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    Pop Quiz... (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by kdog on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:29:17 PM EST
    Complete this sentence.

    A Cleveland Walmart has an employee food drive going, asking associates to donate food to feed....

    A)the homeless.
    B)the typhoon victims in the Phillipines.
    C)Walmart associates.

    Survey says!

    Just read about this one! (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:34:20 PM EST
    Unbelievable, to say the least. That's some weird form of chutzpah on Walmart's part.

    To be fair... (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by kdog on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:39:55 PM EST
    I don't know if corporate down in Arkansas signed off, doesn't sound like the Waltons I know.  They likes their associates to either be hungry or on foodstamps.

    I love Walmart (none / 0) (#19)
    by Slado on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:00:35 PM EST
    But that's besides the point.

    Here are a few other facts about Wal Mart

    That's a lot of bananas


    None of those things really blew my mind (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:18:41 PM EST
    But I've also never stepped foot inside a Walmart. Can't see a reason to support a company that pays its employees such sh*t wages that they need to go on food stamps pr a food bank to survive.

    I'm a longtime supporter of Costco, which treata its employees really well, with both both wages and benefits. Costco employees are happy employees, and many of them have been there for twenty years or more.


    Only #7 kinda did... (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by kdog on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:40:57 PM EST
    25 applications for every job opening...is that a sad indictment of the American job market or what?

    Costco... (none / 0) (#35)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:07:44 PM EST
    ...is Sam's Club redux.  I got a membership about a month ago went in and when I left there was a big stink about me refusing to show my receipt.

    I was followed out to my car and when I got out a manager was coming out to tell the security idiots to back off.  Then she proceeded to explain to me why showing a receipt for stuff I already own was benefiting me.  Seriously.

    Everyone I know is telling me how grand Costco is, but what in the hell do I need a 5 lbs bag of potato chips or a bottle of 1000 aspirin for.  And the selection is severely limited, which is totally the opposite of what I want.  It is hilarious to see things like a 36 pack of Doctor Pepper or a box of 10 large pizzas, but not for me.  

    I am going to hold off on getting my money back until I see if maybe some of those online prices for non-food stuff might actually save me a couple bucks.  But I won't be going back to the store anytime soon.  I don't like the whole warehouse concept for buying food, it's too too utilitarian, like Ikea's ground floor.

    Plus, they don't take Visa, the normal points I get are lost at Costco, which makes their prices 2% higher than posted for me.


    None (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:17:13 PM EST
    of those places work for a single person or even a couple. I used to shop at Sam's before we had kids and a bag of frozen vegetables would literally last six to nine months. You might find some electronics or something like that that you want but in all honesty the membership just is not worth it if you're just buying printer toner or that sort of stuff BUT here in GA they almost always have the lowest gas prices and I could make the membership fee back if I did nothing but buy gas there.

    This is why I keep my Costco membership (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:26:49 PM EST
    I haven't compared here in Denver lately, but the price difference in Baltimore between Costco and local BPs averaged between 20 and 25 cents a gallon. Since the Costco was directly on my way home from work, and, since I traveled at least 70 miles a day, I'm certain that my savings more than exceeded the cost of my annual membership.

    I Agree... (none / 0) (#137)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:07:34 AM EST
    ...but until this past weekend, all of my "We love Costco" friends are/were single.  None of them lived with anyone, so I figured maybe I can benefit more because I at least live with someone.

    So it still stands, sans one sucker, they are all living alone and still loving on the Costco.  But I think it might be some sort of yuppie/hipster statement rather than saving money.  I do find they love to make jokes about their 5 lb salt grinder or the giant cube of cereal.


    I resisted getting a Costco (5.00 / 1) (#143)
    by vml68 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:38:30 AM EST
    membership because I thought it made more sense for families than couples.

    A couple of years ago, I got a membership thinking that even though it would not be cost effective for me, I would be supporting a good company. I signed up for the Costco Amex too and much to my surprise with their cash back, I have actually got back more money than my membership amount for both years. Unfortunately, the Costco closest to me does not have a gas station. That would have been an added bonus.


    Your single friends (5.00 / 1) (#144)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:49:01 AM EST
    Could always get together and split things up - like the packaged meats, so they get good quality stuff at lower prices.

    To each their own (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:18:46 PM EST
    If you had a fit because Costco simply asked you to show you receipt upon leaving, then maybe you were just ripe for being annoyed about something that day.

    My main point about Costco still stands: They treat their employees very, very well.


    And I started shopping there 20 yrs ago (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:24:42 PM EST
    when I ran a catering company. They carried a lot of the items I used regularly -- olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, dijon mustard, vinegars -- in bulk. It's still worth it for me to buy paper towels, TP, and housecleaning supplies there...AND they have great deals on nice clothes. Just try getting a lightweight CK down jacket for $40 anywhere else.

    Checking receipts (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by cpresley on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:28:08 PM EST
    I bought a weight bench set there one Christmas. I had one large box on the long carts. We I showed my receipt at the door they asked me if someone was bring up the other 3 boxes? I said no I didn't know it was 4 boxes all together. They told me to bring my truck up front and they would have someone bring the other 3 boxes and load them for me. It pays to show the receipt.

    For economic reasons and the family budget (none / 0) (#41)
    by christinep on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:18:07 PM EST
    many families appear to like Costco.  From the info I get from friends, it definitely fills a very important need ... as in big cost savings.  

    I've only been twice--once here in the Denver area where a friend and her daughter & son-in-law (and one grandchild) recount all their savings, including on appliances and once in Virginia with a cousin who had a list of bulk items to get for herself and friends.  My experience was pleasant; and, after reading about the positive way in which the employees are treated, the pleasant turned even more positive.  (As for me and my husband, we shop close by in east Denver ... the distance, the convenience, the habit.) But, I can see the appeal of Costco, especially for more than one or two people in a family.


    Seriously? (none / 0) (#45)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:20:54 PM EST
    You had a problem showing your receipt? Since they don't bag my purchases, it makes sense to me. And the exit clerks (for lack of a better name) are unfailingly pleasant. I only have a problem when they are being too pleasant for too long for people in line ahead of me. (::sigh:: I work and work at developing patience. Maybe next life).

    And you are right about the big-box size of purchases there.  

    But they are great for those things you should never run out of. Like toilet paper. And coffee/tea.

    Oh and mini creampuffs. Definitely those.


    I must say... (none / 0) (#114)
    by kdog on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:50:07 AM EST
    I'm with Scott on this one...it's bad form to treat a customer as a criminal suspect.  

    It's bad enough our government does it, but we're stuck with them, we have a choice as to where we shop...and I'm gonna try and shop at places that show there customers a little dignity.  


    You have to remember (5.00 / 2) (#115)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:54:34 AM EST
    Places like Costco and Sam's Club - you have big ticket items.

    And since it keeps theft down, isn't it better to take 30 seconos and have your receipt checked, rather than the store constantly raising prices to cover their losses?

    30 seconds is really an inconvenience?


    Not so much an inconvenience... (none / 0) (#118)
    by kdog on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:10:49 AM EST
    it's the principle...ya just spent your good hard earned money there to be basically accused of theft?  F*ck that.

    Receipt (none / 0) (#122)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:07:32 AM EST
    Just to clear things up, the second I pay for merchandise anywhere, I own it, no other store has ever blinked twice when I say 'I would rather not' when they ask for a receipt.  Costco security followed me to my car and would not allow me to leave because I would prove to them I was not a thief.  Not because they thought I stole something, but because they view each and every one of their customers and a thief until they prove they are not.  Fry's and Best Buy have the same set-up, but when you tell them you would rather not, they don't blink and you are free to leave.

    I am pretty sure the manager realized what potentially could have gone very wrong when she chased security away.

    They have as much right to ask me for my receipt as I do them, I don't have to prove I own stuff just because I am on their property, walking down the street, or anywhere in America for that matter.  

    I don't do it to F with them, I do it because the more we bow to corporate and government BS, the more they do it.  If everyone refused there would be no door person making me prove I am not a thief, or self checkout, or cops asking to look in your vehicle for no damn reason.

    IMO, that at the door BS, is just like NSA and their BS, "we are doing it for your benefit" to either keep me safe or save me money.  In both cases, I never asked for them do to it, I don't appreciate it, and I think the supposed benefit is not worth the intrusion.

    If Costco can't fight crime without acting like each and every on of their precious 'members' is a criminal, I don't think they deserve my business.


    Security (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:27:35 AM EST
    should not have followed you to the parking lot.  Period.

    Your Costco membership agreement states that you will agree to have a receipt check before you leave the store.  If you refuse, they can revoke your membership.  That's it. They can't detain you or take back your stuff.

    And yes, if you don't like it, then you shouldn't shop there.


    A lengthy diatribe (none / 0) (#125)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:25:58 AM EST
    because someone asks to see a receipt is dumbfounding to me.

    Surely... (none / 0) (#131)
    by kdog on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:41:25 AM EST
    you have principles that might seem dumbfounding to others CG.  

    As for lenghly diatribes...isn't that how we do here?  Are you not entertained? ;)


    It might make a good episode (5.00 / 1) (#132)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:48:12 AM EST
    on the show about nothing. I could see George playing the part.

    I Was Simply Explaining Why I Did... (none / 0) (#139)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:15:30 AM EST
    ...it because several people seem mystified as to why.

    And maybe proving you own something is nothing to you, but I find it mildly inconvenient and very annoying considering I just gave them by business.

    I prefer to shop where I am valued as a customer and not viewed as a potential thief until I prove otherwise.


    Thanks (none / 0) (#23)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:20:31 PM EST
    Here are a few more facts about Walmart. It starts getting interesting at about #11.

    I have no problem with other people shopping there. I don't have to (Blessed Be), but everyone makes decisions according to his/her own economic means.

    But more information doesn't hurt.


    How about some Costco facts? (5.00 / 1) (#165)
    by nycstray on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:27:16 PM EST
    The tidied up (none / 0) (#197)
    by sj on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:59:17 PM EST
    link is here :)

    To each his own (none / 0) (#60)
    by Slado on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:03:13 PM EST
    To me complaining about WalMart is like Wesley Snipes complaining about income taxes.



    You want to shop at WalMart, fine with me. (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:08:45 PM EST
    I make no judgments about Wal-Mart customers, because in some rural locales on the U.S. mainland, Wal-Mart is one of the few places where one can buy groceries.

    That Wal-Mart's presence was probably a major factor in the demise of the local competition is really besides the point. People have to deal with the reality of the present, and if there's no place else to go, then your choice has already been made for you.

    But here in Honolulu, we do have choices as to where we can shop. Therefore, I choose to take my own business elsewhere rather than Wal-Mart, for those reasons which shoephone and kdog have already stated.



    from the airport.

    A dozen or two cheap Hawaiian shirts for the family and we're all set for the week.

    Knowing we'll likely never wear them again we find someplace to donate them on our way back to the airport when we leave.


    Don't know to whom you'd donate them. (5.00 / 1) (#189)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:21:11 PM EST
    No self-respecting local would be caught dead wearing cheesy tourist alohawear -- unless it's Halloween. ;-D

    Believe it or not, there's actually a really huge difference between the loud, garish polyester outfits sold to unsuspecting tourists who don't know any better (or to Hollywood types who are too wasted to care), and the much more subtle floral and tapa-print designs on cotton and hemp fabrics which are favored by many island residents. If you come to Honolulu and walk downtown along Bishop Street, which is the business / financial nerve center of the state, you'll definitely see what I mean.



    Or (none / 0) (#196)
    by sj on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:55:14 PM EST
    you can go to the State Capitol and see the real thing as well.

    Why not both? (none / 0) (#198)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 12:31:38 AM EST
    Our Capitol building is only two short blocks away from Bishop Street. Downtown is actually a pretty cool place to visit, given that Honolulu is one of the oldest and most historic cities in the western U.S.

    Right.. (5.00 / 2) (#119)
    by jondee on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:17:22 AM EST
    Or a right-wing libertarian railing about taxes and over-regulation at a left-leaning website.

    Beyond pointless.


    Oh,I'm not complaining (none / 0) (#71)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:37:52 PM EST
    I don't begrudge anyone their financial choices. I really don't. I'm just saying that I don't shop there and that begins to address why.

    Are they asked to buy the food at (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by MO Blue on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:03:08 PM EST
    Wal-mart too?

    Now that (none / 0) (#21)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:10:41 PM EST
    would be dangerously close to company scrip as payment.

    Elizabeth Warren goes to the mat for SS (5.00 / 2) (#55)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:45:27 PM EST
    Don't cut it. Expand it.

    "The most recent discussion about cutting benefits has focused on something called the Chained-CPI. Supporters of the chained CPI say that it's a more accurate way of measuring cost of living increases for seniors. That statement is simply not true. Chained CPI falls short of the actual increases in costs that seniors face, pure and simple.  Chained CPI?  It's just a fancy way of saying cut benefits.

    "The Bureau of Labor Statistics has developed a measure of the impact of inflation on seniors. It's called the CPI-E, and, if we adopted it today, it would generally increase benefits for our retirees -- not cut them.

    "Social Security isn't the answer to all of our retirement problems.  We need to find ways to tackle the financial squeeze that is crushing our families.  We need to help families start saving again.  We need to make sure that more workers have access to better pensions.  But in the meantime - so long as these problems continue to exist and so long as we are in the midst of a real and growing retirement crisis - a crisis that is shaking the foundations of what was once a vibrant and secure middle class - the absolute last thing we should be doing is talking about cutting back on Social Security.

    "The absolute last thing we should do in 2013 - at the very moment that Social Security has become the principal lifeline for millions of our seniors -- is allow the program to begin to be dismantled inch by inch.

    I don't buy into the WAPO's new bleating that Warren will run for POTUS in 2016. I just think she's pushing the issue onto the radar again, in time for a serious debate on it it 2014.

    Sen Tom Harkin introduced legislation this spring (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by MO Blue on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:09:08 PM EST
    to grow SS benefits. A few other Dem Senators are co-sponsors.

    Their pitch is to grow Social Security benefits by attaching it to a new formula, known as CPI-E (Consumer Price Index for the Elderly), which is based on the theory that seniors face higher-than-average price increases, such as on health care and housing. It would be paid for by phasing out the cap on wages subject to the payroll tax, which is currently $113,700. Supporters say this would raise Social Security compensation for all beneficiaries by $70 per month.

    Legislation to this effect was introduced earlier this spring by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), the chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee. The Strengthening Social Security Act of 2013 has since been co-sponsored by Sens. Brian Schatz (D-HI), Mark Begich (D-AK) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH), who added his name this week.

    The White House and Democratic leaders have not backed it. And if they did, it would run into a brick wall of Republican opposition in budget negotiations.

    Instead, President Barack Obama has publicly endorsed a cut to future Social Security benefits by attaching them to a lower rate of inflation, known as Chained CPI.
    "There's been talk of tying Social Security benefits to a 'Chained CPI.' But really, that's a fancy Washington way of saying 'let's cut into people's benefits over time,'" Brown said upon signing a PCCC petition for Harkin's bill. "We need to expand Social Security, not cut benefits."

    Republicans are eager to cut Social Security, but they want Democrats' fingerprints on the knife, so they don't take the blame.



    The previously unknown EBAOD (5.00 / 3) (#96)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 08:18:31 PM EST
    (Executive Branch Agency of Desperation), whose existence has until now apparently been classified top secret, is getting even more desperate apparently...

    US Government Says CIA Black Site Prisoners' Memory Of Their Own Torture Is Classified And Cannot Be Revealed

    I'd missed this story when it came out a few weeks ago, but thanks to Rob Hyndman for calling it to my attention.  There was plenty of press around the fact that one of the guys being held by US forces in Guantanamo, and who faces trial as one of the co-conspirators for 9/11, supposedly sustained head injuries while being held by the CIA.  But, that's just the tip of the iceberg of the story.  Apparently Ammar al Baluchi, and some of the other prisoners are trying to argue that the US violated the UN Convention Against Torture with how they treated prisoners at the infamous black sites.  But here's the crazy part: the US is arguing that the prisoners' own recollections of what was done to them cannot be used in court, because it would reveal classified information.  Talk about adding insult to injury.

    Yes, the US government is arguing that it can torture people (though, of course, it won't call it that), but if you try to call them on it via various courts, domestic or international, the very people who were tortured are not allowed to present evidence of their own torture, because it would reveal classified information.  Classified information like how the CIA tortured people.

    All in the name of spreading Freedom 'n Democracy and being the light of the world, I'm sure...

    AN AXE LENGTH AWAY, vol. 192 (5.00 / 1) (#156)
    by Dadler on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:30:27 PM EST
    She's going to be a suffragette from HELL. (link)

    Volume 191
    Volume 190

    My birthday is tomorrow, so I have to live it up and feel young and spry today. Ahem. Have a great one, my friends.

    In other news.... (5.00 / 2) (#161)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:14:32 PM EST
    Good. (5.00 / 2) (#168)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:44:16 PM EST
    Or (none / 0) (#170)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:51:09 PM EST
    I love them all (5.00 / 1) (#178)
    by Zorba on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:21:00 PM EST
    The Spanish Inquisition, the Lumberjack song, the Spam skit, the Ministry of Silly Walks.  And on and on.
    My kids loved them, too.  They grew up quoting Monty Python sketches and scenes from their movies at great length.  Accents and all.  Usually around the dinner table.
    Good times!

    So they've only... (5.00 / 1) (#190)
    by unitron on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:39:17 PM EST
    ...just been resting, then?

    Oh, I think that's my favorite (none / 0) (#195)
    by sj on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:54:30 PM EST
    Great news! (none / 0) (#176)
    by Zorba on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:13:13 PM EST

    You'll need (5.00 / 1) (#192)
    by Edger on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:36:20 PM EST
    about 5 minutes with no interruptions for this. It also may leave you sitting there with your mouth hanging open for a little while afterwards... so plan on having nothing to do for the next ten minutes or so.

    Now click play
    . Your soul will thank you for taking the time...

    AN AXE LENGTH AWAY, vol. 193 (5.00 / 1) (#202)
    by Dadler on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 11:01:54 AM EST
    Happy birthday to me. (link)

    Volume 192
    Volume 191

    My trusty stead, Bloody Mary, is waiting for me. We shall do battle against the fear of mortality, and we shall prevail. We few, we hapy few...!

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADLER (5.00 / 1) (#203)
    by fishcamp on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 11:35:17 AM EST
    mine is coming up Dec. 2nd but I'm skipping it this year.

    My latest unpleasant run-in w/the police (5.00 / 3) (#204)
    by Dadler on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 01:36:00 PM EST
    I was writing in my office with my headphones on, listening to music as I scribbled.
    I hear something in the background, a solicitor pounding on the door, or someone, maybe my dog barking too.
    But I'm in the middle of a glorious riff, so I ignore the noise and keep writing.
    A few minutes later, I take off my headphones, my dog still barking, and head downstairs to see what's up.
    I look out the little window in our front door and see a police car parked in front of our house. Hmm, I think, that's interesting.
    Then I remember that after my son took off on his bike for school, that I forgot to close the garage door behind him,
    So I head downstairs to the garage to close the door, my 23 lb. terrier mix, Buster, following me. But as soon as I hit the last step, the garage door still open, I find myself frozen stiff, ten feet away from a nervous police officer with his gun drawn. My immediate reaction is, oh sh*t, there's a burglar on the loose and they think he's hiding out in my garage.
    Who are you? the officer asks me, anxious, gun still drawn, his head buzzcut short in a manner that says ex-military.
    I tell him my name, say I live here, the dog is named Buster, call him, he'll come to you. I a m shaking, like I was at twelve years old when an LA cop had me face down on the pavement with a shotgun on my back.
    He asks if I have I.D. on me, I say it's in the house.
    He says a neighbor called and said the garage had been open all week (which it hadn't, but to utterly nutty old neighbor across the street, well, I guess is was...sigh. I ask if I should get my ID. Cop, gun still drawn, says yes. I head upstairs, out of garage into the house. I think my ID is upstairs in my office, so I hustle up the next flight of stairs to retrieve it.
    Halfway up this flight I remember my wallet and ID are on the kitchen table downstairs. So I hustle back down the stairs, saying, "I forgot, my wallet is on the kitchen table..."
    Halfway down, he says, "What?" even more anxiously than when he first confronted me, and I think, oh no, he might think I ran upstairs to get a gun. I slow down the stairs,  put my hands in the air to show him I'm not armed, then say "Sorry, my ID is back downstairs."
    I see my wallet on the table, cop's gun still drawn, and I show him my ID.
    He looks at it, relaxes, hands it back to me. "Okay, well, at least you have neighbors who care."
    And I think, "You don't know them like I do, It's not concern, it's paranoia,"
    He finally holsters his gun, I  heave a huge sigh of relief.
    He never says sorry, never acknowledges the fact that I just faced a gun for no reason and managed not to shit my pants.

    And the day goes on.

    Good times, good times.

    I love unhinged neighbors!!!

    While we've been focusing on (3.50 / 2) (#72)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:46:26 PM EST
    the nightmare that the ACA-rollout has been (and subsequently, what a nightmare many parts of the actual bill are), there has been another rollout that has been as big (or bigger) a cluster than Obamacare.

    Whoda thunk?

    The stupid comment by Arne Duncan, while the focus of the headline, isn't what really bothers me.  I think the more important issue is this:

    The Common Core was designed to elevate teaching and learning. Supporters say it does that; critics say it doesn't and that some of the standards, especially for young children, are not developmentally appropriate. Whichever side you fall on regarding the Core's academic value, there is no question that their implementation in many areas has been miserable -- so miserable that American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten, a Core supporter, recently compared it to another particularly troubled rollout:

    You think the Obamacare implementation is bad? The implementation of the Common Core is far worse.

    New York was the first large state to implement the standards and give students new standardized tests supposedly aligned with the Core. Test scores plummeted earlier this year. State officials had predicted the scores would drop 30 percent -- and that's exactly what happened. (How they could predict that with such accuracy was addressed in a previous Answer Sheet post.) Opposition to the standards, both their content and their implementation, has been growing in New York (and other states) among teachers, principals, superintendents and parents, some of whom have refused to allow their children to take the exams.


    There are people on the political fringe, right and left, who oppose the Core initiative  for different reasons, but that's not where most of the substantive opposition is coming from. Educators and researchers questioned the way the standards were written (whether, for example, there was any or enough input from K-12 classroom teachers) and some criticized the content of the standards (while others praised it). Some critics don't believe in standards-based education, and others felt it usurped local authority. More recently, tea party members have accused the administration of a federal takeover of public education, extreme right-wing rhetoric that clouds a real discussion about the Core. This year some states led by Republican governors began to pull away from the standards.

    Protests by educators, parents, students and others began to grow as it became clear that the Core implementation was being rushed, and some students were being given tests said to be Core-aligned even though teachers hadn't had enough time to create material around the standards.  That's why Duncan announced in June that he was giving the 37 states plus the District of Columbia, which had won federal waivers from the most egregious mandates of the No Child Left Behind Act, an extra year to implement teacher evaluations linked to new assessments that are supposed to be aligned to the new Common Core State Standards.

    Education isn't sexy and rarely gets covered, but this appears to be another well-meaningee but not well-thought out program.

    Any program (5.00 / 2) (#74)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:08:29 PM EST
    that relies too much on testing is going to have MASSIVE problems. Common core worked in MA very well but it took something like ten to 15 years to show results.

    Anytime testing is involved you are going to get "teaching to the test" which is nothing short of disastrous for everybody.


    Yep (none / 0) (#76)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:09:29 PM EST
    But the fact that they can't even roll the program out correctly is concerning.

    AN AXE LENGTH AWAY, vol. 191 (none / 0) (#1)
    by Dadler on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 01:30:09 PM EST
    Soylent Green is scrapple compared to this flesh. (link)

    Volume 190

    Volume 189

    Get your crappy-ass Monday on. Speaking for myself, of course. Ahem.

    Here we go again... (none / 0) (#2)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 01:34:07 PM EST
    ...Zimmerman arrested a little while ago,

    apparently on a domestic violence complaint.

    Shellie and family not involved, but Samantha Scheibe might have been.

    Love this (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 01:49:48 PM EST
    Zimmerman's new girlfriend, a 27-year-old blonde, lives in the 1300 block of Topfield Court, according to an unrelated Lake Mary police report.

    Really?  You can't get to her name until the end of the story?


    The media love the blondes, don't they? (none / 0) (#8)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:19:32 PM EST
    And what is "an unrelated Lake Mary police report?"

    I'm just speculating, but ... (none / 0) (#37)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:12:42 PM EST
    ... perhaps she had her own brush with the law in Lake Mary. Or maybe she's just a "repeat offender" when it comes to poor judgment in choosing boyfriends, and the Lake Mary police know that this isn't the first time she's been the alleged target of domestic abuse.

    Anecdotal, I know, but I've seen plenty of Type-A dominant personalities out there, and also plenty of self-loathing people who've apparently come to believe that their primary purpose in life is to serve as somebody else's doormat. And all too often, I've seen the two types gravitate toward one another like magnets.

    Occasionally, the inherent dynamics of such relationships will somehow work in their own dysfunctional way to the mutual satisfaction of both parties, but that sort of psycho-emotional inequity can also serve as a potent catalyst for eventual abuse and even violence.

    I don't know the woman in question, so I obviously don't know what she's really like in person. But that said and without sounding too judgmental, it's apparent (to me, anyway!) that based upon repeated media reports about her boyfriend's problems with the law both before and since his arrest and trial in the Trayvon Martin case, this guy's got some serious anger-management issues going on here, and he's probably in need of professional counseling.

    Otherwise, without the timely intervention of someone who's able to teach him some alternative non-violent means to channel his frustrations, George Zimmerman is the type who could eventually wind up doing time -- or worse -- because of his personal inability to either get or maintain a grip on his emotions. One thing's for certain, we're well beyond the point of rationalizing and excusing his volatile behavior.



    Supposedly... (none / 0) (#44)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:20:41 PM EST
    ...today's arrest was done by Seminole County Sheriff's deputies and not the Lake Mary police, which may mean the young lady lives outside of the LMPD jurisdiction.

    And the other incidents (none / 0) (#52)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:32:29 PM EST
    One was for speeding and one was for having windows tinted too darkly.

    His ex-wife and former father-in-law called in a domestic disturbance earlier this year, but the police said there was no evidence of a domestic issue and no charges were filed.


    Uh, not quite. (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:09:29 PM EST
    jbindc: "One was for speeding and one was for having windows tinted too darkly. His ex-wife and former father-in-law called in a domestic disturbance earlier this year, but the police said there was no evidence of a domestic issue and no charges were filed."

    According to Lake Mary Police Chief Steve Bracknell and Dep. Police Chief Colin Morgan, Mrs. Zimmerman subsequently changed her initial story by stating that she didn't see her husband actually brandish a firearm, and both she and her father subsequently opted against filing charges against her husband with the police after consulting their attorney.

    But clearly, there was some sort of volatile confrontation and row involving Zimmerman and his now-former wife and father-in-law at the in-laws' house. And prior to the Trayvon Martin case, Zimmerman had been arrested for domestic violence at age 20 in a case involving an earlier girlfriend, which occurred prior to his marriage to his now-estranged wife. Further, he had been arrested in 2005 for resisting arrest and battery on a police officer.

    I suppose it's possible that the deceased Martin and all these complainants somehow got together many years ago, and solemnly vowed to one another that henceforth, their collective mission would be to render George Zimmerman's life a living hell on earth -- but the odds of that having occurred are most certainly much less than even.

    So, absent an absurdly improbable series of amazing coincidences, I'd say that based upon all these police reports, Zimmerman has some personal issues which apparently propel him into otherwise unnecessary confrontations with others, and he could probably benefit from some professional counseling to deal with them. I don't think it really helps him when others keep attempting to rationalize such questionable behavior.



    As you know (3.50 / 2) (#81)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:34:12 PM EST
    From reading the numerous threads of Zimmerman during his trial, the 2005 arrest was because he (who was 20 at the time), shoved an officer who was questioning a friend for alleged underage drinking at a bar.

    Stupid, yes. Proof of an anger issue?  I don't think you can go there.

    The first fiancee - funny how you leave out that while she took out a restraining order against him, he took one out against her. Seems if this was the smoking gun you were searching for, it would have played a pretty prominent role in his trial.  But it didn't.

    And as for the domestic in September,

    Lake Mary Police said in a report released this week that there was not enough evidence to file any charges. Police were waiting to see if images from an iPad could shed more light on the fight, but it was examined by a Secret Service agent who determined it was too badly damaged to get any information from it.

    She also said that GZ punched her father in the nose.  Yet, he had no signs of injury,and the father didn't want to press charges either. right - because if my soon to be ex-son-in-law- punched me in the nose, I would go quietly. (There were also 7 people in the house with them, and not ONE person saw what happened.)

    (And of course, as many people liked to point out numerous times around here during the trial, Shellie Zimmerman also has had problems with the truth. Pretty weird to say he threatened you with a gun, but then a) have no gun found, and b) then you say "I never saw a gun."  

    Is she not being honest and that's why she chose not press charges? I have no idea, but that is certainly an issue that would come up if the case pursued. That, and the fact that many in many cases, will look for anything to gain the upper hand.)

    And finally, his trial earlier this year - well, that also did not prove that he had any anger issues, depsite many who tried to pretzel it that way.

    But you knew all this, and yet you still selectively spin it another way by omitting facts to make your point.

    Do I think he's a fine upstanding citizen?  No.  Did he point a gun at his girlfriend?  I have no idea.  Is she pregnant (making it a felony)?  I also have no idea.  But it seems that, as in the first case we discussed around here, maybe taking a step back and not assuming so much might be the best course of action until we actually know some facts.


    ... that I've even bothered to go there again. While I don't wish him harm or ill, I've already spent far too much of my time talking about him, y lo que será, será. He's made his bed and now, he can lay in it.



    Lay or lie? (none / 0) (#106)
    by oculus on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:53:22 AM EST
    Lie (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:49:32 AM EST
    But when in doubt go with sleep. Of course if she's pregnant, perhaps lay is proper in the past tense.

    More importantly, how many times must we have another 15 minutes of faux voldemort's ignominious fame thrust upon us.


    You can always count (1.00 / 3) (#58)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:58:30 PM EST
    on jbindc to provide an excuse for the one who shall not be named!

    And we can always count on you (4.33 / 6) (#99)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 09:35:38 PM EST
    to fail to follow the conversation; the "other incidents" jb was referring to were in connection with "unrelated police reports" on file for George's new girlfriend.

    And there is nothing about the information jb provided that comes even close to qualifying as "defending" anyone, much less Zimmerman.

    You'd think, as many times as you've embarrassed yourself by commenting before thinking, that you'd be a little more careful before you post these kinds of stupid comments...it's killing whatever chance there is of being taken seriously.

    Thank goodness for christine and MKS, huh?


    We all know what she wrote (none / 0) (#100)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 09:48:49 PM EST
    during the trial and after, extending to this date.

    Okay, if this is how you want to play, be (5.00 / 3) (#101)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 10:10:39 PM EST
    aware that nothing you say will be able stand on its own, in the context of any discussion, but will instead have to be looked at based on positions you have taken in the past.

    That's not going to serve you well, but if those are your rules, you need to be held to the same standard.


    Play in whatever way you want to (1.00 / 1) (#102)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 10:50:49 PM EST
    as if you are not already doing that...
    BTW, I never think of any discussion as a game which you seem to do.

    It is really weird to see the kind of aggressive posture you have taken on behalf of jbindc. Wow!


    Oh, I'm sure jb and I will be on (4.00 / 4) (#108)
    by Anne on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:24:24 AM EST
    opposite sides of an issue soon enough, but if you'd been paying attention, you'd know that she and I have agreed on a lot of things over the years.  Maybe you were too busy keeping track of sj, though.

    Sorry you're so freaked out that I'm able to see more than one side of an issue and call out the kind of dishonest commenting that's been going on here of late.  The only thing missing from this discussion is christine subjecting jb to an interrogation on her political affiliation - I mean, her "real" political affiliation.

    And for someone who says she doesn't see the discussions as any kind of game, most people who would follow a discussion in which you play a major role would not get that at all from your comments.  Misdirection, purposeful manipulation of people's words, deflection - we're quite familiar with your style.  If I were you, I'd consider game-playing to be the least negative of the reasons why those things are your stock in trade, and just let it go.


    I'm glad the 1's make you feel better, but (4.20 / 5) (#109)
    by Anne on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:48:29 AM EST
    the mental picture I get of your stabbing the keyboard and gnashing your teeth makes me laugh.

    Probably not what you were going for.

    If I could pre-rate my own comment for you, I would, but that wouldn't be as much fun for you, would it?


    See what I mean (3.00 / 2) (#185)
    by MKS on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:05:54 PM EST
    What has Christine got to do with this?  She must really get under your skin.....

    And we also all know (5.00 / 1) (#183)
    by Zorba on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:10:12 PM EST
    What Jeralyn, the site owner, said about the Zimmerman trial.  She was a staunch advocate for the defense.  You could look it up.
     Jeralyn Merritt is a defense attorney.  You certainly must realize this, since you have been reading this site for quite awhile.

    You said it yourself (none / 0) (#184)
    by Politalkix on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:01:56 PM EST
    Jeralyn is a defense attorney. It is understandable that she will argue the point from a defense POV. BTW, I did disagree with J and a few of my posts also got deleted.

    However, why this advocacy for jb? Since you brought up the words "defense attorney", you may also recall that jb often expresses disdain for the defense POV. She didn't earn the moniker "Miss Law & Order", for nothing. More often than not, she views things from the prosecution POV. Ofcourse, not in this case!

    She blended well with the Mikado Cats and Char Char Binks and other conservative and libertarian ideologues who frequented this blog during the trial.

    She, ofcourse, does have the right to have her opinion. You do not have to rationalize what she did. It is not needed.



    I do tend to advocate (5.00 / 2) (#187)
    by Zorba on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:42:29 PM EST
    for those who are being bullied.  And I do not always agree with jbindc, especially when it comes to her "law and order" stance in many instances in the past.
    But to be brutally frank, you and a few other commenters have bullied her to the great extent that it appears that you are not reading or comprehending what she wrote, but instead are just expressing your general dislike of her and any of her opinions.  
    This is not a position that reflects well upon you and others, or that makes at least some of us take your opinions seriously.  If you do want to be taken seriously, you might consider revising your responses.  And, BTW, I appreciate where you are coming from, yourself, and although I do not always agree with you, there are more than a few times that I do.

    Whatever you're smoking or drinking (4.20 / 5) (#90)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:30:33 PM EST
    is obviously not a good idea...

    PK seems to be running (4.20 / 5) (#93)
    by Zorba on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:40:47 PM EST
    true to form, Edger.

    Lol! (5.00 / 2) (#94)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:46:55 PM EST
    Precious... but the splash not so much ! (5.00 / 2) (#104)
    by gbrbsb on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 11:36:18 PM EST
    Speaking of delusions.. (4.00 / 4) (#61)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:08:19 PM EST
    I'm not sure where you got that I was defending anybody.  What I stated were facts - I know you don't understand what facts actually are, since you constantly make stuff up, but please try to at least be original.

    In fact, I didn't comment AT ALL on this particular case, except as to the reporting. Since we don't know anything besides the fact that he was arrested, it would be silly to say for sure what happened.

    But you keep living in la-la land.


    That sounded like a (none / 0) (#97)
    by MKS on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 08:40:22 PM EST
    lengthy defense to me.

    And the lengthy defense (none / 0) (#98)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 09:06:28 PM EST
    will look even more foolish as facts come out

    WTF??? (4.00 / 4) (#88)
    by Zorba on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:24:10 PM EST
    Really?  Where are you getting the idea that jbindc is providing an "excuse" for George?

    Yep, agreed; without some alternative means... (none / 0) (#103)
    by gbrbsb on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 11:30:59 PM EST
    he might just end up shooting someone.
    ; - )

    I suspect... (none / 0) (#42)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:18:09 PM EST
    ...that when Lake Mary police showed up that day at the house Shellie's parents own, that they interviewed Scheibe and made a note of her address on the incident report.

    She's not doing much... (none / 0) (#9)
    by kdog on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:21:21 PM EST
    to dispel the blonde stereotype, is she?  I mean c'mon!  Is the dating pool that shallow in central FLA?

    TMZ sez: (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:18:45 PM EST
    According to law enforcement sources -- which have been involved with the Zimmerman case since day one and have always been reliable -- Zimmerman got physical with his girlfriend earlier today, who claimed she was pregnant.

    Since she's pregnant, we're told the domestic violence charge is automatically listed as a felony. The Seminole County Sheriff's website says Zimmerman is not eligible for bail.

    Oh, dear Lord... (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:21:44 PM EST
    that's just perfect.

    Poor George (5.00 / 3) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:58:58 PM EST
    Just think if Trayvon hadn't taken a walk in Zimmerman's neighborhood, these accusations of domestic violence against women would never have made the national news.




    Ehem... you mean of course... (1.00 / 1) (#105)
    by gbrbsb on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 11:48:26 PM EST
    international news and in none other than the BBC ! And otoh, had Trayvon not walked (or was that skipped?) in GZ's neighbourhood he wouldn't have made national & international news either !

    One suspects Mr. Martin would willingly (5.00 / 3) (#107)
    by oculus on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:56:26 AM EST
    foregone his 15 minutes of fame.

    CNN sez: (5.00 / 1) (#150)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:40:18 AM EST
    In a question-and-answer session following Monday's news conference, [Dennis Lemma, chief deputy with the Seminole County Sheriff's Office] told reporters, "At this time, the victim has disclosed to us that she is not pregnant."

    innocent until proven guilty (none / 0) (#15)
    by obsessed on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:33:02 PM EST
    all right everyone - just calm down til we hear from O'Mara - I'm sure this is just another perfectly explicable case of "stand your ground". Justice shall prevail!

    We won't be hearing anything... (none / 0) (#32)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:59:26 PM EST
    ...from O'Mara on this except "no comment".

    Or him (none / 0) (#36)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:10:35 PM EST
    wanting to know when Zimmerman is going to pay him.

    Well, O'Mara took the case, and ... (none / 0) (#56)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:53:47 PM EST
    ... I assume that he knew beforehand that his client was of limited financial means.

    Further, given that O'Mara elevated his own public profile by virtue of representing this particular defendant in such a widely-covered case, I'm sure that sort of publicity / notoriety will eventually attract business from defendants who can actually afford his services.

    He'll get no sympathy from this quarter.


    Mostly (none / 0) (#78)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:11:34 PM EST
    I was making that point because as far as I know that's the last comment he made when it came to Zimmerman.

    But yeah, I agree. If he was so worried about how the guy was going to pay him, he should not have taken the case.


    On that, we wholeheartedly agree. (none / 0) (#84)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:45:47 PM EST
    Speaking as a consultant, while we've taken on our share of clients who otherwise couldn't afford our services, I'll be the first to admit that on at least one occasion it was for less than altruistic purposes.

    And on another occasion, the relationship actually paid off quite handsomely albeit tangentially, as a direct result of that client's subsequent referral of several paying clients to us. It was wholly unexpected, and very much appreciated.



    According to the link (none / 0) (#91)
    by Zorba on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:33:21 PM EST
    you provided previously, unitron, O'Mara has pretty much already said "no comment."  At least, according to his spokesperson.

    According to Shawn Vincent, a spokesman for defense attorney Mark O'Mara, "Mark O'Mara is not representing George Zimmerman in today's matter, "won't represent him in any other new criminal complaints" and "as such, it is not appropriate for him to make any comment."

    Spokesman for O'Mara (none / 0) (#95)
    by MO Blue on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:58:39 PM EST
    Neither Mark O'Mara nor Don West -- Zimmerman's defense attorneys during the trial of the Martin case -- is currently representing him, said a spokesman for O'Mara. link

    Sounds like a nothing burger. (1.00 / 4) (#24)
    by redwolf on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:22:51 PM EST
    It's policy for most police forces to always arrest the aggressor and failing to determine who was the aggressor to arrest the man even if there is no evidence of a crime.

    There was a women arrested for squirting gunning her boy friend or husband when the neighbors called about the noise.  She had to be arrested due to domestic violence laws.


    Um...How much noise does a squirt gun make? (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:35:16 PM EST
    Clearly more than was made by (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:44:18 PM EST
    the brain cells of the woman behind this nonsense.

    I guess the good thing is she didn't shoot him with a real gun for playing XBox, hunh?

    ::rolling eyes::

    ::completely over the rampant stupidity people engage in::


    You've never been a squirt gun fight... (1.00 / 3) (#29)
    by redwolf on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:40:06 PM EST
    have you?  Lots of yelling, getting back the other person, and so forth.  They tend to be quite loud.  Where in the past people would have ignored them now thanks to domestic violence laws they are a crime.

    News flash: (5.00 / 3) (#39)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:15:11 PM EST
    I've been in a lot of squirt gun fights -- but none in recent years...maybe because because I'm not a child anymore.

    In any case, I feel confident that your supposition about the GZ arrest being nothing more than a squirt gun fight will be proven to be utter hogwash. Like pretty much everything else you write on the subject of your poor, maligned hero.


    Excuse me -- but are you for real? (5.00 / 3) (#54)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:40:41 PM EST
    redwolf: "You've never been to a squirt gun fight, have you? Lots of yelling, getting back the other person, and so forth.  They tend to be quite loud.  Where in the past people would have ignored them now thanks to domestic violence laws they are a crime."

    For that matter, how do we know that they weren't totally into watching a close football game in the TV, and were screaming profanities at the players on the screen for a boneheaded play or turning the ball over, or cursing the refs out for a lousy call? After all, there are lots of people who yell at their television sets for a variety of reasons.

    Your attempt at rationalization is so hilariously far-fetched that it's LOL stupid. Perchance you'd care to share with us some statistics regarding the number of people who've arrested for domestic abuse due to a family squirt-gun fight.



    The reports do not mention a squirt gun (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by MO Blue on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:38:59 PM EST
    George Zimmerman arrested in Florida after allegedly pointing gun at girlfriend

    George Zimmerman was charged Monday with aggravated assault, domestic violence battery and criminal mischief, after an incident at his girlfriend's home in central Florida, said Dennis Lemma, chief deputy with the Seminole County Sheriff's Office.

    Yeah, you're probably right (none / 0) (#25)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:24:18 PM EST
    He was probably just playing with a squirt gun. Oy.

    Misleading. (none / 0) (#59)
    by Angel on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:01:34 PM EST
    There was way more going on than her squirting a gun at the guy.  From the linked article:

    Klearman interviewed three witnesses who were in the apartment and heard but did not see the couple's fight. They agreed that the boyfriend was quiet in his bedroom, where he was playing Xbox, before Borge started screaming at him.

    "They then heard scuffling and banging noises," Klearman wrote in the arrest report.

    "Get off me. Get off of me!" they heard the boyfriend scream, according to the report. This led Klearman to conclude that Borge was the aggressor, so he arrested her on suspicion of simple battery/domestic violence. She was taken to St. Lucie County Jail without incident.

    Is that so? (none / 0) (#87)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:23:21 PM EST
    It's policy for most police forces to always arrest the aggressor and failing to determine who was the aggressor to arrest the man even if there is no evidence of a crime.

    Love to see a link for that claim ...


    It looks really bad this time... (none / 0) (#47)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:25:17 PM EST
    ...apparently he pointed a shotgun at her.

    He done effed up big time.


    No, no, really, it was just a squirt gun... (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:29:00 PM EST
    After listening to his call... (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by unitron on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:05:56 AM EST
    ..., which had a certain surreal quality, it seems there may be some question as to the actual pointing of the gun, or any gun.

    But he screwed up just be letting himself get put in that position.

    He'd have been better off living alone.


    He's officially out on bond (none / 0) (#175)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:00:50 PM EST
    with an ankle monitor and a ban on any gun possession.

    Sometimes, most times, ... (none / 0) (#191)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:31:36 PM EST
    ... things really are exactly what they initially appeared to be. And given these repeated incidences of volatile and even anti-social behavior on George Zimmerman's part, I would hardly find it surprising if many of his once-vociferous supporters now desire to reassess their prior opinion of him, if only in private.

    The Trayvon Martin case is water under the bridge at this point, and for obvious reasons, we can't re-litigate the past in light of the present circumstances. But it appears just as obvious -- at least to me, anyway -- that Zimmerman has some serious issues (PTSD, perhaps?) and really needs help.

    I can't deny some small sense of real compassion for the guy, and I do hope that both the court and his family will now see to it that he finally gets that help, both for his own sake and that of those around him -- especially his unborn child.



    Well (5.00 / 1) (#193)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:00:45 PM EST
    Zimmerman says the alleged victim is pregnant. The alleged victim says she isn't.

    The winner in these events...Zimmerman's ex-wife who had been unable to locate him to serve him with divorce papers. They easily found him today and he was presented with the divorce papers either in the jail cell or at the courthouse depending on the source. Thus making Shellie, today's Zimmerman 15 minutes of fame winner.


    If he's saying that she pregnant, and ... (none / 0) (#199)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 12:41:44 AM EST
    ... she's denying it -- wow. Just wow. He must be living in his own private Idaho.

    I thought 'he who shall remain unnamed' (none / 0) (#49)
    by ragebot on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:28:25 PM EST
    was the proper term to use for he who shall remain unnamed unless a thread was devoted to him.  Other wise threads had to specifically allow his name to be mentioned.

    Umm.... (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:56:04 PM EST
    Are you serious about that? Nuance isn't your bag, I take it.

    How To Extract Revenge on Your Cheating... (none / 0) (#3)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 01:38:47 PM EST
    ...ex-wife if you have too much money.

    Buy the house next to her and her new man's house(who was a friend of the husband), then erect a 12 foot statue in the back of a hand with the middle finger extended.  complete with a giant spot light for after dark viewing.  LINK

    Saw that (none / 0) (#4)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 01:48:11 PM EST
    What a complete a$$.

    You despise your ex-wife so much, you have to move next door to her and then have this statue?

    Of course, not to cast aspersions, but this guy is a strip club owner, so "class" is probably not in his vernacular.


    I'm predicting this will not end well. (5.00 / 3) (#11)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:23:21 PM EST
    Wonder how the rest of the neighborhood is feeling about this...

    Most all the divorced men I've dated (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by shoephone on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:32:08 PM EST
    are still completely flipped out about their ex-wives. Even when it's been 10 years since the divorce. Bitterness... the gift that keeps on giving.

    Of course it is... (none / 0) (#33)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:01:47 PM EST
    "Of course, not to cast aspersions, but this guy is a strip club owner, so "class" is probably not in his vernacular."

    I'm sure he's got class.

    I just ain't sayin' what kind.


    Oh, honestly, you two sound just like ... (1.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:14:20 PM EST
    jbindc: "Of course, not to cast aspersions, but this guy is a strip club owner, so 'class' is probably not in his vernacular."

    unitron: "I'm sure he's got class. I just ain't sayin' what kind."

    ... Mrs. Merriwether and Mrs. Meade in Gone With the Wind, clucking to each other over the supposedly flawed character of Rhett Butler's friend Bell Watling.

    Not to cast aspersions, but both you and jb are indeed not only casting aspersions, but also casting yourselves in the sour light of self-anointed moral superiority.



    That's pretty rich coming from you, Donald. (4.20 / 5) (#68)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:16:25 PM EST
    I think you and the high horse are pretty good friends.

    Have you looked in the mirror lately, Anne? (none / 0) (#79)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:26:09 PM EST
    You've hardly been adverse to mounting a few rhetorical Clydesdales yourself on more than one occasion.

    Speaking for myself only, I've never made any pretensions toward human perfection. But I can say with every confidence that I don't flout myself, either here or anywhere else, as the moral superior of strip club owners, strippers or anyone else regarding their own private sexual proclivities, save for those involved in child abuse. I know exactly where I've been and what I've done in the past, and I don't ever forget it.



    I cannot disagaree with you (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by sj on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:36:58 PM EST
    But I can say with every confidence that I don't flout myself, either here or anywhere else, as the moral superior of strip club owners, strippers or anyone else regarding their own private sexual proclivities, save for those involved in child abuse. I know exactly where I've been and what I've done in the past, and I don't ever forget it.
    But I don't think Anne was talking about that. I think Anne was talking about the "I am an officer of the Party" dead horse that you flog as if you are the only commenter who has ever been boots on the ground for the Democratic party and therefore has more insight than the rest of us.

    When really all that gives you is more stories and less objectivity.


    Seems to me (none / 0) (#83)
    by jbindc on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:42:45 PM EST
    Mr. Markovitz has some anger issues....

    Markovitz is a well-known personality around Detroit. According to the Daily Mail, he's been operating strip clubs in the city's Eight Mile since the 1980s. He's also been shot twice, had a mob contract out on his life, faced several lawsuits from strippers and written a book entitled "Topless Prophet: The True Story of America's Most Successful Gentleman's Club Entrepreneur," which was released in 2009.

    So yeah, I'm comfortable feeling morally superior to him... YMMV...


    The Ex-Wife... (none / 0) (#124)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:20:35 AM EST
    ...cheated on him with one of his friends, who happens to be the guy she is currently living with.

    He didn't move in next door, just purchased the property and put up the statue.

    Because it's in the back, the city said he does no have to take it down and if you look at the pics, there is a shield so that the only people seeing it are the residents of one home.

    But as far as slamming the guy with notions of 'class', exactly how much does the woman have who married a strip club owner she met in a strip club have ?  Pretty sure in that respect they are one in the same, well except she did sleep with one of his friends.


    Anybody who cheats with the ex's friend (5.00 / 1) (#157)
    by shoephone on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:32:48 PM EST
    is scum, in my book. There isn't much worse than that (other than cheating with one of your ex's blood relatives). But the ex isn't doing himself any favors with this behavior. He should get as far away from them as possible and then go get some counseling. (And stop buying up property and building snarky statues.)

    Technically... (none / 0) (#135)
    by unitron on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:57:02 AM EST
    ...I did not take a position one way or the other regarding the gentleman in question.

    More evidence Washington DC spends too much (none / 0) (#7)
    by Slado on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:19:22 PM EST

    If you build it they will come.    Too much controlled out of DC.   Nice to see government working well for the 1%.

    If Obama (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by lentinel on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 02:30:40 PM EST
    were running today, pretending to be for "transparency", for the middle class, for equitable distribution of wealth... everybody would laugh in his face.

    I would amend that to "The gov't spends... (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by Dadler on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:25:24 PM EST
    "...too much on all the wrong people for all the wrong reasons at all the wrong times." The government has evolved to be the corrupt beast it is, IMO, because average working people have been pitted against average working people, in a very effectively insidious way, by these private barons who have cornered and thus control the game.

    How can the government (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 03:32:37 PM EST
    be entrusted to manage the spending of single payer health care?

    To whom, then... (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by unitron on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:04:15 PM EST
    ...should management of spending of single payer health care be entrusted?

    The government (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:12:45 PM EST
    would not manage it. The government would only fund it. You could have a separate entity away from the legislators hands that would do disbursement and contracts.

    As to the matter of the actual manager (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by christinep on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 04:28:52 PM EST
    Those years of federal experience under my belt left me with a sense of caution about entrusting too much power and authority to one major contractor or other NGO.  Even tho this area of discussion can only be hypothetical in the present framework, the caution is important for a number of reasons including the time & energy & resources to oversee the contractor/NGO and because "they ain't no saints."  It is a consideration should we ever be there ... the theory vs. reality of ensuring accountability when there is one massive contractor.  (I try not to think about that, because when I do the thinking quickly becomes circular by adding more players and administrators.)

    What about the fact (none / 0) (#66)
    by Slado on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:14:24 PM EST
    that most contractors don't qualify to get contracts because they don't meet all the rules?

    My company turns down opportunities to bid Federal construction because it's not worth the trouble.

    The rules, paper work and flat out waste make these jobs worthless for small companies.

    Only a huge company can navigate the rules and regs designed to be "fair".     In reality it's just a way to squeeze out the little guy.

    See Healthcare.gov for a perfect example.


    You are (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:21:17 PM EST
    actually backing up my point about privatization.

    Well, I agree (5.00 / 2) (#70)
    by Politalkix on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:37:47 PM EST
    with Slado on this one. Obama's campaign worked beautifully because the technology part of it was managed by folks from silicon valley-lots of people with start up experience and those who were capable of thinking outside the box.

    Wish the government procurement process was also the same. Could have saved some of the website problems in the ACA rollout.


    My wife's company does ... (none / 0) (#89)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:29:42 PM EST
    Only a huge company can navigate the rules and regs designed to be "fair".     In reality it's just a way to squeeze out the little guy.

    ... work on federal contracts - between 10-12 workers at any given point.


    Well (none / 0) (#73)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 06:04:29 PM EST
    I'm not talking about privatization which has shown to be an abject failure. I'm talking about a nonprofit entity that would be handling it or you could have Medicare just handle it or take Medicare, SCHIP, Medicaid and combine them all into a new nonprofit.

    How does it handle Medicare, jim? (none / 0) (#62)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:10:17 PM EST
    You know, you aren't looking much like a single-payer supporter these days, so I guess we can put a big "NOT" next to yet another item on the list of "Things jim says he supports."

    Oops - sorry, PK; got you confused with jim. (5.00 / 3) (#64)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:12:43 PM EST
    sorry for the mistake (but it doesn't bode well when someone mistakes anyone else for jim).

    Agreed (none / 0) (#63)
    by Slado on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:11:10 PM EST
    However it seems to me that the Federal government is involved in just a tad too much.

    There are 465 Federal Agencies.  

    Think about that for a moment.   No one can defend that.   How much better off are we today as individuals in terms of freedom and economic opportunity with the creation of 465 federal agencies?   I'd say we're not getting our money's worth.

    Corporations can't screw the poor on their own.   They need the help of government to do that and that partnership grows bigger every year.

    Corporations are the constant.   Government is the force that allows all of the screwing to happen.    


    OMG, are you fking kidding me? (5.00 / 3) (#67)
    by Anne on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 05:14:45 PM EST
    I can't believe people actually believe that crap.

    You're just ridiculous (5.00 / 2) (#92)
    by Yman on Mon Nov 18, 2013 at 07:35:48 PM EST
    Corporations are the constant.   Government is the force that allows all of the screwing to happen.

    Do you seriously think the number of agencies per se makes the slightest bit of difference?  If they consolidated all of them into a single agency ("U.S. government") would that make you feel better?

    BTW - How many corporations are there in the U.S.?  About 30 million - as opposed to your "indefensible" 465.



    This doesn't sound (none / 0) (#111)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:28:02 AM EST
    I admire your (none / 0) (#112)
    by jondee on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:37:40 AM EST
    never-say-die spirit, but you're never gonna get anyone here excited about Chris Christie, jb.

    Just don't see it happenin'.


    Not saying you have to get excited (none / 0) (#113)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:45:54 AM EST
    Trying to show that the Tea Party is on its way out, despite what some people think.

    I'd love to believe (none / 0) (#120)
    by jondee on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:29:15 AM EST
    the hard-right was on it's way out, but it's an  outgrowth of a culture that's deeply and extensively rooted.

    They may always be around (none / 0) (#121)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:36:04 AM EST
    but they aren't going to have a candidate for president any time soon.

    You think a Republican (none / 0) (#123)
    by jondee on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:16:06 AM EST
    can win without them?

    Where's the evidence for that assumption?


    Yes, I do (none / 0) (#127)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:31:16 AM EST
    Because a) the money will stomp out the Tea Party candidates - the monied people are not the social conservatives (note that Christie was speaking at a WSJ-sponosred event to a group of business executives), b) the Tea Party will split the votes among the Ted Cruz faction and Marco Rubio faction, and c) As much as they clamor and shout, the Tea Party Republicans will do everything in their power not to have another 4 (possibly 8) years of a Democratic president, especially if that person has the last name of Clinton.

    I'm not sure I agree that TP Repubs will (5.00 / 3) (#142)
    by Anne on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:29:05 AM EST
    do whatever it takes to keep another Democrat out of the WH; I think they've shown signs of holding to their insane positions even if it means they will lose.

    But I agree that I don't think anything scares Christie, and he doesn't seem like someone who takes any crap from people.  Whether that is seen as a positive among the electorate, I don't know.

    But I think there will be those who just plain won't ever forgive him for betraying them with Obama after Superstorm Sandy.  Just like there are Dems who won't ever vote for Clinton because of her Iraq War vote.

    As for the money - does "Koch Brothers" ring any bells?  Sheldon Adelson?  That's some big money, and it is going to Tea Party-types.  Whether it's enough to counter the money from the not-insane conservatives, I don't know.  I think the Kochs and their ilk will, like corporate donors, spread the money around in hope of being able to exert influence even if the non-TP candidate wins.

    But what do I know - I probably shouldn't have even waded into this discussion, lest I be accused of advocating for a GOP candidate...(yes, that was snark!).


    You (none / 0) (#138)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:09:02 AM EST
    are mistaken about splitting the vote between Cruz and Rubio. Tea partiers do not like Rubio because he has signaled that he will deal on immigration reform something that the tea partiers are dead set against. Ted Cruz has the tea party vote locked up right now.

    The Repub that I once thought (none / 0) (#155)
    by christinep on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:29:36 PM EST
    incredibly dumb may have learned something new.  Rand Paul lately has been doing a straddle between both factions (and associated potential candidates) that you identify, jbindc.  A little bit here, a little bit there ... what odds of success would Paul have?  A mid-westerner? A Libertarian? Possible compromise between the moderate and Tea Party wings?  

    I'm thinking about a person in our condo building who has been a supporter of Rand Paul for more than a few years ... this person and his wife look, talk, act the part of moderate; he is a lawyer with international clientele and she is a designer; they have homes in Aspen and Kentucky; and, for real, they have substantial involvement in the Lexington horse community.  Only one couple ... but, as this society-type couple come and go from Aspen and Lexington, I'm still perplexed at the connection?


    Ruy Texiera has a guest post up at (none / 0) (#151)
    by Anne on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:12:24 PM EST
    Think Progress that seems fitting for this discussion.

    Why Chris Christie Won't Take On The Tea Party

    An excerpt:

    This brings us to Christie's second big problem. No matter how moderate his positions may be on certain issues -- and there are only a few; as Isaac Chotiner recently noted, he is fundamentally quite conservative -- he is unlikely to retain these positions through the Republican primary process. If he wants to win, that is.

    This can be seen from someterrific data assembled by Alan Abramowitz in a recent post on Sabato's Crystal Ball. For starters, he shows data from the 2012 National Election Study demonstrating just how different Tea Party Republicans are from not just the overall electorate but even from other Republicans. Note especially the huge gaps on social and economic issues.

    [snip - there's a chart]

    But here's the killer chart. This looks at Tea Party supporters (and strong supporters) as a share of Republicans, again using NES data. As the charts shows, Tea Party supporters are 52 percent of all Republicans, 57 percent of general election voters, 64 percent of primary voters (Christie strategists take note!), 76 percent of rally attendees and a remarkable 80 percent of donors. Wow:

    [snip - another chart]

    That's the gauntlet Christie has to run to get the nomination. Not much will be left of Christie the moderate if and when he gets to the other side. And not much will be left of Christie, the savior of the GOP, either.

    So, the conclusion seems to be that a moderate who has to move to the right to get the nomination isn't going to be saving the GOP, much less taking the WH.

    But, we are still a good year out from serious jockeying for position - I just don't see the GOP/TP tinkering much with their game plan.


    Sure (none / 0) (#154)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:27:23 PM EST
    But again, that assumes that not only does Ted Cruz run, but other Tea Party favorites (Paul Ryan, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, et al) stay out of the race (Note how that is not factored in). You could have tons of Tea Party voters show up, but if there is more than one Tea Party favorite on the ballot, the votes will be split, and it would be very easy for a Christie or Bush to win in places where they wouldn't be thought of to win or at least place second and rack up delegates.

    Add to that, it will be a much shorter primary season, so there won't be two years of debates and such, forcing the candidates to constantly go all in crazy. That IS a big tinkering to the game plan for starters.

    I also think it is in the best interest of liberal bloggers and liberal media outlets to continue to pushing this idea.  Are they right?  I have no idea.  But it also doesn't hurt their cause to constantly overstate and spin.  That's what they get paid to do.

    Right now this is all a parlor game.  Many things can happen in the next 2 years to change the landscape.  Remember, the mantra in 2008 was that the Republican Party was dead.  Two years later, they kicked the Dems' butts up and down all over.

    Nothing, is certain in politics, especially this far out.


    You really (none / 0) (#162)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:20:55 PM EST
    don't know much about the tea party do you?

    Paul Ryan supports immigration reform so he's out.
    Santorum is called Mr. Bridge to Nowhere.
    Rick Perry fell flat on his face last time. He'll probably do that yet again.

    There are no tea party darlings outside of Cruz and maybe Rand Paul. The rest of the guys you listed are either no longer liked or on the outs for various reasons.

    And even if Cruz and Paul split the tea party vote (unlikely to happen for long even if it does happen) there's still no room for Christie to win with the majority of voters being tea partiers.

    There is ZERO evidence right now that supports anything you are saying and movements like the tea party historically have taken a number of election cycles to peter out. Their views are very much outside the mainstream of politics BUT they either realize that and don't care or they don't realize it yet.


    And (none / 0) (#163)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:22:52 PM EST
    There is ZERO evidence right now that supports anything you are saying and movements like the tea party historically have taken a number of election cycles to peter out

    There is ZERO evidence right now that supports that a Tea Party candidate will win the nomination.

    So let's wait and see, hmmm?


    There (none / 0) (#167)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:30:10 PM EST
    is plentiful evidence that supports a Tea Party candidate. Do the math from Anne's post above. It is impossible for a non tea party candidate to win the GOP primary right now. Those are the people that come out and vote in the primaries.

    "Right now" (none / 0) (#169)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:50:23 PM EST
    Being the operative word in your comment.

    If you want to use that standard, then you will love this poll, which says that "right now", Romney would be in a good position to beat Obama if the election were held today. Guess what?  This means nothing.  Nada. Zip.  Nil.  nothing

    You know how much "right now" matters as to what happens in 2016?

    You guessed it.  IT DOESN'T. Even if you'd like to keep saying it - that doesn't make it true.


    What is going to change (none / 0) (#171)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 03:13:58 PM EST
    the trajectory? The tea party has taken over the GOP. Do you think they are just going to throw up their hands and quit?

    Tell me how are the demographics going to change for the GOP in the next three years? News flash: they aren't. The only thing that is going to happen is more Republicans are going to die so they GOP is probably going to have less voters. Tell me what the GOP is doing to moderate it's image? Is it changing it's stance on anything to modernize the party? No, they are not. It's pretty easy to predict what they are going to do because they are doing NOTHING TO CHANGE their voting base and are actively running off potential voters with their crackpot ideas.


    If you say so. (none / 0) (#172)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 03:19:27 PM EST
    I agree (none / 0) (#174)
    by sj on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 04:07:19 PM EST
    they are doing NOTHING TO CHANGE their voting base and are actively running off potential voters with their crackpot ideas.
    I think the voting demographics may change as much or more for the Democratic party as they will for the GOP, as even more of those disaffected Republicans seek a home away from the crazies.

    And which way do you think the courtship dance for voters will go? Will the Dems court the left-wing? Or the disaffected Republicans?

    Yeah, that's what I think, too. The question is, what will the left-wing do with a party where Republicans can settle and and mostly be comfortable? Frankly, I think there is still "hope" and that the exodus will come much later than maybe it should. I think most will stay put for now.

    It's really not very easy to leave one's political affiliation behind.


    Well, (none / 0) (#177)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:19:17 PM EST
    what eventually is going to happen to the tea party is the GOP moderates are going to squash them like a bug but they can't do it right now. Too much control within the GOP by the tea party.

    I have no idea about left wing right wing but whoever the Dem nominee is will probably be able to move left because the country is moving left and the GOP has become so repellent that the Dem will look good in comparison.

    I actually don't think the moderates are going to exit the GOP. It looks to me like they are going to stay and fight but it is going to take some doing before they come back on top. FWIW I think the GOP loses once again in 2016 and the moderates aim all their barrels at the tea party blaming them for all their losses. I mean by then the GOP would have been through two losing presidential cycles.


    From your mouth (5.00 / 1) (#180)
    by sj on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:47:23 PM EST
    to God's ears. But if you are right and
    "the Dem nominee is will probably be able to move left because the country is moving left and the GOP has become so repellent that the Dem will look good in comparison"
    I would like to point out that just because the Dem nominee could move left, that doesn't mean s/he would move left.

    After all, the Dem standard-bearer chose not to do that.


    I'm excited about Christie... (none / 0) (#134)
    by unitron on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:54:37 AM EST
    ...doing well enough to come in second in '16 if it blocks someone else from getting the GOP nod who would come in first in the fall, but we may need the Tea Party to deny him the nomination and give it to one of their own who won't have a chance in the general.

    I really hate that we can't cast votes of -1, 0, and +1 for everybody on the ballot.


    His (none / 0) (#116)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:03:06 AM EST
    problem is that the tea partiers are the ones that vote in the primary. What states exactly would he carry in the GOP primary? Probably the same ones John McCain carried in 2000.

    And if he really wants to win the primary he's going to have to sign onto all the crackpot tea party ideas rendering him unelectable in a general election.


    That assumes (none / 0) (#117)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 08:10:12 AM EST
    that there won't be more than one Tea Party candidate who won't split the votes.

    I dunno - Mitt Romney won the nomination, and he wasn't a Tea Partier.  And he had a very prolonged, drawn out nominating season.  That won't happen this time.

    I just think his comments strike me as someone who is running and is not afraid of the Tea Party.


    Who (none / 0) (#140)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:16:42 AM EST
    is the other tea party candidate besides Cruz? Rand Paul maybe but I don't think he could make it through the primary with the plagiarism stuff he has.

    You don't understand. It's NOT the same as it was in 2008 and 2012. Those years the GOP establishment had control of things. As you can see from the debt ceiling debacle the tea party has the GOP by the short hairs and is pulling on them. Do you really think that tea partiers are going to show up for yet another "establishment" candidate who they believe is going to lose? They are absolutely convinced that  the demographics and everything is against them and they are going to lose no matter who the Dems put up. So in their minds they might as well go with someone they like  aka Ted Cruz vs. someone they loathe like Christie.


    Shrug (none / 0) (#141)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:25:11 AM EST
    Like I have said before - there are 3 years for them to fight it out and show more and more how crazy they are. The Republican governors and legislators (and their machines) in the Midwest and West will coalesce around a Christie or Jeb Bush and not around a Ted Cruz.

    And I don't see whatever power the Tea Party has in 2016,  that they will just sit back and lose on "principle" and have another 4-8 years of a Democrat in the White House. I just don't. They can barely contain themselves now.

    The only people that is good for are the Rush Limbaughs of the world because it's an easier job to criticize the people in power when they are not of your party.

    We'll see.  It's three years away. But my point was that if Christie was concerned that the Tea Party might present a challenge to him in the primary process, he wouldn't be giving speeches like this.


    So (none / 0) (#145)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:55:39 AM EST
    what if they coalesce around a candidate? They are absolutely sure that those governors are part of the establishment and hence part of the problem. I don't know why you refuse to acknowledge the fact that it does not matter what these people say, the tea partiers are not listening.

    But you don't seem to understand that the tea party thinks that people like Christie are SURE LOSERS in a general election--a repeat of McCain and Romney.

    Sure it's good for the Limbaughs of the world but do you see the GOP cracking down on him or Fox News? They are HUGE part of the GOP's problem but they can't directly go after them because they have allowed them to become too powerful.

    Did you notice how they reacted to Christie working with Obama? They are of the mindset that if they are going to have to vote for someone like him they might as well just sit home. They want someone who will stand up on principal and winning with Christie would be the same as losing to them.

    Christie is making speeches like that because there is no one else doing it. It's not like he has anything to lose by doing that because like i have said 100 times before the tea partiers hate him. That speech is not going to make them hate him anymore than they already do. It also guarantees he will not win the primary.


    Like I said (none / 0) (#146)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:01:25 AM EST
    It's three years away - making a definitive prediction about what the Tea Party will or will not allow is ridiculous.

    It is (5.00 / 1) (#148)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:21:53 AM EST
    easy to predict what they are going to do. It's the same thing they have been doing for three years now. It's going to continue.

    They are convinced that candidates are not winning because they are not conservative enough. They are going to have to see more of their candidates go down in flames before they realize this. As long as the GOP holds the house the tea party is going to continue. The only thing that will end what they are doing is a complete loss of all three branches of government.


    Or get (none / 0) (#160)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:04:15 PM EST
    a Tea Partier like this:

    For those who expect and fear an irrepressible conflict between the tea party and the Republican establishment, Sen. Mike Lee of Utah is a hopeful anomaly. Should this anomaly become a trend, the GOP's future would be considerably brighter.

    Lee's tea party qualifications are beyond question. He co-founded the congressional Tea Party Caucus. He helped discover Ted Cruz. His advocacy for the government shutdown was impeccably irrational. Lee is a man in whom FreedomWorks can find no fault.


    The subtext here is not a challenge to establishment Republicanism, which would offer no ideological objection to the role of government that Lee described. The real contrast is with libertarianism, particularly of the Rand Paul variety. And Lee has come close to making his criticism explicit. "Freedom means `we're all in this together,' " he said. "The conservative vision for America is not an Ayn Rand novel. It's a Norman Rockwell painting, or a Frank Capra movie: a nation of `plain, ordinary kindness, and a little looking out for the other fellow, too.' "

    This is a good, general prescription for Republican recovery: More Frank Capra. Less Ayn Rand.

    Lee's specific agenda -- increasing the child tax credit, promoting flextime, building transportation infrastructure and replacing Obamacare with a market-oriented alternative -- is only half formed. But it is well within the broad tradition of reform conservatism, of empowerment conservatism, even (though Lee would probably be loath to admit it) of compassionate conservatism.

    An opinion piece? (5.00 / 1) (#164)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:27:01 PM EST
    And yet the last time I saw Lee's numbers in Utah they were tanking. He might be SAYING those things but his actions do not back it up. He was one of the big proponents of the government shut down along with Cruz.

    The writer is right that the tea partiers are a bunch of angry irrational people in general but the GOP has been coddling their resentments for close to 50 years now. It is not going to be undone anytime soon and then you have talk radio and Fox to keep the resentment going. Like I said above until the GOP does something about talk radio and Fox news, this is going to be a big problem for them.


    So a Guy in Brooklyn... (none / 0) (#128)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:32:06 AM EST
    ...goes up on the roof to get a view and runs into a couple breaking up.  

    What's he to do ?  Tweet it of course.

    My favorite part is when the guy stops and says:

    Are we getting pizza or what? I don't mean to change the subject but are we?

    Hilarious (none / 0) (#129)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:34:47 AM EST
    yet awkward.

    Thanks for sharing!


    It's being reporterd that Creigh Deeds (none / 0) (#130)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:41:08 AM EST
    former Dem Governor nominee (and current state senator) from Virginia was stabbed by his son this morning (in serious condition). His son then killed himself.

    Make that critical condition (none / 0) (#133)
    by CoralGables on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 09:49:25 AM EST
    How tragic. (none / 0) (#158)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 01:55:57 PM EST
    It's being reported by local media in western Virginia that 24-year-old Gus Deeds, a former student at the College of William & Mary, had long been an emotionally troubled young man. Don't know much more than that, or even if that report is accurate. His parents separated and divorced in 2010.

    It gets worse... (5.00 / 2) (#159)
    by Anne on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:02:41 PM EST
    From the Richmond Times-Dispatch (my emphasis):

    Dennis Cropper, executive director of the Rockbridge County Community Services Board, told the Richmond Times-Dispatch that the emergency custody order, or ECO, allowed Gus Deeds to be held as long as four hours to determine whether he should be held longer, up to 48 hours, under a temporary detention order.

    The son was evaluated Monday at Bath Community Hospital, Cropper said, but was released because no psychiatric bed could be located across a wide area of western Virginia.

    This is just (5.00 / 2) (#179)
    by Zorba on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:25:19 PM EST
    so sad.  No psychiatric beds?  This might well have been prevented if only we were willing to devote enough resources to mental health care.

    Oops (none / 0) (#149)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 11:37:39 AM EST
    Woman cited by President as Obamacare success story frustrated by sign up process

    It's not really the process at this point - it's the fact that the original quote she received has been changed at least twice and has doubled (and she will receive no tax credits nor subsidies).

    Before the flamers start, this was not Obama's fault.  This was the result of poor vetting by the WH staff - this should have been checked, double checked, triple checked and vetted with the state before the presdient held her up as an example.  

    This is going to make a lot more people nervouse about signing up.

    This is the problem with WA State site (5.00 / 3) (#153)
    by shoephone on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:25:25 PM EST
    I was linking to the other day. Gov. Inslee is touting how great it is that over 20,000 people have signed up through the WA Health Finder site, but roughly 8,000 of those were given the shaft just like Jessica Stanford: the premiums were hugely misquoted, amounting to an average $100 mistake by the state.

    When you notify people after they've signed up that they really owe $100 more per month than you told them before, it looks and feels like a bait-and-switch.

    I spoke to the governor's office yesterday about the fact that they provided absolutely no education campaign or outreach at all to WA residents in the weeks before the website went up. And in the last three weeks, Inslee has been too busy kissing corrupt Boeing a$$ with outrageous tax breaks again to pay attention to this so-called great achievement of the WA health care exchange.

    In the meantime, I've been patiently waiting for them to get their act together so I can find insurance, because I have two medical issues that need attention and I can't afford to pay full price on treatments. Looks like I will have to go the luddite route and spend hours on the phone with a health finder representative, and get signed up that way. What a f*cking mess.


    As well he should. (none / 0) (#166)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 02:28:14 PM EST
    shoephone: "And in the last three weeks, Inslee has been too busy kissing corrupt Boeing a$$ with outrageous tax breaks again to pay attention to this so-called great achievement of the WA health care exchange."

    In fact, you guys should feel so honored to have Boeing in your state that you should one-up Long Beach, and offer to pay for the design and manufacture of the B-777X aircraft yourselves!


    But seriously, the stellar record of accomplishment over the decades at Boeing's manufacturing plants in Washington state and Long Beach speaks for itself. And given that their chronically troubled rollout of the B-787 aircraft -- which included multiple delays totaling nearly 24 months, and a subsequent grounding of the plane a few months ago -- was actually much worse than the Obama administration's rollout of the ACA, Boeing is clearly thinking twice about their use of cheaper non-union labor in South Carolina and Kansas.

    Facing stiff competition from Airbus and rising Brazilian manufacturer Embraer, Boeing really can't afford another embarrassing PR and marketing fiasco like that, which ultimately cost them several billion dollars in cancelled or deferred aircraft orders. Public officials in both southern California and western Washington hold some serious cards here, and should not be so quick to give away the store in order to entice Boeing to do what it's probably already going to do anyway.



    Actually, the 787 was three years late (5.00 / 2) (#173)
    by shoephone on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 03:56:16 PM EST
    and after the Italians, the Chinese and the non-unionized, low-wage, low-skilled workers in South Carolina f*cked up the manufacture of parts, guess who saved Boeing's butt by rebuilding those parts so they would be safe and actually work right? Yep. The crew in Everett, WA. So, the $3.2 billion in tax breaks they were handed to secure (only) jobs for final assembly here was flushed down the toilet with all those needed repairs and delays. Inslee and the cowed legislature pushed through nearly 3 times that much ($8.7 billion) for only getting final assembly of the 777x.

    I support the machinists. Not only because the new  contract would have cut all the gains that have been hard-won over the years, but because the machinists and Boeing have an existing contract that doesn't expire until 2016. Basically, the Boeing brass (who made more in bonuses last year than any Boeing worker will ever make in a year's salary) used Inslee to try and breach that contract.

    After Boeing moved their headquarters to Chicago in 2001, the writing was on the wall. The company has proven again and again that they have no loyalty to Washington State and the longtime, highly skilled crew that has made them the Fortune 500 company they are.

    Can you tell I'm pretty mad about this? As my mom would say, "Don't get me started!"


    Agreed. (5.00 / 1) (#188)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:44:31 PM EST
    Boeing's loss of market share, in particular to European rival Airbus, is directly correlated to the company's questionable corporate decision making and its anti-labor activities over the last 15 years, which induced a major Defense Dept. procurement scandal in 2004 and then the 787 fiasco.

    The Boeing executive suite's 2001 move to Chicago, which was done solely at the behest of then-CEO Phil Condit (who was later forced out in the aforementioned procurement scandal), served only to underscore its increased detachment and isolation from the company's core operations and roots in the Puget Sound region.

    Further, with its 1995 merger with McDonnell Douglas Corp., which added the St. Louis-based Boeing defense group and Long Beach, CA facilities, as well as the subsequent 1996 purchase of Rockwell Aerospace and Defense and 2000 purchase of Hughes Space and Communications, Boeing shifted from a company that had been primarily involved in commercial aircraft production into one that was half commercial, half defense and space, and spread across the United States.

    One could argue that with these mergers and acquisitions, Boeing effectively lost its focus and drifted away from what it did best, and allowed quality control to take a back seat to short-term shareholder interests, which ended up frittering away company assets and serving neither labor nor shareholders well over the long term.



    Exactly right, Donald. (none / 0) (#200)
    by shoephone on Wed Nov 20, 2013 at 01:03:01 AM EST
    The focus totally changed, as did the faces of the honchos running the joint, especially with the swallowing up of McDonnell-Douglas. And, authoritarians that they are, they like to hold all the top spots, with no interference. Jay McInerny is president, chairman of the board, and CEO of "The Boeing Company," while Ray O'Connor is executive vice-president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Pretty cushy to have that much power concentrated among two people, huh? The icing on the cake is that Obama appointed McInerny chairman of the President's Export Council.

    McInerny is a total corporate bast@rd, while O'Connor, who joined the company way back in 1977 -- as a machinist! -- should know better.

    As for Phil Condit, he was known to be a traitor from day one, so the move to Chicago was no surprise. But, oy, that wife of his...they bought a house right around the corner from me just weeks before the HQ move, and then she stayed for months, acting as general contractor on a remodel to flip the place in hopes of making a cool million. One day she asked me to come over and look at the place mid-project (I was running my painting company then) to brag about all the great things she was going to with the remodel. It quickly became clear to me that she had no idea what she was doing! She broke zoning codes, antagonized all the neighbors, and ending up selling the house two years later for no profit. The 'hood was glad to be rid of her. And Seattle was glad to be rid of the both of them.

    What a bunch of mobsters.


    When I f8ck up a quote... (none / 0) (#152)
    by kdog on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 12:18:03 PM EST
    there is no saying "sorry"...we honor the quote, my boss gotta eat it, and I might lose my job.  

    Where's the responsibility on the part of the WA exchange and the insurance companies selling through the exchange?  They should get together and honor the f8ckin' original quote.


    Republican Congressman (none / 0) (#181)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:02:17 PM EST
    arrested last month for misdemeanor possession of cocaine.

    Woo Hoo! (5.00 / 2) (#186)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:08:24 PM EST
    In your face, Toronto!

    Supreme Court (none / 0) (#182)
    by jbindc on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 06:06:02 PM EST
    Beyond Tea Party (none / 0) (#194)
    by Politalkix on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 10:36:28 PM EST
    Pail Ryan re-inventing himself. link

    For a conservative, Jack Kemp, should be a good role model.

    Can "compassionate conservatism" win in 2016?