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2851  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 09, 2010, 11:20:01 AM
The Gaza blockade has been a smashing success with regards to it's original intent which was to reduce rockets screaming into Israel.  If you look at the number of rockets launched the numbers are way down from a few years ago.

Not a peep from MSM about that.   All we hear now is that it is a public relations disaster and the policy Gaza blockade policy MUST be reviewed and of course changed by Israel.  This is the spin, even among idiot (IMO) liberal Jews.  They also spin the handling of the confrontation as being bungled. 

"The most ambitious of the two plans has been devised by members of Israel's National Student Union, who this week announced their intention to set sail toward Turkey, in an effort to bring humanitarian aid to the "oppressed people of Turkish Kurdistan" and to members of the "Turkish Armenian minority."

Seems like a good PR move, but the MSM will ignore or talk it down.  The UN will of course somehow find a way to spin this criticize Israel anyway.


 
2852  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: June 07, 2010, 01:28:01 PM
***Back to 1980, the most prominent Democrat in the Senate did not wait for a second term to end to challenge the failed sitting President in his own party.***

Doug,  You may be right.  If Bamster keeps up the cluelessness some Dems may very well want to challenge him in 2012.

I guess the only good thing about Bamster's pursuit of a fantastic social life while the world (gently) weeps is that it keeps him from focusing on destroying this country further.  I think Schumer could live without an endorsement from Paul McCartney.

2853  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: June 07, 2010, 12:51:06 PM
As a Republican I have asked this question time and time again.  I have noticed other right leaning Jews asking the same questions.  Whether this actually satisfactorly answers why so many Jews are such liberals I am not sure but at least someone has the courage to finally write about it.  I am not sure what to make of Dick Morris who as everyone knows helped Clinton get popular in the polls till he was caught with a girl.  I guess it could be said that behind every successful man is a good woman and behind the downfall of every successful man is a bad girl.  In any case:
 
****By Dick Morris 06.5.2010 A Book Review By DICK MORRIS of Why Are Jews Liberals? By Norman Podhoretz

It is the question that sooner or later baffles every political pundit, consultant, expert, or observer. Why do American Jews persist in their adoration of the Democratic Party? Why, like an abused spouse, do they tolerate Israel-bashing, support for the Palestinians and Democratic softness on terrorism and still return for more? As the richest demographic group in our population, why do they still vote for Obama and donate money to him when he specifically proposes to raise the taxes on those making more than $200,000 per year?

Why do they let liberal politicians embrace the likes of Louis Farrakhan and Rev. Jeremiah Wright and still support them on Election Day?


I don´t have an answer and have never heard a satisfactory one from any leader of an American Jewish or pro-Israeli organization.

But Norman Podhoretz does and he explains his ideas in his brilliant book Why Are Jews Liberals?

American Jews, Podhoretz explains, grew up in liberal homes heavily influenced by the ideology they inherited from their Eastern European ancestors. There, in Russia and Germany, you either followed the Kaiser´s or the Czar´s line or were a Communist. Reacting to their exclusion and the pogroms that harassed them, these ghetto Jews readily embraced Marxism. Indeed, Marx was, himself, born a Jew and the majority of the first Bolshevik Politburo in 1917 were Jews. When Hitler railed against Jews and Communists, he often felt no need to distinguish between the two.

In the New World, communism morphed into socialism in the early years of the twentieth century when Eugene V. Debs won a million votes (almost 10%) on the Socialist Party ticket for President. Finally, under the more benign influence of FDR and the New Deal, this leftist impulse settled into the cozy niche of liberalism where it has remained ever since.

Zionism, also, closely identified itself with socialism and the Labor Party of Golda Meier and David Ben Gurion, which dominated Israel´s early years, pushed its ideological agenda. Kibbutzim were formed with communal living as a Fabian or utopian socialism took root in the holy land. So leftist were the early Israelis that Russia recognized the state of Israel even before the United States did in the hopes that it could become a socialist ally. The political majority which underscored this leftist bent was based on Jews descended from the ghettos of Europe — Ashkenazi Jews.

In the U.S. Jews stayed in the liberal camp not just out of conviction but also from fear of the Christian right. When fundamentalism reared its head in American politics, they feared that anti-Semitism would not be far behind. And, as the anti-communism of the McCarthy era targeted the Jewish intellectual establishment, their dependence on Democrats only increased.

It came as a shock to America´s Jews that first Nixon, then Reagan, and finally Bush-43 emerged as Israel´s strongest supporters. (The tepid backing Bush-41 gave the Jewish state was more in line with what they expected from the GOP). And it came as a total shock when the religious right became Israel´s strongest backer based on its biblical conviction that God had promised the Holy Land to the Jewish people.

But, by then, religion and even Israel had weakened their holds on American Jewish hearts. They attended religious services less than half as frequently as establishment Protestants and only one-third as often as Catholics or Evangelicals. Most Jews, Podhoretz notes, attended synagogue “four times a year” on the high holy days.

Meanwhile, in Israel, the socialist Ashkenazi-based Labor Party (led by Shimon Peres) fell to the campaigns of Menachem Begin and Bibi Netanyahu. Both had as their base the Sephardic Jews who came, not from Europe, but from Africa or the Middle East. They had no heritage of socialism, much less Marxism and had a healthy disrespect for their long term neighbors in the Arab world. To American Jews, they looked racist and embarrassed them in front of their liberal friends. When Obama accuses Netanyahu of “intransigence”, he echoes what liberal Jews themselves often think of the Israeli right-wing.

But Podhoretz´ book, written before Obama manifested such an anti-Israel bent, leaves unanswered the question of whether the pro-Palestinian bias of the current administration, not to mention its war on prosperity, will drive Jews away from their liberal moorings. The answer probably lies more with events than within Jewish thinking. As it becomes apparent that Israel faces a holocaust-like threat from Iranian nuclear weapons and the disastrous results of Obama´s socialist project become evident, Jews will likely gradually wean themselves away from the liberal Democratic Party. As it becomes more anti-Israel and anti-wealth, the Party will leave the Jews before the Jews realize it has left and themselves leave the party.

Norman Podhoretz, former editor of Commentary Magazine, and long a leading voice of the neo-con movement, has diagnosed the Jewish addiction to liberalism and helped us to understand why it still dominates their thinking. He has solved the mystery. Now let’s see what we conservatives and Republican Jews can do with the knowledge he has given us.

Purchase Why Are Jews Liberals? from Amazon.com — Go Here Now

Purchase Why Are Jews Liberals? from Barnes&Noble.com — Go Here Now****


2854  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Dems: Schumer in 2016 on: June 07, 2010, 09:45:45 AM
This morning while watching him give a lecture on the greatness of gigantic government made me realize who the next in line Democratic Presidential candidate will be (probably as Crafty thinks - not 2012 but 2016).
Another NE liberal lawyer.  Chuck Schumer.  This is the guy the Republicans better start studying and getting their answers to.
He is IMHO FAR more formidable than Bamster who doesn't have a clue.

He is the guy who is going to bring the fight right back at us.  He is in line to be the Senate Dem leader after Reid falls this fall.
Next will be the Presidential bid.  I don't think he will want to be Bamster's second fiddle for 2012 though it is possible.
2855  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / HT: deep seated hatred for Jews revealed on: June 05, 2010, 01:28:24 PM
There was something about the Helen Thomas thing that made me wonder if she has Arab roots.  Only a Jew hating person (or Jew hating Arab - of course many don't feel this way - I do not speak of all Arabs this way) would make such comments.
On Wikepedia it is noted she is the child of Lebanese emigrees to the US.
I am not clear if they were Lebanese Christains or Muslims.  There is a big difference in their regard to Jews I think.
Her parents were most likely from Muslin heritage.  The Christain Lebenese I have met don't dislike Jews.  Indeed they are more tired of the Palestinian Muslims.

So in this context  her remarks are not surprising.  At her age she may have some cognitive defects and sometimes these defects manifest by people making statments or outbursts that normally they would be able to suppress.  I had a 93 yo. Polish lady who yelled at me while I was clearing wax out of her ears screaming about the "damn Jews", and "Nazis".  Her son a wonderful man kind of laughed.

He has thanked me many times for my care of her (she recently passed away).

I never came out and told him I am a Jew.  I guess I figured I didn't want him to feel embarrased by his senile old mother's remarks.

Yet one cannot dispute she had a deep seated hatred of Jews. 
The glee and delight that many Poles had as the Jews were carted away to be murdered is of course legendary.

Just like Thomas' comments whether made because of early or mild dementia or not, indicate she too has a deep hatred of Jews.

On the other hand, I remember a senile old lady back in the early 1980s when I worked as an orderly.  She was Jewish.  She had the number tatooed on her forearm.
She was so senile she could not even tell you her name.  Yet when they brought a stretcher to take her down from her hospital room to go get an Xray she started seeing "bodies all around her".  Her memories of Auschwitz were vividly described as they took her away (just to go downstairs).  She probably thought she was being taken to the ovens.

Now nearly 30 years later I still remember watching and listening with tears welling in my eyes while she made those comments.

It amazes me regarding the last memories people have as they gradually slip into full blown dementia.

And now too we see Iran's leaders telling the world straight out their plans on how to deal with the Jewish "problem".

I was not old enough to have lived through WW2.  But I have seen enough of the bullshit of the world to know this is the real deal - again.  I have NO reaon to doubt they mean what they say.
Mark my words.  It is coming. 
2856  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: June 05, 2010, 12:27:22 PM
Beng a physician is no longer a "profession".
We are controlled, regulated, villified, debased, and guilty to we prove our innocence.

My accountant and of course my lawer makes twice what I make despite my having far more training, education, legal risk, regulation to deal with, and stress.

I have to fight to get paid, I have to go through a quagmire of regs, mazes, fee collectors, billers, chase after pateints for even a few dollars, pay all of these people a cut just to get paid.  I have to pay my accountant a much higher hourly rate just to get my tax refund due me from the government even though all she does is sit on her ass and write a letter, add and subtract, and fill out a form.

I could go on.

There are some doctors who abuse the system and while I don't condone that at least some of them justify doing it because of all the suffering we are made to go through.

All the while I go through this I see Bamster protecting lawyers.  Not a peep about their corruption.  Not one peep.

Katherine and I have gone what I have ad nauseum noted hear.  And of course I am still expected to be a saint who loves medicine and just lives to provide the most humane best medical care to my patients and all the while agree with another scumbag lawyer named Chuck Schumer state all doctors should make no more than 80K a year.  If that is what he wants there will be no one left in medicine other than nurses and Asians and Middle Easterners dying to come here and work for 100 hrs a week for ten cents.  Then they will smarten up, realize this is not what they came here for and stop coming and many will go back to where they are from because it aint' worth it here.
2857  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 04, 2010, 03:30:47 PM
The police analagy is wrong.

This was not some police action asking for a parking permit.  They were going out to intercept the possible transfer of deadly arms to an enemy combatant.

This is war.

And yes, guns are taken from the soldiers and shots are fired it certainly is appropriate to defend themselves and ask questions later.

Your position as in Kruathammer's article points out makes it nearly impossible for Israel to defend itself without some ciriticism always being justified at the end.

Then again I am not a student of this theory that everything challenge has to be met with "proportionate" force.  Quite the contrary I believe the opposite.
But that is another issue for another thread.

2858  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Krauthammer:troublesome Jews on: June 04, 2010, 01:17:55 PM
I used the phrase F* Jews.  Charles is nicer about it and uses the term "troublesome".

****Krauthammer: Those troublesome Jews
Charles Krauthammer
Friday, June 4, 2010

The world is outraged at Israel's blockade of Gaza. Turkey denounces its illegality, inhumanity, barbarity, etc. The usual U.N. suspects, Third World and European, join in. The Obama administration dithers.

This Story
Krauthammer: Those troublesome Jews
Nudging Israel toward a Gaza fix
Cairo's unmet promise
But as Leslie Gelb, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, writes, the blockade is not just perfectly rational, it is perfectly legal. Gaza under Hamas is a self-declared enemy of Israel -- a declaration backed up by more than 4,000 rockets fired at Israeli civilian territory. Yet having pledged itself to unceasing belligerency, Hamas claims victimhood when Israel imposes a blockade to prevent Hamas from arming itself with still more rockets.

In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded ("quarantined") Cuba. Arms-bearing Russian ships headed to Cuba turned back because the Soviets knew that the U.S. Navy would either board them or sink them. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.

Oh, but weren't the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel's offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza -- as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.

Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel's inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.


Israel has already twice intercepted ships laden with Iranian arms destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?

But even more important, why did Israel even have to resort to blockade? Because, blockade is Israel's fallback as the world systematically de-legitimizes its traditional ways of defending itself -- forward and active defense.

(1) Forward defense: As a small, densely populated country surrounded by hostile states, Israel had, for its first half-century, adopted forward defense -- fighting wars on enemy territory (such as the Sinai and Golan Heights) rather than its own.

Where possible (Sinai, for example) Israel has traded territory for peace. But where peace offers were refused, Israel retained the territory as a protective buffer zone. Thus Israel retained a small strip of southern Lebanon to protect the villages of northern Israel. And it took many losses in Gaza, rather than expose Israeli border towns to Palestinian terror attacks. It is for the same reason America wages a grinding war in Afghanistan: You fight them there, so you don't have to fight them here.

But under overwhelming outside pressure, Israel gave it up. The Israelis were told the occupations were not just illegal but at the root of the anti-Israel insurgencies -- and therefore withdrawal, by removing the cause, would bring peace.

Land for peace. Remember? Well, during the past decade, Israel gave the land -- evacuating South Lebanon in 2000 and Gaza in 2005. What did it get? An intensification of belligerency, heavy militarization of the enemy side, multiple kidnappings, cross-border attacks and, from Gaza, years of unrelenting rocket attack.

(2) Active defense: Israel then had to switch to active defense -- military action to disrupt, dismantle and defeat (to borrow President Obama's description of our campaign against the Taliban and al-Qaeda) the newly armed terrorist mini-states established in southern Lebanon and Gaza after Israel withdrew.

The result? The Lebanon war of 2006 and Gaza operation of 2008-09. They were met with yet another avalanche of opprobrium and calumny by the same international community that had demanded the land-for-peace Israeli withdrawals in the first place. Worse, the U.N. Goldstone report, which essentially criminalized Israel's defensive operation in Gaza while whitewashing the casus belli -- the preceding and unprovoked Hamas rocket war -- effectively de-legitimized any active Israeli defense against its self-declared terror enemies.

(3) Passive defense: Without forward or active defense, Israel is left with but the most passive and benign of all defenses -- a blockade to simply prevent enemy rearmament. Yet, as we speak, this too is headed for international de-legitimation. Even the United States is now moving toward having it abolished.

But, if none of these is permissible, what's left?

Ah, but that's the point. It's the point understood by the blockade-busting flotilla of useful idiots and terror sympathizers, by the Turkish front organization that funded it, by the automatic anti-Israel Third World chorus at the United Nations, and by the supine Europeans who've had quite enough of the Jewish problem.

What's left? Nothing. The whole point of this relentless international campaign is to deprive Israel of any legitimate form of self-defense. Why, just last week, the Obama administration joined the jackals, and reversed four decades of U.S. practice, by signing onto a consensus document that singles out Israel's possession of nuclear weapons -- thus de-legitimizing Israel's very last line of defense: deterrence.

The world is tired of these troublesome Jews, 6 million -- that number again -- hard by the Mediterranean, refusing every invitation to national suicide. For which they are relentlessly demonized, ghettoized and constrained from defending themselves, even as the more committed anti-Zionists -- Iranian in particular -- openly prepare a more final solution.****

2859  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: June 04, 2010, 10:18:21 AM
As for marijauna the only real reason to legalize it is to take the profit out of the business as a criminal enterprise.

Medically I am not convinced of any value.  It is just a bunch of middle aged (my generation) pot head hippies who want to smoke dope.

Almost without exception. 

I met an ophthamologist in Florida who was harrased by the DEA like Katherine and I are harrased by the organizewd crime that runs the music business.  His life was ruined.  They stalked him, would get into his safety deposit boxes, go through his mail, listen in at his home, go through all his accounts, watch his associates, friends, and family.  I guess he was pushing for the vague and questionable medicinal use of pot for glaucoma.  It does seem to reduce eye pressures but spordically and unpredictably and from what I read not at all in a way that is comparable to real medicinals that are not available.  I suppose it may have some anti-emitic effects in cancer treatment or with advanced AIDS, but mostly it seems to me the people pushing it are th post heads from the 60's and 70s.
2860  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: June 04, 2010, 10:10:53 AM
Another example of the dissonance of immigration debate.  We have huge unempolyment yet we also have at the same time 20 million people here illegally because they need the work.

Using the phrase I am hearing from more and more people (friends, patients, talk shows, blogs etc.)
"this country is upside down".

At least Newt on Greta a night or two ago admitted the Right seems to like the cheap labor and thus has also not been going after the other half of the immigration problem - the employers.
2861  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 04, 2010, 09:45:30 AM
Perhaps this thread should be retitled the cognitive dissonance of immigration debate in the US.  Now we are debating that illegals are fighting for their civil rights analogous to Blacks whose ancestors were brought here in chains. I say enough.  And don't tell me the story about they guy who is an "aspiring physicist"(see below)!  I am not impressed.  Get the hell our of here.  They/he are/is illegal. What about the word illegal do they not understand. They have no rights as citizens under our laws.  Now we are debating this?? rolleyes

BOSTON (AP) - They gather on statehouse steps with signs and bullhorns, risking arrest. They attend workshops on civil disobedience and personal storytelling, and they hold sit-ins and walk out of class in protest. They're being warned that they could even lose their lives.

Students fighting laws that target illegal immigrants are taking a page from the civil rights era, adopting tactics and gathering praise and momentum from the demonstrators who marched in the streets and sat at segregated lunch counters as they sought to turn the public tide against racial segregation.

"Their struggle then is ours now," said Deivid Ribeiro, 21, an illegal immigrant from Brazil and an aspiring physicist. "Like it was for them, this is about survival for us. We have no choice."

Undocumented students, many of whom consider themselves "culturally American" because they have lived in the U.S. most of their lives, don't qualify for federal financial aid and can't get in-state tuition rates in some places. They are drawing parallels between themselves and the 1950s segregation of black and Mexican-American students.

"I think it's genius," said Amilcar Shabazz, chairman of the W.E.B. DuBois Department of Afro-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts. "If you want to figure out how to get your story out and change the political mood in America, everybody knows the place to start your studies is the civil rights movement."

For two years, Renata Teodoro lived in fear of being deported to her native Brazil, like her mother, brother and sister. She reserved her social contact for close friends, was extra careful about signing her name anywhere, and fretted whenever anyone asked about her immigration status, because she been living illegally in the United States since she was 6.

Yet on a recent afternoon, Teodoro gathered with other illegal immigrants outside the Massachusetts Statehouse with signs, fliers and a bullhorn - then marched the streets of Boston, putting herself in danger of arrest by going public but hoping her new openness would prompt action on the DREAM Act, a federal bill to allow people like her a pathway to citizenship via college enrollment or military service.

"I don't care. I can't live like this anymore," said Teodoro, 22, a leader of the Student Immigration Movement and a part-time student at UMass-Boston. "I'm not afraid, and I have to take a stand."

The shift has been building, said Tom Shields, a doctoral student at Brandeis University in Waltham who is studying the new student movement.

"In recent months, there has been an interest in connecting the narrative of their struggle to the civil rights effort for education," Shields said.

The movement has gained attention of Congress. Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Richard Lugar, R-Ind., sent a letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano in April, asking her to halt deportations of immigrant students who could earn legal status under DREAM, which stands for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors act, and which they're sponsoring.

Last month, three illegal immigrant students demanding to meet with Arizona Sen. John McCain about DREAM were arrested and later detained for refusing to leave his Tucson office. High school and college students in Chicago and Denver walked out of class this year to protest Arizona's tough new law requiring immigrants to carry registration papers. In December, immigrant students staged a "Trail of Dreams" march from Miami's historic Freedom Tower to Washington, D.C., to raise support for DREAM.

Similar student immigrant groups have sprung up at the University of California at Los Angeles and the University of Houston.

By attaching themselves to the civil rights movement, Shabazz said, the immigrant students can claim the moral high ground and underdog status of the debate.

"The question now is ... can they convince moderate, middle-of-the-road, independent voters to support them?" he said.

The Rev. William Lawson, an 81-year-old civil rights leader and retired pastor of Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church in Houston, called the student activists' tactics courageous and said he'd like to meet them. But Lawson, who marched with Martin Luther King Jr., cautioned student immigrant activists to prepare for peers getting arrested, deported or possibly killed.

"You do have to expect consequences. Many civil rights activists faced injury, sometimes death," said Lawson. "And I'm not sure how many of these (students) understand the fundamental philosophy of nonviolence."

Students have to keep in mind the audience they're trying to win over, said Lonnie King, 73, a founder of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, the group responsible for sit-ins at segregated restaurants across the South in the 1960s.

"They need to understand that the bulk of folks are in the middle," King said. "They have to coach their message to make it broadly appealing."

In Massachusetts, hundreds of student activists have gone through training by Marshall Ganz, a public policy lecturer at Harvard Kennedy School and a former organizer with the late Cesar Chavez of the United Farm Workers movement. At special camps, students attend workshops on civil disobedience, storytelling and media outreach.

Students who have attended the workshops even continue to use the well-known farm workers' rallying clap at the end of organizing meetings.

"They know that clap," Ganz said, "because I taught them that clap. It's all about the experience."

Teodoro said the training changed her life and showed her the cause was larger than herself.

During the rally last week in Boston, she led a march from the Massachusetts Statehouse to Sen. Scott Brown's office at the John F. Kennedy federal building, which also houses U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices. Along with Carlos Savio Oliveira, 22, of Falmouth, Mass., another illegal immigrant, the pair walked into the federal building to hand Brown's staff 1,500 letters of support for the DREAM Act.

Outside supporters wore T-shirts with the words "Brown is beautiful" - a pun referring to the Chicano movement chant and Brown's well-publicized nude photo spread in Cosmopolitan magazine as a college student.

Brown, whose office was previously the site of a sit-in by the same group, has not said whether he supports the bill.

In September, Teodoro and a dozen other students also took a weeklong trip from Boston to the South, with Shields driving.

Along the way, they met with black former students who desegregated Clinton High School in Tennessee and Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas. They visited civil rights museums and filmed the journey for a planned documentary. But the highlight was meeting Carlotta Walls LaNier, a member of the Little Rock Nine.

Teodoro cornered LaNier at a book signing of her memoir, "A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School."

"I went up to her at the signing and told her my story and tried not to cry," Teodoro said. "She listened. Then, she hugged me."

2862  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 04, 2010, 09:37:00 AM
"But it was a fiasco.  I deeply respect Israel; but they can/could/should have done better."

Everyone keeps repeating this.  It was not a fiasco.  It was a confrontation.  Israelis tried to do it peacefully by gently boarding the ship.

They asked to be able to transfer the haul to Gaza themselves.

I don't see what else all the talking heads think would have been better.  They could have shot a missle accross the bow. When the antagonists would not stop they could have sunk the ships.  Then the national "community" could have even had more to gang up on Israel about.

They could have had a small army board the ships perhaps with submachine guns.  Those on board would have then been screaming that this was a disproportionate response to a "peace" ship.

No matter what they did, if they did not let the ships pass, they would be condemned.  This was not botched at all.  It is the medias way of a mea culpa to the Muslims who are for this sort of thing.

To have talking heads speaking of "big nets" in the water, and on and on.  Give me a break.

"but he alone in the world has not condemned Israel for this debacle." 

Obama has hardly come out in support of Israel.  Indeed, his lack of support for Israel may have inspired this sort of thing.

"And it will cost America..."

How so in this case?  You are suggesting because he has publically tried to appear neutral this was not enough.  Thus are you saying he should be condeming Israel because that is in agreement with World opinion and that will keep us popular with the world and the Arabs?

2863  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 03, 2010, 03:38:34 PM
So now to use hate speech against Jews is just as acceptable on campus as using hate speech against Christians.
Yet it would not be acceptable if say Ann Coutler came to town.

Like I have pointed out Nazis are not so bad.  It is the Republicans.  And now again the Jews.
2864  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 03, 2010, 02:47:47 PM
"The enduring hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors present distinct challenges to our ability to advance our interests in the AOR [Area of Responsibility of Cntcom] Israeli-Palestinian tensions often flare into violence and large-scale armed confrontations. The conflict foments anti-American sentiment, due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel. Arab anger over the Palestinian question limits the strength and depth of U.S. partnerships with governments and peoples in the AOR and weakens the legitimacy of moderate regimes in the Arab world. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support. The conflict also gives Iran influence in the Arab world through its clients, Lebanese Hizballah and Hamas."

Appeasement is easy when what you are giving up is the security of the lives of those from *another* country.  7 million Israelis against a billion plus Arabs?
With regards to Mr. Grossman who finds the Gaza policy a big mistake.  I suppose if the Israelis simply opened up Gaza the problem would go away???

He ignores the commitment of many Palestinians to the death of all Jews?

He ignores decades of attempts at two state solutions?

What is he talking about?

Appeasement is NOT going to work.  Unless of course the appeasement were for all Jews to vacate Israel and go somewhere other than Muslim territory.
Again may I suggest Antartica?
2865  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Bella Abzug - I remember her - famous for the hats. on: June 02, 2010, 05:40:06 PM
An impressive lady - but such a liberal -

Crafty your mother must must be reaching for maalox at you growing up to be the wrong kind of lib - a libertarian!

***Bella Abzug
From Wikipedia

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 19th and 20th district
In office
January 3, 1971 – January 3, 1977
Preceded by Leonard Farbstein
Succeeded by Theodore S. Weiss

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Born July 24, 1920
New York City, New York
Died March 31, 1998 (aged 77)
New York City, New York
Political party Democratic
Religion Judaism
Bella Savitsky Abzug (July 24, 1920 – March 31, 1998) was an American lawyer, Congresswoman, social activist and a leader of the Women's Movement. In 1971 Abzug joined other leading feminists such as Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan to found the National Women's Political Caucus. She famously declared "This woman’s place is in the House—the House of Representatives" in her successful 1970 campaign to join that body when she became the first Jewish woman in the United States Congress. She was later appointed to chair the National Commission on the Observance of International Women's Year and to plan the 1977 National Women's Conference by President Gerald Ford and led President Jimmy Carter's commission on women.
Bella Savitsky was born on July 24, 1920. Both of Bella’s parents were Russian-Jewish immigrants in the United States. Her mother, Esther was a homemaker and her father, Emanuel ran the Live and Let Live Meat Market.

When Ms. Abzug was 13, her father died and she was told she would not be allowed to say the Mourner's Kaddish for her father in synagogue where it is Jewish law for sons to say Kaddish (for 11 months after the death of a parent, although in Conservative and Reform communities both sons and daughters are permitted to say Kaddish). However, she did so as one of her first feminist actions because her father had no son. [1]

Abzug graduated from Walton High School in New York City, and went on to Hunter College of the City University of New York, later earning a law degree from Columbia University. She then went on to do further post-graduate work at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.

Abzug with New York Mayor Ed Koch (left) and President Jimmy Carter (1978)Abzug was admitted to the New York Bar in 1947, and started practicing in New York City at the firm of Pressman, Witt & Cammer, particularly in matters of labor law. She became an attorney in the 1940s, a time when very few women did so, and took on civil rights cases in the South. She appealed the case of Willie McGee, a black man convicted in 1945 of raping a white woman in Laurel, Mississippi and sentenced to death by an all-white jury who deliberated for only two-and-a-half minutes.[2] Abzug was an outspoken advocate of liberal causes, including support for the Equal Rights Amendment, and opposition to the Vietnam War. Years before she was elected to the House of Representatives, she was active in the organization Women Strike for Peace.[3] Her political stands placed her on the master list of Nixon political opponents.

Abzug was a supporter of the Zionist movement. In 1975 she led the fight against United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3379 (revoked in 1991 by resolution 46/86) which

"determine[d] that Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination."

She supported various international peace movements, which in Israel was led by Shulamit Aloni and others.

In 1976, Abzug ran for the U.S. Senate, but was narrowly defeated in the Democratic primary by Daniel Patrick Moynihan. She was also unsuccessful in a bid to be the Mayor of New York City in 1977, and in attempts to return to the U.S. House from the East Side of Manhattan in 1978 and from Westchester County in 1986. Abzug then founded and ran several women's advocacy organizations, in 1979 Women U.S.A., and continued to lead feminist advocacy events, for example serving as grand marshall of the 1980 August 26 Women's Equality Day New York March. [4]

Abzug served the state of New York in the United States House of Representatives, representing her district in Manhattan, from 1971 to 1977. For part of her term, she also represented part of The Bronx as well. She was one of the first members of Congress to support gay rights, introducing the first federal gay rights bill, known as the Equality Act of 1974, with fellow Democratic New York City Representative, Ed Koch, a future mayor of New York City.[5]

In 1990, she co-founded the Women’s Environment & Development Organization to mobilize women’s participation in international conferences, particularly those run by the United Nations and appeared in the WLIW video A Laugh, A Tear, A Mitzvah, Woody Allen's Manhattan (as herself), a 1977 episode of Saturday Night Live, and the documentary New York: A Documentary Film.

After battling breast cancer for a number of years, she developed heart disease and died on March 31, 1998 from complications following open heart surgery. She was 77.[6]

Congresswoman Abzug was married to Martin Abzug, whom she met on a bus in Miami on the way to a concert by Yehudi Menuhin, from 1944 until his death 1986. The couple had two children: Eve and Liz.

In 2004, her daughter Liz Abzug, an adjunct Urban Studies Professor at Barnard College and a political consultant, founded the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) to mentor and train high school and college women to become effective leaders in civic, political, corporate and community life.

To commemorate the 30-year anniversary of the first National Women’s Conference, a ground-breaking event held in Houston in 1977 and over which Bella Abzug presided, BALI hosted a National Women’s Conference on the weekend of November 10-11, 2007, at Hunter College, NYC. Over 600 people from around the world attended. In addition to celebrating the 1977 Conference, the 2007 agenda was to address significant women’s issues for the 21st century.[7]

Bella! Ms. Abzug goes to Washington, Bella S. Abzug (edited by Mel Ziegler), Saturday Review Press, 1972 (ISBN 0-8415-0154-8)
Gender gap : Bella Abzug’s guide to political power for American women, Bella S. Abzug and Mim Kelber, Houghton Mifflin, 1984 (ISBN 0-395-36181-8)

Bella Abzug: How One Tough Broad from the Bronx Fought Jim Crow and Joe McCarthy, Pissed Off Jimmy Carter, Battled for the Rights of Women and Workers, ... Planet, and Shook Up Politics Along the Way, authored by Suzanne Braun Levine and Mary Thom, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007, (ISBN 0-374-29952-8)***
2866  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: June 02, 2010, 05:14:16 PM
The silver lining is that Bamster will set the liberal/progressive agenda back to Woodrow Wilson.  The bad news this country is going to be hurt bad till we can climb our way out of this mess.  The people going around saying he is doing a good job are deniers.  Sorry assholes.  You are not going to get your reparations.  Maybe you as well as the rest of us will have to work our butts off to get out of this mess.

And yes.  He does call to mind Jimmy Carter - but like I said - on steroids.  It can't be just coincidence the world's hot spots are exploding into turmoil while the ONE sits at the helm.  Remember big mouth Biden said Bamster would be tested?  Well what is the One going to do now that Israel may go to war with Turkey, we are closer to war in Korea in my lifetime, Iran is almost with nuclear weapons?  I guess he can continue to blame the F* Jews which he all but come out and done (its their faults because of a few housing projects).  Or he can blame Bush again which he has continued (to this day) to do.  Or of course he blame corporate American or BP.  Or he can continue to travel around the world as our fearless leader apologizing to the world for all its problems all the while saying the US is at cause of them.  When willl the MSM come out of their delusional state?  They will have to. Kicking and screaming yes. But they will eventually have to.  But when?

***By Dick Morris 06.2.2010 Published on TheHill.com on June 1, 2010

Conservatives are so enraged at Obama’s socialism and radicalism that they are increasingly surprised to learn that he is incompetent as well. The sight of his blithering and blustering while the most massive oil spill in history moves closer to America’s beaches not only reminds one of Bush’s terrible performance during Katrina, but calls to mind Jimmy Carter’s incompetence in the face of the hostage crisis.

America is watching the president alternate between wringing his hands in helplessness and pointing his finger in blame when he should be solving the most pressing environmental problem America has faced in the past 50 years. We are watching generations of environmental protection swept away as marshes, fisheries, vacation spots, recreational beaches, wetlands, hatcheries and sanctuaries fall prey to the oil spill invasion. And, all the while, the president acts like a spectator, interrupting his basketball games only to excoriate BP for its failure to contain the spill.

The political fallout from the oil spill will, indeed, spill across party and ideological lines. The environmentalists of America cannot take heart from a president so obviously ignorant about how to protect our shores and so obstinately arrogant that he refuses to inform himself and take any responsibility.

All of this explains why the oil spill is seeping into his ratings among Democrats, dragging him down to levels we have not seen since Bush during the pit of the Iraq war. Conservatives may dislike Obama because he is a leftist. But liberals are coming to dislike him because he is not a competent progressive.

Meanwhile, the nation watches nervously as the same policies Obama has brought to our nation are failing badly and publicly in Europe. When Moody’s announces that it is considering downgrading bonds issued by the government of the United States of America, we find ourselves, suddenly, in deep trouble. We have had deficits before. But never have they so freaked investors that a ratings agency considered lowering its opinion of our solvency. Not since Alexander Hamilton assumed the states’ Revolutionary War debt has America’s willingness and ability to meet its financial obligations been as seriously questioned.

And the truth begins to dawn on all of us: Obama has no more idea how to work his way out of the economic mess into which his policies have plunged us than he does about how to clean up the oil spill that is destroying our southern coastline.

Both the financial crisis and the oil come ever closer to our shores — one from the east and the other from the south — and, between them, they loom as a testament to the incompetence of our government and of its president.

And, oddly, to his passivity as well. After pursuing a remarkably activist, if misguided and foolhardy, agenda, Obama seems not to know what to do and finds himself consigned to the roles of observer and critic.

America is getting the point that its president doesn’t have a clue.

He doesn’t know how to stop the oil from spilling. He is bereft of ideas about how to create jobs in the aftermath of the recession. He has no idea how to keep the European financial crisis contained. He has no program for repaying the massive debt hole into which he has dug our nation without tax increases he must know will only deepen the pit.

Some presidents have failed because of their stubbornness (Johnson and Bush-43). Others because of their character flaws (Clinton and Nixon). Still others because of their insensitivity to domestic problems (Bush-41). But now we have a president who is failing because he is incompetent. It is Jimmy Carter all over again.

Who would have thought that this president, so anxious to lead us and so focused on his specific agenda and ideas, would turn out not to know what he is doing?***

2867  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 01, 2010, 11:11:56 AM
JDN,
Thanks for your repsonse. No one says you or anyone hates Jews if you disagree.
I was talking about Obama.  I believe he cynically uses Jews for his own power.  He had no problem sitting in a church of an obvious anti-semite for decades.

Maybe for the US it *would* simply be easier if it lets the Jews in Israel get wiped out.  Then the US would not have to take flak from the rest of the world for being an "ally" of the despised Jews.

There are well over a billion Muslims.  They have many huge countries.  The Jews have (till they are murdered - and it is coming - thanks to Iran) a small piece of Earth the size of NJ.  All they want is to live in peace and security.  And even that is too much for the Arab world.  And apparently much of the rest of the world too!

I too have also questioned out loud on this board if it is reasonable to ask US citizens to die for Jews.  My heart says yes.  But logically it may not be in the best interests of this country to do so. 

But make NO MISTAKE ABOUT IT.  If the US abandons Israel all Jews there will be murdered or driven abroad.  Israel cannot defend itself against a billion Muslims forever.

JDN, please feel free to express your thoughts.  I am sure many Americans rightly question US support of Israel.  You are not an anti-semite and I am not offended.


2868  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Ottomans,Persians:"kill all Jews" on: June 01, 2010, 10:16:39 AM
Isn't interesting how we hear that the new leadership of Turkey has dreams of a new Ottoman Empire.  It is the same as their other big competitor for dominance in of the Arab world - Iran with their dreams of a new Persian Empire.  Both want to be the central power broker in the Middle East.

And of course their *unifying theme - strategy* (as always seems to be with Arabs) is - kill all the F* Jews.  I think they wouldn't mind killing all Americans too and probably all Christians but since their are far fewer Jews they make for the age old easier target.

This strategy always seems to work too.  Now we have Egypt rallying to the cause and opening up "aid" to Gaza.

And the rest of the world too, as always, seems to be happy to get the F* Jews.

Bamster's heart is with the Arabs too.  Anyone who denies this, and those who love him are liars, denyers, or fools.
It will be interesting to see him try to weasel this one without offending Jews whom he has used for political support.  As I have pointed out on this board before this guy would NEVER have been President if it wasn't for the many Jews who helped him.  That is not to say he isn't smart or talented.  But all people getting to the Presidency have help.  And it is historical fact that there were/are many Jews around him who gave him much support, advise, money and the rest.


2869  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / correction:JonALter.eom on: May 30, 2010, 04:42:01 PM
eom
2870  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 30, 2010, 04:41:05 PM
"Everyone is now on the same page.  The White House, Bill Clinton, and Joe Sestak all now state that at the bidding of Rahm Emanuel, Bill Clinton approached Congressman Joe Sestak and offered him an unpaid position as an adviser"

The author leaves out the most crucial entity also now on board the "same page".

And that is the MSM.  It is obnoxious to high heaven watching the Democrat media saying how there is NO scandal, this is business as usual  and on and on and on.

If I see that punk Jonathan Alder one more time.....

Everything is so dumbed down.  Everything is poltical.  Nothing is sacred anymore (or even the prestense of being so).
We can't even rely on media to be reasonable.  What is left?

After watching all this slime, the MMS in bed with the oil industry they are supposed to regulate.  It is just like Copyright Office in bed with the monied people in entertainment they deal with.  Some there take bribes, look the other way, say nothing, don't want scandals, don't want to risk their jobs, get their friends in trouble, or want to get jobs with the those in the biz with money.

It is all the same.

Even our highest government people commit felonies and lie and cover it up.  What was such a huge deal over Watergate?  A minor burglary of some political documents.  That was so much worse than this?  Oh it was the cover up.  I get it.  Yet Jonathan Alter doesn't see a cover up here.  Just takes the characters in the middle at their word.

I just wish I had enough money and could retire and go get a cabin in a quiet place somewhere and leave the garbage to the world.  Our government, our media, they all make me sick.
 
2871  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: May 29, 2010, 06:27:22 PM
And this is exactly why they are "anchor babies" and why this law has to change.  Now it is that much harder to get this guy out of the country because he is going to ask what about my kids who are citizens.  *He* should have thought about that beofre he came here illegally.  And obviously he did.  And obviously he never thought anyone would actually enforce the law and now he is going to use the "how dare you break up families defense".  God are we stupid or what?

****" Alfonso Martinez, a 38-year-old Phoenix carpenter and father of three children who are American citizens, said he's been living illegally in the United States for 21 years while trying to get legal status.
"If they stop me and they find my status, who's going to feed my kids? Who's going to keep working hard for them?"****

Immigration law protesters march on Ariz. Capitol
 
PHOENIX (AP) - Thousands of people from around the country marched to the Arizona state Capitol on Saturday to protest the state's tough new crackdown on illegal immigration.

Opponents of the law suspended their boycott against Arizona and bused in protesters from around the country. Organizers said the demonstration could bring in as many as 50,000 people.

Midtown Phoenix buzzed with protesters carrying signs and American flags. Dozens of police officers were on standby along the route of the five-mile march, and helicopters hovered overhead.

Protesters braved temperatures that were forecast to reach 95 degrees by mid-afternoon. Some used umbrellas or cardboard signs to protect their faces from the sun. Volunteers handed out water bottles from the beds of pickup trucks, and organizers set up three water stations along the route.

Supporters of the law expect to draw thousands to a rally of their own Saturday evening at a baseball stadium in suburban Tempe, encouraging like-minded Americans to "buycott" Arizona by planning vacations in the state.

Critics of the law, set to take effect July 29, say it unfairly targets Hispanics and could lead to racial profiling. Its supporters say Arizona is trying to enforce immigration laws because the federal government has failed to do so.

The law requires that police conducting traffic stops or questioning people about possible legal violations ask them about their immigration status if there is "reasonable suspicion" that they're in the country illegally.

Supporters of the law insist racial profiling will not be tolerated, but civil rights leaders worry that officers will still rely on assumptions that illegal immigrants are Hispanic.

Luis Jimenez, a 33-year-old college professor who lives in South Hadley, Mass., said the law will force police officers to spend much of their time on immigration violations instead of patrolling neighborhoods or dealing with violent crime.

The law also makes it a state crime to be in the country illegally or to impede traffic while hiring day laborers, regardless of the worker's immigration status.

"You're saying to the cop: 'Go pick up that day laborer. Don't worry about that guy committing crimes,'" said Jimenez, a naturalized citizen from Mexico who grew up in Phoenix.

Alfonso Martinez, a 38-year-old Phoenix carpenter and father of three children who are American citizens, said he's been living illegally in the United States for 21 years while trying to get legal status.

"If they stop me and they find my status, who's going to feed my kids? Who's going to keep working hard for them?" he said, keeping a careful eye on his 6-year-old daughter as his wife pushed their 4-year-old girl in a stroller. Their 13-year-old son walked ahead of them.

Some opponents of the law have encouraged people to cancel conventions in the state and avoid doing business with Arizona-based companies, hoping the economic pressure forces lawmakers to repeal the law.

But Alfredo Gutierrez, chairman of the boycott committee of Hispanic civil rights group Somos America, said the boycott doesn't apply to people coming to resist the law. Opponents said they secured warehouse space for people to sleep on cots instead of staying in hotels.

"The point was to be here for this march to show support for these folks, then we're out," said Jose Vargas, a union representative for New York City teachers. "We're not spending a dime here."

Supporters of the law sought to counteract the economic damage of boycotts by bringing supporters into the state.

"Arizona, we feel, is America's Alamo in the fight against illegal and dangerous entry into the United States," said Gina Loudon of St. Louis, who is organizing the "buycott."

"Our border guards and all of Arizona law enforcement are the undermanned, under-gunned, taxed-to-the-limit front-line defenders trying to hold back the invasion," she said.

In San Francisco, groups planned to protest at the Arizona Diamondbacks' game against the Giants Saturday night.
2872  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 29, 2010, 10:32:52 AM
Well yes, but that isn't a defense.
Of course our politicians like everyone else are for sale.
Perhaps it is about time to put a (try at least) stop to this.
I dont' need Stanley Brand to state the obvious.

But this,"sometimes in reward for good service" is not a crime (I don't think).  Trying to offer a job (maybe Clinton did offer a blow job) to get  a person out of a Senate race is a crime.
2873  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 28, 2010, 02:49:34 PM
"anonymous sources"

or better yet, trial balloon?

Here we go again.  "It is only over a job" (not a blow job this time).  "Everyone does it".  "It depends what the word "job" means". It depends what the word "offer" means.

***By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 05.28.2010 The New York Times revealed this afternoon that anonymous sources have informed it that Obama’s chief of staff Rahm Emanuel asked former President Bill Clinton to offer Congressman Joe Sestak a high but unpaid advisory post in the Administration if he would drop out of the Senate race against Senator Arlen Specter. One post mentioned was service on the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board.

The idea was to immunize Obama and Rahm from possible criminal prosecution by using Clinton, not a government employee, as a cut out and to keep the offer to an unpaid job in hopes of not running afoul of the federal bribery statute.


But these evasions will not blunt the force of the law. If Clinton acted at Emanuel’s request, he was Rahm’s agent and the Chief of Staff is still on the hook. And, an unpaid position is still “something of value” within the meaning of the bribery statute which prohibits the offering of something of value in return for a vote.

And, remember why they wanted Sestak out of the race. The White House needed Specter’s vote to kill filibusters and could only get it if he would switch parties, a move he conditioned on getting Sestak to drop out and assure him a clear field for the nomination of his new party. So the bribe offer to Sestak was made by an agent of a government employee, it involved something of value, and it was to procure a vote in the Senate — all the elements needed for a felony to have taken place.

In a previous column (read it at DickMorris.com) Dick and Fox News Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano suggest that Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett, now the Republican nominee for Governor, should empanel a grand jury to get to the bottom of this affair. Today’s revelation makes this ever more urgent.***


2874  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "Did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?" on: May 27, 2010, 03:27:34 PM
'Obama said that every morning when he's shaving, his daughter comes in and asks, "Did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?"'

Who here besides me is old enough to remember Jimmy Carter asking his daughter Amy what was the worst problem facing the world and then using that in a speech??

This guy is such a Jimmy Carter on steroids.
2875  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Energy Politics & Science on: May 26, 2010, 07:18:20 PM
When MSNBC made sure *everyone* knows the ONE is soooo outraged when he said in "private":  "plug the damn hole" all I could think of is the hole I wish could get plugged is the mouthpiece between his ears.
2876  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: May 26, 2010, 07:13:10 PM
"I stand by my prediction that Obama won't be the D-nominee in 2012"

That leaves.......say it ain't so..... cry sad
2877  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: May 24, 2010, 05:51:49 PM
"I think you underestimate how addcited the Republicans in office right now are to spending our money and increasing government power, they are every bit as bad as the Dem's and they love playing helpless as the Dem's roll along."

Interesting comment.  Do you think they want to increase 'government' power or simply their own personal and/or party?

Sometimes I got the impression the Republicans were simply trying to compete with the Dems for votes by buying over more voters than the Dems themselves, and not necessarily a philosophical bent on expanding government.

For example, compassionate conservatism was a means to curry favor with some traditionally Dem voters.   

 
2878  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 24, 2010, 03:49:09 PM
And Rusmussan reports Bamster's (Rush's nickname for the phoney ONE) approval at 44% though this low level was reported before. grin smiley wink

If only the Cans can get their act together!?

Doug, I hope you are right and there is some sort of "Contract with America" again. 

I am hoping they are saving coming out with a contract list till closer to crunch time rather than give away their eggs now.  Yet in this day and age and as I have learned from the music business it is impossible to keep people for finding out one's ideas anyway.

That aside if the cans can come up with something a contract I think they can run away to *crushing* victory in Nov and not just win by default.

I believe A Lame Duck Bamster without his adoring majority in both houses will fold in the face of the opposition.

As for Contract with America, Newt appears to be planning a run.  Can he overcome previously terrible ratings though?  I dunno.
2879  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / disgusted in NJ on: May 23, 2010, 11:15:57 AM
On the AM talk show circuit I hear Paul being critiz=cized as radical because he questioned one small part of the Civil rights law and disabilities.  I don't think I can agree with him on the Civil rights point but I do on the Disability act.  Why do all of us have to pay for the minority of those with disabilities?

But this is certainly a lisoing poktical point anyway in a law that is already passed and entrenched.

What I cannot believe is the absolutely worthless defense Repblicans offer when asked about Paul's "radical agenda".

It is a no brainer to retort that it is less radical than the Obama, Pelosi radical agenda that haws expanded govevernment to the point of bankruptcy.

The cans just always fall into the defenseive mode.

Why can't they put a stop to the falicy that immigration is a civil rights issue when it is not?
Why can't they keep turning the point around to Obama and Democrats that they are the radical ones?
They always soind like a bunch of losers trying to defend themselves.
For goodness sakes I can do a better job of turningthe arguments right back around and putting the Dems on defense.

Are there any decent spokepeople out there?

Forget Sarah.  She sounds like a broken record.  She is a good attack dog but not inspiring beyond the angry base.  Every time I hear her I think well tell me something I don't already know. I know Bamster sucks.  So where do we need to go and how are we going to get there?

We need someone who can really talk of America as needing to wake up.  Needing for us to believe in ourselves.  Needing to accept the fact that we can't retire at 50, and expect government to take care of us our entire lives.  Contrast this to the bamster who has already resigned us to a dependency state and one of second class status.  He takes away our spirit, our confidence, our willingness to work hard.  Isn't that obvious with the his new world order?  All Americans have a stake in this.  He is giving OUR country away.
Black, White, Latiino, Asian.  It doesn't matter.  He is giving the dream away.

For example, we should be expanding the space program.  This is where we lead.  Why in the world shoudl we back off our leadership in space?  You wnat to stop nucs then use our lead to set up space based weapons that can defend against intercontinental missiles.  If we don't the Indians and Chinese will.

Where is the damn leadership?Huh

I am pissed and frustrated.  The cans are losers.



2880  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 22, 2010, 11:07:49 AM
He continues to hasten our decline.

By Michael D. Shear
Saturday, May 22, 2010; 11:45 AM

WEST POINT, N.Y. -- President Obama on Saturday pledged to shape a new "international order" as part of a national security strategy that emphasizes his belief in global institutions and America's role in promoting Democratic values around the world.

Speaking to the graduating class at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point -- the ninth wartime commencement in a row, he said -- the commander in chief who is leading two foreign wars expressed his faith in cooperation and partnerships to confront the economic, military and environmental challenges of the future.

"The international order we seek is one that can resolve the challenges of our times,'" he said in prepared remarks. "Countering violent extremism and insurgency; stopping the spread of nuclear weapons and securing nuclear materials; combating a changing climate and sustaining global growth; helping countries feed themselves and care for their sick; preventing conflict and healing its wounds."

The administration is set to officially release the president's first national security strategy next week, and Obama's preview on Saturday suggests it will be far different than the first one offered by his predecessor in 2002. In that prior document, President George W. Bush formally called for a policy of preemptive war and a "distinctly American internationalism."

Obama has spoken frequently about shaping new alliances with the world, and of attempts to repair the U.S. image abroad after nearly a decade in which Bush's approach was viewed with suspicion in many quarters. In his commencement speech to the graduates, the president emphasized his beliefs in those alliances.

"Yes, we are clear-eyed about the shortfalls of our international system. But America has not succeeded by stepping outside the currents of international cooperation," he said. "We have succeeded by steering those currents in the direction of liberty and justice -- so nations thrive by meeting their responsibilities, and face consequences when they don't."


 Obama said the United States will pursue a strategy of "national renewal and global leadership."

And yet, even as he calls for global cooperation, Obama has intensified America's own war in Afghanistan. And his administration has repeatedly confronted the dangers of Islamic terrorism on U.S. soil, including unsuccessful attempts to down a Detroit-bound airliner and to explode a car bomb in New York's Times Square.

To the men and women in the hall, many of whom are headed to Afghanistan because of the expansion of the war he announced here six months ago, Obama pledged "the full support of a proud and grateful nation."

The president expressed confidence in the military's ability to succeed in Afghanistan, but warned of a "tough fight" ahead as the United States helps the Afghan people to rebuild its civil institutions and its security system so they can battle the Taliban and other extremists on their own.

"We have brought hope to the Afghan people; now we must see that their country does not fall prey to our common enemies," he said. "There will be difficult days ahead. But we will adapt, we will persist, and I have no doubt that together with our Afghan and international partners, we will succeed in Afghanistan."

In Iraq, he said, the United States is "poised" to end its combat operations this summer, leaving behind "an Iraq that provides no safe haven to terrorists; a democratic Iraq that is sovereign, stable and self-reliant."

"You, and all who wear America's uniform, remain the cornerstone of our national defense and the anchor of global security," he said. "And through a period when too many of our institutions have acted irresponsibly, the American military has set a standard of service and sacrifice that is as great as any in this nation's history."

But he said civilians must answer the call of service as well, by securing America's economic future, educating its children and confronting the challenges of poverty and climate change. He said the country must always pursue what he called the "universal rights" rooted in the Constitution.

"We will promote these values above all by living them -- through our fidelity to the rule of law and our Constitution, even when it's hard; and through our commitment to forever pursue a more perfect union," he said.

To the cadets themselves, he praised their pursuit of being "soldier-scholars" and lauded the records of academic excellence the Class of 2010 has set. He also took note of the fact that the class's top two graduates this year are both women, reflecting, he said, the "indispensable role" that women play in the modern military.

As they become commissioned officers in the Army, Obama told the graduates of West Point that the country owes them a debt of gratitude.

"Here in the quiet of these hills, you have come together to prepare for the most difficult tests of our time'" Obama said. "You signed up knowing your service would send you into harm's way, and did so long after the first drums of war were sounded. In you we see the commitment of our country, and timeless virtues that have served our nation well."
2881  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Walter Williams on immigration on: May 21, 2010, 12:22:22 PM
I agree with his logic except to his "nutshell" conclusion which suddenly makes less sense.  I don't think it that heart-wrenching to send people here illegal packing home.
Why we can't stop being a nation of dupes?  I don't know why we must make immigration more streamlined or easier.  Why can't we simply enforce our laws, stop hiring illegals and allowing them to come here and have babies at our expense?  Why is this so hard?
 
****Wednesday, May 19, 2010
 Immigration and Liberty
by Walter E. Williams
 My sentiments on immigration are expressed by the welcoming words of poet Emma Lazarus' that grace the base of our Statue of Liberty: "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free." Those sentiments are probably shared by most Americans and for sure by my libertarian fellow travelers, but their vision of immigration has some blind spots. This has become painfully obvious in the wake Arizona's law that cracks down on illegal immigration. Let's look at the immigration issue step by step.

There are close to 7 billion people on our planet. I'd like to know how the libertarians answer this question: Does each individual on the planet have a natural or God-given right to live in the U.S.? Unless one wishes to obfuscate, I believe that a yes or no can be given to that question just as a yes or no answer can be given to the question whether Williams has a right to live in the U.S.

I believe most people, even my open-borders libertarian friends, would not say that everyone on the planet had a right to live in the U.S. That being the case suggests there will be conditions that a person must meet to live in the U.S. Then the question emerges: Who gets to set those conditions? Should it be the United Nations, the European Union, the Japanese Diet or the Moscow City Duma? I can't be absolutely sure, but I believe that most Americans would recoil at the suggestion that somebody other than Americans should be allowed to set the conditions for people to live in the U.S.

What those conditions should be is one thing and whether a person has a right to ignore them is another. People become illegal immigrants in one of three ways: entering without authorization or inspection, staying beyond the authorized period after legal entry or by violating the terms of legal entry. Most of those who risk prosecution under Arizona's new law fit the first category -- entering without authorization or inspection.

Probably, the overwhelming majority of Mexican illegal immigrants are hardworking, honest and otherwise law-abiding members of the communities in which they reside. It would surely be a heart-wrenching scenario for such a person to be stopped for a driving infraction, have his illegal immigrant status discovered and face deportation proceedings. Regardless of the hardship suffered, being in the U.S. without authorization is a crime.

When crimes are committed, what should be done? Some people recommend amnesia, which turns out to be the root word for amnesty. But surely they don't propose it as a general response to crime where criminals confess their crime, pay some fine and apply to have their crimes overlooked. Amnesty supporters probably wish amnesty to apply to only illegal immigrants. That being the case, one wonders whether they wish it to apply to illegals past, present and future, regardless of race, ethnicity or country of origin.

Various estimates put the illegal immigrant population in the U.S. between 10 and 20 million. One argument says we can't round up and deport all those people. That argument differs little from one that says since we can't catch every burglar, we should grant burglars amnesty. Catching and imprisoning some burglars sends a message to would-be burglars that there might be a price to pay. Similarly, imprisoning some illegal immigrants and then deporting them after their sentences were served would send a signal to others who are here illegally or who are contemplating illegal entry that there's a price to pay.

Here's Williams' suggestion in a nutshell. Start strict enforcement of immigration law, as Arizona has begun. Strictly enforce border security. Most importantly, modernize and streamline our cumbersome immigration laws so that people can more easily migrate to our country.
 
2882  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "This is not just an America in decline.This is an America in retreat" on: May 21, 2010, 09:40:39 AM

By Charles Krauthammer
Friday, May 21, 2010

It is perfectly obvious that Iran's latest uranium maneuver, brokered by Brazil and Turkey, is a ruse. Iran retains more than enough enriched uranium to make a bomb. And it continues enriching at an accelerated pace and to a greater purity (20 percent). Which is why the French foreign ministry immediately declared that the trumpeted temporary shipping of some Iranian uranium to Turkey will do nothing to halt Iran's nuclear program.

It will, however, make meaningful sanctions more difficult. America's proposed Security Council resolution is already laughably weak -- no blacklisting of Iran's central bank, no sanctions against Iran's oil and gas industry, no nonconsensual inspections on the high seas. Yet Turkey and Brazil -- both current members of the Security Council -- are so opposed to sanctions that they will not even discuss the resolution. And China will now have a new excuse to weaken it further.

But the deeper meaning of the uranium-export stunt is the brazenness with which Brazil and Turkey gave cover to the mullahs' nuclear ambitions and deliberately undermined U.S. efforts to curb Iran's program.

The real news is that already notorious photo: the president of Brazil, our largest ally in Latin America, and the prime minister of Turkey, for more than half a century the Muslim anchor of NATO, raising hands together with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the most virulently anti-American leader in the world.

That picture -- a defiant, triumphant take-that-Uncle-Sam -- is a crushing verdict on the Obama foreign policy. It demonstrates how rising powers, traditional American allies, having watched this administration in action, have decided that there's no cost in lining up with America's enemies and no profit in lining up with a U.S. president given to apologies and appeasement.

They've watched President Obama's humiliating attempts to appease Iran, as every rejected overture is met with abjectly renewed U.S. negotiating offers. American acquiescence reached such a point that the president was late, hesitant and flaccid in expressing even rhetorical support for democracy demonstrators who were being brutally suppressed and whose call for regime change offered the potential for the most significant U.S. strategic advance in the region in 30 years.


 They've watched America acquiesce to Russia's re-exerting sway over Eastern Europe, over Ukraine (pressured by Russia last month into extending for 25 years its lease of the Black Sea naval base at Sevastopol) and over Georgia (Russia's de facto annexation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia is no longer an issue under the Obama "reset" policy).

They've watched our appeasement of Syria, Iran's agent in the Arab Levant -- sending our ambassador back to Syria even as it tightens its grip on Lebanon, supplies Hezbollah with Scuds and intensifies its role as the pivot of the Iran-Hezbollah-Hamas alliance. The price for this ostentatious flouting of the United States and its interests? Ever more eager U.S. "engagement."

They've observed the administration's gratuitous slap at Britain over the Falklands, its contemptuous treatment of Israel, its undercutting of the Czech Republic and Poland, and its indifference to Lebanon and Georgia. And in Latin America, they see not just U.S. passivity as Venezuela's Hugo Chávez organizes his anti-American "Bolivarian" coalition while deepening military and commercial ties with Iran and Russia. They saw active U.S. support in Honduras for a pro-Chávez would-be dictator seeking unconstitutional powers in defiance of the democratic institutions of that country.

This is not just an America in decline. This is an America in retreat -- accepting, ratifying and declaring its decline, and inviting rising powers to fill the vacuum.

Nor is this retreat by inadvertence. This is retreat by design and, indeed, on principle. It's the perfect fulfillment of Obama's adopted Third World narrative of American misdeeds, disrespect and domination from which he has come to redeem us and the world. Hence his foundational declaration at the U.N. General Assembly last September that "No one nation can or should try to dominate another nation" (guess who's been the dominant nation for the last two decades?) and his dismissal of any "world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another." (NATO? The West?)

Given Obama's policies and principles, Turkey and Brazil are acting rationally. Why not give cover to Ahmadinejad and his nuclear ambitions? As the United States retreats in the face of Iran, China, Russia and Venezuela, why not hedge your bets? There's nothing to fear from Obama, and everything to gain by ingratiating yourself with America's rising adversaries. After all, they actually believe in helping one's friends and punishing one's enemies.

2883  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politics on: May 21, 2010, 09:34:37 AM
"Just keeping up the Paul family tradition"

GM,

It is errie how the son looks, speaks, thinks EXACTLY like his father.  Maybe HE is the first clone baby.
I agree with Crafty that the point is "sound" but politically he just gave the Dems the rally cry they have been looking for.
Now they will go nuts on every one of their main stream media outlets tying the Tea Party to the party that is "against Civil Rights".
Did anyone else see Paul on Rachal Madcow's show?  She couldn't stop from drooling and giggling with tingle on her leg over sticking this point to him.
His response was weak and defensive even if logical.   
2884  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / morris making sense of elections on: May 20, 2010, 03:33:29 PM
 By Dick Morris 05.19.2010 The message of the May 18th primaries is that it is open season on incumbents. In Pennsylvania, Senator Arlen Specter (D-Pa) lost decisively to Congressman Joe Sestak (D-Pa)in his primary contest while Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark) limped into the runoff in the Democratic primary by 44-42 over Lt. Gov. Bill Halter. There can be little doubt that Lincoln will lose the runoff having scored so far under 50% of the vote. The fact is that 56% of the Democrats in Arkansas decided to vote against Lincoln.

Both Specter and Lincoln are now reaping the harvest of their votes for health care, a fate soon to be shared by Senators Harry Reid (D-NV), Barbara Boxer (D-Cal.), Michael Bennet (D Col.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY). And the liability of incumbency was also vividly on display a week ago when long time Democratic incumbent Congressman Alan Mollohan (D-W Va.) was upended in his primary contest.


Lest the Democrats take comfort in their new standard bearers in Pennsylvania and Arkansas, it is obvious that Sestak and Halter will be easier to defeat than their far better known incumbent rivals would have been. The new Senator from Pennsylvania will be Republican nominee Pat Toomey and from Arkansas it will be Congressman John Boozman (R-Ark.).

With the defeat of Specter, the likely demise of Lincoln, and the recent loss of Senator Bob Bennett (R-Utah), the new Senate class of 2011 will have at least 14 new members…with more to come.

Democrats are taking satisfaction from their victory in Pennsylvania 12 where they held onto the seat of deceased Congressman John Murtha. But the obvious reason for their success is that Democratic turnout was boosted by a ferocious statewide Senate primary which drew out 1,050,000 voters while the Republican contest — never seriously contested 00 brought a paltry 800,000 to the polls. With no statewide reason to vote, local PA-12 Republicans stayed home while their Democratic neighbors flocked to the polls to vote against Specter (a joy not to be missed).

The Democratic victory in PA-12 also underscores a more fundamental point which is that incumbency is a huge liability in 2010. It is simply better to come from nowhere to run this year than to seek to keep a seat in this totally discredited Congress.

Rand Paul´s success in Kentucky in toppling establishment Senate candidate Trey Grayson in the Republican primary — along with the Bennett defeat in Utah — shows that this anti-politician sentiment cuts across party lines.

The harsh verdict on incumbents stems not so much from party preferences as from revulsion at the legislative process itself. The by-product of violating Bismark´s maxim that the public should never see sausage being made or a law being passed is that those who do the latter in full public view are doomed to end their legislative careers in defeat. The unseemly bargaining, machinations, and overt buying and selling of votes that characterized the health care debate of 2009-2010 has left so sour a taste in voter mouths that they understandably dismiss those incumbents from office whenever they can.

The fact that President Obama let the Congress write the two thousand page bill in public and that Reid and Pelosi negotiated for votes in front of the media, has amplified voter anger at Congress. Watching the deals being hatched and votes switching proved too much for the electorate to stomach. Now it is expressing its discontent with the legislative shenanigans it has had to watch.

This year is not just an anti-Democrat year. It is an anti-incumbent year.


2885  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 18, 2010, 10:28:13 AM
***The bottom line: Defensive business arrangements designed to blunt ObamaCare's economic impacts will mean less patient choice.***

This is an understatement.  The goal is NO choice for us.  The goal is Donald Berwick and his Harvard buddies and the Dem politicians will decide EVERYTHING.
2886  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Bamster and crew: Star Wars fans on: May 18, 2010, 10:24:16 AM
Remember how the left mocked and derided Reagan's quest for an anti-missle defense capability and came up with the name "star wars"?

Here is the guy who the Bamster has as his weapons aquisitions Czar mocking Reagan in 1984.  Of course the Bamster is now expecting Israeli's to put their lives on the line by relying on technology all started by Reagan in 2010.

Now Bamster and his crew are in charge and now it is a good thing.


****Obama "weapons Czar" said Reagan's Star Wars a pipe dream
PA Times | 9/4/09 | Pissant

Posted on Friday, September 04, 2009 6:12:30 PM by pissant

In a Tom Wicker NY Times story reprinted in the St Petersberg Times on May 12, 1984 (1), Obama's pencil necked Weapons Czar, Ashton Carter, is quoted as declaring that Reagan's "Star Wars" (SDI) was nothing but a pipe dream. Apparently, Mr. Carter - the man with the oh so appropriate last name - was the author of a report during his stint at MIT that sought to put the kabosh on Reagan's plans for missile defenses.

The Democrats in the house cooked up a group called the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment that issued a scathing report denouncing the efficacy of missile defenses, basing their conclusions on Carter's work.

In his report, Carter stated: "A consensus of the informed members of the defense technical community that the prospect of a successful missile defense was so remote that it should not serve as the basis for public expectation or national policy".

Of course, unlike Reagan, idiots like Ashton Carter did not know that Reagan intended to bankrupt the USSR in a race for missile defenses as well as lay the groundwork for fully functional systems.

But surely Mr. Carter was fully cured of his naivete by the time he was hired on as under secretary of Defense by Slick Willie? Well it turns out that he also was one of the prime architects for the deal with the North Korean commies to halt their nuclear programs in 1994 (2).

So it looks like Obama's czar is batting .000.

At laest one positive thing came from Mr. Carter's supposed expertise. It convinced Walter Mondale to run on a platform opposing SDI (3). ROFL.****



2887  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: May 18, 2010, 09:26:32 AM
"a junior at New College of Florida, a tiny liberal arts college in Sarasota"

And that is the problem.  What does a kid like this know about the world beyond the coombaya nature of her classroom and her facebook?
Perhaps her older relatives are paying her bills?
2888  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Harvard's plans control of ALL US health care on: May 17, 2010, 11:23:32 AM
Finally we are beginning the hear in the media what the academics at Harvard and a few other liberal ivory towers have in store for us as they have planned for decades.  Please recall how I have said these are the handful of people who are pushing for government controlled socialized medicine.  Now that this guy is pushed out there as the new leader of the radical overhaul of our health care system in the US we are finally seeing him scrutinized.  The goal certainly is single payer, no choice, government controlled and dictated care to all of us.  No execptions.  Is it finally clear to the nay sayers yet or not?   

****Donald Berwick’s Radical Agendaby Ben Domenech

President Obama’s nomination of Donald Berwick as the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is a gathering far less attention than a certain other nominee — but it will be getting more attention in the weeks to come, given his particularly radical agenda when it comes to health policy.

Berwick is a leading Ivy League academic and technocrat – he’s graduated from Harvard not once, but three times – and is the founder of a Cambridge-based think-tank, the Institute for Health Care Improvement. Yet the job of running CMS is hardly the same as running a small think tank or talking in broad terms about the nature of health care – CMS is essentially the world’s second largest insurance company after the United Kingdom’s NHS, covering over 98 million people and overseeing roughly $800 billion annually in taxpayer-funded health care expenditures.

Berwick is a great fan of the NHS, and worked as a consultant on the project under Tony Blair. Berwick will have the opportunity to apply the ideas he gained through that experience with the power of the CMS position, which means that his nomination holds massive ramifications for Medicare and Medicaid recipients, hospitals and doctors and, under Obama’s law, all Americans.

Berwick: Health Care Must Redistribute Wealth

Key to understanding Berwick’s views on the NHS is a speech he gave as part of a presentation offered two years ago, in which he shared his thoughts on the NHS and health care generally. You can watch the full speech here, which is excerpted above. The full video shows several lines from Berwick that are notable. He decries private sector solutions to health care problems, dismissing the “invisible hand of the market” as an “unaccountable system.” He also states:

“I am romantic about the NHS; I love it. All I need to do to rediscover the romance is to look at health care in my own country.”

And more disturbingly, in the clip above:

“Any health care funding plan that is just equitable civilized and humane must, must redistribute wealth from the richer among us to the poorer and the less fortunate. Excellent health care is by definition redistributional.”

Berwick’s Views on Why the US Should Be More Like the UK

Robert Goldberg, vice president of the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest, writes on Berwick’s views expressed in 2008 at length in this piece at the American Spectator:

“Berwick complained the American health system runs in the ‘darkness of private enterprise,’ unlike Britain’s ‘politically accountable system.’ The NHS is ‘universal, accessible, excellent, and free at the point of care – a health system that is, at its core, like the world we wish we had: generous, hopeful, confident, joyous, and just’; America’s health system is ‘toxic,’ ‘fragmented,’ because of its dependence on consumer choice. He told his UK audience: ‘I cannot believe that the individual health care consumer can enforce through choice the proper configurations of a system as massive and complex as health care. That is for leaders to do.’”

But as Goldberg points out:

“It may not be joyous or just or configured correctly, but for nearly every disease, particularly cancer, stroke, and heart attacks, Americans live longer and healthier than the English because of better care.”

Indeed, the UK has a terrible record on heart attacks, cancer, and more. A recent piece in the Telegraph runs down the OECD numbers concerning Britain’s actual outcomes from the system Berwick supports so much:

“Britain also languishes near the bottom of the breast cancer league table, with a survival rate of 78.5 per cent. The OECD-wide average is 81.2 per cent. Heart attack victims in Britain are also more likely to die after entering hospital than in most other developed nations. Around 6.3 per cent of patients who have suffered a heart attack have passed away within 30 days of entering a British hospital – significantly higher than the 4.3 per cent average. The figures also show that British life expectancy is much lower than our nearest neighbours. Men in this country can expect to live to 79 years and six months, against 81 years in France. While the report’s authors identified some successes in British healthcare – we have among the best records in Europe for screening women for breast and cervical cancer – the survey indicates that Labour’s much-trumpeted NHS investment has failed to raise standards in key areas.”

The fact is that the UK system is designed for a very different population than ours, with a very different culture — one with far fewer guns, auto accidents, better diets, and fewer young people doing dangerous things. Yet America still has advantages in dealing with these key diseases. While there are many statistics to trumpet on this point, perhaps the best example is that American life expectancy at age 65 is actually higher than Britain.

 Berwick: Best System is Ration-Based Single Payer

Berwick is not so much an ideologue as a true believer in governmental efficiency over the ability of the marketplace and the consumer to direct their health care. In a recent piece in Health Affairs, written along with two colleagues, Berwick details his position on the ideal nature of health care:

“If we could ever find the political nerve, we strongly suspect that financing and competitive dynamics such as the following, purveyed by governments and payers, would accelerate interest in [our policy ideal] and progress toward it: (1) global budget caps on total health care spending for designated populations, (2) measurement of and fixed accountability for the health status and health needs of designated populations, (3) improved standardized measures of care and per capita costs across sites and through time that are transparent, (4) changes in payment such that the financial gains from reduction of per capita costs are shared among those who pay for care and those who can and should invest in further improvements, and (5) changes in professional education accreditation to ensure that clinicians are capable of changing and improving their processes of care. With some risk, we note that the simplest way to establish many of these environmental conditions is a single-payer system, hiring integrators with prospective, global budgets to take care of the health needs of a defined population, without permission to exclude any member of the population.”

As the eloquent Avik Roy wrote recently, there are serious flaws in Berwick’s approach (emphasis mine):

“First off, as William Schambra observed in National Affairs, it assumes that politicians — and politics — play no role in forming health-care policy. Even if you believe that technocrats could better organize our health-care system, Berwick’s approach only works if the narrow interests of Congressmen, labor unions, general hospitals, the AARP, etc., have no influence on the writing of law. No one who watched Democrats make the Obamacare sausage can harbor any illusions on this score.

“Secondly, as Friedrich Hayek pointed out back in 1945, the command approach is doomed to fail because its commanders do not gain accurate information about what is happening on the ground. Technocrats may believe they can marshal statistics and analysis to optimize the health-care system, but they are not omniscient. Their analyses rely on too many assumptions and on unreliable data. This is why government programs always result in colossal amounts of waste, fraud, and abuse. On the other hand, a truly free market for health insurance could efficiently allocate health-care resources to those therapies and tests that patients and doctors most need.”

Yet Berwick is not particularly ideological in his endorsement: he simply believes that the single payer model is the most efficient, and the most easily managed, approach to health care. In large part, this is because he believes in government-directed rationing of care.

In an interview on Comparative Effectiveness Research, Berwick supported an agency which would rationing health care. He particularly focused on what he perceives as the benefits of the UK’s National Institute for Clinical Health and Excellence: As Dr. Berwick said:

“NICE is extremely effective and a conscientious, valuable, and — importantly — knowledge-building system [which has] developed very good and very disciplined, scientifically grounded, policy-connected models for the evaluation of medical treatments from which we ought to learn.”

The interviewer pointed out: “Critics of CER have said that it will lead to the rationing of health care.” To which Berwick replied: “The decision is not whether or not we will ration care. The decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open.”

Here are just some of the horror stories from NICE over the past several years. Under Donald Berwick’s authority as the head of CMS, get ready to see stories like these in the pages of American papers in the years to come.*****

2889  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Maybe not a bad thing on: May 17, 2010, 11:13:22 AM
"This situation has the potential for exploding into something much larger."

Radio host Savage was saying how he is happy about all this.  It is about time we have this fight and stop suppressing it.
He is ready for the fight and it is about time.  I can't say I don't feel the same way.  I don't see why citizens and other legal residents (who got in line and did it the legal way) have to keep taking this abuse.
We are being stepped on and I am tired of it.
2890  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Obama Phenomena on: May 17, 2010, 09:55:59 AM
Doug and Crafty,
Two good posts that sum it all up.
Yet his approval ratings continue to stay at around 48%.
As long as the 48% see him as taking from tax payers to pay for *their* benefits it doesn't appear these approval ratings will change much.
It is a sad state of affairs.
The only way I can think of is that we have to convince the 48% that big government is not the long term solution for them as well as for those who work to pay for all this stuff.  Many of them won't care in the least.  Perhaps a few forward thinkers among them might see the light. 
In the health field I see all day long people gaiming the system.  Government can and will always be "gamed".
There is always talk amongst the liberal crowd how the wealthy and the corporations game the system.  One never hears a peep from them about those on the dole who are doing the same thing.  Doesnt that say it all that they will not say anything about this because this is where they get their power from?
They don't want a lot of peopel off welfare, they don't want people to not be tied to food stamps, government sponsored loans, medicaid, unemployment etc.

Intellectually honest academics would be the first to point out that if you spoil people with freebies at others expense, you only serve to encourage the same behavior.  Psychology 101.

So we must first convince Americans to believe in themselves and private opportunities - not government.  Is it doable?  Hopefully, it is for enough voters to get this guy kicked out of office for good.

2891  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Machismo on: May 15, 2010, 12:57:07 PM
“I never thought that I’d be caught up in this messed-up system,” Ms. Colotl said Friday at a news conference after being released on $2,500 bail. “I was treated like a criminal, like a threat to the nation.”

“This is a civil rights disaster,” said Ms. Bauer, who called the county’s application of the law “mean-spirited and very probably illegal. We call on the Obama administration to end 287(g),” she said.

What can I say?   Simply mind boggling is it not?

If only these people were not mostly Democrats - I guarantee this problem would not exist.

Isn't part of  the concept of machismo about repect?  Yet we get disrespected daily in our own country.

2892  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Wireless networks = public networks on: May 15, 2010, 09:23:28 AM
There is no question they did this purposely.  This is all the new corporate crime going on.  And no one is looking, no one is doing anything about it.  They pay people to snoop like this  They have been doing this to Katherine and I for years and we can't stop it.  Everything is wireless or wireless capable now.  You get this stuff sold to you as though it is some sort of upgrade.  "Oh we will throw this in there too...."

They often hire ex cons to do this.  MSFT does it all the time. They have departments that do this. This is by and away how the entertainment industry gets their material - by watching others and stealing it.

Until the gov. gets serious and enforces laws and puts people away - this kind of stuff will continue to grow.

****TECHNOLOGY MAY 14, 2010, 7:54 P.M. ET Google Says It Mistakenly Collected Data on Web Usage By JESSICA E. VASCELLARO
Google Inc. said an internal investigation has discovered that the roving vans the company uses to create its online mapping services were mistakenly collecting data about websites people were visiting over wireless networks.

The Internet giant said it would stop collecting Wi-Fi data from its StreetView vans, which workers drive to capture street images and to locate Wi-Fi networks. The company said it would dispose of the data it had accidentally collected.

Alan Eustace, senior vice president of engineering and research for Google, wrote in a blog post that the company uncovered the mistake while responding to a German data-protection agency's request for it to audit the Wi-Fi data, amid mounting concerns that Google's practices violated users' privacy.

The camera of a German Google Street View car looms over the car next to the Google logo at the Google stand at the CeBIT Technology Fair on March 3, 2010 in Hannover, Germany.
Journal Community
Vote: From an end to online sales of Nexus One to privacy concerns over StreetView's WiFi surveys, will the setbacks hurt Google's momentum? Google had previously said it was collecting the location of Wi-Fi hot spots from its StreetView vehicles, but not the information being transmitted over those networks by users.

"It's now clear that we have been mistakenly collecting samples of payload data from open (i.e. non-password-protected) Wi-Fi networks, even though we never used that data in any Google products," wrote Mr. Eustace. "We are profoundly sorry for this error and are determined to learn all the lessons we can from our mistake."

Google said it has been collecting and keeping the data since around 2007. At that time, the team building the software to gather the location of Wi-Fi hot spots mistakenly included some experimental software that sampled all categories of publicly broadcast Wi-Fi data.

"It is another example of the how the company hasn't effectively grappled with the massive amount of information it collects," said Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy.

Experience WSJ professional Editors' Deep Dive: Google, Others Struggle With PrivacyTR DAILY
Privacy Can Exist With Innovation, Symposium Speakers SayDow Jones News Service
Facebook Bolsters D.C. PresenceComputerworld (Australia)
Privacy groups target Google Street ViewAccess thousands of business sources not available on the free web. Learn More Due to the mistake, Google could have collected information about which websites people were accessing, from online videos they were watching to emails they were sending.

But Google would only have collected data if the website and the Wi-Fi connection weren't secured. Many major websites that carry personal information, such as financial-services sites, are encrypted so no data from such services were collected, a Google spokesman said. Mr. Eustace wrote that Google only had "fragments" of data, since its cars were on the move.

Google uses the Wi-Fi data to improve its location-based services. By having a database of Wi-Fi hot spots, Google can identify a mobile user's approximate location based on cell towers and Wi-Fi access points that are visible to their device. A Google spokesman said the company would continue to offer those products.

The disclosure comes as Google's collection of Wi-Fi data—along with other real-life imagery it uses in its mapping services—have come under intense scrutiny from some privacy advocates, specifically in Europe. In April, Google moved to defend the service and what it collects in a lengthy blog post in which it said it did not collect or store payload data.

Write to Jessica E. Vascellaro at jessica.vascellaro@wsj.com

Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved****

2893  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: May 14, 2010, 11:13:57 AM
Doug, Agreed by far Latinos make up the largest proportion of illegals.
But my point is not just on principal.
IMO opinion it is quite the contrary.  It is political.
IF we keep making this about Mexcans and other Southern Americans coming here and not about ALL illegals those opposed to doing anything about it, primarily Latinos and their liberal buddies will continue to keep making this about "race".  It isn't as you know but they can continue to rile up the Hispanics who have the nerve to walk accorss th border illegally and than lecture us about rights, humane treament, dignity and all the rest of the crap while they take advantage of the political correct crowd whose ONLY concern is more Demcocrat voters.  Could you imagine the Bama crowd if these people voted for Republicans??

It is all about politics.
2894  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Morris:repubs look poised to retake Congress on: May 14, 2010, 11:08:07 AM
By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 05.12.2010 Behind the scenes, the chances of a GOP takeover of the US Senate increased in the past two weeks with key developments in pivotal states.

Already, Republican candidates are ahead in eight states now represented by Democrats: Delaware, North Dakota, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Colorado, Arkansas and Nevada. And, in California, Senator Barbara Boxer is polling in the low 40s just barely ahead of her Republican challengers.

But nine seats won’t give us control since Biden would break the tie for the Democrats. We need ten.


Enter Washington State where a large field of Republican candidates have failed to dent the lead of three term incumbent Senator Patty Murray. But now it appears that Dino Rossi, the former Republican candidate for Governor, is likely to get into the race. Rossi, in fact, won the election for governor in Washington only to have it stolen from him by 200 votes after multiple recounts. Rossi trails Murray by only 48-46 even though he has yet to announce his candidacy. The vital tenth seat may well be Washington.

Or will it be Wisconsin where Democratic incumbent Russ Feingold is seeking re-election. Feingold is so far left that he wouldn’t find any district this side of Havana safe. And he has now drawn two top tier Republican opponents: Beer mogul Richard Leinenkugel and conservative activist Ron Johnson. Feingold scores below 50% of the vote in trial matchups, a sure indication of vulnerability.

Leinenkugel has good credentials for a race having served as state Commerce Secretary albeit in the current Democratic Administration of Governor Doyle. Johnson brings a compelling speaking style and solid conservative credentials — and a boatload of dough — to the race. Feingold won’t sleep well tonight.

And bear in mind New York where three good candidates — David Malpass, Joe DioGuardia, and Bruce Blakeman — are vying to take on vulnerable appointed incumbent Kristen Gillibrand. Read our book, 2010: Take Back America: A Battle Plan, to see how weak Gillibrand is.

And Connecticut where Democratic Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has slipped to 52% of the vote against Republican challenger Rob Simmons (he leads by 52-38). Blumenthal runs stronger against Linda McMahon of wrestling fame (he beats her, according to Rasmussen, by 55-35). If Simmons wins the primary, he has a good chance of knocking off Blumenthal.

So among Washington, Wisconsin, New York, and Connecticut, we are looking increasingly likely to find a tenth Republican victory.

2895  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Why can't the dumb Cans stop making this about Latinos??? on: May 14, 2010, 09:43:21 AM
Will there ever by outrage from the mainstream media?

I still say Republicans can blunt the racial thing by clearly pointing out that we will not tolerate illegal immigration from any country not just the Mexicans and the southern border.

When Hannity had it pointed out to him from Juan Williams (whom I like) that there are 50,000 illegal Irish in NYC he ignored the comment.  Well what does anyone expect then when he is silent over this yet screaming talking points that are clearly geared towards Latinos?Huh

My question is why is there and why do we tolerate 50K illegal Irish in NYC?  Why is this not as outrageous as the Latinos coming here illegally?  What is the difference?  Illegal is illegal.  Juan Williams has a point.
2896  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Humor/WTF on: May 10, 2010, 12:23:44 PM
After the entire context of the joke was made more clear I didn't find it to be big deal actually.  It didn't instill a desire in me to strap a bomb on my person and walk into a Federal building and take out as many people as possible. 
 wink grin
2897  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / pbs documentary on American Jews on: May 10, 2010, 12:18:47 PM
I am not sure what thread this would go under.  It could be immigration (legal and Jewish), anti semitism (to a small extent), Israel, etc.

I saw one episode last night of a three part documentary of Jews in America.  For those with an interest one get see the broadcast schedule here. 

http://www.pbs.org/jewishamericans/about/watch.html
2898  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Jews: looking for another One. on: May 10, 2010, 11:17:30 AM
The polls don't follow through and ask that if Jews would consider voting for someone else would they consider a Republican.  It is a big leap to expect "someone" else to be from another party.  I doubt most liberal  Jews would even dream of this.  I wonder if the Kagan nomination is a bone for the Jews to placate them.

****Poll: Obama has Lost Almost Half of his US Jewish Support
 
by Gil Ronen
Follow Israel news on  and .


United States President Barack Obama has lost nearly half of his support among American Jews, a poll by the McLaughlin Group has shown.

The US Jews polled were asked whether they would: (a) vote to re-elect Obama, or (b) consider voting for someone else. 42% said they would vote for Obama and 46%, a plurality, preferred the second answer. 12% said they did not know or refused to answer.   

In the Presidential elections of 2008, 78% of Jewish voters, or close to 8 out of 10, chose Obama. The McLaughlin poll held nearly 18 months later, in April 2010, appears to show that support down to around 4 out of 10. 

The poll showed that key voter segments including Orthodox/Hassidic voters, Conservative voters, voters who have friends and family in Israel and those who have been to Israel, are all more likely to consider voting for someone other than Obama.

Among Orthodox/Hassidic voters, 69% marked 'someone else' vs. 17% who marked 're-elect.' Among Conservative-affiliated voters the proportion was 50% to 38%. Among Reform Jews, a slim majority of 52% still supported Obama while 36% indicated they would consider someone else. Among Jews with family in Israel and those who had been to Israel, about 50% said they would consider someone else, while 41%-42% supported Obama.

Fifty percent of the Jewish voters polled said they approved of the job Obama is doing handling US relations with Israel. Thirty-nine percent said they disapproved. “This rating is not good for a group of voters who are 59% Democratic to only 16% Republican,” the poll's analysis noted.

A majority of 52% said they disapproved of the idea of the Obama Administration supporting a plan to recognize a Palestinian state within two years. 62% said that if given a state, “the Palestinians would continue their campaign of terror to destroy Israel.” Only 19% thought they would live peacefully with Israel.     

As Obama loses support among members of the influential Jewish voter bloc, possible Republican candidate Sarah Palin seems to be doing her best to woo them to her****
2899  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: May 10, 2010, 09:27:33 AM
OK.  Lets stop illegal immigration at all our borders including NYC, Canada and everywhere else.
Then we stop hiring illegals.
Then we stop allowing illegals to utilize public services except for emergencies.
WE change the thing where you are born here from illegal parents you are an automatic citizen.

Viola  - problem reduced by probably 90%.

Simple.

The real problem is we have cowards for politicans.
2900  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Who works for who? on: May 08, 2010, 11:32:05 AM
Here in NJ is huge fight between Governor Christie and teachers unions.  I have many patients who are teachers, ex teachers, even a close family memeber who is one.
What Christie is asking of the teachers is clearly NOT unreasonable.  He requests they put of their *annual* 4 to 5 % pay raise (does anyone know of any private sector job that has that?), and contribute 1.5% towards their health care.  The grand total is around $1500 per year.  Teachers union wages are $730/year.
This in the state with the highest porperty taxes in the nation.

Yet the power of the teachers union and how they literally control politicians is on display to amaze all.  They run ads the Christie is ruining education, harming our children and the teachers even have brainwashed out students into going out and marching for them.

I even had a retired teacher tell me she can't stand Christie and how "he is going after teachers". 

I simply don't get this.  They are outraged?  With all their benefits, pensions, health care, reasonably good salaries for a job of 9 months a year and a milliion days off?
It is not like they are facing huge pay cuts.  They think they are entitled to 4-5 % pay raises in economies with 10% unempolyment?

Quite the opposite.  The outrage is not with them.  Can Christie break this?  I sure hope so.  Thank God we have a governor who stands up to this crap. Yet he is sinking in the polls I've heard.  Well they say 1/3 of Jersey residents are on some form of dole.  I guess it is no wonder why teachers forget who works for who.   It is time they be reminded. 

****By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 05.6.2010 A perfect storm is brewing for the nation’s schools and the teachers’ unions that have them in a stranglehold. Voter anger at the socialist, big government solutions of the Obama Administration and its Democratic lookalikes in state capitals throughout the country is about to combine with massive education funding shortfalls brought on by the unions’ waste of taxpayer money.


These forces will combine in November, 2010 to force gigantic changes in school financing and governance, leading to the prospect of genuine school choice for the poor and middle class as the rich have always had.

Just as a Republican landslide in November will engulf and extinguish Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, so it will sweep away the party’s power at the state level. State houses in at least ten states are likely to change parties and dozens of legislative chambers will see Republican majorities, many for the first time in decades. The teachers union will be swept from power along with its Democratic allies.

Just as this earthquake is making its way through state capitals, governors will be casting about for ways to meet revenue shortfalls without tax hikes. Top on their list will be the elimination of layers of bureaucracy and of privileges enjoyed by the teacher unions. As a result more and more of the education budget will be spent in the classroom and vastly more will be channeled into education choice programs.

The number of charter schools will likely grow exponentially and programs for vouchers, scholarships, and tax credits for private and parochial schools will be passed in state after state. Given a chance to provide good education for $7,000 per student in alternative schools rather than pay $10,000 per student in dysfunctional public schools, government officials will move rapidly to expand school choice.

To learn more about this coming revolution in education, GO HERE NOW.

Now is the time for every parent and taxpayer to get involved and to push for seismic shifts in education funding and policy. Perfect storms like this don’t come along every year and not even in every lifetime.****





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