not everyone should carry a weapon. Where’d you get that?

        • hennorama

          jefe68 — facts don’t matter when Sir Nobler Than Thou is frantically fumbling to make a foolish invalid point.

          • HonestDebate1

            Why do you keep saying that? Facts matter a ton to me. Especially the fact that facts can be misleading when in the hands of the disingenuous.

    • Coastghost

      One authentic piece of weirdness you have not cited, hen: reports this a.m. say the suspected perpetrator was the son of an assistant director for that glorious agitprop vehicle for female empowerment from 2012, “The Hunger Games”. How could the uplifting message of arming teenaged girls with crossbows or power bows fail to have penetrated the skull or the heart of this young man with limitless love for all creation? Maybe the next overproduced sequel will reveal all.
      And I do not hear your impassioned call for a strict ban on all assault knives. (Perhaps it’s not too early to begin calling for strict bans on crossbows and power bows.)

      • hennorama

        Coastghost — thank you for your response.

        Leaving aside your movie review and related comments, as they are not relevant, two points:

        1. I have made no “impassioned call for a strict ban on all assault” anythings, making that portion of your comment both inapplicable and absurd.

        2. The suspect’s father being a successful member of the entertainment industry immediately brings to mind an incident in the same town from 2001. In that incident, David Attias, son of a successful TV director, purposely drove his car into an Isla Vista crowd, killing four people and injuring others.

        There are other similarities between the two young men, about which you can read more, here:

        http://www.independent.com/news/2014/may/24/isla-vista-shooting-echoes-david-attias/

        Thanks again for your response.

        • Coastghost

          The ideological failure of an otherwise successful and lucrative agitprop entertainment vehicle seems utterly relevant here: if the suspect’s father was deeply involved in producing the chick flick, surely the suspect himself would have had an unobstructed view of all the glamour and hype attending the film’s production and release, would have been well-placed to thrill to the film’s positive messages.
          Yet the message of girlteen empowerment seems to have become gravely garbled in a circumstance where you might otherwise assume innocently that a father’s professional and political commitments would redound to his own offspring.
          The ideological deficiencies of the Hunger Games franchise merit due consideration.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — TYFYR.

            Nonsense.

            The suspect’s father was the second unit director on THG, which is not exactly a position that shapes the so-called “message” of the film.

            Enjoy your tangent.

          • Coastghost

            hen: the facile ideological content of the film the suspect’s father famously worked to help produce is at least as constituent to the discussion you’ve raised as the suspect’s legal ownership of firearms, knives, or car.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — TY again FYR.

            More tangential nonsense.

            Only someone on a tangential tear would discuss his interpretation of a movie as somehow related to or “at least as constituent to” the means of murder and injury employed by the suspect in this case.

            Expect no further replies from me in regard to your flight of fancy.

          • Coastghost

            Alas, what else can I say, hen: I sometimes see tangential nonsense and flights of fancy as apt and commensurate responses to your incisive commentary and analysis.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — TY again FYR.

            The origin of this thread is a list of facts, which I wrote in real time while watching a telecast of the press conference given by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff. It included no “incisive commentary and analysis” and was spurred by the addition of the facts of the stabbing murders, which were unknown to me (and the general public, as far as I can tell) prior to watching said telecast.

            Your injection of what might be described as “the sins of the father,” as you alone seem to see them in relation to your interpretation of a movie in which the suspect’s father was involved, is more properly viewed as “commentary and analysis,” incisive or otherwise.

          • Coastghost

            Liberals, leftists, and progressives are rarely shy about arguing “from nurture” or “from environment” to account for human failings: why fail to adduce an argument from nurture or environment in this case?

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — thank you for your inquiry.

            As I am none of the seldom-shy persons you described, and have made no mention of what might cause this young man to take the actions ascribed to him, I must assume you meant to direct your question elsewhere.

          • HonestDebate1

            Does it matter to you what might have caused this tragedy or is the gun the only factor of importance?

          • HonestDebate1

            Excuse me Mr. Ghost for butting in but in reading Hen’s reply below I am struck by the illogical premise which seems to be the “means of murder” are more of a factor than the heart of the murderer. I find that completely bizarre.

            I appreciate your comments on this because I was not aware of this latest development. Even if I was it likely would be lost on me since I know nothing about “The Hunger Games”.

    • Coastghost

      And so much for discourse management, hen: right now, the AP is trumpeting the story as “a shooting rampage fueled by an ‘anti-woman vendetta’”–even though reports suggest over half the victims were male, and the male victims (apart from the suspect’s presumed suicide) were all stabbed to death.
      Sounds a lot like generous mischaracterization at work: and Americans distrust their news outlets, go figure.

      • hennorama

        Coastghost — TYFYR.

        Various reports indicate that the suspect’s parents were trying to intercede, as they had received his emailed “manifesto,” and had seen his video just prior to the killing and assault spree. It is therefore possible, although completely speculative on my part, that the parents had contacted the roommates, who may have tried to stop the suspect, precipitating their murders. It’s also possible that the roommates had received the emailed “manifesto,” and/or seen the video.

        It is clear from the video, in which the suspect says “you girls have rejected me .. I will punish you all for it … I will enter the hottest sorority at UCSB … and “slaughter every single spoiled stuck-up blond sl*t I see inside there,” that he had an “anti-woman” attitude.

        (I don’t recommend viewing the video, so I’m not linking to it, but it is available if you feel the need to confirm the above.)

        Reports about his “manifesto” also indicate he had expressed similar thoughts in it.

        Perhaps you might reconsider your view of AP, which has the following on its site right now (7:10 PM GMT, Sunday May 26, 2014):

        GOLETA, Calif. (AP) — In YouTube videos and a long written manifesto, Elliot Rodger aired his contempt for everyone from his roommates to the whole human race, reserving special hate for two groups: the women he says kept him a virgin for all of his 22 years, and the men they chose instead.

        Authorities said he put that bitterness into action in a stabbing and shooting rampage Friday night across the seaside California college town of Isla Vista that killed two young women and four men, at least half of them students at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Thirteen people were injured.

        See:
        http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SANTA_BARBARA_RAMPAGE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2014-05-25-09-57-04

        • Coastghost

          Oh good: it took the AP only one hour to hear me.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — would you be so kind as to provide a link to the story you referenced above?

          • Coastghost

            Too late: Google News has already let that iteration vanish, the AP is no longer advertising its misleading reporting, either.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost –your efforts are appreciated, and confirm my inability to find such a story.

          • Coastghost

            I’m in no better position, frankly, to find the story you adduced initially some twenty-four hours ago: “Dammit. Another mass shooting.” You meant, of course, the multiple fatal stabbings that preceded the shootings. You meant, of course, “a homicidal rampage”, irrespective of the weapons used, including apparently his black BMW.
            Don’t backpedal now on your initial eagerness to implicate firearms in this tragedy.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — TYFYR.

            It was indeed a mass shooting, and all of the early reporting (which I became aware of late Friday night, spending the rest of the night trying to determine the fate of dozens of students), including the sheriff’s briefing very early Sat. morning (around 2:30 AM, as I recall) discussed gunfire, exchanges of gunfire, and victims of gunfire and vehicular assault.

            The details of the three stabbing deaths only emerged much later, as indicated in my post at the start of this thread. Characterizing my reporting of the facts above and below, and quoting some reports of the incidents as “initial eagerness to implicate (only) firearms in this tragedy” is a misreading of my words and intent.

          • Coastghost

            It indeed was NOT a mass shooting, hen: no one will seriously count the perpetrator as a victim, so he killed three victims with stabbings and three with gunfire.
            That’s clearly and unambiguously “a homicidal rampage”: yet you’re still eager to act as if only firearms were used by regarding it simply and blankly as “a mass shooting” without further qualification.
            Practicing that kind of rank dishonesty, hen, you could get a job as an AP editor.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost – TYFYR.

            No doubt the 8 people wounded by gunfire would disagree with your statement that this “indeed was NOT a mass shooting.”

            A total of 19 people, excluding the suspect, were killed or injured in this violent spree. Three were stabbed to death, four were injured with an automobile, one had an injury of “unknown origin,” three were killed by gunfire, and eight were wounded by gunfire.

            Fascinating to read that I, the person who first broke the news of the stabbing deaths in this forum, am thought to be “eager to act as if only firearms were used …” More exactly, I am thought to not just be “eager,” but “”still eager,” as if I was actually ever “eager to act as if only firearms were used …”

            If you are “eager” to find a dishonest person, or much more charitably, an ignorant person, one suggests that you look into a mirror.

            Thanks again for your response.

  • Don_B1

    MSNBC certainly presents the liberal side, but it does give conservatives a strong voice for their usually ridiculous positions. And it does not make things up as Fox regularly does.

    Just visit Media Matters for examples.

    • dfg

      To be fair, both MSNBC and FOX pick idiots from the opposing side to speak on their respective shows. These “guests” usually don’t speak for most conservatives/liberals and end up being made to look foolish. Fair exceptions to this is when they invite elected officials or well known party leaders.

  • HonestDebate1

    Given the shoddy performance of the VA it’s refreshing that the private sector is stepping up. Kudos to Bill O’Reilly for raising $7 million (so far) and buying state of the art, life-changing wheelchairs for wounded veterans at $15K a pop. Ditto Rush Limbaugh and his unrelenting support for the families of the fallen.

    http://www.twoifbytea.com/support.html

    • OnPointComments

      Bill O’Reilly has challenged Vice President Biden to buy a track chair for a veteran. O’Reilly also pointed out how paltry the Biden’s charitable contributions are.

      The 16 years of Joe Biden’s tax returns show that from 1998-2013, he & his wife had total income of $4,604,498, from a low of $210,797 to a high of $408,733, easily within the top 5% of income earners. The Bidens are part of “the rich” of whom President Obama speaks so frequently.

      The Biden’s cash charitable contributions for the 16 years totaled — wait for it — 0.95% of their income. $43,823. An average of $2,739 a year. Less than a 1% average in charitable contributions a year.

      • hennorama

        OPC — yes, and?

        Are you a Christian, and if so, would you care to explain Matthew 7:1?

        Mr. O’Reilly is rather notoriously Christian. One wonders if he is prepared to document his income and charitable contributions for all to see and judge, as he wishes to judge the contributions of others.

        Methinks he is merely a judgmental and pompous ass, who feels the need to advertise and self-aggrandize.

        • HonestDebate1

          Are you? 100% of his merchandise sales have always gone to charity. He has held countless fund raising efforts.

          http://www.billoreilly.com/pg/jsp/billsfavorites/billscharities.jsp

          I don’t even like O’Reilly but I can sure respect his charitable work. Why the hate?

        • OnPointComments

          Methinks thou dost protest too much.

          I’ll leave you to your own interpretation of Matthew 7:1.

          There is no way that the record of charitable giving for the wealthy Bidens (and their wealth as reported on tax returns doesn’t include the considerable perks bestowed upon a senator and vice president) can be considered generous. O’Reilly and I are simply asking the uncharitable Bidens “to pay a little bit more” and to “give something back.” The quotes are from President Obama in his exhortations about the rich.

          • hennorama

            OPC — thank you for your response.

            If you believe that the only measure of charity and generosity is how much one deducts on one’s income tax return, I feel sorry for you.

          • OnPointComments

            There are many measures of charity and generosity, of which cash contributions is one. I’ve searched the Internet for any evidence that the Bidens are generous and I have found nothing, other than a few liberals who tout his voting record as a measure of generosity.

          • hennorama

            OPC – thank you for your response.

            Perhaps another Biblical reference will be instructive: Matthew 6:1-4.

            In my experience, the vast majority of those who do charitable works do so very humbly, and, per Matthew’s writings, “do not announce it with trumpets.”

            Thanks again for your response.

          • OnPointComments

            Hebrews 13:16

          • hennorama

            OPC — TY again FYR.

            Please, explain how the Bidens’ behaviors might not be in alignment with Hebrews 13:16, which in the English Standard Version, says:

            “Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.”

            Source (which includes various other versions, contexts and interpretations):

            http://biblehub.com/hebrews/13-16.htm

          • OnPointComments

            16 years’ income: $4.6 million
            16 years’ cash contributions: $44,000
            Cash contributions as a percentage of total income: 0.95%

            Do you have any evidence that the Bidens have been generous and have shared what they have, other than the 0.95% I have shown? Please restrict your answers to evidence of generosity (definition: willingness and liberality in giving away one’s money, time, etc; magnanimity) and not inconsequential instances.

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            Is there something in Hebrews 13:16 that indicates what level of cash contributions constitutes “shar[ing] what you have,” or that deems a certain level as being too small?

            No doubt Biblical readers await your generous sharing of your expertise in this matter.

            Despite the fact that I have not posited that the Bidens are generous, I would point to various and sundry acts of Dr. Jill Biden, as an educator (an occupation which might itself be considered as a charity, given that it directly involves sharing one’s knowledge and expertise) of emotionally disturbed youth, her presidency of the Biden Breast Health Initiave, her activities related to Delaware Boots On The Ground, as well as her myriad involvements in good works during her time as Second Lady.

            Vice President Biden has also been active throughout his career in his church, as well as for charities supporting women, veterans, police, etc.

            If you feel the need to judge the Bidens and their behaviors, please consider complying with Matthew 7:1, and present your own income, deductible charitable contributions, and other works of charity and generosity that you have performed.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • OnPointComments

            Don’t you think it is appropriate for citizens to review and analyze the tax returns of our vice president, and to draw conclusions from that analysis? What conclusion do you reach based on the Bidens’ income and contributions? If it is not appropriate to reach a conclusion, then why require that these tax returns be released to the public?

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            Notably, you have neither explained how the Bidens’ behaviors might not be in alignment with Hebrews 13:16, nor answered the question as to whether there is something in Hebrews 13:16 that indicates what level of cash contributions constitutes “shar[ing] what you have,” or that deems a certain level as being too small.

            Despite these failings, you pose a series of questions. Curious, that.

            I infer from your questions that you think that candidates for and holders of the office of President and Vice President are required to release their income tax returns. This is incorrect. They are required to file financial disclosure forms, not to release their income tax returns.

            Certainly, if candidates and officeholders do release their private tax forms, the public can view and analyze them as they see fit.

            I personally draw no conclusions about the Bidens’ tax returns, as I have neither viewed nor reviewed them in their entirety.

            In my view, it is unseemly to trumpet one’s good works, and to judge the good works of others. Doing both in combination is unseemliness squared.

          • OnPointComments

            As I am not a theologian, all I have is my opinion of the Bidens’ generosity, and in my opinion the Bidens come up lacking.

            I recall that a year and a half ago, you were quite willing to render judgment when the subject was the Romney’s tax returns and contributions. Now that the person being discussed has changed, you say that judging the good works of others becomes unseemly.

            Luke 6:41-42

          • hennorama

            OPC – TYFYR.

            You misremember and mischaracterize my comments about the Romneys’ tax returns.

            I commended the Romneys’ contributions without fail. I did find it interesting that in at least one tax year (I do not recall which one), the Romneys’ contributions to their church were less than 10 percent of their income, and remarked upon that fact. I also noted how the Romneys reverse-engineered their 2011 Federal income tax return, by not claiming all their available charitable contributions as deductions, for political purposes.

            There is no doubt that the Romneys’ 2011 tax return was reverse-engineered for political purposes. Mr. Romney’s hand-picked personal financial trustee, Brad Milt, said so:

            “The Romneys’ generous charitable donations in 2011 would have significantly reduced their tax obligation for the year. The Romneys thus limited their deduction of charitable contributions to conform to the Governor’s statement in August, based upon the January estimate of income, that he paid at least 13% in income taxes in each of the last 10 years.

            Thanks again for your response, despite your misrembrance and mischaracterization.

          • OnPointComments

            Sounds like you are rendering judgment, but perhaps it’s just me. The Romneys didn’t pay enough taxes, the Romneys paid too much taxes, the Romney’s contributions were generous, the Romney’s contributions were too little — they can’t catch a break, can they?

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            As I wrote, I commended the Romneys’ contributions without fail. I did not indicate that they were “generous” or “too little.”

            I quoted Brad Milt, who used the word “generous” when he described how the Romneys had reverse-engineered their 2011 tax return, for political purposes.

            The use of the term “reverse-engineered” is a description, not a judgment, as the changes were made after the fact. The conclusion that this was done for political purposes is borne out by Mr. Milt’s statement, that the Romneys “limited their deduction of charitable contributions to conform to the Governor’s statement in August … that he paid at least 13% in income taxes in each of the last 10 years.”

            Had they not limited these deductions, the August statement would have been rendered false, which certainly would not have been a politically positive outcome.

            Stating a fact, as I did when noting that the contribution to their church was less than 10 percent of their income one year, is not “rendering judgment,” at least not in my world.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • ExcellentNews

            The prosperous societies in Western Europe and America work not because of the charity of individuals, but because of progressive taxes collected under the rule of the law.

            I hope the Bidens paid their share and did not use foreign investment trusts to hide money offshore. That’s all we can ask of them.

            Tax levels should be set by a democratic process based on equal voting and review of empirical evidence. Taxes should be used to invest back in the country and its people.

            Most rational people agree this is a better process than having a throng of starving workers whose jobs have been offshored to a slave-labor dictatorship hope their CEO tosses them a sliver from his offshoring bonus…

          • Steve__T

            You cant argue Hebrews 13:16, that is instruction on offering a sacrifice to God. With Instruction form Jesus on how to give to the needy. Mathew 6:1-4.
            I’ll leave you with this
            The wise in heart accept
            commands,
            but a chattering fool comes to
            ruin.~ Proverbs 10:8

          • HonestDebate1

            That is completely reasonable.

            I have actually put a lot of thought into Matthew 7:1 although I did not know the book, chapter and verse until Hennorama posted it. I guess it’s a little far afield for this discussion to elaborate other than to say I don’t believe it means it’s bad to judge people.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            The context in which we “judge” Biden’s lack of charitable giving is his long career largely made up of giving away other peoples money.

      • anamaria23

        Exhibit A for the petty little man that O”Reilly is.
        Have you nothing better to do with your precious life than poke around others charitable giving and use it on a public forum for your own agenda?
        Sad.

      • ExcellentNews

        And I CHALLENGE the 0.01% CEOs who offshored 25,000,000 high-wage US jobs to slave-labor dictatorships (and their banker pals collecting 17% interest on student loans) to bring the 15 TRILLION in loot they hide in offshore accounts back to America so that it can be invested in education, R&D and infrastructure.

        Buying a track chair for a veteran certainly would be a very DECENT GESTURE. Not giving 1.2 TRILLION in public funds to crony contractors to “liberate Iraq” would have been GOOD GOVERNANCE (and fewer track chairs for pointlessly wounded veterans). Which is what we vote for.

        If decency or goodness of character was the criterion for electing an official, then we should just have Mother Theresa run the country. I can’t speak for her economic policy, but I doubt it includes inheritance tax cuts for the Hiltons or the Kochs.

    • X Y & Z

      Limbaugh and O’Reilly are both a couple of war mongering Neo Cons who fully supported and promoted the invasion of Iraq (which was based on lies and flawed intelligence), that resulted in the deaths of over four thousand Americans, and hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqi citizens. They both deserve to be prosecuted for war crimes, along with Bush, Cheney, Rice, Wolfowitz, and Rumsfeld.

      P.S. Limbaugh and O’Reilly are conservative in name only.

      • HonestDebate1

        I disagree with you about Iraq, top to bottom, but I’m sick of talking about it.

        I certainly think Rush is a Conservative. O’Reilly, not so much.

        • X Y & Z

          Limbaugh supported NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT, and every other ruinous ‘free-trade’ agreement that has hollowed out the middle class. There’s nothing conservative about that.
          The Republican party is just a watered down version of the democrat party.

    • anamaria23

      Good of Bill O’Reilly after years of promoting an unnecessary war and calling others traitors for speaking out, for calling for boycotts of France, the Dixiechicks etc. Mr, O’Reilly. who has made a fortune humiliating others.
      By the way, there are thousands not of O’Reilly’s vast wealth who give of their time volunteering at V.A hospital and giving some of their small means to help veterans.

      • HonestDebate1

        O’Reilly is doing a good thing Anamaria. Where’s the love?

        • anamaria23

          Too loaded and complicated a question to address on this forum.

          • HonestDebate1

            Alright, fair enough. All I’m saying is good work should be recognized and not viewed through a partisan lens.

        • TFRX

          You ask for too much love for too many asswads.

      • OnPointComments

        True, there are many who give of their time volunteering at V.A hospitals and giving some of their small means to help veterans, but it’s not the Bidens. They are not generous when it comes to charity.

        Incidentally, Bill O’Reilly praised President Obama for his generosity in helping veterans. In 2003, O’Reilly’s position on the war in Iraq was the same as Hillary Clinton’s. Unlike Hillary Clinton, who voted for the war, O’Reilly apologized for his initial position and said he was wrong.

        • anamaria23

          O’Reilly, for YEARS used the public airways to rally for the Iraq war. I am not a fan of Hillary Clinton, but I believe she voted to give W. the authority to go war if he found evidence of the legitimate need to do so.

    • anamaria23

      Given the shoddy performance of a PORTION of the V.A.
      Where were the Congresspersons in the Phoenix V.A, district? Are they not entrusted with the well being of their constituents? How could they not have known that reportedly veterans in their districts were dying for lack of care?

      • HonestDebate1

        I think it’s up to 23 states now.

        • anamaria23

          What is the responsibility of Congresspersons for their districts?
          Every Congressperson where vets not being well served must be held accountable. Why are they there?

          • HonestDebate1

            I don’t know the answer to your question but I agree with your sentiment. The thing is, once it gets up to 23 states it’s a federal issue. How was the Phoenix fiasco discovered?

          • anamaria23

            Not by any member of the U.S. Congress, that I know. I have called my own Senator (MA) to voice my great displeasure with Congress’ negligence in this area.
            The Vets in my family have been and are very well served for 40 years, however.

          • HonestDebate1

            I am happy your family has been well served.

            I’ll look back and see who blew the whistle on this when I get a chance.

          • HonestDebate1

            It was Dr. Sam Foote who worked at the Phoenix VA for 24 years. He gave an interview to CNN who was investigating the VA.

            This is the way it usually happens, they were pretty devious so it would be hard to know anything unless someone on the inside blows the whistle,

    • TFRX

      Please continue pretending this will do everything for the vets.

      At least it’s doing more for them than the Tea Party-threatened GOPers in the senate who voted against the veterans’ benefits.

  • HonestDebate1

    Has anyone notice that Obama has stopped releasing Obamacare enrollment numbers?

    http://hotair.com/archives/2014/05/24/the-administration-has-quietly-stopped-releasing-obamacare-enrollment-numbers/

  • OnPointComments

    Nancy Pelosi blamed the problems at the VA on George Bush because of the “huge, huge increase” in the number of veterans. The VA disagrees with Ms. Pelosi.

    • JONBOSTON

      Tough call as to who is the most stupid politician in Washington since her fellow Democrats offer much competition . But my money goes with Nancy Pelosi , followed by Barbara Boxer.

      • HonestDebate1

        I’d put Sheila Jackson Lee in the mix.

        • JONBOSTON

          US Rep Hank Johnson from Georgia is also in the mix. He actually voiced concern at a congressional hearing that the presence of Marines on Guam could cause the island to tip over and capsize. He replaced Cynthia McKinney who would have been a leading candidate had she not been defeated by Johnson. Imagine what a moron she must be to have been defeated by Johnson. What’s really depressing is thinking about the state of the electorate in their congressional district.

          • HonestDebate1

            I forgot about Johnson. How about Maxine Waters? I guess we could do this all day.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Who is the dude who thought Guam would tip over with too many Marines?

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      When is the media going to start treating Pelosi like they do Michele Bachman? Pelosi has at least as many fact-free assertions.

      • TFRX

        You really need to get out of the wingnut world.

    • hennorama

      OPC — like your earlier post from IBD, comparing the entire population of veterans, not all of whom use VA health care, vs. total expenditures, which includes various other non-health care expenses, is silly and not applicable to the narrower cohort of veterans who actually use VA health services, and VA expenditures for health care.

      • OnPointComments

        The comparison depicted in the graphic is not mine, it comes directly from the VA.

        • hennorama

          OPC — TYFYR.

          Thank you for citing your source.

          Again, it’s not the total number of veterans that is at issue, it is the number of veterans who use VA health services.

          If you want to see that graph, see page 2 of “Trends in the Utilization of VA Programs and Services

          Prepared by the National Center for Veterans Analysis and Statistics

          August 2013,” here:

          http://www.va.gov/vetdata/docs/quickfacts/Utilization_trends_2012.pdf

          It shows quite clearly how both Total Veteran Patients and Total Patient Expenditures have risen in tandem.

          • HonestDebate1

            You really should look at your graph again and examine the ratios.

    • JGC

      The Bush administration publicly counted only a third of the casualties from the War on Terror. They were only counting soldiers DIRECTLY targeted in an attack for their wounded in action statistics. That meant if you were a soldier located one or two vehicles back from the one hit by a roadside bomb but still suffered an injury from the blast, or if you were injured in training, then your injuries would not be included in the stats because you were not wounded in a direct action. This had repercussions for reporting and preparing VA projections.

      Starting around 2010, the Obama administration began to widen the acceptable categories for vets to claim disability compensation, based on scientific studies: this included the signature injuries from the Iraq/Afghanistan wars, Traumatic Brain Injury and PostTraumatic Stress Syndrome, and also applications for previously ineligible injuries due to Agent Orange exposure and Gulf War Syndrome. “Total Pending Compensation and Pension” cases at the VA exploded, rising from around 640,000 in 2007 to almost 900,000 in early 2012, with no digital way to process claims until 2013 when electronic records started to be more broadly phased in. The backlog is coming down now from its highpoint, and stands at around 580,000 today.

  • OnPointComments

    I wonder if Democrats would be OK with accepting a death certificate as a Voter ID.

    “Evelyn E. Burwell’s family was surprised to learn she voted in the 2012 general and primary elections. They knew she was an avid voter, but she’s been dead since 1997.

    “Burwell is one of about 6,100 deceased people still registered to vote in Nassau County, a Newsday computer analysis shows. The former Wantagh resident, who died at age 74, is also among roughly 270 people that records show voted in Nassau County after dying, a group that includes a man who voted 14 times since his death.”
    http://www.newsday.com/long-island/nassau/6-100-dead-people-on-nassau-voter-rolls-newsday-analysis-finds-1.6349860

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Has Judge Leitman weighed in? Sounds like another “extraordinarily difficult case”.

    • HonestDebate1

      There is no way of knowing how much of this goes on despite the left’s claims. Voter ID is the only way to stop it although purging the rolls of the deceased would help.

      Voting is a sacred act, if there are obvious opportunities for fraud then it really doesn’t matter if there is evidence or not. Plug the holes. If I kept jewels, cash and gold in my house, I’d lock the door when I left. I would not wait for evidence that I might be robbed.

      • John Cedar

        One thing is for sure. The number of people who commit voter fraud is 270 + (infinity cubed times more) than there any people would be *disenfranchised*, if they had to get an ID to vote.
        That is because everyone and anyone can get ID to vote if they want to.

      • TFRX

        It doesn’t, you whining child.

        If you want to call voting “sacred” then having people’s votes scrubbed by law is as bad as voting fraud.

        Except the former happens like crazy thanks to you Teabaggers. And the latter hardly happens at all.

        • HonestDebate1

          Yea, I think dead people should not vote, sue me.

    • ExcellentNews

      Would a Kenyan Birth Certificate be counted as valid ID? Oh, and you forgot to holler about Benghazi…

    • John Cedar

      A few months ago the vile little man who governs my great state of NY, signed a law and compact to have my vote essentially thrown out, by having my vote diluted by the votes of the rest of the nation.

      This is clearly an unconstitutional compact, as the Constitution guarantees I get to vote for my Representatives. The Constitution was amended to allow womyn and minorities to have the same privilege to vote. That is a dilution of my vote that is obviously constitutional.

      This would be a good case for the great Ted Cruz to argue in front of the SCOTUS. Since he has a track record of understanding the Constitution and winning cases in front of the SCOTUS as a result of his deep understanding. I mean compared to a constitutional scholar such as Obama, who has merely mused about the constitution in the faculty lounge and in the living room of terrorists he pals around with.

      And I only bring up the anointed one because he recently opined how dumb and unfair the Constitution and founding fathers were, to include the Connecticut Compromise in its design. The man (and I use that term loosely) has no concept or appreciation for limited government and the stroke of genius that our Constitution is.

      I expect the left wing lunatics, who pretend they care about voter disenfranchisement, will put our differences aside, tol join me in my contempt and fight of this unconstitutional popular vote movement.

  • anamaria23

    I feel cautiously optimistic for the people of Ukraine. The projected winner, though an oligarch billionaire, nonetheless seems to have his head on straight re: the needs of the people. His platform is reasonable and of the 21st century. Interviews with the populace suggest that the winner will be held to high accountability with threat of another revolt if deep changes are not made.
    I find their hard work and the risks they took to seek justice very commendable and wish them well.

    • HonestDebate1

      Anamaria, please forgive me for changing the subject from your comment which I respect.

      You have been very vocal, rightfully so, about Congressmen being unaware of the VA situation. President Obama has said he learned about the issue from news reports. He said the same thing about “Fast and Furious”, IRS targeting, NSA spying, and even the photo op flyover of Air Force One in NYC that scared the hell out of New Yorkers. He also had no idea Benghazi wasn’t instigated buy a stupid video and was a terrorist attack. There’s more. Do you think the most powerful man in the world should be in the dark on these issues until he sees them in the news?

      • 1Brett1

        Translation: “I do declare, would you be ever so kind as to forgive me for changing the subject soes I can further criticize our drunkard president?”

        “I, mayam, am a Southern gentleman [removes hat] and would hope to rely upon the kindness of a lovely stranger such as yourself, and don’t you listen to those vile men on this forum from that vile Democrat Party; they are a bunch of despicable buzzards trying to cast aspersions upon my good name!”

      • anamaria23

        I believe that the President and his administration are being held to account, investigated at length for all that you say and also will be deemed responsible for the V.A. scandal by a hostile Congress banging their fists in outrage.
        I ask : Who holds Congress responsible?
        They are in Washington only 3 days a week presumably so that they can be available to their constituents at home.
        Using Arizona as an example, how, in a state with 2 Senators and 9 Reps could a reported forty Vets die without any knowledge of malpractice by that State’s Congressional reps? What is their interaction with the populace? Are they really doing their job? Where were McCain, Issa, Blumenthal as Vets in their districts languished? How many times a year do they visit V.A. hospitals or seek comments by V.A. personnel?
        Why did the whistleblower go to the press instead of to his Congressman? Why did the President and Congress read it in the newspaper first?
        If the FBI is called to investigate, one hopes that the negligence of Congress will be addressed.

        • HonestDebate1

          Hopefully you are right about the administration being held accountable but that wasn’t really my question. I surely may have missed it but I don’t recall you being as vocal or asking how the all that spying, targeting and a terrorist attack in Benghazi could be going on without the President knowing about it. In my view he should have.

          Sadly, Vets die every day. The Phoenix office had a secret list and the names were purged from the records until they came up on that list. It would be very difficult to recognize. However, I still agree with you, local politicians should be held accountable. And that includes more than 2 Senators and 9 Representatives. It would be 46 Senators and hundreds of Representatives. At that level it should also include federal authorities.

          Again, I share your outrage albeit selective IMHO.

          • anamaria23

            As I prefer not to be on the defensive re: my past grievances, I will opt out of the discussion.

          • HonestDebate1

            Fair enough, I’ve made my point. I do think you are reasonable and I’m happy we agree on something.

          • 1Brett1

            I agree with you: your outrage is always selective.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            IMHO, we’d be much better off if the Dems held this administration accountable for mis-deads and incompetence.

            Then there would be less room for partisan attacks and maybe things would improve.

    • ExcellentNews

      Anamaria, please forgive the right wing shills who spam this forum with Tea Party talking points. They want you to forget their unanimous ADMIRATION and support for Putin when the later butted heads with Obama.

      Yes, especially after today’s election, there is reason to be cautiously optimistic. The targeted sanctions against Putin’s cronies seem to have worked. Too bad we cannot apply similar sanctions against our own oligarchy and their offshored trillions.

      • anamaria23

        At least, so far, Mr. Putin is laying back, hopefully, as he said, will respect the vote. Perhaps his deal with China will pump his ego for a while, though it is reported that it will be some long years before it can be functioning. He is very clever and seems to like to threaten, but is not crazy IMHO.
        What makes him so powerful is his ability to lock up dissenters at will. Doubtful his Parliament would go against him in any meaningful way.

    • hennorama

      anamaria23 — if Petro Olekseyevich Poroshenko, the Willy Wonka of Ukraine, becomes President of Ukraine, one supposes the questions are whether Ukraine’s future will be bitter or sweet, dark or light.

      • anamaria23

        Yes, though unless he is a total fraud the odds are more light than dark, sweet than bitter. but not until after a long and difficult slog to steady the ship. My vibes are that he is up to it and if he is not the people will act again.

        • HonestDebate1

          Meanwhile Crimea belongs to Russia. I wish the new President luck and sincerely hope he can secure his nation with no help from us.

  • X Y & Z

    New IRS rule: Businesses are not allowed to say that they laid off employees because of Obamacare

    http://poorrichardsnews.com/post/76536479555/new-irs-rule-businesses-are-not-allowed-to-say-that

    Obamacare is a jobs-killer. 0.1% economic growth confirms it.

    • hennorama
      • HonestDebate1

        “Businesses are not allowed to say that they laid off employees because of Obamacare”

        It is true according to Politifact as far as they can be trusted after having to recant their “lie of the year”. Your link confirms it.

        Is it legal to lie on a federal document? What business is it of the governments to tell a company how many employees they can have? Or why should a business have to justify squat to the government on this matter? This is awful.

        • 1Brett1

          This is telling companies how many employees they can have? …Also, you read this and think it says it is true that businesses are not allowed to say they have laid off employees because of Obamacare?

          Wow, it is interesting how you interpret information and how your opinions comport with every conservative media spin out there…And you question my intelligence?!

          It appears you take out any nuance and any mitigation to the more extreme ideas, latch on to anything that might either be in agreement with you or that might be critical of the current administration or their policies, exaggerate those points after you’ve washed them of their nuances or parts that might balance out one side and hammer your newly spun, biased views as complete facts…wow. My question is: how much are you really aware of your deviousness? Or are your beliefs so blind and strong, you just are unaware of what you are doing?

          • HonestDebate1

            Companies cannot fire people to get under the threshold for Obamacare by this rule. The Politifact link confirms it. Everyone confirms it but that is the link Hen put up so I used it. What I wrote is true.

            It’s not about me.

          • 1Brett1

            So, they can say they laid off people due to ‘Obamacare’ they just can’t get the exemption if they say they laid off people due to ‘Obamacare.’ This is different than your initial statement (and XYZ’s statement).

          • HonestDebate1

            “So, they can say they laid off people due to ‘Obamacare’ …”

            No, that doesn’t cut it. “Businesses are not allowed to say that they laid off employees because of Obamacare.”

            By everyone, I mean law abiding citizens.

            But forget all that and my opinions, let us discuss how I take nuances, exaggerate, spin, what I have difficulty with, my logic my deviousness, my cluelessness, my understanding, how observant I am and your “translations” of how I think.

          • 1Brett1

            You’ve certainly made many comments that are about nothing other than me…but I am not so obsessed that I would take the time to cite three (two of which are the same comments, one being a humorous comment).

            As to my comment, you looked at the politifact piece and distorted it in exactly the way I described.

          • HonestDebate1

            Alrighty then.

  • Coastghost

    Here’s the WBUR homepage from the past ten minutes:

    http://www.wbur.org/

    Note the two concluding headlines for the Isla Vista story: NOT “Alleged murderer”–no, “Alleged shooter . . .”, NOT “Murder suspect”–no, “Shooting suspect . . .” Following this proffered logic, the male stabbing victims were not homicide victims at all, only the female victims qualify as actual homicide victims.
    The press is as gaga over guns as Hollywood is itself, and both use guns and gun violence to sell product.

    • hennorama

      Coastghost — 11 of the 19 victims were wounded by projectiles discharged from firearms, three of whom died as a result of these wounds. In other words, they were victims of a “shooting.”

      4 of the 19 victims were struck by a vehicle and injured as a result.

      3 of the 19 victims died from multiple stab wounds.

      1 of the 19 victims sustained a minor injury from an unknown origin.

      Here’s an excerpt from a recent press release out of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff”s Office (emphasis added). Note the inaccuracy in the first sentence, as well as the use of the term “shooting rampage.”:

      Isla Vista – May 24th, 2014

      The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has identified the deceased suspect who shot and killed six people and wounded 13 others in a shooting rampage that occurred on May 23 in Isla Vista. The suspect, who died from a gunshot wound, possibly self-inflicted, is 22-year-old Elliot Oliver Robertson Rodger, a Santa Barbara City College student from Woodland Hills who was living in Isla Vista. The Sheriff’s Office is reviewing a 140 page manifesto written by the suspect and videos he posted on YouTube prior to the shootings.

      The Sheriff’s Office has also released the names of three UCSB students who were killed in the shooting rampage. They are 22-year-old Katherine Breann Cooper of Chino Hills, California, 19-year-old Veronika Elizabeth Weiss of Westlake Village, California and 20-year-old Christopher Ross Michaels-Martinez of Los Osos, California. The names of three more victims who were found deceased in the suspect’s apartment are being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

      This press release was issued in conjunction with the Sheriff’s press conference, which was held around 5:30 PM PST on Saturday.

      See:
      http://www.sbsheriff.org/05241402.html

      And this is from the latest press release out of the SBCSO (emphasis added):

      Sheriff’s investigators believe Rodger killed these victims prior to going on a shooting rampage in Isla Vista around 9:27 p.m. on May 23. In all, six innocent people were killed and 13 others were wounded. Rodger died in the incident, possibly from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

      See:
      http://www.sbsheriff.org/05251401.html

      • Coastghost

        WaPo too seems keen ONLY to accentuate the criminal and homicidal use of firearms:

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/

        NOT “California murderer”, no no no no no: “California shooter”.

        • hennorama

          Coastghost — TYFYR.

          Perhaps the term “shooter-sideswiper-stabber-something elser,” which would put the methods of injury and death in declining numerical order, is too cumbersome.

          Perhaps most of those who are familiar with the story know it only by the earliest reported method – shooting – and subsequent headlines/reporting refer to “shooter” for consistency, and so as not to confuse the reader, who might think “California murderer,” or “California stabber” referred to different stories.

          Perhaps “shooter” is empirically known to attract more eyes and ears, and therefore mo’ money.

          Perhaps the writer is simply lazy.

          Perhaps.

          The irony of the inaccurate SBCSO press release is that the associated press conference is where the details of the stabbing deaths were first released. (That’s the same PC that I wrote about in near-real time, below. FYI, I emailed the SBCSO public information officer about the inaccuracy when I first noticed it.)

          It’s worth a mention that Sheriff Brown is in the midst of a reelection campaign, and lost no opportunity to congratulate his deputies’ efforts. The prior wellness check visit will no doubt be discussed by second-guessers, and may become a political issue for the sheriff.

          As to whether the PIO was “ready and eager [and uncritical] … to implicate firearms to the exclusion of all other lethal weapons,” I would imagine that sleep deprivation and resultant inattention to be more likely explanations for the inaccuracy. The PIO is an experienced former journalist.

          Thanks again for your response.

          • Coastghost

            Perhaps “shooter”–otherwise unadorned and unqualified–is simply misleading, as in this case.
            Perhaps our media giants simply prefer misleading the public they ostensibly serve.
            Perhaps our media types simply lie about all kinds of things, and the lies simply have become too numerous to count accurately.
            As you say, though, I think laziness has much explanatory power all its own, both in terms of media types themselves and the lowing public.

          • hennorama

            Coastghost — TYFYR.

            If you had your druthers, what term would you use, and why?

          • Coastghost

            hen, thanks for asking.
            Because all reports of murder require temporal unwinding as information becomes available, and because initial reports are so seldom utterly reliable in the fog of responding to a tragedy, the conventions “murder suspect” or “alleged murderer” in this case would have sufficed sufficiently: either rendering would have reflected accurately all initial and subsequent reporting and would not have required correction or retraction, at least until the point when all allegations and suspicions vanished.
            Media readiness to link firearms to mass crime scenes (which our media have conditioned us to expect), while often accurate enough once facts are in, shows a distinct lack of journalistic concern with accuracy when not demonstrating journalistic contempt for accuracy.

  • HonestDebate1

    I don’t get Friday’s show until Sunday at six in my area so I didn’t hear it until tonight. Good Lord! The demonization of the Tea Partiers has taken hold. It is truly amazing what some people believe. One caller made them out to be anti-science religious zealots. All throughout they wee portrayed as far right. Where do you guys get this stuff?

    The Tea Partiers are mainstream America. There is nothing extreme about them especially in the context of Obama, Reid, Pelosi, Holder and most of the administration. The Tea Partiers are no more or less religious than the rest of the Republican and Democrat Parties. They stand for smaller government, Constitutionality, less debt and more freedom. That’s it. And the anti-science thing is just too stupid to express in words. Opposition to a carbon tax or cap and trade is not anti-science. There is no science that says unless we cripple our economy and roll back our standard of living we will be toast. It’s ridiculous.

    • ExcellentNews

      The show gets posted online few hours after it’s broadcast in Boston. Just listen on the internet.

      Where we get this stuff? The Republican primaries and the candidates themselves.

      Denying the possibility that global warming is man made and a serious challenge for our current civilization IS anti-science. Unless your science degree is from the Kentucky Academy of Bible Studies …

      Carbon tax is a great way to gather capital to do something that will benefit a very large number of people, as opposed to a very small number of already rich coal barons. Coal is a very old efficient industry that creates very few jobs, relative to almost any other energy alternative.

      • HonestDebate1

        No one denies the possibility global warming is mean-made. And what does the Bible have to do with it?

        A carbon tax won’t do squat about climate.

        • 1Brett1

          You are NOT denying the possibility that global warming is “mean-made” [sp? I think you mean 'manmade']?! So, you are saying NO ONE denies the possibility of anthropogenic influences possibly affecting global climate? I’ve heard some people deny that, frankly.

          But, when you say no one, you, obviously mean you, although it’s not about you, notwithstanding. So, why do you think human contributions to possible global warming exist? Have you any proof?

          • HonestDebate1

            Thanks, I corrected it.

            I have never heard anyone deny the possibility that man may have some influence on climate.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            People hear what they want.

            Rubio made some comments recently and it was spun that he is a denier of science.

            The same method is used against scientist who DARE talk about the uncertainties. Not a healthy state of affairs.

          • 1Brett1

            If that includes yourself, what do you base your belief on?

          • HonestDebate1

            Common sense and sketchy data.

          • 1Brett1

            So, you have no proof that anthropogenic factors play a role. You disagree with scientific data yet believe something based purely on your hunches?

          • HonestDebate1

            What scientific data do I allegedly disagree with?

          • ExcellentNews

            “Common sense” tells us the Earth is flat and the Sun revolves around it.

            As someone with a deep science background, I can tell you data is ALWAYS sketchy and never complete. You never take a scientific theory for absolute truth. You always try to estimate the likelihood your theories are “true”. And you always keep accumulating more new data to validate this estimate. But you must base your actions on a rational assessment of the incomplete data and possibly flawed models. That is how science works to bring things like bridges you can cross without fear, airplanes that fly with a fatality rate lower than bathtub electrocutions (and pretty much everything else that makes life good).

            The current state of the data tells us that (a) the Earth is warming with a very high degree of confidence, (b) fossil fuels are the most likely cause with a moderately high degree of confidence, (c) future projections of the trend show the need for action with sufficient degree of confidence to actually do something.

            The only thing in the way of action are the profits of the likes of Mr. Massie and King Abdullah – and the chump change they funnel into the Republican party.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            a) about .8C since 1880 — most folks agree
            b) no. The last 30% of CO2 increase saw little temperature increase. The science ‘predicts’ 1C/doubling of CO2 but that doesn’t account for natural variations and both positive and negative feed backs.

            c)”future projections” are all based on climate models which are right now much in the discussion in the climate science community

          • HonestDebate1

            Wait a minute! Are you telling me the earth isn’t flat? in 1492 97% of earth scientist agreed it was. I’m so confused.

        • ExcellentNews

          Oh, this thread is precious. It’s exhibit A for the delusion that has seized the right.

          “No one denies the possibility global warming is man-made” End Quote. Ahem. The Republican party and the media outlets it controls have provided a megaphone for denial of global warming first, and then of fossil fuels likely role in it. At the Republican debates, every candidate has stood proud and denied global warming and the theory of evolution. Public record.

          What the Bible has to do with it? Directly, nothing. Indirectly, everything. In the early 90s, the political operators connecting the Republican party with wealthy donors came with a strategy to reverse the Republican decline based on SCIENCE. The idea was to use marketing science techniques to identify wedge issues that could divide and corral the electorate without having an otherwise material impact on business. Abortion and the literal belief in the Bible were the top two such issues. Hence, the use of religious belief to drive political gains for the party of robber barons.

          “Carbon tax won’t do squat”. Global reduction of CO2 emissions is necessary to do something about climate change (which so far is actually not significant, but may become quite important to our grand-children).

          Curtailing the use of COAL is the primary mechanism to achieve that. A carbon tax on COAL or on products from countries with heavy use of COAL is the easiest and economically optimal way to do this. In fact, curtailing the use of coal will have a net positive impact on the US economy.

          Of course, some coal barons will have to live off the billions they’ve stashed so far. I think this is an acceptable tradeoff for creating a NET GAIN of ~350,000 jobs in the US (EPRI estimate) and a better environment for our descendants.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Let’s try this: “A US CO2 tax won’t do squat” for global CO2 emissions.
            US emissions are now at ’92 levels.

            Coal provides 40% of our electricity. It cannot be replaced overnight without damaging results to the economy. And even if the US replaces it, China will continue to burn it and burn it without the particulate pollution controls we impose her in the US.

          • HonestDebate1

            There was someone on On Point, it may have been the Antarctica show, who really stated it well. He broke down the numbers that would result if we shut down all industry in America and the affect globally would be negligible.

          • ExcellentNews

            True. Our emissions have decreased because of three reasons – more natgas, less manufacturing, and generally more efficient machinery.

            I doubt any progressive (except the real tree huggers) advocates an “overnight” shift. That’s simply impossible. But we can have a real public policy to replace the old coal infrastructure with a mix of nuclear and renewables. It can be done in less than 20 years. This is similar to what the Germans or the French do. It will not destroy our economy. It will create a ten-fold jobs growth in the energy sector.

            Right now, our only policy is to give tax cuts and subsidies to coal billionaires, many of whom are not even in the US. And to let them obfuscate the climate/pollution issues. That’s insane.

            China is not a reason for us to not do the what’s right and good (yes, even good for the economy). In fact, we need to lead the world in a new trade pact – one requiring tariffs on goods made in countries with low labor and environmental standards.

            Race to the top, not the bottom. And thank you for replying without insults, unlike many other posters here.

          • HonestDebate1

            You are entitled to your misguided opinion.

    • kentuckywoman2

      Sweetie, in Kentucky, Tea Party = THEOCRAT. Smaller government, yes, but one run on Christian principles. I suspect that not all Tea Party groups are created equal. One common vein running through them all, though, is abject stupidity and ignorance.

      Don’t forget – here in Kentucky, we are “privileged” to host the country’s only “Creation Museum”….a Tea Party favorite. Please do not presume to tell me that these Tea Party subversives are not “anti-science.” You need to come visit some of the Tea Party groups down here in the Bible Belt of Kentucky, where the Tea Party was “birthed”. You might get a wake up call….

      If the Tea Party is “mainstream American”, then all I can say is I sincerely hope you are wrong, or we are truly headed for “Idiocracy”.

      • HonestDebate1

        In Kentucky you have Rand Paul, I’ve never heard him say anything about creating a theocracy. I am in the bible belt too and have been to many Tea Party events. There are no religious overtones. That’s not what the Tea Partiers are about. They are good, intelligent, mainstream Americans.

        • 1Brett1

          Maybe you just aren’t that observant? After all, you don’t see any Republican state legislatures introducing bills that limit reproductive rights and further erode Roe v. Wade, so…

          • HonestDebate1

            Please don’t tell me what I think. Where do you get this stuff?

          • jefe68

            Then stop telling others what to think.

          • HonestDebate1

            I don’t.

          • Steve__T

            I know right, that’s not something you do.

            Hey 1Brett1 how dare you accuse him of thinking.
            APOLOGIZE IMMEDIATELY!

          • hennorama

            Steve__T — thank you for the amusement. It came just as I needed it, right after I wrote a comment about veterans’ prosthetic legs, above.

            Thanks again.

          • 1Brett1

            I’m just glad he hasn’t taken off his riding gloves, slapped me and challenged me to a DOOO-ELLL!

          • HonestDebate1

            I don’t where gloves and I don’t ride. I’ve never been in a fight in my life.

          • 1Brett1

            You don’t ride horses? That says volumes.

          • HonestDebate1

            What does it say? I shovel poo, bus hog, build barns, fences, arenas, fix machinery (put a new motor in the bobcat last month) and I put up 1000 bales of hay last week. Riding is not my thing.

        • jefe68

          Comprehension issues? Did the comment mention a thing about Rand Paul? No.

          • 1Brett1

            jefe, he only has trouble understanding people/ideas he doesn’t agree with. People/ideas he agrees with, he understands fine, no matter how poorly expressed they are.

          • HonestDebate1

            Rand Paul is the face of the Tea Partiers in Kentucky.

            BTW, you never replied below about Max Cleland. You said I was looking silly for saying he didn’t get a purple heart. He didn’t get a purple heart you silly man.

          • jefe68

            My mistake, I thought he had one.
            Either way you’re inane attack on his service is duly noted, and non Memorial day no less. I still see your comments about Max Cleland as a bottom feeding right wing smear job.

          • HonestDebate1

            No dude, take it back. I have never ever ever attacked Cleland’s service. I would never do that. I respect the hell out of it. It’s his politics I have a problem with. You were the one distorting his military record and condescending on me for being accurate about it.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        The Tea Party in Kentucky supports a theocracy?
        Most Tea Party groups publish their platform. So it should be easy for you to point to the evidence. [As pointed out, Rand Paul is an obvious counter example].

        Tea Party is an amorphous term but all Tea Party groups I have seen are about fiscal responsibility and liberty and freedom from big government coercion. Not a smidgeon of theocracy.

        You might be interested to learn that a Yale professor did a study of science knowledge in the populace. He was stunned to learned that those in the Tea Party had a better scientific aptitude than the public at large. He said he would have to revisit how and where he gets his news (NYTimes, MSM, etc.) because his opinion of the TP was jaded by the left wing spin of these outlets. You might want to revisit your sources as well.

        • hennorama

          WftC — there is no such thing as “The Tea Party.”

          What exists are decentralized and disparate groups using the term “Tea Party” and similar, who seem ideologically opposed to, incapable of, or afraid of, forming an actual political party.

          Instead, they have been largely coopted and absorbed into the Republican Party.

          One wonders when, and indeed, if, these groups will ever be anything other than, as you wrote “an amorphous term.”

          Until then, I will continue to refer to them as TEA Shindiggers.

          • HonestDebate1

            Well they represented a gut-crushing, mind-blowing, historic defeat for the democrat party in 2010. So there’s that.

          • 1Brett1

            Your typical hyperbolic rhetoric, notwithstanding, it’s Interesting that you persist in using “democrat” party when it is Democratic Party (you know this and have even been reminded of it over and over). Your only purpose is to be irritating, hardly someone who is around just for “honest” debate. This is yet another example of your disingenuousness. You meet the definition of “troll” in so many respects, the only accurate way to see you is as a troll.

            You know, I used to use “neo-con” (short for neo-conservative) which is a legitimate term; I stopped using it and started using “conservative” because conservatives on this forum didn’t like “neo-con.”

            So, does using “democrat party” further honest debate? I don’t think so.

          • hennorama

            1Brett1 — again, facts don’t matter to the petty and small Sir NTT.

          • HonestDebate1

            Facts matter.

          • HonestDebate1

            More about me, geesh. I can make you do tricks, there’s nothing dishonest about that. All you have to do is not rise to the bait. It’s easy. I can do it just by clicking like on a comment. You get so flummoxed you flail and call names and then don;t even remember what you said because you didn’t say it out of reason you were in a tizzy. You even denied calling me a racist multiple time and wrote a treatise about how I inferred it. Then I link your exact words and you went away. I made you do that, it’s easy.

          • 1Brett1

            You are delusional. You are also mischaracterizing what I said. My point was that I called you a racist in response to racist things you said and not just out of meanness.

            Also, the “democrat party” thing wasn’t directed at me it was a general thing directed at liberals/democrats on this forum; I just called you out on it. Your delusions come in thinking you are controlling my responses.

            You are, however, divulging that you are purely trying to bait people, which is, again, anything but honest debate.

            Based on your above reply, it would be easy to see that you are indeed a troll and a punk, but you, weeks, months from now, will take that out of context and whine that I call you names just to be mean.

            First you said you “liked” anamaria’s comment because you agreed with her, now you say you are doing such things to “bait” me and to “make” me do what you want. You can’t seem to keep up with your own lies.

          • HonestDebate1

            I have never ever ever said anything racist on this blog ever. I have however seen many liberals say racist things like blacks can’t get an ID, blacks shouldn’t be expected to read cursive by age 19, all kinds of deplorable stuff. I don’t roll that way. Hennorama a admitted she was a racist. she said “I am a racist”. Are you confusing me with her?

            It’s not that I wish I had a nickel for every time a liberal has told me it’s the “democratic” party, it’s that I do. The Koch brothers pay it to me. I’m just trying to make a living here. Thank you for your support.

            Look, this is the arena. You don’t see me getting all up in arms every time someone rights rethuglicans, or teabagger. Hell I’ll bet I could find a dozen iterations of such nonsense. Democrat is not a nasty word, relax. It’s harmless, there is nothing dishonest about it.

            a troll (/ˈtroʊl/, /ˈtrɒl/) is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people,[1] by posting inflammatory,[2]extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a forum, chat room, or blog) with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotionalresponse[3] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.

            What are your comments if not that? Look in the mirror.

            Purely trying to bait people?! No, not purely. I am purposely provocative to illicit honest debate. It’s not to sow discord. If I say affirmative action cannot work unless you judge by the color of skin, or we should not paint Muslims with a broad brush, or blacks are just as capable of obtaining an ID as whites, or Obama is not an authentic black then I understand many will flip out at these unassailable facts. Actually they are provocative only to the left. No one has ever refuted these facts BTW, they just call me a racist. You included.

            I liked Anamaria’s comment because it was a good comment I agree with. Making you dance is just gravy but I wash;t even referring to that. I was referring to you a while back. You would say something sarcastically and I would click like as if I took it at face value. As if I could not see you were being sarcastic. And at face value I did like the comment. you would have an aneurism. It happened at least a half dozen times. It got kind of fun but you stopped after I made a comment about making you do tricks. That really makes you do tricks. Then I noticed you doing the same thing to me a few times but I didn’t rise to the bait so I just needed up with more likes. You can’t make me dance.

            Okay, is there anything else about me that you have to say?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            There will be a resurgence as soon as a the fear of government retribution via audit is removed.

          • hennorama

            WftC — TYFYR.

            What nonsense, and irrational to boot.

          • HonestDebate1

            It is very sobering to think this administration is getting away with these kind of tactics.

    • 1Brett1

      “‘Democrat’ Parties”

      • HonestDebate1

        Yes and yes.

        I didn’t say democrats hate freedom or the democrat party is extreme. Where do you get this stuff?

        • 1Brett1

          You said Tea Partiers like more freedom. More freedom than other people, one would assume…The word “more” has a comparison quality to it.

          Also, you said, “There is nothing extreme about them [TP'ers] especially in the context of Obama, Reid, Pelosi, Holder and most of this administration.” What were you trying to say about the current administration, then, if not to say that TP’ers are mainstream America, but the Obama Administration and Democratic members of Congress are not?

          Where do I get this stuff (fast becoming one of your new catch phrases)? I get this stuff directly from your comments directly above my replies, that’s where I “get this stuff.”

          • HonestDebate1

            I just don’t get your logic. The Tea Partiers want more freedom than we have. It has nothing to do with party.

            Obama, Reid, Pelosi and Holder are extremist. No question about it. They are not mainstream in any sense. They are far to the left of the democrat party proper.

            “Are you saying Obama, Reid, Pelosi, Holder, and most of this administration are extremists?”

            Yes, you did not ask me about the democrat party.

            Instead of assuming I’m trying to say something I’m not, just read my comment. It speaks for itself.

            And of course there are religious zealots in the democrat party. Go hang out at Trinity for a month of Sundays. Talk to the Southern Baptist Bill Clinton. Ask Bart Stupak and his crew.

          • 1Brett1

            It seems you agree with Stupak when it suits your narrative, then site him as an extremist when you wish to emphasize another narrative….be that as it may, Stupak doesn’t represent mainstream Democrats…Yeah, you definitely speak with forked tongue; there’s no doubt about that…

          • HonestDebate1

            Who said anything about agreeing with Stupak? Not me. He’s a liberal, I’m a Conservative. He’s pro-life, I’m pro-choice. He’s religious, I am not.

            But again, it’s not about me.

          • 1Brett1

            I would call Stupak a moderate Democrat, not liberal (he’s out of office by the way; he’s a lobbyist now). As far as religion goes, he’s conservative.

            You call yourself pro-choice, I wouldn’t call you that. I feel as though you think Roe v. Wade is an unnecessary law (not telling you what you think; it’s just my impression based on things you’ve said on this forum), and that if states wish to do away with it, that is up to them (not uncommon for a conservative libertarian; of course that states rights stuff gets thrown out the window if it is a position with which you disagree, part of the wishy-washy nature of what I call neo-libertarians). I don’t consider this a pro-choice position. Sorry, sue me!

            You say you are not religious, and by the definition that a religious person goes to church and has worship rituals…by that definition, no, you are not religious. But I do find that you have never disagreed with any religious views on this forum and have sided with religious persons who are pro-life and are for religious expressions in schools and on public property, etc. You are so cagy and self-contradictory, however, it’s hard to tell what you stand for…

            If it’s not about you, why do you feel compelled to say what you think in practically every comment you make? Just more of the self-contradiction, manipulativeness, no self-awareness, etc., we all have grown to know about you (on this forum).

          • HonestDebate1

            You can define pro-choice however you please. I am not opposed to privately funded abortions before the third trimester. I also favor parental consent for minors. That’s my position, call it what you will.

            Roe v Wade is a different issue. It is an issue of law. I do think it is a flawed ruling but I also think it isn’t going anywhere, no way no how. It’s the law of the land and I don’t in any way call for it’s repeal. I never have and I never will. Regarding States rights, I have made the point that even if it was repealed the decision would simply go to the States. That is true. So many accuse those who do call for the repeal of Roe v Wade of wanting back ally abortions. That is not true.

            Generally, you would not know if I agree with anyones religious views because I respect people’s religious views. If I disagree with them I won’t criticize them because I don’t believe anyone knows, for lack of a better way to put it, the meaning of life. And further I believe it is impossible for anyone to know. That’s why it’s called faith. As far as my personal views go, they’re really none of anyone’s business. All I’ll say is I am not a Christian and that goes farther than skipping church.

            And you really are missing the point about me telling you it’s not about me… big time. It certainly has nothing to do with giving my opinions like we all do. What is the purpose of dissecting my id in every comment?

      • hennorama

        1Brett1 — hope you’re enjoying the holiday.

        Are you enjoying your discourse with Sir Nobler Than Thou, who can’t even acknowledge something as simple as the name of the Democratic Party?

        Talk about an extremist …

        • HonestDebate1

          I know all about the Democrat and Republicanic parties.

    • Steve__T

      You start off with BS. The show is broadcast On-line 9:am ET Mon-Fri. If you missed it,its rebroadcast that afternoon.
      You can listen to the broadcast at the top of this page you are on, 5hrs after original Broadcast. Man can you lay it on.

      • HonestDebate1

        I listen on WFAE out of Charlotte. It wasn’t until I got fired up enough to call in one night that I realized I was listening to a rebroadcast. When i am using my computer I usually have my speakers occupied with something else. I prefer to listen on the radio, sue me.

        I hear the show Monday through Thursday from 7 to 9 PM. and Sunday from 6 to 8 PM.

        • Steve__T

          Still dis-honest, you choose to listen on Sundays. It’s not that you can’t get it on Friday.

          • HonestDebate1

            I didn’t say I couldn’t get it on Friday. I said I don’t get it (obviously meaning on the radio) until Sunday. I choose to listen to it on the radio, that’s all.
            There’s nothing dishonest about that, what’s your deal?

  • JGC

    Here is an article on one disabled Iraq veteran, “Cold Calculations- How a backlogged VA determines the true cost of war” by Greg Jaffe. It takes the veteran (and the reading audience) through the cataloguing process with a VA benefits coordinator to determine his monthly benefit.

    http://washingtonpost.com/sf/national/2014/05/20/after-the-wars-cold-calculations

    And an opinion piece,”What’s Wrong with the VA?” by pwoodford, not all of which I agree with, but still interesting and sheds some light from someone who worked transporting veteran applicant records from Tucson to the Phoenix VA Regional office:

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/05/21/1301014/-What-s-Wrong-with-the-VA

    • HonestDebate1

      I particularly liked the first link. Perspective is powerful. Thanks for posting.

    • hennorama

      JGC — I read both of these when they first came out, and was struck most deeply by the photo under the title of the WaPo piece, where Staff Sgt. Shockley retreived his prosthetic legs before going to physical therapy in which he is learning to use the legs.

      The room reminded me of a sports team equipment room, where the athletes’ armor and implements are stored, waiting to be put to use. Seeing the prosthetic legs, crutches, walkers, and most poignant to me, the lift that’s used to help veterans to get into and out of their wheelchairs and prosthetics, all just sort of casually and routinely there, struck me as “the true cost of war” for the veterans, and their loved ones.

  • Coastghost

    White House celebrates Memorial Day by blowing the cover of CIA station chief in Afghanistan: life does go on and on and on and on and on . . . .

    • HonestDebate1

      I saw that either on one of my radical right-wing blogs or heard it on my radical right-wing radio or I may have seen it on radical right-wing Fox. This is not the first time something like this has happened.

      • Coastghost

        I cited the RT feed to alert “On Point”/WBUR/NPR devotees that at least some people around the world pay attention to our President’s lapses, even when our domestic newsgatherers fail.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Biden on Seal Team Six?

        • HonestDebate1

          Yes, thank you that was one I was trying to remember. But there is also another instance of someones cover being blown. If it comes to me I’ll post.

    • ExcellentNews

      RT? That’s the Russian Fox News scripted by the cronies of Vladimir Putin. To think I lived to see the day when right-wing Americans (I hope you are Americans) quote the Pravda and cheer the new Russian Tsar…

      • Coastghost

        Lest you innocently misconstrue, refer to my three-hour-old post towards the bottom of this thread. (Whenever our own Pravdas and Izvestiyas fail to inform us diligently, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.)
        You DO realize that a reader can consult L’Osservatore Romano without being a Roman Catholic, si?

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    NSF (taxpayer) wastes $5.6M on global warming games (aka climate change propaganda).

    “‘Voicemails’ from the future warn of doom and gloom” Enough to make you sick.

    http://freebeacon.com/issues/taxpayers-paid-5-6-million-for-climate-change-games/

  • HonestDebate1

    There was a kerfuffle over a comment by Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban. I expected someone to bring it up but he’s a liberal so…

    I am a big fan of Stephen A. Smith who defended Cuban and, as a black man, was excoriated. His response was not only great it was great advice apart from the issue.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKXKccyb2e8

    • brettearle

      I do not particularly appreciate feeding your mindset.

      But I feel strongly about this issue.

      One big impulse in Human Nature is `the Other.’

      We all see people differently–especially, and obviously, if we don’t feel that we have enough in common with them.

      That, of course, can range from skin color to credentials to income to convictions (not as in crime (but, of course, also as in crime)) to the area and place where you live.

      When we think about it, there are an endless number of issues and factors that separate us from each other…..

      Mark Cuban’s comments in no way excuse Sterling’s comments.

      For one thing there are many, many forms of Racism–subtle and overt.

      In Sterling’s case, those statements were virtually, if not fully, gratuitous. They were utterly filled with raw and naked racism.

      [Nevertheless, even though I abhor Sterling's comments, I have serious questions as to why he shouldn't be protected by constitutional privacy rights.]

      Nothing that Cuban said suggested that he, Cuban, was guilty of such ugly racism.

      What’s more, nothing that Smith said pointed to exonerating the scourge of Racism.

      Most of us can agree that Racism does NOT always keep an individual back from getting ahead in Life.

      In that regard, therefore, Smith’s admonishments, about personal industry and self-presentation are well taken.

      But we ought to JUST as easily agree that Racism can, most DEFINITELY, keep someone back.. And it often likely does.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    From the “science is settled” department, a true debate amongst scientists on the state of climate science. It is refreshing. A movement in the right direction? Not until the MSM outs alarmists for stifling the debate.

    Dr Judith Curry: “The science of climate change on decadal to century timescales most definitely is not settled, in spite of the IPCC’s highly confident proclamations. There are so many interesting and unsolved issues in climate dynamics.”

    “I’m hoping that at some point soon, climate scientists will get fed up with trying to play politics with their science and get back to researching and debating these fundamentally interesting and unsolved issues in the science of climate dynamics, rather than attacking their colleagues for suggesting that there are other ways of thinking about climate change.”

    http://judithcurry.com/2014/05/26/the-heart-of-the-climate-dynamics-debate/#more-15609

  • brettearle

    I guess no one wishes to be smacked with even more disturbing issues.

    But isn’t it time that we faced up to the ugliness of what has happened, this past Friday evening, and what to do about it–if anything?

    How long, and how frequently, will these Mass Killings continue to go on and to occur?

    Yet again the issues:

    How far, can, and should, the police go when making an inquiry into a violent crime that has yet to be committed?

    How can Mental Health services reach more disturbed, or potentially disturbed, individuals?

    And, failing this, how can we make it even tougher and tougher to obtain firearms?

    In a state where the gun laws are strict, the killer had no trouble getting multiple guns.

    If private tips from the community fail us, if family and friends fail us, and if Law Enforcement’s reach is, reportedly curtailed, then what will we finally do to restrict the purchase of firearms?

    I doubt that anyone who cherishes the true meaning of a free society would ever want to see Law Enforcement overreach immorally and illegally and start rounding up people, who may, indeed, never become violent–simply because society will permit them more latitude to do so.

    That, of course, could become a major slippery slope, eventually– toward a fascist gestapo–should things become even worse?

    It feels as if this gratuitous Evil, this Mental Disturbance–or the combination of the two–has no end to its periodicity.

    • hennorama

      brettearle — I’m much too close to the Isla Vista horrors to comment in depth, but IMO if we can’t find some way to prevent the legal purchase of firearms by someone who was as disturbed as this young man seems to have been, then we’ve clearly failed as a society.

      At present, Federal law prohibits firearms possession and purchase by individuals who have been “committed to a mental institution” or “adjudicated as a mental defective.” This clearly was too narrow a prohibition to exclude the suspect from multiple legal firearm purchases.

      • HonestDebate1

        We will never be able to keep guns from killers with gun laws. We will never be able to prevent madmen from killing even if we could prevent them from getting guns. Once again the best hope would have been if someone had brought a gun to his initial knife fight.

        • brettearle

          Censored

          • HonestDebate1

            Jellyfish.

          • brettearle

            Last Word

      • brettearle

        Not to mention many others–whose disturbances may be more hidden; subtler; and either just as deadly or even more so

        Well said.

  • hennorama

    It’s still early days as far as the VA investigations are concerned, but last week there was some information put forward that contradicts some of the implications of the CNN reporting out of Phoenix.

    Per time.com (emphasis added):

    Acting VA inspector general Richard Griffin told Senators his probe has found potentially 17 veterans who died while waiting for care in Phoenix, but said there was no evidence that the waiting caused those deaths. The original whistleblower, a recently-retired VA doctor, elaborated Wednesday. “In terms of the allegation that I originally made,” Sam Foote told CNN, “that was up to 40 people may have died while waiting for care at the Phoenix VA. We never made the comment that they all died because of the wait, just that they were dying while waiting for care.”

    Source:
    http://time.com/108499/veterans-affairs-health-problems-investigation/

    • HonestDebate1

      Irrelevant. The VA’s own internal investigation directly linked 23 of the Phoenix deaths to wait times. I am not comforted by such absurd parsing as: “We never made the comment that they all died because of the wait, just that they were dying while waiting for care.”

      The allegations have now spread to 23 States so it’s bigger than Phoenix. The latest allegations out of Miami are that some took their own lives because they couldn’t bear to wait any longer. They’re are other deaths that occurred from bureaucratic incompetency separate from wait times.

      The issue is they broke the law with these lists and hid the truth. It would have been far less tragic but just as serious of an injustice even if no one had died. Our veterans deserve better.

    • brettearle

      Henn–

      Seems to me that even with so-called, `Evidence-Based Outcomes’, one can’t know the efficacy of treatment.

      And those waiting may not have presented with symptoms that were the proximate cause of death.

      Nevertheless, for the most part, the sooner one sees an MD, I would think, the greater the percentages there would be, to favor an increase in survivability–than if there is an ongoing delay.

      And, I would also assume that the longer the delay, the greater chance there is, generally, of a decrease in survivability. .

      • hennorama

        brettearle – TYFYR.

        Only some of the delayed appointments were for new patients.

        No doubt there is some judgment involved, in combination with evidence, as to whether any delays might have contributed to patient deaths, as well as whether delays might have caused patient deaths.

        Part of my point is that the implications of some of the reporting were that any delays that may have occurred had caused patient deaths, and thus far, that has not been shown to be the case.

        As we see from the reply below, from [Debates?NotHe.], not only are some concluding that any delays that may have occurred caused patient deaths, others, such as he, are making absolutely false claims.

        Quoting Sir NTT:

        [Debates?NotHe.] (from below): The VA’s own internal investigation directly linked 23 of the Phoenix deaths to wait times.

        This is absolutely false,, as [Debates?NotHe.]‘s own citation, and linked item show.

        [Debates?NotHe.] (from Sun. May 25, 2014, with emphasis added): “… an internal review at the VA has found nearly two dozen veterans passed away in numerous states while waiting for treatment. The review found deaths linked to waiting times occurred in states such as Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Iowa, and Arizona – though at a different facility in Prescott, not Phoenix.

        http://rt.com/usa/161136-veteran-affairs-admits-deaths-delays/

        See:

        http://onpoint.wbur.org/2014/05/23/va-scandal-tea-party-primaries-china#comment-1403412726

        And from the linked item above, some other rather pertinent details were “somehow” omitted by [Debates?NotHe.] from the quote above.

        (Note: the quote below, from the rt.com item, is itself a quote from a Weekly Standard article, which itself quoted a USA Today article. That’s right, [Debates?NotHe.] not only made stuff up, he made it up using info from a source that is twice-removed from the original reporting. Both the Weekly Standard and USA Today articles are linked to below. Emphasis added.):

        As noted by the Weekly Standard, though, an internal review at the VA has found nearly two dozen veterans passed away in numerous states while waiting for treatment. The review found deaths linked to waiting times occurred in states such as Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Iowa, and Arizona – though at a different facility in Prescott, not Phoenix.

        “Delays in endoscopy screenings for potential gastrointestinal cancer in 76 veterans treated at Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals are linked to 23 deaths, most of them three to four years ago,” a USA Today report on the review reads.

        “The delays occurred at 27 VA hospitals with deaths at 13 of the facilities. The worst record was at the William Jennings Bryan Dorn veterans hospital in Columbia, S.C., where there were 20 cases of delays and six deaths, according to a VA report.”

        Here are links to the Weekly Standard and USA Today articles:

        http://www.usatoday.com/story/nation/2014/04/08/va-cancer-treatment-deaths-delay-veterans-hospitals/7457255/

        http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/contradiction-presidents-claim-va-admitted-23-veteran-deaths-linked-delays-care_793459.html

  • OnPointComments

    From CNN:

    “After CNN’s coverage, the VA acknowledged in April that 23 veterans had died as a result of delayed care in recent years, but sources tell CNN that number could be much higher.”
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/05/06/politics/white-house-shinseki-veterans-dying/

    “At least 19 veterans have died because of delays in simple medical screenings like colonoscopies or endoscopies, at various VA hospitals or clinics, CNN has learned. That’s according to an internal document from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, obtained exclusively by CNN, that deals with patients diagnosed with cancer in 2010 and 2011.”
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/30/health/veterans-dying-health-care-delays/

    From the Inspector General:

    “However, during the review “look-back” period, 280 patients were diagnosed with GI malignancies, 52 of which had been associated with a delay in diagnosis and treatment.

    “In reviewing this case, the facility found a delay in GI care which resulted in patient harm and completed an institutional disclosure to the patient the following month. The patient expired in August 2012.

    “As of May 28, 2013, there were 280 patients diagnosed with GI malignancies, 52 of which were associated with a delay in diagnosis and treatment. The facility conducted 19 institutional disclosures providing patients and their family members with specific details of the adverse event or delay of care and their right to file a claim.”
    http://www.va.gov/oig/pubs/VAOIG-12-04631-313.pdf

    • hennorama

      OPC — clearly, any delay in needed diagnosis and treatment is scandalous.

      Would you care to define the following emphasized terms that were used in your selected quotes above?:

      died as a result of delayed care

      died because of delays in simple medical screenings

      associated with a delay in diagnosis and treatment

      a delay in GI care which resulted in patient harm

      One notices that nowhere in the quote from the IG report was there anything indicating that any delays caused any patient deaths.

      • OnPointComments

        No, I would not care to provide definitions. The differences between “as a result of,” “because of,” “associated with,” and “resulted in” are distinctions that are likely lost to the families of the patients that died, and also to me.

        You must have attended the Eleanor Clift School of Logic & Causation. Ms. Clift asserted that it wasn’t terrorists who killed Ambassador Stevens, it was smoke inhalation. Given the opportunity to clarify her assertion, she stuck by her original words. If Ambassador Stevens had been shot, I wouldn’t be surprised if Ms. Clift had assserted that it wasn’t the terrorists who killed him, it was the bullet.

        It wasn’t the VA that killed the patients, it was the cancer, right?

        • hennorama

          OPC — TYFYR.

          I do not know what “killed the patients.” and as I am not a health care professional, would not hazard a guess.

          My point is that the press coverage of these incidents strongly implies that any delays caused patient deaths.

          As was quoted in a post below, the Phoenix whistleblower, Dr. Sam Foote, said

          “In terms of the allegation that I originally made,” Sam Foote told CNN, “that was up to 40 people may have died while waiting for care at the Phoenix VA. We never made the comment that they all died because of the wait, just that they were dying while waiting for care.”

          In your selected quotes, IMO the strongest terminology is

          “died because of delays in simple medical screenings.”

          These words were written by one of the CNN reporters (Scott Bronstein, Nelli Black, and Drew Griffin) who were responsible for the January 30, 2014 article that you quoted, and notably was not a quote from a source.

          In other words, that is their conclusion, not a conclusion [attributed to any named] sources.

          • OnPointComments

            My relevant insertion of the inanity of Eleanor Clift’s statements was to illustrate the equal foolishness of debating the semantics of whether patients died as a result of, because of, or being associated with the inactions of the Veterans Administration.

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            Two questions:

            1. How do you personally interpret the significance of any delayed care, screenings, diagnosis, or treatment that may have occurred in these cases, i.e., do you think these delays caused patient deaths?

            2. Would it surprise you that FoxNews.com said that Ms. Clift “may have been technically correct” regarding your irrrelevant Benghazi insertion?

            Thanks again for your response.

            See:
            http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/05/14/eleanor-clift-criticized-for-saying-ambassador-stevens-was-not-murdered/

          • OnPointComments

            1. The delay in care experienced by patients at the VA hastened their deaths.

            2. It would not suprise me or concern me what Fox News said about Ms. Clift’s statements. If an arsonist sets fire to a home, killing everyone in the house, would he be charged with murder? Of course he would.

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            1. It may be true that some patient deaths occurred earlier than what might otherwise have been expected, but your statement leaves no room for the possibility that delays may have had zero impact.

            2. You do realize that your original statement, that “Ms. Clift asserted that it wasn’t terrorists who killed Ambassador Stevens, it was smoke inhalation,” is inaccurate, right? Ms. Clift did not say that Amb. Stevens was not killed by terrorists, she was pushing back against what she later called ” … the sort of glib use of the word ‘murdered’.”

            The quotes I’ve read all agree that this is what Ms. Clift said:

            “I’d like to point out that Ambassador (Chris) Stevens was not ‘murdered;’ he died of smoke inhalation in that safe room in that CIA installation.”

            Her point was nuanced, so it’s unsurprising that some don’t understand or agree with it.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • OnPointComments

            If you were a member of a jury that heard irrefutable evidence that an arsonist had torched a house, and an innocent person in the house had perished because of smoke inhalation, would you vote guilty or not guilty if the prosecutor had charged the arsonist with murder?

          • hennorama

            OPC — TYFYR.

            1. Your lack of response is noted.

            2. Your question is interesting, but moot and irrelevant, as any foreign nationals involved in the deaths of Amb. Stevens and/or other U.S. personnel in the CIA and diplomatic facilities in Libya would most likely be charged under Federal terrorism statutes, unless they were prosecuted outside the U.S.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • OnPointComments

            Your lack of response is noted.

          • hennorama

            OPC — your response is false, and makes you seem unserious.

            You can do better.

          • OnPointComments

            You opted to not answer a simple, straight-forward question. I wasn’t surprised. You would much rather argue semantics than substance.

  • ranndino

    The criticism of Obama as indecisive annoys the crap out of me. We already had a real “decider” before and he certainly “did something” like getting us into a terrible war in Iraq that cost hundreds of thousands of lives. I actually appreciate Obama’s measured, intelligent approach instead of knee jerk reactions designed to impress everyone with his leadership skills. Your guest who criticized his foreign policy in regards to Syria and Ukraine did not offer a single concrete suggestion on what he’d do differently. “Doing something” isn’t a policy. I find it painful to listen to all these pundits saying the same thing. None of them ever offers any real ideas on what Obama could’ve done differently.

    • 228929292AABBB

      I think the basic idea is that, in a nation of 300 million people with marvelous educational, business, military and social resources we probably shouldn’t have to pick between a decisive moron and a brilliant professor incapable of action if we’re choosing our one and only leader. No one who supported Barack Obama and is in the slightest way objective or realistic can be satisfied with his leadership v. his rhetoric and the proof of that is when Jack Beatty has lost his audacity of hope. Do you really want to be the person who’s still kidding himself after Jack Beatty admits the jig is up? He seemed like a neat President, we probably should have been more realistic about his lack of experience, he’s been a failure. That Bush was also a failure does not make President Obama a success.

      • ranndino

        I’m not kidding myself at all and I am more than slightly objective and realistic. Being realistic is actually Jack’s and your problem. Like that of many bleeding heart liberals his expectations were completely unrealistic. Obama is a president, not a monarch and with the unprecedented pushback by the opposition party tantamount to sabotage of every single initiative (even the ones that originated in conservative think tanks) it’s rather difficult to accomplish a lot.

        Still he has done a lot more than people realize. The economy has greatly improved since he took over, the unemployment rate is down significantly, corporate profits are record high, the Wall Street is humming. He has pulled out of the debacle in Iraq & we’re on the way out of Afghanistan. He has also managed to not get us into any new wars, despite enormous pressure from the same contingent that doesn’t see a war they don’t like, which to me is an accomplishment in itself.

        These are just his major accomplishments. For more see http://whattheheckhasobamadonesofar.com

ONPOINT
TODAY
Jul 23, 2014
In this Saturday, July 12, 2014, photo, migrants walk along train tracks and boxcars after getting off a train during their journey toward the US-Mexico border, in Ixtepec, southern Mexico. (AP)

Crisis at the US border. What do Latinos on this side of the border have to say? We’ll ask our special roundtable.

Jul 23, 2014
Actor Wallace Shawn attends special screening of "Turks and Caicos" hosted by Vogue and The Cinema Society at the Crosby Street Hotel on Monday, April 7, 2014 in New York.  (AP)

From “The Princess Bride” to “My Dinner with Andre “and “A Master Builder,” actor and writer Wallace Shawn joins us.

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Jul 22, 2014
Lt. Col. James Howard Williams, aka "Elephant Bill," is the hero of Vicki Constantine Croke's new book, "Elephant Company." (Courtesy Random House)

We’ll travel to the jungles of Burma for the remarkable true story of Billy Williams—aka “the elephant whisperer”—and his World War II heroism.

 
Jul 22, 2014
Smoke rises after an Israeli shelling at the Shijaiyah neighborhood in Gaza City, Monday, July 21, 2014. The top Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip signaled Monday that the Islamic militant group will not agree to an unconditional cease-fire with Israel, while Israel's defense minister pledged to keep fighting "as long as necessary," raising new doubt about the highest-level mediation mission in two weeks. (AP)

The escalated Gaza offensive. We’ll get the views from both sides and the latest developments.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: July 11, 2014
Friday, Jul 11, 2014

As we prepare for a week of rebroadcasts, we reflect on Facebook posts, misplaced comments and the magic of @ mentions. Internet, ASSEMBLE!

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Two Former Senators, One Fix For US Democracy?
Thursday, Jul 10, 2014

Former US Senators Tom Daschle and Olympia Snowe joined us today with a few fixes for American political inaction.

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Future Radio Interns Of America: On Point Wants YOU!
Thursday, Jul 10, 2014

On Point needs interns for the fall. Could YOU be one of them?

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