Tuesday, 9/20/11, Public Square

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24 responses to “Tuesday, 9/20/11, Public Square

  1. It’s repeal day! Let freedom ring, for all Americans!

    Yep, this is one regulation that never needed to be in existence, and wouldn’t you know — the republicans fought tooth and nail to keep this one. They like ‘controlling’ people’s private lives.

  2. Alaska Court Rules in Favor of Lesbian and Gay Families

    It seems that the exclusion of same-sex couples from the property tax exemption that benefits seniors and disabled veterans violates that amazing document known as the Alaska Constitution. Glory be.

    The ACLU was on the case and challenged the exclusion of same sex families on behalf of three Alaska couples who had been denied $150,000 in property tax exemptions. These couples are in committed relationships with a same-sex domestic partner, but until now have been treated as “roommates” rather than families.

    Anchorage Superior Court Judge Frank Pfiffner ruled in favor of Julie Schmidt and Gayle Schuh; Julie Vollick and Susan Bernard; and Fred Traber and Larry Snider.

    “The Court today again affirmed that it is unfair to treat same-sex couples – who are just as committed to each other as any other family – as second-class citizens,” said Roger Leishman, of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, who presented oral argument on behalf of the couples. “The Alaska Constitution establishes that no senior citizen or disabled veteran should be unfairly taxed just because they happen to be lesbian or gay.”

  3. Congressman Spends $200,000 a Year on Food

    Rep. John Fleming, a Louisiana Republican who owns a string of Subway and UPS franchises, was on MSNBC to explain how earning $6.3 million a year—which he did in 2010—isn’t all it’s cracked up to be and to tell Barack Obama to lay off the class warfare. For instance: $200,000 of that goes to food. Being “rich” doesn’t sound so great now, does it?

  4. Texas Redistricting: Department Of Justice Says New Maps Violate Voting Rights Act

    Texas received four new congressional seats following the last census, more than any other state. The new congressional map was drawn with the goal of protecting and possibly expanding the 23-9 majority enjoyed by Republicans in Texas’ delegation in Washington.

    Hispanics have accounted for two-thirds of the state’s growth since 2000. Yet during the two-week federal trial, opponents argued that GOP mapmakers went out of their way to stifle those gains and deny Hispanics greater voting power.

  5. If you paid attention you know who won the Emmys, did you know this?

    Experts: Fukushima ‘Worse’ Than Chernobyl -Tokyo Evacuation Can No Longer Be Ingored

    Experts warn the need to evacuate Tokyo can no longer be ignored after radioactive hotspots higher than Chernobyl evacuation limits have been discovered across the city.

  6. Divided we fall

    The work of making common cause can be endlessly frustrating, but I’ve seen enough of the alternative to know it’s unthinkable

    If you don’t want the worst, maybe you had better learn to work with the least worst.

    In winning some of our past struggles – civil rights, gay rights, women’s rights, disabled people’s rights – along the way, somehow we’ve forgotten this more hard-nosed, yet generous way of thinking about people who disagree with us. Professional blowhards like Rick Perry, Palin and Bachmann are beyond redemption, since it’s in their self-interest to be cruel and delusional. And, yes, of course, there are plenty of ordinary people with a permanent Ku Klux Klan tattooed on their hearts.

    But not everybody who opposes abortion, or is prejudiced against gays, or is suspicious of immigrants and wary of “big government”, is obnoxious and untalkable to. After all, many of us have such Disagreeables in our own families. So what? You stop talking to them?

    When did we lose patience and decide everyone in the Tea Party movement was evil, racist and stupid?

    A coalition of vastly different opinions is not a love-marriage. But it’s an alliance of sorts to work together, if possible, on a national repair job. It’s the exact opposite of Obama pleading “Can’t we all get along?” to the Republican and Blue Dog Democrat barbarians scaling the walls and itching to cut our throats.

    The Wisconsin recall experience has taught us lessons. One of which is that no matter how hard you work – and my gosh, the Midwest unions and progressives went all out! – there are still lots of voters out there who simply don’t like what we stand for. Yet.

    • Prairie Pond

      “gay rights”

      We won??????????

      Why TF didn’t someone tell me?

      Until I can legally marry my girlfriend, with full equality of rights and benefits, I don’t think we’ve “won.” Believe me, we lose in every legislative session in Kansas.

      Hell, Kansas won’t even repeal the sodomy law, which was declared unconstitutional in Lawrence v Texas.

      So much for the office of the repealer as promised by brownback. If THAT law isn’t repealed, what the hell should be?

      • There’s still a bunch more to be done!

        Republicans want to ‘deregulate’ everything because ya know business people will just do the right thing, but women can’t be trusted to make their own decisions and gays will harm their marriages… You can’t make sense out of nonsense!

  7. I’ve heard it said our young people today don’t have the skills to fill positions that require mathematical and scientific knowledge, yet here is this story which begs the question of maybe we need to change the way we approach problems and maybe we don’t understand what they know, how they learned it, and how their knowledge is accessed?
    ——————————–

    U.S. Gamers Crack Puzzle in AIDS Research that Stumped Scientists for Years

    In just three weeks, online gamers deciphered the structure of a retrovirus protein that has stumped scientists for over a decade, and a study out Sunday says their breakthrough opens doors for a new AIDS drug design.

    The protein, called a protease, plays a critical role in how some viruses, including HIV, multiply. Intensive research has been underway to find AIDS drugs that can deactivate proteases, but scientists were hampered by their inability to crack the enzyme’s structure.

    Looking for a solution, researchers at the University of Washington turned to Foldit, a program created by the university a few years ago that transforms problems of science into competitive computer games, and challenged players to use their three-dimensional problem-solving skills to build accurate models of the protein.

    With days, the gamers generated models good enough for the researchers to refine into an accurate portrayal of the enzyme’s structure. What’s more, the scientists identified parts of the molecule that are likely targets for drugs to block the enzyme.

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/09/19/us-gamers-crack-puzzle-in-aids-research-that-stumped-scientists-for-years/#ixzz1YVH8YADb

  8. 75 years ago —

    September 20, 1936: President Roosevelt dedicated the Hoover Dam (Known at the time as the Boulder Dam. Hoover and damn was uttered often in those days, but with a different intent.) The $49 million project employed 5,000 workers.

    • We have a documentary that we had bought on a visit there. The building of the dam was an amazing feat both in manpower and machine. The men that worked on the dam spoke of the work they did with pride.

      • indypendent

        I remember a time when working Americans took pride in their jobs and the products/services they produced.

        But when the emphasis started to be just on the corporate profits (I blame Reagan’s era for the Decade of Greed for the start of the decimation of hte Working Class), alot of working Americans got treated like just a warm body that can be replaced with yet another warm body, at a cheaper price.

        Sadly, I think this same cancer of emphasis just on money and profits is what has been killing us for a long, long time.

        Employers can pretty much do whatever they want to their workers and not much can be done.

  9. Bill O’Reilly Threatens To Quit If Higher Taxes For Millionaires Are Enacted

    Guess what, America? Bill O’Reilly plans to take his marbles and go home if we don’t play by his rules. Apparently, looking out for the folks has its price and it’s a steep one. Never mind that a large majority of Americans (i.e. “the folks”) want tax increases on the wealthy. If O’Reilly doesn’t get his way, he’s going to quit his job and stop making investments. Way to show your love for your country, O’Reilly!

    • indypendent

      Hey, is this a reason FOR voting to raise those taxes on millionaires?

      Seriously, if we can vote to raise their taxes AND get rid of Bill O’Reilly – sounds like a win-win to me.

  10. Asher Bob White

    “Bill O’Reilly”..”love America!” What a great oxymoron! Bill only loves Bill. If all it takes to get rid of him and all the lies he tells, then I support higher taxes on Bill. Whatever it takes!

  11. indypendent

    There was a comment on the WE Opinion Line or the Opinion Line Extra that said they were tired of the gay protesters yelling ‘I’m queer and I’m here’.

    Well, I’m tired of seeing the Straight Filled with Hate.

  12. indypendent

    Remember this Tea Party Republican Congressman from Illinois? Heis one of these self-professing, morally superior people and he also was one of the Teapublicans who refused to go to Obama’s jobs speech at the Joint Session of Congress.

    Do some research on this guy and keep in mind, this guy won his current seat in 2010 by only 291 votes.

    This is why voter apathy in 2012 is so important on the Democratic side. Even if you’re disapointed in Obama, do you really want some Teapublican to win by only 291 votes?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/20/joe-walsh-named-among-con_n_971909.html

    • indypendent

      BTW – check out the response from this guy’s spokesman – is it really a surprise that a Teapublican pulls the victim card when being singled out on the corruption list?

      Also remember- this guy has only been in office for less than a year. If he has a history like this already, do we really want him in the power-saturated city of Washington DC and with Republicans in control?

    • If that isn’t one of the best examples of IOKIYAR that I’ve ever read!

      Named among Congress’s thirteen “most corrupt” representatives and first his spokesman says he’s done nothing wrong then attacks the messenger. Yep, sounds like republicans!

  13. Our Hidden Government Benefits

    Individuals’ political views partly account for their perceptions. In the Cornell poll, a respondent who self-identified as “extremely liberal” was 20 percentage points more likely to acknowledge using a government program than someone who used the same number of programs but was “extremely conservative.”

    The threat to democracy today is not the size of government but rather the hidden form that so much of its growth has taken. If those who assume government has never helped them could see how it has, it might help defuse our polarized political climate and reinvigorate informed citizenship.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/opinion/our-hidden-government-benefits.html?_r=3&hp