Friday, 6/15/12, Public Square

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Filed under The Public Square

44 responses to “Friday, 6/15/12, Public Square

  1. prairie pond

    File this under “things I thought I’d never see.” And yet, in every state that votes on my civil rights, marriage equality continues to be defeated.

    So much for the faith in “basic intelligence and fairness of the American people.” Thankfully, Obama didn’t wait for the American people to catch up. He did what was right, and it’s appreciated. The American voters? Not so much.

    Pentagon to Mark Gay Pride Month
    WASHINGTON (AP) — Last summer, gays in the military dared not acknowledge their sexual orientation. This summer, the Pentagon will salute them, marking June as gay pride month just as it has marked other celebrations honoring racial or ethnic groups.
    snip
    Although some feared repeal of the ban on serving openly would cause problems in the ranks, officials and gay advocacy groups say no big issues have materialized — aside from what advocacy groups criticize as slow implementation of some changes, such as benefit entitlements to troops in same-sex marriages.
    snip
    At West Point, the alumni gay advocacy group Knights Out was able to hold the first installment in March of what is intended to be an annual dinner in recognition of gay and lesbian graduates and Army cadets. Gay students at the U.S. Naval Academy were able to take same-sex dates to the academy’s Ring Dance for third-year midshipmen.

    Panetta said last month that military leaders had concluded that repeal had not affected morale or readiness. A report to Panetta with assessments from the individual military service branches said that as of May 1 they had seen no ill effects.
    snip
    He said acceptance has been broad among straight service members and has put a spotlight on unequal treatment that gays continue to receive in some areas. “We are seeing such tremendous progress in how much the military is accepting us, but not only that — in how much the rank and file is now understanding the inequality that’s existing right now,” he said.

    That’s a reference to the fact that same-sex couples aren’t afforded spousal health care, assignments to the same location when they transfer to another job, and other benefits. There was no immediate change to eligibility standards for military benefits in September. All service members already were entitled to certain things, such as designating a partner as one’s life insurance beneficiary or as designated caregiver in the Wounded Warrior program.

    http://news.yahoo.com/pentagon-mark-gay-pride-month-081049426.html

    • Seems the only folks that vehemently continue to make homosexuality a problem are those folks that refer to themselves as Religious Right Republicans, overpaid, under-talented talk radio/television shock jocks.

      But you know what I see as a commonality between the groups I have mentioned abov e?

      How many of those folks actually SERVED in the military?

      Dare I say – None, Zilch, Nada and a big fat ZERO (which describes the same folks – in my opinion).

  2. Thinking about the “basic intelligence and fairness of the American people” is certainly a downer. Sadly, if the Republican Party has a say it will get worse. I am reminded almost on a daily basis how much hate can be perpetrated in the name of their god.

    • Did this doofus really just say that? Hmmm, so a man cannot be told what he can and cannot do with his body but that same man feels he has the right to tell a woman what she can and cannot do with her body?

      Does anyone else see a problem with this logic?

      • prairie pond

        They don’t see any logical flaws. When they interfere in a woman’s choice, it’s protecting a “Child” either born or unborn. And in some cases, not yet conceived.

        When government interferes with a man’s choice, it’s an invasion of privacy and liberty. There is no “child” involved, even in preconception laws.

        Because, ya know, women conceive on their own, along with god, with no help from the guys’ little swimmers….

        Jesus wept.

      • It’s like those two female Michigan legislators who were told they couldn’t talk about their vagina while the men were making laws about all vaginas. And no one seems to care that there are men legislators telling women legislators to sit down and shut up.

  3. Any thoughts or comments about what is happening in Greece this weekend?

    I confess, I do not fully understand everything that is going on – but on the CBS Early Show, I heard that 1 out of 5 Greeks are unemployed and there is now widespread homelessness. The homelessness is something that Greece has just not had to deal with – and this is driving alot o fhte emoitons.

    Maybe Greece should get out of hte Eurozone? Maybe that is what the Mayan Calendar is about – the nlightenment period where the entire world is set to stop all this corporatization of the world – in other words, get out of the Eurozone (if you’re Greece) and stand on your own two feet?

    All I do know for sure – when I was a kid growing up, we had alot of MOm and Pop businesses. Everybody could go to the doctor and dentist when needed. We had occasional homeless men but there were never homeless families with kids.

    And look around now – we have nothing but corporate-owned businesses. Hell – our churches are even corporate-owned……..

    Maybe – just maybe – we need to get enlightened and just SAY NO MORE….

    http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/greece-elections-pose-crucial-dilemma-qa-16576118

    • I read an op-ed piece this morning that explained some of this and gave me another perspective. I recommend it. I still don’t know enough, but I’m on a quest to gather info.

      http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2012/06/18/120618taco_talk_lanchester

      • That sounds like me – I don’t know enough about either side to make a rational decision.

        But I do know one thing – what happens in Greece can – and will – trickle down to America.

        On that – I think we can all agree

      • prairie pond

        That’s a very good description of what is going on in Europe. The danger is that European banks will start to fall like dominos. No wonder the great American Bank robbery known as “the bailouts” quietly included money to help bail some foreign banks. Banks quietly took over the world and now we are seeing it unravel before our very eyes. And austerity isn’t working. Never has, never will. But it’s the bright and shiny object global financial institutions dangle so we won’t look at the real culprits. Them.

        No one should forget the role Europe’s role in the Great Depression. And there are those who think the economic turmoil over there helped fuel the rise of fascism and the Nazis. You’ve got the same tinder box going over there now, with dire economics and unemployment coupled with anti-immigrant sentiment and riots. This time, though, the hate is directed towards Muslims, not Jews. But we already know from WWII how powerful anti-Semite hatred can be, no matter what its stripes.

        And once again, Germany is at the center of the European turmoil. With Russia close behind in arming Syria and Iran and a host of other bad guys, including North Korea (not Japan) stirring up trouble in the Pacific.

        I hope it isn’t deja vu all over again.

      • prairie pond

        Oh, and let me add that is my own independent analysis. I have not talked with Tom about this, but I can see what’s happening as clear as a bell. The KDP will be helpless to save Pauls, and if they want to keep that House seat, they will have to support the Democratic candidate, who just happens to be pro-equality.

        God, I love it when a plan comes together, and this one is a thing of beauty. Thank you judges who did the redistricting. Without them, none of this would have been possible. The Kansas House was just too clever by half…

      • prairie pond

        DAMMIT. The above post should have been under the Pauls subthread, not the European one. Sorry. I was so excited I goofed!

      • PP is right on point. I especially appreciate her reference to history.

  4. Validity of new Pauls home in question

    Walk-through planned to see if church meets requirements to be home.

    State Rep. Jan Pauls’ candidacy is coming under fire because of her sudden switch in official residency from a home to a former church in order to run for re-election in the 102nd District.

    http://hutchnews.com/Todaystop/final-version—pauls–1

    • The way I understand it this state Rep. Jan Pauls is a stand out idiot among homophobes and idiots. She seems to have honed her hate to exceed the abilities of others.

      • Then a former church is perfect for her residence – huh?

        What does the Bible say about the appearance of wrongdoing?

      • If she has owned this church builidng since 2003 – then she has had ample time to convert it to meet the residential criteria – hasn’t she?

        Or is this just another way for some holified-sanctified-glorified Dog and Pony Show religious folk to try to keep her job so she can exude more of that holified hate?

      • prairie pond

        Yes, she’s the worst of the worst.

        And the Kansas Democratic Party leadership supports her solidly. And has for years. They love her and defend her and even Sebelius said there is room for someone like Jan Pauls in the KDP big tent.

        And, uh, she said that about the time I left the KDP…

      • prairie pond

        I say Tom Witt plays a hell of a game of chess, and he’s got “check” going on right now with jan the hater.

        The three member objections team are all the top three elected officials in Kansas, who all happen to be repukes with an anti-union agenda, among others.

        Pauls gets her support in the KDP from organized labor, which trickles upward to Paul Davis, minority leader, via R.J. Wilson, his henchman.

        So… if the three member objections rules that Pauls is ineligible, they get a twofer. The House loses a Democrat seat to, perhaps, a Republican since there is one running uncontested in the repuke primary. And, they lose a pro-labor vote when they go after public sector unions again next fall.

        Good job, Tom. Right now it’s “check.” If the city of Hutch rules against Pauls and the three member objection team rules against Pauls, it’s CHECKMATE. Tom captures the “queen” of hatered and gets her off the board.

        Well played, sir. Well played.

      • prairie pond

        And just to show that we can never have enough hate in Kansas…
        Salina recently passed an ordinance to add LGBT to it’s non-discrimination laws regarding housing, employment, and city contracts. Now, a wingnut fundy group from Wichita is fighting the Salina ordinance. Hutch also recently passes a similar ordinance.
        Other cities in Kansas are considering them.

        So now, Tim Huelskamp is giving pointers, in closed meetings, to the religious right who want the ability to discriminate against LGBT people and do it legally.

        Huelskamp offers support for those opposed to LGBT amendment
        By GORDON D. FIEDLER JR. Salina Journal

        The effort to repeal a city ordinance giving protected status to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered individuals received a congressional boost Thursday when 1st District Congressman Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan., visited with an invitation-only crowd over lunch at Coyote Canyon.

        http://www.saljournal.com/news/story/Huelskamp-KFPC

        Ya really gotta go to the link and read it. Two Salina Democrats, who also support the Kansas Equality Coalition, were actually asked to leave the meeting and were forced out since it was “by invitation only.” Translate, Huelskamp is a coward who will only talk to fundies who already agree with him.

        Do I have to say it? Jesus wept.

      • azzippy

        Jan Pauls? After all this time?

        Still?

        Well, they elected Brownshirt governor and Kris Wetback as something-or-other (not that Ken “birther” Bennett is any great prize)..

        Ahhh, Kansas!

  5. prairie pond

    Jan Pauls screamed at me at the KDP annual meeting in 2004. We wore the same colored blazers and I touched her arm and said “at least we have the same taste in clothes.” She recoiled and screamed, yes screamed, “Dont touch me! Don’t touch me ever again.”

    WTF? Everyone standing around, and there were many, thought she was crazy. And she is.

    I guess she thought “teh gay” is contagious?

    • There was the story about Michelle Bachmann doing something similiar when she was on some campaign stop somewhere. And, of course, haven’t we all heard the story about Bachmann hiding in some bushes trying to spy on some fellow Americans who happened to be gay?

      But, you know, I remember when AIDS first hit the news and all the hysteria surrounding that.

      I also remember how Ronald Reagan COULD have put a damper on all that hysteria if he would have just MAN-UP and told everyone to calm down, try to find out what is going on and use our scientific minds to try to find an answer to this epidemic.

      BUT no……what did Ronnie do? Just added to the hysteria ……..

      THAT is one thing I think Reagan should be remembered for – his COWARDICE to face down his own Rabid Religious Right folks and tell them to STFU.

      I remember my mother – a good Fundamental Evangelical Baptist – refused to shake our neighbor’s hand because everyone knew he was homosexual – we just did not talk about it in my childhood.

      But since the AIDS epidemic hit – suddenly our neighbor, who had been a wonderful friend and neighbor – was suddenly CONTAGIOUS….

      I told my mother then that the only contagious people are those with closed-minds and closed heart but thumping their damn Bibles to justify their own hate-filled lives.

      Of course, this was after my own escape from the Fundies and I was quite ready to take on my own mother because she was still in that damn church.

      But I drew the line when my own mother was telling my kids that they should not go around that neighbor because he had AIDS and they would catch it.

      First of all – the man did not have AIDS. Second of all – the science was coming out that AIDS could not be transmitted by a simple handshake or even being near the person.

      But there was no convincing my mother…….and I was going to be damned if she was going to fill my kids’ heads with her nonsense.

      Christian Love my fat ass……

  6. In Michigan republican legislators took the rule of law into their own hands and then did what they wanted, not what was legal. These are lawmakers!

    • LANSING – Majority Floor Leader Jim Stamas (R-Midland) today banned two Democratic women legislators from speaking on the House Floor as the House of Representatives takes up its final legislation before the summer recess. State Representatives Lisa Brown (D-West Bloomfield) and Barb Byrum (D-Onondaga) were not told why the ban was put in place, but it is widely believed it stems from their opposition to radical anti-choice legislation that passed the House yesterday.

      “Both Representative Byrum and I were gaveled down without cause yesterday while voicing our opposition to the Republican’s war on women here in Michigan, “said Rep. Brown. “Regardless of their reasoning, this is a violation of my First Amendment rights and directly impedes my ability to serve the people who elected me into office. I was either banned for being Jewish and rightfully pointing out that House Bill 5711 was forcing contradictory religious beliefs upon me and any other religion. Or it is because I said the word ‘vagina’ which is an anatomically, medically correct term. If they are going to legislate my anatomy, I see no reason why I cannot mention it.”

      HB 5711 which passed 70-39 with one Representative abstaining addresses treatment of fetal remains, coercive abortion screening, physician liability and rules for certain abortion facilities.

      HB 5711 will:

      Institute an onerous and bureaucratic licensing and regulatory process and enact expensive new fees intended to shut down many clinics.
      Invade the important and sacred doctor/patient relationship by requiring new screenings to determine if a woman is being coerced.

      Creates another new windfall for insurance companies by requiring doctors to carry $1 million in medical liability insurance even though liability coverage limits are not mandated in state law for any other medical practices.

      Could ultimately eliminate most women’s access to reproductive healthcare facilities by forcing the vast majority of clinics to close and discourage doctors from practicing in Michigan.
      “My Democratic colleagues and I of both sexes offered amendments to this legislation written to appease special interests,” said Rep. Byrum. “I was ignored by the majority floor leader and not allowed to speak on my amendment which would have held the same standards for men and women when it comes to legal, voluntary procedures in reproductive health and now I am being silenced for standing up for women. This is yet another example of this Republican majority’s misogynistic and cowardly tactics.”

      House Bill 5711 will now be sent to the Senate but most likely not be taken up until the fall. A press conference was held in conjunction with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan and Representatives Byrum and Brown at the Capitol today.

      • I saw this on HuffingtonPost yesterday. All I can say is – let’s keep reminding every woman of how these men are acting.

        I really believe that if every woman would simply show up to vote – that Republicans will have a dismal showing.

        And maybe – just maybe – these old Republican HORNDOGS will get the message that Women do have brains and WE know how to use the ballot box to get what we done.

  7. Welcome to the republican agenda. Never mind that smaller government is currently slowing our economic recovery, they plan to double down on that and hurt America and her citizens badly enough they’ll stay down this time! There will be no getting back up.

    • And, there’s a lot of money to be made off of putting people in prison.

      • Do some research into the for-profit prisons. A certain senator from Tennessee has been on the board of CCA for many years – Lamar Alexander.

        So, if he stands to make a lot of money off prisons – then why is he allowed to vote on anything related to prisons or the funding thereof?

      • Remember the Three Strikes You’re Out fever that was running rampant?

        This graph above is a result of that fever.

        The current fever of Deport all Illegal Immigrants is running rampant – and guess who gets paid when these Immigrants are incarcerated while they are being processed for deportation?

        Like I said above – do some research on the for-profit prisons – and follow the money. It’s going to many ‘right’ hands….

        But, but……I thought these ‘right’ folks were against all that federal spending?

        You silly rabbit – these ‘right’ folks only yammer about the federal spending IF the money is going anywhere BUT to the ‘right’ hands.

        Now do you understand, Republican Tricks are only for the ‘right’ few….

    • One correction to your graphic above – that needs to read ‘public’ schools.

      The for-profit religoius schools will do just fine under the REpublicans.

      Well – maybe to clarify – the Fundy Evangelical and Catholic religious schools will do just fine.

      • The basic flawed logic in the GOP plan is that they need to cut spending in order to balance the budget. But yet, these same folks see nothing wrong with sending more tax dollars to the same folks who have received those special Bush tax cuts and/or taxpayer-funded subsidies.

        So, exactly where is the savings to balance the budget?

        If you’re going to take away from the social programs and just give it to the wealthiest group – isn’t this just nothing more than wealth redistribution?

      • Oh, silly me……wealth redistribution is ONLY when the money goes to the middle class and lower levels.

        When the money goes to the top – that’s called something else.

        Yeah, I know what it is called – the same ol’ B.S. of Reagan, Bush I and Bush II – of which none of these three presidents ever had a balanced budget – did they?

  8. Unless you dig deep, you’re going to hear what these companies want you to hear.

    These 6 Corporations Control 90% Of The Media In America

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/these-6-corporations-control-90-of-the-media-in-america-2012-6#ixzz1xsqAZfAy

    • And then NewsCorp is on the hot seat in Britain for phone hacking ……… Yeah, that’s a nice ethical group …..I guess that is a true statement if your ethics are into phone hacking someone elses’ phone.

      • I was reminded by a blogger on another blog the other day that Foxxies in the Hen House is owned by an Australian with a Muslim Prince as a business partner.

        What could possibly go wrong?

  9. Have you heard about Obama’s act of going around Congress about the loosenig of the immigration rules for illegal immigrants who were brought to the country as children?

    Of course, there are certain criteria – age limits and no criminal history – must be in school or a high school graduate.

    But – boy is this making the Repukes mad……

    But you know – IIRC , Romney’s father was born in Mexico – so sicne MItt was born in the USA – does that make Mitt an anchor baby?

    Just wondering…….

    • And really – to be fair to Obama – I think there should be petition drive to force MItt Romney to produce his certified, long-form birth certificate…..

    • Yes, Mitt’s dad (George W. Romney) was born in Mexico, of parents who were American citizens living in a Mormon missionary group.

      Hmm, operator error, didn’t copy link (as I thought I had). Look in Wikipedia for information and original source. Thus, Mitt’s not an anchor baby, as much delight as that would provide..

      • So…..since Obama’s mother was an American citizen – then her son would be an American by simply that route?

        Oh……so then why doesn’t Mitt acknowledge that Obama is in the same boat as his father – born from an American?

        Mitt may not be a tehcnical anchor baby – but wouldn’t he look cute in a little matador’s cape and hat?

      • Plus the fact, Obama was born in Hawaii – which, in contrast to what’s popular in Teapublican Land – Hawaii IS in the USA.

      • indy, the tea baggers won’t give this canard up, bothwithstanding the facts. As the president’s mother was a citizen, that takes care of the issue under the pertinent provisions of the United States Code. Then, there is the Hawaii being a part of the United States thing, which takes care of ‘natural born’, if it needs to be addressed any further. If the president was Caucasian, whose father was, e.g., a citizen of France, there wouldn’t be a peep.