Thursday, 1/12/12, Public Square

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Filed under The Public Square

40 responses to “Thursday, 1/12/12, Public Square

  1. Republicans move to control Keystone approval

    Congressional Republicans, who are urging President Barack Obama to back the Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL oil pipeline, are now working on plans to take the reins of approval from the hands of the president should the White House say no.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/11/us-usa-keystone-bill-idUSTRE80A28C20120111

    • I agree with Ron Paul in the aspect of churches should be doing what government currently does in the way of social programs.

      Just imagine if all these mega churches would actually put their tax-free millions towards solving the problem of hunger, homelessness or even invest in starting businesses that could hire Americnas with living-wage jobs.

      But, I know, if these mega churches did some actual good in this world, there would be alot of golden crosses ex-salesmen on the unemployment line.

      I believe the Founding Fathers expected the churches to help – but nowadays, the ‘right’ Congress Critters are in bed with these mega church preachers in how to amass even more tax-free millions. I guess one can never have too many golden crosses – can they?

      • bobwhite

        Indy, I disagree because I believe such exclusive role would lead the US toward more Theocracy and less Democracy. Less than 50% of the US citizens currently participate in churches, as such, many in name only. Those active in churches are more humble and less agressive leaving the “fighting” on principles to the unchurched. Yes, one exception is abortion. Again, however, while huge disagreement exists there, the legal matter has been settled, for the current time being. Further, we already have too much interference with “voting” on the part of the churches. Organized religion is a significant threat to the US demoncracy. Faith in the Word is not.

      • I did not mean churches should be exclusively responsible for social programs – but churches should be doing more than they are today. I see nothing of societal charitable value when I see these megachurches build more exorbitant buildings, put in a new gym for their exclusive members, put on public concerts and charge for tickets but is part of their revenue taxed?

        I am 58 yrs old and I remember when churches used to be ‘real’ churches – all different faiths. But in today’s mega churches – I’ll be damned if I can see very many of them actually doing some good for society. Hell, they don’t even pay taxes on their prime real estate where their huge monuments stand.

      • Bob – I must confess, I am very cynical when it comes these Evangelical mega churches. I have been in their midst – I even graduated from one of their colleges – so my view of these folks is quite jaded. In reality, all I can see is that these mega churches have become worse since my days within this movement (in the 70’s).

        When my husband and I finally had our fill (he was a preacher), we lost our faith in the church – but we did not lose our faith. I believe that God should not be held responsible for what some of his followers do in his name.

    • As the article linked above points out, “Libertarianism insists that there are only two real factions of American society: the government and the individual – and that the former is the only one that, if too large, powerful and/or overtly ominous, will work to take away an individual’s personal freedoms. But this is simply not true.”

      Thus we have the Corpocracy.

      sarcasm ON
      And look around you. It’s difficult to find any example of an entity (whether it be a person or a business which is a person according to SCOTUS) that needs any rules or regulations. They all seem to do exactly what is most moral, most civic minded, those things that have nothing to do with personal gain, and they never discriminate against anyone because no wo/man is more equal than another.
      sarcasm off

  2. Imagine a church that discriminates. A church. A ‘minister.’

    This is God’s work? Is this an example of why no rules are needed, no regulations?

    The U. S. Supreme Court said it is fine and dandy for churches to discriminate (or at least their ministers and there was NO attempt to define who/what that is)! That ought to give more room for civil wars inside churches. Factions will split and form their new church… ad nauseum. Some of the smarter people will drop churches from their lives.

    Worth reading —

    Six Reasons Young Christians Leave Church

    http://www.barna.org/teens-next-gen-articles/528-six-reasons-young-christians-leave-church

    • This is exactly why churches cannot be expected to shoulder the nation’s social problems. People fall through the cracks bad enough with the govt. running the programs, imagine those that might not qualify if the churches were in charge.

  3. Here’s the 28-minute film pro-Newt Gingrich super PAC ‘Winning Our Future,’ titled, When Mitt Romney Came To Town.

    http://www.webcasts.com/kingofbain/

    • Why Bain is fair game: Here’s a final point about Bain: His work there is fair game. After all, he made it the central narrative of his candidacy — he understands the economy and can fix the economy because of his private-sector work. The phrase “private sector experience” was perhaps the most common phrase he used in 2011. (And this is the reason why Bain really wasn’t a topic in Romney’s ’08 bid, because his private-sector experience wasn’t his central narrative back then.) As the Weekly Standard’s Jonathan Last has written, “For a variety of reasons (the general dislike of government, Romneycare) he chose to make his work at Bain central to his candidacy with constant and over-the-top talk about how he created ‘100,000’ jobs. As such, he invited voters to look at what he did there and determine if they believe it was both (a) admirable and (b) germane to the presidency.”

  4. I’ve got one response for the cartoon today – Dwight Eisenhower. The GOP needs to stop worshiping Ronald Reagan and start following Eisenhower’s foot steps .

    Especially when it comes to Eisenhower’s feelings about the military industrial complex.

    • Everything the republicans do tells me they worship money.

      The Military Industrial Complex Eisenhower talked about makes some fat cats fatter. The empowered class will tell us what is to be pursued. We should remember our ‘place.’

  5. Research Bought, Then Paid For

    THROUGH the National Institutes of Health, American taxpayers have long supported research directed at understanding and treating human disease. Since 2009, the results of that research have been available free of charge on the National Library of Medicine’s Web site, allowing the public (patients and physicians, students and teachers) to read about the discoveries their tax dollars paid for.

    But a bill introduced in the House of Representatives last month threatens to cripple this site. The Research Works Act would forbid the N.I.H. to require, as it now does, that its grantees provide copies of the papers they publish in peer-reviewed journals to the library. If the bill passes, to read the results of federally funded research, most Americans would have to buy access to individual articles at a cost of $15 or $30 apiece. In other words, taxpayers who already paid for the research would have to pay again to read the results.

    The bill is backed by the powerful Association of American Publishers and sponsored by Representatives Carolyn B. Maloney, Democrat of New York, and Darrell Issa, a Republican from California.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/11/opinion/research-bought-then-paid-for.html?_r=1

  6. Remember James O’Keefe? The guy who dressed as a pimp in a video aimed at taking out ACORN? Well, he’s at it again, only this time to prove voter fraud is a problem, and in the course of that pursuit, his group may have actually committed voter fraud.

    James O’Keefe’s Group Appears To Commit Voter Fraud In Order To Gin Up Hysteria Over Non-Existent Fraud Problem

  7. prairie pond

    Well, well. Lookie here. I guess the republicans are just as unhappy with their candidates as we suspected.

    “CBS News: Republicans have yet to enthusiastically embrace a potential nominee for president – and despite the late date, most would like to see other candidates enter the race, according to a new CBS News poll.

    The survey finds that 58 percent of Republican primary voters want more presidential choices, while just 37 percent say they are satisfied with the current field. The percentage of Republican primary voters that wants more choices has increased 12 percentage points since October.”

    God, please don’t let the “new candidate entering the race” be Jebbie.

    Because, yes, I think American voters are just that stoop-id!

    • Would they change all the rules for when and how candidates get on their ballots if the right person threw his/her hat in the ring at this late date?

      • This would not be the first time rules were changed or ‘bent’ to favor Republicans. IIRC – Jebbie’s brother George W. was heavily favored in the State of Florida (where Jeb just happened to be Governor).

        Now imagine if that scenario happened in some third world country – the process and results would be under scrutiny – don’t you think?

  8. Look who is in trouble on his last day in office as governor. But don’t fret, I heard that Haley Barbour is now a lobbyist – so he the fatted calf is safe.

    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/01/11/10121326-pardon-of-violent-criminals-sets-up-miss-legal-battle

  9. I read someplace recently that ole Gov Scott Walker is in trouble for violating campaign finance laws. It was to the tune of hundreds of thousands in fines. I sure hope that’s true! karma. 🙂

    • That would just make him some GOP martyr. It will just provide ‘proof’ in these Evangelical Republicans’ eyes that one of their own is truly being persecuted.

      I swear – I’ve never seen any group such as the Evangelical Christians who are constantly and incessantly whining about their perceived persecution.

      • Maybe he did a good enough job for the Kochs they’ll pay any fines that might be levied. He seems real stupid to me, but I don’t suppose smart people are bought as cheaply as stupid ones. That slows down the Koch agenda a bit — not enough tho!

  10. Good news on hiring but these are seasonal jobs. Even though it was mentioned that some of these seasonal jobs do turn into permanent jobs.

    But what type of jobs are these – living wage jobs for people to raise their kids or are they low-wage retail jobs that mostly just keep people afloat while they’re looking for something better?

    I was listening to a NPR show yesterday and the issue was Romney’s claim that he created jobs in the private sector. A woman called in and asked whether these jobs at Staples, Dominoes and Sports Authority (these 3 companies were specifically named because Romney has bragged about job creation there) were actual living-wage jobs. The woman went on to say that – in her view – most of these jobs are low-wage jobs that high school or college age kids take to make some money.

    Is this woman correct in her thinking?

    One more point this woman made was quite interesting – Romney (while with Bain Capital) claims to have created so many jobs but yet the companies that his group bought,allegedly knowingly bankrupted and sold off were mainly manufacturing jobs that were living-wage jobs.

    That is the difference. Claiming to have created jobs may be technically factual for Romney but I think most voters want to know what type of jobs they really are – and low-wage jobs just is not going to keep our economy going – IMHO.

    http://bottomline.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/01/12/10136296-home-depot-hiring-70000-seasonal-workers

    • A 16-year-old at my house is diligently looking for a job. Many adults fill the jobs that used to go to teenagers. What’s that tell you?

      Romney’s Bain Capital ‘problems’ are that he didn’t create jobs as he brags! It wouldn’t even matter what the jobs pay, he just didn’t and he is lying about it!

      In addition to Bain Capital, Romney will continue changing his deeply-held convictions until he finds a stance that you agree with. And, his Romneycare was the pattern for Obamacare. If republicans vote for that, everything they say is hypocritical.

      • I can round up YouTube videos of Romney stating a position — no matter which issue and no matter which stance you wish to hear. It’s all there, it’s in his words.

  11. Another problem for Romney is that the Occupiers aren’t going to stop bringing income inequality to the attention of all Americans. The differences between the 99% and the 1% aren’t going away! A discussion on poverty will be held and Romney will be part of that discussion.

    Take a look at his economic plan — it lowers taxes for the most wealthy (AGAIN!) and raises taxes on poorer people. How do you think that’s gonna play?

    There isn’t any republican who will win with the stupidity of protecting the wealthy, and they don’t have anything else.

  12. Law enforcement continues to disappoint and deeply concern me.

    • I can’t even talk about the marines who filmed themselves urinating on corpses.

      • Whenever I hear Republicans arrogantly boasting about American Exceptionalism, I think back to the horrible pictures in the past like that Iranian prison where our soldiers were filmed putting dog leashes on the prisoners and other equally disturbing stuff. Or like the numerous pictures and videos of our US contractors who have these sex orgy parties while they are in foreign countries.

        Are these are the type of people we WANT to represent the USA to the rest of the world?

        And lastly, how smart is the person that poses for such a picture? Do these folks not know that picture can potentially get out into the public?

        Or do these folks not care if it does get it out in the public view – like I said above – some people arrogantly boast that Americans are exceptional – which insinuates that Americans can do whatever the Hell they want. I disagree with this premise – As Americans, we should hold ourselves and our fellow Americans to higher standards. That is what makes America exceptional – IMHO

  13. I’m thinking of a Republican primary. It starts with a candidate (John McCain/Mitt Romney) who ran once before, came in second place, and won over the party’s elite class without winning over its base. Other candidates, understandably unwilling to accept this, line up: An under-funded social conservative (Mike Huckabee/Rick Santorum), an elder statesman who’s walked to the altar three times (Rudy Giuliani/Newt Gingrich), a libertarian who wants to bring back the gold standard (Ron Paul/Ron Paul).

    The conservative base is displeased. In the year before the primary, it pines for a perfect candidate. At the end of summer, on (September 5/August 13), it gets him: (Fred Thompson/Rick Perry).

    The dream candidate immediately rises to the top of national polls, but collapses after lazy, distaff debate performances. When the primaries arrive, he’s in single digits and reduced to attacking the front-runners. But in Iowa, he does just well enough to justify staying in the race.

    The social conservative (wins/almost wins, depending on what math you believe) Iowa. Flush with victory, eager to prove himself in all battlegrounds, he spends most of the next week in New Hampshire. But the surge can only take him from the margin of error to (13/9) percent of the vote. The old dream candidate, now a national laughingstock only known for a debate moment (“I’m not doing any hand shows”/”Oops”) has already moved on to South Carolina. He flies to New Hampshire just to participate in a debate, deeply annoying the supporters of (Ron Paul/Buddy Roemer), whose candidate had worked harder there. He polls a pathetic 1 percent, but stays in the race. The field is crowded enough that a horrified base sees how the front-runner, who’s won the endorsement of (Lindsey Graham/Nikki Haley), can win South Carolina with a plurality of the vote.

    The Republican base looks at the wreckage and shudders. It can never allow this to happen ever again.

    2012 — A Republican Rerun — Haven’t We Lived Through This Primary Before?

    see it here —

    http://video.msnbc.msn.com/the-rachel-maddow-show/45965729#null

    read it here —

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/weigel/2012/01/11/haven_t_we_lived_through_this_primary_before_.html

    • Deja vu? Or is something akin to – repeating what they just did and expecting different results?

      • Either way, we’ve definitely been here before! The republicans are still saying no one is going to choose their nominee for them this time. It’s funny, because they are absolutely right, they’ll choose this time just like they did last time!

  14. Interesting comparison. Bush’s tax cuts amounted to approximately $141,312 for households making more than $1 million. Romney’s plan gives those same households tax cuts of approximately $286,880

    We all know how well those Bush tax cuts worked out. *eyeroll* Bush’s plan was bad. Romney’s is a disaster.

    Romney’s Tax Cut For Millionaires Would Be Nearly Twice The Size Of George Bush’s

    • Romney is the Gordon Grecko of 2012 – like nobody knows how that ended. bigger eyeroll..

      But someone expressed an opinion today that I totally agree with – what kind of country do we want? Do we want a country where only the rich become richer by giving them tax dollars from the working Americans? And the poor just keep getting poorer but every month, there is an influx of new poor because they have become a victim of some vulture capitalism that was financed by the taxdollars of working Americans?

      Or do we want a country where everyone has the same opportunities? I keep hearing Republicans candidates saying they want everyone to work hard and have the same chance to become rich. But if we allow – even applaud – vulture capitalism, will everyone really have the same opportunities?

      After all, one can work hard at a low-paying job and the end result will be still a low-paying job if there are no other opportunities because the vulture capitalists are sitting on their trillions in cash and beating their chests proudly that they are the job creators.

      It all comes down to this – what kind of country do we want?

      Sad to say, if we keep on going the way we are with all this special interest money, and even more with these Super Pacs, we will be getting the kind of corrupt government that corrupt money can buy.

      • Don’t suppose there’s a relatively uninhabited parcel of land we can sail to and start over. I suppose we’ll need to adjust to being serfs for the empowered class unless we’re willing to wage a revolution.

  15. Be Vewy, Vewy Quiet
    Andy Rosenthal gets a bit of a laugh out of Mitt Romney’s insistence that the only reason anyone would talk about inequality is the “politics of envy”, and that if the subject is discussed at all, it should only be in “quiet rooms.”

    Indeed. Because there’s no way anyone who isn’t motivated by envy could be interested in and possibly concerned about this:

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/12/be-vewy-vewy-quiet/?smid=tw-NytimesKrugman&seid=auto