“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, November 13, 2008

60 in the Senate and The Broken Red Line

Will the Republican Filibuster be breached?

The Latest On The Senate Fights
Posted by Brian Montopoli CBS

Election Day may have come and gone, but three Senate races are still being fought, and fought hard. If all three go the Democrats' way – an unlikely outcome, but certainly not an impossible one – it would give the party 60 seats in the Senate, a crucial number since it would mean Democrats have attained a filibuster-proof majority.

(One cautionary note for hopeful liberals: Even if Democrats reach the 60 seat threshold, their majority would include independent senator and John McCain backer Joe Lieberman, who has broken with his party on national security issues, as well as other relatively conservative Democrats who might not always vote with their party.)

Here's the latest on the three races.


For a while, it looked like 84-year-old Republican Ted Stevens had overcome his felony conviction to be reelected for an eigth term. But early and absentee ballots, which are still being counted, have now given a slim lead to Stevens' Democratic rival, Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich, who says he is "cautiously optimistic" that he will prevail. (The latest count, as of late Wednesday: 132,196 to 131,382.)

If Stevens ultimately wins the race, he still faces the possibility of expulsion from the Senate due to his conviction. If that happens, there will be a special election in Alaska to replace the longtime Senator, and all eyes will be on former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin as a potential candidate.

"My life is in God's hands," Palin said Wednesday. "If he's got doors open for me, that I believe are in our state's best interest, the nation's best interest, I'm going to go through those doors."


A nasty Senate race involving Democrat Al Franken and Republican Norm Coleman has only gotten nastier since Election Day. Unofficial results put Coleman ahead by 206 votes (out of 2.9 million), but there will be a statewide recount, and both sides are now jockeying for an advantage.

The latest: Franken is suing for access to data on voters whose absentee ballots were rejected. His hope is that some of these ballots get reinstated and ultimately count in the recount. According to the Secretary of State, a decision about the fate of the ballots would have to be made – where else? – in the courts.

Meanwhile, a board billed as "extraordinarily nonpartisan" has been named to determine who has won the race once the dust settles. It includes Democratic Secretary of State Mark Ritchie, two state Supreme Court judges appointed by Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty, and a pair of county judges.


(AP Photo/John Amis)
Republican Saxby Chambliss, who had initially been expected to win reelection easily, garnered the most votes in his Senate race against Democrat Jim Martin. But Chambliss fell just short of the 50 percent mark necessary to avoid a runoff, and as a result, he will face off against Martin in a Dec. 2nd rematch.

Sen. John McCain, fresh off his failed presidential bid, is scheduled to headline a Chambliss rally in Georgia at 4:30 P.M. Eastern Time today. It's McCain's first campaign appearance since Election Day, and it comes in a state he won with 52 percent of the vote.

Despite the show of unity, however, McCain and Chambliss have had their issues in the past. Back in 2002, McCain harshly criticized an advertisement released by Chambliss against Democrat Max Cleland, who was severely injured in Vietnam. The ad suggested that Cleland was weak on national security and included photographs of Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. Chambliss ultimately defeated Cleland.

"I've never seen anything like that ad," McCain said at the time. "Putting pictures of Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden next to a picture of a man who left three limbs on the battlefield, it's worse than disgraceful, it's reprehensible."


  1. In a close election out here Walt Minnick the democrat beat Sali by a few votes, last I heard.

  2. 44 Senators loyal and true, even that was a bridge to far for the Republicans to hold.

    Read the Dems are pouring assets into Georgia. That will be some kind of run-off election to watch.

    In Alaska, even if Stevens wins, he loses. There will be a Special Election 90 days after the Senate does not allow the convicted felon to take the seat.

  3. $40,000 subsidy per worker per year that GM needs to stay "competitive" with Honda, which has yet to lay off a worker in its whole history. How does someone reconcile that?

  4. One could never have imagined America without Ford or GM. But in the last few days, the number of leaders pushing aside pride for pragmatism has grown.

    “If you’re to bail out auto, where do you stop?” has been asked by many.

    That debate that will engulf America will certainly make us shiver harder than a combined winter blast off the Great Lakes and the Great Plains.

    Who Will be Celebrating in '09?

  5. November 10, 2008
    Worst Recession since WWII

    That is Goldman-Sachs's New Forecast. Rex Nutting:

    Goldman forecasting biggest rise in joblessness since WWII: WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- The unemployment rate is expected to rise to 8.5% by the end of next year and inch even higher in early 2010, economists for Goldman Sachs wrote Friday. The cumulative trough-to-peak increase of more than 4 percentage points in the jobless rate would be the most since World War II, they said. Goldman analysts lowered growth forecasts for the next three quarters, and said they now expect the Federal Reserve to cut its interest rate target to 0.50% by December. "The main reason for these changes is the accumulation of evidence that U.S. domestic demand and production are dropping sharply," they wrote. "We do not see a resumption of anything close to trend growth before 2010."

    Posted at 06:59 AM in Economics, Economics: Federal Reserve, Economics: Finance, Economics: Macro, Sorting: Front Page, Sorting: Pieces of the Occasion | Permalink | C

  6. Chambliss and Martin each failed to get more than 50% of the vote last week.

    Also still unresolved are Senate races in Minnesota and Alaska.

    During his first post-election interview, on the "Tonight Show" earlier this week, McCain praised running mate Sarah Palin, and did little to pass the blame for his loss.

    Campaigning in Georgia

  7. Even the winners are screwed, but don't know it yet.

    I was just listening to a guy on Medved, who wrote a book, to make some money of course, about Bush the Younger, and his troubled life. His troubled life, which gets you hooked, that's the ticker to try and make you buy the book. But, Medved, being the smart guy he is, started talking about Obama, and his troubled life, and how the Bush Family was a shining example of sanity compared to what we have now, where the guy was actually raised by one, count that one, good white grandmother.

    I don't know what we have coming up, but for the first time in my life I think the American people have made a real mistake.

  8. Intel also slashed its outlook, initially driving down shares on concerns that consumers are shying away from big purchases like computers. But its shares recovered to trade up 91 cents, or 6.7 percent, to $14.43.

    General Motors shares, however, remained weak as the nation's automakers wait for President-elect Barack Obama to push Congress to approve a bailout of the struggling industry. There are also reports that Obama will move to appoint a czar or board to oversee the companies.

    GM dropped 13 cents, or 4.2 percent, to $2.95. Ford shares rose 6 cents, or 3.3 percent, to $1.90.

    553 Points

  9. The options:

    / An immediate 100% tax on all gasoline sold.
    / An immediate ban on the sale of all new gasoline engine cars.
    / An immediate electrification of all rail, public transport, and passenger vehicles.
    / An immediate national priority project to build 10GW of green electricity per year and upgrade of the electric grid.
    / An immediate dissolution of the CIA and DOS with said responsibility devolved to the Pentagon.
    / An immediate end to all foreign aid programs including the UN.
    / An immediate 50% cut in the military budget, compounded every year till the US military budget is on par with Russia’s military budget or China’s.



  10. Chambliss may be a crapper, all right. Cleland was mistreated. The republican in fighting gets fierce.

    It's the same way on the other side.

    Even here on our local level, when we had a big discussion about 'the 40 acre rule'.

    Which was just an attempt to disguise the 'keep the other out' philosophy under the guise of 'environmentalism'.

    Brought to you by the liberal proferrors.

    There was some real in fighting among the democrats on that issue. They fought like hell over it.

    As a farmer, I thought the whole thing was absurd, all this talking about the valuable farm land.

    Which was just a disguise.

    As a farmer, I've seen so much 'farm land' I don't want to see another acre.

    Just drive through Montana, the Dakotas.

    Hell, just drive through here.

  11. We've got 'valuable farmland' by the acrefull out here, just sitting around, nothing much happening on it now, cause we got the '40 acre rule'. To keep the 'others' away.

    It's bs.

  12. This '40 acre rule' was actually cooked up by the liberal professors at our universities, who just wanted to keep 'the others' away.

  13. Ash, the question is, why shouldn't I be allowed to sell an acre or two to a black man and his wife from Seattle, if I wish to do so.

    So they can get a start, and listen to the meadowlarks too?

    Zone 'em out, brought to you by the liberal professors.

    Who now want to run your national health care system.

  14. Donald Trump is in the line, too, getting a touch-up from the salon lobbyists while waiting for his turn before the committee. Trump's casinos and resorts are practically empty.

    Everyone is going to the Obama inauguration instead of taking a long weekend at the craps tables. He needs about $10 billion to keep his operation running.

    Finally, last in line stands Sam Zell, the billionaire real estate magnate. If anyone deserves a bailout, it is he.

    Bailout for Trump

  15. It's actually a bright idea, when you think about it.

    Just say, we're for equal rights.

    Then, zone 'em out.

    It's worked, so far.

  16. Last week, the Mexican government carried out a number of operations in Reynosa, Tamaulipas, aimed at Jaime “El Hummer” Gonzalez Duran, one of the original members of the brutal cartel group known as Los Zetas. According to Mexican government officials, Gonzalez Duran controlled the Zetas’ operations in nine Mexican states.


    As previously noted, the FN Five-Seven pistol and FN P90 personal defense weapon are very popular with the various cartel enforcer groups operating in Mexico. The Five-Seven and the P90 shoot a 5.7 mm-by-28 mm round that has been shown to be effective in penetrating body armor as well as vehicle doors and windows.


    While the P90 and Five-Seven are small and light, and use a small, fast round to penetrate armor, the .50-caliber cartridge fired by a Barrett sniper rifle is the polar opposite: It fires a huge chunk of lead. By way of comparison, the 5.7 mm-by-28 mm cartridge is just a little more than 1.5 inches long and has a 32-grain bullet.

    Border Raids

  17. Under our current zoning laws, brought to you by our liberal prefessors, even if I were the best Christian in the world, even if I were Jesus Christ himself, I couldn't bring a black family here from Seattle, and teach them the gospel.

    Brought to you by guys like Ash, that want to run our medical system.

  18. Just zone them out, that's the ticket. Keep them away.

    No little village of white and black here.

    No imagination.

    Zone 'em out.

    Brought to you by Ash.

  19. I wish we could create a 'Comfort Room' for Ash.

  20. The Constitution offers no clear-cut job description for the vice president, other than breaking tie votes in the U.S. Senate and being ready to replace the president. Cheney has said he isn't sure whether future vice presidents will be as hands-on as he's been.

    "I'm reluctant to say it's a trend," Cheney told reporters during an interview in Israel in March. "If you look at the history of the office, it can go either way."

    "You go back and look at how it's developed over the years, it wasn't until really, I guess, Richard Nixon was vice president that he even had an office downtown," Cheney said. "Harry Truman's office was on Capitol Hill."

    VP's Mansion

  21. Do you folks think the procedure of filibuster is a reasonable one? It smacks of obstructionism and seems a tad un-democratic. I'm open to being convinced otherwise.

  22. LOL!
    But of course you are.
    Interesting timing, Ashley.

  23. Even under 'pub rule the same thoughts apply Mat and the topic has never come up here. In any case opinions expressed here is unlikely to change the course of events in Washington.

  24. Begich has rallied after entering the Alaska count about 3,000 in the hole, edging ahead of Stevens by 814 as of Wednesday night.

    The Begich campaign said the Anchorage mayor was “cautiously optimistic” about winning with about 40,000 ballots remaining because many of the votes already counted came from conservative parts of the state.

    “More than 59,000 ballots were counted yesterday,” Bethany Lesser, spokeswoman for the Alaska Democratic Party, wrote in an e-mail. “Of the districts not counted on Wednesday, Begich won all of them on Election Day (for full disclosure, these are regions that have smaller populations).”

    60 Back in Play?

  25. Well, Ashley, the problem is that the US is not a democracy. So the 51% rule never applies, never did apply, and never was meant to apply.

  26. I shudder to think of a nation in which "majority rules" is the way we would make our decisions. What would become of the ethnic minorities, what of the rights of women, or for that matter any minority that lives in our society?

    It is clear that they would be left without a voice. Our nation cannot afford to turn its back on 49 percent of the population because "majority rules."

    Would it then be OK if 51 percent of the population decided that minorities would no longer have rights in our society? This is the path to tyranny, not a tyranny of a man as in a monarchy, but rather what James Madison (father of our Constitution) referred to as a "tyranny of the masses."

    Holding Back Tyranny

  27. I shudder to think of a nation in which "majority rules" is the way we would make our decisions. What would become of the ethnic minorities, what of the rights of women, or for that matter any minority that lives in our society?

    That's the most scurrilous argument I have even heard.

  28. Back in Washington what we have got is a screwed up system now where to 'protect the righs of everyone' we are identifying people by their skin color and saying some can do the poorer on the tests, yet, bingo, they get a break because of this.

    What this is actually is just plain stupid.

    I think it is time to 'not look to Washington' but rather look to your own state, and local community. Except for defense and other necessities, of course.

    Which might not even include the Post Office.

    In our own local communities, we might never have thought up such a bright idea as a '
    Comfort Room'.

    This nonsense was really hatched 'back there'.

    When state after state after state votes against abortion, and gay marriage, yet we have it thrust down our very throats, something is wrong with the system.

    When the local folks can't do what their own moral lights tell them to do.

  29. Affirmative Action Recruiting Consortium (AARC), Braintree, Mass. has chosen Strategis for a re-branding assignment, according to George Irish, founder and president of the independent strategic marketing and communications agency. The account, previously handled on a project basis by local firms, was awarded based on the reputation of the agency and without a review.


    The Mission of the Affirmative Action Recruitment Consortium is to locate outstanding candidates of color for teaching, administrative and support positions in public schools of Eastern Massachusetts. AARC communities are exceptionally supportive of public education making these school systems among the best in the Northeast.

    Strategis's capabilities are in financial, healthcare, retail, consumer products, footwear and education and they serve clients including Dartmouth College, Yankee Spirits, Lombardo’s and Catania-Spagna.

    Strategis for Re-branding

  30. The same system that created the 40 acre zoning law, created the 96% senate incumbent retention rate. I believe the Soviet politbureau had 92% retention rate. :)

  31. Do you folks think the procedure of filibuster is a reasonable one?

    Yes, I think it is, because it slows things down, and gives Time some time to act, and a little more thought than the passions of the day.

    I might bitch and groan about some of the old Senators, I could name a few, still living, but yes, I think law ought to be made very slowly, and worked out over time.

  32. Well, these are deep questions, Mat.

    I like law that is passed over time, and meets the test of time, if there is one :)

    But we did not have any Senate here, that could filibuster, and prevent three county commissioners from passing an ordinance that we still live with, to the benefit of a few, and the detriment to the many.

    It's a good law for me I quess, I can live with it, and have, but it isn't fair.

  33. I quess I just go back to basics. The best of times were when the Idaho Legislature met only every other two years, and before that, never.

    But, you got to have law too.

    So, what's the best solution?

    I don't really know.

  34. Filibuster is not a law, Bob. It's just a Senate procedural rule. Maybe that's a small distinction. I'm wondering what it would take to eliminate it if the Dems get enough majority. Since it's served both sides, they may not wish to. The R's have proven too feckless to wield the power given them, so the D's probably figure to leave well enough alone.

  35. How can a Constitution that was thougt up by a few white dudes back in the day of a few people on the east coast, rule the country today, with over 300 millions, and counting?

    I'm not sure it can.

    The Second Amendment, for instance, gives us the right to have firearms, newly ruled on by the Supreme Court, but which will slowly come under attack by the new Congress and President.

    What are we to do?

  36. So, what's the best solution?

    Fluidity. Fluidity builds to equilibrium. The higher the fluidity, the stronger the equilibrium. Good law means strong equilibrium.

  37. Since it's served both sides, they may not wish to. The R's have proven too feckless to wield the power given them, so the D's probably figure to leave well enough alone.

    Maybe, that might be right.

    For me, I hope we keep it. Laws should be maded slowly.

  38. What are we to do?

    Keep 'em wrapped in cosmoline and concealed.

    Smuggle in powder, primers, and reloading hardware.

    Make your own.

    What did Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett do? Cabellas hadn't opened yet. I want a Barrett .50, myself. It's been on my wish list for Santa for years. I keep getting sweaters.

  39. :)

    Well, I'm not giving my old .22 up!

    Maybe we should have a national sign up list, for all of us, that says, "We pledge not to give our guns up, unless we have a Constitutional Amendment."

    Not an Act of Congress.

    But I think Montana has, in their agreement to join the Union, something about guns, and how you can never take them away from us, or, we are out of Union.

    Move to Montana!

  40. Do a little reading, Bob. It helps keep you focused.

    Like this passage I just read in "Atlas Shrugged".

    Hank Reardon: It's demented, so it has to defeat itself. You and I will just have to work a little harder for a while, that's all.


  41. I've got to read 'Atlas Shrugged'.

    I admit I haven't.

    But I will.

  42. I keep getting sweaters.

    When I really wanted screamers, or panters...

    Y'all knew that was comin'.

  43. But I have read "A River Runs Through It" a great Christian book, as I understood it.

  44. I don't mind sweaters. They're hot.

    Moaners are best, in my limited experience.

  45. The only religion I got out of it was the very accurate distinction drawn between the Methodists and the Presbyterians. But I'm not a literary type. It's just an incredibly well written story about some interesting people, to me. One of those books you keep buying to give to friends. That's how I got my first copy.

  46. Moaners are best, in my limited experience.

    I agree, Bob.

  47. Man, that girl on the last post had a beuatiful leg!

    We all agreed on that.

  48. The truth is every German citizen of Turkish background has a representative, just not necessarily one of his or her own ethnicity. If the people of Nebraska's Douglas County felt "representation" meant electing someone who looked like them, they wouldn't have just given Obama a majority (and the first Nebraska electoral vote to go to a Democrat since 1964).

    The county, which includes Omaha, is 83 percent white.

    The objective of multiracial, multi-ethnic societies shouldn't be electing people of color, gender or ethnicity in proportion to their numbers in the general population. It should be fostering a civic culture in which someone of talent and discipline and good ideas can be elected regardless of those DNA.

    Don't Need Rebranding

  49. Man, that girl on the last post had a beuatiful leg!

    We all agreed on that.

    Nah. Too skinny. Nice face, but she'd not pick up too many spuds before twisting one of those pretty ankles in the soft earth. Doubt if she's ever spent a winter night in a cabin with only a wood stove.

  50. "A River Runs Through It" is a book we should take up on another post.

    I'm not sure I got the distinction between the Methodists and the Presbyterians, but I may have been distracted by the fishing scenes.

    Anyhow, I've got it around here somewhere. My Pastor mentioned it.

    You know me.

  51. Doubt if she's ever spent a winter night in a cabin with only a wood stove.


  52. The Methodist/Presbyterian thing may have been in the movie, now that I think about it.

    Get the Univ of Chicago Press edition with the short stories in the back. Some good tales of the old Forest Service there.

  53. Become a revolutionary, bob.

    Break the unjust law, as your friend mat vontinues to advise.

    March to the beat of your own drummer, if the freedom to own a firearm is important to you, defend it, with that firearm, or not.

    ... with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

    That may be a bridge to far, for you bob. Seeing as Fortune is so important to you. That even reasonable capital gains taxes, to support Federal policies you advocate, are consider "to great" a sacrifice to make, for freedom, by you.

    Your life, that is something you admit has never been put at risk, to defend your freedoms, before.

    And your sacred honor, bob, that is the most interesting of the items pledged. It requires one to break the unjust Law.

    But what would someone that bemoans abortion but supports its use in Eugenic Engineering know of sacred honor.

  54. For the time being Bloomberg, who presided over the great spending spree of the last few years, has been reduced to insisting that only a genius like himself can save Gotham from the fiscal dangers imposed by Wall Street's collapse (and his own maladministration). This seems odd since the man who spoke of New York as "the luxury product" has shown no interest in nurturing small businesses, which are essential for regenerating the economy and have been squeezed hard by his administration's search for revenue.

    Though Newsweek might not have noticed it, there was a net middle-class out-migration from New York City even in the midst of the late lamented boom.

    For the last five years, while Bloomberg has been playing a golden tuba as the sky was raining Wall Street money, there was little point in criticizing a man whose unprecedented concentration of personal and political power made him as much feared as admired. But the skepticism and even open hostility elicited by his power grab has, for the moment, cracked his carapace of invulnerability.

    Bloomberg's Bombast

  55. This comment has been removed by the author.

  56. I'm too old to become a revolutionary, but, that girl had legs!.

  57. Too skinny.

    With all due respect, I have to demurr there.

    I thought she had a wonderful leg, and, if you noticed, she actually had two.:)

    There, I got that right, without the mispelling.

  58. Then you may as well get rid of that old pump gun, now, bob.

    If you are to old to defend the owning of it. Or unwilling to make the sacrifices required in the defense of liberty, because of age or infirmity.

    Beat that "Death Tax". send your money to Planned Paranthood, then. There's always another 400,000 black pregnencies to terminate, each year.

    Hekp keep those folk's numbers down, anyway you can.
    That'll enhance your liberties.

    The old Romans, they'd bivouac an entire Legion on forty acres.

  59. These three planets in this system also appear to be gas giants, and all are at least five times bigger than Jupiter. Their orbits aren't too different from the orbits of our own outermost planets.

    And that makes this solar system somewhat like our own — though the star and its planets are much younger than our 5 billion-year-old solar system.

    But astronomers have not found what they would dearly like to see: an earth-like planet around a sun-like star.

    Caught on Camera

  60. I got to go to the grocery store.

    But, I'm dreaming of those legs.

  61. This comment has been removed by the author.

  62. In 2001, 12 firms accounted for 75% of U.S. hot-rolled steel production. In 2007, three firms accounted for more than 80% of hot-rolled steel production.

    The consolidation has afforded the steel industry an alternative to requesting bailouts in the face of declining demand.

    Following the steel industry's lead to an auto industry reckoning makes more sense - to the taxpayers, to the country, and ultimately to the auto industry - than another bailout.

    Big 2

  63. To Build a Fire, Mat.

    Yes, the call of the wild.

  64. Break the unjust law, as your friend mat vontinues to advise.

    There's nothing sacrosanct about the law. The law is just a rule of agreement. With no agreement, there's little value to the law.

  65. Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

  66. RUSH: Did you see what the Treasury secretary did today? Folks, we're bailing out everybody.


    RUSH: Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said Wednesday the $700 billion government rescue program will not be used to purchase troubled assets as originally planned. He said the administration will continue to use $250 billion of the program to purchase stock in banks as a way to bolster their balance sheets and encourage them to resume more normal lending."


    This, ladies and gentlemen, is what I said.

    RUSH ARCHIVE: One of the things the president said was that this is now going to enable the banks to start lending money again. Now, they tried this in Europe earlier this week.

    Apologizes to the World

  67. Jefferson knew the deal, mat.

    We in the United States have not yet reached that point in time when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

    160 million voters particpated in the last election, in a nation of 310 to 340 million residents.

    There is no despotism, here.
    You, as a foreigner and not even a resident, do not like how we manage our politial affairs, or our Laws.

    But you live your life under our security umbrella, having abandoned your residency in eastern Europe, long ago.
    Leaving the Russian sphere, to live in ours.
    Voting with your feet.

  68. “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.”

    -Thomas Jefferson

  69. That is funny, in a way, sam.

    Obamasan always said that McCain would be four more years of Bush.

    Now it seems that Bush is two extra months of Obamasan.

    Such is the sacred honor of GW Bush.

  70. So did Andrew Jackson, sam.

    The battle raged, until 1913.
    The bankers won and have been in the catbird seat, for the last 95 years.

    The idea of a Centralized Federal Bank, has not even been a political issue for sixty years.

    The United States has had this debate before, the tides do turn, if slowly.

  71. 160 million voters particpated in the last election

    LOL. Yes. 160 million votes that are sliced and diced to be as rationality defensible of those Goldman Sucks triple AAA securities.

  72. So that now, we have both the Standing Army and a Federalized Bank

    So far we've come, following the course charted by George Washington and Alexander Hamilton.

    Where as even President Jefferson, while his rhetoric was ideologically opposed to it, expanded the scope of Executive authority when in office.

  73. So far we've come, following the course charted by George Washington and Alexander Hamilton.

    You started with a Roman Republic and that's where you've ended.

  74. Initial claims have been driven higher in the past several months by a slowing economy hit by the financial crisis, and cutbacks in consumer and business spending. Claims also rose in late September due to the impact of Hurricanes Ike and Gustav, but the department said last week that the impact of the hurricanes has passed.

    The rise in claims has been mirrored by an increase in the unemployment rate. Unemployment reached a 14-year high of 6.5 percent in October, the Labor Department said last week, as the ranks of the unemployed swelled to 10.1 million.

    Several companies recently have announced mass layoffs, including Morgan Stanley, General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Co., and Fidelity Investments.

    7-year High

  75. 60 Senators, AND a complicit media as well. I believe the media is going to help the new administration backpedal on most, if not all of their pledged tax cuts; there is a narrative being established that raising taxes can have positive effects, and that many Americans support paying higher taxes if it will help combat societal ills. Watch the media to see if the narrative continues unfolding.

  76. History doesn't repeat itself, but it sure rhymes.

  77. After the continent was tamed, mat, the nature of the US Republic changed. After our manifest destiny had been attained.

    The Civil War was a pivot point in the evolution to Empire. The professional Generals, on both sides of that war, had marched to Mexico City together.

    The Federals won, the States lost.
    Codified in 1913, along with the Federal Bank.

  78. The novella is noted for using detailed descriptions of fly fishing and nature to engage with a number of profound metaphysical questions, and is recognized as a minor American classic.

    I'd say a 'major American classic' like the girl in the post below.

    You remembet that Christianity is all about catching 'fish'.

  79. in the evolution to Empire.

    We don't even have an 'Empire'.

    You are talking out your ass.

  80. 330 million people, spread across a continent, bob, under one centralized government, is an empire.

    By any historical definition.

  81. Where the hell is this 'Empire', I want to know.

    Put a pin on the map.

    I've been asking for months.



    Eastern Europe?


    Where the hell is it?




  82. Rat, you are a dimwit, sorry to say.

    Get busy, read some good books, grow up.

  83. And for Christ's sake, quit moaning all the damn time.

  84. The direct election of US Senators made them independent of the States, they represent themselves and the Federal Government, more than the interests of the State Governments.
    Super sized House members.

    Part of the Codification of Empire, a further step away from republican government.

  85. Idaho, Alaska, California, New Mexico, Texas, etc, etc

    There is your empire
    From sea to shinng sea.

  86. The Federals won, the States lost.

    True. The Federals fought with a rational for human freedom, and won. The same principle of human freedom that helped the Federals win in the past will help the States win today. Ideas are important.

  87. The empire envisioned by Manifest Destiny, bob.

    Manifest Destiny was a concept which heavily influenced American policy in the 1800s. The idea was the driving force behind the rapid expansion of America into the West from the East, and it was heavily promoted in newspapers, posters, and through other mediums. While Manifest Destiny was not itself an official government policy, it led to the passage of legislation such as the Homestead Act, which encouraged Westward colonization and territorial acquisition. It also played an important role in American thought.

    The term was first used in 1845 by John O'Sullivan, an American newspaper editor who was writing about the proposed annexation of Texas. O'Sullivan stated that it was America's “manifest destiny to overspread the continent.” The editorial suggested that through expansion, the United States could become a recognized political and social superpower. America had, in fact, O'Sullivan argued, been uniquely chosen for the task of expanding Westward, driving out the wilderness and establishing civilization.

    The Westward expansion of the United States did not, of course, begin with Manifest Destiny. The Louisiana Purchase of 1803, in which 23% of the existing territory of the United States was acquired, was probably the first major step. The government saw the appeal in acquiring more land, as well as the potential political power which large tracts of land could confer upon the young nation. As a result, a policy pursuing aggressive expansion was actively pursued. The idea of Manifest Destiny was merely a component, and one which captured the popular imagination.

    Link to the quote

  88. Let's see here now, we know Britain had an 'empire' called the British Empire.

    They were in India, and the 'Dark Continent'.

    It kind of 'worked out' in India, but hasn't done very damn good in Darkest Africa.

    The Spanish had an 'empire' in various places, and that hasn't worked out perfectly too, but they did put and end to human sacrifice in Mexico.

    The French had and 'empire' too in some of the moslem lands, but they are back to seeing the women whipped, and the camel jockeys rule.

    You really don't know what the hell you are talking about.

  89. Idaho?

    I'm in an "Empire"?

    Christ, I never knew it.

    I must be a dumb shit, now enlightened by "Rat".

  90. Your self description is right on, bob.

    Your local Manderins implemented the "40 Acre Rule", but you did not notice.

  91. The Federals can claim any amount of your capital gains, for their coffers. From 15% to 70%.

    There were really punative rates, back in the JFK days. Rates that could be fully justified, from a historical basis.

    Even if bad policy for the economy, the precedent is there for higher rates.

  92. Goddamn, it's news to me that I lived here in an 'Empire' all my life.

    Shit, I didn't really think it was anything like.

    My three generations of ancestors just kind of 'built the country'.

    From scratch, if you will.

    Brought some law to the Indians, some medicine to the cities, that we built, some farming to land that had never been farmed.

    Shit, I'm a moron, not thinking I was in an 'empire' all this time.

    I'm damned glad to 'enlightened'.

  93. Obama's campaign speeches emphasized the theme of a unified America where divisions bred by race or party are no longer important. But America is, in fact, divided: by race, by party, by class.

    And these divisions will matter greatly as we grapple with the whirlwind of financial and economic crises, of prospective ecological calamity, of generational and political change, of widening fissures in the American empire. I, for one, do not have a blueprint for the future.

    Maybe we are truly on the cusp of a new world order, and maybe it will be a better, more humane order. In the meantime, however, our government will move on particular policies to confront the immediate crisis.

    Protest Movement

  94. Under Kelo they could sieze "your" land, to expand the University, or any "better" public use.

    And tax the capital gain away.

  95. O hell, I noticed, asshole, or I wouldn't have told you about it in the first place.

    There is really something wrong with you,





    about every last thing


    everybody knows it



    pointed it out first

  96. I think you are a jeolous little prick, the worst of things.

  97. Read a good book like "A River Runs Through It" and grow up, finally.

  98. Fuck, you're a dumbass, Bob.

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  100. You are right on immigration, though.

  101. I'm glad you agree with me, Sam.

    Goodnight, and the best to you down under.

  102. :)

    Thanks, Bob. Outta here for the day. Take care, friend.

  103. Fuck, you're a dumbass, Bob.

    Our Sam?

  104. Grom scratch, bob.

    Were not the Nez Perce in that country, generations before a Swede ever saw it?

    Just that the family bobal's land use was superior, to that of the Nez Perce.

    But the US Army finally gained the upper hand, by killing their horses.

    Manifest Destiny.

    California, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada taken from Mexico. Florida from Spain.
    Idaho from France.
    All Things Considered, April 30, 2003 · Two hundred years ago today, the United States bought perhaps the biggest real-estate bargain of the millennium, the Louisiana Purchase. Signed in Paris on April 30, 1803, the Louisiana Purchase Treaty gave the fledgling United States 828,000 square miles of land west of the Mississippi River for a mere $15 million -- or about 4 cents an acre. The incredibly favorable terms of the deal prompted Gen. Horatio Gates to exclaim to President Thomas Jefferson: "Let the land rejoice, for you have bought Louisiana for a song."


    But Napoleon, who was abandoning his plans for expansion in America in favor of empire-building in Europe, offered the United States the whole territory instead. Fearing that Napoleon would revoke the offer, Livingston and Monroe closed the deal before they could even inform Jefferson.

    The Louisiana Purchase faced strong opposition from Jefferson's political opponents in the Federalist Party, who argued that the deal, made without the consent of the Senate, was unconstitutional. Nevertheless, Jefferson held firm in his plans for western expansion, and the Louisiana Purchase Treaty was ratified in the autumn of 1803. That same year, the Lewis and Clark expedition set off; it would soon help delineate the riches and boundaries of the property the United States had just purchased.

    More to the acquisition of Idaho than just the Family Bobal

  105. Well, there's empire, and there's empire.

    What the US should become is something akin to today's Anglosphere. Regional blocks, or perhaps individual US states, with their own independence, and a roughly similar foreign policy and cultural identity.

  106. We had that debate already, mat.
    600,000 of US died.

  107. We had that debate already, mat.

    You need better debaters.

  108. Industial captial and Irish immigration defeated the agricultural based economy of the Confederated States.

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  110. It is a long way from being on the Agenda.

    The topic is a lot like coloring out side the lines, just not done by serious people.

    The republican should argue for the repeal of the 17th Amendment, as the results have ill served the People.

    Original Intent was more republican, we should advocate returning to it. That would greatly empower the States, in the check and balance system, as designed. The "upgrade" was really a trojan virus.

  111. The topic is a lot like coloring out side the lines, just not done by serious people.

    So say the corporate fascists of the MSM. I'm not buying.

  112. But you are not part of the 160 millon electorate. So your rejection of the product is of little import.

    Most of the electorate buys into it. Look at Newt's survey results.

    That's the Platform to build his "Newt's Next Revolution" upon.


    There's a fundamental dishonesty of language here. Let's see if you can guess what it is.


    Propaganda pointers from mr Goebbels?

  115. This bickering has got to stop. It's giving me a headache.

    Go play in the yard!