HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
  • LibraryThing
  • Book discussions
  • Your LibraryThing
  • Join to start using.

That's one.

Pro and Con

Join LibraryThing to post.

This topic is currently marked as "dormant"—the last message is more than 90 days old. You can revive it by posting a reply.

1JGL53
Mar 2, 2012, 1:32pm Top

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/02/rush-limbaugh-sleep-train-sandra-fluke-...

So - when will the next shoe fall? And then the next? Etc.

I'm thinking more than a few companies will realized it is not a good idea to advertize on a show wherein the host calls women sluts and prostitutes.

But I could be wrong. Apparently many right-wing people and groups really hate and fear women.

2faceinbook
Mar 2, 2012, 2:14pm Top

Historically, White men have feared just about everyone, women, Native American's, Blacks and most currently, Mexicans. Hence the desire to seize and control. The greater the fear, the more the need to over power and diminish.

This does not mean that this is the case for ALL men but, in general, history tells the story. And I do believe that fear does fall along Party lines. Republican's, for some reason, are far easier to whip up into a frenzy of fear than are Liberals. Once made fearful, logic disappears and all kinds of goofy stuff happens. Example : The past four years in Congress. Mind boggling in it's lack of rhyme or reason.

That is why listening to today's Republican say that they want "less" government involvement in the lives of American's is such a huge contradiction to what they really want. They will run and manage everything they fear, which seems to be a great deal.

3JPB
Mar 2, 2012, 5:44pm Top

The reason the fear works is that those in power fear LOSING that power - so they have to fear EVERYONE.

Those not in power only have to fear ONE thing: the people in power - not each other.

4CharlesBoyd
Mar 2, 2012, 7:36pm Top

Limbaugh is truly a low-life in my opinion.

That said, why should taxpayers have to pay for contraceptives for other people? (Or payment for contraceptives be part of an insurance program, which raises the cost of premiums for everyone?)

I'm all for responsible sex, but what about personal responsibility? If this young woman can't afford contraceptives-hard to believe, they're not that expensive and she should have her partners pay their share-then she should cut her sexual activity back to whathever she can afford.

5faceinbook
Mar 2, 2012, 8:37pm Top

> 4
Maybe she isn't taking the contraceptive for sexual activity. Maybe she has a medical condition that benefits from hormone treatment.
Said this before, my daughter needed hormone treatment since she was in her early teens.....insurance did not cover this at the time. I paid for her medication. Why should this medication be expempt from insurance coverage ?
Insurance did not cover birth control meds until Viagra was made available....they were forced to at that point in time because the double standard was so glaring.

6AsYouKnow_Bob
Edited: Mar 2, 2012, 8:46pm Top

That said, why should taxpayers have to pay for contraceptives for other people? (Or payment for contraceptives be part of an insurance program, which raises the cost of premiums for everyone?)


Promoting the use of contraceptives lowers the birth rate of the people insured, and thus lowers the cost of the insurance program for everyone. Contraception is cheaper than pregnancies.

7faceinbook
Mar 2, 2012, 9:47pm Top

>6 AsYouKnow_Bob:
"Promoting the use of contraceptives lowers the birth rate of the people insured, and thus lowers the cost of the insurance program for everyone. Contraception is cheaper than pregnancies."

Somehow...this is a concept that is beyond the scope of basic understanding for many many individuals.

8Lunar
Mar 2, 2012, 10:50pm Top

#5: True, contraceptives aren't always about birth control. I had a girlfriend who was on the pill to reduce severe cramps. But it's not about sex. The Left and the Right both want it to be about sex, though for different reasons. It's really about force.

There was this doctor on the Daily Show a couple weeks ago and he started babbling about how wonderful aspirin is and declared that the government should "mandate it!" Nevermind that aspirin thins the blood and only reduces mortality rates for people who have a specifically inflammation-related condition. I don't care if you cite cost-benefit analyses or health effects. Government mandates are a recipe for ignorant decisions.

9lawecon
Mar 2, 2012, 10:56pm Top

~4

"Limbaugh is truly a low-life in my opinion.

That said, why should taxpayers have to pay for contraceptives for other people? (Or payment for contraceptives be part of an insurance program, which raises the cost of premiums for everyone?)

I'm all for responsible sex, but what about personal responsibility? If this young woman can't afford contraceptives-hard to believe, they're not that expensive and she should have her partners pay their share-then she should cut her sexual activity back to whathever she can afford."

I suppose that it depends on what you are envisioning as the alternative to taxpayers paying for contraceptives for other people. If you are making the argument that all sorts of transfer programs, where taxpayers pay for food, housing, transportation, education, medical care, etc. for "other people" should be abolished, then I might agree. If you are maintaining that food stamps for fat people should be cut back, I might agree. However, if you limit this argument just to contraceptives it seems that there is probably some other agenda underlying your position.

This is much like the argument that foreign aid to Israel should be eliminated or materially reduced. Perhaps. I would likely agree if all foreign aid, in all but the most extreme cases of natural disaster, overthrow of a tyrant, etc. were eliminated or reduced. But if the reduction or elimination proposed is just for foreign aid to Israel, and leaves intact foreign aid to much more oppressive regimes, then..... ah, well maybe there is something else being aimed at.

10lawecon
Mar 2, 2012, 10:59pm Top

~5

"Maybe she isn't taking the contraceptive for sexual activity. Maybe she has a medical condition that benefits from hormone treatment."

Why do you feel this proviso is necessary? Perhaps she is taking the contraceptive for sexual activity. So? Perhaps I had that slice of rhubarb pie along with lunch today for pure pleasure, and not for nutrition. So? Why is pleasure or sexual closeness a bad thing that has to be recharacterized as something else?

11margd
Mar 3, 2012, 7:24am Top

All these broadsides against the woman-half of the reproductive endeavour... Now, we are seeing some parity! LOL:

"The council for Delaware's largest city passed a resolution by an 8-4 vote Thursday calling on the Delaware legislature, other state legislatures and the U.S. Congress to pass laws granting "personhood" rights to eggs and sperm..."

"Each 'egg person' and each 'sperm person' should be deemed equal in the eyes of the government and be subject to the same laws and regulations as any other dependent minor and be protected against abuse, neglect or abandonment by the parent or guardian," says the resolution. "Laws should be enacted by all legislative bodies in the United States to promote equal representation, and should potentially include laws in defense of 'personhood,' forbidding every man from destroying his semen*."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/02/wilmington-city-council-sperm-egg-perso...

* I think this is addressed in the Bible?

12faceinbook
Mar 3, 2012, 9:24am Top

>10 lawecon:
"Why do you feel this proviso is necessary? Perhaps she is taking the contraceptive for sexual activity. So? Perhaps I had that slice of rhubarb pie along with lunch today for pure pleasure, and not for nutrition. So? Why is pleasure or sexual closeness a bad thing that has to be recharacterized as something else?"

Maybe because this entire issue started with "religion, sex and contraception" Nothing medical about how this attack on a women's right, to be fully covered under insurance coverage, started. Once again, religion and sex got all twisted into some idological mish mash which some feel should be a ruler as to how to handle the availability of contraceptive medication.

Seems that making your point, in regards to my point, is just as non essential, hence they cancel each other out ?

13lawecon
Mar 3, 2012, 10:42am Top

~12

Once again, face, we have the same problem we've had many times before. You seem to want to rely on "common sense," i.e., whatever you've learned as the slogan applicable to a particular issue or just taking whatever is said as a given. I want to take apart the issue on the table - reduce it to its logical premises and ask if those premises make any sense.

The premise in the quote I gave from you, IMHO, doesn't make any sense.

There have been a few people throughout history who have thought that self-flagellation is a good thing. But most of those people were medieval monks or current crazies. So self-inflicted pain and self-denial for the sake of self-denial are not generally held to be virtuous.

True, the Roman Catholic Church teaches that contraception is somehow evil, but they haven't ever been able to argue that position (it is a mystery my daughter) and the overwhelming majority of their own adherents don't agree with that teaching.

Hence, the question seems to be "On what basis is contraception to allow for more sex without pregnancy a bad thing." There is no "cancel out" (whatever that means). If an ethical case can't be made against sex, then it can't me made. If it can be made, please make it.

14SimonW11
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 11:17am Top

http://underthelobsterscope.wordpress.com/tag/fluke/
the page contains a link to her testfying.

In her testimony, Fluke describes the financial barriers for female law students at Georgetown who need contraception because the school does not offer birth control coverage in its student health insurance plans. Contraception can cost women up to $3,000 over the course of law school without the coverage, she said, which adds up to an entire summer’s salary for students on public interest scholarships. And 40 percent of women at Georgetown Law say they struggle financially because of the policy. “Just on Tuesday, a married female student told me she had to stop using contraception because she couldn’t afford it any longer,” Fluke wrote.

For some women, the consequences of forgoing birth control can be severe:

A friend of mine, for example, has polycystic ovarian syndrom and has to take prescription birth control to stop cysts from growing on her ovaries. ... After months of paying over $100 out of pocket, she just couldn’t afford her medication anymore and had to stop taking it. ... Without taking the birth control, a massive cyst had grown on her ovary. She had to have surgery to remove her entire ovary. ...

Since last year’s surgery, she’s been experiencing night sweats, weight gain, and other symptoms of early menopause as a result of the removal of her ovary. She’s 32 years old. As she put it: “If my body is indeed in early menopause, no fertility specialist in the world will be able to help me have my own children.”

Fluke’s testimony and the experiences of her fellow law students could have been important stories for members of Congress to hear about the real impact that having or not having insurance coverage for contraception can have on women.



if instead of speculating about what she might have said you found out what she did say this threads discussion would be better informed.

15margd
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 11:45am Top

> 13 One mightn't agree, but, fyi, the Roman Catholic Church's arguments against artificial birth control are in

ENCYCLICAL LETTER
HUMANAE VITAE
OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF
PAUL VI
TO HIS VENERABLE BROTHERS
THE PATRIARCHS, ARCHBISHOPS, BISHOPS
AND OTHER LOCAL ORDINARIES
IN PEACE AND COMMUNION WITH THE APOSTOLIC SEE,
TO THE CLERGY AND FAITHFUL OF THE WHOLE CATHOLIC WORLD, AND TO ALL MEN OF GOOD WILL,
ON THE REGULATION OF BIRTH

...Given at St. Peter's, Rome, on the 25th day of July, the feast of St. James the Apostle, in the year 1968, the sixth of Our pontificate.

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-vi_enc_2507...

16faceinbook
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 1:42pm Top

Seems we once again have to suspend rational thought process to try to understand what point lawecon is trying to make.

This whole discussion regarding women's health issues STARTED with the Catholic church. Snowballed on to what it is today. A free for all, to the point of a public figure taking licensce enough to call a young woman a slut, and demanding returns on his money in the form of taped sex.
The issue is broader than sexual behavior....Contraceptives are a HEALTH issue as well as a choice for contraceptive purposes.... which is the only point I was trying to make. This was in regards to Limbaugh's rant. A rant that was sexual in nature and did not allow for any other use of birth control medication.

When my daughter took hormones at the age of 13....it had nothing to do with sex. When she took them at the age of 22 it was a different story. What is unclear about this ? Either way, she should be able to afford contraceptives as, in both cases, they are about her health and how she choses to care for her body. For the most part, the Limbaugh's along with the men who were called to testify, were focused only on the sexual affects of contraceptive care.
Basically, I don't believe many of the men, who seem to want to make these decisions, know very much about the role of contraceptives in a woman's life, either for sexual use or for other health issues, it should not be for them to decide. None of it.
A woman, her partner, her doctor...that is it. And for the sake of a health society, her options regarding contraceptives should be the same as any other widely used drug on the market, as it saves a cost to society as a whole.

17CharlesBoyd
Mar 3, 2012, 4:51pm Top

faceinbook: I'm well aware that birth control lowers birth rates and thus helps keep insurance costs down, just thought I'd give someone the chance to feel good about himself/herself making the point. You made it. Don't you feel proud? You're soooo smart.

I'm fine with helping women afford contraceptives if they need them for medical reasons. But paying for other peoples contraceptives for birth control? No. THEY AREN'T THAT EXPENSIVE. Cut out your sodas, or your cigarettes, or your expensive cell phones, or your beer, liguor, whatever and you should be able to afford contraceptives. And, as I stated before, two people have the kind of sex that makes babies, both should share in the cost, which cuts that cost in half. If a man won't share in the cost, why would you want to be with such a person?

But the main issue is personal responsibility? What happened to that? So many people today demand that they get everything they want no matter what. And they expect other people to pay for it. Well, gee, I'd like to take a year off work and tour the world. Anyone want to pay for that for me? Thought not.

Ben Franklin, Jefferson, one of the founding fathers said that democracy will only work until people discover that they can use the government to steal from other people. That realization started around the time of Kennedy's "New Frontier," and it is full blown today.

18theoria
Mar 3, 2012, 5:01pm Top

17> Exactly how are you paying for someone else's contraceptives, which are covered by health insurance acquired through a private employment contract?

19theoria
Mar 3, 2012, 5:37pm Top

"My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir," Limbaugh said in the statement. "I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices." http://nationaljournal.com/healthcare/rush-limbaugh-apologizes-to-sandra-fluke-2...

20lriley
Mar 3, 2012, 5:51pm Top

#19--sounds like a bunch of bullshit to me. He wasn't trying to be humorous at all. More likely--to me anyway--the pressure on businesses sponsoring his show are why he's making his apology. I don't like Rush--but I'm not used to seeing him capitulate. One almost admirable quality of his--is standing by what he says. To me there's no sincerity here--this is money talking--as in 'I need my sponsors'.

21theoria
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 5:57pm Top

20> I think his legal team is trying to avoid a lawsuit and being dropped from the airwaves ala Glenn Beck.

22JGL53
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 8:01pm Top

Any health insurance should pay for birth control, period, otherwise it is a bad health insurance plan.

Many health insurance plans pay for viagra and similar drugs.

Now that's fucked up.

23AsYouKnow_Bob
Mar 3, 2012, 8:22pm Top

Any health insurance should pay for birth control, period, otherwise it is a bad health insurance plan.

Really now: what part of "available only by doctor's prescription" is hard for people to understand?

Oh, and even the Vatican's HUMANAE VITAE specifically allows contraception for medical necessity.

24JGL53
Edited: Mar 3, 2012, 11:28pm Top

> 23

A health insurance plan should pay for prescription birth control drugs, when prescribed by an authorized physician, for a woman who is covered by the plan, otherwise it is a bad health insurance plan.

Now, did that help with the cognitive dissonance I inadvertently caused you - apparently - or will a prescribed drug be necessary? If so then see a physician. I am only a pharmacist.

So the R.C.C. specifically allows contraception (medication) for medical necessity?

Who cares? Certainly not catholic women in American. They are as frequent users of B.C. as others.


25lawecon
Mar 3, 2012, 10:01pm Top

~16

"Seems we once again have to suspend rational thought process to try to understand what point lawecon is trying to make. "

So, I guess you get it. Could you now respond?

26JGL53
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 12:18am Top

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/03/rush-limbaugh-apologizes-to-sandra-fluk...

I'm not sure how much this gets him out of his situation. There's are at least 84,000 women who are still out for payback (see the last paragraph in the story). Plus his three ex-wives, of course.

27Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 12:58am Top

Clear Channel's business model for Limbaugh is kind of weird. Part of the deal for radio stations who want to carry Limbaugh's show is that they have to also take some other less coveted Clear Channel talk show host. With advertizers dropping like flies, it could be more than just Limbaugh who takes the hit.

28SimonW11
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 1:49am Top

17> Who pays for the Birth Control if it is not the people being insured?
Dont be silly CharlesBoyd A man cant pay for birth control that would make the woman a slut. Haven't you been listening to Mr Limbaugh.

29SimonW11
Mar 4, 2012, 2:03am Top

19> Speaking a calumny once might be excusable If the speaker afterwards claimed"My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous" I have said things that I later sincerely regreted It happens. but to repeat that calumny on three shows, in the face of rising criticism, Is more than unconsidered running of the mouth.

As to the rest of the the so called apology it is mealy mouthed in the extreme.

This is the way to write an apology.

http://www.ce9.uscourts.gov/absolutenm/articlefiles/437-Letter%20to%20President%...

30SimonW11
Mar 4, 2012, 2:06am Top

I gather Clear Channel is one Of Mr Romney's Companies.

31margd
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 5:39am Top

>24 JGL53: So the R.C.C. specifically allows contraception (medication) for medical necessity?

"Lawful Therapeutic Means
15. On the other hand, the Church does not consider at all illicit the use of those therapeutic means necessary to cure bodily diseases, even if a foreseeable impediment to procreation should result there from—provided such impediment is not directly intended for any motive whatsoever. (19)"

I'm grateful to AsYouKnow_Bob for pointing out that passage. I read Humanae Vitae a long time ago and didn't remember #15.

Interesting that while #15 addresses CURING diseases (e.g., birth control pills treat various female maladies), Pope Benedict recently seemed to approve condoms to PREVENT transmission of AIDS. (A fuss ensued, so I'm not sure where he stands now.) In the past, women whose lives would be risked by pregnancy have been advised to simply abstain, so allowing artificial birth control to PREVENT disease would be welcome interpretation for those who do follow or are affected by Church teachings on artificial birth control.

Rereading Humanae Vitae, I thought of communism--it sounds reasonable--high-minded, even--but just doesn't work in the real world.

32CharlesBoyd
Mar 4, 2012, 8:35am Top

I've mentioned personal responsibility twice in this thread. No one has touched on that subject. Not surprising.

A question to all the liberals--and this may seem like a sarcastic, not-meant-to-be-answered question, but it's really not meant to be--Do any of you think that people should take personal responsibility for anything what so ever? Or should other people, and/or the government take of everything in our lives? (How could anyone take pride in himself/herself if that is the belief?)

33krolik
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 9:44am Top

This message has been deleted by its author.

34krolik
Mar 4, 2012, 9:45am Top

>32 CharlesBoyd:
CharlesBoyd,

Your first question sounds less sarcastic than pretty naive: a broad-brush caricature.

Your closing parenthetical question seems less naive, and it also implicitly answers what you asked earlier...thereby suggesting that you can see through the caricature.

So, what this adds up to is less an example of intellectual curiosity on your part, despite your claim to want to understand how others might think, than a demonstration of how getting in a dig, even a foolish one, gratifies you.

35faceinbook
Mar 4, 2012, 9:54am Top

>17 CharlesBoyd:
Because insurance did not cover contraceptives in the past, there was a time when I was raising my children when it meant deciding whether to buy a can of tuna for supper or my daughters pills. Now granted, that is nobody's fault but my own, however, I was paying insurance preimums...as hard as it was to make them, I did. Would have been more than happy to be able to get the pills with a copay rather than full price. Plus none of what I spent on them was credited to my deductables.

Years of discrimination ? or....a good lesson in self responsibility ?

>32 CharlesBoyd:
As far back as I can recall, women have been the primary responsible person when it comes to birth control. There are exceptions but, typically, women's bodies have been physically altered, used to house devices and medicated, so as to prevent unwanted pregnancies since the beginning of time. She also is ultimately responsible for what happens when birth control fails.
Keep in mind that women have in the past and still at this point in time, earn less than a man. They have also until fairly recently paid for their contraceptive care, their abortions, their pregnancies and often for the child, should she decide to have the child....this means loss of work on her part.
If insurance companies can provide a fairly cheap measure to help women with this burden....a burden that has typically been theirs to deal with, what is your problem with that ?
It looks to me like women had the bulk of the responsibilty for a long time.

Insurance seems to have no problem covering tons of over perscribed meds, pain killers, anti depressents, Viagra.......you pretty much name it....American's use and abuse it. What about contraceptives is so annoying to some ? and why do women who champion for the same rights as the pain pill popper, or the individuals who has medicated for depression for years on end, suddenly become sluts ? or worse yet "irresponsible"

Demanding equal consideration is not being irresponsible.

>15 margd:
Once again.....what on earth does the church have to do with sex ? and why ? The church that came out with this can't even control their most beloved "sons" when it comes to sex. I would say that they have lost all credibility. Historically, the Catholic church has been horrible regarding sex and most especially to women. The men they seem to "hide" and "protect"....no so much the women. Not only are the women shamed they are ham strung from taking measures that would result in less of a chance of being shamed.
How does anyone buy into this stuff ? Amazing !
So....women will have to LIE to use contraceptive medication, they will need a doctor to say it is for medical reasons. Again, women in the hot seat. Women will be the "sinners"....bunch of hooey !

Sex is biological and the results of having sex can become medical. Nothing to do with the Pope or any church of any kind.
The church should worry about the character of the person....and the sexual aspect will take care of itself. Making rules and regulations regarding a biological function is profoundly disturbing and eventually looks hypocrital.

36lawecon
Mar 4, 2012, 9:59am Top

~32

I explicitly answered you in Post #9 and you ignored the answer. Kinda hypocritical for you to do so and then maintain that "I've mentioned personal responsibility twice in this thread. No one has touched on that subject. Not surprising." There are none so deaf as those who will not hear.

37margd
Mar 4, 2012, 10:22am Top

> 35 Once again.....what on earth does the church have to do with sex ?

Didn't read it, did you?

38lawecon
Mar 4, 2012, 10:26am Top

~37

No, no, of course not. That would involve something more than intuition and having opinions.

39faceinbook
Mar 4, 2012, 10:37am Top

> 37
Yes I did.

40StormRaven
Mar 4, 2012, 11:56am Top

"Didn't read it, did you?"

Didn't read what faceinbook actually wrote, did you?

41CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 1:06pm Top

lawecon: I did read your post #9, but that doesn't answer my question about personal responsibility, rather it touched on what responsibility society may or may not have toward individuals.

krolik: Then let me rephrase my question and pose a few more: How much should society do for individuals in that society and at what cost (financial or otherwise) to other individuals in that society? What and how much should individuals do for themselves? How much responsibility should individuals take for their own actions and how much should they reap the rewards for wise decisions and how much should they reap the harm for foolish decisions?

Far left wing liberals seem to want to bail out, to protect others no matter what they do or don't do. Far right conseratives seem to want to punish others no matter what they do or don't do. I believe the correct course is somewhere in the middle.

Re foreign aid, much of it is hypocritical, more to get what's best for us USA than to help people in other countries.

42Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 1:18pm Top

Spoken like a true conservative, Charles.

Blow little brown kids into small bloody chunks halfway around the world?

An unfortunate side effect.

Take prudent measures to prevent the birth of an unloved and unwanted child?

Not on my dime!!

But, then, to a degree, it all boils down to the politics of cranky resentment, born of the idea that someone somewhere is having more fun than I am:

Well, gee, I'd like to take a year off work and tour the world. Anyone want to pay for that for me? Thought not.

And, when backed into a corner by your own foolishness, crow from the rooftops:

"Personal responsibility! Personal responsibility!!"

43CharlesBoyd
Mar 4, 2012, 1:31pm Top

Makifat, my old buddy! Good to hear from you.

But where do you get the idea that I'm okay with blowing "little brown kids into small bloody chunks halfway around the world." Obviously I'm against that. And where do you get the idea that I'm against taking "prudent measures to prevent the birth of an unloved an unwanted child." I'm all for that.

And what's wrong with the idea (gasp!) that someone take responsibility for his or her decisions?

The last time I checked your profile page, I got the impression you live in the Phoenix area. I'd thought of suggesting you and I meet in person. I'm betting we'd both be more civil toward each other, more willing to agree that at least some of what the other person is saying has at least some validity. What do you say? Meet at a Starbucks or some such? I'll be 62 in April, so you needen't worry about your personal safety. :-)

Answer me by private message if you like.

44Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 1:39pm Top


Yeah, Charles, my personal safety is not a concern. I almost took up a suggesting by Oakes Spalding that I travel to Chicago so that he could punch me in the nose, just for the pleasure of seeing the look on his face when I got off the plane.

Living in Phoenix, I have enough cranky old farts to keep me busy. Thanks for the offer, though. Maybe you could meet up with lawecon.

Perhaps you could understand simple economics: pay a couple dollars for contraception now, or pay thousands for society to raise a kid no one wants.

And, Charles, even you must have been 18 once. Congratulations for never having made a "foolish decision". You must have been a blast to hang around with.

45krolik
Mar 4, 2012, 1:41pm Top

>41 CharlesBoyd:

Well, you cast yourself in the reasonable-sounding middle ground...but the problem is, lots of people who disagree with your opinions will do the same. I can't pretend to be innocent of this pose, myself.

Your next set of questions about how much society and individual responsibility--well, clearly, these are BIG ones. Hard to know where to begin, or when to stop typing.

So, failing an over-arching discourse that purports to explain everything, I'll stick to the immediate context of this thread: healthcare. As an unapologetic liberal on this issue, yes, I think every American should have government-provided insurance, since the current arrangement in the U.S. suffers from a lot of problems. (I say this also being a consumer of French healthcare, which also has plenty of problems but which, on the whole, I see as convincingly better.)

Why better? Because, on the whole, people are better served, suffer less, and live longer. These are desirable results.

To achieve these desirable results, however, it includes (among many other things, but to address your questions about responsibility) giving very costly care to certain kinds of people, say, a bunch of dumbass cigarette smokers who could've saved the taxpayer a lot of money if only they'd exercised more personal responsibility. To the extent that I believe they should've exercised more personal responsibility, well, yes, I share your sentiments. On the other hand, life is messy, the picture is bigger (I think), so I'm ready to concede that we'll have to put up with such situations. (Though we should try to create incentives for individuals to avoid getting there.) Or, to put it another way, just because someone is a dumbass, it doesn't mean society gets to dump them in a ditch.

>42 Makifat:

Come on, Makifat. "Blow little brown kids into small bloody chunks

????

I don't think this was really the tenor of the post that you (we?) are objecting to...

46krolik
Mar 4, 2012, 1:43pm Top

Oh, while I was typing, you guys were still posting. Seems you have a history. Leave it to you to sort it out...

47faceinbook
Mar 4, 2012, 1:48pm Top

>41 CharlesBoyd:
One could argue that discriminating against the coverage of contraceptive drugs would be wide spread irresponsibility on the part of our society. After all, the use of contraceptives shows an act of self responsibility on the part of the woman.

Don't like the abuse of bailouts any more than the next guy but wouldn't want to live in a society that fails to acknowledge that stuff happens and people sometimes need assistance.

Which is more abusive to society : The availability of contraceptives for women (even if the are free pills) or the Corporate tax loopholes enjoyed by the very wealthy ? Which of these costs us more ? Is one of them abusive and the other not ?

Personally I don't think this is a Liberal belief problem , so much as a failure to acknowledge that abuse has many faces and one type of abuse in no better than another.. What we have is a cultural problem as Conservatives and the wealthy tend to abuse our systems just as much as Liberals or the under priviledged.

We just tend admire the fruits of abuse if it leads to great wealth....when the face of abuse is poor, undereducated and often distasteful, we start crying foul.

Advocating system abuse isn't a Liberal belief so much as a Right wing talking point loaded with tons of hypocrisy.

48Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 1:54pm Top


45
Pardon me for the graphic imagery on a Sunday morning. Perhaps I ought to have used the more subtle term "collateral damage", an unfortunate side effect of the foreign policy that Charles notes as hypocritical.* Perhaps we could use the same term as a euphemism for the unwanted children who could have been prevented with simple contraception.

*And if I can be shown that he has spent as much time fretting over those policies as he has on the comparatively insignificant amount of money spent on contraception, then mea culpa.

49faceinbook
Mar 4, 2012, 2:04pm Top

>45 krolik:
"On the other hand, life is messy, the picture is bigger (I think), so I'm ready to concede that we'll have to put up with such situations. (Though we should try to create incentives for individuals to avoid getting there.) Or, to put it another way, just because someone is a dumbass, it doesn't mean society gets to dump them in a ditch."

It is interesting to note that those who fail to see how "messy" life is and what a mire of mess our healthcare system has become, are the first to cry foul when we try to create incentives. Incentives that may very well save them money in the long run. We are taking away "freedoms" tromping on individual rights is the first objection when trying to create a health society. They fail to see that the rights of a four pack a day smoker costs them dearly when they find themselves having to use the medical system.
We live in a group....it is an unavoidable fact that one's actions are going to affect others and visa versa....

There are no good answers but the first step would be to realize that what one does affects others. No matter how much blather is devoted to being "independant" of government, or it's systems, without them the blatherer's themselves would be no better off. The trick is to act appropriately before government has to tell us how to act. Good luck with that !

50CharlesBoyd
Mar 4, 2012, 7:48pm Top

#49 "We live in a group....it is an unavoidable fact that one's actions are going to affect others and visa versa...."

You're kind of making my point for me, aren't you? Personal responsibility is needed because we live in a group and one's actions do affect others.

Makifat: "Perhaps you could understand simple economics: pay a couple dollars for contraception now, or pay thousands for society to raise a kid no one wants." I understand that perfectly well. It's just a question of who should pay for the contraception. I concede that society probably should pay for them, not as a moral imperative, but because there are so many people who don't give a #$@% what they do as long as it's something they want to do, as long as it feels good and to heck with the impact on other people.

Somewhere back, parents became afraid to set rules for their kids and we now have a society where a ton of people are the kind I call "people whose mamas never said no to them." (That includes Dads as well.) Basically spoiled brats. I see them every day in my job.

You declined my invitation much more gracefully than I expected. Thanks for that.

faceinbook: Your arguement that other kinds of people, the wealthy , conseratives, etc. abuse the system is illogical. I agree that such abuse occurs and is wrong, but that doesn't make it acceptable for others (poor people or liberals) to abuse the system. As parents sometimes said "back in the day," if everyone else takes a dump in the middle of the road, are you going to do it too?

51faceinbook
Mar 4, 2012, 8:22pm Top

>49 faceinbook:
"faceinbook: Your arguement that other kinds of people, the wealthy , conseratives, etc. abuse the system is illogical. I agree that such abuse occurs and is wrong, but that doesn't make it acceptable for others (poor people or liberals) to abuse the system. As parents sometimes said "back in the day," if everyone else takes a dump in the middle of the road, are you going to do it too?"

What is "illogical" is the continued effort to "fix" the problems we seem to have in today's society but focusing on only one side of the abuse issue.
Much like balancing the nation's budget by cutting Medicare, SSI and other entitlement programs without looking at what the tax cuts to the top 1% have done to help create the deficit.
Not going to work. Yes people need to be personally responsible but the greater the top abuses our economy the easier or even more essential it becomes for the bottom to attempt to abuse that system as well. Can't be fixed by looking at things in a one sided manner.

The issue of birth control really has nothing to do with money or entitilement, as birth control will save money for most everyone including the insurance companies who are required to provide the medication. Almost a no brainer. It has to do with religion and sexism, power and control.

Explain the "panel" of men who were called to testify regarding a WOMAN's health issue ? As you are not a woman, I don't suppose you would know what it felt like to have a bunch of men discussing a woman's right to affordable health care in regards to contraception. They looked a bunch of fools, only problem being they are very powerful fools.

Explain Rush Limbaugh's rant about this young woman, when the heart of this matter is NOT about sex, it is about women receiving unbaised treatment by insurance companies....a bias they have gotten away with for decades. How did this incident touch on Bayer Aspirins between knees and sex tapes on line ?
Disgusting....the only reason that comes to my mind is sexism revisited. Flash backs to the 60s.

How do you interpret a woman's desire to get her hands on some birth control as irresponsiblity on her part ?
This too seems a bit illogical.

52Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 8:28pm Top

Somewhere back, parents became afraid to set rules for their kids and we now have a society where a ton of people are the kind I call "people whose mamas never said no to them." (That includes Dads as well.) Basically spoiled brats. I see them every day in my job.

Jesus, Charles. If you'd be willing to pay a few cents per year for contraception as a component of public health, maybe there'd be fewer "brats" around to vex your days.

And you wouldn't have to shout: "YOU KIDS GET OFF MY LAWN!" so often, either.

53Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 8:46pm Top

#44: Perhaps you could understand simple economics: pay a couple dollars for contraception now, or pay thousands for society to raise a kid no one wants.

As Charles mentioned, it's about who pays. And if someone other than the individual pays, your "simple" economic calculation is no longer so simple. If someone else is footing the bill, you no longer have an economic reason to favor contraception over raising a kid. There may be other personal reasons still at play, but you have taken the economic consequences out of the picture. The economics of urbanization has long been a great driving force in getting parents not to have too many children. What happens when you tamper with that?

54StormRaven
Mar 4, 2012, 9:01pm Top

"The economics of urbanization has long been a great driving force in getting parents not to have too many children. What happens when you tamper with that?"

So, you're thinking that making contraception more available will result in increased family size? Are you even paying attention to the arguments you're making now, or are you just in full-on frothing at the mouth anti-government mode?

55Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 9:24pm Top

#54: Makifat compared the costs of contraception with the costs of raising a child. I'm talking about how the economic difference between those two outcomes is minimized when someone else takes up the bill. Do try to keep up or don't bother replying.

56Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 9:25pm Top

54
I choose b).

57Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 9:26pm Top

#56: Frothing at the mouth pro-government mode?

58Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 9:32pm Top

Well, being as we live in the real world, rather than in some fantasy utopia (most of us do, anyway), I'd still suggest the price of contraception is way less than the price (in more ways than one) of placing another unwanted child into the public welfare system.

59lawecon
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 9:36pm Top

~41

"lawecon: I did read your post #9, but that doesn't answer my question about personal responsibility, rather it touched on what responsibility society may or may not have toward individuals."

Now that is kinda odd. Most people who like to talk about "personal responsibility" and are not anarchists have in mind the boundary between the public and private spheres. So if you talk about the limits of one, you are also defining the limits of the other. I guess you mean something else by "personal responsibility." Care to tell us what that is?

60lawecon
Mar 4, 2012, 9:36pm Top

~53

"As Charles mentioned, it's about who pays. And if someone other than the individual pays, your "simple" economic calculation is no longer so simple. If someone else is footing the bill, you no longer have an economic reason to favor contraception over raising a kid."

But, of course, "someone else is footing the bill" only to the extent that you have a real choice between a welfare state and no welfare state and only to the extent that you can avoid taxes. If neither, the distinction still makes a lot of sense. That was, after all, why the Nazis eliminated people with mental and physical defects. It didn't pay to maintain them.

61Makifat
Mar 4, 2012, 9:36pm Top

If I may, I'd suggest that "personal responsiblility" for Charles means other people doing things that he doesn't approve of. Such as makin' whoopie on the public's dime.

I'd rather have people fucking on my dime than killing each other on my dime. Just don't make me watch the video.

62lawecon
Mar 4, 2012, 9:42pm Top

~60

Well, I tend to agree with that, if those are the choices. However, I think that Charles and Lunar really believe that there is a choice between people "makin' woopie" on the public's dime and people doing nothing at all on the public's dime. Personally, I've seen no evidence that there is that choice.

The more likely choice seems to be between fascism and authoritarian socialism. Neither are very nice, but the former seems to be rather more directly brutal and nasty most of the time. Communists most of the time just "liquidate" their enemies. Fascists tend to get off on the torture before the liquidation. Even Mussolini wasn't that nice of a guy.

63Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 9:46pm Top

#61: I'd rather have people fucking on my dime than killing each other on my dime.

If only such a trade were possible, I'd start compromising my views in a heartbeat.

64lawecon
Mar 4, 2012, 10:06pm Top

~63

Yes, well I think Obama has demonstrated that such a trade off is not possible.

Now the question is whether the trade off between public support for contraception and a laissez faire society is possible. Some of us are somewhat skeptical about that trade off existing, but we certainly understand how the trade off between accommodating rightwing nut cases and feeling politically isolated is possible.

65Lunar
Mar 4, 2012, 10:17pm Top

#64: ...trade off between accommodating rightwing nut cases and feeling politically isolated is possible...

Methinks you doth protest too much. I don't feel like I have to prove that I'm not a closeted bigot. Maybe LT has a kiddie table you can go to while you have your personal issues sorted out.

66JGL53
Edited: Mar 4, 2012, 11:30pm Top

A seventh sponser has pulled their ads from the Rush "Alfalfa" Limbaugh He-Man Woman Haters Show:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/04/proflowers-rush-limbaugh-sponsor-pulls-...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBIC8JTQMMQ

Interestingly Bain Capital is one of the owners of the HMWHS.

Has Mittwit weighed in on all this yet?

67CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 5, 2012, 12:11am Top

51, certainly women should have been on that panel. And, yes women wanting birth control is being responsible, but it would be even more responsible to pay for it yourself. Want the fun, pay for it. My wife and I have paid for our birth control for forty years, never dreamed of asking anyone else to pay for it. And, no, we're a long way from rich.

I won't make appologies for Limbaugh, he's a jerk, in no way do I support him or value his opinion.

52, I've already posted that we, the responsible people, as a practical matter, must pay for contraceptives for the irresponsible people.

59, I consider personal responsibility to be taking care of your own problems, accepting the consequences of your decisions, and if those decisions cost you money, paying for it, not immediately demanding others pay for your bad decisions. This doesn't mean we should never help people who THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN have fallen on hard times and who want to take care of themselves again as soon as possible. My wife and I have supported children in other countries for over 30 years, so please don't throw that "you're heartless" b.s. at me.

61, no I don't say that personal responsiblity is people not doing what I don't approve of. People can make whoopie all they want, I don't care. That's their business. Just pay whatever the costs that activity entails.

65, You use the term "right-wing nut cases" Seems to me liberals were screaming the loudest that we should rachet down the name calling after Giffords was shot. That lasted about two days, then everyone went right back to it, liberals and conservatives.

By the way, yes there are people who can justifiably be called "right-wing nut cases," but there are also people who can justifiably be called "left-wing nut cases."

68prosfilaes
Mar 5, 2012, 1:22am Top

#18: I'm well aware that birth control lowers birth rates and thus helps keep insurance costs down

Then health insurance is not paying for birth control; it's giving birth control away to cut its costs. It pays the insurance company to give away birth control.

just thought I'd give someone the chance to feel good about himself/herself making the point. You made it. Don't you feel proud? You're soooo smart.

So are you going to take personal responsibility for being abusive and rude to faceinbook?

Ben Franklin, Jefferson, one of the founding fathers

What about the personal responsibility to source the quotes you're using? This sounds like a variant of "When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic?", and if you tried to source it, you might find that Wikiquote editors have found the quote to be attributed to several people, and yet the earliest source they can find is a 1951 Daily Oklahoman, where it was (apparently wrongly) attributed to a Scotsman dismissive of democracy.

said that democracy will only work until people discover that they can use the government to steal from other people. That realization started around the time of Kennedy's "New Frontier," and it is full blown today

That's either clueless or racist or both. Thomas Jefferson used the power of the government to keep people in slavery. Georgians used the power of government to take the homes and churches of Cherokee from them. United Fruit Company used the US government to take the right of self-government from the Guatemalans.

69weener
Mar 5, 2012, 4:00am Top

When I was in college, I started taking the birth control pill to manage my painful cramps - they were so bad they caused me to miss school and work. I still take it, but now my main goal is to avoid becoming pregnant.

I don't feel that one of those uses is more legitimate than the other. Denying myself a healthy sex life would be worse for my health than the cramps were. Having sex is something that the vast majority of society does to get through life. You might as well say, "Why should the government pay for roads and sidewalks? People don't really need to go places." Yes, they do. Sex is something people do and using the pill to have sex with men you're not married to is a 100% legitimate use for it. Making it easy to acquire hurts no one and benefits everyone.

70lawecon
Mar 5, 2012, 6:30am Top

~63

I am not quite sure what a "closet bigot" looks like. I am quite sure what a "libertarian" who never finds allies on the Left, but is frequently willing to align himself with those on the Right looks like.

71lawecon
Mar 5, 2012, 6:50am Top

~67

"59, I consider personal responsibility to be taking care of your own problems, accepting the consequences of your decisions, and if those decisions cost you money, paying for it, not immediately demanding others pay for your bad decisions."

======================

Please don't create strawmen in discussions with me. I have never accused you of being heartless, so don't get your panties in a wad over such imagined offense.

So, you're for people paying their own way. You must have gone to private schools, then? You must have sent your children to private school?

The $88 Billion Bank Bailout under Bush was an atrocity, wasn't it? Bad decisions, they should have failed. Period.

And all those tariffs and trade allocations to keep out "cheap foreign goods." To say nothing of the immigration controls to keep out people who want to freely move to America. Commies !!

Right? Say, if you would post the industry you work in I bet I can find a couple hundred regulations that either subsidize that industry or "protect" it from "unfair competition." Want to try?

============================

"This doesn't mean we should never help people who THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN have fallen on hard times and who want to take care of themselves again as soon as possible. My wife and I have supported children in other countries for over 30 years, so please don't throw that "you're heartless" b.s. at me."

So, those poor auto workers who were going to loose their jobs and/or pensions through no individual fault of their own, they should have been helped?

But, I'm a bit confused at this point. It almost seems as if you are saying that you are against "we" helping certain people at certain times under certain conditions, but not against "we" helping those people who you think should be helped. Ah, ever think of "you" rather than "we" helping the "truly deserving?" That would be true "individual responsibility," wouldn't it? That is what you favor, isn't it?

72faceinbook
Mar 5, 2012, 8:14am Top

>67 CharlesBoyd:
", certainly women should have been on that panel."

Then why weren't they ?? What good reason was there to exclude women from this discussion ?

Again, you are missing the point. Not all proposed availabitly of contraceptives are to be handed out FREE. If insurance has to cover the drug there will be copays and amounts applied to deductables. You are missing the point by focusing on only the sexual implications of this issue.
Contraceptive medication should be considered under insurance plans no differently than any other drug. MOST people do not mind paying for their own care if they can afford to do so.....making it available at an affordable amount makes sense.
Those who will be taking it free are probably at risk of "skipping" it otherwise which increases the odds of an unwanted pregnancy....a pregnancy that, if they are unable to pay for the birth control, will probably be funded by public monies.
The point is UNBIASED health care for women. Given the attitude of the Catholic church, many of the men who have weighed in on this issue and our governing body, there seems to be a fair amount of bias in society.

Erase the sexual aspect (this seems to almost impossible for most although Ms Fluke's testamony did include a medical side bar) and contemplate the amount of women who have medical conditions and have been paying for the hormon pills, in full, AND health insurance premiums. Plus historically, women have paid higher rates for premiums.

And don't assume that this is BS.....because if women were treated fairly there would have been women on the panel organized to discuss women's choices or lack there of.

73lriley
Mar 5, 2012, 12:36pm Top

The abortion issue is not far away at all from this contraceptive issue and it's always amazed me that so many of those against abortion mostly for moral/religious reasons are the pro-responsibility people who would force women (many of whom are very young) to have children that they don't want, can't afford to have or cannot properly take care or and who will be collecting welfare, food stamps etc. to do so and then the same pro-responsibility people will be bitching about that. They'll go on about the tragedy of millions of aborted fetuses and yet almost without fail--fail to think about what kind of role these potential people could have in a society that has been bleeding jobs for the last 10-15 years. Add those millions to our present population and watch some of our more negative social ills spike. That will fix everything. Personally I look at libertarians as so many would be Pontius Pilates. They've got theories how to fix things--but will wash their hands if and when those theories ever show themselves to be inadequate. Whether or not our social programs are flawed and to whatever extent they are still needed badly by our society.

74jjwilson61
Mar 5, 2012, 12:40pm Top

67> I consider personal responsibility to be taking care of your own problems, accepting the consequences of your decisions, and if those decisions cost you money, paying for it, not immediately demanding others pay for your bad decisions.

So, if you broke your leg skiing you should have to pay for that yourself? It sounds like you're saying that medical insurance shouldn't be allowed to cover treatment for any condition that a person brought upon themselves. Is that right?

75faceinbook
Edited: Mar 5, 2012, 1:28pm Top

>74 jjwilson61:
Better yet....you are young mid twenties , no health insurance as you have no health issues to worry about. But, you own a motorcycle. Every time you ride the thing, you are taking a chance that is above and beyond that of the regular motorist. If you find yourself smashed into the pavement somewhere, are we suppose to leave you die ? OR do we as a society absorb the cost of your decisions.

Of course we absorb the cost....but, your decisions have the potential of costing everyone . You have the "freedom" to not pay into the system AND the safety net of receiving care whether you've paid or not.
Pretty sweet deal for those who are not paying anything....believe me, could have taken five or six dang Carribean Cruises on what my husband and I have paid in for insurance and copays during the past two years. Not going to get any better till we hit Medicare age or run out of money....at which point we become part of the problem.

76StormRaven
Mar 5, 2012, 1:59pm Top

"I consider personal responsibility to be taking care of your own problems, accepting the consequences of your decisions, and if those decisions cost you money, paying for it, not immediately demanding others pay for your bad decisions."

So, in your estimation, health insurance plans should not cover prenatal or obstetrical care for pregnant women?

77JGL53
Edited: Mar 5, 2012, 2:56pm Top

The companies who have dropped their ads from The Radioactive Rush Show are now up to nine:

http://www.allaccess.com/net-news/archive/story/103126/rush-limbaugh-explains-ap...

I think I will make a prediction now: The Fat Man is going down. Just like Don Imus. Just like Glen Beck.

He has no friends now. All he has left in his life is about 500 million dollars in the bank.

So I guess by republican standards he wins.

But if he just goes away I think the rest of the world wins.

78faceinbook
Mar 5, 2012, 3:18pm Top

His response was such a "low life" thing to do. He should be gone.
His comments did do one positve thing for the issue. There are not many who feel as he does about women, sex and women's right to equal treatment, but there are some (read some of the sickening comments on Yahoo news site) If anything, it brings to light the fact that women still have a ways to go to receive equal consideration in some areas.
From the ill advised All Male Panel, to Mr. Limbaugh and his filthy mouth.,society needs to take a look at how it treat's it's female members. Kind of sorry that Limbaugh took the heat off of the Catholic Church because various religious belief systems are not easy on women. We recoginize this in the different Muslim faiths but fail to see that one of the largest faith based entities in this country, still holds women to a different standard than men. To the point of feeling free to form groups to make decisions about what she should or should not do with her body.

Still can't believe they were that ill informed...not to know how that panel would look. All the way from the "guys" who were doing the questioning to the "guys" sitting in a row. Do you suppose it was stupidity or was it arrogance ? Maybe a bit of both ? Pretty mind boggling !

79margd
Mar 5, 2012, 6:33pm Top

11 contd. (gender parity)

"An Illinois lawmaker proposed an amendment to a state mandatory ultrasound bill that would require men to watch a graphic video about the side effects of Viagra before legally being able to receive a prescription for it."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/05/viagra-amendment-ultrasound-mandate-ill...

80Makifat
Edited: Mar 5, 2012, 9:04pm Top

74/76

I consider personal responsibility to be taking care of your own problems, accepting the consequences of your decisions, and if those decisions cost you money, paying for it, not immediately demanding others pay for your bad decisions.

You will notice, no doubt, how quickly the decision to have sex turned into a bad decision. Maybe we should start taxing cold showers. Or make these brazen hussies wear scarlet "A"s.

Of course, choosing contraception as a relatively cheap measure to avoid bringing an unwanted child into the world isn't a prudent and responsible action by some measures. It's just an excuse for women to go - to paraphrase Rush - "all slutty".

Why the conservatives - after alienating the hispanics, blacks, and homosexuals - would bend over backwards to decimate female support is beyond me. Maybe they really believe that when women go into the voting booth, they vote just the way hubby told them to.

I'm laughing all the way to November.

81lawecon
Mar 6, 2012, 12:01am Top

~80

"Why the conservatives - after alienating the hispanics, blacks, and homosexuals - would bend over backwards to decimate female support is beyond me. Maybe they really believe that when women go into the voting booth, they vote just the way hubby told them to."

"When falls on man the anger of the gods, first from his mind they banish understanding."
Lycurgus

"When divine power plans evil for a man, it first injures his mind."
Sophocles

"Those whom God wishes to destroy, he first deprives of their senses."
Euripides

"Whom God wishes to destroy he first makes mad."
Seneca

"For those whom God to ruin has design'd, He fits for fate, and first destroys their mind."
John Dryden

"Whom the Gods would destroy they first make mad."
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

82Lunar
Mar 6, 2012, 12:29am Top

#70: I am quite sure what a "libertarian" who never finds allies on the Left, but is frequently willing to align himself with those on the Right looks like.

Actually, it's precisely because of my outspokeness on all sorts of "left" issues amenable to libertarianism from warfare to immigration that I don't feel the need to prove I'm not a right-winger in libertarian clothing. Quit projecting your inadequacies.

83lawecon
Mar 6, 2012, 7:32am Top

~82

From contraception to none of the above... All key libertarian issues. I bet you're even against the USPS, just like Lysander.

84JGL53
Mar 6, 2012, 1:13pm Top

Der Slutboy Show has lost 19 sponsors now.

Mein Gott!

The Femlib/socialist/lamestream/media army is closing in, inch by inch, day by day. What will Das Dittoheads do if Der Leader is rousted permanently from his bunker? I suppose they will have to double down on their faux noise viewing.

85faceinbook
Mar 6, 2012, 1:23pm Top

>84 JGL53:
Be careful ...... mirror images look the same. Trading one set of nasty for another is not the answer.

86JGL53
Mar 6, 2012, 1:32pm Top

> 85

You give me credit for more influence than I think I have on the body politic.

Thanks.

87JGL53
Edited: Mar 6, 2012, 2:47pm Top

Latest count of advertizers dropping the Giant Hot Potato: 26

Plus radio stations are starting to follow suit.

http://thinkprogress.org/media/2012/03/06/438817/four-more-advertisers-ditching-...

I smell coffee brewing. Wonder when Clear Channel will wake up and smell it too?

88faceinbook
Mar 6, 2012, 2:57pm Top

>87 JGL53:
Will grant you that the man is objectionable and the world would be a kinder more decent place without his blather but, sadly, I feel that there will always be those waiting in line to take his place.

Tilting at windmills !

89lawecon
Mar 6, 2012, 6:50pm Top

~86

No, some of us don't.

90prosfilaes
Mar 6, 2012, 7:10pm Top

#88: There's a difference between tilting at windmills and trying to solve a huge problem the best you can.

91JGL53
Mar 6, 2012, 10:09pm Top

Total advertizers dropped, as of today, at 9:09 PM CST:

35

Stay tuned.

92Lunar
Mar 7, 2012, 1:17am Top

#83: Just as I thought, this is more about you than about me. If noncontentious issues like "none of the above" and Lysander Spooner's private postal service are the kinds of things that get stuck in your craw, you might want to consider taking a breather more frequently than the average joe. There are better reasons to have a libertarian catfight than this.

93SimonW11
Mar 7, 2012, 7:28am Top

still he has picked up one advertiser. http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/2012/03/limbaugh-adds-sugar-daddy-advertiser...

SeekingArrangement.com, "the world’s largest sugar daddy and sugar baby dating website,” seem to think he and his wife are sublime examples of their, ahem, ideals.

94theoria
Mar 7, 2012, 8:41am Top

SexTapes.com is standing by Limbaugh.

95lawecon
Edited: Mar 7, 2012, 8:44am Top

~63, ~82 and ~92

Lunar, you seemed to want to talk about the authenticity of your libertarianism. I am willing to have that discussion, but every time I mention a relevant aspect of your views what I get back is a psychological diagnosis. I don't think you are a psychologist. I know that you don't have a clue who I am or anything about my psychology. Could you keep to the topic?

The topic is simple. If you want to imagine yourself to be, and set yourself up as, "Mr. Libertarian," some people, people who have been around the conservative and libertarian movements for over 45 years, are going to express some skepticism. That is particularly true when you demonstrate a propensity to identify libertarianism with crazy fringe issues that you yourself admit don't work - like "none of the above" - or with crazy fringe historical figures that fascinate only scholars in the absurd - figures like Lysander Spooner.

I am sorry if it offends you when people don't have the respect for these absurdities that you do, but libertarianism is an ideology about how to configure the political/ideological world. It isn't a religion with icons and saints.

96Makifat
Mar 7, 2012, 9:03pm Top

I thought he was an anarchist, anyway.

97lawecon
Mar 7, 2012, 9:30pm Top

~96

Naw, most anarchists are much more realistic.

98Lunar
Edited: Mar 8, 2012, 12:02am Top

#95: Lunar, you seemed to want to talk about the authenticity of your libertarianism.

That's just you, dude. Most every one of your posts has been innuendo suggesting I'm just a right-winger in libertarian clothing.

libertarianism is an ideology about how to configure the political/ideological world. It isn't a religion with icons and saints.

That's an odd statement to make coming from someone whose objection to the Spooner Heresy had nothing to do with his arguments, but that he simply wasn't part of the Libertarian Canon. Some of my more ecclectic influences would probably get an orthodox libertarian like yourself to boil with intolerance. You can certainly accuse me of pathologizing your fixations. But with the wealth of material you're giving me you can hardly blame me.

#96: Yes, an individualist anarchist. But I'm comfortable with the "libertarian" label as well. I'm sure lawecon will have another fit just over me using them interchangeably.

99JGL53
Mar 8, 2012, 4:15pm Top

Total companies who have left the Radioactive Rush show now:

45

100lriley
Mar 8, 2012, 5:02pm Top

#98--personally I don't see you as much of an anarchist Lunar. Sorry.

101lawecon
Mar 8, 2012, 8:57pm Top

~100

I think it depends on what you mean by "anarchist." Some people think it means a stateless society, some think it is an exciting word to put on a sign.

102Lunar
Mar 9, 2012, 1:12am Top

#100: Would a Haymarket beard help? There's always room for improvement.

103Makifat
Mar 9, 2012, 1:51am Top

One of those old fashioned Spy vs Spy bombs - like a bowling ball with a fuse - might be apropos. But from there it's just a short slide away from nihilism.

104krolik
Mar 9, 2012, 3:36am Top

>103 Makifat:
I used to have one of those. It was cool. But it got confiscated at the airport.

105lawecon
Mar 9, 2012, 8:42am Top

~102

Probably be as good as what exists now.

106lriley
Edited: Mar 9, 2012, 10:49am Top

#101--that's true enough. The classification of what an anarchist is is all over the map. Kropotkin was not quite as fiery a character as Proudhon or Bakunin. Generally though for me a major tenet of anarchist thought when we peel away the skin a bit is a desire for social justice--for equality of personhood and the marginalization of abstract value systems antipathetic to capitalism in practically every form. Ideas about the elitehood of any particular person or entity seen as absurdities.

107lawecon
Mar 9, 2012, 3:39pm Top

~106

Would you say that describes Lunar?

108JGL53
Edited: Mar 9, 2012, 4:34pm Top

To date total # advertisers dropped from The Radioactive Rush Show:

50

http://thinkprogress.org/media/2012/03/02/436852/rush-limbaugh-advertisers/?mobi...

109lriley
Edited: Mar 9, 2012, 5:49pm Top

#106--No. But again it depends on how people define the word. Personally I don't see any real connection between american style libertarianism and anarchism--though back during the Spanish Civil war anarchists often referenced themselves as libertarian communists. Those people though were emptying the Barcelonan banks on July 20, 1936 and making bonfires out of the paper money. Sacrilege! Libertarians seem stuck on Ayn Rand who was anything but. Not Emma Goldman.

110lawecon
Mar 9, 2012, 8:09pm Top

~109

Personally I think that Emma Goldman was a very admirable person with many right ideas, and I detest Ayn Rand as an intellectual fake with delusions of grandeur.

111lriley
Edited: Mar 9, 2012, 8:32pm Top

#111--sometimes I think my loathing for Ayn Rand is almost pathological. I really shouldn't speak about her at all. On Emma Goldman--she had a lot of guts and the open hostility she had to face throughout her life for what she believed is a good reason for me to see her as admirable as well.

112timspalding
Edited: Mar 9, 2012, 11:55pm Top

I have no love for Limbaugh. I certainly never listen to him. When I have chanced to, I find him both obnoxious and really, really boring. But the campaign against him is bound to fail. As a talk-radio industry person put it yesterday on NPR ATC:
"I think that he will survive, based upon whether or not listeners abandon him, and there's no sign of that. If anything, certainly this week, his audience is much larger than it was last week because of all the attention he's getting. Plus, his audience likes him.

And then there are many people who listen to him because they just love to hate him. So there's no sign that his audience is eroding. If anything, it might grow, and that is the basis upon which his financial future is determined."
This seems clearly true to me. Anyone want to bet me on this?

113StormRaven
Mar 10, 2012, 12:21am Top

This seems clearly true to me. Anyone want to bet me on this?

No bet. Limbaugh is a symptom, not a cause.

114Bretzky1
Mar 10, 2012, 12:35am Top

#112:

That's not necessarily true. There's one more logical step that needs to be taken between large audience and secure future, and that's large audience leads to advertisers willing to buy time during the show, which leads to secure future.

Do I think the "boycott Rush" parade will continue among all of his primary advertisers? No. But I do think a portion of them will stay away for a long time, if not forever. They will, however, be replaced, but likely at a reduced rate.

Limbaugh will survive, but I'd be willing to bet that his employer is going to suffer a loss in profit on his show, and might renew him at a lower salary for his next contract.

115timspalding
Edited: Mar 10, 2012, 1:43am Top

>114 Bretzky1:

We'll see. But there are a lot of advertisers in the world. Rush is his own employer. He is one of the biggest players in the talk-radio industry. Stations pay to have him on, and give him a portion of their advertising time too—all so that they can run some advertisements in the remainder.

Now what do people think of Maher's recently calling Sarah Palin a "cunt"? While I don't think women should be called either sluts or cunts, it does seem peculiar that nobody on the left is calling on advertisers to abandon him. Wrongs are wrongs, but that doesn't mean that the people complaining about wrongs aren't really up to something else entirely.

116Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 10, 2012, 2:03am Top

First I've heard of it. Provide me a link, if you please.

117Makifat
Mar 10, 2012, 2:11am Top

Maher is an outlier, and a comedian to boot. Limbaugh has positioned himself as a conservative leader, and is proud of the power of influence that he has. He only retreats to the "I'm just an entertainer" b.s. when he gets called out on crap like this.

Put it another way, neither I nor anyone else that I know wait with bated breath for Bill Maher to tell me who to vote for, and I'm unaware of any string of candidates ever showing up on his doorstep to kiss his ring. It's been pretty clear for a while that there are plenty of those on the right who see Limbaugh's approval as a litmus test for candidates. He has a certain amount of power, and there is a responsibility that goes with it.

Plus, Limbaugh has a long, sustained record of attacks on women whose viewpoints he despises, labelling them all by the odious term "feminazis" (Get it? Feminist = Nazi). Maher is at least specific in his hatred of Palin. Not that I think the terminology he uses is particularly funny or helpful in getting his point across.

By the way, does Maher even have advertisers? Does he even have a show currently.? I don't really follow him.

118Makifat
Mar 10, 2012, 2:13am Top

116
I know that those on the right are trying to stir up outrage (or at least deflect attention from Rush) by getting all indignant about Maher, but I'm not sure how "recent" the Palin comment was

119Lunar
Mar 10, 2012, 2:38am Top

#115: We'll see. But there are a lot of advertisers in the world.

Certainly, at the national level there will be no shortage of advertisers. But if a local radio station is losing ad revenue from the local mom & pop, that can impact whether individual stations want to keep Rush's show.

120krolik
Mar 10, 2012, 3:13am Top

Tim, I think it's indisputable that people like Palin and Bachmann, whatever their merits (?) in politics, have been subjected to a lot of misogynism, some of it vile. And sure, there has been liberal hypocrisy about this, in many circles.

But I think Makifat's distinction between Limbaugh and Maher is pretty apt. Maher has nowhere near the political clout or national following that Limbaugh does. And commercially, he's in a different sort of zone, since he mainly works for HBO (I think...correct me if I'm wrong) and doesn't have to worry about keeping a bunch of sponsors on board.

121prosfilaes
Mar 10, 2012, 5:03am Top

#115: I found it interesting that Maher stood up for Limbaugh. I've seen it elsewhere, that assholes, even on opposites of the isles, will stand up for each other to protect their right to be assholes.

122margd
Mar 10, 2012, 5:48am Top

"...It’s not as if the left is above attacking right-wing women. For instance, former GOP vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, who was a legitimate target because of her ill-preparedness for office, should not have been subjected to ad hominem sexist barbs about her motherhood, the legitimacy of her fifth child, and her sexual appeal."

"But there is something so creepy and prurient about the conservative focus on women and sexuality. Mr. Limbaugh’s multitude of followers, and Mr. Santorum’s Tea Party base, have in effect been pushing for control of a woman’s sexuality in a way that is entirely contrary to all other Republican “get the government out of our lives” mantras."

"They need a Pierre Trudeau to remind them the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation. But they won’t find one in their ranks because, for them, all social issue roads lead to abortion."

"There is only one way this heavy-handed approach to women and their reproductive freedom will return to being a fringe issue: How it plays with voters."

"On CBC Radio’s The Current this week, host Anna Maria Tremonti interviewed Democratic pollster Peter Hart, who says the latest figures show that every time these social issues are put front and centre, the GOP takes “a tremendous pasting” with women voters. He says his latest poll, released this week on NBC and in the Wall Street Journal, shows that a majority – 56 per cent to 37 per cent – of women voters, including the so-called suburban soccer moms, prefer Obama and the Democrats..."

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/news-and-views/judith-timson/r...

123prosfilaes
Mar 10, 2012, 6:57am Top

#122: Mr. Limbaugh’s multitude of followers, and Mr. Santorum’s Tea Party base, have in effect been pushing for control of a woman’s sexuality in a way that is entirely contrary to all other Republican “get the government out of our lives” mantras.

I don't see that distinction. There are a lot of Republicans who chant "smaller government" and "get the government out of our lives" and then demand greater government intrusion in matters of sex and gender. Less federal government but the Defense of Marriage act.

124faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 8:54am Top

Although Palin, Bachmann and Fluke can technically be defined as public figures, Fluke wasn't positioning herself for a public office. Reluctant to put Fluke into the same catagory as either Palin or Bachmann.

No one deserves to be called nasty names , but it certainly seems to be the norm.

Most disturbing thing about Fluke isn't so much the name but the fact that a contingency of men are so anxious to react to this particular issue in such a manner.

Would bet that Maher reserves his sexist or nasty comments for certain women, would also bet that Limbaugh sees most every woman in the same light. Just a hunch.

125Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 10, 2012, 11:59am Top

I'm not that ready to give Maher a pass, but...

126faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 12:32pm Top

>125 Jesse_wiedinmyer:
No, no passes...sounds just as bad coming from one than from the other. Agree on that !

127StormRaven
Mar 10, 2012, 1:02pm Top

Now what do people think of Maher's recently calling Sarah Palin a "cunt"? While I don't think women should be called either sluts or cunts, it does seem peculiar that nobody on the left is calling on advertisers to abandon him. Wrongs are wrongs, but that doesn't mean that the people complaining about wrongs aren't really up to something else entirely.

I recall the Maher received a fair amount of criticism from the left when he used "cunt" to describe Palin. And far more direct criticism than the tepid response that the right has had to Rush's comments.

128lawecon
Mar 10, 2012, 1:18pm Top

~111

Rand was pretty despicable: her pretend sophistication in Philosophy, political theory, etc., her desire to lead a cult, her false Nietzsche-style individualism, her constant self-indulgence. I am sure there have been worse people, but she tried really hard to join their ranks.

129faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 1:41pm Top

>127 StormRaven:
Yes he did. Difference between Maher saying something like he did and Limbaugh shooting off his mouth is the fact that candidates on the Left don't much care what Maher says about them, the candidates on the Right better care what Limbaugh is going to say cause Limbaugh will crucify a candidate in no time.

Something about the difference between having a base that thinks for itself and having a large portion of a base that will take things Limbaugh and the like, say as gospel truth, no questions asked.

In fact, the whole "Obama BOWED to a Muslim" thing started with either Limbaugh or Beck.....the Republican candidates are now using it on their stump speeches.

Presidental protocol be damned.....

130faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 1:50pm Top

It is backwards.
Instead of the political leaders on the Right dictating a standard of discourse and behavior to their mouth pieces....the mouth pieces are dictating to the leaders.

131theoria
Mar 10, 2012, 3:16pm Top

It is interesting (to me at least) that conservative pundits are still seeking to undermine Sandra Fluke personally, falling into the "they just don't get it" category.

132faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 3:22pm Top

>131 theoria:
It is pretty typical. Historically women who have taken a stand for equal rights have been personally attacked. In much the same manner as Ms Fluke.
Remember when Hillary was first lady ? They attacked everything from her hairdo to her clothing but perhaps the most upsetting thing came after they found out that Hillary Clinton had a brain and a mouth and she was in the habit of using them both. It was then that she was labeled a lesbian.

133lriley
Edited: Mar 10, 2012, 4:35pm Top

#128--Rand has many many fans and believers though--some very influential and as far as economics--Milton Friedman--Alan Greenspan are two of the biggest ones. OTOH I've always had some fascination for anarchism but I'm not really that well read in it. World literature-particularly fiction is really my main thing. And as a fiction reader I can only say that Rand's plotting is atrocious--her character development pitiful. White hats vs. the black hats. Psychological depth doesn't exist in any of her creations. It's all good vs. evil from an atheistic angle that reeks of fundamentalism--total lack of empathy--smelling of the inquisition. The ending particularly of Atlas Shrugged is absurd and laughable and not at all the effect she is striving for. As a work of any depth it's a fucking failure--and even the fact that it has sold millions of copies notwithstanding--IMO it never deserve being published. I haven't even touched on all the ranting in the book masquerading as asides that have nothing to do with the hokey story line or her wooden character development.

Current fans--Ron and Rand Paul, Paul Ryan.

134JGL53
Edited: Mar 10, 2012, 4:48pm Top

I think it deplorable for anyone to call Sarah Palin, or any women, a c.u.n.t. (In public that is - what people do in the privacy of their own homes is their business. Also, uh, like using birth control.) LOL.

Having said that, Sarah Palin is socially and intellectually retarded and is just too plain ignorant, or egotistical, to realized how ignorant and unteachable she is, and thus how unqualified she is to be in any major public position of responsibility. It has been said that when McCain chose her as his v.p. running mate, that fact alone revealed he was not to be trusted to be POTUS. I agree.

The fact that McCain/Palin went down to a near 10 million vote defeat is something I will remember with great nostalgia and satisfaction until the day of my death.

The only male equivalent of Palin that I can think of - in modern politics - is Dan Quayle.

As for Mush Limburger, this drama is yet to be played out. Maybe he will survive and maybe he won't. I will continue to follow the story and post any late-breaking news concerning it on this thread.

Oops - Just saw this:

"...On Thursday, Limbaugh's program was practically devoid of paid advertisements, according to reports. Of the 86 spots that aired, 77 were 'free public service announcements donated by the Ad Council." Seven ads were from companies "in the process of pulling their spots.'"

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/10/talk-radio-losing-advertisers_n_1336634...

135JGL53
Edited: Mar 10, 2012, 4:45pm Top

> 133

If you are interested, for some weird reason, in appreciating just how f.u.c.k.e.d.u.p. Ayn Rand's brain was I can recommend these books:

My Years with Ayn Rand - Nathaniel Brandon

The Passion of Ayn Rand - Barbara Brandon

Is Objectivism a Religion? - Albert Ellis

136faceinbook
Mar 10, 2012, 5:08pm Top

>134 JGL53:
Just happened to see a clip of Ms Palin last night. Can not remember what I was watching but the clip was Hannity interviewing Palin.
She was talking about Obama wanting to take our country back into pre Civil War days and so there could be class distictions and racism.
She said it twice and twice it made absolutely no sense what so ever.
My sister swears that she is on drugs. Sure sounded that way on the clip. Didn't even pronounce her words correctly and had the stupidest grin on her face....did not match what she was saying.
Wonder if Palin knows who Ayn Rand is ?

137faceinbook
Edited: Mar 10, 2012, 5:21pm Top

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/sarah-palin-to-hannity-obama-seems-to-want-to-go-back...

The grin was before the speech....don't see it on the clip but it was odd.

VP ? Seriously ? Wish someone would actually ask her about Rand, would be interesting.

138Makifat
Mar 10, 2012, 6:10pm Top

Not to try to explain what goes on in the misty recesses of Ms. Palin's mind, but I think she may have been trying to talk about the pre-Civil Rights era.* Maybe she was so nervous that the ink on her palms started to run, and she couldn't make out what someone wrote there.

At least she wasn't using a teleprompter.

*Not that that would make much more sense...

139lawecon
Mar 11, 2012, 9:12am Top

"#128--Rand has many many fans and believers though--some very influential and as far as economics--Milton Friedman--Alan Greenspan are two of the biggest ones."

I think you may have that partly wrong. Greenspan was, of course, one of her "Inner Collective" cult, and, as far as I know, one who survived the usual syndrome of mutual hatred once Rand imagined she had been slighted.

Probably you can find something where Friedman said something nice about her, since Friedman was an incredibly indiscriminate nice person who said nice things about virtually everyone. But no one, including Rand herself, believed that she knew anything at all about economics. As I recall (and its been 30 years or more) her Capitalism The Unknown Ideal explicitly says it is about the MORALITY of capitalism, not the economics. The only contributors she could find who were economists were third raters like Robert Hessen or people who plagiarizer Hayek on economic history.

" OTOH I've always had some fascination for anarchism but I'm not really that well read in it. World literature-particularly fiction is really my main thing."

I am not very good on labeling my books, but take a look at my library and sort the titles by the term "anarchism" to see if there is anything that would interest you. There are at least a couple dozen books that should pop up.

"World literature-particularly fiction is really my main thing. And as a fiction reader I can only say that Rand's plotting is atrocious--her character development pitiful. White hats vs. the black hats. Psychological depth doesn't exist in any of her creations. It's all good vs. evil from an atheistic angle that reeks of fundamentalism--total lack of empathy--smelling of the inquisition. The ending particularly of Atlas Shrugged is absurd and laughable and not at all the effect she is striving for. As a work of any depth it's a fucking failure--and even the fact that it has sold millions of copies notwithstanding--IMO it never deserve being published. I haven't even touched on all the ranting in the book masquerading as asides that have nothing to do with the hokey story line or her wooden character development. "

I know zip about literature and don't pretend otherwise. But the only "novel" I've ever read that was worse written was Hazlitt's Time Will Run Back. (Which if you need a good vomit you should try some time.)

140lriley
Edited: Mar 11, 2012, 12:47pm Top

#139--always open to suggestions--keeping in mind that I jump around from genre's a lot and would work things in.

I have read a biography of Goldman by Alice Wexler. Have read several works on civil war Spain by assorted writers some of which were entirely from an anarchist point of view. Probably the most recent thing i've read though is David Graeber's Fragments of an anarchist anthropology--which looks at how more 'primitive' societies--in contrast to the 'civilized' western world--function.

141lawecon
Edited: Mar 11, 2012, 8:36pm Top

There are all sorts of anarchism. If you are familiar with Goldman then you are already familiar with one of the representatives of a hybrid between communist anarchism and individualist anarchism. Kropotkin was the paradigm of communist anarchism. Benjamin R. Tucker and Voltairine de Cleyre were the paradigms of individualist anarchism, albeit Tucker had some strong mutualist tendencies. Then there are the mutualists themselves, the voluntarists, and most recently the polycentric law theorists, e.g., http://www.tomwbell.com/writings/JurisPoly.html and The Enterprise of Law

I've always liked the total eccentrics, like Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, who was one thing one week and another thing another week.

142prosfilaes
Mar 12, 2012, 4:53am Top

http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/03/what-its-like-to-get-attacked-... is another article on how Rush attacks women. It doesn't make as much news when he manages to avoid the word "slut", but the same idea is there; she's a single women, therefore she doesn't deserve to be listened to.

143faceinbook
Mar 12, 2012, 8:51am Top

>142 prosfilaes:
Those "over educated" (this doens't mean intellegent) feminatzies ? " Think he used that comment at one point in time.
I don't agree with what Maher said about Palin but I am finding it very hard to compare Limbaugh with Maher. Limbaugh has an agenda that includes discrediting women who speak out. He said horrible things about Hillary Clinton. He said horrible things about Chelsie Clinton when she was still a child. "looked like the White House dog" is how he put it, I believe.

144Arctic-Stranger
Mar 12, 2012, 12:41pm Top

I for one do not like Limbaugh or Maher. Both capitalize on the inability of people to go beyond simplistic thinking.

I remember when Limbaugh showed a picture of young Chelsea Clinton, and called her the White House dog. She was in her early teens then, if that old.

We had a similar squabble here when tomcatmurr (?) called Palin a cunt. He got a lot of (deserved) flak for that, and not just from Palin supporters.

145prosfilaes
Mar 12, 2012, 7:58pm Top

#144: She was 13. Maher is more marginal and at least marginally a comedian, but yeah, both like to use abuse instead of argument.

146faceinbook
Mar 12, 2012, 8:14pm Top

>145 prosfilaes:
Again, I don't see Maher as abusive as Limbaugh. At least Maher includes various points of view on his show. And though he likes to "win" the discussion, sometimes he doesn't. Key word is "discussion"...there are discussions on his show. Not too sure Limbaugh listens to anyone other than himself.
Maher does stand up comedy.....Limbaugh does sit down snark !
Regardless, they both have freedom of speech but somehow, Maher is funny and Limbaugh doesn't seem to be using his brand of "humor" to make any one laugh.

147Makifat
Mar 12, 2012, 8:38pm Top

146
is funny and Limbaugh doesn't seem to be using his brand of "humor" to make any one laugh.

Seriously? How could you have missed this bit of comedy gold?:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCl_--E3T2c

148JGL53
Edited: Mar 12, 2012, 10:28pm Top

> 147

Gee, that was pretty weak.

I agree with one of the posted comments - fox "news" is only funny when it is trying to be serious.

E.g., look at all the comedy gold they provide, inadvertently, to Stewart, Colbert, Maddow, O’Donnell, Olbermann, SNL, et. al.

Limbaugh and Coulter trying to be funny would be like me trying to perform brain surgery - and is twice as painful.

149faceinbook
Mar 13, 2012, 8:34am Top

>148 JGL53:
Maher IS a stand up comedian. Not so much Limbaugh. Maher also interviews and listens to the opposition, if he says something boneheaded, they will call him on it.....on air.
It has been my experience listening Limbaugh and the like, that they do not listen to opposition, if people who disagree with them call during the show, they hang up on them. Don't suppose they get many calls from opposition ? Don't listen anymore, haven't for years.

150Lunar
Mar 14, 2012, 2:35am Top

#149: But I don't think that's the pertinent difference. Limbaugh is much more prominent than Maher and so will attract more media attention. And let's not forget that Maher was booted from ABC when he questioned the bravery of firing cruise missiles into Afghanistan from thousands of miles away. It's all about the easy news stories and political alignment makes certain narratives easier to sell. Rush is on the right, so it's easier to run a story about him being a misogynist. Maher is on the left, so it's easier to run a story about him being unpatriotic.

It's all in the narrative and all this talk about the technicalities of their job descriptions are neither here nor there.

151lawecon
Mar 14, 2012, 2:46am Top

~150

"And let's not forget that Maher was booted from ABC when he questioned the bravery of firing cruise missiles into Afghanistan from thousands of miles away."

I guess I missed that one. Which channel was he booted from for remarking that the 9/11 perpetrators (at least those who flew the planes) "had guts"?

152timspalding
Mar 14, 2012, 8:38am Top

But I don't think that's the pertinent difference. Limbaugh is much more prominent than Maher and so will attract more media attention.

They have a different profile. Limbaugh probably reaches more people, but his channel is very narrow. You generally don't see him on network TV or major-cable. You won't see him as a panelist on Meet the Press or All Things Considered. I don't think he ever writes Op-Eds or blog posts—unless he has how own.

Maher has a regular show on HBO, and recently had a regular one on Comedy Central and ABC. He is a regular on the major cable news shows on CNN and MSNBC, on with Larry King or Rachel Maddow. He writes regularly for the Huffington Post. He made a movie.

So, while I believe that Limbaugh may reach more people, he's totally invisible to someone like me, who doesn't listen to his radio show. Maher by contrast seems to pop up everywhere.

153faceinbook
Mar 14, 2012, 8:44am Top

>150 Lunar:
Heard last night that some time during the 90s the Republicans made Limbaugh an honorary member of Congress.

As a woman, I can say that there is indeed a difference between Maher's statements about a woman and Limbaugh's comments about women.....Maher finds SOME women objectionable while Limbaugh blankets all women under one definition.
Limbaugh is the definition of a "sexist pig" ! Don't like to call names but his mind goes immediately to the most base place possible.
Maher doesn't like "stupid" coupled with a flapping jaw. Limbaugh has no respect for women, unless they are in some way servicing him....(wife, prostitute....whatever)

Big difference....Pointing a finger and saying that one is the same as the other isn't working for me.

The question in this matter is if Ms Fluke deserved such a public dressing down from a public figure ? And did he cross a line ? The stakes for women in this particular matter are pretty high given the Right's push to regulate women's health care issues.....If Limbaugh represents the feelings of a political party, as it would seem he does, it is not surprising that the blow back is pretty big.

Was listening to clips last night on MSNBC and later on John Stewart. It was pointed out that Ted Nuggent gave a concert and he spent five minutes calling Obama everything from an a@#$%*e to a piece of S^%t. It was televised. The Dixie Chicks said they were embarressed to admit that Bush was from the Texas. The back lash to the Dixie Chicks was immediate and harsh. Nuggent ? nothing. A double standard exists !

It is pretty clear that come election time, many women's groups are going to use this and the Right will be sorry they didn't distance themselves from this clown. The amount of "backsliding" for women's rights in the past couple of years will cost the Party. Like most everything they've done since 2000. Granted, they are spending all of their time trying to make it appear to be someone else's fault, to the point of not governing at all, but in reality, they are messed up.

154lriley
Edited: Mar 14, 2012, 12:11pm Top

The same gun toting macho man Nugent dodged the draft during the Viet Nam years. He's bragged that 30 days before his draft physical--he stopped any kind of personal hygiene--the last week or so only eating Vienna sausages and drinking pepsi by the gallon and refusing to go to the toilet. He showed up for that physical--his clothes reeking and caked with his own excrement. But he will go on to say what a bad motherfucker he would have been if he had gone. He's an attention seeker and an absolute phony but don't tell Glenn Beck. He hasn't figured that out yet. Why some (I'm sure not all) Republicans would want to link themselves to Nugent is beyond me. Anyone who wants to look this up--it's been out there for a long time and it's been all over the internet. A wannabe GI Joe--when all the shooting stopped. He'll send your kids to the next disaster though--no problem beating the war drum for somebody else.

155JGL53
Edited: Mar 14, 2012, 12:29pm Top

Bill Maher was fired for his response to Papa Bush's comment that suicide bombers were cowards. Maher make the cogent point that whatever nasty epithet one could rightfully apply to suicide bombers "coward" was not one. They were assholes, effing crazy, fools, etc. but certainly not cowards.

Of course that comment was immediately taken the wrong way by all the SuperPatriots at the time - which was about 70 or 80 per cent of the country.

Dipshits.

156faceinbook
Mar 14, 2012, 2:44pm Top

>154 lriley:
Pretty typical. Those who want to pound the war drum the loudest are usually the one's who don't seem to feel that they should have to actually do any of the fighting.

>155 JGL53:
What is it about "fist pumping", "flag waving" patriotism that makes 70 or 80 percent of a population lose their collective minds ?

157Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 14, 2012, 2:48pm Top

What is it about "fist pumping", "flag waving" patriotism that makes 70 or 80 percent of a population lose their collective minds ?

Is this a serious question?

158JGL53
Edited: Mar 14, 2012, 4:07pm Top

> 157

And who, I would ask, would even ask if that were a serious question?

I.e., what would possibly cause you to think it is not a serious question?

159faceinbook
Mar 14, 2012, 4:33pm Top

>157 Jesse_wiedinmyer:
No question, just a sad sorry observation !

160lriley
Mar 14, 2012, 5:03pm Top

#155--it was mass hysteria in this country in the days leading up to the Bush/Cheney Iraq invasion. Sad. And sad that that was the Bush administration response to 9-11. To make something out of nothing--to use the shock from that horrible day for their own ideological agenda and it wrecked that country for no real good purpose and badly hurt our own economy. But a lot of his people did well because of it.

161faceinbook
Mar 14, 2012, 5:31pm Top

>160 lriley:
Have several friends who lost family members in that war. National Guards mostly as my friends children are all a bit older now. Miserable to think of why they lost their loved one. One can only hope that there are some sustainable positive changes to that region but it looks doubtful.

Wonder how many times the guy, who just shot those civilians in Afgahnistan, was deployed. Don't remember reading about that. Another shameful part of our national history. Depolying individuals five, six, seven times. Claiming "they signed up for it". Yeah, right !

162lawecon
Mar 14, 2012, 7:22pm Top

~155

Well, we agree for once. How, ah, peculiar......

163JGL53
Edited: Mar 14, 2012, 9:13pm Top

164JGL53
Mar 14, 2012, 9:12pm Top

Preparation H has just pulled its advertisements from the R.L. show.

Limbaugh is the biggest a.s.s.h.o.l.e. in the universe yet Preparation H wants nothing to do with him.

Now, that's gotta hurt.

165timspalding
Edited: Mar 14, 2012, 9:50pm Top

Bill Maher was fired for his response to Papa Bush's comment that suicide bombers were cowards. Maher make the cogent point that whatever nasty epithet one could rightfully apply to suicide bombers "coward" was not one. They were assholes, effing crazy, fools, etc. but certainly not cowards.

This is ultimately a linguistic issue, not a real one. Cowardice is sometimes taken to mean simply fear. As they died in a suicide attack, they aren't cowards in that sense. But cowardice is also often imputed to people who choose an unmanly, despicable path. The 9/11 bombers could have fought like soldiers against American troops somewhere. They chose to terrify and and fool four planes of civilian air travelers into submission long enough to plow the planes into buildings full of office workers.

166Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 14, 2012, 10:02pm Top

I.e., what would possibly cause you to think it is not a serious question?

Post 159.

167Lunar
Mar 15, 2012, 12:51am Top

#156: What is it about "fist pumping", "flag waving" patriotism that makes 70 or 80 percent of a population lose their collective minds ?

Team spirit!

Basically, it makes them feel they're "all in this together" and all that jazz. But maybe Chris Hedges could put it more eloquently.

168Makifat
Mar 15, 2012, 12:52am Top

unmanly?

syn.: girly, womanish.

Is this yet another gender-based insult?

Rush would be proud.

169lriley
Mar 15, 2012, 3:18am Top

We could also say the suicide bombers were just ideological religious fanatics who took their methods to the extreme--like most ideological fanatics dream of doing (whether they actually do or not). In the end true to their obsession. Funny though that I think there is a decent % of Americans who could practically fit the same definition--are willing to do anything so their political party wins or their social or religious views are forced on people who don't want them.

170Lunar
Mar 15, 2012, 3:47am Top

#169: We could also say the suicide bombers were just ideological religious fanatics who took their methods to the extreme...

Ideological religious fanatics... who are western-educated and drink beer and visit strip clubs?

I mean, it's not entirely unlikely. Just look at Ted Haggard. But maybe it's not so much about religion as it is about decades of American political intervention in the Middle-East. It is unfairly dismissive to sit back and say, "Dem crayzee moozlims are CRAYzee!" More currently, when you look at people who are rioting over the burning of korans in Afghanistan, religious fanaticism isn't the common denominator either. It's about the occupation.

Funny though that I think there is a decent % of Americans who could practically fit the same definition--are willing to do anything so their political party wins or their social or religious views are forced on people who don't want them.

How about we not also transfer this vilification of the Other to the US? It's true that politics can be very tribal. But it happens on both "sides."

171prosfilaes
Mar 15, 2012, 6:37am Top

#165: I don't think it's just a linguistic issue. We feel free to use pejoratives against our enemies that are hard to rationally justify.

A man who sits back in an office at Creech Air Force Base and guides an missile into a building a half a world away isn't called cowardly. Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox of the American Revolution, has been called a terrorist by modern British authors; Michael Graham replied "Did he commit acts in an 18th-century war that we would consider atrocious in the current world of peace and political correctness? As another great American film hero might say: "You damn right." That's what made him a hero, 200 years ago and today."* Francis Marion didn't fight like a soldier against British troops, and somehow that's not cowardly because he fought for the US.

* Part of a longer quote on Wikipedia: "Was Francis Marion a slave owner? Was he a determined and dangerous warrior? Did he commit acts in an 18th-century war that we would consider atrocious in the current world of peace and political correctness? As another great American film hero might say: "You damn right." That's what made him a hero, 200 years ago and today." I'm not sure why him being a slave owner helps make him a hero.

172faceinbook
Mar 15, 2012, 8:50am Top

>165 timspalding:
"They chose to terrify and and fool four planes of civilian air travelers into submission long enough to plow the planes into buildings full of office workers"

Didn't our ancestors do much the same to the Native Americans ? No planes, no big buildings but plenty of strategic atrocities committed based on what European settlers thought was a mission they had a right to pursue.

The invasion of Iraq was not a show of "bravery" on the part of the United States. Given the difference between the military might of the two countries....It was a "slam dunk"on the part of the U.S. However, the actions of the soldiers who carried out the missions could certainly be seen as acts of bravery.

As pointed out in the posts above, bravery is a matter of perspective. Would argue that taking one's own life in the name of a cause, is pretty brave.

173timspalding
Edited: Mar 15, 2012, 11:10pm Top

A man who sits back in an office at Creech Air Force Base and guides an missile into a building a half a world away isn't called cowardly.

I think there's definitely danger in that. As much as drones and similar weapons are legitimate in theory, they tend to deprive war of the seriousness it deserves--a serious born of real risk on both sides. We are moving into an age when the United States carries on major operations without even putting a fighter pilot at risk. I worry what that will do to us.

That said, the center of Al-Qaeda's cowardice was in attacking civilians. We do not question the heroism of the soldiers of D-Day because they used bullets, rather than killing German soldiers with their teeth.

Didn't our ancestors do much the same to the Native Americans ? No planes, no big buildings but plenty of strategic atrocities committed based on what European settlers thought was a mission they had a right to pursue.

I don't like talking about the destruction of native Americans in general terms—it's unfair to both sides, as if all white people committed genocide and all indians were victims—and everything was the same for 400 years. But, yes, many major actions against native americans were vicious, brutal, immoral and, yes, very cowardly.

That is, I take the question of cowardly murder seriously. It's bad whoever does it. What's your view?

As pointed out in the posts above, bravery is a matter of perspective.

Apparently that's your view. I find it an immoral one. It seems to me that whether the topic is a secretary roasted alive in a flaming building or a young indian woman bayonetted by a solider, the only "perspective" available is that of disgust and disapprobation for their murderer. One should not excuse the terrorist because you too hate America, or excuse the soldier because you love America to a fault. As you disagree, well, I hope nobody takes a different "perspective" on you or those you love.

The invasion of Iraq was not a show of "bravery" on the part of the United States

One can certainly disagree with the war. But it was a war between armies. Wars between armies can be bad in all sorts of ways, but there's a difference between shooting at someone in uniform and killing civilians whose only crime was being at work on time.

174prosfilaes
Mar 16, 2012, 12:31am Top

#165: This is ultimately a linguistic issue, not a real one.

#173: A man who sits back in an office at Creech Air Force Base and guides an missile into a building a half a world away isn't called cowardly.

That said, the center of Al-Qaeda's cowardice was in attacking civilians.

I'm looking this up, and neither Wiktionary nor the 1913 Webster's Unabridged support you; they're all about the lack of fear part. The New Oxford American Dictionary sort of does--it says "SPECIAL USAGE (of an action) carried out against a person who is unable to retaliate: a cowardly attack on a helpless victim". Which condemns the drone pilot more then the hijackers.

And my problem, and I think Maher's too, is that, if you want to blame them for attacking civilians or for being murderers, go ahead. But when you start pulling out cowardly, it feels like abuse for the sake of abuse, abuse for the sake of dehumanizing. You're stretching the definition of cowardly to include all attacks on civilians; why not just accuse them of attacking civilians, if that's what you mean?

there's a difference between shooting at someone in uniform and killing civilians whose only crime was being at work on time.

It's a different context, but I've always been uncomfortable with that idea when I've usually seen it brought up in the context of Hiroshima. In a number of wars, just because someone is in uniform doesn't mean anything more than they were the right age and gender and at least passable health.

175Lunar
Mar 16, 2012, 4:28am Top

#173: We are moving into an age when the United States carries on major operations without even putting a fighter pilot at risk. I worry what that will do to us.

See, my initial intuition would be that drone "pilots" would be even more emotionally removed from the situation than usual and that this would lead to insensitivity to the point of carelessness about getting the "correct" target. But the other day on Antiwar Radio they mentioned a news item that suggests the opposite problem, that a number of drone operators are experiencing a lot of stress or "burnout" and some even have something akin to PTSD.

Unlike traditional pilots flying manned aircraft in a war zone, the pilots operating remote drones often stare at the same piece of ground in Afghanistan or Iraq for days, sometimes months. They watch someone's pattern of life, see people with their families, and then they can be ordered to shoot.

176lawecon
Mar 16, 2012, 8:37am Top

~173

""A man who sits back in an office at Creech Air Force Base and guides an missile into a building a half a world away isn't called cowardly.""

"I think there's definitely danger in that. As much as drones and similar weapons are legitimate in theory, they tend to deprive war of the seriousness it deserves--a serious born of real risk on both sides. We are moving into an age when the United States carries on major operations without even putting a fighter pilot at risk. I worry what that will do to us."

"That said, the center of Al-Qaeda's cowardice was in attacking civilians. We do not question the heroism of the soldiers of D-Day because they used bullets, rather than killing German soldiers with their teeth."

The first paragraph sounded very sensible. The last sentence in the second paragraph is so far over the line as to be "just plain silly." There is a world of difference (put intended) between flying an airliner into a building, knowing that this result will be your death, and sitting at a console directing a missile half way around the world. Call it bravery or not, according to your prejudices, but the first has it and the second doesn't. The "analogy" between those two and actually engaging in a fight in person "with your teeth" rather than a fight in person with an automatic weapon is a ludicrous analogy. I can't imagine why you would say such a facially silly thing.

=========================

"That is, I take the question of cowardly murder seriously. It's bad whoever does it. What's your view?"

Regardless of how much you would like to drag the discussion back to your frame of mind, it isn't there. "Cowardly murder" clearly exists only if one is outside of the context of military action in a declared war. Bin Laden had declared war. The fact that no one took that declaration seriously was their problem, not his.

While I agree that it would be nice if actions in war were one thing and action against civilians and their lives and property were another separate thing, that separateness has largely evaporated since WWI - and probably hasn't existed in a strong way since the Napoleonic Wars. Do the names Dresden, Hiroshima and Nagasaki mean anything to you? And, as I'm certain you know, those are only the most dramatic examples from a conflict that Americans noticed was going on. The are many other examples today. In fact, most warfare today is against those not wearing uniforms and not even members of a formal command structure. So "murder against civilians" is not going to cut it as a way of disposing at issues you'd rather not address.

177lriley
Mar 16, 2012, 8:57am Top

I would venture to guess that if you're an Al Quaeda recruit--at least a small part of your training takes in the likely possibility that you are going to die violently or be captured/tortured maybe murdered while in detention yourself. I don't buy the cowardice angle.

U.S. military has killed and maimed thousands of innocents in their invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. What did all the 'Shock and Awe' prelude to going into Iraq amount to? And I'd venture out again to say that back in those days the majority of people in this country watching all that thought that was great.

178lriley
Edited: Mar 16, 2012, 9:00am Top

I would venture to guess that if you're an Al Quaeda recruit--at least a small part of your training takes in the likely possibility that you are going to die violently or be captured/tortured maybe murdered while in detention yourself. I don't buy the cowardice angle.

U.S. military has killed and maimed thousands of innocents in their invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. What did all the 'Shock and Awe' prelude to going into Iraq amount to? And I'd venture out again to say that back in those days the majority of people in this country watching all that on their televisions/computer screens (not all that that much different from a guy pushing a button a thousand miles away--to send a missile) thought that was great.

179prosfilaes
Edited: Mar 16, 2012, 5:55pm Top

#176: "Cowardly murder" clearly exists only if one is outside of the context of military action in a declared war. Bin Laden had declared war. The fact that no one took that declaration seriously was their problem, not his.

Who the fuck is Bin Laden? I see no reason to take that more seriously then "I declare war against prostitution: signed Jack", "I declare war against the North Side Gang: signed Al", "I declare war against the women of American: signed Ted", or "I declare war against Columbine High School". Bin Laden was not part of a military, and had no right to declare war; like those other murderers, he's just another killer. (Yeah, he's got some thugs; so did Al (Capone), and so do many gang leaders today. His attack was nothing a large gang or mob boss, or the Black Panthers, or the KKK at one point in time*, couldn't have pulled off. Hell, there's a number of Boy or Girl Scout Troops that could have pulled 9/11 off if they had the twisted mentality to.)

180lawecon
Edited: Mar 16, 2012, 7:17pm Top

~179

"Who the fuck is Bin Laden?"

He was the guy who led an "international terrorist organization" for a decade or so before 9/11.

Who the fuck was Al Capone? If Al Capone declared war on you, would you take it seriously or blow it off?

You seem to have this odd notion that only national governments can and do engage in violent activity. Where you got that notion is beyond me, give the examples in your own post.

Of course, national government routinely label their competitors in the market for violence as "criminals." Curious, however, they seem to only do that when convenient. For instance, I haven't noticed the people in Guantanamo being prosecuted as criminals under the criminal law of the U.S. or of any state in the U.S. If 9/11 was a plain vanilla criminal conspiracy against U.S. citizens or property that is what would happen.

But, on the flip side, you would like to maintain that 9/11 wasn't an "act of war". It wasn't? I don't think you can have it both ways.

181prosfilaes
Mar 16, 2012, 7:27pm Top

#180: If Al Capone declared war on you, would you take it seriously or blow it off?

I would treat it as a criminal act, not an act of war.

You seem to have this odd notion that only national governments can and do engage in violent activity.

No. I have this notion that only nations can engage in war.

Curious, however, they seem to only do that when convenient.

Yeah. If this is first time on these boards that I call bullshit on that, maybe I've been negligent.

For instance, I haven't noticed the people in Guantanamo being prosecuted as criminals under the criminal law of the U.S. or of any state in the U.S. If 9/11 was a plain vanilla criminal conspiracy against U.S. citizens or property that is what would happen.

The people in Guantanamo weren't directly arrested for 9/11. In any case, I don't support the handling of Guantanamo, so I'm not trying to have it both ways.

182lriley
Mar 16, 2012, 9:52pm Top

#179--definitely don't agree with this either. Who the fuck is Bin Laden?--well whether you would take him seriously or not--he carried through with his threat. You might not agree with his ideology or even persist in seeing him as a non-state actor but as events were to show he was someone that needed to take seriously.

I've read quite a bit about P-IRA. They were non-state actors as well. At least to the British (Thatcher govt.) who tried to criminalize them. That didn't work out well. The idea that they were just a mafioso like organization completely lost credibility in the aftermath of ten men hunger striking to it's final conclusion. That required commitment on their part with a capital C and completely shredded the British govt.'s contention. It also put any kind of settlement on the backburner until a day when Thatcher was no longer in power. It meant more commitment--more death, maiming and destruction--primarily because a govt. would not budge at all--it paid the consequences for a good 'nother 15 + years. The problem really starts when a people and its govt. cannot critique themselves. They see enemies--they refuse to wonder what has brought the animosity about.

183lawecon
Edited: Mar 16, 2012, 11:14pm Top

~181

So, let's see, you are now consistent. Good for you.

But, hmm, who determines whether a state of war exists and whether a given individual is a criminal or an "enemy combatant"? Is it you? If it is not you, if it is, instead, the U.S government , then it seems we should look at what the U.S. government has said and done. Let's see, has the U.S. government treated Bin Laden and his group as merely another criminal gang and those who have taken up his cause are merely criminal aiders and abetors or conspirators? It doesn't appear so. It appears that the U.S. government has consistently described such people as "enemy combatants" - implying a state of war. Further, it has refused to charge such people as criminals in the courts of the United States, despite loud encouragement to do so and the campaign promises of a certain high official.

Further, as you may recall, Bin Laden was recently killed by agents of the U.S. government while he was apparently unarmed and not a direct threat to those who shot him. Indeed, there were some reports from "reputable sources" that the commander in chief of such agents had instructed them to kill him unless he was naked. What should happen to those who engage in such premeditated murderous behavior under the criminal law? Willing to go all the way with your "mere criminal" theory?

184Lunar
Edited: Mar 17, 2012, 2:07am Top

#183: It appears that the U.S. government has consistently described such people as "enemy combatants" - implying a state of war.

Oddly enough, isn't "enemy combatants" the doublespeak they cooked up so they wouldn't have to call them "prisoners of war" which would have, I dunno, implied a state of war?

EDIT: Ah, yes. I believe the exact term was not "enemy combatant" but "unlawful enemy combatant," which was later further mangled by Obama when he changed it to "unprivileged enemy belligerent."

What should happen to those who engage in such premeditated murderous behavior under the criminal law?

Saddam Hussein got a trial like a "mere criminal." Not that we should expect any consistency from the likes of the US government.

185SimonW11
Mar 17, 2012, 4:34am Top

Terrorist & Guerrilla fighters are attempting to transition from being treated as criminals to being treated as a state. were the provos and their fellow travelers criminals? Yes. are the criminals now? No they won the war of the flea, occupying some of the moral high ground, demonstrating that they did always act like criminals while on occasion the british and their supporters did.

Dieing for their cause is one of the ways such people demonstrate they are not just criminals. Provoking responses that are or can be represented as unjust, is how they establish that their opponents are the criminals.

186lriley
Edited: Mar 17, 2012, 10:03am Top

#185--FWIW--the Irish and English have a long, long history of animosity. For the Irish--legitimacy as a culture and a nation of its own were always at the root of the dispute. Generally in the south (less so in the north) its people weren't happy incorporated into a British state. It was always politically motivated--which is not to say that crimes weren't committed but in the end it was only through violence (something that can easily be fingered as crime by the govt., media etc.) that the Irish had any chance to win.

As for the P-IRA--they've at least compromised on some of their original agenda to gain political legitimacy through Sinn Fein--which is now a major player in politics on both sides of the border. As far as the main goal of reunification I don't see that happening any time in the near future. Some of those hunger strikers are probably turning over in their graves on that--but that was the price that had to be paid and if anything when a Paisley or McGuinness can get along--what the hell. Happy St. Paddy's day.

187lawecon
Edited: Mar 17, 2012, 11:58pm Top

~184

""What should happen to those who engage in such premeditated murderous behavior under the criminal law?""

"Saddam Hussein got a trial like a "mere criminal." Not that we should expect any consistency from the likes of the US government."

Hmmm, well, as we all know, despite the propaganda run up to Iraq, Saddam Hussein committed no crimes of any kind against Americans or American property. As I recall, he was not tried by an American court, and he was not executed by Americans.

I thus fail to see the relevance to this discussion, and I think you missed my point entirely. The point was that federal agents sent to track down a fugitive from justice do not kill such fugitive in cold blood unless they themselves are in immediate danger from him. Further, if their superiors order them to do so and they carry out those orders, then they and their superiors should be prosecuted for murder with foresight and intent.

188faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 9:29am Top

>173 timspalding:
"That is, I take the question of cowardly murder seriously. It's bad whoever does it. What's your view?"



I am a pacifist....so I don't like any acts of violent murder...for any cause what so ever, but unfortunately it happens. But, I fail to see the difference between the men who flew the planes into out buildings and the soldiers who flew boming missions into Iraq. What is the difference between that action and those taken on 9/11 ?

Got in hot water at the start Bush's war about this cause I said that I disagreed with his reasoning for a war and was told I did not support the troops. Cheney's "slam dunk" in Iraq had nothing to do with the soldiers on the ground. To my way of thinking these are two different issues.

To come to this country and face the Natives was a brave thing to do. The people who settled this country were not cowardly. Yet, when seen later through the eyes of history, it looks a bit different.

To fly a plane into a building knowing you are going to die, is a brave thing to do. The goal may not be one that you agree with but it was not a cowardly action on the part of the person who is commiting the action.

189timspalding
Mar 19, 2012, 11:28am Top

I'm looking this up, and neither Wiktionary nor the 1913 Webster's Unabridged support you

cow·ard·ly adjective /ˈkou-ərdlē/ 

1. Lacking courage

2. (of an action) Carried out against a person who is unable to retaliate
- a cowardly attack on a helpless victim

That's Google. I'm not sure who they're using now--no longer Houghton Miffline--, but it's the 2nd definition. This is just normal English, however much people want to deny it.

190margd
Mar 19, 2012, 11:37am Top

The PERSON who self-immolates or suicide-bombs is not a coward,
but the second ACTION can be if noncombatants are targeted?

191JGL53
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 12:00pm Top

> 190

This really isn't brain surgery or rocket science, as others - not you or me - seem to think.

The second definition is, e.g., when a large bully beats up a smaller person just for fun. The big bully does not self-immolate when doing this. In fact you can back down a bully if he thinks you can whip him. The bully, like even a normal person, seeks to avoid being killed or beaten up.

When a person self-immolates for a cause or ideology, he is not being cowardly - as he is NOT seeking to hurt or kill while avoiding pain or death himself. Such a person - as I said before - can be rightfully labeled a psycho, a dumb-ass, a fool or any number of other pejorative, just not a coward.

I am sorry - but anyone who cannot grok this fails the I.Q. test.

Not that that's a bad thing per se. We all have a certain level of intelligence and thus will grok or not grok at different levels.

As an analogy, I could easily beat a little person at basketball, but in turn I would be easily crunched by any NBA player.

I think we can safely move on to some other topic now. The definition of "coward" has now been settled.

The O.P. was concerning the doings of Rash Limpaw. Does anyone have a comment on that particular gob of slime? If not, for what reason are you posting on this thread?

192SimonW11
Mar 19, 2012, 11:57am Top

189> Well its not the first time I have disagreed with another's definition.

I would have said (of an action) One carried out against people believing it without danger to oneself.

Whatever it seem that either definition hold Drone pilots in low esteem.

193timspalding
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 12:30pm Top

I am sorry - but anyone who cannot grok this fails the I.Q. test.

Not that that's a bad thing per se. We all have a certain level of intelligence and thus will grok or not grok at different levels.


What offensive drivel! Please, any time you want to do a vocabulary test against me, be my guest. Until then, stop disagreeing not only with me but with simple dictionaries. Yes, "coward" and its cognates are most commonly used for simple fear of injury or death, but there is a wider usage.

194JGL53
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 12:51pm Top

> 192 "...I would have said (of an action) One carried out against people believing it without danger to oneself...

Beat me by three minutes.

195faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 1:35pm Top

>189 timspalding:
I don't think that those who flew the planes on 9/11 saw those they hit as "helpless" victims.

How then do you discribe the actions of our soldiers who bombed Iraq ? A bunch of cowards ? I think Cheney is a coward...but I fail to see most of our military members as such.

The plan to fly the planes into the buildings was a cowardly plan....the men who executed the plan, well, they thought they were doing the "right" thing. They were also convinced that those who died deserved to die.

Guess that is why it is so important to chose leaders and "causes" that are honorable and not cowardly. It doesn't take much to make some individuals perform amazing acts of courage for a dishonorable cause.

196lriley
Mar 19, 2012, 1:41pm Top

Our government has carried out wars against innocents too. It has supported many dictatorial regimes. It has trained police and military from other countries in interrogation techniques--including torture. The School of the Americas is particularly known for that. Google Dan Mitrione. He's a perfect example--a small town police chief--first recruited by the FBI--and later sent by the CIA into Latin America. In Uruguay where he met his end--he and his cronies would pick up the homeless to use as guinea pigs. They could not release these people later back onto the streets because they would have stories to tell. They were tortured--then murdered never knowing why--they had nothing to offer except their bodies and whatever pain their bodies could take. We've overthrown governments we didn't like--creating justifiable circumstances for doing that as we went along--engaged in black ops, sold drugs--run guns and consider our spies some sacrosanct beings--well they get their orders from above no matter how enthusiastic they are about what they're doing. Protecting us? or some arrogant assholes who are so powerful they're beyond the law?

The people who died on 9-11 were innocents but in some respect they paid the price for our government's meddling and mischief in the affairs of other nations going back at the least to WWII. That is the way I see it anyway. Best not to demonize your enemies--or emasculate them in this case as cowards. Better to take them seriously--make an effort to understand them and why they do what they do (and correct what you can that's in your power) even if you still feel it necessary to destroy them.

197faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 2:15pm Top

>196 lriley:

"make an effort to understand them and why they do what they do (and correct what you can that's in your power) even if you still feel it necessary to destroy them."

Are you suggesting American may have to APOLOGIZE for something ? Or admit to having some RESPONSIBILITY for what happened ?

Was a suggestion I made shortly after 9/11 at an in-law family gathering of some sort. Was told very loudly and very clearly to : "Go hold hands with Saddam Hussain" if that was the way I felt ! (yes I am surrounded by Conservatives, area of state, neighborhood and in-law family)

Think we deemed them worthy of destruction....which in the end, will most likely come back to bite us in the rear at some point in time. If we aren't paying for that already. Certainly given our current problems, it looks like perhaps we may be on the long horrendous path that is be "pay back" for our actions.

198lriley
Mar 19, 2012, 2:39pm Top

#197--actually I'm not suggesting we apologize. I'd be after something better--some flexibility when it's called for--to change our ways. And our secret services stand in the way of that. In the aftermath of the cold war they had to find even more new enemies to justify their being. Though--I'd also carefully add that some of our intelligence people are no doubt fine and conscientious people.

I'd venture that--and to venture in this case means 'I'd be almost willing to bet'--that there's not a hell of a lot of difference between what passes for the Russian KGB today, Mossad, MI6, their French, German, Chinese counterparts and our CIA--except maybe that this or that group is a little more experienced or adept than some of the others-- but that they all learn from each other. It's the way of the world.

FWIW--I have the same problems with family and in-laws and even some friends.

199faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 2:51pm Top

>198 lriley:
I would guess that an apology can be defined in many ways.
Also venture to guess that "changing our ways" and being "flexible" would appear apologetic to some, in fact there are few of those type of individuals in my aquaintance as well.

Pretty sure some apologies are owed for the likes of Cheney but then that is a deeply held personal opinion. Don't think that the world deserved the likes of him. Again, a personal opinion about the character of the man.

200timspalding
Mar 19, 2012, 3:12pm Top

The plan to fly the planes into the buildings was a cowardly plan

You just failed JGL53's IQ test.

201faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 3:19pm Top

>200 timspalding:

Be that as it may ! My IQ is often in question on these threads :0

The plan to invade Iraq was a cowardly plan as well. Does that make the soldiers who participated in that war cowards ?

202timspalding
Mar 19, 2012, 3:20pm Top

The plan to invade Iraq was a cowardly plan as well. Does that make the soldiers who participated in that war cowards ?

No, I think. Al-Qaeda members are independent actors in a way soldiers are not.

203lriley
Mar 19, 2012, 3:44pm Top

#199--it just strikes me that what's done is done. Amends can be made or behavior modified--apologies without amends or the subsequent corrections are just tokens--not worth a whole lot. Some are not going to forgive you anyway--some others may continue an agenda of destruction--those like the 9-11 bombers have to be stopped.

Generally though--I think this is going nowhere--not because of you but because there will always be people like Cheney who rise to power and because there is a large segment of our population who are enamored with themselves as American supermen/women--who think this role of world's greatest power is something to strive for--and even more moderate people in this country think pretty much the same--I'm pretty sure now that many Democrats even among those seen as 'progressive' will continue to follow in the footsteps of Cheney and his ilk when it comes to being the 'No. 1' superpower--no matter what. Other nations may be more inclined to fix their infastructure, improve health care, figure out their energy problems or invest in education.

204faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 3:50pm Top

>202 timspalding:
You don't believe that the attack's on 9/11 weren't masterminded by someone ? Someone who has had followers for a good long time ?

What size "army" does one have to have to qualify as a soldier ?

Would argue that the men in the planes felt they were soldiers to a cause.

One could also argue that Cheney and his minions were acting quite independently when they built their case for war. I don't view them as conducting themselves in the same manner as our prior leaders. Granted they were not the first to make mistakes but their behavior after 9/11 was not something we had seen previously.
It is just a matter of from what point of view you are looking at the issue.

In fact, it is my belief that Osama Bin Lauden....saw the name Bush as leader of the Western world and from his point of view, that was all he needed to take action. His perspective is tribal....the name is all. Bush Sr and Bush Jr.....one and the same to him. Can't say for sure but it would help if we tried to see things from the perspective of others....9/11 may have been avoided and acts of violence may not happen as often.

205faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 3:53pm Top

>203 lriley:
Think you are correct, also think that American's and their view of themselves will become the butt of many jokes throughout the world. If not already.

A little humility goes a long way !

206JGL53
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 5:55pm Top

I claim no expertise on any of this but I just read a couple of essays by the late Christopher Hitchens on the history of the middle east, especially Iraq and Iran, starting back in WWI.

It seems there was a regime in Iraq that the people were happy with back in the 1940s and early 1950s. But someone in the U.S. government thought they might not sell us oil at the price we thought fair, and furthermore they were suspected of playing footsies with our sworn enemy the Soviets.

So we (the U.S. government at the time) sent in C.I.A. and similar operatives, overthrew the government, and installed the Shah. Remember him - our puppet?

So we (the U.S. government) effed mightily with Iraq - should we be surprised they effed us back, in any way they could?

This is one area where I agree with the insane old racist homophobe Ron Paul. We should leave other countries the hell alone, quit trying to have things go our way in other countries -however that is interpreted - in other words MOOB.

I seem to recall that we supported puppet regimes in the Philippines, Chile and a crapload of other countries - regomes that tortured and murdered their own people as they say fit - like the Shah did.

I don't think these countries hate us for our freedom (what an asinine concept). I think they have reason to hate us because our varous elected governments, over the years, have tried to rule the effing world, mainlybehind the scenes - in their own benevolent way, of course, compared to England, Spain, Germany, Russia and other countries each in turn from the 1800s to now exploiting weaker countries.

I think most people in the U.S. would prefer us to spend tax payer money on repairing our own bridges, roads, our electrical grid, and similar issues and let other countries take care of their own damn business.

Our government always apparently disagrees.

So there you are.

207lriley
Edited: Mar 20, 2012, 3:39am Top

#206--it was Britain that originally pushed the envelope on Iran. They just recruited us to help them out after they got caught doing underhanded shit and that Iraqi government threw them and their entire embassy out of the country. Britain use to have complete control over Iraqi oil. Britain got the Eisenhower administration involved (look up Kermit Roosevelt for one)--but OTOH were not keen on us taking a large slice of their pie afterwards. They wanted things the way they used to be. The British government has a lot of dirty laundry out there if you want to go and look for it. Anyway we did for Mossadegh and then turned around the next year and took care of Arbenz in Guatemala--who wanted to do some land reform for his piss poor population--not on the American Fruit Company's dime even if they weren't intending to ever use large chunks of it. Anyhoo--there's a pattern to post WWII American Foreign Policy if you want to look for it. That's one reason I have some sympathy for Ron Paul--I don't think he's altogether wrong in that area.

208faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 6:20pm Top

>206 JGL53: & 207
Does it not make sense, that if we do not look at our policies in the light of truth, nothing much is going to change ? Perhaps that is why the Republicans are so worried about our relations in the Middle East as they seem to see most everything we've done as "exceptionalism" ? We have a military that is exceptionally strong. If we don't look at the health of our education, energy sources and economy, our military might well be the only thing exceptional about the U.S.
Clearly, we support our own interest and given that we have in many cases, given life saving aide to many countries we do have the right to some expectations, however, if we give aide so as to be able to push our agenda....it is no longer aide, it is an exchange, an exchange that doesn't necessarly benefit the people in the region. Which is why Bin Lauden was so successful in recruiting followers. Probably why so many terrorist groups are successful.

Merely by suggesting such, I have now become an "America Hater".

209StormRaven
Mar 19, 2012, 6:47pm Top

206: The Shah was installed as ruler of Iran, not Iraq.

210JGL53
Mar 19, 2012, 7:11pm Top

> 209

Correct. I pulled a Palin. It happens.

Our boy in Iraq was Saddam Hussein.

I think it possible D. Rumsfeld and Saddam had a gay relationship back in the eighties.

211krolik
Mar 19, 2012, 7:36pm Top

>210 JGL53:

Oh, please.

Sure, anyone can muff a name or a fact, and there's nothing very fruitful when others make a fuss about playing a "gotcha" game. I'll grant you that.

But then, to milk the situation for another tendentious bit--"our boy in Iraq was Saddam Hussein"--really, you ought to pause and take a breath.

True, there were periods when the cozying up to Saddam was real, and shitty, and I definitely think that Ronald Reagan sentimentalists should be challenged on that score.

But your "our boy" bit wildly oversimplifies. To say so is just another version of paternalism. Saddam was more complicated, as were the politics surrounding him. He was a big boy in his own right, in the worst sense. Why minimize this fact? Why implicitly exculpate him?

212JGL53
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 7:54pm Top

> 211

Well, you certainly have the ability to read more into a simple statement than even I do. That's sort of scary.

I think my point was that, sure, Saddam was a piece of shit in his own right, with his own filthy attitude and agenda, but that the American government helped prop him up for decades because some U.S. government A-holes decided that it was in our "national interest", as is said, to do so.

They could have easily had him whacked by the C.I.A. the first day he took power. It would have been easy then. Our government always wants to run the world, so why didn't they do something positive like whack him instead of insuring he would become the supreme overlord of Iraq, wherein he could kill, rape, and torture as he saw fit?

I'm just saying that our government A-holes's effing with countries in the end always turns out such horrible situations that it is hard to imagine it worse if they had just kept their noses out of other countries's business.

213prosfilaes
Mar 19, 2012, 7:55pm Top

#189: If you have multiple dictionaries, most of which don't have your definition, and people denying your definition, I don't know how you can wave it off as normal English.

In any case, that's the definition I quoted from the New Oxford American Dictionary, and it's still being used as a pejorative against people we don't like. Remote drones, snipers, a lot of the tools of modern war are used against people who are unable to retaliate. Since time-immortal, war has been about making sure your enemy couldn't retaliate. One suicide-bomber in Vietnam won the Medal of Honor.

Frankly, there were a lot of people on 9/11 who could retaliate; the passengers could stop the hijacking pretty quickly whenever they choose, as United Airlines Flight 93 shows, and the US did retaliate afterward. The fact that effective retaliation was not carried out that day does not mean that the US couldn't retaliate.

#193: Until then, stop disagreeing not only with me but with simple dictionaries.

A dictionary is written by people in an attempt to encapsulate a complex language rich with subtle meanings in short description. In any case, the dictionary you're quoting does not literally support you; it lets you say the hijackings were cowardly, but it's "(of an action)", so you can't say the hijackers were cowardly.

214prosfilaes
Edited: Mar 19, 2012, 8:10pm Top

#212: the American government helped prop him up for decades

During the Iran-Iraq war, the Soviet Union was the single largest provider of weaponry to Iraq, with France coming in second.* Saddam was apparently great at playing all sides.

Our government always wants to run the world, so why didn't they do something positive like whack him instead of insuring he would become the supreme overlord of Iraq, wherein he could kill, rape, and torture as he saw fit?

And would that have been better? He brought peace to his chunk of the world for a long time. Without him, it's entirely possible it would have turned into a new Somalia, with war-lords constantly fighting over their little chunks of land.

Edit: Oh, and we could just whack him like we did to Castro?

I'm just saying that our government A-holes's effing with countries in the end always turns out such horrible situations that it is hard to imagine it worse if they had just kept their noses out of other countries's business.

I'm not saying we should or should have screwed with other nations. A lot of sad cases seem to be straight paranoia about Communism, accusations of which could be laid against any politician who supported taking property from American or British interests and giving them to local interests. But every time we stand by and let some genocide happen or let foreign aid get used to prop up local warlords, we get crap for not doing anything. When we play pattycake with Saddam we get crap; when we isolate Castro, we get crap. When we give China most-favored-nation status, we get crap.

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_support_for_Iraq_during_the_Iran%E2%80%93Ira...

215faceinbook
Mar 19, 2012, 8:32pm Top

>214 prosfilaes:
What kind of "crap" does the United States get ? As far as I can tell, the U.S. got it's first real taste of crap on 9/11.
People grumble and complain about our actions or lack there of but the U.S. pretty much does what it wants. THAT should be evident after our response to 9/11
Like the other big players, Europe, Russia....we use the world to our advantage.....leaving the little guys, poor, uneducated and frustrated. Then wonder why they keep fighting each other. There is no possiblity they can fight us or any of the bigger developed countries, so they cling to their guns and their religion. Someone else said that....;)

Agree with Ron Paul as well on this one. Not our country or our culture. Change comes from within, when we meddle, we have to revist to remeddle cause it seldom seems to make things better in the long run. We can not insist that people see things the way we do.

216prosfilaes
Mar 19, 2012, 9:16pm Top

#215: we use the world to our advantage.....leaving the little guys, poor, uneducated and frustrated.

It's a half-truth, at best. We've done a lot to help out many of those countries. Whatever we do, you're going to blame us.

You don't get to agree with Ron Paul and accuse us of "leaving" them that way. Either we should try to influence them directly to be wealthier and better educated, or we get to stand with Ron Paul and leave them alone, poor and uneducated.

Then wonder why they keep fighting each other. There is no possiblity they can fight us or any of the bigger developed countries, so they cling to their guns and their religion.

I get real tired of stuff like this; the US has free-will and uses it to do wrong, but these countries are just automatons and when they do wrong, it's not their fault. If the US can be blamed for things as a whole, then so can the Sudan, Egypt, and every other nation.

217CharlesBoyd
Mar 19, 2012, 11:44pm Top

>208 faceinbook: "Clearly, we support our own interest and given that we have in many cases, given life saving aide to many countries we do have the right to some expectations, however, if we give aide so as to be able to push our agenda....it is no longer aide, it is an exchange, an exchange that doesn't necessarly benefit the people in the region. Which is why Bin Lauden was so successful in recruiting followers. Probably why so many terrorist groups are successful."

One of those rare times we're in agreement.

218Lunar
Mar 20, 2012, 12:44am Top

#210: I think it possible D. Rumsfeld and Saddam had a gay relationship back in the eighties.

Nothing beats "terrorist fist-bump" like "homosexual Arab palm-grab."

#216: Either we should try to influence them directly to be wealthier and better educated, or we get to stand with Ron Paul and leave them alone, poor and uneducated.

You know, you don't get points for invoking that White Man's Burden nonsense.

219lawecon
Edited: Mar 20, 2012, 1:20am Top

""The plan to invade Iraq was a cowardly plan as well. Does that make the soldiers who participated in that war cowards ?""

"No, I think. Al-Qaeda members are independent actors in a way soldiers are not."

So you're not cowardly if you're "just following orders?" Seems to me we heard that one some place before......

220timspalding
Mar 20, 2012, 7:09am Top

So you're not cowardly if you're "just following orders?" Seems to me we heard that one some place before......

Yes, obviously. The question is how far you push it? A young German boy drafted into an army of millions and sent to the front is not the moral equivalent of Hitler. An Virginia volunteer who finds himself at Chancellorsville is not the strategic equivalent of Lee. The 9/11 hijackers were not Bin Laden, but their degree of agency and involvement was high--they volunteered, could leave at any time, knew the whole plan and participated to some extent in its development.

221SimonW11
Mar 20, 2012, 8:33am Top

"A young German boy drafted into an army of millions and sent to the front is not the moral equivalent of Hitler."

Yet a young Cerman boy who thought the war wrong. Could avoid going to the front if he showed rather less of the courage of his convictions than was demonstrate by the 9/11 hijackers.

222faceinbook
Mar 20, 2012, 8:46am Top

>216 prosfilaes:
"I get real tired of stuff like this; the US has free-will and uses it to do wrong, but these countries are just automatons and when they do wrong, it's not their fault"

I never said that it wasn't their fault.....in fact just the opposite. If they want to change their way of life it should be their own responsibility to do so. By imposing our will we only make matters worse. Not sure how that adds up to them being blameless ?

"Either we should try to influence them directly to be wealthier and better educated, or we get to stand with Ron Paul and leave them alone, poor and uneducated"

Don't believe we are able to influence them...you are missing my point. We take what we want claiming to have a desire to make life better for them. Nobody can MAKE life better for them.....they have to do it themselves. I stand with Ron Paul.

223CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 20, 2012, 6:11pm Top

>222 faceinbook: You used the word "responsibly" in your last post. Gasp! Careful with that; I was nearly crucified in this thread for using the word "responsibity."

224faceinbook
Mar 20, 2012, 6:27pm Top

>223 CharlesBoyd:
Mr. Boyd.....you are all over the place and keep twisting what is posted. I don't think any of the poster's on this site would advocate for a lack of responsibility on the part of any one. What is not fair is to "target" a particular segment of society and label them as irresponsible when indeed, there is wide spread lack of responsibility and it shows in all kinds of ways on all levels of society
It is easy to point a finger and make a target out of the irresponsible poor....much harder to point out the lack of responsibility of those on the top.
Think ALL should be responsible....until then, the poor are responding to a cultural norm, the only way they can.
But then, that has been mentioned several times by several different individuals. You don't seem to want to hear what is being said.
Of course, you are free to keep pointing fingers at those irresponsible lazy individuals who "live off the government" while the top is making it harder and harder for those lazy people to NOT receive any assistance, it will just be rather nonproductive for you. On the bright side, you will have more targets to point fingers at if the top does not hold up it's end of the responsibility as more and more people struggle to stay at or near the poverty line.

225prosfilaes
Mar 20, 2012, 10:35pm Top

#218: You know, you don't get points for invoking that White Man's Burden nonsense.

Read the context; I was quoting "leaving" from someone else, and pointing that that's does have an implication of responsibility in this context.

#222: We take what we want claiming to have a desire to make life better for them.

What would not doing that look like? Is it cutting off foreign aid? How should we respond to countries nationalizing American property? Do we have to care if all the workers are rightless slaves, or is complaining about that meddling? Is it meddling to make it illegal for American businessmen to give bribes, or is it "taking what we want" to let them engage in bribes, even if that's the standard? How should we deal with an evil tyrant that's crushing an uprising? Is it meddling to ban arms sales to either side? Is it meddling to let the tyrant run up a line of credit and sell him all the arms he wants, if that's the commercially reasonable thing to do?

We live in a complex intertwined world. If you don't want us to go completely isolationist (and who is we, to begin with?) we're going to have to interact with them.

Nobody can MAKE life better for them

If someone falls in the street, the ambulance people and the doctors can make life better for them. Even when you have ongoing domestic violence and it's not trivial to get involved, we still don't write it off as "nobody can MAKE life better for them" so it's okay for one of them to kill the other.

If there's famine, then we can provide food and MAKE life better for them. We can make it easy or hard for them to get medicines. (Again, I don't know what's meddling; is insisting our IP being protected by patents meddling? is giving them free medicines meddling?) Again, how should we deal with an evil tyrant that's crushing an uprising? Wouldn't helping the uprising make life better for most of the people? It's not trivial, but we're all one connected group of people on the planet. We certainly can impact their lives, for weal or woe.

226JGL53
Edited: Mar 20, 2012, 10:53pm Top

> 225 "...If there's famine, then we can provide food and MAKE life better for them. We can make it easy or hard for them to get medicines. (Again, I don't know what's meddling; is insisting our IP being protected by patents meddling? is giving them free medicines meddling?) Again, how should we deal with an evil tyrant that's crushing an uprising? Wouldn't helping the uprising make life better for most of the people? It's not trivial, but we're all one connected group of people on the planet. We certainly can impact their lives, for weal or woe."

Of course.

I think the complaint here is the exploitation of other countries and their people - the propping up of murderous dictators that the U.S. government views as "friendly" to our self-interest. it makes the American people look bad as we are the ones who elected the American government.

I for one think it best to admit the bad and demand the government do only the good it always claims that it only does. Let the truth go forth and it shall set us free.

And, no, I don't hate the troops.

227Lunar
Mar 21, 2012, 12:48am Top

#225: Read the context; I was quoting "leaving" from someone else, and pointing that that's does have an implication of responsibility in this context.

My context meter's working just fine, thank you. Not leaving means staying. That means occupation. No matter how much you want to dress it up as being "responsible," there is no "good" kind of colonialism. Stop pretending your good intentions make colonialism a force for good.

228lawecon
Edited: Mar 21, 2012, 9:51am Top

~220

""So you're not cowardly if you're "just following orders?" Seems to me we heard that one some place before...... ""

"Yes, obviously. The question is how far you push it? A young German boy drafted into an army of millions and sent to the front is not the moral equivalent of Hitler. An Virginia volunteer who finds himself at Chancellorsville is not the strategic equivalent of Lee. The 9/11 hijackers were not Bin Laden, but their degree of agency and involvement was high--they volunteered, could leave at any time, knew the whole plan and participated to some extent in its development."

You know, Tim, it is amazing the doublethink that some Americans can engage in, and after the experiences of the 20th Century !!

If you are a member of a command organization, at least "the right" command organization, and presto, you are exonerated from all morality. If you commit mass murder, on orders or having volunteered for a "mission," in a war that your nation recognizes, presto, you are exonerated from all morality. But, somehow, the same sorts of murders committed by those who have agreed to participate in a declared war against an enemy that was as well identified as the civilians of Dresden, Hiroshema and Nagasaki were identified as enemies to the United States becomes ultimate evil.

It may work for you Tim, but it doesn't work for anyone who sits down and really thinks about it. The dictates of morality are not particular to a certain flag.

Incidentally, Tim, even your particular examples make no sense. You say, for instance: "A young German boy drafted into an army of millions and sent to the front is not the moral equivalent of Hitler." Well, perhaps, if said young soldier is stupid enough not to have deserted before he is thrust into the middle of a great battle in which it is kill opposing soldiers or be killed. But we have numerous records of those young Geman soldiers, sent to the front, who regularly plundered and kiiled civilians for the loot they could send home. Hitler's Beneficiaries. They were members of a command organization. They were engaged in a war of a nation against other nations. But they weren't nearly innocent.

229lawecon
Mar 21, 2012, 9:48am Top

~224

Some people believe that with greater power and position come greater responsibility. Some people believe that with lesser power and position come the ability to be turned into a scapegoat for the failures and foibles of "the great."

Personally, I have not seen many advocates of "free market conservatism" who have spurned "free" public education for their children or the receipt of SS benefits in their old age or when injured. But perhaps Charles is such a one and will tell us all about it? If not, he might want to worry more about that log in his eye before becoming so exorcised about the mote in his brother's eye.

230margd
Mar 21, 2012, 10:49am Top

>220 timspalding: A young German boy drafted into an army of millions and sent to the front is not the moral equivalent of Hitler.

My dad, hardened as he was by a war in which he killed & captured German soldiers and saw friends and innocents die, told me that Canadian soldiers, at least, distinguished between SS and regular German soldiers they captured. The SS, they watched closely and never trusted for a moment. In the regular German soldiers, they often saw kids like themselves, who, though warned by superiors of a bad fate with Allied captors, somehow knew they would be treated ok and were usually happy to be a pawn removed from the gameboard of war. They may have been conscripted or enlisted in a spirit of nationalism (like our guys), but they soon realized the horror of war (like our guys).

231Arctic-Stranger
Mar 21, 2012, 2:21pm Top

When I was in Germany I had two interesting experiences. One was at a poetry reading by local poet. His verse was much like Ogden Nash, and he spoke very quickly, so I missed some of it. After, when I told him I liked his poems, at least the ones I understood. He asked my why I did not understand them, and I told him I was American, and just learning German.

His eyes lit up, and he said, "I was in America once! I was in Arkansas for two years!"

I asked him what he was doing there, and he said, somewhat proudly, "I was a prisoner of war."

A similar thing happened on a train in Florence a few months later.

I later figured why. when their kids asked them what they did during the war, they got to say, "I spent most of the war in America."

To this day, there is little pride among Germans who served in WWII.

232CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 21, 2012, 8:58pm Top

>231 Arctic-Stranger: Years ago I was part of an e-mail group called "Globers," something like that. People from all over the world discussed pretty much anything. One young German led me to believe that the younger generations of that time (ten, fifteen years ago?) considered the average German of WWII almost as much victims as the people in the countries Germany conquered.

>229 lawecon: As you imply by putting quotes around free, public education isn't free. Neither is SS. We all pay for both with taxes. None of us have the option to not pay SS taxes. Few of us can afford to send our children to private schools. So, yes, I will take my SS when I am old enough, I had no choice but to be in the program. As for public schools, as you say, they aren't free. So why should I not have my sons go to them, and now, my grandson go to them? That said, if I were rich I most definately would not take SS benefits; I'd consider it an act of patriotism. And, since my son can't afford to put my grandson into a private school, we picked the very best public school possible, one run like a private school, a so-called "traditional" school. And we volunteer there.

I agree with most of your post #228

To those people posting that the USA is using "foreign aid" in a manner to serve our interests way more than to help other people in other countries: I agree.

>224 faceinbook: To some degree, I agree with your "What is not fair is to "target" a particular segment of society and label them as irresponsible when indeed, there is wide spread lack of responsibility and it shows in all kinds of ways on all levels of society
It is easy to point a finger and make a target out of the irresponsible poor....much harder to point out the lack of responsibility of those on the top."

On this thread and on others, I have occasionally stated that irresponsible, greedy rich people are low lifes, I admit I don't write that much. That's because almost everyone that I've encountered on PRO AND CON do that all the time, so putting in my two cents worth isn't necessary. I have two problems with your thoughts, both on your last post and previous posts: 1) You seem to imply that poor people gaming or outright cheating the system is okay because plenty of other people in other levels of society do bad things, even worse things. Integrity is doing what's right even when it's hard. 2) You seem to believe, maybe my fault, that I think everyone on welfare, food stamps, WIC, etc is a lowlife and shouldn't have those benefits. I'm all for people getting help if they need it; I'm just against abuses to the system that everyone else has to pay for.

Re my attitude toward poor people: In terms of living in extreme poverty, not too many people could match my childhood. I don't ask anyone to feel sorry for me. That's just the way it was. And I'll repeat: Integrity is doing what's right even if it's hard.

233lawecon
Edited: Mar 22, 2012, 12:28am Top

This message has been flagged by multiple users and is no longer displayed (show)
~232

">229 As you imply by putting quotes around free, public education isn't free. Neither is SS. We all pay for both with taxes. None of us have the option to not pay SS taxes. Few of us can afford to send our children to private schools. So, yes, I will take my SS when I am old enough, I had no choice but to be in the program. As for public schools, as you say, they aren't free. So why should I not have my sons go to them, and now, my grandson go to them?"

It was decided long ago, in the Amish cases, that SS is not insurance. You are "entitled" to no benefits. It is a payroll tax and nothing else. If the feds want to try to bribe you by paying you "benefits" that is entirely at their discretion.

And I am amazed by your sudden shift in beliefs. Someone on welfare accepts welfare and they are morally deficient and a leech on society. You do the same thing and you are fully justified. Come on now, I bet you could have paid for your children's education - it was just more convenient for you to suck on the public tit, wasn't it?

As George Bernard Shaw said in his famous story: "Well, Madam, we've already determined what you are, we're now just haggling over price." http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Talk:George_Bernard_Shaw#Shaw.3F_.22We_have_established_what_you_are.2C_Madam.22

234Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 22, 2012, 3:00am Top

Wow, LE, calling someone a whore is pretty low, even for you.

235Jesse_wiedinmyer
Mar 22, 2012, 3:03am Top

I mean, maybe it's not low for Rush Limbaugh or anything, but...

236lriley
Mar 22, 2012, 3:35am Top

#234--like it or not I think he makes a good point. People moaning all the time about services supplied by govt. to people on the lower end of the economic scale--all the same they take advantage. And whenever they can. 'if I were rich'--whatever that means to whoever--but generally speaking the wealthiest take as much advantage of govt. handouts as anybody. 'I paid in' often turns out to be a crock of shit and is used as an excuse to demonize the most marginalized. I hear this from my Dad all the time--he's been retired for 26 years almost and whatever he actually did pay in he's gotten back several times over. Why is it there has been no national discussion about raising our society up from the bottom? Because the wealthiest don't want it and a good portion of those on the right think they're better than anyone below them on the income scale.

237lawecon
Edited: Mar 22, 2012, 8:41am Top

~234

Well, Jesse, that is not what I did, if you bothered to read the post before red flagging it. I'm curious, Jesse, what do you think is the point of the GBS story?

And how would you (especially you) refer to someone who was going on and on about how immoral it was to engage in certain acts and then publically justified his engaging in the same acts? There is a term for such behavior. It is a term that equally well might also be applied to this post of yours, given your persistent behavior in these Forums.

238CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 22, 2012, 9:59am Top

re the question of people getting out more in SS benefits than they paid in: That's a problem certainly, but remember people are not given any option. You pay into SS, like it or not. The government says you WILL pay SS taxes and we, as the government, promise to provide you so much per month when you retire. That's a contract, though one people are forced into, so the government has a legal and moral obligation to do as it's promised to do. No SS and people would be forced to plan on their own for retirement. Same goes for pensions, a promise was made by the pension organization, company, whatever, and that promise needs to be kept. Smarter people in government and on the boards of pension groups would have been helpful.

239StormRaven
Mar 22, 2012, 10:12am Top

The government says you WILL pay SS taxes and we, as the government, promise to provide you so much per month when you retire.

The government doesn't actually promise to give anything in return so it isn't a contract.

240lriley
Mar 22, 2012, 11:50am Top

#238--and really my problem is not with people getting back more than they put in. I just don't see where they have a gripe when it comes to say Health Care reform when it's obvious that it needs to be fixed. National health care is 'socialism'--as if your medicare and social security aren't--but you 'had no choice'--(that makes all the difference?) but you want to choose to say no for others--meanwhile the trend of a smaller and smaller % of people able to afford health insurance continues unabated while a privileged few prattle on about morality. .

241CharlesBoyd
Edited: Mar 22, 2012, 1:35pm Top

>239 StormRaven: Where you're an attorney, I'll take your word for it that the government doesn't make a promise. But, it certainly seems to be an implied promise, so there is still a moral obligation there in my opinion. Maybe SS should be changed to make that a stated, confirmed promise.

>240 lriley: I'm not "wanting to say no" to anyone on health care. I'm just against Obama's plan because it's obviously another step on the road to bankruptcy for this country. It was reported in the Arizona Republic just a few days that some government agency conceded that Obama's plan will cost much more that we were first told. Not that we needed to be told, it being obvious that it would work out that way. Who was it who said (Pelosi or Reid) we should pass the thing and then figure out what was in it?

242StormRaven
Mar 22, 2012, 1:53pm Top

"Where you're an attorney, I'll take your word for it that the government doesn't make a promise. But, it certainly seems to be an implied promise, so there is still a moral obligation there in my opinion."

The SS legislation as it is currently formulated says that current beneficiaries are entitled to a particular level of benefits right now, but it makes no guarantees for the future, nor does it make any kind of promise that those benefits will be continued in their current amount, or in any amount.

Where the law is concerned, "moral obligations" are usually worth about as much a toilet paper.

"Maybe SS should be changed to make that a stated, confirmed promise."

I think there would be a Constitutional problem with binding the government to an indefinite amount of liability for an indefinite amount of time. Even if there was not, I doubt that any Congress would be willing to bind its own hands in that manner vis a vis future spending.

243lawecon
Mar 22, 2012, 2:54pm Top

~238

"re the question of people getting out more in SS benefits than they paid in... The government says you WILL pay SS taxes and we, as the government, promise to provide you so much per month when you retire. That's a contract, though one people are forced into, so the government has a legal and moral obligation to do as it's promised to do."

Let me repeat, since you apparently missed it the first time: there is no promise to pay. SS is NOT insurance or a contract. No one owes you anything. It is a tax. Period. Anything you receive is entirely at the good graces of the government. The government owes you NOTHING for paying a required tax.

244lriley
Mar 22, 2012, 4:11pm Top

#241--Paul Ryan the Republican party's economics guru is almost a sure bet to include a confirmed promise to do exactly that in his next bill--while he's busy cutting everything else. I really don't get the sense that the GOP is very committed to saving either the Social Security or Medicare/Medicaid programs at least as they are right now. If nothing else they'd like to privatize them--another way of saying they'd like to go gambling all those funds at a casino or just to borrow from whenever a pet project comes along.

And it's partly a matter of ideology. Partly knowing where their own best interests lie vis-a-vis their largest contributors. Partly knowing that even if it all turns out fucked up--they'll be taken care of anyway. And anyway when something just doesn't work out the way you draw it up on the blackboard there's always the 'blame it on the other guy' strategy.

The Obama plan at least to my mind was very moderate--didn't go nearly far enough. The right wing press and all their ideologues got up on the soapbox but they've never had any intention of reforming anything. More of an opportunity to demonize. Let's tie it to taking away women's reproductive rights. Let's call it 'godless' and 'socialism'. Done a good job with that. Reform is for losers.

Wonder how you feel about all the subsidies that lobbyists are bringing home to their corporate employers?--I know you worry about food stamps to the odd lottery winner.

245CharlesBoyd
Mar 22, 2012, 5:32pm Top

>244 lriley: Rich people and corporations have too many loopholes, too much power in my opinion. I'm in favor of a standard tax rate for all and little or no loopholes or exemptions. And I'm all for raising the SS tax cap on earnings.

What do people on this thread think of eliminating income taxes and going to a national sales tax?

246JGL53
Mar 22, 2012, 5:40pm Top

> 245 ...What do people on this thread think of eliminating income taxes and going to a national sales tax?

I vote it sucks.

247margd
Mar 22, 2012, 5:54pm Top

>245 CharlesBoyd: What do people on this thread think of ... a national sales tax?

A national sales tax has two advantages:
(1) It taxes imports the same as domestic products.
(2) It captures cross-border Internet sales.

A disadvantage is that
(3) It is regressive.

248lriley
Mar 22, 2012, 6:56pm Top

Nothing wrong with wealthy people who can afford to pay a higher %--paying more. It sounds at least to my ears as 'patriotic'. These days we have major corporations apparently paying no net taxes--getting subsidies as well. As far as I'm concerned Charles the people on food stamps are the least of our problems. We need not only more jobs but more better paying jobs and the subsequent expansion of the tax base. Get that started and food stamps will be even less of a problem. Generally I think those middle class and up type retirees have a tendency always to think that they don't have enough and that they are going to think that no matter. In a nutshell they're paranoid.

To go off on a tangent one of my favorite sayings is by Francisco Gomez de Quevedo (a contemporary of Cervantes). It's maybe a little grim but I think it's a healthy attitude anyway. Because we're all going to die anyway. ''What we call 'being born' is only beginning to die, and what we call 'dying' is only finally dying, and what we call 'living' is only dying in life." Life and death are on a parallel track--part of the same process. People put too much importance into their only particular existences. It's not necessarily how 'good' your life has been whatever 'good' means to you it might be quite different to someone else--if you can say that you made some positive difference (or even tried) however minuscule--then you've done something--how much $ you leave behind doesn't matter at all. Of all the people out there the ones we should worry about the most are the ones who need the most. That's where progress as far as humanity goes really is. A great society has to concern itself with those who are most marginalized.

249lawecon
Mar 22, 2012, 9:28pm Top

~248

"Nothing wrong with wealthy people who can afford to pay a higher %--paying more. It sounds at least to my ears as 'patriotic'. "

Nothing wrong with altruistic people who claim that they place little value on money paying more. It makes everyone happy.

250StormRaven
Mar 22, 2012, 10:48pm Top

"Rich people and corporations have too many loopholes, too much power in my opinion. I'm in favor of a standard tax rate for all and little or no loopholes or exemptions. And I'm all for raising the SS tax cap on earnings."

To balance the budget raising the SS tax cap on earnings is almost necessary. By "creating a standard tax rate" do you mean some sort of flat tax? If so, you'd be giving "rich people and corporations" a giant tax break.

"What do people on this thread think of eliminating income taxes and going to a national sales tax?"

This would run directly counter to your first point, as it would be a highly regressive tax.

251SimonW11
Edited: Mar 23, 2012, 4:51am Top

245> I do not think the government would be able to afford the cost of supressing the uprising.

252Lunar
Edited: Mar 23, 2012, 6:13am Top

#251: Funny. I don't recall there being uprisings in the US over a lack of an income tax prior to when they were first instituted in 1913.

And most people don't realize that when the national income tax was first passed, it was intended to be geared towards the super rich. When adjusted for inflation, anyone with an income under $453,000 only had to pay 1% of their income. But nothing is as greedy as government.

And if that "fair" tax nonsense were to ever get passed, they'd end up introducing the national sales tax first (gradually) and postpone the elimination of the income tax to some future date until we'd gotten used to paying both and then keep it. I'm sure you'd love it.

253lriley
Mar 23, 2012, 6:05pm Top

#249--Heh heh. Ever think of changing your user's name to Zorro. I kind of feel like I have a Z carved in the middle of my forehead. You do have an admirable ability to spot inconsistencies.

Irrepressibly I'll go on. I always have the fucked up semi-alcoholic Irishmen defense to fall back on.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=418UdFOGSkQ

Group: Pro and Con

335 members

87,275 messages

About

This topic is not marked as primarily about any work, author or other topic.

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 92,648,579 books! | Top bar: Always visible