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3901  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: October 24, 2013, 10:55:50 AM
Wall Streets shake up artists such as well know Carl Ichan (I wish I bought Cheesepeake when it was at bottom when he got involved - up from 15 to 27!!!), are scouring other energy companies to do the same thing.

The reason I post here is extracting value is EXACTLY what Wall Street is doing in the health care sector.  It seems to be under the radar with AHA taking all the headlines.  I am not saying it is good or bad.  I am just pointing this out.  But this struck me as a very good analogy to what I see in health care:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-16/activists-seek-repeat-of-40-billion-oil-patch-windfall-energy.html
3902  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / She is only going to worsen the divide on: October 24, 2013, 10:46:28 AM
Half the country despises her.   She will simply not go away.  She will as did Bill shove herself in front of us every single day.  I already want to leave the country.  The heckler should have yelled back that "you refuse to take responsibility when you were politely asked.  So yes, now I am yelling."

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/10/24/hillary-clinton-turns-tables-on-heckler-in-buffalo/
3903  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Rush and Crafty - top dogs on: October 24, 2013, 10:37:48 AM
Doug thanks.

I am not trying to beat a dead horse.  By the way, Rush, has been marvelous since the last election.  There is just no one like him.   For me he is top radio dog!   Crafty is top board dog.  grin

I wonder like GM if we need a crash for those who vehemently defend their "entitlements" to wake up.  

Most people are employees not employers.  So they are kind of followers not leaders.  So offer them free stuff and they will "kill" for it.  This is not a racial thing.  It is a economic class thing.  We see these people all over the message boards, on cable, in our daily endeavors.  They despise Republicans.   They feel they are entitled.  They can't earn it for whatever reasons.  So dammit life is not fair and we need government to give us our due.

Reagan brought in many blue collar types.  I think because he brought back the spirit of pride in AMerica.   TOday the demographics are different.   I am not sure why but ASians Latinos and Blacks do not seem to aprreciate  American traditional values.  Perhaps because they come from different countries that have different types of values.  It certainly does not help when children come here and our schools no longer teach them to think of America with pride.  That may be a big part of it.  You know this identity politics thing.  

We need to combat that I think.  We are ALL AMERICANS.  We are not women.  We are not men.  We are not Latino.  We are not white, black, Asian etc.   WE are all in this country and are together.   Do you want us to be the best or keep tearing ourselves apart?

These are most of the core of other issues.  

But back to the economic side;

As  Reich, and has others, are correct in pointing out : Without a thriving middle class we are all either the very few rich or the very many struggling poor.  And that is a big problem.  Repubs need to connect more than with as Doug nicely describes "platitudes".  

Please my fellow Repubs and Tea Partiers -
More than just platitudes - dudes. cool
3904  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: October 23, 2013, 10:29:04 PM
Crafty quotes Jonah Goldberg:

"it's the insufficient power and popularity of conservatism coupled with the very real failures of the GOP to reverse conservatism's fortunes over the last two decades."

I think this is in line with what I am talking about.  How can we reverse conservative's fortunes if we are not listening and responding to the real concerns of so many?

"the insurgents insisted they were in an ideological struggle with the establishment. But there was precious little ideology involved. Instead, it was a fight over tactics and power"

Well yes.  A guerilla resistance war vs. a full scale retreat with management of decline.

We keep debating in circles.   It all comes down to how do we convince people that government is not the answer to all the world's ills.  Indeed it will mostly make things worse.
Half the US gets a check from the other half.  How do we combat that?   I hear a lot of ideas on the board.  But they speak only to the 50% who are working and shelling out the dough.

Does Jonah offer any ideas to reverse the decline?   Jonah is suggesting both ways are flawed. 

It just might take a giant crash of the pyramid of cards the left has shoved down our throats.

BTW if I read one more lefty state how Reagan was willing to compromise while in the same breath point out he ballooned the debt - why he did that because of the Democrats in the Houses!
3905  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: October 23, 2013, 07:08:07 PM
"HILLARY CLINTON: I've been out of politics for a few years now and I've had a chance to think a lot about what makes our country so great."

This has NO basis in reality.  And yet the morons love this stuff.

The part before the "and", and the part after are both just so full of crap.  Only the Clintons could tie TWO obnoxious lies one after the other in the same sentence.

She is the most divisive figure I can think of after Obama.  Even worse.
3906  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / OMG;OMG;OMG;OMG on: October 23, 2013, 11:15:17 AM
 sad shocked huh cry embarassed

McCain considering seeking reelection in 2016

By Aaron Blake

October 22 at 11:57 am

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Tuesday that he is considering running for another term in 2016, when he would be 80 years old.

"I'm seriously thinking about maybe giving another opportunity for you to vote for or against me in a few years from now," McCain said on KFYI-AM in Phoenix. "I'm seriously giving that a lot of thought."

Asked by host Barry Young to clarify if he was saying he might run again, McCain said: "That would not be wrong."

The New York Times's Mark Leibovich, who is in Arizona following McCain, first tweeted the news.

McCain, the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, is in his fifth term. He has never taken less than 56 percent of the vote and easily dispatched a primary challenge in 2010 from former congressman J.D. Hayworth.

If he runs again, McCain will likely find himself targeted by tea party groups.

Updated at 12:36 p.m
3907  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / What if JFK was not shot? on: October 23, 2013, 11:09:06 AM
I guess the only thing one can say for sure.  More White House interns would have been essentially taken advantage of.  That said.  Oswald unwittingly won big time.  Thanks to him we have had the Great Society, the anti-US counterculture of the 60's and  a march forward towards a more socialist society.  Would Vietnam have turned out like it did?  Who knows?  I don't think so.  Would we have had Civil Rights like we did?  Maybe not.  I agree with it now in some form or another.   Kennedy was not a big government guy according to this article.  Interesting he stiffed the unions.  Why didn't West Virginia mobster unions serve him up the 1960 primary win?
All conjecture.  All water under the bridge but interesting to think what if.....

What if Kennedy lived?
Jeff Greenfield
By Jeff Greenfield October 21, 2013 12:15 PM
 
If Kennedy Lived

Jeff Greenfield's new book, "If Kennedy Lived: The First and Second Terms of President John F. Kennedy: An Alternate History" will be published Tuesday, October 22 by G.P. Putnam's Sons. This is an excerpt from the book's introduction.

It was Thursday, July 14, 1960, in Room 9333 of the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles, and Kenny O’Donnell was furious at the man he had just helped nominate to be president of the United States.

Again and again, Sen. John F. Kennedy had assured the unions, the civil rights leaders, the liberals and intellectuals whose support he was seeking that Texas Sen. Lyndon Johnson would not be his choice for vice president. Yet now, little more than 12 hours after the Massachusetts Democrat had won a first ballot nomination with a razor-thin margin of five delegates, he had offered the second slot on the ticket to Johnson — and Johnson had accepted.

“I was so furious I could hardly talk,” O’Donnell remembered years later. “I thought of the promises we had made … the assurances we had given. I felt that we had been double crossed.”

So O’Donnell demanded to confront Kennedy face to face and the nominee complied, taking O’Donnell into the bathroom, and assuring him that the job would actually diminish Johnson’s power by placing him in a powerless, impotent job.

“I’m 43 years old,” Kennedy said, “and I’m the healthiest candidate for president in the United States. You’ve traveled with me enough to know that I’m not going to die in office. So the vice presidency doesn’t mean anything.”

The man who gave his disaffected aide this reassurance had lost a brother and a sister in airplane crashes; had almost died when his ship was destroyed in the South Pacific during World War II; had been stricken with an illness so serious in 1947 that he had been given the last rites of his church; had undergone a life-threatening operation in 1954 to save him from invalidism, an operation so serious that he was away from his Senate seat for nine months; who was living with a form of Addison’s disease — hidden from the press and public — that required a regular dose of powerful medicine; and who lived virtually every day in pain.

For a man so often described as “fatalistic” — who on the day of his murder mused to his wife, and to that same Kenny O’Donnell, about the ease with which “a man with a rifle” could kill him — Kennedy’s blithe assurance about his invulnerability to fate seemed astonishing. (If nothing else, his immersion in history must have taught him that seven presidents had died in office.)

Maybe, though, Kennedy’s words were not so astonishing. They reflect an impulse deep within the human spirit: to push aside the power of random chance, in favor of a more orderly, less chaotic universe. What has happened, the argument goes, is what had to happen. Even for someone like John Kennedy, who had seen sudden, violent death take two of his siblings, and come close to taking him more than once, had dismissed the whole idea of considering that possibility when choosing the man to stand “a heartbeat away.”

For most historians, the idea of lingering over the roads that might have been taken, but for a small twist of fate, to project what might be different about our lives, or our country, or world, seems at best a parlor game, at worst a fool’s errand, like asking “What if Spartacus had a plane?” That is the view that most historians share, in dismissing “counter-factual” history, the “what-if?” questions.

It is, however, not a unanimous view. In his book “Virtual History,” Harvard University historian Niall Ferguson offers a different approach: to examine “plausible or probable alternatives … only those alternatives which we can show on the basis of contemporary evidence that contemporaries actually considered.” It is an approach he calls “virtual” history, and it is anchored in the concept of “plausibility.”

This is the approach I’ve taken in “If Kennedy Lived,” a book that tries to answer in fictional terms a question that is very much alive today: What if John Kennedy had not died 50 years ago in Dallas? The small alteration of history that saves his life, in my account, is no high drama; it is, simply, a minor meteorological matter; had the rain not stopped in Dallas minutes before the president’s arrival, the bubble-top would have remained on the Presidential limousine, greatly improving the odds of Kennedy’s survival.

And after that tiny twist of fate saved the president? Any speculation about the alternative history has to put aside political ideology, or personal affection or distate for JFK, and turn to what we know about his beliefs, impulses and character. For me, for instance, his innate caution, his skepticism about Vietnam — expressed long before he’d become president — his distrust of his military advisors’ advice and his fear of miscalculation and misguided assumptions that shaped his behavior during the Cuban missile crisis all point to the likelihood that he would have disengaged.

But his political calculations, his fear of being tagged with a “Who Lost Vietnam” label, would have made him disengage by stealth, rather than by an open acknowledgement that victory was beyond our power. And a 1960s with no massive war in Vietnam would have meant a very different counterculture, one where “sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll" still emerged, but where convulsive violence did not. In short, Woodstock, yes; Altamont, no.

Similarly, knowing JFK had little legislative skill and few ties to the congressional power brokers (as opposed to Lyndon Johnson) made it far less likely that he could have passed the groundbreaking Civil Rights Act of 1964, or pushed a Great Society agenda through the Congress, even if he had wished to. (And his skepticism about ambitious government programs might have kept him from even proposing so grand — or grandiose — an idea).

Beyond questions of policy, there are more personal matters: Would his extramarital sex life have been threatened with exposure? In fact, it nearly became a public matter in the weeks before his assassination, and had such exposure been a threat after Dallas, history tells us the Kennedys would have worked to keep the story quiet by means fair and foul. (If you doubt this, look at what the administration did in 1962 to force steel companies to toll back their price hikes. “Abuse of power” is not too strong a term.)

All this is by way of saying that alternative history cannot be hagiography, nor “pathography.” Anyone seeking to imagine an eight-year Kennedy presidency has to come to grips with his strengths and weaknesses, his admirable and deplorable character traits, in trying to determine how a change in the weather in Dallas would have changed — and not changed — one of the most turbulent periods in our history.
3908  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Some thought from the Eastern front on: October 23, 2013, 10:23:52 AM
Michelle who is one of my favorite writers, indeed if I was younger and she was available....

Yes we on the front lines of medical care are forced to spend ALL our time collecting and responding to data and data points, and formats, and numbers.  The personal touch between patient and doctor and decision making is being taken away.  Standards are set primarily by government but the big companies are also using the data to extract every single dime out of humanities daily lives.

A case manager at one of the hospitals I go to recently said to me it is all about the data.  Everything we do is for the data.  Data can be manipulated.  It can be falsified.  She said if it isn't written in the data - it doesn't exist.

Hospitals, dialysis, pharmacies, pharmacy benefits managers, pharmaceuticals, urgent care centers, nursing homes are all consolidating and being run by big corporations.  Most of this is I think funded via Wall Street.  One astute physician suggested how health care is one of the biggest and only drivers of the economy right now.  So the 1000 dollar suits are focusing on health care.  No one can compete with their billions to throw around.

(The energy sector could also do well if the liberal machine would get the hell out of the way.)

There are more jobs there will be more efficiencies.  I don't know if care will necessarily be better or not.  One definite thing is that the way it is measured will certainly be distorted to reflect that it is.
One professor who used to do a lot of research pointed out - it is all in the way one measure it. 

The data points that are shoved in front of us are the measurements used to reflect better care.  We will not see other issues that are not being measured. 

I can go on a hospital floor and see rows of nurses sitting at computers.  In some locations I have actually had to scramble to even get to a computer terminal before the nurse gets there.  Or vice a versa.

We can see first hand how every single human endeavor is being manipulated to squeeze every single penny out of our existence. 
3909  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / second post on: October 23, 2013, 10:08:30 AM
I don't love this guy much and while I disagree all of his prescriptions for anything he does have one valid point.  The middle class in the US is dying.  Remember when one could put their money in a local bank and they would pay us 5% interest without fees, without minimums?  Now banks TAKE as much from us while we park our money with them!  That is one example of the difference between years past and now.  No one can save anything.  One may argue with the exact number but when most people in the US are living from paycheck to paycheck we as a country have a big problem.  Republicans are not speaking TO these  people.  They just speak about debt, freedom, smaller government, etc.  I get it.  I agree with the concepts.  But most Joes want to hear what we can do for them!  We ALL know the Clintons will frame the debate so average people who don't spend much time thinking about political philosophy will understand.  They will frame it in a way to tug at people's emotions.  That is why she will win.  Of course, they have a complicit media.  And they are world class liars.  And they repeatedly commit fraud, cover ups, and take no responsibility for screw ups.  And the media lets them get away with it because they are liberal or want to hop on the money and power train.

So IMHO Reich is a crazy communist liberal.  Yet his points about the sinking middle class is DEAD ON.   So what say we?   Less government, more tax breaks, less regulation.  OK fine.  So how does that help or connect with the average Joe who doesn't know the difference between the AHA and Obamacare?  My answer it doesn't.  And that is why folks we lose.

*****Robert Reich: The triumph of the right
By Robert B. Reich, Tribune Content Agency

Posted October 23, 2013 at midnight

Conservative Republicans have lost their fight over the shutdown and debt ceiling, and they probably won’t get major spending cuts in upcoming negotiations over the budget.

But they’re winning the big one: How the nation understands our biggest domestic problem. Conservative Republicans say the biggest problem is the size of government and the budget deficit.

In fact, our biggest problem is the decline of the middle class and the increasing ranks of the poor, while almost all the economic gains go to the top.

The Labor Department reported Tuesday that only 148,000 jobs were created in September — way down from the average of 207,000 new jobs a month in the first quarter of the year.



Search our databases
.
 
 
Many Americans have stopped looking for work. The official unemployment rate of 7.2 percent reflects only those who are still looking. If the same percentage of Americans were in the workforce today as when Barack Obama took office, today’s unemployment rate would be 10.8 percent.

Meanwhile, 95 percent of the economic gains since the recovery began in 2009 have gone to the top 1 percent. The real median household income continues to drop, and the number of Americans in poverty continues to rise.

So what’s Washington doing about this? Nothing. Instead, it’s back to debating how to cut the federal budget deficit.

But the deficit shouldn’t even be an issue because it’s now almost down to the same share of the economy as it has averaged over the last 30 years.

The triumph of right-wing Republicanism extends further. Failure to reach a budget agreement will restart the so-called “sequester” — automatic, across-the-board spending cuts that were passed in 2011 as a result of Congress’s last failure to agree on a budget.

These automatic cuts get tighter and tighter, year by year — squeezing almost everything the federal government does except for Social Security and Medicare. While about half the cuts come out of the defense budget, much of the rest come out of programs designed to help Americans in need: extended unemployment benefits; supplemental nutrition for women, infants and children; educational funding for schools in poor communities; Head Start; special education for students with learning disabilities; child-care subsidies for working families; heating assistance for poor families. The list goes on.

The biggest debate in Washington over the next few months will be whether to whack the federal budget deficit by cutting future entitlement spending and closing some tax loopholes, or go back to the sequester. Some choice.

The real triumph of the right has come in shaping the national conversation around the size of government and the budget deficit — thereby diverting attention from what’s really going on: the increasing concentration of the nation’s income and wealth at the very top, while most Americans fall further and further behind.

More cuts in the deficit will only worsen this by reducing total demand for goods and services and by eliminating programs that hard-pressed Americans depend on.

The president and Democrats should reframe the national conversation around widening inequality.

They could start by demanding an increase in the minimum wage and a larger Earned Income Tax Credit. (The president doesn’t even have to wait for Congress to act. He can raise the minimum wage for government contractors through an executive order.)

Framing the central issue around jobs and inequality would make clear why it’s necessary to raise taxes on the wealthy and close tax loopholes (such as “carried interest,” which enables hedge-fund and private-equity managers to treat their taxable income as capital gains). It would explain why we need to invest more in education — including early-childhood as well as affordable higher education.

This framework would even make the Affordable Care Act more understandable — as a means for helping working families whose jobs are paying less or disappearing altogether, and therefore are in constant danger of losing health insurance.

The central issue of our time is the reality of widening inequality of income and wealth. Everything else — the government shutdown, the fight over the debt ceiling, the continuing negotiations over the budget deficit — is a dangerous distraction.

The right’s success in generating this distraction is its greatest, and most insidious, triumph.

Robert Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor, is a columnist for the Tribune Content Agency.*****
3910  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: October 23, 2013, 09:51:11 AM
Doug,
First, sorry about the Giants and Vikings shocked.

Doug writes,

" In politics, they are endless.  How come Republicans want to starve the poor, take away Grannies' meds, don't care about working people, only care about the rich, care only about themselves, don't have a plan of their own, only know how to say no, hate government, hate black people, are war mongers, etc.  How come Republicans want people to raise a family on $8 an hour?  How come they want to stop 20 million people from getting health insurance?  The more we answer these questions, the deeper the hole we have dug."

I absolutely agree that the Republicans do not appropriately answer these questions.  But these are questions people have.
I don't think one can win anyone over by simply ignoring or rephrasing these questions.   We need to answer them. 

Doug writes,

****What do we know about income inequality?

a) It is badly measured and greatly overstated,

b) It is a fact, not an issue, and

c) Focusing on this false injustice leads you to all the wrong policy choices.****

Number one there is huge income inequality.  The top controls huge amounts of the country's wealth.  I agree it is not an injustice, but would you not agree there are injustices?   Would you agree the wealthy do get privileges the rest of us do not get?   I am not against them.    But people see the right totally ignoring some at the top who are ripping off the system.  There are people at the bottom doing the same thing with welfare fraud, disability fraud.  My point is we should strive for fairness at the top and bottom.   I want a system based on competition and hard work, conceding that luck and talent often separates those who do better than others. 

So what.  It is still by far the best way.

Just to call it a "false injustice" is very evasive.   I don't think this will persuade anyone.   We need better responses.  I wish I was retired.   I would like to spend the time and give it a go.

We are having trouble winning people over because WE ARE NOT LISTENING to them.  We are not answering them.  We are not really offering a choice.   We are not reaching them.  Convincing them WE (REPUBS) offer the better way of life.

I think Rove and the Bushes and other Rinos think the compromise and concession is the way to listen to others.  I don't agree with that.  That is a losers take IMHO.

OTOH, if a guy with the completely flawed character of McAuliffe can win Virginia and indeed his numbers improve just by having Hillary stand next to him, another with a flawed dishonest personality than maybe we are finished.  THAT is very discouraging! cry cry

3911  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: October 22, 2013, 07:21:07 AM
A great analogy would be a patient who come in to my office and gives me a few questions.

My response,

Change the questions, rephrase them and give answers to questions he didn't ask and then tell the patient, "this is what you need to do and why".
3912  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: October 22, 2013, 07:19:12 AM
Second health thread post.

Perhaps readers might recall how I pointed out how electronic records are simply not ready for prime time.  Yes there are hundreds of vendors out there who will sell you that theirs is the one that works great.

But all are clunky cumbersome and frankly a pain in the ass.   I recall reading that there was some kick back to the politburo Ivy league know-it-alls.   IN one response editorial one of the leading doctor IT cottage industry  types basically wrote in his response for us doctors to more or less just stop whining, shut up, and be happy we are getting through the "FIRST PHASE".   So now all that IT that is being shoved down our throats is suddenly not the answer but is the first phase.   

Now the world with the AHA tech failure can see what we have been living through for the past couple of years.  The IT people are already blaming the government on Drudge.  Oh they were having to eat pizza and work till 10 etc.  No one ever heard a peep from this crowd while they were happily receiving their pay checks probably each and every one of the promising the government they could do the job so they could get the contract.

People, it is all the classic fingers pointing every which way when something is a mess.  Don't blame me it is him or her; not me.

Eventually it will be made workable but don't expect any of it to be a breeze.  This will take years.

IT does show how government regulations make all of us suffer.  While the Obamas of the world promise free health care to all.

Why even that idiot (I have concluded) Peirce Morgan was on last night saying how they have "FREE" health care in Great Britain.   

Wow!   How do they do that?  It's free?   Why can't we do what you wizards in Europe do here?
3913  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: October 21, 2013, 10:12:25 PM
Or put another way, how can we win people over by ignoring their questions and by posing answers to questions they are NOT asking?
3914  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The model of excellence for Donald Berwick on: October 21, 2013, 10:10:17 PM
who was one of the designers of AHA was Britain's National Health Service.
In a recent Lancet piece the resigning chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners says that primary care is in crises and headed for collapse.  Sounds like here in the US:

*****The continuing haemorrhage of UK general practice

The Lancet

Last week was no doubt a sad one for Clare Gerada, who gave her last Chairwoman's speech before stepping down from leading the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) after 3 years. She has been the most visible and successful head of the College in recent memory. Unlike previous Chairs, Gerada has not been afraid to challenge the Government on a wide range of issues. She has led doctors with more confidence, passion, positive vision, and success than the British Medical Association has ever been able to do. She has been the voice of clinical practice in the community for the tens of thousands of GPs who are at the frontline of primary care and the Coalition's bungled health reforms.

At the RCGP's annual conference in Harrogate, Oct 3—5, Gerada hit out at the Government again. At a time when it had just announced plans to increase GP surgery opening times in England from 0800 h to 2000 h, 7 days a week, she presented alarming new figures from the RCGP that general practitioners (GPs) in the UK face a £400 million “black hole” as a result of funding cuts during the past 3 years. This disinvestment equates to a 7% cut in spending per patient. Gerada pointed out that although GPs saw 90% of patients as the first contact, they received only 9% of the entire UK National Health Service (NHS) budget, and that percentage share was falling. “General practice is in crisis”, she lamented. In recent surveys, 85% of GPs also felt general practice was heading for collapse. Quality and safety of patient care are being put in danger, since GPs are seeing up to 60 patients in an 11 h day with far fewer resources. Many predict that patients will have to wait longer for an appointment in the future. Gerada called for general practice to get at least 10% of the NHS budget and 10 000 more GPs.

The Government and its Health and Social Care Act wanted to make general practitioners the clinical leaders of the NHS. But by by withdrawing investment in primary care they have starved general practice of the resources needed to lead the service properly. The result will not only be an inevitable vacuum in leadership but also serious damage to the care of patients.*****

Thanks to the other "Donald".

3915  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / We should not just answer the questions we choose to answer on: October 21, 2013, 12:23:56 AM
Doug writes<

"I share all your frustration, anger, disappointment, etc and then some!  To answer you literally, Republican is a brand that is still winning half of the elections, holding the House, a 30-20 lead in Governorships, a majority of state legislatures, well over the 40 Senator threshold, threatening (for a 3rd try) to take back that majority.  That is with no leader, clarity or message.   Also should have won the Presidency in 2012. 

At the start of the tea party movement I thought the uniting message was cut spending first.  Reduce the size and scope of government, especially federal government.  Lower tax rates along with a booming private sector can follow.  But this was in reaction to Obamacare passage in particular, the greatest expansion of government power in this country ever.

Failing to take the Senate, failing to take back the Presidency, failing to get these expansions struck down in the Court, and failing to defund it, all lead us to starting over, carrying all this damage and with a dispirited base.  We are fighting to get back to where we were, which was in a faltering economy with a huge government and even more people not contributing.

We actually need to both defeat the establishment Republicans and unite with them, a daunting proposition.

Each state, house district etc., IMO, needs to choose the most conservative candidate - that can win in that state or district.  Same for the Presidency.  They need to be focused and disciplined, not make the mistakes that sank others recently.  Get a message and stay on message; this is not about rape abortions, secession, or shooting our way out of this mess.

We need a vision and some visionaries.  A shining city on a hill.  Tell people the positive things about a realistic, America-2014 and beyond vision.  Move past the liberal terminology and definitions of the issues.  As Newt once did, ask questions that poll well and favor our side.  Would you like more government control over your life or more personal freedom and economic opportunity?  Would you like to stop others from succeeding or improve your own lot on life?  Do you like jobs, businesses, schools, health care, and everything else controlled mainly by Washington or closer to home?  Do you think public sector people should have far bigger salaries, pensions, benefits and shorter work days than the private sector people who support them or be in line with the rest of the economy?

At some point there are demographic groups such as unemployed young people who will begin to see that the move toward Stalinism isn't helping them.  Hope and change meant sit still and demand things.  These things tend to swing like a pendulum.  At some point people open up to a different message.  But we didn't made good use of the turns we had to govern and we haven't presented a coherent alternative while out of power, so we are now paying that price."

All excellent points.  It mostly works for me.  Yet I sense something is missing.  It is all beautiful talk but I still think this misses the mark.

Older people have suggested to me it is much tougher to get ahead then it used to be.  Competition is much greater.  One member of household out working was more common.  Now two must work.  College degrees are far more expensive.  Way ahead of the cost of living and wages.  Worse a college degree used to almost guarantee a good job.  Now even advanced degrees don't.

There has to be more specific ways in which republicans speak more than just ideals.  Freedom, less government, less taxes, etc.

This is just not enough.   Something is missing.   

This will not beat Hillary who all is about identity politics and her apparent phony story about conciliation and compromise.

Doug, I agree with you but the message is still short and unsatisfactory.  It is not a winner IMHO.  Unless times get so bad the Repubs win by default.

" As Newt once did, ask questions that poll well and favor our side. "   Why can't we come up with BETTER answers to the questions that don't poll well and favor our side?

Ignoring these questions or changing the subject is exactly the problem I am talking about.

We like it or not half the country wants answers to such questions.   We can't just change the subject.  We must answer them but do it better.

If someone asks why is it not one Wall Streeter went to jail the answer should not be to change the subject.

 
3916  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Turks betraying Israel for Iran on: October 19, 2013, 08:11:47 PM
I don't think the US would give up Mossad agents but I don't trust the Obama led US not give up Israel plans for an attack on Iran"

****Turkish Betrayal’ Is the Talk of Israel

By Karl Vick and Aaron J. Klein / Tel Aviv @karl_vickOct. 18, 201320 Comments   
       
Israeli newspapers were dominated Friday morning by a Washington Post report that Turkey betrayed Israeli spies to Iran.  “Turkey Blows Israel’s Cover for Iranian Spying Ring, “ was the headline on columnist David Ignatius’  Thursday piece, quoting “knowledgeable sources” who described how the Turkish government disclosed to Iran the identities of 10 Iranians who had been meeting in Turkey with Israeli intelligence case officers. The Hebrew daily Yedioth Ahronoth noted a “thunderous silence” from the Israeli government in its article, headlined “The Turkish Betrayal” and including numerous quotes from unidentified officials reinforcing the premise of the story.  The Post column followed an Oct. 10 Wall Street Journal profile of Turkey’s intelligence chief, Hakan Fidan, that included a broader charge that he had passed Israeli secrets to Iran.

Turkey’s foreign ministry dismissed the reports as a “smear campaign” intended to further damage Turkey’s fraught relations with Israel, which Ignatius is in a position to appreciate better than most.  He was the moderator at the 2009 World Economic Forum panel featuring Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Israeli President Shimon Peres, when Erdogan pulled off his microphone and stormed off the stage over the 2008-2009 conflict in Gaza. “When it comes to killing, you know well how to kill,” Erdogan told Peres.

Beyond tightening tensions between Ankara and Jerusalem, the new reports also add to the narrative of the secret war between Israel and Iran that has been emerging in bits and pieces.  In January 2012, intelligence sources acknowledged to TIME that a young man who appeared on Iranian state television in 2011 confessing he had been working for the Mossad, had, in fact, been an asset for the Israeli intelligence agency. The chagrined intelligence officials said 24-year-old Majid Jamali Fashi, who was executed in May 2012 as a “Mossad spy”, had been betrayed to Iran’s security services by a third country, which TIME did not identify.   A subsequent Israeli investigation concluded that Turkey had not overtly identified the Mossad agents, but rather permitted them to be discovered by Iranian state security, either by possibly through their movements between Iran and Turkey, according to an intelligence official.

Three months after Fashi was hanged, the Iranian government paraded another 14 Iranians on primetime television, all describing their roles in the assassinations of scientists involved in Iran’s nuclear program. Iran blames the killings on the Mossad – and correctly so, Western intelligence officials said. The officials acknowledged the loss of more operatives, Iranian nationals paid to provide logistics and other support for the Mossad operation. The officials said the assassinations were intended both to deter Iranian scientists from joining the nuclear effort, and as part of a broader covert campaign aimed at delaying Iran’s program. Before scaling back the level of covert operations later in 2012, Israel’s secret campaign ranged from silent attacks such as the Stuxnet computer virus, to very loud ones, like the massive Nov. 2011 blast at a missile base outside Tehran, which intelligence officials acknowledged to was Israeli sabotage.

Iran attempted again and again to strike back at Israel, in a fast-moving  “shadow war” that involved attempts on the lives of Israeli diplomats and expatriates, from Bangkok to Baku to Nairobi.  But it did not fare well. The Israelis or other governments thwarted every attack until July 2012, when agents of Hizballah – which Iran created and has a history of partnering with in terror attacks – bombed a bus in the Bulgarian resort of Burgas,  killing five Israeli tourists, a Bulgarian bus driver and a Hizballah operative who may not have meant to die.

Karl Vick   @karl_vick   

Karl Vick has been TIME's Jerusalem bureau chief since 2010, covering Israel,the Palestine territories and nearby sovereignties. He worked 16 years at the Washington Post in Nairobi, Istanbul, Baghdad, Los Angeles and Rockville,

Read more: http://world.time.com/2013/10/18/turkish-betrayal-is-the-talk-of-israel/#ixzz2iDhwVzJk****
3917  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Guerilla war or try retreat and regroup while we get our asses kicked on: October 19, 2013, 11:46:26 AM
Do we want a retreating action or a guerilla war?   Which is it?   

As Mark Levin would describe the Tea Party now,

"we are a resistance movement".

Like the French resistance.

Instead of a simple rear guard defensive retreat like establishment Republicans I prefer a guerilla resistance like the Tea Party.   Hit the enemy where one can.  As hard as possible.  Fight back.  Not as Hannity described simply, "manage defeat". 

Reading on Lenin and Stalin they were essentially the same thing - against Tsarist Russia.  They both fought their whole lives to gain power.  I don't admire their use of terror and lies, and murder, and robbery.   But I admire their persistence, their single minded agenda. 

Neither was about money.  It was all political.  Though the politburo members did later become more about money and power for power's sake.  Though they had to pretend they were not like evil capatilists.  tongue
3918  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Al Gore's stock advise on: October 19, 2013, 10:55:04 AM
Short oil.   

http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/daily-ticker/al-gore-carbon-bubble-going-burst-avoid-oil-121707563.html
3919  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politically (In)correct on: October 19, 2013, 10:47:53 AM
"Enough! Done! and a hearty Foff to any who would seek to correct me."

I have many Black patients.   I guess they trust and like me.

I have to admit to being a little afraid at times of how to address them.   Some diseases are different with regards to prevalence or severity in Blacks vs Whites vs. Latino vs Asians.   It does sometimes matter where a person is from; born, raised, how long they have resided in the US. 

Hepatitis B, sarcoidosis, Helicobacter pylori, malaria, intestinal parasites, glaucoma, prostate and colon cancer, liver cancer, thalassemia, sickle cell, and others to name a few.

I was not sure to address them as African American or Black.   I have no problem addressing anyone the way they wish to be addressed.   I sometimes do not know which is preferred.   Once I recall using AA and the patient immediately kind of grinned as though she thought it just as silly.   A few times I recall pointing out a disease is more common in "Blacks" and the patient does display a bit of a change in facial expression.   I try to be as sensitive to this as I can.    I don't know how else to tell them the medical facts.  I go with the facts and present them as they are. 

Usually I use the term Black.   For example when I discuss the pros and cons of doing the PSA (prostate blood test) I would make the patient aware that prostate cancer deaths are more prevalent in Blacks.   Cause unknown but you need to know this.   

I would not use the term colored or Negro.  But do I use AA - which by the way in this case is not even accurate.  Or do I use Black?  I have chosen to use "black".   Thank goodness there has never been any response that suggested anyone was offended.   That is the last thing I would want to do.

In anthropology races were divided into Caucasoid, Negroid, and Mongoloid back in the 70's.  I do not know if it still that way when examining skeletons or not.
3920  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: October 19, 2013, 10:22:46 AM
3/05/14/former-gop-latino-outreach-specialist-is-now-a-demo
3921  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: October 19, 2013, 10:19:36 AM
Get rid of the clowns at the RNC.  I nominate Brent Bozell or maybe even Matt Drudge to become chairman of the PR department of the Republican Party.
How about Sowell?  This guy knows how to communicate.


http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/sowell100813.php3#.UmKiLhXD-Cg
3922  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Benghazi and related matters on: October 19, 2013, 10:15:24 AM
I don't believe that either.   Wasn't there a time period of multiple hours?

And that doesn't excuse those who were in a position to respond for at least not sending help even if it got there late.

You send the help and hope they get there in time.

The crowd there was left to fend for their own.  And the whole affair was covered up and a complete phony story made up as an excuse just before an election and to cover glamour gild Clinton for her run.

The military people don't get promoted for outing superiors.  They fall in line (I think).  No?

The silence of the mainstream media is so telling.  The Republicans must get their act together and coordinated to respond and fight this propaganda war.  They are getting trashed. 
3923  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politically (In)correct on: October 19, 2013, 10:05:47 AM
"Why are people not OUTRAGED by the use of this racist term?"

Good point.  Could you imagine the political correct crowd criticizing the NAACP?

Inadvertently I hit on another point about this.

The organization isn't about "African Americans".  It IS about Black people.   And more specifically American Blacks.

We don't hear the organization's people's outrage over Nigerians slaughtering each other in the streets.  It doesn't represent them.

Also what about Africans who are not Black.  What about Egyptians?  The Arab peoples of northern Africa?  What about my white niece?

The whole "African-American" thing is not helpful.  So is "Asian American". 

This had to have started someone with the political elite liberal university types.
3924  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Continuing the absurdity of it all.... on: October 18, 2013, 10:33:38 PM
NAAAAP

So if one is from Somalia, Nigeria, or say Cameroon but is not also American one cannot be a member?

One has to be both American And African?

Do white South Africans qualify?  My niece is a white South African and now an American.   I guess that is why it is still called the NAACP - to keep white people out!

So what do we call Nigerians?   Nigerian Africans?

Can I be called a New Jersey American?   (not that I want to admit I am from Jerzy)

I guess I am a Lithuanian, Ukrainian, Russian, Prussian American?

In the end we are all descended from apes from Kenya.  So we are all African Americans.

3925  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: October 18, 2013, 09:58:55 PM
Noonan's piece was good till this end part:

*****Ted Cruz ? Here Taft paused. "That fellow is a little self-propelled." Another pause. "We had a saying, 'Give him time and space to fall on his face.' " Others with him on the Hill, however, are "good, smart, intend to make America better, and will be a big part of the future."

And don't forget, Taft says, "the first Mr. Republican. Abe Lincoln. First inaugural: 'We are not enemies but friends. We must not be enemies.' Members of the party should wake up every day saying those words."****

If it wasn't for Cruz we wouldn't even be having this conversation.  I wonder who the "others" on the Hill are who are good and so smart and will be a big part of the  future?  Would she care to elaborate?  I can't think of too many.
3926  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: October 18, 2013, 09:10:58 PM
"We actually need to both defeat the establishment Republicans and unite with them, a daunting proposition."

Yes.  And that is why Cruz is a hero to many of us.  For the first time he stood up to the cowards in our party and gave them a lesson on how to fight. 

It was a brilliant success no matter what the left wing media and the establishment Repooplicans will claim.  He gave me, at least, hope, inspiration, and a will to fight on.

I know no other Republican who can lay the same claim.  Ryan, Rubio, Boner, McConnell, Christie, even Rand (he might be closest).

Even in this temporary defeat there is triumph.   He took a stand and went down fighting.   And more alive to fight another day.

That which doesn't kill you makes you stronger.   

Doug writes,

 "At some point people open up to a different message."   

Why is it Republicans don't have a message machine, a talking points machine like the crats?  Thomas Sowell points out in a recent column how disastrously poor the republicans are with their messages.

This is a major flaw. 



 
3927  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politically (In)correct on: October 18, 2013, 08:37:04 PM
CK suggests we get rid of the "red" portion of the "Redskins".   And then use the "skins" portion.  I am sure he contemplated but for whatever reason did not suggest the other half of the name:  "reds".
I think he is trying to hard to be  above it all.
 
On a more descriptive note we should rename Washington's team the "porkers", or the "lobbyists", or the "redistributionists", or the "elitists", or the "croneyists".

We could name them the Washington "Reds" to parallel the communist tendencies of the politburo types.  Then again we already have the Cincinnati Reds which because of the association with communistm really offends ME as do the Sacramento "Kings".  Didn't we have a Revolution to get rid of the King?

Maybe we could use a politically correct term.   How about the Washington "gays"?  How cool?

Or the Washington "undocumented"? 

I could go on pointing out the stupidity of it all.

CK used to be one of my favorite opinion writers.   Not lately.   Too much Washington DC in his thinking, methinks.
 

3928  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: October 18, 2013, 09:16:05 AM
We keep hearing from establishment Republicans that Cruz has "damaged the Republican brand".

I submit the question:

What brand?

The party no longer represents us.

What is the message besides "low taxes"?

The establishment Republicans sound more and more like Democrats.

I submit the response that there is no "brand".

And that is what the Tea Party is about. 

3929  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Sen.Ted Cruz on: October 17, 2013, 10:31:17 AM
"Meanwhile, the most damage to ObamaCare this month has been inflicted by the law's supporters, with their rollout of the law's insurance exchanges. (See editorial above.) If not for the shutdown diversion, more of the American people might even have noticed the debacle."

The roll out failures mean nothing.  Temporary.   It will be fixed.   The problem is half the country will be forced to pay more to cover the other half.   That won't go away.

The big corporations are expanding and increasing their market power because they are the ones who have the financial and consulting recourses to figure out how to navigate the gigantic maze of regulations.

That's it.

It is all driven by data and assembly line tinkering from birth to grave.  No stopping it.   Whether it is better for us I am not sure.   But many of us will suffer with higher rates, less options, more regulation, and more being dictated to.   Managed care of the 80's and 90's was a small taste of what we will see. 

This could be on the Health care politics thread I guess.
3930  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / The faces of some who were there on: October 17, 2013, 05:02:32 AM
One was supposedly Washington's favorite drummer:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2356524/Faces-American-revolution-Amazing-early-photographs-document-heroes-War-Independence-later-years.html
3931  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Carbon capture on: October 16, 2013, 11:13:42 AM
I didn't know Exxon holds the most patents in this area.  From Scientific American.   

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/plugged-in/2013/10/15/will-oil-companies-become-carbon-capture-ones/
3932  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Dershowitz, on Cruz, then Levin responds on: October 16, 2013, 11:01:59 AM
Dershowitz throws the Constitution, figuratively, at Ted Cruz

National Constitution Center
By NCC Staff 7 minutes ago
 
Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, a noted liberal, threw the Constitution figuratively at GOP Senator Ted Cruz on Tuesday night, as tensions flared in the debt-ceiling debate.

Ted Cruz

As of Wednesday morning, Democrats and Republicans were still trying to make a deal before a Thursday deadline set by the Treasury Department as a milestone for when the federal government lacked the ability to borrow money.

The so-called “debt ceiling” might, in turn, cause the government to partially default on its public debt, since the Treasury Department won’t have enough cash to pay all its bills.

The nonpartisan Bipartisan Policy Council has set a date range between October 22 and November 1 for the default, if a debt-ceiling deal can’t be reached.

Alan Dershowitz appeared with Bill Richardson, the former New Mexico governor, with CNN host Piers Morgan to discuss what negotiation tactics could be used in Congress.

Instead, Dershowitz had harsh words for Cruz, his former law student at Harvard, whom he had praised this spring.

Cruz had led the fight for the GOP’s conservative wing to scale back or repeal the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, and to cut back government spending in general. He is also blamed or praised, by some, for helping facilitate the federal government shutdown as a protest against Obamacare and for his leadership role in seeking concessions from Democrats in any debt-ceiling deal.

After praising Cruz as a student, as he had done earlier this year, Dershowitz leveled some harsh claims against him.

“He has to qualify among the brightest of the students,” Dershowitz said, who added that Cruz is deeply principled.

But when it came to the shutdown and debt-ceiling fight, Dershowitz made his case.

“I think it raises very serious constitutional questions of the kind that Ted Cruz should be interested in. Could you imagine Hamilton and Madison sitting around and drafting the Constitution and the Federalist Papers. They’re talking about how the government has to pay its debts, how it has to secure the credit of the United States, how the House of Representatives to originate bills on revenue. Nobody in a million years would have contemplated the power of Congress to shut down the government, to create doubts about our creditworthiness,” he said.

“I think you can make a very strong argument that what Ted Cruz is doing is deeply unconstitutional. Whether a court would accept that or say it’s a political question is another issue, but Cruz is a principled man. He ought to look at the Constitution and look into his heart and ask himself, ‘What would Alexander Hamilton have done,’” Dershowitz said.

The comments quickly found their way to the Internet and got an equally quick response from author and radio show host Mark Levin.

“Dershowitz is dead wrong. We don’t have to imagine anything,” he told the Newsbusters website. “Congress and only Congress can authorize borrowing under Article I. The president must first pay interest on the debt under the 14th Amendment. The federal government collects 10 times as much revenue each month as it needs to cover those payments. As long as the president complies with the Constitution there can be no default. This is basic stuff. Even a Harvard law professor like Dershowitz should comprehend it.”

Cruz has emerged as the most talked-about figure in the Washington budget battle, and he might be at the center of another constitutional test, as any final bill that goes through the Senate will need to survive a cloture vote, with at least 60 senators agreeing to overcome a filibuster to bring a bill up for a vote.

As of Wednesday morning, there were reports that a deal was struck with John Boehner, the House’s speaker, to have the proposed Senate compromise voted on first by the House, which would limit potential efforts by Cruz, Mike Lee, and other conservatives to extend debate time in the Senate.

Cruz hasn’t publicly indicated if he would try to block or slow down the bill in the Senate. But there are estimates that delays in the Senate could push the bill’s passage closer to this weekend, and several days past the Thursday deadline for borrowing.

Recent Constitution Daily Stories
3933  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Big Data on: October 16, 2013, 10:28:24 AM
You can move it if you like.

Or if you want me to I can.

I feel it is not just about privacy at this point.   It is mankind's future or destiny.

3934  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the left on: October 16, 2013, 10:25:27 AM
Doug,

Just think of the jobs this creates.  The policy tinkerers, the lawyers, the academics, the associated "researchers", their staffs, the interest groups who insert themselves somewhere into this mess, the cottage industries, the consultants who thus attempt to interpret all this to the rest of us, the fodder it gives to pundits, and media types. 

Why, this has created a huge internal economy.   Never mind the rest of us are forced into it whether we like it or not.
3935  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Anyone else feel this way? on: October 16, 2013, 10:20:48 AM
Dear Republican party.  I am no  longer interested.  I would consider myself a Tea Party advocate now.

That is the only party that represents me.

There is no point in considering myself Republican anymore.
3936  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Harsh price of fast food jobs on: October 16, 2013, 10:19:01 AM
Yes, one can blame the big corporations.  I submit the blame goes to government.  Why are we subsidizing these employees?  If we remove these subsidies maybe they would work harder to get to higher positions.  Or perhaps they would not work at server jobs .  Then the big corporations would be forced to pay more wages.  Around here a large proportion of low wagers are from other countries.  If we just stop allowing companies to hire these people their large numbers would not keep wages at the bottom.  The left and right has sold out.

****The harsh price Americans pay for fast-food jobs
October 16, 2013: 9:39 AM ET

Some 52% of families of cooks, servers, and other fast-food workers receive public aid, nearly twice the percentage of the overall workforce.

By Elizabeth G. Olson

130925130920-fast-food-worker-california-minimum-wage-620xa

FORTUNE -- Taxpayers spend at least $7 billion annually to subsidize food stamps and other public assistance programs that fast-food industry workers depend on to get by, according to two new studies.

Some 52% of families of cooks, servers, and other fast-food workers receive public aid -- which is nearly twice the percentage of the overall workforce, based on an examination of public data on such assistance programs by the University of California Berkeley Labor and Education Center and the University of Illinois.

"These are conservative estimates that do not include programs like child care assistance or subsidized lunch programs," says Ken Jacobs, chair of the Berkeley Labor Center and co-author of the report, in a briefing.

While the fast-food industry vigorously disagrees with the recently published report, the researchers say their data supports claims by fast-food workers, who have staged walkouts in 60 cities over the past year to highlight their lack of full-time schedules and benefits like health care and to call for a $15 hourly wage.

"People who work in fast-food jobs are paid so little," Jacobs says, "that having to rely on public assistance is the rule, rather than the exception, even for those working 40 hours or more a week."

MORE: The next Most Powerful Women in tech

A separate study, also issued this week, directly blames 10 fast-food heavyweights, including McDonald's (MCD), Burger King (BKW), Subway, Dunkin' Donuts (DNKN), and Domino's (DPZ), for more than half the total cost of the benefits, some $3.8 billion.

McDonald's alone accounts for $1.2 billion of the cost to taxpayers, the National Employment Law Project study found. The massive burger chain and others use a low-wage, no benefits model that forces workers to turn to the public safety net, the report found.

"The seven largest traded companies paid $53 million in compensation to their CEOs, but low-paid workers are unable to afford the basic necessities," says Jack Temple, author of the NELP report.

Other corporations singled out by the NELP were Yum Brands (YUM), Wendy's, Dairy Queen, Little Caesar's, and Sonic.

Berkeley's Jacobs says that "one of the most surprising findings is that more than two-thirds of the fast-food workers were over age 20, and 68% are the main earners in their families, and more are parents raising a child than teenagers living with their parents."

"The CEO of McDonald's makes more in a day than I do in a year," says Devonte Yates, 21, who earns $7.25 an hour at a Milwaukee McDonald's and receives food stamps. "Taxpayers are basically subsidizing the CEO, who has more money than he knows what to do with, and corporations need to pick up that slack."

In its defense, members of the restaurant industry argue that students make up a big chunk of their core workers and dispute the studies' findings.

"In addition to providing more than 13 million job opportunities, the restaurant industry is one of the best paths to achieving the American dream, with 80% of restaurant owners having started their careers in entry-level positions. In fact, nine out of 10 salaried employees started as hourly workers," Scott DeFife, the National Restaurant Association's executive vice president in charge of policy and government affairs, said in a statement.

DeFife called the studies "misleading" and accused the researchers of failing "to recognize that the majority of lower-wage employees works part-time to supplement a family income. Moreover, 40% of line staff workers in restaurants, the primary focus of the reports, are students."

Jacobs says that only one-third of such workers are under 19. He also noted the large share of families on public assistance, even those who work 40 hours a week. "So it's not just a question of work hours, but of wages."

MORE: Toyota Prius plug-in drops in price, amid waning interest

The median wage for fast-food workers nationally is $8.69 per hour, according to the studies, and only 13% of those jobs offer health benefits, compared to 59% of jobs overall in the U.S. The median fast-food worker also works only 30 hours weekly, in comparison to the average 40-hour workweek.

The states where fast-food jobs cost taxpayers the most are California, at $717 million; New York, at $708 million; Texas, at $556 million; Illinois, at $368 million; and Florida, at $348 million, according to Jacobs.

The 10 largest fast-food companies made more than $7.4 billion in profits in 2012, according to the study data.

On Capitol Hill, Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), said that "anyone concerned about the federal deficit only needs to look at this report to understand a major source of the problem: multi-billion dollar companies that pay poverty wages and then rely on taxpayers to pick up the slack, to the tune of a quarter of a trillion dollars every year in the form of public assistance to working families.

"Seven billion of this is just for fast-food workers, more than half of whom, even working full time, still must rely on programs like food stamps and Medicaid just to make ends meet."

McDonald's USA, in a statement, defended its track record of providing jobs to "hundreds of thousands of people across the country," and noted that "wages are based on local wage laws and are competitive to similar jobs in that market. We also provide training and professional development opportunities to anyone that works in one of our restaurants."

Despite spreading to dozens of cities, worker walkouts have done little to prick the industry's conscience, but Temple, author of the NELP study, says that "companies are very sensitive to their brand because its success depends on popularity.

"The tipping point is going to be continuing activities we've seen this past year until companies see business as usual is not going to cut it."


Posted in: Burger King, compensation, Dunkin' Donuts, Fast-food industry, Income inequality, Low-wage jobs, McDonald's, Public assistance, Subway****   
3937  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Evoultion - out of God's hands into ours on: October 16, 2013, 09:32:51 AM
Not long ago many people wondered if we are still "evolving".  How can we be if there is no survival of the fittest.  Even those who are not "fit" still get to survive and reproduce in our society.

Now it is clear.  Not only are we evolving but evolution will accelerate.   We will soon begin to control our evolution and accelerate it.  From simple choosing the sex of babies to divesting of flawed DNA to insertion of chosen DNA.  Parents will be able to view menus of traits.  You want your son to be tall, athletic.  How about an IQ of 180?  How about extrovert?  High energy?

No problem.   

Not only will evolution increase so that we develop master races of humans we will be controlling it.

3938  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Big Data on: October 16, 2013, 09:27:13 AM
http://www.edge.org/conversation/reinventing-society-in-the-wake-of-big-data
3939  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 16, 2013, 09:17:16 AM
True to form.  Continue to spit on half the country:

****Obama plans immigration push after fiscal crisis ends
ReutersReuters – 2 hours 29 minutes ago..


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that stalled immigration reform would be a top priority once the fiscal crisis has been resolved.

"Once that's done, you know, the day after, I'm going to be pushing to say, call a vote on immigration reform," he told the Los Angeles affiliate of Spanish-language television network Univision.

The president's domestic agenda has been sidetracked in his second term by one problem after another. As he coped with the revelation of domestic surveillance programs, chemical weapons in Syria, and a fiscal battle that has shut down the U.S. government and threatens a debt default, immigration has been relegated to the back burner.

But Obama, who won re-election with overwhelming Hispanic backing, had hoped to make reforms easing the plight of the 11 million immigrants who are in the United States illegally.

In June, the Senate passed an immigration overhaul, but House of Representatives Republicans are divided over the granting of legal status to those in the country illegally, a step many see as rewarding lawbreakers.

Although the president had sought comprehensive reform, he said last month he would be open to the House taking a piece-by-piece approach if that would get the job done.

Obama on Tuesday blamed House Speaker John Boehner for preventing immigration from coming up for a vote.

"We had a very strong Democratic and Republican vote in the Senate," he said. "The only thing right now that's holding it back is, again, Speaker Boehner not willing to call the bill on the floor of the House of Representatives."

Boehner said the sweeping Senate bill would not pass the House and has said the lower chamber would tackle the issue in smaller sections that would include stricter provisions on border protection.

3940  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Nature on: October 15, 2013, 11:33:40 PM
Some surreal photos:

http://www.grindtv.com/outdoor/nature/post/natgeos-photo-assignment-to-the-public-explore-our-changing-world/
3941  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / putin shows some judo moves on: October 13, 2013, 09:28:27 PM
http://search.yahoo.com/search;_ylt=A0oG7iAxU1tSwFsAT.VXNyoA;_ylc=X1MDMjc2NjY3OQRfcgMyBGJjawMzbzRvMDY1OTVtZ3A4JTI2YiUzRDMlMjZzJTNEZnAEY3NyY3B2aWQDVUF5NGxVZ2V1ckE4RXdBeFVsdERLQVNGUlhRZ2tGSmJVekVBQVY3eQRmcgN5ZnAtdC05MDAEZnIyA3NiLXRvcARncHJpZANDOGhwdVNzVVEzaVlGOW5PWS5VR0FBBG5fcnNsdAMxMARuX3N1Z2cDOARvcmlnaW4Dc2VhcmNoLnlhaG9vLmNvbQRwb3MDMARwcXN0cgMEcHFzdHJsAwRxc3RybAMyOARxdWVyeQNncmVhdGVzdCBqdWRvIG1hcnRpYWwgYXJ0aXN0BHRfc3RtcAMxMzgxNzE3MjM5MDg0?p=greatest+judo+martial+artist&fr2=sb-top&fr=yfp-t-900
3942  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Military Science and Military Issues on: October 13, 2013, 09:19:18 PM
Three women who fought in the Civil War:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2285841/The-women-fought-men-Rare-Civil-War-pictures-female-soldiers-dressed-males-fight.html
3943  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Putin's net worth? Maybe 70 billion? on: October 12, 2013, 09:28:03 PM
http://www.celebritynetworth.com/articles/celebrity/how-vladimir-putin-stashed-away-a-secret-70-billion-personal-fortune/
3944  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / elephant and car on: October 12, 2013, 08:56:43 PM
http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=largest+elephant+on+record&qpvt=largest+elephant+on+record&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=96316E0E08568BC37CB7D1FCEB1067B2AA46F80E&selectedIndex=77
3945  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Hillbillary Clintons long, sordid, and often criminal history on: October 12, 2013, 07:35:25 PM
Tinfoil:

All just coincidence.   rolleyes cry angry

Like I said.  It is amazing what money and power can do - almost anything.

The media is complicit.

Like Crafty said.  The legal system is not a "justice" system.  It is a "legal" system.  Those with money and influence and with the right know how can run around it.

We just don't see it.   
3946  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / explaining that which is unexplainable on: October 12, 2013, 11:30:23 AM




Higgs Boson Gets Nobel Prize, But Physicists Still Don’t Know What It Means

By Adam Mann
10.08.13
3:54 PM










Data from the CMS experiment, one of the main Higgs-searching experiments at the Large Hadron Collider. Image: CERN


More than a year ago, scientists found the Higgs boson. This morning, two physicists who 50 years ago theorized the existence of this particle, which is responsible for conferring mass to all other known particles in the universe, got the Nobel, the highest prize in science.

For all the excitement the award has already generated, finding the Higgs — arguably the most important discovery in more than a generation — has left physicists without a clear roadmap of where to go next. While popular articles often describe how the Higgs might help theorists investigating the weird worlds of string theory, multiple universes, or supersymmetry, the truth is that evidence for these ideas is scant to nonexistent.

No one is sure which of these models, if any, will eventually describe reality. The current picture of the universe, the Standard Model, is supposed to account for all known particles and their interactions. But scientists know that it’s incomplete. Its problems need fixing, and researchers could use some help figuring out how. Some of them look at the data and say that we need to throw out speculative ideas such as supersymmetry and the multiverse, models that look elegant mathematically but are unprovable from an experimental perspective. Others look at the exact same data and come to the opposite conclusion.

“Physics is at a crossroads,” said cosmologist Neil Turok, speaking to a class of young scientists in September at the Perimeter Institute, which he directs. “In a sense we’ve entered a very deep crisis.”



The word “crisis” is a charged one within the physics community, invoking eras such as the early 20th century, when new observations were overturning long-held beliefs about how the universe works. Eventually, a group of young researchers showed that quantum mechanics was the best way to describe reality. Now, as then, many troubling observations leave physicists scratching their heads. Chief among them is the “Hierarchy Problem,” which in its simplest form asks why gravity is approximately 10 quadrillion times weaker than the three other fundamental forces in the universe. Another issue is the existence of dark matter, the unseen, mysterious mass thought to be responsible for strange observations in the rotation of galaxies.

The solution to both these problems might come from the discovery of new particles beyond the Higgs. One theory, supersymmetry, goes beyond the Standard Model to say that every subatomic particle — quarks, electrons, neutrinos, and so on — also has a heavier twin. Some of these new particles might have the right characteristics to account for the influence of dark matter. Engineers built the Large Hadron Collider to see if such new particles exist (and may yet see them once it reaches higher energy in 2014), but so far it hasn’t turned up anything other than the Higgs.

In fact, the Higgs itself has turned out to be part of the issue. The particle was the final piece in the Standard Model puzzle. When scientists discovered it at the LHC, it had a mass of 125 GeV, about 125 times heavier than a proton — exactly what standard physics expected. That was kind of a buzzkill. Though happy to know the Higgs was there, many scientists had hoped it would turn out to be strange, to defy their predictions in some way and give a hint as to which models beyond the Standard Model were correct. Instead, it’s ordinary, perhaps even boring.

All this means that confidence in supersymmetry is dropping like a stone, according to Tommaso Dorigo, a particle physicist at the LHC. In one blog post, he shared a rather pornographic plot showing how the findings of the LHC eliminated part of the evidence for supersymmetry. Later, he wrote that many physicists would have previously bet their reproductive organs on the idea that supersymmetric particles would appear at the LHC. That the accelerator’s experiments have failed to find anything yet “has significantly cooled everybody down,” he wrote.

In fact, when the organizers of a Higgs workshop in Madrid last month asked physicists there if they thought the LHC would eventually find new physics other than the Higgs boson, 41 percent said no. As to how to solve the known problems of the Standard Model, respondents were all over the map. String theory fared the worst, with three-quarters of those polled saying they did not think it is the ultimate answer to a unified physics.

One possibility has been brought up that even physicists don’t like to think about. Maybe the universe is even stranger than they think. Like, so strange that even post-Standard Model models can’t account for it. Some physicists are starting to question whether or not our universe is natural. This cuts to the heart of why our reality has the features that it does: that is, full of quarks and electricity and a particular speed of light.

This problem, the naturalness or unnaturalness of our universe, can be likened to a weird thought experiment. Suppose you walk into a room and find a pencil balanced perfectly vertical on its sharp tip. That would be a fairly unnatural state for the pencil to be in because any small deviation would have caused it to fall down. This is how physicists have found the universe: a bunch of rather well-tuned fundamental constants have been discovered that produce the reality that we see.

A natural explanation would show why the pencil is standing on its end. Perhaps there is a very thin string holding the pencil to the ceiling that you never noticed until you got up close. Supersymmetry is a natural explanation in this regard – it explains the structure of universe through as-yet-unseen particles.

But suppose that infinite rooms exist with infinite numbers of pencils. While most of the rooms would have pencils that have fallen over, it is almost certain that in at least one room, the pencil would be perfectly balanced. This is the idea behind the multiverse. Our universe is but one of many and it happens to be the one where the laws of physics happen to be in the right state to make stars burn hydrogen, planets form round spheres, and creatures like us evolve on their surface.

The multiverse idea has two strikes against it, though. First, physicists would refer to it as an unnatural explanation because it simply happened by chance. And second, no real evidence for it exists and we have no experiment that could currently test for it.

As of yet, physicists are still in the dark. We can see vague outlines ahead of us but no one knows what form they will take when we reach them. Finding the Higgs has provided the tiniest bit of light. But until more data appears, it won’t be enough.
3947  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the left on: October 12, 2013, 11:20:28 AM
Despite this he will defend and "protect" the President.   Just wait till we have another 30 million people who will work harder than you and will work for less Tavis.

*****Tavis Smiley: 'Black People Will Have Lost Ground in Every Single Economic Indicator' Under Obama

By Noel Sheppard | October 11, 2013 | 12:34
 
PBS's Tavis Smiley made a comment Thursday that every African-American as well as liberal media member should sit up and take notice.

Appearing on Fox News's Hannity, Smiley said, "The data is going to indicate sadly that when the Obama administration is over, black people will have lost ground in every single leading economic indicator category" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: My last question to you. You often do these seminars with the state of black America. I've watched them on C-Span and different channels, right?

TAVIS SMILEY: Right.

HANNITY: Are black Americans better off five years into the Obama presidency?

SMILEY: Let me answer your question very forthrightly. No, they are not. The data is going to indicate sadly that when the Obama administration is over, black people will have lost ground in every single leading economic indicator category. On that regard, the president ought to be held responsible.

But here's the other side. I respect the president. I will protect the president. And I will correct the president. He's right on this government shutdown. Republicans are thwarting the rule of law with the Constitution. If they let this debt go into default, they're trampling again on the Constitution.

Wow!

Now to be fair to Smiley, he has been hard on the president concerning how his policies are economically damaging the black community, but this is the first time I believe he's been this harsh on national television with such a large audience.

Sadly, he's right.

So why would this community re-elect someone doing so much damage to them economically?

Is it possible they're not aware of it because most liberal media members other than Smiley aren't reporting it?

Hmmm.
.

Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2013/10/11/tavis-smiley-black-people-will-have-lost-ground-every-single-economic#ixzz2hWcEICL1
3948  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / the name "Redskins" was to honor their coach in 1932 on: October 11, 2013, 07:01:17 PM
Who was of Sioux heritage!

******Do You Know the History Behind the Name ‘Washington Redskins’?

Oct. 11, 2013 12:21pm Erica Ritz

Do you know the history of the Washington Redskins?  As the issue becomes increasingly contentious — with many claiming the name is racist or discriminatory and pushing for a change — Glenn Beck tackled the issue head-on Friday.

“Ninety percent of Native Americans feel that the name isn’t offensive and shouldn’t be changed,” Beck remarked, echoing a letter written by the Redskins owner Dan Snyder to fans. “Students at primarily Native American schools all across America wear the name with pride, and say now they’re afraid they might lose the name. At Kingston Oklahoma high school, which is 58 percent Native American, the name ‘Redskins’ has been worn by its students for 104 years.  In fact, ‘Redskins’ was a name first used by Native Americans.”

Glenn Beck Explains the History of the Washington Redskins
Photo via TheBlaze TV

“In 1932, the NFL team moved to the historic Fenway Park and were left under the leadership of George Preston Marshall. The very next year, Marshall changed the name to ‘Redskins.’ Why?” Beck continued. “Well that’s a good question for the president to ask … the name was changed to ‘Redskins’ to honor then-coach Lone Star Dietz, an American Sioux.  So the name actually pays tribute to a great people.”

Switching to a deeply sarcastic voice, imitating those who want the name changed, Beck remarked: “But the people it pays tribute to?  Oh, I guess they just don’t know any better. But Obama does. And Peter King does. And NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell does. But the majority of the Indians … don’t have a clue at all.  The speech police using political correctness again to take care of these helpless, hopeless people so they are never harmed again.  It’s for their own good…”

Beck said perhaps it’s not those who don’t want the name changed who are out of touch, but those “who have no connection to the Native American culture, people out there trying to draw attention to themselves.”*****
3949  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / poster boy for cronism on: October 11, 2013, 07:55:44 AM
There could be no other person who uses his government influence to make a lot of money.
Whenever associated with any wrongdoing just donate to charity, take a big tax deduction, deny any wrong doing and shift the attention to another subject.   Works every time:

*****McAuliffe among investors in Rhode Island insurance scam that preyed on dying people

  By Fredrick Kunkle,   Published: October 10 E-mail the writer
 
 Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe was one of dozens of investors with a Rhode Island estate planner charged with defrauding insurers by using the stolen identities of terminally ill people, according to court documents filed Wednesday by federal prosecutors in Providence.

McAuliffe’s name appeared on a lengthy list of investors with Joseph A. Caramadre, an attorney and accountant who obtained the identities of dying people to set up annuities that ultimately cost insurance companies millions of dollars, the documents say.
 
McAuliffe claims Cuccinelli tax plan could cost $8B

Ben Pershing 8:02 AM ET

Democrat ignores rival’s pledge to cut income tax only if he can recoup funds through closing tax loopholes.

Cuccinelli and McAuliffe trade blows at Richmond forum

Laura Vozzella OCT 10

The rivals for governor made claims about an investment scheme and abortion.

McAuliffe tells a good story — though facts may be missing

Laura Vozzella OCT 10

Democratic candidate for governor in Va. is known for enthusiastic embellishment.


The list also included the law firm of a former Rhode Island Supreme Court justice, a Roman Catholic monsignor, a former Cranston, R.I. police chief, and a bookmaker, according to The Providence Journal, which first reported McAuliffe’s investment Wednesday.

Federal court documents do not accuse McAuliffe of wrongdoing, and it wasn’t clear whether he had made money or lost money on the investments. His campaign spokesman said McAuliffe was a “passive investor” who was deceived like many others. Spokesman Josh Schwerin also said that the campaign and McAuliffe donated sums to the American Cancer Society totaling $74,000 — approximately the amount McAuliffe earned as a return on the investment and received in a campaign donation from Caramadre.

“Terry was one of hundreds of passive investors several years ago and had no idea about the allegations against the defendant — who, at the time, was widely respected by business leaders and elected officials,” Schwerin said. “The allegations are horrible and he never would have invested if he knew he was being deceived.”

Caramadre and his former employee Raymour Radhakrishnan were charged in November 2011 in a 66-count indictment accusing them of wire fraud, money laundering and witness-tampering. Both men pleaded guilty last November, the FBI said in a press release.

Federal authorities say Caramadre, through his firm Estate Planning Resources, began developing products in the 1990s that used the identities of terminally ill people to purchase variable annuities from insurance companies. The annuities offered death benefits when those annuitants died. The investments — which Caramadre allegedly made on behalf of himself, friends, family and others — included returns of all the money invested and sometimes a guaranteed profit, federal authorities said.

In 2006, Caramadre also began investing in “death-put bonds” that relied on obtaining the identities of terminally ill people, according to prosecutors. These investments allowed the owner to redeem the bonds years or decades earlier than the maturity date when the bond’s co-owner died.

The FBI, in a November 2012 press release announcing mid-trial guilty pleas by Caramadre and Radhakrishnan, said Caramadre located terminally ill people by visiting AIDS patients at a hospice, locating relatives of terminally ill people, and placing an ad in a local Catholic newspaper offering $2,000 cash to people with a terminal illness.

In 2009, Caramadre gave McAuliffe’s campaign an $26,599 contribution, including an in-kind event donation of $1,599, according to records kept by the Virginia Public Access Project.

Researcher Alice Crites contributed to this story.*****


3950  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Fascism, liberal fascism, progressivism, socialism: on: October 08, 2013, 11:29:52 PM
Yeah.  Were a nation of laws. angry
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