Tuesday Morning Open Thread

I'll be in court today, here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is back on the witness stand in his Chicago trial. This morning, a juror was excused.

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    Not sure what to think about this (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:39:18 PM EST
    A group from the Westboro Church protested at Arlington National Cemetery yesterday (like they always do).  A counter-protest was held that included 10 people claiming to be a branch of the Ku Klux Klan from Virginia called the Knights of the Southern Cross.

    And here's some more fun Fred Phelps facts:  he used to be a civil rights attorney who took racial discrimination cases that no one else would take, fighting for black clients.

    Phelps was so successful that he became the first lawyer blacks would call when they thought they were being discriminated against, says the NAACP's Scott.

    "Most blacks -- that's who they went to," Scott says. "I don't know if he was cheaper or if he had that stick-to-it-ness, but Fred didn't lose many back then."

    Douglas, the Topeka civil rights activist and former fire chief, says Phelps was such a "brilliant attorney" that he made enemies.

    "He made a fortune on all those cases," Douglas says. "All the businesses hated him because he was so successful. I think if they discriminated against Martians, he would have done those cases. He could make money."

    It is really to bad (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:39:24 PM EST

    that they did not get into a chainsaw fight.

    A group from the Westboro Church protested at Arlington National Cemetery yesterday (like they always do).  A counter-protest was held that included 10 people claiming to be a branch of the Ku Klux Klan from Virginia called the Knights of the Southern Cross.



    I really don't care anymore what (none / 0) (#76)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:52:15 PM EST
    Westboro does, and I think the KKK is much worse but if they have the rights to have their meetins I have the right to use people to virtually block them out, drown them out, and hide them.

    The KKK stands much more of a chance of getting hurt though coming to Arlington.  That stupid Phelps is such an idiot. It is just impossible to take Phelps seriously.

    Wyoming embarrassed me in front of my husband once though.  I wasn't there but a bunch of them went on a battlefield tour and the Little Big Horn was part of it.  They were all at a bar one night in Wyoming, about 30 of them. They were dressed in regular clothes and broken up in small groups.  My husband said that one of the black soldiers asked a local girl to dance, they danced, and then about 5 local dudes showed up at the table to tell him that coloreds don't dance with the local girls.  The soldier laughed and asked them if they were serious.  Oh yeah, they were serious, and he needed to get out to the parking lot now to learn a little lesson.  My husband said that the soldier stood up to go outside but the local boys never made it that far because 30 other soldiers stood up too and there was about to be some real bad chit so they became sorry instead.  Most of the military just does not go for that crap anymore.


    Plastic... (none / 0) (#1)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 10:19:20 AM EST
    it is accepted nowhere I wanna be.

    Interesting article about your credit card overlords restricting your purchases...no medical mj, no gambling, no to some charities, no to some adult entertainment.

    But y'all go ahead keep surrendering your economic sovereignty...what do I know, I'm only saving money at the cash only line at the gas station:)

    Oh Please... (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:50:15 AM EST
    ... we had this discussion before, you use plastic.  A debit card is plastic, and the exact same rules apply as credit.  ATM cash is the same whether it comes out of your account or is added to your revolving credit.

    They do it to protect themselves because clowns buy medical M in one state, take it to another, get busted, then feel like they don't need to pay the bill.  Ditto with nudie clubs, some guy charges a backroom bj on his card, has buyers remorse, then wants his money back because the purchase was illegal.  This happens with internet medications, gambling, music, porn, and on and on.

    It is the duty of the CC companies to provide protection, it is not their duty to insure.

    The article specifically states 'legal purchases', but it doesn't specify what that means.  If I buy Vicodin in Mexico and bring it here, its that legal ?  Medical M is clearly illegal in all 50 states, but the article makes no mention of that, ditto with gambling.  Porn is another one of those iffy areas, pretty sure it's illegal to buy in S or N Carlina.  Is it really up to the CC companies to build every local ordinance into their system logic, or should they just declare certain purchase off limits.

    Just because we don't think weed and gambling should be illegal, doesn't mean companies should hold that point of view.  They should go by the law, and right now that means the charges discussed are all w/i their right to deny.  

    I don't like it, but the law is the law.  If they start declining my card at the local liquor store or the pharmacy, then there's a problem, but right now it appears that they are simply following the law.

    And lastly, does anyone really believe CC companies are putting morals before profits ?  IMO, if they wouldn't get tossed in court they would let people charge babies, hits, drugs, human organs, or any other thing they could to generate revenue.


    Dude... (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:35:35 PM EST
    I don't have a checking account, I don't use ATM's, I don't have a credit line...though I did have to get a prepaid so I have lodging options besides the no-tell motel....but aside from that small sell-out I never use plastic...plastic is evil.

    You're right the CC's and banks are within their rights to deny their customers certain legal transactions for fear of fraud or too much of a hassle to differentiate between jurisdictions, whatever they throw in the pages and pages of fine print is legal...but that don't make it right boss.

    No skin of my back...just pointing it out for those with a dog in the hunt, and trying to win some converts to my way of life so a cashless society never comes to fruition.  Today it's medical mj, maybe tomorrow your brand of medication, or your favorite charity...why put up with that crap on top of everything else, namely leeching off every transaction. It's crazy.


    Is there a blog or organization (none / 0) (#27)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:37:42 PM EST
    in support of your viewpoint?

    Not that I am aware of... (none / 0) (#32)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:58:53 PM EST
    But I kinda like that Dave Ramsey guy, telling people to cut their sh*t up and stop playing the fool with the plastic.  Lots of videos on youtube of various ways to slice 'em, burn 'em, microwave 'em:)

    Though I realize our entire economy collapses if people actually waited to buy something they can't afford right this second.  I was taught a different way is all...if ya can't afford it right now, ya don't need it right now.

    And if ya can afford it right now, why give the banksters a slice?

    Remember that documentary on WalMart, "High Cost of Low Prices"...we need a sequel, "High Cost of Frequent Flyer Miles"...:)


    My Dad proclaimed this philosophy too. (none / 0) (#33)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:01:53 PM EST
    I like (none / 0) (#41)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:24:44 PM EST
    Dave Ramsay too. The thing that people don't realize according to him is that even if you pay off the plastic every month you still end up spending more money than you should. It also wreaks havoc with your budgets.

    Honestly, though I got off the cash train for quite a while because if you gave my husband cash it evaporated and he couldn't tell me where in the h*ll it went and I made him start writing checks for everything.

    Also, doing everything with cash can be annoying because you have to spend a ton of time running around and standing in line to pay bills. My grandmother used to do this and we wasted so much time but I guess when you're elderly, this is kind of a social event for you and a reason to get out of the house.


    too Funny (none / 0) (#42)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:31:54 PM EST
    "I made him start writing checks for everything"

    A grown man writing checks, too funny.


    I know (none / 0) (#47)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:42:10 PM EST
    We had large money issues when we were young and first married I guess you can tell.

    I think that it depends (none / 0) (#43)
    by nyjets on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:31:58 PM EST
    On my CC, I always pay off the balance. Heck, I very ofter call the company when I know I made purchases after the statement was made and pay off those as well. As a result, I usualy pay zero interest.
    For a lot of things, a credit card is useful as long as you use it responsibly.

    Well (none / 0) (#49)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:43:48 PM EST
    what Ramsay says is that people spend something like 20% when they pay with something with a credit card instead of cash. I guess it's a mindset that you aren't actually letting go of the cash right at that moment so you think you can spend more or something.

    I've noticed with myself that I will spend more money using a credit card than if I used cash.


    That is true (none / 0) (#57)
    by nyjets on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:04:34 PM EST
    I do that myself. Usually, but not always it is for items I will buy eventualy but that can be a problem. I find that if I know I will pay it off at the end of the month, that usually tempers my spending.

    Tracking your spending... (none / 0) (#50)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:44:47 PM EST
    can be difficult...I have a habit of spending whatever I leave the house with, so I try to not leave the house with more than I need to be spending...especially if I'm passing OTB on the way home.

    Your husband reminded me of The Dude, buying a gallon of milk via check at Ralphs...too funny.

    As for mailing bills, $0.75 a money order, an additional cost yes, but on my terms.  I hear some banks are changing account holders per written check now too...those with balances that can least afford another fee, of course.  The more money you have the more free sh*t ya get.


    My bank (none / 0) (#53)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:56:20 PM EST
    doesn't charge for anything but I have had them that did. I fired the ones that were charging me for every little thing. One even started charging me 25 cents every time I called the automated line! I used to work with people that didn't have checking accounts because they said they couldn't afford them but then the bank they went to would charge them money to cash their paychecks.

    Yes indeed... (none / 0) (#58)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:06:29 PM EST
    I pay to cash my paycheck, with a local check-cashing outfit.

    Ya can't win, but better than giving a slice to my employers bank, for damn sure...at least the check-cashing guy is local and will likely spend it local.


    But That's a Tired Ole Arguement... (none / 0) (#31)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:48:21 PM EST
    ... "today they came for X, tomorrow it's you".

    They are not letting people charge illegal goods/services.  Doesn't seem very sinister to me, and speculating that Citibank is going to deny you the ability to charge legal goods/services in the future seems a little reaching considering that is their bread and butter.  

    I just don't buy the 'moral high-ground' arguement for the CC companies.

    I thought you told me long ago that you used an ATM card regularly, my bad.


    No worries.... (none / 0) (#37)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:09:09 PM EST
    and I hope I'm just paranoid...but the state is already pushing SS and benefit payments via plastic, not check.  Gotta pay extra to get a tax refund check from NY, pushing electronic transfer.  My great-uncle gets his food stamps via plastic.

    Who is to say one day ya have a National ID/Debit card combo and no cash...thats how they do in dystopian movies of the future.  I pray I'm wrong or it at least hits after I'm dead:)


    Bro (none / 0) (#71)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:02:53 PM EST
    I know you just didn't dignify your answer with a movie reference, that so...   Pretty sure Tina Turner isn't going to fuel an entire city on pig waste, or that people are going to grow gills because the Earth is covered in water.

    Joking, I don't care what anyone does.  I just think it's odd, like my grannie sending letters instead of email because "they're watching".


    SS Plastic (none / 0) (#84)
    by Amiss on Thu Jun 02, 2011 at 01:20:02 AM EST
    MY SS Office recommends against them because of all of the charges. Made me feel better about that person with the govt at least.

    Your (none / 0) (#12)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:35:53 PM EST
    last paragraph says it all. They are about money, money, money and really could care less what people buy as long as they pay for it.

    I'm all for just using cash but this whole "cashless society" thing is a bit of a conspiracy. There's nothing stopping you from getting your entire paycheck out of the bank or cashing it.

    I frankly would be more concerned about the people who do cash checks and charge a percentage for it.


    Cashless Society (none / 0) (#29)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:41:19 PM EST
    With the internet it's definitely increasing.

    I rarely have cash, it's not practical where I live.  But every time I go to say NYC or Wisconsin, I am shocked at how many places don't take cards.  It's frustrating, I like my wallet (CCard, DCard, insurance card, and Drivers license) thin to win.  That fills one front pocket, 4 keys another and phone in my back pocket.  That's how I roll until I go somewhere with cash, it messes up my mojo, wrinkled bills and change, not sure what I have or why I have 12 $1 bills all wrinkled up and $3 in change all taking up valuable real estate.

    I understand people wanting their privacy, but to me that's silly.  This isn't the China, it's Citibank trying to figure out how to bilk a couple more bucks out of your pocket.  It's marketing, nothing sinister, ditto with those reward cards.

    I have always said this, "Once politicians stop taking bribes and doing drugs, we will be a cashless society."  But since that ain't ever going to happen, neither will a cashless society.


    Scott my man... (none / 0) (#44)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:32:23 PM EST
    I hope I can take your saying "to the bank".:)

    GA Dem...have you tried cashing a check as a non-account holder at the issuing bank lately?  Not the piece of cake it used to be or should be....2 forms of ID, fingerprint, 6 dollar vig, and the scripted "can I interest you in a checking account, it's so much easier!" spiel.

    I know I'm a crackpot, but times are changing and the banks change their rules all the time.  I tried to sign a paycheck over to my moms cuz she was short on cash and her bank wouldn't even let her deposit it with my endorsement, and I was there with her to show ID and give 'em their stinkin' fingerprint and everything...another new restriction plucked out of thin air.  She was pissed.


    Yes (none / 0) (#51)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:50:38 PM EST
    I did cash a check at the issuing bank a week or so ago. Not as easy as it used to be but not a huge deal. Just tell them you already have a checking account and that you are just coming here to cash it for convenience or at least that's what I did. I actually bank out of state so once in a while I do have to use a local bank.

    I try to stay pleasant... (none / 0) (#55)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:00:38 PM EST
    I know the teller is a broked*ck like me just following orders...but it is hard to mask my contempt for our banking system.  More dangerous than standing armies, a wise man once said.

    Or as a current wise man says...

    "Never understood why I send my money down to the man at the bank.  When all he does is sit and think, about the money I'm gonna make."

    - Ryan Bingham, "Dollar a Day"

    That they do... (none / 0) (#69)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:56:13 PM EST
    the common areas of FSU when I lived down in Tally often looked like a grifters sales convention...all the credit card apps you could hope to fill out being waved under the noses of college kids struggling to pay their Natty Lite bills...a recipe for disaster right there.

    Plus.. (none / 0) (#74)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:29:55 PM EST
    ... there is an expectation that college kids will make some bank in the near future.  I would imagine a room full of actuaries figuring out exactly when the best time to give them credit and how much so that when they graduate and get real jobs, they can be indebted to the CC company for years.  

    My first credit card had a $500 limit and I though I was King Dong for a month, slapping that baby down like a pimp with his grown man pants.

    Took me like 2 years to pay off that one month of fun.  College kids might know what a zygote is, but giver them credit or too much financial aid and they turn into raps stars real quick.  

    Donald's daughter being the exception of course.


    so true about Tally (none / 0) (#85)
    by Amiss on Thu Jun 02, 2011 at 01:24:25 AM EST
    Is "Quentin Fottrell" your nom de plume? (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:00:11 AM EST
    In other words, when in doubt, pay cash.

    I think plastic sucks the life out of us (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:57:07 PM EST
    in various ways, and should be used with respect like the respect I have for rattlesnakes :)

    Miles, miles, and more miles. (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:00:31 PM EST
    You travel (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:07:15 PM EST
    I lolly around while they document all my likes and dislikes :)  I do use cash a lot for daily things because all that docuementing that they do creeps me out.  We use them for Josh's surgeries though.  I wonder what they think of that billing.  I stay at a fancy hotel and eat hospital food, and I stay at the fancy hotel because with reimbursement I can but they don't know that :)

    True of All Things Usury (none / 0) (#21)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:23:13 PM EST
    On one hand the money you set aside for the future miraculously gets larger w/o doing anything.  But on the other hand, especially early, in a mortgage you send them a huge check yet only a fraction goes to the principle.

    Carrying a balance on a CC isn't a big deal so long as the balance/interest isn't ridiculous.  Anyone that has a mortgage is basically putting a entire house on a CC.  Sure the rates are lower, but when you think about the amount, mortgages IMO are far more damning than a credit card.  

    A $100,000 30 year mortgage @ 5% costs $93k, @6% it's $115k.  Basically, it's the old I buy, you fly.  I buy two houses, you lend me the money and keep one.

    I do have a point, CC are demonized, yet the banks have people, including myself, fooled into thinking that a house is a good investment.  It's not, if you saved the difference between renting and owning (including property taxes) you would have a lot more renting.  But most people, like myself, just are not that self disciplined.

    Mortgages take a whole lot more out of the American pocket than CC's.


    Not fooled there either.... (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:37:14 PM EST
    buy a house and all you really own is a big old pile of debt....unless you buy in cash.

    True (none / 0) (#35)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:08:00 PM EST
    except in cases where you get a 15 year mortgage and the payment is about the same as what you would pay in rent. After 15 years you come out waay ahead because all you are paying is property taxes.

    Also what is overlooked (none / 0) (#38)
    by nyjets on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:11:33 PM EST
    You actually OWN that piece of property. You can now do whatever you want with it. Honestly, if you can afford the payments, paying a mortgage is better than renting because one the mortgage is payed off, you own something outright.

    Not whatever you want... (none / 0) (#39)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:18:34 PM EST
    "own" a house in Coral Springs FLA and they got all kinds of rules...no fences, no this, no that.

    And if you really think about it, all mortal beings are merely renting their space.  Land ownership is something human beings made up....and I'm not quit sure how I feel about it.  I see how it helps keeps the peace, up to a point...but if one "owns" too much land that itself leads to violence and problems.


    Not right now (none / 0) (#80)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 31, 2011 at 07:12:19 PM EST
    You can own all that crap and make the serfs pay for most everything that keeps it safe taxwise, because you might give someone a job mowing all that lawn someday ya know.

    And you get to deduct (none / 0) (#40)
    by Towanda on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:23:41 PM EST
    those property taxes.

    This is one of the reasons why I bought my first home (on my own) -- when I could, after $30,000 in rent for five years and hardly any deductions as a renter.  (There were other reasons, of course, such as landlords making life unsafe for my children and me.)

    The rent and a monthly mortgage payment were the same, although for the down payment, I did have to mortgaged my future to get the first mortgage, cashing out an IRA and paying the steep penalty then.  But in only a few years, as rates went down, I re-fi'd and had more cash flow again . . . in part because I paid off my student loans in the re-fi, too.

    And within 10 years, when I sold, the price of the house had almost doubled.  

    So I wouldn't have had savings vs. rent, I wouldn't have had the deduction, the student loan payoff, etc. -- and above all, I had a safe home for my children, not having to rely on lousy landlords.


    Sadly, in one generation... (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Dadler on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:38:36 PM EST
    ...home ownership has stopped making such sense for a lot of people.  The idea that your home is going to legitimately double in value any time quickly, without another destructive bubble, is just not reality anymore.  And the notion you'll have a long, stable career in one place -- a big factor in the old home owner dream -- went bye-bye years ago.  Maybe in some places, and at higher income levels, but overall...the American Dream of owning your home as it existed is pretty dead, IMO.  Amazing how quickly and insidiously it slithered away.

    I think that's the key (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:42:46 PM EST
    And the notion you'll have a long, stable career in one place -- a big factor in the old home owner dream -- went bye-bye years ago.

    The taxman does.. (none / 0) (#52)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:56:03 PM EST
    screw the renter...I never met a rent that didn't factor in the owners property taxes...so we pay them, but get no deduction.

    The single, childless renter, forget about it....persona non grata, am I right jb? :)

    Scratch that, the single childless renter who smokes cigs and gambles in legitimate games...seriously forget about it!


    It's (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:57:24 PM EST
    called the "sin tax" down here in GA.

    Odd definition... (none / 0) (#56)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:02:53 PM EST
    of sin we got, don't we.

    Not Jesus' definition, to be sure.  He liked to party, water into wine...moneychangers not so much:)


    Yep (none / 0) (#59)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:08:03 PM EST
    As a single, childless person who rents, I get nothing.

    And as a voter we get ignored too - everything is geared towards helping families.


    Here we are... (none / 0) (#60)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:14:54 PM EST
    doing our part to address overpopulation and this is the thanks we get:)

    Seriously though the taxman's deduction hustle is almost as infuriating as the bankster's hustle.


    See? We CAN agree on some things! (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:16:28 PM EST

    LOL... (5.00 / 3) (#63)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:25:42 PM EST
    if you're ever in real tax trouble I'll join you in fraudulent matrimony...anything for you pal.

    Unless a woman in need of a fraudulent immigration marriage catches me first:)  


    Seems to me (none / 0) (#65)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:30:40 PM EST
    It wouldn't be fraudulent, as it appears that you are nuts for a certain lady... :)

    That I am... (none / 0) (#67)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:43:43 PM EST
    but the special lady has no interest in a green card or US citizenship...if anything I'm gonna have to expatriate, and papers are the least of my concerns with any of that.

    You would do nicely (none / 0) (#70)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:56:25 PM EST
    To chuck it all anyway, and take her to some remote island and live on love.  :)

    A friend did that. Then she wanted to (none / 0) (#77)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:54:49 PM EST
    have kids.  

    An opera-lover who sounds as though (none / 0) (#79)
    by christinep on Tue May 31, 2011 at 06:16:37 PM EST
    she isn't a romantic!?! Say what :)

    My aunt... (none / 0) (#81)
    by kdog on Wed Jun 01, 2011 at 08:03:27 AM EST
    did it too...married some paperless dude for a few grand back in the 70's.  She tells a great story about it with a gay marriage punchline, since she is a lesbian and all.  A classic at family reunion time!

    She is the outlaw on mom's side of the fam...we get along really well, obviously:)


    Hey kdog, did you convince your (none / 0) (#75)
    by ruffian on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:51:56 PM EST
    employer to keep writing you a check instead of auto-deposit?

    Pending ruffian... (none / 0) (#82)
    by kdog on Wed Jun 01, 2011 at 08:08:48 AM EST
    Had a sitdown in the bossman's office, explained my reasons, offered a few alternatives besides direct deposit to be reasonable...pay me in cash (not happening), monster raise to bribe my conscience and cover any eventual bankster grift(not happening), biweekly or monthly checks as opposed to weekly (possibility), or drop the whole thing (possibility)...ball is in his court.
    We shall see.

    I don't agree with it, but I understand the (none / 0) (#3)
    by republicratitarian on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:01:36 AM EST
    whole fear of the Fed thing. If the government decides it's time to crack down on "financial institutions" that support "illegal" gambling or legal medical marijuana, then they could just go after credit card companies.

    And honestly, I'd just assume not have a paper trail to anything that might be deemed unsavory or immoral  by the man. Cash is king.

    In theory... (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:21:09 AM EST
    yes, but in practice?  The feds aren't gonna f8ck with their deputies at the bank much, we know this by now...same team.  

    Force the banks and cc outfits to rat us out, yeah...maybe thats why they rather not process at all.  Could be akward for a Amex customer service rep to explain the police at your door.

    A cashless society is a tyrannical society...we must do all we can to hit the brakes on it now, for our grandkids sake.


    I'm less concerned about a cashless society... (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Dadler on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:46:26 AM EST
    ...than I am about a society that is heartless, which we seem to be in excess right now.  This from a kid who remembers clearly waiting in blocks-long lines for our food stamps, then the embarrassment my mom felt when she had to use them at the market. And we still do that sh*t to poor folks.  And much worse.  K-Dog, I tell you my man, it's as if we don't even understand that we're rational, sentient, soft creatures.  It is in a state of reactionary stasis this country seems to live in.  Meanwhile, the few rake in more and more, and the many are left to battle over less and less.  

    Rainy and cold here...again.  Gonna turn me into a Norwegian.  


    Sunny and HOT here in MD... (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Anne on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:02:06 PM EST
    currently 90+, with a heat index of 103, and expected to get up to around 97...it's like dog breath.

    Summer has arrived...


    Mmm, dog breath... (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Dadler on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:12:20 PM EST
    What I wouldn't give for a dose of uncomfortable heat that smelled like a Schnauzer burp.  Getting desperate here.

    Well, I should say that where I live, (none / 0) (#15)
    by Anne on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:54:51 PM EST
    which is out in the country, the air smells like the wild roses and honeysuckle and fresh-cut grass...in the city, where I live, on the other hand, it's hot asphalt and car/bus exhaust.

    But, it's still terribly humid, either way, and so hot it just sort of sucks the life out of you; makes me glad I don't work on a road crew or a roof, ya know?

    Hope the sun peeks out for you soon - too much gray and rainy isn't good for the state of mind.


    Can't you just go take a quick look (none / 0) (#18)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:02:12 PM EST
    at the ocean or bay to cheer up?

    Like going to the ocean in Greenland right now (none / 0) (#30)
    by Dadler on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:42:05 PM EST
    At least to my spoiled, so-cal raised butt.  I must admit, tho, every glimpse of the pacific I get cheers me a little. Unfortunately, the bay is what I have mostly.  It's nice, but it's not the Pacific.  But listen to me, what a pity party, boo hoo.  

    My daughter used to complain the sun (none / 0) (#34)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:03:26 PM EST
    set on the wrong side of Long Island Sound.  

    In truth, we're about ten minutes away... (none / 0) (#36)
    by Dadler on Tue May 31, 2011 at 02:08:16 PM EST
    ...from being on 1 south headed for Pacifica, and about the same away from Skyline Community College, where there is a great ocean overlook.  So it's not like I moved to Iowa.  

    I would have (none / 0) (#13)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:40:07 PM EST
    thought that you guys in MD wouldn't have been hit with the heat yet. I guess I thought wrong. It's already getting bad here in GA and it's not even June yet. We are having July weather already. I dread August.

    Close by in DC (none / 0) (#14)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:47:32 PM EST
    It's disgusting.  Heat index, like yesterday, supposed to be 101-105.  Then add in the heat from the exhaust of the cars between the city buildings. Yuck.

    One of the worst things about living here (besides traffic) - the heat in the summer (even though it's still actually spring).

    Give me fall weather - 55-60 degrees and sunny.


    I do remember our one summer in Arlington. (none / 0) (#20)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:18:18 PM EST
    Hotter and muggier than SE Iowa, and that's saying something.

    Kinda already... (none / 0) (#8)
    by kdog on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:57:31 AM EST
    given up on our collective heart...my roomate was recently shaken down by the police for the "suspiscous" act of giving a panhandler change. Add that to CC outfits refusing to transact some charitable contributions...the heart of the nation is in worse shape than Dickie Cheney's my brother.

    We still got individual hearts, and cash for those hearts to spread around...for now.


    It's Not That (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by ScottW714 on Tue May 31, 2011 at 12:09:59 PM EST
    They can't legally force you to pay for goods/services that are illegal.  Easy enough for stuff like bombs and human organs, but what about porn and paraphernalia ?

    If you go to Bangkok and spend a couple grand on underage prostitutes, and take Citibank to court in the US, those charges will be removed.

    In practice they let it slide and I suspect when the legal claims start adding up they reevaluate their policies.  Pretty sure we can still buy drugs from India or music from Russia.  But now that internet gambling & medical M are becoming hot plate issues, plenty of clowns trying to weasel out of charges.

    CC companies want you to buy stuff, they don't want to eat charges that can't be legally billed.  It's why head shops and nudie bars use odd names and weird billings, because stuff like that varies so much by jurisdiction they try and disguise it so they can use the CC company.


    Dang, meant that as a reply to Kdog (none / 0) (#4)
    by republicratitarian on Tue May 31, 2011 at 11:02:18 AM EST
    Weekend was loooooooooooooong!

    Joran Van Der Sloot's lawyer (none / 0) (#22)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:23:30 PM EST

    (Link to translated copy, so it reads a bit funny)

    Basically, his lawyer is quitting because of unpaid bills and arguments with his client over defense strategy.

    Odd. We don't hear much about this (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:25:58 PM EST
    particular defendant any more. And, BTW, what's Polanski doing these days?

    Sipping wine and eating brie (5.00 / 3) (#24)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 01:27:18 PM EST
    Speaking of banks, I (none / 0) (#62)
    by observed on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:24:13 PM EST
    saw an ad for something called "allybank.com", IIRC---supposedly with no fees, and this bank will even cover your atm charges from other banks. Sounded too good to be true.

    Ally (none / 0) (#64)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:29:55 PM EST
    is formerly GMAC.

    If I'm not mistaken, Ally Bank is (none / 0) (#66)
    by Anne on Tue May 31, 2011 at 03:37:38 PM EST
    the banking unit of Ally Financial, which, befire it changed its name, used to be GMAC; is there more there than a marketing strategy and a new brand that equates being a bank with being an ally?  I have no idea, but you might want to look into it.

    Pentagon confirms (none / 0) (#72)
    by jbindc on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:05:25 PM EST
    computer sabotage by a foreign country may be considered an act of war.

    The officials emphasize, however, that not every attack would lead to retaliation. Such a cyber attack would have to be so serious it would threaten American lives, commerce, infrastructure or worse, and there would have to be indisputable evidence leading to the nation state involved, NBC Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski said.


    Pentagon officials and others in Washington are still debating what would constitute an act of war, the Journal stated, though one idea gaining traction is that of "equivalence" -- military retaliation would be triggered by a cyber attack that causes the kind of death, damage or high-level disruption that a traditional military attack would cause.

    It's getting real bad (none / 0) (#78)
    by Militarytracy on Tue May 31, 2011 at 04:58:24 PM EST
    Unbelievably bad.  China is alway hacking us and so is Iran but I think with less success.  If you are good at IT though and what it takes to fight this fight, the military is looking for you and there is very good money involved.  My cousin's spouse works as a contractor for the Air Force right now and he's raking it in, but he's worth it too.  He stopped a faux test attack and was the only one to get it done in his workgroup.

    Does this mean... (none / 0) (#83)
    by kdog on Wed Jun 01, 2011 at 08:28:18 AM EST
    we're gonna get a "war on Anonymous" a la the "war on terror"?

    Like say Anonymous started f*cking with the banks computer systems again...we're really gonna bomb somebody?  Scary.