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General Category => General Discussion => Topic started by: LMAshton on September 05, 2017, 05:12:33 am

Title: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: LMAshton on September 05, 2017, 05:12:33 am
Please put your current events/discussions regarding US Politics here. Remember to keep all discussion polite and well-mannered.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 05, 2017, 05:24:16 am
Remember to keep all discussion polite and well-mannered.
IOW, pretend you are a politician who is trying not to act like one, but to set a good example for your kids so they have a chance of growing up to be decent human beings.  :D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on September 05, 2017, 12:44:56 pm
So no ad hominem attacks against fellow contributors?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 05, 2017, 08:14:31 pm
Only if you say, "Bless their heart" after you say something nasty.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 06, 2017, 12:29:46 am
Well, we aren’t supposed to say anything nasty about our fellow contributors, right? We’re supposed to save those for the politicians. :D

So I'll start... President Trump, President Obama, Secretary Clinton, Senator McConnell, Speaker Ryan, Leader Schumer, Leader Pelosi, etc... bless their dear, sweet, beautiful, noble, gracious hearts ... :D rofl.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on September 06, 2017, 02:11:06 am
"Only if you say, "Bless their heart" after you say something nasty. "

I think you have to be true southerner to get away with that.  Given my left coast heritage, I'm afraid I don't qualify.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on September 06, 2017, 07:59:22 am
<derail>
Quote
Given my left coast heritage

Sorry, is this actually a thing? Has the US dumbed down to the point where West and East are no longer used to describe geographical locations?

</derail>
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: dyany on September 06, 2017, 10:58:22 am
Andrew, it is a silly phrase meant to refer to both where the West lies on a map and their political leanings.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on September 13, 2017, 02:01:24 pm
I'm starting to wonder if Trump is really a Trojan Horse.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 13, 2017, 06:29:47 pm
Why didn't I think of that? And who would have put that Trojan horse in place? There could be more than one possible answer.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 13, 2017, 09:29:20 pm
I think Pres. Trump is the electorate's response to Pres. Obama's abuse of executive power. So instead of leader, we got the world's most recognizable hatchet man.  "You're fired!"
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on September 15, 2017, 12:00:00 pm
Why didn't I think of that? And who would have put that Trojan horse in place? There could be more than one possible answer.

The Trojons.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on September 16, 2017, 06:55:00 am
I am glad that President Trump is working with the other side. There has been so much acrimony, that perhaps working with them on a relatively easily justifiable concession will allow inroads for future cooperation. Politicians, while outwardly hard core, are inwardly pragmatists.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 21, 2017, 02:57:36 am
Lookie here, 4 whole days without a post on this thread. And with all the sensational & bizarre related events & statements that have been flying around. Maybe the Nauvoodle neighborhood is getting weary of all the political stuff & is settling down to live normal lives again. :)

** Dodges as a golf ball comes sailing by & barely misses drilling me in the back.  **

Look out, Punkin. You too, Ivie. It isn't safe for kitty cats around here. Let's go back to the Cabin before someone grabs you.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on September 23, 2017, 10:11:08 pm
I began watching a few youtube videos about people visiting North Korea, as well as listening to interviews from people that have escaped from North Korea. The North Korean people all believe that the USA and capitalism and exploited South Korea and they are all living in poverty. They believe that they will some day liberate South Korea and increase their standard of living.

Kim Jong Un put on weight and cuts his hair like he does so that he looks more like his grandfather, who is very beloved. If you do not cry loudly enough on the anniversaries of their beloved leaders deaths, you may be into one of their prison camps. Their prison camps are very similar to the labor camps in NAZI Germany, with many people dying of starvation. Many are executed. There are forced abortions. They also have generational imprisonment, where not only the criminal is imprisoned, but his parents and children, even those not yet born, will also be imprisoned.

Courts are controlled by the politicians. Laws are there to protect the rights of the state, rather than individual rights.

There are 2 TV channels, both controlled by the government. There are around 30 websites you can access, but only the elite can even get onto the internet. All the news is expressed at how the rest of the world trembles before the might of their beloved leader, thus they are able to achieve political victories that gives them Food Relief. One solution they are using for controlling hunger is to encourage limiting yourselves to only 2 meals a day.

They have museums dedicated to the atrocities that the Big Noses (Americans) committed during the Korean war. They have set up America to be the Bogey Man, and begin indoctrination early on.

Calling Kim Jong Un "Rocket Man" seems like an appropriate way to respond to him. He maintains power by becoming a god to them, so Trump brings him back down to earth.

Watch some of those videos. It is amazing.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 25, 2017, 08:39:00 pm
He may well fit the "Rocket Man" title, but it's a legitimate concern that two world leaders with nuclear weapons at their disposal are carrying on this kind of personal, emotional feud & continually escalating it.

We are looking at two impulsive, ego- & hormone- driven boys who have trouble controlling their actions or their mouths, admitting any personal fault or accountability, or recognizing that everything we do or say has consequences that we can't always control. This is the kind of toddler playground behavior that responsible mommies & daddies do their best to redirect. And we have supposedly grown adults doing it, with billions of human lives at stake. I am not sure whether Kim or Trump is more worrisome, & the combination of the two of them is an absolute catastrophe.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on September 26, 2017, 09:08:14 pm
He may well fit the "Rocket Man" title, but it's a legitimate concern that two world leaders with nuclear weapons at their disposal are carrying on this kind of personal, emotional feud & continually escalating it.

We are looking at two impulsive, ego- & hormone- driven boys who have trouble controlling their actions or their mouths, admitting any personal fault or accountability, or recognizing that everything we do or say has consequences that we can't always control. This is the kind of toddler playground behavior that responsible mommies & daddies do their best to redirect. And we have supposedly grown adults doing it, with billions of human lives at stake. I am not sure whether Kim or Trump is more worrisome, & the combination of the two of them is an absolute catastrophe.
It is easy to tell which one is more worrisome. In one country anyone who said anything remotely negative about the president would be executed and their children and parents placed in a concentration camp to die of starvation and torture. In the other country a whole industry has cropped up to bad mouth the president, and it is considered patriotic. In one country hundreds of thousands are starved because of the leaders. In the other country there is abundance of food, so much that even the poor tend to get enough to eat. In one country information is so suppressed and distorted that they believe their rich neighbors to the south are dying in poverty. In the other country there is so much information that you can choose any point of view to believe. In one country hundreds of thousands have been killed in camps to maintain the state's rights. In the other country the individual rights are paramount.

In one country the leader is akin to Pol Pot and Stalin. In the other country the leader has finally gotten the entire world, and especially China to do a bit more to enforce sanctions, something that Clinton, Bush, and Obama never accomplished. I do not like the way Trump communicates. I did not vote for him. But I often view him as similar to an incision and drainage of an infected wound. Gross to watch, but necessary to get the infection out.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on September 28, 2017, 02:54:23 pm
I see your point. But I do worry more about the US launching their weapon than the other way around. Maybe history has something to do with it.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 30, 2017, 02:01:57 am
There is no doubt that Kim is a worse despot than Trump, & the atrocities he has committed against his own people are worse than anything any American authorities do to Americans.

With that said, I thank God we have a system of checks & balances that puts controls over any official of any persuasion who might seek to misuse the power of the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of the U.S. government. There is no such control in North Korea. Even if a totally certifiable, psychopathic maniac were in the highest positions in the U.S. (not that it could or would happen – or has – just sayin’), there would be constitutional checks on that person’s abuse of power. Those in the other branches, or the violator’s own branch, would need to recognize it & have the courage & integrity to do their duty. In the executive branch, where this scenario is likeliest to happen, others in that branch could include the Vice President, the Cabinet, National Security Council, even the military. No, I don’t want to see the United States ever have a coup d’etat, but might it ever be justified? I don’t even want to go there, even think about it; but I don't doubt that there are people in government who do.

The fact is, I do not trust either Kim or Trump with nuclear weapons because of personality traits they both display that make them untrustworthy. If Kim were to initiate an attack, there’s no doubt that Americans would support a counter-attack. But the truth is that I also fear Trump’s impulsiveness, ego, inability to acknowledge not only that he could be wrong, but that anyone else might be partly right, & lack of self-control. The only reason I am willing to see him anywhere near the nuclear codes is because he cannot press the button all by himself.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 03, 2017, 06:09:09 pm
Congratulations, disaster victims: you now have a golf trophy dedicated to you. And not just ANY golf trophy, mind you. Feel honored - that's an executive order.

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/The-Latest-Trump-cites-great-job-in-helping-12244316.php

And we’ve just discovered a way to help balance the national budget: some folks have just got to quit having disasters. Or if they insist on having them, at least have real ones that kill more people so they can justifiably be called disasters & therefore won’t be resented so much when they put dents in the budget.

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/us/article/Trump-Puerto-Rico-thrown-budget-out-of-whack-12249432.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: kazbert on October 03, 2017, 07:08:43 pm
Regarding North Korea:

I could be wrong, but I don't think either NK or US is going to set off a nuke on the other's territory.  The question is: Why does NK want nukes and ICBMs?  What's Kim's game plan?  For 70 years and three generations of Kim's, their over-arching wish has been to reunite North and South.  They know the only way to do this is by military force.  NK may be willing to launch thousands of shells and rockets at Seoul, but they don't want to destroy the South.  They won't nuke it.  They want to take it over.  You don't destroy the very thing you're lusting after.  The reason NK wants nukes and ICBM's is to discourage the US from interfering when NK makes their move to annex the South.  I think Kim believes that the US people will not seek to rescue South Korea if it will cost us a few nuclear detonations on our own soil to do it.  Kim knows that the moment he launches a nuke at the US he will be dead within days.  I also think Kim is convinced that Trump will nuke NK if Kim tries to take over the South because Trump will act impulsively.  Kim is going to wait until the Trump administration ends, a more level-headed president takes his place, and Kim will just continue building up nukes and ICBMs until then. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 04, 2017, 10:16:46 pm
The question is: Why does NK want nukes and ICBMs? 
Leverage during negotiations.  Particularly with China.  If NK can become part of the nuclear club, they can play with the big boys.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 16, 2017, 05:25:21 pm
https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/trump-s-false-claim-about-obama-fallen-soldiers-n811206

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-gays-pence-hang-them-all_us_59e4afd5e4b04d1d518320d9

Wow, what can we look forward to next?

He has belittled & verbally emasculated half his Cabinet; feuded with Congressional leaders, including Republicans he can’t afford to antagonize if he wants his agenda passed; quarreled & obsessed continually with the “failing media” about “fake news” & made noises about muzzling freedom of the press; spent enormous time & energy tweeting about the NFL; made sick jokes about disaster victims, blamed them for their own problems, demeaned their hurricane because it didn’t kill enough people, & tossed towel rolls at them like peanuts at monkeys in the zoo; & deliberately provoked some of the world’s most experienced & respected leaders & some of the world’s most dangerous & volatile tyrants.

For once, one measly, piddly little time, can’t he just make a simple statement, or give a simple answer to a simple question, or say he has no comment & needs to study an issue more? Must there always be some stupid, insensitive comment that he thinks builds him up & makes him look brilliant, tough, or witty, but serves only to hurt people more, make them angrier, push other world leaders closer to their own breaking point, or distance Americans even further from each other?

Repeat after me, “President Pence."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 17, 2017, 09:01:39 pm
A lot of pundits like to portray Kim Jong Un as mentally imbalanced.  The game he plays with nuclear weapons development shows that he isn't.  Yes, he can make all kinds of threats against the U.S., knowing that we will do nothing.  We don't have the political will or national interest to get into a shooting match with North Korea.  The game is for the other countries in the region who are watching.  "Kim Jong Un is deranged enough to challenge the United States!"  Think of what that means for South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, and even China.  NK will never be able to compete with the U.S. militarily, economically, or in any other way. It's like a five-year-old throwing pebbles at Arnold Schwarzenegger. But you can bet everyone in the region is paying attention.

From that perspective, even Trump's rhetoric has a purpose.  All his bombastic responses to Kim's shenanigans keep China on edge. Which is a good thing.  Over the past decade, China has been growing impervious to economic and political consequences for continual human rights violations.  They just don't care, anymore.  Maybe now they'll be a little more willing to make nice with the U.S. to help contain Kim's ambition.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on October 21, 2017, 10:23:27 pm
The North Korean people absolutely believe they can beat the Big Noses (United States).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 21, 2017, 11:27:31 pm
Well, the North Korean people who have time to think about it, that is.  Most of the people in North Korea are too busy trying to obtain enough to eat.  Food shortages are common. One in three children is malnourished.  Only those who are well placed in the political/military regime have enough time and energy to think about evil Americans.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 20, 2017, 12:02:56 am
We used to laugh at Berkeley, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Portland, etc. for having their own foreign policies & getting embroiled in matters thousands of miles outside their city limits & their official purview, usually on hot-button issues like boycotting Israel trade to show support for Palestine. Some of their ventures into the big wide world are still absurd.

Now, an increasing number of American states & communities, & not only flaky ones, are actually finding it necessary to get involved in foreign affairs, or foreign countries are reaching out to states & communities, because of unavailability or inability at the federal level to participate in some international relationships in meaningful ways.

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Frustrated-foreign-leaders-bypass-Washington-in-12367877.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 29, 2017, 03:37:30 pm
Sarah Huckabee Sanders defends the POTUS retweeting discredited slurs about Muslims, on the grounds that “the threat is real.” IOW, it’s OK to use any kind of lies, slurs, or inflammatory stereotypes about any ethnic group if some people in that ethnic group are committing crimes.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/white-house-defends-trumps-muslim-tweets/ar-BBFVxeP?li=AA5a8k&ocid=spartanntp

Theresa May condemns this retweeting.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/theresa-may-calls-trumps-anti-muslim-retweets-wrong/ar-BBFVzW1?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartanntp

OTOH (I can’t find it now), David Duke praises Trump for the same tweet & standing up for Making America Great Again. So whose judgment do you think is more reliable, huh? A “Great American” who was a grand wizard of the KKK, ran for public office numerous times on racist, anti-Semitic platforms, denies the Holocaust, collaborated with neo-Nazis all over the world & even with Ahmedinajad in Iran on anti-Semitic activities, & called Muslim women in hijab “a hag in a bag” – or some dame over in London?

Of course, you don’t impeach a POTUS just for incessant, intemperate, unfiltered tweeting & foaming at the mouth with toxic, hateful, bigoted speech. Can’t do that. Those don’t rise to the level of proving a person constitutionally unfit to be POTUS. Crazy, loathsome, maybe - but not unfit to run the United States of America.

OTOH, there’s the Russia investigation, & what do Jared Kushner & Michael Flynn know that the rest of us would like to hear?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 29, 2017, 06:45:07 pm
IOW, it’s OK to use any kind of lies, slurs, or inflammatory stereotypes about any ethnic group if some people in that ethnic group are committing crimes.

Not only is it okay, you can become rich and (in)famous doing it.  Just ask Pam Geller.

We need a vomiting emoticon.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 29, 2017, 07:42:56 pm
Here you are. Custom designed for a good deal of what goes on around us today. 

For when  :( or ::)  or  >:(  don't quite do it.



(http://cdn.thestorypedia.com/images/2016/06/Emoticon_Sick.png)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: dyany on November 30, 2017, 01:01:23 pm
Going back a bit to Roper's comment about Kim Jong Un, being smart and being mentally imbalanced are in no way mutually exclusive.  'mentally imbalanced' means mentally ill, which can mean a plethora of things, usually involving inappropriate emotional reactions and/or delusions of some sort, but that doesn't have anything to do with being intelligent.  In this case, it makes him more scary.  Being mentally imbalanced means Kim Jong Un overreacts in a negative manner to input, possibly due to delusional ideas about his own importance or threats to his own safety (paranoia).  But that doesn't mean he's stupid.  He could be smart about grandstanding, making threats, and doing despicable things in a (so far, successful) effort to control the behavior of people and countries around him, even though the delusions upon which the smarts are based are not real.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 30, 2017, 10:20:56 pm
Since none of us can make a qualified diagnosis of mental health, all we have are observable behaviors.  I think the megalomania is mostly a show to keep Western media focused on the wrong thing--apparent personality disorders.  I think that more than anything, Kim Jong Un wants to be taken seriously in a world which has sidelined his country since 1953. He's politically immature--an elementary school bully on the global playground.  So, rather than provoke him (Trump's idiotic responses), we should be responding like we would to any bully.  Ignore his staged bravado unless he hurts someone. Reward his appropriate behaviors to help him feel powerful. Hopefully he'll grow out this nonsense.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: dyany on December 01, 2017, 04:05:41 pm
That, I agree with.  But unfortunately, our leader is at the same maturity level. :(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on December 23, 2017, 07:48:15 pm
Jana is a lot closer to this & probably knows exactly who said what. So I’ll just post it without comment. If it’s fake news, she can clarify. ;D

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/12/22/trumps-ambassador-to-the-netherlands-just-got-caught-lying-about-the-dutch/?utm_term=.debf3017b3e7&wpisrc=nl_az_most&wpmk=1

And there are ways to wish people Merry Christmas without politicizing it or pushing it in anyone’s face. We live in a country with Judaeo-Christian origins that is becoming more diverse, & there isn’t any need for any politician (or any person) to make holiday greetings confrontational, or single out non-Christians (in some politician-speak, read immigrants), or call attention to all these folks who don’t believe in Christ – many of whom act more "Christian" than some public figures who make a big spectacle of being Christian.

http://m.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/There-s-no-missing-Trump-s-Merry-Christmas-12451869.php#photo-12287786
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 09, 2018, 06:34:59 pm
Did everyone pay their tithing? Did you have tithing settlement & give the bishop an honest accounting? Are you RIGHT WITH GOD - or would you ROB GOD?

Don't you dare lie now, or you will face His wrath.

http://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Trump-s-spiritual-adviser-Send-me-your-Jan-12485105.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 11, 2018, 10:09:08 pm
This is the face of America to the world.

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2018/01/11/trump-why-are-we-having-all-these-people-from-shole-countries-come-here/23331286/
Quote
"Why are we having all these people from s**thole countries come here?"
Maybe Congresswoman Mia Love (R-Utah), the first Haitian-American elected to Congress, can furnish an answer.

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-ambassador-to-Netherlands-Muslim-Hague-12489528.php

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/State-Dept-disavows-comments-by-US-ambassador-to-12491609.php

* Crawls down a deep hole & pulls dirt in over head *

ETA comments by Rep. Mia Love:
https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900007378/rep-mia-love-demands-president-trump-apologize-for-vulgar-remark-about-haiti.html
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on February 20, 2018, 09:35:35 pm
Wow, this dude can have access to the most important national security matters & carry on sensitive negotiations with world leaders with no security clearance, but I couldn’t get hired for a job involving oversight of DUI or shoplifting suspects in the pre-detention facility (let alone the county jail) or taking county cars to the maintenance shop back in the day, unless I had actually passed one. What’s wrong with this picture? :-\

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2018/02/20/jared-kushner-can-do-job-without-security-clearance/23366846/
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 20, 2018, 11:08:43 pm
When I went to intel school in the Air Force, all airman had to have their Top Secret clearance finalized before they could even go to intel school. Or flight school. In rare cases, a person might get to start school on a temporary clearance, but if it wasn't finalized in the first two months, the person was dis-enrolled and had to choose a new career field which didn't require a TS.  I figure if such a policy is enforced in the military, it should also be enforced for everyone who works in the White House.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on February 20, 2018, 11:33:25 pm
Doesn’t it seem to be a risky precedent to keep people in sensitive positions with their security clearance still pending? If it’s done for Jared Kushner (presumably because he is the POTUS’s son-in-law), who else can get an exception, & on what grounds? 

The last time I had to have a governmental security clearance, I was already working but couldn’t even get a building exterior door key until the background check was complete. White House personnel in transportation, medical, or food services, or who work at Camp David, even members of bands who play for POTUS/VPOTUS occasions, must have a “Yankee White” rating, the highest level of security clearance & the same one required for the military aides who carry the “nuclear football” wherever the POTUS goes.

And yet this person who has no prior government or military experience, therefore only an outsider’s understanding of security considerations, is allowed to negotiate for Middle East peace & access who knows what military or diplomatic intel.

** Scratching head **
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on April 27, 2018, 05:02:16 pm
Quote
  So, rather than provoke him (Trump's idiotic responses), we should be responding like we would to any bully.  Ignore his staged bravado unless he hurts someone. Reward his appropriate behaviors to help him feel powerful. Hopefully he'll grow out this nonsense.

Quote
But unfortunately, our leader is at the same maturity level.

https://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/donald-trumps-america/103445864/us-president-donald-trump-deserves-nobel-peace-prize-for-korean-triumph (https://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/donald-trumps-america/103445864/us-president-donald-trump-deserves-nobel-peace-prize-for-korean-triumph)

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/trump-deserves-a-nobel-prize-obama-got-one-for-less (https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/trump-deserves-a-nobel-prize-obama-got-one-for-less)

https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/A-Nobel-prize-for-Trump-Xi-Moon-and-Kim2 (https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/A-Nobel-prize-for-Trump-Xi-Moon-and-Kim2)

Ignoring NK led to nuclear empowered Kim.
You may not like his methods, but they seem to have the results that presidents from the 1950's have sought.



Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on April 27, 2018, 10:05:54 pm
Sure.  Why not give Trump a Nobel Peace Prize?  Obama got one, and he did virtually nothing to earn it besides talk a lot. 

Trump has waged cultural war against Muslims, economic war against Mexicans, and psychological war against women.  But hey, IF he can get North and South Korea to talk about peace, let's give him a prize! 

I guess the days are gone when the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the likes of Red Cross, UNICEF, Amnesty International, organizations to end nuclear and chemical war, Mother Theresa, Linus Pauling, and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Al Gore, Barack Obama, and maybe Donald Trump? It's like the Academy Awards for politicians.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on April 28, 2018, 02:50:01 am
Whether Trump gets a noble peace prize (unlikely) is irrelevant as it lost any meaning a long time ago.

Likewise, this thread turned into an Anti-Trump thread a long time ago. My point is that for some of the things he was dismissed for have actually have been successful. It makes no difference if you like him or not, his success is being recognized by both political parties. North Korea and South Korea agreeing to get rid of nuclear weapons is a big deal. Signing a treaty ending the Korean War is a big deal. To repeat, both have been a goal of all the presidents since the 1950's. It seems his tweets did not end in a nuclear disaster after all.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on April 28, 2018, 04:31:48 am
I guess the days are gone when the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the likes of Red Cross, UNICEF, Amnesty International, organizations to end nuclear and chemical war, Mother Theresa, Linus Pauling, and Martin Luther King, Jr.
Agree.

Likewise, this thread turned into an Anti-Trump thread a long time ago.
Don’t agree.

I don’t think this thread has turned into a Trump bash-fest, & I have also looked with dismay at some of the Nobel Peace Prize choices. When I was growing up, people looked up to Nobel Peace laureates as the best among us, like those Roper mentioned, or the U.N. High Commissioner on Refugees, U.N. Peacekeeping Forces, Doctors Without Borders, Mikhail Gorbachev, Elie Wiesel, or Malala.

It’s an insult to those distinguished people & organizations to elevate either Trump or Kim to their level. I doubt that Albert Schweitzer, Mother Theresa, or Martin Luther King would roll over in their graves at the news, because they were people who did strive to make their world a better place & they would want to give these two proposed recipients the benefit of the doubt & try to think the best of them – something neither of them makes easy.

Not that I minimize the importance of a final settlement of the Korean War & denuclearization of the Koreas; if these two basically awful individuals can get lucky & make it happen, I’m grateful to them. But IMO the Nobel Peace Prize should recognize a person or group’s overall life work & achievements (or at least efforts) in peacemaking, humanitarian, human rights, or other endeavors that benefit & uplift all of humanity. As contentious & violent as the modern history of the Middle East has been, I was glad to see Anwar Sadat/Menachem Begin and Arafat/Peres/Rabin receive Nobels for their ongoing efforts to solve a conflict that has long seemed unsolvable. They were imperfect, but they put intensive effort over many years into bringing peace to the Middle East, & they deserved the recognition.

The word "imperfect" to describe Trump or Kim would be totally inadequate & fall so far short of reality to be ridiculous. Objectively, the overall life work of either of them would never come close to any of those others Roper or I mentioned. Saying either deserves a Nobel is like suggesting Mussolini should get a civic service award for getting the trains to run on time.

Tyrants or wannabee tyrants who isolate, imprison, torture, & summarily execute their own people (even their own kinfolk); who sow distrust, hostility, & bigotry; who single out racial, religious, gender, or cultural groups to harass (or call third world countries ****holes); who flex their weaponry & their mouths to threaten or intimidate; who set individuals, groups, communities, & nations against each other rather than seeking to unify people – basically, those who build walls (or seek to) rather than bridges between people do not deserve the Nobel Peace Prize.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on April 28, 2018, 01:38:24 pm
Not specifically anti-Trump.  Anti anyone who mistreats people and passes it off as "No Big Deal" for the sake of political expediency.

If the qualifications for the Nobel Peace Prize have become so Machiavellian, then the prize belongs to Kim. He stamped his feet and threatened and threw rocks until the grownups of the world engaged with him.  He didn't earn peace by being a champion for human rights. He didn't earn peace through programs and policies to build an economy which would lift his people out of poverty. He built nuclear weapons and threatened everyone around him.  But hey, he got Japan, South Korea, China, and the U.S. to at least respond.  So let's encourage that kind of behavior with prizes for everyone!

If the end justifies the means to peace, then the Prince of Peace's teachings about peace were wrong.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on April 28, 2018, 11:20:12 pm
I saw on the Nobel Prize website that there are 329 nominees for the 2018 Peace award: 216 individuals & 113 organizations. This means Kim & Trump need to be judged the most deserving over 327 other nominees, of whom I daresay most are probably a better caliber of people. Achieving a final peace in Korea would be momentous, & I wouldn’t want to deny either of them credit for getting us there if they manage to make it happen. But as I said in my earlier post, IMO the Nobel Peace Prize should not be for a one-off achievement, but for proven long-term commitment to the words, actions, & attitudes that make the world a better place & the human race a better species. Based on everything they’ve said & done so far, I absolutely do not see Trump or Kim meeting that standard.

Nominators for any Nobel need to have proven qualifications in that field. Peace nominators must be university professors (active or emeriti) in specific fields, heads of state or government officials, members of the International Court at The Hague, prior Nobel Peace laureates, & certain others, some invited to participate by the Nobel Committee. Nominee lists are sealed for 50 years, with the Nobel Committee & nominators forbidden to disclose anything about nominations. So the likelihood is that many of us here will never know, at least in this life! And BTW, you can't nominate yourself, so if Trump or Kim was proposed, they found corrupt people who did meet the nominator qualifications & bribed them to do it. :D

Not sure how it was determined, but the Nobel Prize website lists the “Most Popular” Peace recipients as Martin Luther King, Malala Yousafzai, Mother Theresa, Jane Addams, Elie Wiesel, & Nelson Mandela. Such people set a high standard, which the Nobel Committee should do its best to maintain.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on April 29, 2018, 03:26:17 am
Can someone explain to me why this is considered to be because Trump has done something good/right?

Yes, this may mean it is more probable that Trump and Kim has their "super meeting", but even that is not guaranteed. A similar meeting between the leaders of Koreas and same agreements were done 2007 and nothing happened. Would Kim really get rid of nuclear weapons? Most likely not. Would US agree to have peace without them getting rid of nuclear weapons? Most likely not. Call me a pessimistic, but I don't see much happening here.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on April 29, 2018, 12:32:56 pm
I really really hope for the elimination of NK's nuclear weapons program. I hope for an end to the DMZ and the reunification of the Koreas. I hope for the opportunity for the people of the world to show their good will toward NK and help to lift them out of the poverty that has plagued families for generations.  It will be one of the greatest achievements I have witnessed in my lifetime.

However, it will not be brought about by a commitment to peace.  It will be brought about by the fear of war.  Trump and Kim have already said as much. One should get a Peace Prize for pursuing peace. One shouldn't get a Peace Prize for threatening invasion, war, and retaliation. That's brinkmanship, not peace.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on May 15, 2018, 03:27:59 pm
I think the biggest push for resolution will be when they allow their people to freely travel between the two countries. Families will be reunited. Those in North Korea will see what prosperity looks like. And South Korea can likely learn some things from North Korea, too.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 18, 2018, 10:00:10 pm
I'm sure ya'll have seen the news by now:  Kim threatening to disengage from peace talks and Trump retaliating with threats of "decimation." Sigh... It's like watching second grade bullies kick sand at each other.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 19, 2018, 04:40:17 pm
But second-grade bullies kicking sand at each other can’t wipe out millions of people in a single burst of infantile, temperamental brattiness.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 28, 2018, 09:14:01 pm
Way to go, prezzie. ::) Use one of America’s most solemn days to beat your own political drum. This might look a bit different (but not much) if you at least had served like so many of your military high school classmates, “heroes proved in liberating strife, who more than self their country loved,” instead of in your papa’s business empire while sitting on your liberating heel spurs.

http://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-memorial-day-2018-remarks-slammed-critics-946322
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 28, 2018, 11:28:20 pm
Well, it looks like this year I'll be voting for democrats for the Senate and House to counter the Oval Office's agenda, democrats for state offices to help protect Utah's public lands, and democrats for local offices to stem the tide of cutting community services in one of the nation's fastest growing economies.  This will be a first.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 29, 2018, 03:14:40 am
Roper, I knew there was still good in you. Welcome to the light side.   ;)

I understand where you are coming from.  My 5 year stint in Utah cured me of voting along republican party lines.  Those Utah R's are cra-zy. 

I tend to vote about 70% D and 30% R these days.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 13, 2018, 08:00:35 am
Great news, everyone. [where's the applause graemlin when you really need it?] The big threat from “Little Rocket Man” has been eliminated. The whole region is so safe that the U.S. will cease joint war games with South Korea, an apparent surprise to South Korea & the Pentagon. DT says that will save money.

Quote
"Everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office. There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.”

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/trump-says-north-korea-no-longer-a-nuclear-threat/ar-AAyA9f2?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/The-Latest-SKorea-still-trying-to-parse-Trump-s-12989861.php?cmpid=overnight

Trump, Pyongyang, & Moscow are happy.

OTOH, Canada is still a problem …. Maybe with the savings from the military exercises, we can build another wall, to the north.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 13, 2018, 09:20:56 am
"Everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office."

Tell that to the 160 million women in the U.S. whose president sexually assaulted women and bragged about it, and then it was all swept under the rug.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 13, 2018, 12:01:12 pm
You see, the MAGA crowd don't care about any of this.  Their primary interest is in preserving their white trash, redneck culture.  Guns and their religion of white privilege are all that matters to them. 

Sadly, most of the GOP leadership have caved.  While more and more Republicans are getting on board with Trumpism, fewer and fewer people are sticking with the GOP.  I suspect the Republican party is going the way if the Whig party, drifting into irrelevance by clinging to policies no longer relevant in a changed world.  I hope whateven party comes in to replace it will temper some of the worst tendencies of the Democratic party.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 13, 2018, 12:17:39 pm
Sadly, most of the GOP leadership have caved. 
Yep. Politics became more important than people. I've been slowly walking away from the Republican party for about a decade.  Trump turned it into a sprint.  The sad thing is this:  There are many good and decent Republicans in office. Trump bullies them into submission. And they submit. Hopefully, people will come to their senses by 2020.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 13, 2018, 01:58:06 pm
A legislator who stands by while our constitutional and human rights are attacked by a man child power monger, doesn't deserve to be in office.  Most of our LDS members of congress have been gross embarrassments to the church and our values in this area.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 14, 2018, 05:57:09 pm
Using scripture to justify just about anything is as old as scripture.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/sessions-cites-bible-to-defend-separating-immigrant-families/ar-AAyF52Q?ocid=spartandhp

Those who disapprove of the Trump regime's edict to break up families might cite Matthew 19:6 or Mark 10:9, “what God hath joined together…” We usually see this in reference to marriage, but what has God joined together, even more than a husband & wife, than children with their parents?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 14, 2018, 07:38:06 pm
What a wrest! 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 14, 2018, 10:29:43 pm
I'm not defending or criticizing any policies, here.  I'm just asking a question, because I honestly want to know:

When an adult citizen commits a crime, stealing a car, for example, a police officer arrests the person and puts them in jail.  That separates them from their children.
When a citizen of another country commits a crime, illegally entering the U.S., for example, a border patrol officer arrests the person and detains them. That separates them from their children.

How are these two scenarios different?  Are the outcomes for the kids different?

Again, I'm not defending the practice. I'm curious to know why we consider one acceptable but not the other one.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 14, 2018, 11:17:28 pm
Fair question, since in both cases, the adults have done something that violates a law.

I’ll try to answer from my past experience in police & sheriff dispatching, records, warrants, intake, & matron duties. Police matrons may be almost extinct now, but common when there were few women LEOs & special female officers were used to transport & process women or juvenile arrestees, oversee children of arrestees, & in cases with women or juveniles, perform or witness search/seizure or supervise prisoners. This was before the modern enlightened practice of both male & female deputies or correctional officers supervising both male & female prisoners, which is a whole other set of issues.

In cases where an adult is arrested in the U.S. – at least it was the practice when I was in the business – the police will try to locate a family member or other responsible adult approved by the parent to take the kids. Maybe they’re a loving family that does everything together, & Mom took the kids to Target for a shoplifting trip or Dad is DUI with the child in the car. When I was doing this, before taking the adult to jail, the officers would have the dispatchers try to contact someone to come for the kids. Sometimes the officers would even wait at the scene of the arrest for the person to arrive. Or they would take the kids to the PD where the effort would be made. If there were children at home who would be alone, the officers would have dispatchers or matrons try to find someone to look after them.

When local police arrest adults, they don’t just take their children to a mass detention center with dozens of other kids whose parents were arrested, with an open-ended duration & no real assurance of when they will be reunited. And I don’t think any law enforcement or judicial official has ever come out with a blanket statement in advance that if people are arrested for any specific crime, as a consequence they and their kids will automatically be separated.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 15, 2018, 12:06:20 am
Thank you, Curelom, for your thoughtful and articulate answer.  That helps me to think about the situation in the context of taking care of kids, and working to minimize the consequences caused by their parents' actions. I can relate to that much better than getting caught up in the political debate part of it.

This whole immigration thing is such a mess. Even before Trump took office, it was really screwed up.  A woman we went to church with in Texas got deported. She left her husband and four young kids here.  She had to go back to Mexico and go through an expensive year-long process to come back.  There should have been a process for her to complete the requirements here, without being deported.  I think it's the height of hubris to deport people.  When colonists came to America, the Native Americans didn't round them up and ship them back to Europe, insisting the colonists go through a long and expensive legal process to come back over.  And look what the colonists did--seized land, spread disease, raped, pillaged, and waged war to take over the continent.  We're here because of their atrocities.

Yes, there needs to be a screening process. Our current process is really broken.  And don't get me started on talk of a wall.  >:(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 15, 2018, 01:49:35 am
Thank you, Curelom, for your thoughtful and articulate answer.  That helps me to think about the situation in the context of taking care of kids, and working to minimize the consequences caused by their parents' actions. I can relate to that much better than getting caught up in the political debate part of it.

Thanks, Roper.

Yeah … see, most regular folks, if they really stop to think about it, are not interested in hurting people or making their lives miserable. And especially children’s lives. In over two decades of working in LE, & collaborating with enforcement people in police, sheriff, fire, & health agencies, I never heard anyone say, “Let’s break up this family, because Dad or Mom is a turd & so the kids deserve to suffer.” We did encounter plenty of turds, but most turds loved their kids & their kids loved them even if they were turds, cuz they were Mom & Dad. And seeing a parent handcuffed & put in a patrol car & taken away has to be the worst thing for a child, short of having the parent desert them or actually die. What person (or at least what person who claims to have human feelings) would want to make the kids’ ordeal even worse?

I worked in a different era in LE, & yet not so long ago (1980s) when cops talked about “gettin’ some stick time” [using their batons] & openly used racial slurs. This was in California, not the Deep South. If someone gave an officer grief, they’d be made sorry, & there wasn’t much of a legal specialty focusing on citizen complaints or police review yet. But not one of the LEOs I knew would have purposely, deliberately, premeditatedly, thought to pull children & parents apart unless a child’s safety required it. Even as crusty, macho, & racist as some of them were, they still thought of themselves as protectors of the public order.

I think it's the height of hubris to deport people.  When colonists came to America, the Native Americans didn't round them up and ship them back to Europe, insisting the colonists go through a long and expensive legal process to come back over.  And look what the colonists did--seized land, spread disease, raped, pillaged, and waged war to take over the continent.  We're here because of their atrocities.

What an interesting idea – I never thought of that, but indeed, it’s true. What a different place this continent would have been if the original residents had refused to accept illegal immigrants at Plymouth Rock or Jamestown or San Diego harbor. What if they’d decided too many foreigners were coming & disrespecting their culture, refusing to learn the language or wear the local clothing, & causing too much violence? I wonder if any Native Americans now in the U.S. wish their ancestors HAD built that wall.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on June 16, 2018, 09:51:10 am
I just learned something. There is a difference between "improper entry" and "unlawful presence". Improper entry is a misdemeanor crime. Unlawful presence is not a crime, but a violation of regulations. It is punished with civil penalties, not criminal penalties. The civil penalties may be deportation, and there is an extensive civil process in place. Many people here may have entered legally, but then overstayed their visas or other allowable times. It could be that 45% of those without proper permission entered this way. They are not criminals, as it is not a violation with criminal penalties.

The fine for the misdemeanor crime of improper entry is $50-$250, but gets more if repeated. Many of us have had traffic tickets for more than that, which are also misdemeanors.

I found this in a 2014 Deseret News article. https://www.deseretnews.com/article/865601049/LDS-Church-reaffirms-stance-on-immigration.html

Interestingly, President Uchtdorf speaks of being a refugee twice.

The article also states, "Our principle, I declared to the president, is that we love our neighbor, which means we love all people, in all places and at all times," President Uchtdorf said. "One of the core values we stand for is families. The separation of families (in U.S. immigration policy) isn't helping."

and

"One of the major pillars is the right to bring and enforce laws, using the rule of law, that enforce our borders," President Uchtdorf said. "First we need a just and caring law balanced with the values and principles that we love our neighbors, that families stay together, and enforce just and compassionate laws."

I think the church would encourage us to find avenues of enforcement that do not separate families. If you get a traffic ticket, you sign the ticket, promising that you will appear at court, rather than being arrested right then.

The article is referencing a 2011 statement from the church which included this, "We recognize an ever-present need to strengthen families. Families are meant to be together. Forced separation of working parents from their children weakens families and damages society".

For many people it is becoming harder to separate their politics from their religion.

2 Nephi 1:5,6 "But, said he, notwithstanding our afflictions, we have obtained a land of promise, a land which is choice above all other lands; a land which the Lord God hath covenanted with me should be a land for the inheritance of my seed. Yea, the Lord hath covenanted this land unto me, and to my children forever, and also all those who should be led out of other countries by the hand of the Lord.

6 Wherefore, I, Lehi, prophesy according to the workings of the Spirit which is in me, that there shall none come into this land save they shall be brought by the hand of the Lord."

That last line is interesting to me. It might depend on whether you consider the USA, or Mexico, or central America the promised land, but for many, it is the USA. Can you imagine that all of those that are coming here from India, Pakistan, Syria, Mexico, Guatamala, etc, are brought here by the hand of the Lord?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 17, 2018, 04:38:33 pm
Colleen Kraft, president of the American Association of Pediatrics, visited a shelter for immigrant children on the Texas border.  Here is what she said about kids who are separated from their parents: “The really basic, foundational needs of having trust in adults as a young child was not being met. That contradicts everything we know that the kids need to build their health.” She went on to explain that..."Such a situation could have long-term, devastating effects on young children, who are likely to develop what is called toxic stress in their brain once separated from caregivers or parents they trusted. It disrupts a child’s brain development and increases the levels of fight-or-flight hormones in their bodies. ... This kind of emotional trauma could eventually lead to health problems, such as heart disease and substance abuse disorders."

Nearly 4,600 mental-health professionals and 90 organizations have joined a petition urging President Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and several elected officials to stop the policy of separating children from their parents. The petition states:
Quote
"These children are thrust into detention centers often without an advocate or an attorney and possibly even without the presence of any adult who can speak their language. We want you to imagine for a moment what this might be like for a child: to flee the place you have called your home because it is not safe to stay and then embark on a dangerous journey to an unknown destination, only to be ripped apart from your sole sense of security with no understanding of what just happened to you or if you will ever see your family again. And that the only thing you have done to deserve this, is to do what children do: stay close to the adults in their lives for security. ... To pretend that separated children do not grow up with the shrapnel of this traumatic experience embedded in their minds is to disregard everything we know about child development, the brain, and trauma.”

You can read the full article here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2018/06/16/america-is-better-than-this-what-a-doctor-saw-in-a-texas-shelter-for-migrant-children (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2018/06/16/america-is-better-than-this-what-a-doctor-saw-in-a-texas-shelter-for-migrant-children)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 17, 2018, 05:54:36 pm
Honestly, it shouldn't take a pediatrician or psychologist to grasp this. It seems very simple. I am not a health professional or a teacher, or even a parent, but I get it. Any normal human would. The Republican Party considers itself the defenders of traditional family values, & what could be a more fundamental family value than keeping children with their own mothers or fathers, or other relatives if there is no health, safety, or child welfare reason to separate them?

Those kids are getting 3 hots & a cot in that converted Walmart, but are they getting the less tangible things that kids really need?

Two questions have just popped into my mind: What if these kids were from Northern Europe, which we know DT prefers over ****hole countries that have mostly non-white people? And, if you got the kid all alone & vowed never to quote him, what would Barron Trump really think of all this?

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 18, 2018, 11:25:40 pm
Church is troubled by the forced separation of families & says it is harmful to families & especially children. Elder Uchtdorf, having been a refugee twice from both Nazis and Soviets, can certainly identify.

https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900022039/troubled-by-forced-separation-of-families-lds-church-calls-for-rational-compassionate-immigration-solutions.html

All living U.S. First Ladies have chimed in, including Melania Trump.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5858095/All-five-living-Ladies-including-Melania-condemn-separating-immigrant-families.html

Rep. Mia Love of Utah, a New York-born daughter of refugees from the repressive Papa Doc Duvalier regime in Haiti, says the breaking up of families is horrible and is not about left or right, but right or wrong.

https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900022010/rep-mia-love-pushing-bill-to-end-horrible-separation-of-families-at-border.html
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jana at Jade House on June 19, 2018, 04:25:14 pm
I just do not know who and what to listen to and believe.  Separation of children from parents crossing illegally is not a new thing.  Children who are alone need to be protected from villains. Some parents might even be rather relieved that their kids are getting as Curelom says 3 hots and a cot. because as horrible as it is to normal people,  where they came from is far far far from normal and safe.  In many ways these poor beleaguered folk are not unlike refugees that come knocking on Europe's door.

The truth is out there somewhere but emotions and opinion have certainly made it hard to discern. 
I am glad I don't have to make these decisions.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 19, 2018, 05:11:41 pm
Someone else who has "been there" sounds off. And he says, "At least in the internment camps..." - IOW, as awful as that was, & as egregious a violation of people's civil & basic human rights, there was a mitigating factor that these kids & parents don't have.

http://foreignpolicy.com/2018/06/19/at-least-during-the-internment-are-words-i-thought-id-never-utter-family-separation-children-border/

Most of us here are too young to personally remember either the Japanese-American internment or this next episode personally, but many of us have heard of it. I saw the movie ages ago, but had to look up the details to refresh my memory.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MS_St._Louis

Decades later, according to the Wikipedia story: "In May 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the Government of Canada would offer a formal apology in the country's House of Commons for its role in the fate of the ship's passengers." Although the folks at our border are not in the same kind of peril as the MV St. Louis passengers, will a future POTUS eighty years from now be making a similar apology?

You're right, Jana, it isn't easy. Where these folks came from might have been a real horror story, or else they wouldn't be making such extreme efforts to get into the U.S. knowing the risk of arrest & deportation. I think one thing that dismays many people (& even many of the ruling party) is the seemingly harsh & heartless way this was done, with Sessions, Nielsen, & Trump taking a completely letter-of-the-law approach without apparent attention to the human aspects. That, along with the idea that young kids have to be made to suffer for whatever their parents did.

The ruling party (at least those up for election this year) is starting to worry about the impact of widespread viewing of children bawling behind barbed wire on their electoral chances. That's the immediate, pragmatic concern, which is a big reason so many are distancing themselves from it. Some Republicans or conservatives (like Mia Love whom I quoted above, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, Susan Collins, Laura Bush, & even Franklin Graham & Trump's own wife) are adding more philosophical & humanitarian questions, which it appears do not bother Trump, Nielsen, & Sessions.

However this plays out over the summer, whatever your political inclinations are, I guarantee that you're going to see Democratic candidates showing not only images of Trump praising Kim Jong-un, courting Putin & China, calling third world countries ****holes, insulting legitimate world leaders, or equivocating about whether the Klan or neo-Nazis actually are evil - but also provocative picture of those children bawling behind barbed wire.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 19, 2018, 05:29:41 pm
Just coincidence - today is World Refugee Day.

http://www.un.org/en/events/refugeeday/
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 26, 2018, 11:51:27 am
Primary elections today in Utah, and the Republican party is disenfranchising voters. I don't need a civics lesson to understand how primary elections work. Here's the problem: In Utah county, there are only Republican candidates running for county sheriff. The winner of today's primary will become the new sheriff without going to the general election. However, I was told I can't vote, because I'm not registered as a Republican. I'm unaffiliated. That's never been a problem in any other state where I've lived and voted. But it's a problem in Utah.

The big sign right outside the polling place states that I have the right to vote in any election in my precinct. The affiliation box, right on the affidavit, states that party affiliation is OPTIONAL. The Democratic party does not require party affiliation in order to vote in primary elections. But, Republicans won't let you vote unless you're affiliated with their party. So, I don't get to vote for the county sheriff in this election, unless I change my affiliation to the Republican party. That doesn't seem right.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 26, 2018, 02:13:47 pm
Yup.  It was the Utah Republicans that drove me from the party too.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 02, 2018, 12:08:14 am
I think it is common to only be allowed to vote for one party's candidates in an election. In Illinois you chose either a Republican or Democratic ballot. If you choose neither, you can vote only on the non-partisan things, but not for a party's candidates. Washington state used to have an open ballot where the top 2 vote getters were then placed on the general election ballot, but that was deemed illegal by the courts, being argued that people would cross over and vote for spoilers. Now you have to pick which party you want to vote for. The primary system is supposed to be about picking a party's candidate to put on the ballot, but the parties are "kind enough" to allow us to vote on which candidates they run. In Germany, I think you only vote for a party, and the party itself picks the candidates that go into office.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 02, 2018, 12:15:56 am
And I totally agree with the principle of primary elections.  The problem is when all the candidates for an office are from one party.  When their general election is a closed primary, then we have elected officials for whom many people did not get the chance to vote, because those voters didn't declare party allegiance.  That's wrong.  But it's an easy fix. When all the candidates are from the same party, they should be required to run in the general election instead of in the primary election. That way, all voters will have the opportunity to elect the person who will represent them.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 03, 2018, 11:47:01 pm
Thank you, Clarkston, Georgia.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/one-america-small-town-welcomes-thousands-of-refugees-with-southern-hospitality/ar-AAzxqJg?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on July 04, 2018, 11:39:06 am
Some states have laws that allow all people to vote in primaries where the outcome will be election because of no general election competition.   But if you start lobbying for this, make sure you also retain open primaries if there are write in candidates or straw candidates:  in my state candidates get friends or non-friend to get on the ballot to prevent the open primary, but they are not and don't intend to be serious candidates.  (It would help if open primaries were permitted whenever both candidates paid money as opposed to have gotten the required signatures, which no one does unless they cannot afford the filing fee, but absolutely do want people to elect them.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 05, 2018, 09:26:52 pm
Are all these kids security risks or victims of politics & hysteria?  :-\  ???

https://www.sfgate.com/news/world/article/AP-NewsBreak-US-Army-quietly-discharging-13052437.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 05, 2018, 09:33:57 pm
It's interesting that they haven't been labeled "security risks" until now.  I think military service is a great path to citizenship, and should be promoted more.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 05, 2018, 10:43:55 pm
I've always respected people who were not yet citizens but we were willing to serve in the military. No doubt some immigrants are security risks, but so are some natural-born life-long U.S. citizens. I'm afraid this is yet one more divisive measure designed to make people more mistrusting & hostile toward each other. Unfortunately, "Us vs Them" is the political tactic of the day, where once upon a time the goal for leaders in both parties was unity, cooperation, & working toward common goals. Now there isn't even a pretense.

As a native-born U.S. citizen, I sure miss America.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on July 06, 2018, 08:32:14 pm
They are apparently saying they are security risks, solely because the normal background checks (which are likely quite impossible to do in some countries) aren't done:  not because of anything they've FOUND in any background check.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 06, 2018, 11:01:13 pm
The Marquis de Lafayette is the best known foreign hero of the Revolutionary War. He trained soldiers, led them in battle, devised strategy, & recruited Native Americans to the colonists’ side. We all know he was born in France, & after American independence, he returned home & helped foment the revolution against the monarchy.

John Paul Jones, the “father of the U.S. Navy,” was born in Scotland. After the Revolution, he served in the Russian Navy. He had a checkered career and life after the Revolution & died in France but is now buried at the Naval Academy in Annapolis.

Thaddeus Kosciusko (anglicized), a native of Lithuania, was a military engineer who helped design fortifications as well as commanded troops. Like Lafayette, he returned home after serving in the Revolution & became a leader for reforms in his country.

Friedrich von Steuben was born in Prussia & served in the army there. He came to the colonies & helped train the Continental Army. One reason he left was home was harassment over the perception, now believed true, that he was homosexual. He lived in New York State for the rest of his life & is buried there.

Kasimir Pulaski, the “father of the U.S. Cavalry,” was born in Poland & originally fought against invaders of his own country. He expatriated himself to Paris where he met Benjamin Franklin who was serving as consul & advocate from the newly declared nation of the United States, & Franklin recruited him to serve in the Continental Army. Pulaski was killed in battle & is buried in Savannah, Georgia.

Much of the money to pay for the Revolutionary War, including to pay the wages of some of the troops (including Kosciusko) came from Haym Salomon (anglicized), a Jewish banker born in Poland. He was not in the military but was arrested twice by the British as a suspected spy & once sentenced to death. He managed to evade the noose, died after the war & is buried in Philadelphia.

Eight soldiers born outside the U.S. were awarded the Medal of Honor for service in the Vietnam War. One Afghanistan veteran received it, & he would probably be suspect today because his mother was French-Algerian.

I hope we are not at a point in immigrant hysteria that we will strip these men of the honors they have received from the United States, disinter those who were buried here & dump them somewhere else, or posthumously demote them or give them an administrative discharge them from the U.S. military.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 08, 2018, 01:48:08 am
That article gives no background rates of discharge. Has this increased or decreased recently? Is this consistent with general enlistment discharges? 40/10,000 is a rate of 0.4%, or 1 out of 250 that do not make it through. But are these accurate numbers? I saw an article that said that 7-14% of general enlistees drop out after boot camp, depending on the branch. So would this program be a bigger success than regular enlistment? Or is this comparing wrong things. This article is so frustrating, because it seems to leave out crucial information, but wants to paint a picture to disparage Trump. I think you need several levels of information before you can do that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 08, 2018, 02:35:20 am
You had one of ours too (and it seems quite a few other Finns in the US Army according to this article) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lauri_T%C3%B6rni
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 08, 2018, 06:22:20 pm
This article is so frustrating, because it seems to leave out crucial information, but wants to paint a picture to disparage Trump. I think you need several levels of information before you can do that.

I'm not sure the intent of the article is to disparage Trump, although there's plenty aside from this issue to disparage him (and, to be fair, almost everyone in national leadership positions, where we are sorely lacking in quality). I think the notion of blanket discharges for military personnel simply because they are immigrants grates on most Americans' sense of fairness, equal opportunity, refraining from stereotyping, & judging people by the content of their character & not the color of their skin (or their birthplace, parents' names, or other factors not of their choosing).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 08, 2018, 11:55:59 pm
One doesn't need to dig deep to find evil doings by Trump and his minions.  He brags about them on a daily basis.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 16, 2018, 03:23:56 pm
After antagonizing the countries we have to live next door to every day, & bashing allies that have been at America's side for decades, in some cases centuries, & have shed blood alongside American blood, now what does he do?

https://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Lawmakers-call-Trump-s-performance-bizarre-13079081.php

"Bizarre" is only part of it.

One of a kind.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-sheds-all-notions-of-how-a-president-should-conduct-himself-abroad/ar-AAAaIuk?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on August 12, 2018, 02:05:48 am
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/opinion/why-can’t-trump-just-condemn-nazis/ar-BBLNsKt?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/omarosa-book-claims-trump-wanted-to-be-sworn-in-using-art-of-the-deal-instead-of-the-bible/ar-BBLNCJj?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mormon-distaste-for-trump-could-hurt-gop-candidates-in-2018/ar-BBLE3O1?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: DerrellF on August 26, 2018, 12:04:52 am
Arizona's senior senator, John McCain, has died after a lengthy battle with brain cancer.  RIP.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 06, 2018, 03:06:44 am
What’s new on the fake news front?

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/opinion/i-am-part-of-the-resistance-inside-the-trump-administration/ar-BBMVtbs?ocid=spartanntp

https://m.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Anonymous-official-cites-Trump-amorality-in-NY-13207276.php

https://m.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Trump-others-dispute-book-s-description-of-13205252.php

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-suggests-protesting-should-be-illegal/2018/09/04/11cfd9be-b0a0-11e8-aed9-001309990777_story.html?utm_term=.6792018e60a9&wpisrc=nl_az_most&wpmk=1
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 09, 2018, 01:00:48 am
Warning: I could ruin Canada. Stop ripping us off, Canada!

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/canada/trump-warns-he-could-cause-the-‘ruination’-of-canada/ar-BBN1iZn?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 11, 2018, 04:34:48 pm
Most Americans were remembering today with a sense of respect & reflectiveness, or participating in service activities designed to honor those who lost their lives 17 years ago. Meanwhile ....

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/president-trump-criticized-for-behavior-as-nation-pays-tribute-to-9-11-victims-on-17th-anniversary-of-attack/ar-BBNbRbT?ocid=spartandhp

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-starts-off-today-s-9-11-observance-with-a-13220650.php

https://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/Trump-had-an-unusual-reaction-to-9-11-just-hours-12189600.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 11, 2018, 09:42:16 pm
Threatening Canada?  CANADA!  Wha...???

In the mid-term election, I'm voting for anyone...ANYONE...regardless of party, who will seek to block Trump at every available opportunity.  If we can't impeach, then we can gridlock. 

https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2018/09/07/trump-warns-he-could-cause-the-ruination-of-canada.html (https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2018/09/07/trump-warns-he-could-cause-the-ruination-of-canada.html)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 25, 2018, 08:37:15 pm
So far, we’ve somehow avoided the subject of the Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination. Maybe everyone is too burned out on politics or too disgusted with the state of political discourse that no one feels like talking about.

But I just happened to see this, which might interest a few neighbors here.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mormon-women-demand-lds-senators-halt-kavanaugh-hearings-so-misconduct-allegations-can-be-investigated/ar-AAADJ31?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 25, 2018, 09:20:29 pm
Quote
“If these accusations are proved false, an investigation will prevent harm to the court’s legitimacy. If they are true, then Judge Kavanaugh must not be confirmed,”

True dat.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on September 26, 2018, 12:05:29 am
Hatch just needs to shut up and go home.  He is the biggest embarrassment to the church right now.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on September 26, 2018, 09:26:55 am
Quote
“If these accusations are proved false, an investigation will prevent harm to the court’s legitimacy. If they are true, then Judge Kavanaugh must not be confirmed,”

I think it is worth a discussion as to whether something that happened at age 17 should derail the rest of one's life.   If it had been reported then, it would likely have been handled within a juvenile system that is complete private.   

I absolutely believe that what she described happened to her (though I could see the hand over her face as trying to stop the noise as much as her perception that the perp knew what he was doing and wanted to not get caught.)  What I don't know is whether it was him.  I would think it was, but she reports the total culture of drinking, and doesn't know whether she followed him upstairs or was already upstairs or where it was.  (I am a rape survivor and I understand how she wouldn't recall the date.)   

I don't think I'd have disqualified him f he had said he didn't believe he did it, that he had made a choice to be celibate (he has said he was a virgin into his 20's, and he was a Catholic), that his friend Judge had never mentioned it having happened, but then Judge was usually plastered when he was.  But there are times when he couldn't remember what he'd done when he sobered up, so he literally doesn't know if he was there and what he might have done.  And that he was so very sorry (embarrassed and ashamed)  if he in fact did what she says he did.

I am troubled by the 15-17 year old gap:  our kids need to stop sexual contact with younger kids, with less worldly kids, with kids who may be trading sex for affection or belonging, and that is tough to do when the world is talking about women owning their bodies and nature said to do whatever one pleases.  For sure 30 years ago, even the laws would not have made something of that.   

I don't know that we will ever know what exactly happened.   But I am more inclined to see his failure to own that he doesn't really know as what disqualifies him for the seat, not the original sin.  I say we have the hearing (what would an FBI investigation do?).  And see whether 50 percent plus Pence wants him there, and if not move on to approve the next nominee (which should not be held up by Democrats).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on September 26, 2018, 10:34:29 am
How is anyone supposed to investigate something that happened at a party, in a house, that long ago?

It is preposterous. I don't know if it happened or not. However, if he is unfit to serve because of something he did when he was 15, then he is also unfit to serve as a Judge in the lower courts. So, all his hearings should be investigated too. Right?

If any US Judge, in any court, ever lied should they be removed from office because they are not trust worthy? But wait, virtually every child on the planet has lied at some point.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on September 26, 2018, 11:31:44 am
Stories like this are rarely so obvious that there is a camera showing what happened, so we must rely on memory. Memory is fickle, and enough time has passed that one can reasonably question any account. But the incident would have potentially had the biggest impact on the victim, so memory would likely be most reliable for her. But even then, some things would be hazy, so it is not unreasonable that exact date and place are forgotten. Think of Joseph Smith being accused of making up his first vision because he didn't remember all of the peripheral details when writing down his experience years later. This doesn't maker her accusation true or false, just that we shouldn't dismiss it because it lacks all of the details we would like. The lack of corroborating testimony is problematic. Character witnesses are nice, but do not prove this incident didn't happen, as "we never suspected he had a dark side" could easily happen. Probably the 2 most important character witnesses are from the 2 women whom he dated. That he wasn't aggressive toward them is informative.

I do not think the Democrats have been fair to this lady. They have been using her as a political tool. Holding onto this claim for months and only releasing it after the regular investigative process had completed and the vote was days away is very indicative of their known plan to do whatever it took to delay and disrupt the confirmation process. They leaked her story when she had asked them to keep it confidential. And they are not being consistent in their application of who is disqualified for these types of allegations and proven transgressions.

I do not like President Trump's responses. His first responses were fine, but that is not what anyone will remember. 

Otherwise, I think the Republican Senators have been very measured and accommodating in their response.

The second allegation  has more problems to validate it. If I understand the story correctly, she spent a week calling up friends trying to remember if it was Judge Kavenaugh or someone else who purportedly had the bad behavior. That type of memory is ripe for implanting wrong ideas.

Does this represent his underlying philosophy on violence against women, or does the next 30+ represent it. There are those that say his denial that this happened is the biggest problem, but how it is described he can sincerely believe it did not happen and not be a liar.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on September 26, 2018, 02:24:31 pm
A few points:

Denying someone a seat of the SCOTUS does not constitute irreparable harm, and a nominee does not have the right to the "reasonable doubt" due process qualifications that a defendant in a criminal trial does.

As PNR points out, the crime(s) is (are) one thing and very serious, but lying about them under oath during the nomination is another.  Even if the crimes are forgivable due to age the lying is not.

There are multiple corroborations to both stories (apparently there are some for the third, but they haven't come forward yet so no knowing if that's the case or not).  In the second case, where the woman took time to make sure she was remember correctly, there are people who were on the floor at the time who confirm that not only did that happen but that people were yelling that Kavanaugh was doing exactly what she described him doing.  These corroborations were obtained independently from the woman who made the accusation.

Republicans have not, in my opinion, acted one way or another about this.  People like Flake and Murkowski have said they take this seriously, want to hear from everyone and want to carefully consider the evidence.  Others like McConnell have described this as a "hiccup" and guaranteed that Kavanaugh would be confirmed no matter what Ford said or didn't say or whatever other accusations come forward. Trump (also a republican) has said since she didn't report it as a teenager it couldn't have happened.

What doesn't make sense to me is that there are plenty of conservative, qualified candidates that could fill this seat.  Why stick with Kavanaugh?  It's starting to become a time issue for purely political reasons, but it wasn't at first.  His nomination could've been pulled and someone else replaced him and confirmed before the midterms. These are very serious, very credible allegations of sexual assault from a potential SCOTUS justice.  Maybe they aren't true, but why not skip him (where his punishment is to continue in his lifetime appointment as a federal judge) and put someone on the court who doesn't have this baggage?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 26, 2018, 08:06:40 pm
When men came forward with allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests which had happened 30 years before, there was public outrage.  Nobody ridiculed those men. When men came forward with allegations of sexual abuse by Jerry Sandusky at Penn State which happened 30 years ago, there was public outrage. Nobody ridiculed those men.  This case is not different just because the accusers are female and the abuser is a political nominee.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on September 26, 2018, 11:16:14 pm
I haven't read the thread but of course, you can't miss the allegations. He has already had 6 FBI aggressive background checks. If those background checks that were actively looking for things that would disqualify him for his judicial seats and missed these horrendous assaults - how does anyone expect this same FBI will find anything now?
It appears that Maryland does not have a statute of limitations for sexual assaults - why haven't there been any legal investigations and charges filed?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on September 27, 2018, 09:32:50 am
I haven't read the thread but of course, you can't miss the allegations. He has already had 6 FBI aggressive background checks. If those background checks that were actively looking for things that would disqualify him for his judicial seats and missed these horrendous assaults - how does anyone expect this same FBI will find anything now?
It appears that Maryland does not have a statute of limitations for sexual assaults - why haven't there been any legal investigations and charges filed?

Because the FBI didn't know to look for them when they did the previous checks.  Though I'm not part of the group that thinks a FBI investigation would clean this all up so take that for what it's worth.

And there haven't been any legal investigations or charges filed because there's strong disincentive for women to report sexual abuse.  Dr. Ford is a prime example: she finally does speak out because (according to her) she can't bear the idea of the person that tried to rape her getting a seat on the SCOTUS and she receives death threats, has to vacate her home and she and her family have to go into hiding.

I'm not saying I know these things happened, I'm saying the lack of legal accusations isn't a very good indicator of if they did or not. A very small percentage of those who experienced sexual abuse report it, and that includes rape or attempted rape.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on September 27, 2018, 11:44:41 am
I don't know if anyone else is watching the hearing, but it's pretty heart-wrenching to hear Dr. Ford describe her experience and how it's impacted her life.  It's makes a pretty strong case that these actions are/would be disqualifying even without the lying about them later.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on September 28, 2018, 05:24:20 pm
I saw Kavanaugh's equally heartrenching denials (though his answers to questions were less impressive (otoh so were the questions).   I believe both of them.   Of course they both cannot be right.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on September 28, 2018, 07:03:35 pm
I saw Kavanaugh's equally heart wrenching denials (though his answers to questions were less impressive (otoh so were the questions).   I believe both of them.   Of course they both cannot be right.

Yes they both can - Dr Ford probably was sexually assaulted, some time during the summer of 1982 and in some house other than her own - BUT not by Judge Brett Kavanaugh.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 28, 2018, 07:58:58 pm
I agree, pnr.  They're both convincing.  So I guess it comes down to motivation and method:  Who has the stronger incentive to lie and happens to be a better actor?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on September 28, 2018, 08:12:43 pm
Eyewitnesses do make mistakes. - It's worth watching.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsBplRi1PfA
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 28, 2018, 08:16:57 pm
When I was seven years old, I was playing baseball in a vacant lot with some boys from my neighborhood. I was playing catcher. The boy who was batting took a step back at the same time he was bringing the bat back. He hit me so hard in the nose that he broke the bridge of my nose and almost knocked me unconscious.  Although I was delirious with pain, and everything around me seemed to swirl in and out of focus, I know exactly who hit me, who ran away afraid at all the blood, and who helped me to stagger home.  That trauma happened 44 years ago, and I can picture the incident clearly today, even though I could barely stand up at the time.  You don't forget trauma like that.  So, I'm not buying the whole, "Yeah, she was sexually assaulted, but it wasn't him," spin.  When she says it was him, I believe her.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on September 28, 2018, 09:11:42 pm
Roper, watch the video. This woman's experience is least worth considering.
This woman was raped when she was 22, at knifepoint. She memorized everything about the face the man raping her so that she could make sure he went to prison. And he did. He was sentenced to 100 years in prison and served 11. That was when he was exonerated because of a DNA test. She knew without a doubt that this was her rapist and yet, he wasn't.
Memories are failable. And they are also malleable. Even if you are a professional whatever. True for both Kavanaugh and Dr. Ford.
 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 28, 2018, 10:33:03 pm
Anger is the last defense of the guilty.  I remember learning that in a criminal justice class way back when I was a sophomore in college.  The use of anger and misdirection (accusing the democrats, in Kavanaugh's case) are well researched and documented in psychology as defense mechanisms against guilt, fear, and shame.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 28, 2018, 11:19:01 pm
Palmon, I watched the video. Thank you for sharing it.  I understand that eyewitnesses can make mistakes and that memories are malleable.  If Ford v. Kavanaugh was a criminal case, there would be a more stringent burden of proof and higher standards of evidence for the prosecution, and the expectation of "innocent until proven guilty" for the defense.  This is a political nomination with a confirmation hearing. Pending the results of an investigation, their testimonies are what we have to go on. Given that, I believe Ford. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on September 29, 2018, 04:02:09 am
"but it's pretty heart-wrenching to hear Dr. Ford describe her experience and how it's impacted her life"

It is, so why did this professional women, leave it so long to come forward. This man may now be on the brink of the highest place he can go in his career. However, he has been serving for many years in an almost as important place. Should she not have alerted authorities sooner?

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on September 29, 2018, 04:30:36 am
This is interesting.

https://www.facebook.com/Breitbart/videos/316115425635280/UzpfSTc4MjY0Mzg1MjoxMDE1NjE0NzE5MzczMzg1Mw/ (https://www.facebook.com/Breitbart/videos/316115425635280/UzpfSTc4MjY0Mzg1MjoxMDE1NjE0NzE5MzczMzg1Mw/)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on September 29, 2018, 02:07:49 pm
Quote
The use of anger and misdirection (accusing the democrats, in Kavanaugh's case) are well researched and documented in psychology as defense mechanisms against guilt, fear, and shame.

And you don't think that anger as the result of being falsely accused isn't the expected reaction to that?   (Not to mention that there's been much published recently about scientific studies that didn't actually find what they claimed to find, and that left out data that would have impacted the results.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 29, 2018, 02:18:50 pm
Falsely accused?  We need an impartial investigation to determine that.

Republicans are scared that they're going to lose the majority in the senate during the mid-term elections. That's why they're denying an FBI investigation and trying to fast-track Kavanaugh.  I'm amazed at the political contortions they're going through to discredit Dr. Ford.  Well, maybe not amazed. "Revolted" might be a better word. Dr. Ford is not on trial, here.  This is a job interview for Kavanaugh.

In reply to the "timing" argument: I believe Dr. Ford addressed that quite well the several times she was asked the same question in various forms.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on September 29, 2018, 10:35:47 pm
When men came forward with allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests which had happened 30 years before, there was public outrage.  Nobody ridiculed those men. When men came forward with allegations of sexual abuse by Jerry Sandusky at Penn State which happened 30 years ago, there was public outrage. Nobody ridiculed those men.  This case is not different just because the accusers are female and the abuser is a political nominee.
In terms of the abhorrence of the deeds, & the damage done to the victims, it isn't different. However, I think there is a difference in perception & response, maybe more so among men (not generalizing about 100% of men, but I think many have this mindset).

Too many male adults still have the "boys will be boys" attitude about youthful boy-girl "escapades" (some of which are actually just that if everyone involved is a sober, consenting adult, while others are more serious).

OTOH, many men have a deep aversion & horror of homosexual molesting. In many cases, I think it goes to their insecurities about their own sexual identity, inclinations, or fear of being emasculated - and what could be more emasculating than being overpowered & violated by another guy?

In the case of Kavanaugh & the accusations by several women, my jury is still out about who is being truthful, who is not being truthful, & who truly believes they are being truthful. It may be a mixture on the part of all involved, because some of these events happened decades ago. Both Judge Kavanaugh & Professor Ford seem like what we would call pillars of the community, upstanding citizens who have done much good in the world, not the kind of people you would think would lie for no reason at all. So if one is lying, or both are, we have to ask what their motive would be. Who has more to lose or more to gain from the truth being concealed? I don't know the answer to that.

As Roper said, this isn't a trial. When we talk about the constitutional right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty, that applies to people charged with crimes who have a right to a trial by a jury of their peers, & could face sentencing for a felony if convicted. No one is facing that here. In a job interview, as Roper calls this, there is no right to the presumption of innocence, & no one has a burden to prove anyone's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt to a moral certainty. All the employer needs is a reasonable presumption, excluding bias based on race, ethnicity, religion, etc., that this person is not a good candidate for the position.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on September 29, 2018, 11:14:03 pm
To consider in regards to his credibility, IE, can he be shown to be honest and forthright, under oath,  in key things about his own past that can easily be shown to be correct or incorrect? It doesn't look great.

 This analysis is worth considering, exploring his own under-oath testimony.

https://www.currentaffairs.org/2018/09/how-we-know-kavanaugh-is-lying
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on September 29, 2018, 11:21:52 pm
Quote
In a job interview, as Roper calls this, there is no right to the presumption of innocence, & no one has a burden to prove anyone's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt to a moral certainty.

Except that is isn't just a job interview. If he fails to get this job he will also, almost certainly, no longer be fit for any legal job. He will be forced into retirement on the word of an accuser. With no trial, no conviction, and nothing than the testimony of one person.

I don't know if he did it, maybe there should be a trial. But there IS reasonable doubt - I would think.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on September 30, 2018, 12:40:30 am
He has a lifetime appointment as a federal judge. Why do you think he have to resign and find a new job? Politically, there's zero chance he gets impeached by this congress...

[When I reread that it sounded accusatory. Sorry, I'm honestly asking]
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: LMAshton on September 30, 2018, 04:13:19 am
"but it's pretty heart-wrenching to hear Dr. Ford describe her experience and how it's impacted her life"

It is, so why did this professional women, leave it so long to come forward. This man may now be on the brink of the highest place he can go in his career. However, he has been serving for many years in an almost as important place. Should she not have alerted authorities sooner?

I've told people/reported some of those who sexually assaulted me. My mother didn't believe me and refused to do anything about it. When I tried reporting to cops, they refused to take a statement - they didn't believe me. When I told a boss, I was told to get over it. I was criticized and it was blamed on how I dressed, although in one case, it was because I always wore pants, so my co-workers assumed I was a lesbian, so somehow this made me a target. I was mocked and ridiculed. It was assumed that I must be asking for it somehow.

In talking to other women about their sexual assaults, they've had pretty close to the exact same experience. Cops are reluctant to take reports. Parents do nothing. Other adults in authority do nothing. Bosses tell us to get over it. No one wants to actually do anything.

Why on earth would she or any other woman make a statement? It's a grindingly difficult and emotionally taxing uphill battle, and we are conditioned from a very young age to not make waves.

Stop asking women why we don't report. We keep telling men, but the men aren't listening. We tell this same thing over and over and over again. Most women get it. Most women have been through it. Try listening to us.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on September 30, 2018, 06:27:34 pm
Laurie, thank you so much for sharing your experience.

It's unconscionable that 10 men on the Senate Judiciary Committee couldn't muster the confidence to question Dr. Ford with dignity and respect. They had to bring in a female prosecutor to do their jobs for them.

It's also unconscionable that so many women have posted things like this, which showed up in my FB feed linked to one of my friends: "Pray for the Kavanaugh family. I hope he makes it. I find it hard to believe this Ford woman. She was 15 yrs old doesn’t have any witnesses to back her story."  This was from a mom with children.  And many other women liked it and posted similar comments.

I still consider myself fairly conservative.  I have many conservative values.  The Republican party, however, has abandoned true conservative values over the past several years. The election of Donald Trump proved that the Republican party has lost its mind.  The Kavanaugh hearings proved that the Republican party has sold its soul. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on October 01, 2018, 12:01:41 am
I'm going to make these comments and then leave.

1. There are a lot of strong emotions on each side. There is no evidence and yet our beliefs about what happened seems to be drawing out the worst in many of us. Both parties and their families are being threatened in most vile ways. I pray that they will all survive. And yes, I think it has gotten to that point. And I pray our nation will, too.

2. I absolutely hate the label 'victim.'  To keep 'victim'  as part of your identity makes you weak. Women are anything but weak. Women are strong and in my opinion, we have always been stronger than men.

3. I also hate the term "survivor". Everybody 'survives' life and sometimes life is really nasty. For me to say I am a cancer 'survivor' is a ridiculous comparison to someone that has been fighting stage 4 lung cancer for the last 10 years (my BiL). Yet, I had cancer and I'm alive - that makes me a survivor, right?  Sorry, no. Those that truly have to fight for survival - those are the survivors.

In another context, 'Survivor' also puts on par some of the "me too" accusations - 'he touched my bootie when he walked by', blah blah blah,  with women who have truly suffered devastating attacks, such as Laurie.

If everyone is a victim and a survivor - then it means nothing.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 01, 2018, 03:43:58 am
I've told people/reported some of those who sexually assaulted me. My mother didn't believe me and refused to do anything about it. When I tried reporting to cops, they refused to take a statement - they didn't believe me. When I told a boss, I was told to get over it. I was criticized and it was blamed on how I dressed, although in one case, it was because I always wore pants, so my co-workers assumed I was a lesbian, so somehow this made me a target. I was mocked and ridiculed. It was assumed that I must be asking for it somehow….

Laurie, it can’t have ever gotten any easier to talk about this, so thank you for being willing to share. While I have never been the victim of an actual rape or violent sex crime, or child molesting, I along with probably a large majority of females have had experiences like flashing, workplace sex harassment, or being groped on public transit. I can’t imagine how traumatic it is to have a genuinely violent crime perpetrated against you.

The few details you gave explain why those who experience sexual assaults, molestation, or sexual harassment, are often so reluctant to report. With a long history of sexual assault victims being disbelieved, dismissed, or told they were at fault, why would anyone else want to put themselves through the same ordeal?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 01, 2018, 08:38:14 am
Kavanaugh lied under oath about the extent of his drinking.

Chad Luddington is a professor at North Carolina State University. Ludington said in the statement he often drank with Kavanaugh when they were classmates, and said Kavanaugh had played down "the degree and frequency" of his drinking in his testimony. Ludington said he often saw Kavanaugh "staggering from alcohol consumption," and said he often became "belligerent and aggressive" while drinking. Ludington said in his statement he witnessed Kavanaugh throw a beer in a man's face once for making a semi-hostile remark, "starting a fight that ended with one of our mutual friends in jail." "It is truth that is at stake," Ludington said in a statement. "and I believe that the ability to speak the truth, even when it does not reflect well upon oneself, is a paramount quality we seek in our nation's most powerful judges."

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/01/politics/yale-kavanaugh-drinking/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/01/politics/yale-kavanaugh-drinking/index.html)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on October 01, 2018, 12:02:08 pm
Nowhere in this statement was he put under oath of penalty of law. It was just a statement to a newspaper.

Let's wait and see what the unbiased FBI investigation finds out. Oh, and by the way, Ford never claimed she was raped, just that a man was on top of her grinding his hips into her, that they both were fully clothed.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on October 01, 2018, 01:23:50 pm
Raped?  No.  Sexually assaulted and battered? Yes.

For me the biggest issue is his lack of ownership of his past behavior.  I'd be ok if he said, "When I was young and stupid, I was young and stupid.  Although I don't remember this incident, if I did do such a thing I am truly sorry and ask for forgiveness.  I hope I am a bette person now than I was then." 

But no, instead he has tried to paint himself as some besieged saint who never did wrong.  His lack of self empathy, his distortion of facts and his sense of entitlement to the position are huge red flags.  He is like Bill Clinton and Nixon in many ways, and will tarnish SCOTUS like Clinton and Nixon tarnished the presidency.  He is unfit and should be voted down.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on October 01, 2018, 01:37:04 pm
Bingo.

Makes me wonder if his wife was told and led to believe one version of his past, and that's the version he's sticking to, in the face of the recollection of everyone else, including his own yearbook entries.

I'm willing to believe he genuinely does not recall assaultingFord. But he is repeatedly denying, under oath, that he participated in events and locations and actions surrounding such a culture that all the evidence seems to clearly point that he very much did.

 It's not a good look for anyone, but especially not someone being considered for one of the highest and most important posts in the land.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 01, 2018, 10:17:54 pm
We can continue talking about previous topics, but I wanted to share this wonderful story of love & affection while it was still timely. Our (or somebody’s) president is involved in a touching affair of the heart.  <3  <3  <3

https://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Trump-on-Kim-Tough-talk-and-then-we-fell-in-13269453.php

Regardless of what he actually meant - which he might not know since he so often just flaps his jaws without thinking - can anyone imagine the fallout if FDR had said he and “Benny” Mussolini had fallen in love, or JFK had said he & Fidel had exchanged great letters & become cozy, or Obama or either of the Bushes had spoken so glowingly of Khadafy or Osama Bin Ladin? But we know DT is fickle. Tomorrow he could be shifting his affections to Putin or Duterte or one of the other “tough guys” that he thinks personify the manly qualities he desperately craves to be associated with.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 03, 2018, 01:27:24 am
We don’t know for sure if she is a victim, or if he is, or who actually did what. But a decent person does not mock or taunt even a POSSIBLE victim. If there is a chance that someone was wronged or harmed, the last thing any decent human being does is pile on. I have tried to refrain from having a derisive attitude toward either of them since I don’t know for sure what happened, & I get it that this has been tough for both – although I can make some judgments based on both of their statements & demeanor before the Judiciary Committee. But I hafta agree with Ms. Ford’s attorney that what DT did is totally putrid.

https://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Trump-mocks-Dr-Christine-Blasey-Ford-testimony-kav-13276611.php

And as long as we’re on the subject of The Don ...

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Takeaways-From-The-Times-Investigation-Into-13275938.php

No one is perfect, & everyone has messed up. Some people mess up over & over & over, & they do it deliberately, for personal gain, & they show no remorse or empathy or sympathy or even feigned concern for anyone but themselves, & they delight in calling out everyone else’s mistakes & misdeeds when they have a big fat mote stuck in their own eyeball. This tax story is just one more straw on the pile. Yesterday it was cozying with Kim Jong-un. Feuding with allies. Treating his own staff & cabinet members like ****. And so on, you name it. The day before, & the week before, & the week before that ... it goes on & on.

No other president of the United States, regardless of party, would have survived half of these fiascos. The Bushes, Obama, Clinton, Reagan, Carter, Nixon, all had their flaws, & some had lots, but now, I would gladly take almost any of them back if I could. The one thing I can say about all of them is that they would do their damnedest to keep America & the world at peace, & that I could sleep at night knowing that if they did take us to war, it wouldn't be out of rashness, stupidity, personal pique, egotism, or toxic machismo.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on October 03, 2018, 02:31:50 am
Kavanaugh lied under oath about the extent of his drinking.

Chad Luddington is a professor at North Carolina State University. Ludington said in the statement he often drank with Kavanaugh when they were classmates, and said Kavanaugh had played down "the degree and frequency" of his drinking in his testimony. Ludington said he often saw Kavanaugh "staggering from alcohol consumption," and said he often became "belligerent and aggressive" while drinking. Ludington said in his statement he witnessed Kavanaugh throw a beer in a man's face once for making a semi-hostile remark, "starting a fight that ended with one of our mutual friends in jail." "It is truth that is at stake," Ludington said in a statement. "and I believe that the ability to speak the truth, even when it does not reflect well upon oneself, is a paramount quality we seek in our nation's most powerful judges."

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/01/politics/yale-kavanaugh-drinking/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/01/politics/yale-kavanaugh-drinking/index.html)
This characterization of his drinking is contradicted by many of Kavanaugh's other college classmates. Even the throwing of the "beer" in another man's face is wrong. Another man at a bar was aggressive toward Kavanaugh and the report is that Kavanaugh threw ice at the man, not beer. Seems to be another false report. Kavanaugh was not arrested and whatever happened was not serious enough to warrant further investigation.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on October 03, 2018, 02:45:40 am
After reading Rachel Mitchell's report, I now find Dr. Ford's account far less compelling.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 03, 2018, 08:37:19 am
I dunno, Jason.  There are many more reports of former classmates and friends that have surfaced over the past two days--reports which state Kavanaugh drank to excess and became aggressive. And the research is extensive on alcohol consumption and the inability to remember. I'm inclined to believe that Kavanaugh's memory of the night in question is even more unreliable than Ford's.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on October 03, 2018, 09:02:02 am
After reading Rachel Mitchell's report, I now find Dr. Ford's account far less compelling.

Huh, that's surprising to me.  Her report read to me as a very partisan document that didn't address how a normal prosecutor would handle a victim nor address the lack of investigation (saying there's not enough evidence to bring charges without acknowledging most of the investigation into other witnesses or evidence didn't happen seem pretty ingenious). But perhaps this is more relevant: How we Know Kavanaugh is Lying (https://www.currentaffairs.org/2018/09/how-we-know-kavanaugh-is-lying).

What's frustrating is that we keep getting more evidence through the media about this case.  Most of it is damaging to Kavanaugh and supportive of Dr. Ford, but by no means all the evidence runs that way.  The GOP held a seat open for a year so they could get someone they want on the bench: it seems pretty cynical to now declare that they can't take two or three weeks to really investigate all this stuff. And I continue to say I don't understand why not even from a political, cynical perspective.  If there is more condemning evidence against Kavanaugh it's obviously going to come out and then they're going to be the party that put an attempted rapist or worst on the highest court in the land. And if there's evidence that supports his claims (and they're certainly claiming they believe he's innocent of all charges) then wait a couple weeks to either find that evidence, or show as conclusively as possible that it doesn't exist.

I'm glad Senator Flake changed his mind and force the rest of the party to call for a FBI investigation, but I'm less than impressed by what they've been allowed to investigate and how much time they've been given to do it.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on October 03, 2018, 02:46:00 pm
In my humble, female aged 66 years old opinion ANY reports from the media should be tossed out with the daily garbage.

Back in 1983 when I was a new accounts teller at my local bank, I was accused of showing publicly a clients check that paid for a gambling establishment in town. Establishment actually means gaming tables in one of the taverns in town.

I did no such thing, and I would never do such a thing. I took my oath with the bank Dead Serious. BUT, without a *hearing* my employment was terminated. For 2 years I attempted to find an attorney to represent me and fight it. Each attorney I contacted couldn't because of Conflict of Interest. Even the attorney's in a 150 mile radius. Finally I had to drop it and settle for working at just a job and not a career.

10 years later I met a man as he was sitting alone in the local lounge, he always sat there day after day for hours, nursing a brandy w/a coffee chaser, and writing in steno books after steno books. Finally I went over, sat down and asked him what he was doing. He was a writer. No, he had never published. He and his wife were retired school teachers. He had taught language arts & journalism to high school students. They were from a large city 150 miles away, and were fast friends with an attorney there.

Cut to the chase ~ they had heard of my story from this attorney. So they came to my town to ferret out the real scoop of the story, and fell in love with the area & moved permanently here. Boy Howdy did they get the story. But not from me or from my then husband, but from the gambling table owner's rival.

We met every early evening, after I got off work, and we talked. It took him nearly 4 months to get me to tell him my version. BUT in the meantime he had sent the other version of what happened to the local newspaper and my name, reputation and honesty were smeared all over again. I lost my job too.

Had he used his real name and not a nom de plume, I would have known it was him. It was only after I had accosted the gaming table owner at that same lounge in a drunken rage that I found out about my writer friend, and the REAL story. Yep, I was a very inactive member of the church AND an imbiber of strong spirits then. BUT I wasn't so drunk I didn't know what I was doing & saying & I remembered it LONG after it had happened.

Three days later in the gaming table owners own home, we all met. And the story was revealed. Took two weeks of such meetings at 2 hours each meeting. The writer got his story, I found out who *set me up* as the fall guy, and the why.

Why didn't the gaming tables owner come forward sooner? He didn't know until 4 years after I was fired. By then the statute of limitations was well into effect (2 year).

The writer got the entire story plus what I had gone through (emotional, mental, financial anguish). What the gaming tables owner went through and he also did some honest deep digging about the rival and the why behind his setting me up. Then he went to our local bi-weekly newspaper to have the entire story published and was turned down. Finally our once a month periodical agreed, and put the story in a 10 part series.

Yes, a writer finally told the true story - - but what I am getting here is this ~ ~ ~ NOT one of those people who were interviewed by the MEDIA in the Ford vs Kavanaugh case were under "Oath of Felony", or any Oath. Why did they finally surface and go to the MEDIA rather than an attorney who would then bring it to the Judaical Committee???

So much was done in an incorrect manner - back-arse-wards really - regarding this.

As a rape victim myself, and as a recovering abused wife, I really, really listened to both of the testimonies. The first time I didn't pray before hand. The second and yes third time I did. My discernment tells me that yes, Ms Ford was sexually molested at some time in the early 1980's and after she had been consuming alcohol. At least she believes that. BUT she really isn't sure it was Kavanaugh with or without his buddies.

It has been 48 years and I still remember in vivid detail my rape. Even to the way the rapist smelled. No I never saw his face. But in giving her testimony she READ the entire thing. She is a college graduate, a well educated woman, a Psychology Professor, and she had to READ her own personal account of that sexual abuse account. It was scripted.

As for Judge Brett Kavanaugh - he used what looked like hand written notes. Each page for a particular part of his testimony. He did not read his testimony in it's entirety. Yes he was mad. I was mad when I wrote out my testimony, and I didn't have the husband I have now to edit it. I would have NOT believed him had Judge Kavanaugh NOT be mad. It was Righteous Indignation mad. The drinking of water, the tongue pushing against his cheek and lower lip - those are ways to keep the tears of anger from bursting forth.

My gift of discernment tells me that he is telling the truth. As for him writing nearly everything down on calendars, so did I when I was in High School (9th -12th) grade, then not for 2 years, then again to date. I much preferred calendar books to the hang on the wall kind.

Why don't we hold judgement until the FBI finishes, and the results are given to the Judicial Committee and THEY make it public.

Note ~ why is only Kavanaugh's back ground been put under scrutiny and not Ford's? Both should be.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 03, 2018, 05:16:38 pm
ANY reports from the media should be tossed out with the daily garbage.
Without reports from the daily media, none of us would know what was going on in Washington or elsewhere in government. Public officials, especially politicians who we know aren’t very moral or ethical, would be even less cautious about what they did, how they misused public funds, whose rights they trampled on, or what they did in their daily routines that could affect billions of people all over the world.

The trouble is, most media are biased. Everyone knows that. Somewhere between Fox & CNN, very far from both, maybe the truth can be found. It’s up to us to decide where. And we have legitimate questions about the credibility of both Kavanaugh & Ford. Are one or both being entirely truthful based on their honest knowledge & recollections? Are one or both are lying at least some of the time? We need the FBI to do a thorough investigation & not be denied access to any potential information sources, & saying the FBI doesn’t have WH approval to interview specific witnesses is BS. Does your police or sheriff need the approval of mayors, supervisors, or council members to do an investigation & decide whom to interview? And in the case of employment background checks that are not criminal cases, does the mayor or governor need to approve any time the hiring agency wants to contact one of your former bosses, classmates, or neighbors?

If (& unfortunately, it seems more & more likely) we find that both Ford & Kavanaugh have been deceptive or evasive (or even downright untruthful), & have skeletons in their closets that are too big to sweep under the rug, then the question ceases to be about either of them as forthright or devious, honest or dishonest, ethical or unethical individuals. Then it is about what is at stake. This is not a criminal trial where a defendant’s freedom can be taken away & there is a burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt to a moral certainty. It’s about someone’s suitability to be a Supreme Court justice. If Ford turns out to be a bad apple, her university employers can decide what to do about her. If Kavanaugh turns out to be a bad apple, we the people are his potential employers & Congress is supposed to act on our behalf, & they will need to do what’s right.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on October 03, 2018, 06:20:31 pm
Senator Flake made a deal with the Democrats for a 1 week limited investigation into then circulating allegations. Now the Democrats are changing their tune and want an endless investigation into anything that may come up. One of their presidential hopefuls has even stated that it doesn't matter if Judge Kavanaugh is not guilty, and on that I actually believe him. That does not sound like an honest arrangement, and I would hope that Senator Flake realizes that he has been manipulated.

Recently a previous boyfriend has come out and cast doubt on the veracity of many of the claims of Dr. Ford. I am sure more on that will be forthcoming.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on October 03, 2018, 07:06:55 pm
Quote
One of their presidential hopefuls has even stated that it doesn't matter if Judge Kavanaugh is not guilty, and on that I actually believe him. That does not sound like an honest arrangement, and I would hope that Senator Flake realizes that he has been manipulated

This could be said of Senators on both sides of the aisle, because this HAS happened on both sides. This is messy.

It's clear that for many, Truth is not the object. A Win is.

That said, the investigation is clearly also not what Flake had in mind, because it appears that contrary to what was originally said, the WH -has- put some bizarre limitations and hindrances on the FBI investigation, which should raise serious questions as to its legitimacy, no matter what side you're on.

If you really want to exonerate Kavanaugh, truly believing there isn't something damaging to find, you wouldn't limit the scope of the investigation. An artificially partisan-limited investigation would NOT serve Flake's intended purposes. Trump getting involved in this way has ABSOLUTELY tainted the results. That is not what was wanted, and serves nobody looking for legitimacy.

If you have a week to do it, it shouldn't matter if more leads are followed than you'd like ... if the truth is really what you're after. I can only think of one reason to actively halt the gathering of more information, ordered by the Side who is most like not to benefit from a deeper dive, when a specific end-date is already specified.

This whole thing is a disaster.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 03, 2018, 08:30:35 pm
Roper's Theory of Evil in High Places:

Republicans in the federal government are terrified of Donald Trump.  He has shown his willingness from the beginning to remove anyone who disagrees with him. "You're fired!" When Dr. Ford's testimony came out, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee felt they didn't have a choice. Ten men couldn't question her for fear of alienating their constituency. So they retained a female prosecutor to do it.  That way, if it all goes south, then they can claim, "We did the best we could to confirm the president's nominee." Hopefully, The Donald won't come after them.

Democrats in the federal government are terrified of Donald Trump. They pushed for an FBI investigation, knowing full well that the president, as chief executive of the legislative branch (and therefore the ultimate boss of the FBI) would shackle the investigation.  That way, they can appease their constituents, and if it all goes south, then they can claim, "We used the president's agency to investigate." Hopefully, The Donald won't come after them.

Both parties are to blame for the degradation of our government.  There has been such a resistance to compromise that the executive branch has steadily increased power and authority to force political agendas.

The real casualty in all of this is Dr. Ford. We have proven yet again, that when women come forward with testimony that they have been sexually abused, we won't believe them.

God help us survive the next two years.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on October 03, 2018, 11:58:15 pm
3 words.  Congressional term limits.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 04, 2018, 08:17:31 am
Or, move away from the two-party system where so many resources are wasted vilifying the other party.  If no party has a majority, then the focus becomes building consensus to address issues. Vote third party!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 04, 2018, 11:48:45 am
As some of us keep saying, the Kavanaugh hearing is not a trial & it is not about proving guilt or presuming innocence as would be necessary in a court trial. It is about credibility & a candidate’s fitness for a job.

http://www.latimes.com/local/abcarian/la-me-abcarian-kavanaugh-investigators-20181004-story.html#nws=mcnewsletter

Trump & McConnell are sticking by Kavanaugh & insisting that the FBI report clears him

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/grassley-white-house-stand-by-kavanaugh-as-senate-reviews-fbi-report/ar-BBNUZsy?ocid=spartanntp

While some are suggesting the FBI was not allowed to do a thorough investigation, meaning Kavanaugh's supporters are relying on flawed reporting.

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/As-FBI-check-of-Kavanaugh-nears-its-end-probe-13279734.php

Who knows the actual truth? The end result of this mess is that whatever ultimately becomes of the nomination, none of us will ever know. Republican & Democratic politicians in the White House & the Senate, uninterested in what's best for America & motivated only by political agendas & winning at all costs, corrupted the process. Taalcon is right: “This whole thing is a disaster,” & Roper is right: “God help us survive the next two years.”

I’ve been deliberately voting against both of the corrupt, anti-American parties for some time, by seeking out good alternative candidates, not only in 2016 although the two major candidates made that a lot easier. One of the third-party people got my last presidential vote, & I would have voted for almost any of the alternatives over the deplorables that the major parties gave us. I plan to do the same in 2020, provided the Constitution is still in force & we are not under either a dictatorship or a junta of generals who decided enough is enough, & an election does occur.

Good people are out there, & they need more support from thinking voters, because as long as the corrupt, self-serving, unethical Democrats & Republicans control our political process, decent candidates have little chance. I think one of the last best hopes for the survival of our republic or democracy is the downfall of the two major parties, which have both perverted the concept of republic & democracy. They can't collapse a minute too soon.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 05, 2018, 05:31:40 pm
Collins & Flake have thrown in the towel, so it's all over but the bitter post-morteming, accusations, innuendos, & curious questions from people who wonder what was in the report that, in Warren's words, Senators were "muzzled" from discussing.

Someone is bound to tip off Wikileaks. And when whatever YKW they are keeping under wraps comes unraveled, the YKW will hit the fan.

And it could hit the fan again in November.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on October 06, 2018, 11:49:29 am
"Collins and Flake have thrown in the towel".
Collins did not 'Throw in the towel'.  I suggest you read the text of her hour-long speech.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/05/us/politics/susan-collins-speech-brett-kavanaugh.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/05/us/politics/susan-collins-speech-brett-kavanaugh.html)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on October 10, 2018, 01:50:38 pm
It has been leaked what was in the report that caused Senators Collins and Flake to make their final decision. FBI agent Jeff Blakely said, "After many follow-up visits and exhausting all possible leads, I feel that I must blame anesthesia". When reading that, both of them nodded and said, "ah, that makes sense."

(For those not familiar, anesthesia is blamed for nearly everything).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 12, 2018, 11:51:11 pm
Anesthesia or amnesia?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 12, 2018, 11:56:29 pm
Robert E. Lee may have had good leadership qualities & military skills (I don’t really know), & many people may admire his personal qualities – but honestly, how much more tone-deaf could a president of the United States be? I mean, we know Mussolini made the trains run on time, but would a POTUS praise him? (Wait – don’t answer that).

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-praises-robert-e-lee-during-ohio-rally/ar-BBOiYGL?ocid=spartanntp

Wait - there's more! He praised Robert E. Lee & then he told African-Americans to "honor" him with their votes. Too bad I already used the phrase "tone-deaf." Is there a superlative for it?

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-calls-on-blacks-to-honor-him-with-votes-13304045.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Nottoc on October 14, 2018, 12:36:01 am
I read other sources. And it was clear that Trump was asking Black voters to honor the Republicans with their votes, not Robert E. Lee. Also, there are many that say from a strictly military point of view Robert E. Lee was an excellent general. Robert E. Lee was also a man of his time and how he was raised, and he believed blacks were less than human. They are distinct attributes of the man.

I haven't found an accurate replication of the speech, so I don't know the context of his remarks. However, a good business person can recognize a commendable quality in a person. Even if that person has a very bad understanding of some other aspect of life. Since, I don't know the context, the positive assumption is that Trump was recognizing a particular skill in a person that also happened to support an evil cause.

I recognize that this is similar to Reagan's "Killer Trees" speech. Which is largely recognized as a mistake. However, in this case, it seems to be a timing issue more than accuracy issue. Thus allowing the largely against Trump press machine to inaccurately report things like "Trump urges Blacks to Honor Robert E. Lee with a republican vote.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 14, 2018, 02:07:41 am
I wasn’t implying that trump asked black voters to honor Robert E. Lee. But to commend the CinC of the Confederate army for his positive qualities in the same speech that he asked for black votes was totally tone-deaf. I can't see any of his speech writers putting such words in his mouth, because they're too politically savvy to do that. I can only imagine it was trump's own thoughts because they show his level of insensitivity.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 25, 2018, 11:56:00 pm
Quote
"Let's get along. By the way, do you see how nice I'm behaving tonight? Have you ever seen this?"

IOW: I thought I would surprise you this time & try to act like a normal human being. It isn't my fault, but the fault of the fake-news media & the Democrats that makes me act like such an ******* so much of the time.
 
https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/The-instant-inevitable-cries-of-false-flag-13333266.php

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-doubles-down-on-blaming-media-as-suspicious-13335406.php

https://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/As-political-strain-grows-pipe-bombs-target-13334728.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on October 26, 2018, 11:20:35 pm
Well it is factual that there were advocates urging people to join the caravans --- it now appears that they were local trying to embarrass their own Honduran president.   When people don't trust anyone (and there are a lot of people on all sides that don't these days), it is easy to get assume the worst of "the other".
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on October 31, 2018, 07:22:45 pm
I’ve been totally sick over the murder rampage in Pittsburgh – regular folks minding their own business, worshipping peacefully, welcoming an addition to their congregation like we do, struck down by a bigoted sociopath. Admittedly, I am partial to the Jewish people, but I’m sick at the idea that this could happen to any group in America. I’m sad & furious & frustrated about it. It’s been a sad, infuriating, frustrating few weeks in American political life, with the murder of the journalist Khashoggi & the bumbling response of public officials whose motivations we have every reason to distrust, the mail bombs (real or fake), & now this.

Those who read up on Church history know that last week was the anniversary of the notorious Missouri extermination order, the only such official act in U.S. history against a specific group of people. Until it was reversed in the 1970s, state law could have authorized any of us to be rounded up in St. Louis or Kansas City, or while visiting Liberty Jail or Adam-ondi-Ahman, & hauled off to the gallows. Not that it would happen, but under state law it could have. And folks in America are still targeted for religious reasons, not by official government action, but some in government positions are responsible for the hostility & antagonism that pollutes our public life & gives extremists permission to attack civilized institutions & values.

The Potus was incredulous that in this day & age, such an anti-Semitic terrorist act could happen. I can’t imagine anyone being surprised. After all, Charlotteseville was only about a year ago, with its flock of Klansmen & neo-Nazis. Of course, he did say it included some “very fine people,” so he may truly not get it that those bigots Want. Jews. Dead. The dismal state of public conversation in this country is a big cause of hate crimes. Not that Trump or any other politician “makes” anyone shoot up a synagogue – we know everyone has agency & is accountable for their acts. But fringe-dwellers who do these evil deeds are not whole in head or heart to begin with, so unlike those of us with normal minds & consciences, they are easily nudged over the edge. All it might take is the President of the United States calling the press the enemy of the people, or his rivals crazy, lunatics, crooked, or disgraceful, or an ethnic group rapists or invaders, & whether or not that’s true is irrelevant – no elected official should be using that kind of language. If your local mayor, police chief, or health director did, how long would the public tolerate it?

In a display of bull-in-china-shop stubbornness & total lack of sensitivity or empathy, he decided to go to Pittsburgh in the midst of the start of the victims’ funerals, after the mayor & many residents asked him not to, at least one victim’s family refused to meet with him, & no other local, state, or congressional leaders would join him … to “pay his respects.”

Reckless, inflammatory speech, calling people liars, weak, dumb, or crazy for disagreeing, publicly demeaning women, characterizing entire ethnic or cultural groups, threatening to ban Muslims, undermining the freedom of speech & press, offering emotional support & comfort to racists, & more – from the highest office in the land, emboldens some people to abandon the standards of decency, courtesy, & fairness that society needs. We don’t need to “Make America Great Again.” Thanks to a friend of mine for inspiring this new slogan. What we need is to make America OURS again.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/jewish-leaders-tell-trump-hes-not-welcome-in-pittsburgh-until-he-denounces-white-nationalism/ar-BBP2lEL?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/for-trump-dutiful-words-of-grief-then-off-to-the-next-fight/ar-BBP2tME?ocid=spartanntp

https://m.sfgate.com/opinion/article/Trump-finally-gets-the-shunning-he-deserves-13351284.php

And now, to top off a month of insanity, we have talk of Constitutional amendment by executive order.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on October 31, 2018, 08:51:54 pm
I listened to an NPR story today about a recent study showing how political party is now more divisive than race, gender, or any other difference in U.S. society.  :(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on November 01, 2018, 10:41:38 am
Who ever runs again orangehead in 2020, be it primaries or the general, should use the slogan "Make America GOOD Again".
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 02, 2018, 10:42:18 pm
Where there is smoke, there isn’t always necessarily fire. But where there is a LOT of smoke, & it comes from a LOT of different places, & a LOT of people can see it & are worried about it … can we still say there isn’t any fire?

https://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Trump-black-people-too-stupid-vote-Michael-Cohen-13359022.php
https://www.npr.org/2018/10/31/662436272/trump-and-anti-semitism

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/opinions/george-washington-saw-america-as-a-safe-place-for-jews-trumps-america-isnt/2018/10/28/e21ea6e6-dade-11e8-b3f0-62607289efee_story.html

https://www.google.com/amp/s/foreignpolicy.com/2018/10/31/trumps-divisive-speech-puts-the-first-amendment-at-risk-antisemitism-hate-speech-crimes-pittsburgh-shooting-synagogue-jews/amp/

 https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/opinions/wp/2018/11/01/trumps-racist-ad-shows-how-low-republicans-have-sunk/?utm_term=.8f4076bf6bae
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on November 04, 2018, 08:29:26 pm
Many of you were concerned with the lack of thorough investigation during the Kavanaugh hearings. Here is a link to the 414 page summary of the investigation results released bt by the Senate Judiciary Committee today.  I'd be interested in your thoughts after you read the report yourselves - not the comments of what other people say about it.
[url]https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/press/rep/releases/senate-judiciary-committee-releases-summary-of-investigation-from-supreme-court-confirmation[url]
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 04, 2018, 10:59:21 pm
I’ll take a look at it, but not today, because it's the Sabbath, which shouldn't be ruined by the sordidness of politics. I’m skeptical about anything that comes from the mouth or pen of any Congressional committee or any member of Congress of either party, both of which are detestable, but I will concede that the crooked, dishonest, corrupt scoundrels are entitled to the benefit of a doubt.  :D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on November 05, 2018, 04:48:16 pm
I read most of it. Just as I thought, Kavanaugh is proved innocent.

I also have a *gut feeling* that she lied to gain notoriety and money, and that the Democrats used her & directed her in what to say - to stall Judge Kavanaugh's appointment.

Also I do believe that the Democrats demanding that the FBI do yet another investigation never thought that it would happen and it blew up in their faces and showed how complicit they were in this fiasco.


Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on November 05, 2018, 04:52:50 pm
I read most of it. Just as I thought, Kavanaugh is proved innocent.

No matter one's interpretation of what's presented, that's not how this works.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on November 06, 2018, 11:00:59 am
Many of you were concerned with the lack of thorough investigation during the Kavanaugh hearings. Here is a link to the 414 page summary of the investigation results released bt by the Senate Judiciary Committee today.  I'd be interested in your thoughts after you read the report yourselves - not the comments of what other people say about it.
[url]https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/press/rep/releases/senate-judiciary-committee-releases-summary-of-investigation-from-supreme-court-confirmation[url]

It looks like it was as reported.  They didn't interview the accused or the accuser, they did interview one person who was a witness for Kavanaugh but none of the people that were witnesses that stated they could confirm the accusations.  They did find people to try to discret Dr. Ford but that seems to be it, and even after expending their resources exclusively to defend Kavanaugh the strongest piece of information (according to them since they lead with it) is that she still flies despite a fear of flying.

I don't see any definitive proof that Kavanaugh committed the acts he was accused of.  I also don't see a very robust attempt to determine if he was or not, and it doesn't even come close to what I would expect of an investigation to determine if someone credibly accused of sexual assault should be a lifetime appointment to the highest court.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 09, 2018, 08:44:44 am
Winning isn't enough. Apparently, some people have to destroy anyone who dares to challenge their political views.

Quote
Kavanaugh Accuser Christine Blasey Ford Continues Receiving Threats

She has had to move four times, she wrote last month. She has had to pay for a private security detail. She hasn't been able to return to her job as a professor at Palo Alto University.

"My family and I have been the target of constant harassment and death threats," she told the committee.

"People have posted my personal information on the Internet. This has resulted in additional emails, calls, and threats. My family and I were forced to move out of our home. ... My family and I have been living in various secure locales, with guards."

Full story at NPR: https://www.npr.org/2018/11/08/665407589/kavanaugh-accuser-christine-blasey-ford-continues-receiving-threats-lawyers-say (https://www.npr.org/2018/11/08/665407589/kavanaugh-accuser-christine-blasey-ford-continues-receiving-threats-lawyers-say)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 09, 2018, 01:16:25 pm
Reminds me of how unmercifully Trump kept beating up on Jeff Sessions before finally pushing him off the cliff. When people have a need to keep clobbering someone whom they already have an advantage over, it's an example of the "B-word" - that thing we try to teach our kids not to do to those who are smaller, weaker, or more vulnerable. And the one who does it is a pitiful, contemptible "B-word."  ::) >:(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 09, 2018, 01:22:21 pm
I listened to an NPR story today about a recent study showing how political party is now more divisive than race, gender, or any other difference in U.S. society.  :(

I've read that where folks used to be concerned about their son or daughter dating someone of a different race or religion, now they don't want them getting involved with someone of the other political party!

And considering what political differences have done to some people, & how they have deteriorated overall civility & courtesy, I would RATHER my kid (if I had any) married someone of another religion or race than someone with whom they'd be having endless political arguments!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on November 09, 2018, 03:53:48 pm
I'll probably hate myself in the morning, but here goes:

Quote
Winning isn't enough. Apparently, some people have to destroy anyone who dares to challenge their political views.

There's a lot of that going around. And one could make the case that there's more of it coming from the left than from the right. Just this week Tucker Carlson's wife was threatened by a mob outside their home while he was at work. They weren't just a bunch of protestors on the sidewalk. They physically damaged the outside of the house and she had to lock herself in the pantry until the police arrived. Trump administration officials have been harassed and chased out of public places, on several occasions, egged on and encouraged by current and former Democratic party office holders, including Queen Hillary herself. Not to mention an actual assassination attempt on Republican representatives and senators on a baseball field.

And don't even get me started on Antifa, a rather ironic name for a group that tries to impose, by force of violence, an ideology that was responsible for over 100 million deaths in the last century.

As for not being satisfied with winning, there's plenty of that on both sides too. Opponents of gay marriage were mocked for saying it would threaten religious freedom. Yet that's exactly what happened. And now that gay marriage is essentially the law of the land, its proponents appear determined to beat everyone else into submission, hence Masterpiece Cakeshop.

I'm not defending what's being done to Dr. Ford. It's despicable. I don't have the words to describe how much I hate that kind of treatment of anybody. The fact that it comes from both sides, or either side, is a sign of how sick and disfunctional our political discourse has become.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 09, 2018, 07:38:03 pm
Agreed, Jacare.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on November 11, 2018, 07:18:26 pm
Current event?

Armistice declared in the Great War!

17 million deaths.

Ironically named Spanish Flu taken around the world by returning military. 500 million infected. 50-100 million mostly young, healthy adults die (3-6% of the world's population).

Called Spanish Flu because Spain was not involved in WWI, so they did not censor reports of this pandemic like other war participating countries did, who were trying to maintain morale. It was more devastating in other countries, though.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 14, 2018, 02:42:41 am
This is related to the California wildfires, but it's also about politics, so I'll keep this off the fire thread so we can talk over there without distraction.

In the midst of these awful catastrophes, while dozens have died & tens of thousands have fled for their lives, losing everything, & emergency responders are risking their lives to save people & property … a feud starts.

https://www.sfchronicle.com/california-wildfires/article/Trump-on-California-s-Camp-Fire-Forest-13380388.php?utm_campaign=sfgate&utm_source=article&utm_medium=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.sfgate.com%2Fcalifornia-wildfires%2Farticle%2FWill-Trump-come-to-California-White-House-mum-as-13385296.php%3Ft%3D0c65dde8ba

http://www.cpf.org/go/cpf/news-and-events/news/cpf-president-brian-rice-responds-to-president-attack-on-ca-fire-response/

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/trump-draws-ire-firefighters-celebrities-tweet-about-california-fires-n934856

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-blames-California-for-natural-disaster-13387222.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 19, 2018, 03:44:47 am
https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Mr-President-That-s-a-Good-One-Congressman-13403784.php

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump’s-attack-on-retired-admiral-who-led-bin-laden-raid-escalates-a-war-of-words/ar-BBPRcJT?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.voanews.com/a/trump-gives-himself-an-a-plus-as-president/4663827.html
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 22, 2018, 03:25:40 am
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/saudi-arabia-celebrates-as-trump-gives-riyadh-a-pass-in-journalists-killing-outrage-follows-elsewhere/ar-BBPY0aA?ocid=spartanntp

http://www.staradvertiser.com/2018/11/21/breaking-news/rep-tulsi-gabbard-calls-trump-saudi-arabias-bitch/

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/16/politics/donald-trump-saudi-financial-interests/index.html
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 24, 2018, 10:40:46 pm
At Thanksgiving, my family was visiting my wife's folks who winter in Yuma, AZ, just a few miles from the border with Mexico. We stayed with them for three days. While we were there, we went to the border crossing at Los Algodones. There were a lot of people crossing in both directions--many on foot. We went farther west to the Imperial Sand Dunes (holy cow are they big!) It's a huge recreation area for off road riding. There are several places at the dunes where the border fence is almost buried.  I mean, you could drive a four wheeler back and forth between Mexico and the U.S. with impunity. Guess what?  We didn't get murdered or raped!  No mayhem!  I know Trump warned us; however, all I saw were a lot of people from both countries going about their business or having fun. I lived in a border state (Texas) for 18 years. I think a lot of people don't understand how much immigrants are part of the culture and economy of border states.  Trump's whole campaign of fear mongering is founded on the reality that many people don't understand real life in a border state. People who live there understand. People who have family members across the border understand. We understand that a lot of people buy into Trump's lies about immigrants because party is more important than reality.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on November 25, 2018, 04:08:46 pm
a lot of people buy into Trump's lies about immigrants because party is more important than reality.

I don't buy this --- it isn't a party, certainly not to the Pres.  And many traditional R's don't consider much of what he does consistent with their party values.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on November 25, 2018, 07:14:31 pm
Shoulda said "political party."  ;)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on November 26, 2018, 12:02:17 am
What DT was grateful for at Thanksgiving.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-thanks-president-t-in-thanksgiving-weekend-tweet/ar-BBQ4xtt?ocid=spartanntp

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on December 07, 2018, 12:34:05 am
What an interesting story!

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Making-Trump-s-Bed-A-Housekeeper-Without-Papers-13447649.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on December 21, 2018, 12:18:41 am
Nikki Haley. Jeff Sessions. Scott Pruitt. H.R. McMaster. Rex Tillerson. Tom Price. Steve Bannon. Michael Flynn. James Comey. Last week, Ryan Zinke, under a cloud of scandal, like some of the others listed & others not. To name just a few – people who hitched their wagons to the Trump star & bailed, were dumped, or bailed ahead of being dumped. 

And now, the one with probably the most critical role of all with regard to national security along with Secretary of State – the Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, has submitted his resignation.

This comes just hours ahead of a potential government shutdown over the funding for the Trump Wall.

https://www.sfgate.com/business/article/Mattis-Resigns-as-Defense-Chief-Citing-13482117.php

https://www.sfgate.com/opinion/article/With-Mattis-out-we-re-in-uncharted-territory-13482386.php

https://www.sfgate.com/news/texas/article/With-Senate-passage-bill-to-prevent-shutdown-13479782.php

https://www.sfgate.com/news/texas/article/The-Latest-Trump-slams-GOP-leaders-over-border-13480776.php

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/ap-explains-what-happens-in-a-partial-government-shutdown/ar-BBReVKv?ocid=spartandhp

If any hostile country or entity wants to invade or subvert the United States, this would be the ideal time, just before Christmas, with the federal government in disarray & arguably a leadership vacuum in Washington, with no one in the White House or Congress willing to be the needed statesmen/women (or just the needed adult to keep the household running & the babies under control).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on December 21, 2018, 10:44:42 am
"Elect me and I'll end our two major wars and close Gitmo." - Obama
- Becomes the first president to spend an entire 8 years at war, from start to finish.
- Doesn't close Gitmo
- The world reluctantly understands, because of words like "precarious" and "diplomacy" and "vacuum".

"Elect me and I'll bomb ISIS into oblivion and bring troops home" - Trump
- Bombs ISIS into oblivion and brings troops home
- Even though everyone started trying to get him to stop.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jana at Jade House on December 21, 2018, 10:49:06 am
Except from international sources, ISIL is not bombed into anything but simmering defiance.  The war there is far from over.

I abhor war, but to say ISIL is defeated is clearly uninformed and dangerous.  I will be glad when they lay down their grievances, madness, and mayhem.  But sources here are absolute that ISIL is still a threat, diminished, but a threat.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on December 21, 2018, 04:11:18 pm
Mathis isn't leaving until Feb 28, 2019 when he expects a replacement to be in place.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on December 21, 2018, 04:48:51 pm
"Elect me and I'll end our two major wars and close Gitmo." - Obama
- Becomes the first president to spend an entire 8 years at war, from start to finish.
- Doesn't close Gitmo
- The world reluctantly understands, because of words like "precarious" and "diplomacy" and "vacuum".

"Elect me and I'll bomb ISIS into oblivion and bring troops home" - Trump
- Bombs ISIS into oblivion and brings troops home
- Even though everyone started trying to get him to stop.

Meaning what?  Congress and the DoD have far more influence in ongoing military operations than the President does.  Intelligence is pretty conclusive that ISIS has not been bombed into oblivion. Our allies want us to stay.  Who wants us out? Russia. Putin is applauding Trump's announcement. Hmm...

Besides, they're both unfit Commanders-in-Chief. Shoulda elected McCain, or at least Romney, when we had the chance.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on December 21, 2018, 08:45:45 pm
The point I'm trying to make, isn't about the effectiveness of our waging war against ISIS.  I'm trying to make the point that two presidents ran on the platform of ending war and bringing troops home.  The one on the left didn't keep his campaign promise, and all the traditional war-averse folks gave him a pass.  The one on the right(ish) did keep his campaign promise, and all the traditional war-averse folks are all up in his grill about it. 

I'm hearing it all over the place: The unspoken demand of eternal never-ending war because a diminished threat is still a threat.
 There's always more they, and there's always more threat.  The bloodthirstyness of how diminishing the threat isn't enough, from folks who claim to abhor war?  You sure about that?

Good time to look in the mirror.  If Obama had pulled out, and you were hearing the critical voices you're hearing now, who would be having the same reaction y'all are having now?  I'm guessing the world would be full of people saying "they're a diminished threat, and that's enough", and talking about how perpetual war doesn't solve anything, and blaming Bush for us being there in the first place. 

I guess multiple points.
- Its interesting to watch everyone freak out when a president does something he promised to do.
- Its interesting to think about how folks sometimes base their opinions not on the principles they claim to hold, but how much they like or dislike the guy or party making the call.
- Its interesting that a president actually makes good on a promise, despite the tsunami of criticism.
- (and my favorite point) I didn't vote for Trump or Hillary, so neener-neener. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on December 21, 2018, 08:54:14 pm
Quote
- Its interesting to watch everyone freak out when a president does something he promised to do.
Some of us were freaked out when he promised to do most of the things he's doing, which is why we we opposed to him for a VERY long time, next to others who were going to vote for him anyway who said, "It's all rhetoric. He's not actually going to do those things."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on December 21, 2018, 11:43:44 pm
And my point is that neither of those presidents should have made those promises in the first place, so it means nothing whether or not they were kept. Presidents, especially this one, take way more credit for positive things done by others, and they pass way more blame onto others for the negative things they actually do.

And so were clear about allegiances here: In my lifetime, the only presidents for whom I voted who subsequently made it into office are Reagan and the two Bushes. Never voted for either of the Clintons. Never voted for Obama. Didn't vote for Trump, either. Just because someone is opposed to Trump's policies doesn't automatically mean they're a socialist or a pacifist or that they supported Obama. 

America deserves better leadership than it's had this past decade.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on December 22, 2018, 12:16:51 am
America deserves better leadership than it's had this past decade.

A M E N
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on December 22, 2018, 09:01:03 pm
No. We get precisely the government we deserve.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on December 22, 2018, 09:42:48 pm
No. We get precisely the government we deserve.
I am not so sure that’s necessarily true.  The political processes (machinations would be a better word) that decide who ends up in Congress & the White House are so far removed from the average person that I almost believe one person’s vote (or one neighborhood’s, one town’s, or even one state’s) doesn’t matter. Governorships, House & Senate seats, & the Presidency of the United States itself are bought & sold, bartered & traded, treated like merchandise, & the transactions are signed & sealed before any of us even get to vote in a primary election.

I’m sorry to sound so cynical, but I think many Americans feel the same way. The main reason I vote now is because it is one of the most basic constitutional rights that I am entitled to as a U.S. citizen, & I don’t have the right to complain if I don’t vote.

A free & honest electoral process, one person one vote, where everyone can say "My voice matters, & someone cares what I think," is something most human beings do not have. Once upon a time, I naively thought we did. Thousands of Americans gave their lives to secure it, from the “embattled farmers” of Lexington & Concord to James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner, & Viola Liuzzo in my own lifetime. These brave people would writhe in their graves if they could see what has become of the democratic process that they were willing to fight & die for.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on December 23, 2018, 11:18:11 am
But that is because we choose to live where we do, and because we polarize ourselves in the political debates and trash talk the other, so those who seek our vote do not know/believe that we expect them to BE inherently good people, seeking actual solutions to issues, including getting out of our own partisanship.

I'm one of those people who believe that we need to enact legislation/amend the constitution so that the only money in politics comes from those who actually are voting or could be voting in the specific elections.   If you had to have a nexus --- a physical office, a residence, etc --- before the candidate could accept your money, then we'd be voting for local needs and interests, and not subject to the things money can buy for agendas that are not those of the place where people are voting.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on December 30, 2018, 04:39:18 pm
No. We get precisely the government we deserve.
We, as citizens, get precisely the government we deserve, because we elected our representatives. America--the ideals and principles enshrined in our founding documents--deserves better leadership.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on December 31, 2018, 07:16:00 pm
I apologize. I misspoke and didn't correct what I said, even after Curelom's and PNR's response made it clear that I had.

To rephrase: We get exactly the leadership we deserve. We are not a righteous country. We cannot expect nor do we deserve leadership that is more moral than we are as a nation. How many of the Lord's people have been destroyed because of unrighteousness? He has made He blesses the righteous nations and that so long as His people stay righteous, they will prosper in the land.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 02, 2019, 08:39:14 am
Senator-Elect Mitt Romney writes to the American people. It's meant for everyone because it's in the Washington Post (isn't that one of the favorite recipients of the fake news moniker?), not the Deseret News

https://www.sfgate.com/opinion/article/How-a-president-shapes-the-public-character-13502232.php




Mosiah 29
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on January 03, 2019, 10:49:49 am
It's a tricky thing to talk publicly about Trump, when you support so many things Trump is doing, but you detest the guy personally.

https://utahpolicy.com/index.php/features/today-at-utah-policy/16567-romney-praises-trump-s-first-year-in-office
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 03, 2019, 05:20:58 pm
Government shut down & limping along, employees working without knowing when they'll be paid, volunteers emptying trash & cleaning outhouses in national parks because Trump directed they be kept open so he avoids taking the fall for closing them.

Red Senate & Blue House probably at each other’s jugulars for the next 2 years. Pelosi & McConnell, lucky us.

Trump retreating from America’s historic role as a world leader, trashing forever allies while cozying with Putin, Kim, & MBS, losing or firing the brightest thinkers he once thought would be assets, making a show of slandering & demeaning them as viciously as he can, & feuding with everyone else.

The world increasingly looking elsewhere for leadership.

And don't even get me started on Mueller & what he might discover & reveal, or hush money, or taxes, who is in prison or is about to be.

https://m.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-opens-year-with-self-attery-and-13504634.php

https://m.sfgate.com/opinion/article/The-walls-around-Trump-are-crumbling-13503156.php

https://m.sfgate.com/opinion/article/After-two-years-Trump-is-more-ignorant-on-foreign-13505976.php
 
https://www.npr.org/2018/12/26/678348210/opinion-5-ways-the-u-s-retreated-from-the-world-stage-under-trump-this-year
 
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/20/world/middleeast/trump-saudi-khashoggi.html

https://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/ny-news-trump-putin-kim-jong-un-20181014-story.html

https://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-biggest-insults-world-leaders-2018-1273155

https://www.seattletimes.com/business/economy/as-america-retreats-china-moves-to-create-a-new-world-order/

Happy New Year, everybody! It'll be an interesting time. 
::)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on January 03, 2019, 08:32:28 pm
The GOP's amoral response to Romney:

Quote
Maybe Romney thinks the Democrats are also a big problem and that Trump’s policies are great, but that character is also important and should be addressed? Perhaps he recognizes that lots of Republicans praise Trump’s wins and attacks on Democrats, but believe there is a dearth of Republicans willing to raise this important issue?

Those very logical arguments aren’t countenanced by the most prominent defenses of Trump. Instead, leading voices in the GOP seem to be arguing that tribalism is the end goal — that the ends justify the means. The party of values and morality is increasingly arguing that such ideals are mere speed bumps on the way to conservative policy goals. And they’re saying it publicly.

What might be most notable, though, is what they’re not saying: that anything Romney wrote about Trump’s character is wrong.

Entire article here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/01/03/gops-extremely-telling-amoral-response-mitt-romneys-op-ed/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.72dca3c30aae (https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/01/03/gops-extremely-telling-amoral-response-mitt-romneys-op-ed/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.72dca3c30aae)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on January 03, 2019, 08:43:10 pm
The GOP never really embraced Mitt Romney. They were happy to tear him apart during his presidential run. Now that he is saying true things about President Trump, they are happy to circle the wagons around Trump and excoriate Romney once again. He recognized the danger in Russia long before the Democrats pivoted and became anti-Russia. Even if he is a big government Republican, can it get any bigger than it has become under President Trump? Record taxes are being brought in, but they are spending more than ever resulting in record deficits, meaning that nothing has been done for fiscal restraint.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on January 04, 2019, 10:08:32 am
Ya bunch of down-in-the-dumpers. 

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-world-is-getting-quietly-relentlessly-better-11546430400?fbclid=IwAR1N8strf_A4CTwXPqWN_HBmpOo49kLuleFy324-UBFYVO0fC3LW_c_8wC8

If you're not behind a paywall, this is a pretty cool article.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on January 04, 2019, 09:50:25 pm
Thanks, NT. That seems to be how things work, unfortunately.  Good things usually happen quietly and consistently, while bad things are filled with drama.  Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, btw.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on January 05, 2019, 07:23:39 pm
"The Real Roots of American Rage" https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/01/charles-duhigg-american-anger/576424/

I read this today and thought it might inform this thread.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on January 05, 2019, 08:17:31 pm
Thanks for the link to the article, PNR. A few thoughts:

Quote
Harvard Business School devoted a course to using anger in negotiations. “There were papers and studies explaining that the way to unite your company is by getting them angry at a common enemy,”

Militaries have been doing this for as long as...well...there have been militaries. Politicians do this as well as military commanders: Unite your base by identifying an enemy--a threat to security.

Quote
When we scrutinize the sources of our anger, we should see clearly that our rage is often being stoked not for our benefit but for someone else’s. If we can stop and see the anger merchants’ self-serving motives, we can perhaps start to loosen their grip on us.

Amen.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 07, 2019, 01:56:10 am
Quote
When we scrutinize the sources of our anger, we should see clearly that our rage is often being stoked not for our benefit but for someone else’s. If we can stop and see the anger merchants’ self-serving motives, we can perhaps start to loosen their grip on us.

Amen.
Double amen.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 18, 2019, 01:44:32 am
I see no one has posted on this thread for awhile. Are we just all totally, completely, terminally fatigued?  :(

I am friends with many federal employees, & at the moment I care more about them than about the babies in Congress & the White House. Political disagreements can be resolved by adults if they put resolving them ahead of any personal agendas or feuds. I am so fed up with Trump, Pelosi, McConnell, & the whole screaming bratty kindergarten full of them, their stubbornness & refusal to honor the promises they made both while campaigning & while raising their right hand to take their oath of office. AFAIAC, they all should be ashamed to hold any public office & consider themselves patriotic Americans. Better not say any more. ::)

** Goes off in a corner & picks up one of the cats. Dogs & cats are good for our mental health & help keep our blood pressure down.  8)  **
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on January 18, 2019, 01:17:39 pm
Dogs & cats are good for our mental health & help keep our blood pressure down.  8)
We raise turkeys, and I have a video somewhere with shennanigans.

Me: "Everybody say 'Make America Great Again!'"
Turkeys: [muted blerp blerp noises]

Me: "Everybody say 'Obamacare'!"
Turkeys: GOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLEGOBBLE!!!!!!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on January 18, 2019, 09:02:49 pm
the whole screaming bratty kindergarten full of them
At least, Kindergarten kids are done screaming and being bratty after a few minutes. Then they're friends again. They don't go around the school taking everybody else's lunchboxes.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 19, 2019, 02:15:02 am
At least, Kindergarten kids are done screaming and being bratty after a few minutes. Then they're friends again. They don't go around the school taking everybody else's lunchboxes.

Where is that ROFL graemlin that was so popular at Old Nauvoo?  :D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: nitasmile on January 19, 2019, 09:09:55 am
I agree Curelom, well said. We have quite a few families in our world that are impacted. It is so frustrating to me to see how this type of shutdown is being allowed. I do not understand what happened to the checks and balances system in this country. Are these judges who are allowing people to continue to work without being paid being bribed? I have to wonder. I do feel in the last few days I've seen more strongly worded articles that it needs to end and people standing up for some of the wrong doings. I do not understand why these air traffic controllers and other personnel are required to work without pay, seems completely illegal to me.
I I'm so tired of the lack of compassion and someone in comments that I see in other news pages that I follow. A lady of my neighborhood is actually starting a furlough
Food pantry for people in our neighborhood still have it impacted and my neighborhood is a super nice neighborhood! I'm curious to see what will happen in the speech today at 3 Eastern Time. Hope this resolves soon, but I do agree with you that they should be able to normal fashion.

Do we have any noodles that are not able to work due to the shutdown?[
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on January 19, 2019, 09:42:15 am
RayB from Old Nauvoo is a government contractor. He works with radar systems for the Air Force. In the past, he has been furloughed during government shut downs. I suspect that's the case now. I know he has kids at home.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: nitasmile on January 19, 2019, 10:51:47 am
Hope he and others are ok.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on January 19, 2019, 11:49:48 am
My Branch President is on furlough. BUT as he stated to all of us over the pulpit,
Quote
Sissy, our sons and I Thank our Heavenly Father for giving us through our prophets the revelation of Food Storage and Preparedness. We listened, counseled with our Bishop when we were first married oh so many years ago, and put away 20% of our gross income into Emergency Savings as well as paying not only our 10% tithing but also a *Generous* Fast Offering. During this time of *In The World* unrest, we will be more than fine. We figure we have enough cash reserves to pay utilities for approximately 2 years, our home is debt free, property taxes will be paid for those two years, we have food reserves to last us about 6 years, and as for fresh vegetables Sissy learned how and what to sprout year round here at an RS Evening meeting. We also have a *Petty Cash* reserve to pay for gas for the cars, personal incidentals for several years. Now, if there are any of our newly baptized members, new investigators here who need a helping hand ....


We were concerned about Hubby's Son as he is contracted to the US Gov. Hubby called him, asked, and was told that his company isn't compacted by this - the contract they have is solid and the money has already been paid. No one else in our family + extended family is affected.

Now, since I am widely known as stepping outside of the box and boldly speaking my mind I told husband well before our Branch President stood up and told the congregation they were okay. I said regarding him & family: ME: He was born in the covenant, as was his wife and their two teen children. Both have stressed their testimonies of Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness. IF they have been telling the truth - IF even 1/4th of the two double car garages is filled with food storage AND emergency preparedness, and if they have even utilized 1/16th of the acre they own as a vegetable garden, then they should be okay regarding food for the next several months if not years.

As for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, HAD they heeded the words of God's living prophets regarding Food Storage only, they should be okay for a minimum of 3 months, or 6 months or at the most 1 year. Isn't this one of the Calamities, reasons the prophets have warned us about as they have told us to prepare our food storage/emergency preparedness??? Not just to survive tsunamis, hurricanes, typhoons, floods, earthquakes, but for the (these are MY words) stupidness and follies of our individual government heads?

Personally, if our SS Checks are not held back, we will be able to pay bills. We have food storage that will feed us, and that we will thrive on for approximately 9 months. My mini vegetable garden kept getting invaded by the local feral cats, raccoons, and river rats. So I planted flowers and turned my efforts to sprouting instead. Discovered that Hubby absolutely loves sprouted radishes, carrots, alfalfa, broccoli, etc., etc. on sandwiches and as salads. Sprouted lentils, dry beans, mung beans made into soups using from the many, many cans of diced tomatoes in my food storage, and freeze-dried chicken made into a hearty soup.

For those who are impacted by this, who are not LDS, many banks are offering interest-free 90-day loans to help tide them over. Don't know if any food banks are gathering in more food to help them or not. Since I am not in the grocery business anymore, don't know what the store chains are now doing with their out-dated but still totally edible foods.


Edited just now because of spelling & grammar errors.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on January 19, 2019, 07:43:28 pm
I once did 6 months of unemployment.  The combination of the tech bubble and the telcom bubble bursting just did me in.  My wife was in the middle of a complicated and dangerous pregnancy at the time, seeing a specialist on top of her gyn/OB, and having weekly ultrasounds.   I took the first job I was offered (which is a condition of unemployment insurance), even though it offered no health insurance.  Man, those were the days!

We got by, largely because we had been following the church's counsel on provident living (a few years before the term was coined) for years, and had a reserve saved up, had always minimized debt, lived (mostly) within our means.  And also because of a generous Mom's group who volunteered 20+ different mommies to watch kid #1, so daddy could go to work and momma could stay on her bed rest to give protokid #2 the best chance to grow to term.  Also our Bishop just showed up unasked-for with a ton of Christmas and an envelope with some hundred dollar bills.

Yes indeed, it stinks to have your ability to make a living for your family kicked in the teeth by forces outside of your control.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 19, 2019, 08:30:50 pm
My Branch President is on furlough. BUT as he stated to all of us over the pulpit,
Quote
Sissy, our sons and I Thank our Heavenly Father for giving us through our prophets the revelation of Food Storage and Preparedness....  As for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, HAD they heeded the words of God's living prophets regarding Food Storage only, they should be okay for a minimum of 3 months, or 6 months or at the most 1 year....



It's all well & good if everyone can be prepared for a 3-month, 6-month, or longer siege. And those who can't - yeah, they aren't heeding the word of God & the prophet, yeah, they had years to get this done. But many people cannot achieve that level of preparedness for various reasons, & through no fault of their own have to stretch paychecks from one month to the next. And then, as N3uroTypical said, someone comes along & yanks the rug out from under them. This includes many federal employees, who are typically paid less than state or local employees for comparable work but still have to pay the rent in NYC, SF, or other expensive regions. Reality is a b**** :(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 25, 2019, 04:31:43 am
This is a disgrace.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/if-coast-guard-members-are-killed-during-shutdown-their-families-wont-get-benefits/ar-BBSHAjP?ocid=spartanntp

So is this.

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Lara-Trump-tells-federal-workers-their-missed-13555782.php

And this.

https://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/a-family-trip-to-national-parks-and-the-nightmare-of-the-shutdown/
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on January 25, 2019, 03:51:06 pm
Looks like the bell rang for round one, everyone to their corners for a breather.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47007081

Quote
Speaking on day 35 of the shutdown in the White House Rose Garden, Mr Trump said the agreement would fund the government until 15 February.

He said federal workers affected by the political imbroglio, whom he called "incredible patriots", would receive full back-pay.

Mr Trump also said he had decided at this time not to resort to "a very powerful alternative" - an apparent reference to declaring a national emergency.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 26, 2019, 08:03:16 pm
Goodie for them. We make fun of third world "s***hole countries" for having interim governments & being unable to manage the simplest of governmental functions.

We have an operating government for 3 weeks. How many Americans of average means could run their lives without knowing 3 weeks in advance how we would pay the rent or mortgage, make car or tuition payments, schedule medical or dental procedures, or just buy food? 

None of the politicians will budge. On Valentine's Day we will be back where we are today. The Democrats will agree to some border security enhancements but reject a wall, on principle. Trump insists on a wall or no budget, even though we've been told repeatedly that Mexico will hand over the money. We'll see a continued "who blinks first" contest, no action on the federal budget, then a constitutionally questionable declaration of national emergency, with a court challenge that will go for months. Maybe James Mattis, John Kelly, & a few other present or retired military leaders will organize a coup d'etat - which I am not convinced would be any worse than what we have now, as long as they were committed to restoring civilian government once we have elections & have some assurance of integrity in Congress & the White House.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on January 26, 2019, 08:04:08 pm
Well, well, well!!!!! :D

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-s-demand-for-a-border-wall-shut-down-the-13564266.php

ETA more.

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-once-advocated-a-huge-financial-penalty-13601840.php

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/From-Costa-Rica-to-New-Jersey-a-pipeline-of-13601269.php
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on February 01, 2019, 09:14:47 pm
I had to laugh when Pelosi got mad at Trump for finding legal loopholes to continue as much of government as he could, and insists he behaved badly.   If she's not willing to support one of the several bills withholding congressional salaries and requiring they remain in session during any shutdown, and if she continues objecting to what seems a huge amount to the rest of us but is a drop in the bucket in Washington terms to secure the border that Charles Schumer and a lot of her Democratic colleagues once supported, specially not giving it up for dreamers, just because it is Trump asking for it, then she's definitely part of the problem (as are those Democrats who really think that we are okay if we do not secure the border at all).

I'm not one who thinks that Trump can use the emergency executive power to build it, as I don't courts will construe the illegal immigration problem as the type of emergency Congress meant in granting it.   But it will be sheer partisan politics if Democrats don't give up substantial funds for dreamers.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 01, 2019, 09:38:29 pm
To be fair, democrats are on record of supporting everything that has been asked to secure the border, except for Trump's wall. It is misinformation from the White House that democrats are against border security. Democrats want border security--better communication and surveillance equipment, more personnel, better training, streamlined legal processes--everything Homeland Security and border states have identified as the most important considerations--they just don't want Trump's ineffective wall so he can fulfill a campaign promise.

Edit: By the way, Trump also said that he would get Mexico to pay for the wall. So...where's the money? I'm not inclined to foot the bill for that failure.

On a related note: Anyone been following the news of El Chapo's tunnels for bringing drugs across the border?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on February 02, 2019, 12:36:23 am
Quote
democrats are on record of supporting everything that has been asked to secure the border, except for Trump's wall.

Actually, virtually every major democratic leader in America is on record as supporting a wall. Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Diane Feinstein, Chuck Schumer, Barack Obama, to name just a few, all voted for a wall -- but then Trump became president. Polls show that democrats generally supported a wall until Trump announced his candidacy for president. Opposition to a wall now has nothing to do with it's efficacy, and everything to do with the fact that Trump is for it.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on February 02, 2019, 12:51:02 am
 Pretty good op-ed by Senator Rick Scott (https://www-washingtonpost-com.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/opinions/ive-been-a-senator-for-two-weeks-washington-is-worse-than-youve-heard/2019/02/01/2e5ebe66-2575-11e9-90cd-dedb0c92dc17_story.html?amp_js_v=a2&amp_gsa=1#referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com&amp_tf=From%20%251%24s&ampshare=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.washingtonpost.com%2Fopinions%2Five-been-a-senator-for-two-weeks-washington-is-worse-than-youve-heard%2F2019%2F02%2F01%2F2e5ebe66-2575-11e9-90cd-dedb0c92dc17_story.html)

His main point is that the vast majority of Americans want a secure border, including a physical barrier of some kind. The vast majority of Americans also want protections for Dreamers. It should be an easy deal to make. Except in Washington, where obliterating ones opponents is more important than doing the right thing, even when the right thing should be easy.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 02, 2019, 12:50:37 pm
Yep. I think most reasonable people could agree that if both sides gave a little to gain a lot, we could get there. However, both sides seem to have this mistaken idea that compromise means weakness. Couple that with "I get everything I want or people will suffer," and, "No you don't, and I'm going to teach you a lesson or people will suffer," and we end up with another shut down. Trump and Pelosi are egomaniacs. McConnel is sycophant. Thank goodness we still have decent senators and representatives in Congress:

Quote
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) on Tuesday introduced legislation to prevent future government shutdowns in the event of funding lapses. ... The Stop Stupidity (Shutdowns Transferring Unnecessary Pain and Inflicting Damage In The Coming Years) Act would automatically renew funding for all aspects of government, besides the legislative branch and president’s office, at the same level as the previous year. ... Warner said in the release that the Stop Stupidity Act would “protect federal government workers from being used as pawns in policy negotiations.” ... He added that the bill would force Congress and the president to “do the jobs they were elected to do” without “hurting the American public.” ... “It is disturbing that the daily lives of hundreds of thousands of workers are at the mercy of dysfunction in Washington,” Warner said. “Workers, business owners and tax payers are currently paying the price of D.C. gridlock and my legislation will put an end to that.”
 https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/426459-senate-dem-introduces-stop-stupidity-act-to-end-government-shutdowns (https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/426459-senate-dem-introduces-stop-stupidity-act-to-end-government-shutdowns)

Quote
Another proposal, from Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), would automatically fund the government at existing levels if lawmakers don’t reach an agreement on time. But funding would be reduced by 1 percent after 120 days and again every subsequent 90 days if lawmakers haven’t reached a deal. ... The push comes as the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said in a report Monday that the shutdown cost the U.S. economy an estimated $11 billion, with $3 billion expected to be permanently lost even after workers receive back pay and services return to normal.
https://thehill.com/homenews/house/427372-lawmakers-push-to-end-govt-shutdowns-for-good (https://thehill.com/homenews/house/427372-lawmakers-push-to-end-govt-shutdowns-for-good)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on February 02, 2019, 10:42:01 pm
Quote
To be fair, democrats are on record of supporting everything that has been asked to secure the border, except for Trump's wall. It is misinformation from the White House that democrats are against border security. Democrats want border security--better communication and surveillance equipment, more personnel, better training, streamlined legal processes--everything Homeland Security and border states have identified as the most important considerations--they just don't want Trump's ineffective wall so he can fulfill a campaign promise.

Edit: By the way, Trump also said that he would get Mexico to pay for the wall. So...where's the money? I'm not inclined to foot the bill for that failure.

On a related note: Anyone been following the news of El Chapo's tunnels for bringing drugs across the border?
Many leading Democrats are also on record for wanting to abolish ICE, comparing ICE to NAZIs, and having open borders and open immigration. There is a wide range of opinions among the Democrats regarding immigration.

If I were a Democrat that opposed Trump's issue (even if I previously was in favor of variations of his issue), I would pass a bill that would fully fund the Wall, however, the appropriations would be an invoice to Mexico. Promise made, promise kept.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on February 06, 2019, 02:31:22 am
….both sides seem to have this mistaken idea that compromise means weakness. Couple that with "I get everything I want or people will suffer," and, "No you don't, and I'm going to teach you a lesson or people will suffer," and we end up with another shut down. Trump and Pelosi are egomaniacs. McConnel is sycophant.

I can't stand any of them. Yes, God created them & they are His children, but I disown them as siblings! I wish we could treat them like defective merchandise & take them back for a refund. :D

Can we really legislate against stupidity? That would be great. We could totally outlaw it, not only at all levels of government, but in education, industry, health care, entertainment, & every other area of life. Being stupid once would be a misdemeanor, & repeated stupidity would result in "strikes" resulting in felony charges & prison time. Half of Congress would qualify today for a life sentence. ::)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on February 06, 2019, 01:41:27 pm
SOTU address:  CNN instant approval rating: 76%
favorite lines:
 
  "We must keep freedom alive in our souls."
  "We are born free and will stay free"
  "All children—born and unborn—are made in the holy image of God.”
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on February 06, 2019, 02:14:14 pm
I also liked "Great nations do not fight endless wars".
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 06, 2019, 11:46:40 pm
It's interesting that when Trump called for paid family leave, everyone cheered. When he called for an end to late term abortions, the representatives in white immediately became stoic.  I don't agree with Trump's demand for a wall. However, on the issues of family leave and abortion, he has my full and enthusiastic support.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 07, 2019, 08:31:53 am
It's interesting that even the Church is a little more understanding of the complicated and difficult nature and reasons the ability to legally have some abortions (even later ones) can be the difficult, but correct decision.

From lds.org (https://www.lds.org/topics/abortion?lang=eng)
Quote
Church leaders have said that some exceptional circumstances may justify an abortion, such as when pregnancy is the result of incest or rape, when the life or health of the mother is judged by competent medical authority to be in serious jeopardy, or when the fetus is known by competent medical authority to have severe defects that will not allow the baby to survive beyond birth. But even these circumstances do not automatically justify an abortion. Those who face such circumstances should consider abortion only after consulting with their local Church leaders and receiving a confirmation through earnest prayer.

I personally don't like the idea of abortion. At all. As someone who added to my family through adoption, I am grateful the child's birth mother made the heart-wrenching and physically draining decision to carry the child to term, even knowing she would then hand the child over to others to care for him.

But I HAVE been made aware of situations where married couples who WANTED the growing baby made that terrible choice because of rare but real circumstances involving both the knowledge of the outcome of the child's severe physical ailments mixed with severe life threatening complications of the mother's body. (Circumstances which the much-discussed New York Law was specifically worded and put in place to make allowances for)

It's an insanely complicated issue, and making those rare, difficult cases illegal across the board isn't the right answer. Listening to those who were placed in a situation to have to truly grasp with this (both LDS and not) has absolutely had an effect on my thoughts on this.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on February 07, 2019, 12:36:13 pm
It's interesting that even the Church is a little more understanding of the complicated and difficult nature and reasons the ability to legally have some abortions (even later ones) can be the difficult, but correct decision.
Indeed.  But IMO, folks have a responsibility to make this difficult but correct decision, before the child growing inside them begins reacting to sounds or pain or light, or has a chance of surviving outside the womb.  These things happen in the third trimester. 

Right?  I mean, this news story came about by a resurgence in the notion that abortion should be legal in the third trimester, and we have one guy making headlines for making the live/die decision after the actual birth.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 07, 2019, 01:12:31 pm
It's interesting that even the Church is a little more understanding of the complicated and difficult nature and reasons the ability to legally have some abortions (even later ones) can be the difficult, but correct decision.
Indeed.  But IMO, folks have a responsibility to make this difficult but correct decision, before the child growing inside them begins reacting to sounds or pain or light, or has a chance of surviving outside the womb.  These things happen in the third trimester. 

Disastrous situations don't always arise when we feel they should. Again - there are circumstances where it is clear a) the child will not survive outside the womb even at that state, and serious health issues would be exacerbated for the parent if the gestation continues.

I wish these circumstances didn't exist. It would be much more convenient to my worldview if it was that way.

But life can be incredibly messy, and while general principles are good, not allowing any nuance or allowance for the statistically rare, but actual lived experiences is not the right way to do it.

I find it helpful to realize that even the Church's official policy is not absolute on this, recognizing the difficulty.

People having to make a decision for third trimester generally aren't lazy or incompetent or selfish. They desperately wanted those children, and are devastated at having to choose between horrible options. Sometimes the generalities presented in these discussions dehumanize them.

It's possible to hate the idea of terminating a pregnancy while acknowledging the need for legal allowances.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on February 07, 2019, 01:48:14 pm
We might as well see exactly what we are talking about during the third-trimester abortions, also earlier. This former abortionist created films (animated) of what exactly happens during an abortion.
https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/he-performed-1200-abortions.-in-new-videos-he-wants-you-to-see-what-abortio (https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/he-performed-1200-abortions.-in-new-videos-he-wants-you-to-see-what-abortio)

It is also interesting to note that in western culture, the US stands alone in making abortion legal until the birth of the child. Governor Northam's description of what would happen if a woman wants an abortion after going into labor makes it clear that we really are talking about infanticide.
The articles I've read have all said that if Virginia's law concerning abortion had passed, it would have made the horrors Gosnell had done, legal.

"In 2015, the CDC reported that 1.3 percent of abortions were committed at 21 weeks’ gestation and later. While 1.3 percent sounds very small, this equates to nearly 8,300 preborn children killed late-term every single year."
https://www.liveaction.org/news/three-myths-third-trimester-abortions]In 2015, the CDC reported that 1.3 percent of abortions were committed at 21 weeks’ gestation and later. While 1.3 percent sounds very small, this equates to nearly 8,300 preborn children killed late-term every single year.[url]https://www.liveaction.org/news/three-myths-third-trimester-abortions (http://In 2015, the CDC reported that 1.3 percent of abortions were committed at 21 weeks’ gestation and later. While 1.3 percent sounds very small, this equates to nearly 8,300 preborn children killed late-term every single year.[url)

Guttmacher Institute  As of Feb 1, 2019 State Policies on Later Abortions https://www.guttmacher.org/state-policy/explore/state-policies-later-abortions (https://www.guttmacher.org/state-policy/explore/state-policies-later-abortions)
note - the chart did not include Alaska, which allows 3rd-trimester abortion
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 07, 2019, 02:08:24 pm
If it wasn't clear before, I am very much opposed to late-term abortion in general. (I'm no fan of it earlier than that either.)

While I understand the debate among the nebulous nature of early stages of gestation, I am truly horrified by the very few who might desire to seek one with no medical cause at that late point, and by those who find no problem in those who do so.

That is not my point. I am no advocate of unregulated free late-terms for everybody.

My point is across-the-board banning of the practice with zero allowances for exceptions is incredibly un-nuanced, and is NOT the solution, and dehumanizes both the infant and the woman, by making their unique circumstances irrelevant.

There are idiots and horrible evil people who are proponents of some aspects of late-term abortion.

That, in itself, is not a reason to unilaterally cut off sensitive and medically important options, as unpleasant and as rare as those may (and should) be.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on February 07, 2019, 03:40:49 pm
There are nuances in most decisions to have any medical procedure, including abortions at any stage of the fetus. I don’t think there is necessarily an intractable “black & white,” because of all the things that go into a mother, father, & perhaps family’s consideration, especially medical factors. At the moment, a couple of expectant moms I know are having serious health problems, & recently someone I know died of complications from pregnancy & birth (the child survived). I’ve never had kids, so I don’t have the perspective of either people who have hoped & wanted for years to be parents or those who have wished desperately for years that they weren’t.

I do wonder, though, if late-term abortion without extraordinary, extenuating medical reasons is ever legal (IOW "on demand"), why do prosecutors try to press criminal charges when a fetus is injured or killed? If a criminal act that harms an 8-mo fetus in the womb can be charged as a crime, why is killing the same fetus just because the egg and/or sperm donor want to be rid of the consequences of their actions just another medical treatment?  :-\ 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jana at Jade House on February 08, 2019, 03:35:17 am
It is hard for me to even read the differing views on this because of what I know, what I have experienced and the scars I have. 
Personally, I hope no one I care about ever has to be in the horrible position of termination decision. 

But when some folk are screaming infanticide, and some folk have no medical clue what they are talking about, and some folk have lovely children that are truly a miracle on feet, and others are indebted for life because their high need barely alive child clings to life, it is tough to separate out fact and sense.

Termination should never be for birth control, period.  But in very very narrowly defined circumstances after all other roads are considered, I am glad that termination is not criminalized.

but I still would not any one I cared about to make that decision.   
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 08, 2019, 08:56:09 pm
My point is across-the-board banning of the practice with zero allowances for exceptions is incredibly un-nuanced, and is NOT the solution, and dehumanizes both the infant and the woman, by making their unique circumstances irrelevant.

Who is advocating for that?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on February 13, 2019, 01:00:31 am
Many of the Catholic and Protestant pro-life groups are in support of 100% ban on all abortions. I have listened to some call in Christian radio shows as well as read some online advocacy groups and they are quite adamant that there can be no exceptions.

I think that helping people change their minds about abortion will be more effective in stemming the number of abortions than legislative acts will. Legislative bans have the undesired effect of forcing actions rather than allowing someone to exercise agency.

If we could convince people to voluntarily choose not to have elective abortions, then 95-98% of abortions would not occur.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on February 13, 2019, 08:10:08 pm
In the case of abortion, laws have been used to push opinion and acceptance.

Quote
Legislative bans have the undesired effect of forcing actions rather than allowing someone to exercise agency.
Some would argue that laws that protect abortion do more than just allowing agency, that instead they are cover for genocide. I suppose it all depends on how you view the life of the pre-born.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 13, 2019, 08:22:44 pm
Yeah, the "no exceptions" hard line doesn't help the cause. My question was in the context of Trump's State of the Union address.

As far as the law vs. agency debate:  The argument is much more nuanced than the two sides would have us pay attention to.

The federal government and several states have a fetal homicide law. If someone kills a pregnant woman, the perpetrator can also be charged with the killing of an unborn child. The law is very careful to exclude abortion. I find it ridiculous that the law acknowledges an unborn child as worthy of protection from anyone else killing her/him, except for the child's mother.

It's also interesting that the father does not get to choose. The mother can deprive the father of providing for the unborn child (by abortion) or force the father to provide for the unborn child by court order.

Ultimately, though, abortion is not a women's rights or a men's rights issue. It's a human rights issue. The unborn child has no means to advocate for his/her own rights, so the law must do it.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on February 14, 2019, 02:16:04 pm
While cultural and temporal context differs significantly from today, some of the old testament punishments included cutting off a person's lineage. They also included invading and killing all of a neighboring kingdom's males and children, then forcing the women to have children with the invaders, raping and leaving them, or forcing them to marry them (which would still be considered rape by today's standards), thus spreading their own genes.

This reminds me a little of a new lion taking over a pride and killing all of the male offspring from the old leader of the pride and then impregnating all of the lionesses with his own DNA.

To me, this provides some of the reasoning and context for allowing for abortion for rape victims. Why should a rapist be granted an "evolutionary win" where he can spread his genes. There should be no reward for rape.

When does life begin is the wrong question. I think there is no doubt that life never stopped. The egg and the sperm are both alive. They were never dead. They join together and continue living. A new mixture of DNA has occured, but biological life never stopped, so biological life never began.

The correct questions to ask are as follows. One is religious, when does a spirit enter a prepared body? The other is legal, when does the fetus obtain various rights?

I do not think we know the answer to the first question. I have serious doubts that it is at conception, as half of all conceptions are spontaneously aborted, most of that without the women ever knowing a conception had happened. No where in the scriptures or church teachings have I found a place that says that part of the plan of salvation is that half of all spirits would never experience having a body, but rather that part of the plan is to obtain a body with all of its experiences.

Does John "leaping" in Elizabeth's womb when Mary came and greeted Elizabeth mean that John was conscious of what was happening? Or did an excited first time mom read something into her baby kicking. On the other hand, does 3rd Nephi 1:13, wherein the voice of the Lord tells Nephi "on the morrow come I into the world" mean that the spirit does not enter the body until birth and the "breath of life". Or are these special cases and cannot be generalized for when the spirit enters the body.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 14, 2019, 02:58:19 pm
There's a lot of assumptions we make about the spirit/body connection, based on the shorthand symbolism generally used to describe it.

We really don't know much at all except for the general idea that there is a symbiotic relationship that forms and bonds at some point (physically? Remote link?) between these earthly animal bodies, and an eternal intelligence, and both together in a mutually beneficial covenant relationship of sorts, become more than the sum of their parts.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on February 15, 2019, 12:12:16 am
 Hmm..  Sounds very mither magey to me.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 15, 2019, 07:06:14 am
Ha! I never actually got around to reading those, and know nothing about their story, although I've heard positive things!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 15, 2019, 11:24:46 am
Many are aware of the language of the LDS Church Policy which includes allowances, but haven't encountered a story that fits or helps truly understand those circumstances. Here's an article (https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/late-term-abortion-rape_us_5c630b8de4b0a8731aeabbd6?ncid=engmodushpmg00000003&fbclid=IwAR1lxM3d1RKppEtCmaOHdU2uyZRJXa01Lbbe6tXABjNBghIQE2t2nW9pgVI) (with an understandably horrific and off-putting headline) that places real people with real stories that make it more clear why the Church has made allowances and exceptions rather than an across-the-board ban on the practice. It's messy and it's horrible. But, IMO, those involved in these discussions should be aware of such stories and circumstances.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on February 15, 2019, 03:34:02 pm
Scott Card loves to slip in variations of LDS thinking into his stories, especially with regards to the nature of intelligences and the physical body.  Gatefather really gets into it.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on February 15, 2019, 04:20:50 pm
Oh, I'm very much not surprised.

I remember a point after being Baptized, and thinking about Speaker for the Dead, and the three stages of piggie life, the out-of-sight Mothers, and was like WAIT A MINUTE. And then there were Aiuas.

I had also read Memory of Earth before reading the Book of Mormon, not knowing it's source. I hadn't realized how LDS-inspired some of Card's coolest concepts were until after they already had me ;)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on February 16, 2019, 01:08:13 am
I wonder what WALL-E thinks of Trump building a wall. If we had such a robot I bet we could just dump our trash along the border and the WALL-Es could create the wall pretty quickly. A big, beautiful wall...maybe not that beautiful. But big and a wall.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 16, 2019, 01:31:36 am
I think the LDS Church's policy on abortion makes the most sense. While I understand that some groups advocate for zero exceptions, I don't think anyone on this forum has done so.

Card's Alvin Maker series is clear full of LDS symbolism and parallels.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on February 17, 2019, 08:31:55 pm
"My government isn't doing what I want it to do!"

"Have you tried turning it off and on again?"
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on February 17, 2019, 10:19:45 pm
As well as the Homecoming series.  OSC has an interesting theory on why Alma the younger behaved the way he did.  There are gold plates in Enchantment, JSJ parallels in Alvin Maker series, a discourse on value of marriage in Magic Street, and so on.  A Mormon reads his books with a much different lense than non-mormons. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on February 18, 2019, 10:21:52 am
"My government isn't doing what I want it to do!"

"Have you tried turning it off and on again?"

I sometimes think about how cool it would be to just move the capitol building and white house to the middle of Nebraska or somesuch.  The massive disruption of lobbying networks and infrastructure and creature comforts and media frenzy and whatnot might just have our elected representatives focus on their jobs, so they can finish them and go home.  CSPAN can give us all the news we need. 

Folks got together and banged out a Constitution in the oppressive Philadelphia heat.  Maybe we need a little more of this.
https://constitutioncenter.org/blog/hot-hot-hot-the-summer-of-1787
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on February 18, 2019, 05:33:23 pm
"My government isn't doing what I want it to do!"

"Have you tried turning it off and on again?"

Or taking it to the toxic waste recycling center & getting a new or lightly used, functioning replacement.  :D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on March 08, 2019, 11:56:02 am
I am very, VERY uncomfortable in seeing the increasingly common practice of necessarily combining one's position on the State of Israel with one's view of the Jewish People.

One can be pro State of Israel while at the same time being in reality anti-Jewish/anti-Semitic. Likewise, one can be highly critical of the political State of Israel and be extremely respectful and reverential towards the Jewish people, beliefs and culture.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on March 08, 2019, 01:53:29 pm
I am very, VERY uncomfortable in seeing the increasingly common practice of necessarily combining one's position on the State of Israel with one's view of the Jewish People.

I think church members (and all Christians) should read Daniel Peterson's "Abraham Divided" https://www.amazon.com/Abraham-Divided-Daniel-C-Peterson/dp/1562362038  to distinguish support of Israel as discussed biblically, from support of Israel, the current nation state which doesn't always behave as though it is lead by people of God in various clearly mortal decisions it makes.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 08, 2019, 10:04:38 pm
I am very, VERY uncomfortable in seeing the increasingly common practice of necessarily combining one's position on the State of Israel with one's view of the Jewish People.
  Me too. We also do it with a lot of other things. If you criticize the violence and misogyny in Hip Hop, you're racist. If you criticize any aspect of feminism, you're misogynist. If you criticize any aspect of American corporate greed, you're a socialist. If you advocate for free speech in the ever expanding classification of "hate speech", you're homophobic, etc.  Groupthink and Balkanization are very much alive and thriving in American political society.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on March 09, 2019, 08:58:30 pm
I assume you're talking about Rep. Ilhan Omar and her "alleged" anti-Semitism. Although at first glance some of what she's said doesn't seem like such a big deal (certainly Israel isn't above criticism). But what she's done is to recycle a lot of the old tropes, stereotypes, and conspiracy theories about how the Jews use their financial prowess to secretly rule the world through the banking system. It sounds ridiculous but there really are people who believe that. In politi-speak what she's done is called a dog-whistle; a subtle, sometimes innocuous word or statement that may sound innocent enough on the surface, but is designed to appeal to, and get a rise out of, a specific group of people. What she's said is not substantively different, just more sophisticated, than when Donald Trump said that Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on March 09, 2019, 09:24:55 pm
That circumstance has brought out a lot people conflating the two, but this went on long before that. So many politicians, Trump included, when accused of making clearly anti-Semitic remarks, or endorsing someone else who has a strong history of blatant anti-Jewish rhetoric, almost always, as their first and main defense, goes, "That's impossible, I'm such a strong supporter of Israel!"

There's something very attractive for many anti-Semites of the idea of a single, isolated Jewish Nationalist state. Many White Nationalists are very pro State of Israel for such a reason. There are other Evangelical-led strongly pro-Israel positions that are also very, very rooted in essentially anti-Semitic doctrinal positions.

Look online and see how many comments you see combining one's attachment for Jewish Community and State if Israel. It's very uncomfortable, particularly in politics.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on March 09, 2019, 10:57:05 pm
What she's said is not substantively different, just more sophisticated, than when Donald Trump said that Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers.
I don't suppose you've got a source for the claim that Trump has said Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers, would you?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 09, 2019, 11:41:34 pm
"When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best...They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists." - Donald Trump June 16, 2015

You can read many of his tweets against Mexico here: http://time.com/4473972/donald-trump-mexico-meeting-insult/ (http://time.com/4473972/donald-trump-mexico-meeting-insult/)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on March 10, 2019, 10:43:03 am
Sorry, Roper, but Jacare's claim is "Donald Trump said that Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers."

Your Trump quote does not say "Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers".  Your Trump quote says "When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best...They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists."

One would think that anyone with a modicum of charity, willing to follow the 2nd great commandment, could quite easily see Trump wasn't talking about "Mexicans", he was talking about a tiny subset of humans that a country is willfully sending.  He's not talking about all Mexicans, he's not talking about people who cross legally, he's not talking about everyone who crosses illegally.  He's not even talking about Mexicans.  Surely the recent caravan news hasn't escaped our short term memories that quickly, has it?  How the waves start in other countries and pass through Mexico? 

So again I'll state my request: Hey Jacare, that's a pretty stiff accusation you're making against another human - care to cite your source? 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 10, 2019, 12:44:48 pm
Source stands. And here's why:

Donald Trump begins his statement by identifying one country: Mexico. Then he uses the possessive pronoun "its" to refer back to Mexico as a state. "Its people" can only mean citizens of Mexico. We wouldn't say, "America is sending its people to help rebuild Haiti" and mean that a small group of Canadians passing through America is going to Haiti. Trump meant Mexicans.

Trump then states, "They're sending." Again, the pronoun refers back to Mexico. Furthermore, "Sending" does not mean an unintended movement. "Sending" indicates a deliberate choice and action. Trump clearly implicated Mexico.

Trump states, "They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists." Again, the pronouns refer back to the only proper noun stated: Mexico. There is no reason to believe he suddenly switched to an ambiguous and unnamed origin for these people who are rapists and who bring crime and drugs. Trump meant to identify Mexicans.

Charity does not mean that I should take the actual words of a politician and wrest them to be politically palatable. Charity means I don't judge Trump's soul. That's what Jesus taught in the account of the woman brought before him. Maybe Trump doesn't really believe what he said. Maybe he was just saying it to create a common enemy which would unite his base. Maybe he has since changed his mind. I'm won't condemn him to Hell. Christ is the Judge. Not me. That said, charity does not require me or anyone to change a person's words into something they clearly did not say.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on March 11, 2019, 02:23:12 pm
"Charity does not mean that I should take the actual words of a politician and wrest them to be politically palatable."

By my reading, charity pretty much demands you refrain from taking the actual words of a politician and thinkething-evil about them.

Like how when Pres. Hinckley told Larry King and Mark Wallace the WoW meant no to caffeine, we all sort of knew what he was saying, and it's not "We don't drink caffeine".  Like that kind of charity, except offered to someone politically unpalatable.

Or maybe we should judge Hinckley's words in the same light.  So what do you think Roper, was our Prophet out of touch?  Outright lying?  Pushing up against dementia?  I mean, apply your skills at English the same way to those interviews.

Trump is politically unpalatable, whereas Hinckley is religiously palatable.  But God says charity should be offered to both.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on March 11, 2019, 03:09:33 pm
Trump is ethically, morally, logically and socially unpalatable.  He has said, done and promoted enough things contrary to the gospel of Christ, that his fruits speak for themselves.  Mormons who defend him are like the Nephites who supported the robbers in their midst.  No, Trump does not get a benefit of the doubt, as there is no doubt where his heart lies.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on March 11, 2019, 04:05:11 pm
Thank you, Roper.

When Trump finished his remarks about drugs and rapists, he followed up with something like, "and I'm sure some of them are nice people," clearly indicating that he felt they were the minority. Maybe I wasn't precise enough in my description of his remarks, since I didn't specify that he was talking about illegal immigrants from Mexico and not necessarily all Mexicans. Either way his statement was false and designed, it seems to me (don't want to be too absolutist in my interpretation of clearly communicated ideas) to stoke racial animosity in the group that he perceives to be his base.

Maybe I'm too sensitive on the subject. I spent the last 30 years of my working life living in a predominantly minority community and taught for 10 years in a high school that was around 80% Hispanic. Many of my students were Dreamers. One of my former Dreamers is now studying to be a Catholic priest. I had one student's mom who was a big supporter of our ROTC program, frequently helping out at activities and such. I had no idea she was here illegally. Her daughter has since graduated from college and works for the National Park Service. I love those kids and am proud of them. It was an honor to have them in my class.

Having said all that -- I support many of Trump's initiatives. I believe illegal immigration is a serious problem that calls for serious solutions. I believe a border barrier of some kind, whether it be a wall, a fence, or a Star Wars style force field should be one of those solutions; not for the entire 2,000 miles or whatever the length of the border, but strategically placed to augment and enhance whatever other processes are in place.

I believe sanctuary cities are a travesty. They endanger not only the lives of American citizens, but the lives of legitimate immigrants in minority communities, because that's where illegal immigrant criminals are most likely to hang out.

So there are things that Trump supports that I support. There are things that I don't. Either way, Trump debases both himself and his position when he resorts to demagoguery.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on March 12, 2019, 10:32:40 am
Trump is ethically, morally, logically and socially unpalatable.  He has said, done and promoted enough things contrary to the gospel of Christ, that his fruits speak for themselves.  Mormons who defend him are like the Nephites who supported the robbers in their midst.  No, Trump does not get a benefit of the doubt, as there is no doubt where his heart lies.

Quote
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on March 12, 2019, 11:02:23 am
N3uro, with all due respect, Jesus, and the prophets before him, called out corrupt politicians and religious leaders whose actions and hearts were causing emotional, physical, and spiritual suffering to their constituents. It is actually one of the hallmarks of historic Prophetic ministry. (Remember that time where Jesus wouldn't give Herod the benefit of hearing his voice, but still compared him derogatorily to a fox in front of others?)

It is done out of Charity for those for whom those powerful individuals are oppressing and harming.

There are times that people (including family members, politicians, and others in position of power and influence over others) have revealed themselves so clearly, to continue to support and give them the benefit of the doubt begins to be harmful not just to them, but to oneself and others as well who are within their influence.

Charity does not include supporting, excusing, or ignoring abuse. It can include hoping one will change, but it does not include trusting and supporting or facilitating the consistent behavior while they have not. Especially when one is in a position to continue to do harm to others.

When a bully says bullying things 20 times a day, it is not charitable to say one of those 20 things, consistent with other bullying language used on other contexts, might be interpreted to NOT be bullying. There are other words for what one is doing in that case, but, from my perspective,  'charitable' is not one of them.

I know many, many people who desperately wanted (and want!) to be able to support Policy Trump, and tried for a long time to put a spin on his rhetoric into something gracious, but have long given up on trying to allow themselves to give him the benefit of the doubt on, well, anything. Because it hurt their head and heart too much to do so. They tried the 'charity' path, but came to a point where they realized that what they had convinced themselves was 'charity' and 'hope' was in fact just a manifestation of 'political loyalty'.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on March 12, 2019, 01:20:46 pm
Quote
There are other words for what one is doing in that case, but, from my perspective,  'charitable' is not one of them. 

I think the polite term is "enabling."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 12, 2019, 07:46:55 pm
By my reading, charity pretty much demands you refrain from taking the actual words of a politician and thinkething-evil about them.
1: Are you sure you know what I'm thinking? 2: I'm not thinking evil. I'm doing a bit of rhetorical analysis.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on March 22, 2019, 02:37:30 am
Would you just look at this? A day after several days of additional trashing of an American hero who isn’t even alive to defend himself, along with trashing other American public figures plus the husband of one of his own last little handful of employees who will put up with his ****, look what he does.   >:(

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-congratulates-Putin-on-his-reelection-12767317.php

It’s trite to say it, but you Just. Can't. Make. This. Stuff. Up. :(
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on March 22, 2019, 09:29:00 am
Would you just look at this? A day after several days of additional trashing of an American hero who isn’t even alive to defend himself, along with trashing other American public figures plus the husband of one of his own last little handful of employees who will put up with his ****, look what he does.   >:(

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-congratulates-Putin-on-his-reelection-12767317.php

It’s trite to say it, but you Just. Can't. Make. This. Stuff. Up. :(
Listen, I can't stand the guy, but look at the date:  Tuesday, March 20, 2018

It was stupid and a problem then, but it's not in the context of the above stuff. He does enough new insane stuff. No need to make old insane and careless stuff new again.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on March 22, 2019, 12:45:16 pm
You're right, I got this from sfgate.com which often resurrects old stories that they think are interesting because they are related to current stuff. I should have read more carefully. Mea culpa! (something no one will ever hear DT say).

Not to worry. There will be lots more evidence to come that the 25th Amendment is necessary,  even if those who should impose it refuse to.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on March 23, 2019, 07:11:43 pm
Iowa wingnut racist sympathizer & neo-Nazi apologist congressman (whose own party took away his committee assignments as discipline for his race-baiting & other inflammatory sayings) disparages Katrina disaster aid recipients, & says Iowans take care of themselves.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/steve-king-belittles-katrina-flood-victims-in-new-orleans-compared-to-iowa/?ref=hvper.com

But do we hear him turning down FEMA money when it’s authorized?

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/trump-approves-iowa-disaster-declaration/ar-BBV94gf?ocid=spartanntp

He never said “no” to this big welfare check either, did he?

https://farm.ewg.org/region.php?fips=19000
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on March 25, 2019, 11:07:52 pm
I guess everyone is so exhausted by the discussions, debates, & arguments over what Mueller's report would or wouldn't reveal that no one is talking about it anymore.

So I guess I won't. We all deserve a rest, however short. I'm going up to the Cabin.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on March 28, 2019, 08:36:22 am
It was actually quite remarkable the lack of Russia stories on the air this week. Suddenly the only important topic is healthcare. Republicans were expecting a "pivot", but this was so dramatic and synchronized that I am surprised it is not a news story in and of itself. This pivot was asked for by Nancy Pelosi. I seriously wonder if the networks got the exact same talking points together to synchronize their pivot.

As someone who occasionally enjoys watching CNN and MSNBC, I am a little saddened by how little introspection and lack of public apology has occurred by the talking heads. When pressed, most of them doubled down and said that their own reporting and opinionating was fair, reasonable, and necessary. The near daily calls for impeachment, and flat out false and/or poor reporting should be cause for an apology. My trust in the intelligence and media communities were shaken with the horribly wrong reporting on weapons of mass destruction that led us to war in Iraq. I think the Russia collusion story is equally faith shaking. Why should I believe the narrative they are presenting on any other topics when they have time and time again shown they cannot be trusted. Even a simple, "we occasionally overreached, we recognize that and hope to do better in the future" would do wonders for my trust in them as institutions.

Back in 2012 the Democrats (starting with President Obama) were openly mocking Mitt Romney when he said that Russia was our top geopolitical threat. They did a sudden pivot when the narrative benefited them politically in 2016/17. Those were the first signs I saw that this was all politically motivated. If they cannot admit their shortcomings in the Russian collusion story, I will be a strong skeptic of anything they report that conveniently seems to fit the narrative that they want.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on March 28, 2019, 02:07:11 pm
No doubt there are talking-heads noticing this great pivot but they are probably on networks that no one watches because they are too conservative.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on March 28, 2019, 06:02:27 pm
Wait, what are you talking about?  The "pivot" you are talking about was done by Trumpkins himself.  The news is merely following the story.  Politically, it was probably the stupidest thing he could have done. 

All Muller found was that there was insufficient evidence to show a "meeting of the minds" in order to establish a conspiracy charge.  Nevertheless, Trumpy did benefit from Russian interference, and frankly welcomed it.  Obstruction of justice is still on the table though
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on March 28, 2019, 08:03:44 pm
DCS (Department of Child Services) took custody of child and siblings over a dispute with a doctor over care. The parents took the child to the doctor with 105 fever. He told them to go to the ER. They said they would but once they left the office, the child's fever broke and they saw no need.
https://www.foxnews.com/us/police-officers-with-guns-drawn-raid-arizona-home-for-boy-with-105-degree-fever-report-says (https://www.foxnews.com/us/police-officers-with-guns-drawn-raid-arizona-home-for-boy-with-105-degree-fever-report-says)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on March 28, 2019, 11:30:07 pm
Since the US legal system requires the prosecutor to have enough evidence to charge and convict someone, not charging Donald Trump with obstruction means that there was not enough evidence to charge and convict. That is a very strong vindication. It is very difficult to prove a negative, so not finding evidence to exonerate someone is hardly convincing of a crime.

President Trump wanted to talk about healthcare, too, but he is spending a tremendous amount of time on his victory laps. I have not seen evidence that he has pivoted very much.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 28, 2019, 11:33:13 pm
Here are the actual words of Attorney General Barr's summary.

Regarding Russia's IRA attempts to influence the election:

"...the Special Counsel did not find that any U.S. person or Trump campaign official or associate conspired or knowingly coordinated with the IRA in its efforts..."

Regarding Russia hacking into Clinton campaign computers:

"...the Special Counsel did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts..."

Regarding obstruction of justice:

"...the report sets out evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the Special Counsel views as “difficult issues” of law and fact concerning whether the President's actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction. The Special Counsel states that “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

I suppose we'll see if there is agreement with Barr's analysis once the full report has been released. If so, then I believe apologies from the press would be appropriate for all of the hype about collusion. I'm less inclined to expect apologies from elected representatives who were doing their jobs to ensure the executive branch of government is not abusing power.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on March 29, 2019, 12:03:01 am
There is a lot missing from this story. I think that would shed a lot of light on what happened. It was not as the headline makes it appear, that she simply went from the doctor's office visit to a SWAT team kicking in her door. There was a steady progression.

The doctor's working hypothesis was that this child might have bacterial meningitis, which can kill any healthy person within 24 hours. Bacterial meningitis is now very rare because of vaccinations. This child was unvaccinated. The child likely had other symptoms, such as stiff neck.  If so, then the working hypothesis was very valid.

Other stories said that when the mother did not show up to the emergency room as she had agreed, the doctor spoke with her on the phone. This is excellent follow-up from the physician. What she told the doctor must not have been reassuring enough that she again agreed to go to the ER. But like the first time, she did just the opposite. As she had agreed twice to go to the ER, she must have had some concerns, too. The explanation given for why she did not go to the ER was that she did not want to get in trouble for not having her children vaccinated (as even though she said her child was acting more normal, she was convinced enough in their phone conversation to agree to go to the ER). If hiding her legal liability was her main reasoning for not going to the ER, then she was potentially putting her child at risk of a quick death for a very poor reason, especially when she had been reassured that she would not get in trouble for that.

She had engaged the physician to care for her child. That comes with a huge amount of responsibility, including the responsibility to report any possibility of child abuse or endangerment. He tried multiple times. But he felt she could be putting her child at risk, so was legally required to report her to DCS. There is no wiggle room. These laws apply to ministers (though ministers would likely be observant of other signs than medical ones), so if any of you teach primary, please familiarize with your lawful duties in your state.

I cannot speak to the DCS and police responses. Kicking in the door was not the initial response. She refused to communicate with them. They even had her neighbor call her to try and get her to talk with them. I think cart blanche separation of families is generally a bad idea. But I do not know and cannot guess what went into that assessment.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on March 30, 2019, 12:41:11 am
Quote
But he felt she could be putting her child at risk, so was legally required to report her to DCS. There is no wiggle room. These laws apply to ministers (though ministers would likely be observant of other signs than medical ones), so if any of you teach primary, please familiarize with your lawful duties in your state.
Those laws also apply to teachers and counselors. I have had to file CPS reports based on children's behavior, even when I knew that parents would be negatively impacted by the resulting investigation. I dislike the whole process, but I dislike even more the situations which lead to the requirement to report.

On a related note, Pope Francis made it mandatory for church officials at the Vatican and its ambassadors to immediately report allegations of sexual abuse. In his edict, he announced, "The protection of minors and vulnerable persons is an integral part of the gospel message that the Church and all its members are called to spread throughout the world. We all have the duty to generously welcome minors and vulnerable people and to create a safe environment for them, taking their interests first."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on March 30, 2019, 01:02:10 pm
Jason and Roper, you no doubt are right but to many of us on the outside, it brings to mind the photo of Elian Gonzalez. Not a good visual.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elián_González (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elián_González)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on March 30, 2019, 03:44:09 pm
On a related note, Pope Francis made it mandatory for church officials at the Vatican and its ambassadors to immediately report allegations of sexual abuse.
I am glad that I've lived to see the Catholic church do such an extreme about face on the matter, and I will probably always be amazed at the zeal I've personally encountered in years past, when adherents to Catholicism defended their refusal to do so.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on March 30, 2019, 11:50:17 pm
Here is what is written about the child welfare check.
"Inside, they found that two additional children, ages 6 and 4. In their report, authorities wrote that the home was a mess, with piles of clothes scattered across the floor. In the parents' bedroom, police found a shotgun next to the bed. Bryce later told KPHO that the gun didn't work.

"We located the other two children in their bedroom which was covered in stains of unknown origin," one officer wrote. "The children advised us they had vomited several times in their beds and had stains around their mouths. One child told me that their 'stomach hurt.'" All three children were taken to the hospital, then placed in foster care. According to the Republic, the 2-year-old was ultimately diagnosed with a respiratory virus. The other children do not appear to have had any serious medical issues."

The condition they found the children as well as the firearm laying out are probably some of the reasons the children were placed in state custody.

I am also now reading that the doctor was a naturopathic doctor. I am glad he called and spoke with staff at 2 other hospitals for guidance, as it seems he felt this was out of his expertise. He sent them to a children's hospital, which is likely one of the hospitals he called for advice.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on April 01, 2019, 09:36:31 pm
Still thinking back to the days when I had to pass background checks, psych interviews, & polygraphs to get certain jobs that had no bearing on national security but did involve public trust. They looked at everything - finances, amount of debt you owed, where your monthly income went, whether you drank & how much. They visited or at least called not only your last few employers, but a few random neighbors (one of my neighbors reported later that they were asked if they'd ever seen me drunk), past schoolteachers, people you worked with in community or volunteer activities, & personal references.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/the-white-house-whistleblower-bombshell-and-what-it-could-mean/ar-BBVv3AH?ocid=spartanntp

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/White-House-whistleblower-says-25-security-13731876.php

Police & fire personnel, health professionals, teachers of juveniles, employees who work with a variety of valuable items or sensitive or hazardous processes, & myriads of other common working folks are required to pass some sort of screening to determine if they have a minimum level of honesty, mental stability, responsibility, & reliability. Apparently, however, not every individual with access to information that could make or break the well-being of our country. Not only that - once some of them have failed the screening, they can somehow get the results annulled.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on April 03, 2019, 09:09:35 pm
When I read this story I thought, if your boss or even the security office who vets you, already knows you have all these skeletons in your closet then how can they be a continuing security problem so as to prevent a security clearance?  You aren't likely to do things bad because of any blackmail attempt.    And there are people with criminal history that remake themselves into good citizens, who are better able to do their jobs because of what they learned as a criminal or in rehabilitating themselves.   Further, if a boss knows of some risks, they can set up various procedures to reduce that risk.

There was a time when no one who had ever smoked marijuana even once was able to get a job in law enforcement.   That isn't true any longer.   

I fully agree that there should be security vetting, and disclosure about the risks to boss in government, and maybe even public disclosure of the issues.   But I do not think it helps our country to categorically decide that some people's misdeeds forever bar them from all government service forever.   The president is the president.  He is legally able to give security clearances.   I think this whistleblower just thought people would cast stones at him for overruling her decisions.   And, of course, she was absolutely right because there are a lot of Americans who (mistakenly in my view) think that President Trump does not love his country and therefore does things to undermine it, or does stupid things that they think he shouldn't (as opposed to policy decisions that they wish he hadn't which is part of the regular rough and tumble of a democracy).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on April 03, 2019, 09:23:03 pm
If you have skeletons in your closet, and then have access to classified information, you are susceptible to coercion: "If you don't tell me ABC, then I will make public your XYZ actions." It's interesting to me that the persons in question wouldn't be given the clearance to perform maintenance on aircraft in the USAF, but they can work at the highest levels of government "because the President says so." Another example the executive branch's abuse of power, and another reason why it should be challenged by the other two branches.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on April 04, 2019, 02:40:45 am
Quote
Back in 1988, in Department of Navy v. Egan, the United States Supreme Court noted in its decision:

The President, after all, is the "Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States."  U.S. Const., Art. II, 2.  His authority to classify and control access to information bearing on national security and to determine whether an individual is sufficiently trustworthy to occupy a position in the Executive Branch that will give that person access to such information flows primarily from this constitutional investment of power in the President and exists quite apart from any explicit congressional grant.

https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2019/04/dems_wrong_on_white_house_security_clearances.html (https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2019/04/dems_wrong_on_white_house_security_clearances.html)

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on April 04, 2019, 11:16:43 am
Yep. Security is a function of the executive branch. The president has constitutional authority to issue security clearances as he sees fit. Congress has constitutional authority under Article 1 for oversight to prevent the executive branch's abuse of power. It is proper and necessary for congress to challenge the oval office. "Can" does not mean "should."

Edit: I guess if the House really wanted to, they could just stop funding any security clearance processing initiated by the White House. That would be petty, but no more so than Trump bypassing critical security procedures to give a job to his son-in-law.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on April 04, 2019, 05:05:49 pm
The president is the president.  He is legally able to give security clearances.

I'm curious to know if he ever passed a security clearance, & what level. If he doesn't have one, can he legally grant one? If he isn't Yankee White, can he authorize someone else to be? If I don't have the Melchizedek Priesthood, I can't ordain anyone else, not even as "only" a deacon.

It's interesting to me that the persons in question wouldn't be given the clearance to perform maintenance on aircraft in the USAF, but they can work at the highest levels of government "because the President says so." Another example the executive branch's abuse of power, and another reason why it should be challenged by the other two branches.

Where I live, & where I've worked in the past, a person wouldn't be hired to oversee county jail inmates, or staff a police or sheriff's records or dispatch center, without a strict security check. I'm sorry it's been so long since I was involved in those occupations. I knew people who couldn't pass, maybe because of long-old alcohol or drug abuse, misdemeanor arrests for shoplifting or joyriding, or financial problems (not dishonest, just dumb). Today, I'd tell them "Not to worry, I know where you can get hired & get to see our country's nuclear secrets, or know what our agents in Korea, Syria, or Cuba are finding out before it hits CNN, or even when The Boss is going to play golf next. Forget about any such dumb thing as a security check - just get to be good pals with The Boss."


Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on April 24, 2019, 10:28:07 am
I think many of us struggle & strain to relate to the ordeals that Christ endured throughout His life until the very last moment, but still cannot.

Here is someone who evidently doesn't.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/steve-king-says-he-can-relate-to-jesus-christs-suffering-after-backlash-over-white-supremacy-quote/ar-BBWf3Rn?ocid=spartandhp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 16, 2019, 11:48:55 pm
Details about what he wants The Wall to look like. Something to rank with the Great Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, the Circus Maximus, etc., as monuments built by ancient kings & emperors to themselves.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/trump-wants-his-border-barrier-to-be-painted-black-with-spikes-he-has-other-ideas-too/ar-AABsOLQ?ocid=spartandhp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 17, 2019, 10:52:12 am
I still prefer a rainbow inclusive eco love wall with solar panels and dirt on the top for organic gardening.  And a crisis hotline phone every twenty feet, in case someone needs counseling or services.  Better make it every ten feet.  I mean, we surely want to provide the criminals trying to enter our country illegally, with the best possible experience with our friendship wall, now don't we?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 18, 2019, 09:50:53 am
Or maybe we should follow the recommendations of the border state governors who actually deal with the challenges every day.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 18, 2019, 03:42:46 pm
I did something I don't usually do, and listened to a good 30 minutes of some Trump event.  The event was held on the border, and for a solid 45 minutes, we heard from person after person, DHS and ATF agents, US Border patrol, representatives from small towns.  They took 1-3 minutes each, there were like 20 of them.  Every one said basically the same thing - thank you for finally noticing us, and yes we need more wall and we need it now please.  Some of the stories they told were horrendous.

Some of the governors tell a different story do they?  Well, they have to think about re-election and representing their constituencies and stuff.  You should listen to them too I suppose.  But you sure shouldn't discount the impassioned pleas from the folks who deal with things year in and year out.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 18, 2019, 10:26:31 pm
Yep. And you'll hear stories from farmers and businesses along the border about how necessary a thriving immigrant population is. From POTUS to Pelosi, each politician will hand pick those stories which make their case seem the strongest. Each media outlet will broadcast those stories which best fit their own political persuasion.

My wife's folks live in Yuma (the lettuce capitol of America) six months out of the year. They are devout Trump supporters. And yet...every time Trump brags about shutting the border or deploying troops, they shake their heads. What Yuma needs is a faster and more efficient way to help immigrant families at the border. Their are so many families seeking asylum that the workers who cross on a daily basis to work in the lettuce industry are lining up at 3:00 a.m. to get across. It takes four hours each way. A wall will only make things worse for families seeking asylum, for workers who live in Mexico, and for the U.S. farmers.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 18, 2019, 10:37:52 pm
"What Yuma needs is a faster and more efficient way to help immigrant families at the border."

I think the entirety of both the exporting and importing countries need that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 19, 2019, 08:41:27 am
Quote
DHS and ATF agents, US Border patrol, representatives from small towns.

You could have just said "the deplorables."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 19, 2019, 07:23:42 pm
From POTUS to Pelosi, each politician will hand pick those stories which make their case seem the strongest. Each media outlet will broadcast those stories which best fit their own political persuasion.

Isn't it SAD & DEPLORABLE (I want to be fair & non-partisan in choosing my adjectives) that public opinion on any issue depends on whose lies & demagoguery sound more credible at any given moment?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 22, 2019, 11:44:44 pm
If your little kids get upset with their playmates, grab their soccer ball or My Little Pony & storm back home, it’s a great object lesson for Mamma & Daddy. What happens when (supposedly adult) politicians get into a snit & refuse to play any more?

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-blow-up-leaves-lawmakers-worried-about-disaster-aid-budget-talks/ar-AABL2fo?ocid=spartandhp

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/very-very-very-strange-how-nancy-pelosis-meeting-with-trump-went-down/ar-AABKLTE?ocid=spartandhp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 23, 2019, 02:04:55 pm
The counterpoint, of course, is that Dems and the media continue to scramble to find their next area of attack in the wake of their failure to have Russian collusion stick.  2+ years of effort, dead.  They'll find something new, but for now, all they can do is talk about coverups and obstructing justice without providing details, and getting personal with all the talk of Trump "roaring into the room", "getting upset", "blowing up", "getting into a snit", "refusing to play any more", "storming back home", "temper flaring up", etc.

So for folks who consume news mainly from places like msn.com, you end up with that picture in your head.

Here's a portion of his statements in the Rose garden after this melodramatic high-emotion scene.  He doesn't look very post snit/upset/roaring/storming/flaring to me.

https://www.facebook.com/WhiteHouse/videos/1159733690878947/?__xts__[0]=68.ARBwu20KnMXL1xDaPatIuWK03UURsypaCt6GP0YrhSP-jG8tnn6m0URfAOxX8LaR1wVImBtN3_5ZAU29Ae6D6KZEapcXaBzr9epSOl8eFu7lnaJ8qwXEkYWT1VIgV9LH4iL9k3V5XDWl5KiciIIRnzEmsYOjMcLDVl61vkflF2YvinI5MfJ8vhxxefYG8xI54WV03mVXQxLHAGkFKRRqIlJ8xAfmMGGJe8o0M9SZ7e1JfjPbM8g0inTrjsyPgJY53OVmb_YFmFlcYnpVDEb-aW4T9ZbY1M5ZDsCcHXD9QRYbCzxB9D2uY80ggvVf9gKHKRk6DyT-XocBtyiow6-p9ga6DCy1m3NA06lTphy2&__tn__=-R
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 23, 2019, 10:31:05 pm
He is a con artist.  He can usually put on the facade he needs to appease his sycophants.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Hobbes on May 23, 2019, 10:56:24 pm
The idea that the president of the United States can't agree to sign a bill addressing the dangerous condition of our infrastructure because the opposing party is being mean to him is... not great.

Signed: a bridge engineer
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 23, 2019, 11:09:39 pm
So for folks who consume news mainly from places like msn.com, you end up with that picture in your head.
I get my news from NPR and the BBC World Service. I read analysis from Sratfor and the CATO Institute. I stopped reading MSNBC and Fox News years ago. I still think Trump's behavior was/is boorish.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 24, 2019, 11:01:32 am
I've lost my free Stratfor stuff - was just thinking about getting back in the loop there.  Thanks for the timely reminder!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on May 25, 2019, 12:36:12 am
$2 Trillion wish list without NO effort to come up with a way to pay for it. I am glad that was quashed. Where did the deficit hawks go? I hate my posterity as much as the next American, but this is getting a little ridiculous.

If you want stuff, pay for it. Raise taxes on all individuals and all corporations, especially multinationals.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 25, 2019, 12:50:27 am
I like this guy.  I can definitely get behind his immigration policy.

https://www.npr.org/2019/05/24/726080593/juli-n-castro-wants-to-redefine-which-immigrants-have-merit (https://www.npr.org/2019/05/24/726080593/juli-n-castro-wants-to-redefine-which-immigrants-have-merit)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 25, 2019, 10:18:42 am
Where did the deficit hawks go? I hate my posterity as much as the next American, but this is getting a little ridiculous.
We're still right here, and we're closing our 2nd decade of not being given any valid presidential candidate for which to vote.  The last time I saw hope was in the campaign rhetoric of Bush I.  Then the twin towers happened, and pres Bush said "this is now the focus of my administration", and I haven't heard anything about sound spending besides empty platitudes ever since.  Seventeen years now?  Oy.

I'm guessing that folks intend to keep this deficit spending going forever with plans of controlled inflation.   The stuff we bought for millions in the '80's is now a drop in the bucket.  The stuff we bought for hundreds of millions in the '90's, well, we talk in billions now.   Todays tens and hundreds of billions will seem smaller once we talk in trillions in a decade or two.

I remember an argument my dad had with a neighbor back in the late '70's.  Neighbor was griping about inflation.  My dad, who was born during the great depression, said "When I was growing up, everything cost a nickel, but nobody had a nickel.  Today everything costs a dollar, and I've got the dollar."

I'm not arguing that everything's ok, not dismissing a single relevant point against deficit spending.  I'll vote for fiscal conservatism every time it's presented to me.  Just expressing a tiny twinge of hope that I might not actually be consigning my kids' children into slavery.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 25, 2019, 05:33:26 pm
For those who believe Trump is the greatest figure on Earth in the last two millennia, you have some support. Admirers of one or the other Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Reagan, the Bushes, Obama, or any other presidents can stop reading.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/movies/celebrity/jon-voight-argues-trump-is-greatest-president-since-abraham-lincoln-in-twitter-videos/ar-AABU7ke?ocid=spartandhp

Once he has actually won a war, saved America from fracturing into two (or more) separate countries - or merely expressed the hope that it won't, made the world safer for democracy, championed causes like the League of Nations or United Nations, WPA or CCC, GI Bill & its successors, Civil Rights Act, Voting Rights Act, Medicare, Peace Corps, or Thousand Points of Light, we can coronate him as the greatest figure ever to come to Earth, without exception. It won’t make Deity happy, but that shouldn’t bother those for whom Trump IS deity.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 25, 2019, 07:09:01 pm
...Admirers of ... Obama, ... can stop reading.

Once he has actually won a war, ...
Just so long as nobody is admiring Obama for ever winning a war.  Because that would be, like, about as laughable as Trump being the greatest president ever.  Perhaps even more so.

Seriously.   Obama was so good at perpetual never ending war, and getting people to accept and support (or at least ignore) it, that even folks on this board were complaining that Trump was trying to end one.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 26, 2019, 12:50:45 am
In hindsight, the Iraq war was unnecessary and unjust.  It distracted from Afghanistan and created much instability in the region.  Obama inherited the mess from Bush and managed as best he could, and was perhaps too war adverse.  He could have built a solid coalition to intervene in Syria, but chose not to.  Trump seems to be chomping at the bit to plunge us into a brutal war with Iran.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 26, 2019, 10:07:06 am
If you want stuff, pay for it. Raise taxes on all individuals and all corporations, especially multinationals.
+1
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on May 26, 2019, 11:21:01 am
The economy is roaring pretty well, so it is probably the only time that one could reasonably enter into a trade war to right some past trade wrongs. It would not be good to do this during a recession. China and other countries have more cracks in their economy than we do. If not now, then when could we negotiate from a position of strength?

One of the biggest decreases in purchasing power today compared to the 50s or 70s is that there is so much more advanced stuff to purchase today than back then. Today's monthly expenses have categories that were never dreamed of back then. Wireless phones, internet access, subscription services, smart devices, etc. Little expenses matter when it comes to wealth accumulation. But we also have companies like Vangard and free information like the Bogleheads, that make it relatively simple and inexpensive for the average person to invest and become richer.

President Trump will not stop being himself. But I think he has moderated a bit. Now the bigger story is not the shock that people have of him, but rather the opposition's opposition to him.I do not think this is all sincere, either. There was definitely financial benefit to many media corporations in their negative coverage of him.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 26, 2019, 10:45:30 pm
Quote
President Trump will not stop being himself

Which is precisely why he must be opposed in all that he does.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on May 27, 2019, 02:00:55 pm
Quote
President Trump will not stop being himself

Which is precisely why he must be opposed in all that he does.
Only the Sith deal in absolutes.

The type of absolutism wherein you oppose something simply because it aligns with your specific opposition party is one of the silliest things I have read for a while. I would be a little disheartened if you really opposed all of these things simply because they were accomplished with President Trump in office. Some are better than others. Some have compromise in order to pass. But most have something good in them.

Replace NAFTA?
Cut taxes? 
Nominate 2 constitutionalists to the supreme court?
Help for preventing Veteran Suicides?
Genocide prevention act?
Legal production of Hemp?
Airport space for breastfeeding mom's?
Expand Childhood Cancer Research?
Unemployment record lows?
2026 World Cup?
Border Patrol with fentanyl detection kits?
Russia Sanctions Bill?
US Embassy to Jerusalem?
Large pay raise for military?

Why not judge something based on its own merits, rather than if Obama or Trump did it.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 27, 2019, 03:14:10 pm
Replace NAFTA?
Unnecessary, and pooly negotiated.  We lost cred woth out neighbors.

Cut taxes? 
Makes the rich richer, harms the poor and needy while decreasing our economic strength.

Nominate 2 constitutionalists to the supreme court?
Sotomayor is my favorite SCOTUS judge.  Not a fan of Kavanaugh or Gorche.

Help for preventing Veteran Suicides?
By cutting mental health funding.  That makes a lot af sense.

Genocide prevention act?
Which he has no involvement.

Legal production of Hemp?
Kinda late to the party on this one.

Airport space for breastfeeding mom's?
Really?  You keep citing small regulatory changes he has little if any input to.

Expand Childhood Cancer Research?
Act of Congress.

Unemployment record lows?
Thanks to Obama's smart growth policies.  Employment is a lagging indicator.

2026 World Cup?
Who cares?

Border Patrol with fentanyl detection kits?
Yeah, let's presume everyone with brown skin 8s a drug dealer. 

Russia Sanctions Bill?
You're joking right?  The man is practically a Russian agent.  He signed that bill under political duress and hasn't bothered to enforce it properly.

US Embassy to Jerusalem?
Bad idea from the start. 

Large pay raise for military?
Again, you keep citing legislative acts he had nothing to do with except sighn his name as some sort of accomplishment.

The only place where Trump has done anything "good" is where he has shut up and let people much smarter, ethical and competent do their job.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 27, 2019, 05:12:33 pm
Lol people like this:
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on May 27, 2019, 08:34:49 pm
The type of absolutism wherein you oppose something simply because it aligns with your specific opposition party is one of the silliest things I have read for a while. I would be a little disheartened if you really opposed all of these things simply because they were accomplished with President Trump in office.

Why not judge something based on its own merits, rather than if Obama or Trump did it.

Isn't this exactly what both corrupt parties, & their corrupt office-holders in the White House & Congress, are doing? Trump is systematically dismantling what Obama did because it's stuff Obama did, while he & the crooked, self-serving Democrats & Republicans in the House & Senate refuse to work together to enact legislation that this country needs. Meanwhile, many Cabinet-level officials are interim or acting because no capable or sensible person will stay in this administration & Trump is avoiding the ordeal of proposing more of his unfit cronies & foot-kissers for Senate confirmation.

This is a big reason why I can't wait to see the collapse of both parties & the eventual rise of a functional multi-party system where coalition & compromise would take the place of this continual conflict & animosity. I am sick of the bums in Washington & their drama. They need to stop the lying, fighting, & remember their oath to the Constitution & the lovely words they so glibly threw out in their campaign promises.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on May 27, 2019, 10:58:52 pm
Unfortunately a multi party system is not feasible with the current constitutional framework.  Are you willing to risk the bill of rights for a rewrite?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 28, 2019, 12:49:16 am
Unfortunately a multi party system is not feasible with the current constitutional framework. 
Please explain. It wasn't always thus.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 28, 2019, 10:37:25 am
A buddy who lived in Israel a while told interesting tales.  He went over there with the opinion that our two party system was broken, and he was looking forward to seeing how multiparty systems like the Knesset.  He came back jumping off the plane and kissing the ground, grateful we have our flawed and broken two party system.   The way he told it, getting anything done in Israel required having to give several single-issue minority parties what they want, so they'll vote for your thing.  Wanna pass a spending bill?  Gotta include human rights for gay walruses.  Need this or that law?  The bonk-yourself-in-the-head party wants an official national holiday and the ultraconservative religious folks want to make it harder for women to have a drivers license. 

Not sure if something that would be a step up, or a step down if implemented here in the US. 

I think if we force ourselves to think about it long enough, most of us will realize that no matter what form of government we have, it'll only be as good/fair/smart/righteous as the goodness/fairness/smartness/righteousness of the populace it represents.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on May 29, 2019, 10:42:11 pm
And Israel fares so well in everything that it's the best model of the multiparty system to make the decision on?  :P ::)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on May 30, 2019, 12:34:45 pm
Well, when I'm off making decisions, I was able to move from "I don't know what this looks like", to "I have an example of what this looks like."   Gaining a data point may not show the line, but it's better than no data points at all, right?

I mean, here's a perfect time to say "oh, I lived in Waziristan for 5 years, and our multiparty system worked pretty well!".  Maybe it's just me, but I haven't heard anyone saying that. 

As we go about coming up with solutions to world problems, one would think that the absolute barest amount of homework we might be expected to do, before proposing this or that change, would be to become informed on the history of other folks trying it, and how well it worked for them.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on May 31, 2019, 01:24:29 am
There are a lot of other countries where people are happy with their form of government and think that the U.S. form causes a lot of unnecessary conflict. I think most people prefer what they are familiar with. That is not evidence of superiority of any one system. I've lived in Japan, Germany, and Oman. I wouldn't trade any of those governments for the U.S. government. However, there are some things they do better. The U.S. government is not better than everyone else's in every way. We can learn from the best practices of others and we can adapt. We have an amendment system which enables that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Scruffydog on June 03, 2019, 11:08:51 am
Personally, I think that all politics would be improved by making it at least punishable with a fine when politicians tell lies. I can put up with a government from a party I don't support so long as I don't feel that they are dishonest and working for one interest group only. I suspect that makes me rather naively optimistic to believe that we could ever have that
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 03, 2019, 08:29:53 pm
The first amendment protects political speech above all else.  What you propose would be heading down a very dangerous road. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 04, 2019, 09:55:23 am
Yep.  Have all the laws you want against libel, slander, fomenting rebellion, treason, inciting violence, and such.  But once folks try to criminalize stuff based on what a select group of people think truth is, well, consider me your arch nemesis.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 04, 2019, 10:27:18 am
The first amendment also protects pornography. Knowing just a little of pornography's intimate relationship with other crimes, specifically with sex trafficking, I'm not as absolute in my support of our current interpretation of the first amendment as I once was.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 04, 2019, 02:47:49 pm
Meanwhile, in London … 

https://www.sfgate.com/world/article/Trump-meets-queen-escalates-feud-with-London-13926674.php

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2019/06/04/trump-keeps-up-war-of-insults-with-mayor-of-london/23741736/

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/morning-briefing/trump-greets-queen-elizabeth-ii-insults-london-s-mayor-morning-n1013096
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 04, 2019, 03:27:30 pm
Content based free speech regulations must pass strict scrutiny, meaning that the government must show a compelling government interest and that the regulation is narrowly tailored and least restrictive to meet that interest.

Certain types of pornography have been found to meet that standard, such as child porn and crush films where the government has a compelling interest in stopping child exploitation and animal cruelty, the complete ban was found necessary to achieve those objectives.  With regular porn, much of it done by consentung adults, where sexual relations is protected on similar grounds that found race restrictions on marriage unconstitutional.  However, certain time, place and manner restrictions on distribution have been upheld.  There is also the issue of what is offensive pornography and what isn't.  These are some who would argue that Michelangelo's statue of David is offensive.  So the standard applied alliws courts to consider local norms and scientific, educational or artistic value. 

IMHO, we will have to allow the free expression of ideas, even if we don't like the specific content of  some others', to ensure the ability to express our own.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Scruffydog on June 04, 2019, 03:59:08 pm
Lie all you like when you are a private citizen, even if that is in public or on public fora. Lie as a politician to journalists and take the consequences when they call you out. Lie while campaigning in a deliberate attempt to get an advantage over your opponent, and I don't care what party you represent, you should be stopped from doing that. It is not an infringement of free speech; it is a protection of democracy. The Brexit crisis is largely caused by the fact that both sides were spraying around claims with no clear basis in fact, so no one knows what to believe, and everyone is making their own truth out of it. You can wave around freedom of speech all you like, but you just have to see what a catastrophe can be caused by politicians lying in a campaign by looking at Britain divided and confused and leaking money like a sieve. This isn't about opinions, it is about deliberately falsifying and making up facts
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 04, 2019, 07:03:25 pm
Ok, Scruffy.  Are you thinking civil litigation or criminal prosecution?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Scruffydog on June 06, 2019, 04:20:21 am
Whichever works, to be honest. The longer that lying and falsification are accepted as legitimate political tools, the more voters will lose faith in democracy and go looking for alternatives that seem to provide simple solutions. Last century, that led to fascism and communism.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 06, 2019, 04:44:28 pm
Whichever works, to be honest.

Well, Nancy P. said she'd like to see Donald "in prison." Wouldn't the two of them make great cellmates? In fact, give them a whole suite, so there will be space for a few other political figures whose names come to mind.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 06, 2019, 05:04:24 pm
There are a lot of things which are legal that are nonetheless immoral. I suppose that's the challenge: Teaching our children to understand the difference and help them learn to follow God's laws.

Politicians will continue to lie until the consequences outweigh the benefits. That's something the law will never address. So if we want truth, we have to insist on it ourselves. Most people won't. They're afraid of the consequences of speaking up. They might offend someone. This year, I've made one small step. Whenever anyone sends me something false via email or social media, I correct the lie and ask them not to forward it. I'm convinced far more lies are spread around by people using social media than by the politicians themselves. The latest one I received was about Trump sending airplanes from his own fleet to bring home soldiers who were delayed returning from Desert Storm. It never happened. And I said so. I served in Desert Storm, and lying about military members' service to score political points is wrong.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on June 08, 2019, 10:01:26 pm
"Lock her up" is a refrain heard often at Donald Trump political rallies, referring to possible criminal conduct by Hillary Clinton. It is very satisfying to feel that you will now have the power to impose your will on others, through threat of violence, with the ensuing humiliation that occurs. While satisfying to contemplate, putting Hillary on trial never had much chance of occurring. It was always a slogan, rather than an action plan.

Jailing political opponents is not something that I want to see occur, because there are so many laws that it is impossible to not commit felonies regularly. Think on the research that says every American commits about 3 felonies a day, and if the government takes a dislike to you, then they have to be totally incompetent to not find something they can jail you on.

Jailing for corruption, as occurs in Illinois, is something that should have a strong basis in impartial law, and not something forced through by partisans.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on June 22, 2019, 08:35:42 pm
I listened to Cory Booker and Joe Biden today.

Cory Booker's speech could be summed up as "America is horrible. 1/2 of the American population is horrible. If I am in charge we can squash all of that horribleness."

Joe Biden's speech could be summed up as, (in an Oprah Winfrey voice giving away stuff), "You get tax money! You get tax money! You get tax money! You get tax money! You ALL get tax money!"

On a good point, Trump did not retaliate with a military mission against Iran that would have killed 150 people. The given reason, that killing 150 people is not proportional to knocking out an unmanned aircraft is such a breath of fresh air. If Trump does nothing else besides staying out of another war, then he will be more successful than many past presidents. I am having trouble believing that Democrats are now Chicken hawks, chastising him for not launching a military attack. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 22, 2019, 11:05:41 pm
I am having trouble believing that Democrats are now Chicken hawks, chastising him for not launching a military attack.
I'm not.  Orange man bad, and must always be bad.  It's sort of disheartening how folks set aside what's important so they can oppose whoever they find objectionable on the other side of a political fence. 

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on June 22, 2019, 11:10:23 pm
 Are you talking about the strike that he reportedly ordered, and then claimed in a tweet he stopped 10 minutes before it going into effect because he just then thought to ask about the collateral damage?

The issue I've seen wasn't a complaint that he didn't strike. Far from it.  It's concern over the fact that he DID ORDER IT, along with the claim (reported by Trump himself) that the actual Intel either didn't come up (or wasn't grasped or understood or considered) until the operation was already sent out, and within minutes of it having been accomplished.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on June 23, 2019, 12:02:36 am
Meanwhile, on the other side of the country --

I can't help but believe the overall tone of public discussion (that should read "discussion") in this country contributes to this sort of incident. People no longer feel the need to carry on civilized discourse because, well, why should we when so few at the very highest levels of our government do? Trump, Pelosi, McConnell, McCarthy, & so many more are setting the most terrible example for the way people in a democracy should treat each other & each other's opinions. They are almost giving Americans permission to be intolerant & abusive.

https://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Militia-threat-shuts-down-Oregon-Statehouse-amid-14029845.php

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/oregon-statehouse-shut-down-after-lawmakers-team-up-with-right-wing-militias/ar-AADh0mB?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 23, 2019, 12:10:15 am
The given reason, that killing 150 people is not proportional to knocking out an unmanned aircraft is such a breath of fresh air.
Huh. That's odd. The brutal assassination of a Jahmal Khashoggi apparently is not proportional to jeopardizing millions of dollars in arms deals.  Money before morality has always been Trump's modus operandi.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on June 23, 2019, 02:36:03 am
The given reason, that killing 150 people is not proportional to knocking out an unmanned aircraft is such a breath of fresh air.
Huh. That's odd. The brutal assassination of a Jahmal Khashoggi apparently is not proportional to jeopardizing millions of dollars in arms deals.  Money before morality has always been Trump's modus operandi.
Khashoggi's murder is a complicated situation, as are most incidents in the middle east, as well as the rest of the world. There are no clean hands in the international stage. We cannot disengage ourselves from every country that commits immoral acts. The reports of what China is doing to the minority citizens is horrendous. We would need to disengage from Mexico, Brazil, Venezuela, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Egypt, Libya, Israel, Syria, Jordan, Vietnam, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, Oman, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qater, Bahrain, Kuwait, Turkey, Tunisa, Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, South Africa, the USA, and many more.

Why are movie production companies threatening to leave Georgia over abortion laws, but still do business in many worse countries? Should I call them hypocrites for their selective outrage? Or should I realize that being outraged over every immoral act waged by every country puts me in an impossible situation. There is only one who can properly judge all the actions taken by each nation, its leaders, collectively and individually. Until that day arrives, we have to pick and choose our battles, which often means compromises.

If it were me, I would look for any excuse to not be a weapons dealer.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 23, 2019, 04:52:04 pm
Not outraged. Not suggesting disengagement. I think there should be consequences severe enough to send the international message that we will not tolerate such behavior. Which is exactly what many of our elected representatives have advocated for.

Why are movie production companies threatening to leave Georgia over abortion laws, but still do business in many worse countries? Should I call them hypocrites for their selective outrage?
Yes. Because they are.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 23, 2019, 10:20:55 pm
I believe it is safe to say we are all hypocrites.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 23, 2019, 11:30:18 pm
I believe it is safe to say we are all hypocrites.

Is this an example of that "white liberal guilt" I keep hearing about from Rush Limbaugh? 

"the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one's own behavior does not conform; pretense"?  I do not believe it's safe to say we're all hypocrites.  My behavior conforms to my moral standards, or I have repenting to do.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on June 23, 2019, 11:49:30 pm
One thing that has frustrated me with politics is that politicians do not seem to understand nuance and alternative points of view. But I know politicians are generally well educated people with above average IQs. I have to believe they understand nuance and alternative points of view. It is just that in the field of politics, they must pick a position and stick with it 100%. They will build strawmen arguments, such as anti-abortion advocates are simply men who want to keep women down, instead of admitting that there are moral considerations about when individual life and rights actually begin.

The politician who simply acknowledges that he/she can see my point of view, but believes that the counter points weigh heavier, is one that would win my vote nearly every time. But that is also a politician who does not get elected in the primaries and general elections, and they will get called a flip flopper and a compromiser when they compromise on some items to get other items passed.

I feel that the all or nothing rhetoric that dominates our lives has spilled over into the media, which has found that all or nothing rhetoric drives their ratings and profits, which perpetuates this cycle.

Some movie companies have chosen to pick abortion and Georgia as their red line. What drives 50% of the country crazy is not that they picked this battle, but instead that they wear blinders to their own hypocrisy. If they even acknowledged that they cannot right all wrongs, but only have limited power, and have chosen to use the power that they have to fight for what they believe is right in this one location, then I would have much more respect for them. They would not be hypocritical, as they would have truthfully acknowledged that they can't change the entire world.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 24, 2019, 10:36:27 am
The politician who simply acknowledges that he/she can see my point of view, but believes that the counter points weigh heavier, is one that would win my vote nearly every time. But that is also a politician who does not get elected in the primaries and general elections, and they will get called a flip flopper and a compromiser when they compromise on some items to get other items passed.
Thank you, Jason. I feel the exact same way. "Electability" has become the defining criteria. Many candidates who would be excellent in public office get passed over for the one who can mobilize voters by creating an enemy. Obama did it by demonizing the Bush administration and congress and convincing voters we needed "Change." Trump did it by demonizing immigrants and convincing voters we need to build a wall.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 24, 2019, 11:22:44 am
I do not believe there is a single person on this earth whose behavior fully conforms with their stated beliefs.  We all constantly sinning, often contrary to our own morals, usually without realizing it..  That is the whole point of king Benjamin's discourse (see that thread).  None of us are good, but we can always strive to be better.

As for "white liberal guilt"  (whatever that means), I suppose I'd rather have that than white Republican hubris.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 24, 2019, 12:13:54 pm
I do not believe there is a single person on this earth whose behavior fully conforms with their stated beliefs.  We all constantly sinning, often contrary to our own morals, usually without realizing it..  That is the whole point of king Benjamin's discourse (see that thread).  None of us are good, but we can always strive to be better.

Are you sure you wouldn't be happier in a midwestern Lutheran denomination full of German immigrants? 

I'm a son of God, inheritor of a divine birthright.  I'll never be perfect, far from it, but I am made good through applying the atonement of Christ.  I may be a fallen sinful agenda-prone and error-prone human, but I am not bad.  I may commit acts of hypocrisy at times, but I am not a hypocrite.  Call this hubris if you like.

(My post is only about 22% arguing for the sake of arguing.  I believe these are important distinctions.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 24, 2019, 01:53:38 pm
Funny you should say that.  My grandfather was a Lutheran pastor with the Missouri Synod.  He has appeared regularly in my dreams of late, ofter to offer correction.

I'm less concerned about your semantics argument than I am about your casual disinvitation to come to church.  Is it really part of your value system to try to exclude those that may express an opinion that you find uncomfortable?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on June 25, 2019, 10:33:15 am
I do not believe there is a single person on this earth whose behavior fully conforms with their stated beliefs.  We all constantly sinning, often contrary to our own morals, usually without realizing it..  That is the whole point of king Benjamin's discourse (see that thread).  None of us are good, but we can always strive to be better.
And that "not realizing it" is the distinction. That's not hypocrisy. That's ignorance. Claiming to be a Christian and intentionally leading a life filled with misogyny and racism--that's hypocrisy.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on June 25, 2019, 03:43:46 pm
I can accept that there are shades of hypocrisy and I fully agree that the Trump administration is one of most hypocritical presidencies we have ever had.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 27, 2019, 04:22:04 pm
lol last night's Democratic candidate debate.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on June 27, 2019, 05:36:36 pm
What I like as we get more of these debates, is there becomes a requirement to speak less in general nice ideas, and get into the nitty gritty of how to actually implement those ideas, and acknowledge the problems (perceived or otherwise), and explain how they would address them.

I think we started seeing a little of that in some categories last night, but there was definitely was a lot of monologuing, non-answers, and grandstanding for applause lines. So, basically, your standard Presidential Debate.

Some candidates fared far worse than others. I think some weaknesses were definitely exposed, and look forward to seeing how the messages are refined going forward.

I look with interest to tonight's batch, to see what lessons may have been learned from seeing last night play out.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on June 28, 2019, 12:39:13 pm
I missed the 2nd debate. I heard Biden promised to insist that we get 250,000 charging stations for our electric cars. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on June 28, 2019, 01:05:10 pm
I haven't gotten to that point yet (doing a next day listen in chunks.)

... But wow, Biden definitely did not end up on top this time around!

From the parts I've listened to, I've heard a lot of worthwhile discussion about separating employment percentages from gainfully employed percentages, and the difference between having health insurance, and being able to afford/have access to health care.

A lot of focus is on raising basic standard of living so that energy,focus and cash from those individuals can be productively placed elsewhere. That actually seems to be a key uniting element. Lots of cross-discussion and disagreement over the specifics of what that looks like or means, and what is a reasonable approach.

There's affirmation that those proposing and advocating Medicare For All type initiatives do indeed have a responsibility to make clear how this would be paid for/accomplished.

Essentially, it's breaking down a lot of terms that are used as cannon-fodder for broad swipes, and breaking them down into personal an understandable issues.

I think it's beneficial to see this for someone who is 100% positive they would never vote for a democratic candidate to listen to the whys and motivations that are presented for concepts they've been told are blanket evil or stupid or wouldn't do anything to hear some good discussion over them that might help understand the other view a little better, even if they still ultimately disagree on the approach to the action taken.

Yeah, you're gonna hear downright stupid ideas, and cheap mean shots and some over generalization of YOUR positions as well. Sometime's that's good for me to hear, to stop and think, "Oh, is this how I sound? Do I maybe characterize or misunderstand their position?"

It's why I try to pay attention to the broad range of debates. It actually does help me out, and give me new things to think about. sometimes it reinforces what I already thought, and it sometimes changes my mind on things I was less informed about.

There's often a lot to mock, and there's often much to be legitimately frustrated about, but I believe these are important, and have their place, and the more who pay attention to them on more sides with a modicum of an open mind, the more informed the electorate will be, and the better America as a whole can be.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 03, 2019, 09:36:06 am
I may end up voting for Trump.

I despise the way Trump treats women and minorities. I think the the way he impulsively and haphazardly conducts the nation's business is counterproductive. Thank goodness there are some moderating forces still in place. I don't agree with him at all on immigration.

However...

I support several policies his administration has put into place so far.

Democrats. Ugh. They seem to be engaged in some sort of weird game of how far left they can push each other. Most of them advocate policies to make the U.S. look more like certain European countries. Some of those policies are worth considering. Almost universally, they want to pay for those policies by taxing the wealthy more heavily. That's just not going to work. European countries pay for their social programs through Value Added Tax. We are not going to support that. Nobody wants a European style VAT for the U.S. (well, some on the far left have suggested it in other terms.)

So...where does that leave the moderate voters, like me, who will decide the next election? Unless the democratic candidates move back toward the middle, Trump is going to win again. A democratic House of Representatives with a democrat in the oval office who wants to spend spend spend...no way.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 03, 2019, 11:29:05 am
I may end up voting for Trump too.  I didn't vote for him last time, I found someone on the left who despised Hilary as much as I despised Trump from the right, and we both agreed to vote for Gary Johnson in a way that wouldn't just give a vote to the other side.  It's a point of personal pride that I jumped ship based on his character, a few months before the "grab 'em" audio hit the news.  Makes me almost feel like a good disciple.

His personal life is full of stories almost as bad as Clinton's string of accusers and Oval office infidelity.  I am not happy with the standard kick-the-deficit-spending-down-the-road approach he and the last half-dozen presidents have had.

But I have to admit, I like just about everything else.  I like the refreshing multiyear break we've had from the word "lobbyist", because Trump doesn't need them.  I appreciate how he is not a politician, and his high staff turnover keeps it from being about personalities and entrenched bureaucracy.  He's a guy the board of directors brings in to give gastric bypasses to failing companies - exactly what the US needs.  It is so incredibly refreshing to have a filter-free, focus group-free, lobbyist-free bunch of rough tweets and news conferences.  So nice to have the leader of the free world dismiss CNN with a contemptuous wave of the hand and the insult "fake news" that it has so richly deserved for decades.  So nice to see the cooking channel doing better than CNN in some time slots now.   Busting up the status quo - best thing I've seen a president do in a long time.

I like his approach to geopolitics, and his willingness to make deals with traditional enemies.  I like that he is not a warmonger, and he seems to have learned the lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan that Obama never seemed to learn.  I like that, as China has always had North Korea on their side for a long time, Trump made a meaningful symbolic walk across the line without his Secret Service, in order to send a powerful message to NK that they belong to no one, and can work with the US. 

With the notable exception of the standard govt deficit spending, I really, really, really like his approach to the economy.  Me and my wife's retirement funds are 42% higher than on the day he took office.  Economic cycles surely helped with that, but nobody besides Trump was proposing the stuff Trump did. And few rational people would claim that we'd have the boom we're having if Hilary had won.

I like how he can just stand there with a dumb look on his face, and people will claw through their own grandmothers to spit venom at him.  No other president has helped America see what's wrong with so much of our country and government and leaders.  I believe as more and more people get offended by the blind hate, they'll choose less hate.  Light of Christ, and all that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 03, 2019, 02:55:28 pm
Putting “America First.”

https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/01/politics/us-diplomacy-100-hours/index.html

Keeping it all in the family.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/01/politics/ivanka-trump-donald-trump-jr/index.html

It’s America’s birthday. It’s all about America, right? A non-political feel-good day to celebrate what we have in this country, be grateful for the founders who left us so much, & enjoy family & friends. Right?

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-takes-over-fourth-of-july-celebration-changing-its-location-and-inserting-himself-into-the-program/2019/05/10/40f428c0-733d-11e9-9eb4-0828f5389013_story.html

https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/02/politics/donald-trump-july-4/index.html

https://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local/Reagan-Flights-Suspended-for-July-4-Military-Flyovers-512126171.html

My tax dollars at work. At least I know that I pay MY taxes & have nothing underhanded or incriminating to hide, no questionable profiting off my role as an elected official, no money hidden in Saudi Arabia.

https://www.politicususa.com/2019/07/02/trump-is-taking-2-5-million-from-the-national-parks-to-fund-his-4th-of-july-campaign-rally.html

https://www.rollcall.com/news/democrat-wants-trump-pay-authoritarian-style-july-4-event-damages-infrastructure

Lots of tanks, flyovers, & other military hardware on display. We’ll be the envy of Stalin & Hitler. The biggest & the most – isn’t it fascinating how obsessed he is with the biggest & the most? I’m not a psychologist, so I can only surmise.

Just think, he could have gotten all this out of his system if he’d just done his two years like countless good Americans have done. Daddy’s money & a job in the family firm would still be waiting. I hope the guy who went to Vietnam in his place came back alive & has had even a tiny fraction of the opportunities Captain Bonespurs was able to have by staying home.

https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2019-07-02/trump-promises-tanks-biggest-ever-fireworks-on-july-4

Oh, by the way, character matters (sometimes).

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/the-cruelty-is-the-point/572104/

Mother Nature has the last word. If it rains & thunders like holy #3\\ - oh well.  ;D

https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/washington-dc/20006/daily-weather-forecast/327659?day=2
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 03, 2019, 03:24:05 pm
Quote
Most of them advocate policies to make the U.S. look more like certain European countries. 

Yes.  These same countries with better standard of living, more equitable weath distribution, longer life spans and overall greater happiness levels than the U.S.  Why would we ever want to be like them?

Quote
  Almost universally, they want to pay for those policies by taxing the wealthy more heavily.


I still fail to see why this is a problem.

Quote
  I like the refreshing multiyear break we've had from the word "lobbyist", because Trump doesn't need them 

Of couse he doesn't.  He already is a full time lobbyist for Trump enterprises.

Quote
   He's a guy the board of directors brings in to give gastric bypasses to failing companies - exactly what the US needs
Quote

There is a word for running a country like a business.  It's called fascism.

Quote
  It is so incredibly refreshing to have a filter-free, focus group-free, lobbyist-free bunch of rough tweets and news conferences   

In other words, you like that he is an uncouth, uneducated, uninformed and offensive.

Quote
    So nice to have the leader of the free world dismiss CNN with a contemptuous wave of the hand and the insult "fake news" that it has so richly deserved for decades 

Or on other words, you believe freedom of the press only applies to those with whom you agree with.

Quote
  I like his approach to geopolitics, and his willingness to make deals with traditional enemies. 

Yeah, let's hand a big knife to those who wish to stab us in the back.  Real smart.

Quote
Trump made a meaningful symbolic walk across the line without his Secret Service, in order to send a powerful message to NK that they belong to no one, and can work with the US.     

Yup, we symbolically told the world "we don't care about human right."

Quote
  Economic cycles surely helped with that, but nobody besides Trump was proposing the stuff Trump did.

And for good reason too.  Trump seems to want old chaotic boom and bust cycle of 19th century economics.  No rational person wants that.

Quote
  I like how he can just stand there with a dumb look on his face

There is a reason for that....

Quote
I believe as more and more people get offended by the blind hate, they'll choose less hate.  Light of Christ, and all that. 

Oh the irony.  Trump's entire platform is built on hate and cruelty.  Hate and cruelty toward desperate migrant families, hate and cruelty toward children, hate and cruelty toward the poor and meek, hate and cruelty toward free speech, hate and cruelty toward the rule of law, hate and cruelty toward religion, hate and cruelty toward women, and hate and cruelty toward the earth.  With Trump his fruits all point to hate and cruelty.  The only things he seems to love are money, himself and adoration.  By their fruits ye shall know them, and his fruits are rotten to the core. 






Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 03, 2019, 03:27:31 pm
Quote
So nice to have the leader of the free world dismiss CNN with a contemptuous wave of the hand and the insult "fake news" that it has so richly deserved for decades. 

You know as well as anybody that he demonstrably calls anything Fake News which is not flattering to him, even if it is 100% accurate, or reporting on something he himself literally tweeted out not 2 hours ago. That term, which originally became re-popularized in the aftermath of an article discussing literal Fake News Farms who manufactured and sold ads on Facebook for widely spread for-hire intentionally and explicitly false news stories about (surprise!) Hillary Clinton, has since been re-claimed by Trump, who then weaponized it to lose all legitimate meaning.

I have issues with a lot of your 'pros' mentioned. But this ... come on. I have an Uncle who is a videographer for BBC. He, and other journalists have been harassed, screamed at, threatened, and even assaulted by attendees at Trump Rallys. Ralleys where he prompts and encourages smears on the Media, that he lumps alltogether, while sometimes giving specific callouts.

People's lives have actually placed in danger for an applause line. And he loves it.

And this is only one of many, many places where Trump places his ego over lives and livelihoods of those who are annoying, or politically inconvenient to him.

It's constantly amazing to me (although by now it probably shouldn't be) what people are willing to let others go through and have done to them and find some way to justify it so that they can feel slightly more financially comfortable than they were before.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 03, 2019, 03:58:21 pm
So Curelom, JLM, Taalcon, I take it we won't be seeing any of you in your orange MAGA hats any time soon?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 03, 2019, 04:20:48 pm
Among many, many, many other things, I've just become really tired and depressed by the constant new relevance and un-ironic repetition (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bijsl9p55qo) of the sentiments of this 1941 cartoon by those who DO wear those Red Hats..
(https://www.snopes.com/tachyon/2015/11/dr-seuss-adolf-the-wolf.jpg?w=608)

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 03, 2019, 04:23:09 pm
So Curelom, JLM, Taalcon, I take it we won't be seeing any of you in your orange MAGA hats any time soon?

Not in your wildest dreams, or my worst nightmares! But not to worry, I won't be flying the orange diaper-clad blubber-butt baby blimp over my roof on the 4th. We have enough immature & childish behavior in public life as it is.  ::)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 03, 2019, 06:16:06 pm
Wait,  I thought those hats were bright Soviet red?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 03, 2019, 09:37:32 pm
Quote
Yes.  These same countries with better standard of living, more equitable weath distribution, longer life spans and overall greater happiness levels than the U.S.  Why would we ever want to be like them?
Umm...their "happiness" comes from a higher consumption of anti-depressants, and there's more suicide. Those are two reasons to not be like them. There are many others. If I wanted to get a government permit to invite my friends over for a barbecue, I'd move to Germany. If I wanted 70% of my income to go to taxes, I'd move to Scandinavia. I definitely don't want to be like them.

Quote
I still fail to see why this is a problem.
Because while the idea might sound attractive to pay for everything by taxing the rich, implementation is impossible without civil war. Like Europe, we would need a gradually increasing VAT until over half of our income is taken in taxes. Again, civil war is more likely.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on July 04, 2019, 12:03:32 am
And you can't keep taxing the rich forever. The cost of "free" stuff:  free college, free health care (including for illegal immigrants), government funded abortions, and so forth would be beyond astronomical. And these kind of programs NEVER get smaller. They ALWAYS get bigger. And more expensive. And more inefficient. Eventually even the rich run out of money. Then what?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 04, 2019, 12:34:23 am
The one thing I agree with is universal health care. I doubt it would be more expensive than the $740 a month I already pay for a family policy which has all kinds deductibles, limits, and exclusions. I have never ever in my life dealt with an insurance company who wanted to actually cover medical bills for my family. They always try to find ways to exclude some service or portion of the bill. They are the most immoral business I've ever had to deal with. Seriously...they're worse than the DMV.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 04, 2019, 01:28:41 am
Quote
  their "happiness" comes from a higher consumption of anti-depressants, and there's more suicide. 

Hmm. I'll look that up.  Nope.  According to the World Health Organization, only 7 European nations have higher suicide rates than the USA, Russia is the top and all the others are former Soviet satellite states.  So apparently being close to Russia is bad for mental health.  That explains alot.

Now checking antidepressant use.  Wrong again.  USA has the highest use of antidepressants in the world, more than double most European countries. 

Roper, me thinks you have picked up the bad Trumpian habit of making up facts that suit your agenda.  Time to give up on Fox "News" and start learning something for reals on CNN or NPR.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 04, 2019, 01:32:16 am
Oh, and the only reason we might go into civil was would because if the right wing, fascist, gun nuts thought it more important to slaughter innocents than to accept a valid democratically decided policy.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 04, 2019, 01:35:30 am
 Ok, that last comment was a bit trollish, but really?   Civil war over an adjustment in tax policy?  Really?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on July 04, 2019, 01:42:43 am
Separation of powers. Checks & balances. Donald, read the Constitution, Locke, & Montesquieu. All the world's wisdom isn't found in "The Art of the Deal."

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-appears-to-contradict-administration-on-14069986.php

What worries me most about Trump is his lack of respect & even understanding for the rule of law. Never having worked a day before 2017 in government, military, diplomatic, educational, philanthropic, or any other area where he had to recognize any authority but his own, he is used to having his fiats unquestionably obeyed. Well, the United States of America is not the Trump Organization. We have a constitution that limits any one branch or individual from having dictatorial power. Watching Trump, it's clear that our national founders had prophetic vision & wisdom. He is just what they were guarding against.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 04, 2019, 10:40:15 am
Quote
Roper, me thinks you have picked up the bad Trumpian habit of making up facts that suit your agenda.  Time to give up on Fox "News" and start learning something for reals on CNN or NPR.

Making up facts? Nope. I got mine from the World Health Organization. If you want to exclude half of Europe, then Finland is still higher than the U.S. Also, WHO doesn't include doctor-assisted suicide, so it's actually higher in western Europe. The OECD data I looked at showed western European countries leading the world in the consumption of antidepressants. Additionally, I haven't watched FOX news in 15 years. I also don't watch CNN, because it's as much a propaganda outlet for the left as FOX is for the right. I get my news from NPR, BBC World Service, and Stratfor. We may disagree, JLM, but please don't assume I'm a Trump supporter. I am demonstrably not.

As I have said, there are policies in Europe which are worth consideration. However, I reject the left's rose-colored idolization of western European socialism as much as I reject the right's MAGA chanting idolization of rapacious corporatism. Both sides seem to hate moderate voters because we won't join with them in their crusades for ideological purity.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 04, 2019, 11:00:54 am
I didn't vote for him last time, I found someone on the left who despised Hilary as much as I despised Trump from the right, and we both agreed to vote for Gary Johnson in a way that wouldn't just give a vote to the other side.
I did the same thing, NT. I don't know if that will be an option this time.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 04, 2019, 11:53:42 am
As much as I might disagree with some of their approaches, when I listen to (most) of the current D candidates right now, I actually believe they want a better life for Americans.

When I listen to Trump, I only believe he wants to be seen as The Best In The Ratings. Everything. EVERYTHING he makes about HIM. He can't compliment anyone or anything without taking credit for it in some way. I haven't seen a single shred of evidence that Trump has an empathetic bone in his body. He makes policy decisions based on what he believes will get the greatest applause at his Rallys. While it would be naive to think all politicians don't do this to a degree, he is incapable of acknowledge a misstep, or that he did something wrong (It's actually something I'm seeing more and more of in Biden (although of a much lesser degree than Trump), which is still one of many things which keeps me very disinterested in him).

There's a difference between a Politician who learns and grows and changes positions based on getting better information (and learning more about the will of the people, and how it effects them), and someone who changes position because they saw something else was suddenly getting louder applause without grasping or dealing with the situation.  I wouldn't call the former a flip-flopper, I would call that person someone able to be humble and acknowledge they still could learn and develop and evolve.

Trump changes positions, and then claims he was always FOR that position, and his opponents, who may have been consistently FOR that position, he now claims have always been THE chief opponents of it! (See: No Insurance exclusions for Pre-Existing Conditions)

Trump isn't about making America Great. It's about winning for 8 years. Once his term is up, everything that crashes down he will blame on his successors (just as everything good that happened within his term, even from policies he had nothing to do with, he took credit for).

Trump has never been able to explain or defend any policy with any degree of nuance that convinces he knows what he's talking about. It's a word salad of superlatives and adjectives that makes clear someone showed him a chart, and told him it would be awesome, and that those who opposed it are BAD, and that his fans would LOVE IT.

You can't engage with Trump. You can't get him to explain his underlying thoughts and positions and logic, and have him adjust them, because he does not have them thought out. I have not seen any ANY evidence. I still listen to most of his speeches. They always make me sick, but I listen, because I try to find some evidence there's more beneath the surface, and I keep coming away with the conclusion that there's less. I also listen to them, because I want to hear it from his mouth, instead of rely on what others have said that he says. And what he actually says is constantly troubling, offensive, ignorant, obtuse, inaccurate, contradictory, and often what I would consider downright evil.

I've listened to the current Democratic debates. I think most of those on the stage will listen, can be reasoned with, and have a genuine desire to help the most amount of people, and do not see a high degree of people living in abject poverty as an acceptable loss. This resonates with me. I want to hear solutions.

The Republican Party has stopped trying to advocate for any position that is not popular with Trump's base. It has ceased to be its own independent functioning party, whatever you might think the merits of its past may have been, and has become a Trump enabler to stay in power. They've made a deal with the devil, and they're hoping to wade it out and hope that it's worth it.

I don't claim loyalty to any party (Besides what you might think from my recent posts, I have still to this day never voted for a Democratic candidate for President), and this is a key reason why. Any party can quickly and easily become a cult of personality, and the Republican Party is currently one of a dangerous and disgusting one, the worst caricature of America's worst brought to life and presented as the ideal.

Right now, several of the candidates for the Democratic party have ideals and goals that actually do resonate with me. I see many of them willing to work to find a solution that WORKS, and an ability to compromise that Trump will never have. Even Obama has gone on record saying he messed up in some of his early cavalier approaches. A democratic candidate winning right now (especially with the Popular and Electoral votes) would be a strong public repudiation of the things that Trump has done. That should be a substantial check on that power, and one that would be STRONGLY refuted in the midterms if it was felt they took too much power (much as happened with Obama).

Halting the Trump momentum for a single term I don't think could possibly lead to the transformation of the US into some vision of the 20th Century Soviet Bloc that people are dreading would happen. But the VERY strong momentum of Trump's eroding the rule of law and normalizing xenophobia and authoritarianism absolutely would deepen and become more troubling for not only many, many, many of our citizens, but also with our standing and relationship to the rest of the world.

And it's not worth a potentially nice temporary uptick in my savings to endorse that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 04, 2019, 05:16:31 pm
Civil war over an adjustment in tax policy?  Really?

I know I'm not the only one who laughed out loud at this.  Someone else tell him - I can't bring myself to put it charitably.

The kicker is that he did it in the same post where he was admonishing Roper to watch more CNN.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on July 04, 2019, 05:48:39 pm
I just posted the following on Facebook:

I haven't bought a Nike product in years, long before I ever heard of Colin Kaepernick with his ego sized hairdo and mediocre passing skills. Nike is a horrible company. Many of their products are made in Asian sweatshops where workers are paid near slave wages in miserable conditions.

If Kaepernick really wants to make a difference, instead of moral posturing he should put his ego to work convincing Nike to open plants in places like Compton or Detroit, or maybe one of the Central American countries where people are risking their lives coming here for economic opportunities.

But don't hold your breath. Virtue signalling is easy. Making a meaningful difference means putting your money where your mouth is. It takes sacrifice and courage; something sorely lacking at Nike.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 04, 2019, 09:48:29 pm
Genuine question: What do you see as the difference between
Quote
moral posturing
Quote
Virtue signalling

And

Quote
I just posted the following on Facebook:
I haven't bought a Nike product in years
Quote
It takes sacrifice and courage; something sorely lacking at Nike.
?

I've seen so many non-Nike buyers get mad that Nike made a corporate choice to not put an old flag on a shoe that they, the angry ones, would never have even considered giving them money and buying to begin with. It genuinely seems most of the public-posting angry responses and claims of boycotting and throwing away already purchased material (???) by non-targeted consumers of the product in question are, by definition, "Moral Posturing" and "virtue signalling". Can you help me understand how you see this differently?

For the record, I couldn't care less about Nike product. And looking into this controversy actually did make me aware of something I didn't know - that there have been (and still are) prominent White Supremacist groups for decades that have used the 13-star flag as a symbol of pre-emancipation idealism.

I don't think that suddenly makes the flag itself evil or wrong, but it does help me see the perspective of African Americans who understand that to many of their ancestors, the 13-star flag explicitly did NOT signify freedom or independence for them. Just a new Empire and a new set of masters.

I'm grateful for that perspective, and can understand why a corporation might want to take that into consideration as well, and not want to make the appearance of making an unintended statement that would bolster a group that has been feeling pretty well bolstered already lately.

Frankly, I wouldn't have thought the decision either way was the 'right' or 'wrong' one, and doesn't show courage or weakness anyway. It's a corporate decision.

But I am appreciative of the new awareness and perspective looking into this has given me. So for me, the controversy has had value, even though I am not at all invested in the actual outcome of the availability or not of the object or product.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 05, 2019, 02:39:25 am
Civil war over an adjustment in tax policy?  Really?

I know I'm not the only one who laughed out loud at this.  Someone else tell him - I can't bring myself to put it charitably.

The kicker is that he did it in the same post where he was admonishing Roper to watch more CNN.
I would assume you are talking about the Revolutionary war against Great Britain. Of course taxes and tariffs that are viewed unfairly will lead to wars, civil or otherwise.

There is not enough money among the top 1% to pay for all the give a ways that are promised, let alone the current obligations. The wealth inequity is quite discouraging, especially the top 0.1%. But they are easy scapegoats. It would likewise be silly to say that the top 1% in the world should pay to raise the standard of living for the rest of the 99% of the world, because that top 1% are those that make around $52,000/year, varying a little depending on where I get the information from. Imagine wanting to impose even a 50% tax on those that make that amount each year to distribute to the rest of the world. Riots in the street.

As someone who is more inclined to be a deficit hawk, I think the only practical solution is to raise taxes on everyone. But, as I have said before, you do not get elected by raising taxes on everyone. The Democrats are offering giveaways. The Republicans, too, in a different manner. Power is all that really matters.

I am not foolish enough to dismiss violence on either side. The left has certainly demonstrated a recent coziness with and defense and encouragement of Antifa, which is a group that seeks to impose its will with fear and violence. Their demonization of anyone who doesn't agree with them adds fuel to the fire. A brutal murder count like with Pol Pot could easily happen with enough encouragement. I also do not like the left's complete 180 on free speech.

If Trump loses he will leave office. This is not the kind of country where the leaders curry favor with the military in order to stay in power. To say otherwise is just to get the blood boiling among activists. But there is a lot of trolling out there on both sides.

Trump trolls the left. The fall for it every time. He enjoys being the foil. It makes him the center of attention. I do not wish him to win re-election. However, many of the ideas that are coming from the current batch of Democratic candidates are horribly flawed. I can hope that like most politicians they will not actually enact what they are espousing and govern a little more from the middle. But, Obama never really came to the middle, and much of his speech was pretty inflammatory and divisive, just not bombastic.

I could get behind Elizabeth's Warren's anti-corruption credentials. I could get behind Joe Biden's attempts at nuanced views on delicate issues, like bussing, which do not lend themselves well to 30 second sound bites. I just have a difficult time getting behind most of the other stuff that comes out of their mouths. But this comes back to the point that politicians are forced to pick a side on an issue and must argue for it without acknowledging that an alternate point of view exists. So ultimately, I am going to look for a wise and honest person to vote for, even if I disagree with some of their politics. If I do not think there is an honest person, I might then look for a side that I feel is less dishonest. Right now it is difficult to determine.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on July 05, 2019, 03:31:11 am
I'm not aware of any difference between "moral posturing" and "virtue signalling." As far as I know, the terms are synonymous. I also tried to work in "performative wokeness," (I learned that from my hipster son who works in Hollywood) but it didn't seem to flow right.

I'm not trying to get anyone to boycott Nike. And I'm quite certain that I don't currently have any Nike gear to burn, throw away, or whatever. Yeah, that would be kind of pointless, since I would have already paid for it. But I made a personal decision at least 10, probably more years ago not to buy Nike products because of where and how their stuff is made.

My bigger point is that Nike tries very hard, for marketing purposes, to cultivate an image of being a socially conscious company, an image that is very much at odds with their actual business practices. If somebody cares (not everybody does, and that's OK) about the kind of company they spend their money on, and where that money goes, they might want to think twice about about spending it on a company that pays starvation level wages to impoverished workers in third world countries.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 05, 2019, 09:17:01 am
Quote
I'm not aware of any difference between "moral posturing" and "virtue signalling." As far as I know, the terms are synonymous. I also tried to work in "performative wokeness," (I learned that from my hipster son who works in Hollywood) but it didn't seem to flow right.

Formatting muddled my question, I should have seen that. That's my bad.

The question was intended to be what is the difference between what you labelled with those terms, and what you did in declaring that you made a public statement on Facebook about your own stance about your judgment of CK's ego, and Nike's morals.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on July 05, 2019, 10:01:42 am
Please help me out. I heard this on the news, and now read it here. What is "virtue signalling"?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 05, 2019, 10:23:10 am
Generally, in my experience, "virtue signalling' is understood to mean making a declaration of your position on a topic not as a part of a conversation, or inviting engagement, but to make clear to one's 'tribe' that you are part of their 'team' and opposed to their other team. It's seen as something being designed solely to score credibility within a community, often by disparaging something seen as valued on the 'other side'.

Sometimes, relatedly, as I have often seen it used, going out of one's way to declare something 'virtue signalling' can, in and of itself, be a form of said thing. It is a way of dismissing the argument and the issue, and declaring it an issue unworthy of thought or discussion. If you're on the same 'team' as the labeler, of course you'll disagree with the opposing 'team's argument.

IE, "No need to engage with this person, or give their argument any thought. They're just virtue signalling."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on July 05, 2019, 12:16:08 pm
I want to make a slight correction to what Jacare said

Quote
Many of their products are made in Asian sweatshops where workers are paid near slave wages in miserable conditions.

They do use slave labor. In China, political/religious prisoners are used to manufacture many of the low priced items we devour.

The US government has an app (Sweat and Toil) that you can use to see if what you are buying was a product of slave/forced labor, child labor or forced child labor.
https://www.dol.gov/general/apps/ilab (https://www.dol.gov/general/apps/ilab)

History is history.  I am more concerned with the slavery that is ongoing.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_in_the_21st_century (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavery_in_the_21st_century)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 05, 2019, 01:24:35 pm
Virtue is holding a noble quality that expresses itself no matter what comes.    Virtue signalling is the conspicuous expression of moral values.   The action or practice of publicly expressing opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one's good character or the moral correctness of one's position on a particular issue.

When I sit there on facebook and talk about how I have that virtue and another person doesn't, I'm not having virtue, I'm not advocating for a virtuous position.  I'm merely communicating that I have that virtue (and the other person doesn't).  In the study of social behavior, it's part of signaling theory.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 05, 2019, 04:28:22 pm
Thinking about the CNN/Fox news stuff said in this thread, undeniable urge to post this picture in this thread is undeniable. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 05, 2019, 09:15:03 pm
The action or practice of publicly expressing opinions or sentiments intended to demonstrate one's good character or the moral correctness of one's position on a particular issue.
Christ had this to say about such practices (Matthew 6):

1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. 2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

John the Baptist put it this way (Matthew 3):

7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jacaré on July 06, 2019, 01:26:47 pm
When I use the term "virtue signalling," I'm referring to empty gestures and platitudes that are designed to demonstrate the user's righteousness, but without actually doing anything. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, my politically liberal hipster son tells us the new term is "performative wokeness," suggesting that even on his side of the aisle there's some recognition that it's all about showing off.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 06, 2019, 03:07:35 pm
So two scenarios: 

1) Someone is in a position of influence, and they state their strongly held belief to encourage awareness and introspection, and to potentially cause a discussion on the subject designed to cause change.

2) Someone wishes they were in a position of influence in a community (or desires to remain to be seen as such), and they state an opinion that is already popular and has already been stated within their community to bolster their respect and influence among them.

I often see (on both sides of an aisle) that when someone does 1), and that expressed belief disagrees or is not popular with the person hearing the expression, that they are suddenly declared as doing 2), allowing it to be written off as hollow.

This is done in politics, but it is also done with issues that should NOT be tied to politics, but unfortunately, HAVE been. It's become popular (on both sides) to take a complex issue, and because a specific solution being championed by The Opposing Party is not acceptable for one reason or another, the next thing to do is to pretend that Complex Issue Doesn't Exist. Not to acknowledge "this is a complex issue with many potential ways of addressing it," but rather, "No, your solution is for a problem that doesn't exist." It turns Complex Issues that SHOULD NOT BE PARTISAN into partisan ones, because the specific approach to tackling it is not politically expedient for one reason or another. Rather than grapple with the complex issue, it's far easier to spread a smear campaign suggesting they're idiots for even suggesting a problem exists.

Disregarding and laughing at a whole idea is a lot simpler than working with the nuance of differing solutions. So the very existence of Real Problems that effect lives become Partisan to even acknowledge.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 06, 2019, 09:09:31 pm
Thanks, Taalcon.

It's also interesting that complex issues quickly devolve into, "The Constitution (or the Supreme Court) says I can do it so STFU."

Democrats do it with abortion.
Republicans do it with guns.

I wonder if we'll ever get to a place where reasonable people can work toward reasonable solutions without having to become a Crusader or a Victim.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 07, 2019, 01:19:30 am
 Le sigh.  The tax issue of 1770's was the lack of representation and perceived unfairness with respect to the tea and stamp tax to fund Briton's war against France.  But the Revolutionary War had other justifications too beyond taxes.

The killing of others because of a mere tax policy change by fairly and democratically elected representatives would be completely unjustified.  If such were to come to civil war, then our nation would deserve the destruction that would result.

As for the WHO statistics, you raise an interesting point in how to interpret data.  As a measure of general happiness and mental health, I would exclude doctor assisted suicide since those individuals almost all have a terminal illness and likely feel that they have already lived full lives.  Also, there are 51 European countries, so 7/51 is not half.

Europe isn't perfect, but much of the continent seems to have a better approach to a fair and just society than the USA
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 07, 2019, 01:54:32 am
The killing of others because of a mere tax policy change ... would be completely unjustified.
That's what Britian thought. It doesn't matter if it's justified or not. If the U.S. government raises taxes to over 50% to pay for social programs, there will be Ruby Ridge on a nationwide scale. And it won't be civilians firing the first shot. It will be government forces ordered by an increasingly authoritarian Commander in Chief to enforce the law.  But Democrats know it won't come to this. They know they can't pay for everything by raising taxes on the general populace, so they target the wealthy. That's not going to happen. Wealthy people stay wealthy because they have teams of lawyers who shelter their incomes from as much taxation as possible.

Here are the solutions:

1) Increase taxes across the board. Republicans won't allow that.
2) Cut spending across the board. Democrats won't allow that.
3) Increase deficit spending. Both parties seem just fine with that option.

I expect we'll go bankrupt before we go to war. Then we'll be in economic servitude to China rather than fighting a civil war. I'm not convinced that's a better option.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 07, 2019, 11:09:33 am
The killing of others because of a mere tax policy change by fairly and democratically elected representatives would be completely unjustified.  If such were to come to civil war, then our nation would deserve the destruction that would result.
Indeed.  You might want to spend some time thinking about the decline of the British Empire, and think about that decline in terms of what it "deserved".   It's a far better use of your time than watching CNN.

Fortunately, there are enough people around who understand why "tax the rich" isn't a solution, to keep those who don't understand from enacting destructive policies.  And thus, things won't come to civil war, because the presence of those smart people justify the nation's continued existence.  Although I fear Roper is being prophetic here, so we'll see what the future brings.

Yeah, let's all spend a little time thinking about the fall of the British empire, and the Roman empire, and all the other empires that fell (which is all of them).

Quote
But the Revolutionary War had other justifications too beyond taxes.
True.  Here's how Wiki puts it:  "The Boston Tea Party was a significant event in the growth of the American Revolution. Parliament responded in 1774 with the Intolerable Acts, or Coercive Acts, which, among other provisions, ended local self-government in Massachusetts and closed Boston's commerce. Colonists up and down the Thirteen Colonies in turn responded to the Intolerable Acts with additional acts of protest, and by convening the First Continental Congress, which petitioned the British monarch for repeal of the acts and coordinated colonial resistance to them. The crisis escalated, and the American Revolutionary War began near Boston in 1775."

JLM opening position: "Civil war over an adjustment in tax policy?  Really?"

JLM current position: "The killing of others because of a mere tax policy change by fairly and democratically elected representatives would be completely unjustified."

You can atone for your CNN apologia and rejoin the group of relevant opiners, once your position looks like "History is replete with examples of uprisings over taxes, including bloody and government-changing examples, and now I understand why "just tax the rich people" is not the fix-all I've spent so much time thinking it was."

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 07, 2019, 12:10:04 pm
I heard an interesting idea that may seem basic to others, but on which I have been thinking. The US government exists to secure our rights, not to grant us rights. The rights exist and the government is there as a tool to allow us to exercise them. The rights pre-date the government. Where do the rights come from? From God does not work for me, because Freedom of speech does not come from the Bible.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 07, 2019, 12:50:45 pm
The US government exists to secure our rights, not to grant us rights. The rights exist and the government is there as a tool to allow us to exercise them. The rights pre-date the government. Where do the rights come from? From God does not work for me, because Freedom of speech does not come from the Bible.


I believe you're absolutely right, Jason. I think the Declaration of Independence states it best:

Quote
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, 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.

Self-evident truths which existed before government:

- Equality
- Right to life
- Right to liberty
- Right to pursue happiness (the original proposition listed property instead)
- Consent to be governed (this is often replaced with admonitions to obediently submit. Consent is not submission.)
- Right to alter or abolish government if it becomes destructive of the previous rights
- Right to institute a new government to effect safety and happiness

I suppose one can believe such rights are an endowment from God or that they are a self-evident and unalienable birthright of every human on the planet. The application remains the same regardless of origin.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 07, 2019, 01:53:00 pm
I don't "watch" any news since most TV news is mostly opinion pieces at this point.  I read the news online, mostly CNN, NPR, Washington Post and New York Times, where the delineations between news and opinion are more clear.

You do make a good point about tax shelters.  The wealthy pay lower taxes than the middle class precisely because Congress makes take policy that allows it.  Often these tax exemptions are created to incentivize certain types of business investment.  Unfortunately, much of the current policy is decades behind the current economic and social needs.  This was made worse by the recent Republican tax changes, where many of the tax benefits that had been available to the lower and middle class were taken away and more were given to the already super wealthy.

I agree that just raising the base tax rate on the wealthy won't work without rooting out the unfair and unnecessary tax exemptions.  I'm actually in favor of a flat tax approach, that mostly does away with tax deductions, replacing them with limited tax credits.  For example, each minor child would allow a fixed $5000 tax credit, each dependent adult child would be $2,500, charitable donations could be credited at 50%, and mortgage interest would be a 10% credit up to some cap.

For example, let's assume a base tax rate of 30% with 4 different tax scenarios and the assumed credit schedule above.

1) Family with 3 kids, $50,000 income, donates $1000 each year to charity, rents. 
Base tax: $15,000
Credits: $15,500
Net tax: $500 back

2) Familiy w/5 kids, $150,000, LDS tithe payer, $10,000 in mortgage interest.
Base tax: $45,000
Credits: $33,500
Net tax: $11,500

3) Corporation, $ 10,000,000 profit, donated $500,000 to charity
Base: $3,000,000
Credits: $250,000
Net tax: $2,750,000

4) Single, no kids, $50,000 with 50% member stake in LLC with $200,000 in profits, $5000 on mortgage interest.
Base: $45,000
Credits: $500
Tax: $44,500

Other possible areas of tax credit could be student load payments, education payments, charitable service hours, loan forgiveness, and so on. 

I believe that this approach would be more fair than our current system.  A flat base rate treasts all income equally, while the tax credits are proportional to what the tax payer gives back to society. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 07, 2019, 02:53:31 pm
Yes, the Declaration of Independence was the foundation for the thought that the government procures our rights. I began thinking about this after listening to a podcast which outlined it. That this is in the Declaration of Independence means that these thoughts have been around for a long time.

The source of the rights matters because I would want atheists, agnostics, and those that believe in a hands off God to agree with this concept. We create the rights based off of our combined history and experience, as well as what values we hold dear. This also means that the rights can be added to, as time goes on. There are rights that are not specifically outlined in the founding documents (Declaration of Independence, Constitution) which are still rights nonetheless, or which will become rights, and it is worth utilizing the government to empower us to exercise those rights. Ending slavery was a strong use of the government to secure rights. But empowering our rights does not come easily, and is often worth fighting for, one way or another. Ending one battle does not mean the fight is over.

In the USA the state exists to serve the people (mostly). In other countries the people exist to serve the state, with the reason that a strong state means that the people are generally happy. In those countries, the concept of rights preceding the state may be very foreign. So far, the US model has been the most successful in history, allowing other countries the opportunity to try out their versions, as well.

---------------------------------------
In response to JLM. The term wealthy is very nebulous. I consider myself wealthy. I pay far, far more income taxes than the middle class and lower class households, both in percentage and absolute value. But I do not get the loopholes that most think the wealthy have. The only loopholes that I have are 401(k), HSA, charitable giving, capped mortgage interest, and capped property tax deductions. I am phased out of most all other deductions that the middle and lower class enjoy. The loopholes I do have come at a cost, as it is money that I cannot use for myself, except for retirement or healthcare. The middle and lower class get far more income tax loopholes than I do, many to the point of not paying any income taxes at all or receiving a net positive from the government.

I think what you might mean by super wealthy (which term is used later) would be those who live off of long term capital gains, which is still taxed at 22%, which is more than the middle and lower class pay. In order to live off of long term capital gains, one needs to have wealth (not income) in many millions of dollars, probably $10 Million, at least. This could be a high paying specialty doctor at the end of his career after living frugally, but most doctors are bad with money. There are relatively few people that are wealthy enough to live off of long term capital gains. Definitely not enough to fix the budget.

I would keep a progressive tax code. I would eliminate all deductions. I would engage in wealth redistribution mostly through benefits rather than tax rebates. I would prevent large generational wealth transfers (progressive estate taxes, very high rates at very high levels of wealth). I would make it harder for people to set up quasi-charitable trusts. I would especially change the tax laws to target multinational corporation tax shelters. To protect the environment I would likely set up a national value added tax, too, even if this is considered regressive.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 07, 2019, 09:33:19 pm
While I agree with tax reform, I think there should still be 100% deduction for charitable giving. Lose (or lessen) the deduction and you eliminate the incentive for many people.

I think we should get the government out funding public education. Let public education compete in the market. Fund it by making donations to education 100% deductible. If Lockheed wants a tax break, Lockheed can donate $150 million to fund a STEM school available to students at no cost. Lockheed wins by investing tax-free money to strengthen the pool of potential employees, schools win by having enough money to attract top teaching talent, parents win by having a choice in education and by relief from property tax to support education, and students win by having schools with enough resources.   
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 07, 2019, 09:39:14 pm
I don't think we can eliminate public schools, because there will always be rural and poor communities that can't be effectively served by private interests, but I do favor school choice, vouchers and tax deductions for private school tuition,  all of whild would make alternative school opportunities more available and affordable to many low and middle income families.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 07, 2019, 10:01:58 pm
So, Justin Amash.  While I'm not a huge fan of some of his more hyper-libertarian positions, I give huge credit for standing up for what he believes is right and for calling out both parties for putting party power over doing what is right for the wellness of our nation and and government.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 07, 2019, 10:24:28 pm
 :) I'm glad I'm not the only one who knows about Justin Amash. I think his more extreme positions will temper with time and experience.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 07, 2019, 10:54:16 pm
I think we should get the government out funding public education. Let public education compete in the market.

Colorado is a pretty favorable environment for school choice.  One school district about 20 miles away from us has been pretty aggressively advertising themselves outside of their own boundaries, and has been thriving as people "choice in" their kids from other school districts.  With the child's enrollment goes the per-child state funding.  Not pure competition, but better than nothing.
 
They offered better homeschooling outreach options than our school district, so my daughters have been choicing in to that district for a lot of years.  These days they're both in a hybrid online high school program, with a building and teachers/mentors/advisors that take 'em 4 days a week from 10-2. 

I sometimes wonder if my local school district is upset, or even notices.  But I'm doing what's right by my kids.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 08, 2019, 12:26:40 am
I work at a charter school in Utah. It's publicly funded based on enrollment. We are able to use a teaching philosophy/methodology different from traditional public schools, but we still have to meet accountability standards (state tests.) I like the choice it gives to families. I dislike the reality that the per-student funding we get is significantly less that what traditional schools get. That needs to be fixed.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 08, 2019, 04:51:41 pm
There are some things that I do not think pure competition works especially well for. Education is one of those things. The only way to really know how well your child will do in a specific school is to enroll them. Then competition would have you withdraw them and try out a different school. But after 2 years, your child's needs will be different, so all that information you learned from trying out the 2 different schools will no longer be valid.

I also believe that a lot can be done to game the system to get more money for not a lot of improvement in outcomes. Cherry picking students is one of those methods. That school gets better outcomes, but those outcomes are on students who would have done well no matter where they went, so the students that need more intensive teaching and money are going to be shortchanged.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 09, 2019, 01:44:39 am
Valid concerns, Jason. Those are logistics. Of course, schools would have to be regulated. Just like every market enterprise which serves the public. Competition improves the breed. Public education has proven now for 30 years that we are incapable of reaching our goals for children. Time to try a new model.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 12, 2019, 07:27:04 pm
NT:
With the notable exception of the standard govt deficit spending, I really, really, really like his approach to the economy.  Me and my wife's retirement funds are 42% higher than on the day he took office.

Taalcon:
It's constantly amazing to me (although by now it probably shouldn't be) what people are willing to let others go through and have done to them and find some way to justify it so that they can feel slightly more financially comfortable than they were before.


Had to chuckle, because a few nights ago, I actually had a dream about this part of the conversation.  Nauvoo was a fancy dinner party around a table where witty ripostes are hurled with startling precision in between the Dessert and Mignardise courses, with monacle firmly in place and pinkie upraised during a sip from the water glass.  There I was, new money - the son of a blue collar guy, who stood up so fast my belly bumped the table and all the water glasses sloshed around, and I yelled "you got something to say, come say it to my face!" 

The poor hostess fainted.  Someone assisted her to a couch.  At least one monacle dropped off one eye.  Lots of sculpted moustaches twitched and mouths sputtered.  My waking thought was "good way to not get invited back to this dump". 

By the time I was out of the shower, I had started giggling, and I giggled through half the day.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 12, 2019, 11:54:50 pm
For the record, I am unable to grow a mustache sufficiently thick to be sculpted.  (Can't speak for the others though.  Roper might sport quite the luxurious handlebar mustache.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 13, 2019, 05:19:19 pm
 ::) I think handlebar mustaches look ridiculously hipster. Nah...I'll just stay with the Chuck Norris look  8)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on July 13, 2019, 07:08:03 pm
::) I think handlebar mustaches look ridiculously hipster. Nah...I'll just stay with the Chuck Norris look  8)

In serious need of a shave???
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 13, 2019, 07:15:47 pm
It's comments like that which make me want to go for the Lorenzo Snow look  ;)

Out of all the prophets' beards, I think I like Heber J. Grant's best.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 15, 2019, 10:45:13 am
I stand by everything I've said about my thoughts and bewilderment about those who still feel justified in supporting Donald Trump. This is the one place I feel I don't have to put on a public generally neutral face to have influence in my own sphere. I haven't seen any arguments that make any moral sense whatsoever to me of someone still being willing to pledge support for him, and to vote for a continuing run of his administration today, in 2019.

My North Georgia ward is full of proud Trump Supporters. Not just reluctant, but PROUD. There have been literal Testimony Meetings where individuals bore testimony of him as a Great Example of a Father, and defender of Truth. His rhetoric of othering those who are different have made their way into Elders Quorum lessons, and ward member comments in classes, generally met by approving laughter and nods of approval.

And most of these comments have nothing to do with so-called Economic Anxiety.

For context, my ward is also full of those who proudly wear Confederate Flags on their vehicles, homes, and clothing. This includes my Bishop's family.

I serve with them, I love them, but I just absolutely cannot understand or smile at the disconnect. I am regularly EXTREMELY uncomfortable.

And feel very lonely. And it feels that in the Church of Christ, on THESE subject? I shouldn't be. I just SHOULDN'T BE. And that makes it worse.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 15, 2019, 12:16:00 pm
There have been literal Testimony Meetings where individuals bore testimony of him as a Great Example of a Father, and defender of Truth.
...
For context, my ward is also full of those who proudly wear Confederate Flags on their vehicles, homes, and clothing. This includes my Bishop's family.
Yeesh.  And all we have in my ward, is a lady who occasionally bears her testimony about how we all need to put the hymn books away right, or we're disrespecting scripture. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Iggy on July 15, 2019, 04:57:24 pm
Taalcon, I can feel just a wee bit of your anguish. I don't converse with many in my Branch - so I don't know what any of the members political leanings are, except for one man and I have detested him from the moment I shook his hand in church when I met him. MY discernment SCREAMED at me to avoid him at all costs.

My husband went from hating Trumps guts to now praising him. I hate Trump, he is the devil incarnate to me. I see him, hear his voice or even read something he says - my gut roils and I shake all over in fear.

Hear the devil often enough and one will believe all he says and does, and then one will follow him into hell.

I fear for my husband. I fear for my country. It isn't often that I am at peace and NOT feeling ill in my own home. I finally had to get knees to knees sitting in front of my husband and practically scream at him to keep Trumps rhetoric out of my hearing & seeing. I also was so extremely angry that I actually threatened him that if he had the sound up on his computer so that I heard that man, I would destroy his computer. I would take the 5 pound sledge hammer to it. Promise, PROMISE, not threat.

The volume has been off - only going through his head phones since then.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 15, 2019, 06:41:42 pm
Taalcon, I feel for you. I'm in a very conservative Utah ward. My brothers and sisters here are compassionate and valiant saints. But, we can't talk politics. It's probably a good thing I serve in Primary.  I hope you will always feel welcome and accepted here in Nauvoo, Taalcon.

Any inkling that I had about possibly voting for Trump has vanished. After his recent racist tweets about elected officials hating America, I can't support him. In any possible way.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 15, 2019, 11:46:50 pm
I'm super disappointed in Mitt Romney.  He had the opportunity to call a spade a spade and gave a political waffle instead. 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on July 16, 2019, 10:32:00 am
[quoteI hope you will always feel welcome and accepted here in Nauvoo, [/quote]

The question is will those that have opposing opinions be welcomed and respected?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 16, 2019, 11:03:17 am
I can absolutely welcome and show respect to individuals as a whole, but not claim respect to certain beliefs/opinions that are held.

I think the history of this forum shows the majority of members of this board engaging with different opinions that they clearly do not agree with or appreciate, but having a respectful conversation about it with those willing to engage. A big part of this forum is seeking to understand why people can feel a way very different from the way another understands things.

Some validly view support of Trump and his rhetoric and policies as a personal attack on them, their friends, their family, etc.

If you believed someone was bullying and abusing those you cared about, you would probably not respect the opinion of those who view the bully and abuser as a good person, and overall good for everybody. You might like the person, you might participate in many events or activities with them, but part of you would wonder why they approved of someone who, from your personal experience, was making life worse for you and so many others. And why they kept shrugging off your explanations and experiences as "fake news" and "just another opinion.", and "Well, I just don't see it."

I can respect people that acknowledge others' experiences, while still holding a different view, but I would, honestly, have a very hard respecting those who, in order to keep their view, must categorically refuse to acknowledge the others experiences exist.

Fortunately, I have had very, very, very, very few encounters with the latter on Nauvoo, and with those I did have, they generally didn't stay around long enough to matter.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 11:52:32 am
I can respect people that acknowledge others' experiences, while still holding a different view, but I would, honestly, have a very hard respecting those who, in order to keep their view, must categorically refuse to acknowledge the others experiences exist.
Now, see, in my funny dream, you were sitting there making these vague observations, and every single one of them was pointed directly at me.  Just done with words that wouldn't violate the social expectations of a fancy dinner party.  Me knocking over all the water glasses in order to call out dream-Taalcon violated it immediately, and earned me instant judgment as a low-class buffoon, as well as a permanent dis-invitation to the party.  I continue to giggle at the dream, now almost a week later.

Anyway, if you are thinking I might be one of these people, I'll share a story:

Election night November 2016 found me in a social media room for fans of Hamilton the Broadway play.  People there were panicking.  Some were openly sobbing.  Others were locking their doors and listening for sounds of boots belonging to swat teams going to grab them and make them disappear (half were afraid because they were GLBTQ, half because they were not white).  These people had received a serious shock, lost adrift on an unfriendly ocean in a sinking ship.  I did what I could.  I kept telling them that I was a conservative religious white guy, and they were all welcome to come hide at my house if they wanted.  The fact that I was probably 400+ miles away from all of 'em didn't really matter - several folks told me the offer helped, and they were able to calm down enough at least to drive home, or whatever. 

The event stuck with me.  Because of the lies they had been told and believed about Trump and his motives, those folks were genuinely afraid.  Not for their jobs, or their social acceptance, but for their very lives.  Literally hysterical.  I was worried some of them might start hurting themselves or others.  Online, I'm always the over-blunt no-punches-pulled insensitive arguer who is no respecter of persons, but I set it aside on that night to give genuine e-hugs to the panicky gays and latinos.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 01:15:59 pm
Dan Peterson's comments are worth reading.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeterson/2019/07/on-the-trump-tweet-1.html
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 16, 2019, 01:33:50 pm
Quote
   Not for their jobs, or their social acceptance, but for their very lives. 

Given the real and significant increase in hate crimes against  Latinos and LGBT since Trump's election, I think their fears have been fully substantiated.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 01:48:06 pm
Quote
   Not for their jobs, or their social acceptance, but for their very lives. 

Given the real and significant increase in hate crimes against  Latinos and LGBT since Trump's election, I think their fears have been fully substantiated.

Again, they weren't afraid about any "increase in hate crimes".  They were literally afraid of government troops breaking down their doors to kill them.

As for "real and significant", yeah, you may have caught some of the hysteria lie virus too.  Vandalism isn't being killed.  Stop it.

https://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2019/apr/03/hate-crimes-are-increasingly-reported-us/
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 16, 2019, 03:43:10 pm
I have always had a few children of undocumented parents in my classes. After Trump was elected, they stopped volunteering at school because one must complete a background check to volunteer, and they are afraid that a background check will be sent to ICE and they will be hunted and deported. With Trump's nationwide raids now in full swing, ICE is using every database it can to hunt down and arrest undocumented people. Maybe not all fear of Trump is justified (the "safe rooms" on college campuses for people to cry about the election were hilarious), but many fears about this administration are reality in people's every-day lives.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 16, 2019, 03:50:35 pm
The question is will those that have opposing opinions be welcomed and respected?
As long as they abide by the charter, I don't see why they wouldn't be.

Huh. I just went to re=read our charter, and there's nothing in the "Please Read" section.

#######################################################################################################

*** Forum admins, where is our charter? ***

#######################################################################################################
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 04:34:38 pm
Free for all!  It's like when the government shutdown had the TV censors not working!









(poopie) (snicker)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 16, 2019, 04:38:33 pm
My Uncle is a videographer for the BBC. He's been threatened, and attacked at Trump rallies that he was covering by mobs because, just by holding a camera, he's part of the "Fake News Media" and is an "Enemy Of The People". These are at the rallies where the President of the United State POINTED at the Media Pool, and called them the Enemy of the People, reveling in the boos and vitriol of his supporters.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on July 16, 2019, 05:41:56 pm
Quote
As long as they abide by the charter, I don't see why they wouldn't be.

Being welcomed and respected is a bit different from just being there.

Taalcon, I am sorry your relative was so badly treated. Are you suggesting that all supporters of Trump are equally guilty because some people that 'supposedly' agreed with them were violent? In that case, do all supporters of the left carry the sin of Antifa? I don't think they do.



Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 06:02:50 pm
Trump is a master showman.  His tweets and statements and whatnot paint him as an inflammatory divisive antagonistic jerk.   He's not a bridge builder, he's an old school power broker who uses his leverage (whenever he's got it) openly and unapologetically.

I wonder what it's like when the cameras are turned off. 

Its interesting to watch the public trashing he gives people, and all the visibility his firings and character comments get.  I would bet ten bucks though, there's an endless line of people waiting for presidential appointments, and getting a public trashing by POTUS is considered maybe not a badge of honor, but hardly a negative thing.  I wonder if a "former insider fired and bashed by Trump" person has additional opportunities, or increased leverage in various beltway circles, or similar advantages.  Wouldn't surprise me in the least.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on July 16, 2019, 06:57:45 pm
Showman.

When he causes a kerfuffle on one hand - watch the other one.

It's been said that because of his massive TV experience, he is a master of the story arc, using his tweets to stoke it.

What's the story with this one?  Will the outrage his tweets caused result in greater Left unity? Or bring to the forefront the Squad, giving them more power just when the Pelosi was trying to diminish it?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 16, 2019, 06:57:59 pm
Just a little FYI.  Every time you try to defend Trump, you lower his status even more in my view.  Moat of your arguments in favor of him are exactly the reason I oppose him.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 16, 2019, 07:09:51 pm
Quote
Are you suggesting that all supporters of Trump are equally guilty because some people that 'supposedly' agreed with them were violent? In that case, do all supporters of the left carry the sin of Antifa? I don't think they do.

Trump's platform and position is that the Media are the Enemy of the People. He knows attacks happen. He laughs about it, and keeps doing it. He's been on camera saying he'd pay the legal expenses of people who punched out protesters. The violence and the anger and the ugly parts aren't  a bug, it's a feature of his presidency and his platform.

I don't know any ANTIFA platform, or leaders. I don't know of any leaders I've supported or voted for who have encouraged and delighted in violent actions they've taken.

When Trump is called on to disavow followers who do horrible things, he softballs it, and then uses the opportunity to say how horrible the victim must have been, suggests they deserved what they got, and that they were the real bad guys. It sends the message to those who do those things that he's got their back.

I know many who want to vote for Trump, but actively avoid listening to his rallys, or avoid what he says on Twitter, or on his news conferences. And then when the Media picks up on it, they say, "Oh, they must be exaggerating or taking out of context."

I watch the rallys. I follow the tweets. I listen to the interviews. The ones who do the nastiest stuff with their red MAGA hats are taking Trump's rhetoric at full value, and going to the next logical step.

Your equivalence doesn't make any sense. (Especially since I've stated many times that I do not associate with any party - I've never voted Democrat in the Presidential election before) And there is no candidate I'm considering supporting in 2020 who would at all be considered a Figurehead of ANTIFA.

Quote
I wonder what it's like when the cameras are turned off. 
When he thinks everything off, he's bragging to others about how he can (and has) sexually assaulted women as soon as he meets one, married or not, because he's powerful. I'm sure you're quite familiar with the actual words he used, so I don't think a quote is necessary.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 16, 2019, 07:18:57 pm
Quote
What's the story with this one?  Will the outrage his tweets caused result in greater Left unity? Or bring to the forefront the Squad, giving them more power just when the Pelosi was trying to diminish it?

By the way, if anybody but the President used their position to say what Trump said, they could be in violation of the Law and be fired.

From the government's Equal Employment Opportunity Commission website (https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/publications/immigrants-facts.cfm):

Examples of potentially unlawful conduct include insults, taunting, or ethnic epithets, such as making fun of a person's foreign accent or comments like, "Go back to where you came from, " whether made by supervisors or by co-workers.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 16, 2019, 07:46:04 pm
NT and Palmon have it right. Trump's a showman. He keeps everyone's attention focused on drama instead of examining the evidence that he has failed in his two biggest promises to make America great again--the wall and trade deals.

Trump had two years when congress rubber stamped almost anything which came out of the Oval Office.

He failed to build a wall and have Mexico pay for it. (He now blames the Democrats in congress.)

He has failed to get significant trade deals. The "deal" with South Korea was just a minor reworking of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement. South Korea agreed not to sell pickups in the U.S. (they weren't, anyway) and U.S. pharma expanded their South Korea market by a bit. In the end, the result was trivial for trade. China: Nada. Even Trump says, "There's a long way to go." Meanwhile, economists outside of White House influence almost universally agree that the tariff war has had an overall negative effect on the U.S. economy. The U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement to replace NAFTA has some good news for U.S. workers in the automotive industry. It removes some of the incentives for outsourcing. However, it wasn't, as Trump put it, "The most important trade deal we've ever made by far." It was a modest gain. And the EU: Trump demands a market for U.S. agriculture. The EU vows to protect its own farmers. Zero real movement despite the almost daily tweets. Maybe Boris Johnson can get a deal with Trump after Great Britain leaves the EU. We'll see. The best trade deal for America would have been the Trans Pacific Partnership. Trump withdrew 3 days after he took office. The other countries went ahead. In April of this year, Trump ordered his trade team to seek to rejoin the TPP and re-negotiate the original deal. The 11 other countries are not willing at this point. So much for putting America first with all these trade deals.

American banks stopped loaning money to Trump years ago because his business ventures failed and went bankrupt. Now, Trump has turned America into another one of his failed business ventures on a global scale.  But instead of calling Trump out for his failed "deals", Democrats and the media have been watching his daily circus.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 16, 2019, 08:37:31 pm
Examples of potentially unlawful conduct include insults, taunting, or ethnic epithets, such as making fun of a person's foreign accent or comments like, "Go back to where you came from, " whether made by supervisors or by co-workers.
It's interesting how many laws don't apply to the President or how many laws the President can get around through executive order. I've watched Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump all do it to protect their personal interests and to circumvent the checks and balances of the other branches. It seems the executive branch has consistently become more powerful while the House and Senate have consistently become weaker. I wonder how to shift that back...
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 09:45:47 pm
By the way, if anybody but the President used their position to say what Trump said, they could be in violation of the Law and be fired.

From the government's Equal Employment Opportunity Commission website (https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/publications/immigrants-facts.cfm):

Examples of potentially unlawful conduct include insults, taunting, or ethnic epithets, such as making fun of a person's foreign accent or comments like, "Go back to where you came from, " whether made by supervisors or by co-workers.

Oh man.  That was almost the funniest thing I heard all week.  Almost.  Then I remembered the sorts of downright evil things some EEOC offices have done in the past - like sue family-owned Korean restaurants out of business because their employee base didn't mirror the racial demographics of the neighborhood where they were located.  They did that, like a lot.  Until someone sued them, pointing out that the local EEOC office was guilty of the same.  Buncha evil, evil white liberals.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 16, 2019, 09:46:26 pm
Just a little FYI.  Every time you try to defend Trump, you lower his status even more in my view.  Moat of your arguments in favor of him are exactly the reason I oppose him.
Who are you talking to?  I haven't seen anyone defending Trump on this thread...   :o
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 17, 2019, 12:17:05 am
In other news: It's interesting that the left has shifted from support of "socialism" to what they're now calling "democratic socialism." I really have no idea what they're talking about. They keep referring to the Nordic countries of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark as shining examples of democratic socialism. Those countries don't have socialist economies. They're based on free market capitalism. According to the Economic Freedom of the World Index published by the Fraser Institute, and the Index of Economic Freedom published by The Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal, the Nordic countries, along with most Western European countries, are ranked higher in economic freedom than Japan and South Korea, both of which have strong market based economies. Nordic countries have successful free market economies AND high taxes to support their generous social programs. They don't have economies based on socialism. The national discussion we should be having is this: What increases in social programs are worth paying for with higher taxes? We shouldn't be debating about making the U.S. into a socialist country. That's just a waste of brain bandwidth.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 08:33:55 am
Quote
Then I remembered the sorts of downright evil things some EEOC offices have done in the past - like sue family-owned Korean restaurants out of business because their employee base didn't mirror the racial demographics of the neighborhood where they were located.  They did that, like a lot.  Until someone sued them, pointing out that the local EEOC office was guilty of the same.  Buncha evil, evil white liberals.

You are aware that people who see Trump's rhetoric, policies, and points vile do not not give a free pass to corruption elsewhere, right?

"LOL! You're funny! Look at something bad someone else did!" doesn't make the point I think you're trying to make. I'm not a fan of abuse of a system or hypocrisy within it either. That's sort of the point.

Part of the primary process is to call out or question candidates who have supported or enabled the kind of corruption we are against. Those who want to get Trump out don't want more of the same just wearing another Jersey.

To be strongly opposed to Trump doesn't mean you approve everything Obama did. Or that you're a raging fan of Hillary Clinton. Or you cheer ANTIFA.

I don't get this whole, "A is bad." "Yeah, well, B did something bad too, so that makes the criticism of A invalid," thing. That's not addressing the issues, it's avoiding them.

In this election, I don't care what Obama did, or what Hillary Clinton did. They're not up for election. I don't have to justify my disdain for Trump by some false equivalent to something it's assumed I must "therefore" also Tribally support.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 08:36:56 am
Just a little FYI.  Every time you try to defend Trump, you lower his status even more in my view.  Moat of your arguments in favor of him are exactly the reason I oppose him.
Who are you talking to?  I haven't seen anyone defending Trump on this thread...   :o

He might of been referring to this long list of things (http://nauvoo.site/forum/index.php?topic=545.msg12348#msg12348) that began with, "I am not happy with the standard kick-the-deficit-spending-down-the-road approach he and the last half-dozen presidents have had. But I have to admit, I like just about everything else."
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 17, 2019, 10:23:49 am
 Roper - it works, the democratic socialism. And even though much is based on that, we only have one party called social democrats in our multi party system, so there is room for variety of thoughs.

Honestly, I think it's worth paying taxes to get the same education for all (which they tend to think quite good), even at university level. You can get it wether you or your parents have money or not. I like it how everyone is guaranteed healthcare, regular and special and the cost is ridiculously low. I'm happy to help others that way and also glad to be on the receiving end at times. I'm happy to pay for the 9 month maternity leave and the chance for parents to take care of their children at home up to age 3. And that those with children get benefits (though tax reductions based on children might be better). Those are all things that are important to me, so I'm happy all have the same opportunities.
 
Finland is a good place to be in    ;D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 17, 2019, 11:10:19 am
I think those things are economic investments. Universal education through college leads to a better educated citizenry and that leads to most people having better paying careers (which generates more tax revenue) and lessens the strain on safety net programs for people in poverty. Universal health care leads to a healthier citizenry and that leads to higher workplace productivity and again lessens the strain on safety net programs for people with no insurance. Generous family leave policies lead to more stable families and happier workers, which again lead to all kinds of economic benefits. I'm happy to pay increased taxes for increased social benefits. In American politics, however, raising taxes = political suicide.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 17, 2019, 11:12:49 am
I don't get this whole, "A is bad." "Yeah, well, B did something bad too, so that makes the criticism of A invalid," thing. That's not addressing the issues, it's avoiding them.
Quote
He might of been referring to this long list of things that began with, "I am not happy with the standard kick-the-deficit-spending-down-the-road approach he and the last half-dozen presidents have had. But I have to admit, I like just about everything else."


I get it!  People think I'm defending Trump!   Like he's my guy or something!   So Taalcon, you got a strawman going there.  Putting words in my mouth I didn't say, didn't imply, and don't believe.  Trump's recent tweets were an attempt to ride the wave of democrats being divided, and he managed to screw up and pull defeat out of the jaws of victory.  The EEOC quote was sort of the capstone on how bad he screwed up, until I remembered what the EEOC has stood for and done in the past. 

Ok, my bad.  Let me clarify: I'm not on team Trump.  I feel absolutely no need whatsoever to defend the guy.  I get to be happy with what I'm happy with, and not happy with what I'm not happy with.  Again, not only did I --not-- vote for the guy, I actively campaigned against him (on the internet from my armchair at least). 

I'm able to separate policies from people.  I'm also able to giggle with girlish glee when I hear some stuff coming out his mouth that I've wished a president would say for 20 years (like finally calling out CNN as the lying spin machine for leftism it's been for years).   It's ok to be for some things and against other things.

I'm interested mainly in arguing policies.  I know hatin' trump is top on so many lists these days, but personal politics bore me.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 11:24:48 am
Quote
In American politics, however, raising taxes = political suicide.

That has been the generally accepted wisdom. I think this is exactly what is being challenged.

"So you want better care for all, in a way that will stabilize health, opportunity, and conditions. Are you willing to put skin in the game to do so?"

I think more and more are realizing that nothing else has been working. And they're willing to look around and maybe try what other nations are doing that appears to be successful, and addresses what, here, seems to be an otherwise unsolvable problem.

I would to observe love a rational debate on the subject with rational representatives on both sides who have a good grasp on the economics and practicalities of it, and think right now the democratic debates will be the best place to see it actually play out.

Because once we get to the General Debates, Trump, who couldn't explain a complex policy to save his life, and, as you point out resorts to showmanship, will just resort to calling names, and making up scare stories and whatnot.

And it's a great tactic. Why explore a difficult topic when you can just laugh loudly, mock the messenger, and deflect, and declare themself the winner of the debate.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 11:31:01 am
Quote
I get it!  People think I'm defending Trump!   Like he's my guy or something! 

I guess I understood, "I have to admit, I like just about everything else." in a way different than you intended?

I likely also misunderstood your EEOC anecdote. I'm used to you coming in making some comment about laughing at a poster and their point, or how it reminds you of something hilarious, and then telling a story that I don't always follow how it connects to the thing that set off your funny bone.

I didn't see how what you said related to the point I was making, apart from suggesting that the EEOC was inherently bad. Your style can be difficult to follow at sometimes. I apologize if I mischaracterized your intention or belief. I was not trying to do so.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 17, 2019, 01:40:20 pm
Trump's move seems to be to elevate the far left so that they become the face of the Democratic party, which will make it easy to run against. Nancy Pelosi used to be the face of the far left, until others came along and out-flanked her by a long way.

Representative Ayanna Pressley,
Quote
"If you’re not prepared to come to that table and represent that voice, don’t come, because we don’t need any more brown faces that don’t want to be a brown voice."

"We don’t need black faces that don’t want to be a black voice," she said. "We don’t need Muslims that don’t want to be a Muslim voice. We don’t need queers that don’t want to be a queer voice. If you’re worried about being marginalized and stereotyped, please don’t even show up because we need you to represent that voice."

This is something that was said recently by one of the members of the group that President Trump is trying to elevate. This is the type of identity politics that many Americans dislike. It would be very, very easy for President Trump to run a campaign against rhetoric like this, as it is very exclusionary. "You're not black unless you are my kind of black". "You're not queer unless you fall in line with my version of what queers should be". If he can elevate their line of thinking to make it the face of the Democratic party, then he will have elevated a foil for himself to run against.

It is an effective way to try and define the narrative. President Trump doesn't have the majority media creating a narrative for him, so he must go to great lengths to get his narrative out there. Do not just think that President Trump does this. A more common way to define the narrative is to create a strawman. President Obama did this all the time with his rhetorical flourish of, "some may say..., but I say...". He had a willing media going along with him, which made it a bit easier. He may have spoken about being a someone to unite people, but I only ever saw lip service to that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 17, 2019, 01:45:11 pm
Yes, NT's style can be a bit mercurial at times. It keeps people from pigeonholing him  ;D

I'm a big fan of using humor to de-escalate conflicts. The challenge is to do it without being disingenuous or mean. I use it pretty successfully in the classroom. However, when it fails, and the person thinks I'm laughing AT him--that takes a whole lot of mending.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 01:48:45 pm
Quote
President Obama did this all the time with his rhetorical flourish of, "some may say..., but I say...".

Not sure you really want to use THAT specific rhetorical device as a particularly negative example  :D
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 17, 2019, 02:09:27 pm
President Obama copied this rhetorical device from the Bible because it is effective. We do not know the exact sentiments of those living in Jesus's time, so it is hard to know if he was accurately describing the majority view of the people or leaders at the time, or if he was using a rhetorical device to show that it was time to make a change to the Old Testament.

But today, we know that President Obama was trying to define those in the opposite political party to set the narrative in his favor, even those nearly no one in the opposite political party held the views he said they did. It wasn't lying, because, "some may say" could mean just 2 people in the entire world.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 02:22:29 pm
Trump's move seems to be to elevate the far left so that they become the face of the Democratic party, which will make it easy to run against. Nancy Pelosi used to be the face of the far left, until others came along and out-flanked her by a long way.

Representative Ayanna Pressley,
Quote
"If you’re not prepared to come to that table and represent that voice, don’t come, because we don’t need any more brown faces that don’t want to be a brown voice."

"We don’t need black faces that don’t want to be a black voice," she said. "We don’t need Muslims that don’t want to be a Muslim voice. We don’t need queers that don’t want to be a queer voice. If you’re worried about being marginalized and stereotyped, please don’t even show up because we need you to represent that voice."

This is something that was said recently by one of the members of the group that President Trump is trying to elevate. This is the type of identity politics that many Americans dislike. It would be very, very easy for President Trump to run a campaign against rhetoric like this, as it is very exclusionary. "You're not black unless you are my kind of black". "You're not queer unless you fall in line with my version of what queers should be". If he can elevate their line of thinking to make it the face of the Democratic party, then he will have elevated a foil for himself to run against.

I went to look up any additional comments she had on that quote, and her perspective. I had an idea of what I thought was meant, but I wanted to make sure I wasn't just searching. This was one of her responses on Twitter, which confirmed what I thought:

Quote
"I was speaking to the collective impact of lifting up one's lived experience, *whatever* that is, whatever your life walk. I was encouraging *everyone* to lean-in on & not run away fr lifting  their unique lived experiences when in the corridors of power"

In other words, she wanted people who would be lifting their life experiences, and would not let themselves be intimidated into being silent. Come if you're going to contribute, not just nod your head.

Honestly, although the rhetoric uses different words, and is addressing disparate communities, it's the same idea we hear a lot in church talks, and that I heard especially a lot in Missionary training.

To translate: This work is for those willing to Stand up for what you believe. Don't be silent. Don't let "the world" intimidate you into silence. Share your testimony, and do it often.

I've been in a lot of scenarios where people have been bullied, or some experience I've had is being directly challenged. And I didn't want to cause a ruckus, or lose my potential standing in a community, so I just didn't say anything. I was quiet. I wanted to, but I was afraid. And you know what? Nothing bad happened to me. But my silence was justifiably understood as agreement. In allowing others to be bullied, I also allowed myself to be bullied.

It's a call for strength.

I know so-called "identity politics" has been tarnished as a dirty word, but it's often (and I am NOT acusing you personally of this, to be very clear) by those who have had ZERO stakes or experience in the identities being marginalized or otherwise oppressed. "I don't see it, it doesn't effect me, so I don't get why it's a big deal, and wow, they're making themselves victims, and that seems weak and cheap."

I've learned A LOT by listening to those making what seem extreme claims and views. Some that seem ridiculous on the surface. Some remain so, but in others, I've learned the nuance and pain and experience that LED to that perspective, and sometimes it leads me to GET it. It's sometimes hard to translate or communicate that experience to someone who had had nothing like it. There's several factors involved. I've put in a lot of work to understanding perspectives of those who have claimed marginalization.

I haven't listened to or read everything this congresswoman has said. It's very possible, and most likely I would not agree with everything she has advocated for. But this particular statement? I think I get the sentiment behind it, and who she was talking to, and why.

It's like when I see some LDS political leaders (including those who have been on both sides of the aisle) who have the opportunity to stand up against some popular aspects of their party to stand up for values they have expressed personally in the past that transcend party, using their lived experience to give their moral standing some strength even when it wouldn't be popular on party lines --- but then, in a moment where it matters, they choose rather to be silent. It's frustrating. And it's times like that when I get Congresswoman Pressley's frustration.

Without using your voice, you are just a prop. And there are enough props, and too few voices.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 17, 2019, 02:28:17 pm
Quote
So interesting to see “Progressive” Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done. These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!
So here is the actual tweet in question. The substance of the tweet is one that could merit discussion on the idea. Someone here from a corrupt place (likely referencing Somalia) may not have the experience to know how a much better government is run. Her version might turn the USA into another Somalia.

However, it is the words "go back" that is offensive, as that is possibly referencing a trope of nativism that has been hurtful to immigrants to our country for a long time. It is the use of a trope, not necessarily the contents of the tweet that are offensive.

Comparison. Representative Tlaib has made tweets pointing out the corrupting nature of money in politics. This is a valid concern. However, the tropes that she repeatedly used were ones that have traditionally been used to stoke anti-Semitic sentiments.

PS, Identifying a trope is my new favorite way of being offended at something. It is a cooler way of saying "dog whistle".
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 02:36:00 pm
Remember how Trump's very campaign is not that America is Great, it's that it's super broken, and needs to be made Great Again? He started his campaign saying the American Dream is Dead.

... and now he equates pointing out problems and corruption with 'hating america'.

His followup tweet doubled down:
Quote
Our Country is Free, Beautiful and Very Successful. If you hate our Country, or if you are not happy here, you can leave!
.

The congresswomen in question (all but one of them born in the United States) have not stated they hate the country, but that they see the implementations of its hopes and ideals as being currently broken, and not available to all through a series of systemic problems.

The idea of 'if you don't like it, then LEAVE' - is insane to say to a member of Congress, who was elected by constituents to BRING change for what they see as the better.

If those who hate corruption don't fight corruption, it leaves the corrupt in power, and the victims absolutely defenseless.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 17, 2019, 03:48:10 pm
"go back where you came from" makes people think you're a racist, because while not everyone thinking the thought is a racist, most racists have thought the thought, or said it.

"If you don't like it then leave" has older people remember when their dads used to yell that at smelly hippies.  Or even more recently, yelling it themselves at hollywood actresses who promised to leave the country if Trump got elected.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 17, 2019, 04:55:43 pm
And sorry folks, I have been not speaking clearly and caused much confusion.

It is true that I am tickled pink about many things Trump is doing.  But that's because I like the things, not Trump.  Trump portrays himself as a callous jerk, and many things I've learned about his private life make me think he's a disgusting person.  But he doesn't have to not be a disgusting person to do things I like.  It would be a plus, the world might be better if it happened, but it's not a necessity. 

Republicans used to look at Nixon and say "yeah, he's a *bleep*, but he's our *bleep*.  Sort of the same thing.

Hope that makes more sense.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 17, 2019, 08:52:59 pm
Well, right now, Trump's packed crowd is loudly chanting "Send Her Back' to the smug, nodding approval of the President of the United States.

https://twitter.com/passantino/status/1151639762085863424?s=19
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 17, 2019, 11:45:31 pm
So, in 2020, let's send Trump back--back to his failed businesses and the $400 million debt he owes. Back to being rejected by U.S. banks and investors on Wall Street because the "Donald Risk" means probable default and bankruptcy. He should "go back and fix the totally broken and (bankrupt) place from which he came. Then he can come back and show us how it's done. Your own businesses need your help badly. You can't leave fast enough!

Glass houses, pots and kettles, and all that  ;)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on July 18, 2019, 09:44:04 am
Quote
So, in 2020, let's send Trump back

The problem is, that in the US system, that would mean a Democrat for president. And thus far I am still scratching my head trying to see who that might even be, let alone what it might mean for the US, and the world in general.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 18, 2019, 09:47:52 am
Curious, have you watched any of the debates, Andrew?

And what do you mean by:
Quote
let alone what it might mean for the US, and the world in general.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 18, 2019, 10:28:39 am
I watched the entire first debate, and various highlights of the 2nd debate.  I'm very worried.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 18, 2019, 12:44:41 pm
For a while, I was in danger of becoming a single-issue voter. Abortion. I firmly believe that a developing child's right to life has to be given legal protection. And that ruled out all of the democratic candidates. Which means I would have to vote for Trump. I resolved that issue for myself, now. The abortion issue will be decided by the supreme court as state cases are already making their way up. In practical terms, the candidate's campaign assertions on abortion are less important.

Amy Klobuchar and Tim Ryan. I hope they do better in the next debate. I believe they have the sensibility required to restore dignity to the Oval Office. I believe they have the determination required to work through partisan bickering.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 18, 2019, 01:14:15 pm
Professor Peterson just keeps hitting them out of the park.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeterson/2019/07/send-her-back.html

Quote
The fact that I’ve even thought about possibly voting for Joe Biden — Joe Biden! — illustrates how desperate I am.  Still, the Democrat lurch to the left that begins to make Mr. Biden seem moderate by comparison also makes it impossible for me to consider that party right now.  They are flirting with quasi-socialist ideas that will blight the economic prospects of millions of Americans and diminish American liberty.  And likely Democratic appointments to the federal judiciary would damage the United States for generations to come.

I just can’t go there.

But neither can I, in good conscience, cast a ballot for Mr. Donald J. Trump.

I realize that he’s put conservative people in federal judgeships and, most notably, on the Supreme Court.  And I’m very happy about that.  Moreover, there are several other appointments and policy decisions of the Trump administration that I’ve supported.  I haven’t counted them up, but I probably agree with more of the Trump administration’s policies, both foreign and domestic, than I disagree.  However, my form of conservatism is about much more than mere politics and policies.  It’s a view of life, of community.  A particular vision of social grace.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 18, 2019, 01:45:16 pm
As this conversation moves forward, I'd really like to hear more from cook's perspective in these discussions, being someone who lives in the actualized conditions that people are claiming they are absolutely terrified to move towards being like.

Responding to what Peterson said, economic prospects of millions of Americans are VERY bleak and blighted right now, and have been, with no end in sight, and nothing the Trump Administration is doing is substantially increasing the opportunities or conditions for the most vulnerable in any meaningful way. The economic theories in play are simply not working on a practical level for those most in need of them.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 18, 2019, 03:18:25 pm
...nothing the Trump Administration is doing is substantially increasing the opportunities or conditions for the most vulnerable in any meaningful way. The economic theories in play are simply not working on a practical level for those most in need of them.

Disagree.

This of course is the standard debate between competing economic philosophies that has been going on for longer than anyone here has been alive.  Go Hayek! 
https://youtu.be/GTQnarzmTOc?t=336

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 18, 2019, 03:35:38 pm
It's sad, really, how many people become agitated and defensive when talk turns to "socialism" for American citizens. So before we talk about that, let's just review taxpayer funded "socialism" for corporations in America:

- Department of Agriculture: Grants and subsidies for agricultural products, operations, and farm loans.
- Department of Commerce: Grants, subsidized loans, and direct subsidies for export operations, equipment modernization, and business development.
- Department of Defense: Applied research and development funding for "dual purpose" (military and commercial) technologies.
- Department of Energy: Gee, where to begin? Every form of energy in the U.S. is subsidized by the government in some way.
- Department of Housing and Urban Development: Mortgage insurance subsidies (reducing lender risk). Block grants to developers. Grants for revitalization.
- Department of State: The foreign military financing program gives grants to foreign countries to purchase equipment manufactured by U.S. firms.
- Department of Transportation: Amtrak anyone? Air Traffic control and other services to airlines. Same with railroads and shipping. The nation's system of roads is used by corporations to transport goods.

In addition to direct grants and subsidies, corporations enjoy tax preferences, favorable trade barriers against competition, and government monetary enterprises to specifically support private enterprises.

One can definitely argue that all of these provide value and opportunity to American business. I completely agree that they are good investments. However, we have a system in America where profits are privatized and risks and losses are socialized. As some have put it: "Socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor."

The debate is not, "America can't have socialism." We already have a form of socialism for corporations. The debate is really, "Should citizens get benefits of taxpayer funded programs like corporations do?"

 
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 18, 2019, 03:45:39 pm
Quote
Go Hayek!

As a Hayek fan, do you also support the implementation of Guaranteed Basic Income? Maybe Andrew Yang's your man.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 18, 2019, 04:16:53 pm
As this conversation moves forward, I'd really like to hear more from cook's perspective in these discussions, being someone who lives in the actualized conditions that people are claiming they are absolutely terrified to move towards being like.

Responding to what Peterson said, economic prospects of millions of Americans are VERY bleak and blighted right now, and have been, with no end in sight, and nothing the Trump Administration is doing is substantially increasing the opportunities or conditions for the most vulnerable in any meaningful way. The economic theories in play are simply not working on a practical level for those most in need of them.

Feel free to ask any questions. I'm sure otherwise I can't really pinpoint things.

One thing I've often been baffled about is the claim that in the US anyone can become anything... As if it couldn't be so in other places. It is true that over here it's not easy to become a multimillionaire with hard work, mostly because there just isn't that much money around to get with only 5 million people. But if you have inherited some and put in wisely in stocks, you'll get plenty.

I feel that in the US not everyone can become anything because higher education costs. A few may get the scholarships, but onot everyone. Here it actually is possible, that anyone can become anything - if they study and work hard.

We have unemployment (6,7% in Feb compared to US  3,8%, but I'm not sure how these are calculated). We don't have jobs where you can just go without any education that much anymore. We have unemployment benefits, so for some it is nicer to be unemployed than work for just a little bit more money.

We pay taxes in our shopping so that it is included in the price. Some things are taxed more than others. Taxing is progressive, some examples are here - yearly payment 33000 €, tax 25,3%, 43000 € 30,3%, 73000 38,5 %, 93000 € 41,9%. , 1 000 000 55,8% . The tax includes the retirement funds etc. Some of the taxation would be nicer to be different. For example inheritance is taxed quite much. It has already been taxed when the people earned it, so it's kind of double taxing. In some places the taxing on the land is so much that older people on retirement have a hard time paying it, if they own a bigger plot in a city. But then compared to some taxes of that sort in the US it actually feels very small -so I guess it depends.

We have about 7000 homeless people. (population a bit over 5 million). That includes people like those who live in shelters or not permanently with their relatives or friends or ex-convicts who don't yet have an appartment. It doesn't mean they live outside. A few do though.

One of my children has thyroids problem. He has check ups about twice a year. Blood test costs nothing. The hospital visit costs 32 €. The medicine costs 4€ 100 pieces. He also has something they haven't figured out. For that there is a yearly check up. That costs the 32 €. Now he gets physical therapy about 20 times a year for free and horse riding therapy the same amount. He has gotten also speech therapy and occupational therapy, some of them every week for some years, all for free. He's genes have been sent somewhere to be studied - for free. We've gotten all kinds of helping equipment for loan, for free, during these years. In our city he get's as much swimming as he wants for a 30€ yearly fee + an adult accompanying him for free. We also get a benefit of 90 €/ month because of his disabilities (the lowest amount). So does my elderly father, who is losing his memory. All of my kids have had fractured bones or deep cuts that have needed stitches or glue. ER - free. Dental health care, braces for kids, free. One of my kids had a tumor of sorts in her mouth, stopping a tooth from growing. Cutting it out, free.

Life is so much more stress free especially with a family, both children and ageing parents, when you know, that what ever illness comes, you will be taken care of. You wont be in trouble because of the costs. We do have private health care facilities also. If you're in a hurry or it's hard to go see a doctor during the regular hours, you can use them. Works well.


Of course systems are not perfect, and they don't make people equal but I like that it creates more equality among our people.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 18, 2019, 09:26:49 pm
Quote
Go Hayek!

As a Hayek fan, do you also support the implementation of Guaranteed Basic Income?
You got me - apart from these few videos, some googling, and some half-remembered econ college classes, I wasn't aware he was a fan of such things.  After some googling, I find myself as perplexed as most of his other libertarian fans as to why he suggested it in the first place. 

I mean, I'm fine with safety nets and welfare and whatnot.  But my take on human nature (which seems to align with Hayek with this as a big exception) tells me if we pay people to not work, we'll have more people choosing to not work than if we didn't.  Unemployment benefits for those who have paid into it through working?  Hooray.  Everyone gets a minimum basic income?  This ain't Star Trek - come back when we've got limitless energy and free replicators, then we can talk.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 18, 2019, 09:43:51 pm
I think the idea was an understanding that his system doesn't fully work unless those at the bottom have choices, and a way to actually get started, and an understanding that there are some systematic roadblocks in place that keep many from even entering the system to begin with. Someone working two minimum wage jobs that barely get someone by, coupled with medical bills, is not going promote upward mobility. (It's a key reason why employment numbers alone aren't worth cheering, unless they are coupled with jobs that provide a livable wage).

I've read some studies on UBI, and while I still have a lot more thinking to do on the subject, there's some fascinating logic and sense behind it. When there is a release from the tension for basic needs, further participation in the economy and considerations for options for upper mobility become accessible and possible. Further education possibilities are explored. Creativity is encouraged. Access to resources to explore that creativity and to enrich the marketplace become available.

Are there some who would just take and not contribute? Sure. But I think the vast majority would enrich their lives, and the ecnonomy, and the communities if they weren't struggling to survive. And $1000 a month (Yang's position, coupled with VAT) which is what is generally proposed, is a great booster shot, but is not going to let someone love it up without another source of income from employment.

It's a recognition that the old trope 'The only poor people are lazy people' doesn't hold water, as some of the hardest workers are the most poor, and some of those who do the least work make the most money from inherited investments.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 19, 2019, 11:22:47 am
Guaranteed basic income is a consideration of human nature. I'm sure there are people who would move up the pyramid of Maslow's hierarchy if all of their time wasn't spent just trying to survive. I'm happy to support that. I'm also sure there are people who would spend all their time playing Fortnite or using social media because they share a house or an apartment and wouldn't have to work. I definitely don't want to enable that. So, if enacted, basic income would need to have some kind of accountability measure attached. Otherwise, I'm of the opinion that I can better decide how to charitably use the money I earn.

Edit: I think guaranteed basic income is a questionable solution to the living wage problem. In a more just and equitable world, businesses would be grateful for all the public help they've received to make them successful. In turn, they would pay their employees well. That's not reality. Businesses receive all kinds of public investment, then they do things like close factories and move to cheaper overseas labor markets. They employ part-time workers so they don't have to pay benefits. They rely on contract workers for the same reason. It's all in the name of maximizing value for shareholders. Businesses which operate with a conscience, which treat their employees well, are few. No business would survive or even exist without the public investments we have all made. Let's hold businesses accountable to give a return on investment in the form of better employee compensation.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 19, 2019, 11:43:58 am
I'm also sure there are people who would spend all their time playing Fortnite or using social media because they share a house or an apartment and wouldn't have to work.
That's one end of the scale.  The other end has roaming gangs of predators, serial drug abusers, folks who choose the 'homeless beggar lifestyle', and people who seek to do evil with their free time and resources.

And let's be clear - we have plenty of those folks all across this 'Fortnite to rape gang' scale already.  Anyone know the issues facing Seattle, or the "shooting gallery" issues in Vancouver, or the endemic homeless population issues in Washington DC?  I hear Seattle has hired full-time employees to be the "poop patrol", cleaning the human feces off the streets.

Quote
basic income would need to have some kind of accountability measure attached
The church welfare system is a good example of a system that works.  We don't just give people money, we only pay bills.  And the bishop works with the recipient to make sure they're moving forward to self-sufficiency.  Church aid is a temporary thing only.   And it's paid for by voluntary contributions, not "mandatory" offerings (to the extent you can consider tithing 'mandatory'). 

If someone wanted to try a government version of the church welfare system, I'd be cautiously and unenthusiastically willing to entertain the notion.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 19, 2019, 12:02:33 pm
My thoughts about one possible solution:

Provide businesses an incentive to pay better wages. If a business employs an hourly worker full time and pays that worker at least $15/hour, then that worker is eligible to enroll in Medicaid for health insurance.

I think it's a good compromise to the single-issue extremes which are being proposed.

In a few years: If a business employs an hourly worker full time at $20/hour, then that worker is eligible for Medicaid AND 128 credits of free tuition at a public college or university.

Businesses get a more educated, healthy, and productive work force. Government gets more tax revenue. The people at the lowest economic level have a path upwards. Huzzah! A win-win-win!  ;D

Whatever the solution, the costs need to shared. Corporations can't bear the entire burden. Neither can taxpayers.

I have lots of other ideas about retirement programs, family leave, etc. But this is a good place to start  ;)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 19, 2019, 12:25:14 pm
I think these are all thoughtful. And it's why I like listening to the debates, and why it's important for them to play out publicly, so ideas can be engaged with, and hopefully the best ideas rise to the top.

I just wish that there was a candidate who would be able to engage with them intelligently from the other side of the aisle as well. you know, they way things should be. Get the best ideas, not just the strongest personality.

 Since Trump's not railing against one of the already most hated people in America, Trump's got a super up-hill battle going into any one-on-one debate. I'm really interested in seeing how this plays out.

And at this point, the word 'socialism' has sort of lost its meaning. It doesn't mean what the Right is loudly saying it means, and it doesn't mean what most of the Left who are embracing the word means either. It's why the specific ideas and implementations need to be approached head-on rather than the boogey-man of a word-as-concept.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 19, 2019, 01:34:52 pm
And at this point, the word 'socialism' has sort of lost its meaning. It doesn't mean what the Right is loudly saying it means, and it doesn't mean what most of the Left who are embracing the word means either. It's why the specific ideas and implementations need to be approached head-on rather than the boogey-man of a word-as-concept.


I like what Jeff Dorfman wrote in Forbes last year:
Quote
Socialism can take the form of government controlling or interfering with free markets, nationalizing industries, and subsidizing favored ones (green energy, anyone?). The Nordic countries don’t actually do much of those things. Yes, they offer government-paid healthcare, in some cases tuition-free university educations, and rather generous social safety nets, all financed with high taxes. However, it is possible to do these things without interfering in the private sector more than required. It is allowing businesses to be productive that produces the high corporate and personal incomes that support the tax collections making the government benefits feasible. The Nordic countries are smart enough not to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.

If the left insists on naming a system of generous government benefits combined with a free market democratic socialism, I cannot stop them. That seems unnecessarily confusing since the government is actually running no industries other than education (and meddling somewhat in healthcare). It certainly isn’t socialism. In fact, the only reason most such countries can afford those benefits is that their market economies are so productive they can cover the expense of the government’s generosity. Perhaps a better name for what the Nordic countries practice would be compassionate capitalism.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/#16982d6b74ad (https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/#16982d6b74ad)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 19, 2019, 01:43:29 pm
EXACTLY. It becomes a battle of rhetoric than a battle of actual ideas. And that's just not productive in actually contributing to solving problems.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 19, 2019, 03:50:49 pm
 I like that term, compassionate capitalism.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 22, 2019, 11:27:05 am
Yay behind the scenes Colorado politics meet national politics!

So, one story you haven't heard, because the local news isn't putting much effort into covering it, is the Denver ICE facility was attacked a few weeks back.  Protesters stormed the facility, vandalized/spray painted some surfaces, took down the American flag and ran up the Mexico flag.  The police chief says they made the conscious choice to stand by and let this happen, because getting involved would have turned a rowdy demonstration into something worse.  Folks on that police force, speaking anonymously, say that's the sort of thing they train for, so the chief's explanation doesn't pass muster.  Whatever.  Denver and surrounding areas are one of the true "sanctuary cities" you hear about.

Part two of the story, (also not covered in the news, including local news) is Mike Pence and Ivanka are visiting Colorado today/this week for various reasons.  VP Pence was going add a tour of the ICE building to is itinerary.  He was bringing a flag that had flown over the white house, to run up the flagpole that had seen the earlier desecration by the Mexico flag.  Folks got wind of it, and the facility was a flurry of activity.  New TVs for the detention areas, graffiti power-blasted off the exercise yard walls, cable locks on all the flagpoles, stuff that had been broken a long time got fixed. 

Part three of the story, is a last minute schedule change has VP Pence skipping the ICE facility, and nobody can find who made the decision to ask them why.

Just another Monday morning drive to work.  I like my AM radio guy - he gives me stuff to think about I wouldn't otherwise be thinking about.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 22, 2019, 01:48:49 pm
When I was in the military, stuff would be in disrepair for months. Then, when the Adjutant General was coming to the base, there was a flurry of activity to make everything pretty.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 22, 2019, 02:06:28 pm
This is Church News, but also I think very relevant for everything else going on in our nation. This is from last night's meeting of the NAACP, where President Nelson was a special guest speaker.

Watch the introduction, and also the talk by President Nelson. It's incredible. It may be my favorite talk President Nelson has ever given.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rkq2o8M7ByM
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on July 22, 2019, 03:48:58 pm
I'm super disappointed in Mitt Romney.  He had the opportunity to call a spade a spade and gave a political waffle instead.

FYI

https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2013/09/19/224183763/is-it-racist-to-call-a-spade-a-spade
Quote
In the late 1920s during the Harlem Renaissance, "spade" began to evolve into code for a black person, according to Patricia T. O'Connor and Stewart Kellerman's book Origins of the Specious: Myths and Misconceptions of the English Language. The Oxford English Dictionary says the first appearance of the word spade as a reference to blackness was in Claude McKay's 1928 novel Home to Harlem, which was notable for its depictions of street life in Harlem in the 1920s. "Jake is such a fool spade," wrote McKay. "Don't know how to handle the womens." Fellow Harlem Renaissance writer Wallace Thurman then used the word in his novel The Blacker The Berry: A Novel of Negro Life, a widely read and notable work that explored prejudice within the African-American community. "Wonder where all the spades keep themselves?" one of Thurman's characters asks. It was also in the 1920s that the "spade" in question began to refer to the spade found on playing cards.

The word would change further in the years to come. Eventually, the phrase "black as the ace of spades" also became widely used, further strengthening the association between spades and playing cards.

Wolfgang Mieder notes that in the fourth edition of The American Language, H.L. Mencken's famous book about language in the United States, "spade" is listed as one of the "opprobrious" names for "Negroes" (along with "Zulu," "skunk" and many other words that I can't print here). Robert L. Chapman struck a similar note in his Thesaurus of American Slang (1989). "All these terms will give deep offense if used by nonblacks," warned Chapman, listing "spade" in a group that included words like blackbird, shade, shadow, skillet and smoke.

The British author Colin MacInnes, who was white, frequently used the term in novels like City of Spades (1957) and Absolute Beginners (1959) about the multiracial, multicultural London of the 1950s and '60s. MacInnes has been criticized for his exotification and sexualization of black culture in his books. MacInnes also coined the cringeworthy word "spadelet" to refer to black infants.

As with many other racialized terms, there were efforts to reclaim the word after it had become a slur. Four years after Malcolm X was killed in 1965, poet Ted Joans eulogized him in his poem "My Ace of Spades." The artist David Hammons also explored the negative connotations to the word in his 1973 sculpture "Spade With Chains." Hammons once told an interviewer that he began to incorporate spades into his work because "I was called a spade once, and I didn't know what it meant ... so I took the shape and started painting it." And a character in 2009's Black Dynamite (a spoof of the blaxploitation films of the 1970s) tells a rival that he's "blacker than the ace of spades and more militant than you."

So what does all of this mean for people who want to, well, "call a spade a spade"? I urge caution. Mieder concludes his case study with the argument that "to call a spade a spade" should be retired from modern usage: "Rather than taking the chance of unintentionally offending someone or of being misunderstood, it is best to relinquish the old innocuous proverbial expression all together."

BTW, my take is that Trump was meanspirited, unnecessary, (I could add other words describing bad) but that what he said isn't racist.   I also find it hard to understand those who claim it as being racist.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 22, 2019, 03:58:16 pm
Quote
I also find it hard to understand those who claim it as being racist.

I find it very easy to understand, being familiar with the accounts of MANY people of color being shouted out to "Go Back Where They Came From", and not hearing that as being a common occurrence with people who tend to look more like me.

--

By the way, stuff like the origins of 'call a spade a spade' is fascinating. I read a book a year or so back with my wife called The Everyday Language of White Racism (https://www.amazon.com/Everyday-Language-White-Racism/dp/1405184531) that documents many such phrases that have become common and which roots come from inherent racist slang or ideas than tend to have been forgotten (by many, but not all) over a couple generations.

It's absolutely caused me to work at removing some necessary inherited phrases and tropes from my vocabulary.

There's a difference between those who use phrases with a racist history ignorantly, and those who have a history of making regular and blatantly racist comments making another well known blatant racist comment.

Those who truly do not want to offend tend to remove the phrase from their vocabulary. Those who DO want to offend declare the person who pointed out the offensive nature is the one with the problem, and tend to double-down on the usage.

I'm reminded of several public figures last year that got caught on camera saying "Martin Luther Coon", and then said, oops, that was just an unfortunate slip-up that doesn't represent what they really think and ever say.

Nah.

That's not something that just comes out, it's something that was BLATANTLY racists, would ONLY be used in a racist context, and was clearly used over, and over, and over, and over, and was part of how they commonly described and called the man. The only slip-up was having it come out in public in front of cameras. It revealed their nature.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 22, 2019, 04:18:55 pm
Quote
Quote
I also find it hard to understand those who claim it as being racist.
I find it very easy to understand, being familiar with the accounts of MANY people of color being shouted out to "Go Back Where They Came From", and not hearing that as being a common occurrence with people who tend to look more like me.

I have two advantages.  A greater-than-short attention span, and a broad spectrum of places I check when thinking about stuff.

- Argument-driven right-wingers are rife, RIFE with harping on Canadians who opine about US politics.  They get quite loud when a Canadian does it from inside the US.  Yes, Taalcon, they often yell "go back where you came from" to white english speaking dudes.

- Multiple people kept track of Hollywood liberal elites who promised to leave the country if Trump was elected.  They tried to keep it an active news item after the election, and all the white liberal english speaking actors and actresses didn't leave.  Yes, Taalcon, they were yelling "leave America now", and plenty of similar things.

- The (white english-speaking) Dixie Chicks lost just about every good-ol-boy republican fan after they bashed America while outside the country.  People called radio stations to complain, threatening to never do business with companies advertising on that station, if they ever hear another Dixie Chick song.  The Chicks sort of informally disbanded then re-imaged themselves as some sort of liberal sexy goth punk band thing.  And yes, Taalcon, you couldn't swing a dead cat without hearing people yelling at the Dixie Chicks to stay in France, leave the country, etc.

- Telling white, english speaking Americans to "love it or leave it" has been present in my various circles for as far back as I can remember.  At least the early 1980's. 

- They tell me people in the Vietnam war era were all about offering to give (white, english-speaking) hippies the boot.  Kick 'em out of America.  Go live somewhere else.

So much white.  So much english-speaking.  So much not having the slightest thing to do with racism.

Taalcon, the only reason it's possible to think about what Trump said in a racist light, is because you never encountered the plethora of non-racial-based bunch of similar yelling that has been going on in this country for at least the last four decades.  (Or you did, but forgot.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 22, 2019, 04:25:25 pm
There is a signifcant rhetorical difference between "Go Away" and "Go Back To Where You Came From," and those to whom it is GENERALLY and most often directed towards.

The conflating of the two in your mind actually does you a service in illustrating a key reason (among many others!) as to why I don't believe you, for example, would ever do the former in a racist way!

One phrase suggests "you never belonged here to begin with", and the other is "don't bother me." - I understand why the phrases are viewed as being similar, but the rhetoric is very different. And is very much recognized with those to whom it is directed, and generally those who DO use the phrase, "Go Back From Where You Came From." - And then when it's directed to those with people from different skin and different ethnic backgrounds who were actually born in the United States? Come on.

When someone has a very, very, very long history of saying and doing blatantly racist things, they've kind of lost the plausible deniability of, "Well, this time, let's assume they probably meant the other thing."

And for Trump, who based his campaign on the idea that America Wasn't Great Anymore, and Needed To Be Great Again, and declared, "The American Dream Is Dead"  to suggest anyone criticizing the current state of the nation is by definition not Patriotic just ... I mean... COME ON.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 22, 2019, 10:29:33 pm
I suppose if one parsed the phrase word by word it would be possible to come to the conclusion that the statement wasn't racist. However, given the context of the statement, given the statement's historical use against minority populations including white people from Ireland, Germany, Scandinavian countries--whoever happened to be the target at that time, and given Trump's history of racist statements and actions, I can only conclude that it was racist and was intended to be such.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 23, 2019, 11:22:42 am
given Trump's history of racist statements and actions, I can only conclude that it was racist and was intended to be such.
I hear he kicked Rosa Parks in the butt after snagging his Ellis Island award, and then he ran away before Mohammed Ali could react.  Nasty racist. 


Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 23, 2019, 12:45:04 pm
Apart from what many have been using this photo to say, the reality isn't super helpful to any point (https://www.apnews.com/afs:Content:6348420521). (Another fact check (https://www.politifact.com/facebook-fact-checks/statements/2019/jul/19/facebook-posts/trumps-ellis-island-award-was-not-work-within-blac/) on that point)
Quote
Trump was part of the first group of Americans to be given the award, which recognized people hailing from a variety of ethnic backgrounds who made significant contributions to the country, Otto Coca, communications director for the Ellis Island Honors Society, told The Associated Press last year. 

Trump was honored because of his German heritage and his work as a developer.


On the other hand, he WAS found at fault for housing discrimination explicitly against African Americans (https://www.npr.org/2016/09/29/495955920/donald-trump-plagued-by-decades-old-housing-discrimination-case) , so I'm not sure what point this photo opp makes.

But then again, maybe you're right. Getting an award for being a successful German might negate that.

--

You also know better that racism isn't just a caricature of "I want to beat up or kill all not-me people" - it's an attitude of inherent superiority, and inherent irreconcilable differences.

A lot of time violence comes because individuals from the 'other' group are seen being treated just as well (or better!) than you personally, and because you are not from their group, and you KNOW that YOUR group DESERVES more, and THEY deserve less, so it's inherently unfair, and THEY'RE taking what should be YOURS. And it leads to resentment and anger. Mostly, it's just expressed in passive-aggressive language and behavior. But it seeps into all aspects of life.

They can't live in this neighborhood, it lowers the property value for people like me who want to buy!
They shouldn't have this job, they're taking it away from someone like me who is more qualified!
They can't be critical, they should just be grateful we let them be here!
They shouldn't play with my kids, they'll be a bad influence!

Just because you haven't experienced it or recognized it and because you don't DO it doesn't mean that others don't.

Logic often goes, and I've seen this play out countless times, when something is pointed out as being a racist action or idea that someone did, the thought process will go, "Well, wait, I DO say or do that thing. But Racism is Bad. And I'm not bad. So I can't be racist. Therefore if I do or say that thing, it is therefore is impossible for that thing to BE racist, therefore the person pointing out the behavior is a liar, and how dare they besmirch my name! I'm the REAL victim!"

If people keep defining RACISM as an extreme caricature of "SOMEONE WHO HATES BLACKS WITH EVERY FIBER OF THEIR BEING CAN'T STAND TO STAND NEAR ONE OR WOULD KILL OR BEAT UP EVERY NON-WHITE WITHIN 12 INCHES", then of course, it's easy to say, "Of course I'm not a racist, that's offensive!" and go on with your life.

The reality, and the actual lived effects of it are A LOT more nuanced than that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 23, 2019, 01:09:09 pm
My overall point is that the label "racist" is at best, unhelpful.   
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 23, 2019, 01:34:32 pm
I understand that you don't see how it is of value to you personally. Whether someone is racist or not doesn't really effect how they generally would interact with you.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 23, 2019, 02:18:07 pm
I lived in Texas for 18 years. Undocumented workers from Mexico pretty much dominated the labor force in housing construction and landscaping. Why? It's not because they were taking jobs away. It's because they would work outside in the Texas heat, which nobody else wanted to do. Same thing with the lettuce industry in southern Arizona.

We have a sad history with migrant labor. After slavery was abolished, the cry went out that newly freed slaves were taking away the jobs that white people wanted. Asian immigrants in 1800s, most notably ethnic Chinese, provided a lot of farm labor and manual labor that citizens were unwilling to do. The nation's railroad system couldn't have been built without them. When people started understanding their barbaric working conditions and demanded better, guess what the response was? "They're taking away our jobs." Same with Irish immigrants building roads and bridges and domestic work. If you didn't have African "help," you had Irish. And when they started moving upward economically, suddenly, "They're taking our jobs away."

It's a lie that's always been used to keep immigrants in their place.

"Go back to where you came from." Different words. Same sentiment.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 23, 2019, 05:07:36 pm
Agreed, Roper.  And no mention of the stupid and useless "r" word was necessary to convey the point. 

Thank you for dragging us up out of the playground.  I get tired of hearing "he's a poopy-headed poopy-head", just dressed up in fancy words.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 23, 2019, 06:27:09 pm
Agreed, Roper.  And no mention of the stupid and useless "r" word was necessary to convey the point. 

Thank you for dragging us up out of the playground.  I get tired of hearing "he's a poopy-headed poopy-head", just dressed up in fancy words.

Anyway, here's one of the best, most sensitive and thoughtful approaches on this subject I've seen, and it was published in the Ensign, and written by the amazing Darius Gray. I highly recommend everyone involved in this highly charged conversation give this a read. Actually, encourage EVERYONE to give it a read.

Healing the Wounds of Racism (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/blog/healing-the-wounds-of-racism?lang=eng)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 23, 2019, 07:01:53 pm
Quote
2. Recognize It in Ourselves
Some people acknowledge the problem but may not recognize it in themselves.
Has anyone else encountered Harvard's Project Implicit?  It's a fascinating (and I believe meaningful) way to measure "implicit social cognition - thoughts and feelings that are largely outside of conscious awareness and control."  Basically, it measures your bias.  You can punk the test if you try hard enough, but if you're interested in a decent measure of the forces moving in you, of which you may only be dimly aware, I wholeheartedly suggest some of the tests.

https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html

Last time I took these tests, I had little to no gender, sexuality, or racial bias.  I kept taking the religious test and coming up with a different answer every time. 

Take some tests and tell me how you do!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 23, 2019, 11:14:33 pm
I'll get back to it, but two issues: don't do it with the phone, at lleast mine kept answering based on previous without me seeing the next, perhaps my fingers lingered too long in the place.

It also has some words that are probably understood one way but could be understood the other way. Like pleasing, Iknow it means positive, but to me, I think first of a person who is trying to please everyone and I think that as a negative. Also having taught the kids about emotions so much, I tend to think some negative feeling is a positive thing because it serves a purpose...

At first I also misunderstood the word-picture combined, that because I feel all people are good I could have clicked that for everyone...
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 23, 2019, 11:15:31 pm
Many years ago as a new teacher, I videotaped myself teaching my class. I wanted to see if I had any biases in the way I interact with children. I do. Overall, I was more directive with boys than with girls. The Hispanic girls in my class got away with a lot of disruptive and off-task behaviors. That surprised me. I mean, it wasn't even on my radar while I was teaching, but there it was, right on the video. Then it occurred to me:  My wife and my daughter both have brown eyes and dark hair. The Spanish girls in my class resembled my wife and daughter in appearance. I was much more lenient with them than with other students. Once I was aware, I could work to make discipline in my class more equitable.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: AndrewR on July 24, 2019, 03:51:43 am
Well, that was interesting, and I don't believe entirely accurate.




Quote
The sorting test you just took is called the Implicit Association Test (IAT). You categorized Male and Female words with Science and Liberal Arts.

Here is your result:
Your data suggest a moderate automatic association for Male with Science and Female with Liberal Arts.

Your result is described as an "Automatic association for Male with Science and Female with Liberal Arts" if you were faster responding when Science and Male are assigned to the same response key than when Science and Female were classified with the same key. Your score is described as an "Automatic association for Female with Science and Male with Liberal Arts if the opposite occurred.

Your automatic preference may be described as "slight", "moderate", "strong", or "no preference". This indicates the strength of your automatic preference.

The IAT requires a certain number of correct responses in order to get results. If you made too many errors while completing the test you will get the feedback that there were too many errors to determine a result.

First it got me to associate the 'E' key with Science and Male, and the 'I' key with Arts and Female. Then it switched, and then assumed that my slight delay in getting it "right" was because of my "automatic association", and not because I had to get used to the change.

If it had been done the other way I wonder what the result would be. Not very scientific, IMHO.


Quote
Your data suggest no automatic preference between Disabled Persons and Abled Persons.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on July 24, 2019, 08:39:03 am
Wasn't there "King of the Hill" episode that used that racism test as a plot point?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 24, 2019, 11:03:47 am
[Really, really looking forward to hearing Taalcon's report on his Racism test.]


Full disclosure: Here's my recent result:

Quote
The sorting test you just took is called the Implicit Association Test (IAT). You categorized good and bad words with images of African Americans and European Americans.

Here is your result:
Your data suggest a slight automatic preference for African Americans over European Americans.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 24, 2019, 12:55:52 pm
Me too. And so far, it's randomizing me, and all that it tells me is that I don't have a significant automatic preference in how I view Betty White or Scarlett Johansson, and that I tend to have a "moderate automatic preference for Thin people over Fat people." Taking a break, and will come back to these later.

ETA:
Heh, well, there you go, on at least one of the race-related tests (only one I encountered so far):
Quote
Your result is described as an "Automatic preference for Black people over White people" if you were faster responding when Black people and Good are assigned to the same response key than when White people and Good were classified with the same key.


I may have unintentionally gamed the test, though, as I took it right after having my 5-year-old darker-skinned son running around giggling and bursting into my home office with his new stuffed snake puppet and a giant grin on his face.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: cook on July 24, 2019, 01:53:32 pm
I have strong preference of thin people over fat people.

Would not have guessed (with my anorectic past).  But I do think it mainly describes me and my relationship with my fat instead of  towards other people. Maybe.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 24, 2019, 02:51:09 pm
Heh, well, there you go, on at least one of the race-related tests (only one I encountered so far):
Quote
Your result is described as an "Automatic preference for Black people over White people" if you were faster responding when Black people and Good are assigned to the same response key than when White people and Good were classified with the same key.

Yes, but what's the strength of the preference?  Slight, moderate, or strong?

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 24, 2019, 03:06:06 pm
Oh, I thought I'd copied the relevant part. Looks like it was from the explanation rather than the actual verdict. I believe on this one, it registered as 'slight'. Is there a way to pull up one's past results?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on July 26, 2019, 06:05:50 am
I wonder if Mr. Mueller's performance was intentional (difficulty hearing, not knowing what many thought were key points in the report), so that people will not bother him anymore about this. He is 74 and could have more grandchild time. It could also be that his work lived in more of a bubble with those surrounding him keeping track of the details, or that he insulated himself from the rest of the news media for the last couple of years.

He also stayed away from all of the answers that the Democrats and Republicans wanted to hear. For the poor Republicans he stayed away from the origins of the investigation. And the poor Democrats really, really wanted a smoking gun, but he refused to say what they wanted him to say, and he even clarified a point he made that they might have later used, probably when his support person realized what they were going to use his words for.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on July 26, 2019, 10:23:14 am
He was a tired teacher who just really wished the people asking him questions had read the assigned reading.

And he was VERY conscious that both sides wanted him to be on camera speaking what they saw as the most damning parts of the report. They wanted it in his voice.

And it's true - having him say those words would have more power than what would be seen as a partisan repeating them, or saying, "read it yourself." - but he very strongly didn't want to be used as a partisan prop. I give him credit for that. People kept asking, "Will you read this paragraph?", and he declined each time, for both party members, having them read it themselves.

Basically, his report wasn't super convenient to anyone. The Republicans don't want to acknowledge the VAST amount of Evidence of Very Bad Things listed out in the report and all of the serious implications therein, and the Democrats wants him to go further that the report was willing to go and say unequivocally what other departments he's not connected to or associated with should do about it.

He's trying to stay EXTREMELY strictly in what he understands as his lane. Team Trump wants him to say, "There's No Evidence Of Any Wrongdoing!", and the evidence and his bounds absolutely and very clearly don't allow him to accurately say that. In fact, his on-the-record notes that claims of complete exoneration and 'finding no collusion' are not accurate are a massive thorn in the side, but they keep repeating it anyway.

The Democrats want him to say, "He should definitely be indicted or impeached!", and his bounds as he understands them don't allow him to properly say that either.

While in any other world, the contents of the report SHOULD absolutely lead to further bipartisan action and concern, instead, we've got loud vocal extremes on both sides that are insane, and absolutely add to the polarization of the political discourse.

It's a mess.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 26, 2019, 03:06:32 pm
...the contents of the report SHOULD absolutely lead to further bipartisan action
Which contents should lead to action, and what action should be taken?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on July 26, 2019, 06:37:57 pm
It's a lie that's always been used to keep immigrants in their place.

"Go back to where you came from." Different words. Same sentiment.
I'll never look at Marge Simpson the same again.

https://youtu.be/e2Ux3LGHTTo?t=189

(Happy Friday folks!)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on July 31, 2019, 10:13:27 am
Thanks, NT. I needed a good smile :)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on August 02, 2019, 10:43:27 am
The feud between Trump & Elijah Cummings continues.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-tweets-about-reported-break-in-at-cummings-home/ar-AAFePAM?ocid=ientp

What president of the United States has ever mocked a crime victim?  ::)  And don't tell me this tweet isn't a mock.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 02, 2019, 11:47:03 am
Oh, the tweet ranks with people hearing someone had a heart attack and saying "now that's a shocker", or hearing their teen driver got a speeding ticket and saying "Gee, and here you always tell me you drive 5 mph under the limit.", etc.

The answer to your question Curelom, is the eye-roll emoji has been with us since there have been humans.  So has blind antagonism towards someone in authority that people don't like.

 ::)

As for smarmy comments at another's misfortune because they've supposedly brought it upon themselves?  Here's one involving two of our founding fathers, John Adams talking about Alexander Hamilton.

Quote
In this place I cannot avoid introducing a reflection by Way of digression. What a pity it is that our Congress had not known this discovery, and that Alexander Hamiltons project [...] all arose from a superabundance of secretions which he could not find Whores enough to draw off? and that the Same Vapours produced his Lyes and Slanders by which he totally destroyed his party forever and finally lost his Life in the field of honor. But to return from this digression

Yeesh.  Not just mocking Hamilton and blaming him for his own death, but also doing it after he was dead.  Yeah.  You keep telling yourself Trump is the worst because he says mean things.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 02, 2019, 03:39:14 pm
Quote
Oh, the tweet ranks with people hearing someone had a heart attack and saying "now that's a shocker", or hearing their teen driver got a speeding ticket and saying "Gee, and here you always tell me you drive 5 mph under the limit.", etc.   

Good point.  People who make comments like this in public are antisocial a**holes.  Thanks for continuing to validate my  anti-Trump opinion.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 02, 2019, 05:07:55 pm
How's your opinion on the founding fathers?  They did the same, were they also antisocial a**holes?

(Just wondering if you're intellectually consistent, or just an "orang man bad" brain-dead waste of skin.)

(And since we're tossing around personal insults for some reason, which is worse?  Being an antisocial a**hole who ushered in a worldwide revolution in human rights, or that thing I almost called you?)

(And finally, I don't really think of you, or anyone like that JLM.  Just returning the insults for dramatic effect.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 02, 2019, 05:29:56 pm
Jefferson could definitely be an A-hole.  His personal attacks on Adams were not appropriate.  I'll give him credit for later repenting and repairing the relationship.

Don't care you call me names.  I'll take it as a badge of honor.

But in rebuttal, you will note that I said PUBLIC commets.  It may be appropriate to challenge your teen's honesty using that type of language in a private conversation, but NOT appropriate in front of others.  Context. 

Furthumore, Trump's comments have no rhetorical value other than schadenfreudesque  dog whistling. 

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 03, 2019, 10:07:34 am
Every time Trump does or says something asinine, I have extended family members who immediately post information about the asinine things Obama or Clinton did. It's a deflection. I see kids do it all the time when I confront them because of their bad behavior. "But she said..." as they point to another person.  Bad behavior is bad behavior, no matter what political party the person belongs to.

As citizens and voters, we often complain about the decline in decency among our elected officials. But then, we defend them, we make excuses for them, we deflect criticism away from them, and we seek to lessen their culpability, all because we affiliate with the same party as them. We need to stop doing that. We need to hold our elected officials to higher standards of civility and professionalism. They're not going to change until we--all of us--tell them to stop behaving like bullies.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 03, 2019, 12:57:32 pm
We need to hold our elected officials to higher standards of civility and professionalism. They're not going to change until we--all of us--tell them to stop behaving like bullies.

I wish the solution to this would be something that is actually possible and within the scope of human nature. 

Quick poll of the room: How many righties we got here that didn't vote Trump?
How many lefties we got here that didn't vote Hillary?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 03, 2019, 01:25:47 pm
I voted Republican in every presidential election I participated in prior to 2016.
In 2016, I did not vote for Trump or Hillary.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 03, 2019, 02:12:09 pm
Quote
Every time Trump does or says something asinine, I have extended family members who immediately post information about the asinine things Obama or Clinton did. It's a deflection. I see kids do it all the time when I confront them because of their bad behavior. "But she said..." as they point to another person.  Bad behavior is bad behavior, no matter what political party the person belongs to.

This is something we strongly emphasize with our children (current ages 5 and 9). When called out for bad behavior, they are to apologize for and/or come to terms with their own behavior, and not compare or justify it with something their sibling or someone else did.

No, "I'm sorry, but...". I let them know they aren't being called out in comparison to what someone else did, they're being called out for what THEY did. Them being called out doesn't mean any other party won't be called out at well - it simply isn't relevant to their own accountability.

If any apology is followed by an attack or justification, it takes away the power and sincerity of the apology.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on August 03, 2019, 03:08:32 pm
Quote
We need to hold our elected officials to higher standards of civility and professionalism. They're not going to change until we--all of us--tell them to stop behaving like bullies.

They only represent the society we are. If we expect better behavior of them, then it's time we act the part.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 03, 2019, 03:12:25 pm
Quick poll of the room: How many righties we got here that didn't vote Trump?
How many lefties we got here that didn't vote Hillary?

I'm independent. In past elections, I have mostly voted for Republicans in national races, Democrats in state and local races, and (when we lived in Texas) Libertarian judges. In 2016, I voted for Johnson & Weld in the presidential race.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 03, 2019, 03:25:20 pm
We need to hold our elected officials to higher standards of civility and professionalism. They're not going to change until we--all of us--tell them to stop behaving like bullies.

I wish the solution to this would be something that is actually possible and within the scope of human nature.

Well, we could use our God-given intellect, discover a little about them, and then not put them on the ballot in the first place. When Obama entered the race, all you had to do was look at his voting record in the senate and you would know that his answer to every issue was more government spending and regulation. Before Trump entered the race, all you had to do was look at his much-publicized business failings and the way he treats other people. But, people who actually care enough to vote in the primaries are the same people who put party allegiance before every other consideration. Then, in the general election, the choices are whatever idiocy the primary voters have determined. So that's a start: Learn something about the candidates and vote in primary elections.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 03, 2019, 04:31:00 pm
Yep. My state allows you to vote in the primaries of one party at a time. IE, if you vote in the first democratic primary, you can't also vote in the Republican primary, etc. I've always voted in Republicam primaries. This time, I will be voting in a Democratic primary.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 03, 2019, 05:44:15 pm
Former Republican turned independent about 15 years ago.  I have generally vote for the party not in power for state positions (so R in Cal and D in Utah), usually vote R for President (with Trump being the obvious exception), and D for the Senate and House.  For local positions, I favor those with a scientific or engineering background.  These days my ticket tends to be 70% D and 30% R, largely because I currently live in a heavy R district.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Curelom on August 14, 2019, 10:44:55 am
https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Trump-official-Statue-of-Liberty-poem-refers-to-14302331.php

Folks from $#!+#0[$ countries need not apply.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 14, 2019, 02:59:44 pm
A quick check of Wiki:
Quote
As part of one such effort, an auction of art and manuscripts, poet Emma Lazarus was asked to donate an original work. She initially declined, stating she could not write a poem about a statue. At the time, she was also involved in aiding refugees to New York who had fled anti-Semitic pogroms in eastern Europe. These refugees were forced to live in conditions that the wealthy Lazarus had never experienced. She saw a way to express her empathy for these refugees in terms of the statue.

And a quick check of common sense: Unless there is some serious dysfunction happening, of course all nations want only those to immigrate who will be net contributors, and not a net drain on that nation's resources. 

Oh - and I found a discarded memo from da left.  It reminds everyone that the correct "R" word from last month until the election is "racist", and it reminds everyone to never speak again the old "R" word of "Russia", for obvious reasons. 

And for pete's sake - you can't say it like Joe Biden did.  You have to say it better than this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=If2q-pO95k0
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on August 14, 2019, 03:28:21 pm
Every time Trump does or says something asinine, I have extended family members who immediately post information about the asinine things Obama or Clinton did. ...

Aren't you leaving out the step that triggers that reaction?   If all that happened was someone did something  uncivil and it was reported completely fully and accurately,  then a response of "everyone is doing it, would be every bit as bad as you state.

But what is far more common is that it isn't just reported, isn't fully accurately reported, and/or those who hate the person who did it heap on about him, in addition to the fully accurate news report.   The response then is not deflection, but calling out the hypocrisy of those who would flail the person they hate generally, but not the same conduct from people they support.    When we call out uncivil behaviors we are only on firm ground when we do it based on the behavior, and not our feelings/beliefs about the person doing whatever we think is uncivil, or wrong.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 14, 2019, 03:52:59 pm
Quote
and it reminds everyone to never speak again the old "R" word of "Russia", for obvious reasons. 

Uh, I believe the left (as well as everyone else) should still be very concerned about Russia's past and current attempts to meddle with the elections, as well as several other dangerous aspoects concerning policy with them. (Mitt Romney was mocked by Obama for suggesting we should be chiefly concerned with Russia. Obama was super wrong, and, other things about Obama I do admire aside, I think that debate moment should and absolutely will go down in infamy)

While I'm disgusted at Trump, and concerned about Russian interference (among other things), it is also very possible for me to be frustrated at harmful rhetoric and approaches taken by those on the left. I don't think there's a balance right now, however, or feel there's really a need for there to be one.

By the way, so we're clear, I also want everyone associated with Epstein's evil, whatever political party they may be a part of, to be discovered and held accountable.

It's possible to be bipartisan, and be disgusted as immoral and disgusting behavior and silly positions no matter what jersey the individual is wearing.

I don't despise Trump because he's a Republican, or a 'Right Winger'. I am disgusted by him because of what he says, does, and the open contempt he has for morals and people I value. He currently has the power to codify his approaches that I despise into policy. I'll also find that policy just as contemptible. Trump doesn't even try to coach these policies in nice language. He says what used to be the quiet parts out loud, and has caused the quiet racism and contempt to be an acceptable part of the discourse, and one of the 'sides' that people are claiming we honor as just another 'opinion' that needs to be honored.

Listen, if a Democrat wins the election, and they put forth policies or speak in anything nearly as disgusting or demeaning or immoral as Trump does, I'll be the first in line to call that out as well.

What-about-ism is pointless. I like to think most people's responses to such arguments would be, "Yup. That person, who happened to wear the same political jersey I do/did, was totally wrong on that, too."

Being an actual moderate isn't all that fun. There are very few political standard-bearers you can full-heartedly get behind, but a whole ton you just really don't like.

And then there's Trump. Who you'd think good people from both political sides would want to reject completely and fully. But here we are.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 14, 2019, 07:00:48 pm
It's possible to be bipartisan, and be disgusted as immoral and disgusting behavior and silly positions no matter what jersey the individual is wearing.
...
Listen, if a Democrat wins the election, and they put forth policies or speak in anything nearly as disgusting or demeaning or immoral as Trump does, I'll be the first in line to call that out as well.

What-about-ism is pointless. I like to think most people's responses to such arguments would be, "Yup. That person, who happened to wear the same political jersey I do/did, was totally wrong on that, too."
Yay!  Finally found a replacement .sig for my profile here!
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 14, 2019, 09:23:55 pm
And a quick check of common sense: Unless there is some serious dysfunction happening, of course all nations want only those to immigrate who will be net contributors, and not a net drain on that nation's resources.
That kind of "common sense" is one sided, at best. Australia, and our own history, clearly illustrate that what other nations consider a dumping ground for all manner of undesirables can become a global power in any way imaginable. We would be a colony in servitude to a foreign crown were it not for our huddled masses yearning to breathe free.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on August 15, 2019, 05:54:49 am
This week in Media Hypocrisy:

Don Lemon allegedly sexually assaulted a man in a bar. CNN is standing behind him. Not sure where the #MeToo movement went. In a private conversation that was leaked, Trump is recorded saying these words, but not actually doing them. Don Lemon actually does it in a public place.

Chris Cuomo threatened to throw a man down the stairs for calling him a name from the movie Godfather. CNN is standing behind him. Good thing the guy didn't play a drum near his face to diffuse the situation. Minor Nathan Phillips showed far more restraint for a more significant provocation than Chris Cuomo did.

April Ryan has her security guard assault a reporter who was cleared to be there. CNN is standing behind her. Enemy of the people is only relevant in certain circumstance.

Gunman targets and shoots up ICE facility. No news organizations condemning the Democrats for their hateful rhetoric that is causing this. Only one of the major news networks even covered this at first.

The Dayton Shooter was a leftist whose manifesto quoted prominent Democratic presidential candidates. This is buried to focus on the manifesto by the Texas shooter who was anti-immigrant.

Multiple times this week I have heard Democratic presidential candidates lie and say that Donald Trump called white supremacists and neo Nazis fine people, when he explicitly excluded them and condemned them. And none of the interviewers called them out on that.

It would be much easier to turn away from Donald Trump and the Republicans if the alternative did not exhibit so much hypocrisy. It appears that they have a narrative and will use whatever means necessary to advance that narrative.

It is hard to call out your own side. The only one that I see who does that regularly is Mitt Romney. But he is attacked extensively for that.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 15, 2019, 07:22:50 am
Quote
Don Lemon allegedly sexually assaulted a man in a bar.
The charge is assault, not sexual assault, and it appears the guy previously tried to extort Lemon and has been vocal in his opposition to CNN on social media.

If it turns out Lemon did what he's specifically accused of, it's absolutely gross, disgusting, and uncalled for. But so far, the circumstances of the accusation are under extremely questionable circumstances. Lemon is a constant specific target of harassment by Trump on Twitter and otherwise. The actual data raises serious credibility questions (just like a great deal of Kavanaugh's (many) accusers )

Quote
Chris Cuomo threatened to throw a man down the stairs for calling him a name from the movie Godfather
Yeah, he totally lost his cool. There's some more context behind the name, but he absolutely should not have threatened to toss him down the stairs. I do wish CNN had at least added that it doesn't condone threats of violence.

Quote
Gunman targets and shoots up ICE facility. No news organizations condemning the Democrats for their hateful rhetoric that is causing this.
You're right, as far as I can see. What are some of the examples of violent rhetoric towards ICE have you seen coming from elected political leaders? I've definitely seen some by randos on Twitter, tho. I'd like some more data points, please
 Thanks!

The Dayton Shooter was a leftist whose manifesto quoted prominent Democratic presidential candidates. This is buried to focus on the manifesto by the Texas shooter who was anti-immigrant.

Can you show me where you found news about this shooter's manifesto? I've heard he followed and retweeted Left candidates, but I'm not getting any results for a manifesto being found, let alone one where he quotes them or even echoed their rhetoric in support of killing people. I'm just curious what news source has provided you with this information? Thanks.

Quote
Multiple times this week I have heard Democratic presidential candidates lie and say that Donald Trump called white supremacists and neo Nazis fine people, when he explicitly excluded them and condemned them. And none of the interviewers called them out on that

This is sonewhat disingenuous, and likely on the part of your sources rather than you.  Initially, he absolutely did explicitly include them as being 'fine people', and doubled down on doing so. He later gave a teleprompter speech where he did say the words saying he condemned them, but also immediately went off prompter to intentionally bring them back into it. I watched all of those things live. I've seen them since. You are not being accurate here. Maybe you genuinely haven't watched different videos, or only heard one news service deny it, and then show the one clip from the one news conference. There's a history and a context and multiple data points on this one. He's since been asked if he still holds to the very fine people on both sides, and he doubled down. On the original non-scripted comments.

Quote
It is hard to call out your own side. The only one that I see who does that regularly is Mitt Romney. But he is attacked extensively for that.

The only 2016 Republican candidate who NEVER finally came in support of Trump, even momentarily, was John Kasich. Almost all the candidates called him a slimeball or worse during the primaries, and then turned somewhere down the line into a sycophant. While I definitely have some disagreements with him, Kasich's policies were by far the most moderate as well, and so of course he was dismissed by The Party. He remains the only R candidate from that primary season who I would have actually felt pretty good voting for.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 15, 2019, 10:13:23 am
What are some of the examples of violent rhetoric towards ICE have you seen coming from elected political leaders? I've definitely seen some by randos on Twitter, tho. I'd like some more data points, please
 Thanks!

I think the biggest one was AOC calling detention centers "concentration camps", and then doubling down on it later.  https://dailycaller.com/2019/08/13/aoc-doubles-down-concentration-camps/

10 minutes of googling shows a million news stories of threats and violence against ICE centers being blamed on "anti-ice rhetoric from leaders on the left", but I don't see a single other example. 

My dad was paid to carry a rifle and grenades into Belgium and Germany to kill people working for the government that ran Nazi concentration camps.  It's what good guys do - kill people who run concentration camps, right?  Thanks, AOC.

https://abc6onyourside.com/news/nation-world/ice-blames-political-rhetoric-and-misinformation-for-violence-as-immigration-tensions-ri


(And just a reminder - I was telling Nauvoo the other day about the ICE facility in the Denver area that was vandalized by protesters, the American flag taken down and the Mexico flag raised in it's place.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 15, 2019, 10:44:46 am
Quote
My dad was paid to carry a rifle and grenades into Belgium and Germany to kill people working for the government that ran Nazi concentration camps.  It's what good guys do - kill people who run concentration camps, right?  Thanks, AOC.

Here's a question that lots of recent stuff have brought up to me. If someone sees a parallel to the development of something dangerous and evil in the past - where is the line between [[warning about the parallels in strong clear terms so we don't GET to that point]], and [[not making the comparison because it's highly emotional charged]].

We all know that the worst atrocities committed by "OTHER" governments didn't come out of nowhere. There was a process involving policy, rhetoric, and acceptance by degrees as 'normal' of those things long before the FINAL BIG BAD STUFF came around as a 'natural' extension of those things.

In other words, it's hard for me to find the line/balance between knowing when someone is just seen as crying wolf, and when there's an actual danger in trajectory that can have substantial and significant historical parallels.

I think there are people who shout out NAZI because it's become the cool thing to do. I also believe there are people who shout out Nazi because a) people are self-identifying as such, and b) there are real-life parallels to the trajectory and rhetoric involved.

It becomes easy to conflate the two, and dismiss the latter because the former exists.

It's like saying a person plausibly convicted of a crime cannot be guilty of that crime, because someone else made up a false accusation of them doing something similar to them, and that was shown to be incorrect.

I think it's accurate to say there are some troubling trajectory and rhetorical and policy similarities with this administration, and the attitudes and ideas presented in the rise of the worst policies and practices of Nazi Germany. I think calling attention to such parallels can be helpful, especially in forcing supporters to really think about how different (or similiar?) some of them actually are. (Although in some cases, it's been shown that upon unwilling to disagree that what WE are doing is wrong, it goes on with logic to suggest, "well, maybe the Nazi's weren't all that wrong afterall")

BUT - it's also correct to say many who are screaming out the term Nazi at any and all supporters of Trump are misguided, and unhelpful.

It's nuanced, and its frustrating, and really concerning altogether. And I don't know what a fix-all solution is.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 15, 2019, 12:27:35 pm
After writing that, I see this today (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/14/opinion/joe-walsh-trump-primary.html?smtyp=cur&smid=tw-nytopinion), from *checks notes* Joe Walsh. I give him a LOT of credit for writing this.

Some excerpts:
Quote
In Mr. Trump, I see the worst and ugliest iteration of views I expressed for the better part of a decade. To be sure, I’ve had my share of controversy. On more than one occasion, I questioned Mr. Obama’s truthfulness about his religion. At times, I expressed hate for my political opponents. We now see where this can lead. There’s no place in our politics for personal attacks like that, and I regret making them.
Quote
Mr. Trump has taken the legitimate differences that Americans have on policy and turned them into personal division. He’s caused me to change my tone and to reflect upon where I went over the line and to focus on policy differences moving forward.

Reading that, on a humerous note, I was somewhat reminded of this sketch (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VImnpErdDzA).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 15, 2019, 12:36:58 pm
I think it's accurate to say there are some troubling trajectory and rhetorical and policy similarities with this administration, and the attitudes and ideas presented in the rise of the worst policies and practices of Nazi Germany. I think calling attention to such parallels can be helpful, especially in forcing supporters to really think about how different (or similiar?) some of them actually are. (Although in some cases, it's been shown that upon unwilling to disagree that what WE are doing is wrong, it goes on with logic to suggest, "well, maybe the Nazi's weren't all that wrong afterall")
I think we've got some common ground here, Taalcon.  How about that?

I was arguing in less polite areas of the internet the other day, and, well, this:


Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 15, 2019, 08:12:22 pm
CNN is standing behind him.
As an intelligence officer in the USAF, I always had CNN playing, because I could often get breaking news faster than through classified sources. For example, I had been watching footage on CNN of the airplanes hitting the WTC towers for 15 minutes and had already briefed my wing commander before the SIPRnet (classified internet) alarm let me know urgent message traffic was coming in. And then, about 2003/2004, CNN started becoming very partisan. I haven't watched Communist News Network since.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 15, 2019, 10:45:36 pm
What are some of the examples of violent rhetoric towards ICE have you seen coming from elected political leaders? I've definitely seen some by randos on Twitter, tho. I'd like some more data points, please.
Another one dawns on me - not ICE, but law enforcement.  The recent anti-cop absolute lies from Senator and Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren, misrepresenting (as in, bizzaro mirror Star-Trek universe misrepresenting) the Michael Brown case.   Her tweet is still up for all to see:
Quote
5 years ago Michael Brown was murdered by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. Michael was unarmed yet he was shot 6 times. I stand with activists and organizers who continue the fight for justice for Michael. We must confront systemic racism and police violence head on.
https://twitter.com/ewarren/status/1159902078103445507


Senator and presidential hopeful Kamala Harris like 15 minutes earlier:
Quote
Michael Brown’s murder forever changed Ferguson and America. His tragic death sparked a desperately needed conversation and a nationwide movement. We must fight for stronger accountability and racial equity in our justice system.
https://twitter.com/KamalaHarris/status/1159893277954514944


Here my failed googling had me thinking it was mostly fake outrage meant to build on AOC's nonsense.  Now I'm truly outraged.   Not just random lefties, but two sitting senators.  Both of them Democratic candidates for president.  Now that I look at the actual, live tweets, I'm almost physically ill.

What has Trump said that even comes close?  Bragging about grabbing women's genitals because they let you, doesn't really compare to anti-cop lies in my book...
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Palmon on August 15, 2019, 11:16:07 pm
During the narcotics raid in Philidelphia, spectators were laughing, mocking, pushing and throwing objects at the police. I'd like to say it's some politician's fault for saying blah blah blah.  But it isn't. It is the fault of the people acting out.

[url]https://www.foxnews.com/us/crowd-of-onlookers-taunt-police-during-philadelphia-standoff-reports/url]
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Jason on August 15, 2019, 11:54:36 pm
This is from the transcript of the Trump's press conference, which was not with teleprompters. I am not being inaccurate when I say that he excluded the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists. He did not double down on praising the neo-Nazis and white nationalists at this press conference. He did not call the neo-Nazis and white nationalists 'fine people', yet that is what is said by the Democrat's presidential candidates.
Quote
and I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists because they should be condemned, totally. But you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists, OK? And the press has treated them absolutely unfairly.
In this press conference he differentiated between people that were there to quietly protest the removal of a historic statue and those very bad people that were there to be violent. And while not all of the counter-protesters were violent, Antifa was among them. I consider Antifa to be a domestic terror group. Antifa is not composed of good people. These are people that seek to enforce their political beliefs through violence and terror, believing that the ends justify the means. They came to fight. They came to revel in violence. They came to make a media circus. Antifa absolutely bears an amount of blame for the violence.

The Dayton shooter might not have been a traditional manifesto, but here is what CNN reported,
Quote
In the hours before the Dayton shooting, the Twitter account "liked" several tweets about a shooting in El Paso that left 22 dead, including one supporting gun control and others that called the El Paso shooting suspect a "terrorist," and a "white supremacist."
The account retweeted messages supporting Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, as well as posts against ICE agents, including one that said, "these people are monsters," and multiple posts condemning police, and supporting Antifa protesters, who often use violent tactics.
There were also many tweets of selfies, photos with a friend and ordinary memes and nonpolitical content.
The account was suspended by Twitter on Sunday evening. A Twitter spokesperson would not comment on the account, only saying in a statement, "We're proactively removing content that violates our policies and will be engaged with law enforcement, as appropriate."
He is also the one who had a rape and kill list. Keeping an enemies list is not typically a sign of a stable mind (Joaquin and Julian Castro...).
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 16, 2019, 01:05:11 am
Quote
The Dayton shooter might not have been a traditional manifesto, but here is what CNN reported,

So, specifically NOT that he had any manifesto (a document designed to clearly explain beliefs and motives) that quoted political leaders or named them or called them out as support and justification for his attack (which was on civilian attendees at an event, and targeted on ICE or Police Officers), as you claimed. Okay. Just wanted to make sure we were clear.

Because your whole topic was false narratives.

Quote
This is from the transcript of the Trump's press conference, which was not with teleprompters.

The initial press conference, which the later press conference you quoted was a RESPONSE to, was absolutely with a teleprompter, and has this: ""But we're closely following the terrible events unfolding in Charlottesville, Va.. We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides. "

The bolded part was not on the prepared remarks written for him. It was ad libbed by Trump in the moment, suggesting there was equal "hatred, bigotry and violence" on what he sets up as "Both sides".

The night before the murder, the "peaceful protests" were by a literal Neo Nazi group. They organized the event. The people chanting "you will not replace us. Blood and Soil" These were who organized it. They were leading the chants.  It was a literal White Supremacy rally. If you were a part of that protest movement, you were literally identifying with them. You were joining THEIR event.
(https://cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/170812072518-01-charlottesville-white-supremacists-0811-restricted-exlarge-169.jpg)
Video from the event. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVzQSEIh-gM)

A counter-protester was murdered. By a White Supremacist. Who was there for the White Supremacist rally.

So for Trump to get up and suggest that maybe theoretically there were good people among that group in the press conference you quoted was was absolutely disengenuous.

If you show up to someone's party and do what the hosts are doing, you're part of the party.

And of course anyone who proactively went after someone violently was in the wrong (you know, like the white supremacist who ran over people).

This was a time when there was a clear long-seeded moral ill on display, of a group of people chanting and advocating for the loss of rights of those who are not white, who were advocates of slavery, who were using the emblems of Lynch Mobs, that ended in Murder.

For ANYONE to not just directly come against that, but set up the counter-protesters as on equal ground? Come on, Jason.

Trump has also made clear he has no idea what White Nationalism IS. In fact, the use of the term bothered him so much, he declared HIMSELF a Nationalist, and urged others to do so as well, to specifically use that phrase. (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/23/us/politics/nationalist-president-trump.html)

Trump regularly says he condemns or disavows something, and then immediately justifies that such a thing or those doing such things as good, actually. It makes him say the words he's supposed to say so they can be quoted by his supporters (hi), while the absolutely rest of everything else he says and does show what he meant by it.  It's gas-lighting to the extreme.

It goes something like this:

* [[White Nationalism is Bad, whatever.]]
* [[Most People At The White Nationalism Party Were not part of the Bad People, they were Good People]]
* [[Nationalism is a good thing, and those good people, who are definitely not bad, should all all call ourselves Nationalists.]]
* [[No, those people saying they are Nationalists are the Good Kind. My Kind.]]

When you deny that acts of racism are actually racism, then nobody can be called a racist.

When you think that Nationalism is good, and White Nationalism isn't really a thing, when you condemn White Nationalism it's empty, and when you call yourself a Nationalist, you are seen as promoting the ideology by those who also call themselves by that name.

A lot of the most prominent White Supremacists were quite vocal around Twitter at that time. It was clear that none of them felt condemned by Trump, and many felt emboldened. First a VERY long delay in saying anything (which Trump attributed to wanting to know all the facts before saying anything - COME ONE. NOBODY who knows Trump thinks he every actually looks for full details before commenting, and placing blame.). He knew it was a White Supremacist rally. He knew the White Supremacist killed someone.

He also knew very well many of the White Supremacists vote for him. And if anything, he needed to wait to see if he could find something to shift some of the blame off of them, and to soften the blow, and not make it unilateral against his supporters.

Come on, Jason.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 16, 2019, 01:08:17 am
Not just random lefties, but two sitting senators.  Both of them Democratic candidates for president.  Now that I look at the actual, live tweets, I'm almost physically ill.

Yeah, if the situation and facts are as I currently understand them, those are, at best, very irresponsible.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 16, 2019, 01:33:54 am
Bragging about grabbing women's genitals because they let you, doesn't really compare to anti-cop lies in my book...
They're both disgusting and should be condemned, in my book. Bragging about sexual assault doesn't get a pass because of what someone else said.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 16, 2019, 08:35:05 am
Lemme just, as a right wing white guy, say something transparent and unambiguous:

I denounce white nationalism or white racism of any sort.  Those people don't represent me.  I don't care what you believe about the role of government or the dangers of taxation or whatever, once you cross the line into demonizing or elevating a group because of race or ethnicity, you are not one of me.

There.  I did it without saying anything about what the other side does.  Because it doesn't matter what the other side does, this stuff is wrong, bad, even evil when it's bad enough.

(Tryna do right by my new .sig. :) )
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 16, 2019, 08:52:07 am
I remember when the Church first posted this statement condemning what happened in Charlottesville (https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/church-statement-charlottesville-virginia), some members used it to suggest the Church was both-siding it, and was really condemning antifa, Black Lives Matter, etc, and actually supported White Supremacy and White Nationalism, (this was especially in response to a White Supremacist member that was gaining more and more traction online and at WP events, who was making lots of claims that Church policy and doctrine actually supported her position).

In response, the Church made an unprescedented update making VERY Clear who they were talking about.

Quote
It has been called to our attention that there are some among the various pro-white and white supremacy communities who assert that the Church is neutral toward or in support of their views. Nothing could be further from the truth. In the New Testament, Jesus said: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37–39). The Book of Mormon teaches “all are alike unto God” (2 Nephi 26:33).

White supremacist attitudes are morally wrong and sinful, and we condemn them. Church members who promote or pursue a “white culture” or white supremacy agenda are not in harmony with the teachings of the Church.

This resulting in LOTS of comments on the Church Facebook page from angry members saying that the Church was falling into the Liberal narrative, that White Supremacism wasn't really a thing, that Nationalism was a GOOD thing, and was just another word for Patriotism, demanding for them to also specifically denounce those who said, "Black Lives Matter" because it was JUST as bad and racist too, call out antifa, etc.

The Church, unlike some other denominations and professed Christian leaders (and politicians), didn't cave on this point. And I felt very proud.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 16, 2019, 09:18:15 am
An excellent example of the church reading Taalcon's post. 
 "Yup. That person, who happened to wear the same political jersey I do/did, was totally wrong on that, too."

(I'm probably getting this in the wrong order or something.  It's back to school morning for my kiddos, and I'm not exactly sure where I fit in the timeline here.)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 16, 2019, 09:20:58 pm
We're heading into a recession. A big one. Recession is a good thing for the wealthiest one percent. They have the resources to buy lots of real estate at deeply discounted prices. When the market goes back up, they can use that real estate as security for all kinds of other investments. No complaints, there. This is capitalism.

However. This recession is ENGINEERED. Trump's trade war is driving it. Even the hardest-hit sector, American agriculture, still stands behind a morally bankrupt president who is using his public office to enrich the 1% (and himself, of course.) Sure, we can vote him out of office next year. It will be too late. We'll be in full recession in four months. The first big indicator was when big ticket luxury items, such as boats and RVs, fell by 40% over the summer. The next biggest indicator is happening now. Investors are moving money to tax-backed investments--the safest you can get even if they're low yield. Economists see it coming.

What will it take for people to understand that Donald Trump IS NOT a public servant. What will it take take for people to understand they have been sold a bill of goods?

I'm done blaming Trump for the decline of everything America stands for. The responsibility rests on those who continue to support him in spite of all the evidence that "Make America Great Again" is 180 degrees out from reality.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 16, 2019, 09:43:55 pm
However. This recession is ENGINEERED.
If we're gonna be throwing around conspiracy theories, then let's at least think about who would benefit with a country in recession during the next presidential election.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 17, 2019, 12:06:53 am
That's simple.  Trump.  With a depressed real estate and stock market, he can buy properties and securities on the cheap.  Heck, he might even try to buy Greenland, which will increase in value as we heat up the Earth by pumping coal into the atmosphere. 

My wifw has been saying for the last two years that he is trying to tank the economy, and I'm starting to believe her.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 17, 2019, 12:31:18 am
Read what economists are saying. Look at what's happening in the market.

Jan Hatzius, Goldman Sachs chief economist: “We have increased our estimate of the growth impact of the trade war. Fourth-quarter growth could drop to 1.8 percent. The cumulative hit the trade war has dealt to the nation’s gross domestic product is at 0.6 percent. Fears that the trade war will trigger a recession are growing.”

Bruce Kasman, chief economist and head of economic research at J.P. Morgan: “I think we have a heightened risk of recession. I think the reason is that we’re seeing the intensification of the big drag in the global economy this year: The falling business confidence related to geopolitical concerns, particularly trade conflicts."

Nicolas Lardy, Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics: "American companies and consumers are the ones paying the price. Trump keeps putting out the big lie that prices are not going up because Chinese producers are absorbing the tariffs. Every independent study has found that Chinese producers are not lowering their prices.”

Marc Zandi, Chief Economist at Moody's Analytics: "The trade war with China already has eliminated 300,000 jobs and reduced the GDP growth by 0.3 percentage points. If Trump follows through with 10 percent on $300 billion, and tariffs stay there, the impact by the end of 2020 will be 0.7 percent. Trump’s likely got a recession on his hands."

For the first time since 2007, the yield curve inverted in the bond market. That means long term rates fell below short term rates. That means investors think the U.S. economy is headed for recession.

30 Central Banks around the world have recently cut interest rates because of slowdowns caused by Trump's trade war and the Brexit debacle.

People way smarter than me believe we're heading for a recession and that Trump's trade war is a chief cause. That's not conspiracy. It's economics.

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 17, 2019, 01:49:24 pm
Roper, I'm not saying a recession isn't coming.  I'm saying that JLM's post is a tad weird.

Trump wants a recession because it'll help him buy Greenland for cheap, and after he blackens the skies with coal and global warming, the earth will heat up and Greenland will go up in value?

I can't even fathom the mindset of someone who thinks that's a plausible. 

JLM, do you also think NASA faked the moon landing?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 17, 2019, 02:40:40 pm
I think it was hyperbole to illustrate Trump's agenda in removing environmental safety regulations and promotion of U.S. dominance in oil and gas.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 17, 2019, 03:22:10 pm
Was it hyperbole, JLM?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 17, 2019, 09:55:41 pm
I'm really missing the point and laugh emoji from old Nauvoo.  Yes, of course I was using hyperbole ... sort of.  It was noted that only the rich benefited during a recession, and Trump, allegedly being rich, could really snap up a bunch of real estate for super cheap is the economy tanked.  He truely has an incentive to hurt the economy.  The Greenland thing was just to be funny in light of the rumors of him proposing to buy Greenland and his horrible record on the environment.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 18, 2019, 11:43:36 am
Fair enough.  Now, off to amend my social media post of "guess what someone just said to me!"
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 21, 2019, 10:35:00 pm
Not angry. Just...incredibly sad that we have come to this.

Quote
The U.S. government will not give flu vaccines to migrant families being held in detention centers near the U.S.-Mexico border ... even after three migrant children have died in the past year from the flu.

Earlier this month, doctors associated with Harvard and Johns Hopkins sent a letter to Congress members calling for an investigation into the health care at migrant detention facilities. The doctors specifically cited the migrant children who died from the flu ...
- https://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-wont-give-flu-vaccines-to-migrants-in-border-detention-centers-near-mexico-border/ (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-wont-give-flu-vaccines-to-migrants-in-border-detention-centers-near-mexico-border/)

"And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold;" - JS-M 1:10

Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 21, 2019, 11:59:35 pm
ICE has been overrun by heartless, racist, compassionless scoundrels and needs to be disbanded.  The evil there runs so deep it cannot be fixed.  Immigration enforcement needs a complete purge and reboot.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 22, 2019, 01:59:06 pm
Hey Roper and JLM, just out of curiosity, when was your last flu shot?  I don't think me or anyone in my family has ever had one, although we might have that one year when H5N1 was in the news.  What was that, 2009?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 22, 2019, 02:25:44 pm
Hey N3uro, just out of curiosity, do you consider their (and your) circumstances comparable those detained, en masse, in enclosed spaces in many cases without a particularly great access to many standard hygenic materials (like soap) (https://www.npr.org/2019/08/15/751634918/appeals-court-rules-detained-migrant-children-should-get-soap-sleep-clean-water)?

(I get the shot annually, as does my family. I forgot to get around to it two years ago, and I alone got the flu in a highly strong manner that year that renewed my resolve to do whatever I could to avoid that in the future)
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 22, 2019, 03:07:22 pm
My last flu shot was Sep 2018. Same with everyone in my family. We're all getting them again next month.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 22, 2019, 03:22:04 pm
Hey N3uro, just out of curiosity, do you consider their (and your) circumstances comparable those detained, en masse, in enclosed spaces in many cases without a particularly great access to many standard hygenic materials (like soap)?
There are obvious differences.

There are more comparable circumstances to times when the cops are called on a domestic violence incident and go arrest the parents, and the children are seized and placed into CPS custody.

I doubt anyone has ever given a second's thought to "did CPS vaccinate these children?"  But then again, the news can't use such stories as a way to bash Trump, so why would anyone?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 22, 2019, 03:41:04 pm
From what I've seen, the way children are handled in cases of CPS is not in any way comparable to the circumstances in these under discussion.

While I understand the argument/comparison being made to the cause of the removal of children, when you go to the conditions of the individuals, the situation of the children who are removed by CPS as opposed to in these circumstances is, generally, simply not comparable.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 22, 2019, 08:02:56 pm
Comparisons aside, doctors from Harvard Medical and Johns Hopkins are concerned enough that they sent a letter to congress. It's interesting that congress hasn't acted on it. At the very least, they could appropriate the funds and then have a legal case when DHS refused to implement.

From DHS's own report: "We are concerned that overcrowding and prolonged detention represent an immediate risk to the health and safety of DHS agents and officers, and to those detained." You can bet that DHS agents are required to get flu shots to help protect them. The same shots are denied to migrant children. Hmm...
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: pnr on August 22, 2019, 09:37:28 pm
Don't you think that the parents of those children ought to be the ones deciding whether or not to vaccinate their children?   Why do we think the federal government should impose vaccinations  --- they don't /cannot do it for citizens?
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Taalcon on August 22, 2019, 10:00:41 pm
I mean, sure, ask the parents! I don't think the parents are being consulted about anything, or I guess the kids would have gotten soap? Pretty sure none would have opted out of that given the option.

The situation is messed up, and quite unprecedented in its sheer numbers. And the Flu has killed children in custody.

But you're right. That's a great idea. Offer it, and ask the parents if they want to opt out giving their children a potential life saving measure.

Most of these families aren't privileged enough to even think about being an anti-vaccer.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: Roper on August 24, 2019, 09:53:40 am
Why do we think the federal government should impose vaccinations  --- they don't /cannot do it for citizens?
It is not and never was about "imposing." It is about providing. Our government provides flu vaccinations to millions of children through federal and state programs. Why not migrant children? Because the Trump administration believes, like the Obama administration before Trump believed, that these kind of measures are a deterrent to families seeking asylum. Study after study shows that there is zero deterrent effect. Hmm...keep my children here, where they might be murdered or sold into slavery, or travel a thousand miles to America, where I know we'll be detained and probably deported. But, maybe we'll be one of the lucky families who get in...

I know exactly what choice I would make. As many times as it took.
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: JLM on August 24, 2019, 01:56:04 pm
So Trump now thinks he is "The Chosen One."  Wow. What a megalomaniac.  Yet his approval rating still hovers around 40%. It is so hard to believe that 40% of the population is that stupid, but here we are
Title: Re: Current Events - US Politics Edition
Post by: N3uroTypical on August 24, 2019, 05:04:51 pm
[is one of the 40% that "is that stupid"]

I'm the rubber, you're the glue.  Or something.