Friday, 2/24/12, Public Square


Filed under The Public Square

26 responses to “Friday, 2/24/12, Public Square

  1. prairie pond

    I’m singin’ the “happy happy, joy joy” song from Ren and Stimpy because Rick is home and feeling better!!! Yay Rick. And a hat tip to Mrs. Rick and the whole Rick family as well. He is a dude who is well loved.

    On another note…

    Ok, so this is why I love Austin so much. The Rag was an underground, subversive newspaper published by hippies in Austin in the sixties and early seventies. It’s been revived and now appears in my email every week as The Rag Blog.

    Great social, political, and scientific commentary, along with the occasional goddess wisdom and lots and lots of music stuff. Because ya know, Austin is the live music capital of the world. If you don’t remember Commander Cody and Bill Kirchen, you are too young to post on this blog!

    Anyway, it’s heavy on Texas stuff but I thought it was worth posting a link to this issue. You can subscribe, for free, if you like. But all the articles this week were worth reading.

    Oh, yeah. KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD!

    Sniff, sniff. I miss Austin…

  2. prairie pond

    I love the graphic in the header this morning. Even an old dyke like me supports free contraceptives for all. I’m tired of paying for all the breeders’ kids. J/K

    • Reliable birth control has allowed women increased access to social, economic and political equality. What we’re seeing today isn’t new it’s just not as well hidden. Finally we’re peering into the corners and making public the backlash against the increasing empowerment of women. The well being and economic security of women is being used as a political football.

      We must put a stop to this madness. It’s time and women are capable of doing this!

  3. It’s Friday! The weather is spring like — maybe this will be the year when winter arrives in July and August when it would be welcome. 🙂

    Here is a great scene from the old television show “Designing Women.” You tell em Julia! It’s fun, and so on the mark!

    • I didn’t get hooked on Designing Women until it was in reruns, but it will always remain a favorite. However Dixie Carter, married to Hal Holbrook, was a Republican and often the very antithesis of her character on the show.

      The great irony is that although we identify Dixie Carter with the staunchly left-wing politics of Julia Sugarbaker, Carter herself was in fact a Republican. She jokingly called herself “the only Republican in show business” (though in reality she was joined by Hollywood notables like Ronald Reagan, Bruce Willis, Heather Locklear and Arnold Schwarzenegger). Carter didn’t disagree with every position Julia held – the actress supported gay rights, just as her character did – but often, the role required her to speechify on something she personally didn’t believe.

      The above from

      Still, it’s a great clip from a great show. 🙂

  4. This is the story of a map! I found it so interesting I wanted to share. I hope someone else appreciates it half as much as I did.

    The Greatest Paper Map of the United States You’ll Ever See

  5. Anyone with about $10, physical access to a Diebold voting machine and rudimentary knowledge of electronics can remotely hack into the device, according to experts at the Vulnerability Assessment Team at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois. A hacker could potentially change a person’s votes without them ever knowing about it.

    “We believe these man-in-the-middle attacks are potentially possible on a wide variety of electronic voting machines,” said Roger Johnston, leader of the assessment team. “We think we can do similar things on pretty much every electronic voting machine.”

    Watch video at link —

  6. “I don’t want everybody to vote. As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.” —activist Paul Weyrich as quoted in Ari Berman’s piece for ROLLING STONE.

    The GOP War on Voting

  7. prairie pond

    Ok, now I’m worried. I’m thinking that Jeb Bush just tossed his hat in the ring as an alternative to the clown car bunch.

    Jesus wept.

    “I used to be a conservative and I watch these debates and I’m wondering, I don’t think I’ve changed, but it’s a little troubling sometimes when people are appealing to people’s fears and emotion rather than trying to get them to look over the horizon for a broader perspective and that’s kind of where we are.”

    — Jeb Bush, quoted by Fox News, on the rhetoric of the Republican presidential candidates

    • Another Bush.

      ~~ shudder ~~

    • He would put all the republican voters out of their misery and they’d finally have a candidate to rally ’round.

      • Jeb won’t run. He doesn’t want to be a patsy like his brother was. And you know the party would destroy him if he didn’t toe the line.

    • Political rhetoric aka double-talk from Jeb Bush in the above link:

      “…Or you equip people that aspire for a better life to give them the tools and then you don’t try to manage that, you allow them to pursue those dreams as they see fit. That to me is the better approach and it requires a celebration of success.”

      What tools are people being equipped with? And just what people are you equipping? Seems the wrong people have been given those tools aka loopholes in taxes and ignoring the lawlessness in Wall Street.

      And I have this firm desire to start dumping the majority of “friends” I have on FB, because our politics are so far apart, it’s hard to believe we live in the same world, much less country. That’s what I get for looking, I suppose. (sigh)

      • I have both friends and family who view politics so differently it’s a subject that must be completely avoided. What I long for are the days when adults were capable of speaking with one another and maintaining their dignity whether they agreed or not. We learned a lot when we could have those conversations and hear from those who held differing opinions. We learned why they held those opinions. I refuse to be drug down to a level where I would be tempted to behave so childishly so I only talk politics with you guys. 🙂

        Recently, since the contraception kerfuffle, I’ve had some of those women I never talk politics with bring up the subject. I hung back cautiously to test the waters. They are as upset as we are. I’m not just surprised, I’m amazed!

  8. Did anyone else see this?

    House approves bill on unemployment insurance

    TOPEKA, Kansas (AP) — The Kansas House has approved a bill that could reduce benefits to some unemployed Kansans while cutting unemployment rates paid by new employers.

    Under the bill, unemployment benefits would be reduced for a person who receives a lump-sum separation or severance payment. The reduced benefits would continue for the number of weeks that the lump sum represents.

    The bill also would reduce the unemployment insurance contribution rates.

    Supporters tout the bill as a way to create jobs in Kansas. Critics said employers’ contributions rates shouldn’t be cut at a time when the state already is struggling to pay unemployment benefits.

    The measure now goes to the Senate for consideration.

    I don’t know. Maybe I’m a backward thinker, but wouldn’t cutting unemployment rates paid by new employers be a small incentive to rid themselves of a few workers? “Hey, let’s move our business to Kansas! We can hire people and then get rid of them without spending much, thanks to not having to pay in as much on unemployment.” And if this passes, why would workers want to come to Kansas for jobs? It’s obvious the House isn’t concerned about workers, only employers.

    • I didn’t think unemployment benefits were offered until paid time (which could include vacation pay, severance pay…) was exhausted. So I don’t understand how this would be different.

      It doesn’t make sense to me to think a reduction in unemployment rates would be a draw to new businesses. In the scheme of things I wouldn’t think that would account for much of your start-up costs.

      The unemployment rate a company pays is determined by an experience rating. Those businesses that have higher numbers of past employees filing unemployment pay higher costs than the business that doesn’t have past employees filing. If you have a stable workforce with low turnover rates you don’t pay high unemployment rates.

      • I’m so glad someone understands this stuff! I never have. LOL

      • prairie pond

        “It doesn’t make sense to me to think a reduction in unemployment rates would be a draw to new businesses.”

        Actually, a low unemployment RATE for the community is a bad thing. Employers look for communities where there is an available workforce. Out here, some counties have unemployment rates of 3 percent, and that means they have NO available workforce for their business. NEW Corp. recently left Hays because they could not find enough workers to fill all their open positions. It has been so since they came out here less than ten years ago, and they got tired of it and pulled up stakes.

        I know the unemployment percent is different from the UI rate of payment, but businesses would waaaaay rather pay higher insurance rates than to be unable to find enough workers. If Kansas concentrated more on bringing PEOPLE here instead of businesses, they’d be better off. And… why, to Wicked’s point, would workers WANT to come to this dumbass state.

        Brownback’s state of DUMBFUCKISTAN!

  9. And the silliness goes onandon…

    A bill to allow Utah schools to drop sex education classes — and prohibit instruction in the use of contraception in those that keep the courses — moved significantly closer to becoming law Wednesday. The House passed HB363 by a 45-28 vote after a late-afternoon debate that centered largely on lawmakers’ differing definitions of morality.

    “We’ve been culturally watered down to think we have to teach about sex, about having sex and how to get away with it, which is intellectually dishonest,” said bill sponsor Rep. Bill Wright, R-Holden. “Why don’t we just be honest with them upfront that sex outside marriage is devastating?”

    • sigh

      They seem to think that if they don’t talk about it, it won’t happen. IT=SEX Most kids these days are savvy in the ways of sex and its various incarnations. They know how to have the kind of sex while keeping their “virginity” and assure they won’t get pregnant