Tuesday Night TV and Open Thread

Decisions...American Idol or the Olympics? And I still have "24" and Damages to watch from last night.

What's on your minds tonight? This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Idol? Really? (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Key on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 08:41:22 PM EST
    There's something I don't understand about Idol.  What's the appeal?  I can't get why people want to watch the same thing over and over again.  I mean, the performers may be different but the performances are essentially just the same thing over and over again....  It's a show that never really progresses.  Sure, the field narrows each week, but essentially it's the same thing week to week, year to year.

    Now for me, the choice is between the Olympics and Lost.  The Olympics offer the possibility of seeing records broken, and only come around once every 4 years.

    Of course, Lost is in it's final run and there's a lot of mystery left to be solved.....

    Long day (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 08:44:07 PM EST
    Long tomorrow...long week.  Sounds like my husband is working round the clock too.  Five minute phone calls, when I ask if he's off shift and heading to bed he never is.  I thought I would dig something up on pay per view.

    Zogby sez (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by andgarden on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 08:47:38 PM EST
    that Americans want Congress to "start over" on healthcare.

    I can now confidently predict that we will get Reconciliation and final passage. Zogby is always wrong.

    email I re'c Wed am: (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Molly Pitcher on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 08:10:57 AM EST
    New Amendment:

    "Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and Representatives; and, Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States."        

              Each person contact a minimum of twenty people on their email address list, in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

     In approximately three days, all people in the United States of America will have the message.  This is one proposal that really should be passed around.  

    You're still a youngster (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Zorba on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:35:12 AM EST
    Wait 'til you turn 60!  Have a great birthday!

    Aw jeez.... (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by desertswine on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 12:07:11 PM EST
    I just read that it takes 9 hours of sex to burn off 6 McNuggets.  THIS is why I'm fat. It's not me, really.

    AI and phone call home so far (none / 0) (#4)
    by nycstray on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 09:02:45 PM EST
    I'll catch up on the Olympics and Westminster later.

    Got a portable TV/DVD/CD player today to tide me over from when my stuff moves to CA and we catch up. 5 Days I'm figuring, but most important for monitoring the weather before I leave. Traveling with pets (and shipping some before I leave because of a 2 pet "rule") I was totally stressing on being cut off for a day or many more before going to the airport and the storms rolling through. Now if Mom can get me on Biz Class with her miles, I'll be a happy camper :)

    Watching amazing men's skate at Olympics (none / 0) (#5)
    by wrensis on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 09:20:02 PM EST
    taping Damages ...Japanese Daisuke Takahasi was amazing. Less than a point behind Plushenko of Russia who was/is favored to win the gold.  Americans Abbott, Lycechak and Weir still to skate

    Whew...great night of skating

    I have to catch the replays (none / 0) (#19)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:16:44 AM EST
    Fell into the 'I'll just rest my eyes during the commercials' sleep trap and missed the whole thing. Sorry I missed it.  Next time I will tape it.

    I prefer watching the women (none / 0) (#26)
    by brodie on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:24:59 AM EST
    and couples skate, but caught some of last night's mens and here was the clear highlight:  

    The Russkie Plushenko performed very well, especially in the jumps.  Then NBC's expert analyst, two-time gold medalist Dick Button was interviewed by Bob Costas and offered a fairly harsh view of Plushenko's skating style -- essentially, yes he can do the jumps, but I don't like all the meaningless arm-waiving and frenetic moving about.  It all seemed passionless and was esthetically unpleasing, said Button.

    Then Costas re-ran a previously aired taped interview with Plushenko -- which Button apparently hadn't seen -- where in a thick Russian accent the skater expressed the hope that he would win a second consecutive gold medal, "like Dick Button did."

    Cut back to Button in the studio where you could almost hear him clearing his throat as he furiously backtracked to offer that, well, of course when you watch Plushenko you know you are witnessing Greatness, like seeing superstars Nureyev or Baryshnikoff perform ... etc ...

    Hilarious ...    


    Ha! that's good (none / 0) (#47)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 03:10:44 PM EST
    open mouth, insert skate

    I agree with Buttons regarding the lack of grace in many of the skaters. In fact, I commented exactly that to my wife during Plushenko's performance. But then again, I was only watching because my wife was in charge of the remote control.

    Costas set Buttons up. Kinda sleazy, imo.

    He got Buttons to say his piece and then, surprise! "We have a video of Plushenko that we never told you about that you might be interested in." (an apocryphal "quote", not real a real quote)

    After he watched the video, and realized what Costas had done to him, Button's face dropped, as would anyone who just got blindsided like he did.

    My memory is that he then said basically one line after that, something like "Well Plushenko is a great skater." I do not remember him saying anything about "Greatness, like seeing superstars Nureyev or Baryshnikoff" but he might have.

    I do have it on DVR, so I guess if I really get ambitious tonight I'll re-watch it...


    I.Cannot.Stand.Bob.Costas. (none / 0) (#53)
    by shoephone on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:06:37 PM EST
    Never could, never will. He ruins every sports broadcast because he simply will not shut up for five seconds.

    While I sometimes enjoy the figure skating (none / 0) (#54)
    by shoephone on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:09:20 PM EST
    I've seen both Nureyev and Barishnikov, in their prime. Skaters got nuthin' on them.

    I re-watched it last night. (none / 0) (#62)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 01:34:11 PM EST
    Buttons critiqued Plushenko's dancing ability as described above. And then, among other things, he said something along the lines of "Plushenko commands you to look at him kinda like the "bad guy" in a movie does."

    After Costas showed him the Plushenko comment, Buttons was obviously very complimented and said something along the lines of: "Plushenko commands you to look at him like Nureyev and Barishnikov did, although his dancing ability is no where near as good as theirs."


    Jeralyn, aren't you the one (none / 0) (#7)
    by shoephone on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 09:36:13 PM EST
    that was commenting recently about that PBS show with Robert Lipsyte, "Life, Part Two"? I just watched a good episode of it. One of the guests was Sarah Lawrence-Lightfoot. She's recently published a book called The Third Chapter, which delves into the phenomenon of 50-75 year-olds starting new businesses and new projects in their lives. Since I'm in that process myself, I'm going to buy the book.

    I miss Lipsyte's writing at the NYT, but he wouldn't be hosting the show if he was still at the paper.

    No TV for me tonight, except for maybe "The Good Wife," but only if I get some project work finished in time!

    Having been lost more than I should (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 10:34:42 PM EST
    admit on my recent trip, and realizing I am navigationally impaired, I googled sd. topic today.  One result: effect of steady use of MJ on Hippocampus

    But this explanation does not fit for moi.  I think it is genetic.  Any input?  Help.  No mobile phone GPS in Japan on U.S. mobile phone.  Not good.  I could have rented a Japanese mobile phone with GPS but didn't.  Should heve.

    Thats more than steady use.... (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 08:23:33 AM EST
    5 joints a day for 10 years is steady uber-heavy use...if you're rolling 'em nice and fat thats almost 1/4 ounce a day.  I'd wager blind that equivalent uber-heavy alcohol use for 10 years would cause liver failure and death, nevermind loss of some brain function.

    The dishonesty of drugrehabtreatment.com speaks volumes about their agenda...scare 'em into calling the toll free number...how nice.  Honesty doesn't increase call volume I guess.


    my ignorace-- is 1/4 ounce a lot? (none / 0) (#25)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:14:32 AM EST
    back in the day-- or waaaaaay back in the day, i think an ounce was called a 'lid' and wasn't that much. a lot, but not monster sized, I guess.

    But science entered marijuana-- plant breeding techniques to increase THC levels in hybrids, for instance... nice to see horticulture used for good causes!


    Yep... (none / 0) (#27)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:34:28 AM EST
    a lid is an ounce, approx. 28 grams. I consider a lid a good amount of reefer.

    A 1/4 oz, approx. 7 grams, lasts me a week of everyday use...of course, its the good stuff chock-full of THC:)  Some call it the "one hit and quit" stuff. If I was smoking the denny I'd need closer to a half lid per week. (denny=regs aka dirt weed aka schwag)


    Did you read a couple paragraphs (none / 0) (#33)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 11:51:24 AM EST
    further? They talk about users who smoke 350 joints/week?!

    Must have been a typo, must have meant 35/week.

    I've met guys who've smoked that much (5/day, 35/week) but not many - maybe only a half dozen or so in my lifetime.

    That said, I've also met dozens of guys in my lifetime who, after just a few moments of conversation, you know is a stoner. (Odd that being a hard-core stoner seems to be mostly a guy thing.)

    Anyway, the stuff does have long-term affects, not that I am saying every person will be affected the same way and/or to the same degree, and also not that I'm saying other, legal, drugs don't also have long-term affects, etc., etc...


    What I meant to write is: (none / 0) (#34)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 11:52:53 AM EST
    That said, I've also met dozens of guys in my lifetime who, after just a few moments of conversation, you know is - or was - a stoner.

    For sure... (none / 0) (#39)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 01:18:19 PM EST
    I've known a couple 5 a day people...but they aren't close to the norm of daily smokers.  Most daily users are one a day, and most users aren't everyday-ers.  Who can afford it besides anti-materialists like me?...:)

    And of course, like most any other substance taken in excess, there are negative consequences.  "Couch Lock" is a real phenomenon, just not the norm, its the extreme.  Compared to other legal and illegal intoxicants though, reefer is by far one of the least harmful.  Try as they might, the experts have been unable to attribute even one death to mj use by itself...not a one.

    My bro-in-law, a weekend warrior, considers me something of a freak.  He says "most people I know who smoke as much as you are totally burnt, how are you still pretty sharp?"  I don't have an answer for him.  I'm not easily pegged as a stoner, believe it or not:)  But I know they type you're talking about...there are the type I sniff out in a strange town for a connection:)


    I agree with you (none / 0) (#23)
    by Zorba on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:39:45 AM EST
    that it's genetic, oculus.  My daughter used to get lost all the time (I don't know how many times I used to get calls from her when she was younger, sometimes from the same place, asking how to get home from there).  My son, on the other hand, seems to have a built-in GPS.  He never gets lost.  He's more like his dad.  I'm not as bad as my daughter, but she definitely takes after my side of the family.

    I am a slave to maps (none / 0) (#24)
    by gyrfalcon on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:49:19 AM EST
    Came a-cropper on solid geometry, too.

    Some of us, largely women I have to say, have brains that just don't do spatial relationships very well.

    If I know how to get from A to B and from A to C, I'm helpless if I have to go from B to C.  Can't do it without going back through A.

    For solo foreign travel especially, GPS is our only hope.


    I really did think: what am I doing? (none / 0) (#38)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 01:14:23 PM EST
    when ATT informed me I would not be able to get GPS on my Blackberry in Japan.

    iPhone, baby (none / 0) (#48)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 03:12:25 PM EST
    got me around London and Glasgow!

    Blackberry stood me well (none / 0) (#49)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 04:53:10 PM EST
    in London. Japan has a different GPS type system.

    Upper-Class Twits (none / 0) (#9)
    by kidneystones on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 11:10:51 PM EST
    Monty Python probably didn't have O in mind as an upper-class twit, but according 45% of Americans do see President Hyde-Park Harvard Columbia Occidental College as 'upper-class'.

    The poll points out that most Americans don't want incumbents back, Obama included. Yet, when we download the poll we discover some interesting facts. Like the single largest group of those polled see O as one of them, by which they mean upper class. Telling, no?

    Best comment so far (none / 0) (#11)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 12:09:56 AM EST
    bama is triangulating as fast as he can! You can't be all things to all people any better than this!

    Why can't the people see that he's a beer chugging wine aficionado? A Wednesday night bowling/Saturday morning polo enthusiast? A main street Wall Street union man of the investor class?

    Well, he certainly gave it the ole college (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 12:53:57 AM EST
    try during the beer drinking with Gates, Biden, and Crowley.

    You'd have to go (none / 0) (#32)
    by jondee on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 11:15:20 AM EST
    all the way back to the ninties to recall another President who was called a weak-on-defense, crypto-Marxist by the hard right and a triangulating, Wall St stooge by the Left.

    The good old days..


    My theory: when you hit 50 you no (none / 0) (#10)
    by oculus on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 11:34:36 PM EST
    longer are obliged to edit before speaking.  Enjoy!

    I must have been (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by Zorba on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:34:07 AM EST
    old before my time- I haven't been editing before speaking since I was an adult (and not much editing as a teen, either).  Just ask my family and friends.  ;-)

    hear hear! (none / 0) (#16)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 07:20:24 AM EST
    Withour 50 (or more) year old eyes, it all looks the same anyway.

    Happy Birthday Donald! (none / 0) (#20)
    by ruffian on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:18:14 AM EST
    50 is not so bad...it is when you really do start to realize that the number does not mean a thing.

    For kdog (none / 0) (#28)
    by jbindc on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:38:02 AM EST
    TSA to swab hands of random passengers in search for explosives

    Washington (CNN) -- To the list of instructions you hear at airport checkpoints, add this: "Put your palms forward, please."

    The Transportation Security Administration soon will begin randomly swabbing passengers' hands at checkpoints and airport gates to test them for traces of explosives.

    Previously, screeners swabbed some carry-on luggage and other objects as they searched for the needle in the security haystack -- components of terrorist bombs in an endless stream of luggage.

    But the ACLU is ok with it, but they do have a concern that TSA may not swab  completely  "randomly".

    Under the new protocols, tests will be conducted at various locations -- including in checkpoint lines, during the screening process and at gates. Newer, more portable machines make it easier to conduct tests away from fixed locations such as the checkpoint.

    The TSA has more than 7,000 explosive trace detection (ETD) machines and has purchased 400 additional units with $16 million in federal stimulus money. The president's fiscal 2011 budget calls for $60 million to purchase approximately 800 portable ETD machines.

    Napolitano said the tests will not significantly increase wait times at airport checkpoints.

    The American Civil Liberties Union has "always supported explosive detection as a good form of security that doesn't really invade privacy," said Jay Stanley, an attorney and privacy expert with the organization.

    Stanley said the ACLU is chiefly concerned that the TSA does not discriminate when selecting people for enhanced screening -- something the agency said it does not do -- and that it treat people with dignity.

    As long as... (none / 0) (#29)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:46:28 AM EST
    they're just swabbing for explosive residue, and not for anything else, I could live with this.  I'm always saying explosives are what we need to keep off planes...not free people, not dope...just explosives and weapons.  

    If an explosive swab and metal detector only gets rid of pat downs, the x-rays, the shoes off and the shaving cream confiscated, all the better.


    And a link for Emma (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 11:00:03 AM EST
    the female U.S. soldier who has no soldier ethos and doesn't even know what one is, Adm Mullen talking about little resistance within the military on dumping DADT.  Jeff Sessions doesn't feel the same way but he isn't part of the military is he?  And never has been either but I hear he was an Eagle Scout

    Entirely unnecessary. (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 11:14:22 AM EST
    the female U.S. soldier who has no soldier ethos and doesn't even know what one is

    Oh Yeah (none / 0) (#40)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 01:39:40 PM EST
    Cuz I'm supposed to take total crap off of people and like it.....NOT

    A slight diversion: (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 01:48:36 PM EST
    No one needs to take crap from anyone... (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by vml68 on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 02:51:42 PM EST
    but your point/argument would have stood without taking a cheap shot at Emma.
    She obviously got under your skin if you felt the need to prove your point (after ? many days have passed) with that comment.

    Yes, Emma really did get under (none / 0) (#46)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 03:05:36 PM EST
    my skin and she painted the military to be something that it is not.  Perhaps in her day it was different.  I don't know when she served but soldier ethos is not new...only updated.  And she admitted to not knowing what it was or caring what it was.  That was very strange. I don't know how you get out of basic training without being taught soldier ethos and what purpose it serves.  It is the framework of cohesion and trust in the very worst situations.

    In my reading of the SOTU live thread MT, (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 03:21:34 AM EST
    I got the impression that Emma (are her ears burning yet) "painted the military" the way she experienced it, as a female soldier who also happens to be a lesbian who served under DADT.

    It should come as no surprise if her experience differs considerably from your experience as a civilian woman who is married to an officer.

    That doesn't mean neither of you is capable of knowing anything about the experience of the other. But, obviously, you are bound to be worlds apart. After all, if your husband had personal knowledge of her, or any other gay/lesbian service member, he would be obliged to undertake proceedings to have them ousted from the military. At least that's how I understood it from the original discussion.


    My nextdoor neighbor is a soldier and (none / 0) (#63)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 07:54:05 PM EST
    she is gay.  She is as gay as gay can get gay, and her lover lives with her.  Actually, we as a commumity are now on lover #2 with her.  My husband IS obliged to immediately undertake proceedings dealing with my nextdoor neighbor's gayness once he has observed it or has been told anything......BUT.  She is a soldier.  I hear that she is a really good effing soldier.  I firmly think she's a lousey neighbor though, but that has never been grounds for anything substantial other than whining.  She is deployed this minute as is my husband and we have lived nextdoor to her for four of the longest DADT years.  My God they even had a professional disagreement that all the other post warrant officers became involved in when she was running the WOC school.  He said that her candidates expected this to be a kinder gentler military and this was not THAT kinder gentler military and she had better grow her candidates up and it was her job to do so.  He told her that she was not teaching her candidates to be professional.  Other Warrants agreed with him too, but it was a professinal critique and she did whatever she did and the world kept turning around the sun kept coming up. If you ask my spouse though about her as a soldier, professionally he is not willing to have her employed anywhere else.  She has an I.Q. that equals his he says, and she is blah blah blah blah.....he can name off everything she adds to the military.  She will just have to stay and fight it out with him, and WOC school will benefit from the professional fight.  And it did.  And now they both work elsewhere and when she is having coffee in the mornings on the deck he looks at the ground walking to the car and then he has nothing to report other than the worms were busier this morning.  But talking about that reality inflamed Emma.  If Emma doesn't like those that live that reality though and the careers and the professional soldiers that it protects, then get the eff rid of DADT Emma.

    MT, for those of us who are less (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 02:36:18 PM EST
    intimately involved with the military, what is "soldier ethos". Given the context, I gather it's a quality the military values in its soldiers.

    I was also wondering, whether you still think the prospective end of DADT will cause the problems you cited Jan 27th on the SOTU Live Blog:

    Officers care because there will wrinkles to iron out.  DADT will have to be converted into teachings about keeping your sexual orientation to yourself when at work....as it should be. But you will get soldiers running to their superiors complaining about being hit on by the gay soldier, and all the officers know that now among all the other things they have to deal with (married people not married to each other but getting each other pregnant in war zones....huge lists of social situations....they will now deal with a new wave of homophobia and showering togetherness). I think it is knowing that it is going to take awhile to iron out the wrinkles that really makes officers make the super duper frowny face.

    I see you got into a pretty intense debate on that thread, but it looks like you didn't in any way "take total crap off of people and like it". And now it seems you're ready to go there again, with a pretty scathing opening salvo to Emma who you characterize as a "female U.S. soldier who has no soldier ethos and doesn't even know what one is". Last time around, you weren't willing to believe she had ever been a soldier - she may, at least, regard that as a change for the better.

    BTW, I read your comments with interest and always wish the best for the well-being of you and your family.


    Soldier ethos is what allows our (none / 0) (#45)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 02:59:02 PM EST
    military to function during extreme stress.  The mission comes before all of their personal lives and it comes before what sex you might think you would prefer in your off hours.  Emma went off on me when I brought up that repealing DADT will bring about a change in the military social structure that will be taught in classes yearly exactly like all the rest of the social structure is.  You don't make racist jokes unless you like reprimands, you don't make sexist jokes unless you like reprimands, and now nobody will make gay jokes unless they like reprimands.  And if people want homosexuality taught in health class, don't worry....the military will be the first to do it because that is how they do things now involving social structure.  I do think we will have some homophobic soldiers quit too.  Who cares.  Adm Mullen has made it pretty clear he isn't interested in you if you are that cowardly and truthfully, if you can't deal with getting rid of DADT you probably aren't an exceptional soldier like many of the gay soldiers are who have had to literally live a lie and succeed during a career time involving two wars.  Officers are always going to be grumbly about more work with whining soldiers too.  People will whine, people will quit, the highly competent will not...they will evolve....most of them already have, just silently.  And I took total crap...I am a self important officers wife...remember?  Emma knows the type blah blah blah.  Actually what I am is a bored mother with a disabled child who is nosey beyond belief, asks any and all questions that I want to and who makes my own friendships with people in my life....while I'm surrounded by military right now...and my friendships with peole are separate from my spouses friendships too though we often do share some of the same friends.

    I wikied "soldier ethos".. (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 05:27:15 PM EST
    This is what I got per U.S. Soldier's Creed:
    The current version of the Soldier's Creed is a product of the Warrior Ethos program authorized by the then Army Chief of Staff Eric K. Shinseki in May 2003. The Soldiers Creed was approved in its current format by the next Army Chief of Staff Peter Schoomaker on 11/24/03. The Warrior Ethos is contained in the Soldier's Creed.

    I am an American Soldier.
    I am a Warrior and a member of a team.
    I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
    I will always place the mission first.
    I will never accept defeat.
    I will never quit.
    I will never leave a fallen comrade.

    I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
    I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
    I am an expert and I am a professional.
    I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
    I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
    I am an American Soldier.

    I found the following bit particularly interesting in view of ongoing debates regarding the Constitution and the War on Terror:
    The U.S. Soldier's Creed in no way supersedes the Oath of Enlistment that all U.S. Service Personnel are required to adhere to wherein: obedience to the U.S. Constitution is placed first and foremost ahead of the "Mission First" premise of the Soldier's Creed.

    Fine, and true (none / 0) (#52)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 07:03:11 PM EST
    But when does a President issue orders that violate the Constitution?  I don't understand your point unless you just want to make chit chat.  It isn't something that plays out daily, and the soldier creed is not all that there is to soldier ethos.  You are accountable to be of the highest integrity and that means that you uphold all existing military rules and you do not violate those rules.  That is why when you change the rules in the military you change the ethos....instantly.  For many soldiers soldier ethos does not trump the Geneva Conventions either.  My husband was one of a couple of scattered soldiers who said that they would not shoot a looter in Iraq when Rumsfeld first declared that was how we would handle looters.  Nobody else in the room where my husband was immediately realized that the mission they were being given violated the Geneva Conventions either until he said that, but once it was said and every person in the room reevaluated what they were being briefed to do, the command began to backpaddle quickly because they had a true conflict of values taking place that could completely blow up in their faces.  But my husband's commander hated him for the rest of that tour of duty and considered him a "problem" person. The Bush Administration was all a bunch of crazy freak cowboys though.  And that same commander quit long before he hit 20 years because he couldn't handle the ethos that the job during an actual war required.  I've watched my spouse suffer the stresses of soldier ethos on many levels since Bush's Iraq War. But soldier ethos rules dailing, violating the Constitution seldom comes into play.  Soldiers get up every day and go to work within the framwork of soldier ethos and once again it is what creates the cohesion and trust they must have in each other during crazy stress that most of us can't even imagine.

    MT, now I don't understand your MO. (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 09:19:40 PM EST
    I took you at your word when you described yourself earlier as: "a bored mother with a disabled child who is nosey beyond belief, and asks any and all questions that I want to". With that in mind, I imagined you might be open to my "chit-chat" (your less than complimentary term for my comments ;-).

    So, perhaps you're open to explaining what you meant when you said:

    When does a President issue orders that violate the Constitution?

    Are you suggesting that Presidents don't violate the Constitution? If so, does nothing come to mind from the present or recent past? Not even in our whole sordid history of declaring and waging war?

    My "point" is that President's do violate the Constitution, both domestically and abroad, in times of peace and war. Unfortunately, when this happens in times of war, soldiers are made complicit in the process.

    As for what you call "soldier ethos", it is a term that I hadn't heard before you used it. Even after you defined it, I didn't know if it was your personal term or whether it was some kind of official military doctrine. So, I looked it up and found that it is the latter (as per the link in my previous comment).

    It's regrettable if any of this puts me on your bad side. C'est la vie, c'est la vie. I'm hanging it up for now.


    If a President violated the Constitution (none / 0) (#56)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 10:46:01 PM EST
    recently perhaps you should get specific about what that was.  Nobody can read your mind.

    How "recently" does it have to be MT? (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 02:50:29 AM EST
    I can't "read your mind" either.

    But, let's say "recently" is anytime during the past 10 years, up to and including the present.

    Do you honestly wish to maintain that no President has "recently" violated the Constitution in any way, or to any degree, either directly or indirectly, domestically or internationally in the ongoing War on Terror? And no troops have been thereby placed in a morally, or ethically, or legally indefensible position?

    If that's what you're suggesting, I'll have to say the magnitude and nature of this challenge is well above my pay grade. If that's not what you're suggesting, then you know the answer as well as I do and we could both make better use of our time.

    BTW, are you familiar with the ACLU or the writings of Glenn Greenwald? I kid, I kid!


    Pick your poison (none / 0) (#58)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 02:58:37 AM EST
    or is your heart's desire simply to be a generalized fatalist?

    HUH? (And that's my final word ;-) (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 03:24:16 AM EST
    pffft (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 11:09:18 AM EST
    zero fun

    Oscar Goodman (none / 0) (#35)
    by jbindc on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 12:05:33 PM EST
    The mayor of Las Vegas, who has laready once called Obama out, is now refusing an invitation to meet with Obama when the president visits Vegas on Thursday.

    "I've got other things to do quite frankly for my constituents here in Las Vegas who rely on me to do the right thing as a mayor," explained Mayor Goodman.

    Mayor Goodman has more important things like attend budget meetings during a major shortfall than meet with President Barack Obama when he visits Las Vegas Friday, even though he's invited by the White House.

    "Were you surprised to get that invitation in light of comments you've made before and your opinion on him and what he says," asked Action News reporter Heather Klein.

    "A little bit in the sense I would think they would know that I would say I'm not coming," said Mayor Goodman.

    Another view on reconciliation (none / 0) (#37)
    by jbindc on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 12:25:32 PM EST
    Now, before anyone says anything, these comments were made on a conference call with conservatives, which may show the messenger's tilt.  That being said, this man was the Senate Parliamentarian for 12 years, and a law professor, so I think he understands the procedures and ramifications better than journalists or bloggers or talking heads on TV.

    The parliamentarian can rule any provisions as "incidental" and remove it from the bill if he or she judges that its purpose is to write new policy not simply to alter the federal budget. "The 'incidental' test is a very difficult test because it is very subjective," Dove said. "You are trying to judge peoples' motives," he said. The Senate can overturn the parliamentarian's rulings with 60 votes -- but if Democrats had 60 votes, they would not be using reconciliation. Dove also noted that Vice President Joe Biden, in his Constitutional role as President of the Senate, is the ultimate authority and could overrule the parliamentarian. He added, though, that "no vice president, frankly, since Nelson Rockefeller in 1975, has exercised that right.

    Senators are also entitled to offer as many amendments as they choose during reconciliation. Though Democrats have a large enough majority to beat back GOP attempts to alter the bill, neither they nor the parliamentarian can limit the number of amendments introduced, Dove said.

    (Which means endless amendments being introduced)