Sunday Night Open Thread: Weeds is Back

The final season of Weeds begins tonight. Here's what I thought would happen when the last season ended.

The Prime Minister of New Zealand has rejected calls for an inquiry into the Kim DotCom raids.

The New York Times reports young voters "are looking past" Obama. But when you read the article, the stats show he still has a lead among them and there's little reason to think they'd vote for Romney.

Exit polls show Pena Nieto has won the Mexico election. We'll see what he does with U.S. drug policy, but it's doubtful much will change. Still, Washington is nervous.

Another open thread, all topics welcome.

< Sunday Open Thread | Obama Signals on Drug Reform >
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    Kind of a shocker to find a bigger- (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by oculus on Sun Jul 01, 2012 at 11:33:11 PM EST
    than life-size cutout of Mitt Romney at the Del Mar Fair.  GOP booth.  But still.  

    Honestly, how could anyone at the fair ... (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:27:45 PM EST
    ... tell the difference between the life-sized cardboard cutout and the candidate himself?


    You knew that was inevitable you posted it, didn't you?


    So true. I saw nothing re Obama (none / 0) (#48)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:43:58 PM EST
    reelection campaign.  But, then, the GOP booth, tended by two "women of a certain age" wearing red, white, and blue sparkly shirts, didn't have any visitors when I walked by.  

    They had to make it bigger than life size... (none / 0) (#2)
    by unitron on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:13:59 AM EST
    Well, either that or visibly smaller.

    Otherwise, ...

    (Nah, too easy)


    Or Enrique could... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by unitron on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:20:28 AM EST
    ...legalize the stuff inside Mexico and watch tourism figures soar.

    I'm not saying it wouldn't have its drawbacks, but it would be an interesting experiment.

    It should be obvious to everyone by now that Prohibition just gets you more organized crime and big expensive law enforcement bureaucracies without ever putting a dent in the supply.

    Well, (none / 0) (#4)
    by NYShooter on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 05:21:38 AM EST
    ..it should be apparent what their goal really is.
    "...and big expensive law enforcement bureaucracies."

    It just goes to show you what the Government can do when they really put their minds to it.


    They are Already Legal (none / 0) (#20)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:59:13 AM EST
    All drugs, at least the illicit ones, are legal in Mexico for personal use.
    Includes meth, smack, cocaine, LSD, and weed.

    Nonscientific follow-up: (none / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:07:11 AM EST
    It's Dumb... (none / 0) (#24)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:27:47 AM EST
    ...the amounts are ridiculous, especially for junkies, maybe a dose or two.  Too small to change anything, more of a pass for tourists I would imagine.  

    But even then, it's like a handful of chips, who's going to buy it like that, just gimme a bag because it's cheaper and I won't have to leave my house every time I want a snack.  

    I wasn't commenting on the law, just noting that technically drugs are legal in Mexico.


    More Florida follies (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by ruffian on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 06:27:03 AM EST
    Woman reports man for playing with himself while driving. He says he was drumming. This woman was looking way too hard into the van. Extremely distracted driving. I would cite her instead.

    What was she driving... (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by unitron on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 07:21:27 AM EST
    What was she driving that was so high off the road as to give her a good line of sight down into the window?

    Unless she's claiming that he had a very long "drumstick".

    I'm not sure what he had his hands on, but it sounds like she has too much time on hers.


    What a freak! (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by kdog on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:19:41 AM EST
    Peeping in windows, dropping dimes, trailing cars on I95...I've heard of some kinky fetishes in my day, but that lady's version of getting her freak on might take the cake.

    Hey KD, did you get the email I sent? (none / 0) (#11)
    by observed on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 09:31:55 AM EST
    Negative. Please put "TalkLeft" (none / 0) (#12)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 09:52:40 AM EST
    in subject  

    ok, I re-sent. (none / 0) (#15)
    by observed on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:17:23 AM EST
    No, please resend... (none / 0) (#16)
    by kdog on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:18:32 AM EST
    I don't think I got it, but it might have been exiled to the spam folder and deleted  Talkleft prominent in subject is vital.

    Received and forwarded... (5.00 / 2) (#17)
    by kdog on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:25:06 AM EST
    happy to be of assistance;)

    Here's one for her from Willie Nelson: (none / 0) (#10)
    by Angel on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:22:57 AM EST
    Observed has a way better voice. (none / 0) (#50)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:47:08 PM EST
    I love Willie. (none / 0) (#64)
    by Angel on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 04:58:24 PM EST
    Funny: (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:15:52 PM EST
    In addition, we are promoting Armando back to Contributing Editor status. Er, re-promoting. We're able to do that because he's not a raving lunatic anymore.

    Learning to ignore some people (none / 0) (#37)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:20:07 PM EST
    A life skill learned in steps :)

    Doesn't sound like you have reached (none / 0) (#38)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:22:37 PM EST
    Nirvana yet in this regard as pertains to facebook!

    There is that other life skill though (none / 0) (#39)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:23:25 PM EST
    Pick your battles :)

    AND if you are going to put (none / 0) (#40)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:24:20 PM EST
    misinformation in my feed, well...it is my feed.

    Garden! (5.00 / 3) (#66)
    by Zorba on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 06:19:48 PM EST
    I am drowning in produce.  Lettuce, broccoli, green beans, tomatoes, zucchini.  I am freezing broccoli because it is growing faster than we can eat it.  Also the green beans.  I don't freeze them (we don't like the way frozen green beans sort of squeak on your teeth when you cook them), but I do can them.  So I have canned green beans, but in the next couple of days I am going to make pickled dilled green beans for canning.  We love these.  Pickling salt, vinegar, water, lots of fresh dill, lots of garlic cloves, and if you want, hot peppers (or hot pepper flakes).  I do both.  I made a bunch last year, and we ate them so fast, I guess I'm going to have to make even more this year.
    And I'm thinking I need to make a batch of cream of broccoli soup with some of the broccoli.  With or without cheese.  I freeze the soup base before adding milk or cheese, too.
    The tomatoes are appreciated in salads right now.  As they get more prolific, there will be canned tomatoes and canned spaghetti sauce.
    I need an associate cook.  I'm getting too old, and too disabled with my arthritis, to continue this much longer.  But I love to cook.  And to preserve our produce for later use.  
    Now, if only I had a way to preserve all that lettuce.......     ;-)  

    This has been a banner year in the (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by Anne on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:34:37 PM EST
    garden, for sure...the zucchini plants look like we put them on steroids - they are freakishly large and producing zucchini faster than we can eat them.  Beans are coming in, but in a manageable way.  Peppers - we have about six varieties - are abundant, so next week, I think we're pickling them.  The cucumbers - I swear, if I sat out in the garden at night I could see them growing: one day, they are an inch, and the next, they are six. I think there are pickles in our future, and lots of cucumber and onion salad. Lettuce is going nuts - salads every night...beets will be ready in about a week, I think, but carrots are taking a little longer, onions are looking good, too.  We seem to have a tomato forest growing - we've had some, but the deluge is coming..., which means salsa, sun-dried tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato sandwiches!  

    We're also doing butternut squash, pumpkins and gourds - and all are producing like crazy.  

    There really is nothing like eating food you've grown, sharing it with family and friends, and putting some by for later.  


    For our peaches too (5.00 / 2) (#73)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:37:53 PM EST
    I picked all day today trying to make sure I got them before the evil squirrels did.  I've got too much for us to eat.  Nice surprise though, this is only the peach trees 3rd year in the ground here.

    *raises hand* (none / 0) (#67)
    by nycstray on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 06:31:17 PM EST
    I'll be your side-kick cook.  Although I do come with some baggage known as Roxy! the Dalmatian :)

    Oh dear! (none / 0) (#68)
    by Zorba on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 06:34:42 PM EST
    I love all dogs, but Mr. Zorba is allergic to pretty much all breeds except poodles!

    {pout} (none / 0) (#77)
    by nycstray on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:56:37 PM EST
    And I can't go anywhere without the Roxy! monster . . .  I don't think she's willing to go for a poodle do either :-P

    Interesting article about lion preserves (none / 0) (#105)
    by oculus on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 02:32:02 PM EST
    in India, but this part caught my eye:

    Evidence suggests the gene pool is dangerously shallow, meaning a disease that affects one Gir lion could quickly affect many. Tanzania's Serengeti National Park saw a third of its 3,000 lions wiped out in 1994 by canine distemper, likely brought by tourists' dogs.

    rare lions

    We finished The Hunger Games series (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:52:40 PM EST
    Ended up reading it out loud as a family, even my husband joined us.  Finished it about ten days ago.  We have never done anything like that before.  Now what do we do?  What can we read that flows that easily and is that attractive to all of us?

    Check DK tomorrow: (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:14:11 PM EST
    1. What are you reading  (a.m.), and
    2. Bookflurries (p.m.).  

    One of the commenters is reading with her son this summer and I think he is about Josh's age.  

    Correction: Wed. (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by oculus on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 07:42:54 AM EST
    Once and Future King (5.00 / 2) (#79)
    by Towanda on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:07:50 AM EST
    is still a classic.  Josh may be too old for the  first book, perhaps -- although he also may be old enough to enjoy the allegorical level of it for adults, its laugh-out-loud allegories of us and the animals.  We all some people who think like ants.  (Think:  neocons.)

    The next three books are . . . simply amazing.  (All four "books" are in the one book.)  And the writing is so good that it's a pleasure to read aloud.

    Then get the fifth and final book, separately, that the publisher would not print -- The Book of Merlin -- on the eve of World War II in England, the context to understand the anguish of author T. H. White as he witnessed the dream of peace -- "Camelot" -- crash and burn, yet again.

    The Harry Potters are fine works, the Chronicles of Narnia is a classic, but they all draw from and pale in comparison to the Once and Future King for me.

    p.s.  I really enjoyed Hunger Games, too.  I had not thought that I would from some descriptions, but I trusted a friend, tried it, and got into it.


    Will investigate (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 08:13:22 AM EST
    Once and Future King.  

    Good! I hope that you and yours like it (none / 0) (#103)
    by Towanda on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:33:57 PM EST
    and so I will look forward to more reports of your family's summer reading!

    What a wonderful way to read that series (5.00 / 2) (#86)
    by sj on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 09:15:20 AM EST
    Well, a wonderful way to read any book, really.  But I found them really thought provoking when I was reading them, and I didn't have anyone to discuss them with.

    greetings! (5.00 / 4) (#98)
    by CST on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 02:19:36 PM EST
    Aus Deutschland.  The weather is nice, the beer and chocolate are better and the company is wunderbar.  There's nothing particularly touristy or exciting but its incredibly livable.  Fresh baked rolls for breakfast, trains everywhere, and they recycle everything.  Went to the very nice public pool and had spaghetti-eis today.  Tomorrow I'm off to visit my old school and then Heidelberg for dinner.  My German is so so, although it gets better daily and I'm starting to think in it again.  I could live here again... But, only here till Monday and I'm off to Istanbul!

    Glad you are having good time. (5.00 / 2) (#99)
    by caseyOR on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 04:30:46 PM EST
    Please continue to report in. I am especially interested in what you see and experience in Turkey. I am fascinated by Istanbul.

    Travel is not a possibility for me now. So, i live vicariously through the reports of TLers who wander. Thanks to Donald I had a great time in Viet Nam. :-)  I bet I will love Turkey.


    Hey, good call on your Weeds theory (none / 0) (#5)
    by ruffian on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 05:23:42 AM EST
    I won't tell which part was right. I liked the season premier- gives me hope the series will end with some reflection and character development. Sometimes that has been missing from the previous seasons. It has been too well written and acted  to just be a series of hijinks and gags, although those have also been extremely entertaining. I love the hospital administrator's statement about "this isn't Canada...'".and then goes on to name a list of countries with single payer.  
    I love the new opening titles,  and the brief flashback, which I had to replay 5 times, that showed Shane as a little tyke. That actor has been so great.

    Anyway, glad to have one more summer with the Botwins.

    Or (none / 0) (#8)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 07:53:55 AM EST
    The New York Times reports young voters "are looking past" Obama. But when you read the article, the stats show he still has a lead among them and there's little reason to think they'd vote for Romney.

    They probably won't vote for Romney, but that doesn't mean they'll come out and vote at all.

    And, per Yahoo news, Latinos (none / 0) (#13)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 09:55:09 AM EST
    are predominately reg. as "I,"

    That's Would Cover Me... (none / 0) (#22)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:10:55 AM EST
    ...not sure about the young part, but staying home.

    But you never know, once they scare me with the world coming to an end rhetoric, I might have to vote to save democracy, you see.

    Plus I am have only skipped one election and I was out of the country.  On one hand it seems un-American not to vote, on the other it seems un-American to vote for someone who sucks.  

    And of course voting for someone who has zero chance seems stupid and wasteful, especially in Texas.  Ditto for the other races, not much chance of Texas voting a liberal into Congress, not zero but pretty damn close.


    Voting for someone who has zero chance (none / 0) (#23)
    by sj on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:17:55 AM EST
    seems less wasteful to me than completely staying home.  It is a real live, actual registered vote.  But I can see your dilemma if none of the other races are meaningful to you either.

    The world is ending anyway (none / 0) (#29)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:10:57 PM EST
    December 21st.

    Why are we having an election anyways?  :)


    That emphasis (none / 0) (#33)
    by christinep on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:46:12 PM EST
    May be the most effective way for Repubs to tamp down the vote to date.  You are always thinking, jbindc.

    Not for nothing... (none / 0) (#35)
    by kdog on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:57:15 PM EST
    the long anticipated rapture and "beam me directly to paradise Scotty" might work to keep the conservatives on the couch for election day.

    Not that real conservatives have anybody worth voting for either, there in the same boat up the river with no paddle as real liberals, but you catch my drift.


    Beam Me Up, Scotty... (none / 0) (#43)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:37:00 PM EST
    ...is something that is engrained into my psyche, not bad or good, just heard it so many times my brain nearly freezes with the vast memory dump.

    If only I could figure out how to make a couple bucks off i.  Nothing sleazy, just some good old American capitalism.  Is $1 too much to tell a real live Scottie, "Beam me up Scotty." ?


    Most interesting parts (none / 0) (#31)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:37:42 PM EST
    of the article:

    In the four years since President Obama swept into office in large part with the support of a vast army of young people, a new corps of men and women have come of voting age with views shaped largely by the recession. And unlike their counterparts in the millennial generation who showed high levels of enthusiasm for Mr. Obama at this point in 2008, the nation's first-time voters are less enthusiastic about him, are significantly more likely to identify as conservative and cite a growing lack of faith in government in general, according to interviews, experts and recent polls.


    Today, specifically, the youngest potential voters are more likely than their older peers to think it is important to protect individual liberties from government, the Harvard data suggest, and less likely to think it is important to tackle things like climate change, health care or immigration.

    It has been a long time (none / 0) (#14)
    by sj on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:15:37 AM EST
    since I've seen a news organization try to do actual fact checking.  The AP does it here on ACA.  Who would have thought both presidential candidates would stretch the truth?

    Politicians lie? (none / 0) (#18)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:27:45 AM EST
    I'm shocked.

    I did notice that article mentions a little known fact - the tax on medical device manufacturers.  They were talking about it on NPR this morning.  

    Basically, it adds a 2.5% tax on the purchase of their products.  The representatives of some MDM companies were talking about how, in their industry, almost 70% of them aren't profitable yet, so adding a tax could literally kill their business.  They may be able to add it on to their customers (hospitals), but hospitals run on such tight margins nowadays, that they will likely balk and make the MDM eat that cost.  Or, more likely, this tax will get passed on to the individual "consumer", which means that knee replacement surgery gets more expensive for you, the patient, starting January 1.  

    Now, hospitals aren't going to stop buying knee joints and heart valve pumps because they ar


    Will they stop passing on the cost (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by ruffian on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:49:47 AM EST
    of the tax if an increased numbers of insured patients increases the number of devices they sell?

    The guy speaking for the manufacturers on NPR this morning did not speak to that at all.


    oops (none / 0) (#19)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:28:18 AM EST
    Should have deleted that last thought!

    The fact checking (none / 0) (#25)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:31:31 AM EST
    itself does some stretching of the truth and assumption-making.  

    For one, the article assumes that very few people will opt for the mandate tax, because they'll just get insurance instead....weeeeelll, the same kind of assumptions were made about the high risk bridge pool. Those assumptions did not materialize into reality, even when the premiums were lowered.


    And (none / 0) (#27)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:04:00 PM EST
    it talks about "low penalty" for not buying insurance - uh,  yeah, only the first year.  But by year 3 and beyond for someone doesn't have insurance, it's a yearly tax, (cough) penalty of at least, $695 per year.  That fact isn't mentioned very often.

    True enough (none / 0) (#28)
    by sj on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:08:43 PM EST
    The fact checking (none / 0) (#25)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 11:31:31 AM EST

    itself does some stretching of the truth and assumption-making.  

    But forecasting must always make some assumptions; it's not like history is being reported here.  I'm not going to hold that against them.

    I would note however, that the assumption you reference is the same assumption that the administration is likely making which kind of does make it comparing apples to apples.


    The historical basis (none / 0) (#32)
    by christinep on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:42:02 PM EST
    May be, inter alia, the Massachusetts experience with the charge for those opting not to obtain insurance (not including those financially unable to pay where statutory & individual relief is provided.). Wtoper predicting percentage of those who would opt not to buy insurance can be tricky, there is reason to believe that most would purchase affordable insurance...or insurance made affordable by the subsidy formula in the Act coupled with competitive Exchanges in 2014.

    A guess:  As we move into fuller operation of the Act and with the greater certainty afforded by the SCt decision last week, the dynamic of moving forward with implementation is likely to accelerate.  See, e.g., the Kaiser study released today wherein one finding if that about 56 percent of those surveyed want to move forward with the Act and want impeding actions to be curtailed. BTW, 51 percent of Independents are counted in wanting that forward movement.  Whether one agrees or not, SCt decisions have a way of reverberating with Americans  in a way that says "That issue has been decided...time to move on.". (Trans: Most people don't get into the weeds of a decision...other than the most active.)


    I think (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:55:05 PM EST
    the impact of the subsidies have been way oversold. They will help some, true, but for those who think they will be significantly helped mayybe in for a very rude awakening.

    Did you see Amy Goodman on (none / 0) (#45)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:41:12 PM EST
    Maher?  She thinks that this will lead to a majority fight for Medicare for all.

    No (none / 0) (#51)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:03:36 PM EST
    Don't watch Maher.

    But which majority?  The one in the Senate now or the one that will possibly be there in January?


    You are absolutely right (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 07:16:34 PM EST
    Today is the day when we all must slash our wrists.

    Do you remember that guy that gave up?  Yeah, neither does anyone else :)


    I make enough that the subsidies (none / 0) (#55)
    by Rupe on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:24:11 PM EST
    will be fairly insignificant, something like $60 a month, but I can't afford the policy (which is like $260/month).  So I will be one who pays the penalty until I get a better job or pay down some of my student and credit card debt.  I do have an English passport too, so I could always move back there, but their healthcare system is pretty sh!tty unless you've lived there for a long time, getting a dentist or a primary care physician in the south of England literally takes years (as my mother tells me, anyway).  The majority of my family who lives there purchase supplemental insurance.

    Shame I don't have a more advanced degree, I'd move to Canada!


    That said (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by Rupe on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:25:56 PM EST
    I think the passage of the ACA is a good thing because it will hopefully force action towards a better model.  Of course, our legislature is utterly worthless, but the optimist in me says its a first step anyway.

    I think (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:31:37 PM EST
    many people will find themselves in that situation - getting not very much money back per year, while not even close to covering the monthly premium.

    And by 2016, your penalty will be the greater of $685 or 2.5% of your income.  So, if you make as little as $40,000, your penalty will actually be $1000 per year! (Plus the cost of any medical treatment, of course, since you will not have purchased any insurance!)


    Sorry - $695 (none / 0) (#58)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:31:58 PM EST
    Finger slipped

    Yeah its going to be brutal (none / 0) (#60)
    by Rupe on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:41:48 PM EST
    Either way, Health insurance with a high deductible I can't really afford or a tax penalty of $800 a year.  I guarantee a lot of people in the too "rich" for Medicaid and too "poor" to afford insurance are just going to take the hit on their taxes.  I just hope they're smart enough to withhold more throughout the year so they're not hit with a tax bill.

    Are you figuring from adjusted gross income (none / 0) (#71)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 07:23:09 PM EST
    on this?  Pretty sure that the healthcare penalty scale is based on adjusted gross income.

    Exactly. Sor for a $40,000 income (none / 0) (#80)
    by Towanda on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:11:45 AM EST
    with an AGI of, say, $30,000 . . . that's not $1000 but $750 . . . and then deduct the subsidy . . . and, as noted, consider the cost of medical care without coverage.

    I think that it could work.


    No (none / 0) (#82)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 06:42:45 AM EST
    You're combining 2 different things.  Using the example above of $30,000 AGI (based on $40,000 gross income), you just get a $750 tax penalty. (Plus the cost of any actual medical expenses). You do not get any subsidy because you haven't purchased insurance (which is why you are being taxed in the first place).

    If, in the same example,($40,000 gross income) - you buy an insurance plan (30 years old, medium cost area), you will get exactly $0 in subsidy.


    What say you about (none / 0) (#89)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 10:27:22 AM EST
    the rebates that will be received this year?

    Lookuing forward to it (none / 0) (#90)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 10:45:23 AM EST
    Family average is $151. I pay for my own plan, so I figure I might get $50 or so.  I would be pleasantly surprised with more.

    Of course, most will be going back to employers, who pay for insurance plans, so most people won't see it anyways.


    I don't see that reality (none / 0) (#91)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:02:05 AM EST
    reflected in your healthcare cost calculations though.

    You don't see it (none / 0) (#93)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:05:07 AM EST
    because people who are getting rebates have insurance...?

    People who pay the penalty do not have insurance and will not be getting a rebate.

    Or am I missing something?  Are you trying to fit the rebate in somewhere else?


    You keep saying though (none / 0) (#96)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 12:38:25 PM EST
    That Obamacare dooms us to more and more expensive insurance and crappier and crappier plans.  That isn't a given and actually it looks like it comes down to enforcement of all the provisions to include what the insurance companies are allowed to claim as profit.

    Because (none / 0) (#97)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:00:52 PM EST
    I'm apparently much more cynical about business than you.  Insurance companies are for-profit entities (who helped write the bill in question, by the way).  If they are forced to offer rebates because of these tighter rules, just like cockroaches, they will find another way to come to the top.  

    To whistle past the graveyard on this and assume that the ACA will keep the insurance companies in check is misguided, in my opinion. You have had some success with your son since this bill has passed and that is excellent news.  Others, like me, have seen premiums increase already and had more restrictions placed on me, so sorry if I don't feel like cheering.


    I'm pretty cynical about business :) (none / 0) (#101)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 12:09:22 PM EST
    I think it is the worst idea in the world to place life and death in the hands of business :)  It's all we've got right now though, and Mitt Romney would only get more of us killed.

    Hmmmm (none / 0) (#92)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:02:56 AM EST
    May not even get $50.

    Average rebate in Virginia for individual plans is going to be $32.

    And of course, I could get it as a check, a credit in my bank account, or as applied to my next month's premium.


    Duh. Of course. (none / 0) (#102)
    by Towanda on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:33:00 PM EST
    But I still shall hold hope that it works, somehow . . . while also not holding too much hope for the results of an unholy cabal of health insurance companies, big pharma, and Republicans behind the scenes as well as Democrats in front.  Shudder.

    Facebook BE crazy :) (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 12:27:03 PM EST
    It seemed like the wingers had all the good Facebook stuff.  Some wackjob with too much time on their hands always seemed available to express themselves creatively and share it.  This morning my Facebook opened with a photo of a heart made out of 50 or more handguns and two grenades.  Someone out there is making up for something very small.

    The fight is on though about healthcare.  Everything wingers put up is not what Jesus would do, and I'm getting a lot of really good placards to post shot my way, tasteful, informative, and catchy.

    Liberals make friends IMO differently than most Conservatives.  Flying a flag in your front yard and having a yellow ribbon magnet on your vehicle is an automatic shoo in for nothing with us.  And we are so diverse we really do need to get to know each other a bit.  Not now though, I have liberals I have no idea who they are sending me friend requests and I friend them, I run across a liberal sharing a friend with me and I send a request.  I can always unfriend.  And we aren't taking any $hit now.  Some trolls have been giving some DailyKos diarists a really hard time on Facebook and angry about the Facebookification of DailyKos, is this what they are angry about?

    People like that simply live to ... (none / 0) (#42)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:31:20 PM EST
    ... be angry about something, which makes them a real blast to hang out with a parties.

    What does someone need a grenade for? (none / 0) (#44)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:39:59 PM EST
    You need to frag someone?

    Not really, but ... (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:43:41 PM EST
    ... if you have anyone in mind, I'm certainly open to the suggestion.



    (Sigh!) I'm never going on vacation again. (none / 0) (#46)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:42:45 PM EST
    I've been swamped at work, ever since I got back from Vietnam and Japan. I spent the weekend in the office just trying to catch up, especially since this is a short work week and I have two consecutive neighbor island business trips, to Molokai on Thursday and Hilo on Friday.

    I'll miss eldest daughter's departure on Friday to return to school; they're starting volleyball practice next Monday. She'll be back here for a few days at the end of August, as her team comes to Honolulu to play in the University of Hawaii's Outrigger Hotels Invitational, along with UCLA and Ohio State. For obvious reasons, we're one of the host families, and it should be a lot of fun.

    Hope everything's going well with everyone. Aloha.

    I always liked the test re a successful (none / 0) (#49)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 01:46:40 PM EST
    vacation:  how long back at work b/4 the effects of the vacation recessed into your memory banks.  

    Answer: (none / 0) (#52)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:12:29 PM EST
    One day.

    We got back on Tuesday afternoon, and I was back in the office on Wednesday. It took me two days just to answer the e-mail and snail-mail. The good thing is that I may have picked up two additional clients, which accounts for my quickly scheduled trip on Friday to Hilo.


    That's good. New subject: (none / 0) (#54)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:21:10 PM EST
    Library here bought this book, which I quickly checked out.  It is beautiful.  

    Temples of Cambodia:  the heart of Angkor

    Photographs by Barry Brukoff.  Text by Helen Ibbitson Jessup.  $65.00 U.S.  


    I bet it's beautiful. (none / 0) (#59)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:37:19 PM EST
    My wife and I visited Angkor Wat during our trip to Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore in 2006. It's a fascinating place. We thought about going there again during this trip, but alas, it would've been trying to cram too much into a short amount of time. Vietnam's a pretty big country, all on its own.

    The next travel item on my bucket list is actually in North America -- Copper Canyon, if the violence in northern Mexico would ever abate. I've always wanted to go there, and take that long train trip along the canyon rim.


    Me too. (none / 0) (#61)
    by oculus on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:42:15 PM EST
    Oh, look! (none / 0) (#53)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 02:14:55 PM EST
    Anderson Cooper has formally announced that he's gay.

    Yawn. Gee, who knew.

    Bigger secret revealed in that article (5.00 / 5) (#69)
    by ruffian on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 07:11:44 PM EST
    Who knew Andrew Sullivan was a newsman?

    I don't know. (5.00 / 3) (#75)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 08:58:03 PM EST
    ABG, perhaps?

    Supreme Court 2011 roundup (none / 0) (#62)
    by jbindc on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 04:42:13 PM EST
    in numbers.

    As much as the 5-4 decisions get the good press, out of the 75 cases heard and decided this term, only 15 (20%) were actually 5-4 decisions.  And of those 15, only 3, had the case decided by the entire conservative wing and where the liberal wing was shut out.  In other words, in only 3 cases out of 75 (4%) was the decision made by Kennedy, Scalia, Alito, Thomas, and Roberts.  All other 5-4 decisions had at least one liberal in the majority.

    In fact, the vast majority of the decisions - 33 in fact (44%) - were 9-0 decisions. (Case breakdown here).  That is actually an improvement over the average of past terms, where overall, 9-0 decisions made up 39% of the total and 5-4 decisions made up 24%.

    Ginsburg was in the majority the fewest times, while Kennedy was in the majority the most times.  Not surprising, the conservatives on the Court were in the majority most of the tim, but Kagan was also in the majority 82% of the time - a bit more even than Scalia (81%). Even with that, Ginsburg was still in the majority 69% of the time in all cases.

    Also not surprising, here are the pairs that agreed the most and those that disagreed the most.

    And this is kind of cool -  a virtual representation of the case voting alignment.

    That's an interesting point, which ... (none / 0) (#63)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 04:56:14 PM EST
    ... should serve to remind us that while the media thrives on creating an impression of real conflict in government by focusing on what I like to call the "colorful issues," there are actually a lot of things that are agreed upon both the courts and in Congress -- and for that matter, our state legislatures and municipal councils / boards -- without much notice or fanfare at all.

    But if not for the hysteria (none / 0) (#81)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 06:32:03 AM EST
    Where do the bumper sticker political slogans go>

    A One Year... (none / 0) (#94)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:27:06 AM EST
    ...breakdown is hardly representative nor is giving each case equal weight.  Certainly Citizens and ACA should carry far more weight than cases most have never heard of.  And neither happened in 2011.

    I get your point, but seems like one year is not enough data to make the conclusions you are making.

    Especially when one decision could essentially effect the makeup of the court for years.  Trying to equate say Citizens to Sacket seems disingenuous at best.  In your sample, if those 3 cases were the most important decisions they made, well then the analysis is flawed.  Not saying they were, but there has to be some measure of importance when trying to figure out what degree politics plays in their decisions.


    You can look at previous years (none / 0) (#95)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 12:07:09 PM EST

    9-0 decisions (48%) / 5-4 decisions (20%)

    History of 5-4 decisions from 2000 - average percentage of conservative "victory" in 5-4 decisions - 45% of the time (although 2010 had a spike and 63% of the 5-4 cases went to the conservative bloc).

    Here's a chart showing 5-4 decisions back to 1995

    There's more at SCOTUSblog, but historically, there really are very few close and purely ideaological decisions.


    And yet, jbindc (none / 0) (#100)
    by christinep on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 07:38:03 PM EST
    Some would argue that the several cases that have been clearly ideologically based in the past dozen years or so are quite significant.  Quite significant.  Certainly, I appreciate your report about the numbers...for one thing, it confirms in part what one would hope (i.e., the "for the most part" decisions have cross-overs.)  But, we do need to keep an eye on the "biggies," the ones that set the tone & reality for years to come.  For example, construing corporations as "people" has much, much more effect than the various writs of certiorari granted in any given year.

    I don't completely disagree (none / 0) (#104)
    by jbindc on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 07:11:04 AM EST
    But the fact that the theme has been "The Supreme Court is so polarized and are churning out all these conservative opionions!" just isn't necessarily true.  More often than not, members of the liberal wing agree with the conservatives, or in many cases, they all agree.  So the only ones who still believe that everything is so close are those who want to perpetuate the spin.

    Once again, Gov. Chris Christie ... (none / 0) (#65)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 05:20:12 PM EST
    I sure hope this country hasn't gone so (none / 0) (#78)
    by nycstray on Mon Jul 02, 2012 at 10:58:29 PM EST
    reality TeeVee, that when he runs for Prez next round, they support him . . .

    What an  embarrassment.


    PBS/Lawrence Tribe: (none / 0) (#84)
    by oculus on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 08:07:27 AM EST
    Breaking: Andy Griffith has died (none / 0) (#87)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 09:22:41 AM EST

    RIP, Andy (none / 0) (#88)
    by sj on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 09:53:34 AM EST
    I just read that and came here.  No open thread since Sunday night.

    Anyway, I was sad to see this.