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2017/09/20 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
9/20    

2008/10/9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:51443 Activity:low
10/8    Get ready for the great fraud election of 2008
        http://www.ogdenonpolitics.com/2008/10/voting-early-often-indianapolis-bloated.html
        \_ Courtesy ACORN:
           http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=308358130652174
        \_ Of course it is not possible that McCain is going to lose simply
           because his ideas and his party are unpopular. I actually like
           this meme, it guarantees that the GOP will remain out of power
           even longer, as they refuse to admit to their problems.
        \_ the 100 guys the all powerful ACORN have signed up will tilt
           the election!
2017/09/20 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
9/20    

2008/10/7-9 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51419 Activity:nil
10/7    Prop 8 proponents pouring millions into it, these bigoted assholes
        might get it to pass -- go to http://www.eqca.org and donate $$$
        Don't let prop 8 pass!
        \_ my wife got a flyer supporting prop 8 at work.  it was from a
           church goer, all in Chinese, and pretty slick.
           \_ Interestingly the poll shows that all of the pro-prop 8 movement
              is coming from young people.
              \_ URL?
2008/10/5-9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:51390 Activity:nil
10/5    Guess which VP candidate has read the Constitution?

        PALIN: Of course, we know what a vice president does. And that’s not
        only to preside over the Senate and will take that position very
        seriously also. I’m thankful the Constitution would allow a bit more
        authority given to the vice president if that vice president so chose
        to exert it in working with the Senate and making sure that we are
        supportive of the president’s policies and making sure too that our
        president understands what our strengths are.

        BIDEN: The only authority the vice president has from the legislative
        standpoint is the vote, only when there is a tie vote. He has no
        authority relative to the Congress.
        \_ He said "He".  SEXIST.
           \_ Of couse he won't say "she" at this point of the campaign.  Just
              like he'd say he already knows that the next president will be
              black, even though deep in his mind he's not sure.
        \_ But Palin has read the Russian Constitution!
           \_ She can see it from her house!
        \_ Palin is not entirely wrong.  A Republican VP is more powerful than
           a plain VP.  Just look at how powerful Chaney is (seriously).
           a plain VP.  Just look at how powerful Cheney is (seriously).
           \_ Research Cheney and the VP position. Constitutionally, VP has
              no more power/responsibility than Biden says. Cheney has
              _created_ new power for the VP position because "the goddamn
              constitution is just a piece of paper."
2008/10/3-6 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51375 Activity:nil
10/3    Hypothetical moral question: if you know someone who has the
        opposite political stance as you but know that the person isn't
        sure whether he/she wants to vote, would you:
        1) encourage that person to vote because it's in the American
           spirit to vote?
        2) don't bother that person to vote because he/she will
           nullify your vote.
        Please explain your answers.
        \_ I think everyone should vote who's paying attention.  There's
           something to be said for the wisdom of democaracy, but I think
           something to be said for the wisdom of democracy, but I think
           that breaks down if the voter isn't paying attention.
        \- 1. i dont think this is a moral question typically
           2. not voting is a form of voting.
           longer answer: if you are persuaded the way you are voting is
           "moral" and the other party is not ... like say they believe
           in torturing people ... the moral act is to try to persuade them
           to do the "right thing". now in some cases it's reasonable to
           agree to disagree or the other party may reasonably have different
           interest from you. i think discussing issues matters more than
           voting. but to answer your question directly, #2. --non-voter.
        \_ Cast an additional vote on their behalf for your candidate. -rdaley
        \_ It doesn't matter. -DIEBOLD
2008/10/2-7 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/SocialSecurity] UID:51349 Activity:moderate
10/2    What is it like to date a Republican?
        \_ Dated a TAIWANESE Republican. Great sex, but some side effects.
           Always thinks she's right. Very stubborn. She's never wrong, and
           you're always wrong. Materialistic. Always talks about money.
           Complains about job all the time. Wants more money. Plays stocks
           a lot. Talks about stocks all the time. Great sex. Always talks
           about herself. High maintenance. Talks too much. Talks about
           stocks and $$$. Complains about work. More righteous than
           anyone else. Wants more tax cuts. Does not care about anyone
           else except herself. Fuck mass transit and homeless and
           social programs, the government should spend more money on
           ME ME ME. Wants more tax cuts. Does not care about war as long
           as it doesn't affect her tax rates. Votes Republican all the
           time because it's GOOD FOR TAIWAN, so nothing else matters!
           And low tax, oh my! Republicans are GOOD. Who cares about faggots
           and minorities, lower tax is good for me! Me me me. $$$. See,
           she's totally self absorbed & selfish & annoying. My advice is
           that to be happy with someone like this, you too should be a
           Republican and use her until she's no longer of value to you.
        \_ Great sex.  Annoying arguments.  Overruse of cloying personal care
           products by your SO.
           \_ Annoying sex.  Great arguments.  Crappy food.
              \_ Why crappy food? I thought southerners ate better and
                 took better care of themselves. SOUTHERN BELLES, MAN.
                 \_ Have you ever been to the south?
                    \_ I've never been to the south. In fact, like many
                       people here, I've never left Northern California.
                       people here, I've never been outside of N Cal.
                       The only real reference I have is Sweet Alabama.
                       Please tell me about the South.          -pp
                       \_ Well the Republican I dated wasn't from the South,
                          but classic Southern food isn't exactly known for
                          being healthy.
                          \_ There's usually an inverse correlation between
                             something that tastes good and something that
                             is healthy.
                             \_ Spoken like someone who knows nothing
                                about food.
                                \_ The key word is: usually.
                    \_ You beat me to it.
                    \_ I have. Women there (men, too) from the upper classes
                       \_ I heard Southern pussies are bigger. Whether that's
                          environmental or genetic is still debatable.
                          http://csua.com/?entry=34794
                          \_ Southern men are just more well-endowed.
                       are more put together. They dress up more often and
                       wear makeup everywhere they go. This is in stark
                       contrast to people in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic who
                       are boring and plain-looking. I am not sure where
                       to classify Texans, but there are lots of hotties in
                       Texas, Florida, and Georgia.
                       \_ And generally chubby, you forgot that part. MOTD
                          boob guy would like it there.
                          \_ And you forgot that dim like them chunky. Dim
                          \_ I was visting family, sorry.
                          \_ And you forgot that dim like 'em chunky. Dim
                             likes 'em Texan size. Dim like JACKIE JOHNSON.
                             Dim like LA and suburban homes. Bigger IS better.
2008/10/2-6 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Prop] UID:51343 Activity:nil
10/1    I am a liberal.  I've constantly being lectured about how great
        free-market is.  I am a bit frustrated now that practically *NO* ONE
        talk about free-market anymore.
        \_ eBay works well in the free market. In short, IMHO free market
           works the best if you're dealing with oranges and such, and
           not so well when you're dealing with homes and healthcare. I
           for one welcome FDR style government because we're ready for it.
           The pending wave of Socialism reforms is about to sweep America.
           I know, because I am the next generation, and we want Socialism.
           We are as talented and hard working as the generation before us, and
           the generation before that, but unlike them we all missed out
           the dot-com and housing boom. We have NOTHING to win and
           everything to lose with the F-U everything for myself
           Reagan style Capitalism. But we have everything to win
           and NOTHING to lose with FDR style programs. We're fed up, and
           we want CHANGE. The future of America depends on a bunch of
           people like us, and we want Socialism NOW. More taxes on the
           people who have, and less taxes on people who do not. Fuck
           Prop 13, fuck corporate tax cuts, fuck religious nuts, fuck
           anti-gay biggots, fuck tax cuts, fuck deficits, fuck automobiles,
           fuck free market. We are ready for change.
           \_ http://tinyurl.com/socialismisback
2008/9/30-10/4 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51342 Activity:nil
9/30    Senate to vote on bailout tomorrow, attaching bailout proposal to
        existing bill.  If passed, will go to House for a vote.
        \_ Has anyone read this 451 page monstrosity? It has something for
        every special interest that ever walked the Halls of Congress.
        My favorite is an excise tax break for manufacturers of wooden
        shafts for children. The shafts must be laminate, not all wood,
        less than 5/16ths of an inch in diameter.
        Then there is the excise tax relief for rum producers... that's nice.
        The bill is full of this sort of junk. This is insanity!
        \_ This... is... the SENATE!
2008/9/29-10/6 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51328 Activity:nil
9/29    A key problem with this bailout is that the final version was
        released on Sunday, and Dems and Republicans were expected to follow
        their leadership and vote Yes after reviewing it for < 24 hours.
        This is crazy for a $700B bailout.  Every House member who voted for
        it should be kicked out in November.
        If you're gonna spend $700B, you FUCKING DO IT RIGHT.  150+ economists
        are against this plan.  See http://fedupusa.org for one approach.
        \_ It isn't $700B
           \_ please elaborate
            \_ $250B at first, $100B available by asking for it.  Another
               $350B that is only available if congress explicitly agrees
               to it via a joint resolution after the Treasury asks for it.
               So it's really a $350B plan with the option to increase the
               plan if desired.  (Which is still a lot of money)
               \_ Plus, we probably end up getting most of it back.
                  \_ how much of RTC did we get back?
                  \_ So let's see... the govt buys the assets that the banks
                     want least (presumably because it's tied to borrowers
                     who are most likely to default), and the govt wants to
                     not buy it at firesale prices, since that would cause
                     the banks to realize large losses and still make them go
                     out of business, so we'll buy it at prices that are
                     fairly close to "hold to maturity" (this according to
                     Ben, anyway). And then we hope and pray that we can
                     actually hold it to maturity without the borrowers
                     defaulting. How does it stand to reason that we'll
                     probably get most of it back? Just because the govt buys
                     their debt, these people will now more likely not default?
                     \_ The reality is that the default rate is pretty low
                        in either case. The problem is that no one wants
                        to buy the debt. It's a liquidity problem. The
                        banks would probably be fine if they had enough cash
                        reserves to operate, but they were counting on
                        selling the securities. Recall that in the early
                        1990s banks owned a lot of RE and it caused them
                        massive liquidity problems even though they would have
                        made large profits if they could have held on for 10
                        more years. Banks don't want houses, though. They
                        want cash. The gov't can afford to sit on it. Note
                        that I am still against the bailout.
                        \_ ^liquidity^solvency
                           taxpayer should take a loss because Hank said so
                           \_ Or, the taxpayer could take a gain. You really
                              don't know and neither does anyone else. Do you
                              even know how the bailout bill plan for auctioning
                              securities was going to work? I guess it doesn't
                              really matter now, but the next bill will have
                              something like it. You claim that the taxpayer
                              will take a loss, but the truth is, we won't know
                              for a while if that is true or not.
                              \_ how much of RTC did we get back?
                                 \_ I don't know, but we got 100% of the money
                                    we lent out using the HOLC and even got a
                                    slight profit. We even got 100% of the RFC
                                    money back. How much of the RTC did we get
                                    back, you seem to know.
                                    \_ http://tinyurl.com/4th5r7
                                       \_ That does not answer the question, but
                                          one person quoted that the US would
                                          end up getting 50% back. But the
                                          total cost ended up double (?) the
                                          original estimate.
                                     \_ We lost $124B on a total purchase of
                                        $400B of debt and distressed assets:
                                        http://tinyurl.com/4mogcb
                                        \- re: the S&L crisis:
                                           1. the circumstances of the s&l
                                              crisis was deposit insurance
                                              not an intervention. so the
                                              govt in a sense didnt have a
                                              choice [or the nature of the
                                              choice was different ... e.g.
                                              the could have closed firms
                                              earlier ... if you are interested
                                              in a difference between today
                                              [FDIC now] and "yesterday"
                                              [FSLIC back in the late 80s] see
                                              e.g. http://tinyurl.com/4gts57]
                                           2. to understand the full costs,
                                              you must add the signficant costs
                                              of the failed FSLIC in addition
                                              to the successor, the RTC [there
                                              are a bunch of smaller orgs as
                                              well, but those can be ignored].
                                              [the FSLIC shutdown about $100bn
                                              worth of S&Ls and was insolvent
                                              from very early in the process,
                                              but continued to go through the
                                              administrative motions]
                                           3. these assets the RTC had were
                                              seized, not purchased, and the
                                              seized, not purchased, and then
                                              disposed of. so the govt can
                                              be criciized about how they
                                              disposed of stuff, but not their
                                              selection of what to buy ...
                                              in the current situation the
                                              problem facing the govt is
                                              how much to pay when buying and
                                              holding, as opposed to how to
                                              dispose of a carcass while
                                              keeping your promise.
                                              \_ "You really don't know and
                                                  neither does anyone else."
2008/9/26-10/1 [Politics/Domestic, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51319 Activity:nil
9/26    http://abcnews.go.com/Primetime/News/story?id=180291
        Republicans more satisfied with sex than Democrats.
        \_ Women and fags are more likely to be Democrats.
        \_ I think it is all the bathroom sex.
2008/9/22-29 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51256 Activity:nil
9/22    When's the last time to register to vote for Nov?   -first time voter
        \_ In CA, Oct 20:  http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/elections_vr.htm
        \_ http://www.rockthevote.com/voting-is-easy/important-dates
2008/9/21 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51251 Activity:nil
9/21    Contact/email your representatives to oppose the $700 billion bailout
        of Wall Street.
        http://boxer.senate.gov/contact/email/policy.cfm
        http://lee.house.gov/?sectionid=44§iontree=18,44
        http://feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=ContactUs.Home
2008/9/17-19 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:51212 Activity:nil
9/17    Ah-nold to veto Dem+GOP supported California state budget.  karma++
2008/9/10-14 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51122 Activity:nil
9/9     California anti-gay leaders raking it in
        http://justinmclachlan.com/08/46/california-family-council-money
2008/9/8-9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:51102 Activity:low
9/7      I can't stand the smirky tone of Palin's voice.  Her mocking of
         Obama, especially when her facts are wrong or deliberately disengenous
         as they are shoved at her by Republican operatives, pisses me off.
         I wasn't going to vote for her anyway, oh well
        \_ I hated her too.  She has that primly self-righteous tone of
           holier-than-thou which I learned to despise from a co-worker
           of mine, this sheltered whiny self-centered woman-child who
           was pleased to level judgement on everyone else, but who,
           when justifiably called flaky for actions she herself
           committed, got all pissed off and then went on the attack
           instead of admitting that yes, she HAD been a flake, sorry,
           she'll try to do better.
           \- but she runs a state with a land border with CANADA and a
              martime border with RUSSIA
        \_ http://donate.barackobama.com/page/contribute
2008/9/7-14 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51088 Activity:nil
9/7     U.S. taxpayer put on hook for junk stuffed in FNM/FRE/FHLBs.
        Cost likely to exceed $500B over next couple years:  "In the end, the
        ultimate cost to the taxpayer will depend on the business results of
        the GSEs going forward" - Hank Paulson
        http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122079276849707821.html
        \_ Thanks Republicans! Deregulation sure had worked out great!
        \_ Thanks Republicans! The deregulation thing is working out really
           well.
           \_ Get ready for FOUR MORE YEAR.
           \_ Wrong. There's been a dedicated regulator created just for these guys
              since early 90s, and it has always done a terrible job. Fannie, et al have
              great lobbyists. Repubs have been fighting to cut them loose and
              completely privatize, while Dems defend them because they help
              subsidize loans to lower income people.
        \_ The article says Treasury will put up up to $200B. Where does it say $500B?
           \_ Wrong. There's been a dedicated regulator created just for these
              guys since early 90s, and it has always done a terrible job.
              Fannie, et al have great lobbyists. Repubs have been fighting to
              cut them loose and completely privatize, while Dems defend them
              because they help subsidize loans to lower income people.
              \_ But but Bush sucks!
              \_ An interesting way to put it; another way might be to say that
                 the Dems are supporting the dream of home ownership, while
                 the GOP want to cripple the govt. by privatizing any
                 successful programs.
              \_ Didn't Bush just nationalize them? It is true that F&F have
                 given generously to both parties over the years, but the GOP
                 could have easily killed them when they controlled both house
                 of Congress and the White House, but they didn't. Instead they
                 let the IBs run wild with SIVs and GSEs and derivatives and
                 ignore their capital requirements.
                 http://preview.tinyurl.com/5w38tk (FNM gives to whoever is in)
        \_ The article says Treasury will put up up to $200B. Where does it
           say $500B?
2008/9/6-12 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/SocialSecurity] UID:51078 Activity:nil
9/6     http://www.econlib.org/library/Columns/Courseyvalue.html
        \_ Screw polar bears.
2008/9/4-8 [Politics/Domestic/Election, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51056 Activity:nil
9/4     "Attacks, praise stretch truth at GOP convention"
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080904/ap_on_el_pr/cvn_fact_check
2008/9/3-8 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:51049 Activity:nil
9/3     Caught a minute of the GOP convention, and I swear I heard
        Obama's name mentioned more often than McCain's. (Granted, in
        negative contexts, but still more often.) This seems...
        counter-productive.
        \_ It's been like this all year.  The GOP literally has
           nothing positive to run on.
           \_ Vote for Our Guy! He's not... that guy!
              \_ Pretty much.
           \_ HOPE! CHANGE!
        \_ McCain's name was mentioned more in the Dem Convention
           than Obama's name was at the RNC. I guess the Dems have even less
           to run on? The R's appear to have a more uniform distribution
           whereas the Dems are completely focused on McCain and CHANGE!
           http://tinyurl.com/6yhfym [nytimes.com]
2008/9/1-3 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:51017 Activity:low
9/2     California hasn't paid bills for over 62 days. The government is
        starving. The beast is starving. Is this what Republicans have been
        dreaming of? Will a dying beast be good for everyone? Should I go
        out and buy guns ammos and water filters? The message I'm getting
        is that I need to be SELF RELIANT.
        \_ "My goal is to cut government in half in twenty-five years," he u
        \_ "My goal is to cut government in half in twenty-five years," he
           says, "to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the
           bathtub."  -Grover Norquist
        \_ ammo, not ammoS
        \_ You can't buy guns without a waiting period. If fit hits the
           shan your ass is defenseless due to Democrats like Perata
           (who has a concealed carry permit but doesn't want you to have 1)
           \_ If you wait until the shite hits the fan to learn how to shoot,
              you have lost already. Why do you keep deleting this reply, btw?
              \_ Because I'm a liberal and I really hate guns and want to
                 SODOMIZE you.
2008/8/26-9/3 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Foreign/Asia/Others] UID:50972 Activity:nil
8/26    Gary Glitter spent months in a Vietnamese prison cell.  Can I vote
        for him too?
        \_ that's a fit punishment for writing "Rock and Roll Part II".  -tom
        \_ What are you talking about?
           \_ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_Glitter
              \_ I know who Glitter is--I didn't ask *who* the op was talking
                 about.
                 \_ Did you see the part about how he was sent to jail in
                    Vietnam?
        \_ BUD DAY doesn't appreciate what you are trying to imply here.
        \_ OJ Simpson is a black celebrity.  Can I vote for him too?
           \_ Your analogy doesn't hold since Barack Obama isn't so much a
              celebrity as a politician. Your analogy would work somewhat
              better if you stated that the similarity between OJ and Barack
              is that they're both black, but that would make you sound
              racist, esp. as op drew parallels between experience and not
              skin color. Would you like to try again?
              \_ No, because you are incredibly stupid and not worth
                 conversing with.
                 \_ Yay! Win by annoying you! Yay!
2008/8/26-9/3 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Law/Court] UID:50967 Activity:nil
8/26    Bernie Ward, super-perv
        http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/08/22/BA0912G3V4.DTL
        \_ Man, that article is full of all kinds of irony.
2008/8/21-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Prop] UID:50923 Activity:kinda low
8/21    CA highest income tax bracket hits at 44K?
        http://www.ftb.ca.gov/aboutFTB/press/2007/07_38.shtml
        \_ seems like it's 60k for head of household, which would apply
           for anyone not claimed as a dependent I believe.  --jwm
           \_ So 90K for married filing jointly.  Anyone here call that rich?
           \_ I think Head of Household is when you are not married and you
              pay for more than 50% of the living expense of another person
              who is not a dependent of another taxpayer.
             \_ Yeah you're not head of household if you are just a single
                dude without dependents. (like me). fuck.
        \_ Well, at least we still have one of the lowest property
           taxes, and capped so that when we retire, we don't have to
           worry about ridiculously amounts of tax increase! By a happy
           owner. Once you buy a home in CA, DON'T EVER SELL!!! Trust
           me. This is the way of life in California.
           \_ ObSwami
        \_ الله أَكْ!
           \_ No, our property taxes are around the median.
              \_ Median in rate, but because of Prop 13 they are lower than
                 most places if you've owned a property a long time. When
                 I bought my house for ~$350K N years ago it had been in
                 the seller's family for 65-70 years. They paid something
                 like $600/year property tax, which is definitely low. I
                 paid $4000/year on the same property when I bought it,
                 not that I'm complaining, because now my neighbors are
                 paying $8000+/year on similar houses.
                 \_ You know I wouldn't pay $100K for any piece of land in
                    inland Southern California, though I would be
                    willing to pay millions of dollars for Malibu and
                    coastal estates. S Cal inland in general is dumpy,
                    including Santa Ana, San Fernando, and even
                    Pasadena. Hot. Traffic. Dumpy.
                    \_ Yes, much better are New Jersey, Texas, and Florida.
2008/8/19-26 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50905 Activity:nil
8/19    Dem assemblywoman votes against budget, is thrown out of capitol
        building.
        http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/sfgate/detail?blogid=14&entry_id=29225
        \_ the aristocracy lives!
        \_ Pointing this out is going to make me sound like I support the CA
           dem party, but WTH: she didn't vote for because she wants a
           water bond for her district, not out of any great moral objection.
           This didn't stop the CA GOP spokesweasel from standing behind her
           and pretending that she was just about to switch parties.
        \_ الله أَكْ!
2008/8/4-10 [Politics/Domestic/HateGroups, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50771 Activity:low
8/3     I have lived in N Cal all my life and have had a very sheltered
        and liberal life. Actually it's pretty deprived as well. I've
        never been to the South, and I'm wondering how accurate the
        portrayal of the hicks are in the movie Sweet Home Alabama?
        \_ No. Hollywood is exaggerated.
           \_ What does North Hollywood have to do with it?
              \_ OP was wondering how accurate the portrayal in a Hollywoor
                 movie was.  Perhaps PP meant "Hollywood is exaggeratING."
        \_ The South has been homogenized just like the rest of America -
           so you'll see lots of the same fast food restaurants, parking
           lots, and big box stores.  More churchs, although this actually
           applies more to Missouri than the "proper" South.  Folks there are
           generally the same mix of friendly and ignorant you'll find in
           any other suburb, though the accents are a little different.  The
           cities are just as urban as anywhere else.  Honestly Americans are
           much more alike than they'd like to think - regional differences
           are much more superficial now than they have ever been.  This was
           likely very different, say, 100 years ago, when travel was much
           more difficult and expensive, and mass media consisted only of
           newspapers.
        \_ It depends on where you visit. If you go to Chapel Hill, you will
           people as open minded and cosmopolitan as anywhere in California.
           find people as open minded and cosmopolitan as anywhere in CA.
           If you go to rural Kentucky, you will feel like you are in another
           country. In general, the cities are like cities everywhere in
           America, maybe a little more tolerant, since there is more black-
           white race mixing. Rural areas can be kind of scary. I was in
           Asheboro, NC last year and I saw a photo of the "old time" local
           Klan chapter up on the wall of an antique store I was visiting.
           I am sure he was just showing off a bit of local history, but
           I think he was making a statement about how he felt about race
           relations at the same time. He was not very friendly to my
           Asian wife. Are you planning on visiting? If so, I can give you
           some pointers. I was stationed in NC for three years and learned
           some things about how to relate to Southerners.
        \_ I own a house in Alabama in a smaller city, my mom lives in
           Missouri near the Arkansas border (but Missouri is Midwest and
           not The South), and my mom-in-law lives near Biloxi, Mississippi.
           I've spent a lot of time in The South and not just in Atlanta,
           Tampa, or New Orleans as I've done some touring of the rural areas
           by car. I don't really remember the movie, except that the
           seemingly redneck guy turns out to be a successful artist, which is
           \_ But all his friends are trashy, like the friend who keeps
              suggesting "Wanna arrest someone?" "Strip club?" etc etc
           pretty typical of The South. Yes, people are bigoted there and
           not just by race but also by religion. You even find a divide
           between regular church-going people and occasional church-goers
           and even the enlightened think Jews and Asians are novel/neat
           as in "There's this Jewish fella over there. His family's been here
           for 2 generations and he don't cause no trouble. He done told
           me he don't eat no pork. Can you believe that?" Of course, I
           found people in New England to be just as bigoted against WASPs,
           so I hardly want to single out The South. Southerners also tend
           to be classist as in Old Money versus New Money. I think
           found people in New England to be just as bigoted against (other
           than) WASPs, so I hardly want to single out The South. Southerners
           also tend to be classist as in Old Money versus New Money. I think
           everywhere might be like that, but it's very evident there
           because there are so few wealthy folks to begin with.
           \_ Yeah, New England types are much more unfriendly, even stuck up.
           found people in New England to be just as bigoted against non-WASPs
           so I hardly want to single out The South. Southerners also tend to
           be classist as in Old Money versus New Money. I think everywhere
           might be like that, but it's very evident there because there are so
           few wealthy folks to begin with.
           \_ Yeah, New England types are much less friendly, even stuck up.
2008/8/3-8 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Immigration] UID:50767 Activity:kinda low
8/3     It is much better to have homogeneous suburbs than diverse cities:
        http://www.city-journal.org/html/eon2007-06-25jl.html
        \_ you know why "It's a small world" is such a happy ride?
           because every race is segregated.. if u mixed them up
           there'd be wars and genocides on that disney ride
           \_ BEST (FUNNY) RESPONSE EVER. Thanks! :)
           \_ I was on that ride a couple times and the only thing I didn't
              like was that the music was too loud.  Never though that the
              whole thing was actually politically incorrect.
        \_ I always knew that diversity is good EXCEPT when Latinos
           and Mexicans are involved. I've lived through LAUSD for
           18 years and things are in fact deteriorating. However, like
           Putnam, I keep this to myself because every Liberal thinks
           diversity regardless of the type of diversity is good.
        \_ I'm not saying this dude's data is bad.  I'm just surprised because
           I think of the places I lived, and the ones that were the most
           souless/didn't know anyone who lived around me were the ones where
           pretty much everyone was the same.  To be fair, I really wasn't
           so maybe the benefit of homogenity only works when you identify
           with the majority?
        \_ I read "The Geography of Happiness" and apparently cultural
           homogeneity is is a big element of societal happiness.
           Homogeneous groups were much more like to be happy groups.
           Some of what this article mentions matches my experience as well.
           Any difference in norms is a potential conflict, so people do often
           hunker down.  I had some Mexican neighbors I liked OK in my old
           house, but we clashed a few times, and I put up with a lot of
           weird crap just because I didn't want to fight about it.  (Who
           keeps a rooster in a highly populated area?)  I got along much
           better with my White neighbors even though I liked the Mexicans
           more.
           \_ My amazingly white mormon nneighbors kept a rooster.  And it
           \_ My amazingly white mormon neighbors kept a rooster.  And it
              wasn't in a rural area.
              \_ Doesn't religious diversity count?
              \_ Doesn't religious diversity count?  The problem is cultural
                 homogenaity, not race per se.  In my case one group was
                 Mexican, and the other was CA style white trash.  If you
                 were Mormon, you'd see those guys at church, and it would be
                 pretty easy to find a chance to say, "Hey, your rooster is
                 waking my daughter up at 4 am every morning.  Why do you have
                 rooster?"  If you don't have some sort of common cultural
                 raport, you have no idea how your neighbor will react of your
                 inquiry, and you'll tend to hunker down instead.
                 diverity, not race per se.  If you were Mormon, you would see
                 them at church and it would be easy to ask why they have a
                 rooster waking your daughter at 4am every morning.  With no
                 social/cultural rapport it is much more difficult to
                 predict their reaction, and judge how you should approch the
                 the situaltion.  So people hunker down instead.
                 (Sorry, somebody squished this.)
                 \_ The mormonness is just to point out just how blindingly
                    white they were.  "Step outside and instantly burn on an
                    overcast day" white.
        \_ Racial integration is sex-based.  Until they start screwing each
           other's women and having mixed kids people mostly stick within
           their own ethnic groups.
           Therefore my new liberal government plan is arranged marriages
           between races.
           \_ Is that why I see so many asian chicks with white dudes?
              \_ It's because the Asian chicks are gold-diggers who somehow
                 find prestige in dating white men and those particular white
                 men are too geeky to even try to hook up with hot Nordic
                 blondes but still won't date fat chicks. They produce mongrel
                 children who possess the worst traits of both.
           \_ Are you a Moonie?
2008/7/30 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50738 Activity:nil
7/30    Can I CCW a gun into say, a post office? How about other
        government buildings? What happens when you have to go through
        the airport and they scan you, can you just show them your
        CCW permit and carry your gun inside the building?
        \_ Read the CA law.  The permit is for CA, not for federal property.
           Airports have specific regulations about guns.
2008/7/30-8/5 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Military] UID:50731 Activity:moderate
7/30    Can I CCW a gun into say, a post office?
        \_ no.
        How about other government buildings?
        \_ no.
           \_ Incorrect.  State or City gov't buildings are covered by CCW.
            \_ I'd like to see you take them into a police station
               or courthouse.  I'll be there with the camera taking pictures
               of your surprise.
              \_ I'd like to see you take them into a police station or
                 courthouse.  I'll be there with the camera taking pictures of
                 your surprise.
                 \_ A CCW covers any local or state building or meeting
                    required to be open to the public.
                 \_ I dunno, cops go into these things all the time and they
                    are all armed. They just take off their side arms when
                    they go through the metal detector. I imagine it would
                    go more or less like that, in fact most cops would probably
                    just think you were undercover or something.
                    \_ right, except they actually have real badges
                       and you have a frigging commoner's CCW permit
                       \_ Of course I've *been* in a courthouse with a CCW
                          while carrying, no problem.  (No metal detector
                          either.)
                          \_ Where? San Diego and most SFBA Courthouses screen
                             with metal detectors.
        What happens when you have to go through the airport and they scan
        you, can you just show them your CCW permit and carry your gun inside
        the building?
        \_ you go to jail.  actually i lied.  they take you to stupid
           person's jail, which is deep underneath the real jail.
        \_ you go to jail.  actually i lied.  they take you to dumbass
           jail, which is deep underneath the real jail.
        \_ Read the CA law.  The permit is for CA, not for federal property.
           Airports have specific regulations about guns.
        \_ In an airport, a CCW covers you up to the sterile area.  No
           exceptions for firearms beyond that (see CA penal code 171.5(b)(1))
           \_ If you're dumb enough to carry a gun to an airport these days,
              I think you should stay home.
              \_ But I want to be a hero like emarkp and save innocent
                 people from TERRORISTS!!!              -emarkp #1 fan
2008/7/29-8/3 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/BayArea] UID:50720 Activity:nil 90%like:50716
7/29    Swami! Your prediction is off by 6 months!!! You SUCK
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/6opb7h [cnn]
        \_ Wow San Francisco went UP by 22%. How about San Jose, Sunnyvale,
           Mountain View, Santa Clara, etc?
           \_ Fuck SF. Let them pay for their own stupid bridges.
           \_ Based on the for sale flyers I see, prices in the parts of
              SJ near Cupertino/Saratoga have gone up slightly from January.
           \_ This is a typo. "SF" for Case Shiller means SF MSA, which is
              SF, CoCo and Alameda counties.
              SF, Marin, San Mateo, Alameda and CoCo counties.
        \_ What is the peak of this graph?
           http://bubblemeter.blogspot.com/2007_09_01_archive.html -GS
2008/7/25-30 [Politics/Domestic/California, Finance/Banking] UID:50696 Activity:nil
7/25    not exactly WaMu:
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080726/bs_nm/banks_fdic_dc_4
2008/7/25-30 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:50691 Activity:moderate
7/25    "This is the moment when we must build on the wealth that open markets
        have created, and share its benefits more equitably."
        Um, say what Obama?
        \_ This is straightforward enough to me. What is confusing to you about
           this statement? Was it the word "share" that threw you for a loop?
           \_ I find it amusing that he's so clueless that he's talking to the
              people of Berlin about how they threw off communism, and then
              talks about reimposing it.
              \_ you're a moron.
              \_ You mean sharing is communism? Thanks for warning me, I had
                 been teaching my toddler to share, I will stop immediately.
                 \_ "This is the moment when we must build on the wealth that
                    open markets have created, and share its benefits more
                    equitably."
                    Communism
                    \_ Public schools, free clinics, world-wide efforts to
                       eradicate AIDS, the US military... and everything
                       else your taxes pay for. Communism? No. Government?
                       Yes.
                 \_ Forcing people to share is communism.
                    \_ Paying taxes that fund social services that improve
                       the basic quality of life is part of the social
                       compact. Do not confuse your a failure to meet your
                       silly Libertarian ideals with Communism; there's
                       plenty of room in-between.
                       \_ Taking money from one group and giving it to another
                          is communism.  Plain and simple.
                          \_ you're a moron.
                          \_ Did you actually attend Berkeley? Communism requires
                             the elimination of private property and the ownership
                             of the means of production by "the people".  And we
                             already do this in our system, except the money goes
                             from the poor/middle class to the wealthy and
                             corporations.
                          \_ Did you actually attend Berkeley? Communism
                             requires the elimination of private property and
                             the ownership of the means of production by "the
                             people".  And we already do this in our system,
                             except the money goes from the poor/middle class
                             to the wealthy and corporations.
                             \_ the problem with you liberals is that you
                                think everyone who disagrees with you is
                                an idiot and that you're smarter than
                                everyone else. Think about that for a minute.
                                everyone else. Think about that for
                                a minute.               -emarkp #1 fan
                                \_ no, we think *you* are an idiot.  -tom
                                \_ We are smarter than you. QED.
                                \_ Straw men aren't particularly fun debate
                                   partners.
        \_ He wants to raise taxes.
        \_ His first action as President will be to send the 82nd Airborne
           into the Hospitals to nationalize them. Next he will seize
           the banks. After that, your will have Obama Party officials
           spying on you at your place of work. He is a Marxist.
           into the Hospitals to nationalize them. Next he will nationalize
           the banks. After that, your will have Obama Party officials watching
           over you at your place of work. He is a Marxist.
           \_ BLACK HELICOPTERS!
2008/7/23-28 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:50662 Activity:nil
7/23    DNC:  gas tax dodgers
        http://www.9news.com/news/local/article.aspx?storyid=96282
2008/7/19-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:50631 Activity:moderate
7/19    Hey tom, since you're employed by the state (and receive a 6-figure
        salary), maybe you shouldn't be the one arguing for higher taxes in the
        state?
        \- I'd be happy paying Denmark tax rates for safety, security,
           cleaniness, and all the good stuff in Denmark. Your brain has
           been classified as: puny and selfish
           \_ Having been to Denmark, I disagree.
              \_ Visitors to Denmark get access to social services too?
           \_ Considering that Conservatism reached a high water mark with
              the Bush/Rove/DeLay/Frist team, the only real question is can we
              expect 10 or 20 years of Liberal dominance. If it is 20, you
              just might get your wish.
              \_ It will never happen because Americans in general are
                 proud and self absorbed and don't see outside their
                 States let along their country.
                 \_ Why did the New Deal happen then? How about the JFK/LBJ
                    period that gave us a bunch of liberal advances, including
                    the Civil Rights act? Your knowledge of American history is
                    extremely poor.
        \_ Get a life.  -tom
           \_ You don't think it's relevant that the organization you advocate
              sucking more money out of my pocket pays you?
              \_ No.  -tom
                 \_ Oh, so when Exxon execs say global warming is a hoax, you
                    won't object?  Got it.
                    \_ Once again, you suck at putting words in my mouth.
                       Practice isn't making you any better.  You also should
                       consider outsourcing your attempts at analogies.  -tom
                    \_ Once again sucking at putting words in my mouth.
                       Practice isn't making you any better at that.
                       You also should look at outsourcing your production
                       of analogies.  -tom
                       \_ Hush tom, the grownups are talking.
                          \_ Not on the motd they're not.
                       \_ You know, Tom, the "you" you addressed isn't the
                          same person as the last person you said that to.
                          You'd be a lot more objective and less knee-jerk
                          if you didn't take the motd personally.
2008/7/18-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:50627 Activity:moderate
7/18    California state government spent $145 billion last fiscal year, $41
        billion more than four years ago when Gov. Gray Davis got recalled by
        voters.  With all that new spending -- a whopping 40% increase -- we
        ought to be in a golden age of government with abundant public services
        for all.
        http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oe-matsusaka17-2008jul17,0,7957570.story
        \_ same flawed assumption as before; using the CPI as the
           measure for inflation is wrong, because both salaries and
           real estate costs in the state (not just in the public
           sector) have risen far faster than CPI inflation in the past 10
           years.  -tom
           \_ Just look at the nominal values.
              \_ nominal values of what?
           \_ Which means exactly zero. You're saying that the adjusted numbers
              aren't adjusted enough. Or that the rich should be getting soaked
              more.  The point remains that the state spending has increased by
              a huge amount in a short time. The whining about the budget is
              ridiculous, especially considering that the proposed budget will
              still increase next year--mostly by stealing from other funds and
              raising taxes:
              http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-arnold18-2008jul18,0,334514.story
              http://tinyurl.com/6b9koc   [latimes]
              \_ Yes, I'm saying that the adjusted numbers aren't adjusted
                 enough.  State spending has increased by a huge amount in
                 a short time *because of inflation*; it has not increased
                 by a huge amount relative to the cost of doing business
                 in California.  Actually I would expect that, except for
                 the prison sector, real state  expenditures relative to
                 California-indexed prices are flat or down over the past
                 4 or 10 years.  -tom
                 \_ Since you don't believe the published numbers, you'll just
                    pull them out of your ass!
                    \_ What are the published numbers for California?  -tom
                 \_ High real estate costs don't much affect State spending
                    and I doubt even State salaries are up 40% in 4 years.
                    \_ Real estate is absolutely a major cost to the
                       state.  So are fuel and energy.  State
                       state.
                       \_ I doubt it much impacts operations. How much
                          real estate does the State buy after all -
                          especially residential real estate, which is
                          where the bubble was? You'll have a hard time
                          arguing 40% over 4 years undersells the State's
                          real estate cost inflation. By the way, every
                          business in CA has done business in the same
                          inflationary environment. How many have increased
                          spending 40% in the last 4 years? I know my
                          employer hasn't. More like 5% per year which is
                          about 23% over 4 years. Inflation hasn't been
                          40% over the last 4 years.
                          \_ California's gross state product is up over 40%
                             since 2000, so clearly business spending has
                             increased by at least that much.  I wasn't
                             able to find 2002 numbers, but given the dot-com
                             crash, I'm sure it didn't increase much from
                             2000-2002.  -tom
                             \_ What is your source, I can use it in my
                                next debate with a net.libertarian. -ausman
                             \_ Big difference betweeen 40% since 2000 and
                             \_ Big difference between 40% since 2000 and
                                40% over the last 4 years. Here are the
                                GDP numbers, BTW (in millions of current $):
                                (Source: http://www.bea.gov/regional/gsp
                                2000 1,287,145
                                2001 1,301,050
                                2002 1,340,446
                                2003 1,406,511
                                2004 1,519,443
                                2005 1,632,822
                                2006 1,742,172
                                2007 1,812,968
                                So California GDP is up ~40% over 7 years.
                                Since 2004 it is up 19%.
                                \_ This is an awesome data source (and is
                                   a pretty strong argument that The State
                                   is spending more), thanks. Aren't classroom
                                   sizes smaller these days?
                       So are fuel and energy.  State
                       population is up over 7% since 2000, which
                       represents an absolute baseline for spending
                       increase.  Median household income rose from
                       $46K in 2000 to $54K in 2006.  And by
                       cherry-picking a 4-year period, you're ignoring
                       the fact that there were state budget cuts the
                       three prior years.
                       \_ And you're ignoring that the state was still deficit
                          spending in those years.
                          \_ So?  They still had to defer all kinds of
                             expenses.  -tom
                             \_ So. What?  The state shouldn't be spending more
                                than it takes in. Period.
                                \_ Why not?  Pretty much every business and
                                   family spends more than it takes in, at
                                   least occasionally.  -tom
        \_ Time to recall the Governator!
           \_ I'd be for that in a heartbeat. -op
2008/7/18-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Reagan] UID:50620 Activity:nil 54%like:50612
7/17    More hypocrisy from Al Gore
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESxvY1tQHTo
        [Promo/hit piece from Americans for Prosperity]
        \_ It's pretty tough being Al Gore. On one hand, he wants to get
           his message across. On the other hand, it is extremely difficult
           to get his message across without violating his messages. On
           one hand, I'd wish he would bike to conferences using a single
           speed bicycle and wearing spandex. On the other hand, no one
           really listens to hippies dressed in tie dye shirts shouting
           "Global warming is here! Conserve!" Tough position man. What
           would you do in his position?
        \_ "This video is no longer available"
            \_ works fine for me
        \_ http://AmericansForProsperity.com has a picture of RONALD REAGAN
           Oh yeah this is a GREAT message and a GREAT site RONNIE is
           our GREAT HERO YES VOTE CONSERVATIVES NOW! Patriots unite!!!
           \_ Translation: I feel really stupid for supporting this hypocrite,
              ad hominem time!
        \_ You're a conservative, why do you care what other people do
           with their lives? As long as you are eco-conscious or can
           help others become more eco-conscious, what do you care?
           \_ Mainly just because it's annoying to have some hypocrite
              harranging you. -!op
           \_ Al Gore is trying to get policies enacted to force me to act in
              a way that he himself doesn't.  It's clear that he doesn't
              actually believe in his global warming hoax since he doesn't even
              do a thing to live like he tries to tell the rest of us to live.
        \_ WWAGD. Bwahaha http://www.zombietime.com/zomblog/?p=33#comments
        \_ Al Gore is 10 times the leader that Dubya is. Too bad the Supreme
           Court selected Bush.
2008/7/15-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic] UID:50574 Activity:nil
7/15    i stuck 'sex dungeon' in my google news alerts
        http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&ie=UTF-8&ncl=1226788863
2008/7/14-16 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50559 Activity:nil
7/14    Customers line up in front of IndyMac bank branches in hopes of pulling
        out cash
        http://tinyurl.com/5k5b72 (yahoo.com)
2008/7/14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/BayArea] UID:50558 Activity:nil 92%like:50565
7/14    Mythbusters need people in the bay area to help out in September
http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2008/07/help_mythbusters_recreate.html
2008/7/11-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Industry/Jobs] UID:50537 Activity:high
7/11    Regarding the below discussion about "overpaid" government
        employees, here is a result of a search on all programmers
        who work for the State Board of Equalization:
        http://www.sacbee.com/1098/story/766730.html
        As you can see, the pay is below industry standard.
        \_ You know who makes way too much in California?  Firefighters.
           Screw those guys.  Just as soon as they're done fighting the 3000
           simultaneous fires going on now all over the state and turning
           my sunset a pleasant red, I expect a full auditing of their
           overtime and massive firings.
           \_ If they have to work that much overtime then maybe they need
              to hire more firefighters. However, I bet the unions won't
              allow that. There are lots of people lining up to be
              firefighters and there are no positions to be had, yet these
              guys work crazy overtime (which has to be unsafe). They
              won't accept making their base salary amount, though, which
              is what they'd have to take if enough were hired.
        \_ My take all along has been that IT is one of the *few* areas that
           the government underpays, which is probably why so many of you
           think that government pay is low.
           \_ Never worked for the government I see.
              \_ Never lived in DC I see.
           \_ Show me a job title and employer where the pay is high then:
              http://www.sacbee.com/statepay
              All I see is mediocre (at best) pay levels.
              \_ How about an OC detective making $221K?
                 \_ Unsourced anecdotal evidence is pretty weak. I presented
                    you with a database with tens of thousands of salaries,
                    now go make your case.
                    \_ Happy?
                       http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-deputies14-2008may14,0,1117569.story
                       "The average salary for federal employees is
                       $60,517... the Washington, DC area has an average
                       salary of $78,593."
                       (Source: http://www.fedsmith.com/article/687
                       "The top overtime recipient was sheriff's
                       investigator Theodore R. Harris, who made $120,000
                       in overtime, bringing his total pay to $221,000"
                       (Source: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-deputies14-2008may14,0,1117569.story
                       (Source: http://preview.tinyurl.com/5lxapl [la times])
                       "City workers' average salaries will reach about
                       $68,850 for civilians and $93,800 for sworn police
                       and fire by July - placing them in the upper ranks
                       of comparable cities and far higher than
                       private-sector workers."
                       (Source: http://www.dailynews.com/search/ci_9221826?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com
                       (Source: http://preview.tinyurl.com/5lb8s9 [daily news])
                       "What was not reported was her annual salary,
                       which, according to a database published by the
                       Daily News, is $104,000.  Another DWP mother in
                       attendance was Wendy Ramallo, the wife of Joe
                       Ramallo, who, according to the database, makes
                       $167,478 per year.

                       By the way, if those two drove to the meeting, they
                       probably drove a car you own.  You see, all DWP
                       employees with six-figure incomes get, in addition
                       to their salary, a free car, paid for by you, the
                       taxpayer/ ratepayer.

                       Sara Perez and Jo-Del Navarro also spoke out, but
                       they "only" make $86,025.60 and $72,620 per year."
                       (Source: http://www.citywatchla.com/content/view/1032
                       "As the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
                       seeks a hefty taxpayer rate hike, a Daily News
                       review of salary data shows the average utility
                       worker makes $76,949 a year - or nearly 20 percent
                       more than the average civilian city worker.

                       More than 1,140 of the utility's employees - or
                       about 13 percent - take home more than $100,000 a
                       year. And General Manager Ron Deaton, who is on
                       medical leave, rakes in $344,624 a year making him
                       the city's highest-paid worker.

                       DWP salaries are on average higher than city and
                       far higher than private-sector workers'"
                       (Source: http://tinyurl.com/6xctu5 [laist])
                       LWDP database showing painters making $79K:
                       http://lang.dailynews.com/socal/ladwpsalaries/?appSession=735104577589687
                       http://preview.tinyurl.com/64ubs3 [dailynews]
                       Feel free to search for your own job titles at:
                       http://lang.dailynews.com/socal/ladwpsalaries/
                       Even "CUSTODIAL SERVICES ATTENDANTS" make $46K.
                       "Have you heard about the fire captain in the city
                       of San Diego who made $242,138 in one year? How
                       about the city lifeguard who made $138,787? It's
                       all true - and if you thought the city of San Diego's
                       pensions were generous, wait until
                       you see how much some city workers are being paid."
                       "For years, the city's powerful unions and many
                       city officials have claimed city workers are
                       underpaid - using the official salary
                       schedules published in the budget as their
                       evidence. It is time that the public be told
                       exactly what city workers are paid. Taxpayers
                       should not have to rely on an institute to dig up
                       the information using W-2 data. City departments
                       (such as the Fire Department) also put "phantom
                       positions" in their budget to hide off-budget
                       expenses such as excessive overtime. Mayor Jerry Sanders
                       recently discovered that 400 or more salaried positions
                       are not even included in the budget each year."
                       (Source: http://tinyurl.com/pz5wo [sd union tribune])
                       \_ "The average salary for federal employees is
                          $60,517... City workers' average salaries will reach
                          about $68,850 for civilian workers..." Sorry, those
                          numbers just don't seem that exorbitant to me, do
                          they to you? Perhaps there are a few departments where
                          employees are overpaid (and it sounds like DWP is
                          one of them) but to extrapolate from that to all
                          they to you? Perhaps there are a few departments
                          where employees are overpaid (and it sounds like DWP
                          is one of them) but to extrapolate from that to all
                          government employees is bad logic. I do not
                          begrudge someone getting paid 2X a normal salary
                          if they do 80 hrs/week of work and I don't
                          understand why you would either. It does sound like
                          their boss needs to hire someone new, but this is
                          their boss needs to hire an extra person, but this is
                          not always possible, as should be obvious if you
                          stop to think about for even a second.
                          \_ 1. It depends on the job being done. For an
                                accountant maybe not. For a simple clerk,
                                painter, or custodian then yes. The
                                argument was that gov't employees are
                                underpaid and that is clearly untrue. They
                                don't have to have 'exorbitant' salaries
                                for that to be untrue. I make $100K and I
                                don't have a free car, for instance.
                             2. I gave data for all federal employees, so
                                we don't have to extrapolate.
                             3. Do you really think these people are doing
                                80 hours/week of work based on the hours
                                gov't offices keep and your experiences in
                                working with the city/county? For
                                instance, in San Diego they get every
                                other Friday off. And they are still
                                working crazy OT? No way. It's a farce
                                caused by lax auditing. Why are people who
                                make $100K per year getting any overtime
                                at all? At my company (and most companies)
                                people at that level are exempt and we just
                                suck it up or quit. The article is making
                                a point that "phantom positions" are
                                created to perpetuate this overtime fraud.
                                The gov't will never hire appropriately
                                because it would be akin to a pay cut for
                                the workers. It's easier to continue with
                                the status quo because you have an excuse
                                why you are behind on work (short-staffed)
                                and make the paper salaries seem small.
                             4. Like I said, I have two sisters working
                                for the gov't and it's easy money. My one
                                sister is very honest and she always says
                                she doesn't have enough work to do and
                                asks for more and they tell her she needs
                                to stop working so hard and just enjoy it,
                                except she gets bored. She's an executive
                                secretary (which means she is the personal
                                secretary for a high-level engineer) and
                                she makes $70K. In another 4 years (will
                                have been 20 years) she can retire with
                                50% of her salary and free medical for
                                life. I don't begrudge her that, but let's
                                be honest about how that compares to being
                                a secretary at, say, Wells Fargo (where my
                                mom worked for many years) where those
                                benefits are non-existent and you would be
                                lucky to make $40K in that position. Put
                                the 'government employees are underpaid'
                                thing to rest. At worst, they are
                                compensated as well as anyone else and
                                usually better.
                                \_ You're talking a lot, but you're not
                                   saying anything.
                                   \_ You're a moron who can't read.
                                \_ Since you are the king of making up things
                                   to support your position, I need a lot more
                                   than "the friend of my sister-in-law over
                                   heard at a party" kind of data. Give me a
                                   job description and a state department and
                                   show me a sector of employees in the
                                   in the State of CA database. All of the data
                                   is there for the world to see, surely if
                                   public sector workers are so overpaid, you
                                   can find at least one of them. $60k/yr for
                                   a mid-career teacher, police officer or
                                   skilled craftsman seems very reasonable,
                                   even underpaid, to me. The majority of
                                   local spending is on education, public
                                   safety and public works, so that is where
                                   the majority of employees are going to come
                                   from. The rest of your comments are mostly
                                   not worth replying to, but I will note that
                                   if these jobs are so great, why aren't people
                                   lining up to fill them? There is a chronic
                                   shortage of police officers and teachers in
                                   CA, hardly indication that they are overpaid.
                                   http://http://www.bls.gov/news.release/ecec.t03.htm
                                   Note that total overtime pay is .4% of
                                   overall salary, so your opinion that
                                   overtime pay in the public sector is
                                   ubiquitous is clearly wrong headed.
                                \_ Plug in "exective assistant" for the
                                   Dept of Water Resources and you will see
                                   pay varies from $39k to $48k.
2008/7/9-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:50527 Activity:nil 80%like:50517
7/9     Dallas County meeting gets racial.
        http://csua.org/u/lvy
        \_ Do we really need every damn freeper article reposted here?
2008/7/9-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Prop] UID:50526 Activity:moderate
7/9     Now we know what the definition of "rich" is:  $150K/yr/household
        http://www.sacbee.com/111/story/1069753.html
        \_ Only $150K, why you poor poor thing.
        \_ The GOP has no function in CA, except as obstructionists.
           \_ You mean like all those Republican unions that got all of
              the Governator's propositions defeated in the 2005 special
              election?
              \_ I notice you still can't pick one thing that the GOP
                 has accomplished in California in the last 30 years.
                 \_ That's because the California State Legislature
                    has had a Democratic majority for the past 30 years. So
                    the inability to get anything done is somehow the
                    minority party's fault? Try again, dumb troll.
                    \_ In other words, their only function is as
                       obstructionists.
                       \_ Sure maybe in the CA Legislature, but the you
                          must have missed my comment 9 lines above yours.
                          Oh wait, you're a troll. So you're deliberately
                          ignoring presented facts.
                    \_ Somehow the Republicans in Congress get things done
                       even though they are in the minority and they control
                       the Executive. Why can't the GOP in CA? Is it because
                       the Executive. Why can't the GOP in CA?
                       \_ You do realize that US Congress has a completely
                          different legislative process than the state of
                          California, right? Oh wait, you're a troll.
                       Is it because
                       they hold onto a tired and inflexible ideology which
                       rejects the possibility of compromise? Also, there
                       rejects the possibility of compromise?
                       \_ You're nothing but a political homer if you think
                          California Republicans are the only ones with
                          an inflexible ideology.
                       Also, there
                       have been many GOP "victories" at the initiative level.
                       Why not trumpet those? The extension of Prop 13 tax
                       breaks to the decendents of the original home purchaser
                       must count as a great victory in the general Conservative
                       agenda of advancing inherited wealth over earned wealth.
                       breaks to the descendants of the original home purchaser
                       must count as a great victory in the general
                       Conservative agenda of advancing inherited wealth over
                       earned wealth.
                       \_ Prop 13 is older than 30 years old.
                       How about "Three Strikes and You Are Out"?
                       earned wealth. How about "Three Strikes and You Are Out"?
                       Surely, breaking the back of the State budget with
                       earned wealth. How about "Three Strikes and You Are
                       Out"? Surely, breaking the back of the State budget with
                       overflowing prisons and severely cutting back public
                       post-secondary education must count as one of the
                       greatest victories of American Conservatism in the 21st
                       century. The GOP has always hated great public
                       institutions like the University of California, and it
                       looks like you will finally get your long desired goal
                       of destroying it, or at least severly weakening it. How
                       about Prop 187? Surely eliminating schooling for the
                       about Prop 187? Eliminating all schooling for the
                       children of the poorest must rank as a great victory
                       in the Class War against The Poor! Isn't it every
                       Conservatives secret desire to have a house full of
                       poor, dumb, uneducated servants, too hopeless to be
                       anything but docile? Eliminating any chance of becoming
                       literate is surely a huge step in the right direction.
                       Oh, that's right, the courts shot that one donw. C'mon
                       Oh, that's right, the courts shot that one down. C'mon
                       fly your flag high, you have lots to be proud of!
                       \_ So pretty much the California GOP has the courts
                          against them now too. So, what have CA Dems
                          accomplished with the deck stacked so heavily in
                          their favor?
                       \_ Were you foaming at the mouth when you wrote this
                          rant?
                          \_ Yes, because obviously anyone who disagrees with
                             the GOP is rabid.
                             \_ That is the most off the rails rant I've read
                                in months.  That has nothing to do with the
                                target. -!pp
                                \_ Still waiting for some "successes" from the
                                   CA GOP. Don't the things I listed count
                                   as initiatives they are proud of?
        \_ Actually, if you read it it is $321K. The $150K number is just
           for a child dependent exemption worth $200.
        \- well there are a few way to approach "rich" ... say the
           "top 5%, 2%, 1%" in the country/state/"area" and then there is
           "doesnt have any money worries" ... can buy any car they want
           "within reason", can vacation anywhere they want, no worries
           about healthcare expenses, or college tuition for kids, has all
           the house they "need". i think we operate in the latter context ...
           but if you are "richer" than 98% of "everybody", can you really
           say you arent "rich"? rather than picking a wealth/income level,
           how would you define "rich"? the "relative income" approach or
           the "opportunity" approach or something else?
2008/7/9-11 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50525 Activity:low
7/9     Got too many junk mails? Thanks to People's Republic of California,
        Comrades can opt out of mailing lists. Take your pick:
        Tons of free-market junk mail, or socialist controlled junk mail:
        http://www.ciwmb.ca.gov/wpie/JunkMail/default.htm
        \_ And what's a free-market alternative method of opting out of
           junk mail? It's so damned cheap to produce and send that almost
           any result makes it profitable.
           \_ The free market alternative would be to refuse to accept it,
              but the USPS doesn't allow one to refuse to accept mail.
              \_ what would be the advantage to the delivery service of
                 allowing you to refuse to accept deliveries?  -tom
2008/7/9-11 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50524 Activity:nil
7/9     Electric Minis for CA Only:
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/6qbnn9 [autobloggreen.com]
2008/7/9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:50517 Activity:nil 80%like:50527
7/9     Dallas County meeting gets racial.
        http://cityhallblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2008/07/dallas-county-meeting-turns-ra.html
2008/7/9-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Prop] UID:50508 Activity:high
7/9     Check out the graph of CA revenue vs spending
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/2ttws3
        \_ CLEARLY, we need to cut pork, like education (for illegal
           immigrants), lunch food (for illegal immigrants),
           healthcare (for illegal immigrants), transportation (amigos
           driving on my I-210). You see it's all about illegal amigos.
           Say no to illegals, say yes to tax cuts!             !dim
        \_ it's hard to tell whether this guy is a nutjob, or is satirizing
           nutjobs.
        \_ Is this guy one of those "compassionate" conservatives I keep
           hearing about? I just *love* his idea of scrapping public
           health. Can you say epidemic?
        \_ Look at the chart.  Notice how spending increases outpace revenue
           increases? -op
           \_ what a surprise, given relentless tax cuts amidst growing
              demand for services.  -tom
              \_ Next time I spend more more money than I make, instead of
                 cutting back on my expenses, I will just order my boss to
                 give me a raise so that I can keep on binge spending. That
                 is such a great plan, I can't believe I never thought of
                 it before.
                 \_ Noone is saying cuts shouldn't be made, but the cuts
                    this person came up with are beyond dumb.  You can
                    cut services that may very well pay for themselves and
                    have serious quality of life concerns when they are gone
                    (even for people who don't directly benfit from them) or
                    you could go after the real pork like prison overspending.
                    \_ I agree. I don't agree with the cuts the guy in the url
                       wants to make. I think some of them are totally nuts. My
                       point was only that some cuts should be made and that
                       it is unrealistic for the government to keep demanding
                       ever increasing taxes to fund pork projects.
                 \_ How about, next time your are spending about as much
                    money as you make, you order your boss to give you a
                    pay cut, since the extra profit the company makes from
                    paying you less salary will trickle down to you.  -tom
                    \_ This is just bizarre.  Revenue was increasing.  Spending
                       increased as well, just faster.  I can't see any
                       evidence of "tax cuts" in the revenue curve.
                       \_ Well tom's idea is that spending has a natural
                          positive growth and income should have a similar
                          growth (by maintaining or increasing taxes). I
                          don't think he accepts the premise that perhaps
                          government spending and income shouldn't grow.
                          Re tom's hypo - perhaps the government should
                          try spending LESS than it makes and re-thinking
                          what services are absolutely necessary.
                          \_ I think my brain just popped.  Does tom think that
                             we should decided spending first and then set
                             taxes to raise that money?
                       \_ You can find evidence of tax cuts in the legislative
                          record.  Revenue continued to rise because *more
                          people came to California*.  In 1980 there were
                          23.7 million people in California; now there are
                          36.5 million.  -tom
                       \_ Overall state government spending as a percentage
                          of GDP has been within 1% of 9% since the mid 90s.
                          It has not gone appreciably up or down.
                          \_ Inflation-adjusted per-capita spending has
                             increased over 40% in the last decade.
                             \_ Please provide evidence for this "fact".
                                \_ Math is hard.
                                \_ http://www.caforward.org/dynamic/pages/link_10_135.pdf
                                \_ link:preview.tinyurl.com/65rpor
                                   [caforward.org]
                                   \_ Personal income has risen much faster
                                      than state spending; obviously the
                                      state's increase in spending is trickling
                                      down to the people of the state.
                                      (NB: a likely flaw in these numbers
                                      is use of incomplete or fudged figures
                                      for inflation.)  -tom
                                   \_ So, as a percentage of personal income,
                                      state spending has actually gone down.
                                      As I have asked before, why do you think
                                      that state spending should track
                                      inflation? Most of what the State spends
                                      on is salaries. Shouldn't state spending
                                      track GDP or personal income instead? Why
                                      do you think that State employees should
                                      expect their salaries to constantly lag
                                      behind the private sector?
                                      \_ Government employees in general
                                         are compensated extremely well.
                                         Have their numbers increased or
                                         decreased over time? (Honest Q)
                                         \_ Government employees are not
                                            compensated well compared to
                                            corporate employees; at low levels,
                                            if you include benefits (which
                                            are better for government
                                            employees) people are still
                                            paid a little better in the
                                            industry, and at the high end,
                                            there's nothing in the public
                                            sector anywhere close
                                            to the compenstation given to
                                            industry executives.  Their
                                            numbers have increased, as
                                            the population and thus the need
                                            for government services has
                                            increased.  -tom
                                            \_ Actually, government employees
                                               are compensated very well.
                                               We're not talking CEOs
                                               here. We're talking rank
                                               and file government employees.
                                               Government jobs are some of
                                               the highest-paying jobs around
                                               *NOT ACCOUNTING FOR* the
                                               ridiculous benefits. You
                                               don't realize it, because
                                               you work in one of the few
                                               fields where the government
                                               underpays. Two of my sisters
                                               work for the gov't (county and
                                               city) and for example the county
                                               just hired a new 24 y.o. civil
                                               engineer with an MS at $120K
                                               per year. The evidence is
                                               not just anecdotal, either.
                                               For example, 2/3 of OC
                                               sheriff's deputies make
                                               $100K+ with the top sheriff
                                               making $221K. Note that this is
                                               not The Sheriff, but a detective.
                                               not The Sheriff, but a
                                               detective.
                                               The average DWP employee makes
                                               $77K. Locksmiths and painters
                                               for DWP make $80K. I read
                                               a gardener for the City made
                                               $100K including overtime
                                               and a transportation coordinator
                                               (coordinates events like LA
                                               Marathon) made $120K base + $60K
                                               overtime. No, the government
                                               pays quite well, the benefits
                                               are good, expectations are low,
                                               and it's hard to be fired.
                                               \_ gee, then why aren't you
                                                  working for the government?
                                                  How much do you think a
                                                  sheriff's deputy should
                                                  make?  -tom
                                                  \_ My industry is one in
                                                     which the gov't underpays
                                                     unless I move to DC which
                                                     I don't want to do. But,
                                                     actually, I do work for
                                                     the government indirectly.
                                                     Not sure what your point
                                                     is with that ridiculous
                                                     comment anyway. As
                                                     for deputies and prison
                                                     guards, compare their
                                                     salaries with those of
                                                     free market security
                                                     guards. I think a deputy
                                                     should be paid more, but
                                                     not *that much* more
                                                     to work the mean
                                                     streets of Irvine.
                                                     BTW, if gov't pay is so
                                                     low then why have you been
                                                     working for the gov't for
                                                     20 years - all through the
                                                     <DEAD>dot.com<DEAD> era of easy wealth?
                                                     <DEAD>dot.com<DEAD> era of easy
                                                     wealth?
                                                     \_ Because I am not
                                                        motivated by pursuit
                                                        of wealth. -tom
                                                        of wealth. (Although
                                                        I will note, you have
                                                        no clue about my
                                                        career.)  -tom
                                                        \_ I was exaggerating,
                                                           but it's been 13
                                                           years according to
                                                           your own resume.
                                        \_ Your anecdotal evidence is BS, as
                                           I am sure you well know. I have
                                           three family members who work for
                                           State of California and they are
                                           all paid poorly for their level of
                                           experience. One is a DBA, with 20+
                                           years of experience, who makes $80k
                                           one is a programmer, with about 10,
                                           who makes $60k and the last is
                                           a secretary, who makes about $30k.
                                           \_ IT is one of the few areas where
                                              the gov't underpays. I won't
                                              dispute that. However, a
                                              secretary at $30K is about
                                              market value. The average
                                              pay at the DWP is $77K. That
                                              is not anecdotal, and the
                                              average is not brought up by
                                              lots of $800K managers. In
                                              fact, only about 10% of the
                                              workforce makes more than $100K.
                                              If you work for DWP you can
                                              make $70-80K for just about any
                                              job and it's easy money, too.
                                              It's not just the DWP either.
                                           Pay in the public sector is, in
                                           general, below the private sector.
                                           And even if it wasn't, why should
                                           people who work in the public sector
                                           expect their pay to lag and fall
                                           further and further behind? You
                                           cannot even answer this question,
                                           which is why you are trying to change
                                           which is why you are trying to
                                           change
                                           the topic.
                                           \_ I have no interest in answering
                                              that question. I am not the
                                              person to whom it was asked.
                                              I just want to point out that
                                              the government wastes a lot
                                              of money, which should come
                                              as a surprise to no one
                                              other than tom.
                                              \_ Corporations waste a lot of
                                                 money, too.  -tom
                                                 \_ Maybe, but here's the
                                                    point you miss:
                                                    It's *THEIR* money!
                                                    The government's money
                                                    is *MY* money.
                                                    \_ So?  It's not possible
                                                       to run a large
                                                       organization 100%
                                                       efficiently; that
                                                       standard is simply
                                                       not realistic.  -tom
                                                       \_ So? SO? You like
                                                          handing over your
                                                          $$$ to be wasted?!?!
                                                          Maybe the gov't
                                                          shouldn't be so large
                                                          then.
                                                          shouldn't be so
                                                          large then.
                                                          \_ It doesn't bother
                                                             me any more to
                                                             hand over money
                                                             to the government
                                                             than to United
                                                             Airlines or any
                                                             other faceless
                                                             corporation.
                                                             I think most
                                                             governmental
                                                             programs have
                                                             decent return on
                                                             investment.  -tom
                                                             \_ I can't say I
                                                                agree that that
                                                                has been true
                                                                for many years
                                                                now. It was
                                                                true once upon
                                                                a time.  What's
                                                                the ROI for
                                                                attacking Iraq?
                                                                D'oh!
                       \_ State spending as a percentage of GDP has remained
                          essentially unchanged since the late 80's:
                          http://www.cbpp.org/7-31-07sfp-f2.jpg
        \_ http://www.urban.org/publications/1001173.html
           "State and local revenues have been relatively stable over the
           last 30 years..."
           Sorry to bust your bubble, buddy.
2008/7/8-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:50497 Activity:kinda low
7/8     FREE HANS
        \_ It seems like he has a decent chance of getting out in 15 years.
           Would they let him use computers in jail?
           \_ CA pretty much doesn't give parole to murderers anymore.
              And I suspect his computer use will be pretty much non-
              existant.
           \_ Only 15 years for strangling his wife?
              \_ 15 to life.  Parole no sooner than 15 years, though the state
                 doesn't tend to grant parole to murderers.
                 \_ I know what the minimum sentence is, but I disagree with
                    the "decent chance of getting out in 15 years" comment.
                    \_ Ok, I made that up. Nevermind.
                 \_ Can't he get 1/3 off for good behaviour? He might be
                    out in 10 years!
                    \_ he won't behave well.  -tom
                 \_ he's being sentenced to 15-to-life, instead of 25-to-life.
                    I don't think it matters at all.  it just means in 15 or
                    25 he is eligible to apply for parole.  So he applies for
                    parole.  The Parole Board makes a decision.  That decision
                    is 'sorry'.  Even if they agree to let him out, the governor
                    has to sign off on it. no CA governor since Pete Wilson
                    has parolled a murderer.  ok i think maybe Arnold just released
                    a woman who killed her rapist abusive husband 30 years ago.
                    I dunno why we even have a goddamn parole board if they don't
                    let anyone out.
                    is 'sorry'.  Even if they agree to let him out, the
                    governor has to sign off on it. no CA governor since Pete
                    Wilson has parolled a murderer.  ok i think maybe Arnold
                    just released a woman who killed her rapist abusive
                    husband 30 years ago. I dunno why we even have a goddamn
                    parole board if they don't let anyone out.
                    \_ We let people out. Just not murderers. Do you think
                       you can rehabilitate a murderer? Some, probably.
                       Most, I wouldn't take a chance on. What's sad is
                       that a lot of sex offenders do get paroled and then go
                       out and repeat offend.
2008/7/8-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:50495 Activity:low
7/8     Congress approval in single digits for first time ever
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/5d496t
        \_ The Democrats in Congress are considerably higher, though
           still quite low, at 21%:
           http://www.pollingreport.com/cong_dem.htm
           \_ The trick is, the Republicans are also 21% favorable.
              "Congress" is too amorphous a body to have a meaningful
              approval rating.  -tom
              \_ Also meaningless because generally people like their guy.
                 And since you can only vote for your guy overal approval
                 rating is really just a indicator of how fucked up people
                 think the country/economy is getting.
              \_ But the comparison to previous congresses is valid.
        \_ The way this congress handled issues like war spending, Farm Bill,
           and the upcoming FISA bill make me want to vote out pretty much
           every incumbent senator and congressman out of office regardless
           of party affiliation, starting with Nancy Pelosi. This congress
           has not attempted to resolve any issues that they were elected
           to work on, and for the last 12 months they had been for the
           most part engaging in election year politics and pandering to voters.
           most part engaging in election year politics and pandering to
           voters.
           \_ Totally agree.  Didn't we elect them to remove the rubber-stamp
              practices?  I don't get why Pelosi doesn't stand up to Bush
              the way she did when first elected, telling the President he
              needed to calm down.  Since then, every confrontation the
              democrats have caved.  Almost all the slightly controvertial
              legislation they have passed has been vetoed, why does Bush
              have any credibility or sway with them anymore?  Its getting
              pretty annoying that the republicans vote in a complete block
              but the democrats can't come to a cohesive position... ever.
              \- i'm willing to wait and see what kind of hearings we get
                 about cheney and the other liars and theives and tortures
                 after the election. i can see being risk averse if it looks
                 like you will cruise to victory.
        \_ Not exactly:
           http://preview.tinyurl.com/5n4kc2 [yahoo news]
2008/7/8-10 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Gay] UID:50493 Activity:nil
7/7     Study: Gays in the military don't undermine unit cohesion
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080708/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/military_gays
        \_ Well heck, the Greeks knew it helped.
        \_ Study funded by gay activist group.
         \_ Those goddamn fags
2008/7/2-6 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:50450 Activity:moderate
7/2     Christopher Hitchens on Waterboarding: "Believe me, it's torture."
        http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/jul/02/humanrights.usa
        \_ Gee, how nice of him to change his mind now.  Rats.  Ships.
           Sinking.
           \_ As much as I dislike Christopher Hitchens, it seems hard to
              fault him for this.  He had the courage to back up his claim
              that waterboarding wasn't torture by trying it out, and then
              (having learned what it was like) he admitted he'd been wrong.
              I wish everyone was so principled.
              \_ 4 years too late... I don't have much sympathy for anyone
                 who defended torture as strongly as that man did.
              \_ FLIP FLOPPER!
        \_ And why should I care what he thinks?
           \_ Because he has been a tireless defender of the technique as not
              being torture and has now been convinced, by experience, that it
              is. If you believe that it is not, perhaps you should try it out
              yourself.
        \_ Torture is any experience so horrible that no-one would consider
           trying it out simply for the purpose of writing a Vanity Fair
           article about what it's like.
           http://sweasel.com/archives/1269
           \_ If he'd thought it was torture before he experienced it, he
              would not have tried it out. Now that he's experienced it, he
              recognizes it as torture and would not do it again.
              \_ Yah, see here's the thing, torture is something that you know
                 you wouldn't try it even before you try it.
                     \- i think that is true for "medieval" type
                        torture [gouging out eyeballs], and highly
                        likely for modern "clinical" pain-inducing
                        torture [electric wire between teeth] but
                        i dont think it is necessarily possibly to
                        i dont think it is necessarily possible to
                        know the effects of things like sleep deprivation,
                        and psychological/terror oriented approaches such
                        as mock executions [russian roulette style, fake
                        firing squad, blind folded and dropped from
                        firing squad, blindfolded and dropped from
                        helicopter etc] until you've "been there/done that".
                        anyway, i thought this was a settled issue given
                        that all the "warriors" [mccain etc] said "wboaring
                                     \_ Not by a long shot.  Quite a few
                                        military members said *they'd* been
                                        waterboarded, and said they had no
                                        problem with us doing it to others.
                                        \- who is a "military member" who
                                           has said "it's ok if somebody
                                           waterboards US troops when
                                           captured".
                        is totally clearly over the line" and it was only
                        chickhawks [bush, cheney, limbaugh] either saying
                        it wasnt clear or it was like frat hazing.
                        i was was captured and you said you were going to
                        if was was captured and you said you were going to
                        put me in the iron maiden, i'd talk right way.
                        if you threatened to waterboard me, i might go
                        for a minute or two. --psb
                        \_ McCain voted to support waterboarding.  -tom
                           \_ I missed that.  A point in his favor. -emarkp
                                \_ I'm sorry, "emarkp", but I
                                   think you need some introspection on
                                   whether you're serious about your
                                   religion and whether your support of
                                   torture is really consistent with
                                   that.
                                   \_ Why the quotes?  It really is me, and I
                                      find it laughable when someone else tells
                                      me what my religion should be.
                                      Especially the prolific atheist
                                      relgion-haters here (though I obviously I
                                      don't know if you're one of them).
                                      -emarkp
                                      \_ The quotes were simply to open
                                         the door to the idea that someone
                                         was masquerading as you to make
                                         you look bad.  Now I'm forced to
                                         go with the person below:  your
                                         "religion" is a hollow sanctimonious
                                         shell over your hateful and vile
                                         core.
                                      \_ yeah, it's easy as an atheist to
                                         underestimate the ability of
                                         religious people to rationalize
                                         whatever it is they want to do
                                         or believe.  -tom
                                         \_ You should be careful trying to
                                            apply your childish understand of
                                            something to a grown-up discussion.
                                            -emarkp
                                      \_ You're right, no one can tell you
                                         what your religion is or should be.
                                         But thanks to threads like this one
                                         we know that whatever your beliefs
                                         are, they serve as little more than
                                         a hollow sanctimonious shell over
                                         your hateful and vile core.
                              \_ you're an idiot.
                                 \_ I don't understand, shouldn't you be
                                    calling him evil rather than stupid?  This
                                    looks like a clear values call. -- ilyas
                                 \_ and anyone disagreeing with your opinion
                                    is an idiot. Great logic, comrade! Welcome
                                    to People's Republic of California.
                                    \_ No, I am tom!  Do not anger me!
                                    \_ I disagree with people who are not
                                       idiots all the time.  But *you* are
                                       an idiot.  -tom
                 \_ I believe you are confusing torture with deterrents.
                  \_http://home.lbl.gov:8080/~psb/Articles/Politics/Schelling.q
                 \_ I wouldn't try waterboarding, but I'm not a fucking
                    idiot like Christopher Hitchens.  -tom
2008/7/2-6 [Politics/Domestic/Crime, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50446 Activity:kinda low
7/2     Why do people CCW or open carry? I mean, in a place such as
        Cupertino or Sausalito, wouldn't you get more disturbances out and
        hastle from open carry than the minute, less than lottery chance
        that you'll heorically save someone from danger?
        \_ Let's see. If you are a Mormon with Asperger's syndrome, you'll
           feel that you're a lot smarter and better and more righteous
           than everyone else and that no one can be trusted. In addition,
           if you live in Chico, you gotta protect yourself because
           everyone else is a nutcase -- they have very different
           "values" and beliefs that you have. So in that respect, it
           totally makes sense to carry a weapon.
        \_ It's worth it so you can finally feel like a man again.
           \_ Is it worth even responding to this crap?
              \_ Wait, there really is some other reason?  Let me guess, you
                 are just waiting for the armed revolution to start so you can
                 go shoot some cops, and it would really suck if you had to go
                 home first casue someone else might have gotten them all?
                 \_ My right to protect myself and my property is
                    constitutionally protected.  Your interpretation is
                    bizarre.
                    \_ But the right to protect your right to protect yourself
                       and your property is not constitutionally protected.
                       I.e. the constitution can be changed by votes.
                        \_ do you really go to UC Berkeley?
                           \_ Yes I did.  Do you?
                       \_ It has been many years since I took crim law, but
                          iirc, the US Constitution does not require the states
                          to provide any defenses to the accused, i.e. self-
                          defense, defense of of others, and defense of
                          property are all defense provided by state law and
                          are constitutionally protected, if at all, by state
                          constitutions. So, in one sense, your statement is
                          probably correct.
                          In the context of this discussion, I assume that you
                          are referring to 2d amendment personal right(s) to
                          keep and bear arms.  And I assume that you mean that
                          the constitution can be changed via the amendment
                          process.  If so, I think that your statement is only
                          true in a very technical sense because the amendment
                          process operates as designed and prevents any drastic
                          changes from being made to the constitution. We have
                          only used the process 27 times and the 27th amendment
                          was pending was over 200 years. This suggests that
                          the 2d amendment personal rights can considered
                          immutable because amending the constitution to remove
                          the 2d is about as likely as an armed revolution to
                          to overthrow the republic.
                          \_ It's really easy. The EARLIER number amendment
                             the less likely you can challenge it as time
                             goes on.
                    \_ If you are so afraid of the world you can't wander
                       the mean streets of Cupertino without packing lethal
                       force you are laughbly pathetic, constituationally
                       protected or not.
                       \_ I keep a flashlight on my keychain as well.  Does
                          that make me afraid of my own shadow?
                          \_ Do you keep the flashlight around so that if
                             some scary dark looking person comes near you
                             you can shove it in their eyeball while shouting
                             "semper fi motherfucker!"
                             \_ Do you do that with your car instead of riding
                                on the bus?
                       \_ So you don't drive?
                        \_ I sure don't keep a car in my pants in order to
                           keep my dream of getting to run over some dangerous
                           looking feller in the name of justice alive.
                       \_ If you have to rely on someone else to protect you,
                          you're pathetic.
                          \_ See, unlike you I'm not afraid of my shadow, so
                             I don't need to have a gun around as a security
                             blanket.
        \_ Dude, you don't know what it is like on the mean streets of
           Cupertino. Jackbooted, BMW-riding Cupertino motorcycle cops
           routinely use their gestapo tactics to ticket jay-walking
           pedestrians who are just trying to save a few minutes on their
           walk to TapX or I Heart Yogurt. Open carry is all that keeps
           the man at bay.
           \_ OpenCarry Yogurt!
2008/7/1-14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:50436 Activity:nil
7/01    Stevens' dissent in Heller (DC gun ban) has a few factual errors.
        http://armsandthelaw.com/archives/2008/06/stevens_dissent.php
        \_ Don't you have a job or something?
2008/6/30-7/14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic] UID:50423 Activity:nil
6/30    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7481857.stm
        Please explain to me why Mugabe doesn't get arrested as soon as he
        leaves Zimbabwe?
        \_ Does he leave?  Does he leave to go to countries that have the
           political power and will to arrest him?  Does he leave to got o
           countries with the political power and will to arrest them who
           haven't given their word not to arrest him?
           \_ He just arrived in Egypt for an African Union meeting.
            \_ If you have an African Union meeting and you arrest the leaders
               who go there it isn't going to be very Unionious for long.
        \_ Hey: "he was elected, he took an oath, and he is here with us, so
           he is president". What's your problem, huh?
           \_ >.< Lines like that make the baby jeebus weep blood.
2008/6/23-24 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:50335 Activity:nil
6/23    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/20/opinion/20brooks.html
         "And then on Thursday, Fast Eddie Obama had his finest hour. Barack
        Obama has worked on political reform more than any other issue. He
        aspires to be to political reform what Bono is to fighting disease in
        Africa. He.s spent much of his career talking about how much he
        believes in public financing. In January 2007, he told Larry King that
        the public-financing system works. In February 2007, he challenged
        Republicans to limit their spending and vowed to do so along with them
        if he were the nominee. In February 2008, he said he would aggressively
        pursue spending limits. He answered a Midwest Democracy Network
        questionnaire by reminding everyone that he has been a longtime
        advocate of the public-financing system.
         "But Thursday, at the first breath of political inconvenience, Fast
        Eddie Obama threw public financing under the truck. In so doing, he
        probably dealt a death-blow to the cause of campaign-finance reform.
        And the only thing that changed between Thursday and when he lauded the
        system is that Obama's got more money now."
        \_ "Fast Eddie Obama"? David Brooks has valid points. Shame he's got
           such a hard-on for a Heritage Foundation sinecure.
2008/6/22-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Prop] UID:50327 Activity:kinda low
6/22    Who Ruined California Public Schools?
        http://www.broowaha.com/article.php?id=267
        Is it true that CA is 42nd in school spending? By what measure?
        \_ Oh yes, blame it on Prop 13. Why do you hate tax cuts?
        \_ No, it's a simple lie.  CA spending has been well outpacing
           inflation, and enrollment has actually declined significantly.
           \_ Other states could still have raised their spending more.
              Do you have any data that supports your claim?
              \_ Which means nothing.  Performance has almost no correlation
                 with spending.
                 \_ So does that mean you have changed your tune and now
                    agree that CA is 42nd in school spending?
                    \_ Not the PP and I'm not sure what the right number
                       is, but it has nothing to do with Prop 13 as CA tax
                       revenues are the same as they always were.
                       \_ You need to explain what you mean by "the same as
                          they always were". Same in nominal dollars, in
                          inflation adjusted dollars, in inflation adjusted
                          per capita dollars or as a percentage of GDP dollars.
                          Those are all pretty different things.
                  \_ http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2004/RAND_MG186.sum.pdf
                          We used to spend 4.5% of total income on education,
                          now we spend 3.5%.
            \_ Enrollment has declined since 1978? Are you crazy?
2008/6/19-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:50305 Activity:nil
6/19    High gasoline prices accelerating return to the cities:
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/4gdqop (SF Gate)
        \_ http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200507/fallows
           Reading SF Gate + Atlantic is like reading Kunstler's rants.
           CITY GOOD SUBURB BAD! Fucking hippies. Pasadena rules!!!
           \_ This article is amusing, but unlikely. Why would China want to
              collapse the American economy? This would be like a crack dealer
              shooting his best customer.
2008/6/14-17 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime, Politics/Domestic/President] UID:50260 Activity:nil
6/14    The Exile:
        http://radaronline.com/exclusives/2008/06/russian-government-press-feedom-putin-ames-medvedev.php
2008/6/11-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Immigration] UID:50224 Activity:nil
6/10    Slow down everyone!
        http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/worklife/06/06/balance.slow.movement
2008/6/10-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:50219 Activity:nil
6/10    Oops.  More problems with Obama's friends.
        http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2008/06/obamas-answer-o.html
        \_ Heh, nice comment from JA on the page about Bsuh Obama similarity.
        \_ Did you ever figure out who killed Vince Foster?
2008/6/10-13 [Finance/Investment, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50215 Activity:low
6/10    Millions Paid to Dead CEOs Outrage Over 'Golden Coffins': Tech T:
        http://www.csua.org/u/lqh (finance.yahoo.com)
        "Among the more outrageous posthumous packages:
            * $298.1 million for Comcast CEO Brian Roberts
            * $288 million for Nabors CEO Eugene Isenberg
            * $115.6 million for Occidental CEO Ray Irani
            * $17 million for Shaw Group CEO J.M. Bernhard to not compete with
              the firm after he dies"
        I wonder if J.M. Bernhard is thinking about breaching the contract.
        \_ Why should you care what someone's compensation is?
           \_ It's just funny that a firm is willing to pay a CEO to not
              compete with the firm after he dies.  --- OP
              \_ That's the wording of the author, not of the contract.
                 \_ see the WSJ link; it's a non-compete clause in the
                    contract, which still pays off if he's dead.  -tom
                    \_ Correct.  Which is different than the wording of the
                       author. -pp
                       \_ I understand now.  Thx.  -- OP
                       \_ it's still pretty lame to have a non-compete clause
                          pay off in the case of death.  -tom
                          \_ duh.  It is just to make sure his family gets the
                             money if he leaves the company by dying instead
                             of by leaving.  It is to encourage him to stay
                             until he dies and not leave early to cash in on
                             the non-compete when he's otherwise doing a good
                             job.  It is not lame if you accept that any
                             non-compete clause was worth that number.  Why is
                             it necessary to explain such a simple concept?
                          \_ What better way to guarantee fulfillment of the
                             non-compete side of a contract than to die?
2008/6/5-10 [Politics/Domestic/Immigration, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50162 Activity:nil
6/5     It's pretty amazing to read this and think "wow, that was only 42 years
        ago"  http://ourfuture.org/blog-entry/meaning-box-722
        42 years ago there was regular rioting in Chicago because of laws
        saying it was illegal to have neighborhoods where you couldn't buy
        a home unless you were white.  That's pretty mind blowing.
         \_ the phrasing of this is interesting.  It is also subtly wrong.
            \_ How so?
2008/6/4-10 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/SocialSecurity] UID:50149 Activity:low
6/4     In Venezuela, ratting on neighbor is the law
        http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/nationworld/sfl-flavenez0603sbjun03,0,4071658.story
        \_ Hugo Chavez: proving at every turn that scumbaggery knows no
           ideological boundaries.
           \_ Yeah, he's totally breaking new ground as far as communist
              strongmen go...
              \_ Funny. Actually, he made several improvements to the country
                 and he continues to do so; he's also not breaking any ground
                 on the Civil Liberties front.
                 \_ Name those improvements.  He's a thug like all other thugs.
                    I hope you don't tell us how he made the trains run on
                    time.
                    \_ He nationalized a corrupt oil industry and funneled
                       at least some of the money to improving conditions for
                       the poorest Venezuelans.
                       \_ Wow, so a corrupt politician cum dictator took
                          property away from corrupt businesses and tossed some
                          breadcrumbs to the peasants.  Yay!  He's my friend
                          now!
                       \_ I dunno how corrupt the foreign investment of
                          infrastructure part of the Venezuelan oil industry
                          was that he nationalized.  It looks like he has
                          embarked on a poorly planned program of massive
                          socialism to placate the masses and buy their
                          votes to keep himself in power, without thinking
                          of the further economic consequences.  and I'm a
                          bleeding heart American liberal.
                    \_ From Wikipedia:
                       "By the end of the first three years of his presidency,
                        Chavez had initiated a land transfer program and had
                        introduced several reforms aimed at improving the
                        social welfare of the population. These reforms
                        entailed the lowering of infant mortality rates; the
                        implementation of a free, government-funded health
                        care system; and free education up to the university
                        level. By December of 2001, inflation fell to 12.3%
                        the lowest since 1986,[38] while economic growth was
                        steady at four percent.[39] Chavez's administration
                        also reported an increase in primary school enrollment
                        by one million students.[39]"
                       And that's about it for the good. You're right: he is a
                       thug. That his thuggery happened to also involve some
                       social improvements doesn't change that. On the plus
                       side, he didn't suspend the constitution after the ppl
                       voted down his Chavez-for-life proposal. On the minus
                       side, hell, just about everything else.
2008/6/3 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:50147 Activity:nil
6/3     One reason no true conservative should ever vote for McCain:
        Keating Five
2008/6/1-5 [Politics/Domestic/California/Prop, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50116 Activity:nil
6/1     question for MOTD Armchair Economists, are home prices in CA
        artificially high because of old people homeowners and Proposition 13?
        are rents artificially high because property value is so high?
        are rents really artificially skewed in the Bay Area because land
        is more precious than gold, Prop 13, rent control and what the hell
        throw in all powerful fabulous and fabulously wealthy gay couples?
        \_ according to Master Dimwit, they are high because of speculation.
           Speculators think it'll be high, so they keep buying until...
           they're too high for speculators. In all seriousness, dimwit
           will most likely say something to the effect of free-market,
           supply and demand, etc.
        \_ Bay Area is more expensive because of several reasons. One is
           a much much stricter land use control. Lots of areas are reserves
           and hippies from Sierra Club fight to preserve whatever land is
           available in the Bay Area, so developers have less land to build.
           The other reason is average income. N Cal on average has higher
           income and educational level and attracts more immigrants who
           are well educated or well to do. In contrast LA has been the
           manufacturing and service hub of CA and attracts different types
           of immigrants and workers. In addition LA has been sprawling
           crazy in the past few decades so homes are plentiful and
           cheap and attracts a much diverse populace, from those who are
           super rich all the way to those who are super poor. Proposition
           13 is just one of the few components, and just as important
           as Prop 13 is the low property tax, which drives demand from
           investors from all over the world who hold on to their investments
           for decades but don't really use (look at all the empty and
           expensive homes in Arcadia and San Marino), since homes in CA
           have much lower tax to deal with (compared to say 3% prop tax
           in Texas), which make properties in CA very good long term
           investments. CA properties attract certain types of buyers
           (investors) similarly to FL properties that attract certain
           types of buyers (criminals... because properties in FL are not
           repossessed even if you go bankrupt). All of these things make
           \_ WTF are you talking about? If you don't pay your mortgage
              in FL you lose your home just like anywhere else.
              \_ In FL, if you paid off your home and then declare bankruptcy,
                 they can't repossess your property back. This is why
                 Al Capone "invested" heavily in FL properties, and ditto
                 with many criminals.
                 \_ You are confused about the Homestead Exemption:
                    http://preview.tinyurl.com/63bs5f
                    (No need to read the whole thing, just read the five
                     states that allow unlimited HE, FL is not one of them)
                    Also, Federal bankruptcy code changes have considerably
                    limited this kind of protection.
                    \_ Dude!  Capone!  Obviously we are still living in the
                       30s!  Now why aren't you wearing a suit and hat?
           CA homes highly desirable, which then drive up huge demands from
           all over the world, which then drive up prices. It's all
           inter-related.
        \_ What makes you think rents are too high and if they are too high
           then why do people pay them? All things considered I find rents
           in CA reasonable compared to income. I can't believe people pay
           $1000/month to live in places like Alabama. (I own a rental
           home in Alabama so I know what rents there are.)
2008/5/30-6/2 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50101 Activity:nil
5/30    CA Torture Trial Airs Family Horror Stories
        http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/05/30/ap/national/main4137681.shtml
2008/5/22 [Science/GlobalWarming, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:50026 Activity:high
5/22    We brought together the heads of big oil.
          See that big head over there? Yeah, he runs Shell. That one?  That
        runs ExxonMobil. Mr. Big oil, we're here to talk about the high price
        of gasoline.  How could it have possibly gotten this high?
          Let me tell you what we've done here in congress.  We told you that
        drilling in ANWR is off limits.  We told you that drilling off the
        coast of Florida and California is off limits.  We told you, Mr. Big
        oil, that there wouldn't be any new leases for drilling in the Gulf
        while China and Venezuela and even Cuba pursued these leases and have
        just signed 100-year leases on the oil in the Gulf of Mexico.  We here
        in congress have promised, as all three presidential candidates have
        also promised, to introduce and pass in the next term a cap and trade
        legislation bill that will increase the price of gasoline according to
        the EPA by an additional $1.50. Some people say it could be as high as
        $5 additional per gallon.
          We have said that we're shutting down oil fields in Colorado.  We
        won't let you develop shale oil fields in several Western states.  And
        yesterday we passed legislation that would let us sue OPEC with the
        full understanding that they'll never retaliate.  Yes.  We have allowed
        environmental attorneys to sue you big oil fiends for future possible
        destruction of Alaskan Eskimo village which legal experts believe is
        the same strategy used to bring down big tobacco.  We're especially
        proud of our recent action to protect the polar bear and their habitat
        which just happens to be where the future oil deposits happen to be
        located.  We told you that you're making too much money and that we're
        looking at seizing any money that we consider windfall profits.  Yes.
        We have allowed you to drill in some very small areas in Alaska while
        simultaneously creating very generous environmental laws which have
        tied up the very production we authorize through years of litigation
        after you spent the money on buying and setting up equipment.  We told
        you through our policies that we would not allow you to build a new
        refinery in over 30 years.  In fact, this great country, under our
        tutelage, has even reduced the number of operational refineries by half
        since 1982.
          We have even told your potential competitors in the nuclear and
        hydroelectric industries that we would send the environmental lawyers
        after them if they even dared think about building a new plant or a new
        dam. We've refused to fund or allow the deployment of coal-to-oil
        technology which has been around since the 1930s. We've told you that
        you have to make different blends of gasoline, let states like
        California dictate what unique gasoline blends you have to make for
        them. We will not reduce our federal gasoline tax. We won't even
        consider reducing it for the summer months.
          So Mr. Big oil, tell me why exactly are gas prices so high?
        \_ This guy is barking up the wrong tree. Prices are high because
           demand is high, due to economic growth in India and China. The
           US cannot possibly pump enough oil to satisfy worldwide demand
           increases, in fact, we cannot even make a dent in it. What
           grandstanding politician are you quoting?
           \_ This is essentially what the hearings on gas prices are. -op
              \_ Yes, we agree. I guess this guy (Glenn Beck?) has a point
                 on the nuclear and hydro issues.
           \_ No, demand is not driving the price. Speculation is.
              \_ Wow you're stupid.
              \_ Should I bother showing you why you are wrong, or is this
                 an ideological belief of yours that is not subject to debate?
                 \_ Go ahead and show me, because I've seen the charts
                    that show current usage versus supply. Usage now is
                    about 12% higher than it was a decade ago. Sure,
                    that's higher. Not enough higher to create the crazy
                    high gas prices we are seeing now as production hasn't
                    dropped. Also, the low dollar is making gas seem expensive
                    to us, but if you adjust for inflation (use real dollars)
                    gas prices are not even at historical US highs. In
                    short, people are buying oil because they are worried
                    about supply interruptions and because they perceive
                    that the price will always rise. This creates a
                    self-fulfilling prophecy. The DOE has 3 oil-price
                    profiles and only one of them (worst case) has oil
                    prices rising from here over the next decade. If you
                    look at supply versus consumption versus price on a
                    graph you will see that consumption is indeed driving
                    oil prices higher, but most of it is speculation. You
                    think oil prices have gone from $60 to $130 per barrel
                    in a year because of an increase in *consumption*?!?! -dim
                    \_ http://preview.tinyurl.com/6de8js (BP usage data)
                       This is the most recent good data I can find, which
                       shows more like a 20% increase in demand. Are you
                       laboring under the illusion that a 12% increase in
                       demand (with no increase in supply) should only lead
                       to a 12% increase in price? The truth is, prices should
                       obvious that gasoline demand is pretty inelastic
                       meaning that people don't use it much less just because
                       the price goes up. Also, your factoid about the dollar
                       is not really true: gasoline is now at an all time
                       inflation adjusted high. It might perhaps not be true
                       if you use some oddball deflator factor. Look at
                       oil priced in Euros. Speculation does not increase
                       the consumption of oil, in fact, it will decrease it.
                       If your theory about speculation is correct, oil
                       prices should collapse real soon now, right?
                       \_ The truth is, dimitrious has a linear mind
                          ding ding ding!
                          \_ More of he doesn't understand the non-linear
                             nature of cost with inelastic demand:
                http://www.investopedia.com/university/economics/economics4.asp
                       \_ No, I never said that 12% = 12%. The curve, if you
                          look at it, has a certain slope/shape that does
                          not match the reference at present.
                          \_ What curve are you looking at? I am curious what
                             your reference for this statement is.      -dim
                          \_ Where do you see a supply-demand curve for
                             oil consumption? I would be interested in your
                             source for this.
                       increase as much as needed to clear the market. It is
                       \_ You could say this about real estate recently,
                          too and yet that was driven by speculation more
                          than by actual need for housing.
                          \_ Not every increase in price is due to a "bubble."
                       \_ You could say this about real estate recently,
                          too and yet that was driven by speculation more
                          than by actual need for housing.
                       \_ Bzzt. In 1981 it was $3.29/gallon in today's
                          dollars.
                          \_ Not all price increases are "bubbles."
                       \_ Bzzt. According to the DOE in 1981 it was
                          $3.29/gallon in today's dollars. I found a chart that
                          says $3.17 with an all-time high in 1918:
                          http://tinyurl.com/emy76
                          Regardless, the point is that prices have been just
                          as high in the past. This is not ground-breaking.
                       \_ Speculation increases the *PRICE* not the
                          *CONSUMPTION* which we already established is
                          just a bit higher than before.                 -dim
                       \_ I think they will eventually decrease a lot from
                          current level, yes.
                          \_ I moved your comments out of line. you're welcome  -dim
                             \_ *********FUCK YOU***********
                                Worry about your own fucking posts, dick.
                                \_ Stop putting yours in the middle of others.
                                   Makes it really hard to read.  Or are you
                                   too stupid to organize your thoughts?  -dim
        \_ This guy is wrong about oil shale and coal gasification, too:
           http://preview.tinyurl.com/6xs54d
           He is wrong about most things.
           \_ Your story is from before congress changed things.
2008/5/22-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:50025 Activity:low
5/22    Bill Gross on underreporting the CPI and what it means for
        the little investor:
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/52vfy2
        \_ http://www.theleftcoaster.com/archives/004721.php
        \_ http://www.isil.org/towards-liberty/inflation-gov-lies.html
        \_ http://www.wnd.com/index.php?pageId=59409
           \_ Ah so it started with the Carter administration. See,
              Democraps are evil!
              \_ It actually started with Clinton, but that doesn't change
                 your basic premise. Politicians of both parties lie all
                 the time.
        \_ LIES. The Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn't lie. The
           government doesn't lie. Why would it lie?
       \_ Ron Paul has been saying this for years and people say he's
          some sort of crazy racist.
          http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2008/cr031108h.htm
          http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2008/cr0305a08h.htm
          http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2008/cr022608h.htm
          http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2008/cr021308h.htm
          http://http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2006/cr050206.htm
          http://http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2006/cr042506.htm
          \_ Non sequitur often?
             \_ Oh it's sequitous. Here these directly question CPI:
                http://http://www.house.gov/paul/tst/tst2004/tst030804.htm
                http://http://www.house.gov/paul/tst/tst2006/tst071006.htm
                http://http://www.house.gov/paul/press/press2006/pr021506.htm
                \_ What does race have to do with inflation?
          \_ Ron Paul IS a crazy racist, irrespective of what he has to
             say about the CPI.
2008/5/22-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/911] UID:50024 Activity:nil
5/22    http://tinyurl.com/3h2zvh (market-ticker.denninger.net)
        Good post re current events in commodity, treasury, and stock markets.
        To summarize:
        - The Fed balance sheet is contaminated with CDOs
        - Money is going into commodities rather than Treasuries
        - Rates are going up
        Several more points:
        - Expect the commodity bubble to drive inflation in the near term.
        - The commodity and equity bubbles will sweep up excess credit from
        bad banking practices.  The subsequent blow-up (occurring over
        3-12 months for the undesired chaotic crash, or 1-10 years for a
        controlled descent) will efficiently sop up this cash.
        - Guess who loses their bux on:
          (1) The building up of the commodity bubble
          (2) The reduction of said bubble
        http://www.thislife.org/Radio_Episode.aspx?episode=355
        Excellent radio segment (.mp3) which talks about "giant pool of money"
        and where it goes (guess where this money is going now)
        \_ What's the difference between a CDO and a mortgage backed
           security?
           \_ MBS = Pool of mortgages.  One structure is rated (e.g., all
                    shares from an MBS are given a single rating, i.e., AAA).
              CDO = Pool of MBSs.  Structure is sliced into different levels,
                    each of which may have a different price and rating.
                    each of which has a different price and rating.
                    The lower tranches will have the lowest rating and eat any
                    losses first, but have the highest yield.
                    losses first, but advertise the highest yield.
              MBS and CDOs are both asset-backed securities (ABS).
              Now go listen to the MP3 and find out how Joe Schmoe was raking
              in $1M/year.
        \_ Funny how this guy rants and rails about Congress and does not
           mention the word "President Bush" even once. Where is our nations
           leadership during this time of financial crises? Oh, and what you
           call a "commodities bubble" I call the market functioning normally
           to get supply and demand in balance. Do you have any evidence that
           excess oil is starting to pile up anywhere? Copper? Coal? If
           prices are "too high" shouldn't that be happening?
           \_ He's a Republican who is likely to vote Democrat in November.
              Here's his anti-Republican rant from four days ago:
              http://tinyurl.com/5dsp98
              "Commodities bubble" =
                (a) Hedge on the stock and bond markets
                (b) Huge pool of money needs to go somewhere
                (c) Certainly there is a supply/demand factor to commodities
                    prices
                (d) Hedge on strength of U.S. economy, financial system, dollar
              He rants and rails?  Okay.  Good thing I'm here to summarize!
2008/5/21-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:50021 Activity:nil
5/21    The Great Lie of Supply Side Economics:
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/5mjhk5
        \_ Econ as agenda!  I love that blog!
2008/5/20-23 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:50011 Activity:moderate
5/19    Here's my whacky idea for how politics will go after 2008:
        The (D) continues a leftward shift, alienating the center, Hillary
        loving, soccer mom, family types.
        \_ Why do you see (D) moving left and not more Moderate?
           \_ Look at who's leading it.  Obama is *the* most left in the
              Senate.  Olbermann, http://moveon.org, dailykos, etc. are all waaaaay
              left. -not op
              \_ I'm genuinely curious: what policies of Obama's do you see as
                 left-leaning and not moderate? Are they socially left-leaning
                 or culturally left-leaning?
                 \_ How about: universal health care
                               immediate withdrawal from Iraq (backed off this)
                               removal of funding to NASA
                               \_ not according to his website
                               raising taxes on the wealthy
                               \_ raising taxes or closing loopholes?
                               opposition to free trade
                               making life easier for unions
                               \_ through secret ballots or New Deal?
                                  \_ Obama advocates removing oversight
                                     of Teamsters. http://csua.org/u/lne
                                     \_ The rest of the story:
                                        http://csua.org/u/lnf
                    Seems like typical D stuff.
                    \_ And what in there is lefty and not moderate?
                       \_ All of it. You think Universal Healthcare is
                          moderate?!
                          \_ *shrug* I see a lot of Americans behind it. If
                             the majority want it, is it that lefty anymore?
                             \_ Lots of people want a free lunch, but it's
                                very lefty to want the government to control
                                business.
                                \_ UHC or an equivalent is considered a need
                                   by a lot of people. This is not simply a
                                   handout or a free lunch. Opposition to
                                   such may be categorized as Conservative,
                                   not Moderate.
                                   \_ I wouldn't say proposing it is very
                                      moderate. It's left, which is why
                                      the right opposes it.
                                      \_ maybe the right opposes it because
                                         they're a bunch of morons.  Or maybe
                                         this whole argument is just another
                                         attempt by conservatives to redefine
                                         reasonable ideas which produce
                                         results in every other industrialized
                                         country as "leftist," as if that's
                                         supposed to be an insult.  -tom
                                      \_ The CEOs of GM, US Steel and WalMart
                                         are on The Left? Wow, you guys on the
                                         Right must be feeling pretty lonely
                                         at this point.
                                         \_ Shoving more of the cost onto
                                            the gov't means less of the cost
                                            shouldered by the business. Many
                                            businesses pay little tax as
                                            it is so why do they care?
                                            \_ So, the people and big
                                               business both agree that
                                               universal health care is a
                                               good thing.  So, uh, who is
                                               against it?  Oh, right,
                                               anti-government ideologues. -tom
                                               \_ TANSTAAFL
                                                  \_ Case in point.
                 \_ Every election year some obviously hack study comes out
                    that says "surprise surprise, the Democratic candidate is
                    the most liberal senator/congressperson/gov/etc" so idiots
                    like the poster above can go spout this crap.
                 \_ I'm unaware of *any* lefty idea he doesn't support. -pp
                    \_ What, you're saying he wants to nationalize industry,
                       creche your kids, mandate pharma for the proles, etc.?
                       Seriously, can you tell me what particularly makes him
                       "the most left in the Senate"? I'm genuinely interested
                       in hearing what you have to say, but I'd like some
                       substance.
                       \_ Did you mean "nationalize all industry?"
                          \_ Whoops! Yes, I did. Self-correction in 5.
                       \_ That's pretty funny, considering I haven't seen any
                          substance from Obama.
                          \_ Yay! You hit the fish in the barrel! Now, how
                             about an answer?
                             \_ How about how he wants to raise the capital
                                gains tax even though it may decrease revenue,
                                to be "fair" ?
                                \_ That would appear to be lefty, but could
                                   also be viewed as populist... or just
                                   popular. Here's the interview with Charlie
                                   Gibson where he says it:
                                   http://csua.org/u/lng
                                   Frankly, I can't argue with this: why are
                                   multi-millionaire hedge-fund managers paying
                                   a lower tax-rate than their secretaries?
                                   \_ Well, there are two possible "fixes" to
                                      this inequity: 1) raise taxes on
                                      capital-gains, or 2) lower income taxes.
                                      We *know* (1) decreases overall revenue,
                                      so....
                                      \_ BZZZT!  No.  The only answer is to
                                         call the money the hedge fund managers
                                         make what it is: income.  It is not
                                         capitol gains *for them*.  For the
                                         money manager is it *income*.  If
                                         their income was taxed as such they'd
                                         be paying a boatload more than their
                                         secretaries.  Their earnings are
                                         misclassified.
                                      \_ No, we know (2) decreases overall
                                         revenue. Or at least every sane
                                         economists (even those who support
                                         tax cuts) knows that.
                                         \_ I'm sorry, but I don't agree.
                                            \_ clearly you're not a sane
                                               economist.  I guess that
                                               makes you a clueless
                                               ideologue.   -tom
                                               \_ Sane = "agrees with you"
                                                  Clearly a 100% tax rate
                                                  will maximize revenue.
                                                  \_ No, but it is quite clear
                                                     that our tax rate does
                                                     not maximize tax revenues,
                                                     and that cutting taxes
                                                     from the current rate
                                                     reduces tax revenues. -tom
                                        \_ Cutting capital gains tax does not
                                           raise tax revenue over the long run.
                                           There is often a short term uptick
                                           (bonus points if you can figure out
                                           why) but it lowers them in the long
                                           run, at least as long as it is below
                                           the Laffer Curve, which appears to
                                           be around a 40% tax rate.
                                           \_ We should be optimizing for
                                              GDP, not for tax revenues.
                                              \_ Says who?
                                              \_ We should be optimizing for
                                                 the general welfare of the
                                                 citizens of this country.
                                                 GDP growth is now almost
                                                 totally disconnected from
                                                 the general welfare.  -tom
                                                 \_ Yes, comrade. A healthy,
                                                    growing US economy benefits
                                                    only corporate
                                                    industrialists.
                                                 \_ Tax revenue == general
                                                    welfare in your mind? Wow.
                                                    \_ clue == completely
                                                       absent in your mind?
                                                       Obviously.  Try
                                                       reading it again.  -tom
                          \_ Funny, I've seen lots of substance from Obama,
                             it just changes every time he talks.
                             "Unlike most politicians, Barack Obama does not
                              waffle. He comes out boldly, saying mutually
                              contradictory things." -Sowell
                              \_ Why would you bother quoting Sowell on
                                 anything?  -tom
                                 \_ Because, unlike you, he's occasionally
                                    right.
        The (R) party splits.
        (R1) goes to the center with McCain.  Grabs all the center-left the
        (D) loses, but loses the conservatives.
        Conservatives form new party, (R2).  (R2) has a small set of hard core
        voters, similar to the smaller (D) party.  (R1) party gains plurality
        of seats, offices, etc, but can not rule without assistance of (D) or
        (R2) in general or pass individual bills without help.
        Ok, the odds of this actually happening are small but it would make
        things interesting, IMO.  If it does happen, you heard it here first!
        \_ Our winner-take-all system of representation makes three parties
           inherently unstable.  If a third party does arise, it will
           die immediately, or else kill one of the existing parties.  -tom
        \_ My prediction: Obama and the Democrats end the war and balance
        \_ My prediction: Obama and the Democrats end the war and balances
           the budget, following mostly Clintonian economic policy. This
           \_ You forgot stopping Global Warming and starting the
              Age of Aquarius.
              \_ No, that waits for the second term.
           stabalizes the dollar, brings down the price of gasoline and gets
           the economy going. The voters reward the Dems with a filibuster
           proof majority in 2010. Obama then passes comprehensive health
           care reform, which ends up being the most popular program ever,
           even more than Social Security, which is supported by 2/3 of all
           voters. He is re-elected in 2012 in the biggest landslide since
           FDRs second term.
        \_ My prediction: McCain wins but not by a large margin. Not a whole
           lot really changes.
2008/5/16-6/13 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49975 Activity:nil
5/16    Planned free public transit day on June 19, 2008:
        http://www.sparetheair.org
        \_ Except BART.
           \_ Where's it say that?
              \_ Sorry, no free rides on spare the air day (March 15th).
                 My bad...
                 \_ You meant May 15th (and 16th), right?
        \_ ^free^taxpayer funded
           \_ Is there any kind of "free" that's not funded by someone /
              something?
              \_ Free as in freedom?
                 \_ "Free" in the sense that the first reply was saying it
                    wasn't "free".
                    \_ Yes.  But in this case, no.  The government can not
                       give anyone anything for free in the real sense of the
                       word because the government produces nothing.  The
                       government, on a good day, only transfer wealth from
                       producers to non-producers.  On a typical day, the
                       government destroys a good portion of that wealth along
                       the way.  On a bad day, the government flat out
                       destroys wealth or prevents the creation of wealth.
                        \_ You should move somewhere nice, like Iraq.
                           \_ You should actually read what I said before
                              snapping off a brainless one liner.
                       \_ So why don't anarchies like Somalia have the
                          world's best economies?
                          \_ Because no one is advocating anarchy.  The
                             government has a role collecting taxes to raise
                             a common defense, building roads/bridges and
                             other infrastructure projects.  The government
                             has no business taking from one group of people
                             to benefit another group to empower themselves
                             at the ballot box.  The government does not create
                             wealth.  The government can enable/assist others
                             to do by so building infrastructure or destroy
                             wealth creation through taxation and regulations.
                             \_ Some regulations are good of course. E.g. to
                                protect common resources like air quality, to
                                prevent fraud, or prevent cabals/monopolies
                                from screwing people.
                             \_ But the govt is taking from one group
                                (taxpayers) to build toll-free highways to
                                benefit another group (drivers).
                                \_ What % of taxpayers drive? Honest question.
                             \_ "The government does not create wealth" is
                                a completely meaningless statement.  Want to
                                \_ It's not meaningless, it's false.  Learn the
                                   difference. -- ilyas
                                know the #1 employer in California?  UC.
                                UC also does more research and invents more
                                things than any company in California.
                                Unless your definition of "creating wealth"
                                is limited to "giving money to the CEO",
                                it is obvious that the government can and
                                does create wealth.  -tom
                                \_ So UC is the #1 employeer. So what? Its
                                   not like UC is self-sustaining - w/o tax
                                   revenues, government, including UC, can't
                                   operate. When the government starts making
                                   a profit independent of tax revenue and
                                   starts sharing that profit with the people,
                                   then one can say that government has
                                   created wealth. Since that day will almost
                                   certainly never come, government cannot
                                   create wealth.
                                   \_ I was going to respond to this, but
                                      it's simply too stupid.  But here's
                                      a hint: wealth takes forms other than
                                      cash.  -tom
                                   \_ I'm not pro-socialism but this is not
                                      accurate. In the simplest case, if the
                                      state owns a mine and operates it then
                                      technically it creates wealth. Maybe
                                      you should define "create wealth".
                                      \_ Well my definition is pretty simple:
                                         wealth is created when an operation
                                         is able to repay its creditors, cover
                                         its operational expenses, and still
                                         has money left over that can be
                                         distributed to its members/investors.
                                         Can government run its operations
                                         such that repays its creditors (the
                                         taxpayers), covers its operational
                                         expenses, and then still has money
                                         left over that can be distributed
                                         to the taxpayers?
                                         I can agree that parts of the
                                         government can create wealth under
                                         this standard (e.g. the USPTO or a
                                         mine in your example), but as a whole,
                                         government cannot create wealth. There
                                         is no incentive for it to create
                                         wealth and most of its operations are
                                         not designed for wealth creation (I
                                         suppose if our government started to
                                         follow the British colonial model and
                                         plundered from the places it invades,
                                         then our government could generate
                                         wealth, but I hope this is not where
                                         we are headed).
                                         Perhaps tom is right that government
                                         can create wealth in non-quantifiable
                                         ways. But, that kind of "wealth,"
                                         unlike dollars, euros, &c. can't be
                                         used to better your life independent
                                         of location, so I don't think it
                                         counts.
                                         \_ It's obvious that education
                                            hasn't bettered your life.  -tom
                                            \_ Actually my UC engineering
                                               degree was quite worthless.
                                               Mostly the moderate financial
                                               success I have had was due to
                                               things I did outside of my ug
                                               education along with private
                                               professional school. And the
                                               cost of my ug degree was more
                                               than paid for by my tuition
                                               and the taxes I and my parents
                                               have paid over the years.
                                               \_ yes, but some people make
                                                  it through Cal and actually
                                                  are not complete morons
                                                  afterwards.  Sorry you
                                                  couldn't manage it.  -tom
              \_ Yes. For instance sea water is free.
                 \_ Sure.  "Planned free sea water day on June 19, 2008!"
                    \_ "All you can drink!"
2008/5/15 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49957 Activity:high 66%like:49954
5/15    When will this windfall be taxed?
        http://csua.org/u/ljk
        \_ My favorite quote:
           "You'd be taxing success here," Kevin Casey, Harvard's associate
           vice president for government, community and public affairs
           complained in a quote that will soon be framed and hung in my
           office. "Over time, this would put us at a real competitive
           disadvantage, which would drastically hurt the Commonwealth."
           \_ Amusingly, everyone else seems to have missed this. -op
              \_ Missed what?  Glenn Beck is still a tool. and a troll.
                 I hate you for making me think about him today.  You win.
                 \_ Missed the quote from Kevin Casey you moron.
                    \_ why didnt you point it out, furryboy?
                       \_ I figured "everyone else seems to have missed THIS"
                          pointing to the quote was sufficient.
                          \_ Yes, this is quite ironic.
        \_ my brain is hurting from trying to parse this article.
           Harvard == GIANT UNREGULATED HEDGE FUND!!!!!!!!!!
           you know there are real live unregulated giant hedge funds
           out there who do actual shady documented crap, they probably
           don't concern themselves with giving out degrees.
        \_ The fact that this is from Glenn Beck explains it all.
           GO IRAQ WAR IT IS THE RIGHT THING!
           \_ But Glenn Beck apologized for misleading America and being
              a cheerleader for an incompetent and corrupt Administration.
              Right?
        \_ "But while their financial statements may look similar, their
           missions aren't. The Gates Foundation is working to cure malaria,
           develop new tuberculosis vaccines, and stop the spread of AIDS.
           Most of our colleges and universities are only working to spread
           the radical political views of some of their professors."  Oh
           that's right Glen Beck.  Harvard (which he had just been writing
           about a sentance earlier.) just exists to spread radical politics!
           THOSE DAMN FIFTH COLUMNISTS AT HARVARD.  You read this shit and
           take it seriously?  Do you have more braincells than God gave a
           chihuahua?  This dude makes the chewbacca defense seem reasonable.
              \_ toy poodles are even stupider
                 \_ url?
           \_ Yeah. Never mind the universities spend far more money on useful
              research and training in engineering, fundamental sciences, life
              sciences, and yes, also in medicine. Neither the views of
              humanities faculties are necessarily politically radical.
              I have taken 3-4 humanities courses and never felt that
              the instructors were necessarily biased, much less spread
              radical views (although I know such people exist). This man
              discredited himself after that paragraph.
        \_ yeah, whoever posted the url... glen beck is not a noted
           economist.  people pay attention to him.  im not sure why.
           he's not as mean spirited as Rush.  that might be it.
        \_ This windfall is even more disgusting:
           http://csua.org/u/ljp (Times Online)
           \_ Why is ExxonMobil's profit disgusting?
              \_ It's disgusting in terms of the massive subsidies they still
                 get despite these sorts of profits.
                 \_ You're an idiot. Do you know how much they paid in taxes?
                    \_ Probably 35 percent on earned income, minus the
                       gajillion deductions any giant company with an army
                       of tax lawyers at their command should be claiming.
                       if you're talking about that recent email floating around
                       about how Exxon already pays 40 percent in taxes...
                       oh dont get me started.
                       if you're talking about that recent email floating
                       around about how Exxon already pays 40 percent in
                       taxes... oh dont get me started.
                       \_ IIRC, they paid more than 2x in taxes than they had
                          in profit.
2008/5/15-16 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:49950 Activity:high
5/15    CA Supreme Court legalizes same-sex marriage
        http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=080515174435.xgo31cvp&show_article=1
        So much for law.
        \_ Must people in ORANGE COUNTY are disgusted by this.   -oc
        \_ I don't hate gays.  I like gays.  I am straight.  I'm fine with
           gays getting married.  marry who ever you want.  I believe
           that in the united states, children are served best by having
           a present mother and a present father in their life.  not divored.
           someone around up until they leave the nest.  now notice i mean
           a 'female mother figure' and a 'male father figure'  does this
           make me a flaming homophobe?  help me motd, you are my only hope.
           \_ No it makes you an in-denile homobphobe.
           \_ No it makes you an in-denial homophobe.
           \_ Not necessarily a flaming homophobe, just ill-informed as to
              what serves children best. I'd argue that a stable home-life
              with love, attention, and discipline is better than simply having
              a female mom and a male dad at home.
              \_ What would Glenn Beck think?
           \_ Perhaps true and fits in with my own bias, but I would like to
              see actual studies before I made such a statement. Would you
              have The State take away children if their parents get a divorce,
              too? The fact is, people do things I disapprove of all the time,
              but that doesn't give me the right to try and regulate their
              behaviour.
        \_ If you're into gay marriage, you MUST check out Planet Unicorn
           HEYYYYY:
           http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQJD1ura7G4
        \_ Not sure what you're implying... actually I know what you are
           implying.  Courts interpret the law.  So it's... the law!
           state props suck anyway.  Given enough money I could hire
           a vast army to get my geeks should be forced to swear
           CA state props suck anyway.  Given enough money I could hire
           a vast army to get my Geeks should be forced to swear
           forged iron slave collars and 20 sided dice prop on the ballot.
           It's far to easy to get your pet legal initiative on to the
           It's far too easy to get your pet legal initiative on to the
           ballot of the largest state in the country, which is insane.
           \_ I'm implying that laws should be interpreted based on how they
              were written. It's the only protection we have against tyranny.
              \_ And I think the Court's job is to determine if a state prop
                 is constitutional.  The Court decided the state prop is
                 not constitutional.  I'm more afraid of being tyrannyized
                 by a CA state prop than the court, what about you?
                 \_ More afraid of the court, really.  7 people telling the
                    rest of us what to do, who aren't subject to election?
                    \_ They're subject to recall.  In all seriousness, I really
                       am more afraid of specious CA ballot proposition
                       stuck on the ballot with not very well thought out
                       consequences, than the state supreme court.  I really
                       do think that it's a lot better to have your law
                       painfully go through the House/Senate bill process
                       (and hopefully die in committee) than for it to
                       magically pop up there one day because someone
                       with too much money hired 1000 people to stand in
                       front of your local supermarket and have you sign
                       their petition.
                       \_ Admittedly, I don't think the court would have
                          outlawed eating horse meat. -!pp
                       \_ So you don't trust the voters, but you do trust the
                          judges.  Okey doke.
                          \_ How do you like the CA prop system?  What if
                             get a ballot init to outlaw Catholics?
                             \_ See, that's why we ratified the constitution.
                                The individual laws have to conform to the
                                constitution.  However, a judge redefining
                                language long after that document is written is
                                a huge mistake.  Fundamentally, the power rests
                                with us, the people.  I vastly prefer the prop
                                system to activist judges.
                                \_ The opinion talks about this at some length.
                                \_ The opinion (link:csua.org/u/lji deals
                                   with this question directly and in detail.
                                   Have a look at pages 107-116, starting with
                                   "The Proposition 22..." and ending before
                                   "After carefully evaluating...".
                   http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S147999.PDF
                                \_ The opinion (csua.org/u/lji) deals with
                                   this in detail.  Look at pages 107-116,
                                   starting with "The Proposition 22..." and
                                   ending at "After carefully evaluating...".
                                \_ Judges are supposed to decide if a law
                                   is constitutional or not.  They are the
                                   check on just any insane law getting passed.
                                \_ How did the CA SC redefine language?
                                   \_ The word "marriage"
                                      \_ The word marriage has only ever
                                         legally meant a contract between two
                                         consenting adults according to the
                                         CA constitution. No redefinition
                                         there. Try again.
        \_ Unconstitutional laws are by definition unlawful.
        \_ I just don't get it. Let's allow gay marriage, they'll just
           marry each other and becomes extinct. It's how nature
           \_ not if they get artificially inseminated and raise
              hot lesbians. mmmmm lesbians.
           works. it's like someone who has cancer and demands society
           to recognize them as healthy. Well fine, you'll just die,
           it's the best proof that you are NOT healthy.
           \_ Actually how nature is supposed to work is, gay marrying each
              other will have no offspring, so their disease is self
              contained and when they die the disease dies with them.
              But now they want to adopt, and corrupt their
              offsprings. This must be out-lawed.
              other will have no offspring, so their disease is self contained
              and when they die the disease dies with them. But now they want
              to adopt, and corrupt their offsprings. This must be out-lawed.
              \_ I would so vote for a constitutional amendment labeling you
                 an idiot.
        \_ This is the perfect time to get a wedge issue like gay marriage on the
           ballot and raise all of those Republican value voters from the dead to
           vote in the November election, assuring McCain's future 100 year
           reign of darkness after he wins and declares elections a quaint
           honorable custom favored by my honorable opponent, until our boys
           in Iraq stop dying.  Great timing, gay people!
        \_ This is the perfect time to get a wedge issue like gay marriage on
           the ballot and raise all of those Republican value voters from the
           dead to vote in the November election, assuring McCain's future 100
           year reign of darkness after he wins and declares elections a
           quaint honorable custom favored by my honorable opponent, until our
           quaint custom favored by my honorable opponent, until our
           boys in Iraq stop dying.  Great timing, gay people!
           \_ This is by far the most hilarious post. Thanks!
2008/5/15-16 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:49946 Activity:nil
5/15    Sign the angry renter petition! No bailouts!
        http://angryrenter.com
        \_ Angry renter?  How about the 99% of mortgage holders who pay their
           bills *and* the taxes that would fund a bailout?
        \_ Actually a product of a billionaire and a politician:
           http://www.csua.org/u/lk4
2008/5/14-16 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49942 Activity:nil
5/14    If you don't vote for Obama you're a racist
        http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/05/14/navarrette/index.html?eref=rss_topstories
        \_ The author didn't even recognize Obama is not exactly, to borrow
           his phrase, "black American".
           \_ Really? He's not American? He's not black?
              \_ He wasn't raised as an American during his formative years.
2008/5/9 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49908 Activity:nil 57%like:49901 Entry has been invalidated. Access denied.
2008/5/8-9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49901 Activity:moderate 57%like:49908
5/8     Next time a CA politician says we need more moeny for schools, remember
        this:
        http://www.johnandkenshow.com/archives/2008/05/07/another-lausd-waste
        http://www.latimes.com/business/careers/work/la-me-lopez4-2008may04,1,718733.column
        \_ These guys are lying to you. The school cost $230M, not this
           sculpture. How much did the sculpture cost?
        http://www.latimes.com/business/careers/work/la-me-lopez4-2008may04,1,718733.column
           \_ The sculpture cost over $40M.  The original budget for the high
              school was less than the sculpture alone. See the LA Times story.
        http://www.latimes.com/business/careers/work/la-me-lopez4-2008may04,1,6298591,full.column
              \_ The *theater* with tower cost that much, not the sculpture.
                 Still a tremendous waste when kids don't even have books.
                 Public education is a sham.
2008/5/5-8 [Health/Disease/General, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49886 Activity:low
5/5     "Who should MDs let die in a pandemic? Report offers answers"
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080505/ap_on_he_me/pandemic_rationing_care
        \_ I vote for football players, then politicians, then lawyers
        \_ Very old people, people with chronic conditions, people who
           have other problems making them likely to die.  Thing is,
           amongst the rest, who gets allowed to die?  Males?
           \_ The obvious answer is the ALPHA MALE. One Alpha breeds
              with all the females.
              \_ You Mormon!
        \_ Welcome to triage.
        \_ In a real pandemic everyone is going to die.  The doctors won't have
           a cure right away, if ever, and no one is going to run around asking
           victims to see their driver's license, prior medical, financial and
           educational history before treatment.  This is just silly stuff.
2008/4/29-5/4 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49853 Activity:kinda low
4/29    How Frederick Douglass addressed the 3/5 issue:
        "I answer.and see you bear it in mind, for it shows the disposition of
        the constitution to slavery.I take the very worst aspect, and admit all
        that is claimed or that can be admitted consistently with truth; and I
        answer that this very provision, supposing it refers to slaves, is in
        itself a downright disability imposed upon the slave system of America,
        one which deprives the slaveholding States of at least two-fifths of
        their natural basis of representation.
        "A black man in a free State is worth just two-fifths more than a black
        man in a slave State, as a basis of political power under the
        constitution.
        "Therefore, instead of encouraging slavery, the constitution encourages
        freedom, by holding out to every slaveholding State the inducement of
        an increase of two-fifths of political power by becoming a free State."
        http://medicolegal.tripod.com/douglassuos.htm#three-fifths-clause
        \_ Quite impressive, the human ability to rationalize.  He practically
           sounds like a Randroid.  -tom
           \_ The irony police are overwhelmed with tom, send in the irony
              national guard!
           \_ The 3/5 compromise was made by abolitionists who wanted to weaken
              slave states.  Go back and read history tom.
              \_ It was actually done by both sides, hence the label used
                 "compromise."
                 \_ Yes, but the slave states wanted the slaves to count as 1
                    person.
                    \_ ...with their votes cast by the slave owner.  -tom
                     \_ You are confused.  The slave owner still only had
                        one vote.  The 3/5 rule was for the number of seats
                        that state got in congress.
                        \_ Right, so if the slaves were truly free to vote,
                           and at 1:1 representation, the state of Georgia
                           might have more seats in Congress, but the people
                           in power in Georgia would lose power.  -tom
                           \_ Well, at the time women were counted as 1
                              person but couldn't vote.  People under
                              voting age are still counted as 1 person but
                              obviously can't vote.
                              \_ Parents are the legal representatives of
                                 their children; slave owners and slaves
                                 have diametrically opposed interests.   -tom
                                 \_ And womenfolk?
                                    \_ Personally I think women's suffrage is
                                       a good thing--you disagree?  -tom
              \_ The US had the choice to allow slavery, or not allow
                 it.  It is pretzel logic to claim that, presented
                 with that choice, deciding to allow slavery but make
                 it somewhat less attractive was "encouraging
                 freedom."  There's also no reason to believe that
                 slaves would vote the same way as their masters;
                 giving slaves full votes would likely have led to
                 abolition via democratic processes, for example,
                 rather than civil war.  You could say that the 3/5ths
                 rule meant that "Georgia" had less power than New
                 York, but the people who actually had power in Georgia
                 were strengthened by the fact that their slaves couldn't
                 vote themselves freedom.  -tom
                 \_ The current congress has the choice to continue war or not.
                    And?  I thought you lefties thought it was conservatives
                    that only think in black and white.
                    \_ Do you think that the current Congress deciding to
                       continue to fund the war is "encouraging peace"?  -tom
                    \_ Are you trying to change the topic?
                 \_ Umm, the US had the choice to allow slavery, or not exist.
                    You know when the constitution was written right?
                    \_ I thought you trolls believed in the power of the
                       free market.  -tom
                       \_ Whaa?  Am I talking to some sort of eliza program
                          based on tom rantings here?
                          \_ The idea that the US could not have existed
                             without slavery in 1787 is ridiculous.  -tom
                             \_ It seems pretty obvious that the South would
                                not have signed a constitution that outlawed
                                it.  Hence, the US would not exist, at least
                                as we know it.
                                \_ It's not necessarily obvious. The Southern
                                   Colonies might have conceded, or they might
                                   not have. That they were never forced into
                                   position where they had to make the decision
                                   is not evidence of which way they might
                                   have jumped. Interesting counterfactuals
                                   proceed from both eventualities.
                                   \_ Don't let that whole Civil War thing
                                      stand in the way of your hypothetical.
                                      \_ Don't let a lack of understanding of
                                         the causes of the Civil War or the
                                         nearly century-long gap between it
                                         and the signing of the Constitution
                                         stand in the way of a one-line quip
                                         full of sound and fury signifying
                                         nothing
        \_ is there some reason the 3/5ths compromise is suddenly big news on the motd?
           did Hillary finally get behind it?  Did Reverend Wright vow to travel
           back in time and rip Dred Scott limb from limb?  What's going on?
        \_ is there some reason the 3/5ths compromise is suddenly big news on
           the motd? did Hillary finally get behind it?  Did Reverend Wright
           vow to travel back in time and rip Dred Scott limb from limb?
                                              \_ Rev. Wright would more
                                                 likely wish to rip Taney,
                                                 CJ, limb from limb.
           What's going on?
        \_ Assuming this quote is correctly attributed to
           http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Douglass call me crazy, but
           on this one I'm going to go with the smart guy who lived through
           it over tom.
           \_ In what way? Frederick Douglas and tom speak to utterly
              different audiences: FD to a world where legalized slavery is
              still considered a possibility, whereas tom speaks to a world
              where slavery is an abhorrent concept. FD had to be almost
              painfully cautious in expressing his beliefs, whereas tom is
              free to express his with very little fear of danger to his own
              physical person. Had he had his 'druthers, FD might have said
              something more strident and provocative. --erikred
              \_ FD wrote tons of provocative stuff.  Start with the wiki
                 link.  Not buying it.  Also tom is claiming the union could
                 have somehow existed with the south agreeing to end slavery.
                 No.  Ridiculous.  If that were the case there would have been
                 no need of the 3/5th "compromise".  You really think they
                 didn't talk about all this stuff at the time?  Wow!
                 \_ FD also had his house burned down.  I'm sure they talked
                    about it at the time; that doesn't change the fact that
                    deciding to encode slavery in the Constitution is not
                    "encouraging freedom."  -tom
                    \_ /shrug. FD was being politic, working with what he had
                       at the time. It would be interesting to see what he had
                       to say post-Civil War, Emancipation Proclamation, 14th
                       Amendment. Also, pp's point vis-a-vis that the union
                       could not have existed without a 3/5ths compromise is
                       speculative. Carry on. --erikred
2008/4/22-5/2 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/RealEstate] UID:49797 Activity:nil
        4/22    Yes, they are illiterate peasants.
        http://www.wltx.com/news/story.aspx?storyid=61193
        \_ "Back in January, he became the first Colorado lawmaker censured
           by the House, after he kicked a newspaper photographer for taking
           his picture during a prayer."  Sounds like a classy guy.
           \_ He was in prayer, and someone was at his feet clicking away.  He
              nudged him away with his foot.  And what does that have to do
              with the correct statement that most (if not all?) illegals from
              south of the border are indeed illiterate peasants?
              \_ Do you have a link for that?  Just curious.
                 \_ http://cbs4denver.com/politics/bruce.photographer.kick.2.636572.html
                 "Bruce told the committee that the photographer goaded him and
                 was responsible for creating a disruption. Bruce also denied
                 that what he did was a kick, saying he gently pushed the
                 photographer away with his foot."
                 \_ Colorado house votes 63-1 to censure him. Did all those
                    Republicans who voted for the motion fear Political correctness?
                 \_ Colorado house votes 62-1 to censure him. Did all those
                    GOP members who voted for the motion fear PC?
                    http://www.csua.org/u/lbz
        \_ so he calls it like he sees it, and gets in hot water.  This is
           classic stifling effect of 'political correctness'
           \_ THE MAN IS KEEPING HIM DOWN!
           \_ being a jerk has always been impolitic
2008/4/14-19 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic] UID:49749 Activity:nil
4/14    LA is facing a budget crisis. The city's a shithole. Ditto with
        80% of the S Cal cities.
        \_ Unlike beautiful urine-soaked San Francisco.
           \_ Golden shower in the Golden State.
           \_ http://www.danheller.com/sf-top.html
              \_ Doesn't mention how all of these sites smell like urine.
                 \_ You have your nose in the gutter, when instead you
                    should have your eyes upon the stars.
                    \_ surprisingly, people like LA more than SF, according
                       to Mr. Google:
       http://appleorangescale.com/?wd0=san%20francisco&wd1=los%20angeles
2008/4/13-19 [Politics/Domestic/California, Finance/Investment] UID:49744 Activity:low
4/14    The Conservative solution to the housing mess: print lots of money.
        http://www.csua.org/u/l9t (WSJ)
        \_ And the solution to the federal deficit. What is a better
           solution to cut your deficit by 1/2 than inflation? MORE TAX?
           \_ LESS SPENDING?
              \_ Let's cut social programs.
                 \_ Agree. Let the homeless people go rampant on the street,
                    and let the desperate and starving ones carry their
                    struggle in their 'hood. Let's put them away somewhere
                    far so that we don't have to deal with them, ever.
           \_ (inflation is, effectively, a tax on people with savings)
                    Let's designate that place as Southern California.
                    \_ Can we put them in all the empty McMansions in the exurbs
                    \_ I think these places are called SF, Berkeley, Oakland,
                       Hollywood, Venice, and Santa Monica.
                       \_ Sadly, criminals don't stay in one place. Therefore
                          a better solution is to put them far away from
                          the civilized world (e.g. putting criminals in
                          S Cal)
                          \_ Northern Cal seems to have more of an affinity
                             for these people based on voting trends and
                             anecodotal evidence. Southern Cal on the
                             other hand (e.g. Orange County) does not
                             except for the cities I mentioned.
                             \_ You have obviously never been to downtown
                                Los Angeles.
                                \_ Skid row? Skid row is a perfect example
                                   of how poorly the homeless in SoCal are
                                   treated and how unwelcome they are. For
                                   example: ordinances against camping on
                                   the street, ordinances against sleeping
                                   on the sidewalk during the day, and so
                                   on. The ACLU and LA constantly clash.
           \_ (inflation is, effectively, a tax)
2008/4/8-12 [Politics/Domestic/California, Recreation/Food] UID:49688 Activity:low
4/8     Fattest States:
        http://calorielab.com/news/2007/08/06/fattest-states-2007
        \_ "California not getting fatter" only because starving
           immigrants are making the average less, while fat lazy
           trailer trash whities from Riverside and the Inland Empire
           keep moving inland towards Las Vegas and Arizona.
           \_ Erm... Mexico is the second fattest nation after
              the U.S.
              \_ I'm talking about LEGAL immigrants you dits, like those
                 \_ dits?
                 skinny nerdy INDIANS who took over 1/2 of our company.
                 Oh well at least they work 2X as hard for 2/3 the pay.
                 Go company stock!
                 \_ You are so funny.  You should go into stand up.  But you
                    might need to throw in a few "white people drive like
                    this, black people drive like that," jokes.  You know,
                    just to spice it up.  Also maybe a joke about how women
                    love to shop.
              \_ How about guatemalans and el salvadorans?
              \_ It's true Mexico is about to overtake the USA in obesity.
                 Is Kuwait still fatter than the USA?
           \_ I seem to recall that hispanics have the fastest growing
              obesity rate.
           \_ Given that rice prices are going up, and a bigger percentage of
              CA residents compared to other states eat rice, this will
              probably become more true.
              \_ Don't you mean lice?
                 \_ http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20080407/cm_csm/efood_1
2008/4/7-16 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:49680 Activity:moderate
4/7     In Massachusetts, Universal Coverage Strains Care
        http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/05/us/05doctors.html
        \_ If you add more people to the system and not more dollars this
           will happen. Universal care will end up costing taxpayers more
           money for a reduced (or the same) level of service - and don't
           give me this BS about how preventative care will save money. If you
           think that's true then make the Universal system include only
           preventative care.
           \_ Well, any solution that amounts to layering a bureaucracy on
              top of the existing system is dubious.
           \_ ...well, hell, if you don't believe preventative care will
              save money, how about you go ahead and stop receiving any of it
              and let us know how you're doing in about 10 years?
              \_ I think you missed his point. -!pp
                 \_ Not if his point was that preventative care will save
                 \_ Not if his point was that preventative care won't save
                    money or cut costs in a Universal healthcare system.
                    \_ Do you mean 'will not save?'
                       \_ Er, yes. Will fix soon and erase both of these
                          comments.
              \_ Preventative care won't save money if it then leads to
                 expensive procedures anyway. However, I'm all in favor
                 of free medical exams. Free clinics funded by the government
                 do this already. That's the extent of it, though.
              \_ http://www.overcomingbias.com/2008/04/prevention-cost.html
                   -- ilyas
                 \_ Excellent: _some_ preventative medicine will save costs;
                    indiscriminate spending on unproven preventatives will
                    raise costs. That's important to know so's we can focus.
                    \_ Does early cancer screening save costs, improve
                       quality of life, or neither? I would argue that
                       overall it might improve quality of life, but it
                       doesn't lower costs. In fact, it adds to costs
                       because you have the cost of the screening plus the
                       costs of the treatment which is much the same either
                       way. On top of that, as the article points out,
                       you've extended a life so that you can have more
                       expensive screenings and ultimately (in many cases)
                       a recurrence anyway. Prevention works for conditions
                       which we have cures for like polio. It doesn't work
                       so well for cancer, heart disease, and such which
                       is probably where most of the medical $$$ go anyway.
                       \_ Have you included the value of saving the lives
                          of fully-productive adult members of society in
                          your calculation?  [Hint: No.]   -tom
                          \_ We are comparing prevention to no prevention +
                             treatment.  Are you claiming that the former
                             actually saves more lives (aside from the
                             known beneficial cases, e.g., vaccinations)?
                                -- ilyas
                          \_ The data shows that the cases where preventative
                             care actually does save productive lives are
                             very rare, except for those few known things like
                             vaccines or a single colonoscopy at a certain
                             age.
                             \_ This depends entirely on what you consider
                                preventative: is abstinence education prevent-
                                ative? how about safe sex classes including
                                information on condoms? It makes sense, though,
                                that certain testable measures are much more
                                reliable than, say, handing out pamphlets.
           \_ No, because over 1/3 of the current costs of the medical system
              go to the "free market" beauracracy. All those countries that
              go to the "free market" bureaucracy. All those countries that
              have introduced universal health care have cut costs. I leave
              it as an exercise for the reader to discover how this could
              possibly have happened.
              \_ US government != European governments. As history proves
                 over and over again, US government = inefficient beauracracy
                 that cannot be trusted, and hence we have no choice but
                 to rely on the free market.
                 \_ You mean inefficient like the US Army or Marine Corp?
                    \_ Our military branches are efficient at torture.
              \_ They save costs because you die while waiting to get the
                 surgery you need because of rationing. The free market
                 can allocate resources much more effectively than some
                 bureaucrat can. If you really want to cut costs you should
                 eliminate insurance entirely. Right now people don't pay
                 attention to whether their doctor charges $1400 versus
                 $1200 for a procedure. If it's within the customary
                 averages insurance companies are going to pay it.
                 However, if that extra $200 comes out of their pocket you
                 can be sure people will pay more attention to costs. Our
                 current nightmare of employer-sponsored HMO plans is
                 basically already Universal Healthcare for the working
                 class. Sure, you can purchase individual coverage but how
                 many people eligible for an employer-sponsored plan do
                 that? (And if they do, not many employers refund their
                 portion of the premium!) For the elderly we already have
                 Medicare. Universal health care is a step in the wrong
                 direction. Eliminate virtual-mandatory participation in
                 these plans and watch both doctors and patients become
                 much happier as they split that 1/3 overhead that HMOs
                 currently enjoy. I pay $600/month for health insurance if
                 you count my portion and my employer's portion and I am
                 under 40 and healthy. That's your UHC tax right there.
                 Refund it back to me and let me decide how to obtain
                 medical care. Don't legislate away the only choice I have
                 (not to participate).
                 \_ Savings have to come from eliminating bureaucratic fat,
                    better experimental study design (so we actually know what
                    works), and more personalized medicine (relying on averages
                    works), and more RUSSIAN medicine (relying on averages
                    is expensive and kills people).  People who just want
                    Universal Healthcare <tm> basically aren't thinking about
                    the problem, they are just shouting a political meme.
                          -- ilyas
                 \_ You mean how the free market so efficiently allocated
                    resources during the dot-com bubble and the housing
                    run-up and collapse? Simply repeating your ideological
                    position does make it any more persuasive. Yes, the free
                    market rations health care according to ability to pay and
                    state run systems allocate them according to need. Guess
                    which one gets more bang for your buck? People die in both
                    systems waiting for health care.
                    \_ What exactly was wrong with the <DEAD>dot.com<DEAD> bubble or
                       the housing run-up? It's how markets work. I'm sure
                       you far prefer the former Soviet Union which didn't
                       have those "problems". Bureaucrats cannot decide
                       "need" as well as dollars can. I argue that more
                       bang for the buck is the one that eliminates the
                       middle-man.
                       \_ The medicare and VA bureaucracy is much more
                          lightweight than the HMO/medical insurance one is.
                          I prefer what works, not what my ideology tells me
                          "must" work.
                          \_ I think you are the one with an ideological
                             problem here.
                 \_ Another issue is that people without insurance or ability
                    to pay still get care in emergency rooms. I don't know
                    what the $ numbers are for those cases. But most med
                    insurance is pretty obviously not very efficient. If med.
                    insurance should be mandatory it should have really
                    high deductibles. The biggest problem with insurance
                    is that it neuters market forces towards the medical
                    industry. With most insurance plans, all doctors and
                    all drugs cost similar amounts, barring some brand
                    name vs. generic category things. The consumer as you
                    say has little reason to look for medical "deals".
                    And insurance is expensive, and those who aren't insured
                    freeload.
                    \_ Exactly. There is no reason to shop around. When
                       shopping for a new doctor how many people inquire
                       as to his rates? How many times do you pay your
                       bill at the doctor *after* services are rendered?
                       High deductibles and large co-pays make sense, but
                       I do not think that's what the UHC people have in
                       mind. Anyone who has spent time at a free clinic
                       (or knows someone who works at one) realizes what a
                       disaster that is for all involved. We should be
                       looking for a more streamlined solution, not a
                       bigger and more difficult to administer solution
                       with mandatory participation that will screw
                       middle-class taxpayers even more than they already
                       are while doing nothing to improve medical care.
                       \_ I agree with everything except for your conclusion.
                          UHC works very well in the places it has been tried:
                          the US Army, VA hospitals, Canada, England, etc. In
                          this country, we will probably have to have a two
                          tier system, more like England, rather than a
                          mandatory participation system, like Canada, though.
                          \_ Do you know anyone in the military? My gf's
                             mom was an Air Force and then Army nurse
                             (active duty) for 30 years and when she
                             retired from nursing she continued to work
                             closely with Tricare, NIH, VA, and State Dept
                             (believe it or not they are involved for things l
                             like sharing patient data between branches of
                             military) as a consultant. She was also a
                             hospital administrator for a military hospital
                             and her daughter (my gf's sister) is Air
                             Force reserves, former Army, and works
                             full-time for the VA right now. In addition,
                             my gf's dad and stepdad were both military
                             officers and my gf's sister's ex-husband is
                             active duty Army who spent time in Iraq. I
                             can say from my experiences at military
                             hospitals (visiting) and from the stories
                             I've heard that I do not want military
                             medicine or the VA as a model for anything.
                             \_ I grew up on military bases all my life. My
                                father was a hospital administrator for the
                                Navy (35 years service). While I would not
                                suggest that OCHAMPUS is by any means perfect,
                                it provided adequate health and dental coverage
                                for us throughout my childhood. I would
                                consider it a fine model for basic services.
                                --erikred
                                \_ The key words you used were 'adequate'
                                   and 'basic services'. I would say
                                   'substandard'. I wouldn't go to a military
                                   hospital unless I had to. Lots of military
                                   people like it because it's free to them,
                                   but if I had a serious illness I would
                                   rather it be treated elsewhere. Also, ask
                                   your dad about the waste that goes on. For
                                   instance, military hospitals require the RNs
                                   to be trained in almost every discipline.
                                   Private hospitals only require nurses train
                                   in the field they work. I think that part
                                   of the reason that military healthcare
                                   seems cheap is that many costs are
                                   hidden. For instance, doctors' salaries
                                   are very low (which scares me in itself)
                                   but there are other benefits they receive
                                   which many think makes it worth their while.
                                   You will not be able to hire doctors
                                   privately at those salaries because the
                                   total package needs to be evaluated
                                   (e.g. retirement benefits, travel benefits,
                                   and so on). I am not sure if studies that
                                   examine the costs of military medicine
                                   account for these externalities. The
                                   military hospitals receive many benefits
                                   private hospitals do not just by virtue
                                   of being part of the military machine
                                   and yet the quality of care still sucks.
                                   \_ I was a medic for three years, so yes
                                      I am familiar with the military medical
                                      system. I think it is fine. The VA
                                      system is even better. We can easily
                                      hire doctors at the pay level that the
                                      military pays them: that is what MDs
                                      make everywhere in the world, except
                                      here. The AMA artificially keeps the
                                      supply low, to inflate salaries. I am
                                      surprised that such a purported free
                                      market cheerleader would not be aware
                                      of this fact.
                                      \_ Many people would dispute your
                                         assertion re: AMA. The AMA does
                                         not have this power. Less than
                                         20% of physicians are members and
                                         the AMA has no direct regulatory
                                         authority. Also, many countries keep
                                         MD salaries artificially low. Spain,
                                         for instance, recruits MDs from
                                         Eastern Europe and Third World
                                         nations at low salaries and
                                         holds them hostage with visas.
                                         It's not worthwile for Spaniards
                                         to even bother with medical
                                         school at those wages. The
                                         salaries of US doctors are high
                                         and it's one reason we have a
                                         high standard of care. Plus, US
                                         doctor salaries have actually eroded
                                         over the past 40 years.
                                         \_ The AMA controls licensing for
                                            medical schools, which is how
                                            they keep the number of doctors
                                            low. Show me proof that MD salaries
                                            have eroded over the last 40 years,
                                            because I don't believe it. Maybe
                                            for primary care docs, but almost
                                            assuredly not for specialists.
                                            Salaries are high due to monopoly
                                            pricing power, not quality.
                                            \_ The AMA does no such thing.
                                               The government controls
                                               this. Sure, the AMA is a lobby
                                               but they can't mandate anything.
                                               http://tinyurl.com/e33gk
                                               http://tinyurl.com/4yn35s

                                               \_ Your articles provide support
                                                  for my claim that an
                                                  artificial shortage of MDs
                                                  has been created. And a four
                                                  year snapshot of MD salaries
                                                  from 10 years ago doesn't
                                                  prove much. Lately MD salaries
                                                  are going up:
                                                  http://www.csua.org/u/l96
                                                  \_ An artificial shortage of
                                                     MDs has been created by
                                                     whom?
                                                     \_ AMA of course.
                                                        Why is it so hard to
                                                        get a medical edu.?
                                                        Actually learning the
                                                        stuff isn't that hard,
                                                        but getting into the
                                                        school is. -!pp
                                                        \_ The articles dispute
                                                           that the AMA has any
                                                           such power.
                                                           such power. It is
                                                           the gov't that you
                                                           trust to admin UHC
                                                           which is the problem.
                                                         -/
        http://www.acgme.org/acWebsite/newsRoom/newsRm_acGlance.asp
        "The ACGME's member organizations are the American Board of Medical
        Specialties, American Hospital Association, American Medical
        Association, Association of American Medical Colleges, and the
        Council of Medical Specialty Societies. Member organizations each
        appoint four members to the Board of Directors, which also includes
        two resident members, three public directors, the chair of the Council
        of Review Committee Chairs and a non-voting federal representative."
        The AMA is one of the people on the board of the organization that
        certifies medical schools, but is not the only member.
        \- Might be of interest: WSJ article on non-profit hospital profits:
           http://tinyurl.com/55v9th
        \_ Nice to know, but in the end it is the government (through Medicare)
        \_ Nice to know, but in the end is it the government (through Medicare)
           that funds residents. In theory, we don't need any more accredited
           programs to churn out more doctors. We just need more students in
           the existing programs.
           \_ In other words, the AMA (amongst others) controls licensing for
              medical schools, which is what I said. The AMA also agressively
              lobbies the government to underfund medical education, but that
              is a bit more complicated as there are other players. But for
              generations, the AMA has done everything in its power to keep
              the number of doctors artificially low. Nice to see that some
              people are waking up to the fact that this might not be a good
              idea afterall.
              \_ This is what you said:
                 "The AMA controls licensing for medical schools"
                 (This statement is not really true as the AMA does not
                 have sole, or even majority, control. They have input.)
                 "which is how they keep the number of doctors low."
                 (This statement is not really true either since, as I
                 pointed out, the number of residents is largely
                 determined by the government.)
                 The AMA is a lobby out to protect the interests of
                 doctors. Wow, what a shocker. Next you will tell me that
                 UAW is trying to protect American autoworker jobs. However,
                 the AMA always gets blame for artificially limiting the
                 number of doctors and the reality is that they don't have
                 that capability. They have the desire, but let's not
                 overstate their authority. The biggest party at fault is the
                 government - the same government that people want to run
                 Universal Health Care.
                 \_ You said "the government controls this" which is entirely
                    false. "The government" is you and me, put the blame
                    where it belongs.
                    \_ You can increase funding for medical residents? You
                       should get on that.
2008/4/2-6 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:49648 Activity:nil
4/2     http://blog.wired.com/cars/2008/04/should-drivers.html?nup=1&mbid=yhp
        "Yet motorists in Los Angeles County might be paying an extra 9 cents
        per gallon at the gas pump -- or an additional $90 on their vehicle
        registration fees. The purpose? It would help fight global warming."
        Yeah.  Let's do this here in the Bay Area also.
2008/4/1-6 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49637 Activity:nil
4/1     The Masculinist Coalition
        http://masculinists.org/updates
        \- YMWTGF("Harvey Mansfield", manliness)
           \- Professor Mansfield touched me. I am lewis@soda.
2008/3/28 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49593 Activity:nil
3/28    Google Maps is lame.
        From    34643 Allegheny Ct, Fremont, CA
        To      1309 Elmer St., Unit A, Belmont, CA
        Yahoo Maps: via Dumbarton Br, 18.3 miles
        Google Maps: via San Mateo Br, 23.2 miles
        \_ Yeah, google maps really hates the dumbarton for some reason.
2008/3/23-27 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Foreign/Asia/Others] UID:49541 Activity:low
3/23    Democracy comes to isolated kingdom - Yahoo! News:
        http://www.csua.org/u/l3q
        '"If you had a referendum, even today, Bhutan would reject democracy.
        That's the ground reality," said Khandu Wangchuk, the burly, gravel-
        voiced former foreign minister who is running for a seat in the
        western town of Paro. "But there's no use wishing democracy away."'
        Between the Democratic presidential nomination and the Taiwan election
        yesterday, this is strange news.
        \- Bhutan is not a "normal place". The "gross national happiness"
           would be a lot lower if not for massive indian subsidies.
           would be a lot lower if not for massive Indian subsidies.
           Imagine Hawaii without govt handouts, and the govt not turning a
           blind eye to Hawaiian price discrimination etc. For example
           Bhutanese can buy cars heavily subsidiezed by find from India,
           which they then turn around and sell at a profit to Indians ...
           rinse and repeat. Also they have no foreign policy/defense
           expenditure etc.
           Bhutanese can buy cars heavily subsidized by India, which they
           then turn around and sell at a profit to Indians ... rinse and
           repeat. Also they have no foreign policy/defense expenditure etc.
           And this doesn include airport, power, road building etc
           subsidies or outright construction. Bhutan = leech.
           \_ The Feb. Natl Geo paints those subsidies as India buying hydro-
              electric power. Is this not a correct depiction?
              \- I have not read the National Geographic article, so I
                 cannot comment on that, but there is very large development
                 subsisdies as well as non-developmental subsidies from
                 India. Bhutan doesnt do anything other than moderate
                 tourism. Bhutan = leech.
2008/3/12-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/911, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49436 Activity:high 80%like:49431
3/12    Spitzer's Kristen, 5'5" 105lbs revealed. Don't drool!
        http://www.pagesix.com/story/spitzer+s+hooker+revealed
        \_ ANOREXIA!!!
        \_ No way is that woman 105 pounds.
           \_ How about this one:
              http://img219.imageshack.us/my.php?image=sportbikebabe4cx4.jpg
              I'm guessing 5'5" 100lbs.
              \_ More like 115-120.
                 \_ Depends on how tall she is. 115-120 is not thin for a
                    woman who is 5'2". More like 95-100. Models are
                    usually about 5'9" 120.
                    \_ Well look at the MOTORCYCLE!!! The in-seam height
                       of a CBR600RR is about 32-32.5". Extrapolate, and
                       you'll get the actual height. I can't do it now
                       because I'm at work.
        \_ http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/13/nyregion/12cnd-kristen.html
          \_ Liberal new york times.
             \_ You crack me up.  So, when the NYT reports the biggest scandal
                of the moment, and it happens to be to a hypocrite Dem, that
                means they're not Liberal?  Or what does your post mean?
        \_ http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2008/0312084kristen1.html
           \_ Wait he paid $5K a trip for her? WTF I wouldn't pay over
              $285/session for this woman. I can get better looking
              women for only $300-500/session.
              \_ Why do you go to hookers?
        \_ C?  Looks more like a B to me.
           \_ Some of us have seen real breasts. That's a nice full C in that
              photo.
              \_ My ex had D and my wife has A.  I've seen and touched them
                 countless times.  IMHO the ones in the pic look closer to A
                 than to D.  So I guessed they're B.  -- PP
                 \_ So in other words you have very little boob experience.
2008/3/12 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49431 Activity:nil 80%like:49436
3/12    Spitzer's Kristen, 5'10" 105lbs revealed. Don't droll!
        http://www.pagesix.com/story/spitzer+s+hooker+revealed
2008/3/10-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49404 Activity:nil 88%like:49402
3/10    Why there won't be a second Florida primary:
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/2yz4s2 [new republic]
2008/3/10 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49402 Activity:nil 88%like:49404
3/10    Why there won't be a second Florida primary:
        http://www.tnr.com/politics/story.html?id=8da17f52-5cff-4a48-9d49-a7d2293aefd9
2008/3/8-11 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49392 Activity:moderate
3/8     So here is a question: it's conventional widsom that CA and NY
        are Hillary States.  However, I dont really meet a lot of pro-Hill
        people ... but most of the people I encounter among whom this
        politics comes up are high incomes 30 somethings ... so not really
        Hillary constituency [menopausal women and economic losers and
        Hollywood insiders?] ... so does anybody here live in a heavily Hillary
        pocket of CA? If so, who and where is this crowd? Stockton? North
        Hollywood? Malibu? Palo Alto PTA?
        \_ You probably don't hang out with enough Asians or Latinos.
           \_ Asians above age 45 are afraid of/dont trust a Black man?
              There are a lot of younger, high incomes, liberal Asians in the
              Bay Area. Which Asians are you talking about?
              \_ Look at the demographic or by-county breakdown of Obama vs.
                 Hillary voting in CA, that's all I'm saying.  The by-county
                 breakdown is particularly interesting.
              \_ What does O's race have to do with it?  I thought only the
                 evil republicans were racists.  Please help me out here.
                 \_ Racism has nothing to do with party affiliation.  Does
                    that help?  ok tnx.
        \_ Do you know any women at all? Almost all the women I know are voting
           for Hillary, most of whom are in there 30's or above and have good
           educations and jobs. These women live in San Francisco and
           Riverside.
                \- do all the hillary women you know wear pantsuits?
                   i have talked the small number of hillary-women i know
                   out of supporting her by mocking/shaming them ... by
                   making them feel dumb or hypociritical. well at
                   least they publicly claimed to have switched.
           \_ FWIW, Obama won San Francisco county 52% to 44.5%:
              http://csua.org/u/kzw (latimes.com)
              She cleaned up in Riverside, however.
              In more recent elections, Obama has been splitting younger and
              educated women, however...only the older women have been
              sticking with her by big margins.
              FYI, all of the women I know voted for Obama with the exception
              of my mom.  No argument seems to persuade the older women out of
              the "But she's a woman" argument.
              \_ Right and since her support skews female it is obvious
                 that a majority or close to it of San Francisco women
                 voters voted for her.
                 \_ One more note on this - after a recount, Obama picked up
                    8 more delegates in CA when the vote was certified this
                    week.  This was not widely reported.  I'm not sure what
                    the "official" vote totals ended up looking like.
              \_ My mom (in her 60s) voted for Obama. Most women I have
                 talked to are in favor of HRC, though.
2008/3/8-9 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49391 Activity:nil 88%like:49381
3/7     CA judge outlaws homeschooling?
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/2x2g2y (sfgate.com)
        \_ "The ruling was applauded by a director for the state's largest
           teachers union."  surprise, surprise, surprise.  -crebbs  [formatd]
        \_ You know, I don't have any use for religion, but I have even less
           for meddling government bureaucrats. Hey Teacher! Leave those kids
           alone!
2008/3/7-8 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49381 Activity:high 88%like:49391
3/7     CA judge outlaws homeschooling?
        http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/03/07/MNJDVF0F1.DTL
        \_ "The ruling was applauded by a director for the state's largest
           teachers union."  surprise, surprise, surprise.  -crebbs  [formatd]
        \_ You know, I don't have any use for religion, but I have even less
           for meddling government beauracrats. Hey Teacher! Leave those kids
           for meddling government bureaucrats. Hey Teacher! Leave those kids
           alone!
        \_ "The ruling was applauded by a director for the state's largest teachers union."
           surprise, surprise, surprise.  -crebbs
2008/3/6-7 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49371 Activity:nil
3/6     No one remembers that the national Dems warned FL Dems not to have
        their early primary?  And FL Dems chose to do it anyway (deciding not
        to have a caucus later)?
        http://www.sptimes.com/2007/06/13/State/Florida_primary_will_.shtml
        \_ I remember, why did you forget or something? The FL voters
           are always trying to twist the rules to their advantage, remember
           2000?
           \_ That wasn't the voters
2008/2/29-3/4 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49299 Activity:nil
2/28    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3gQfz8GC0o
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Etk_O-nhlA4
        \_ Hillary cackles in response to serious questions as technique
           to avoid answering same questions.  Amusing but not really
           meaningful now since her campaign ended Feb 5th.
2008/2/25-29 [Politics/Domestic/California, Transportation/PublicTransit] UID:49241 Activity:high
2/24    so who here is up for giving FOUR HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS to
        AC Transit so they can completely foul up east bay city traffic by
        making bus only lanes up and down shattuck all the way down
        International, closely mirroring BART (why?  no clue), and
        to give San Francisco 1.5 billion to 6 billion dollars to
        build a 3 stop subway from Chinatown to the ballpark (they
        claim it'll cost 1.5 billion, this thing is going to go under
        the most densely populated spot on the entire west coast, yay
        sure it'll only cost 1.5 billion.
        \_ Roads are fucking expensive.  Traffic costs a shitload of money
           to deal with.  That's why the "trains aren't efficient" idiots
           don't have a leg to stand on.
           \_ Trains can be efficient, but you keep trying to cram that
              square peg into round holes. In *most* instances, trains are
              poor solutions to transit problems. There are *some*
              instances where they work, but they are few and far between.
              \_ yes, those few and far between places are called "cities"
                 \_ Cities of a certain size and density that are also
                    built around a central core of which there aren't many.
                    \_ yeah, cities with downtowns are so rare.  uh, not.
                       \_ How many factors did I cite? Cities that possess
                          all 3 are rare. For instance, LA and San Jose have
                          only 1 of the 3 (size). Many have downtowns but
                          not size or density. The concept of a downtown
                          is a turn of the century idea and the concept of
                          people commuting from suburbs to a downtown for
                          work is from maybe the 1930s and 1940s. It
                          hasn't been that way for a long time. How many
                          people out of the Bay Area population commute to
                          downtown SF for work? Not that many. Not even Tom.
                          Isn't it like 5%? (350K out of 7M) And that's
                          for a dense city with lots of high-paying jobs.
                          (Note: LA and SJ obviously have downtowns, but
                          these exist mostly in name only.)
                          \_ Seriously, I bet I could name hundreds. Do you
                             really want me to start? Anytime you have enough
                             density of population trains are the way to go.
                             \_ Just name 5 in CA.
                                \_ SF, LA, SD, Sacramento all could benefit
                                   from significant rail infrastructure.  Oh
                                   no, that's only four in CA!  You must be
                                   right!  -tom
                                   \_ All of your cities are too big and lack
                                      a real city center for a real train
                                      system.  Trains can supplement an auto
                                      system but never replace one.  The idea
                                      is simply ridiculous.
                                   \_ Oakland. There, that's five.
                                      \_ Yay!  What do we win?  -tom
                                   \_ Are you kidding? I didn't say to
                                      just list names of cities in CA.
                                      \_ Those are all cities in CA which
                                         were built on rail transit.  It's
                                         absurd to suggest that rail transit
                                         can't work in them.  -tom
                                         \_ Sacramento's farebox recovery
                                            ratio is 20%. You call that
                                            working?!
                                            \_ Better than the 0% that the
                                               roads bring in.  Farebox
                                               recovery is a red herring. -tom
                                               \_ Roads are not 0%. Every
                                                  car on the road is
                                                  contributing through
                                                  fuel taxes and through
                                                  the purchase of the car
                                                  itself.
                                                  \_ If you count taxes,
                                                     the train system is
                                                     doing just fine, right?
                                                     Enough with the
                                                     irrelevanices.  -tom
                                                     \_ That's a disingenuous
                                                        response. You know
                                                        damn well that fuel
                                                        taxes are equivalent to
                                                        train fares as a
                                                        'use tax'.
                                                        \_ And what percentage
                                                           of the total cost of
                                                           auto usage is
                                                           recovered by fuel
                                                           taxes?
                                                           \_ I dunno. Feel
                                                              free to calculate
                                                              and share.
                                \_ Oh, so *now* you come up with a new
                                   requirement. Any city built before 1950
                                   is probably going to be dense enough to
                                   support rail. That does exclude most of
                                   California's flash-in-the-plan unsustainable
                                   California's flash-in-the-pan unsustainable
                                   suburbs.
        \_ $400M just for marking the lanes or paving new lanes?  URL please?
        \_ I'm not a big fan of the BRT proposal.  I'm not sure about the
           Chinatown proposal; it would be better if it went a little further
           into North Beach.  $1.5 billion is not that much money for a major
           infrastructure project; the Bay Bridge east span is costing
           four times that much (before they calculate the overruns).  -tom
           \_ $400M is also the ballpark for the Caldecott fourth bore and
              the Devil's Slide tunnel.  -tom
              \_ It was stupid to build the caldecott with 3 tunnels and it
                 was stupid how much politics has gotten in the way and
                 increased the price of the 4th bore over the last few
                 decades everyone knew it was needed.
                 \_ Obviously the free market didn't think it was needed,
                    then or now.  -tom
                    \_ Why should the free market provide what the gubmint
                       provides? You cannot compete with the government.
                       \_ The Caldecott was completed in 1937; the third
                          bore was added in 1964.  The free market had 40
                          years to put in a tunnel there.  Why didn't they?
                          The Bay Bridge could have been replaced, another
                          toll Bay crossing could be done privately.  Why
                          aren't these things done?  Because they're huge
                          money-losers.
                          \_ So if they are money-losers then why does
                             the government waste money on them? Sounds
                             like you are wising up.
                             \_ The purpose of government isn't to make money.
                                 -tom
                                \_ Sign I saw today:
                                   "Paved roads: yet another example of
                                   government waste."
                                   Maybe the government should consider what
                                   makes financial sense before committing to
                                   spend money that isn't theirs.
                                \_ If it's making investments on behalf of the
                                   public, the investments should have some
                                   real value to that public. Of course the
                                   problem again is accurately quantifying the
                                   benefit of such shared resources, who
                                   receives that benefit, and who should pay.
                                   And what other things might we use those
                                   resources for?
                                   Do I, living in the South Bay, really give
                                   a shit about the Bay Bridge? I wouldn't
                                   personally pay to use it. Would it stimulate
                                   economic growth of the area? I don't know,
                                   maybe it just screws with the natural
                                   market-driven path of development in other
                                   directions.
                                   \_ There's no such thing as a "natural
                                      market-driven path".  It's a tautology.
                                      Yes, the government should evaluate
                                      different ways to invest public money
                                      to "promote the general welfare"
                                      (remember that bit?)
                                      As I've already noted many times, the
                                      cost/benefit equation is much better
                                      for rail than for roads; the analysis
                                      has been done.  The only reason the
                                      U.S. doesn't build more rail is
                                      politics and the power of the
                                      corporations.  -tom
              http://www.brookings.edu/views/papers/winston/200605-aeijc.pdf
                          Every $1.00 spent on highway construction returns
                          11 cents in congestion reduction benefits.  -tom
                          \_ No point in drilling an extra bore. New roads
                             become filled to capacity almost immediately
                             anyway, mostly with frivolous trips. There is
                             an almost unlimited appetite for "free" ways.
                             \_ I like the way you think.  Since there's no
                                point in providing a service that will *gasp*
                                just get used(!!!) we should only provide
                                services people don't need or want.  They won't
                                get used and we'll save a lot of money.  Bravo!
                          \_ Why didn't they?  Because government regulations
                             make it impossible for non-government to do such
                             a thing.  Duh.  You can't just build your own
                             bridge anywhere you damned well feel like it.
                             You're just trolling now, right?  You can't
                             actually believe this stuff.
                             \_ Perhaps you could list all the proposals
                                private companies came up with for building
                                new tunnels and bridges in the Bay Area.
                                Surely there would be some interest in a
                                new Bay crossing, even if it required a toll.
                                And private industry is (ideologically) so
                                much more efficient than government, they
                                should be able to do it cheaper, right?
                                Why didn't they try to supply the demand?
                                 -tom
        \_ You are right, they should spend twice as much and run it all
           the way to Fisherman's Wharf. Someday they will, I am sure. We
           spend more then $1.5B in Iraq every week.
           \_ Iraq?  Yawn.  Has nothing to do with anything.  "We've spent
              money on dumber things before!" is not a reason to spend money
              on some other dumb thing, even a somewhat less dumb thing.
              \_ Stop wasting all that money in Iraq and we will have money
                 for all kinds of useful things, like transit.
2008/2/24-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:49225 Activity:low
2/24    I'm about to buy a home in an unincorporated city, what are
        some of the ramifications of having a home in an unincorporated
        city? Does that men we're screwed if the road/sewage/water
        need repairs? What about tax and other ramifications?
        \_ I live in an unincorporated area. A lot of it depends on who
           provides your services. It's usually the county. If you live in
           a rich county it can be good. A poor county might mean you
           don't get good services. Taxes will be less. In my particular
           case, we get better police and fire services, worse roads
           and utilities, more freedom when it comes to building codes
           and ordinances (can be a plus or a minus), worse humane society,
           and worse library system.
           case, we get better police and fire services, worse roads, worse
           electric utility, more freedom when it comes to building codes,
           zoning and ordinances (can be a plus or a minus), worse humane
           society, and worse library system. No difference with schools in my
           situation (which again can be better or worse - some uninc.
           areas have their own school system and others use a nearby district
           and it can vary which is better). The sewer and water are handled
           by my county either way. In short, the bad part is that there's no
           one to complain to and the good part is that there's no one
           placing restrictions on you. If you like HOAs you might not like an
           unincorporated area. If you like more freedom you will. My
           county has more money and so a plus is that when we want
           something expensive all we have to do is convince our county
           supervisor. That means we can get expensive things a small city
           may not be able to afford if we can make a case for them. (A certain
           amount is budgeted by the county for our district and that is not
           true in incorporated areas where the county figures the city should
           pick up the cost.) Essentially, we have access to a bigger
           pool of funds to use on pet projects like redevelopment zones,
           parks, and libraries. (Even though our library system is worse
           than the nearby city that's just because theirs is really
           extensive. Ours is very nice for an area our size.) Over the
           years there have been many votes to incorporate or to be
           annexed to the nearby city and they have all failed, so the
           majority of people must like the status quo (probably don't
           want to pay the additional 0.25% property tax in exchange for
           being told what to do).
           \_ Thanks Unincorporate City Guru! It's very very useful!
              May I ask which county or city you live in?
        \_ The answer is: it depends. Who provides sewer, water, power
           and heating gas? Is there a chance your neighbors are going
           to get together and vote you all a tax increase to pay for
           more services? Read up on what a Mello-Roos is:
           http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mello-Roos
           \_ Communities, incorporated or not, can vote taxes for
              themselves. It's not really relevant to the discussion.
              Mello Roos is tangential as well. Unincorporated areas don't
              necessarily have Mello Roos fees. I would guess most don't.
              \_ An area without water, electricity or sewer is much more
                 likely to vote a tax increase to fund those things than
                 an area that already has them.
                 \_ Sure, but what does that have to do with incorporated
                    vs. unincorporated? Absolutely nothing.
                    \_ You know of incorporated areas with no sewer, water
                       or electricity? In America???
                       \_ Yes. All you have to do is leave the cities. Go to
                          the central coast of CA for instance and you will
                          find homes which are part of a city but which get
                          water from a well and use septic for waste. Hell, La
                          Canada Flintridge just got a sewer system in the last
                          10 years and it's a wealthy city. The residents voted
                          to pay for it and some people got majorly screwed.
                          My boss had a $40K bill for his portion *and* he
                          had just installed a new septic system just a few
                          years before. Yes, it is an incorporated city (1976).
2008/2/24-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Recreation/Humor] UID:49223 Activity:nil
2/23    it would be reall funny if huckabee somehow won the nomination
        \_ I'd never vote for him, but you've got to appreciate a man
           with a sense of humor. Good on him for doing Weekend Update on
           SNL. --erikred
           \_ I would love to see it, since I always thought Huckabee was
              sort of like some SNL character to begin with.
              \_ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hac-UHi56Xc
                 Probably not good for long, since YouTube deletes SNL
                 clips mighty quickly. --erikred
        \_ key word: somehow
                 \_ Already gone.
                    \_ On the SNL site now: http://csua.org/u/kw9
2008/2/22-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/911] UID:49214 Activity:nil
2/22    House GOP plaigarizes new season of 24:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cY9iXX1fT3A
        \_ Dude this is awsome!
           \_ Yeah, they've got the Jerry Bruckheimer vote in the bag.
        \_ key word: usually
2008/2/15-16 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:49162 Activity:nil
2/15    http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5i5y6nS4ErwjpwekMrJe53uPrnTcwD8UQCMEG2
:wq
le
2008/2/14-18 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Reagan] UID:49148 Activity:kinda low
2/14    Seriously, does a black man really have a chance against a more
        experienced (though controversial) white Caucasian candidate?
        Is America really ready for a black President?
        \_ What is this "experience" that she and everyone keep talking
           about?
        \_ Is America ready for a 72 year old President?
           \_ Reagan was 70-78 years old during his presidency.
        \_ What is this "experience" that she keeps talking about?
           \_ Someone had to mind the store while Bill was busy with
              the staff.
        \_ Given how people are talking when interviewed, this really
           appears to have become a non-issue.
        \_ Americans vote for charming winners that appeal to their hearts
           while right wing people vote for smarties (or at least those
           who seem annoyingly smug about their superier intelligence)
                                                \_ Please tell me this
                                                   was edited after the fact.
                        http://csua.com/2008/02/04/#49061_
                        (stop deleting this asshat)
           It's not about the policies, damnit.
           \_ Oh look, it's Mr. MAINSTREAM AMERICA posting again.
           \_ Really? I thought right wing was anti-smarty. It's the
              liberals that always say they're the smart people.
              Big city elites and all that.
              \_ Rush always says that Democrats are a bunch of crack
                 smoking welfare moms. Does he mean welfare moms with
                 PhDs? Don't forget the illegals and lazy Union thugs.
                 Are these all supposed to be intellectuals?
        \_ Think Presidents David and Wayne Palmer. But one hopes that
           Michelle Obama is nothing like Sherry Palmer.
        \_ I love conservatives.  When it comes to policy, 'racism doesn't
           exist anymore.'  When it comes to candidates, 'OH NOES BLACK GUY
           RUN FOR THE HILLS!'
                 \_ Why do you listen to Rush?
        \_ After seeing Presidents David and Wayne Palmer in action,
           America is totally ready for a black president. A black
           first lady, however, is a different story. Hopefully Mrs.
           Obama is nothing like Sherry Palmer.
        \_ This country is not ready for a black president. This contry
           isn't ready for a female president either. However, it is ready
           for a moron president (http://www.presidentmoron.com
2008/2/14-18 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:49141 Activity:kinda low 75%like:49133
2/13    Mythbusting Canadian Health Care
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/2gpm64 (part I - http://ourfuture.org)
        http://preview.tinyurl.com/27ejwh (part II - http://ourfuture.org)
        \_ Oh sure, you'd expect this from free-market deniers.
           \_ Care to respond to the arguments or just blather
              and set up strawmen?
              \_ "1. Canada's health care system is "socialized medicine."
                 False. In socialized medical systems, the doctors work
                 directly for the state."
                 This is a joke. It's a semantic nit-pick. (And goes downhill
                 from there.)
                 \_ All I can say is that I have one of the best PPOs money
                    can buy in the USA, and it SUCKS DONKEY BALLS.  If
                    what Canada has is socialism, then bring on the
                    socialism.  ok thx.
                    \_ What sucks about your PPO?
                    \_ Maybe your PPO isn't as good as you think. My
                       current one sucks, but my previous one was awesome.
                       If yours sucks then it doesn't indict the entire
                       medical system.
                    \_ Move to Canada then.
                       \_ yeah, because who would want to do anything to
                          improve America?   -tom
                          \_ I don't think it would be good for America, and
                             the arguments at the links above are specious.  I
                             think the government needs to get *less* involved
                             in health care, not more.  If you want Canada's
                             system, go to Canada.
                             \_ If the system changes and you don't like it,
                                where are you going to go?  -tom
                                \_ Excellent non sequitur, sir!
                                \_ Mexico, where health care is cheap and
                                   of high quality.
                                   \_ Cuba!
                    \_ What exactly sucks about it? That it's not free?
        \_ This is my favorite:
           "We'll have rationed care
           Don't look now: but America does ration care. And it does it in the
           most capricious, draconian, and often dishonest way possible.
           "Mostly, the US system rations care by simply eliminating large
           numbers of people from the system due to an inability to pay."
           Um, yes. That's called capitalism.  This is saying, "socialized
           health care would be better because socialism is better!"
           -emarkp
           \_ no, it's saying that capitalism rations care.  -tom
              \_ No, capitalism puts care on a market.
                 \_ and that's good because...?
                    \_ Because markets are a proven mechanism for optimizing
                       results and give you a choice of where and how to
                       spend your money. What's good about socialism? You
                       are trying to change the system so the onus is on
                       you.
                       \_ Evolution is also a proven mechanism for
                          optimizing results. Just let all the poor, dumb
                          people die, it's the natural order of things.
                          \_ Don't forget about the UNLUCKY.  Evolution
                             doesn't care if it operates fairly.  Fairness
                             is a human peculiarity.
                             \_ Darwinism does account for luck where
                                both the lucky and unlucky offset each
                                other hence you'll still find order in
                                any chaos system.
                                \_ It's lots of fun for those who lose
                                   because of bad luck, isn't it?
                       \_ It is a fallacy that markets optimize results.
                          An obvious failure case in the health realm is that
                          markets don't provide universal vaccine, which
                          ends up being a larger public health cost than
                          vaccine would be.  -tom
                          \_ I'm not saying everything should only be driven
                             purely by markets. So provide free vaccine. Next?
                             \_ Socialist.
                          \_ Exceptions don't mean it's a fallacy. "Commons"
                             concerns are a known area where markets alone
                             can't optimize the problem, because the costs
                             and benefits aren't easily quantified or owned.
                             Another example is stuff like national parks
                             and open space. The actual value of open space
                             to the society at large or in the area is hard
                             to accurately capture. I'm open to discussion
                             of what constitutes such cases but I don't see
                             convincing arguments with respect to health
                             care.
                       \_ Proven, you mean like how the markets put CAs
                          power out a few years back? And gave us M$ as a
                          monopoly product? No one seriously believes in
                          unregulated markets as a mechanism for optimizing
                          anything.
                          \_ No one seriously promotes unregulated markets,
                             dumbass. Power markets are a laughable example
                             however: regulations prevented investment in
                             more power infrastructure.
                             \_ Then if you agree we need to regulate markets
                                you are just arguing over how much "socialism"
                                we really need.
                                \_ Regulation (laws) is not socialism, dumbass.
                                   \_ I'm confused. op posts article debunking
                                      myths about Canada's healthcare system.
                                      emarkp makes comparison to socialism.
                                      criticisms of capitalism follow, then
                                      praises of capitalism (by way of the
                                      free market, i.e., competition), then
                                      bad examples of said competition, then
                                      qualifications based on possible limited
                                      regulation, followed by ironic
                                      invocation of "socialism," followed by
                                      literal reference to socialism. At what
                                      point does any of this point to the US
                                      system somehow being better?
                                      \_ dumbass
                                         \_ Yay! You're contributing!
              \_ Well, it's true but oddly twisted.  All limited resources
                 must be rationed some how.  I only know of 3 ways, money,
                 politics, and violence.  The Free Market uses money for a
                 variety of good reasons, but sometimes it doesn't work.
                 However, we are so used to the free market that we only call
                 political rationing, rationing.  It's just a matter of
                 common language use.
           \_ No, it's saying "fears of rationing care are based on a
              fictional lack of rationed care in the US."
        \_ I love this argument:
           - Universal health care is Socialism!  Capitalism rox!  F U TAXES!
           - Our health care system sucks!  We need Canada's system!  OBAMA!!
2008/2/13-14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:49133 Activity:high 75%like:49141
2/13    Mythbusting Canadian Health Care
        http://www.ourfuture.org/blog-entry/mythbusting-canadian-health-care-part-i
        http://www.ourfuture.org/blog-entry/mythbusting-canadian-healthcare-part-ii-debunking-free-marketeers
        \_ Oh sure, you'd expect this from free-market deniers.
           \_ Care to respond to the arguments or just blather
              and set up strawmen?
              \_ "1. Canada's health care system is "socialized medicine."
                 False. In socialized medical systems, the doctors work directly
                 for the state."
                 This is a joke. It's a semantic nit-pick.
                 This is a joke. It's a semantic nit-pick. (And goes downhill
                 from there.)
                 \_ All I can say is that I have one of the best PPOs money
                    can buy in the USA, and it SUCKS DONKEY BALLS.  If
                    what Canada has is socialism, then bring on the
                    socialism.  ok thx.
                    \_ Move to Canada then psb.
                       \_ That wasn't psb. --also not psb
                    \_ Maybe your PPO isn't as good as you think. My
                       current one sucks, but my previous one was awesome.
                       If yours sucks then it doesn't indict the entire
                       medical system.
                    \_ Move to Canada then.
                       \_ yeah, because who would want to do anything to
                          improve America?   -tom
                          \_ I don't think it would be good for America, and
                             the arguments at the links above are specious.  I
                             think the government needs to get *less* involved
                             in health care, not more.  If you want Canada's
                             system, go to Canada.
                             \_ If the system changes and you don't like it,
                                where are you going to go?  -tom
                                \_ Excellent non sequitur, sir!
                                \_ Mexico, where health care is cheap and
                                   of high quality.
                                   \_ Cuba!
                    \_ What exactly sucks about it? That it's not free?
        \_ This is my favorite:
           "We'll have rationed care
           Don't look now: but America does ration care. And it does it in the
           most capricious, draconian, and often dishonest way possible.
           "Mostly, the US system rations care by simply eliminating large
           numbers of people from the system due to an inability to pay."
           Um, yes. That's called capitalism.  This is saying, "socialized
           health care would be better because socialism is better!"
           -emarkp
           \_ no, it's saying that capitalism rations care.  -tom
              \_ No, capitalism puts care on a market.
                 \_ and that's good because...?
                    \_ Because markets are a proven mechanism for optimizing
                       results and give you a choice of where and how to
                       spend your money. What's good about socialism? You
                       are trying to change the system so the onus is on
                       you.
                       \_ Evolution is also a proven mechanism for
                          optimizing results. Just let all the poor, dumb
                          people die, it's the natural order of things.
                          \_ Don't forget about the UNLUCKY.  Evolution
                             doesn't care if it operates fairly.  Fairness
                             is a human peculiarity.
                       \_ It is a fallacy that markets optimize results.
                          An obvious failure case in the health realm is that
                          markets don't provide universal vaccine, which
                          ends up being a larger public health cost than
                          vaccine would be.  -tom
                          \_ I'm not saying everything should only be driven
                             purely by markets. So provide free vaccine. Next?
                             \_ Socialist.
                          \_ Exceptions don't mean it's a fallacy. "Commons"
                             concerns are a known area where markets alone
                             can't optimize the problem, because the costs
                             and benefits aren't easily quantified or owned.
                             Another example is stuff like national parks
                             and open space. The actual value of open space
                             to the society at large or in the area is hard
                             to accurately capture. I'm open to discussion
                             of what constitutes such cases but I don't see
                             convincing arguments with respect to health
                             care.
                       \_ Proven, you mean like how the markets put CAs
                          power out a few years back? And gave us M$ as a
                          monopoly product? No one seriously believes in
                          unregulated markets as a mechanism for optimizing
                          anything.
                          \_ No one seriously promotes unregulated markets,
                             dumbass. Power markets are a laughable example
                             however: regulations prevented investment in
                             more power infrastructure.
                             \_ Then if you agree we need to regulate markets
                                you are just arguing over how much "socialism"
                                we really need.
                                \_ Regulation (laws) is not socialism, dumbass.
                                   \_ I'm confused. op posts article debunking
                                      myths about Canada's healthcare system.
                                      emarkp makes comparison to socialism.
                                      criticisms of capitalism follow, then
                                      praises of capitalism (by way of the
                                      free market, i.e., competition), then
                                      bad examples of said competition, then
                                      qualifications based on possible limited
                                      regulation, followed by ironic
                                      invocation of "socialism," followed by
                                      literal reference to socialism. At what
                                      point does any of this point to the US
                                      system somehow being better?
              \_ Well, it's true but oddly twisted.  All limited resources
                 must be rationed some how.  I only know of 3 ways, money,
                 politics, and violence.  The Free Market uses money for a
                 variety of good reasons, but sometimes it doesn't work.
                 However, we are so used to the free market that we only call
                 political rationing, rationing.  It's just a matter of
                common language use.
           \_ No, it's saying "fears of rationing care are based on a
              fictional lack of rationed care in the US."
        \_ I love this argument:
           - Universal health care is Socialism!  Capitalism rox!  F U TAXES!
           - Our health care system sucks!  We need Canada's system!  OBAMA!!
2008/2/13-18 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49131 Activity:moderate
2/12    Why does Feinstein keep getting elected by California? She's like
        our version of Lieberman.
        http://tinyurl.com/34kexz
        \_ Last chance to stop it:
           link:secure.eff.org/site/Advocacy?id=363
        \_ because the democrats are too wimpy to run anyone plausible against
           her.  She's a serious sell-out.  -tom
           \_ What has she sold out on?
              \_ Follow the URL. OP: thanks for the link -- I was looking
                 for that info myself yesterday.
              \_ Patriot Act.  DMCA.  Iraq.  Mukasey.  FISA.  Death penalty.
                 Flag burning, for chrissakes.  -tom
                 \_ Who is your ideal office holder?  (Among all national level
                    elected figures).
                    \_ how is that relevant?  DiFi is inches away from being
                       a neocon.  -tom
                       \_ Shows how far left you are. Ask your NRA friends
                          what they think of Feinstein.
                          \_ It's "far left" to be against the Patriot Act,
                             DMCA, and FISA?  -tom
                             DMCA, FISA, and the flag burning amendment?  -tom
                             \_ I wouldn't call Feinstein "far left" but
                                she's certainly not "inches away from
                                being a neocon". She's not even close to
                                a moderate right winger let alone a neocon.
                             \_ So she has a few votes you don't like.  What
                                about the rest of her zillion year voting
                                record?  No politician is going to agree with
                                you 100%.  What politician has a 100% record
                                with you?
                                \_ ...? If you have perhaps a half-dozen hot-
                                   button issues, and she screws you over on
                                   all six, the rest of her record becomes
                                   increasingly irrelevant.
                                   \_ Her voting against one's personal HB
                                      issues doesn't make her a sell-out.  I'd
                                      still like to know the candidate anyone
                                      here agrees with 100%.
                                      \_ How would you define "sell-out"?  -tom
                                         \_ What candidate has a 100% track
                                            record with you?
                                         \_ Someone who mostly votes
                                            against party lines and/or
                                            constituents' desires. Since
                                            Feinstein keeps getting
                                            re-elected it looks like the
                                            voters are happy with her
                                            record. I am. Not everyone who
                                            votes 'D' is as far left as you.
                                            \_ What credible liberal candidate
                                               has run against Feinstein?
                                               The fact that she can beat
                                               a tool like Michael Huffington
                                               by less than 2% (failing to
                                               even get a majority) is
                                               hardly an endorsement.  -tom
                                               \_ Someone would run
                                                  against her if they
                                                  thought they would win.
                                                  \_ prove it.  Party politicos
                                                     tend to smack down
                                                     serious challenges
                                                     from within the party.
                                                       -tom
                                                     \_ Not if there's a
                                                        person in office
                                                        they dislike and
                                                        who opposes their
                                                        ideals.
                                               \_ Medea Benjamin?
                                                  \_ Har.  Oh, and DiFi is
                                                     also from Stanford.  -tom
                                                     \_ Who do you consider to
                                                        be a credible liberal?
                                                     \_ Isn't that a plus?
                                                        That she's smart?
                                                     \_ Who do you consider to
                                                        be a credible liberal?
              \_ executive summary: she voted against removing telecom immunity
                 for illegal wiretapping from the FISA Amemdments bill passed
                 by the senate.
                 \_ so?
        \_ http://www.csua.org/u/krr
           Summary: very pro-choice and anti-gun, but other than that,
           mostly a moderate.
2008/2/7-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:49088 Activity:moderate
2/7     http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120241324358751455.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
        Biofuels actual worsen warming and other problems, while gov't
        mandates their use.
        Score another one for meddling, overbearing, incompetent government.
        \_ You might want to look at who's really backing biofuels.  -tom
           \_ How is that relavent to the point being made?
           \_ How is that relevant to the point being made?
              ADM and their ilk are backing it.  Many of the environmentalists
              (at least the organizations) have come around and realized
              that only tools were supporting this, but guess what, it
              will continue to recieve giant subsidies.  -crebbs
              will continue to be mandated and subsidized .  -crebbs
              \_ The issue, then, is the power of the coporation, not
                 "meddling, overbearing government."  -tom
                    \_ Govmnt is always acting on some's behalf.
                       Usually some large already powerful organization
                       like a corp.  The difference is that the coporation
                       does not have the power the forcibly take my money
                       (without getting the government to do it for them).
                       and use it fuck shit up.  Only the Govmnt has this
                       and use it to fuck shit up.  Only the Govmnt has this
                       power, which is one of the reasons continually
                       expanding the power of govmnt is a bad idea. (see
                       Hayek for others (and more lucidity).  It is also
                       why the point made by top is relavent and it is not
                       why the point made by top is relevant and it is not
                       reasonable to try to move blame being rightfully
                       assigned (a piss poor use of government power) to
                       "the big evil corporations".  (even if, as in this
                       case, a particular big evil corporation certainly
                       does share culpablility). -crebbs
                       does share culpability). -crebbs
                       \_ LIBERAL RANT ALERT BELOW! LIBERAL RANT!
                       \_ Government doesn't inherently work on behalf of
                          coroporations, although that's certainly been the
                          case in the U.S. since Reagan took office.  The
                          more you weaken government, the less it has the
                          ability to fight against the control of large
                          powerful organizations.  The fact that conservatives
                          beholden to large corporate interests have been
                          championing deregulation and lower taxes is not
                          coincidental; it is quite intentionally meant to
                          foster a specific pro-corporate ideology, that
                          the purpose of the government is to protect
                          coporate interests.  -tom
                 \_ If the government was limited to essential functions,
                    instead of messing around with stuff like lightbulbs
                    and fuel percentages, then corporations could not
                    do this. Same goes for income tax shenanigans that
                    corporations do: a simple fixed tax scheme would
                    go a long way towards preventing those.
                    \_ If coporations ran everything except "essential
                       functions", we'd be worse off than we are.  -tom
                       \_ No we wouldn't. Yay!
                          \_ Cf. Free Market in Baja California.
                             \_ You're an idiot.
                                \_ You're an asshat. Are we ready to talk
                                   like adults now?
           \_ The farm lobby?
           \_ Whoever cornered the corn market in Mexico?
              \- cornholio?
              \_ Isn't that guy worth more than Bill Gates now?
        \_ President Bush signed energy legislation in December that
           mandates a six-fold increase in ethanol use as a fuel to 36
           billion gallons a year by 2022. See, it's all Bush's fault:
           http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23057867
2008/2/6-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:49078 Activity:high
2/5     How about this instead of the BS below:
        I found out my school district spends $16K per child and it's
        ranked in the bottom 1/3 in the State. Please explain why the
        State deserves more of my dollars. A family of four is not getting
        their $32K worth. In fact, many people in my city put their kids
        in private school even though the government is spending $16K/kid.
        That's a shitload of money for the government to waste. This is
        how well the government manages your money and the education of
        your kids. --dim
        \_ Nice. You forgot to mention that we need to deport Mexicans
           who are leeching off of tax dollars, that we need to be
           tough on crimes, and that we need to build bigger jails.
           \_ As opposed to... giving amnesty, being soft on crime,
              and shutting down jails?
              \_ Yay! Binary worldview!
        \_ You know, countries that don't provide social services end up
           having other problems like huge crime rate, mafia, gangster,
           child gangster, prostitution (e.g. Brazil) and that affects
           everyone from the middle class all the way to the upper class.
           I guess this huge disparity is one of the main reasons why
           nice LA/OC/SD homes are mostly gated communities with private
           security guards.
           \_ How about the State spend that $16K/pupil in a way that
              makes sense instead? Many private schools educate for less
              than $10K/pupil and even the best are at no more than
              $24K/pupil. Please tell me why the education is substandard
              at those rates. If the education was better maybe some of
              the poor kids stuck in public schools would contribute more
              to society and feel better about their prospects.
              \_ You can't compare costs of private and public schools
                 directly, because of the selection bias of private schools.
                 (Kids of poor families with uninvolved parents don't go to
                 private school).  -tom
                 \_ Ah. This is the hew and cry of the liberal. When one
                                    \- did you go to private or public school?
                                       it's "hue and cry". --your common law
                                                             consultant
                                       \_ Seems to be both now, although
                                          originally "hue and cry":
                                          http://tinyurl.com/3bh7fm
                                          http://tinyurl.com/32tod4
                                          \_ If you're going by current usage,
                                             that's a pretty liberal definition
                                             of "seems to be both".  Google has
                                             548,000 hits for "hue and cry" vs.
                                             888 for "hew and cry", a ratio of
                                             about 600:1.  For comparison,
                                             "their" vs. "thier" gives 58:1.
                                          \- no, "hue" is correct.
                                             if hew is commonly used in
                                             error, it is still an error,
                                             \_ That's not really how our
                                                language works.
                                                \- i said "commonly used in
                                                   error" not commonly used.
                                                   common usage as slang or
                                                   as a short cut is one
                                                   thing ... there isnt
                                                   a requirement to use
                                                   say "whom" ... but in the
                                                   case of a word with a known
                                                   origin, there is a right
                                                   and wrong. somebody can
                                                   call herself "candee" but
                                                   if you spell the sweet
                                                   that way, it is wrong.
                                                   say "shall" vs will ...
                                                   but in the case of a word
                                                   with a known origin, there
                                                   is a right and wrong.
                                                   eventhough geeks like
                                                   virii, that is not correct
                                                   since its not from a latin
                                                   word for one.
                                                   either in latin nor english
                                                   today.
                                                   \_ And it's not even
                                                      commonly used in error,
                                                      according to the Google
                                                      stats above.
                                             as with "toe/tow the line".
                                             note that your second link is
                                             not to the "official" nyt,
                                             where "hue" is used.
                    of the schools in my district scored highly even with
                    mostly black and Hispanic students people like you
                    said the same thing. It's self-selecting, the principal
                    shipped out the bad kids, and so on. Nevermind the school
                    was a shithole for 20 years before that. Now parents want
                    their kids to attend there and the effect is snowballing.
                    You have to start somewhere and putting kids in an
                    environment conducive to learning is part of that.
                    You cannot allow a few disruptive kids to destroy the
                    entire system and the education of millions. The
                    teachers and administrators are very upset that that
                    school is doing well, which shows how sick the system is.
                    \- look i dont disagree with you that $16k/student is a
                       lot, but a couple of points:
                       1. the selection bias is a huge issue. my private
                          high school spend something like half what public
                          schools spent but they could choose who to take.
                          they didnt have govt mandates to meet special
                          education needs of of either handicapped students
                          or the pain in the ass factor of difficult
                          students.
                       2. surely you realize you can be matched one for one
                          with outrages in the private sector. the bart
                          supervisor making +$150k or the NYC school janitor
                          who is filed fishing on his boat during school hours
                          is trivial compared to corporate welfare, and the
                          or the golden parachutes for incompent but not
                          criminal executives in the private sector. private
                          industrury make be more efficient at many things
                          and one of them is extracting resources from the
                          govt.
                          \_ red herring: there is corporate graft so gvt
                             graft is ok.  it isn't.  gvt graft is far worse
                             because they extract my money by force and they
                             choose how much to extract.  if a corporation
                             is run poorly they will go out of business.  i
                             do not have to give them my money if they provide
                             a poor product or service or charge too much.
                             "surely you realize" this.
                             \- corporate graft [agaist shareholders] isnt
                                the same as corporate welfare or graft agaist
                                the govt. i'm not talking about high CEO
                                salaries, backdating options etc. more things
                                like no bid contracts, "socializing losses" etc
                                that is "theft from the taxpayers" just like
                                fraud in the oakland school district ...
                                except they are better at it and the amounts
                                are more. see savings and loan bail out,
                                agriculture subsidies etc.
                                \_ Uh huh, and this happens *only* because
                                   the gvt has that money available because
                                   it has taken it from tax payers.  once the
                                   gvt takes your money, it matters little if
                                   they piss it away on public or private
                                   theft.  a corporation can not take
                                   anything from me in a clean-gvt environment.
                                   clean the gvt and the rest automatically
                                   follows.  you can not clean your sort of
                                   gvt-aided corporation theft while the
                                   gvt is dirty.
                                   \- this "starve the beast" analysis is
                                      ridiculous. you are choosing between
                                      what is possible not what is platonic.
                                      "the main reason american soldiers get
                                      killed is because we sent them to war"
                                      -> people in favor of war hate the troops
                                      BTW, if the corporations can influence
                                      what the standard is for breach of
                                      fiduciary duty and can get directors and
                                      officers insurance, then they certainly
                                      can rip you off. you should read
                                      barbarians at the gate for example.
                                      do you know how conflicts of interest
                                      work in practice during LBOs? you might
                                      also want to read james surowiecki.
                                      \_ I never said starve the beast.  The
                                         rest of your stuff has nothing to do
                                         with what I said.  I said a clean gvt
                                         will not give my tax dollars to corps
                                         for stupid/corrupt things.
                                   \_ I don't think you will find too many
                                      people arguing for a corrupt gov't. There
                                      have been arguments about how to best
                                      allocate resources for as long as their
                                      have been gov'ts, which is to say since
                                      the beginning of recorded history. What
                                      kind of things do you advocate to help
                                      clean up gov't, other than your somewhat
                                      ambiguous notion that it should be
                                      smaller? It seems to me that campaign
                                      finance reform might be a better place
                                      to start.
                                      \_ I didn't say it should be smaller,
                                         just that what they do have should be
                                         spent more wisely and less wastefully.
                                         If there was real oversight of budgets
                                         we stopped all earmarks, and corps
                                         were no longer 'citizens' with rights
                                         and were not allowed to donate money
                                         to politicians, that would go a long
                                         way to clean gvt.  What is your
                                         solution?
                        again, read somebody like martin wolf.
                        i think there are a number of outragous cases
                        where "sepcial need" students have disporprotionate
                        resources spent on them, but just like heavy public
                        medical subsidies of "lost causes", it's a hard
                        problem.
              \_ Like the birth-right citizenship person before you, it
                 sounds like your issue is with problems in how the education
                 system is run, not necessarily the system itself. Although
                 it may be more work, fixing the system is likely to prove
                 less expensive and more beneficial to society as a whole than
                 simply abandoning the system entirely and jumping to vouchers
                 spent at private schools or academies (many of which are
                 founded by people looking to make a quick buck by preying on
                 parents who are frightened of a public education, and many
                 of which are destined to go out of business in less than five
                 years).
                 \_ It's impossible to fix the system. It doesn't want to
                    be fixed. The solution we are proposing is to form our
                    own school district and secede. I guess you can call
                    that 'fixing'.
                    \_ It's not impossible to fix the system. It will, however,
                       take a lot of work, dedication, and determination. I
                       understand that this is not as sexy as, say, vouchers
                       for private schools and military academies, but the
                       end result is a stable, beneficial system.
                       \_ People have been trying to fix this problem for
                          20 years now. There's a point where you just say
                          'Screw it' and start from scratch.
                          \_ For most people, this point is when their kids
                             have graduated, which means we have to count on
                             a new crop.
           \_ We should forcibly bus the kids from gated communities to
              ghetto public schools. That way we ensure a level playing
              \_ I see you are a budding Jonathan Swift, but FWIW we did this.
                 That's how the schools got screwed up to begin with. Then the
                 parents who really cared took their kids out and sent them
                 private, leaving behind only those too poor or unconcerned. It
                 had a devastating effect. Now our 'racially integrated'
                 schools have no caucasian or Asian students and the other
                 kids who want to learn are screwed. It's so much better now.
              field. We should ban private schools. We should also ban
              marriage, so that gays, bisexuals, and non-sexuals will
              not be disadvantaged, and kids with single parents won't
              be disadvantaged over kids with married parents. Actually we
              should take kids away at birth and randomly assign parents
              for them. We should make food and housing free for all,
              and energy for heating and cooking and lighting and hot water,
              and health care, because all those things are basic human rights
              needed for survival. We should ban automobiles and ban wasteful
              single family housing structures. All housing structures shall
              be randomly assigned but with economic and ethnic backgrounds
              balanced, and mandatory "community learning sessions" shall take
              place 3 days per week. Community job centers shall provide
              equal-opportunity employment, with jobs to be defined by
              each employee.
              \_ This is truly brilliant.
        \_ at least school districts are more incompetent at stealing
           your tax dollars than halliburton. i do think we should
           stop glorifying school teachers ... i've some school teachers
           who were smart but quite a few seem to be glorfied day care
           personnel. but at least the rank and file teacher arent as
           venal as school administrators. but again even they arent
           ken lay, dennis kozlowski etc. you should read martin wolf.
        \_ Oh, you're just selfish and hate children.
        \_ Motd says you're contributing to the common social good and you
           should be happy to be paying these taxes because there is no
           other possible way to educate children other than turning them
           over to the state for several hours a day.  The schools can get
           better only by raising your taxes even more.  Teachers are
           starving.  Students are failing and not learning the right
           things.  It is all your fault.
           \_ Incorrect: it's not op's fault, it's your fault.
              \_ I'm in favor of 100% tax rates and therefore maximum
                 government revenue for maximum social good.  how is it my
                 fault, comrade?
                 \_ Not your comrade, you filthy communist bastard, and
                    there's your problem in a nutshell: some regulation and
                    government organization != communism. Embrace compromise.
                    \_ This isn't about regulation.  This is about control.
                       The power to tax is the power to destroy.  And you,
                       comrade, obviously are in need of higher taxes.  For
                       the common social good, of course.  Embrace social
                       good.
                       \_ Marriage is slavery! All men are rapists! Dems
                          tax and spend! You're missing a lot of !!!
        \_ Where did you find this out? Considering the general veracity
           of the "facts" you state on the motd, I would need verification
           before I would believe it, especially considering average per
           pupil spending in CA is half that. -ausman
           \_ Average spending per pupil does not account for things like
              facilities. From CA DOE:
              "This amount includes the cost of employee salaries and
              benefits, books and supplies and replacement of school
              equipment. The current expense of education does not include
              non-instructional expenses such as construction and
              acquisition of facilities, benefits for retired employees
              and food services."
              CA spends about $70B dollars each year to educate 6M K-12
              students, or almost $12K per student per year - not the $7K
              you often see quoted.
              you often see quoted. Maybe more. Not sure if $70B considers
              locally voted indebtedness or funding sources like PTA.
              http://www.ebudget.ca.gov/StateAgencyBudgets/6010/agency.html
              Our district has a lot of facilities for the number of kids
              (since so many have been lost to private over the last 40 years)
              and has been shuttering schools, which is ridiculous in itself
              when you consider that almost everywhere else they are building
              more schools and complaining about a shortage of space. --dim
              \_ Your math is off quite a bit as there are really 6.4M K-12
                 students and some of the Dept of Education budget is for
                 adult education. The best I can figure the real numbers are
                 67.5B/6.4M kids = $10.5k/student, not the $12k you bandy
                 about. But you have a point that the Dept of Education takes
                 \_ You are splitting hairs here. $10.5K is still a lot of
                    money. You can go to a good private school for that money
                    and actually receive an education. The best public
                    school districts spend more than $10.5K I'm sure.
                    That's just what they get from the state and federal
                    governments as far as I can tell.
                    \_ Plenty of people go to public schools and get a perfectly
                       fine education. Things could always be better, but
                       there is lots of evidence that the schools in CA are
                       getting better. I will probably send my daughter to
                       improving. I will probably send my daughter to
                    \_ Plenty of people go to public schools and get a
                       perfectly fine education. Things could always be
                       better, but there is lots of evidence that the schools
                       in CA are improving. I will probably send my daughter to
                       public school (and I can afford private). The best
                       public schools rival the best private schools in
                       education quality, so I am not sure what point you
                       are trying to make, except perhaps that a great
                       education costs quite a bit of money.
                       \_ 1. The best public schools do not rival the best
                             private schools. There are some very good
                             public schools, but no one is ever going to
                             confuse those with an Exeter or Groton. Of
                             course, those schools cost quite a bit more, too.
                             I realize that.
                             \_ Compare Stuyvesant's Ivy League admission
                                rate to Exeter's.
                                \_ Can I send my kid there? I live in CA.
                                   Also, talk about self-selecting.
                                   Also, talk about self-selecting. BTW,
                                   I think Exeter's rate is higher. Stuyvesant
                                   sends more in terms of numbers because it
                                   is larger. Why would one want to go to
                                   a private university anyway? I am offended
                                   that you would use that as a metric
                                   instead of looking at the rate of
                                   acceptance to glorious UC.
                                   \_ Exeter is probably a bit higher, but
                                      they are in the same league anyway.
                                      I don't think I would want to send my
                                      child to boarding school anyway, but
                                      maybe I will feel differently once she
                                      is a teenager. If you really want UC
                                      admission send them to Lowell High
                                      which is in SF.
                          2. No one has a problem with the top 10% of
                             public schools. It's that bottom 90% (and
                             especially bottom 30%) that's the real problem.
                          3. Personally (and this is just my preference) I
                             wouldn't send by kid to even the best public
                             wouldn't send my kid to even the best public
                             school. However, I still think a quality
                             "public" education is important, because not
                             everyone has that choice in the current system.
                 a large "tribute." You still haven't provided any evidence that
                 they spend $16k/student in your district.
                 a large "tribute." You still haven't provided any evidence
                 that they spend $16k/student in your district.
                 \_ Sorry, but I cannot find this online. Is it really
                    far-fetched when the average is $10.5K? Like I said,
                    we have a lot of schools and a shrinking number of
                    kids which makes the overhead higher than most places.
                    (I read it is 2x higher than the state average.)
                    \_ Why does everyone else's esstimate of per pupil spending
                    \_ Why does everyone else's estimate of per pupil spending
                       in CA differ so widely from yours. You are the one
                       making the outrageous claim here, back it up.
                       \_ What do you want me to do? I can't find it online.
                          Take it or leave it. I don't think $16K is
                          outrageous when the average is $11K.
           \- ausman: the range in CA is really wide. that number is plausible
              for a state school district, but it is hard to imagine it is
              in such a poorly perfomring school district ... i.e. not
              saratoga or CA. i can believe high spending per student with
              poor performance in a place like SF (NYC spends something
              like 14k per student ... but the top hedge fund guy made more
              money last year than all the NYC teacher put together ... for
              three years). but all that being given, i was wondering if the
              number was correct as well.
              \_ SF has generally good results and does not spend that much
                 per pupil. link:preview.tinyurl.com/2jxbxb (PDF)
                 \_ Hmm, I forgot SF public schools was very heavily
                    asian. I am guessing that keeps costs down. I was
                    just thinking about the white flight and minitory-heavy
                    side. Might be interesting to look at oakland hills vs
                    oakland flats.
                    \_ The experiment has already begun. Google "oakland
                       school district demographics"; the first hit is a 2007
                       report noting that OUSD is hemorrhaging students,
                       particularly African-American students; they're "out-
                       migrating" to non-bankrupt School Districts (cf.
                       articles on fraudulent enrollment in cities like
                       Hercules).
        \_ Perhaps you should move to San Francisco:
           http://www.reason.com/news/show/33293.html
           \- special announcement: there is another long piece on ADRIAN
              FENTY and MICHELLE RHEE's Washington DC school reform program
              on TV tonight. it is about halfway through the MACNEIL-LEHERER
              SHOW today. n.b. FENTY and RHEE are respectively the mayor and
              school chief for DC. they are also both about 37! the evil
              arlene ackerman was in DC before she came to SF. ok tnx.
2008/2/5-7 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49072 Activity:nil 66%like:49063
2/4     Shriver is vomiting for Obama.
        \_ For whom do you expect her to vote?  A Republican?
        \_ He got her pregnant?
2008/2/4-5 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49063 Activity:nil 66%like:49072
2/4     Shriver is voting for Obama.
        \_ For whom do you expect her to vote?  A Republican?
2008/2/2-6 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:49054 Activity:nil
2/2     Did anyone get a CA vote-by-mail ballot where it says
        "No postage necessary if mailed within the United States"
        but the same mail also says to apply 58 cent postage?
2008/2/1-7 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:49046 Activity:high
2/1     Just out of curiosity, are there any registered Republicans here on
        motd? -emarkp
        \_ Tell us what you think about the Iraq War. Was it a right
           decision?
        \_ We're mostly flip flopping Independents and are not as rigid
           and brain dead as most of the ultra right wing Conservatives.
        \_ I am.  But I always vote Democrat.  I'm also the same guy
           who is trying to seduce the hot 30 year old Mormon.
           \_ by the way, how's that going?
        \_ I register Republican and vote for the 2nd or 3rd weakest
           person in the primary hoping to dilute their hope of winning.
           The Party of Corruption must go away.
           \_ So both the Dems and Repubs then? -emarkp
              \_ The corrupt party IN POWER needs to go away. That party
                 is currently R, but when D's take control, I will vote
                 them out as well.              -smart independent
              \_ Dems = Good.  Reps = Evil.
           \_ Another flaw of this political system.
        \_ I should be I guess, but I'm Nonpartisan. I can't vote in the
           R primary in CA. I hate the mainstream of both parties. I'm
           not sure what I'll do for the primary. I guess I'll go and vote
           in the D one for the hell of it.
           Ok I've decided to vote for Obama. I would vote for him over
           McCain in the general election anyway.
           Ok I've decided to vote for Obama.
           \_ I am also "decline to state" and I didn't think choosing
              the R primary was an option this year. My ballot says I get
              a choice of D or some other smaller parties, but not R.
              \_ Yeah, that's what I'm referring to, the CA R party
                 excluded the independents. But we could have registered R
                 up until the Jan 23rd or some such.
                 \_ Why would the R party do that? I would imagine more I
                    voters choose R over D.
                    \_ Probably not this year.
        \_ Not this election. --erikred
        \_ I registered undecided.  Its sad that the Republican party excludes
           us undecided's from their primary.  I guess they don't care about
           our our feedback on which of their  candidates would appeal most to
           the undecided folks, and would rather cede the 'undecided' vote to
           the other party in the real election -- the one that actually counts.
           \_ Yeah, I'm rather disappointed that I can't vote in the R primary
              this time.  The canidates are actually kinda good.  The Ds
              have scum and dumb.
              \- it just seems arrogant and stupid.  The R members are most
                 likely to vote for an R in the election, regardless of which
                 of their candidates get chosen in the primary, so the real
                 election gets decided by who gets the most of the the
                 'undecided vote' (assuming a even distributino of R and D's).
                 It's stupid to marginalize the undecide voters' appeal in that
                 situation.
                 \_  Of coure the reality is that the CA distribution is
                     heavily Democratic, so much so the Republicans might as
                     well not bother holding a primary here.
                     \_ Yeah, no way an R can win an important office in CA
                        \_ Yeah, not like the governorship or ... anything ...
                           \_ Except he's a RINO.
                           \_ Exactly. It'll never happen. About as likely
                              as an R President from CA.
        \_ All you people complaining about not being able to vote in the
           primaries because you're not registered should have changed your
           party 2 weeks ago.  There's a simple form you can use to change
           party up to 2 weeks before an election in CA.
        \_ I've been a registered Repblican for nearly 15 years, but I think
           I will probably switch to Independent b/c the party has gone all
           kook in recent years (well, except for the Governator).
           \_ What are you looking for in your political party/candidates?
              \_ I guess I'm looking for people who are willing to think
                 things through and come up with reasonable solutions. I
                 just don't see the current crop of GOP and Democrats as
                 willing to do that. Currently both the Dems and the GOP
                 kind of weird me out - the Dems on social issues and the
                 GOP on the Religious Right & the War in Iraq. I think we
                 need more reasonable people like the Governator running
                 the country.
                 \_ I agree that both parties stink right now. One wants
                    big government and handouts like universal health
                    care. The other one wants to erode our civil liberties
                    and bankrupt the country fighting wars. Candidates
                    should stop pandering to the populace and do what
                    makes sense.
                    \_ The current Admin is rooting for three of the four
                       things you complain about plus tax cuts for the
                       plutocrats. What makes sense is universal healthcare,
                       even if it's work-based; what doesn't make sense is a
                       first-world nation with working-poor.
                       \_ Illegal immigration directly impacts the poor. It
                          dilutes the value of uneducated, unskilled labor.
                          It also adds more poor kids into public schools
                          whose parents don't pay taxes, thus lowering the
                          education quality for the poorest people.
                          A welfare state is incompatible with lax
                          immigration policies.
                          \_ This I agree with. Because I believe in the
                             promise of America, I support lax immigration
                             policies and a free market state. Hardcore
                             liberals fail to realize that their alternative
                             is a socialist state with strict immigration
                             policies. That almost sounds like fascism to
                             me. They sweep that part under the rug.
                             I think it helps more people to be able to
                             migrate here and fend for themselves versus
                             keeping everyone else out but having a populace
                             of fat and lazy sheep.
                             \_ Too late. LA is full of lazy fat sheeps
                                who blast hip-hop music on 101/405/210/5
                                710 freeways in their SUVs. You know what
                                annoys me even more about S Cal? People
                                leaving their dogs alone 12-14hrs a day
                                in the backyard, barking non-stop and
                                annoying the hell outa everyone else. The
                                only good thing about LA is the abundance
                                of cheap gardeners for their beloved lawns.
                       \_ I am vehemently opposed to universal healthcare.
                          I am also opposed to non-working middle class,
                          like in Europe. Pay for other people with your
                          dollars, not mine. BTW, if you want free
                          medical, retirement, education, and housing then
                          there's the US military waiting for you.
                          \_ I was vehemently opposed to the Iraq War, but
                             that didn't stop you from spending my tax
                             dollars on it. Get used to being out of power
                             for a while. Move to Canada if you don't like it.
                             \_ I'm not an R and I'm glad Bush is leaving
                                office.
                                \_ Did you vote for him?
                          \_ Unless you went to private schools all your life,
                             earned every penny you've spent, and inherited
                             nothing, I find your petty Libertarianism
                             utterly unconvincing.
                             \_ Did you return Bush's tax cut to the IRS?
                                  -- ilyas
                                \_ No, I reinvested in hookers and blow.
                                   \_ I find your petty Liberalism utterly
                                      unconvincing.  -- ilyas
                                      \_ Touche', Academic Libertarian living
                                         off the grant teat.
                             \_ This is complete shit, sorry. The welfare
                                state exists and using it has nothing at all
                                to do with whether one believes it should
                                exist.
                                exist. If you were in communist Russia, would
                                you not eat the government bread?
                             \_ I'm not trying to convince you. If you
                                like socialism then Europe is waiting for you.
                                If you like American values then you are
                                in the right place.
                                1. Yes, except for UCB which I sometimes
                                   regret, and a year in elementary school
                                   which was a waste of a year of my life
                                  \_ Your parents paid for private schools
                                     almost your entire life and yet you
                                     claim you will not inherit anything.
                                     How is that possible?
                                     \_ They spent a lot of their money on
                                        private schools instead of on
                                        themselves. I am sure when they
                                        die I will get a bill and not a check.
                                        Private schools are not completely
                                        filled with blue-bloods and you
                                        can qualify for aid.
                                        \_ The money they spent on your
                                           education _is_ your inheritance.
                                           You benefited from their benefits.
                                           To pretend that someone, somewhere
                                           along your line didn't benefit from
                                           social progams or position from
                                           birth is simply dishonest.
                                           \_ Using your definition we all
                                              inherit from our parents. I
                                              think that's a stupid
                                              definition.
                                              \_ Not all of us go to private
                                                 schools.
                                                 \_ Non-sequitur. Did you
                                                    not benefit from your
                                                    ancestors in some manner?
                                                    \_ You're making my point
                                                       for me: we are all
                                                       beneficiaries of the
                                                       system. To pretend that
                                                       you earned everything
                                                       you have on your own
                                                       merits is ridiculous.
                                                      \_ Nobody is saying that,
                                                         nice straw man.
                                                         What is wrong with
                                                         families supporting
                                                         each other? Why do we
                                                         need "the system" to
                                                         replace that? That is
                                                         out of some Orwellian
                                                         dystopia, not America.
                                                         \_Are you a 1st
                                                           generation immigrant?
                                                           There is nothing
                                                           wrong with that, but
                                                           it might explain some
                                                           of your half-cocked
                                                           ideas about what
                                                           "America" is.
                                                           \_ "The system" is
                                                              not "my ancestor".
                                2. Of course,
                                3. That's right.
                                However, I'm not Libertarian. They are too
                                far to the right. I'm just practical. I
                                understand that most candidates running
                                now wish to bankrupt the country, whether
                                on idiotic sojourns to Iraq or by
                                government handouts. To be honest, Arnold
                                S. is my brand of government and I'm not
                                the person in this thread who already
                                mentioned him. I am socially liberal but
                                fiscally conservative and I really, really
                                hate socialism and socialist policies as a
                                product of my European family, most of
                                whom can't wait to get the hell out of the
                                shithole that is Europe.
                                \_ You speak as if it were not possible to
                                   provide minimal assistance and public
                                   services and yet not put us in deficit:
                                   Where were you when Clinton gave us the
                                   surpluses? Also, which shithole Euro
                                   nation did you flee? The socialist Nordic
                                   states seem to doing just fine.
                                   \_ Those surpluses were fleeting and
                                      the product of a gigantic bubble we
                                      won't see again for decades. Clinton
                                      (and government in general) had nothing
                                      to do with it. However, they did
                                      manage to spend that money. BTW, I
                                      think at issue here is what 'minimal
                                      assistance' means. It means different
                                      things to different people.
                                      \_ More of your GIGO thinking. Government
                                         shrank during the Clinton era. Clinton
                                         had nothing to do with this?
                                         \_ Had more to do with revenues
                                            increasing than any shrinkage
                                            of government. BTW, what the
                                            hell is "GIGO"?
                                            \_ Garbage In Garbage Out
                                               What do they teach CS students
                                               these days?
                                               \_ Heard the term, but never
                                                  saw it referred to with
                                                  that acronym. Makes
                                                  sense now that I know.
                                            \_ How did increasing revenues
                                               lead to a smaller gov't headcount
                                               and decreased real per capita
                                               gov't spending?
                                   \_ My family is from France, Germany, and
                                      the Netherlands. My French relatives
                                      in particular cannot stand France
                                      anymore and are selling their
                                      property to move to places like US
                                      and Canada. More would come to the US,
                                      but for GWB giving us a bad reputation.
                                      The EU has not been a good thing for
                                      Western European citizens. It has made
                                      everything expensive, eroded social
                                      services, made people work harder
                                      (or for the first time in their lives)
                                      and brought in an influx of cheap
                                      labor from Eastern Europe and
                                      Russia. Now that Europe is finally
                                      grappling with the same problems the US
                                      has been it is clear that their model
                                      needs to change. It is certainly not the
                                      direction the US needs to move in.
                                      They will collapse before we do
                                      without serious reforms. The people
                                      in countries like Denmark are living
                                      in la-la land and think that they
                                      will be immune to the problems facing
                                      countries like France, but they have
                                      their heads in the sand.
                                   \_ Boewulf is cool man!!! Go Scandinavia!
                                  \_ Norway is rich because of oil. The others
                                     aren't doing that great. Aside from that,
                                     "seeming to do fine" is not a meaningful
                                     point of discussion.
                                     Communist USSR, Vietnam, and China "seem
                                     to do fine" also. The USA seemed to do
                                     fine with slavery.
                                     \_ Denmark boasts happy people, a strong
                                        economy, and socialized medicine. Not
                                        a lot of oil. Life is good. Wtf was the
                                        slavery/communism thing about?
                                        \_ Denmark is the size of my living
                                           room.
                                     \_ OK, how about measures like crime
                                        rate, literacy rate, infant mortality,
                                        life expectancy?  The US scores
                                        poorly.
                                        \_ And yet we are the wealthiest
                                           nation in the world. I think
                                           a lot of those measurements are
                                           meaningless. What matters more
                                           is what the top 10% are doing
                                           and not the conditions of the bottom
                                           10% who are just drains on
                                           society anyway. Do you want to
                                           compare standards of living of
                                           the top 33% of Americans with
                                           the top 33% of <pick your
                                           nation>? I am not necessarily
                                           advocating throwing the poor to
                                           the wolves, but this is the
                                           country where that poor person
                                           can die a billionaire. The
                                           price to be paid is that some
                                           people are chewed up and spit
                                           out. I prefer a system that
                                           rewards ability even if it
                                           means some people fare a little
                                           worse (but still *very very well*
                                           compared to most of the world.)
                                           The US takes in the dregs of
                                           humanity and provides for them.
                                           Of course the averages are
                                           going to suffer for that. Most
                                           of them (if you ask them)
                                           wouldn't move anywhere else.
                                           They love having opportunity!
                                           Why do you insist on telling
                                           people what they want?
                                           \_ Let them eat cake.
                                              \_ The US is the antithesis of
                                                 the French monarchy.
                                                 \_ In its purest form, yes.
                                                    The current tax cuts for
                                                    plutocrats bring us closer
                                                    to Le Roi du Soleil.
                                                    to Circus du Soleil
                                           \_ Great: Now prove that the US
                                              system rewards ability.
                                              Income mobility has decreased
                                              in the U.S. since the
                                              pre-Reagan years, and the U.S.
                                              has less income mobility than
                                              most European countries.
                                              (Obligatory Reagan answer:
                                              poor people just want to be
                                              poor).  -tom
                                             \_ What data do you have saying
                                                income mobility decreased or
                                                is less than Europe? Maybe
                                                some people do want to be poor.
                                                Maybe the welfare state
                                                encourages that. Why is it that
                                                certain immigrant groups do
                                                much better here than others
                                                or than certain poor natives?
                                                \_ http://www.csua.org/u/kp7
                                                   The Economist magazine
                                                   on class mobility in the US.
                                                   (They also say it is higher
                                                    in Europe, but not in that
                                                    article).
                                                   \_ That's not data, that's
                                                      an article headline.
                                                      I can't get to the rest
                                                      of the article.
                                                      \_ I put a copy in
                                                /var/tmp/economist.mobility
                                                         for you and added
                                                /var/tmp/economist.america
                                                         for good measure.
                                                        \_ Ok, how useful is
                                                        it to talk about class
                                                        and average incomes
                                                        in an essentially
                                                        socialist country?
                                                        For example the NYTimes
                                                        thing compares gen-to
                                                        gen income growth. But
                                                        this would of course
                                                        take longer if there
                                                        is a wider range to
                                                        start with. Wealth
                                                        disparity: is it an
                                                        inherent problem to be
                                                        addressed?
                                                        The e'ist also points
                                                        out that the poor are
                                                        better off in absolute
                                                        terms than they ever
                                                        were.
                                                        This is also in the
                                                        context of an America
                                                        that is not free of
                                                        welfare, so it is not
                                                        really an appropriate
                                                        example for comparison.
                                                        Denmark is too small
                                                        to be appropriate
                                                        anyway.
                                                        \_ I'm not the one
                                                           making the
                                                           extraordinary claim
                                                           that there is more
                                                           opportunity in the
                                                           US than elsewhere;
                                                           or even more oddly,
                                                           that the relative
                                                           lack of social
                                                           services in the US
                                                           *causes* greater
                                                           opportunity.
                                                           Where's the evidence
                                                           for that?
                                                             -tom
                                                         \_ Well, the evidence
                                                            shows a) more ppl
                                                            *believe* they have
                                                            opportunity, and b)
                                                            the successful ppl
                                                            in the US are
                                                            apparently more
                                                            successful than
                                                            those elsewhere.
                                                            \_ or the system
                                                               is rigged in
                                                               favor of the
                                                               rich.  -tom
                                                             \_ Do you think
                                                                we should allow
                                                                there to exist
                                                                rich people?
                                                                Maybe we should
                                                                have an asset
                                                                cap?
                                                              \_ Do you think
                                                                 we should
                                                                 allow both
                                                                 obscene wealth
                                                                 and abject
                                                                 poverty to
                                                                 exist in the
                                                                 same society?
                                                                   -tom
                                                                \_ Allow? I
                                                                   think
                                                                   obscenity
                                                                   is subjctve
                                                                   and you have
                                                                   a personal
                                                                   choice to
                                                                   give wealth
                                                                   to the poor.
                                                                   But remov-
                                                                   ing wealth
                                                                   seems a more
                                                                   efficient
                                                                   solution to
                                                                   that issue.
                                                                   The excess
                                                                   wealth will
                                                                   naturally be
                                                                   auctioned
                                                                   out to the
                                                                   "have nots"
                                                                   and bring
                                                                   everyone
                                                                   closer to
                                                                   avg. Unlike
                                                                   handouts, it
                                                                   scales to
                                                                   any level of
                                                                   national
                                                                   wealth and
                                                                   does not put
                                                                   a drag on
                                                                   economy.
                                                   \_ I'm calling BS on the
                                                      class mobility in Europe.
                                                      It is still very
                                                      important who your family
                                                      is/was in Europe. I
                                                      have a Czech friend
                                                      in France who is a
                                                      scientist there (and who
                                                      was also one here).
                                                      He told me their system
                                                      allocates N slots for
                                                      scientists and you have
                                                      to wait for one to open
                                                      up before you can be
                                                      hired. The allocated
                                                      slots are filled with
                                                      people resting on their
                                                      laurels and their
                                                      cronies. A surprising
                                                      number are based on
                                                      nepotism. If your dad
                                                      was a famous scientist
                                                      or politician then you
                                                      will likely get a slot.
                                                      He says this is in stark
                                                      contrastely get a slot.
                                                      This is in stark contrast
                                                      to the US, where the
                                                      brightest students get
                                                      a slot no matter. Sure,
                                                      it matters who you are
                                                      here, too (GWB) but not
                                                      like in Europe where it
                                                      seeps into every day life.
                                                      \_ The pluaral of
                                                         anecdote is not data.
                                                       /var/tmp/economist.europe
                                                         From the NYT:
                                                       http://www.csua.org/u/kpb
                                                         A nice book:
                                                       http://www.csua.org/u/kpc
                                                       \_ Let's put this in a
                                                          way you will
                                                          understand:
                                                          How many Euros come
                                                          to the US for
                                                          opportunity vs. how
                                                          many Americans go to
                                                          Europe seeking
                                                          opportunity? You went
                                                          to Cal. How many
                                                          classmates went to
                                                          Europe for grad
                                                          school/postdoc and
                                                          stayed there? How
                                                          many Euros came here
                                                          for grad/postdoc and
                                                          stayed here? There
                                                          is a lot more
                                                          opportunity in the
                                                          US, but it's funny
                                                          that Americans are
                                                          often not those who
                                                          take advantage of it.
                                                          You can lead a
                                                          horse to water...
                                                          I think that helps
                                                          explain the above
                                                          numbers.
                                                          \_ Even when all the
                                                             evidence points\
                                                             against you, you
                                                             continue to believe
                                                             a false proposition
                                                             An unwillingness
                                                             to learn is not
                                                             conducive to
                                                             success.
                                                           \_ The evidence does
                                                              not all point
                                                              against. Irony.
        \_ I didn't leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left me.
2008/1/14-18 [Computer/SW/Languages/C_Cplusplus, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48947 Activity:insanely high
1/14    Why do we put up with plurality voting for stuff like primaries?
        When the "winners" get around a quarter to a third of the vote
        something is broken. We should have IRV. And also, national
        popular vote for president.
        \_ IRV is not monotonic.  What you want approval voting. -dans
           \_ Actually I'd rather have IRV. I think we discussed this
              before though. I think monotonicity is mostly irrelevant.
              The arguments I've seen against IRV are either wrong (use
              a misconception of what IRV is) or else cite concerns
              about tactical voting. But we have tactical voting now.
              The question is whether the situation is improved. I
              believe we can be a lot more confident in broad support
              of an IRV winner than a plurality winner.
              \_ Uh huh.  But approval voting has all the advantages you just
                 described, doesn't suffer from being not monotonic, and
                 elimnates tactical voting.  As a practical matter, have you
                 ever tried to count the votes in an IRV system?  It sucks,
                 and is completely opaque. -dans
                 \- See Arrow Impossibility Theorem
                    \_ Thank you for supporting my point. -dans
                       \- I am not supporting your point.
                          you pretty much cant eliminate tactical
                          or various other pathologies. if you think
                          you can, you dont understand the Arrow Thm ...
                          which is of course quite possible.
                          \_ Actually, you're the one who doesn't understand
                             it.  Voting systems can and do eliminate the
                             pathologies mentioned, it's just that a given
                             system cannot eliminate *all* of them.  Tactical
                             voting has a very specific definition in this
                             context, and you don't seem to understand it.
                             Indeed, all the arguments I've seen that suggest
                             approval voting is not strategy free seem rooted
                             in the same misunderstanding you hold. -dans
                             \_ What is the specific definition, and who
                                decides it? If there are problems that don't
                                fall into your specific definition, who cares
                                what the definition is, if the problems are
                                real? The fact is that approval voting does
                                not allow ranked choices and has its own
                                pathologies/strategies/whatever.
                                \_ Pathologies != Strategies.  Obviously
                                   approval voting does not have ranked
                                   choices, but that's not the point.  The
                                   point is that all forms of ranked choice
                                   voting I've seen add significant complexity
                                   to the process, and can produce oddball
                                   results where people's choices get
                                   permuted.  Both of these considerations are
                                   unforgiveable. -dans
                                   \_ Approval also adds complexity to the
                                      process. IRV is being used already so it
                                      is clearly a manageable complexity and
                                      obviously "forgiveable". Oddball results
                                      I think you're just wrong about.
                 \_ It does not have all the advantages. It does not eliminate
                    tactical voting, duh. If I approve A, but like B better
                    than C, I could vote B even though it hurts A's chances.
                    That is tactical. It does not let you rank your choices
                    which is the entire point. How is monotonicity relevant?
                    Who gives a shit?
                    With approval voting, approving another candidate could
                    lead to my preferred candidate losing. How is that
                    better?
                    \_ You're just wrong.  If you vote for A and B in approval
                       voting, then you're saying you're okay with either A or
                       B, and there's no way your vote can help C, who you
                       don't approve of, win.  In IRV, if you vote A as you
                       first preference and B as your second, you can actually
                       cause C to win.  Whoops. -dans
                       \_ Show me a realistic example where that happens.
                          \_ Read the literature. -dans
                             \_ I have. It doesn't happen in any realistic
                                case. I believe, and I'm not alone in this,
                                that your concerns about being monotonic
                                totally irrelevant.
                             \_ You're making the assertion.
                                \_ It's not my job to do your homework,
                                   especially when if you're just going to
                                   assert that my example is unrealistic.
                                   Don't be disingenuous, and don't bring a
                                   knife to a gunfight. -dans
                                   \_ I've done my homework and think you're
                                      wrong. Many <learned authorities>
                                      support using IRV. Show me where we
                                      "cause C to win" by voting A. I think
                                      you're selectively playing fast and loose
                                      with terminology.
                                      Examples of this problem:
                                      Math Prof at Temple University:
                                      http://www.csua.org/u/ki3
                                      Wikipedia: Instant-Runoff Controversies:
                                      http://www.csua.org/u/ki4
                                      -dans

                                      \_ I read the first example in the first
                                         link and it's ridiculous. Range voting
                                         is obviously less intuitive when you
                                         have averages, and his first example
                                         shows C winning even though the
                                         majority of the voters either dislike
                                         or know nothing about C.
                                         The discussion of monotonicity also
                                         shows how irrelevant the concern is.
                                         Yes, it is unrealistic: it proposes
                                         looking at the results after the fact
                                         and saying "if I had done such and
                                         such then the outcome would be
                                         different". How would you ever know
                                         to that detail how others would vote?
                                         You could easily end up accidentally
                                         electing C. The reality of the example
                                         is that it is close to a 3 way tie
                                         and any winner is "reasonable". Most
                                         importantly, the result of the
                                         "honest" IRV is reasonable.
                                         And how would you translate that into
                                         approval voting? All voters ranked
                                      \_ <cut mostly irrelevant comments -op>
                                         How would you translate the example
                                         to approval voting? All voters ranked
                                         all 3 candidates. Does that mean they
                                         approve them all?
                                         approve them all? Let's say they each
                                         approve their top two choices. Then
                                         B wins. But what if the supporters of
                                         A, being crafty, decide to withhold
                                         their approval of B, to make A win?
                                         In this way, "lying" helps them. So
                                         regardless of your terminology the
                                         same "problem" exists.
                                         \_ I am not advocating for range
                                            voting, merely citing an egregious
                                            flaw in IRV.  Since we're asking
                                            for citations, kindly cite all
                                            future unnecessary changes of
                                            subject and strawman arguments you
                                            plan to make before continuing this
                                            discussion. -dans
                                            \_ I'm sorry you're too dense to
                                               comprehend. I'll give up now.
                                               I mentioned the range voting
                                               because the source advocating it
                                               as realistic means the source is
                                               dense.
                                               \_ You're right.  I am dense.
                                                  If I was sparse I would have
                                                  also asked you to list all
                                                  ad hominem attacks you would
                                                  apply before continuing the
                                                  discussion. -dans
                                                  \_ The ball was in your
                                                     court and you gave a
                                                     worthless response so I
                                                     responded in kind.
                                         \_ No, it doesn't.  They approve of
                                            both A and B.  One of A or B wins.
                                            Notably, in most actual ranked
                                            choice systems, e.g. San
                                            Francisco, you must rank all
                                            candidates.  Whoops. -dans
                                            \_ In the example below, A or B
                                               still wins. So it is the same.
                                               Perhaps it is merely a bad
                                               example. I found this one far
                                               more convincing/damning:
                                           http://rangevoting.org/CoreSupp.html
                                               However, I still don't agree
                                               with that article's conclusion.
                                               Pairwise comparisons aren't so
                                               meaningful. In this example,
                                               C and G are sharply split: you
                                               have those 5 voters in the
                                               middle who rank C on top and G
                                               on the bottom, who give their
                                               votes to M.
                                               votes to M. Condorcet isn't
                                               provably the best winner.
                              (Example from the link:)
                              voter1:   A>B>C
                              voter2:   A>B>C
                              voter3:   A>C>B
                              voter4:   A>C>B       IRV EXAMPLE.
                              voter5:   B>A>C
                              voter6:   B>A>C
                              voter7:   B>C>A
                              voter8:   C>B>A
                              voter9:   C>B>A
                              One of IRV's flaws is that it is not monotonic
                              and dishonesty can pay.  In the example, suppose
                              voter1, instead of honestly stating her
                              top-preference was A, were to dishonestly
                              vote C>A>B, i.e. pretending great LOVE for her
                              truly hugely-hated candidate C, and pretending a
                              LACK of affection for her true favorite A.
                              In that case the first round would eliminate
                              either C or B (suppose a coin flip says B) at
                              which point A would win the second round 5-to-4
                              over C.  (Meanwhile if C still were eliminated
                              by the coin flip then B would still win over A
                              in the final round as before.)
                              In other words: in 3-candidate IRV elections,
                              lying can help.  Indeed, lying in bizarre ways
                              can help.
                              \_ It sounds like your grief is with the imple-
                                 mentation of IRV (i.e., mandatory ranking of
                                 all candidates). If you allow voters to NOT
                                 rank all candidates, this problem appears to
                                 evaporate.
                           \_ And lying in approval voting can help. So what?
                              But you said "In IRV, if you vote A as first
                              preference and B as your second, you can actually
                              cause C to win." You haven't shown an example of
                              that, which is what I asked for.
                              \_ No, it can only hurt.  Casting a vote for
                                 someone you don't want in office helps them.
                                 Not voting for someone you do want in office
                                 hurts them. -dans
                                 \_ Most real people have a top choice. If
                                    everyone only votes for who they really
                                    want then AV reduces to plurality voting.
                                    \_ Really?  Show me data.  You realize
                                       this flies in the face of a fairly
                                       large body of psychological,
                                       sociological, and hci research about
                                       choice, and peoples ability to
                                       effectively express their choices.
                                       -dans
                                       \_ Well *I* always have a top choice.
                                          The problem with plurality winners
                                          that the majority of the votes
                                          did not count. A minority is able
                                          to elect the winner. With IRV,
                                          the rank system ensures that your
                                          preferences get factored in to
                                          the outcome. No, IRV does not
                                          eliminate tactical voting: with
                                          a field of strong candidates with
                                          divergent voter preferences there
                                          would be tough choices to make as
                                          to which of your top 2 choices to
                                          rank first. But that's perfectly
                                          fine: it's inherent to any runoff
                                          system. AV does not solve the
                                          problem that IRV solves. It still
                                          decides the winner based only on
                                          plurality. IRV also solves the 3
                                          candidate spoiler problem while AV
                                          does not.
        \_ I've read the wiki and other articles on most of the voting
           methods.  Although interesting most of them ignore the increased
           complexity of the system over a simple, "mark an X next to my
           favorite and drop it in the box" method we use now.  Some people
           say that various methods of anti-voter fraud are too high a burden
           for voters and are discriminatory but that's nothing next to the
           complexity of several of these alternative voting schemes.  What I
           got from my reading is that each of these other methods has a
           different idea of the 'best' way to determine a winner but their
           idea is based on their own notions of fairness.  Fairness is not a
           measurable absolute.
           \_ Approval voting is not complicated.  Instead of mark an X next
              to my your favorite candidate, you mark an X next to any
              candidate you would accept in office.  The winner is the one
              with the most votes so its notion of fairness is pretty close to
              that of plurality voting. -dans
              \_ If it "pretty close" then why not just do the simpler way
                 we already have now?  Seems like added complexity for no
                 reason.
                 \_ It eliminates spoilers and, more importantly, would make
                    it possible for us to grow viable third parties. -dans
                    \_ What you call a spoiler I call a low support third
                       party candidate.  For example, I don't think Nader
                       ruined Gore in 2000.  If those people really wanted
                       Gore to win, they understood the voting process and
                       should have voted Gore not Nader.  I also don't see
                       the need for third parties.  What has happened in this
                       country to third parties is the two major parties have
                       absorbed their platform when it became popular enough
                       eliminating the need for the third party without
                       causing the instability of a multi party mush that you
                       see in some other countries in Europe, Israel, etc.
                       In those place you end up in a situation where an
                       extremist party with a normally trivial number of votes
                       gets joins the majority party coalition and ends up with
                       power that far exceeds their vote count in the general
                       population.  I don't see that as a positive.
                       \_ So in other words, you believe something, and
                          whenever someone presents evidence to the contrary
                          you redefine the terms to suit your purposes and
                          state that the evidence is irrelevant.  Awesome!
                          P.S. Your assessments of the American two party
                          system as well as politics in "Europe, Israel,
                          etc." show an impressive degree of ignorance. -dans
                          \_ Why did you have to make this personal?  What is
                             wrong with you?  How about you provide some
                             actual facts or even some contrary opinions
                             instead of personal attacks?  I think if you call
                             me a "douche" like you normally do, you'd look
                             really extra super duper smart.  Good street cred.
                             \_ There's nothing personal about this.   I
                                present facts, cite source, you repeat the
                                same arguments, change the subject, and
                                dissemble.  Nothing personal about that,
                                unless you think my pointing out that your bad
                                form is 'personal', in which case, get a
                                thicker skin, and maybe join a debate or
                                forensics society.  And, yes, you're being a
                                douche. -dans
              \_ Of course it completely misses the point that "I could live
                 with this bozo" vs "I really want this guy" are two seperate
                 things.  While IRV does have some theoretical issues, in
                 any real world situation they don't actually matter worth
                 a damn.  Oh and as to how to count votes, well guess what,
                 there's this magical thing called software.
                 \_ Okay, "mark an X next to any candidate you want in
                    office".  Don't be a douche.  Of course, since you're
                    advocating a voting system that, by your own admission, is
                    so complex that it requires software to effectively
                    implement the count, you have shown yourself to be utterly
                    unqualified to take part in any discussion of voting
                    systems and methodologies. -dans
                     \_ Suppose I have an election with a total bozo (B) and
                        2 pretty good candidates.  (A and C).  Out of 100
                        people 99 like A and C but like C better.  But 1
                        person likes A and B.  In an approval vote system
                        that gets you candidate A.  But if B isn't in
                        the race that gives you candidate C.  Thus having
                        B in the race changes the results UNLESS people vote
                        with the knowledge that B has no chance.  I'm not
                        saying it is likely, but then again neither are the
                        contrived IRV problems, and IRV has big wins because
                        ranking matters.
                        \_ By the numbers, more people wanted A.  Get over it.
                           -dans
                           \_ No, more people "approved" A. But the vast
                              majority wanted C. There is a difference.
                              \_ Now you're just arguing with semantics. -dans
                               \_ No, because if C wasn't in the race the
                               \_ No, because if B wasn't in the race the
                                  result would be different.  But because
                                  you have decided on a set of criteria that
                                  happily ignores that you don't think it is
                                  a problem.  You've decided "tactical voting
                                  is bad" and then defined tactical voting
                                  in a nonsense way so that you don't have to
                                  admit that in ANY voting system there will
                                  be tactical voting.  Oh and once again
                                  in real world situations IRV is much less
                                  likely to be broken and much less likely
                                  for a small group of tactical voters to
                                  throw an election.  Plus it gives you
                                  ranked choices which are a win.
                     \_ You're ignoring his point about ranked choices.
                        Don't be a douche. I've yet to see a case where
                        IRV produces results that are "unreasonable". (Where
                        "reasonable" is intuitive, since no one result is
                        provably "best" for all voting scenarios.)
                        Don't be a douche. Show me some cases where IRV
                        produces "bad" results and let's talk about how
                        bad they really are.
                        \_ Preference inversion (i.e not monotonic).  Done.
                           -dans
              \_ How's that STD going dans?
                 \_ Awesome!  I've got a sentient talking boil on my ass that
                    likes your philosophy, and wants to know if you have a
                    newsletter it could subscribe to.  As a practical matter,
                    would you actually make fun of someone who had an
                    nasty and possibly life-threatening disease?  Wow, what an
                    asshole! -dans
                    \_ the most common STDs are not life-threatening.
                       \_ Yeah, 'Sorry about your syphilis man, Haw Haw!' like
                          I said, what an asshole. -dans
2008/1/10-12 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48921 Activity:high
1/9     California wants to control the temperature in your house
        http://csua.org/u/kfn (Utility Consumer's Action Network)
        \_ That's great news. Thanks.
           \_ Yer welcome.
        \_ "Thanks to efficiency standards, California's demand for
           electricity has remained flat since the late 1970s even as its
           population has doubled, Gottlieb said."  Remained flat since the
           late 1970s?  Really?
           \_ You were right to be suspicious. Gottlieb is apparently wrong.
                http://enduse.lbl.gov/info/LBNL-47992.pdf
                This says that annual electricity consumption in CA went up
                from 167 TWh in 1980 to 258 TWh in 2000.  That's significantly
                less than double, but not "flat".
                \_ Residential use versus commercial use?
                   \_ if you read the PDF....  but anyway, ALL of {commercial,
                      residential, industrial....} went up, NONE doubled.
        \_ How is this worse than a rolling blackout?
2008/1/8-12 [Politics/Domestic/Abortion, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48910 Activity:high
1/8     Ron Paul says he didn't wright the vile things in his newsletter.
        Ron Paul lies.
        http://csua.org/u/kfc [LGF]
        \_ Whether or not he's lying, he allowed it to be published.  I've
           had vague doubts about Ron Paul, and this morning, I finally
           realized why.  Paul's espoused ideology ultimately comes down to
           every man(*) for himself.  I don't trust someone who is motivated
           purely by self interest, but isn't willing to come out and say it.
           -dans
           (*) As an aside, I say 'man' here because Ron Paul is a misogynist.
           His views on the role of women in society are a throwback to the
           middle ages.
           \_ Please cite a primary reference for Paul's view on role of women.
              \_ a) His stated views on abortion and a woman's right to choose.
                 b) His newsletters.  Go read them. -dans
                 \_ Anti-abortion == middle ages? You're nuts. Women have the
                    right to choose not to fuck people.
                    \_ the constitution is not "freedom to NOT do things."
                       It's freedom TO.
                       \_ That's a really stupid statement. You don't have the
                          freedom to kill a baby. Abortion has little to do
                          with the Constitution. Personally, I see both sides
                          of the argument: I don't care about it as an issue
                          and a candidate's view on abortion doesn't matter to
                          me.
           \_ Odd, it's not "every man for himself", it's that the government
              shouldn't intervene in what every man does.
              \_ I may be mistaken, but I don't get the sense that Ron Paul
                 is espousing the ideologically pure libertarian viewpoint I
                 think you're referencing.  I am curious though, if you strip
                 the government of power, how do you effectively avoid society
                 turning into a free for all? -dans
                 \_ The impression I get of him is that he's trying to push
                    towards a pure libertarian stance. Unfortunately, he's a
                    hypocrite.  However, how do you define "free for all", and
                    how do you see it as being bad? -emarkp
                    \_ What is "pure libertarian"? He's not advocating removal
                       of government. He's advocating limited government based
                       on Constitutional principles.
                       \_ That's what I meant by "pure libertarian". -emarkp
                          \_ Is he really a hypocrite? Let's imagine I am an
                             opponent of public schools. Am I a hypocrite if
                             I send my kid to a public school? No, because
                             that is the existing system. I'm not sure just
                             what you're referring to however.
                             \_ He's a hypocrite because he puts earmarks into
                                bills and then votes against them. -emarkp
                             \_ He's a hypocrite because of what he's done as a
                                rep, not because of anything in this
                                discussion. For instance, he adds pork to
                                bills, and then votes against them so that he
                                can bring pork to his district and also say he
                                votes against it. -emarkp
                                \_ That's why I brought up the school analogy.
            \_ so if you're taking political ideologies to their extremes,
               you'd perfer the opposite, where the government controls everyone
               and everything, for their own good?
        \_ 1st, the things weren't that vile and a couple of them have been
           lied about. For example the article in question did not "support PLO
           terrorists".
           2nd, a philosophy "based on self-interest" is not necessarily
           against the common interest. Communism vs. capitalism. We know
           that EVERYONE is motivated primarily by self interest, that's
           human nature. Even when you help someone else you're doing that
           because it makes you feel good. This is how markets work and why
           they generally perform better over time than management by fiat,
           no matter how selfless the masters. So many supposedly well-
           intentioned efforts end up doing more harm than good. Wasting
           public resources on pointless wars and bloated government
           programs hurts everyone.
           \_ please let us know when you finish reading Atlas Shrugged.  -tom
              \_ let me know when you have anything interesting to say.
              \_ Holy shit, I agree with tom.  I actually believe in such a
                 thing as enlightened self interest, but the self-interest
                 Ron Paul espouses doesn't qualify. -dans
                 \_ why not?
              \_ GOLD STANDARD.
2008/1/3-7 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48882 Activity:nil
1/1     Yahoo! Weather for Newark, CA today:
        High: 61, Low: 40, Current: 34.
        What??
        \_ I've seen this all the time. No explanation.
2007/12/20 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48845 Activity:nil
12/20   ultramonkey has a stupid name and appears to not have been updated
        So the dumbducks in Congress are legislating what type of light
              \_ Oh my god. You are dumb. Suppose what you said was
                       \_ You're an idiot who didn't read the link or pay
              \_ You're a fucking dumb ass. If you had a $10k chandelier
                 anyone of having no sense of taste? You're a moron.
                 \_ Seconded, the op sounds like a dumb ass.
                    \_ Wow, you're dumb and don't even realize it.
        \_ You know what is even dumber about this idea? In probably 10
           is going to look pretty stupid in 10-20 years, I bet.
        \_ Wow.  The PM's at your company are either assholes or idiots. -dans
                                dumb to decide those arent the numbers you
                                \_ 'linear combination of arrogant and dumb',
              people who believe stupid rhetoric about "death taxes" or
              if you say "candidate X is either a moron or a liar". 2. many
              positions are morons and scientists ... so they probably do
           weak/stupid --  witness our tolerance for predatory lending.
                   to take advantage of stupid ones?  Morally OK?
                   Granted, government can't protect stupid people
                   bastards who're taking advantage of the stupid.  You know,
                \_ congratulations, you're not stupid!  Now how would you
                   feel if by a combination of having been born stupid
                   stupid ones over?  Now, do you think you're smarter than
              stupid and doesn't attack the problem. It exacerbates it by giving
                price to some dumb shmuck. There are far more cases of people
                                         don't agree you're either stupid or in
2007/12/18-20 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:48832 Activity:moderate
12/18   Can anyone explain why so many Republicans keep claiming that tax
        cuts raise government revenue, even when they know it is not true?
        http://www.csua.org/u/ka9 (WashPo)
        \_ Because in a high-tax environment, it's true?  Tax RATES aren't the
           same as tax REVENUE.
                \- yes, "everybody" acknowledges this may have been true
                   in say the eisenhower era, but it's disingenuous to imply
                   this holds true today.
                  \_ Well the relationship between tax rates and GDP growth
                     isn't an exact science either.
                     \- "we dont know what 'causes cancer' ... how can you
                        say smoking is bad for you?" "evolutionary theory
                        cant explain fainting goats ... so it's 'merely'
                        a theory just like ID is a theory."
                        \_ You are a tool for two exciting reasons!  Firstly,
                           science is powered by scepticism, so it is never a
                           vice.  Secondly, you seem to think economic
                           causal theories are as well understood as an
                           extremely well-studied medical special case.
                             -- ilyas
                             \_ when was the last time you took a shower?
                                anyone ever asked you that?
                             \- no, it is more like second guessing a
                                jury verdict .. it could be wrong, but
                                substituting your opinion when you dont
                                know any of the details of the case and
                                havent heard the arguments is crazy.
                                so maybe decrasing tax rates increases
                                revenue down to 10% MRT, but if 95% of
                                the econ profession believes revenues go
                                negative somewhere between 80 and 40%, it's
                                seems some linear combinaion of arrogant and
                                dumb to decide those arent the numbers you
                                \_ 'linear combination of arrogant and dumb',
                                   that's a good one.  I think I'll borrow it.
                                   -dans
                                will operate with. even if there are a couple
                                of smart guys here and there who (sincerely)
                                disagree. i am not saying it is TRUE, i am
                                saying it is what you must operate on unless
                                you have some extremely heavyweight reason
                                why you dont. peter duesberg might have some
                                "heavyweight" reason to disbelieve the
                                HIV->AIDS theory but for Thabo Mbeki to
                                disbelieve it require some explanation
                                other than "well as a world famous biologist,
                                in my opinion, here are the flaws in the
                                science ...". There are some questions where
                                there are truely split opinions among
                                experts ... like say on the mechanism of
                                planet formation [http://tinyurl.com/37oy55]
                                [rumor is you are an expert on "the stars"?]
                                but supply side econ not such an example as
                                applied to the US today. you also seem to be
                                unaware of the different quality of certain
                                econ predictions. there are econ predictions
                                about certain equillibium conditions that
                                are not speculative because there are clear
                                forcing functions [arbitrage] ... so while
                                there might be lots of competing theories
                                about the level of exchange rates [CIP, UIP,
                                PPP etc] the cross exchange rate parity
                                prediction is a strong one.
                                (one more thing: yes science is powered by
                                scempticism, e.g. the H PILORI example, but
                                these pols and motd posters arent DOING
                                SCIENCE, they are running for office or
                                trying to justify a policy. they arent being
                                sceptical. they are usually lying and some
                                some small number there may be some other
                                expedient explanation.). -danh (the planet)
                                \_ That last bit is 'high priest thinking.'
                                   You don't need to be Doing Science to be
                                   a sceptic.  Criticism isn't a privilege of
                                   the knowledge producing class.  Now it is
                                   true most criticism/scepticism of any given
                                   theory that DOESN'T come from scientists
                                   themselves will generally be silly or
                                   misguided.  However, this isn't always so,
                                   and it is very important that there remain
                                   outside channels for challenging the current
                                   status quo in science.  This is because
                                   science, for a number of reasons, is
                                   particularly susceptible to 'mafia effects.'
                                     -- ilyas
                                   \_ This is all well and good, but it's
                                      orthogonal to the point that supply-side
                                      economics is believed to be bunk by the
                                      economic establishment, and while it may
                                      not have the imprimatur of of the COBE
                                      experiment, it's pretty damned good
                                      science. -dans
                                      \_ That's pretty funny considering what
                                         "imprimatur" means. -lewis, nihil obstat
                                         "imprimatur" means. -psb
                                         \_ imprimatur: Official
                                            approval; sanction.
                                            I guess I just can't do funny.
                                            -dans
                                            \_ Historically from the Pope
                                               giving out an official decree.
        \_ See also http://csua.org/u/kaa (New Yorker)
        \_ It's called faith based government -- tax cuts raise government
           revenues because we believe they do.  Tax cuts also cure cancer
           and bring endangered species back to life.
           \- IMHO: "they" do it because "they" can get away with it.
                 \_ Post a link to your blog, windbag.
              so the question degenerates to "why can they get away with it?"
              well aside from "there is a sucker born every minute" [e.g.
              people who believe stupid rhetoric about "death taxes" or
              "double taxation" etc] type explanations [and remember, in
              america in 2007 we have three people running for president
              who can say "i dont believe in evoluation" and not be sent
              who can say "i dont believe in evolution" and not be sent
              packing on the hayseedmobile], i believe there are two
              pathologies in american journalism that leads to the pols
              not being called on this: 1. fear of having "access" cut off
              if you say "candidate X is either a moron or a liar". 2. many
              journalists are experts at "journalism", not a subject area.
              so they are trained in things like "objective/neutral view
              points", "presenting both sides" rather than having subject
              matter expertise and being able to render judgements. now they
              kind of research they may be good at is "digging up connections,
              influence, following the money" ... or maybe digging up gossipy
              thigns like who'se campaign is in trouble when they present the
              things like whose campaign is in trouble when they present the
              election as a horserace ... but they are not good at evaluating
              substance in areas like climate science, economic science etc.
              those are trickier areas than say evolution where the two
              postions are morons and scientists ... so they probably do
              positions are morons and scientists ... so they probably do
              ok there. now the nice part of "america 2007" is the blogosphere
              contains many people who are not journalists but ARE subject
              matter experts. these people are much better at holding the
              journalists and pols feet to the fire. but of course they dont
              generally have the giant podium the MSM journalists have.
              of course some exceptions: paul kurgman has a big podium
              of course some exceptions: paul krugman has a big podium
              [but he isnt a journalist. i know many journos kvetch about
              the blogosphere, but to the complain about giving a plum
              column to a non-journo? i am glad the NYT gave it to PK and not
              some random liberal journalist.]. james suroweiki also an
              exception. i think his finance coverage is really good. one
              reason the e'ists science coverage is decent is they look
              for "science people" who have some writing talent, rather than
              a journalist to has some interest in science. i guess the one
              thing that might be worse than the "silly objectivism" of
              some journalists might the the ones that forget they are
              journalists, like gary taubes' pronouncements about "fat
              research".
              \_ Why don't you ever post your name, unreadable screed guy?
                 -jrleek
                 \_ If you don't know that's partha, you have better things to
                    do than motd.   How exactly is it unreadable?
              \_ Massive wall of text, lost interest and skiped  the rest
                            \- supply side economics -> wall of voodoo
                 about 10 lines in.  This is the motd, not a novel.
                 \_ You are too short for this motd thread....
        \_ I don't care if higher taxes raise or lower government revenue
           over time.  My goal is not to maximize government income.  My
           tax goal is to pay as few taxes as possible while getting the
           minimum government services required to run the country smoothly
           and safely.  (And I didn't need an unreadable 2 page rant to
           explain).
           \- "what do people owe each other" merits a longer answer than
              say "what is your favorite color". a personal statement of
              perference is a different beast than the search for the
              explanation to a normative or empirical question. you have
              have offered a 6line reply, but "your tax goal" provides
              neither insight into accuracy of supply side economics nor
              its "cost free" adoption by all the R candidates.
           \_ I think this is a good and admirable goal (and one that I
              share) but I think we should have that discussion honestly,
              not lie to the voters and claim that tax cuts are "free"
              which is where the Republican Party is now.
             \_ Ron Paul doesn't say this. It's not "the Republican Party"
                it is those particular men who say this.
                \_ Okay fair enough. But it is stated as true by all the
                   other candidates. There is some economic sanity left
                   in the Party, but you have to admit it is in the
                   minority these days.
        \- Brad de Long [ucb dept econ] heavily covers the gap between
           economists and pols on supply side econ. of recent postings,
           see this "straight from the laffer's mouth" article:
           http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2007/12/justin-fox-on-a.html
2007/12/18-20 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48824 Activity:nil
12/17   When the state comes to you for more taxes, remember how they're
        spending your money right now.
        http://www.knbc.com/news/14866201/detail.html
        http://www.dailynews.com/opinions/ci_7745781
        http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_7733735
        \_ And software never goes over budget or over schedule in the
           private sector, right?
2007/12/5-12 [Politics/Domestic/California, Recreation/Food] UID:48747 Activity:nil
12/4    Where do people buy those candies that reads "It's a boy!" or "It's a
        girl!"  Any pleaces in the San Mateo or Fremont area?  Thanks.
        \_ Preston's Candy & Ice Cream
           1170 Broadway, Burlingame, CA
           they have a lot of nice candy too, in addition to the gimmicky
           baby candy.  I recommend the honeycomb, rocky road, and the
           hot cocoa kits.              -brain preston
           http://prestonscandy.com
        \_ Cause cigars are so your grandparent's generation.
           \_ the chocolate shop on telegraph has chocolate cigars.
              you can get them online too.  They are a bit pricey but <shrug>
              \_ so are babies
        \_ The Candy Store in San Francisco on Vallejo b/w Polk & Van Ness
           is really, really awesome.  I've seen "It's a g/b" cigars there.
           http://www.yelp.com/biz/TZJ7a4slnPGIjIMkMbuFyw
        \_ Go to SF, they have "Congrats, it's a gay boy!" cards.
           \_ And in The South, you can get "Congrats, it's a Redneck" card.
        \_ Thanks for all the responses.  Party Land in San Mateo carries it,
           but the girl kind is currently out of stock.  Party America in Union
           City has both the boy kind and the girl kind in stock.  -- OP
2007/12/3-6 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:48733 Activity:moderate
12/3    Perot was right:
        http://www.csua.org/u/k50 (SF Gate)
        \_ about what, dubya being an idiot?
        \_ Ron Paul > Perot
         \_ Damning with faint praise?
          \_ What was bad about Perot? Was Clinton better?
             \_ <doubletake> Huh?!?
                \_ It's R code. A vote for perot was a vote for clinton.
                   \_ Perot was a protest vote for those who thought the
                      party was drifting.  The contract with america was
                      the response to that protest. Then it all fell to shit.
2007/11/20-26 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48671 Activity:moderate
11/20   If gas price doubles, what are some states that'll suffer more
        than the others? Farm states? States that lack cities/mass transits?
        \_ States where residents pay a larger proportion of income for fuel.
           In consumption per capita the top states are Wyoming, the
           Dakotas, Alabama, and South Carolina. California is #51 (list
           includes DC). In consumption per $ GDP the top states are
           Mississippi, Montana, Alabama, Arkansas, and Oklahoma.
           California is again #51. (Source: http://tinyurl.com/yvsxav
           \_ California and NY both have residents who pay a lot for fuel,
              *and* have to have goods trucked in to large population centers.
              Your gas will cost more, but so will your vegetables.
              \_ The expensive states spend more as a proportion of income
                 on things somewhat unaffected by fuel prices like housing and
                 insurance and less on things like vegetables. I also
                 suspect that fuel costs are a smaller proportion of
                 operating costs as a percentage of sales price in states
                 like CA where items like food are so expensive relative
                 to other states.
                 \- you're sort  of on  to something,  but  i  think  a more
                    correct "econ dept"  analysis is "wealthier people spend
                    a smaller fraction of their incomes on non-discretionary
                    purchases, and thus they can more easily adjust to price
                    changes. you can drink  "second growth" wines instead of
                    premier crus as the dollar falls. you can decide to stay
                    in  star-- hotel  on your  vacation  if the  if you  are
                    spending  more  on gas  around  the  year.  but that  is
                    different  than trying  to change  your food  or utility
                    bill 24x7."  however this is analyzies  the "welfare" or
                    "utility"  impact,  not the  prices.  but  when you  say
                    "suffer" that's what you mean.  obviously a "luxury tax"
                    on  +100ft yachts  will raise  the price,  but  you cant
                    really call that suffering.  anyway, again you are on to
                    something when you look at prices and the composition of
                    expenses but you have to factor in substitution effects.
                    and in that case i'd look at "rich" vs "poor" rather
                    than cost of living. [e.g. poor people in the bay area
                    dont have high heating bills in the winter].
                    an interesting philosophical detour is to look at the
                    "utility monster" aspect to this. although this is
                    better looked at across more disparate populations, like
                    say us vs china, rather than california vs alabama.
                    per diminishing marginal returns, somebody making $10k
                    a year will get more utility from making an extra $1k
                    per year and thus lose more from not making the extra $1k
                    compared to somebody making $100k. however the question is
                    if the $10k person has sort of adapted to low expectation
                    but the spoiled and weak person at $100k sort of expected
                    to keep getting raises and "suffers" serious shopping
                    withdrawal, who is really suffering more? obviously it
                    is hard to suggest public policy should compensate the
                    whiney/subjective utility.
              \_ You think vegetables grow in Montana? There is actually
                 quite a bit of economy of scale in shipping vegetables to
                 large urban areas. I wouldn't be suprised if it actually
                 cost more to ship to smaller morkets that are closer.
                 cost more to ship to smaller markets that are closer.
                 \_ Umm.. I know some people who grow vegetables in Montana.
                    Hence, yes, I think vegetables grow in Montana.  They also
                    grow in California, and many other places.
                    \- Famous Montana Potatos. there are a lot of cerial
                    \- Famous Montana Potatos. there are a lot of cereal
                       crops grown in montana, although i dunno how much
                       of this makes econ sense and how much of this is
                       because of crazy subsidies.
                       amazingly enough, there is a proposal to grow
                       sugar cane in the imperial valley [read desert +
                       massive water subsidies = crazy plans]
                    \_ I used to live in Montana. No one is growing any
                       significant quantity of vegetables there, unless
                       they are using a hot house. It freezes too late
                       and too early.
2007/11/19-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Reference/Tax] UID:48657 Activity:very high
11/19   Warrent Buffet says that the inheritance tax / death tax is a good
mm
        thing.  No surprise since his company makes a fortune buying up
        properties sold to pay for the tax.
        http://www.renewamerica.us/columns/vernon/050824
        \_ The problem with death taxes: when I earned the money, I was taxed
           on it.  Now it's mine.  I should be able to do what I want with it.
           Taking it from my estate upon death means giving it to other people
           who had absolutely nothing to do with earning it.  Giving it to my
           family & friends means giving it to people who physically,
           emotionally, and/or financially helped me earn it.  For example,
           a man who spends all his time working has less time to spend with
           his family.  It cost the family something.  When dad/husband is
           dead, the least they should get is the money he earned for them
           while away from them.  Neither the government nor any strangers
           getting 'entitlements' are entitled in any way to his earnings.
           They already got their cut when he earned it.  I have no interest
           in hearing from the ultra wealthy about their solutions for the
           country which always seem to involve things that don't hurt the
           billionaires or their families in any way.  Buffet is obviously
           a great investor but he is in no position to dictate social or
           tax policy for the Little People.  He should stick with what he
           knows: investing in successful companies other people built.
           \_ You say you should be able to do what you want with your
              money and not be taxed on the transfer. When you buy goods from
              a merchant, you pay sales tax, even though you've already paid
                \_ not all states have a sales tax.  i also have a choice to
                   buy elsewhere or not at all.  death is mandatory.
              taxes on the money you used to pay the merchant (presumably).
              Wealth is taxed more or less whenever it changes hands; why
              should it matter if the transfer is due to death instead of a
              voluntary transfer? And if you think the government didn't
              help you earn that money, you need to brush up on both your
              civics and your economics.
                \_ the government helped.  they got paid the first time.
                   i see no reason to pay them a second time when my family
                   hasn't been paid the first time and it cost them a lot
                   more than it did some random government chosen recipient
                   through random vote-buying 'entitlement' program.
                   if you want to tax the rich, just go for it and create a
                   straight wealth tax.  go tax buffet a few billion a year
                   (i think 10% is fair) just for having money.
                   \_ Good luck getting your ideas implemented into law.
        \_ Would you prefer to return to hereditary aristocricy? This guy
           is another rich guy doesn't want to pay his fair share of taxes
           and would rather that someone else pay it for him. What else is new?
           \_ The important thing isn't income disparity (which is increasing)
              but lifestyle disparity (which is decreasing). -- ilyas
              \_ What does this even mean?
                 \_ What it means is that income differences matter less and
                    less.  There was a thread on this in the past.  Personal
                    computers, cell phones, reliable cars, electronics, etc.
                    are getting cheaper and better all the time, which means
                    the poor in America can afford many of the same 'bits
                    of lifestyle' as the rich.  This is why a straight
                    income comparison is misleading, the rich spend more and
                    more of their surplus on 'brand differentiation' not
                    quality. -- ilyas
                    \_ Not so sure of this. Look at the crappy food the poor
                       eat. The lead-based toys and other cheap Chinese imports
                       from Wal-Mart. I know some wealthy people and their
                       lifestyle is not really extravagant, but the
                       eat, their lead-filled toys, and other cheap Chinese
                       imports from Wal-Mart. I know some wealthy people and
                       \_ It's a free country, people are free to eat and
                          play whatever/whenever. Ultimately, people are
                          responsible for their own actions. If they want
                          to smoke to death or play with lead laden toys,
                          that is their choice.
                          \_ Sure, but there are a lot of people who
                             cannot afford a healthy lifestyle even if
                             they want to live one. This isn't about
                             choice, but about opportunity. The poor eat
                             far more often at McDonald's because of the
                             price and they pay for it with their lives.
                             Many would probably prefer organic grassfed
                             beef burgers, but it's not an option for them.
                             \_ Like I said, this is a free country, if the
                                rich can afford more options, then they will
                                pick the better options. So what? It's been
                                like that way since the dawn of mankind.
                                How are you going to "solve the problem"
                                for the poor? Communism? Socialism?
                                More regulations?
                                \_ You're arguing against your own strawman.
                                   I didn't say we need to do anything about
                                   it. I am just disputing the assertion that
                                   lifestyle disparity is decreasing even as
                                   income disparity increases.
                             \_ I dispute that notion about McDonald's.
                                McDonald's is not cheap when compared to
                                home cooking using modest ingredients.
                                For example, just cooking rice/potatoes/
                                any commodity staple, cheap veggies,
                                and some cheap meat from Safeway is going
                                going to be healthier and cheaper than
                                McD's in all likelihood. However McD's is
                                fast. Maybe some of the poor have no time
                                to cook, because time is a luxury. But
                                I think it's mostly their own laziness:
                                most people can do better than McD's.
                                (You don't even need meat, of course.)
                                \_ You're very wrong. I cannot make a
                                   double cheeseburger for myself for 99
                                   cents even if I use the worst
                                   ingredients I can find. Yes, I can eat
                                   plain white rice for cheaper, but that
                                   misses the point. My girlfriend and I
                                   cook a lot - more than most people -
                                   and it's always the same or more
                                   expensive than eating fast food. Sure,
                                   the quality is better, but it costs more.
                                   It's cheaper than a good restaurant
                                   meal, but not by much. Restaurants have
                                   economies of scale that I can't match.
                                   Maybe if you have 9 kids you start to
                                   get close.
                                   \_ In terms of actual food value the
                                      rice is better, so it's not missing
                                      the point.
                                      Anyway, the 99 cent cheeseburger
                                      uses frozen, crappy meat and not a lot
                                      of it, and ultra cheap buns that are
                                      mostly air anyway. The cheese is process
                                      cheese. If you make your own you would
                                      spend more because you'd use better
                                      things, but you don't have to. There's
                                      nothing else on that except condiments.
                                      I think you can pretty easily make meals
                                      that have more "food value" than those
                                      burgers per dollar. If you really
                                      wanted you could also cooperate with
                                      other poor families to create that
                                      "economy of scale" thing.
                                      \_ We're not talking about "food
                                         value". I am using McDonald's as
                                         an example of the type of fast
                                         food that the poor eat and
                                         comparing it to the type of fast
                                         food that the wealthy eat. If
                                         you want to talk about cooking at
                                         home, then the wealthy can live even
                                         better. Your argument is "Don't
                                         eat fast food at all" which misses
                                         the point of the comparison. BTW, I
                                         would be very unhappy if I ate plain
                                         rice every day and I would harm myself
                                         or others.
                                        \_ We're not? I am. You said: "poor
                                           people eat McD's because of the
                                           low price... pay for it with
                                           their lives... would prefer
                                           organic grassfed". I'm just
                                           saying that if they wanted to
                                           they could eat tasty alternatives
                                           that are healthier, or for not
                                           much more, cook their own
                                           hamburgers. I'm not saying
                                           not to eat fast food. I'm saying
                                           that it's a choice.
                                           Many millions of people eat
                                           "plain rice" every day.
                                           \_ If you tried to subsist on a
                                              diet of only rice, you would die.
                                            \_ That's not what I suggested in
                                               my original reply.
                       their lifestyle is not really extravagant, but the
                       quality is much better. Are you one of those people
                       who thinks a handmade leather Italian shoe and a
                       machine-made shoe made in Mayalsia out of rubber
                       are equivalent because they provide equal utility
                       and the main difference is 'brand differentiation'?
                       The wealthy live better and tend to live "smaller"
                       in that they care more about things like
                       environmental toxins and political issues in
                       faraway lands. The poor just want the cheapest shoe
                       possible, regardless if it will turn their toes green.
                       Important products that everyone used to have, like
                       organic food, are now only affordable to the wealthy.
                       Those products are more important to a good quality
                       of life than the fact that LCD televisions are now in
                       reach of the common man.
                       \_ It's true that some things that were more available
                          in the past like organic food or hand-made furniture
                          are less available/more expensive today, but you are
                          being disingenious by ignoring the VASTLY LARGER
                          number of things that were invented and
                          made affordable to the general population.  Again,
                          it's true that premium brands tend to be better made
                          (although not always, for instance luxury car brands
                          tend to be less reliable than hondas/toyotas).
                          I am merely saying that the gap in lifestyle has
                          been shrinking for the last 100 years.  If you are
                          truly concerned about 'the gilded age' trends,
                          you need to look at lifestyle, not income.  Of
                          course, 'lifestyle differences' are much harder to
                          quantify and talk about, we are not talking about
                          numbers in a bank account. -- ilyas
                          \_ In general, a bigger bank account means a
                          \_ In general, a bigger the bank account means a
                             better lifestyle. A much bigger bank account
                             means a much better lifestyle. I don't think
                             this has changed very much. I know where
                             you're coming from (a king in 1400 lived less
                             well in many ways than we commoners today)
                             but I don't see a trend where this disparity
                             has really changed much over the last, say,
                             40 years at least. In fact, the gap seems to
                             be widening if you look at statistics like
                             home ownership.
                             \_ Yes, of course income is strongly and
                                positively correlated with lifestyle quality.
                                My claim of decreasing lifestyle gap comes from
                                the observation that mass production,
                                specialization, and other capitalist
                                institutions result both in innovation
                                (invention of additional ways to improve
                                lifestyle), and efficiency (current lifestyle
                                improvements strongly tend down in price).
                                The only way for the lifestyle gap to be
                                increasing is if the number of qualitative
                                lifestyle changes was increasing faster due
                                to inventions than existing lifestyle
                                to inventions faster than existing lifestyle
                                was trending down in price.  But there is
                                little evidence for this.  Innovations
                                to differentiate products for wealthy
                                consumption seem to favor premium brands as
                                value-in-itself, various 'intangibles'
                                (like hand-crafted assembly), and health
                                and environmental consciousness.  These things
                                are valuable, but that the rich increasingly
                                turn to these things is hardly evidence of
                                a widening lifestyle gap. -- ilyas
                                a widening lifestyle gap.  (I would
                                be surprised if long term home ownership
                                trends weren't strongly positive, btw). -- ilyas
                                \_ How about looking at home ownership or
                                   at the number of dual income families
                                   compared to, say, the 1950s? Even in my
                                   own family in the 1970s, neither my mom
                                   or dad had a college degree and they
                                   worked entry level jobs. They still had
                                   a house in the suburbs, two brand
                                   news cars, and sent the kids to private
                                   school even though my mom took 5 years
                                   off work to help with the kids. That
                                   still happens in parts of the country,
                                   but the fact that it's much less common
                                   now is evidence that the gap is
                                   increasing, since the rich live as
                                   well as ever and yet the middle class
                                   lifestyle is eroding.
                                   \_ http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/housing/census/historic/ownerchar.html
                                        -- ilyas
                                   \_ Home ownership has been trending up
                                      since the 50s (http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/housing/census/historic/ownerchar.html
                                      \_ But if you look at the numbers
                                         you'll notice that it's the
                                         over65 segment which rose even
                                         while more and more families
                                         became dual income households. I
                                         think that is significant. I also
                                         don't think dual incomes have as
                                         much to do with social norms as
                                         with the need to make ends meet.
                                         I think you acknowledge that
                                         there is greater income disparity.
                                         I think it is patently obvious that
                                         what follows is a lifestyle disparity.
                                         You can't point to a shrinking
                                         disparity because of this
                                         nebulous 'brand differentiation'
                                         without more data that I haven't seen
                                         you produce.
                                         \_ So that's it?  That's your
                                            evidence?  All this is evidence of
                                            is that housing costs rose faster
                                            than effective income.  You need a
                                            lot more comprehensive argument to
                                            counteract the vast evidence for
                                            my conclusion (for instance look
                                            at the availability of consumer
                                            electronics since the 70s, or
                                            car quality, or power/price of
                                            personal computers, or a thousand
                                            other things).  There is more to
                                            lifestyle than a house, that's why
                                            I say you need to average over
                                            everything.  -- ilyas
                                            \_ Most households spend over
                                               50% of their net income on
                                               housing, so it's a lot more
                                               important than anything else.
                                               You can say that electronics has
                                               gotten better since 1970, but
                                               how does it follow that the
                                               disparity between the quality of
                                               the lifestyles of the rich and
                                               the poor has gotten smaller?
                                               I don't think the standard
                                               of living now for the lower
                                               classes in the US is higher
                                               than ever, but it certainly
                                               is for the wealthy. QED,
                                               unless you want to make the
                                               argument that the lower
                                               classes (or even middle
                                               class) are living better
                                               than ever. From my observation,
                                               I wouldn't say the middle class
                                               lives a better lifestyle than
                                               the 1950s even we now have
                                               a lot more gadgets and the
                                               average car is nicer than it
                                               was.
                                               \_ Your notion of 'better'
                                                  is strange and confusing.
                                                    -- ilyas
                                                  \_ Here's an idea to
                                                     help you understand: Look
                                                     at household debt now
                                                     versus at some point in
                                                     the past. Having more
                                                     useless crap doesn't mean
                                                     we live a better life.
                                                     \_ So cars, personal
                                                        computers, the internet,
                                                        home electronics,
                                                        medical advances, etc.
                                                        are 'crap?'  Gotcha!
                                      The number of dual income families has
                                      apparently been trending up since the
                                      50s, but that in itself is not
                                      evidence of a 'squeeze' (but changing
                                      social norms for women).  Neither is
                                      your anecdote.  -- ilyas
                                      your anecdote.  Even changing percentages
                                      for specific expenditures like housing
                                      or healthcare is not, in itself,
                                      evidence of a squeeze.  (This is why
                                      lifestyle is difficult to talk about,
                                      you have to average over everything).
                                        -- ilyas
                                      \_ So you admit that people are working
                                         longer hours, getting paid less and
                                         having to commute more, but in the
                                         face of all this, you claim that their
                                         lifestyle has "improved." How about
                                         the fact that crowding has increased
                                         over the last decade? Food insecurity?
                                         \_ Is it true the vast majority of
                                            "food-insecure" adults are
                                            overweight?
                       \- panem et circensus. lcd televisions in the reach
                          of the common man keeps people from boredom
                          and involved in petty politics and/or
                          revolutions. lcds and football games are like
                          the romans bread and circuses. feed 'em so they
                          dont starve, and keep 'em entertained...and you
                          wont have to worry about public unrest. it was
                          true in roman times, and it's at least as valid
                          today. panem et circensus
                          \- ps b i am gay
                          \- ps i am gay
                          \_ This is not psb's voice, btw.
           \_ There is so much wrong with this I'm having a hard time starting.
              1) False dichotomy
              2) Are you saying we don't have a hereditary aristocrisy?  I
                 guess the Kennedys don't exist?
              3) Anyone with enough liquid assets can easily get around this
                 by:
                 - setting up a non-profit and donating money to it
                 - appointing their children as the board of directors and
                   compensate them quite well
              4) I've just started my own business.  The death tax would force
                 my kids to sell off my share.
              \_ Who do you propose to pay the tax burden instead? How long
                 has America had an inheritance tax? This guy (and you) all
                 made money knowing full well what the rules are, why should
                 we change them in the middle of the game to favor you even
                 more? And isn't the first $5M untaxed anyway? Why should a
                 bunch of people who did nothing to deserve a windfall benefit
                 at the expense of everyone else?
                 \_ Here's a key concept:  It's not your money to take away.
                    If I can't give my property to my children, I don't own it.
                    It's one thing to fund the government, it's another to be a
                    communist. -op
                    \_ I notice you have not answered the first question, nor
                       are you able to do so. You claim that anyone who is in
                       favor of any taxes whatsover is a communist? You are
                       a lunatic. I do not have conversations with crazy people.
                       a lunatic. I do not have conversations with crazy
                       people.
                       \_ I don't like to have conversations with stupid
                          people.  I said "funding the gov't is one thing".
                          That means I understand the need for taxes.  However,
                          once you say "why should he get money?" you're a
                          communist.
                          communist. -op
                          \_ So who are you going to raise taxes on instead?
                             I am always amused when far right wingers claim
                             that the position supported by an overwhelming
                             majority of Americans is extremism.
                             \_ It's not amusing when far left wingers do it?
                                \_ If you can give me an example of that
                                   happening, I guess I would let you know
                                   if I thought it was funny or not. If you
                                   mean people like ANSWER, yeah I think they
                                   are pretty funny.
                             \_ It's a bad question.  The question isn't "who
                                should we take from", it's "if we remove this
                                tax, what do we do".  Firstly we should
                                eliminate the programs that are simply wealth
                                transfers.  That'd take care of about 60% of
                                the federal budget. -op
                                \_ So you want to eliminate Social Security
                                   so that the wealthy don't have to pay
                                   estate tax. I see.
                                   \_ They're 2 separate issues.  SS is going
                                      away anyway, but yes, I'm in favor of
                                      eliminating it.  Yes, I'm in favor of
                                      eliminating the death tax.  The first is
                                      not to provide for the 2nd. -op
                                      \_ Which "wealth transfers" are you
                                         talking about then? There is no way
                                         that "wealth transfers" are 60% of
                                         the federal budget, unless you
                                         include SS in that 60%.
                                       http://www.warresisters.org/piechart.htm
                                         You can quibble about the percentage
                                         of debt payment that should be
                                         considered devoted to "past military"
                                         but those numbers are all up to date
                                         and accurate. Military + VA + debt
                                         is already half the budget. Do you
                                         call things like the Dept of Homeland
                                         Security a "wealth transfer"?
                                         And the death of Social Security has
                                         been predicted many, many times, but
                                         so far, she is still beating strong
                                         and overwhelming popular.
                                        \_ Who says it's so popular? Are
                                           payroll taxes popular?
                                           \_ 70 years of persistance in the
                                              face of Conservative attempts
                                              to eliminate it speak to its
                                              popularity. You could also google
                                              for a poll, if you really wanted
                                              an answer.
                                            \_ Slavery persisted a long time
                                               too. I could google for one,
                                               but I thought you might already
                                               have had a source in mind. But
                                               no, it was just something you
                                               pulled from your ass.
                                               \_ You really believe that
                                                  answers the point?  Social
                                                  Security enjoys upwards of
                                                  70% support in any poll you
                                                  could find.  In addition,
                                                  GWB's plan's disapproval
                                                  never dropped below 60%.
                                                  You seem to be something
                                                  pulled from an ass.
                                                  --scotsman
                                                  \_ that's the 70% of people
                                                     who plan to get a lot more
                                                     out of other people's
                                                     pockets than they'll ever
                                                     pay in who have no plan
                                                     for their own retirement.
                                                     that sort of number not
                                                     only does not impress me
                                                     but worries me that this
                                                     country is turning into a
                                                     nanny state socialist pit.
                                                     \_ If you don't like
                                                        democracy, leave.
                                                        \_ Should I quote the
                                                           line about
                                                           democracy being
                                                           great until people
                                                           figure out they
                                                           can vote themselves
                                                           goodies?  The motd
                                                           is full of uber
                                                           geniuses today.
                                                           \_ Quote all you
                                                              want, you undemo-
                                                              cratic, elitist
                                                              thug.
                                                 \_ I don't know but 60% is not
                                                    "overwhelming". GWB's plan
                                                    is not the only alternative
                                                    to SS. SS as implemented is
                                                    broken and regressive.
                                                    \_ It is when approval
                                                       never got above 35%.
                                                       never got above 33%.
                                                       GWB's plan wasn't about
                                                       "fixing" it.  There are
                                                       broken portions, and
                                                       changes need to be made,
                                                       but the pp spoke of
                                                       eliminating it.  That's
                                                       an idea that you can't
                                                       sell to this country.
           \_ I love that "his fair share".  Define fair share. -op
              \_ Arbitrarily: 50%.
           \- The only question worth asking about the Renew America columnist
              is "is he stupid or does he think you are stupid" ... i.e. "is
              he stupid or is he disingeuous?". If you arent interested in
              speculating on that Q, not worth reading.
                 \_ So everyone should pay 50%? -op
                    \_ From each according to his means, to each according to
                       his needs.
        \_ I am a democratic and I am opposed to the death and
           inheritance tax. It should be my god given right to give my
           hard earned money to my children without tax. Take 50% of
           that away is just robbery, plain and simple.
                \- Grover Nordquist just got his wings.
           \_ You haven't done much research on this subject, have you?
           \_ Odds are that if you're not the uber-rich, you will be able to
              give your money to your kids with a minimum of tax.
              \_ And if you are the uber-rich, you will certainly be able to
                 give your money to your kids with no tax at all!
                 \_ How? If so, what the fuck is the inheritence tax
                    for? The not so rich father that didn't know better?
                    \_ It has been argued that inheritance taxes on the rich
                       exist as incentives for those worthies to donate
                       heavily to charities.
                       \_ But the real reason is "because we can"
                          \_ That's right, the same people who fought tooth
                             and nail against godless communism are now
                             taking rich people's money because they can.
                             See you in the food lines, comrade.
                             \_ Oh boo hoo, everyone has to pay taxes and
                                it has been thus since Roman times. Forgive
                                me if I don't shed a tear for you.
                                \_ That's a fascinating argument.  All sorts
                                   of shitty things have been true since Roman
                                   times.  Death, for instance.
                                   \_ I think we should bring slavery back.
                                      It's the natural order, has been since
                                      Roman times.
                                      \_ I agree.  MANIFEST DESTINY!!!
                                   \_ Yes, we should outlaw death too. That
                                      will work. Why not move someplace where
                                      is no functioning government and therefore
                                      no taxes? I think Somalia is a libertarian
                                      paradise. You can have all the guns you
                                      want, too.
                                      is no functioning government and
                                      therefore no taxes? I think Somalia is
                                      a libertarian paradise. You can have all
                                      the guns you want, too.
                                      \_ Dailykos talking points!
                                    \_ You are an idiot.
                 \_ Please give some examples of this happening.
                    \_ Cf. Gallo
                       \_ http://www.csua.org/u/k15 (PBS)
                          Are you referring to this? It says here that
                          they paid their taxes, but over a number of years.
                          Do you mean something else?
                          \_ Check out the Straight Dope article. You're right,
                             they didn't avoid the tax entirely, but they've
                             reduced it significantly.
                             \_ By what percentage was their tax reduced? I
                                am not being contentious, I am just curious.
2007/11/15-18 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48643 Activity:high
11/15   So newly minted RON PAUL fans, this is a link from Daily Kos
        about some of his extreme positions, he gets a few points from
        me for not spouting the usual drivel and having an honest
        straight forward persona and not being double gitmo pro
        torture, but I really can't vote for the dude:
        http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/5/15/124912/740
        \_ I could, knowing full well that no matter what my vote is,
           California will go overwhelmingly for whomever the democratic
           candidate is.   So the electoral votes will swing that way, I can
           vote for Ron with a clean conscience that my 'share' of the
           electoral votes will still go to the D's.
           -California voter
        torture, but I really can't vote for the dude:
        http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/5/15/124912/740
        \_ I could, knowing full well that no matter what my vote is,
           California will go overwhelmingly for whomever the democratic
           candidate is.   So the electoral votes will swing that way, I can
           vote for Ron with a clean conscience that my 'share' of the
           electoral votes will still go to the D's.
           -California voter
           \_ Yes, California. The state that gave the world Nixon,
              Reagan, and - to some extent - Ford which has a Republican
              governor and who elected Pete Wilson to the position.
              \_ while the state does have some record of occasionally
                 electing republicans, I think for the forseeable future
                 they are solidly democratic.
                 \_ Ed Meese, George Deukmejian. These are not just some
                    random Repubs, but they were very powerful Repubs.
                    I agree that D seems to predominate at the moment, but
                    to say that CA "occasionally" elects Repubs is
                    deceiving. Since 1900 CA has had 15 R govs and 4 D govs.
                                             \- and 1stripper: Earl Warren.
                    The State is changing as the demographics change, but
                    even now 3 of the last 4 were R.
                    \_ seriously, come on now, do you think *any* of the R
                       candidates have the slightest prayer of taking CA's
                       electoral vote?  It would take something bizarre like
                       one of the D candidates taking all of them out in a
                       freak murder-suicide in a primary debate.
                       \_ Who knows? Lately, the R's have been conceding
                          CA and it's worked. If they campaigned here
                          instead of just hitting OC up for $$$ then maybe
                          they'd have a better chance. CA elected *Pete
                          Wilson*.
                          \_ I didn't leave the Republican Party, the
                             Republican Party left me. The GOP is entirely
                             dominated by religious fanatics who care more
                             about punishing other people for their bad
                             behavior than the old Reagan ideal of small
                             government. If the GOP nominated another western
                             libertarian, then they could compete in CA again.
                             But they won't (do they even have one running?).
                            \_ Duncan Hunter is from CA. He gets no press
                               seemingly. Calling Reagan a libertarian? I scoff
                               mightily at that. Mightily indeed. Did Reagan
                               even reduce the size of gov't? He might have
                               cut some taxes, but it's spending that
                               determines the size. Reagan and Bush spent like
                               crazy. GOP isn't "entirely" dominated by
                               fundies. They are just a large group that GOP
                               needs to pay lip service to.
        \_ If DailyKos is opposed, then Ron Paul is certainly worth considering
           as a serious candidate.
        \_ This article means nothing to me. "A vicious, comptemptible racist".
        \_ This article means nothing to me. "A vicious, contemptible racist".
           It's self-evidently horseshit.
2007/11/7-9 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:48564 Activity:low
11/7    What can i do?  The top 3 repub candidates are in an insaneD
        alternative universe proclaiming to the people how they are
        more pro torture than the other guy.  It's really odd.
        I can't vote for any of these guys.  They're almost as bad
        as the fascist president in the movie 'The Dead Zone'
        \_ What's the problem then?
        \_ Don't vote. R is doomed this election anyways. Thanks Georgy!
           \_ It's not Georgy's fault he was elected.
              \_ Fucking Al Gore and Kerry's fault. Speaking of Kerry,
                 what is he doing these days, sulking like Al Gore?
                 \_ Gore is hardly sulking. He is jet setting and giving
                    speeches, basking in the glow of his Nobel Prize.
                    \_ Gore is apparently promoting Peace.
                       \_ And poking fun at himself on shows like 30 Rock.
                          Go, Al.
2007/11/5-8 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:48551 Activity:nil
11/5    The Ron Paul spam
        http://www.metafilter.com/66234/Ron-Paul-Spam
        I dunno about you, but any candidate that's got the endorsement of
        Stormfront AND the John Birch Society has got my vote!
2007/11/5-8 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/SocialSecurity] UID:48541 Activity:kinda low
11/5    The more you drive, the less intelligent you are:
        http://www.guardian.co.uk/Columnists/Column/0,,1671053,00.html
        \_ Ah, Guardian, the libural outlet of the socialists.
        \_ I just started a job much further away than my previous job.  So
           I'm dumb for taking a better job further away?
           \_ only if you drive there.
        \_ well not exactly, but I love this quote from the article:
                When you drive, society becomes an obstacle. Pedestrians,
                bicycles, traffic calming, speed limits, the law: all become
                a nuisance to be wished away. The more you drive, the more
                bloody-minded and individualistic you become.
            -ERic
           \_ Fuck you eric. Read this:
              http://images.libertyoutlet.com/prod/p-myvehicle.jpg
              \_ Hey, don't attack me, it's not my opinion -- I was just
                 pointing out a choice quote.  -ERic (and yes, I have a SUV)
           \_ America is built because of  individualism. If you hate
              individualism, you hate America.          -Randian
              individualism, you hate America.          -Randroid
              \_ Pretty true actually.  And a shame.
              \_ There was a TV commercial a couple months ago that started
                 with the line "I only care about me, myself and I."
           \_ America is the land of the individuals, the land of the
              uncommon man, the land where man is free to develop his
              genius-- and to get its just rewards. Individualism
              fosters invention and ingenuity. NOW I SHALL GO PUT
              KEROSENE IN MY HAIR.              -Ayn
              fosters invention and ingenuity.          -Ayn
        \_ None of the above jackasses got the Repo Man reference.
           Sad face!
           \_ Actually I did, but it was a bad reference, unless yoy are
              trying to imply that individualistic implies less intelligent.
              -ERic
              \_ It made me want to drive more.  And I live in LA, and fucking
                 hate to drive here. -- ilyas
                 \_ You Go Girl!
2007/11/5-8 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48536 Activity:kinda low
11/5    Barack Obama on net neutrality:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vd8qY6myrrE
        I think Obama just got my vote. -dans
        \_ I find it hilarious that I post something related to politics, and
           it generates no response, but I post a job req and it triggers a
           massive flamefest. -dans
           \_ It isn't your job posting that triggered a flamefest.  It was
              your hostile response to very simple, common, and expected
              questions about your company.  I don't recall anyone here ever
              responding in such a manner to simple job questions.
              \_ Really?  Because I'm pretty sure it all started with someone
                 referring to me as 'the motd idiot'.  I'm not sure how I come
                 across as hostile in that regard. -dans
                 \_ That isn't how it started and you know it.  Now you're
                    just trolling.
                    \_ Please stop making shit up. -dans
                       \_ Maybe you're reading a different motd.
                          \_ Apparently.  Try signing your name once in a
                             while. -dans
2007/10/30-11/2 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Gay] UID:48492 Activity:nil
10/30   Is this guy a Republican or a Democrat?
        http://www.csua.org/u/jv5 (The Guardian)
        Orange County Sheriff charged with accepting bribes
        \_ He is gay and he wants you.
        \_ I don't think sherrifs usually run on party platforms.
        \- he's trying to show why government is bad.
2007/10/25-29 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:48449 Activity:nil
10/25   Fox News blames socal fires on Al Qaida
        http://rawstory.com/news/2007/Fox_advances_theory_that_CA_fires_1024.html
        \_ ... while the spread of the fire is blamed on bureaucracy.
           http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/wildfires_grounded_aircraft
        \_ Randi Rhodes blames Blackwater
           http://newsbusters.org/blogs/p-j-gladnick/2007/10/26/randi-rhodes-suggests-blackwater-started-california-fires
2007/10/24-26 [Politics/Domestic/California, Computer/SW/Unix] UID:48436 Activity:low
10/24   Animated gif satellite view of the fires
        http://www.osei.noaa.gov/Events/Current/CaliforniaFire.gif
        \_ Wow. I never heard about the one in Mexico.
        \_ bah, it's only a four hour window
        \_ http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/gallery
        \_ http://www.signonsandiego.com/firemap
        \_ http://alg.umbc.edu/usaq
2007/10/24-25 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:48427 Activity:moderate
10/24   the weather girl on KRON4 has a gigantic rack.  I really should drive
        to work.
        \_ What does that have to do with driving to work?
        \_ Pics please?  The weather video on http://www.kron.com only features a guy.
        \_ I like Jackie Johnson here in LA (on the left).
           link:tinyurl.com/37359e
           \_ Lisa Guerrero is hotter.
              http://www.hottystop.com/lisa-guerrero/4.jpg
              \_ Amazing, but I still like Jackie better. She's more fresh
                 and wholesome seeming. Lisa Guerrero has a better body,
                 but she looks like she's been around the block.
2007/10/18-24 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48371 Activity:low
10/18   Watson backpedals from statement like mad
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071018/ap_on_sc/controversial_scientist
        \_ Watson is wrong. ALL MEN are created equal. The bible says so!
        \_ "In 2000, in a speech at the University of California, Berkeley,
            he suggested that sex drive is related to skin color. "That's
            why you have Latin lovers," he said, according to people who
            attended. "You've never heard of an English lover. Only an
            English patient."
           WAIT what??? So if I'm brown I'm horny?
        \_ Shouldn't the headline be "Watson backpoodles from statement"?
        \_ Shouldn't the headline be "Watson backausmans from statement"?
           \_ Haha!
        \_ Shouldn't the headline be "Watson backgerman shepherds from statement"?
2007/10/16-18 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:48338 Activity:moderate
10/16   The Religious Right has boatloads of cash on hand.
        http://www.thecarpetbaggerreport.com/archives/13257.html
        \_ Interesting. I wonder if there's a sense among the RR that 2008
           is pretty much a wash and that it would make more sense to save
           money for 2012.
           \_ The RR is a single minded entity with a single bank account?
              Sort of a giant Jesus Multi-Body Entity(tm) with a single
              group mind?
              \_ You have a question/answer/real point to make? Or you just
                 like using question marks?
                 \_ It's there.  Try again.
2007/10/12-15 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:48296 Activity:nil
10/12   I am very curious... do people in USA actually think they have the
        moral high ground of accusing others for genocide?
        http://csua.org/u/jpq
        \_ Yes.  Oh, and today is the 12th of Oct.
        \_ Absolutely, and that doesn't negate our obligation to recognize
           injustices to Native Americans by our predecessors at the same
           time.
           \_ i am still waiting.
              \_ Dude, we let them gamble and they don't have to observe
                 state law.  It's a pretty sweet deal! ;)
                 \_ They can even declare themselves sovereign nations.
                    Exactly what it means by having sovereign nations within
                    the US, I don't know.
                    \_ Exactly.  As far as I can tell it means they have to
                       follow federal law, and that's about it.
        \_ Your logic: because the US was responsible at one time in the
           past for atrocities against the natives here we have no business
           telling people committing genocide today to stop.  Thank you for
           joining us today.  Maybe you'll have better bait tomorrow.
           \_ my logic is that the only reason why we stopped is not because
              we didn't feel it was the wrong thing to do.  We stopped because
              we've gotten what we wanted and these natives are no longer
              have any means to fight back.  ANd even today, USA never
              officially label these acts "genocide," nor have American
              produce any sort of remedy for such act (return some of their
              land?  monetary compensation?).  and now we are passing a bill
              labelling Turkey for doing the same thing?
              \_ Same logic: you did bad stuff so you can't point out when
                 other people do bad stuff.
              \_ The bill has no 'weight'.  Symbolic only.  At least in the US
                 most people would agree that we were pretty shitty to the
                 Indians.  The Turkish government completely denies anything
                 happened at all.
                 \_ Sounds similar to Germans vs. Japanese regarding WWII.
                    \_ You're over generalizing.  If anything, the Germans of
                       today accept MORE than their fair share of the blame
                       for WW2.  They won't shut up about how awful they were.
                       Boo hoo.  nationalist Japanese parties like to pretend
                       the barbaric excesses of the imperial army did not
                       happen, I'll give you that.
                 \_ The "weight" is that Turkey will become an enemy.
                    Currently, 70% of our supplies for Afghanistan and Iraq go
                    through Turkey's airspace.  This bill has been attempted
                    for over a decade.  Only now, when it will cut off the
                    supply lines to our troops are the Dems working on it.
                    \_ The Dems are building alliances around the world!
                       \_ While calling Bush terrible at diplomacy.
                          \_ Enjoying some crow with your Freedom Fries?
                             \_ Huh?
              \_ Native American tribes can run casinos in CA.  White trash,
                 n***er and Chinamen can't.
        \_ http://www.filibustercartoons.com/archive.php?id=20071011
2007/10/10-14 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48286 Activity:high
10/10   Two suggestions for elections: 1) Voter lottery: each person who
        votes gets entered in a $10M lottery. 2) Electoral points: each voter
        gets to allocate a pool of "electoral points" to whichever candidates
        he or she prefers; say six "electoral points," so as to allow pyramid-
        ical ranking of 1, 2, and 3. Thoughts?
        \_ Obviously, voting is too difficult of a job that the average
           American does not want to participate in. We should outsource
           voting offshores. We should also offshore our politicians to
           reduce conflict of interests.
        \_ Yes.  Your understanding of math and civics is poor. -dans
           \_ dans: shitting in other people's cornflakes for the hell of it.
              \_ Others' responses below elaborate on my points nicely. -dans
        \_ 1) Don't like it. if they don't want to vote, let them not vote.
              Work on making voting easier. Absentee ballots are probably
              easier for most people but it's a bit of a hassle to get them.
           2) I think this is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cumulative_voting
              I prefer IRV for a single-winner election because it doesn't
              make you compromise your support. Dividing points to create
              ranks is inferior to simply ranking them outright.
        \_ Lack of voting is a signal that is often interpreted as 'none of
           the above.'  -- ilyas
        \_ How about an IQ test or a test of knowledge? So many people who
           *do* vote don't know most of the issues and do more harm than
           good.
           \_ Or how 'bout a poll tax!  Do you know anything about our country,
              constitution, or history?
              The point that would be valid here is that since democracy is
              predicated on an educated populace, access to education is an
              inherent right.
              \_ Hah!  Do your research on rights.  Oh and on the difference
                 between a republic and a democracy.
              \_ Maybe we should abandon voting altogether and use the
                 jury selection method: random lottery selection per election
                 period. Apparently this is how ancient Athens appointed
                 officials.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sortition
                 We could use multi-member districts and use approval voting
                 or cumulative voting etc. to let voters elect representatives
                 from a pool of randomly selected residents (somewhat akin to
                 how juries are approved). Perhaps the pool should be limited
                 to those who "sign up" to be in the pool, to avoid personal
                 liberty issues.
                 The advantage over direct democracy would presumably be that
                 dedicated officials would have the time to fully educate
                 themselves about the issues. The advantage over elected
                 reps is to remove the money-driven election apparatus and
                 get ordinary people rather than giant political parties.
                 \_ That's what we thought about representative democracy.
                    \_ It's still representative democracy. The method for
                       choosing representatives can vary.
            \_ Perhaps only Veterans should be allowed to vote. -Vet
               \_ There are many vets who aren't even citizens and cannot vote.
                  \_ I was under the impression that serving in the US
                     military guaranteed one citizenship.  Is this incorrect?
                     -dans
                     \_ You're thinking of Starship Troopers. There is fairly
                        recent legislation to expedite citizenship for members
                        of the military, but it's not automatic.
                     \_ We are increasingly going the route of Rome in its
                        later years, with an Army made up primarily of
                        non-citizens and mercenaries.
               \_ Perhaps only people of my ethnic/socio-economic/education/
                  geographic/professional background should be allowed to vote.
                  \_ At least one person got my point. It is disingenuous for
                     a bunch of CS geeks to argue for an IQ requirement for
                     voting. -Vet
                     \_ A basic civics requirement wouldn't be too much to
                        ask, would it?  "Here's a pamphlet in all 300 official
                        US languages.  Call this phone # toll free to hear it
                        read to you."
                        \_ Actually, yes it would be too much.  Education
                           requires funding and free time.  Making it a
                           requirement for voting makes it equivalent to
                           a poll tax.  Education is the silver bullet. A
                           more educated populace yields a "better" electorate
                           and, one would hope, a "better" democracy.  This
                           is what I speak about above, that the idiotic
                           replier doesn't understand.  --scotsman
                           \_ So making sure someone had read a flyer or
                              listened to a 2 minute explanation of our
                              government system on the phone or at the
                              polling place is too high a burden to ask a
                              voter?  If someone can' be bothered to do so
                              little to vote I don't want them voting.  I
                              think you're taking the poll tax concept way
                              too far.  Do you think non-citizens should be
                              allowed to vote?  If not, why not?  Is that not
                              a burden which puts a person in a position to
                              be a victim of government with no say?  Taxation
                              without representation, etc?
                              \_ Citizenship is a prerequisite for voting.
                                 I would not change that.  I think it's a
                                 very sad thing that non-citizens likely
                                 know more about US civics than natural born
                                 citizens.
                                 The solution is not to make people prove
                                 they're "capable" of voting.  It's to
                                 improve education.  As to non-citizens,
                                 I assume you mean people who are seeking
                                 citizenship, or people working (and taxed)
                                 under a visa.  In those cases, they are
`                                working under pre-agreed conditions.  If
                                 you're talking about undocumented people,
                                 I don't speak on that subject for lack of
                                 knowledge. --scotsman
                                 \_ My idea is about improving education
                                    "on the spot", if you will.
                                    \_ It's not the place for it, and I'd
                                       presume law and precedence on the
                                       matter would back me up. IANAL.
                                       http://epress.anu.edu.au/cw/mobile_devices/ch13s02.html
                                       http://www.britannica.com/eb/topic-1004351/literacy-test
                                       \_ It isn't a literacy test.  You're
                                          way too focused on that part.  How
                                          do you expect your populace to get
                                          educated?
                                          \_ An educated populace doesn't
                                             solve the problem. You need
                                             to demonstrate you care
                                             enough to know the issues.
                                             Knowing a lot about EE
                                             doesn't mean you know diddly
                                             about Prop XYZ, or even read
                                             it. Therefore, I think some
                                             sort of test of knowledge
                                             would be useful. "Do you know
                                             what Prop XYZ is about?"
                                             \_ An EE degree != educated. I
                                                think it was clear that in
                                                the context of this discussion
                                                we're talking about a basic
                                                knowledge of civics, not about
                                                requiring a 4 year degree. Ok,
                                                let's try again: I want to see
                                                voters who know what they're
                                                voting for/about and I want
                                                their votes to count without
                                                going to direct nationwide
                                                polling.  What is your
                                                suggestion?
                                                \_ And I want a pony and a
                                                   blowjob, but wishing
                                                   doesn't make it so.
                                                   Actually, I'll probably get
                                                   the blowjob.  What is your
                                                   point? -dans,!PP
                                                   \_ If you have nothing to
                                                      contribute, don't.  I'll
                                                      stick to the validity of
                                                      my 'civics lesson
                                                      requirement' for voting
                                                      since no one here can
                                                      come up with a flaw in
                                                      it, just childish noise.
                                                      \_ Read a fucking
                                                         history book.
                                                         Reading requirements
                                                         for voters were
                                                         historically abused
                                                         to systematically
                                                         disenfranchise poor
                                                         and black voters.
                                                         Your civics lesson
                                                         nonsense would be
                                                         subject to similar
                                                         abuse.  Others have
                                                         made this point.  I
                                                         shouldn't have to do
                                                         it again.  Enjoy your
                                                         pony. -dans
                                                         \_ You are totally
                        ignoring what I have been saying.  It can be read, it
                        can be a phone call, it can be read to you, I don't
                        care what form it takes and you keep intentionally
                        ignoring that which makes you a troll.  If there is a
                        Hellen Keller voter out there who can't read, hear, or
                        anything else then we'll give her a pass on the
                        requirement.  You're just trolling.  I'm not tom, stop
                        trolling me like I'm him.
                                                         \_ So because
                                                            someone may abuse
                                                            a law that means
                                                            we should not
                                                            have it? The status
                                                            quo, with only a
                                                            few people at the
                                                            polls and many of
                                                            *those* having no
                                                            clue what they are
                                                            doing is not being
                                                            abused by
                                                            politicians?
                                                            \_ Hyperbole; we're
                                                               not there yet.
                                                               Also, as to yr
                                                               first q, when
                                                               there's a track
                                                               record, yes.
2007/10/7-11 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/California/Arnold] UID:48258 Activity:moderate
10/7    Let's make every vote count.  Unless it hurts us.
        http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2007/10/07/MNSESIOTG.DTL
        \_ Changing the electoral system of the most populous state in the
           country, while leaving the rest of the states the same, is not
           "making every vote count"; it's a transparent attempt to undermine
           the electoral process.  If you want to change all 50 states, we'd
           have something to talk about.  -tom
           \_ I'd take a 50 state change.  And no, CA wouldn't even be the
              first leading the way, but the third.  And if you read the
              article, they have no concern about voters but their own power.
              How many quotes in there are about killing babies and shooting
              guns and other forms of violence?
              \_ I'd consider a 50-state change, but that's not what's on the
                 table.  I'm sure the Republicans would fight heartily against
                 a 50-state change.  This is a political move (led by
                 Guliani's campaign) and was defeated politically
                 by the opposing party.  No surprise at all.  -tom
                 \_ Of course, that can never happen.  States aren't allowed to
                    make those compacts.  Frankly I think it'd be better if
                    every state went to the congressional district solution,
                    but I'd be okay if CA did it.  That would probably go for
                    TX, NY and FL as well.  The states are too big.
                    \_ 'States aren't allowed to make those compacts'?
                       E_LACKS_FACTUAL_BASIS.  You're a moron. -!tom
                       \_ What part of "No State shall, without the Consent of
                          Congress ... enter into any Agreement or Compact
                          with another State" in Article I, Section 10,
                          paragraph 3 of the constitution don't you understand?
                          http://csua.org/u/joe
                          \_ The part in Article II that says "Each state
                             shall appoint, in such manner as the Legislature
                             thereof may direct, a number of electors...."
                             http://csua.org/u/joj If a number of states
                             pass state legislation conditional on other
                             states passing similar legislation concerning
                             a winner-take-all award of electors, that would
                             not constitute the Agreement or Compact you
                             cite above.
                             \_ I believe that making the allocation of
                                electors conditional on how other states
                                allocate their electors would be an illegal
                                compact.  Do it or not.  None of this crap
                                about "who else is going"?  Otherwise, all
                                compacts could be "we'll do this if State B
                                implements it as well" would be a way to get
                                around this paragraph every single time.
                                \_ Welcome to Constitutional Law 101.
                                \_ I believe you are not a fucking lawyer,
                                   and that you should shut the fuck up before
                                   you highlight your lack of domain-specific
                                   knowledge further.
                                   \_ Jesus, even I wouldn't go that far. It's
                                      the motd, not Debate Club. -!pp
                 \_ You'd be wrong about the (R) fighting a 50 state change.
                    Because they'd win the Presidency hands down if the last
                    several elections are anything to go by.  Anyway, I don't
                    care who came up with an idea if the idea is good.  The
                    source of a good idea seems to be a reason to dismiss an
                    idea to you.  To me that is just ad hominem.
                    \_ No, you forget that Gore won the popular vote in 2000.
                    \_ In the current climate of gerrymandering by both
                       parties, district-based electoral votes are
                       meaningless. A direct apportionment by popular vote
                       would be more representative, esp. if coupled with
                       Instant Runoff Voting. --erikred
                       \_ Ok, true, I forgot the gerrymandering part.  I still
                          like the concept even if the implementation would
                          be flawed due to policians picking their voters
                          instead of voters picking their politicians.  I'm
                          not entirely thrilled with true direct democracy
                          given how stupid the average citizen is.  As a
                          separate issue I think IRV is too complex for most
                          people to figure out.  You think the butterfly
                          ballot and hanging chads thing was a mess?  Wait
                          til people start complaining they didn't understand
                          IRV or it wasn't clear or whatever so they ended up
                          with Pat Buchanan in office.
                          \_ Question: why would you expect less direct
                             methods to succeed in the face of postulated
                             stupidity of the voter?  -- ilyas
                             \_ The point (to me) of having to win voting
                                blocks (of whatever size) instead of just
                                across the entire set of individuals helps
                                prevent a regional candidate from squeaking
                                in.  When regional votes count you have to
                                please the entire nation to some degree not
                                just a large enough group who all think the
                                same.
                                \_ Alright, but given your own assumption
                                   of voter stupidity how does pleasing a wider
                                   section of voters help?  You are slicing
                                   the same stupid pie. -- ilyas
                                   \_ It spreads the stupidity such that a
                                      candidate must gain the confidence of
                                      *different* sets of stupid people.  Just
                                      taking a single geographic region or
                                      heavily taking cities/rural areas alone
                                      won't be enough.  Call it a 'stupidity
                                      smoothing function' if you like.  I don't
                                      think you'll find that many stupid people
                                      all thinking the same thing across
                                      multiple slices of the country.
                                      \_ If you just want to average, you leave
                                         yourself open to well known biases,
                                         anchoring, etc.  Averaging over
                                         stupid opinions doesn't give you good
                                         outcomes if good opinions are 'far
                                         away.'  Further, if you want
                                         to average, you can just bypass the
                                         voting thing entirely. -- ilyas
                                         voting thing entirely.  Still, it
                                         would be nice to harness the 'wisdom
                                         of the crowds' effect, though I think
                                         markets do that better than voting
                                         schemes.  But then using markets to
                                         make political decisions is batshit
                                         crazy, right?  -- ilyas
                                       \_ How would you use a market? Require
                                          people to bid for the right to vote?
                          \_ I submit to you that ordering your choices 1,
                             2, 3 would be much easier than asking Amerians
                             to select one, and only one, candidate, and
                             tough shit if he doesn't win outright.
                             \_ Of course it isn't easier. "Pick one" is easier
                                than "pick an ordered list".
                                \_ I haven't thought about voting schemes a lot,
                                   but your notion of 'easier' seems misapplied.
                                   What's difficult about 'picking one' is
                                   choosing which candidate matches your
                                   beliefs better, out of a field of candidates
                                   who are generally not very well matched to
                                   your beliefs.  This creates 'hard choices,'
                                   since the winner takes all.  In this case,
                                   an ordered list makes the choice less hard,
                                   since you are signalling your beliefs much
                                   better.  Voting isn't a computational
                                   problem but a signaling one. -- ilyas
                                \_ I haven't thought about voting schemes a
                                   lot, but your notion of 'easier' seems
                                   misapplied.  What's difficult about
                                   'picking one' is choosing which candidate
                                   matches your beliefs better, out of a field
                                   of candidates who are generally not very
                                   well matched to your beliefs.  This creates
                                   'hard choices,' since the winner takes all.
                                   In this case, an ordered list makes the
                                   choice less hard, since you are signalling
                                   your beliefs much better.  Voting isn't a
                                   computational problem but a signaling one.
                                   -- ilyas  [formatd]
                                   \_ Sorry, I meant easier to implement. True,
                                      making that one pick is not easier
                                      for a conscientious voter, especially
                                      with >2 candidates and tactical concerns.
                                      But the practical apparatus, instruction,
                                      and reporting of results are obviously
                                      harder than pick one. AFAIK this is
                                      the primary complaint. Personally I
                                      actually have long supported IRV, ever
                                      since I heard about it in high school
                                      or whatever.
                             \_ I submit to you that the typical American
                                voter barely knows anything about their first
                                choice much less has 3 choices in mind they
                                could actually rank.
                       \_ IRV is not monotonic, and thus not strategy-free.
                          I think this makes it a terrible idea.  Approval
                          voting >> IRV.  Simpler too. -dans
                          \_ Approval voting is not strategy free either.
                             I think its simplicity is a major point in
                             favor though. It's very close to the simple
                             FPTP system logistically. However I feel it
                             does not really address the "spoiler problem"
                             which is the main benefit to alternative voting
                             systems as I see it.
                             \_ Okay, just brushed up on this (I haven't done
                                serious research or study of voting systems
                                since 2004), and you are correct, approval
                                voting is not strategy free.  There exists,
                                however, fairly strong evidence that it is
                                about as resistant to tactical voting as one
                                can hope for without introducing
                                non-determinism.  We seem to be having some
                                problems with semantics because approval
                                voting *eliminates* the spoiler problem, how
                                do you feel it fails to address it?  IRV,
                                however, partly because it is not monotonic,
                                and due to several other side effects risks
                                *severe* spoiler effects. -dans
                                \_ Due to the Primary system (which won't go
                                   away with IRV), approval voting already has
                                   tactical voting built in. I consistently
                                   re-register as a member of whichever party
                                   has the Primary I want to vote in. Je suis
                                   un saboteur.
                                   \_ That's reasonable, but it has nothing to
                                      do with approval voting itself.  And,
                                      arguably, approval voting makes the
                                      primary system unnecessary, though I
                                      understand why it probably wont' go away
                                      for political reasons. -dans
                                \_ Consider candidates ABC and I think A>>B>>C.
                                   Do I vote for B or not? Voting for B hurts
                                   A's chances. But I really don't want C to
                                   win. IRV lets me just rank them A,B,C and
                                   leads to a reasonable result in general.
                                   The results may not always match some
                                   theoretical rule but I don't think it has
                                   practical problems in most cases. It's not
                                   perfect but it lets me state my preferences
                                   better than approval voting.
                                   \_ "This voting for 3 people thing really
                                       confuses me and I've now been disen-
                                       franchised!  I want to re-vote!  Wah!"
                                      \_ It would sure as hell be easier to
                                         divine voter intent in IRV than
                                         hanging chads.
                    \_ Um, the idea is terrible.  It's a blatant power grab.
                       Furthermore, past events are not a predictor of future
                       behavior.  There are some very interesting shifts in
                       the behavior of substantial voter demographics in red
                       states.  Oh, and you don't seem to know what ad hominem
                       means.  You're a moron.  That's ad hominem. -!tom
                       \_ Ad hominem: attacking the man, not the idea.  Thank
                          you for showing us how little you know.  The idea is
                          great.  It gets us closer to true democracy instead
                          \_ Little known fact:  The founding fathers didn't
                             want "true democracy".  They thought the people
                             as a whole, were dumb.  So much stupid shit
                             happens these days that I am inclined to agree
                             with them.  There's a reason we are a
                             'representational democracy'.
                             \_ I'm aware of that and the FF were right.  But
                                the country was much smaller then and I don't
                                think they foresaw half a dozen states of 50
                                determining the POTUS with no realistic say
                                for the rest of the country.  Going to county
                                sized voting blocks would still be
                                representational without going 100% democracy.
                          \_ I take it back, you're not a moron, you're a
                             disingenuous tool.
                             \_ Who cares what you think?  You've yet to post
                                anything that could be mistaken for rational
                                thought or adding value to this discussion.
                          of the current system of Red/Blue states where if
                          you're in the "wrong color" state your vote has no
                          power.  It is not a power grab.  I don't care which
                          "color" President gets elected.  I want votes to
                          count.  What do *you* want?  You want "your guy"
                          whoever that is to be in office no matter how they
                          got there.  *That* is what power grabbing is about.
                          \_ Stating the fact that Giuliani's campaign was
                             leading the push is not an ad hominem.  Stating
                             that it is a naked political push to crack CA's
                             electoral vote bloc is not either.  Saying "I
                             don't like it because Giuliani's a doo doo head"
                             would be, but no one said such a thing.  The
                                \_ In context, it was clearly meant as "G.
                                   came up with this so it must be bad".
                                   \_ Bullshit.  You're laying your opinion
                                      of the matter on others' comments.
                                      \_ Welcome to the motd.  Ready to play?
                             other two states that break up their votes along
                             district lines each have 3 electoral votes.  For
                             them it makes sense to do this so they can grab
                             attention from the candidates.  For CA it would
                                \_ 3 votes isn't attention grabbing.
                                   \_ In a tight race, it can be.
                                      \_ "In a tight race your vote might
                                         count, maybe, otherwise screw you."
                                         That isn't what our voting system
                                         was supposed to be like.
                                         \_ I don't see how you've put any
                                            proposal forward which would change
                                            this.
                                            \_ I stated I think we should do
                                               it by county or by voting
                                               district or polling place or
                                               whatever instead of as giant
                                               state sized blocks.  I've also
                                               explained why I think this will
                                               improve voter 'value' in more
                                               than the current top 6 states.
                                               \_ If the race isn't tight,
                                                  your vote still wouldn't
                                                  count.
                             be a sacrifice of the state's sway in electoral
                             politics.  I would tend to agree with an amendment
                                \_ We have no sway.  We're the bank for the
                                   party who comes through here doing no
                                   campaigning at all because they know our
                                   votes don't matter.  They just take our
                                   money.
                             to institute such a change nationwide, though it
                             would be a big bite out of the 10th..  I would
                             also agree with abolishing the electoral college,
                             but that's just me. --scotsman
                                \_ I'm not saying CA should be the only state
                                   doing it.  I'd go for a nationwide change.
                                   But not doing it out of pure partisan power
                                   play politics puts party before nation.  I
                                   have no interest in that.  Nation first.
                                   \_ How would the nation be better off if
                                      California (and only California) split
                                      its electoral votes?  -tom
                                      \_ It would bring candidates here to
                                         earn our votes because it would
                                         suddenly matter.  Other states would
                                         see that and follow suit.  Voila!
                                         Now everyone's vote matters more and
                                         the nation is better off.
                                         \_ With us voting last and our
                                            primaries near last, the elections
                                            are often 'called' before they even
                                            get to us.  Granted recent years
                                            much of this has changed.
                                            \_ That's another story.  As a CA
                                               resident our insanely late
                                               voting date always irked me.
                                               This time we're Feb 5th only
                                               a few weeks after the first
                                               votes take place so we finally
                                               get a say in things.  We're
                                               still the bankroll for both
                                               parties and they don't
                                               campaign here at all but at
                                               least our votes might count
                                               for something.
                                               \_ The Democrats have been
                                                  campaigning like mad in
                                                  California, where have you
                                                  been? Each major candidate
                                                  has been to the Bay Area
                                                  alone in the last six weeks.
                                   \_ Proud statements, but it's not a
                                      persuasive argument for CA switching.
                                      Politics is the process by which the
                                      nation runs.  Go find a benevolent
                                      monarchy if'n you don't like it.
                                      \_ See my response to tom just above.
                                         But I do find your "love it or leave
                                         it" line amusing.  I wonder if you
                                         see the irony in that statement in a
                                         dicussion of how to better run our
                                         representational democracy.  :-)
                                         \_ In your argument, you've decided
                                            to reject the process that under-
                                            pins democracy out of hand. I
                                            wonder if you see the irony in
                                            thinking you're astute enough
                                            to declare something ironic.
                                            Are you the same person who
                                            claimed "earmarks" == "pork"?
                                            \_ In what way have I rejected the
                                               process that underpins
                                               democracy? Au contraire mon
                                               frere!  I want more people in
                                               more places (all places) to
                                               know their vote is valued.
                                               \_ You reject "politics".  We
                                                  are a representative
                                                  democracy.  Do you support
                                                  Mike Gravel's direct
                                                  democracy initiative?
                          \_ Eh, I'm gonna have to go with !tom on this one.
                             Maraland passed a similar law with the stipulation
                             "when enough other states change to swing the
                             electoral college."  To do it in just one state
                             is whack.  That said, yeah CA is WAY too large.
                             \_ Sure, but if you split it into NorCal/SoCal,
                                SFBA and LA would still be the 500lb.
                                gorillas.
                                \_ That's only because human beings should
                                   have more of an effect on the electoral
                                   process than dirt does.  -tom
                                   \_ What?  Dirt?  Huh?
                                      \_ The Bay Area has people.
                                         Modoc County has dirt.  -tom
                                         \_ So you think people in Modoc County
                                            shouldn't count?  LA has way more
                                            people than SF.  By your logic, we
                                            should only count LA's votes.  Oh,
                                            and San Jose since they have more
                                            people than SF, too.
                                            \_ If Modoc, Salinas, King, Fresno,
                                               San Diego, and Orange all swing
                                               against LA, LA loses.
                                               \_ Ok, and so?  It takes 6
                                                  counties, 2 of them heavily
                                                  populated to top LA.  What
                                                  is wrong with that?
                                                  \_ Nothing. It just proves
                                                     that people count more
                                                     than dirt.
                                         \_ So you disapprove of the Senate?
                                            \_ As arbitrary divisions of
                                               representation go, this one
                                               is still oddly more repre-
                                               sentative than are Districts.
                                               \_ You're inconsistent (or
                                                  you're inconsistent with
                                                  tom).  Either dirt counts or
                                                  it doesn't.
                                                  \_ You're beating a straw
                                                     man.  Note that I said
                                                     "more of an effect." -tom
                                                     \_ And in the Senate, the
                                                        dirt matters more than
                                                        the people.
                                                        \_ If so, Alaska would
                                                           get more Senators
                                                           than RI.
                                                  \_ Arguably, the Senate
                                                     is neither about dirt
                                                     or ppl, just arb. pol.
                                                     distinctions. -pp
                \-  Trying to get this implemented ni a large state with a
                   long history of voting for a particular party is patently
                   unfair unless coupled with a number states whose combined
                   electoral votes show a similarly strong record voting for
                   the other party.  I  could agree with legislation to divide
                   CA's electoral votes by popular vote if that condition was
                   met.   The alternative of course, is implementation over
                   all states.
                      Were third (and nth) parties considered as well?
        \_ You may wish to peruse:
   http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2007/10/andrew-gelman-w.html
2007/10/6-11 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48250 Activity:low
10/3    http://www.kidsdata.org/topictables.jsp?t=18&i=7&ra=8_2
        Look, Democrats are more concerned about children than
        Republicans by ~20%! See, Republicans are selfish bastards. -troll
        \_ Charles Manson was a liberal. Any question?          -anti-troll
           \_ So was Hitler - anti-anti-troll
        \_ i hope you are not talking about the recent veto of extending
            health insurance to low-income children.  Because that bill is
            largely sponsered by Republicans.
           One thing I failed to understnd is that congress can EASILY
           use war funding to choke President Bush but they don't have the
           gutts to do so.  They should know that even if we just cut the
           war funding, the public probably won't hold much against it.
           \_ Well it's well known that liberals are wishy washy flip-flops
              who are afraid to fight Osama Bin Laden, or something like that
              \_ No, official policy is that terrorism is a criminal matter,
                 thus an FBI issue.
        \_ I found the real reason why he vetoed it - the hidden cigar tax!
           Bush may not smoke them, but his rich buddies all do.
2007/10/3-5 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton, Politics/Domestic/Immigration] UID:48233 Activity:nil
10/3    Secessionists meeting in Tennessee
        http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071003/ap_on_re_us/secessionist_movement_1
2007/9/27-10/2 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48205 Activity:high
9/27    In response to the previous threads about rubber stamp Democrats.
        My point is not rather we should fund the war or not.  But rahter,
        if we going to fund it, fund it as part of regular budget process
        instead of going through all these supplement spending bills which
        doesn't have the same oversight as regular spending bill.  Further,
        I failed to understand why Democrat would take Bush's veto threat
        about domestic spending while this guy's military spending is going
        completely out of control.   Democrats should just say "fund the war
        via the regular spending bill, or not fund the war at all."
        \_ Ask Pelosi and Reid why they continue to fund it.  The American
           people put them in office for a reason.  They promised to end the
           war and clean up government.  Under their watch, the war has
           actually expanded by 30k troops and corruption is rampant across
           the board.  Oh yay, I so can't wait to vote for that bunch again.
           They've been so effective.
           \_ In what way is "corruption rampant"? Is there more or less
              corruption than with the Republican Congress?
              \_ Hello?  Earmarking the hell out of the budget?  Just like
                 Republicans, except the Democrats promised to cleanup.  So
                 we get corruption+hypocritics instead of 'mere' corruption.
                 There's a reason Congress's popularity rating as a whole is
                 at all time lows.  No one likes a liar (Iraq funding) or
                 a hypocrite (earmarking corruption).
                 \_ give some examples of corrupt earmarking.  earmarking is
                    not inherently corrupt.
                    \_ you're kidding, right?  DiFi's committee granting
                       nobids to her husband's company?  Pelosi granting
                       handouts to her family's companies?  Murtha, well damn,
                       just about anything Murtha has come near.  Look, be
                       serious.  You can't point a finger at the other party
                       and scream 'corruption!' when your own party is doing
                       the same crap.  Glass houses and all that.  If you
                       spent less time prowling for Republican corruption
                       and turned less of a blind eye towards Democratic
                       party corruptions, you'd see the hypocrisy and I for
                       one have had enough.  I will not support corrupt people
                       of either party even if they sometimes agree with me or
                       even vote the way I like most of the time.
                       \_ Please back up your claims.
                          \_ I did.  I'm not going to discuss this further
                             with someone so clearly wearing blinders.  You
                             would google for it yourself if you actually
                             cared and weren't suffering from severe self
                             inflicted blindness.
                             \_ No, you didn't.  You gave allegations.
                                \_ Whatever.  You don't want to know and
                                   wouldn't care if I put it under your
                                   nose.  Bored now.  Bye.
                                   \_ "And I'm taking my ball and going home!"
                                      \_ No, just bored and not looking to get
                                         trolled today.  I gave you more than
                                         enough info to google it if you
                                         cared to know.  You don't.  Story
                                         over.
                                      \_ Wow, fools do mock! -!pp
                                         \_ Your contribution: zero. oktnx
                       \_ You do know that the current Congress has 1/10th
                          as many earmarks in the budget than the GOP Congress
                          immediately preceeding it, right?
                          \_ When it is zero, lemme know.  "Woot!  The one
                             party is not quite as corrupt (yet) as the other
                             party!  Yay for such heroism in government!"
                             \_ Good luck on holding out for your utopian
                                society. Are you going to hold your breath
                                until you get it? Not everyone even is able
                                to agree on what "corruption" in government
                                is, so you will never find one without any.
                                As a previoius poster noted, sometimes there
                                are legitimate uses for an earmark.
                                \_ Name a legitimate use for an earmark.  I'm
                                   not certain you even understand what an
                                   earmark is.  An earmark is a politician
                                   sticking something into a bill to give
                                   money to some local cronies in their
                                   district which usually has nothing at all
                                   to do with the bill.  The bill in question
                                   is typically one of many "must be passed"
                                   pieces of legislation so no one will vote
                                   against it even though it is loaded with
                                   pork.  If the allocation of money was
                                   legitimate it would have it's own bill.
                                   Earmarking = corruption.  Unless you
                                   already hold office or are the recipient
                                   of said funds.
                                   \_ Earmarks can be legitimately used to
                                      fund specific projects.  Don't be
                                      obtuse.  -tom
                                      \_ Name a legitimate earmark.  Just one.
                                         A specific project can and should get
                                         a specific bill, or be part of a
                                         larger related budget.  I expect the
                                         military budget to include funding
                                         for specific weapons and bases.  I do
                                         not expect it to include bridges to
                                         no where, funding for DiFi and Pelosi
                                         family and friends, or anything not
                                         related to the military.  Either you
                                         don't know what an earmark is or
                                         you're being a total idiot
                                         intentionally.  Either way, no one
                                         has posted a single earmarked item
                                         that is legit.  Given how many
                                         billions of dollars in earmarks go
                                         out in each budget, you should be
                                         able to name one legitimate earmark,
                                         if there were any.  There are not.
                                         \_ Here is $1B worth of earmarks
                                            to improve the CA freeway system.
                                            Are you going to claim that all of
                                            them are unneeded?
                                            link:www.csua.org/u/jma
                                            \_ privatized freeway systems
                                               are cost effective and
                                               better utilized.
                                               \_ Better utilized? Wtf does
                                                  that even mean?
                                               \_ So your claim that these
                                                  earmarks are corrupt is
                                                  based on the idea that
                                                  freeways should all be
                                                  tollways??! Hoo-kay, please
                                                  sign your posts with the
                                                  moniker "Libertarian Troll"
                                                  next time, so I will know
                                                  not to waste my time
                                                  researching a reply.
                                            \_ You're kidding right?  Of course
                                               a transportation bill has money
                                               for transportation projects.
                                               Why do you even bother?  I don't
                                               get it.  Do you think no one
                                               will fact check your links? I
                                               specifically said they're
                                               filling the budget with money
                                               for local projects unrelated
                                               to the bill they're attached
                                               to.  Transport money in a
                                               transport bill is not what I
                                               was talking about and you knew
                                               that.
                                               \_ The transportation bill is
                                                  one of the appropriations
                                                  bills that make up the
                                                  "budget".  It is you who do
                                                  not know of what you speak.
                                                  He pointed to a "budget" bill
                                                  with "earmarks" which you
                                                  admit are "valid".  You are
                                                  clearly too short for this
                                                  ride. --scotsman
                                                  \_ I was quite specific about
                                                     this.  If you choose not
                                                     to read it and instead
                                                     pick and choose single
                                                     words out of context to
                                                     'feel big', then do so
                                                     but don't think you've
                                                     actually proven anything.
                                                     \_ You have repeatedly
                                                        mistaken "earmarks" for
                                                        "pork".  When called on
                                                        it, you got all
                                                        defensive and claimed
                                                        that everyone else is
                                                        an idiot.  To earmark
                                                        is to set aside monies
                                                        for a specific project.
                                                        Tom's phraseology is
                                                        right.  Yours is wrong.
                                                        Also, you mentioned
                                                        the "Bridge to Nowhere".
                                                        I assume you meant
                                                        Stevens' $200M joke.
                                                        What bill do you think
                                                        that was to be in?
                                                        Hint: it wasn't in
                                                        Defense.
                                                        --scotsman
2007/9/24-27 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48166 Activity:nil
9/24    Gosh, why do we even have Proxy Vote for stocks? It's not like any
        of us commoners have any power. Look at this for example where
        the Board of Directors vote against all commoners' wishes:
        02. PROPOSAL FOR THE APPROVAL OF THE ADOPTION OF THE FISCAL YEAR
           2008 EXECUTIVE BONUS PLAN.
           Directors Recommend: FOR <--- uh, DUH, they want my MONEY
        03 .  PROPOSAL TO RATIFY THE SELECTION OF ERNST & YOUNG LLP AS
           INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM OF THE COMPANY
           FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING MAY 31, 2008.
           Directors Recommend: FOR <--- uh, DUH, they suck
        04 .  STOCKHOLDER PROPOSAL ON THE AMENDMENT TO THE CORPORATE
           BYLAWS ESTABLISHING A BOARD COMMITTEE ON HUMAN RIGHTS.
           Directors Recommend: AGAINST <--- uh, DUH, human rights will
                                             get in the way of PROFITS
        05 .  STOCKHOLDER PROPOSAL ON AN OPEN SOURCE REPORT.
           Directors Recommend: AGAINST
        \_ Duh, of course the recommend stuff that lines their pockets.
           Sheesh.  This is direct plutodemocracy.  You vote with your
           dollars.  Don't have as many dollars = less voting power.  Why
           should someone who invested $100m into a company have less say
           than you who dropped $5 in?
2007/9/20-22 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:48133 Activity:low
9/20    Someone deleted my CRV question. Where does the money collected
        by the CRV end up? I assume (perhaps incorrectly) that some of it
        is used to pay refunds, but what happens to the rest? I STFW already.
        \_ The first two hits on google for "california CRV money" came up
           with very informative articles on this subject:
           http://www.sdreader.com/php/ma_show.php?id=384
           http://www.sdreader.com/php/ma_show.php?id=279
           about the 6th hit is
           http://www.somelifeblog.com/2007/01/californias-redemption-value-increase.html
           which goes into great detail on this.
           The latter ones two seemed really relevant to your question.  At
           this point all I can say is LRN2STFW.  -ERic
           \_ I used Yahoo! and not Google. BTW, thanks.
             \_ Its is a poor craftsman who blames his tools.
                \_ Not blaming the tool. Just saying #1 and #2 hits on
                   Yahoo! were not informative. In fact, most were not.
2007/9/14-22 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:48077 Activity:nil
9/14    Paging AGONZALES :
        http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-ucilaw13sep13,0,5893599.story
        [considering what LSUMMERS was booted for, as BDELONG says "Why does
        MDRAKE still have a job?"
        \_ Right Wing Political Correctness run amok.
        \_ Political Correctness run amok.
           \- speaking of LSUMMERS:
              http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2007/09/unclear-on-the-.html
           \- speaking of LSUMMERS and UC:
              http://tinyurl.com/2kvadz
2007/9/14-22 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Bush] UID:48070 Activity:low
9/14    Another radical leftist on Bush's economic policies:
        http://www.csua.org/u/jj5
        "Little value was placed on rigorous economic policy debate or the
        weighing of long-term consequences," Greenspan writes of the Bush
        administration.
        Greenspan said he unsuccessfully urged the White House to veto
        "out-of-control" spending bills while the Republicans controlled
        Congress. Republicans "deserved" to lose control of Congress in last
        year's election because they "swapped principle for power," he said.
        \_ Who are you baiting?  I don't recall anyone here being an ardent
           proponent of high spending.
           \_ There sure are (were?) a lot of pro-war pro-spending folks
              posting a few years ago. Nice if they all had a change of heart.
              \_ You're confusing pro-war with pro-spending.  I was appalled
                 when Bush's first action in 2001 was to do an across the
                 board increase to every federal budget.  I'm still anti-tax,
                 anti-spending.  That has no relation to my opinions on the
                 war which is a foreign policy decision, not an economic or
                 political one (for me).
                 \_ You think the war is free?
                    \_ Don't strawman, of course it isn't.  It also isn't a
                       "spending" decision as I explained.
                       \_ It's not a spending decision, it's just a decision
                          which requires spending!  As much spending as all
                          our other decisions combined!  Right!
                          \_ Snarky was cute in HS.  If you have something
                             worth saying I'll gladly discuss it further with
                             you but if all you've got is snarky one liners in
                             response to my serious explanations then don't
                             bother.  Snarky is no longer a successful debate
                             tactic at this stage of life.
                             \_ You don't have a serious point.  "war is a
                                policy decision, not a spending one" is
                                tautological and meaningless.  Whether to
                                embargo Cuba is a policy decision; whether
                                to go or war or not is a spending decision.
                                \_ Well, going to war without cutting anything
                                   else is certainly an interesting spending
                                   decision...
                                   \_ Oh they cut things.  Taxes for one.
                                      \_ Well, duh... CUTTING TAXES INCREASES
                                         REVENUES DIDN'TCHAKNOW
                       \_ No, it is not a "strawman" to point out that starting
                          wars costs money. It is kind of willfully blind to
                          pretend that it does not.
                          pretend that it does not. Would you support starting
                          a war that had a moderate foreign policy gain if it
                          cost $10T? $100T? Of course cost considers into the
                          decision.
2007/9/12-14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic] UID:48035 Activity:moderate
9/12    High School students not allowed to wear US Flag
        \_ On 9/11
         \_ The day that changed everything!
        http://img406.imageshack.us/my.php?image=736551408894700123226loxq4.jpg
        http://www.nbc17.com/midatlantic/ncn/news.apx.-content-articles-NCN-2007-09-11-0027.html
        \_ More imporantly, stupid school bans wearing flags, has
           to deal with the consequences of such an assinine rule.
           \_ The US flag isn't a foreign flag.
            \_ It's a stupid fucking rule.  Start banning things just because
               they are foreign and you are asking for a much deserved
               lawsuit.
               \_ I'm pretty sure schools can ban pretty much whatever they
                  like Anyway, it is a stupid rule, I agree.  But the leap
                  from that rule to baninng the US flag is
                  mind-boggling. -op (!pp)
                  \_ No they can't.  There are free speach limits even at a
                     school.  And let's take a hypothetical.  Hispanic
                     students start wearing Mexican flags, people get upset
                     some kids get into fights.  The school bans Mexican flags.
                     (And it doesn't get smacked down.)  Now some of the
                     love it leave it assholes who were also part fighting
                     start wearing American flags as a fuck you this is America
                     display (not hard to imagine now is it?)  Why is one
                     acceptable and the other not?
                     \_ Umm.. because this actually IS ths US?
                      \_ So why are they banning flags then?  Because
                         "This is America damnit (tm)" or because flags
                         were causing a significant disruption?
                         \_ What is wrong with "This is America damnit (tm)"
                            anyway?  Is this *not* America?
                            \_ Besides the xenophobic viewpoint it's not
                               appropriate for schools to degenerate into
                               violence.  Why were flags banned in the first
                               place?  Until you get answer that, this is just
                               squwaking.
                               \_ Flag Code aside (because that isn't why they
                                  were banned): Banning flags is not the real
                                  issue.  The issue is violence.  Banning flags
                                  doesn't make the hatred that causes the
                                  violence to go away.  Now that I've answered
                                  that, tell me what is so wrong about loving
                                  your country and putting your own nation
                                  above others.
                               \_ Why not look it up yourself, squwaker? You're
                                  the one asking.  Why is it my job to answer
                                  your questions?
                                  \_ Because I'm not the one in hysteronics
                                     about the evil anti-american flag cabal?
        \_ Wearing the US flag is a violation of the Flag Code: http://www.legion.org/?section=our_flag&subsection=flag_code&content=flag_respect  -tom
           \_ So is lowering the US flag to half-mast when some local hero
              (e.g. firefighter in your community) dies while in line of duty.
              But people do it arbitrarily anyway.
              \_ You are incorrect.  Half-staff may be ordered by the
                 president, but that does not preclude respectful displays
                 by other local authorities at other times.
                 (Oops.  I'm wrong.  The order to half-staff can only come
                 from the President or a Governor.  Never mind.)
              \_ Yes, it's just funny to see rah rah U-S-A types defending
                 violations of the Flag Code.  -tom
2007/9/10-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Crime] UID:47999 Activity:moderate
9/10    Will Hsu have as much fallout as Abramoff?
        \_ No
        \_ Abramoff was a criminal working for other criminal republicans
           in an ongoing effort to subvert the usc and all that is right and
        \_ Abramoff wa s a criminal working f or other criminal republicans
            in an ongoi ng effort to subvert t he usc and all that is right and
           good in the world.
           Hsu is a victim of racism and an overzealous hostile prosecutorial
           system that seems to oppress and limit his natural free speech
           right to assist his chosen and righteous candidate obtain high
           office so she can fight the good fight for the entire village
           against the barbarians.
            Hsu is a vic tim of  racism and an overzealous hostile prosecutori
           system that se ems to  oppress and limit his natural free speech
            right to assist his c hosen and righteous candidate obtain high
           o ffice so she  can fig ht the good fight for the entire village
           ag ainst the bar barians .
           So, no.
           \_ I know you think you're funny, but I can't figure out
              how Hsu may have benefited from all of contributions.
           \_ I  kno  w you think you're funny, but I can't figure out
              ho w Hs  u may have benefited from all of contributions.
              This is an important distiction.
              \_ You can't figure out how a businessman benefits from
                 contributing lots of money to politicians?
                 contrib  uting lots of money to politicians?
                 \_ Yeah, I can't actually.  What was he selling besides
                    suckering people into a Ponzi scheme in CA 15 years
                    ago?  Exactly how does holding fundraisers jump start
                    my Ponzi scheme business that I can't tell anyone about
                     suck ering people into a Ponzi scheme in CA 15 years
                    a go?    Exactly how does holding fundraisers jump start
                    my  Ponz i scheme business that I can't tell anyone about
                    because if they figure out who I am I'll go to jail?
                    \_  If y o u can't see how bundled cash has destroyed our
                       s  yst e m of government then please don't vote.
                    \_ If you can't see how bundled cash has destroyed our
                       system of government then please don't vote.
                 \_ Sorry, is there a quid-pro-quo actually being alleged?
                    I haven't seen anything other than "convicted felon
                    gave money, politicians give it away".
                    I haven 't  s een anything other than "convicted felon
                    gave money,  p oliticians give it away".
                    \_ If yo u ca n 't see how bundled cash has destroyed our
                       system  of  g overnment then please don't vote.
                    \_ If you can't see how bundled cash has destroyed our
                       system of government then please don't vote.
                       \_ But... But... Money is SPEECH!  You don't want to
                          LIMIT SPEECH, do you?!  Until we have public funding
                          of elections, bundled money will persist.  And
                          unsavory characters will pop up.  You seem to be
                          insinuating, though, that taking Hsu's money auto-
                          matically means that politician is corrupt.  If you
                          can't see that's not necessarily true, you're the
                          one in need of the civics lesson.
                          \_ Money corrupts.  Bundled money corrupts absolutely
                             and has for a long time.  Was there quid pro quo
                             on this particular bundled cash?  I don't know and
                             I don't care and I don't think it matters.  It is
                             a systematic problem.  I have never stated a
                             preference either way on public funding or the
                             'money is free speech' concept so I don't know
                             why you're going there.  Money = corruption.  Big
                             money = big corruption.  This isn't that hard to
                             understand.  If you're still looking at this as
                             a "I must defend Hillary from her evil attackers!"
                             issue then don't bother.  She isn't that
                             important.  She's just one symptom of a greater
                             illness in the government.
                             \_ So what are you doing about it and what do you
                                think a solution would be? Just complaining
                                doesn't do much to help, if anything at all.
                                \_ This wasn't about what I am personally
                                   doing about it.  This is about "does
                                   bundled money corrupt government or not?"
                                   And my answer is "yes it does".
                                   \_ I agree with you 100%. I am just (mostly)
                                      at a quandry as to what to do about it.
                                      Got any suggestions?
                             \_ What he said, and also, this "pox on both
                                their houses crap" is for the weak.
                                \_ How very black and white Bush of you. "You
                                   are either with us or against us!".  I'm a
                                   politically aware moderate and if your
                                   party (whichever that may be) keeps pushing
                                   your one sided idiocy your asses will be
                                   out of office.  The real power is at the
                                   center in the hands of swing voters.  Your
                                   party will displease us at their peril.
        \_ Hu is Hsu?
2007/9/10-13 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/Election] UID:47996 Activity:high
9/10    A reminder of 6 years ago
        http://www.coxandforkum.com/archives/001195.html
        \_ Lucky bastard.
        \_ Yes, I remember how the Commander-In-Chief finished reading
           _My_Pet_Goat_ and then ran away and hid, while America was under
           attack.
           \_ Nice partisan shot at a non-partisan post.  I salute you troll!
              \_ Cox and Forkum is non-partisan? In what Universe?
                 \_ The post itself was non-partisan, irrespective of the rest
                    of the site.
           \_ You are so 9/12.  With everything that has happened since then
              if wasting 7 minutes for the cameras and then going to airforce
              one like he's supposed is still on your mind as being important
              at all then vote republican next time.  They can use your help.
              \_ Who decides what the President is supposed to do in this case?
                 Most past Presidents had enough personal bravery to fulfill
                 their responsibility to the nation first.
                 \_ Yeah yeah nice, join us here with our problems in 2007.
                    As far as your whining about being on AF1 6 years ago,
                    maybe standing in front of the whitehouse trying to catch
                    an incoming 747 would have been a nice gesture but they
                    still evacuate buildings for anthrax and bomb scares, too.
                    Next time congress has a scare should they stay there
                    anyway to show their bravery?  You're too stupid to
                    continue breathing.  Please fix that, trollboy.  Back here
                    in 2007 no one gives a crap about pet goats.
                    \_ That's right, join us in 2007 where we STILL need to
                       impeach the treasonous SOB.
                       \_ Treasonous and cowardly.
                       \_ At least the topic of impeachment is 2007 and is
                          about things more important than pet goats.
                          \_ I get what you're saying, but I get a serious
                             twitch thinking that we're somehow better off now
                             that we have something more than silly behavior
                             on which to base a call for impeachment.
                             \_ No we're not better off, of course but it is
                                a total head-shaker for me that anyone would
                                even bother to troll on pet goats at this
                                point.  It's just a stupid waste of bits.  As
                                far as impeachment is concerned, that is and
                                always has been a political issue, not a legal
                                one.  The *only* requirement is having enough
                                votes for it.  If you got the votes and the
                                balls, then go for it.  If you don't, then
                                there's no point in mentioning it.  I think an
                                impeachment could be exciting in a spectator
                                sport sort of way but it isn't going to happen
                                so what's the point of talking about it?  By
                                "you" I mean "whoever is in power at the time
                                and doesn't like the current administration
                                now or at any other time", not "you
                                personally".  I don't expect a random csuaer
                                to single handedly impeach the US President. :)
                                \_ You asked for "recollections of 9/11." I
                                   posted mine. Too bad that anything other
                                   than your rose colored vision of the
                                   past is "Trolling" to you.
                    \_ Yes, Congress should stay to show their bravery. It is
                       the overreaction to 9/11 that caused more damage than
                       the event iteslf. If our leaders had shown some courage
                       and self-sacrifice, the population at large would have
                       done so as well and we wouldn't be in the mess we are
                       in now.
                       \_ Hence the call for impeachment.
                       \_ You didn't peg the Troll Meter.  You just broke it.
                          You think Congress should stay in a bomb/anthrax
                          scare building to show their bravery?  Complete
                          waste of precious bits.  Get off the net.  Find a
                          bridge to hide under.
                          \_ There was a time when bravery was considered
                             a virtue by most and it still is by some of us.
                             Obviously, you are not one of them. Who are you
                             to decide who is deserving of having on opinion
                             or not? Grow up.
                             or not? Grow up. How many bomb threats a day do
                             you think Congress gets? Why did they evacuate
                             Capital Hill because a single-engined Cesssna
                             flew off course? It was all part of an attempt
                             to terrorize the sheeple, which apparently took
                             quite well in your case. Land of the Free,
                             Home of the Brave, indeed.
2007/9/7 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:47947 Activity:nil
9/7     Is Norman Hsu in witness protection program after "falling"
        on the train?
        http://www.csua.org/u/jgy
2007/9/7 [Politics/Domestic/California, Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton] UID:47946 Activity:nil
9/7     Norman Hsu, big Hillary fundraiser, now under indictmen,
        "falls" on trainride to Arkansas:
        http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1892624/posts
2007/9/7-10 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:47931 Activity:nil
9/6     http://berkeleydailyplanet.com/article.cfm?issue=09-07-07&storyID=27961

        Editors, Daily Planet

        I flew from Tennessee to California to attend the UT-CAL game this
        past Saturday. The Cal campus is beautiful. Although I wore the most
        obnoxious orange clothes and shoes I had, everyone I met was
        exceedingly friendly and gracious. Except for the fact that my team
        lost the game (the better team won) everything else about my time and
        experience in Berkeley and on campus was exceptionally positive.

        I was, however, slightly unnerved by the people in the trees.
        Everywhere I went I heard people saying they had high-powered rifles
        and could be snipers. Although I didn.t take such talk seriously it
        did create a slight sense of uneasiness. I asked a police official
        stationed at the base of an occupied tree overlooking the football
        field if there were any truth to the .rumors.. His half-smile while
        saying "no" was not very reassuring.

        The attitude of the authorities and people in California is cavalier
        and dismissive as if a Virginia Tech or University of Texas Bell Tower
        incident couldn.t happen there. I know this is very unpleasant,
        uncomfortable, difficult and even painful to contemplate for some of
        you but it could happen.
        Perhaps they have conducted background checks and psychological tests
        to ensure the people they allow in the trees are emotionally and
        psychologically healthy and stable. I hope so.

        Robert W. Overman
        Memphis, TN
2007/9/7-10 [Politics/Domestic/California] UID:47929 Activity:nil
9/7     "World's largest photograph displayed in California"
        link:www.yahoo.com/s/670318
        Is there anything in that large photo???  All I see is some gray color.
2007/9/6 [Politics/Domestic/President/Clinton, Politics/Domestic/California] UID:47908 Activity:kinda low
9/6     Who would vote for Fred "old, grumpy, get off my lawn white
        guy who doesn't seem that different from the other 9 old
        grumpy white guys hoping for the repub nomination" Thompson?
        I don't get it.
        \_ Ching ching!
        \_ HILLARY CLINTON WILL NOT BE THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE
           UNITED STATES!@!!1!
2017/09/20 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
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