Debate and Discussion

For the liberals who voted the Democrats in to "get us out of Iraq"
Vindibudd at 4:11PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Vindibudd
mapaghimagsik
This has been another edition of “pointless rhetorical questions”

I honestly don't believe you are capable of defending what you believe. You don't even try. You simply make unrelated statements that have no bearing on what the person asked you about. You do not know why you believe what you believe, you simply believe it and eviscerate those of differing views for being mindless all the while being the immortalization of mindlessness. I don't understand why you do a political comic if you can't handle philosophy and political theory.

There's a difference between having a discussion and wanting to *be* the discussion. See, you want to “lead” the discussion, while those of us who have already examined said issues have already been there.

But hey, thanks for the insults. It shows a *lot* about your style.

You said: people do not understand the Constitution.

I said: what about it do they not understand?

You blew right by this without explaining what they do not understand to make allegedly pithy retorts to something I was not even asking.

You started the conversation by making the statement.

I am simply asking for a clarification of your statement.

You are apparently incapable of providing any sort of basis for your statement and would rather obfuscate.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
mapaghimagsik at 4:20PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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warren
Fubar is not related to a political party. It is related to political incompetance.

I totally agree with this, but I'd like to point out that at some point, a democratic president will take power, long after the Republicans have been booted out. However, the ramifcations of seven years of bad decision making have come to pass. So, we'll wind up with the noise machine screaming “look how bad the economy is doing now with the democrats in charge”. Its already happening, but that's a personal anecdote.

So there's some lag time.

So you're like 1 billion percent correct. I think we need to look at cause and effect a little more closely.

The issues of patronage have *always* been a problem. Tammany Hall was replaced by this painful bureaucracy, which has now been replaced with a highly politicized apparatus.

I'd also like to point out that as much as we'd like it to be different, presidents don't have that much power in the economic arena. Even the Fed is realizing their trick of manipulating interest rates isn't having the effect it used to.

What is different is that the current administration refuses – flat out refuses – to see the signs of what's going to be a terrible mortgage debacle – banks are *already* starting to beg the Fed for bailout, and the bailout has already begun. Lending practices of many mortgage companies were beyond predatory, and now they want to get Fed assistance for making bad business decisions. Of course, our friends in the right wing don't call it welfare. So its the administrations refusal to see reality – or more aptly, your reality is not the administrations reality. But we all can't be war profiteers.

So people who give or take credit for the economic mess to a president are missing some pieces. The President does have the bully pulpit, though, and that does count for something. But unless y'all are making 6-7 figures, you're not the audience of this administration.

Anyway, your observation was a breath of fresh air. Thanks for that.

Edit: Vindi, this is what a conversation looks like – you know, starting with consensus and moving on to additional points to work through consensus again? So I'm going to let you have the last word – its your thread after all, and enjoy.

Warren: I look forward to your response.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:51PM
Vindibudd at 5:33PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Edit: Vindi, this is what a conversation looks like – you know, starting with consensus and moving on to additional points to work through consensus again? So I'm going to let you have the last word – its your thread after all, and enjoy.


Conversations are not the exclusive realm of consensus, but that is beside the point. Even if that were the case, I can't have or not have consensus when you refuse to define what you mean when you make a broad statement like “people need to understand the Constitution better.” For 231 years people have debated the Constitution so a little sound bite comment is not going to be adequate.

But this is an ongoing thing with you. As a published editorial cartoonist, I take interest in people who are editorial cartoonists. I have many liberal colleagues who are brilliant editorial cartoonists and I can have wondrous expansive meaningful conversations with them. You on the other hand make Ted Rall look like Abraham Lincoln. You have no interest in persuading anyone to your point of view but rather, you prefer to mock people and ignore their calls for discourse. Unlike a “compassionate” liberal, you seem like you only want to make your statement from on high and have it unchallenged. From my very first encounter with you, you have wanted to fight with me. When I ask for more definition of your communication you shut it down and retreat to insults and nebulous comments or start muting people.

In other words, you cannot handle criticism. And it is a real shame because you have potential and it is being hindered by your angstrom-thick skin. As long as you can have your cartoons viewed by already like-minded people, you are not going to get more people to come to your point of view. But then again, you don't seem to care about people who already disagree with you, preferring instead to laugh at them. That is a real shame, and though you do not care about what I, a lowly stupid conservative that you completely have figured out think, you should probably evaluate your position for your own benefit as it pertains to reaching more readers. I have shown your work to several left-wing cartoonists for college papers that I know and they have a “consensus” that you are not making your point effectively, so it is not just me. Maybe I should simply have them contact you directly. Or you can just go on believing that you are the second coming of Tom Nast.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
mapaghimagsik at 5:44PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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I had no idea that you'd be so upset that I muted you for pontificating on my comic. As per your request, the admins did remove the multiple comments I had to mute because you wanted to flood off all other conversations but yours. Yours were the only comments I've ever had to mute. I muted them, sent you the reasons why, and wished you the best with your own comic. The messages got a little creepy, to be honest, and unwelcome.

To quote the movie: “This is all about you wanting an abortion, isn't it?”

I don't see why you're so angry, frankly. Its your thread, and you have the bully pulpit, complete with Fox News based questions. Its your forum.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:51PM
Vindibudd at 5:55PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
you wanted to flood off all other conversations but yours. Yours were the only comments I've ever had to mute. I muted them, sent you the reasons why, and wished you the best with your own comic.

I don't see why you're so angry, frankly. Its your thread, and you have the bully pulpit, complete with Fox News based questions. Its your forum.

I have never tried to flood people's comments off the page. I was making comments in response to your comics, just like you did to my comics. I don't own this thread, I don't own this page, you can type whatever you want and in fact I encourage it.

And I am not angry that my comments got muted, I was simply surprised that you would mute someone for doing the exact same thing that you did yourself. It showed a bit of hypocrisy. Muting the comments does not remove them, and I asked to have them removed so as not to embarrass you. It says a lot when you think it is creepy when someone is attempting to be nice to you.

I like your comic and I disagree with your comic and though I disagree with it, I have tried to help you come up with ways to better get your point across. Sue me.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Ronson at 6:49PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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Back to the subject of the argument which I think is:

There is no anti-war majority in the House or Senate, so don't be surprised that they haven't ended the war.

That is, I think, a fair statement. But the added implication that the anti-war democrats have done everything they could to try to end the war sooner is just flat out wrong.

Here's the difference: they have to try things that will undoubtably fail.

Right now the problem is that anti-war democrats are in the majority in the House and within reach occasionally in the Senate. But the supermajority needed to override a Bush veto doesn't exist.

Fine. Got it. No argument.

But the democrats SHOULD be making Bush veto a lot of regulations that, if the American public were to find out about them, are popular with the American public.

The problem is, of course the “procedural fillibuster”. That is, a fillibuster that doesn't require the minimum 10 hours of floor debate before putting the bill forward.

To understand this strategy you first have to understand that a filibuster is an attempt to extend debate upon a proposal in order to delay or completely prevent a vote on its passage (thanks wikipedia). Ending a fillibuster requires a “cloture” vote, which has to be passed with a super majority (60 votes in the Senate)

A “procedurual fillibuster” only requires the minority leader to show that he has the votes to prevent a successful cloture vote and the majority leader tables the bill. This was enacted to save time and energy on bills destined for the trash can anyway.

You wouldn't know it by mainstream media coverage, but a lot of the legislation that anti-war advocates would like - and liberal social policies as well - are being blocked by the Republican minority with this political maneuver. In fact, the Republicans are on record explaining their strategy is to grind process to a halt in Congress and the Senate so that come election time they can start pointing fingers at Democrats and call them “do nothings.”



What the Democrats should do is force an actual fillibuster on everything EVERY TIME. They did it once a few weeks ago, but it was called a democratic stunt. Funny that the months of Republicans fillibustering nearly everything wasn't called a stunt.

Why should the Democrats force bills through that will be inevitably vetoed by the President? To put everyone on record. History will follow the Senate's failure to end the war before more soldiers die, and every day the war continues, the Republicans get to pin a little more of it on the Democrats.

______

Now, let's talk about why this isn't happening.

Partly, it's because “Blue Dog” democrats and moderates on both sides don't want to be responsible for losing the war. This is a crazy argument, because the implication is that the war is winnable. Even the rosiest of scenarios project a $2 trillion dollar cost and a 10 year committment that will serve “much like our situation in North and South Korea.” (Tony Snow said that a few weeks back).

Anyone here really think the North/South Korea situation is a victory? It's more like a delicately balanced scale, with the potential for disaster ever increasing as N. Korea gains nuclear ability and their leader seems to drift ever further from sanity.

The republicans, of course, are not allowed to think for themselves as “party unity” trumps conscience every time for Republicans. This is not something the majority of Republican voters think is bad, by the way. Republican brains are very different from Liberal brians - they think loyalty is so important that you're better off defending a dumb policy than ambandoning your friend.*

Add to that the corporatists on both sides that know that there are big bucks they can get for their campaigns if they straddle the fence just right. A bit from the military industrial complex, a bit from radical elements, and then a chunk from whatever domestic corporations they're going to help the most.

So you get one big mess, and in the middle are the majority of people who, thanks to decades of Republican brainwashing, have somehow fostered the ability to narrow the American Way down to three sentences:

1. The best way to help the average American worker is to give corporations and the super-rich (billionaires) more money so that they can retool their businesses to run with less (and cheaper) people and to create products that don't last as long so that everyone has to buy them more often.

2. If we're at war, it is for a good reason and should go unquestioned - unless the other party started it and then it's an abomination and needs to be stopped.

3. All government is inefficient and incompetent and our government's military is the best in the world.

The fact that all three of these statements contradict themselves is tragically hilarious.
___________
* Please note I specified “Republican” and not “Conservative”. The Conservative mind may be Republican, but it also has the added quality of not really understanding what it is they stand for except corporate giveaways.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
mapaghimagsik at 7:51PM, Aug. 14, 2007
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There's another piece you miss, Ronson.

America has spent like its been on a war footing since WWII. Its very profitable to *be* at war. California Dems won't back down on defense spending because its good for their districts. The fact that its ultimately bad for us is ignored – hence the blue dog or DINOs, like Lieberman who have made their political fortunes on bringing defense money to Connecticut or Stevens from Alaska who… well lets just say he has problems.

Until we can change how we spend our money, we'll always find ourselves in this situation, since there's really only so much to spend on defense before you want to spend on offense.

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:51PM
Ronson at 4:49AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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Absolutely correct, mepaghimagsik.

Though that goes back to the three sentences that contradict eachother, I think.

Republicans are convinced about the ineffectiveness of government, and yet don't see their own desire to spend billions on bombs conflicts with their desire to stop spending millions on schools, social programs and the things needed to create an educated population.

A bomb may pay a region for it's creation, but it can only be used once. A school, a bridge or universal healthcare would reap rewards far beyond their initial creation. But that requires the rejection of the “government sucks” mentality.

But that presumes that those in power want a healthy, financially comfortable population. It could be that they do not, and that is why they're destroying the middle class.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
TnTComic at 6:12AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
There's another piece you miss, Ronson.

America has spent like its been on a war footing since WWII. Its very profitable to *be* at war. California Dems won't back down on defense spending because its good for their districts. The fact that its ultimately bad for us is ignored – hence the blue dog or DINOs, like Lieberman who have made their political fortunes on bringing defense money to Connecticut or Stevens from Alaska who… well lets just say he has problems.

Until we can change how we spend our money, we'll always find ourselves in this situation, since there's really only so much to spend on defense before you want to spend on offense.



bingo!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
Kohdok at 7:21AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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Ronson
Absolutely correct, mepaghimagsik.

Though that goes back to the three sentences that contradict eachother, I think.

Republicans are convinced about the ineffectiveness of government, and yet don't see their own desire to spend billions on bombs conflicts with their desire to stop spending millions on schools, social programs and the things needed to create an educated population.

A bomb may pay a region for it's creation, but it can only be used once. A school, a bridge or universal healthcare would reap rewards far beyond their initial creation. But that requires the rejection of the “government sucks” mentality.

But that presumes that those in power want a healthy, financially comfortable population. It could be that they do not, and that is why they're destroying the middle class.

Yeah, that whole “trickle down” thing doesn't work to well with the increased cost of living, or the fact that people are greedy (Also a big failing point of communism). Those benefits don't “trickle down”, or if they do, it's to people in India.

I think this is the only time where during a period of war we've had tax cuts. That's why we've had to gut so many government agencies like Social Security and Fema. Of course Social Security is failing, you keep taking money from them!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:20PM
TnTComic at 7:32AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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My problem with trickle down is sometimes it doesn't.

If you give tax breaks to the poor, they WILL spend it, benefiting the entire economy.

If you give tax breaks to the rich, they MIGHT spend it. And who's to say they'll spend it on something that benefits OUR economy? You don't have to worry about the dude who lives in the trailor park blowing his cash in Milan.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
warren at 7:54AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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TnTComic
My problem with trickle down is sometimes it doesn't.

If you give tax breaks to the poor, they WILL spend it, benefiting the entire economy.

If you give tax breaks to the rich, they MIGHT spend it. And who's to say they'll spend it on something that benefits OUR economy? You don't have to worry about the dude who lives in the trailor park blowing his cash in Milan.
Well, “poor” people don't pay taxes, meaning they get everything back at the end of the year. Add a kid or three, and some people get back thousands more than they “pay in”.

“Rich” people may not spend it, true. But that is kind of their right.

As much as it pains me to say, taxes should probably be higher. This could be accomplished buy just raising the levels of income in which the tax rate falls (instead of increasing percentages) and not having a cutoff for social security. If you're making $300K+ a year and are still living week to week, you have bigger problems than not having the social security taxes end at $94,200.
Warren

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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
TnTComic at 8:36AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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warren
Well, “poor” people don't pay taxes, meaning they get everything back at the end of the year. Add a kid or three, and some people get back thousands more than they “pay in”.

“Rich” people may not spend it, true. But that is kind of their right.


What a pompous fucker you are, and incorrect to boot!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
warren at 8:44AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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[What a pompous fucker you are, and incorrect to boot!
A “pompous fucker”. Such a classy ad hominem attack.

People under the [poverty level (and even to a certain point above it) are eligible for something called Earned Income Credit. Maybe it's something you should read up on.

Basically, someone who could be defined as “poor” by most of the poulation “earns” an additional “tax credit” (get it?) because they are financially disadvantaged. A single mother with three children can get a couple thousand extra dollars.

Did I say that was wrong? I did not. I think it's needed.

Please research rather than lashing out emotionally. You can make a lot better points to people and not simply turn them off to an “angry young man” phase.
Warren

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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
TnTComic at 8:55AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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warren
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[What a pompous fucker you are, and incorrect to boot!
A “pompous fucker”. Such a classy ad hominem attack.

People under the [poverty level (and even to a certain point above it) are eligible for something called Earned Income Credit. Maybe it's something you should read up on.

Basically, someone who could be defined as “poor” by most of the poulation “earns” an additional “tax credit” (get it?) because they are financially disadvantaged. A single mother with three children can get a couple thousand extra dollars.

Did I say that was wrong? I did not. I think it's needed.

Please research rather than lashing out emotionally. You can make a lot better points to people and not simply turn them off to an “angry young man” phase.

You said poor people don't pay taxes which is completely false, they pay taxes on every goddamn thing they buy, just like everybody else.

“Angry young man” phase, or whatever you call it, simply cuts through the bullshit. I'm sick of people saying the rich do so much more for our country and deserve a break, and that the poor don't do anything and have it easy… when its obvious that the rich of this country got that way off the sweat of the poor.

So yeah, when I hear shit like “trickle down” economics, it pisses me off. When you CAN give money to someone who needs it, but you instead give it to someone who might not even use it, it pisses me off.

last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
warren at 9:07AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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Find the works “trickle down” in any post I've made here. Or where I've said the rich do more. In another thread I was actually for increasing taxes.

Yes, the poor pay sales taxes like everyone else. That is one of the things EIC is meant to offset. Therefore, in some cases they are reimbursed 100% (or more) for any taxes the incur.

I think the working poor work a hell of a lot harder than some banker. I've been the schlub sweating over a fryer a Burger King. So I have nothing but respect for anyone trying to fight their way out, and think they deserve many more tax breaks than someone who can hit a ball with a stick.

But what do I know? I'm just a pompous fucker. And proud of it.

Warren

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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
TnTComic at 9:34AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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I have no idea if you're hopping from side to side on purpose or not. What is your position on trickle down economics?
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
warren at 10:44AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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On paper supply-side economics sounds like a decent idea. But on paper, so does socialism.

Does it actually work? Probably not anywhere near as well is people like to argue.
Warren

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PAC -New! >10 strips.

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Spare Change -updating! ~2000 strips!
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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:48PM
TnTComic at 10:50AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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warren
On paper supply-side economics sounds like a decent idea. But on paper, so does socialism.

Does it actually work? Probably not anywhere near as well is people like to argue.

…on paper, my comic works

badum-ching!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
Vindibudd at 11:53AM, Aug. 15, 2007
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Ronson
The problem is, of course the “procedural fillibuster”. That is, a fillibuster that doesn't require the minimum 10 hours of floor debate before putting the bill forward.

The problem is not filibustering that keeps the Democrats from passing insta-veto bills, the problem is that the Democrats are trying to build a veto proof majority and the only way they can do that is by cutting pork deals with everyone. Not even all the Democrats want a withdrawal bill. Another problem is that they are trying to tack on withdrawal deadlines to funding as well and that rubs a lot of people wrong.

Ronson

The Democrats were filibustering judges which is outrageous and until the previous congress had never been done in the history of the senate. The Republicans were not mad that the Democrats were filibustering bills, they were mad, and rightfully so, that the Democrats were filibustering federal judge appointments and acting like children instead of allowing up or down votes.

Ronson
What the Democrats should do is force an actual fillibuster on everything EVERY TIME. They did it once a few weeks ago, but it was called a democratic stunt. Funny that the months of Republicans fillibustering nearly everything wasn't called a stunt.!

The Democrats knew that they were not going to get cloture on the debate of demanding withdrawal with a funding bill, it was a stunt because they staged it by declaring they would be up all night long and had cots brought in and they were gonig to show those Republicans who was boss! Yes they were! That is why it was called a stunt.

Ronson
Why should the Democrats force bills through that will be inevitably vetoed by the President? To put everyone on record. History will follow the Senate's failure to end the war before more soldiers die, and every day the war continues, the Republicans get to pin a little more of it on the Democrats.

They can keep on doing it and wasting time instead of working on issues that the public really cares about. There is a reason that the congress approval rating is sub-20 percent these days, and it is because all the Democrats want to do is hold investigation after investigation instead of passing bills that are required to keep the country operating. The president fired some federal prosecutors, which is his call to do any time he wants for any reason at all, but all we hear non-stop is how the Democrats are investigating the firing of federal prosecutors like it was some giant conspiracy. They are more interested in hunting administration heads than they are about doing the business of the country and the country according to approval ratings are getting fed up. It's just like when the Republicans were trying to impeach Clinton.

Ronson
Now, let's talk about why this isn't happening.

Partly, it's because “Blue Dog” democrats and moderates on both sides don't want to be responsible for losing the war. This is a crazy argument, because the implication is that the war is winnable. Even the rosiest of scenarios project a $2 trillion dollar cost and a 10 year committment that will serve “much like our situation in North and South Korea.” (Tony Snow said that a few weeks back).

That's out of context there, Ronson. What Snow was saying was that Bush wants to see the US in Iraq as a force of stability like what the situation is in South Korea, which is to say, South Korea is stable and doesn't have terrorists running around all over the place. To compare the Korean Conflict with the Iraq War is not valid because Iraq is not in a civil war. No one cares that we are in South Korea because there are no terrorist bombings going on all the time in South Korea.

Ronson
Anyone here really think the North/South Korea situation is a victory? It's more like a delicately balanced scale, with the potential for disaster ever increasing as N. Korea gains nuclear ability and their leader seems to drift ever further from sanity.

Considering the reasoning for the ceasefire in effect there, yes, I would consider that a victory. Or maybe you would have rather had an all-out war with Communist China and the Soviet Union vs. the United States? Me, not so much. But have no illusion, the U.S. would not lose that fight.

Ronson
The republicans, of course, are not allowed to think for themselves as “party unity” trumps conscience every time for Republicans.

This is just plain incorrect. The Republicans are anything BUT the epitome of party unity. For Pete's sake, look at Olympia Snow. Or you can look at the recent immigration fiasco, not much unity there.

Ronson
This is not something the majority of Republican voters think is bad, by the way. Republican brains are very different from Liberal brians - they think loyalty is so important that you're better off defending a dumb policy than ambandoning your friend. Please note I specified “Republican” and not “Conservative”. The Conservative mind may be Republican, but it also has the added quality of not really understanding what it is they stand for except corporate giveaways.

Conservatives stand for smaller government. Period. Republicans in general are for strong national defense and limited interference in people's regular lives. If you want to talk about liberal brains and loyalty, how about Susan McDougal who rotted in prison for months rather than testify about Clinton in the Whitewater investigation. A real shining example of someone not being blindly loyal right there. I can go on, but there are more important points to address.

Ronson
Add to that the corporatists on both sides that know that there are big bucks they can get for their campaigns if they straddle the fence just right. A bit from the military industrial complex, a bit from radical elements, and then a chunk from whatever domestic corporations they're going to help the most.

Yeah, no argument there.

Ronson
So you get one big mess, and in the middle are the majority of people who, thanks to decades of Republican brainwashing, have somehow fostered the ability to narrow the American Way down to three sentences:

Decades? The Democrats held the house for 60 years. Republicans? 12.

Ronson
1. The best way to help the average American worker is to give corporations and the super-rich (billionaires) more money so that they can retool their businesses to run with less (and cheaper) people and to create products that don't last as long so that everyone has to buy them more often.

That's too nebulous to respond to.

Ronson
2. If we're at war, it is for a good reason and should go unquestioned - unless the other party started it and then it's an abomination and needs to be stopped.

This is not brainwashing, this is standard politics from both sides.

Ronson
3. All government is inefficient and incompetent and our government's military is the best in the world.

The military is not a beauracracy so that is where that statement breaks down.

Ronson
The fact that all three of these statements contradict themselves is tragically hilarious.

Moreso than you think!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
mlai at 3:38PM, Aug. 15, 2007
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Omnislashing is very bad netiquette, and unproductive. In stricter forums, your post would be summarily deleted.

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:05PM
Vindibudd at 3:51PM, Aug. 15, 2007
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mlai
Omnislashing is very bad netiquette, and unproductive. In stricter forums, your post would be summarily deleted.

To be accused of that I would have to be taking his argument out of context.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Ronson at 8:36PM, Aug. 15, 2007
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I've don't know what omnislashing is, but I have no arguments with Vindibudd's response.

Now to show where he messed up…

Vindibudd
The problem is not filibustering that keeps the Democrats from passing insta-veto bills, the problem is that the Democrats are trying to build a veto proof majority and the only way they can do that is by cutting pork deals with everyone. Not even all the Democrats want a withdrawal bill. Another problem is that they are trying to tack on withdrawal deadlines to funding as well and that rubs a lot of people wrong.

I am specifically calling for more “stunts” as you call them. These “stunts” would pin the republicans and moderate democrats to this misbegotten war in a way that would guarantee their expulsion come election time. Also it would show exactly how many of our politicians have been bought.

The Democrats were filibustering judges which is outrageous and until the previous congress had never been done in the history of the senate. The Republicans were not mad that the Democrats were filibustering bills, they were mad, and rightfully so, that the Democrats were filibustering federal judge appointments and acting like children instead of allowing up or down votes.

This is wrong. Here's proof:
http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2005/01/b281089.html

Excerpt: “In 1996 Clinton nominated Judge Richard Paez to the 9th Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals. Conservatives in Congress held up Paez's nomination for more than four years, culminating in an attempted filibuster on March 8, 2000. Bill Frist was among those who voted to filibuster Paez.”

Just because the republicans claim that doesn't make it true.

The Democrats knew that they were not going to get cloture on the debate of demanding withdrawal with a funding bill, it was a stunt because they staged it by declaring they would be up all night long and had cots brought in and they were gonig to show those Republicans who was boss! Yes they were! That is why it was called a stunt.

Yes it was. Fortunately, some of us think the lives of our soldiers and innocent Iraqis are worth the occasional stunt when it draws the attention of the intractable right wing which will not admit it's mistakes.

They can keep on doing it and wasting time instead of working on issues that the public really cares about.

Except that when the issues the public really cares about, the Republicans all lock step and block any action so that they can blame the Democrats. And the Democrats have done this as well, but it's a bit silly to claim that they're wasting time, when it's actually just a result of republicans not willing to put the people first.

http://mediamatters.org/items/200707280005

There is a reason that the congress approval rating is sub-20 percent these days, and it is because all the Democrats want to do is hold investigation after investigation instead of passing bills that are required to keep the country operating.

You really have to see what the congress has done since it has been in session, and then look at what was blocked, what was tabled and what was “pocket vetoed” before you can really make that statement.

I will agree that the slim majority the Democrats have is what is preventing them from fulfilling their goals, but I'm not ready to say that's because what the majority of Americans want is not an end to this war. I have many republican friends who feel it's wrong … finally … and they didn't cave just because of my dulcet tones.

The president fired some federal prosecutors, which is his call to do any time he wants for any reason at all, but all we hear non-stop is how the Democrats are investigating the firing of federal prosecutors like it was some giant conspiracy.

It was.

If you can find the reason for the firings then by all means share it with the class. Right now, there is the suspicion that the firings were motivated against procecutors that wouldn't punish enough Democrats and who were punishing too many Republicans.

One big name on the list was the woman who procecuted Representative Randy “Duke” Cunningham … arguably convicted as the most corrupt politician in history. (Though I wonder if that would still be true if you counted for inflation…we've had corruption for a while) This prosecutor was asked to step down (which no prosecutor can really refuse … it's a legal thing), and the White House claimed it was because she was not good at her job.

There are several on the list who the White House had little to no reason to fire for incompetence, but were reluctant to pursue obviously trumped up voter fraud charges or were too interested in Republican misdeeds.

Now, Vindibudd is correct. The President can hire and fire prosecutors at will. Usually presidents do this at the beginning of their first term in office. Clinton Did. Bush Sr. Did. They all did. It is extremely unusual to do it in the second term but not illegal.

But if the White House did fire the prosecutors to prevent a crime from being discovered, then that is a criminal misdeed. If there is a way to find out if that happened without an investigation, I don't know what it is. I suppose since it's a Republican Administration, we should just take them at their word, right?


They are more interested in hunting administration heads than they are about doing the business of the country and the country according to approval ratings are getting fed up. It's just like when the Republicans were trying to impeach Clinton.

Yep. Politicizing the judiciary to the point where it is used as a tool to punish or reward one's cronies is exactly the same as exposing a bj in the White House.

That's out of context there, Ronson. What Snow was saying was that Bush wants to see the US in Iraq as a force of stability like what the situation is in South Korea, which is to say, South Korea is stable and doesn't have terrorists running around all over the place. To compare the Korean Conflict with the Iraq War is not valid because Iraq is not in a civil war.

I'm sorry Vindibudd. I hate to break it to you. Most people see what's happening in Iraq as a Civil War. Colin Powell has said it, several retired generals have stated it, Most scholars accept it as true but debate the beginning of it.

Now, I understand you don't want to call it that. And there's still a very small sliver of daylight between a completely in your face civil war and what we're seeing in Iraq. You might not know this but dozens of headless bodies turn up in the street EVERY DAY. Sometimes they're Sunni, sometimes they're Shiite. I suppose we could just call it religous and regional terrorism directed at citizens of Iraq by citizens of Iraq…you know, if it makes one feel better to do so.

No one cares that we are in South Korea because there are no terrorist bombings going on all the time in South Korea.

The point isn't that we don't care, it's that it isn't a solution. A peaceful negotiated settlement should have been accomplished between the Koreas. It hasn't because they are intractable.

And I don't see how I took Tony's quote out of context, but will not split hairs with you. Either way, Snow claims that we will be in Iraq indefinitely, spend American dollars (and many lives) there, with no forseeable end in sight. Doesn't sound like a great plan to me.

Considering the reasoning for the ceasefire in effect there, yes, I would consider that a victory. Or maybe you would have rather had an all-out war with Communist China and the Soviet Union vs. the United States? Me, not so much. But have no illusion, the U.S. would not lose that fight.

I think a better solution could be found. But I suppose China has figured out other ways to fight since then.

This is just plain incorrect. The Republicans are anything BUT the epitome of party unity. For Pete's sake, look at Olympia Snow. Or you can look at the recent immigration fiasco, not much unity there.

Yes, there are a handful of moderate Republicans. The immigration fiasco is another thread and this is already too long by half, but the reason for it getting killed has nothing to do with party unity and more to do with who signs the politicians checks.

Conservatives stand for smaller government. Period.

But they vote for politicians who bloat the government every bit as much as the most liberal Democrats, even moreso with Bush.

Republicans in general are for strong national defense and limited interference in people's regular lives.

Except for the wiretapping, the sneak and peek investigations, redition, disappearing, torturing, the anti-choice loonies, the anti-gay loonies, the anti-stem cell loonies, the ones who want to force prayer into public schools or force Intelligent Design theology into science books … the list goes on.

And I don't agree with the first bit either. Republicans are for “looking like” we're doing something strong on defense. The first thing a Republican does is destroy diplomatic relations by proving we can do it all by ourselves. Then they critique (constantly) any of the checks and balances that our Constitution put in place to protect the citizens from tyranny. Your own stance against investigations into potential criminal behavior proves that. What about Pat Tillman? What about Jeff Gannon? What about the outing of a covert agent? What about voter caging lists? What about eavesdropping without a warrant or even without legislation legalizing the eavesdropping?

If it was a Democrat, the republicans would be all over this stuff. The difference is, people like me would be right there with them. The bj that Clinton lied about was enough for me to want him out of office, but Bush has literally killed thousands of our soldiers using fake intelligence and the republicans pretend like it didn't happen.

If you want to talk about liberal brains and loyalty, how about Susan McDougal who rotted in prison for months rather than testify about Clinton in the Whitewater investigation. A real shining example of someone not being blindly loyal right there. I can go on, but there are more important points to address.

I forget, what political office was Susan McDougal elected to? Wait, I'll google it… huh, lookee there, none.

I'm not talking about blind party loyalty. Both sides have that. I'm talking about the elected officials who refuse to work with the opposition because of political maneuvering. I know both do it, but the Republicans do it more and don't care who they hurt in the process.

Decades? The Democrats held the house for 60 years. Republicans? 12.

I'm talking about the specific “government = bad” mentality that exists today. Even I have it to an extent. It was pushed beginning in the Reagan era, but it has become the standard of too many politicians today. And I did blame the Democrats for bloating the government to the point where it was a meme that could be exploited.

Ronson
1. The best way to help the average American worker is to give corporations and the super-rich (billionaires) more money so that they can retool their businesses to run with less (and cheaper) people and to create products that don't last as long so that everyone has to buy them more often.

That's too nebulous to respond to.

Sorry you didn't understand.

This is not brainwashing, this is standard politics from both sides.

Again, the republicans popularized it to the point where it has become a standard for both sides. The republicans still get a little more play with it because they (for inexplicable reasons) are considered strong on defense.

The military is not a bureaucracy so that is where that statement breaks down.

I'm not a member of the military, but I have been given to understand that it certainly is a bureaucracy. Maybe Phantom Penguin can chime in and straighten that bit out?

Whew. I bet no one reads this last sentence.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
TnTComic at 6:09AM, Aug. 16, 2007
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Ronson
Whew. I bet no one reads this last sentence.


Actually, it was the only one I read!
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
Vindibudd at 9:10PM, Aug. 16, 2007
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posts: 416
joined: 1-29-2006
Ronson
I am specifically calling for more “stunts” as you call them. These “stunts” would pin the republicans and moderate democrats to this misbegotten war in a way that would guarantee their expulsion come election time. Also it would show exactly how many of our politicians have been bought.

That could work but I don't think the general public would side with the Democrats constantly doing this. It would get old fast. By the time the election rolled around, the Democrats would be running on their record of endless votes that did nothing and the Republicans would say, hey, we will work on fixing immigration blah blah blah.

Ronson
This is wrong. Here's proof:
http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2005/01/b281089.html

Excerpt: “In 1996 Clinton nominated Judge Richard Paez to the 9th Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals. Conservatives in Congress held up Paez's nomination for more than four years, culminating in an attempted filibuster on March 8, 2000. Bill Frist was among those who voted to filibuster Paez.”

Just because the republicans claim that doesn't make it true.

Okay, let me rephrase, the Democrats were filibustering every single judicial nomination. That was what had never been done before. Individual incidents have occurred of course, but not wholesale default filibuster for every single judge.

Ronson
Yes it was. Fortunately, some of us think the lives of our soldiers and innocent Iraqis are worth the occasional stunt when it draws the attention of the intractable right wing which will not admit it's mistakes.

Can you tell me how the U.S. pulling out of Iraq right now is going to save innocent Iraqi lives?

Ronson
Except that when the issues the public really cares about, the Republicans all lock step and block any action so that they can blame the Democrats. And the Democrats have done this as well, but it's a bit silly to claim that they're wasting time, when it's actually just a result of republicans not willing to put the people first.

This is real lockstep here with the Republicans.

Ronson
You really have to see what the congress has done since it has been in session, and then look at what was blocked, what was tabled and what was “pocket vetoed” before you can really make that statement.

I could be wrong, I just haven't heard of the Democrats complaining about something not being signed or vetoed other than Iraq-related issues.

Ronson
I will agree that the slim majority the Democrats have is what is preventing them from fulfilling their goals, but I'm not ready to say that's because what the majority of Americans want is not an end to this war. I have many republican friends who feel it's wrong … finally … and they didn't cave just because of my dulcet tones.

All Americans SHOULD want the war to end. What they disagree on is HOW it should end.

Ronson
Vindibudd
The president fired some federal prosecutors, which is his call to do any time he wants for any reason at all, but all we hear non-stop is how the Democrats are investigating the firing of federal prosecutors like it was some giant conspiracy.

It was.

If you can find the reason for the firings then by all means share it with the class.

This is a colossal waste of time for the Democrats because it doesn't matter how or why the president fired these prosecutors, it is impossible to have fired them for an unacceptable reason because the president can fire them for any. reason. at. all. Therefore, no one can be prosecuted, no one can be convicted. No one can be anythinged at all. The president has made his people available to talk to the democrats off the record. The reason the Democrats want everything on the record is so they can play “Gotcha” and get someone to forget they said one thing and then say another thing at a later date. That is a political game and the president saw what happened with Libby who simply forgot what he said to who, and when he said it, and got crucified when he never leaked the Super Duper Super Secret Covert Status of Valerie Plame Heroine of the Suddenly Angelic And Perfect CIA to anyone in the first place.

So the president has nothing to gain and everything to lose by having people unnecessarily testify about anything at all with a hostile congress.

Ronson
Yep. Politicizing the judiciary to the point where it is used as a tool to punish or reward one's cronies is exactly the same as exposing a bj in the White House.

I'm not going to get into why Democrats think it is okay to commit perjury when one is the president but not when one is the chief of staff of the vice president.

Ronson
I'm sorry Vindibudd. I hate to break it to you. Most people see what's happening in Iraq as a Civil War. Colin Powell has said it, several retired generals have stated it, Most scholars accept it as true but debate the beginning of it.

In this article, the reporter talks to one “scholar” ( Chris Gelpi, an expert on war and public opinion at Duke University) and uses that one source to state “most scholars” believe it is a civil war. The reporter is either bad at reporting, or she is a liar. That is actually quite possibly one of the worst written articles I have ever seen.
She doesn't even cite where she is getting what “academics” use for the “standard” definition of “civil war.”

Iraq is not a civil war because there are not two sides at war with each other that are Iraqi and that have declared war against each other. That's like saying the UK was in a civil war because of the IRA.

Ronson
Now, I understand you don't want to call it that. And there's still a very small sliver of daylight between a completely in your face civil war and what we're seeing in Iraq.

More like the blazing dawn.

Ronson
You might not know this but dozens of headless bodies turn up in the street EVERY DAY. Sometimes they're Sunni, sometimes they're Shiite. I suppose we could just call it religous and regional terrorism directed at citizens of Iraq by citizens of Iraq…you know, if it makes one feel better to do so.

And we don't have any reason to believe that one or the other is actually doing this. It could be Al Qaeda doing it for all we know. No, for real Ronson, we can't sit there and say, well these are Sunnis, so the Shiites killed them. That is sophistry.

Ronson
And I don't see how I took Tony's quote out of context, but will not split hairs with you. Either way, Snow claims that we will be in Iraq indefinitely, spend American dollars (and many lives) there, with no forseeable end in sight. Doesn't sound like a great plan to me.

Agreed.

I see no point in responding to the rest of the post. I will just agree to disagree.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
Kohdok at 12:16AM, Aug. 17, 2007
(online)
posts: 776
joined: 5-18-2007
VindiBudd
This is real lockstep here with the Republicans.

I'll have to agree with you on that one. It really does show what the Republicans are trying to do. There was over 44 hours of constant debate and a lot of the comments shown were Republicans who were for pushing the bill forward.

I also thought you were the one who said Democrats don't get anything done.


Vindibudd
Ronson
Vindibudd
The president fired some federal prosecutors, which is his call to do any time he wants for any reason at all, but all we hear non-stop is how the Democrats are investigating the firing of federal prosecutors like it was some giant conspiracy.

It was.

If you can find the reason for the firings then by all means share it with the class.

This is a colossal waste of time for the Democrats because it doesn't matter how or why the president fired these prosecutors, it is impossible to have fired them for an unacceptable reason because the president can fire them for any. reason. at. all. Therefore, no one can be prosecuted, no one can be convicted. No one can be anythinged at all. The president has made his people available to talk to the democrats off the record. The reason the Democrats want everything on the record is so they can play “Gotcha” and get someone to forget they said one thing and then say another thing at a later date. That is a political game and the president saw what happened with Libby who simply forgot what he said to who, and when he said it, and got crucified when he never leaked the Super Duper Super Secret Covert Status of Valerie Plame Heroine of the Suddenly Angelic And Perfect CIA to anyone in the first place.

So the president has nothing to gain and everything to lose by having people unnecessarily testify about anything at all with a hostile congress.

Sooo… where's the answer you were asked for? Did Bush really just fire all those prosecutors at once for no reason at all? Why would he? I know it's in his powers to do so, but why?

Vindibudd
Iraq is not a civil war because there are not two sides at war with each other that are Iraqi and that have declared war against each other. That's like saying the UK was in a civil war because of the IRA.
To quote Wikipedia: A civil war is “a violent conflict within a country fought by organized groups that aim to take power at the center or in a region, or to change government policies”. I think we've already mentioned the Shiites and Sunni. Nowhere does the article say that one needs to declare war to have it be a civil war. The events in Iraq sure looks like a Civil War to me, in broad terms.

Vindibudd
And we don't have any reason to believe that one or the other is actually doing this. It could be Al Qaeda doing it for all we know. No, for real Ronson, we can't sit there and say, well these are Sunnis, so the Shiites killed them. That is sophistry.

Ronson never says we have a reason to, he just says that members of each of those factions end up dead every day. Incidentally, that's another term in the definition of a Civil War is that people from all factions turn up dead, at least 1,000 and 100 from each side. I'd say the quota has been met.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:20PM
Vindibudd at 1:21AM, Aug. 17, 2007
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Kohdok
Sooo… where's the answer you were asked for? Did Bush really just fire all those prosecutors at once for no reason at all? Why would he? I know it's in his powers to do so, but why?

I don't have the faintest idea why, and if anything could come of it, I might look into it. At this point, it is only speculation.

Kohdok
Ronson never says we have a reason to, he just says that members of each of those factions end up dead every day. Incidentally, that's another term in the definition of a Civil War is that people from all factions turn up dead, at least 1,000 and 100 from each side. I'd say the quota has been met.

Could it not be that terrorists are responsible for this? While the definition of Wikipedia might be used, I'll stick with the American Heritage dictionary definition of:

civil war
n.
A war between factions or regions of the same country.

The difficulty here is that there are no political (or religious for that matter) factions that have announced they are at war with each other. They are at war with the coalition and foreign anti-coalition resistance. That I would not exactly consider the major media friendly to the administration, I would imagine that if some group announced it, it would be all over the news. Another thing is that the indiscriminate killing by Al Qaeda is beginning to unite all the Iraqis against them. They are getting fed up with it and this includes native resistance.

So is there a lot of fighting going on? No, there is a lot of terrorism. Like Phantom Penguin said someplace, when there was an all out fight between the U.S. and the resistance, they got annihilated. This is why it is important for the U.S. to stay there. Eventually things are going to chill out, but we have to stick it out. Not going to be easy.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
TnTComic at 5:18AM, Aug. 17, 2007
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Vindibudd
Kohdok
Sooo… where's the answer you were asked for? Did Bush really just fire all those prosecutors at once for no reason at all? Why would he? I know it's in his powers to do so, but why?

I don't have the faintest idea why, and if anything could come of it, I might look into it. At this point, it is only speculation.

Anyone who has taken a cursory look at the story has the “faintest idea why”.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM
Ronson at 8:27AM, Aug. 17, 2007
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posts: 837
joined: 1-1-2006
Could it not be that terrorists are responsible for this?

I have not heard any credible experts back the terrorist argument. I have certainly heard it suggested by the Administration (not credible) and right wing pundits (not credible), but there aren't any substantial reports that this is the case. There ARE substantial reports of the opposite, though.

But I can't deny the possibility, however remote it could be.

Even “Al Queda in Iraq” is not officially tied to the Al Queda that attacked us on 9/11/01. It claims to share the same goals, which is a problem as they conflict with ours, but they aren't being directed by Bin Laden. Even so, “Al Queda in Iraq” is credited for a smaller percentage of the violence than the Sunni and Shiite groups that are attacking eachother.

I don't have the faintest idea why, and if anything could come of it, I might look into it. At this point, it is only speculation.

If the Bush Administration fired some of these attorneys to halt an investigation, that's obstruction of justice. That is a crime. It can only be determined if there's an investigation, and if the principal players actually testify and don't hide behind executive priveledge.

There is evidence, in that the official reasons given were proven to be false in that they were not incompetent.

And it should also be remembered that the attorneys that were fired that are raising the most eyebrows are republicans who were actually appointed by repubicans - some of them by first term GWB.

The simple fact is that the Bush White House is protected by their cloak of secrecy. But there is ample evidence that things have happened there that need to be investigated.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:10PM
TnTComic at 8:41AM, Aug. 17, 2007
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By today's standard, the Viet Cong were terrorists.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:31PM

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