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
Tuesday, February 14. 2017
Six Plants and Animals Threatened by Pseudoscience
John Waters update
Stepford School: Princeton students forced to abandon individuality, freshman says
Signs of Terminal Illness - From forced marriage to alcoholic excess, Britain’s airports display the symptoms of cultural rot.
Is the USA an Idea or a Nation?
Both, of course
Trump and Andrew Jackson
Cool. A quote:
Washington Post demonstrates importance of voter ID laws
From Andy McCarthy's Populism, VI: Populism versus populism:
With One Simple Order, Trump Could Reduce the Healthcare Costs of the Uninsured by 90%
Don’t Block the Education Secretary, End the Department of Education
For the Media, the Only Jihad Is Against Trump
Muslim-American Olympiad Detained By Customs Agents Before Trump Became President, Media Still Blames Trump!
Klavan: Yes, CNN IS Fake News
Hamas elects convicted murderer Yahya Sinwar as Gaza chief
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Re: Stepford School... Wasn't it the founder of the American public school system, John Dewey, who said, back during the Wilson administration, "Children who know how to think for themselves spoil the harmony of the collective society, which is coming, where everyone is interdependent."
Dewey's mission was largely a success. How did she not notice until Princeton?
Washington Post demonstrates importance of voter ID laws ... Thus, if voter fraud isn’t a problem in New Hampshire it’s because the state has strict voter ID procedures that protect against it. These, of course, are the very procedures that leftists want to do away with because, supposedly, they suppress voter turnout.
Gee whiz. The Mirengoff doesn't even read his scribblings. No one is turned away from the polls in New Hampshire if they don't have photo ID.
If an ID is lacking, the voter’s photo is taken, they have to sign an affidavit affirming their identify and then state officials follow up.
Mirengoff then links to the ACLU which objects to Voter ID laws which make it difficult for eligible voters to cast their ballots, especially those tailored to prevent minority participation, such as in North Carolina, where the court found this former Jim Crow state "targeted African Americans with almost surgical precision."
Mirengoff also missed this story: New Hampshire collects all of this information and then does nothing with. It does not help the the NH AG since 2013, Joseph Foster, is a Democrat.
Investigation of Voter Affidavit Fraud Abandoned by NH AG
Past voter fraud incidents may never be known due to thousands of affidavits from voters without IDs in 2012, 2014, sitting in boxes.
Not familiar with the specifics. How was this "surgical prevision" accomplished? It would seem to be quite the task to establish separate guidelines for whites, Asians, Hispanics, American Indians, East Indians, etc...and then poof a completely different set of standards for AA's.
How was this done?
Ahhh!! The key words were "the court found" NOT that it was true, not that there was any evidence of it but just as the court discovered in the constitution last week that our president in fact is not allowed to keep us safe "the court found" what they wanted to and were directed to find. Kinda reminds me of when Pelosi used the phrase "deemed".
OneGuy: The key words were "the court found"
It was a finding of fact.
Fourth Circuit Court: "Faced with this record, we can only conclude that the North Carolina General Assembly enacted the challenged provisions of the law with discriminatory intent."
That the legislature requested information on racial patterns in voting, then enacted legislation that was devised to make it more difficult for African Americans to exercise the franchise. Feel free to read the opinion.
The NC voter ID law was very similar to other state's voter ID laws that had passed court muster. The act of asking for an ID is not discriminatory in any way unless you only ask for some IDs and that was not the case.
The Fourth Circuit is populated by a majority of Democratic appointments and it has been an article of faith that voter ID laws are discriminatory apparently based on their belief that blacks aren't able to get figure out how to get an ID. In fact, black participation at the polls was up between 2010 and 2014 in spite of the law taking effect in 2013.
It is also a primary leftist position that ANY impediment to voting is to be removed - even if that impediment is to preclude illegal voting. The left has made gone to court to block voter roll purges of deceased, people who have moved, or criminals. We've seen Democratic Machine areas like Chicago, Detroit, and New York often have higher incidences of voting irregularities and heavily Democratic states have lax voting laws - e.g. in Washington State, voting is by mail which is very insecure.
The Court didn't provide a single instance of voter suppression. This is just plain old judicial activism Democrat style (though not quite as egregious as the recent 9th Circuit 3 judge panel decision).
mudbug: The NC voter ID law was very similar to other state's voter ID laws that had passed court muster. The act of asking for an ID is not discriminatory in any way unless you only ask for some IDs and that was not the case.
You asked for and were provided evidence that the law was crafted to make it more difficult for African Americans to vote — which you then ignored. The legislature explicitly "requested data on the use, by race, of a number of voting practices", then absent any evidence of extensive voter fraud, devised the law to target the African American franchise. This, in a Jim Crow state.
Dale: How was this "surgical prevision" accomplished?
Fourth Circuit Court: “Before enacting that law, the legislature requested data on the use, by race, of a number of voting practices. Upon receipt of the race data, the General Assembly enacted legislation that restricted voting and registration in five different ways, all of which disproportionately affected African Americans.”
"disproportionately affected African Americans"
Well! There it is folks. It was racist by intent because it affected too many black folks. Not why it affected them and what part they themselves played in it that made it affect them. Simply that a law intended to make elections cleaner affected blacks more. One wonders why or how? And if we knew why or how does it prove that the legislators intended the law to discriminate against blacks? I actually wonder if it is possible to clean up our elections without affected blacks more. But the real question should be why does it affect them more. In the past the claim was that more blacks than other groups/races do not have ID. Not mentioned in that statement is the reason they don't have ID is because they had their license taken away for breaking laws. But never mind why all that matters is that they don't have IDs or don't know how to get IDs or something. Seriously folks, do you believe black 18 year olds don't have IDs to buy cigarettes and black 21 year olds don't have IDs to buy booze? But we are somehow supposed to believe that they don't have IDs to vote. Yeah right!
What is really going on is the Democrats steal elections and IDs to vote would put a cramp in their style. The MSM knows this, the judges know this, the election officials know this, everyone knows this. But yet we are all supposed to suspend common sense and believe that these judges acted to protect a minority and were no complicit in stealing elections. Come on Americans, you are too stupid to retain your freedoms.
OneGuy: It was racist by intent ...
It was racist by intent because it was shown that Republicans used race as a basis to craft laws to make it more difficult for African Americans to exercise the franchise.
The photo ID objection I always find bizarre. Why should all of us be harmed by the fact that certain minority groups apparently make a decision not to obtain a photo ID (e.g., decide not spend the time or energy that all other American citizens have to go through). That's not discrimination, that is either laziness or a belief that they are too privileged to have to comply with civic burdens everyone else has to deal with.
Here, photo ID is required for virtually everything: to get on a plane and sometimes just to get into the airport parking lot when security is high, to get into many private buildings and residential condos with security, to enter public buildings (virtually all of which now have security and metal detectors), to get on to a military base or installation, to get a bus pass, to get discounts at the theater or at fast food restaurants because of your age or because you are a "local resident," to cash a check or use a credit card, to buy a bottle of wine or over the counter cold medicines at the grocery store, to see your account balances at the bank, to get a library card, to pick up your prescription at the pharmacy, and on and on and on.
this is the published opinion, as usual, you should read it rather than allowing zachriels to tell you what it says.
looks like the legislature screwed up. could be fixed though.
Jim: Why should all of us be harmed by the fact that certain minority groups apparently make a decision not to obtain a photo ID (e.g., decide not spend the time or energy that all other American citizens have to go through).
Among adults who do not have a photo ID: 13% of blacks, 10% of Hispanics, but only 5% of whites; 12% of the poor, but 2% of the upper class; 15% of adults 17-20 y.o.
If Republicans really wanted to secure the vote, then they could certainly find support across the aisle. However, they often use voter ID laws to make it more difficult for minorities to vote, so there is a great deal of suspicion. For instance, in the case of North Carolina, they specifically excluded government IDs that African Americans or students were more likely to have.
In-person voter fraud is relatively rare. Mail-in voting fraud is much more common, but because these voters tend Republicans, they don't seem interested in improving this aspect of the ballot system.
The plural of anecdote is not data (which we provided in the comment to which you replied).
No, you provided a claim. This is the same lame ass claim the left always makes whenever we try to clean up our elections. The elft depends on illegal voting to win and they don't want it stopped. So they resort to the usual; trumped up claims of racism. This does not serve our citizens well. We deserve honest elections AND honest judges.
OneGuy: No, you provided a claim.
We provided specific statistics. American National Election Studies, The University of Michigan and Stanford University 2012: PDF
But everyone sees through it. Everyone knows that the left are race baiting this issue and the stats and studies are pure BS. This is what the left does divide and conquer.
Waving your hands doesn't make the facts go away.
here's the opinion as issued by the court, you'll want read it carefully.
do not let zachriels explain what it means, because he is a source known to be unreliable.
Reduce the health care costs by 90%:
I should be a believer. A few years back my local health care provider didn't accept my insurance. So I paid cash and was happy to at least get a 25% discount for cash paid at the time of the service provided. So yes I paid a lot more since I submitted my claim to the insurance and they paid me about 20% of the bill. But I'm not on this bandwagon. The real problem is that the federal government (and some private insurers) have so much power that they can indeed dictate what doctors will get paid for any particular service. They clearly do this to save costs and it does but the costs are very real and someone has to pay it. Yes it's unfair that an uninsured person pays more but that misses the point and the problem. The problem is that the powerful insurer pays less and someone has to make up the difference. So the very problem they are claiming they can fix by reducing everyone's payment is the problem THEY caused.
A better answer is to have specific charges for specific treatments and some way of preventing a health care provider from just piling up unnecessary treatments. The insurer should pay the same for a specific treatment as an uninsured patient. I'm not asking for price controls but rather for transparency and more consistency.
"Six Plants and Animals Threatened by Pseudoscience"
Where is the pseudoscience?
The article discredits folklore and mythology and tribal wisdom, the pseudoscience lies in the scientific belief that the scientific method provides the ultimate way of knowing "facts". But we all know facts are meaningless, you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true. I have a hunch that hunches are a better way of knowing the truth, my wife's women's intuition tells her that a woman's intuition is a valid way to prove things, my brother is of the opinion that opinions are just as truthful as facts. Who's to say what's true? And if nobody really knows the truth, all things are just as equally plausible as everything else. If you don't know the best way to cure a headache, taking an aspirin or whacking yourself on the head with a hammer or rubbing a toad 3 times against the back of your left hand are all equally plausible remedies. Right?
Reminds me of people who believe beef is packed with, and I quote, 'incredible nutrition'. I know it's true because it appeared here.
There's as much to that as the notion scales give you virility or whatever that was.
Those silly buggers! It's BACON that's packed with incredible nutrition. And FLAVOR.
Silverman story: I saw this yesterday and hadn't laughed this hard in a while. Moron. I have never liked her act and I hope this is another nail in the coffin for her career.
In the linked story about Silverman's swastikas, there is a passage about a Jewish liberal who was freaking out that his plumber might have voted for Trump. Dude, if you are going to freak out every time you interact with someone who has different opinions than you, where is your love of diversity? YOU are the Nazi, Ned, not your plumber.
agreed. I haven't laughed this hard since that story about "shooting us with rubber bullets" which turned out to be orange foam earplugs.
It just goes to show that so many of the "elites" don't have the faintest clue about working. I mean real, get your hands dirty, work.
on fresh eggs, When I sailed to Hawaii in the Transpac Race in 1981, my wife bought 12 dozen fresh eggs form an egg farm. We taped the case of eggs to the rudder post in the stern and had a dozen eggs for breakfast every morning. We made our own egg McMuffins. If you get them warm, they may hatch but they were cool enough in the stern of the boat that they stayed fresh and we had great meals while some of our competitors ate freeze dried mush.
This example shows the importance of accuracy in your tax return.
The IRS has returned the Tax Return to a man in New York City after he apparently answered one of the questions incorrectly.
In response to the question, ... "Do you have anyone dependent on you?" the man wrote:
7.1 million illegal immigrants,
1.1 million crack-heads,
4.4 million unemployable scroungers,
800,000 criminals in over 85 prisons, plus
450 idiots in Congress and a group that call themselves,
The IRS stated that the response he gave was unacceptable.
The man's response back to the IRS was.... "Who did I leave out?"
Uhhhh ...... you mean "Muslim-American Olympian", not Olympiad.