“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, August 16, 2012

Enquiring minds need to know: Is Ebonics an indicator of a defective voter registration gene??

Vice President Biden does impromptu “get out the black vote” routine: Are you fired up?

Pennsylvania voter ID ruling could put Keystone State in play

August 15, 2012, 1:48 PM
A judge’s decision Wednesday not to block a voter ID law in Pennsylvania could make the Keystone state — which tends to slightly lean to Democratic Party candidates — a possible key pick-up for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. See the ruling.
Obama at the moment has a 7-point lead in polls of the state, according to the RealClearPolitics average.
A study by the state estimates that about 9% of 8.2 million registered voters do not have a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation issued license. Some of that 9% of course hold other valid ID, like a passport, and Pennsylvania already has taken steps to make it easier for those with lapsed driver’s licenses to get new ID.
The impact of some of that 9% not being able to vote is what’s in the air. Famously, the head of Pennsylvania’s state House Republicans, Mike Turzai, said in June: “Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.”
Turzai was more restrained Wednesday. “The elections in the Commonwealth will be on a more level playing field thanks to voter ID and other recent election reforms,” he said in a statement.
The law still could get blocked. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court — which currently consists of three Democrats and three Republicans — almost certainly will hear the case; a majority would be needed to overturn the ruling. Federal lawsuits also are possible.

Later, Screaming Joe Biden,did one of his old favorites for y’all


  1. Can’t wait for the Ryan-Biden debate. I’ll bet Biden is already peeing his pants.

  2. :)

    He'll need Depends.

    What The Fuck Moments From Our American History --

    Hillary talks black --

    1. Lord, what cartoons most of our politicians be!

  3. The GOP Now Owns the Medicare Issue
    Rob Miller
    The Democrats can lie, dissemble, and rant, but they can't change a basic truth. They can either defend ObamaCare, which was designed to destroy Medicare, or they can disavow ObamaCare. They can't do both.

    When Granny comes home with some pills in a plastic bag
    Obama will give her a hearty high five tag
    The Emanuels will cheer, the Kevorkians will shout
    The eugenicists they will all turn out
    Get ready for the Ezekiel Emanuel Jubilee
    He’ll give Herr Obama three times three
    And he will feel so happy and gay
    When Granny is placed at the funeral home on display

    Ezekiel Emanuel is an evil freak.

    He said the Hyppocratic Oath should be junked, among many other and worse pronouncements.

    1. GnuCarSmell
      The new Romney ad is quite effective. It shows a senior guy (worried look on his face) and a calm voice-over. You've paid your Medicare tax all these years, taken out of every check, and now, Obama has taken $716 billion out of Medicare to pay for Obamacare.
      Truth works.

      Read more:

  4. Real crucifixions in Egypt -

    A Sky News Arabic correspondent in Cairo confirmed that protestors belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood crucified those opposing Egyptian President Muhammad Morsi naked on trees in front of the presidential palace while abusing others. Likewise, Muslim Brotherhood supporters locked the doors of the media production facilities of 6-October [a major media region in Cairo], where they proceeded to attack several popular journalists.

    Christians form Christian Brotherhood, presumably for self defense.

    Under the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the bottle has been uncorked and the Islamic Genie set loose. Expect much worse to come.

    This was all so predictable. The peace between Israel and Egypt is going, going....There were rockets into Israel from the Sinai the other day.

  5. .

    Pennsylvania's 'motor voter' law?

    Who gives a damn? Philly beat out Detroit for 'best sandwich in the US'.

    Recount Demanded

    I'll never hear the end of it from Mel if we ever hear from Mel.


    1. 3Q again follows 'his gut instincts'.

    2. Following my gut instincts, I can tell you the Basque food at the Basque Festival in Boise would beat anything east of the Mississippi.

  6. A lot of those poor old black ladies don't have driver's licenses, I guess. UnAmerican bitches; what right do they have to vote, anyway.

    1. Oh BULLSHIT Rufus. You don't have to have a driver's license to vote. You got to have some I.D.

      ID Needed for Voting

      All voters are required to show a photo ID before voting. All photo IDs must contain an expiration date that is current, unless noted otherwise. Acceptable IDs include:

      Pennsylvania driver's license or non-driver's license photo ID (IDs are valid for voting purposes 12 months past expiration date
      Valid U.S. passport
      U.S. military ID - active duty and retired military (a military or veteran's ID must designate an expiration date or designate that the expiration date is indefinate). Military dependents' ID must contain an expiration date
      Employee photo ID issued by Federal, PA, County or Municipal government
      Photo ID cards from an accredited Pennsylvania public or private institution of higher learning
      Photo ID cards issued by a Pennsylvania care facility, including long-term care facilities, assisted living residences or personal care homes

      If you do not have one of these IDs, you may be entitled to get one free of charge at a PennDOT Driver License Center. To find the Driver License Center nearest you, and learn what identification and residency documentation you will need to get a photo ID visit PennDOT's Voter ID website or call the Department of State's Voter ID Hotline at 1-877-868-3772.

      "If you do not have one of these IDs, you may be entitled to get one free of charge at a PennDOT Driver License Center."

    2. I am trying really really hard not to call Rufus a moron.

  7. Yeah, just go down there and tell'em you want one a them "free" photo IDs. Get back with us on how that worked out.

    Or, them old black women can get their lazy asses off the stoop, and use their passports. yaah, that's the ticket.

    I know the last time Ga tried this they could get that "free" ID if they got someone to drive them 150 miles to one of the two locations in the state where they were issued.

    1. Whose votes are they spending all this time, and money trying to suppress?

      And, you call me a moron.

  8. .

    I've got to go with Ruf on this one. It's too blatant an effort, too many GOP politicos in unguarded moments have admitted the intent, to consider this as anything more than an obvious attempt at voter supression.

    Good point Rufus, I guess it's true, in the land of the blind the one-eyed is king. Good going your highness.


  9. Total BULLSHIT.

    They are not trying to suppress anything. That is the democratic party's term for it. They WANT illegals to vote because they will vote mostly democratic. The democrats want amnesty for MORE VOTES.

    Pennslyvania wants citizens that are eligible to vote, to vote. They will pay for your damned ID.

    Not Mexicans. Not Felons. Not people from Jersey.

    You BOTH are just dumber than shit, Quirk sometimes, Rufus, all the time, these days.

    1. How many "illegals" really try to vote? Don't be a schmuck.

      I've seen people try to get those "free" IDs. Don't kid yourself; they're trying to keep those old, black women away from the polls.

      Like Willie Sutton said, "Tha's where the money is."

    2. .

      Damn, Bob, you are so damn gullible I'm surprised your wife let's you walk around unattended.

      They are not trying to suppress anything?

      From today's WAPO.

      Simpson said he considered complaints that Pennsylvania’s law was motivated by partisan interests, noting what he called the “disturbing, tendentious statements” by state House Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R).

      Turzai listed the law as an accomplishment at a meeting of GOP activists, saying, “Voter ID — which is going to allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania — done.”

      This is just one of the unscripted and one assumes honest comments by the GOP in states where they were pushing the photo-ID laws. If you can't see it's a push for voter suppression, you are nutz.

      Cases of voter impersonation fraud — the kind that would be stopped by photo ID laws — are exceedingly rare. Pennsylvania acknowledged that such fraud had not occurred in the commonwealth, nor was it likely to occur in the coming election, even without the law.

      The small incidence of fraud doesn't justify the inconvenience you impose on voters. To catch 10 fraudulent voters you would suppress the votes of thousands.

      Voter Fraud? There is just not much there.

      We have heard about voter fraud since 2000 when the Dems charged it in Florida and Ohio. The claims proved to be bogus. Any fraud that occurs doesn't occur because of the individual voter. It occurs higher up the food chain with partisan voting officials.

      Stop getting sucked in by GOP talking points.


    3. The only illegal voting reported in 2008 at the Elephant Bar was bob's wife voting by mail in Ohio, while she was a legal resident of Idaho.

      That is the extent of the voter fraud we have been witness to.

    4. :)

      I wanted to mention that, but I knew ol' Bob would have a sputtering fit, and I just didn't feel up to it.

  10. Thankfully I'm going to the Casino for breakfast.


    1. .

      With as much time as you spend there, do they comp you for the breakfast?


  11. Replies
    1. :)

      Thank God for the kids.

      The Li'l Darlinks :)

  12. Nat Gas injections continue to run about 40% less than a year ago.

    UNG (nat gas for the cautious) looks like a good go, here.

  13. Obama's "elevator" speech:

    While “I have strengthened Medicare,” Mr. Obama declared before a crowd of 3,000 here, “Mr. Romney and his running mate have a very different plan. They want to turn Medicare into a voucher program.” Such a move, the president maintained, would “force seniors to spend an extra $6,400 a year.”

    The president offered a quick comparison of his proposals and the Republicans’. “My plan has already extended Medicare for nearly a decade,” he said. “Their plan makes seniors pay more so we can get tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires.”

    Obama on Medicare

    1. .

      Man, last week it was going to cost seniors $2,000 a year. Later, it was going to cost them $2,400. Now, it's $6,400.

      By the election, our senior problem will be gone. They will have all been sold into bondage for unpaid debt.

      (I owe Joe Biden a H/T for inspiration on that last line.)


  14. .

    In 2001, the CBO projected that for the period 2001-2011, we would have a budget surplus of $5.6 trillion. Instead, we ended up with a shortfall of $6.1 billion, a change of $11.7 trillion.

    The Dems blame Bush and the GOP. The GOP blames Obama and the Dems. Both views are political and simplistic. They are both wrong, or both right, depending on how you want to look at it. In fact, this clusterfuck was a joint effort.

    So, once again, how did we lose $12 trillion?


    1. Reminds me of a couple of businesses I owned back in my early days.


    2. Seriously, though, you really have to keep that in mind when pundits, politicians, and other snake-oil salesmen try to tell you that this or that program is going to do this, or that, 5 or 10 years down the road.

      The CBO, routinely, misses its "next-year forecasts" by $100 Billion, or more.

  15. The Philadelphia problem is not little ol black ladies. It is multiple voting by felons and other ineligibles. On election day, Philadelphia uses ward bosses that are given “walking around money”, cash they do not have to account for . They hire vans and taxis to take multiple voters to voting places that have registrations for non existent voters. A four time voter is not unusual.

    That is harder to do with photo ID cards. You have to be naive to think that the Republicans are anywhere close to being on par with the Democrats when it comes to voting fraud. They don’t come any better prepared than a Democratic Philadelphia Ward boss. They can wipe out entire rural Pennsylvania counties with fraudulent votes.

  16. I'd have to see some actual, you know, evidence of that. It sounds more "urban mythish" to me than anything else.

    I bet if I was a Republican "poll watcher" I could get a few license numbers, and jerk a knot in their tails.

    It makes a great beer-drinking story, but I'm just really not buying it.

  17. I buy it. Same thing goes on in many urban areas. Memphis has a huge problem with it.

    The Ford's mantra was: vote early, vote often.

  18. Rat's touting of Gary Johnson has much merit. His stances are in line with most of the people I know, hang out with, and respect. I also agree with the vast majorit of his postitions. But not necessarily his stances on abortion and legalizing recreational drugs.

    Rat says vote with your heart. Well that may be the goodly thing to do. The votes Johnson will get in November will not move the needle. It is hard to take him as a serious contender when he doesnt seem to take himself seriously. If he did he would have a louder voice. I see it as merely a protest vote.

    Ruf thinks I will vote for Romney. I guess he thinks that because I detest Obama so much. I joking have said I will vote White, which is true, but I don't think I have said I would vote for Romney, although I have no trouble defending him, especially with the love affair some on this blog have with Obama.

  19. pay no attention to my spelling as I have swollen fingers today.

  20. .

    I would also like to see proof of it. We have all heard the legends but you have seen the studies that have been posted here where they have come up short on evidence. The fact that voter rolls haven't been updated to remove dead persons doesn't indicate criminal intent as much as it does sloppiness.

    A four time voter is not unusual? You know this? The state doesn't seem to. They indicate they have had no fraud and that they don't expect any this election even in the absence of the photo-ID law.

    Also, I am not saying there doesn't have to be proof that you are a registered voter. In my opinion, a voter registration card that can be mailed by the SOS is sufficient. Also, with today's technolgy they can even make 'smart cards'. However, finding a few people trying to cheat doesn't justify disinfranchising thousands of people.

    Likewise, no one said the GOP was worse than the Dems when it comes to fraud. There are numerous ways other than falsely identifying yourself to commit voter fraud as mentioned in those studies. Messing with the absentee ballots, misplacing ballots, miscounts, etc. to mention a few. However, the issue we were arguing with Bob about was the reason the GOP was pushing photo-ID. Anyone who argues it isn't to suppress the vote has drunk a little too much kool-aid or he is off in lalaland.


    1. No one is disenfranchised, you moron.

      I doubt they have even ever looked for fraud.

      Speaking of which, in Minnesota, fats Frankenstein won by 500 and some votes, and they have identified over 1,000 felon votes. Who do you think most of them voted for?

      So Frankenstein is in because because people throw away their votes on meaningless third party crap, and the system is so sloppy that even felons can vote and get away with it.

    2. Anyone who argues it is to suppress the legitimate vote has drunk a little too much kool-aid or he is off in lalaland.

      They offer to help the legitimate get registered, for god's sake.

    3. If a person is capable of getting off one's fat ass and going to vote, one is capable of getting off one's fat ass and go get legitimately registered to vote.

      It is supposed to be a legitimate representative democracy here, not some damned romper room school with no rules, no responsibility. Only citizens are allowed to vote.

      Maybe I'll come to Pennslyvania and vote. I could vote Michigan too while I'm at it, maybe throw in Jersey.

      It's nuts.

    4. I sure do. Some of my best friends were Democrats. I also know how the DA’s office in Phila. worked when Frank Rizzo was boss. They justified it over a few bottles of Schimdt’s as a way of saving some of those poor ol black ladies a trip to the polls. Good Samaritans if you think about it, sort of like running to the A&P to pick up a few things for the housebound.

  21. I see nothing wrong with requiring someone to prove they are the registered voter they claim to be in order to vote. They had the where with all to register, which required identification, did it not? It seems like a simple request.

    You can go on and on about the little old black lady, but in reality, those who are fighting this appear to have something to hide.

    1. .

      Something to hide?

      That's the same thing they said about those who complained about the government's warrantless searches and spying on American citizens with the launch of the WOT, something some dumbshit from Idaho often complains about.



    2. Q

      requiring ID is the same as a warrantless search. Same thing? Not even close.

    3. .

      I never said it was.

      What I was pointing out was the inanity of your argument. You have no proof for the argument that those who oppose photo-ID 'have something to hide'.

      It was the same faulty logic used in the discussion of the WOT.


    4. And I never said I had proof, nitwit.

      Appear: to have the appearance of being; seem; look: to appear to be a nitwit. Get it?

    5. There are many US citizens who don't have picture ID. There are many US citizens who have a hard time getting a picture ID. If you don't have a birth certificate (and there are many reasons why one might not have one) it can be very difficult to get picture ID. Little old black ladies whom have never had a picture ID are just one example.

      Gag, are you suggestings that all US citizens be required to have picture ID, a citizen card of some sort or only if you want to vote?

    6. .

      Well, it might 'appear' that way to someone who lacks the ability for critical thought, Gag, but most educated people would look for some sort of proof on which to base their assumptions or to form an informed opinion.

      Just saying.


    7. Ash you are getting as bad as Q. No where in my post do I refer to photo I.d. Just I. D.

      Are you really stating that any one should just be able to walk up and vote by just stating their name? You can't be serious. Really?

    8. This comment has been removed by the author.

    9. The Penn voter thing revolves around Picture ID doesn't it? The standard has been a lot lower ID wise but, yes, there are, and should be, registration requirements.

    10. We vote once a year, every 2 years and every 4 years depending on the office or ref. you would think even those little old black ladies could even manage a foto Id in those lengths of time. Come on get real.

    11. I'm going for a run. Y'all don't let those mean ole republicans put you in chains? Out.

    12. That is the point - there are a whole bunch of folk, for a bunch of reasons, who don't have photo-ID and requiring photo-ID disenfranchises them.

  22. Right on.

    Those fighting it know they will lose some votes out of it. That is obviously why they are fighting it. Otherwise they wouldn't fight it.

    This logic is just to complex for Quirk and Rufus.

    It's sad.

    1. And to call it 'voter suppression' is just a liberal language game designed to malign those in favor of a little good sense in voting procedures.

      It like Rufus pulling out the race card on me. It's just langauge bullshit.

    2. I'm finished now with the topic.

      But I steam when I think of Frankenstein.

      And I've blown off my steam.

  23. .

    Speaking of which, in Minnesota, fats Frankenstein won by 500 and some votes, and they have identified over 1,000 felon votes. Who do you think most of them voted for?

    I would like to see a link for that.

    Oh, and allegations don't count. Surely, the facts were reviewed. What happened to the felons? Surely, they were punished. Was there a recount? If not, why not...


    1. Exactly, since all politicians are NOT Dicks, there could not possibly be foul play at work.

      ...or some such Pretzel (Quirk) "logic."

    2. .

      From a Rolling Stone article from last year (by the way my wife subscribes to the magazine and it's pretty good).

      Voting by Convicted Felons

      The truth: Only in a handful of cases have people stripped of the right to vote by convictions been shown to have knowingly voted illegally. This makes sense, since who would risk getting thrown back in jail for the sake of one extra vote? Less rarely – though not often – people vote without realizing they're ineligible, frequently because they were misinformed by clueless election officials. Sometimes, it's a case of people being convicted after voting; other times, a person convicted of a misdemeanor, which doesn't disqualify them from voting, is listed as a felon. Again, the fault often lies with flawed list matches caused by typos, clerical errors, and the like.

      Typical case: In 2000, Florida claimed that 5,643 ineligible persons with convictions actually voted in the general election. Upon investigation, it turned out the data included eligible citizens with misdemeanors, citizens with convictions after their valid vote, and eligible voters whose names and birthdates matched those of convicted felons.


    3. .

      Pretzel logic?

      Doug, once more prove you inability to follow the train of an argument, similar to your inability to distinguish between identical and equivalent.

      No one said there was no fraud involved; however, we are talking about how wide-spread are the instances of fraud that would be caught by the photo-ID law. For instance, one of the more significant areas of fraud is reportedly with absentee ballots. Photo-ID would have no affect on that. Just as fraud by election officials or buying votes are both serious and criminal but neither are affected by the 'motor voter' laws.


    4. That was the explanation that b had, when his wife broke the law and voted in Ohio.
      Clueless election officials were to blame for her breaking the law. Not malfeasance on her part.

      We can all wonder as to the truth of the matter.

  24. Dinesh d Souza to the rescue -

    A few days ago I received a call from a man I recently met named George. He was a bit flustered, and soon informed me that his young son was sick with a chest condition. He pleaded with me to send him $1,000 to cover the medical bills. Since George was at the hospital I asked him to let me speak to a nurse, and she confirmed that George’s son was indeed ill. So I agreed to send George the money through Western Union. He was profusely grateful. But before I hung up I asked George, “Why are you coming to me?” He said, “I have no one else to ask.” Then he said something that astounded me, “Dinesh, you are like a brother to me.”

    Actually, George has a real life brother who just happens to be the president of the United States. (George Obama is the youngest of eight children sired by Barack Obama Sr.) George’s brother is a multimillionaire and the most powerful man in the world. Moreover, George’s brother has framed his re-election campaign around the “fair share” theme that we owe obligations to those who are less fortunate.

    One of Obama’s favorite phrases comes right out of the Bible: “We are our brother’s keeper.” Yet he has not contributed a penny to help his own brother. And evidently George does not believe, even in times of emergency, that he can turn to his brother in the White House for help.

    Read more:

    Told you Dinesh was a good guy.

    And there are people here who would actually vote for a slime bucket like Obama.

  25. Q&A on Medicare proposals: What's true, what's not


    The goal of both campaigns is to accuse the other of weakening Medicare — something independent experts say is inevitable if the program's unsustainable growth is to be contained.

    "The truth is that no one can preserve Medicare as we know it," says Bob Laszewski, a health care consultant. "There isn't a prayer that your father's Medicare will be around in 10 years."

    Here's what the proposals would really do — and what they would not.

    The Romney-Ryan plan

    Q:Obama says Romney wants to "end Medicare as we know it." Is that true?

    A: Not really. The original budget plan written by Ryan and passed by House Republicans would turn Medicare into a "premium support" plan. Seniors would have a fixed government subsidy with which to purchase private insurance — but the new version of that plan includes an option to retain traditional Medicare coverage.

    Q: Does Ryan's plan affect people on Medicare today, as the latest online adby the Obama campaign implies by showing seniors in a seated exercise class and referencing "Florida's massive retirement population"?

    A: No. It would not begin until 2023. That means today's seniors, plus those 55 and older, would be exempted from the new system. And by the time there's a deal on any plan, a 10-year exemption likely would include people younger than 55 today.

    Q:Would the Ryan plan raise the Medicare eligibility age to 67?

    A: Yes, by 2034, but the eligibility age for Social Security already is headed to 67. Medicare is in worse financial shape than Social Security. In last year's deficit-reduction talks, Obama was willing to consider the higher age in exchange for higher taxes on the wealthy.

    Q: Would the Ryan plan affect rich and poor alike?

    A: No. Like Obama's plan, the Republican plan includes higher Medicare premiums for wealthier beneficiaries. And it includes extra government subsidies for lower-income beneficiaries.

    Q: Would private insurance options be more expensive?

    A: Yes, because the money seniors would get to put toward their insurance would be capped, while medical costs would not. But the figure used as recently as Wednesday by Obama while campaigning in Iowa — that seniors would pay an average of $6,400 more annually — is based on the Congressional Budget Office's analysis of an older version of Ryan's plan.

    The Obama health care law

    Q: Does the Obama plan cut about $716 billion from Medicare, as the Romney campaign argues it does?

    A: Not exactly. There are no cuts in benefits, and, in fact, seniors have already seen preventive services, such as annual exams and cancer screenings, with no co-pays.

    Instead, the savings comes by decreasing provider payments.

    Ryan's plan would repeal the health care law but keep the $716 billion in savings in place. Romney says he favors "putting that $716 billion back."


    ...more of the same follows.

    Our MSNBC crowd here will no doubt concur.



    "You didn't build your practice, Big Government Did"

    (Start the unsustainable inflation of health care costs)

    We gaurantee your benefits, we don't promise to pay for them, now is not the time for profits, markets, and free choice.

  26. I'm still hopping mad about how the MSM Trashed John Kerry for his Wealth.

    1. The GOP and friends did trash him for his wealth (he did release his tax records did he not?) and then they Swift Boated him.

    2. Right, MSM = Dems

      GOP = GOP

      Swift Boat Veterans told their stories.

      Take them or leave them.

      Given Young JFK's congressional testimony about fellow Vets,
      I'll take them over his.

      But he does still hold the (fake?) medal toss record.

    3. How about revealing just a few of your talents and techniques that lead to your wealth, Ash?

      Just a couple.
      I've always wondered.

      Hope it's not a Teresa Heinz story, 'cause I'm pulling for you otherwise.

    4. You tinfoil hatters constantly refer to the MSM as if it were a single entity spewing a single message which is, on its face, simply false. The MSM is a many headed beast and FOXNews is just one of the heads. Then there is your buddy Rush, a pillar of the MSM establishment. Hell, right wing talk radio dominates the MSM.

      Yeah, Kerry married into his wealth, JFK was born into it, and Romney pillaged for it and now is trying to hide it from view... truth, I think all that buying and selling of companies is fine, and, yes, jobs get lost and some get gained - I'm a free trader at heart and I detest the status-quo protecting trade protecting.

      Romney is a twit though, a plastic man flip flopping, say anything boob begging for power for no other apparent reason then he wants the accolades and trappings of POTUS.

    5. me, I'm just a small businessman surviving in a tough environment doing something I like and determined to enjoy my life as opposed to grubbing for as many dollars as possible.

    6. That's great, but really wonder what you like to do.

      I like building things, never made a lot, made money making things, lost money trying to run a business out of something I built.

      (A Microbrewery)

      ...took a small fortune and made it smaller.

      Took 20 years to figure out why, after getting the best franchise on the CA Central Coast, then an offer from Bud distributorship to carry it!

      Very Slow Learner!

      (...and some guy came by while under construction and told me all the mistakes I would probably make if I ignored his advice!
      ...which I did.)

      All worked out for the best for the kid, tho.

      Like to get back to building things if I ever learn how to keep house and not let all the constant reminders of a missing loved one de-motivate me.

  27. 10. Walt

    Barack Obama, who once looked very much like Happy, but who now looks more like Grumpy, pumps up his inner circle with a rousing rendition of Heigh ho, Heigh ho, all the while smiling into a mirror and demanding to know if the polls say he is still the fairest in the land.

    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    It’s off to work we go
    We’ll smash the nuts
    Who hate my guts
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho Heigh ho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Our VPs got to go
    I’ll find some gents
    Who’ll make some sense
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Our secrets we will show
    We’ll make amends
    And make new friends
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho, Heighho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Paul Ryan’s cruel we know
    We’ll spread the dirt
    And make him hurt
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Mitt Romney’s made some dough
    We’ll make it plain
    It came from Bain
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    The voters they all owe
    Me four more years
    Of smiles and ears
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho, Heigh ho
    Heigh ho, Heigh ho

    The voice trails off as the dwarfs, led by Grumpy, enter the mine, to disappear forever from history and memory.

  28. Well, as to gag's comments, up thread.

    If one wishes to vote for a signer of a assault weapons ban, do so.
    If one wishes to vote for a candidate that has advocated that individual Federal mandates are the way to go on paying for health care, do so.

    To get both in one package, Mitt Romney is your man.

    If one wishes to vote for a candidate that extended conceal carry into the National Parks, vote Obama.
    He is a proponent of the individual's right to bear arms. Proven so by his performance as President.

    If it really makes a difference to you.

    Me, I couldn't vote for either of the major Party candidates. The stench of hypocrisy is to great. Mr Johnson was frozen out of the GOP prices, where he could have been competitive.

    Vote your conscience. In Texas it doesn't really matter.
    Romney will carry Texas, regardless.
    As he will carry Arizona.

    Mr Obama will carry Hawaii.
    So a conscience vote will not make a difference, there.

    Vote for a proponent of an assault weapons ban...
    ... if that will make your day.

    1. e, I couldn't vote for either of the major Party candidates. The stench of hypocrisy is to great. Mr Johnson was frozen out of the GOP pPROCESS, where he could have been competitive.

      MEA CULPA.

      As for Mr Ryan, he was an Ayn Rand acolyte before he wasn't.
      As to his leadership, he has and 2 sponsored pieces of legislation passed in 13 years, one to rename a post office.
      He has been a mouthpiece, not a Leader.

  29. It's amazing that no one has uttered the execrable (to libertarians) words, "Facial Recognition."

    The technology as it exists, Today, could stop multiple voting dead in its tracks.

  30. Outside the embassy Thursday, John Hamblett, a 55-year-old Londoner who manages a café for the Catholic Worker movement, which campaigns against war, poverty and social injustice, said protesters "think it's a crime to make people who try to speak for truth and justice into criminals." He said he didn't know whether Mr. Assange is guilty of the allegations leveled against him in Sweden.

    "I don't necessarily think there's any truth to them, but I think he should answer them anyway to clear the decks," Mr. Hamblett said.

    Saul Yanchaliquin Duran, a 46-year-old Ecuadorian who lives in London and works as a waiter at the House of Lords, held up Ecuador's flag and chanted in favor of Mr. Assange in both English and Spanish. "Until the proof comes, nobody is guilty," Mr. Yanchaliquin Duran said.

  31. Ecuador's government has a great record of challenging the disastrous record of Western neo-liberalism, but its Foreign Secretary is wrong to describe the charges as "laughable" and "hilarious". Though its UK Embassy must be protected from any British Government attempt to attack its sovereignty, it is wrong to offer Assange political asylum.

    Assange should go to Sweden to face the allegations. That doesn't mean abandoning the struggle to hold Western governments to account, and to force them to be open about how they act in our name.

    But this is a struggle that has become tragically compromised by Assange.

  32. He did more than his share to help Bush add $5 trillion to the national debt. But if the prodigal son wants to redeem himself with a politically dangerous blueprint to make Medicare affordable, more power to him.

    Democrats have a point in saying what Ryan offers is not as good as the current version of Medicare. It's also not as good as the Big Rock Candy Mountain, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow or the valley of Shangri-La.

    His option does, however, have the virtue of a connection to the real world. It's a place his critics can't avoid forever.

  33. Back in June 2011, British prime minister David Cameron backed proposals tackling the sexualisation of British children, in a bid to dilute the culture of sex that has swept western nations. The rhetoric goes that the ‘oversexualisation’ of society, as represented in everything from ‘lads mags’ to advertising boards promoting shampoo, has fuelled a surplus of sexual desire that is thought to have contributed to the rise of teenage pregnancy and rape cases in the UK.


    Too much work, too little sex:

    Japan is a country where sales of adult diapers exceed child diapers, and where more public money is spent on healthcare than defence. It's also one of the world's most industrialised countries, with an agricultural sector comprising 1.5% of its GDP and services sector comprising 75.7% of GDP.


    Encourage Fertility

    This would help ensure that the labour market and services such as transport are not undersupplied. It can be done in at least three ways. The first is through pro-natal incentives, such as child tax breaks for couples who desire children. The second is to restrict or even ban abortion (Japanese abortion laws are some of the most liberal in the world).


    The third, and perhaps the most untried, is to sow the seeds for a more sexualised Japanese culture, one with more lust and desire, in an attempt to situate relationships as more desirable than the latest computer game.

  34. Ash has it right about Romney. More so than Rat. Assault weapons ban? No way. Pandering for votes in Mass. Is a little different than the same in the other 49 states. If elected he won't go near it.

  35. It's inherent in the genes of the British/American Ruling Class to desire a plentiful population of extremely poor, uneducated "workers" to "drive the trucks, and serve the Dinner."

    It explains how they can demonize birth control, and at the same time fight ferociously against child health-care, nutrition, and education/training programs.

    1. The young Japanese are educated, and are having none of it.

      A cautionary tale for the "Lords, and Masters."

  36. This is an Astonishing Statistic.

    It’s common knowledge by now that the recession has hit college graduates and non-graduates differently, but the size of the gap is dramatic. A new report from Anthony Carnevale, Tamara Jayasundera and Ban Cheah found that while employment fell for people with high school and associates’ degrees, it actually ROSE during the recession for college graduates:

  37. Replies
    1. The report also broke down the severity of the recession by gender. Three quarters of jobs lost during the recession belonged to men, but men also received four fifths of jobs since the recovery started, meaning they’ve actually gained relative to women due to the downturn. Indeed, this was the worst recession ever for women. But college-educated women saw consistent job gains, while even college-educated men lost jobs:

      this means....

      McDonalds hired more chicks than men...

      what a load of nonsense.

    2. I didn't see anything in the article about McDonalds Hiring More "Chicks."

      But, you're saying the local McDonalds is just replete with "College-educated chicks?"

      I would like to see some proof of that.

  38. Decades ago, China's Deng Xiaoping is said to have energized the nation's capitalists by declaring: "To get rich is glorious."


    Entrepreneurs who make it big and land on well-publicized rich lists in China are more likely to draw government scrutiny, some new research shows. That can be costly—to the business and the entrepreneur.

  39. I was watching a program the other night about Edwardian England. The Early 1900's.

    The Earth was changing all around them, but the British "Upper-Class" never noticed. Until WWI.

    By the time WWI was over they were through. Sitting in their now-unaffordable country estates, thumbs dead up their asses, going "Wha' Happened?"

    History is Prelude.

    1. We don't call them "landed gentry," today. We call them "Hedge-fund Managers, and Bundlers."

  40. The Bipartisan Policy Center has an excellent summary of Paul Ryan’s budget. But I’m having trouble with this graph:

    It’s not that the graph is wrong, though the fact that the “Y” axis begins at 15 percent of GDP makes the differences between the plans look more dramatic than they really are. It’s that the graph works off the numbers that Ryan provides. But they’re not numbers that I’m comfortable using.

    The problem is primarily on the tax side. Ryan says his plan will be “revenue neutral” to current policy. That means it will raise about the same amount of money as the current tax code. But it also “repeals the AMT, condenses the rate structure of the individual income tax to just two rates of 10 and 25 percent, and lowers the top corporate tax rate to 25 percent.”

    In the accompanying text, the Bipartisan Policy Center is clear on what that means. “In order to remain revenue-neutral, nearly every tax expenditure would have to be eliminated.” I don’t believe that Ryan is going to eliminate nearly every tax expenditure, nor that it would be a good idea if he did.

    I’d perhaps feel differently if Ryan had a history of voting to pay for tax cuts, or voting to trim tax cuts that couldn’t be paid for. But he doesn’t. He voted for the Bush tax cuts without demanding offsets. He voted to extend the Bush tax cuts without demanding offsets. He voted to repeal the House’s “PayGo” rule, which says both new spending and new tax cuts need to be paid for, and to replace it with the “CutGo” rule, in which spending cuts need to be paid for and tax cuts don’t. And, while he’s told the Congressional Budget Office to assume revenue neutrality, he pointedly did not include even a single offset for the tax plan in his budget.

    If you assume Ryan’s tax plan would not be paid for, then it only raises 15.5 percent of GDP in revenue, and Ryan’s plan is the single most fiscally irresponsible plan on the graph.

    The question then is how should we in the media report on Ryan’s plan? Do we use the revenue numbers he tells us to assume, despite the fact that he offers no path for reaching those numbers, and despite the fact that he and his party have a long history of choosing tax cuts over deficit reduction? Or do we use the policy changes on the page, in which case Ryan’s plan is wildly fiscally irresponsible?

    I don’t have a good answer. I’m not comfortable dismissing what Ryan says he’ll do. But I’m not comfortable assuming that he’s going to do something he’s never done before, that the Republican Party is ideologically uninterested in doing, and that would be nearly impossible to get done. Which is why I’m uncomfortable with the graph, and with the tendency folks have to treat the Ryan budget’s deficit reduction as settled fact.

    At the very least, people should know that when they hear about the Ryan plan’s deficit reduction, those numbers are assuming that Ryan, who has thus far refused to name even one tax break that he would get rid of, has either eliminated almost every expenditure in the tax code, including the capital gains tax break and the home mortgage interest deduction, or he’s sacrificed his tax cuts.

    The Ryan Budget - Does it Reduce the Deficit

    Pure Smoke and Mirrors

  41. The Republican budget might keep President Obama’s cuts to Medicare. But a Romney administration wouldn’t.

    Lanhee Chen, the campaign’s policy director, left no room for doubt in his statement: “A Romney-Ryan Administration will restore the funding to Medicare, ensure that no changes are made to the program for those 55 or older, and implement the reforms that they have proposed to strengthen it for future generations.”

    Avik Roy, a health-care policy adviser to Romney, doubles down. “Whatever you think of Obamacare’s cuts to Medicare, the fact is that a Romney administration would repeal them,” he writes.

    But then how will a Romney administration make its budget math add up?

    Romney is not going to make these kinds of cuts to the federal pie. (Shannon Stapleton — Reuters)

    Consider what Romney has promised. By 2016, he says federal spending will be below 20 percent of GDP, and at least 4 percent of that will be defense spending. At that point, he will cap federal spending at 20 percent of GDP, meaning it can never rise above that level.

    All that’s hard enough. Romney will have to cut federal spending by between $6 and $7 trillion over the next decade to hit those targets. As my colleague Suzy Khimm has detailed, those budget promises already require cuts far in excess of what even Paul Ryan’s budget proposes.

    But Ryan’s budget includes more than $700 billion in Medicare cuts over the next decade, Romney’s budget won’t. And Romney promises that there will be no other changes to Social Security or Medicare for those over 55, which means neither program can be cut for the next 10 years. But once you add up Medicare, Social Security and defense and you’ve got more than half of the federal budget. So Romney is going to make the largest spending cuts in history while protecting or increasing spending on more than half of the budget.

    The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities indulged this idea back in May. If Social Security and Medicare are spared from cuts, then to get federal spending under 20 percent of GDP while holding defense spending at 4 percent of GDP, “all other programs — including Medicaid, veterans’ benefits, education, environmental protection, transportation, and SSI — would have to be cut by an average of 40 percent in 2016 and 57 percent in 2022.”

    Consider what the Romney campaign, then, is saying: If Romney is elected, then by his third year in office, every single federal program that is not Medicare, Social Security, or defense, will be cut, on average, by 40 percent. That means Medicaid, infrastructure, education, food safety, road safety, the postal service, basic research, foreign aid, housing subsidies, food stamps, the Census, Pell grants, the Patent and Trademark Office, the FDA — all of it has to be cut by, on average, 40 percent. If Romney tried to protect any particular priority, it would mean all the others have to be cut by more than 40 percent.

    Romney's Budget Fantasy

    1. There is definitely a reason why Republicans get their most votes in states with the lowest education rankings.

    2. Math is not the R&R Boyz' friend.

      Now, don't get me wrong; I know there are some on this blog that have "run the numbers," and expect to do better under the Pubs. More power to ye.

      No, what I'm talking about is the poor, white guy that comes in somewhere around, or below the Median Income. If that guy votes for the Pubs he's just flat voting against his, and his family's best interest. Over, and Out.

    3. .

      Cut it out.

      This is not a place for facts or reality. It just confuses the issue.

      'Anyone but Obama' is enough for some.


  42. So far, the system is running as smoothly as a Swiss watch and the patient satisfaction rate is high. In a 2010 Deloitte survey, more than half of Swiss respondents praised their healthcare system, compared to 21% to 43% of Americans, Britons and Canadians. In fact, grumbling about having to buy insurance is non-existent in Switzerland. At least part of the compliance may be cultural: the Swiss are extremely risk-averse and want to be insured if an illness or another calamity strikes. Today, 99% of the population is insured and when it comes to residents who aren’t — mostly new immigrants — the government can buy a health plan on their behalf and send them the bill.

    “Switzerland’s system is superb: consumer-driven, cost-effective, and equitably distributed,” says Regina Herzlinger, a Harvard Business School professor who has studied the Swiss model extensively. “For quality care, patient satisfaction, and chronic disease management and prevention, the Swiss come out on top.” Indeed, Switzerland’s population is among the healthiest in the world. According to United Nations, they have the second-highest life expectancy in the world, while the United States lags behind in the 38th place, proving, perhaps, that the highest price tag — nearly $8,000 per person in healthcare spending each year in the U.S. — doesn’t guarantee the best or most equitable care.

    Read more:

    Obamacare in Switzerland

  43. In a statement released online the WikiLeaks founder added: “I’m grateful to the Ecuadorean people, President Rafael Correa and his government. It was not Britain or my home country, Australia, that stood up to protect me from persecution, but a courageous, independent Latin American nation.

    While today is a historic victory, our struggles have just begun.”

    The episode has also provoked a fresh row within the Coalition Government after Nick Clegg registered his worries with Mr Hague over the ratcheting-up of tensions between the two countries. Mr Clegg’s office appealed for an effort to calm the situation after the Ecuadorian government went public with the Foreign Office warning.

  44. In The Teavangelicals, Christian Broadcasting Network correspondent David Brody sets out to persuade readers of an already well-known fact: Many Tea Partiers are socially conservative Christians. He calls these conservatives "Tea-vangelicals" and argues that they are reinvigorating the religious right.


    On a side note, Brody has kind words for two libertarian-leaning politicians, Texas Rep. Ron Paul and his son, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul. The senior Paul, Brody writes, "will go down in American history as a man whose ideas challenged the status quo and changed the conversation in this country.

    He's considered the godfather of the Tea Party, and his trendsetting economic message of fiscal responsibility ushered in Teavangelical support." And indeed, Ron has significantly shifted the conversation in this country, as has the Tea Party movement that he helped inspire.

  45. On this day in 1977, singer Elvis Presley passed away at the age of 42. He died at the Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tenn.