Friday Morning Open Thread

If you enjoy good intelligent discussion of issues that looks at things from many ideological perspectives, I recommend Outside The Beltway. Here are 2 representative pieces - the first by James Joyner and the second by Prof. Steven Taylor - discussing the the Repeal Amendment and the role of States under the Constitution.

I'm on trial next week so I'll be going dark after today.

Open Thread.

Update: (TL): I'll be at the jail today, but should be around this weekend and next week while BTD is in trial. Good luck, BTD.

< President Obama In Afghanistan, Meeting With Karzai | Feds Probing Alleged Racial Bias of Drug-Using Judge >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    Biodiversity matters. (5.00 / 4) (#12)
    by Dr Molly on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:29:54 PM EST
    Excellent study on another reason why biodiversity matters.

    Just an example from the paper:

    The work reveals a critical connection between conservation and disease. Species losses in ecosystems such as forests and fields result in increases in pathogens -- disease-causing organisms -- the researchers found.

    The animals, plants, and microbes most likely to disappear as biodiversity is lost are often those that buffer infectious disease transmission. Those that remain tend to be species that magnify the transmission of infectious diseases like West Nile virus, Lyme disease, and hantavirus.

    Cat Food Commission goes purring (5.00 / 3) (#37)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:32:50 PM EST
    off into the sunset.  A few meows and they adjourned three days after the official deadline of not later than December 1, 2010 without taking a final vote.  A total of eleven votes were sort of registered, failing to meet the 14 vote threshold.  The president thanked the Commission for all its fine work and indicated that his administration would be studying the recommendations that Bowles and Simpson served up. I would say: Requiem in pacem, but this Commission's work is likely to have nine lives.

    It's always important to remember that (5.00 / 8) (#55)
    by Anne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:26:41 PM EST
    cats have nine lives.

    Obama's statement on the Commission:

    "I want to thank the members of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform for their important work in highlighting the magnitude of the challenge before us, and outlining an array of options to confront it.  Jobs and growth are our most urgent need. But if we want an America that can compete for the jobs of tomorrow, we simply cannot allow our nation to be dragged down by our debt.  We must correct our fiscal course.  

    Nothing would be more valuable to addressing this challenge than strong, sustained economic growth. But the Commission's report underscores that to sustain growth in the medium and long term we need to face some difficult choices to curb runaway debt. It will require cutting the spending we don't need in order to invest in what's necessary to grow our economy and our middle-class. It will require all of us, Democrats and Republicans, to find common ground without compromising the fundamental principles we hold dear.  Because the undeniable fact is that no one party can successfully tackle this challenge alone.

    Chairmen Bowles and Simpson met the charge that I gave them and the Commission: to bring our deficits down in the medium term and to meaningfully improve our long-run fiscal situation so that we can keep commitments made to future generations. The Commission's majority report includes a number of specific proposals that I - along with my economic team -- will study closely in the coming weeks as we develop our budget and our priorities for the coming year. This morning, my budget director, Jack Lew, spoke with Chairman Bowles and invited the entire Commission in to meet with him and Secretary Geithner to discuss the Commission's proposals. Overall, my goal is to build on the steps we've already taken to reduce our deficit, like slowing the growth of health care costs, proposing a three-year freeze in non-security discretionary spending and a two-year pay freeze for federal civilian workers, and restoring the rule that we pay for all of our priorities.  

    I don't doubt our ability to meet this challenge, but our success depends on our willingness to engage in the kind of honest conversation and cooperation that hasn't always happened in Washington.  We cannot afford to fall back on old ideologies, and we will all have to budge on long-held positions.  So I ask members of both parties to maintain an open mind and a commitment to progress as we work to lift this burden from the shoulders of future generations."

    My bold.

    Some things that struck me about the composition of the statement:

    1.  There's a "but" clause appended to every sentence about the need for jobs and economic growth; it makes me believe he has no idea how to grow the economy or create jobs, and that he is more comfortable believing that he can cut our way to growth.

    2.  The report is now the "majority report," with no mention of its failure to obtain the 14 votes necessary to turn the report into recommendations.

    3.  There's that blasted "common ground" again, which is built not on the right policies, but on something that's beginning to resemble "I don't care - let's just do SOMETHING, so we can check it off on the list and we can both say we tried."

    4.  Bowles and Simpson working with Lew and Geithner isn't going to end well for us.

    5.  Building on the steps he's already taken are only going to take us farther down the road to economic hell; is he so completley convinced of our unique American-ness that he finds no lessons to be taken from the austerity programs instituted in Ireland and Greece?

    6.  He really just doesn't get it.

    7.  I read somewhere that Reid has promised the Senate will vote on the report in the next session; sure am glad he'll be staying on as leader, aren't you?

    Yes, the goal posts keep changing. (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:53:49 PM EST
    Now it is the "majority report", except they did not really vote on it, just expressed positions.  You are right, they will keep at it until we recognize that they, not us, are the smartest in the land.

    Fourteen Democratc Senators (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Anne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:02:39 PM EST
    climb on the austerity bandwagon...(my bold)

    Fourteen Democratic Senators have asked Harry Reid for action on reining in the budget deficit, on the same day that the Catfood Commission failed to reach the threshold to deliver an official report.

    The number - 14 - is incredibly significant. Democrats will have 53 members next year. 13 of the 14 members who signed this letter will be back next year, and the letter didn't include Dick Durbin or Kent Conrad, who voted for the Catfood Commission plan. That would mean that, if every Republican wanted a deficit reduction plan, there would be a filibuster-proof majority to do something. There may not be such a majority on the specifics, but in a general sense, there will be some kind of deficit reduction action next year.

    "Prompt action is needed to bring the country's deficit into balance and stabilize our debt over the long term," the group wrote. "Regardless of whether the Commission's report receives the support of at least 14 of its 18 members, we urge legislative action to address these problems." [...]

    The 14 senators hailed the commission's recommendations on Social Security, healthcare, and tax reforms -- three cornerstones of the plan on which support for a plan could hinge.

    "There is no easy way out, and Washington must lead the way," they said. "The strong bipartisan support its recommendations have already received demonstrates we can, and must, come together to solve this impending fiscal crisis. Every day that we fail to act the choices become more difficult."

    The 14 signatories were: Mark Warner, Evan Bayh, Mark Begich, Michael Bennet, Tom Carper, Dianne Feinstein, Kay Hagan, Amy Klobuchar, Mary Landrieu, Joe Lieberman, Claire McCaskill, Jeanne Shaheen, Jon Tester and Mark Udall.


    Don't you just love the smell of cat food in the morning?


    Would that be... (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by sj on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:41:26 PM EST
    Michael "indistinguishable on the issues" Bennet from Colorado?

    Yes, wake up and smell the cat food. (5.00 / 2) (#77)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:59:58 PM EST
    It will taste great when prepared by White House chefs.  No matter what you may have heard, this is not a failed commission. You may have been laboring under the written words of President Obama's charge to the commission, such as 14 out of 16 needed to go forward, and if it received the right number it would go to congress for an up and down, no amendment vote.

    No, not at all.  Chairman Bowles, in presenting whatever it is that he is presenting, said "the goal has been really simple: to start an adult conversation about the dangers of the deficit we are running."  Well, we knew it was to be an adult conversation when the tone was set by Co-chair Simpson with the adult (X-ratedJ preliminary blurting out that social security was "a milk cow with 310 million tits."


    the tone was set. (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 07:20:31 PM EST
    And the rules were set. But they were like Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate Code: only an advisory.

    Doesn't matter what the issue is, Obama allowed and, I daresay encouraged, this commission to choose to examine Social Security.

    RICO statutes, if they applied, would at least make him a coconspirator, wouldn't they?

    But it's not a RICO case. It's politics within the beltway.


    Just like the ignoring of the lack of a 14-18 vote, it's moot.


    This Holiday Season, I ask for forgiveness (5.00 / 4) (#87)
    by NYShooter on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 08:10:58 PM EST
    I can't help it, I just have this picture in my mind of the truly odious  (spiritually & physically) Alan Simpson sulking off into the horizon, drooling and muttering about those ungrateful, worthless, "whiners" who simply are too stupid to understand that unnecessary pain and suffering is their rightful condition in this new world.

    Since calling this wretched wreck, "dreck" would be a libel on dreck, I'll just have to satisfy myself with the image of Ichabod Simpson suddenly looking up in horror as the wicked witch of tormented souls points her baton at former Senator, Dreckman and cackles, "this is for you my pretty failure, and "woosh, a glorious self immolation takes place just as the screen fades into darkness.

    I've confessed, I feel better now.


    Ichabod Simpson :) (none / 0) (#93)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 06:56:14 AM EST
    reminds me (none / 0) (#99)
    by The Addams Family on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 08:44:56 AM EST
    of those cases in which the voters in a municipality voted NOT to build a sports arena at taxpayers' expense - and then the sports arena got built at taxpayers' expense

    Oh, no - I never put much stock in (5.00 / 4) (#85)
    by Anne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 07:34:20 PM EST
    the idea that if the commission failed to produce recommendations for the Congress that that would be the end of it for the deficit hysterics.  When you consider that Obama himself resurrected the commission when it failed in the Senate, there was never any way the ideas coming out Simpson-Bowles were going to be allowed to die - not when there is a fairly large contingent of conservative Dems already running around like Chicken Little.

    As near as I can tell, this "adult conversation" seems to consist of a bunch of people talking out of their a$$es.


    Udall surprises me a little. (none / 0) (#71)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:21:32 PM EST
    Not too much, but a little. Otherwise,

    "Smells like...Victory."


    Isn't DiFi up for re-elect 2012? (none / 0) (#79)
    by nycstray on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:13:56 PM EST
    Term limits (none / 0) (#80)
    by waldenpond on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:19:41 PM EST
    I believe she is done in 2012.  Hence the rumors she wants to run for Gov?

    Term limits? I don't (5.00 / 2) (#86)
    by caseyOR on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 07:49:36 PM EST
    think there are terms limits for Congressional elective offices. I have heard the governor talk. Maybe DiFi just wants to come home.

    Looked it up :) (none / 0) (#88)
    by nycstray on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 08:21:11 PM EST
    she was considering it (and polling well against Brown) but decided not to and became Boxer's Camp Mg. instead. My understanding is she'll run for Sen again. But at 77+, who knows . . .

    Considering Grey Davis beat her in (none / 0) (#89)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 10:44:53 PM EST
    the Dem. gubernatorial primary awhile ago, I'd say, Diane, go thou sweetly into the good night.

    I wasn't around then (none / 0) (#91)
    by nycstray on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 11:14:14 PM EST
    I checked Wiki for the info above :P

    I don't want to be put into a position to have to vote for her against some whacko . . . but OTOH, CA did well this last election, at least I'll still have some blue state livin' in 2012.


    Term limits for (5.00 / 1) (#92)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 11:46:07 PM EST
    Senators and Congresspeople are unconstitutional.  It would take a Constitutional amendment to permit it.

    We do have term limits (none / 0) (#98)
    by jbindc on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 08:39:22 AM EST
    They are called "elections"

    Tell me again (none / 0) (#67)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:15:18 PM EST
    Why we voted for a "Democrat"?

    The courts (none / 0) (#73)
    by Raskolnikov on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:27:50 PM EST
    Almost to the point where that's the only reason.  And its a good one, where there is a legitimately better alternative.

    That may very well (none / 0) (#76)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:58:13 PM EST
    be the only reason, as you suggest.  Not that I'm thrilled with Obama's nominees, but they're certainly better than anyone McCain would have come up with.

    Of course (none / 0) (#78)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:10:58 PM EST
    McCain would have had to get his nominees through a Democratically-held Senate, so they probably wouldn't be nearly as bad as you imagine.  Obama had a free pass with his nominees by a compliant Senate.  His choices may turn out to be good or they may not.

    Corey Maye... (5.00 / 0) (#42)
    by Tony on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:52:05 PM EST
    gets a new trial.  Great news.

    I read that yesterday, that is great news (none / 0) (#48)
    by republicratitarian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:58:15 PM EST
    I've sat in my bed at night before and wondered how I would react if the police busted in my front door at night while I was asleep. I sleep with a fan right next to my bed and I know I would not hear anyone announce themselves, if they do.

    That case stunk from the beginning. Hopefully things go his way at the next trial.


    I hear that... (none / 0) (#96)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 07:32:15 AM EST
    at the very least chock full of reasonable doubt, and we know on which side our system is designed to error.

    did announce, like they say they did, despite getting a warrant that allowed them to enter w/o knocking/announcing, then Corey's got a problem.

    If the cops didn't knock/announce, then that's a different situation all together...


    You've got Crapo and Dorgan (5.00 / 4) (#44)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:52:57 PM EST
    and Tweety all aligned to fingt for the recommendations, especially cutting SS and increasing retirement age...

    in other words, running away from 75 years of policy and guarantees, a non-budget item, that's supposed to be killing us economically.

    Yeah, right. Easy fix for medicare, too-- medicare for all. LEt people practice medicine because they want to save lives, with income as a minor issue. Last I checked, people still attend medical school in Cuba, and they are required to spend 2-4 years outside the country practicing-- helping the poor in the world.

    Meanwhile, Bolivia lowers retirement (5.00 / 5) (#49)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:00:07 PM EST
    age to 58 and nationalizes pensions:  WSJ

    Is that good? (none / 0) (#82)
    by Wile ECoyote on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:36:38 PM EST
    Only 4.5 percent of the population (none / 0) (#83)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:43:20 PM EST
    there lives till 65. I imagine the government is lowering it to give males a 10 year or so retirement (sorry, grad classes in demography;-) Life expectancy is increasing, but too much (as in extremely too much) surplus in retirement is probably as bad as not enough, although the problems would be polar opposites.

    I meant (none / 0) (#95)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 07:14:05 AM EST
    nationalizing pensions.

    Seems to work... (none / 0) (#97)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 07:36:40 AM EST
    quite well for executives at Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citi, BofA, Fannie, Freddie....like hittin' the sweepstakes.

    So you are for it. (none / 0) (#102)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 12:32:25 PM EST
    Hell no... (none / 0) (#103)
    by kdog on Sun Dec 05, 2010 at 07:44:04 AM EST
    I'm not for a nationalized multi-million dollar pension plan for grifters only.

    But something like Bolivia with a higher retirement age that covers everbody in old age better than SS...worth considering if it can be sustainable. Radical national tax & spend reprioritization would likely be required.


    And, even the Cat Food Commission's (none / 0) (#66)
    by KeysDan on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:14:26 PM EST
    recommendations were not offered to address the deficit, but rather, to fix it in and of itself (which it does not need).   Moreover, as Representative Jan Schakowsky (D Il) pointed out in an interview yesterday on Lawrence O'Donnell's MSNBC show, social security did not belong on the table of this Commission. She voted (actually registered her position) as being against the Obama Commission 'report'.  Actually, Ms. Schakowsky would make a good president.

    just posted this (none / 0) (#1)
    by CST on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 12:57:44 PM EST
    over in thursday's thread, but i think it bears repeating.

    Scott Brown is officially on board with a DADT repeal.

    Only one more republican to go.

    You're "on trial"? (none / 0) (#2)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 12:59:29 PM EST
    Really?  Details, details!  ;)

    "I'm on trial next week" (none / 0) (#3)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:01:10 PM EST
    What did you do now?  Overuse of the phrase Catfood Commission?  Flagrent throwing of red meat to the Clintonistas?  

    Well all but the bootlickers... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:10:22 PM EST
    are "domestic extremists" now, so I guess it's only a matter of time till we're all on trial.



    And all those... (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:12:55 PM EST
    who swipe plastic will be the easiest to apprehend.

    Well, say goodbye (5.00 / 3) (#11)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:29:05 PM EST
    to the First Amendment and the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.  Say goodbye to the entire Bill of Rights, for that matter.  I don't even recognize my country any more, and it doesn't seem to matter if there is a Republican or a Democratic administration.  Very, very sad.

    No, no (none / 0) (#13)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:30:22 PM EST
    The 2nd Amendment will live on proud and strong!

    Maybe, (none / 0) (#15)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:39:54 PM EST
    Maybe not, despite the efforts of the hugely influential NRA.  Besides, do you really think that any arms that a citizen can legally (or even relatively easily, if illegally) acquire will stand up to heavily armored tanks, shoulder-mounted missile launchers and, for that matter, Predator missiles (or any of the other armament the government can bring to bear)?  Not that I think for a moment that our own government would use such against its own citizens, unless you're overseas and the administration has authorized an assassination order against you without due process............

    Are you supposing the NJ iman has (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:42:40 PM EST
    immunity on U.S. soil?

    See (none / 0) (#20)
    by republicratitarian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:51:02 PM EST
    Waco 1993

    Philadelphia 1985

    Better upgrade that front door to bullet proof,fire proof, armored personnel carrier proof specs.


    David Koresh (none / 0) (#22)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:56:35 PM EST
    was a nutjob.  Those children's blood is on his hands.

    Plenty of blood... (none / 0) (#25)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:02:35 PM EST
    to go around there...and I expected more sanity from Reno, Clinton, ATF, etc.

    The child abuse is on the parents and Koresh, the blood is on alotta hands jb.  Koresh was nuts, but so is the state.


    I would say (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:13:19 PM EST
    If not for Koresh and his followers hoarding illegal weapons, and then refusing to cooperate with the authorities in the first place, there would have been no firey and bullet-ridden end, and those kids would still be alive, as well as the 4 ATF officers.

    Spoken like a true... (none / 0) (#33)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:20:58 PM EST
    authoritarian...responsibility demanded from the individual, none demanded from the state.

    Oculus is much more far along in her jedi training:)


    Nope (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:29:21 PM EST
    The fact that there were credible allegations of child abuse as well that were never allowed to be investigated because the Davidians wouldn't let the children be interviewed separately also gives me pause.

    Not authoritarian, but believe if people are going to make choices, then they should also accept the consequences that come with those choices.  There was no reason to fire on officers serving a search warrant.  There are legal means to challenge it, to work within the system, but if you start firing, then I say, all bets are off.


    I can't agree it better for a child to die (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:42:49 PM EST
    than to be abused.  

    I also can't agree the sins of the parents (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:43:44 PM EST
    should be visited upon the children.  

    I'm not talking about the kids (none / 0) (#41)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:47:11 PM EST
    I don't hold children responsible for the actions of their dumb parents.  But I do hold the parents responsible for making bad choices and having their children suffer the consequences.  

    It wasn't the kids who started shooting guns at officers serving a warrant.  It wasn't the kids who could have dealt with this in a more civilized and legal manner.  It wasn't the kids who shot each other and committed suicide at the end.

    This was the parents' fault.

    That doesn't make me an authoritarian.


    No... (none / 0) (#46)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:55:37 PM EST
    failure to acknowledge the state's role in the senseless loss of life in Waco that makes you an authoritarian.

    Nobody here is claiming the parents and Koresh are innocent victims or don't deserve some of the blame...just that the state botched that bust up good and has blood on it's hands too.


    If I (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:09:18 PM EST
    was an authoritarian, I'd require everyone to always agree with me, because, of course, I'd always be right.

    (Hey, that actually doesn't sound like a bad gig.)


    Labels rarely work... (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:12:41 PM EST
    lets just you've got an authoritarian streak and I've got an anarchist streak and have another drink:)

    BTW... (none / 0) (#53)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:15:43 PM EST
    did ya see this one?  NYPD Queens Narcotics kinda remind me of the Branch Davidians, with how they go about their courtship of young ladies...in a word, disgusting.

    Police and Thieves in the street....


    Maybe it's their plan (none / 0) (#54)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:26:02 PM EST
    to increase revenues from fines?  

    You show me allegedly corrupt cops, I can show you allegedly guilty d-bags getting away with crime and corruption. :)

    Let's have that drink now!


    You're equating (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:13:20 PM EST
    cops and perps now?  I think that we need to hold the police to a much higher standard than that.  Some guilty people going free hardly excuses corrupt cops.  (Besides, better that ten guilty people go free than one innocent person be punished.  But that's just my opinion.  Well, mine and Sir William Blackstone.)  

    I would say there are (none / 0) (#69)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:33:26 PM EST
    far more perps that go free than corrupt officers. YMMV.

    My point was, the conversation is not one sided.  There are criminals everywhere - they should be dealt with, regardless of whether or not they wear a uniform.  But I'm not so paranoid that I think that everyone who wears a uniform is corrupt and out to get me.


    I thought... (none / 0) (#56)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:40:12 PM EST
    using their authority to trade get out of jail free cards for sex, kinda like how Koresh would trade tickets to heaven for sex, would draw more ire outta ya jb, if not the frame-ups and other shenanigans at Queens Narcotics.

    Make it a double!


    Nah (none / 0) (#58)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:43:12 PM EST
    It's late on Friday, I'm going to a fun holiday party at the Newseum here in DC, and I did $1200 worth of damage to my car last night when I didn't pay attention while backing out of a parking space in a garage and hit the left front quarter panel, so I don't need to get riled about stuff out of my sphere of control or influence.

    It's just time to mellow and have that drink - first round's on me! (Although, since I now have to pay for car repairs, I can only buy one round!)


    Tough break... (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:51:43 PM EST
    always something, I'll count my blessings that all I have to p*ssed off about today is the usual state of the union/planet and stop busting your chops now.

    Enjoy the shindig!


    plastic cars... (none / 0) (#60)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:50:16 PM EST
    When I drove an old Plymouth Valiant, one I wish I hadn't abandoned after three years of no heat, it could have taken that hit without more than 50 bucks damage to itself.

    Now I'm having to get work done on the front--plastic part, grill assembly, etc. of the car because of simply scraping over a concrete parking barrier. Not $1200 worth, but still.

    Oh, I much prefer the safety features, mileage, reliability of my current car, but I miss my old plymouth, my old Fords, and my first car, a 1955 De Soto two-tone two-door with a 392 CI big block Hemi. Couldn't afford to drive it and restore it then, and glad I don't have to buy gas for it now, but hey, it was a De Soto.


    It's probalby more about exercising authority (none / 0) (#57)
    by republicratitarian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:42:34 PM EST
    I want in on the drink! It's almost 5.

    Come on down! (none / 0) (#59)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:47:12 PM EST
    The more the merrier!

    This round is mine. (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:51:02 PM EST
    As long as cheap light beer is the choice!

    Actually that you support (none / 0) (#100)
    by Rojas on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 10:21:13 AM EST
    the irrational and arbitrary use of state violence as it was employed at Waco suggests more of your psyche than tendencies toward the run of the mill authoritarian. One only needs to look back a few more decades when Lynch Law was an American tradition and spectacle to understand the depravity that lay just beneath the surface in mans soul.

    Uh, no (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by jbindc on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 11:24:31 AM EST
    But thanks for the free psychoanalysis.  Worth exactly what I paid for it - nothing.

    No psychoanalysis involved (none / 0) (#104)
    by Rojas on Sun Dec 05, 2010 at 12:10:12 PM EST
    Considering you and you high fiver friend are or have been government lawyers and the governments actions in these events are contrary to your stated concerns, your position is completely irrational.

    Yoiks! (none / 0) (#105)
    by christinep on Sun Dec 05, 2010 at 09:44:01 PM EST
    I'm a government lawyer?? (none / 0) (#106)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 06, 2010 at 10:26:38 AM EST

    How could I have missed that - especially since I don't (or have ever) received a paycheck from the government?  Have I not been showing up to a job I supposedly have?


    No, I am not now, nor ever have been, a government lawyer, so your statement is a ludicrous as your first.


    Too true (none / 0) (#64)
    by Zorba on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:03:49 PM EST
    Although Philly was the city thugs- pardon me, police- not the Feds.  Waco was the Feds, all right, under a Democrat.  Thanks a lot, Bill Clinton and Janet Reno.

    I said my goodbyes... (none / 0) (#18)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:43:23 PM EST
    years ago Z...I'll always miss that B.O.R., if not what is was, because it never really was what it should have been, but at least what it represented.  Now ya can't even call it a shell...it's just a myth and a lie.

    Yep, without those precious protections, all we've got is our wits to keep from getting snared in the tangled web of criminality we've created.  


    I'm going to have to... (none / 0) (#10)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:26:57 PM EST
    ...look into this whole writing your own subpoena thing.  

    Although, one can probably get better results, easier by just using teh Google.


    Wow (none / 0) (#94)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 04, 2010 at 07:01:43 AM EST
    Vile (none / 0) (#6)
    by waldenpond on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:14:52 PM EST
    This country has gone effin' overboard.  

    I think we mighta... (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:20:32 PM EST
    just made another list or 2 waldenpond, we better watch ourselves.

    If I don't talk to ya, we'll touch base at the holding pen at the airport:)


    So all boot licking, plastic swiping (none / 0) (#14)
    by republicratitarian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:37:39 PM EST
    domestic extremists in the grope and grab line?

    I'm not sure about us (none / 0) (#16)
    by waldenpond on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:41:54 PM EST
    but I can guarantee the US has moved up a couple of clicks on lists of authoritarian/repressive regimes.

    I think it has to do with betting on NCAA football (none / 0) (#23)
    by ruffian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:01:10 PM EST
    Ha. (none / 0) (#27)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:05:38 PM EST
    Just goes to show... (none / 0) (#50)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 03:00:09 PM EST
    I don't know...say maybe 99% of us could be put on trial if the state wanted too, or had the resources...no shortage of weapons in them law books.

    Good. Something challenging to read (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:17:42 PM EST
    during the blackout.  

    Sad sports world news- Ron Santo has died. (none / 0) (#9)
    by caseyOR on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:20:38 PM EST
    Cubs great and all around good guy Ron Santo has died. He was one of the best, and the refusal of  Hall of Fame voters to recognize that is one of baseball's most egregious acts.

    Santo played during a glorious time in the Cubs long and storied and still unfulfilled march to a World Series. Imagine watching Santo and Ernie Banks guarding the infield together. Good times, people, good times.

    Ruffian, I thought of you when I saw the news. It's a sad day in Cubsville.

    Thank you casey (none / 0) (#19)
    by ruffian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:43:38 PM EST
    I was about to post the same thing when I saw your post. It really is a sad day. He was as much a part of my childhood as one of the kids in the neighborhood.

    I'm also thinking of my Dad who passed 6 weeks ago. He had his differences with old Ronnie over the years...I remember some swearing over men left on base in critical games on '69. Hope they are sharing a pizza and beer together now.

    Dad lived to the age of 82 and never saw his team win the world series. I probably will too!


    Very possible neither one of us, both (none / 0) (#24)
    by caseyOR on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:01:34 PM EST
    now in our 50s, will live to see the Cubs take the WS, or even get to the game. I do keep a flicker of hope burning. You never know, but still.

    My Mom, also 82, has resigned herself to never seeing the Cubbies in a WS. She has reached an almost zen-like peace with it. My 85 year old uncle, on the other hand, still greats each and every spring training with a heartbreaking optimism. Of course, in very short order he is cursing them up and down and swearing he is done with that g@d-d@mned  team!


    You know, at least our parents saw them (none / 0) (#90)
    by ruffian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 11:08:28 PM EST
    play in a WS, even though it was when the Nazis ran Germany! Probably more than we will ever get.

    Santo-Kessinger-Beckert-Banks (none / 0) (#21)
    by ruffian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 01:51:45 PM EST
    will always be the Cubs infield to me! I did see them play at Wrigley many times as a child. Spoiled me for life...or at least until the Sandberg-Grace-Dawson era!!!

    Update on tutoree's science fair (none / 0) (#26)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:04:47 PM EST
    project on Hooke's Law.  On line order of "Hooke's Law apparatus" was a bust.  Special order, which that source had to back order.  Earliest expected arrival date is well after the deadline.

    I discussed this with clerk at hardware store last night.  He is a grad. of a prominent local private high school.  Sd.je encountered "Hooke's Law" in high school calculus, not physics and it is a complex problem, even for a high school calculus student.  Also sd., at his school, after the teacher assigned such a project, the teacher would mentor the student.  Not happening here.  

    what's the idea (none / 0) (#28)
    by CST on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:09:36 PM EST
    behind the project?

    I gather to illustrate the formula. (none / 0) (#29)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:11:35 PM EST
    There are lots of academically-based illustrations on line as to how to set it up. But neither of us can figure out where to acquire the necessary equipment.  

    for example (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by CST on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:54:52 PM EST
    set up a "rig" which essentially could be a 1-2 foot long 2x4 attached (screwed/nailed) to a smaller 2x4 base so it looks like an upside down T.  Put a nail in the top of the rig.  Hang one of these from the nail.  Measure your base point (where the spring is on the board with no weights).

    On the other end of the spring you can essentially hang anything, as long as you know how much it weighs - here is one example of weights you can buy.  In an ideal scenario, you would have a clean distribution (1 lb, 2lb, 3 lb, etc...) - but it's not critical so long as you know what the mass is.  And measure the spring location with each incremental weight.

    If you can't find weights but you want an even distribution, one way to do that is to put some sort of container on the string and add varying amounts of water.  Then you can control how much weight you are adding to the spring.


    if you need something longer than a nail (none / 0) (#47)
    by CST on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:56:49 PM EST
    maybe a thin metal rod screwed into a block of wood or something

    Think the rig qualifies (none / 0) (#68)
    by the capstan on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 04:27:20 PM EST
    as a 'desk-top experiment.'  Spouse was a theoretical physicist who often judged science fair entries.  (Except when son was winning locally and nationally.)  He was most enthusiastic about rigs built from scraps by the kids; figure out the simplest illustration of the principle and design simple variables.  Most important: student must understand and be able to explain the principle, variables, etc.

    For example: (none / 0) (#31)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:14:28 PM EST
    Is the idea to show (none / 0) (#32)
    by republicratitarian on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:16:48 PM EST
    One example of an object that exceeds the limit and one that doesn't?

    When did math start using so many letters? :)


    Who knows? I don't recall the actual (none / 0) (#34)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:21:04 PM EST
    language the teacher assigned him.  Hope kid does!

    in theory (none / 0) (#35)
    by CST on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:21:17 PM EST
    all you need is a spring, a ruler of some kind, and a couple of weights

    Something to bolt the top end of a spring to would probably also be useful.  Such as a tall block of wood with a nail sticking out.

    Local hardware store should have all of that though.

    I guess it depends on how in depth you are trying to be.


    Perhaps the kid and I need to think (none / 0) (#40)
    by oculus on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:47:01 PM EST
    in simpler terms.  Seems to me he needs a sturdy, level cross bar attached horizontally to a sturdy vertical base.  Maybe he should concentrate on the rubber band illustration!

    Related to media shame (none / 0) (#43)
    by waldenpond on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 02:52:39 PM EST
    I was thinking of the writing regarding the media reaction to Assange.  How they focus on Assange and ignore the cables or US activities.  I find the argument that they effed up and abrogated their function as a check to govt power (for access) and are lashing out.  There are a few journalists that admitted their error for their coverage in the run up to the Iraq war (serving as nothing but propagandists)

    I was thinking it is a mirror to Obama voters.  Some admit they effed up in supporting him and are moving on to other means to policy change, but some are now pushing decades old failed conservative ideology or just flat out angry.

    Unrelated... JC at BJ is having a meltdown.  It seems nearly half his writing has been about drinking, being drunk, hungover or pets.  Now he's distraught he criticized Obama and needs a break.

    Obama (none / 0) (#75)
    by jbindc on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 05:57:17 PM EST
    Issues the first 9 pardons of his presidency (aside from turkeys):

    My favorite:

    --Ronald Lee Foster, of Beaver Falls, Pa., sentenced in 1963 to a year of probation and a $20 fine for mutilating coins.

    Ramping up police state (none / 0) (#81)
    by waldenpond on Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 06:23:59 PM EST
    Too cute.  He's pardons are really lame and at the same time he's ramping up the police state.  The Fed is spying on people through credit cards and retailers (through the the Corporate class).  It has got to be illegal but you got to admire how much sneakier he is than even Bush to get the Fed to track people when he can't get a warrant.