The Republicans Can’t Help Themselves

Almost lost in the furor last week over the NSA spying story, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to ban all abortion after 20 weeks. The debate over the bill brought forth some ludicrous moments, such as when Rep. Michael Burgess defended it by arguing that male fetuses at that stage of development can masturbate. This led to one of the better Twitter jokes I’ve seen lately:

There was also Rep. Trent Franks, who made the Akin-esque comment that “the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy [is] very low” – so low that there was no reason to include a rape exception in the ban. (The uproar over that was so great that the leadership later, quietly, added one.)

The GOP legislators who voted for this bill made no attempt to argue that it was constitutional, much less that it had any chance of passing the Senate or being signed into law by the president. It’s just another sign of how the House Republicans have given up any pretense of governing in favor of an endless parade of futile, symbolic statements of defiance, like their 37-and-counting go-nowhere votes to repeal Obamacare.

By now, you’d think a rational group of lawmakers would have accepted that however much they dislike Obamacare or abortion, they don’t have the unilateral power to end these things, so they might as well come to terms with this and focus on what they can accomplish in a divided government. Instead, the GOP has dug in and settled on a strategy of even more bitter and unwavering opposition, redoubling their obsessive focus on a few signature culture-war issues and making it their aim to defeat or undo everything that Democrats propose.

They’re sticking to this strategy even when sheer self-interest ought to advise against it. The same week they passed their futile abortion ban, the House Republicans also voted for a punitive anti-immigrant measure that would undo the DREAM Act provisions President Obama implemented by executive order, which amounts to an act of political suicide in the face of the growing Latino vote.

In a sense, the Republicans are victims of their past success. It was once a winning strategy for them to pound on social issues, demonizing their opponents as godless heathens, perverted gays, lazy entitled minorities, dirty contraception-using sluts, pointy-headed intellectuals, and all the other slurs that could be relied on to rile up their traditional base of old, white Christian men, to get them to believe their way of life was threatened and storm to the polls in defense of it. (Newt Gingrich was one of the pioneers of this strategy, in a 1990s memo titled “Language: A Key Mechanism of Control”.)

But by refusing to acknowledge changing demographic realities, Republicans have trapped themselves in an ideological death spiral. As America becomes more diverse and less religious, it’s crucial to their future electoral prospects to broaden their appeal beyond old white Christian men. But to do that, they’d have to cast votes that would grate against the already frayed nerves of those base voters, who are anxious over a changing world and their shrinking influence in it. The result is that Republican politicians are left clinging to a smaller and smaller slice of the electorate, which, however, punishes them more and more harshly for any deviation from party orthodoxy on guns, God, gays, women or immigrants.

Some of them don’t even recognize the peril they’re in. For example, many Republican lawmakers have been dismissive of party reports concluding that they need to broaden their appeal, arguing instead that all they need to do is bear down harder and be even more conservative. With immovable ideologues like this consolidating their grip on power within the GOP, even as the rest of the country leaves them behind, it’s hard to see how the Republicans will be able to remain competitive in the long term. They literally can’t help themselves.

Obviously, this is a trend to be cheered. We can’t continue with a national party that’s run by misogynist, anti-intellectual fanatics. Even as their power slips, they’ll wreak immense harm wherever they’re still in control – like the Texas legislature, which is set to pass a brutal anti-abortion bill very similar to the one that passed in the House. In fact, 2013 was one of the worst years yet for choice, as Republican-controlled statehouses all across the country pass laws designed to intimidate, shame, harass and burden family-planning clinics and the women who use them.

But for all that, we shouldn’t want to see the GOP die off or crack up. It’s unhealthy for a democracy to have just one dominant party; competition keeps politicians honest and gives them an incentive to deliver results. It’s hard to see how the party as it’s currently constituted can be saved, but it’s just barely possible that if it collapses, something more like the Republicans used to be – more friendly to science, more supportive of minority rights, more opposed to government overreach and militarism – will emerge from the ashes.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

About Adam Lee

Adam Lee is an atheist writer and speaker living in New York City. His new novel, Broken Ring, is available in paperback and e-book. Read his full bio, or follow him on Twitter.

  • Russell Wain Glasser

    “But for all that, we shouldn’t want to see the GOP die off or crack up.”

    No, really really, we should. I see no redeeming qualities whatsoever in today’s Republican party. It is a dumping ground for bigots, xenophobes, religious zealots, and warmongers. We should not hope to preserve it out of some misguided idea that if the GOP disappears then it will be the end of loyal opposition. Quite the opposite… the fact that the GOP is the only other major party means that nobody sane or rational can vote for anyone but Democrats. If they were to go the way of the Whig party or the Bull Moose party, another faction would show up to fill the vacuum. We might even wind up with TWO parties that are not batshit insane.

    Let Ron Paul take the torch and turn the Libertarian party into the second major one. I still wouldn’t support him, I’d still vote against him, but he doesn’t scare me as much as President Santorum would. Or let the disgruntled Blue Dog Democrats become the opposition. Let it be Democrats vs the “Connecticut For Lieberman” party. Hell, let Bernie Sanders rise up and form a new party from the left.

    Seriously, having no opposition at all would be preferable to keeping the GOP on life support, and virtually any party that could take up the torch would have a better chance of being effective at nondestructive governing. Let them die. Slowly and with wailing and gnashing of teeth.

  • koreypeters

    In a sense, the Republicans are victims of their past success. It was
    once a winning strategy for them to pound on social issues, demonizing
    their opponents as godless heathens, perverted gays, lazy entitled
    minorities, dirty contraception-using sluts, pointy-headed
    intellectuals, and all the other slurs that could be relied on to rile
    up their traditional base of old, white Christian men, to get them to
    believe their way of life was threatened and storm to the polls in
    defense of it.

    ^ This paragraph really stood out to me. I’m so thankful the times are changing.

  • Gordon Duffy

    I would like to see another party over to the left of the Democrats.

  • Gideon

    But there’s another factor here: how the population is divided up into geographical districts to elect House representatives. Depending on how it’s done, a minority can still be electable in many (although not all) House districts. A related factor is political concentration through self-sorting. Similar subgroups prefer to live alongside similar subgroups, and subgroups to some degree tend to have a dominant political affiliation. This would be true even without the long history of explicit segregation of minorities.

    As long as the population continues to cluster in separate predefined areas in the states, the Republicans will continue to have many “safe” seats in the House.

  • Jerrad Wohlleber

    I agree with all of this except the slowly part. The quicker the better, I say.

  • GCT

    Also due to gerrymandering, which the Rethuglicans have engaged in quite a lot over the last couple decades in order to consolidate their positions.

  • Kerry

    I am going to gingerly step into the water here. I am a life-long republican. I was raised fundamental independent christian, but have since left that world of mythology and am now a free-thinker and humanist. My views on politics have also evolved as part of that change, but I am still republican, although much more libertarian today, so Rand Paul would probably be more to my liking should he run for President.

    On social issues I am not far removed from most who read this post. I believe abortion should be rare and safe. I believe it should have the kind of state regulation necessary to guard agains the atrocities of the abortion clinic run by Gosnell. I understand and appreciate that not every pregnancy is wanted for many reasons, but as one who values the species, I believe all human life is valuable.

    I live in Asia these days, and I have seen what abortion can do to a society. In China, there are not enough females aged 25-40 for all the available men. This is because of the years of “selective breeding” where the girl babies were aborted in favor of the more highly sought after male babies.

    I am very much a small government guy which I know is at odds on this site, but I have seen, and we are all experiencing in the US how out of control, unaccountable,and irresponsible government can be. How in the world the US can or should operate without a budget year after year is beyond me. How the Congress, on both sides, will knowingly force through Congress legislation that impacts greatly all of America, without first having READ THE BILL…i.e. Obamacare, is beyond me. Government is a delicate balance of compromise…read the minutes from the Continental congress in Philadelphia. I say this to both sides so don’t preach to me about one group or the other leading to gridlock.

    My hope is for reasoned debate on these important matters, but alas, I think that hoping is in vain.

  • L.Long

    The RePuke-ians are continuously shooting themselves and have brains no bigger than a cockroach, & I apologies to cockroaches for the comparison.

    Unfortunately there are way too many Sheeple that also agree with their stance.
    And they are being empowered by them.

    We need the Demoncrat prez to grow a set and become a Democrat and the rest of the Demoncrats to help fight back and push back

  • Kerry

    Really you guys, I think you need to also read a bit of history…both sides engage in this activity when they have the power to do it. t
    This is part of the problem with the political process in America…it is essentially mob rule. Just look at some of the districts in this country that are long haphazard snake-like districts which guarantee a certain party’s dominance. People in the extreme parts of the districts have no community relationship with those of the extreme opposite end, except for the similarity in ethnicity, or religion, or income level. It is a pathetic excuse for democracy fostered by both R and D.

  • GCT

    I live in Asia these days, and I have seen what abortion can do to a society. In China, there are not enough females aged 25-40 for all the available men. This is because of the years of “selective breeding” where the girl babies were aborted in favor of the more highly sought after male babies.

    That has less to do with abortion than it does patriarchal societal “values”.

    I am very much a small government guy which I know is at odds on this site…

    Oh, FFS. Can a conservative ever write a comment that doesn’t try to pull out the “Liberals all want an out-of-control-sized government that does everything,” bullshit?

    I say this to both sides so don’t preach to me about one group or the other leading to gridlock.

    Except one side has made it their sole mission to oppose everything and anything the other side does.

    My hope is for reasoned debate on these important matters, but alas, I think that hoping is in vain.

    You could start by not throwing out canards about the “other side”. It’s not very conducive to “reasoned debate” to start with bullshit strawmen about our position.

  • Kerry

    I rest my case!

  • Katatonic

    “I live in Asia these days, and I have seen what abortion can do to a
    society. In China, there are not enough females aged 25-40 for all the
    available men. This is because of the years of “selective breeding”
    where the girl babies were aborted in favor of the more highly sought
    after male babies.”

    Not even wrong here. The one-child-per-family policy is what drove this skewing of demographics, not abortion per se.

  • Frank

    Sounds like a group of people who are standing true to their beliefs despite the circumstances. That’s integrity.

  • Elizabeth

    >Rand Paul would probably be more to my liking should he run for President.

    What do you think about the Civil Rights Act?

    >I say this to both sides so don’t preach to me about one group or the other leading to gridlock.

    How do you explain this chart, if “both sides” do it?

  • Kerry

    I am aware of the policy that drove the decision. My point is, it is still taking of a human life. The definition of abortion as you must know, according to Webster’s is

    : the termination of a pregnancy after, accompanied by, resulting in, or closely followed by the death of the embryo or fetus: as a : spontaneous expulsion of a human fetus during the first 12 weeks of gestation — compare miscarriage b : induced expulsion of a human fetus c : expulsion of a fetus by a domestic animal often due to infection at any time before completion of pregnancy

    I highly value human life, much more now as a humanist then before as a christian. My only change is that the decisions should be left to the people directly impacted by the decision, not society as a whole.

  • Kerry

    Civil rights Act? You mean of 1964? (Incidentally, the very Act that Robert Byrd D-WV filibustered for more then 14 hours.) Are you referring to the speech Rand gave at Brown? I am not sure I follow. Many more Republicans supported the CRA then Democrats. Johnson was not exactly an ardent supporter, but he was backed in the corner. Frankly, this act showed what can happen when both sides work together for the common good.

    As to your wonderful chart, It shows the complete ineptitude of Washington. Reed leading the Senate with no votes on anything of importance. The Repubs in the House passing very little that ultimately matters.

    I remember the days of Reagan-O’Neil who differed on almost every issue, still were able to hoist a beer together and work through many of the problematic issues. It can be done, and must be done.

  • Tommykey69

    Abortion is motivated by entirely different factors in the United States. A woman who finds out she is pregnant while being in a financially vulnerable situation or she is in the process of trying to complete her education or get started in her career. Or a woman with medical problems who is told by her doctor that carrying a pregnancy to term is too medically risky for her. What happens in China is irrelevant to abortion policy in the United States.
    As for Bill Clinton’s oft-quoted position on abortion, that it be safe, legal, and rare, it’s missing one crucial component, that it be accessible.

  • Kerry

    Elizabeth, I am sorry for the delay here. I had responded but I see there is no record of that response, so let me try to remember what I had submitted.

    I assume you are speaking about the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The one which was filibustered curiously enough by the late Sen. Byrd for some 14 hours. There were actually three groups of six senators in the filibuster…all but one a democrat, I think.

    If you mentioned this because Rand recently spoke to at Brown, then I am not sure of the context.

    As for your wonderful graph, it is a visual presentation of all that is wrong in Washington. There is no give and take. The filibuster has been loved and loathed by both sides as long as it has been in use. It was the Democrat’s procedure of choice during the Civil Rights Debate. It was the Republican’s choice on other occasions.

    I do miss the Reagan-O’Neill days wherein these two polar opposite politicians could hoist a cold one at the end of the day together, and fight for their principles during the day. These two were good role models for today’s inept and pitiful politicians. Compromise was the style that made it possible for DC to get anything done.

  • GCT

    Yes, let’s look at history and see who is by far, much worse:

    http://www.motherjones.com/transition/inter.php?dest=http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2013/01/who-gerrymanders-more-democrats-or-republicans

    Does it happen both ways? Yes. Is it much worse for one side than the other? Yes. Is it skewing American politics more towards one side than the other? Yes. Is it fair to pull “Both sides do it, so it’s a wash” card? No.

  • GCT

    So, you got taken apart, point by point, and that somehow validates your point? If anything, this validates my point that you aren’t actually interested in “reasoned debate.”

  • GCT

    My only change is that the decisions should be left to the people directly impacted by the decision, not society as a whole.

    Then, you should support abortion rights, since the pro-choice side is the one that seeks to leave the decision up to “the people directly impacted by the decision.”

    My point is, it is still taking of a human life. The definition of abortion as you must know, according to Webster’s is [snip]

    No, that does not settle the issue that it is the “taking of a human life.” It is the termination of a group of human cells, but so is scratching an itch. The real thing you have to argue is what personhood is, how it develops, when it applies, and then go from there.

  • Figs

    Just to back this up, go take a look at Sam Wang’s work on gerrymandering, over at Princeton Election Consortium. It brings some pretty good mathematical rigor to show that while this happens a little bit in Democratic states, it’s far and away worse in Republican ones.

  • Figs

    When you’ve got something to say beside warmed-over talking points, I’m all ears.

  • GCT

    Many more Republicans supported the CRA then Democrats.

    That was then, this is now. Rethuglicans do not support the CRA anymore, and the conservative branch of the SCOTUS just today dealt it a rather nasty blow. Let’s not pretend that it continues to be a triumph for the Rethug party anymore.

    As to your wonderful chart, It shows the complete ineptitude of Washington. Reed leading the Senate with no votes on anything of importance.

    Ah, I see. When the Dems filibuster, it shows they are obstructionist. When the Reps do it, it shows the Dems are wrong and inept. Heads you win, tails I lose?

  • GCT

    I suppose you’d say the same about racists who hold true to their beliefs that blacks are inferior?

  • Kerry

    The article is not as dire as you seem to indicate, however, it proves my point that both sides engage in securing their districts to the extent possible. Curiously, there was no mention of Florida in this chart where, as I recall there was an attempt to fit the district based on ethnicity alone.

    Does the system need to be revamped? Indeed it does. The following article has some good information. I like many of the ideas from CommonCause and FairVote.

    m/blog/174235/our-elections-really-are-rigged-gerrymandering-and-districting-abuses#axzz2XF6RVj8O

  • Science Avenger

    “Both sides do it” is a weak argument. A) That doesn’t mean we should accept it, and B) it is important to what extent they do it. I don’t ever recall a year like 2012, where the party with a strong majority in house seats received fewer house votes in total across the country. It’s a mockery.

  • Kerry

    did I say that anywhere? I blame all of them for the lack of progress on any damn thing in Washington. I tar and feather both parties. Do you even read what I wrote. And use Republicans have been blamed for many things but ALL republicans are not as you want ALL republicans to be, as ALL democrats are not what many republicans want them to be.

    Name calling is a wonderful way to work toward that spirit of compromise and accommodation needed in Washington.

  • Kerry

    Only in your dreams GCT. You have no interest in a reasoned debate. You have no interest in listening to anyone that may have a different viewpoint. You are as hardheaded and unmovable as I once was in my fundamentalist religious community. I have left behind that part of me that had to be right, that could not bend, that was so self-assured. Today, I am open to all viewpoints without the need to call others names that favor another viewpoint.

  • Kerry

    First, I don’t use talking points. I am not part of the Repub establishment. But I am entitled to my opinion and view. I have lived in Asia for 5 years. But I do care deeply for my country. I have seen from afar what happened to America under Bush…a disaster…and now under Obama…ineptitude. We must do better.

  • Science Avenger

    As a former Republican myself (the Objectivist stripe), I suggest you study the history of the various government institutions that Ron Paul would dismantle, particularly the conditions that existed to bring them about in the first place. You’ll find (as I did) that his vision is every bit as mythologial as Jesus rising from the dead.

    As for wanting reasoned debate, to achieve that you’ll have to jettison the GOP talking points that litter your 4th paragraph, as well as dispensing with the “fair and balanced” mindset that implies the only reasonable position is to blame both sides for everything. Sometimes one side is almost entirely in the wrong, and sometimes there’s a lot of blame to go around. It’s intellectual laziness posing as enlightenment to assume the center is the only proper solution to any political debate.

  • Science Avenger

    as one who values the species, I believe all human life is valuable.

    That doesn’t follow. Look at army ants, or war triage. Sometimes valuing the species means treating individuals of the species as dispensible.

  • Kerry

    Both side do it is not an argument. did you not read anything I said. The fact is …BOTH SIDES DO IT. We need to think about how to change it. But trotting out studies as Figs does above is not necessarily the best solution. Every side can produce their studies. We don’t need more studies, and summit meetings, and czars; we need solutions.

  • Tommykey69

    “I highly value human life, much more now as a humanist then before as a christian.”
    As a humanist, I value the right of a pregnant woman to be able to make decisions regarding her health and reproductive rights without strangers imposing their beliefs on her.

  • Science Avenger

    Talking about the two parties in 1964 as if their demographics were the same as they are today merely because they still have the same names is, frankly, dishonest. One might as well talk about the Houston Texans as if they were the old Dallas Texans.

  • Kerry

    I do support abortion rights…did you see where I said I didn’t? Is there something wrong with encouraging them to be rarer and safe? You remind me of the pro-life crowd….intense on the definition and dogmatic that everyone must agree with every point of they position or to hell with you. Really, do you have such a problem with rare and safe procedure?

    As for comparison to scratching an itch…I am not aware that what you are scratching on your arm has any potential to be the next Einstein. Maybe my science is inadequate.

  • GCT

    It appears that you have no interest at all in engaging in the “reasoned debate” that you claimed you were interested in. You’re looking at the data and simply clinging to your previous notions no matter what the data says. Here’s more that you’ll simply hand-wave away and ignore:

    http://election.princeton.edu/2012/12/30/gerrymanders-part-1-busting-the-both-sides-do-it-myth/

    The sad fact is that you’re making a false equivalence. It’s like looking at someone who ran a marathon and another person who ran to the end of their driveway and saying, “Well, they both ran, so therefore there’s no real difference between what they’ve done.” It’s intellectually dishonest.

  • Kerry

    GCT….you can send articles all day long to prove your case, and I suppose if I had the time, which I don’t, never mind the interest, I could provide articles in disagreement to your point. (Notice I did not say that these articles represent my beliefs, I just said they would disagree with your claims.) You cannot deny that both sides do this when they are in a position to make these decisions for their side. This is a fact. The question is not does it go on, but how to build a better system. A more equitable arrangement that removes the current abuse of the system. I am not part of this debate in the States, as are others, but as I have stated several times, there is a justifiable reason to seek a better way to create congressional districts.

  • GCT

    Where did I call you names?

    Secondly, I’ve provided data, you’ve stuck your head in the sand and cried out the same bullshit over and over…yet I’m the one supposedly not interested in reasoned debate? I’m the one not willing to listen? The data speaks against you, and you simply ignore it so that you can continue to trot out the same tropes and straw men that make up your argument. It’s sad really.

  • GCT

    And, running to the end of your driveway is the same as running a marathon. Of course, you can’t be bothered to actually look at the data – no, you must insist that it’s meaningless and counter-productive. Don’t confuse you with the facts, your mind is made up.

  • Figs

    You seriously just said that? I directed you toward a study that shows your fundamental premise is dead wrong, and you come back with, “We don’t need to look at studies”? Blah blah blah, bullshit. Studies help us KNOW THINGS, which you obviously don’t.

  • GCT

    did I say that anywhere?

    Yes. You looked at the data where Rethugs continually block Dems and claimed it was the Dems’ fault.

    And use Republicans have been blamed for many things but ALL republicans are not as you want ALL republicans to be, as ALL democrats are not what many republicans want them to be.

    Yes, you’re so persecuted by my broad brush strokes…wait, what broad brush strokes? Where did I say all Reps are the same? That’s right, I didn’t. You, however, came in here throwing around the Rep talking points that are built on straw men, have ignored the evidence presented to you, and are now being rather dishonest.

  • GCT

    BTW Figs, thanks for pointing me to Sam Wang’s work. It’s good stuff. I included the link to it above so that Kerry couldn’t claim that no one had done so.

  • Figs

    Absolutely. The only reason I didn’t include a link was a sort of petulant hope that Kerry would do it on his/her own. But yeah, it’s very good stuff.

  • Kerry

    You must be mixing this reply up with another one, as I did not say in this post that you called out names. And what data, relating to this post are you referencing? You have accused me of being a conservative, which I never said, only because I believe that government should be lean and mean. I mentioned that I am libertarian which may make me more conservative on some issues, but more liberal especially on the social issues.

  • Kerry

    I am sorry you are so insecure with your position. I am sorry you cannot read with comprehension. Please point out to me where I blamed it all on the democrats! Your purpose seems to be pigeon-holing me into some kind of talking point, which I am not. I am content with my stated purpose LONG ago that what we need is reasoned debate in the spirit of compromise on issue important to Americans.

  • Jason Wexler

    It’s integrity when I agree with it, and pig-headedness when I don’t.

  • Kerry

    I agree

  • DavidMHart

    Well, I guess it is a kind of integrity. But it is not particularly admirable to stand by your beliefs and principles if your beliefs are manifestly absurd and your principles are obviously causing harm to most people. In those circumstances, I’d vote for someone who adjusted their beliefs in the light of their implausibility, rather than someone who keeps on asserting their beliefs in the absence of any good evidence that they are true.

    That is, the better sort of integrity is the sort that involves trying to ground your beliefs in reality as conscientiously as possible, rather than than the sort that involves sticking by your previous position no matter how divorced from reality it is.

    [Edit - I'm not claiming that the Democrats are particularly good at doing that, but the Republicans as currently constituted are terrible at it]

  • Jason Wexler

    Forgive me Adam, for I know this comment is at best tangential, but I’ve often wondered if the standard narrative about the 2010 election being a repudiation of Democrats over-reaching was actually right. I think it may be minimally possible that liberals and Democrats stayed home because the Democrats over-conceded on too many issues such as health care reform and the size of the stimulus. I may be a third party voter but most of my liberal friends vote Democratic and they honestly were expecting health care reform to mean Universal Single Payer, when they voted Obama in 2008. I think there is also some evidence that if Democrats stood up for liberal positions they would do better in general at the polls.

    So basically I am agreeing with other commentators here that maybe the Republican party should be allowed to die off, so that American can finally get a liberal party to the left of the Democrats (who lets not forget are to the right of most conservative parties in the civilized world).

  • Kerry

    Thank you Science Avenger….I will certainly look closely at Rand Paul…..I was not particular enamored with his father. I am not interested in the kind of extreme libertarianism that he espoused.

    And, my friend, I have no GOP talking points. I do not watch FOX in Asia or other right-wing media. I am a product of my past, however, and as I have studied and concluded the errors of my past religious creeds, so too will I exercise the same seriousness with regard to my next votes.

    I appreciate your comments.

  • Kerry

    I should have been more clear….accept my apologies. I value the human species.

  • Cylon

    Are you even aware that the Civil Rights era caused a fundamental shakeup in the nature of the two parties? Yes, during that era, the southern states were overwhelmingly controlled by Democrats (the Dixie Democrats). And yes, they were mostly racists and opposed the Civil Rights act. When LBJ was able to push the CRA through anyway, many southern Democrats defected in protest and became Republicans. This process continued as Nixon and Reagan courted “values voters” with culture war issues until the South became the bastion of conservatism that it is now. Trying to draw a link between the conservative southern Democrats of the 60′s and the liberal (relatively speaking, anyway) Democrats of today shows a misunderstanding (or perhaps simply ignorance) of history.

  • DavidMHart

    as one who values the species, I believe all human life is valuable.

    As one who values the species, you ought to consider that, as we are already straining at the limits of what the planet can comfortably sustain, limiting our numbers is a worthwhile project. And it is disingenuous to use the phrase ‘human life’ without defining what you mean by it. An adult human, or a child, is a very, very different entity from a microscopic cluster of cells, and if you’re going to elide them both under the category of ‘human life’ (and yet not also elide tumours into the same category), then you need to make the case for why they should be considered morally equivalent (which is what it sounds like you’re trying to imply – please correct me if you’re not).

    And China’s gender imbalance is not in any meaningful way caused by abortion; it is caused by the systematic de-valuing of women. If China had strict equal pay laws, equal opportunity laws, properly enforced, together with a concerted effort to change the culture so that daughters could carry their family name forward just as much as sons (perhaps with something like the Spanish and Portuguese tradition of children inheriting each of their parents’ family names, and then add a system like picking at random which to discard a generation later) etc, the gender imbalance will disappear.

    Add into the mix a concerted effort to promote cheap, affordable contaception and overcome taboos about talking about sexuality, and the practice of aborting female foetuses will shrink to negligible levels.

    But worrying about human ‘life’ when we should be worrying about the wellbeing of sentient human persons is not likely to be of any help at all – and blaming abortion for a problem whose roots are clearly not abortion is disingenuous.

  • Kerry

    Seriously you guys…the tag team duo…there are myriad of studies. Heritage foundation has one. Cato has one. AEI-Brookings has one. We have studied this to death. There are as many studies and research papers as there are opinions. All of them have their good points. Again, and I know this is so very difficult for you to understand…depending on what position I want to take, I can find a study to defend my position. We need a watershed moment that creates the kind of adjustment needed to make the system fair and impartial.

    forgot….I am also familiar with the NYT article I think Wang wrote, although I have not read his study.

  • Figs

    I think it’s hard to say about the 2010 election. I’ve been partial to the mundane explanation that, basically, Obama wasn’t on the ballot, and things devolved to the normal state of affairs with mid-term elections, where the electorate is historically older, whiter, and more conservative than the pool of registered voters at large.

  • Kerry

    I have no issue with Clinton’s statement…in fact I have said it as well in not so eloquent terms. I can even add your crucial component. I would however, be certain that as part of that accessibility…that states regulate this as any other medical procedure so that Philadelphia is not repeated.

    And yes, of course ,I know abortion is different in the States then China, but taking a life is taking a life….or aborting a potential life is still aborting a potential life. The politics of China caused this tragedy and the difficult choices that were made. For that reason, neither politics, nor church should interfere with the choice.

  • Russell Wain Glasser

    False equivalence is a legit fallacy, you know. You don’t just get to say “both sides are equal” without backing it up.

  • Kerry

    Really Russell, You need for me to demonstrate for you that both sides of the aisle have abused the system when they were the first seat? I have to show you how the Republicans in Texas while in control of the legislature tried to create districts to safeguard Republican seats. I need to show how in Illinois the Democrats did the same thing for Democratic seat. I need to go through the history of how the filibuster has been abused by the party out of power. I need to demonstrate how Bush led his Sec of State to lie to the UN about WMD in Iraq, and how Obama had his UN Ambassador lie to the American people about Benghazi?
    Do I need to give you a complete rundown of the politicians from both sides of the aisle who have served time in jail for bribes, fraud, or sexual indiscretions?

    Is it really important to add each if these up and then decide which side is the worst offender? I believe we have long since left the concept of transparency and accountability in this government. No one, absolutely no one, takes responsibility anymore for anything. I disgusts me to be governed by a bunch of spineless, weasels, and I say this to the current administration as well as the previous one.

  • Kerry

    Actually China is doing much better in many of the areas you discuss. Contraception is readily available and promoted on television. Female abortions are much less common then 20 years ago. Dealing with the cultural masculine nature of society will take some time, however. I have seen many changes here in the last 10 years. The new President is better and his wife is very popular, so there is hope she will have a strong positive impact on these issues.

    As for defining human life, I am not a doctor and do not feel adequate to give a definitive answer. If I was cornered, I guess I would respond with “viability.” I know that even this term is suspect, but there comes a time when the fetus can sustain life outside of the womb, and that in my opinion is a human being.

  • Sally Strange

    The thing that bugs me about the small government thing is that I can’t see any causal relationship between the size of government and how democratic or tyrannical it is. A government can be small, efficient, and incredibly oppressive. Or it could be large and oppressive. Or it could be vast, sprawling, and extremely responsive to the needs of those it governs. I’ve seen this claim repeated over and over again with never any supporting data. Maybe I just missed it though.

  • Sally Strange

    How incredibly disingenuous to pretend as if the past 50 years, including the Southern Strategy, never happened. Shame on you.

  • Kerry

    Sally, I guess i am more of a…dare I say it here….States Rights kind of guy. I think the founders had it right in that whatever powers were not mandated on the federal government were reserved for the States. I see that the federal government has taken on much of that responsibility that was once in the States. I do believe that government manages best the closer it is to the people. I was raised in New Hampshire, and the Town Meetings that occur every year are still fresh in my memory. This is real grassroots democracy. I know there is much debate and discussion as to what role Washington should play, and that will forever be the case. What I would like to see is a more streamlined process which empowers the Governor’s to carry more of the burden.

  • A European

    I don’t see why America couldn’t elevate another party to the status of ‘second party’. The greens, maybe? The Democrats are already more right-wing than most of Europe. What y’all need is a good, solid, centre-left party.

  • Kerry

    How so? Yes, Nixon and the republicans had a straggly for the South, as did the Democrats I should think. Point is, for better or worse, in those days the republicans were much better on civil rights issues then were the democrats. How the republicans lost that initiative is to their everlasting stupidity and incompetence. Politics being what it is, the game of chess will continue with the majority of the people, mere pawns on the game board of America.

  • Figs

    Just because an organization like Heritage puts out a “study” doesn’t mean its contents have the same merit as another study.

    And anyway, what in the hell is your proposed solution? We don’t need to study, we need to do! Do what? I don’t know, we just need to do! Do do do, without studying! Because obviously that’ll work like GANGBUSTERS.

  • Figs

    Current abuse of the filibuster by Republicans is unprecedented. Unless you’re unconcerned with data, as you’ve said you are.

  • Figs

    You submit misunderstanding or ignorance as possible motivations for Kerry’s misrepresentations. I’d like to offer lying as a more likely option.

  • Kerry

    Interesting, but all of this interpretation is based on whatever bias you prefer. A case can be made that the Southern Strategy was not so much the racist movement as it was the strong middle class America being born in the South. Charlotte, NC is a good study on this phenomenon. The solid middle class refused the entreaties of the racial extremism of Wallace and the racial liberalism of Humphrey, and thus the middle ground that Nixon found. He became the alternative candidate. Now understand, I am not stating that this is the case. I am just saying that others can certainly read into history a different interpretation. I am not southern. I do not like the Bible Belt. I am not willing to concede that there is only one correct reading of that time period.

  • Kerry

    Figs, Typical of fundamentalists of any stripe…whenever anyone disagrees with what you believe, they are liars. How could anyone have a substantive discussion with you.

  • Kerry

    What I find serious is that democrats have difficulty accepting the serious flaws and indiscretions of the past, as do republicans. I know it is better to dwell on the here and now since this is where we live, Please do not discuss past heresies. I appreciate that civilization has evolved and the world is actually a better place then it was 50 years ago. I am vexed that the republicans want to force their religious views on all humanity. It is wrong. I am distressed that Obama Care was forced on America without debate or open discussions. That too is wrong. Obama campaigned on transparency and I wish he had lived up to that. Bush ran on kinder and gentler, and we were anything but that. There are days when I really support “throwing all the bums out” and starting over.

  • busterggi

    “I believe it should have the kind of state regulation necessary”

    “I am very much a small government guy”

    Three cheers for cognitive dissonance!

  • Kerry

    You have one chart to prove a plethora of charges. I can agree with you on the merits of the graph, but then one must ask a question…why has it been necessary to engage in such activity. What has changed in Washington that is so different from the past. I do not think it is a simple as point to one set of facts. I believe there could be many possible causes which should be considered.

  • busterggi

    “I guess i am more of a…dare I say it here….States Rights kind of guy.’

    local mob rule, legalized racism, yeah you’ve said it all.

  • Science Avenger

    Czars? Really? REALLY?!?!
    You’re buried neck deep in GOP BS dude. I know, I used to be right there with you. I know the language, and you speak it well. More’s the pity.

  • Kerry

    What is your point my friend. You have pulled quotes from different emails and tried to make some point. I believe the first was about the manner in which abortion should be rare, safe, and legal, and that the states should regulate it as they do other medical procedures. This is in the best interest of the patient.

    As to the other quote, I was discussing that States should have more decision making authority rather then Washington.

    None of this is complicated.

  • Kerry

    and what state do you live in?

    Perhaps you could use a refresher course on the Founding documents.

  • Science Avenger

    I tar and feather both parties.

    Yet you only parrot the talking points of one (the GOP) and only defend one (the GOP). You may sincerely believe that you are in the neutral middle, but your every statement screams otherwise.

  • GCT

    Heritage puts out “studies” that support their pre-determined position in order to game the system, which is part of the problem. And, it seems to happen much more frequently on the conservative side of the aisle. Why is that? You’re just digging the hole deeper.

  • GCT

    You must be mixing this reply up with another one, as I did not say in this post that you called out names.

    Ah, so you just pulled the complaint about name calling out of thin air and it had nothing to do with anything except you patting yourself on the back for not doing it? Right.

    You have accused me of being a conservative, which I never said, only because I believe that government should be lean and mean.

    You’ve self-identified as a life-long Republican. They are the current party of conservatism, theocracy, tyrannical attempts to control women, white, rich, Xian, heterosexual men, etc.

  • GCT

    You’ve already seen the data on both filibusters and gerrymandering and have ignored it.

  • Kerry

    I just mentioned Heritage as one of three examples, but it is funny how you dwell on that one. I knew you would. You are true to your calling. I have no truck with Heritage, I did it to test you.

  • GCT

    Which is why you compare it to the “taking of a human life?” Oh please. Making something more rare can be accomplished many ways as well. I’ve yet to see you come out and say that you support availability and unfettered access for women to reproductive health. When you parrot the talking points of the anti-choice crowd, why are you surprised when others take you at your word?

  • GCT

    You don’t use talking points? That’s all you’ve done.

  • GCT

    I am sorry you are so insecure with your position. I am sorry you cannot read with comprehension.

    I’m sorry that you’re an asshole that has neither the inclination nor the aptitude for reasoned debate.

  • Kerry

    Sorry I had responded to Figs, but I guess he is not active now. My comment was that it is not so easy to simply pull data from one graph and draw conclusions. One must take into account why it is that the situation exists today that the filibuster is used more then in previous times. What might have caused this spike. What other components to this graph might be important. There is more information that can be gleaned from this one post, I am sure.

  • Kerry

    Yep that will certainly help in the reasoned dialogue!

  • Kerry

    Why is it that when someone shares what they believe…sincerely believes, and because it, in some cases, is similar to people you already disagree with, that I am using talking points? This is who I am. I stated earlier that I am still a republican. I never denied that. I am also not typical. I am also atheist. But I am an open book to following my heart in the directions I think best for me and for my country. So why am I such a talking point guy?

  • TheodoreSeeber

    I thought atheists were against Gosnell.

  • Kerry

    You are so predictable. Like christians do to atheist, they group everyone together, and like atheists do to christians, they group everyone together. Well, you have done the same to me. You do not know me. Yes i have been a republican but I do not believe much of what is on your list above. I am not conservative in your definition of the term. I am atheist and very supportive of women’s rights. I am white…nothing I can do about that, although I am married to a Taiwanese. I am not rich. I support SSM. But I am also pro 2nd amendment. See, i am not very typical. So stop making assumptions!

  • Jason Wexler

    I think that is probably the most responsible explanation, it’s not very sexy, but probably true.

  • Kerry

    Gosnell was taking human life….that I will not tolerate, nor should anyone. I get the impression that you have no problem with what he did.

  • Kerry

    Please explain to me how supporting States Rights is racist, and how the States would be able to ignore federal law on these issues. Allowing States to administer many of the federal programs will be more efficient, effective, and less costly. Why is this a bad thing?

  • Frank

    You could but it wouldn’t be the same thing.

  • Omnicrom

    Acting the Tone Troll NEVER reflects well on you.

  • Omnicrom

    You are receiving argument because what you claim to sincerely believe is 100% in line with GOP talking points. Nothing you have said makes you seem atypical except your atheism. If you were a Christian you would be largely indistinguishable from the Republican base.

  • Omnicrom

    We are. How is this relevant?

  • Kerry

    My friend, you are certainly entitled to believe whatever you want to believe. It is a free country. However, I am not now, nor have I ever been a troll. I think for myself. I do my own research and arrive at my conclusions based on the best evidence I can uncover. I do not apologize for that, but apparently because I do not march in lock step with you and others, I am to be ridiculed and mocked. That is so tolerant of you! Really, you should be proud of your stubborn insensitive, and bone-headedness.

  • Kerry

    How so my friend? I am not pro-life. I am an atheist. I am supportive of SSM. I am from a mixed marriage. I am for drug legalization. To name a few. What in these makes me Republican? Yes, I do share some thoughts and ideas with the republicans as I do with the democrats. I am American after all, but alas, I am like a man without a country.

  • Azkyroth
    Many more Republicans supported the CRA then Democrats.

    That was then, this is now.

    Is it even true? I’d like to see a citation for this, since while I’m by no means an expert on the period I do know that the Democrats’ adoption of support for the Civil Rights movement caused a major realignment of black voters away from the “party of Lincoln.”

  • Azkyroth

    My point is, it is still taking of a human life.

    No more than refusing to donate a kidney is.

  • Figs

    What are you trying to get out of this?

  • Azkyroth

    1970s Republicans, for instance.

  • Figs

    You’re using a funny definition of “necessary” that I’ve never heard before.

  • Sven2547

    You’re a “small government guy” who supports the party of big-government bans on abortion and same-sex marriage, the party of government being allowed to tell kids what gods to pray to, the party of war and torture.

    Whenever I see someone describe himself as a lifelong Republican who is a small-government guy, I shake my head and laugh.

  • Figs

    So on the one hand you’re saying that studies are pointless and all that matters is action, but here you’re saying that we need to glean more information before saying anything concrete.

    Better trolls, please.

  • Figs

    You’re acting as though you’ve never heard of the Southern Strategy. It’s a specific thing. A campaign of stoking race-based fear to win votes for Republicans. This is history. It’s not some thing that Sally just made up and you get to pretend was done by both sides.

  • Figs

    Sorry, you’re right. Lying requires knowledge of what the truth is, and it seems like you don’t even acknowledge that there’s such a thing as the truth.

  • Figs

    A case cannot be made that the Southern Strategy is the bullshit that you say.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_strategy

    Words have meanings. Try using them.

  • Figs

    Are you serious in thinking that Science Avenger was confused and thought you were talking about ants? Or are you tipping your hand that you’re trolling?

  • Figs

    Supporting states’ rights isn’t racist.

    “Supporting States’ Rights” is, and has a long, long history of being very thin cover for virulent racism.

  • Azkyroth

    Because the primary “State’s Right” that has been at issue has always been the claimed right of certain states to treat dark-skinned people as subhuman. Practically the only one, really.

  • Azkyroth

    Doesn’t Adam have a policy against trolling, too?

  • Azkyroth

    There is no integrity in being wrong vigorously.

  • Kerry

    wikipedia!!!! that is the best you got!

  • Azkyroth

    Promise?

  • Kerry

    But you cannot even debate someone with a differing view. You do not even acknowledge someone could possible see things in a different light. How interesting can your world be when everything is already understood?

  • Azkyroth

    Why ignore the potential of the person who owns the uterus to be the next Einstein if not saddled with an unwanted child?

  • Kerry

    Two minutes of googling will reveal what you need to know. Yes, the truth is there were many more D’s against the CRA of ’64.

  • Kerry

    Well the I guess that is where the D’s must have learned that because today every time someone disagrees, it is a racial thing. I am so glad I live in Asia. We just do not have that kind of immaturity, on that issue anyway. But seriously, this was campaigning tactics which every campaign has. Do you really want to have a discussion about underhanded campaign strategies. I know both sides of that discussion very well.

  • Kerry

    I believed he was making light, so I did the same.

  • Kerry

    only to a a person that sees conspiracy everywhere. Again this is ancient history. I would love an example of a current situation wherein that is the clear purpose….not what you think they mean by it, but a clear expression of that meaning.

  • Kerry

    I am just saying all of the questions have not been exhausted as to the various interpretations of the information provided in the graph.

    You have a great way of pulling from various places the statements I make. You really are quite a wizard.

  • Kerry

    oh that was so 8 hours late

  • Kerry

    of course…that would be the best of all possible solutions….even up to the minute before the fetus is born! You and Gosnell would be great compatriots. How is it you think I am pro-life? Do you not read? Fortunately, that person…the woman, has access to condoms, morning after pills, and other alternatives before the life is viable.

  • Kerry

    Please…you are so narrow minded and bigoted. I stated clearly what I believe. You obviously are not capable of reading and comprehending what you read. Are you that thick headed? Why is it important that I be someone other then who I am? What do you gain out of that? It is just possible, no it is for certainty that you are wrong about what you think I believe, but you are entitled to believe anything you want, but what you believe about me would be a myth.

  • Dryad

    Exactly. Here’s hoping for a future where the Democrats actually have to work to win my vote, instead of getting it by default because the other party literally thinks I am a demon.

  • Dryad

    And if the fetus is just floating there without moving, it’s clearly demonstrating that it has the ability to perform a homage to cinema classic Sunset Boulevard.

  • smrnda

    Wow, amazing. A convert away from the personality cult of Ron Paul? All said, you’ve won my Internet of the Day Award just for that.

    I’m sometimes curious as to whether Ron Paul actually thinks things would be better without the government institutions he opposes, or whether he just thinks that there’s so much intrinsic value in a minimalist government that widespread misery is an acceptable cost. My own experience is supporters of similar points tend to drift from one to the other, depending on which is convenient at the time.

    The notion of a nearly non-existent government that only exists to protect private property rights is an unprecedented and untested notion, a myth as you did point out.

  • Jason Wexler

    So this response is probably better suited to your prior comment above (which busterggi was responding to), however the Federalism model and the notion of better response is kind of meant to apply to low population communities. I live in a city of 140,000 people, which is a suburb of a city with 600,000, which is the core city of a metro area of about half again the population as the United States had when the constitution was ratified; and my next door neighbor doesn’t know that my other next door neighbor is our city’s mayor, even though we all hang out together a few times a month. With a population of 140,000 there is no way our mayor can know everyone, we don’t have a facility which could accommodate town hall meetings like the ones you grew up with in a tiny village in New England. Even if we could accommodate that many people with say a virtual town hall, it would still take three days nonstop for everyone to even introduce themselves. I am sorry but close to the people government is a luxury we can’t afford with so many people.

    I might also add that every dysfunctional, failed and eventually autocratic state in the world for the last century started by adopting a US model of government; while every stable, prosperous, long lasting country (other than the US and Germany) has adopted a system of expansive unitary power. So the problem isn’t that being more efficient is a bad thing, it’s that your foundational hypothesis is flawed and disproven by the evidence of the real world, allowing lower level administrative divisions autonomy on administering programs isn’t actually more efficient or cost effective or utilitarianly effective.

  • Jason Wexler

    So claiming “States Rights” is a cover for virulent obfuscated racism is too narrow a claim, what they probably should be arguing is that it is a cover for virulent obfuscated bigotry of all types. It is an argument being used against the federal extension of rights to LGBT people (both employment and marriage non-discrimination), it is an argument that was used against the Affordable Care Act because it included protections for womens health, which conservative opponents opposed, as well as expansions of rights and privileges for poor and other underclass people.

    I actually agree with one of your many arguments from elsewhere in this debate, that both Democratic and Republican ideologues apply standards of criticism inconsistently with respect to Federal Power. However, your debate opponents are also correct to point out that one side does do it more than the other; and even if that isn’t true, it is certainly difficult to argue that one side arguing for States Rights only in instances where it allows them to bully despised minority populations doesn’t bode well for the case that “States Rights” isn’t a euphemism for unrestricted bigotry.

  • Jason Wexler

    I think that Wikileaks, Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden have effectively put to rest the idea that only the Republicans are the party of war and torture.

    Plus there are a lot of Democratic politicians which are Blue Dogs who support many of those same positions as well.

    It isn’t entirely fair to say he is a hypocrite on that point, as he has repeatedly stated he is not a supporter of the politicians who enact those policies. If I were to make the mistake of putting words into his mouth I would say that Republican seems to be the name he gives his political philosophy, even though that philosophy doesn’t match most of our shared definition of what it means to be a Republican, i.e. it is entirely a semantic argument. By analogy I have to ask would you spend a lot of time (as much as has been spent in this thread arguing with Kerry) debating and pressuring another nonbeliever who self identified as a Christian in order to avoid conflict at the holiday dinner table?

  • Sven2547

    By analogy I have to ask would you spend a lot of time (as much as has been spent in this thread arguing with Kerry) debating and pressuring another nonbeliever who self identified as a Christian in order to avoid conflict at the holiday dinner table?

    Just as much. The GOP branding itself as the small-government party is a joke, and I’ll tell that to believers and non-believers alike.

  • Figs

    No you don’t.

  • Figs

    Idiot. Do you have anything to say about it or not?

  • Figs

    Youre not even attempting to respond to points anymore. Why shouldn’t you just be banned?

  • Loren Petrich

    Except that there is a certain problem: Duverger’s law.

    First-past-the-post induces a two-party system.
    Proportional representation permits a multiple-party system.

    So we ought to try to get proportional representation.

  • Loren Petrich

    Why this fixation on single-member districts? Why not consider multi-member ones? One can have proportional representation in them, or semi-proportional systems like Single Transferable Vote.

  • Loren Petrich

    Yes, the Republican Party decided to make itself the party of Jefferson Davis.

  • Loren Petrich

    While ignoring which Democrats and which Republicans. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Rights_Act_of_1964

    Definitions here:
    “South” = ex-Confederacy
    “North” = rest of the US

    A larger fraction of Republicans than Democrats did vote for the Civil Rights Act, but breaking down into regions is revealing. There were hardly any Southern Republicans back then, though they all opposed the CRA. There were lots of Southern Democrats, however, and they mostly opposed the CRA. That’s why the Republicans came out ahead overall.

    Northern Democrats and Northern Republicans both supported the CRA, but Democrats by a larger margin than Republicans. Senator Robert Byrd was *very* atypical.

  • Gordon Duffy

    Well obviously FPTP isn’t really democratic. That’s a given.

  • Gordon Duffy

    Sure, if you have a time machine.

  • Loren Petrich

    The filibusterers were all Southerners. The non-Southern Democrats mostly supported the Civil Rights Act, more than the non-Southern Republicans did.

  • Loren Petrich

    You’d need to have proportional representation or something similar, like the Single Transferable Vote.

    We Americans are still stuck with First Past The Post, and by Duverger’s Law, it produces a two-party system.

  • GCT

    How fucking stupid.

    I just mentioned Heritage as an example of the three that you listed, which are all shills. Yes, there is a cottage industry on the right that specializes in misinforming the public in order to push their policy agendas. And, you sit there and lap it up because it purports with what you’d like to be true.

  • GCT

    Like christians do to atheist, they group everyone together, and like atheists do to christians, they group everyone together.

    Bigot.

    Well, you have done the same to me.

    I’ve done no such thing. I’ve simply reacted to your talking points.

    You do not know me.

    I don’t need to in order to react to the arguments that you are making.

    I am atheist and very supportive of women’s rights.

    Then, by your own words you group all Xians together. Do you even attempt to think before opening your mouth and shoving your foot in?

    As for being supportive of women’s rights, I highly doubt it. You support the party that is trying desperately to demolish women’s rights. You trot out anti-choice talking points and rail against the evils of abortion. Those are not actions indicative of someone who actually, you know, supports women’s rights.

  • GCT

    Because one party has devolved into a bunch of theocratic, whining malcontents that have no other plan except to obstruct.

  • GCT

    The facts of the matter are that your party is the party of obstruction, and you are desperately looking for a way to pin the blame on the other guys. Just as I said you were. Your mealy-mouthed excuses don’t change that, and just make it evident that you have no interest in honest and reasoned discussion. You’re a troll.

  • Kerry

    I just mentioned Heritage to show that you have an absolutely knee-jerk reaction to anything you think might disagree with your stated views. This is intellectually dishonest. One needs to understand a variety of views and work towards a solution…not simply plant your stake on one idea and refuse to move. Fundamentalism in every stripe…politics, religion, philosophy, is a disaster.

  • GCT

    Ah, I see, if I point out your hyperbole and anti-choice talking points, that means I support Gosnell. Which, BTW, is what I would expect from someone who has nothing but anti-choice talking points to throw out. But, let’s look at your statement, shall we?

    Gosnell was taking human life….that I will not tolerate, nor should anyone.

    Wow. You’ve already tried to argue that abortion is the taking of a human life, so therefore you shouldn’t tolerate it. So, which is it? Care to try and weasel/lie your way out of this one too? When you try to troll, at least keep your story straight.

  • GCT

    Ah, I see. So, that woman (you know you want to say “bitch”) better have that child as punishment for having sex. Never mind the fact that your party is making it as difficult as possible for her to use alternatives. You’re quite the asshole.

  • GCT

    Um, because that’s all you’ve used to argue anything.

  • GCT

    Because your arguments were so well reasoned in the first place? Oh yeah, I’m the bad guy because I came out and said you’re an asshole instead of mealy-mouthed insinuations and insincere notpologies.

  • Kerry

    Jason, Again, there is an immediate knee-jerk reaction to the term “States Rights.” This is a two-headed coin. I see SR as creating a situation where some states have decided that marijuana should be de-criminalized. Other states have allowed SSM. Still others have dealt with the abortion issue on their own terms. It is not ALWAYS a racist expression.

    These states, on just the issues stated above, which incidentally I support, have led the way in creating an environment on a broader scale that is more supportive of these issues. That is a good thing in my mind. Can the SR concept be used for ill…of course, and has been to this day, but I believe the overall good that will result from such boldness on these issues by this handful of states will blaze a trail of national acceptance for the cause that can be embraced by the majority. Those sinister concepts will be swept away over time.

  • GCT

    I do my own research and arrive at my conclusions based on the best evidence I can uncover.

    This is flatly untrue. What research do you do? Oh yeah, you figure out what the Faux News talking points are and parrot them. Then, when presented with evidence, you ignore it in favor of your talking points. Do you honestly think no one will notice that you are lying here?

  • Sally Strange

    Until you figure out what the word “bigoted” actually means, I suggest you stop using it. Hint: it does not mean shaking one’s head at a person who identified with a political party despite the fact that it contradicts his stated political philosophy.

  • Sally Strange

    I don’t see why you think it’s any more acceptable to be oppressed by, say, Albany in my case, than by Washington. That’s the thing about states’ rights that always bugged me. Yeah, theoretically I can see how a smaller pool of people influencing a particular governmental body can lead to more responsiveness by said body, but clearly in reality that’s often not the case. Again the evidence is lacking – and I note that you did not provide any evidence demonstrating correlation, causal or not, between “small” and “good.”

  • GCT

    I know it is better to dwell on the here and now since this is where we live, Please do not discuss past heresies.

    This, coming from the person who is trying to condemn the Democrats for not supporting the CRA as much as the Rethuglicans. Not only are you unaware of the issues that you pretend to be knowledgeable about, but now you’re being nothing short of duplicitous.

  • GCT

    Oh, the irony.

  • Sally Strange

    They weren’t making light. It’s a serious argument. If you value the human species then the most rational thing to do is encourage birth control AND abortion.

  • Kerry

    You are correct on federalism, and while I love to wax nostalgic from time to time about quaint New England villages…population 950…I understand it is not workable in more populated areas. I still contend that the nation would be served better at state level, and that will continue to be a debate for years to come.

    As for Europe, none of these nations have our unique subset of culture, history, or traditions. These were all Monarchial for most of their existence. The had a state approved church that was to be revered and honored. It is a different place they come from.

    I have spent a good part of my life outside the US. I remember well the break up of the USSR, and the mad rush by American’s to help institute American styled democracies in the newly minted (again) countries. I was opposed to this as to be America, you must have an American tradition and heritage, which none of the countries had. It was important that whatever form of government they produce be in keeping with their culture and traditions, and most importantly of all, supported by the populace.

    Our grand experiment in the US is unique and may never be birthed again, but if we cannot find a way to work together as a people, then there will continue to be dark days ahead.

  • Sally Strange

    So, do we need more regulation of a medical procedure that affects only people with uteruses? Or should neither politics nor church interfere with that choice? Make up your mind.

  • Kerry

    I agree that the Republicans have done no better then the Democrats at limiting government, but that does not mean I cannot desire such a possibility. It is what I believe, and I know there are those that share that belief even though we may still disagree on most of the social concerns.

  • Kerry

    Sad but unfortunately true.

  • Sally Strange

    Not “a strategy for the South.”

    “The Southern Strategy.”

    Are you claiming ignorance of what “The Southern Strategy” is? If so, why not ask what it is or look it up, rather than wallow in ignorance while attempting to maintain your argument, which is based on false premises?

    WE are not the ones denying that the Republicans USED to be the party of anti-racism. YOU are the one having trouble dealing with the fact that it’s been 50 years since that was true.

  • Sally Strange

    Well the I guess that is where the D’s must have learned that because today every time someone disagrees, it is a racial thing.

    You happen to be wrong about an issue of political history involving race politics. Of course it’s a racial thing. Why are you so dishonest?

  • GCT

    Why not? You’ve indicated that integrity = standing true to your beliefs despite the circumstances. If that is your definition, then it works equally well for white supremacists. But, when faced with that, you back away. Why is that? Oh yeah, it’s because Jason Wexler nailed it. It’s only integrity when YOU agree with the position being held.

  • Kerry

    Really, and you know how many Republicans that support abortion, or SSM, or legalizing drugs, etc. How many atheistic republicans do you know. Yes, I am mostly libertarian on many issues which again goes against the core beliefs of most republicans.So, which issues have you cherry picked to pigeon hole me as a republican troll? I have not hidden the fact that I am republican, but as I rethink my personal beliefs in many of these areas, I am quite certain that I will not again be the mouthpiece for another fundamental camp. Been there, done that.

  • Sally Strange

    However, I am not now, nor have I ever been a troll.

    The dishonesty you display, and your inability/unwillingness to respond to factual corrections of your mistakes, leads us to believe that you’re not being sincere.

  • Kerry

    I guess in trying to access the larger picture which encompasses our history, and weighing that against where we are today, I try to appreciate the journey of what brought us to today. Sometimes it is easier to just forget about the past, especially if it does not reflect favorably on our narrative of today.

  • Sally Strange

    Yes. If you make a claim, AND you want to be believed, then yes, it is VERY important for you to be able to support your claim with facts.

    You sure you’re down with this whole skepticism thing? Seems to me like you’re new at it.

  • Russell Wain Glasser

    We already have a 1970s Republican party. They’re Democrats.

  • Kerry

    For the last time, I abhor being placed in the position to have to support the Republican Party. That is not my intention, nor do I feel an obligation to defend them. I have pointed out numerous times the areas in which I disagree, but there is a constant effort to tell me what I believe and who I am. How unfortunate.

  • Kerry

    GCT, you are impossible. I have never used the word you did above, but apparently you are most familiar with it. Funny, I did not swear when I was a christian, and I do not now that I am an atheist. I did not call people derogatory names before, nor now. I have no need for such terms because it never advances a conversation.

    I consent that the party I have affiliated with my whole life has made it difficult for women, based solely on their fundamental religiosity. However, that is not the whole party. I have an equally difficult view of the democrats like you that support and otherwise endorse people like Gosnell. Your position is as abhorrent to me as that of many republicans.

  • Russell Wain Glasser

    “You need for me to demonstrate for you that both sides of the aisle have abused the system when they were the first seat?”

    No, I need you to demonstrate that both sides of the aisle have abused the system at roughly equivalent rates to the extent that it makes your claim at all relevant to this discussion. If they do so in a vastly disproportionate way, then your comment is vacuous. It’s saying “At least one X has done Y, therefore X is the cause of Y.” Observe “Both cancer and people with mustaches have caused deaths. If we want to find a cure for cancer, it’s equally important that we ban mustaches, otherwise we are hypocrites.” It’s a stupid, trivial way to argue. It adds nothing to the discussion.

  • Kerry

    Sally…please see the definition below. This is exactly what I have encountered “intolerantly devoted to ones own opinion.”

    : a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance

    And again, for the umteenth time, I am as much a pariah in my own party these days as I would apparently be in your party. But I will be damned if I will join a party that is a closed on ideas and discourse as your group has demonstrated here.

  • Figs

    GCT opposes Heritage because it specifically has shown itself to not be interested in intellectual endeavors. Not because of a knee jerk reaction. You don’t know people here or their history, don’t make statements like that which you can’t hope to back up.

  • Figs

    So you’re claiming that every statement you make should be taken in isolation, and claiming one day that the sky is blue should in no way influence my interpretation of your claim on a subsequent day that the sky is green?

  • GCT

    Still others have dealt with the abortion issue on their own terms….

    These states, on just the issues stated above, which incidentally I support, have led the way in creating an environment on a broader scale that is more supportive of these issues.

    Can we dispense now with the lie that you are for women’s rights?

  • Figs

    Being libertarian does not go against the core beliefs of many Republicans. Jesus. Do you not get this?

  • Kerry

    Russell, I have said elsewhere that it is not enough to simple pull the information off of one graph and build a narrative around that information. It is dangerous. So, to full understand what is going on…in DC these days, it is necessary to ask more questions. I visited DC several months ago for the first time in perhaps 4 years, and I have never seen or felt a more polarized town then what I found there. Having disagreements is one thing, but for both side to display utter contempt for each other and complete intolerance is a situation that does not bode well for our future. I wish I had the time to dissect these various questions because I think they are ultimately important to drawing any conclusions, but unfortunately at the moment I do not have the time.

  • Figs

    In other words, black people and women are now equal and they don’t have any right to complain anymore.

  • Figs

    Of course I acknowledge that someone could see things in a different light. But you’re not doing that. You’re refusing to acknowledge that THINGS, as a class, even exist.

  • Figs

    The phrase “States’ Rights” has long been used for bigoted purposes, and your frequent invocation of it either speaks to a lack of understanding of history (unlikely, since you wouldn’t just come up with that phrase on your own) or a deliberate attempt to mislead.

  • Kerry

    Good point Figs…and Ron Paul was so very popular during the presidential primary. It is a subset of the party yes….but it is also a subset of your party.

  • Figs

    “Limiting government” as a goal, without any eye toward making government work better, is and always has been idiotic.

  • Kerry

    As you always do Figs, you see one word or phrase and latch onto it. If you read what I have written, I discuss efficiency, and effectiveness. Government closer to the people in need is usually more effective. But you are your usual intolerant self.

  • Kerry

    So, enlighten me if you will on the process by which the states have explored the ares I brought up. They are certainly in defiance of “national law.” To what concept of government do they appeal so as to decriminalize marijuana for example.

  • Kerry

    I do not believe you can compare war triage with abortion. The doctor working under the Hippocratic Oath must make decisions during war that are indeed god-like, and often must choose one life over another. In the case of…let’s take Gosnell as our example because he is current and his manner of “medicine” was horrendous…this can in no way be an apples to apples comparison. If babies lived as the conviction confirmed, then how is this acceptable? By what right does G get to play god to a helpless infant struggling for life. As I have said many many times on this site…I support contraceptives, morning after pill, 1st, even 2nd trimester, and life of the mother, but for me personally, I must draw the line at what doctors would define as viability. At this point I do not believe it is a “skin scrapping of cells” as was defined by another on this site. I know my views fly in the face of some here because I am not pure enough. they also fly in the face of my republican friends for the same resins…purity. These are my views and nothing more.

  • Kerry

    Sally, In fact, I am new at this whole skepticism thing. I spent 50 years as a fundamentalist church-going, bible believing christian. I left that intolerant and condemnatory guilt ridden community about 5 years ago. I first needed to fully grasp the “religion” questions which I spent three years dissecting until I have arrived at the only sane conclusion…atheism. I have changed from an inerrancy of scriptures advocate to one who sees the Bible as a mythical book similar to Homer’s Odyssey.I have moved from YEC to old earth, because the evidence is overwhelming.

    I say all of that to show you that I have made substantial changes in my core beliefs. Now, as I consider my political views, I have already made some of those changes as I have indicated. I have not tried to hide where I came from.
    My reservation as I journey down this political road is the intolerance…FROM BOTH SIDES. Have we come to the point where reasonable people cannot disagree in a civilized manner?

    Living in Asia has been refreshing actually. I find…at least in my experience…that the Buddhist culture allows for a wide divergent of views without anyone feeling offended. I know this may not always be the case, I am just stating this from my experience. I am able to question with confidence the various political and religious difficulties faced in China. I am eternally curious about the “why’s” of everything.

    So Sally, please forgive my delicate “toe in the water” approach here. It has not been pleasant, but I am not discouraged. I will continue to study and learn, but I can never go back to a community of doctrinal purity and intolerance. “To my own self be true.”

    This may result in never finding a political home in the States. I am prepared for that. I will still vote based on my best understanding of the 2 candidates that will never measure up to what I believe, nor how I would govern, but that is America.

  • GCT

    You don’t seem to support abortion. And, there are some atheist Rethuglicans…and I can’t understand why. There are also gays that are Rethuglican for some strange reason. What’s your point? Are you trying to argue that you are not actually a Rethuglican, even after repeatedly telling us that you are?

  • GCT

    Which is why you’re pretending the Southern Strategy never happened? Can you make one comment that isn’t an out-right lie?

  • Kerry

    I never said I was “Rethuglican.” I said I have been a member of the republican party my whole life. I am pleased that at least after repeating over and over again that I support abortion that you finally get it. I have difficulties with the Gosnell type abortions, and for that I am castigated because I am not pure enough! I am not nor have I argued that I am not republican. I have differences with the party as I have pointed out, and I have differences with the D’s as well.

  • Science Avenger

    Kerry is playing the age-old game of pretending to be a postmodernist whenever the evidence threatens to turn against him, or god-forbid it becomes clear that effort is required to sift through competing claims to see who has the evidence to back them.
    I HAVE seen and considered both sides, since I’ve inhabited both. I know all the GOP arguments and can tell you what is wrong with every one of them. THAT is intellectual honesty dude, not throwing your hands up in the air and pretending that any time there are competing claims, they are either equal or impossible to parse.

  • Science Avenger

    If you think Benghazi is equivalent to Iraq, you have a serious problem with false equivalence.
    And YES, it is VERY important to add up all the evidence to decide which side is the worse offender. It’s called being an informed voter.

  • Kerry

    You believe yourself to be so smart SA. I have no fear of competing evidence, but I am perhaps more thorough before drawing conclusions. If you want to base your critical analysis on one graph without also considering that there might be additional information, both complementary or in opposition, then that is fine. It is not as you say…intellectually honest.

    I do know the GOP side as I have lived in that camp for many years. I spend most of my time reading the various books and opinions that were not part of my diet for many years. Unlike you however, I am fully capable to not simply disregard a certain viewpoint because it might conflict with my presupposition. For example….I read The Wash Post. The NYT, and the Wash Times every day. I think this is a balanced approach, but I would wager you do not read anything that does not buttress your own beliefs. I can read Heritage, or Cato…along with the Princeton study or MIT if there is one, in an effort to draw from as many ideas as possible. To do otherwise is either insecurity or stupidity.

  • Sally Strange

    It’s not a question of defining “human life.” Egg cells are alive, and human. Sperm are alive, and human. Blasocysts, embryos, and fetuses are all alive, and human. The question you want to answer is what defines a human person, and the expertise of a medical doctor is of little use answering that question.

  • Kerry

    I was not comparing the two in the way you infer. I was demonstrating that both misled America.

    OK let me go into one other issue that has bothered me. Can you honestly say that were Bush President today and carried out the drone program as has Obama that you would be ok with that? I despised the Bush war and I despise the apparent disregard for the national sovereignty of other countries demonstrated by Obama. Yet, those that would have foamed at the mouth against Bush are eerily silent on Obama. Why is that? Washington has become like a spectator sport. As in football, we see the clipping done by our team but we yell at the referee when he makes the call, excusing it because it was “not that flagrant.” Well, as long as Washington is one side cheering on their team irrespective of the infractions, then we are in big trouble my friend.

    Unlike you, who continues to cheer from the sidelines, I have the luxury of being more objective since I have no dog in this fight. I am not fully R nor am I D. And as such, I have no difficulty in being honest about the infractions.

  • Science Avenger

    With regard to talking points, I’m sorry, but you are deluding yourself. You use the EXACT phraseology and tactics of the GOP talking points. I accept you at your word that you are not doing this purposely, but you are in fact doing it. I’d compare you to family members of mine who think they are no longer the racists they used to be while still slinging around phrases like “nigger rigging”. It takes more to purge yourself of GOP nonsense than just the conscious rejection of their positions. Look deeper at the way you think on these issues.

  • Kerry

    I will allow that I tend to speak like a republican. Unfortunately it is what I know. I have had a difficult not saying “god Bless you” as well, but I continually work on it. I can assure you that my worldview is the most clear of any time in my life. I no longer need to cheer my side when it gets away with breaking the law or lying to the American people. I can be annoyed and disgusted with actions that are disgusting and unlawful. That is what I try to do.

    I have discovered that although I threw the baby out with the bathwater….I rather liked the bathwater! It is not an all or nothing situation. I cannot be. Both sides have some valid points, and to just disregard because of the source is intellectually dishonest.

  • Science Avenger

    Thank you, although I’m not sure it is deserved. The drift you mention on the benefits of minimal government has to be understood within the objectivist/libertarian mindset, which DEFINES “good” as “that which follows from a rightfully limited government”. If protecting our rights and refraining from initiating force results in a lot of people living in slums, then they, by definition, deserve it, and there is nothing to be done or concerned about.
    Of course, you’ll be hardpressed to get anyone of that stripe to admit that their ideal world would have such results. The magic hand of freedom is like the magic hand of god, it will provide, somehow.

  • Science Avenger

    You think I was making light? Based on what? You do understand that my “war triage” comment was referring to humans, right?
    Let me be more clear. Every act of HUMAN warfare implicitly treats some individuals as less valuable than others, to be sacrificed for the good of the species or society. We Americans treated Nazi soldiers as less deserving of life than our own for the betterment (or so we hoped) of our society and the species. It simply does not follow that valuing humanity as a species means treating every individual as valuable.
    If you are so interesting in productive discourse as you claim, you have to be willing to admit error. I’ll wait.

  • Kerry

    sorry my friend, I have responded more fully to you although I do not see the comments above. Hopefully they appear soon.

  • Science Avenger

    I do believe that government manages best the closer it is to the people.

    This might be true on unique geographic issues. I’ll take the view of local Alaskans or Hawaiins of how to deal with their weather and local threats (volcanos and glaciers) than someone living in DC. But where this really breaks down is on universal issues like education or racism where the locals ARE the problem. Left to local control, many communities see to it, wittingly or not, that their kids are just as ignorant as they are (ie evolution). Left to their own devices, the South (where I’m from) would STILL be segregated. On such issues a more centralized approach is demonstrably more effective.

  • Science Avenger

    The GOP has done worse, because while the government grows and grows under either party, the Democrats have historically done a much better job of paying for it. The worst fiscal deficits consistently occur under GOP administrations. And spare me the argument that congress is more to blame, I’ve examined the data. By FAR, the information that most correleates with high deficits is who is sitting in the White House.

  • Sven2547

    “Bigoted”? No, “bigoted” is believing that certain Americans should be second-class citizens. What’s the Republican stance on same-sex marriage, again?

  • Kerry

    I have not studied this in any detail but I will concede your point. Bush was incredibly inept at keeping spending or deficits under control. Clinton I am aware did well but was aided by the dotcom bubble. In my opinion BHO has not demonstrated his commitment to reducing deficits apart for increasing taxes…and I know I am sounding like a repub again, but don’t you think that everyone…government included must tighten their belts.

    I dislike the games played in DC regarding deficit reduction. Most of the time, any reduction is a reduction in the increase. It is not a real deduction. I know the people in Dc think the rest of America is stupid…many are.

    But again, I do not disagree that the R’s have not handled spending issues well. I do think the match of Clinton-Gingrich performed well….and NO I am not a fan of NG. I am so paranoid about saying anything in a favorable way about anyone that this site vehemently disagrees with! So shallow….anyway, for that reason, I do support a divided political structure in DC so that no one has the ability to run roughshod over any others. It worked I think for Reagan-O’Neill as well, however, it does not appear to be working for Obama-Behner, and that is most distressing.

  • Science Avenger

    Atheist Republicans? Simple. Read Ayn Rand. Substitute “free market” for “god”. Pretend all issues involving children or institutionalized biases are fictional or unimportant. Add a healthy helping of hatred for anything remotely approaching a hippie. Remove empathy. Presto – atheist Republicans.

  • Omnicrom

    No. You are being a tone troll. In response to negativity and disagreement you address mostly the negativity. When people harshly disagree with you you swoon over how nasty their words are and not what their words actually are. You elevate tone over meaning. You are a tone troll.

  • Science Avenger

    I do not believe you can compare war triage with abortion.

    Neither do I, which is why I didn’t. I was merely pointing out that “valuing the species” “valuing every member of the species”.
    Oh, and BTW, bringing up Gosnell as representative of the abortion discussion is another GOP talking point. They still have you, whether you realize it or not.

  • Kerry

    Yes we largely agree, but in my opinion the issues such as you address relative to discrimination has been largely settled nationally. No one has the right to discriminate. As for creationism…we will have to fight that in every nook and cranny of America. There should be a national standard as to what must be taught and retained by the student. But, I do believe local control over how to implement some of those standards would be acceptable provided the school districts meet the standards.

    Let me give an aside here. In China most all grade school children are taught English. The phonics method is used there. Here in America, there is a huge debate about the methodology…Look Say…I think, or phonics. Why should there be this intense controversy? Use whatever method works in the particular environment, but no matter which is used, the standard must be met.

    As for local control I see it more on the administrative side not the policy side per se. Having said that, it is the “local control” that has also pushed for decriminalization of marijuana, and SSM, so this issues goes both ways. Certain rights are guaranteed by the constitution and those must be settled…such as discriminatory local laws. But I also have no issue with a state passing local laws addressing gun rights. As far as I am concerned it is a state issue and as long as the 2nd Amendment exists owning a gun is constitutional. I also am not concerned should a town decide that strip clubs are not allowed. It is their call as a local jurisdiction. I think making a law that prohibits these establishments within so many feet of a school is prudent. All of this is local.

    Distribution of welfare is better handled locally I believe. I can see Washington as the great collector of the funds, with the actual distribution in the 50 states through the state structures. This has the immediate impact on the number of people necessary in DC to administer such programs with a corollary increase of people at the state level.

    By the same token, I am opposed to the tax relief that churches receive. I think that is forcing those of us who have no god belief to support those enterprises, and that is unconstitutional. I intend to be active in this fight.

  • Kerry

    Science A…please you are a little sensitive. Your reluctance to address an atrocity is telling. Really…talking point or no…it is what I believe. I cannot help that occasionally I will discuss some of the things they discuss. You know what, I also am accused by the other side of using D talking point on marijuana, and SSM. I am solidly in the middle here but I can see the dangers which you apparently are not willing to see.

    It may not be representative, but because of people like him, we need to be sure that abortion is safe. Do you argue this point! Why is it your side is so quick to brush him off as if it didn’t happen? It is you cheering for your side again regardless of how many times your player clips. That is irresponsible action on your part. To be consistent, you should condemn in the strongest terms such incompetence and abuse. Do you?

  • GCT

    If you have no fear of competing evidence, why do you ignore all evidence presented to you and simply continue to parrot out your talking points? Troll.

  • GCT

    My reservation as I journey down this political road is the intolerance…FROM BOTH SIDES.

    Sigh, here we go again with the false equivalence. It’s been pointed out to you multiple times that this is a false equivalence, yet you persist. Then, you cry and complain about intolerance when you have to be consistently told over and over the same shit, all the while making passive aggressive insults at us.

    Have we come to the point where reasonable people cannot disagree in a civilized manner?

    There is nothing civil about your manner of pushing racist, misogynist, and religiously privileged points on us.

  • Kerry

    There was one paper presented and one graph near as I can tell. And yes, I have no fear as I am fully capable to follow the evidence even if it may disagree with my presuppositions. You on the other hand are content to rest on a paper that agrees with what you believe….Done! How is that comprehensive?

  • Kerry

    So you contend that at least one side is not intolerant…do I have that right? And that side would surly be your’s correct? How charming! You continually trot out who you think I am and what you think I believe because you NEED to believe that is who I am, but you are wrong. So you then resort to name calling when your last line of defense has fallen.

    You are not capable to see your own weaknesses, and that is a very unfortunate place to be. You think that continuing to harp about talking points somehow discredits anything I say, but as you know that is not true. Truth is truth whether I say it or it is said by Obama, Boehner, or R or D. Even uncomfortable truths can be instructive, but not if you keep your head firmly buried in the sand.

  • GCT

    Yet, those that would have foamed at the mouth against Bush are eerily silent on Obama. Why is that?

    Um, because you don’t hear liberal voices on Faux News. You make all these assumptions based on your talking points without even knowing what our positions actually are (then accuse us of doing the same thing, which is projection).

    And as such, I have no difficulty in being honest about the infractions.

    Except you’ve done incredible mental gymnastics to avoid being honest about the infractions.

  • Kerry

    Listen my friend…I see no network news or cable news. Most of what I get is from BBC or sometimes CNN Int. The Chinese papers don’t count. I am only aware that there was a letter from some senators and congressmen demanding answers which O rebuffed if I remember correctly. There is no outrage though. If there is deep consistent pressure from his party, I would love to be informed so I can correct my statement.

    But like so many things, when it is uncomfortable you would rather not deal with it. O was quick to comment on the Trevon Martin case but remained silent on Gosnell. Why is that? Were Gosnell’s crime and murderous ways so inconsequential? This is not a talking point…this is an observation from one that sits and observes from afar.

    I am consistent. I deplore the Iraq war of Bush. It was part of what led to my searching for new and better answers.

  • Azkyroth

    Note who I was replying to.

  • Kerry

    Here is an interesting quotation I found.

    That second Pew poll found that more than 80 percent of Democrats approve of Obama’s handling of his role as commander in chief. Obama is a Democrat, they’re Democrats and that’s probably that. It may take a Republican in the White House to get liberals to care about drones again.

    Perhaps I will not tell you where it is from since you will assume it is a TALKING POINT!

    But ok it is from http://www.salon.com/2013/02/07/liberals_love_drones_too/

    the whole article is interesting actually. Again, I just do not see the rage, as would be apparent if there were a R conduction this war. How even-handed is that in your opinion?

  • Science Avenger

    You would lose that wager. And you can make whatever claim you like as to the diversity of your readings, but as long as everything that comes out of your mouth is GOP boilerplate, no one will believe you. And really, “you think you’re so smart”?! How old are you?

  • GCT

    I do know the GOP side as I have lived in that camp for many years.

    If this is true, then it can’t also be true that you don’t know you’re spewing out GOP talking points. So, which is it? Which one of your statements was a lie? You can’t have it both ways.

  • Science Avenger

    I was not comparing [Benghazi and Iraq] in the way you infer. I was demonstrating that both misled America.

    Bullshit. You were responding to Russell’s challenge that you back up your position that both sides are equal. Do you really think you can deny what you did when its right up there in black and white? You really aren’t very good at honest discourse.

    As for me, I’m a former GOPer, now independent, who got that way thanks to the internet alowing me to get the facts myself and not have to depend on political partisans to get it for me. That’s where I learned that the GOP is way way WAY more full of crap than the Democrats are. You should try it.
    I’m not impressed with speculative arguments about who would have done what, but I share your revulsion at the blind partisanship that exists in our system. The problem is you think you aren’t still part of it when you clearly are. You can’t constantly parrot GOP talking points and get offended when people conclude you are indeed one of those partisans.

  • Science Avenger

    I believe that your worldview is clearer than its ever been. It’s good that you no longer feel the need to cheer on side on no matter what.
    Now go the next step and stop feeling the need to equivocate, to comdemn both sides whenever you rightly condemn one. Sometimes, often, one side is far worse than the other. Take the evolution/creation issue. The GOP is way way WAY worse than the Dems are, not just on that issue, but on ANY issue. That is, there is no scientific issue on which the Dems take a position that runs counter to the near entirety of the scientific community the way the GOP does on evolution.
    Can you admit that? It’s a snap to confirm. If you can’t, you’re still caught in the partisan trap.

  • Kerry

    SA, I respectfully disagree. I specifically related it to the lying that both sides had done. I was comparing the magnitude of the event that led to American deaths. Of course the bigger lie was the Bush administration, but my point was to demonstrate that it was done by both. Somehow, you seem to indicate that the lie by the Obama Admin is not as serious because only 4 people died. I certainly trust you are not letting them off the hook because of some weighted scale of justice that you possess.

    Perhaps I will be in your place one day as regarding the GOP. I have not talking points. I know of Gosnell because it was on the news in China. I did not need any help on that front. Maybe I use Chinese talking points. You know,I did try to google Republican Talking Points and it was mostly inconclusive at least as any sort of usable list. But I do not understand when why everyone screams Talking Points, when difficult questions are broached.

    I have been in the States once in the last 5 years and so I have moved past any political involvement. My interests are here, but as part of my journey, and in exploration of my previously held positions, I have begun investigating those positions and the reasons for said belief. As I have indicated, many have given way to more reasonable explanations, but I will not be bullied into accepting new world views, by those who desire to hide behind the emperor.

    I have no agenda here which makes the vitriol all the more fascinating to me. I may be a bit rusty on the political ligo of the day, and the appropriate terms for polite conversation, but I never envisioned such backlash. If inquiring minds are shut down, then where are we as a nation?

  • Kerry

    I have done that, as I have said. I left YEC and am solidly old ancient earth and believe that evolution is the most elegant answer to life. I first had to deal with my view of god, but once that was complete, it was an easy move to Darwinism. Question, it would be my understanding that as far as D’s go, that the African-American community is still pretty solidly in the creation camp. Is that correct? No matter, just an interesting factoid.

    This is one issue I deal with regularly as my family lives in the South and …well I don’t need to tell you.

    I am not yet convinced that the D’s are that much better the the R’s…that is my situation at present. I am in agreement with the D’s on most social issues, however the mere mention of Gosnell and the retreat I sense, bothers me a little bit. I am however, more supportive of some of the R’s stated positions economic matters. Notice I said “stated” because the walking out of those positions most often is vastly different. So, I am working my way through what I hold dear, and what I need to change.

    I will probably end up simply reading for future knowledge. These discussions would not endear a searching soul to the cause most of the people here espouse, and I don’t want to be turned off because a few overly zealous people affected my search.

    I do have a few very strong democratic friends that I discuss some of this with. We for some reason never feel the need to cower when difficult questions are raised. We deal with them, debate them, decide to agree or disagree, and move on.

  • GCT

    The data was presented to you. You can try and spin it all you want, but the data is correct. You’ve bent over backwards to try and minimize it and hand-wave it away so that you don’t have to deal with it.

  • GCT

    So you contend that at least one side is not intolerant…do I have that right?

    It would help if you actually were to read my comments. Intolerance can be found on both sides. You have to look a hell of a lot harder to find it on one side than the other. That is why this is a false equivalence. You’re claiming that if you can find any instance on both sides, then they are no different, and if no different then it doesn’t matter if you choose one side over the other. It’s bullshit.

    So you then resort to name calling when your last line of defense has fallen.

    I’m not resorting to anything. I straight up call you an asshole because you are acting like one.

    You think that continuing to harp about talking points somehow discredits anything I say, but as you know that is not true.

    No, but the data that discredits you and that you are trying so hard to hand-wave away certainly does discredit you.

    Even uncomfortable truths can be instructive, but not if you keep your head firmly buried in the sand.

    Again with the irony…

  • Science Avenger

    I’d call it obliviousness rather than lying. I was there once, and have family who still is. They REALLY think they are independents who draw their conclusions from reasoned analysis. The problem is that their underlying assumptions cloud which data and evidence they give more weight to, so they circularly come back to where they started.

  • Science Avenger

    Arguments based on speculation are weak, and, sorry to say it again, part and parcel of the GOP playbook. They like to claim to be the party of facts, but they are really the party of speculation.
    There is also more to being commander in chief than the drone issue. There are also a lot of democrats who are pissed at Obama over the drones, WAY more than the number of GOPers who complained about Iraq.

  • Science Avenger

    Yeah, you’re damn straight I think a lie that leads to nearly a million deaths (when you include Iraqis) and does irreparable harm to our standing in the world is a wee bit more serious than one (granting the assumption, which is inconclusive as I’ve seen it) that led to a mere 4 deaths. And you want to accuse others of a weighted scale of justice? Methinks you should concentrate on the beam in your eye…

  • Science Avenger

    You know,I did try to google Republican Talking Points and it was mostly inconclusive at least as any sort of usable list.

    There is no such list, stop looking. What people are referring to is the use of certain words and phrases by the GOP establishment and media to try to win issues by sheer repetition. Advertisors understand this well, that’s why they use it. However, they give the game away when they use phrases that are unusual, and always in the same context and order. Witness the recent use of “sing like a canary” that nearly every Murdock-employed talking head used when referring to the early interrogations of the Boston Bomber. “out-of-control government spending” is another.
    Sure, reasonable people of a similar ideological stripe can independently reach the same conclusions, but they aren’t going to use the exact same phraseology to do it unless they are getting it from some central source. So if you use these phrases, you’re going to get called on it.

  • Kerry

    Yes but I would point out that Bush also had support of congress, and yes there were more R’s then D’s but there were plenty of D’s. There was also a number of international supporters, England in particular that fallen of the same manufactured evidence. So, while atrocious, as I have said so many times now, this scale somehow negates the Benghazi issue to nothingness. You seem to not care, which I don’t understand. It is never right for the government to willfully mislead and lie, and I would think that citizens would call them out, regardless of who is in the White House.

  • Kerry

    Understand, thanks. But since I do not see much western media…especially of the conservative stripe, then I have no way to know what phrase is currently in use. If I use similar sounding phrases, it is due to the fact that they are ingrained in my brain from years ago. This tells me the issues have not evolved much! Geeze!. As to the two referenced phrase above…I never used either one, although I did share the idea of smaller government but if that is being misconstrued, then there is just simply paranoia on the other side. Thanks again for the heads up.

  • Science Avenger

    I first had to deal with my view of god, but once that was complete, it was an easy move to Darwinism. Question, it would be my understanding that as far as D’s go, that the African-American community is still pretty solidly in the creation camp. Is that correct? No matter, just an interesting factoid.

    Another red flag – in America, practically no one aside from evolution-deniers calls it “Darwinism”, since we are all very aware of how far the science has come since Darwin. “Evolution” will do nicely.
    Your question/factoid is a perfect example of what I’m talking about. I make a statement about Republicans vs Democrats, and you move the discussion to blacks in an attempt to equalize the situation. There is no equalization. It is a matter of easily accessible public record that 95-100% of politicians who have supported or proposed bills to allow/mandate the teaching of creationism in schools have been Republicans. Why is it so difficult for you to admit, without equivocation, that on this one issue, the GOP is far worse than the Democrats?

  • Science Avenger

    You are projecting and parroting, and it doesn’t become you. Nor is it relevant that those on the other side parrot the “talking points” line. As Rush rightly said “words mean things”. Saying something doesn’t make it so.
    I condemn Gosnell’s murders in the strongest of terms. Wherever do you get the idea that anyone defends him? The GOP talking point part of it is to present him as somehow mainstream or representative of what abortion is, and he clearly is not. It’s the equivalent of taking the dentist who was raping his patients under anesthesia and presenting him as a reason to come down on dentistry.

  • Kerry

    Oh wow!!! I read it as Darwinism all the time. I had no idea that term was not in vogue, but I am fine with Evolution.

    Please do not misunderstand my intent. I was not moving the conversation for any other resin then we were discussing how difficult it would be for the religious right to embrace evolution. since the Black community is very religious…I assume it still is…I was only curious if that is an issue for them as well. That is all. There is no hidden agenda, but if it is too sensitive to deal with I will do the research on my own. I was just an offhanded question.

    I have no problem with acknowledging that the GOP religious right is a huge obstacle with creationism. I spend much time educating my family and friends about the evidence I have found regarding evolution. I have handed out a good many Dawkin’s books to friends as well. I am a bit of an evangelist on this issue. So, how many ways do I need to say we agree on that?

  • Kerry

    You are the first one to state a position on Gosnell, but you have also justified it by saying that he is not representative, and that may be true, but this is exactly why I support regulated clinics, so we are sure there are no more G’s. Apparently, regulation is the one government program that is not highly supported at least by the people on this site. I may be wrong, it is just an impression I get. I am not aware of any Democratic politician condemning in the strongest terms his actions. I know Planned Parenthood did. Do you know of any? This is my concern for ignoring difficult situations, and that just gives me pause.

  • Science Avenger

    …in my opinion the issues such as you address relative to discrimination has been largely settled nationally.

    You are wrong (I can relate, so was I until I got educated by some family). The social sciences are overwhelming on this (google New York Stop and Frisk), as would be one week’s experience in any small town in the old Confederacy. DWB is not an urban myth, it is a reality. I’m not kidding…in many areas, if not entire states, in the south, the majority of whites would bring back segregation if they could. Really.

  • Kerry

    How is that possible in the year 2013! I guess I should be thankful to be in Asia. I never see any of that kind of attitude toward others….really. I had assumed it was only the Aryan Nation kind of folks these days. Disgusting!

    This is interesting, I lived in Western Africa for more then 6 years…Liberia, Ghana, DRC, and once I had lived there so long I forget that my skin was a different color. However, there is still tribal prejudice in many places, but I never felt like a stranger.
    I was in Liberia the night Obama was first elected, and there was quite a party! I would have hoped that at least with him as President those issues would have greatly dissipated.

  • Science Avenger

    Why should everyone have to tighten their belts when everyone isn’t causing the problem? The upper end tax cuts, the criminals in banking (my professional cousins btw) who caused the 2008 crash, and these needless wars have contributed more to our deficit problems.than all the crap the GOP pratters on about by several orders of magnitude.
    When Warren Buffet and Sheldon Adelson pay the same ate of tax as the average American, when our international policy isn’t always “send in the troops”, and when the heads of the banks and rating agencies that caused a near collapse of our economy are in jail where they belong, I’ll think about making people on welfare and social security tighten their belts.

  • Kerry

    I agree and that is another of my issues…Obama put the same kind of guys in Treasury that Bush selected. These are all Wall Street guys doing favors for each other and cooking the books. Part of my departure from Bush was the bailout, and Obama followed suit. I can think of a few more names to add to the two you name. Agree on the wars. Have advocated for a long time that the military withdraw from S Korea and Japan. The cost savings would be incredible.

  • GCT

    So, you admit that you don’t listen to the news, but you know that no one is speaking up against the drone program and that they did when Bush was pres? And, further, that constitutes me having trouble with the truth? I guess if truth is defined by what you make up, then I’m guilty as charged. For the rest of us, however, we’ll actually stick to what is really true.

    Of course, your new confessions contradict your story from elsewhere that you keep up with the news, but hey, you’re a troll who obviously doesn’t care about consistency or facts (by your own admission).

  • GCT

    But I do not understand when why everyone screams Talking Points, when difficult questions are broached.

    They’re not difficult questions, they’re straw men assertions based on prejudiced views that you are throwing at us and demanding that we answer for. It’s like you’re asking us when we stopped beating our wives. It’s thoroughly dishonest and sleazy.

    I have no agenda here which makes the vitriol all the more fascinating to me.

    When you parrot a bunch of racist, misogynistic, and religiously privileged (bigoted) bullshit, you deserve some vitriol. And, as I said, there’s nothing at all polite about what you are doing or saying. Further, you’re obviously not inquiring in good faith.

  • Kerry

    You really are an ass aren’t you. I have listed what papers I receive on line to read daily. I have indicated most of the tv is BBC, and I read The Chinese Daily. I look at web information when I am not traveling, but I am not typically on a blog site, and as this experience has not been fruitful particularly, I will probably limit this activity in the future. there are many more productive ways to gather information then listening to intolerant fundamentalist like yourself.

  • GCT

    I never said I was “Rethuglican.” I said I have been a member of the republican party my whole life.

    SHM.

    I am pleased that at least after repeating over and over again that I support abortion that you finally get it.

    Yes, I get it. You’re full of shit. You claim to support abortion, and then you throw a bunch of anti-choice shit at the wall to see what sticks.

    I have difficulties with the Gosnell type abortions, and for that I am castigated because I am not pure enough!

    No, you’re castigated for being a dishonest asshole. No one here supports Gosnell, no matter how often you try to tar us with his crimes you lying POS.

  • GCT

    I do have a few very strong democratic friends that I discuss some of this with. We for some reason never feel the need to cower when difficult questions are raised. We deal with them, debate them, decide to agree or disagree, and move on.

    This is simply disgusting. You bring up a bunch of straw men and then complain that we’re hiding from the difficult questions when we point out that you’re pulling shit out of your ass. Meanwhile, you get the data handed to you that shows you that you’re wrong, and you hand-wave it away and ignore it so that you don’t have to deal with it. Fuck off you dishonest bigot.

  • Azkyroth

    Your argument depends on bigots coming out and saying that they intend to discriminate?

  • Azkyroth

    of course…that would be the best of all possible solutions….even up to the minute before the fetus is born!

    Have you ever in your entire life met a woman stupid and impulsive enough to carry a pregnancy for nine months and then intentionally abort a minute before birth? (Actually, all the really stupid and impulsive women I’ve ever met have been profoundly anti-abortion. Go figure.) Abortion stems from a desire to not be pregnant any more, and at that point in the pregnancy would take the form of an induced delivery even positing that a natural one wasn’t already in process.

    Anyway, I noted that you claim you aren’t anti-choice. Your approving regurgitation of anti-choice rhetoric continues to be worthy of criticism, especially given the extent to which it conflicts with your stated conclusion.

  • Azkyroth

    Depends on whether the self-identified Christian opened and continued the way Kerry did.

  • Jason Wexler

    I am not sure I remember which of his posts was his opening salvo, the one where he identifies as Republican and then lays out a philosophy which was to the left of everyone in congress save Bernie Sanders, or where he engaged in the false equivalence fallacy regarding both parties engaging in torrid reprehensible political behavior, while ignoring that Republicans have been more abusive of that since Obama took office?

  • Figs

    Actually, what you said about Trayvon Martin and Kermit Gosnell IS INDEED a GOP talking point. Try again.

  • Figs

    What the hell are you even talking about?

  • Figs

    You can’t compare one thing I said to another thing I said! How dare you!

  • Figs

    You haven’t discussed shit about efficiency and effectiveness. You discussed a reflexive tendency for “small” and “limited,” which precludes any case where an expansion of a government program would be the most efficient course.

  • Jason Wexler

    So I finally figured out why I don’t think this graph is good evidence for the point being made that both sides are equally guilty. While it does show that current Republican obstructionism is historically unprecedented it also shows that out-party obstructionism has been in a game of increasing brinksmanship for some time. Regression to the mean would give us an exponentially expanding curve, which suggests that the next time the Democrats are the Senate minority party we could expect them to be even more obstructionist than Republicans are right now.

    In fact I think what this piece of data gives us is an answer as to when and why hyper-partisanship started, it was with the legitimate impeachment of Nixon.

  • Figs

    I don’t disagree, but I think it looks as though the Republicans as the out party seem historically to be the ones raising things to the next level, whereas the Democrats that follow them as the out party simply maintain that as the new status quo. It’s a pretty small sample, though.

  • Jason Wexler

    It is somewhat difficult to measure since the Republicans are usually the minority party in the Senate and have been since 1930. Prior to where this graph starts the Republicans only had the majority in the Senate for one term in the 1950′s.

  • Azkyroth

    Kerry may or may not be trolling, but Seeber certainly is.

  • GCT

    Except you continually do defend them. So, which is it?

  • GCT

    I’m intolerant? You’ve spouted racist, misogynistic, and religiously privileged bigotry and I’m the intolerant one? Go take your state’s rights bullshit and troll somewhere else.

    You continually complain about not being in the loop and not having detailed knowledge of the issues, then claim that you know all about the issues and make all kinds of pronouncements on what is true (and get it wrong 99% of the time). Then, you throw out a bunch of bigoted shit and see what sticks. When it’s pointed out how full of shit you are, you hide behind your rethuglican talking points. Yet, I’m the “intolerant fundamentalist”? Go troll somewhere else.

  • GCT

    …although I did share the idea of smaller government but if that is being misconstrued, then there is just simply paranoia on the other side.

    Except that you’ve given examples of your ideas of smaller government and they suck. It’s not paranoia to look at your ideas and point out how much they suck. And, might I point out that this is yet another instance of you attacking us instead of dealing with our objections, all the while complaining that it’s what we are doing to you. It means that you’re either too stupid to realize that you’re projecting, or you’re being duplicitous (yet again) and doing it on purpose…which is another tactic used just like talking points.

  • GCT

    Yet, you’re espousing the misogynistic stance of punishing women for having sex.

    I have an equally difficult view of the democrats like you that support and otherwise endorse people like Gosnell.

    You lying sack of shit. Find one person who supports Gosnell. You keep claiming that we all do, yet you can’t back it up. This is yet another example of your under-handed tactics. You’re nothing but a right wing shill that will lie to try and win a point. You’re trash.

  • GCT

    I love how you just give us our positions and then tell us how disgusting they are you lying sack of shit. No one has talked about Gosnell because…oh wait, we have told you about Gosnell. I’ve told you that no one supports him, no matter how many times you keep trying to tell us that we do. You’re fundamentally dishonest.

    …but this is exactly why I support regulated clinics, so we are sure there are no more G’s.

    There already are regulations. Gosnell ignored them. Of course, we know what you’re really advocating here, which is putting more regulations in place as a means of denying the availability of abortions to women.

    I am not aware of any Democratic politician condemning in the strongest terms his actions.

    Pelosi certainly did. A lot of others stayed out of it for one simple reason. It’s because your right wing buddies were already pushing it as a reason to restrict reproductive rights for women, even though it had nothing to do with that. And, here you are disgustingly playing the same card. You’re a horrible human being.

  • GCT

    BTW, the whole, “My party hates me as much as the other party” is another trope that is brought up all too often by right wing talking heads in order to prove their legitimacy. Not buying it.

  • GCT

    …lays out a philosophy which was to the left of everyone in congress save Bernie Sanders…

    When did that happen?

  • Figs

    I just wanted to pile on with GCT: telling people that they support someone like Gosnell when such a charge is nowhere in evidence? That’s a real piece of shit maneuver you just pulled, there.

  • Kerry

    GCT…I will make this one last comment to the vitriol you have thrown out these last couple of days. Your style is not becoming, but then I doubt very seriously that you care little about that.

    My very FIRST post here indicated that I was a republican! I never tried to hide that fact. You can believe whatever you need to believe about “trolling” and there is not way I can dissuade you of what you want to believe. I just finished reading the Washington Post, and I would have to say that of the opinion pieces, fully half of them could not be discussed with you because they might just be “Talking Points!” Seemingly, there is no subject matter in the press that is suitable for conversation, resulting in your need to continually scream “troll” and “talking points.”

    Just so you know, I have notified Adam directly by email about this post. I have shared with him as straightforward as I know how, my concern over the gestapo unbending manner f certain bloggers. Anyone seeking alternative information and conversation would certainly be rebuffed by what you say. There is nothing the least bit attractive from your writings that would encourage anyone to consider for one moment your positions on the issues.

    The Gosnell reference is telling because all you can do is fume about it. OK you disagree, but where were the voices from your side? I know Obama said nothing. Did Pelosi speak out, or Reed, the leaders of the Democrats? I saw the news over here and could not believe no one would say anything. It is often best to acknowledge the seriousness of such a situation and take measures to ensure it is not repeated, then to remain silent. Silence is tacit approval.

    I know …TALKING POINTS again, but as it has, or was in the news, and as it did happen, and as, in my opinion, it still remains a mystery, I will address it.

    Finally, let me just say that you need help in your communication approach. Many people ask questions because they are curious not because they have been “planted.” Many people are seekers of new information, as am I, but nothing in what you have said would attract me to your cause.

    BTW, you need to ask for a refund because the therapy you have been paying for is not having the desired effect on your personality.

    Cheers!

  • Figs

    Also, and I hadn’t even noticed this, your little game of playing coy about the implication of “States Rights” is given up entirely by the way you prefaced it with “dare I say it here”. You’re obviously trolling, but not even doing it well. It’s boring.

  • Figs

    The vitriol has come specifically because you’ve refused to address anyone’s points. More than that, you’ve derided the idea of objective facts and studies that demonstrate them. Why have you given anyone any reason to be polite to you? Comity can be fractured through tone, but more often it’s fractured through the flagrant disrespect you’ve shown all of your interlocutors in this thread.

  • Kerry

    Indeed, and if bringing up topics from in the news…I am sorry, TALKING POINTS, is problematic for you then you have a real blind spot. So, tell me, can you at least share with me where any one in leadership condemned in the strongest terms his actions. See, these situations could be teaching moments for abortion if anyone was more interested in facing this head on then hiding behind silence. For instance, the Congress could immediately pass a resolution to regulate clinics in such a way so the public is safe. They could have done any number of things to demonstrate that the health of the women was first and foremost in their thoughts, but as far as I can tell they did none of these things. If I am wrong then show me.

    I really do not like discussing this TALKING POINT but since it is out there I guess we will.

    Cheers

  • Figs

    You don’t get it. Talking about a topic in the news is not a talking point. Talking about it in a specific way that apes the standard line from one party or the other? That is a talking point. And the way that you’ve handled almost every discussion in this thread conforms to the expectation that you’re not going to have anything to say that we haven’t heard before.

    But you brought up, probably by accident, something that’s almost a good point, so I’ll address it. You think that Congress should have used this incident to pass strict new laws regulating clinics. Why? Why would they do this? What would this help? Gosnell was already in violation of PLENTY of laws, and he was found guilty for having violated them. This is the way the system is supposed to work, and it worked. There is absolutely no reason that this should inspire us to put new laws into place.

    There is absolutely no reason to conflate Gosnell with legal abortion in the US, any more than there’s any reason to conflate a meth cook with the producers of Children’s Tylenol.

  • GCT

    I will make this one last comment to the vitriol you have thrown out these last couple of days. Your style is not becoming, but then I doubt very seriously that you care little about that.

    Yes, sometimes people deserve vitriol. You are one of those people because of your horrible ideas that promote racism, misogyny, and religious bigotry. Of course, you obviously care very little about that, just as you care very little about facts and evidence, by your own admission.

    Seemingly, there is no subject matter in the press that is suitable for conversation, resulting in your need to continually scream “troll” and “talking points.”

    Obviously I’ve brought no substance to this debate and have only screamed “talking points” and “troll”…oh, except for the data I provided…oh and except for how I’ve pointed out the problems with your positions…oh, and except for the fact that I’ve pointed out your many inconsistencies and reversals…oh, and except for the fact that I’ve pointed out your straw man attempts…but, obviously nothing of substance. You’re projecting. You’ve been defeated at every turn and then you refuse to budge from your preconceived positions, all the while yelling that everyone else is guilty of what you are doing.

    Just so you know, I have notified Adam directly by email about this post.

    Yeah, and?

    I have shared with him as straightforward as I know how, my concern over the gestapo unbending manner f certain bloggers.

    He’s just as capable as I am of seeing through your bullshit.

    Anyone seeking alternative information and conversation would certainly be rebuffed by what you say.

    You’ve made it abundantly clear that this was not your goal from your very first post to this one.

    There is nothing the least bit attractive from your writings that would encourage anyone to consider for one moment your positions on the issues.

    People do tend to hate data.

    The Gosnell reference is telling because all you can do is fume about it.

    Yes, I do tend to get upset when people assign a position to me and then pretend that it’s true.

    OK you disagree, but where were the voices from your side? I know Obama said nothing. Did Pelosi speak out, or Reed, the leaders of the Democrats?

    I’ve already answered this elsewhere. But, let’s try something else? Where were the Rethuglican leaders who didn’t try to use this as a bludgeon to take away reproductive rights from women? Yet, here you are standing shoulder to shoulder with them in condemning the Dems for not playing their game.

    Many people ask questions because they are curious not because they have been “planted.”

    True. Others, like you, are simply JAQing off.

    Many people are seekers of new information, as am I, but nothing in what you have said would attract me to your cause.

    This is flatly untrue in your case. When given new information, you simply ignored it and continued to toutt he right-wing party line.

    BTW, you need to ask for a refund because the therapy you have been paying for is not having the desired effect on your personality.

    Why am I not surprised that you’d end with an ableist insult that just shows your bigotry in more detail?

  • Science Avenger

    Bush had the support of congress because he lied to them! What difference does it make how many fell for it and how many didn’t?
    I don’t care about Benghazi because only 4 people died, and 90% of what I’ve heard on the news about it is bullshit about changes in media talking points, like I or anyone else should give a fuck about that. If you think a modern government can function without doing something like that, or occasionally keeping information from the populace, you’re as naive as a five year old. It’s CLEARLY a partisan witch hunt to throw as much crap at Obama as possible in the hope something sticks (like that other bullshit manufactroversy, Fast and Furious)
    Yes, on a national scale (US pop 300M+), 4 deaths rounds to nothing. It certainly puts it in a completely different category than the Iraq war. Hell, it puts it in a completely different category than the Sandy Hook shooting, or the Texas chemical plant explosion.
    Sorry dude, but focusing on Benghazi is as close to a one-step test of partisanship as anything I can think of.

  • Science Avenger

    So the subject of the difficulty of the religious right to accept evolution comes up, and the first thing to pop into your mind is to ask how well the blacks (who you no doubt have a great relationship with) do accepting it? And you don’t see why this would raise serious red flags about your supposed nonpartisanship? Hint: it has nothing to do with sensitivity, I’m not a remotely sensitive person.
    Oh, and congrats on coming around on the issue and attempting to educate others. I strongly suggest you investigate other GOP positions in the same manner, you might be shocked by what you find.

  • Science Avenger

    You are the first one to state a position on Gosnell, but you have also justified it by saying that he is not representative, and that may be true…

    Jesus tapdancing Christ guy, your logic skills need serious work. Saying “Person X’s acts are not representative of Group A” is not even REMOTELY the same as saying “Person X’s acts were justified”. Am I also justifying the anesthesia-raping dentist when I say he is not representative of dentists? And you wonder why people accuse you of being dishonest.
    Further, by tacitly agreeing with me (“that may be true”) you tar yourself with same stupid Gosnell-supporting brush. Welcome to the club.

  • Science Avenger

    In some ways Obama being president has made it worse, because its made the racists feel like they’ve been invaded. It’s not as apparent in the big cities, but once you get into small towns, it’s pretty obvious. And hello, you don’t notice it because it isn’t happening to you. Go drive around with a black friend at night and you’ll get an education quick.

  • Jason Wexler

    The time stamp for that post reads 2 days ago, it is the initial post to which this thread is responding to. When your post layout is set on default it should be 12 posts above this one.

  • GCT

    You’re not catching my drift. At no point did Kerry lay out a philosophy that is very left.

  • Jason Wexler

    Well based upon where I draw the line for the political center I am inclined to agree, his philosophy is somewhere in the grey area between right and center right. However what I said was that his self described positions place him to the left of everyone in congress except Bernie Sanders, the implication being that while he may not be “very left”, he is further left then anyone elected to federal office in 537 out of 538 cases, or if we are including the President 539 out of 540 cases.

  • Kerry

    It only came up because you had mentioned the christian religious right that was an obstacle to evolution. I suppose I could have mentioned Mormons but my impression would be that they are part of the religious right, although I am not positive on what they believe about evolution. The black churches on the other hand, at least in the South, tend to be some form of protestantism, which precipitated the question. It was just a question as to whether that community had moved past the issues of evolution or if they were still in YEC camp…that is all.

  • GCT

    Honestly, I don’t see anything that’s not in line with the Rethuglican platform, except for a tepid line about abortions being safe. Most Rethuglicans don’t care if abortions are safe or not. There’s nothing left-wing in that initial post. The Dems may not be progressive enough, but they are, on the average, left of the Rethuglican platform.

  • Figs

    Bullshit, that’s not all. Your clear implication was something like “Black people are almost all Democrats, and black people believe this, so why don’t you go after them, hypocrites?” Disgusting.

  • Olive Markus

    Apparently my entire post disappeared…

    Anyway, Kerry, I had to butt in here with your constant assertion that only the Republicans are outraged by Gosnell and that there’s some weird Liberal media conspiracy to cover up and ignore the situation. You couldn’t be further from the truth. Gosnell has become a Talking Point for the anti-choice Republicans because they are trying to manipulate the story into something that will help them eradicate women’s rights. That is the situation. They are trying to make their followers believe in some sort of conspiracy in which Democrats are hiding the thousands upon thousands of Gosnells in this country doing exactly as he did, and that is why we haven’t gone all bat-shit crazy like they have. They have snapped up the story, years after it came to light, mind you, and tried to spin it into a media frenzy of the horrors of legalized abortion.

    The fact is this: Gosnell’s case does not represent abortion in this country. Gosnell deserves to be punished to the fullest extent of the law. Nobody condones his actions and not a single person is trying to cover this up.

    The case is, in actuality, a study into how little our culture values women, minorities, and the poor, since it was generally poor African American women who were forced to seek out somebody who could get them the abortion they needed. My guess is that this is why it didn’t become the talk of the entire country in the beginning. Who cares about poor women being taken advantage of, right? The only reason the Republicans care now is because they are in the middle of assault on women’s rights and they need to make up as much shit as possible to win themselves points. Unfortunately, situations like the Gosnell case would be all too common if the Republicans had their way and eradicated abortion. That is what makes their battle cry so incredibly ironic.

    The fact that you are eating up their misguided and manipulative spin on this story gives us a pretty good clue about where you stand. You claim to care about women’s choices, however, anybody who truly cared about women’s rights and women’s health in this country would dare to do a little independent research and see where the majority, or at least the Pro-Choicers, stand on this case. You haven’t done that. Instead you still parrot what you read in a couple of newspapers as if that’s the final say while you’ve done absolutely nothing to look further. If you cared at all, you would also be hyper aware of how your very own party is rabidly obsessed with taking away women’s reproductive rights and how perfectly their take on this story fits right into that agenda. But you refuse to acknowledge that, and I’m not sure how.

    Here is a link to a blog post here on Patheos in which the story was covered by a Liberal, Democratic, Feminist woman. She includes several links that dive into the story even deeper.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2013/04/the-real-message-of-the-kermit-gosnell-story.html

    If you still believe that Democrats are involved in some kind of cover up regarding this story, then there is obviously no getting through. I just couldn’t sit by and read this nonsense any further.

    I apologize for not being as knowledgable or eloquent as the posters here. I didn’t really want to joint the conversation and embarrass myself but I couldn’t help it.

  • GCT

    You seem plenty knowledgeable and eloquent to me, and you have no cause to fear embarrassment. Great post.

  • Olive Markus

    Thank you! I appreciate that.

  • J_JamesM

    I agree. The faster the party dies, the faster a new and improved Republican party emerges. One that might be as liberal as- gasp!- the party was all the way back in the ancient times of 2008.

  • J_JamesM

    I don’t think you understand. Even if the super-right-wing Republican Party as we know it dies off, the party’s base and America’s strong Conservatism won’t just evaporate. The party that replaces it (hypothetically) will naturally be to the right of wherever the liberal party (the Democrats) ends up.

  • J_JamesM

    I really, really hope that after gay marriage, proportional electoral reform is next in line for the spotlight.

  • Jason Wexler

    Ending the drug war is probably the next high profile culture war issue.

  • Jason Wexler

    I am adamantly opposed to FPTP systems of election, but how is it undemocratic?


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