We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Thursday, November 29. 2012
Cuba to Tax Citizens for the First Time in a Half-Century
Two-thirds of millionaires left Britain to avoid 50p tax rate
Wage War: Government Employees vs. Everybody Else
The Coming Middle Class Tax Hike - Neither Republicans nor Democrats eager to argue for extending payroll tax rate
Conservatives Must Learn the Dark Arts of Image Manipulation:
Oliver Stone's "History" as Propaganda
Morning Bell: Disabilities Treaty Just Another U.N. Power Grab
Former Arab League Head Amr Moussa: 'Egypt Has Never Been in Such a Critical State'
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[i]Conservatives Must Learn the Dark Arts of Image Manipulation: ... Conservatism has always had problems dealing with questions of image, ranging from the days when they had no idea there was such a thing, to the days when image was viewed as a novelty and thus suspect (in much the same way as shirts with attached collars and cars that started without the help of a crank), to today, when... well, to today, because things have not changed in any substantive respect./i]
Heh. Quite entertaining—but not entirely accurate. The right has often used imagery to sell their positions. For instance, the infamous welfare queen driving a Cadillac, Obama as witch doctor, and "You start out in 1954 by saying, "N****, n*****, n*****." By 1968 you can't say "nigger" — that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states' rights and all that stuff."
"Conservatives should select one or more representative leftist icons and Palinize them."
Obama, Ried, Pelosi (& possibly Zachriel, in the first post above).
Why Hamas Forced Me to Leave Amherst College
Another pointlessly rational argument supported by evidence and sound judgment. Such tactics didn't work against Hamas, the PLO, Nazis, or the the anti-Dreyfusards, to name a few. Need I point out how to deal successfully with anti-Semites?
The Latest Sexual Tyranny from the Southern Poverty Law Center
Someday the SPLC will convince us that all sexual orientations, being "born that way," are equally deserving of respect and legal recognition: bestiality, homosexuality, pedophilia, sadist, masochist, rapist, etc. They're certainly all equal in my eyes.
It's funny seeing Zachriel using 1954 as his baseline, since most Southern racists were, in fact, Democrats.
The recent 'come to Jesus' on the part of the Democratic Party, with regard to racism or immigration isn't a magnificent transformation. It's a recognition that it's easier to attract flies with crap, which is basically what they've done in the most cynical fashion possible.
It is impossible to "Palinize" something which refuses to be "Palinized". Sarah herself allowed what occurred by not reacting properly or forcefully enough. It's actually shocking to see a rather self-sufficient and resourceful woman being "Palinized" by feminists, since she really represented them better than they represented themselves.
But since her rhetoric didn't fit the story they wished to tell, they found some rough edges and played these up for all they are worth.
Sarah Palin could show up at a soup kitchen and work there for a month and the headlines would blare "Sarah Palin Works for Free Food".
As a result, trying to do the same thing to Democrats is nearly impossible for two reasons:
1. The MSM will not allow it. Gore's fall from grace is anything but a fall from grace - but if a similar situation was encountered by a Republican, the fall would be nasty and far. Gore remains a key leader and commentator in his own self-defined field of 'expertise' because the MSM likes him there and they don't kill their own willingly.
2. Most of the people who need to be "Palinized" already have a myth of altuism weaved for them. Reid is a class A moron, as are people like Henry Waxman - but these are folks who have had other morons running against them (an astoundingly lucky feat in itself), but also have some great one-line comments which get trotted out whenever facts become unpleasant for them. The one-liners help them shift the discussion away from "Palinization" and back to 'look how evil the Republicans truly are! Attacking personalities rather than ideas!'
Thing is, we've attacked the brain dead ideas for years, but there are enough voting zombies, continuing to attack them only proves we are brain dead.
Most importantly, we need some truly funny people who share our values to get TV shows that pass themselves off as 'news'. The ones they have are aggravating, annoying, and (after watching Jon Stewart toss that gravedigger Warren Buffett a few softballs) pushing Leninist agit-prop disguised as 'thoughtful interviews'.
Bulldog: It's funny seeing Zachriel using 1954 as his baseline, since most Southern racists were, in fact, Democrats.
That's right. The Republican consultant was talking about conservative southern Democrats whom Republicans were wooing. In any case, the article was incorrect on the claim concerning conservative use of imagery.
It appears you are trying to smear Republicans but be obtuse enough so that no one quite recognizes the smear and disagrees with you. Are you afraid to come out and state your belief?
It was the Democrats (even Northern Democrats) who fought Lincoln tooth and nail to stop him from freeing the slaves. It was the Democrats who formed the KKK. It was the Democrats who held every office in the old South to keep the blacks oppressed. It was the Democrats who fought in congress to prevent the civil rights law. And after the Democrat hold on the old South fell in the 60's it was the new Democrats who continue to be driven by racism and bigotry. You can insinuate and smear but the truth is exactly the opposite of what you preach.
GoneWithTheWind: It appears you are trying to smear Republicans but be obtuse enough so that no one quite recognizes the smear and disagrees with you.
We stated our point twice. Despite what Dunn claimed, conservatives do use imagery to sell their points. Perhaps, not in an artistic fashion, but certainly one tailored to their message.
GoneWithTheWind: It was the Democrats (even Northern Democrats) who fought Lincoln tooth and nail to stop him from freeing the slaves.
GoneWithTheWind: It was the Democrats who formed the KKK.
GoneWithTheWind: It was the Democrats who held every office in the old South to keep the blacks oppressed.
And again correct.
GoneWithTheWind: It was the Democrats who fought in congress to prevent the civil rights law.
Not all Democrats, but certainly southern Democrats as a group; and some Republicans were also against civil rights laws, in particular, Barry Goldwater at the crucial moment in history.
GoneWithTheWind: And after the Democrat hold on the old South fell in the 60's it was the new Democrats who continue to be driven by racism and bigotry.
The modern Democratic Party is largely composed of minorities.
"The modern Democratic Party is largely composed of minorities"
Yea? so? Who ever said that minorities are not racist?
Or do you subscribe to the belief that only white people are racist and that it is impossible for non-whites to be racist?
I really don't want to defend Barry Goldwater because he was way to controversial and he probably said many things I disagree with. But on the civil rights issue he was 100% correct. He saw it as special rights with no end to the gifts and "free stuff" and that it would bankrupt us. Of course everyone at the time knew he was over reacting. But more importantly he was a believer in the constitution and the importance of equality under law and in spite of the high sounding title of the legislation the civil rights act was unconstitutional and discriminatory and should never have been passed. We didn't need new legislation we needed to enforce the constitution.
I voted for Barry Goldwater and I remember I was warned that if I voted for Barry Goldwater we would have war with Vietnam and sure enough we did.
GoneWithTheWind: But on the civil rights issue he was 100% correct.
Goldwater, the Republican nominee for president, said he was against laws outlawing discrimination in public accommodations.
No shirt, no shoes, no service. Oh wait! That's discrimination!
I'm against all unconstitutional laws. The federal government does not have the constitutional right to tell me who I should sell products or service to. It is the individual who has rights not the federal government. Should you patronize a business that discriminates based on race? No and the business would suffer for their outdated beliefs. Should the government force someone to either discriminate or not discriminate? NO! But look where that slippery slope has brought us; now it is legal, even required to discriminate as long as you don't discriminate against the protected groups. It gets worse everyday. I would not be suprised to see this end in violence when the unprotected group gets tired of being abused and finds that they have no alternative and are the new slaves. Break out the pitch forks and guillotines.
GoneWithTheWind: The federal government does not have the constitutional right to tell me who I should sell products or service to.
Or whom you can hire. Or who can stay in the hotel. Or what water fountain to use. Or what entrance they can use.
Yes, we understand your position.
If it is YOUR water fountain on YOUR property then indeed yes you do have and should have the right to decide who can drink from it. Where YOU go wrong is conflating private privilage with public responsibility. TODAY we discriminate based on race and gender on state schools and federal, state and local government jobs and welfare, and THIS is wrong. But it is accepted by you and the racist liberals. Go figure! What the conservatives are saying is end racism. What the liberals are saying is we like racisim because it gets us elected to office and power. Simple as that!
GoneWithTheWind: If it is YOUR water fountain on YOUR property then indeed yes you do have and should have the right to decide who can drink from it.
If it's a public accommodation, then the law precludes racial discrimination. Private concerns are not covered by the law.
GoneWithTheWind: Simple as that!
Yes, you made your position clear.
Good! Now you clearify your position on racial and gender discrimination that the government forces on all of us. Why are there quotas at colleges? Why do you accept it and even justify it? Why not end all forms of discrimination by government and law? Is affirmative action discriminatory and counterproductive? Just to be more concise about it being counterproductive; would you go to a minority or female doctor knowing that they probably got into medical school based on their minority status and if they were not able to succeed in school that because of their minority status the school would graduate them anyway? Ditto for almost any minority professional. Does this question bother you? Would you prefer we are not allowed to discuss the unintended consequences of liberalism gone wild?
I await your wisdom...
GoneWithTheWind: Why are there quotas at colleges?
The Grutter decision rejected quotas. You probably mean affirmative action. Affirmative action is meant to address the vestiges of previous discriminatory practices. A simple example is the 1960s boycott of A&P, which only hired whites, even in black neighborhoods. It wasn't deemed sufficient to merely stop discriminating, because that would have left an all-white workforce. And if they had a hiring policy based on recommendations from people who already worked or managed there, discrimination could very well continue, even if unintentional.
There's also the notion of accountability. It isn't enough to stop stealing from others, you have to make some reasonable attempt at restitution.
GoneWithTheWind: would you go to a minority or female doctor knowing that they probably got into medical school based on their minority status and if they were not able to succeed in school that because of their minority status the school would graduate them anyway?
Would you go to a white doctor knowing that the doctor received preferential placement because he was male and white, and that a more qualified woman or minority may have been excluded? That was by far the more likely situation for generations, and yet people kept going to doctors.
Perhaps you might argue that the time for affirmative action is past, but you can't reasonably address that argument unless you understand why affirmative action was considered just at one time.
"For it is obvious that if a man is entered at the starting line in a race 300 years after another man, the first would have to perform some impossible feat in order to catch up with his fellow runner."
Of course there are no quotas "wink, wink, nudge, nudge". It is "affirmative action" which is now redefined to definitely mean NO QUOTAS. Don't use that phrase. You must have 15% African Americans and if you don't you will be sued but don't you dare say the word "quotas".
But suppose you never stole from someone and in fact the someone who had something stolen passed away years ago and the theif did as well. But because you are the same skin color as the thief you must continue to pay and pay. But to who? The victim is long dead, so who benefits from this restitution? Why anyone with the correct skin color or who even claims to be the correct skin color or even if they immigrated to this country yesterday they are the perpetual beneficiary of the perpetual restitution.
Before we started to admit people to medical school using the quota system they used the old fashioned system of selecting the most highly qualified. Today that might still be true for white men because they are the group discriminated against but for everyone else the criteria is gender and race first. So although there has always been good doctors and bad it was certainly not intentional. But today it is by design.
Can you give me an example of a 300 year old man please.
And while you are at it explain this to me:
How is this possible in these public accomodation institutions? Will you stand with me and demand that the end these racist and sexist public accomodations? I think each should be fined millions and the money placed in scholorships for men and white citizens as an affirmative action to help reverse this harmful discrimination. After all if there is one thing we have learned in the last 60 years of our evolving away from discrimination is that you cannot have a quality education without diversity. I await your wisdom...
GoneWithTheWind: How is this possible in these public accomodation institutions?
None of those colleges discriminate based on race.
As exception was made under Title IX to allow all-women undergraduate private colleges that are not professional or technical institutions to continue. Historically, women couldn't be admitted to many colleges, so a separate system arose. As sexual discrimination has decreased, the need for, and the number of all-women's colleges has also decreased.
"None of those colleges discriminate based on race."
Bwahahaha! That's just too far out there to respond to.
Ahhh! Title IX. Another one of those perpetual restitution machines. We institutionalize gender discrimination as a cure for gender discrimination!? Who thought that up? And when will that new discrimination end? Will we then have to institute restitution for all the men who were discriminated against. I do believe there are more female K-12 teachers then male teachers. When will we fix that obvious example of discrimination? There are more female nurses then male nurses. I can assume you and all Liberals are right on top of that problem and have a "fix" ready to go. Far more women get custody of their children after a divorce then do men. More men pay child support and alimony then women. I assume you are making a list to take to your next angry liberal meeting so you can fix these problems.
But no problem I understand title IX is expanding and now men will be prevented from filling graduate programs in science so the vacuum can be filled by the plethora of female undergradute in math and science. Yes, yes, I know the ONLY reason there aren't more females taking science and mathematics is because we dispicable men have taken more then our fair share of college calculus classes. We will start quotas OOPS I mean "affirmative action" tomorrow and stop those bigoted white guys from studying math until we have enough women and minorities with math and science degrees. That should work!!
The problem with all of this; the quotas, the forced bussing, title IX, etc. Is that first it is unconstitutional and second it was the wrong way, no, it was the worst possible way to fix the problem. Instead of fixing discrimination we institutionalized it and legalized it. And those who "benefitted" from the "fix" are worse off because in most/many cases they were unqualified/unprepared and they require a lifetime of "affirmative action" to prop them up after they supposedly benefitted from this "fix". It's like a Bizarro version of the Peter Principle placed into law and annointed by a politicized Supreme Court. We can't have "the best and brightest" doctors but you can now be seen by a diverse group of questionable doctors. And soon brought to you by title IX you won't have the best and brightest scientists discovering new cures and fixing the huge problems facing the human race but you can take comfort in knowing that 50% (or more) will be women and 15% will be black and 15% will be hispanic and . . .
Government Employees vs. Everybody Else:
Hmm, it seems the author of this news article thought it was important to compare the pay and benefits of government employees to privately employed workers. I'm thinking, not so much. Much better to ask what happens when the government 'worker' fails to do his job compared to what happens when a privately employed worker fails to do his. We all know the answer. Government workers, less those very rare exceptions, don't get fired. So I wasn't extremely surprised when I heard Condoleezza Rice say on C-Span recently that most recruits taking the armed forces exam failed it. Which is hilarious in a very sad sort of way. Unless they radically changed those tests in the past thirty years or so, they are ridiculously easy. It's even hard to describe them as tests since their declared purpose was to help discover a recruit's aptitude. Which may explain why they asked several times in slightly different ways if I liked driving a tank. Anyway, that most recruits can't write a sentence or fill in the blank or read is tragic. And funny. I place a good deal of the blame on the government schools and those government teachers who can't be fired. Just a thought, but maybe if we shot every fifth teacher, the rest would begin doing their jobs?
Charles: Yea? so? Who ever said that minorities are not racist?
Just clarifying. So you are concerned that the Democratic Party is racist against non-minority groups.
GoneWithTheWind: Before we started to admit people to medical school using the quota system they used the old fashioned system of selecting the most highly qualified.
Well, no, they didn't. They had a quota system—all white males. You need to internalize this fact.
In any case, you have already indicated that A&P should have been able to continue hiring whites only. For some reason, non-whites were not satisfied with this policy.
Actually they did not. The time period we are talking about, that is when most doctors and most medical school students were men (sorry white men) was when most educated people with the desire and ability to spend 8-12 years becoming doctors and who then were likely to spend the next 50 years actually practicing medicine were white men. Was there discrimination around the edges? Yes but in fact had there been zero discrimination the realities of life back then would have prohibited most women and minorities from ever getting to the point where they could qualify for medical school. Pregnancies, wanted and unwanted is a glaring example of one of these realities. To assume that because at the turn of the century 95% of doctors where white men proved women and minorities were prevented from becoming doctors ignores the facts and the realities of the period. Also during that same period 99% of teachers and nurses were women and often as a result of the same realities.
On A&P two points: 1. Yes! Absolutely. We are constitutionally allowed to do things that others would consider wrong, immoral or worse. The community should set the standard and under udeal conditions things like this would not stand.
2. I'm not familiar with the A&P story but I am certainly aware of many cases like this. Usually there was no real discrimination BUT lawyers could convince a jury that there was and after all who doesn't hate corporations, so either the defendant was found guilty or they choose to agree to accept the charges and the punishment in lieu of a trial. Given the history of cases like this I am going to assume A&P probably did little more then live by the standards in the communities they were doing business in until some ambulance chaser looted the corporate treasury.
GoneWithTheWind: Actually they did not.
When your position contradicts fact, change the facts. You're actually arguing discrimination was not a major facet of society.
GoneWithTheWind: I'm not familiar with the A&P story
In the 1960s, A&P had an all-white workforce, even in predominantly black neighborhoods.
GoneWithTheWind: We are constitutionally allowed to do things that others would consider wrong, immoral or worse.
Just so we're clear; you're against laws that ended discrimination in hiring, housing, and other public accommodations. There's no way to make someone understand why that is not an acceptable situation for most minorities.
Institutional discrimination against blacks WAS a major part of the SOUTH. Other then that discrimination was pretty much individual. The Irish didn't like the protestants, the italians didn't like the Germans, the Greeks didn't like the Poles, The blacks didn't like the whites, the Indians didn't like the Mexicans, etc. Today most discrimination is institutionalized. It is the government that doesn't like white males and openly discriminates against them. I really don't care if someone choose to dislike me or you because of our skin color or national origin or gender. That is a fact of life, people have biases (as you have proved) But the government should not. We have made great strides in fighting discrimination and now we need to end the institutional discrimination against white people and men.
That is where you are consistently wrong. laws did NOT end discrimination people did. You can go to the South today and it is a changed place NOT because of laws but because of a very real change in the people. TV, the internet and religious influence has done this. Ironically at the same time it is the minorities who have accelerated racism and discrimination not just in the South but all over the country. There is a war on white people by minorities. Every year in this country blacks kill more whites then the total number of blacks killed by the KKK in it's entire history. Black rape of white women is epidemic while at the same time rape of black women by whites is so rare it is almost unheard of. In the black culture raping white women is acceptable and encouraged by men and women as a kind of payback, what was that phrase Obama used... Revenge! You are either unaware of these problems or complacent. There's no way to make someone understand why that is not an acceptable situation for most people. And what YOU don't understand is I want EQUALITY and YOU want PREFERENCES (affirmative action, quotas revenge).
GoneWithTheWind: That is where you are consistently wrong. laws did NOT end discrimination people did.
That's odd, because segregation in public accommodations ended simultaneously with federal civil rights legislation.
GoneWithTheWind: Other then that discrimination was pretty much individual.
Yes, and private bigotry is still legal.
GoneWithTheWind: And what YOU don't understand is I want EQUALITY and YOU want PREFERENCES (affirmative action, quotas revenge).
What we said was that perhaps you might argue that the time for affirmative action is past, but you can't reasonably address that argument unless you understand why affirmative action was considered just at one time. But you have expressed your displeasure at laws that ended discrimination in hiring, housing, and other public accommodations, so affirmative action is rather a moot point.
If you truely believe it was the civil rights legislation and ignore the thousands of good Americans who fought hard to overcome prejudice then you are a fool. The civil rights legislation was "intended" to secure the gains made. Sadly it has had the result of creating massive (what is inaccurately called reverse discrimination) instead.
You miss the point! Not suprising but you didn't even touch the point of the arguement. And that is we all have a right to form our own opinions and even act on them as long as we don't break laws. It is the government that is not allowed to be bigoted. But that is exactly what has happened. We have institutionalized bigotry and now those who benefit from it have to use violence, lies and more bigotry to continue to maintain quotas and expand their bigotry. I don't believe for a second you missed the point because it wasn't obvious you missed it because you cannot address it.
You are rationalizing! You are advocating for bigotry and discrimination. You are advocating an undefensible and dispicable racist sexist program and you have to resort to lies and rationalization to do it.
I would suggest that IF the laws "favoring" certain races or genders are SO GOOD, that we specifically apply them to everyone equally. Instead of having protected groups who enjoy special treatment provide the same treatment to all. You are defending a system and set of laws that has created racism and sexism and is hell bent on expanding it and you are clueless and blind to the facts on the ground.
Affirmative action is unconstitutional, period!
Bussing was unconstitutional, period!
Special treatment based on race or gender is unconstitutional, period!
Quotas based on race or gender is unconstitutional, period! There is no middle ground. The ONLY constitutional remedy to past discrimination was to end it and enforce constitutional laws equally. This is not hard to understand. Your position on this is indefensible.
GoneWithTheWind: And that is we all have a right to form our own opinions and even act on them as long as we don't break laws. It is the government that is not allowed to be bigoted.
Yes, we understand. You have already said you are against laws that ban discrimination in hiring, housing, and other public accommodations.
You do indeed ALMOST understand. I am against laws that prohibit individuals from discriminating. It is the government which is constitutionally required to treat all people equally without regard to race, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, etc. not individual citizens. Just as you are allowed to tell bad jokes, view porn, have bad taste in clothes you are allowed to discriminate as long as you break no laws.
By the way, who is "we"? Do you have a gerbil in your pocket?
GoneWithTheWind: I am against laws that prohibit individuals from discriminating.
Individuals in the private sphere are not prevented from discriminating. However, discrimination is illegal in public accommodations. In other words, if you open a business to the public, you have to treat everyone equally with regards to race or religion. Unless we misunderstood your remarks above, you are against such laws.
That is correct. Cab drivers choose not to pick up some customers after dark in certain parts of the city. To be clear black and hispanic cab drivers choose not to pick up seedy looking black and hispanic passengers after hours in black and hispanic parts of the city. They do this out of an abundance of knowledge not blind racism. It is and it should be your constitutional right to choose who you associate with and who you choose to let in your home or business. So that part you have correct. Blatant unjustified racism (yes I used that word intentionally) is wrong and we should educate people, coerce people but not unconstitutionally punish people for rudeness.
The part that you so conveniently choose to ignore is the federal sate and local governments actively discriminate based on race and gender and have enshrined that in law and YOU support that. This type of discrimination is in fact unconstitutional. THAT is the kind of discrimination you should be fighting but you are supporting it under the delusional belief that certain races and certain classes of people are due this preferential treatment forever. It will never end unless the oppressed group uses violence. My fear is your racism is going to cause violence that will effect me. I would much prefer that you and people like you who support and encourage this racism come to the conclusion that you are wrong and stop it.
It is such an irony that anyone would conclude that racism is bad so we need racism to correct it. It is also incredibly stupid that you would be blind to the harm you and this belief has caused. MAYBE it wasn't so clear 50 years ago when we began this racist agenda that it would backfire and create more havoc then it could ever correct. But surely it is obvious to even the most obtuse among us today that it was a terrible mistake and worse it was an intentional extra-constitutional effort that has caused real harm and now requires a program to make those victims of this whole.
GoneWithTheWind: That is correct.
There is no way to argue fundamental values. Most Americans consider laws against discrimination in hiring and other public accommodations to be one of the most important accomplishments of the Civil Rights era.
And yet if an employee of a college writes something on her facebook that is conservative she will be fired. Somehow your unconstitutional law failed to protect conservatives.
The law you are referring to has been a huge benefit for trial lawyers and a huge problem for employers. It is almost impossible to fire a minority or other protected individual unless they commit murder.
The law made racial discrimination (quotas, affirmative action, whatever catchy sounding name you prefer) mandatory in everything the government does.
So when does it end? When is enough enough? Just as we have spent $12 trillion on ending poverty since the 1960's and we now have more poverty then ever before; we spent untold billions on affirmative action and discrimination against those who did no wrong and reparations paid to those who were never wronged and we have more need for affirmative action and more people eligible for it then ever before. So where does it end?
And you know what the worst part is? We have harmed those people you and other do-gooders supposededly intended to help. We continue to harm them in new and more ingenious ways everyday just so that you and other do-gooders can make yourselves feel good and pat each other on the back. When the great reset happens (the economic crash, the great depression, the debt chickens coming home to roost, etc.) how do you think these pampered, kept, affirmative action pimps will survive? We provide for them from cradle to grave and have denied them reality. What will they do after the crash ends the welfare state???