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April 25, 2015, 01:36:47 am
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News: Don't forget to get your 2013 Gubernatorial Endorsements and Predictions in!

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1  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Would you have voted for the Iraq War? on: April 24, 2015, 05:07:45 pm
Without hindsight, probably not.

With hindsight, maybe.

you would be more likely to vote for it with hindsight than without?

Yes. The 'weapons of mass destruction' rationale was always flimsy, and nothing that I've read has done much to convince me that anyone voted for the war on the basis of "secret evidence" or whatever rather than for the sake of political convenience.

Despite this, in purely humanitarian terms , the long-term outcome of the Iraq War looks better at this point than either the continuing disintegration of the Baathist state (or, worse, its revival) would have been.

Hundreds of thousands of war deaths? The displacement of a huge number of Iraqis? The rise of the Islamic State (though I'm a bit on the fence as to whether the Iraq War or the Civil War in Syria has more to do with that)? Not to mention, the actual way in which the occupation of Iraq was handled by L. Paul Bremer and co.?

(I don't really disagree with you btw, I'm just curious as to how you factor all of the above into your calculus).
2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Senate Confirms Lynch as AG on: April 23, 2015, 05:08:44 pm
Terrible news. I was hoping they'd fillibuster her so that Holder, who has been fantastic, could continue as AG until at least the end of Obama's term. Sad

For a second,  I was wondering when Cassius became a fan of Eric Holder.

3  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Ike vs. JFK on: April 23, 2015, 11:26:11 am
FWIW, Ike's Secretary of Agriculture was a member of the John Birch Society.
4  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Rand Paul skips hearing on State Department funding to blast Hillary on Benghazi on: April 23, 2015, 03:31:22 am
Sen. Rand Paul on Wednesday skipped out on a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing,
instead appearing on a radio program blasting Hillary Clinton's handling of the Benghazi terror attacks.

The topic of the hearing?

Funding for the State Department, including requests for funds "that will allow us to improve the safety and security of U.S. citizens, government employees and facilities overseas," according to Heather Higginbottom, deputy secretary of state for management and resources, who testified on Wednesday.

5  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Republican Congressmen demonstrate their respect for exsiting gun laws on: April 22, 2015, 08:07:10 pm
Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) last week tweeted a picture of himself and Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), the leader of the House's Benghazi investigation, holding an AR-15.

Having the AR-15 in the District could be a violation of the city’s strict gun laws, and the city attorney general’s office has referred the matter to police, a spokesman told The Hill.

"The matter has been referred to the Metropolitan Police Department for further investigation,” he said.


In fairness, Buck did say this:
Buck told The Hill the rifle is “inoperable” and that he received approval from U.S. Capitol Police to bring it to his office, where it is on display in a locked case.

“I have a very patriotic AR-15 hanging in my office. It hangs directly above my Second Amendment flag,” Buck said.

“While safety protocols call for all guns to be treated as if they are loaded, this one isn't. Further, a close inspection of the only public photo of the rifle will show that the bolt carrier assembly is not in the rifle; it is in fact in Colorado.

But still....seriously, Buck?
6  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Gay marriage opponents' strategy uncertain in 2015 on: April 22, 2015, 04:38:14 pm
The key thing now will be to see if there will be any exemptions allowed in society to a genderless definition of marriage. Will clergy who refuse to perform same-sex marriages be able to keep their ability to solemnize vows in the eyes of the state? I could see that changing in the next couple years.

I don't see the issue. Clergy are not employees of the state, and churches/places of worship are not places of public accommodation.  I don't think anyone's seriously saying that  pastors who are against gay marriage should be required to perform them  anyway. What supporters of gay marriage are asking is that the state recognizes same-sex marriages and affords them equal rights and protections under the law.

Religious beliefs are a private matter (not "private' in the colloquial sense, but in the legal/constitutional sense) , and a particular religious belief (e. g. opposing homosexuality) should never be a basis for legally codified discrimination.   Same-sex marriage is a public issue, since it concerns  state discrimination that has been legally codified. That is what I wish more opponents of gay marriage would understand.
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Deal Reached on Fast-Track Authority for TPP on: April 22, 2015, 04:05:04 pm
Early Wednesday, Sanders forced the Senate Finance Committee to abandon a legislative hearing on a bill that would grant Obama so-called fast-track authority on trade agreements. Sanders invoked an arcane procedural maneuver, objecting to a rule that allows committees to meet during legislative sessions. By doing so, Sanders has prevented the Finance Committee from dealing with the trade bill until at least 4:00 p.m.

That's significant because Senate Democrats, including Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), have prepared dozens of amendments to the fast-track bill, which will take several hours to address in committee. If the panel can't finish its work Wednesday, or just decides to call it a day early and resume its business tomorrow, Sanders can raise the same objection again, potentially delaying the process for several days.

8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Gay marriage opponents' strategy uncertain in 2015 on: April 22, 2015, 02:27:16 pm
As the Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments on same-sex marriage next Tuesday, the nation seems more ready to accept it than many imagined even a year ago. But divisions remain, and while more than half of Americans now endorse the idea, about one-third say they oppose it, according to survey data from 2014.

In Northeastern states like Vermont and New York, large majorities support same-sex marriage. And in many more states including California, where a vote in 2008 to ban it was later overturned by the courts, such marriages have become routine.

In perhaps a dozen other states, mainly in the South and the Great Plains, majorities still think that gay and lesbian couples should not be allowed to marry, studies indicate. Some conservative leaders promise to keep defending that view whatever the Supreme Court decrees — and even if they have few practical options.


9  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Former Senator Larry Pressler (R/I-SD) now a Mormon. on: April 21, 2015, 01:27:17 pm
Mormon Republicans are best Republicans.

10  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Cruz: Obama is an "unmitigated socialist" on: April 21, 2015, 01:25:09 pm
Cruz is an antisocial-ist.

Hey, he's just following his religion.

As Jesus Christ* himself said:

It is easier for a rich man to ride his camel into heaven than it is for a poor man to find work from a benevolent Job-Creator in the Obama economy

*Supply-Side Jesus.
11  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Cruz: Obama is an "unmitigated socialist" on: April 21, 2015, 01:16:55 pm
Cruz would know about having profoundly dangerous beliefs.

12  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Ike vs. JFK on: April 20, 2015, 11:00:56 pm
I should note though that the Kennedy plan was more pro-consumption and geared towards increasing personal incomes across the board while also encouraging investment spending.  That doesn't necessarily make it more conservative (or more liberal for that matter) than the Ike plan, just a different approach to what was attempted during the 1950s.

Back then, at least, encouraging consumption was what liberal (more precisely-Keynesian, or at least Keynes-influenced) policymakers did, especially during recessions, which is when Keynesians would call for fiscal policies that increased the federal budget deficit - for the purposes of stimulating economic activity.
13  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Ike vs. JFK on: April 20, 2015, 10:53:20 pm
Reagan had a Democrat congress,

And Eisenhower didn't?

Also, you might want to look into why Eisenhower didn't want the high marginal tax rates to be lowered as much as JFK did. Hint: It has to do with the federal budget.

14  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Kochs Signal Support for Scott Walker on: April 20, 2015, 10:46:51 pm
It's profoundly disturbing that a couple of very wealthy men have this much influence in the American political system.

Then again, this is hardly historically novel in this country...

15  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: When will we next have a competitive Democratic Primary? on: April 20, 2015, 10:40:46 pm
Why don't they vote based on biblical issues like income inequality, rejecting hatred of other human beings, and promoting equal rights for all?

Because homosexuality was taught against strongly in the Old Testament, and most true Christians consider the Old Testament to be just as relevant as the New Testament.  They should vote also based on income inequality, but most Biblical voters consider homosexuality and abortion to be more important issues.
Most "true Christians" are categorically wrong and ignoring everything Jesus said to justify their own bigotry, more rather.

And most "true Christians" neglect the fact that they're not the only religion (or lack of religion) in America, and never have been, really. The US government is not a fundamentalist Protestant theocracy, no matter how much some jokers would like it to be.
16  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Ike vs. JFK on: April 20, 2015, 10:18:10 pm
Kennedy, if only because the two insane warmongering brothers that Eisenhower had heading up the State Department and the CIA.
17  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Do you know what country your grandparents were born in? on: April 20, 2015, 10:11:01 pm
All were born in the US.

Maternal grandfather: Glen Ellyn, IL
Maternal grandmother: Peabody, MA
Paternal grandfather: Portland, OR
Paternal grandmother: Ottawa, KS
18  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Deal Reached on Fast-Track Authority for TPP on: April 20, 2015, 09:11:48 pm
From what I've seen, a lot of the objections to TPP read like they are from the mid-20th century (e.g. paranoid fears about the United Nations or economic globalization). Kinda hard for me to take those seriously in 2015.
19  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Which Country is more Free? on: April 20, 2015, 09:05:03 pm
I think that Canada is more socially free and the US is more economically free.
20  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: More Clinton scandals uncovered in new book on: April 20, 2015, 10:30:24 am

21  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Who is more right wing? on: April 20, 2015, 10:28:33 am
They're both horrific, but Santorum is creepier.
22  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Marco Rubio on: April 20, 2015, 10:27:58 am
Worse than Ted Cruz
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: sheldon whitehouse for vp on: April 20, 2015, 10:26:24 am
I'll pass on the boring white male New Englanders
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Which demographic subgroups will Hillary win against Bush? on: April 20, 2015, 10:24:58 am
You are not serious? If you are sicko of course, if you are a paedo yeah sure!😮 & you want a bullet to the back of the head, burned alive or castrated!

haha wtf
25  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rand Paul: Many in the GOP would have made the middle east worse than Obama has on: April 18, 2015, 05:18:35 pm
Why do Libertarians think there were no recessions or inflation crises before the Federal Reserve? It's easily verifiable as wrong by the even simplest of google searches. What a joke.

They're confusing the Golden Age* with the Gilded Age.

*of Capitalism.
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