Monday, 6/25/12, Public Square

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Filed under The Public Square

67 responses to “Monday, 6/25/12, Public Square

  1. Will we hear the SCOTUS ruling on Obamacare today? They say as soon as today and for sure this week.

    I feel so bad for the millions who have already benefited from the law. Will those benefits be snatched back quickly or will they have some warning? I hope they know exactly which political party is responsible for trying to help them and which one only wants affordable basic health care available if you’re wealthy and ‘deserving’ enough. If republicans win this fall the separation between those deemed to have ‘earned’ basic rights and those who must serve them will become more evident. Because that’s what it’s all about with republicans — they’re just sure someone will get something they don’t ‘deserve,’ just sure their tax dollars might go to help a person who could sure use some help. Sigh.

  2. Health Care as a Privilege: What the GOP Won’t Admit

    (from the link):Opponents of the law have endlessly invoked “socialism.” Nothing in the Affordable Care Act or any part of President Obama’s challenges the basic dynamics of market capitalism. All sides accept that some of us should continue to enjoy vastly greater comforts and pleasures than others. If you don’t work as hard as Mitt Romney has, or were born less smart, or to worse parents, or enjoyed worse schools, or invested your skills in an industry that collapsed, or suffered any other misfortune, then you will be punished for this. Your television may be low-definition, or you might not be able to heat or cool your home as comfortably as you would like, you may clothe your children in discarded garments from the Salvation Army.
    This is not in dispute. What is being disputed is whether the punishments to the losers in the market system should include, in addition to these other things, a denial of access to non-emergency medical treatment. The Republican position is that it should. They may not want a woman to have to suffer an untreated broken ankle for lack of affordable treatment. Likewise, I don’t want people to be denied nice televisions or other luxuries. I just don’t think high-definition television or nice clothing are goods that society owes to one and all. That is how Republicans think about health care.
    This is why it’s vital to bring yourself face-to face with the implications of mass uninsurance – not as emotional manipulation, but to force you to decide what forms of material deprivation ought to be morally acceptable. This question has become, at least at the moment, the primary philosophical between the parties. Democrats will confine the unfortunate to many forms of deprivation, but not deprivation of basic medical care. Republicans will. The GOP is the only mainstream political party in the advanced world to hold this stance.

    http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/06/health-care-as-privilege-what-gop-wont-admit.html

    • prairie pond

      I guess in a nation that thinks rape in jail or prison is “what they deserve” why would we be surprised that that denial of basic health care is, for those who didn’t win the parent lottery or couldn’t become engineers, “what they deserve?”

      Yes. In general, repukes think being raped in jail and being unable to pay the outrageous cost of healthcare or food is just what we get for not pursuing the golden calf.

      No matter what their bible says.

    • R.D. Liebst

      Due to my recent history, ok to me it is still recent since it was within my memory which in a sesne is still yest a couple of years ago. I wonder if someone had been setting in judgement as to where I was worth the money to save? Looking at the blind and colorless page of where I was in life and what the future as to the country might be with or without me.

      Unemplyed and over fifty with a high school education and no visible talents that made me all that special per capitive. I have no idea just how many thousands were spent to save me and to finally stop me from playing tag with the White rabbit and Alice.

      • I must admit because I know you, your wife, know about your family… that to me you are VERY SPECIAL, I’ll just say that every human being is valuable, is worthwhile, is more important than money that might be spent to provide more than emergency care.

      • Too Smart – I think I can speak for the rest on our blog that we all think you’re pretty special and we don’t even ask as to why or what you can offer to us. Those things do not even enter our minds – but that is because we all believe that everyone should have the same opportunities and same help given – if needed.

        Which is why this Health Care Reform is so important to us. Am I happy with the final Obamacare deal – Oh hell, NO. But it is sure alot better than what we had previously..

        And, I for one, will NOT go backwards.

        Besides – Too Smart – your family and friends will always be there for you….

        Sometimes – when you really don’t want us… now be honest….LOL…

  3. I’ve said this before – if the stakes were not so high, I would sit back and laugh at Romney if he got in the White House. Can you imgine the hell that guy would have 24/7?

    Democrats could then be the Obstructionists and call for impeachment hearings, call for an investigation into Romney’s birth record and his father’s birth heritaghe and even grapha’s reason for leaving the USA to go to Mexico

    And – of course – if Romney even thinks about bringing in his Mormonism – do you think these Fundy Christians would sit back and tolerate that?

    I think we would see a reversal to their current mantra of bringing God into the government – especially since Fundies do not see Mormonism as a Christian religion.

    And let’s not even think of what the CAtholics would do if Romney got in and pushed his Mormonism.

    Yes sir, I do think we would see the tide shift from Rah-RAh Romney to Demonize Romney on a very personal level.

    Because – after all – there is no honor among thieves. And Romney chose to join their little Merry Band of GOP Thieves….

    Romney deserves everything he will get – and then some…IMHO

    But – as I started this rant off – the stakes are too damn high for a Romney presidency.

    I am serious – a war with Iran is already on the GOP table of goodies. And now with the election of the Muslim Brotherhood candidate as Egypts president – these same GOPPERS will want to throw War with Egypt on that same table of goodies.

    • I know. And America can only afford to give the residents of countries they invade basic health care. If American citizens want access to affordable basic health care I guess we have to invade ourselves??

      • Isn’t that the kicker? We will have to declare war on ourselves just to get health care and our infrastructure repaired?

        Only in a GOP world does that make sense..

  4. The other ruling that will be heard from SCOTUS this week is a case having to do with Arizona’s 2010, Bill 1070, (“Papers Please”) immigration law. The main question was framed around state sovereignty: Can a state make immigration law or is that left to the federal government? But in recent SCOTUS rulings we’ve seen maneuvering tactics used to avoid narrow rulings if the Roberts Court wants to rule more broadly (think Citizens United).

    Supporters of the Arizona law say it was changed to eliminate racial profiling. But don’t be fooled it still encourages police officers and government agencies to check people’s immigration status on the basis of ‘reasonable suspicion,’and failure to carry proper immigration documents becomes a violation of federal regulations. So if the Roberts Court wants to make racial profiling legal they can do it when they rule on this law, even if the question had only to do with state sovereignty.

    Since the Arizona law began its way through the Courts other states — Indiana, Georgia, South Carolina, Utah, Alabama — have adopted similar laws.

    • First blush — immigration ruling just handed down according to the news.

      So police officers can check immigration status according to SCOTUS. The remainder of the law seems to have been deemed unconstitutional, as they have struck down most of the law.

      Looks like the federal government better get busy! SCOTUS isn’t going to allow the states to make their own laws. Wonder what Romney will have to say now? Will he give any answers to what he would do? He’s been deflecting. Now it will be the responsibility of the federal level of government. Voters should expect a candidate for president to answer questions and not allow this deflection to continue!

      • prairie pond

        Geez, fnord, don’t you know that STATES RIGHTS (in capital letters, by god) only apply to gay marriage and Jim Crow? Otherwise, the feds and activist judges rule.

        Get with the program.

      • prairie pond

        Oh, I see this is how Kennedy got around the states rights issues. He wrote, “”Arizona may have under­standable frustrations with the problems caused by illegal immigration while that process continues, but the State may not pursue policies that undermine federal law,” Kennedy writes in the opinion’s conclusion.

        The police immigration checks are allowed, however, because state police would simply flag federal authorities if they find an illegal immigrant.”

        It’s because the local cops would only be enforcing federal law because the state laws that differed from federal law were the parts that were struck down.

        So there.

        WTF?

    • And Alabama has been seeing a backlash – from their agricultural employers in their state that are finding it difficult to have their crops harvested due to the Hispanics leaving Alabama.

      Well – you know – these farmers could pay a fair wage and use some of that taxpayer-funded subsidies in a psoitive way.

      • prairie pond

        They don’t need no stinkin’ migrant workers! But we certainly do when we go to pay the prices for produce.

      • Those prices would not be so high if the corporate agricultural fat cats would stop skimming all those millions off the top for their Top Fat Cat.

    • prairie pond

      I love this part. “Conservative Justices Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas partially dissented, saying the entire law should have been upheld.”

      Because just upholding part of the law wasn’t, ya know, mean enough.

      • Now, now….PP …..you know these CONS just have your best interest at heart.. You’re just a woman – let these men tell you what is best for you and your country.

        Very heavy sarcasm//// **Now I need to go wash my hands out with soap after writing that lineo fB.S.**

  5. ‎”I’ve only mispredicted one big Supreme Court case in the last 20 years. That was Bush v. Gore. And I was able to internalize that by saying they only had a few minutes to think about it and they leapt to the wrong conclusion. If they decide [healthcare] by 5-4, then yes, it’s disheartening to me, because my life was a fraud. Here I was, in my silly little office, thinking law mattered, and it really didn’t. What mattered was politics, money, party, and party loyalty.” — Akhil Reed Amar, Professor of Law at Yale

  6. Here is link to SCOTUS Arizona Immigration Law ruling:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/25/arizona-immigration-law-
    ruling_n_1614067.html#comments

  7. prairie pond

    Somehow I think the news will be received “not with a bang but a whimper.”

    It’s how the PTB get away with all of their mischief. We just whimper. We never go “BANG!”

  8. Well, well, well…….seems Republican Darrell Issa is contradicting Johnny B. But maybe – just maybe – Issa is trying to backpedal out of this mess because he knows the GOPPERS picked this Fast and Furious as a political ‘gotcha moment’ and now that the facts are coming out that this operation actually started under the Little Cowboy President Dubya – and the fact that Eric Holdedr does not appear to sha be shaking in his boots beause Issa says ‘GOO – Issa is tryign to find some way to get out of this mess that he helped to create with saving some face?

    Yeah , sure….. And where the truth is all this?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/24/darrell-issa-john-boehner-fast-and-furious_n_1622141.html#comments

    • Damn – my typing is getting worse – maybe cause it is Monday and only one cup of coffee??

      GOO = BOO

      • I understood and appreciated every word you typed! Your mind works better and faster than your fingers. I like that!

      • prairie pond

        Oh hell, Indy. We are all old enough to read past the typos. I’ve committed a number of grammar and punctuation errors already this morning. I”m just too lazy to go back and correct them.

        I sure hope Zippy comes to visit us and give us his take from on the ground in AZ.

      • prairie pond

        HA! Fnord! Great minds work alike.

      • R.D. Liebst

        Yeah rhar has been one of the biggest pits to me, I so needed my coffee in the morning when I woke up. But now it tastes so bad and causes me to have to make a mad and sudden rush to the closest bathroom or have to change my pants! So the day goes mostly without seeming an opening shot of awake!

    • I refuse to give any credence, any time or attention to the stupidity of this republican witch hunt. They want a scandal and they can’t find one so they’re trying to make one up. They look very stupid and very childish and petty. Meanwhile, where are the jobs?

      • This was supposed to be in response to Indy’s post on Fast and Furious. I clicked in the wrong place. 🙂

      • I know it is a witch hunt – but Republicans are counting on those folks who do not know it is a witch hunt and maybe – just maybe – they can make a big stink about something.

        But, as has been shown in the past, Obama has this way of helping these Republicans to make even bigger fools of themselves – and all Obama has to do is to turn the tables on them.

        You know – Obama plays chess while Republicans are playing checkers – rings true much more often than not.

        And I love it when the Republicans end up with that blueberry pie all over their faces – AGAIN.

      • R.D. Liebst

        I so agree with you there! The mindless madness of Politics and the lack of seemingly reason and logic. LOL that is why I so did not talk about or even get involved in discussions or watched the Political show in the rehab. I would have been still looking out some window watching life passing.

      • Sad to say – both sides of the political sideshows are corporate driven – because exactly which media outlet is not owned by corporations – except NPR….

        And then I saw somewhere on the Huffington Post that the public stations are possibly going to run political ads?

        I’ll have to go back and try to find that…… what I saw was a Breaking News alert ticker-tape running across the top of the screen…

        I listen to NPR alot……and I like them alot. They are not quite as nasty a set-up like the other political shows. The average political show now reminds me too much of a Jerry Springer show. A free for all…..and alot of yelling…,

  9. Prairie Pond made this comment upthread – It’s how the PTB get away with all of their mischief. We just whimper. We never go “BANG

    —–
    Rev. Al Sharpton puts it another way – (Personally, I like the one where Rev Al talks about the blueberry pie all over their faces)

  10. I had forgotten that Jan Brewer is Arizona’s governor because she was Arizona’s Secretary of State and first in line of succession when Janet Napolitano became Secretary of Homeland Security.

  11. Romney made a comment on today’s SCOTUS immigration ruling basically saying everything is Obama’s fault, etc., etc. He didn’t say a word about what he might do if elected. He never does. I know republicans will vote for him without him ever doing anything but being critical of all things Obama, but there aren’t enough republican votes to elect him. 🙂

    Do you think Latinos will warm up to Romney when he has nothing? Do you think women, independents, people who possess the ability to think will warm up to Romney’s nothing? I don’t think so either.

    We recognize he is Bush2 on steroids, and we remember very well where Bush2 policies took us. One of the few policies Romney could copy from Bush2 that might help him with the Latino vote is the position on immigration and Romney can’t do that because President Obama already did.

    • The one thing Romney has said clearly about immigration is that he would veto the Dream Act. Do you think that is going to win him Latino support?

      And the only thing republicans as a party have done on immigration are make unconstitutional state laws and filibuster the Dream Act in the U. S. Senate. Do you think that is going to convince people they’re for comprehensive immigration reform?

    • What gets me to shaking my head is how these Republicans who have vowed to veto (and have successfuly filibustered) the Dream Act is now saying that Obama is lying to the Latinos because his executive order does not give a pathway to citizenship – and it only covers young people.

      WTF…..

      Just like health care reform – REpublians have promised health care reform for yeasrs but Obama and the Dmeocrats finally dleivered something.

      It may not be the perfect health care reform – but it is alot better than we had previously…and it is more fair to everyone.

  12. You’re going to like this! Enjoy!

    • You know what is truly sad is the fact that Romney is, by all accounts, a very religious man who truly does believe in the traditional family values.

      BUT he has allowed his insatiable quest for political power to make him into someone who is as two-faced and total vulture-campaigner as we have seen since the GOP primary.

      Let’s remember – Romney outspent his fellow Republicans by as much as 25 to 1 just to win the GOP primary.

      And for what? So he can be that perfectly lubricated weathervane?

      For all this praise for Romney as a personal of solid moral conviction – I just don’t trust any man who spins as much as this Romney caricature.

      • when I use the phrase – traditional family values – I am not talking about just a married heterosexual couple with 2.5 children.

        When I think of traditional family values – I think of people who are a part of a family who value and cherish their relationships. Those who respect others and cares about others – and not just those folks in their own families.

        Those are what I call traditional family values – ….

        Like I stated above, from all accounts, Romney does love his wife very much and he is devoted to his kids and grandkids – so for that, I will give Mitt the credit he deserves.

        But I just wish MItt Romney could see past the narrow view of his church and fellow Fundy Republicans – families come in all sizes, shapes, colors and religions – and yes, homosexual couples have great family values.

  13. The U.S. Supreme Court not only reaffirmed its ludicrous Citizens United position on Monday. It made damn sure that it applies to every state of the union.

    Montana’s state supreme court had challenged the flimsy basis of Citizens United: the ludicrous claim that independent expenditures don’t give rise to corruption, or even the appearance of corruption. Citing a long train of corporate involvement in elections prior to the state law 100 years ago that banned it, the Montana high court said that its history demonstrated the need for restrictions on corporate campaign contributions.

    But the Supremes would not be budged—at least the five conservative jurists, who, in a per curiam ruling, overturned the Montana court’s decision in American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock.

  14. Fnord – I wanted to let you know when you posted that video of your son that I have a great personal interest in diabetes prevention and treatment.

    My son was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes (Juvenile Diabetes) when he was 5 yrs old (3 weeks before his 6th birthday)

    We had just been transferred to Michigan – we were still living in the Hotel provided by the corporation until our house was ready. That was an absolutely horrible time for us.

    I remember the doctor telling us that he beleived my son’s generation would be the last generation for Type I Diabetes to be found so prevalent. This doctor truly believed that research was going along so rapidly that Type I would soon be a distant memory.

    But, alas, I don’t think that has happened. My son is now 31 yrs old. But maybe Type I Diabetes is not as rampant as the Type II Diabetes that I hear about so much showing up in these obese kids of today?

    Anyway – I am so grateful for doctors like your son who are working so hard to help people. And this is why I feel so strongly about stem-cell research. I do not care what anybody thinks of me – if there is a chance for my son or all the sons and daughters out there who can be helped by stem-cell research – then go for it.

    Please tell your son a big Thank You from this mother and grandmother in Kansas.

    • Life is so much better when we acknowledge we’re in this together and any help that might come to one benefits all!

      I know you’re aware that republicans want to make scientists who are doing embryonic stem-cell research criminals. Doesn’t matter whether the left-over blastocysts were happily and enthusiastically given by the donors to research. Republicans are hellbent to protect life before birth, they just don’t give a damn once it’s a child who might need food, shelter, health care…

      • I never could figure how the these Far Right Wingers could justify couples allowing their unused fertilized eggs to be thrown in the trash but yet when scientists want to use these same eggs, then it is murder in the eyes of these Far Right Wingers.

        I guess being thrown in the trash can is NOT murder in their sanctimonius and pious eyes?

    • When the private sector is making record breaking profits, sitting on trillions in cash and they still get their taxpayer-funded special tax cuts and subsidies – then I expect these same private sector job creators to do as they keep telling us they will do….

      STILL waiting…….

      • Maybe these private sector job creators (?) are standing behind Boehner and the Boys while they’re busy trying to regulate every woman’s vagina? I guess these poor fools think we women hold jobs in our vagina?

        NOW we know why these same fools don’t like science classes?

  15. Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer (D) and Lieutenant Governor John Bohlinger (R) respond to the Supreme Court’s action invalidating Montana’s 100-year-old Corrupt Practices Act.

    The 27th amendment (last one) was proposed in 1789 and finally ratified in 1992. It’s a long and difficult process. But I do think this is a worthy goal!

    • I listened to the radio yesterdays (NPR station) and the guest was a reporter covering that Romney/GOP Utah Resort Conference this past weekend. The anchor of the show asked how the appearance of the candidate and the SuperPac being at the same conference could pass the smell test of the SuperPacs not coordinating with the candidate – which is, they say, against the SuperPacs regulations.

      Well, this reporter then said – it is not against the SuperPac regulations if their folks just happen to be at the same event the candidate is – it is required to PROVE that the SuperPac and the candidate actually coordinated the event.

      Isn’t this alot like that infamous Bill Clinton defense of what the word ‘is’ means?

      I didn’t believe Bill Clinton and I don’t believe these SuperPacs or Romney.

      But that is my own personal opinion. ….

      • Besides – who are WE the PEOPLE going to complain to? The very same folks that set up these SuperPacs in the first place.

        And I will not be holding my breath for those folks to stop that flow of unlimited and anonymous money.

      • We The People seem to have no place to turn. Congress makes laws that benefit their corporate sponsors, the legislative branch has proven they’ve sold out to the highest bidder too.

        I don’t know. I wish I did.

        I do know we each have a vote — at least until the republicans finish purging the voter lists — and it’s important to use that vote. It’s important even in Kansas where my vote for president doesn’t count. At least this year it won’t again. If things get bad enough will some that vote republican finally wake up, or will they continue to vote against their own best interests?

  16. Finally had time to go searching for a link about public stations taking political ads. There were others when I Googled, but I chose this one to post the link.

    Seems there was a California Court that ruled in April and this is an issue that is about to break?

    http://tv.yahoo.com/news/public-stations-may-ok-political-ads-165828161.html

    • What a difficult conundrum. They don’t accept the money they need badly to ensure they are respected for their objective reporting, and then they die due to lack of money. Everyone knows the stations aren’t endorsing the ads they take the money to air, but when it comes to public broadcasting the republicans would like to kill or at least cripple them and they stoop to the dirtiest of lies to accomplish their goals. Republicans can’t stand neutrality or people and organizations that are trustworthy so they’d set different standards for PBS to follow.

  17. (From the Link): Although some early news reports said that the court upheld this “show me your papers” provision, that wasn’t quite right. The court determined that it didn’t have enough information about how the law worked in practice, especially considering the law explicitly commands the police not to engage in racial profiling. So the justices sent the dispute over this provision back to the lower courts for further fact finding. Nevertheless, the court specifically noted that if this law led to racial profiling, as I suspect it will be concluded, the law would be invalidated.

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/06/25/what-the-supreme-court-s-arizona-ruling-means-for-immigration-and-healthcare.html

    • I read somewhere today that Jan Brewer stated that law enforcement who racially profiled would be held accountable.

      So – I guess people are to simply take her at her word?

      BTW – when was the last case of racial profiling and exactly what happened to the law enforcement officer?

      Until we see law enforcement asking these white males that live in those gated communities to show their papers – then there will always be a taint of racial profiling – wouldn’t there?

      I was just on Huffington Post blog and one person said that he was asked to show his license, registratin and insurance papers when he got pulled over – so why is it a federal crime when illegals get asked to do the same.

      That’s a fair question – but I take the phrase ‘show your papers’ as being a birth certificate or naturalization citizenship papers. Am I mistaken in this assumption?

      Now if the illegals cannot provide a license, registration or insurance papers – then the current law that would be applied to those white wealthy males in those gated communities should also be applied to the suspected illegals. There is no reason for the State Law Enforcement to demand to see their papers. These LEO should contact the federal government and then let that agency do its job.

  18. FBI Tracking 100 Suspected Extremists In Military

    The FBI and Department of Defense call these cases “insider threats.” They include not just active and reserve military personnel but also individuals who have access to military facilities such as contractors and close family members with dependent ID cards.

    http://www.npr.org/2012/06/25/155710570/fbi-checking-100-suspected-extremists-in-military

    • That was a concern in 1973-1977 when I was on active duty. The not-really-spoken-but-certainly-implied fear was that, as the ”
      all volunteer military” took over fully, i.e., those in due to the draft leaving when their enlistment was up, any time there were recruiting problems, laxity would occur in checks, and “bad boys” would be allowed in. In those days, infiltration by organized crime for purposes of creating new markets for pharmaceuticals not approved by the DEA was the major concern. Contractors and dependents were concerning, although during my four years, the two cases with potential Mom ties involved active duty members.

  19. If anyone is interested, I’ve d/led the slip opinion. It is in PDF form, and I’ll be happy to email it to anyone requesting same. Pp. 19-24 of the Slip Opinion contain the section 2b discussion, which makes it quite clear the majority was not upholdin\g said section, but could not automatically invalidate it, either. Justice Jennedy made it as clear as he could that said section’s status is still open after today’s decision, i.e., no res judicata on the issue.

  20. The good Justice Kennedy is very bilingual, so I truly believe you would understand it. However, I can translate as needed….