Saturday Open Thread

I've been working on the Wordpress version of TalkLeft since Xmas Eve. I just put up an open thread there, so you can help me see what the comment section will look like with a lot of comments. If you have a few minutes, please check it out and let me know what you think in the comments. You have to be registered to leave a comment, but it just takes a few seconds and you can use the same user name you use here. Since it's an open thread, you don't have to write about the site, you can write about whatever you want -- both there and here.

I don't have a specific date for it to replace this site, but I'm getting closer.

Again, all topics welcome, here and there.

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    I sure hope these become (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:27:43 PM EST
    an affordable option in the next 5 - 10 years.

    Fully Functional Driverless Car

    People are promoting this idea for safety reasons but think of how much these cars would help older seniors maintain their independence. Older seniors often have to give up driving at night or even driving altogether. For me, the ability to drive is part of my remaining independent. The idea of having to rely on others to take me to do simple tasks like get groceries etc. is totally abhorrent to me.

    They say (none / 0) (#20)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 06:30:20 PM EST
    technology is not the problem.  That it pretty much already exists.  But the problem is acceptance.  

    Haven't clicked your link yet.


    No regulations or safety standards (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 06:53:33 PM EST
    Exist at the moment. Other issues:

    Some of the questions that need to be addressed include determining which traffic laws must be enforced, what happens if and when computers freeze up or are hijacked, and how to manage alternating control between the car and the human driver. There's also the question of whether a person needs to be in the vehicle at all, let alone a licensed driver. Despite these concerns, there is a general consensus that driverless cars should be safer than human-driven vehicles.

    The pedal to the metal folks might find it hard to give up control but other demographics might find it a blessing.


    Anything that makes humans use less brain power... (none / 0) (#77)
    by Dadler on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 10:35:14 AM EST
    ...is not good. Ever. IMO, of course.

    GPS is already atrophying parts of the human brain involved in directional memory.

    We'd all be better off using our hands and feet and eyes and brains as MUCH as we can, not as little.

    In short, driverless cars are like drones to me, like artificial intelligence -- not a good thing for humanity on the whole.

    But I could be wrong. If you ask my wife, she's say it's a pretty good bet.

    Peace out.


    Well some oF us dont have (5.00 / 2) (#78)
    by MO Blue on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 10:45:09 AM EST
    Directional memory to lose. I'm one of them. I'm all for exercising the brain and when I'm 90 I'd like my driverless car take me to numerous activities where I can do just that as well as personally interact with people.

    Speaking of memory loss (none / 0) (#83)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 11:41:25 AM EST
    i just saw a report on a Springfield TV station about what seems to be the most serious effort yet to get a "legalize pot" initiative on the ballot in '16 in MO.   I was surprised at the polling.  Something like 51 49 against.
    If it happens I may have to temporarily change my residence to my cousins house two miles away so I can vote.

    Given where we live, (none / 0) (#86)
    by Zorba on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:24:43 PM EST
    when we get to the point where we can't drive safely, or even just can't drive at night, we will have to move.  There is no public transportation up here.  A driverless car would make it possible to stay where we now live, which we love, longer.
    I'm okay with directional memory.  Not great, but I've learned to be pretty good at reading a map.  Daughter Zorba is hopeless with directional memory.  Her cell phone, with its GPS, has been a lifesaver for her.
    (Son Zorba, OTOH, seems to have been born with some kind of internal GPS.  He can get from anywhere to anywhere else.  Even if he's in a strange area, he always knows which way is north, south, etc, and which way to travel that will get him close enough to some place he knows.)

    That is my point (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by MO Blue on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:09:45 PM EST
    For seniors of a certain age it would be a quality of life issue. IOW can we stay where we are now and still do the things we need or want to do.

    I am so directionally challenged that before mapquest, I developed a plan to compensate. I would get to an unfamiliar intersection and logically figure out which way to go and then turn in the opposite direction. This method wasn't fool proof but it worked much better than going by my directional compass. I might as well read Greek as a map. They would both make as much sense to me.

    We do have public transit but the closest bus stop is a mile or a mile and a half from my house. Can walk it now but seriously doubt I would be able to do it in a few years due to back and knee problems. Currently our city has a small bus that will pick a senior up and take them to certain things within the city's boundaries during the day. A better option than what you have, for sure but then again, I would have to rely on others to take me around and would be restricted to certain areas and in my activities at night. Independence to me is coming and going by myself. I would dearly love to have a driverless car when I'm not able to safely drive myself.  


    I totally agree (none / 0) (#93)
    by Zorba on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:47:43 PM EST
    It would definitely be a quality of life issue.  We love living in the country, the quiet, the natural beauty.  
    We have certainly lived in cities, and we could do so again, if need be, but our quality of life would be lowered.
    Our "nearest bus stop," BTW, is about 18 miles away.   ;-)
    Even cabs do not very willingly come up here, and they cost a small fortune.

    My 90 year old dad's best friend from (5.00 / 2) (#121)
    by ZtoA on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 04:00:02 AM EST
    chilhood (who I totally love too) has been testing these cars for several years. He had polio as a kid and his legs have never worked very well. But his brain.... his brain is and has always been brilliant! My dad is an emotionally horrid person but he is so not "directionally challenged" and always could place himself in directions and photographically remember any place he had ever been. He could/can not remember how to say words but when I drive him someplace he completely knows where and how I should turn the car. Pretty amazing. He also, BTW, remembers how to play classical piano - even when he was on the 'dementia ward' of his nice nursing home (I have now moved him to a 'higher' level since he has improved - probably partly because of the keyboard I had installed for him to play).

    Anyhoo, my dad's friend who has been driving and testing these driverless cars has said that they have been life saving for him. He now lives in 'the country' of AZ and has lived with the impact of polio for his whole life (his mother saved his life by massaging his limbs for hours every day during the depression and he went on to a very successful career and family). He has said that this technology has helped him stay in the 'lane' that he needs to be in to drive himself to a hospital. (I heard about his testing this around 5-6 years ago). And he still lives in his own home and does not need to impact govt care, which he is very grateful for.


    Like your son, Zorba, my own ... (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:54:29 PM EST
    ... navigational instincts are near-flawless. I've always been able to identify north, south, east and west without a compass for as long as I can remember, even at night.

    To describe how I utilize my own directional abilities, I first picture myself as a coordinate on a map, and then in my mind I plot my course to my destination from wherever I happen to be at that moment.

    (I once had a teacher in grade school who loved to use charts and maps in her instruction, and she awakened my own latent fascination with them. Maps have really become second nature to me.)

    Further, if and when I do happen to misplace myself and get lost, which does happen on occasion in urban areas on the mainland that are unknown or unfamiliar to me, I'm not at all afraid to inquire about directions.

    That's why I think GPS navigational features on our gadgets are totally cool. I mean, why waste time guessing where to go and what route to take, and then driving around without a clue, when assistance is readily available? To allow pride to dictate otherwise is to be enslaved by one's own ego.

    But on the other hand, please don't ask me where I last laid my car keys in my house or office. Or my glasses. Or the TV remote. Or my cell phone. (At least I can call my cell phone from our land line, and then hunt it down as it rings.)

    In our household, I've also long been known as "Whomee?" -- that mysterious and notorious in-house gremlin who's always picking up stuff unconsciously and walking off with them, and not returning them to its original and proper place when finished with them.

    As a result, I'm usually the very first one called out / yelled at when somebody can't find something, and I'm just as likely to be guilty as charged. As is the case with my navigational instincts, I've also been like that ever since I can remember.

    And please don't ever lend me your pen, unless it's one of those cheap ones you won't miss. I have a coffee cup on my desk at work that's chock full of pens, and I daresay most of them were lifted inadvertently from their original owners.



    You sound a lot like my son (5.00 / 2) (#105)
    by Zorba on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 03:14:19 PM EST
    He is always misplacing small objects.
    But set him down somewhere, and he can figure out where the heck he is.
    When he had his learner's driving permit, I would take him out to practice driving, on the highways, the nearest towns and cities, and our country back roads.  He always knew where he was, and how to get where we were going.
    One time, I had him drive to a very, very back road up here.  He immediately said, "oh, yes, my kindergarten bus used to come this way."  What the heck?  His kindergarten bus?  And he hadn't been on that road for eleven years!
    Before modern cell phones and GPS, even as a young kid, he would sometimes pipe up from the back seat of the car, "Dad, I think you're going the wrong way to X."  And by golly, he would invariably be right!

    Ah, but even the good is bad for some (none / 0) (#111)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 05:17:44 PM EST
    There may also be some climate and environmental benefits of driverless cars should they come to rule the road. Self-driving cars are highly efficient, could be powered by alternative forms of energy, and are deferential to pedestrians and people on bikes, which could help boost those forms of transportation. However, driverless cars could also make urban sprawl more appealing as cheaper, more convenient rides could encourage lower-density living and even hinder or reverse investment in public transportation infrastructure. Nonetheless, a recent study by the Rocky Mountain Institute found that when self-driving vehicles are combined with car sharing methods and new vehicle materials, overall CO2 emissions could drop "by up to 95 percent, even when considering the CO2 emitted from the electricity generation."

    Of course what we see here is the same thing that happened when horse drawn vehicles were replaced by cars...

    No more sparrows.


    Guesses are nice but (5.00 / 2) (#124)
    by MO Blue on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 08:24:41 AM EST
    They are just guesses. It is just as possible that driverless cars could reduce urban sprawl due to providing people like Zorba  the ability to remain in their home in the country rather than being forced into a city environment.

    Anything that reduces (5.00 / 2) (#131)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:05:19 AM EST
    nursing "homes" is good.

    Total agreement (5.00 / 2) (#133)
    by MO Blue on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:18:54 AM EST
    I'm also very big on things that are quality of life issues even if they don't result in the need to go into an extended care or skilled care environment.

    Many of the activities that I participate in that keep me physically and mentally active occur at night. In some circles, I'm a "youngster" but my friends and I are all aging so we will all reach a point where even getting rides to these activities will be challenging if not impossible to find.


    Agreement?? I thought I felt the earth (none / 0) (#138)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:46:38 AM EST
    move. And, as a side note, if we can agree from time to time you have to wonder why the Repubs and Demos can't... but let's don't go there.

    Speaking of unintended consequences from technology shifts I think the Internet made blogging possible and brought on Facebook, etc which has kept many senior citizens' mind active and connected.

    From a political view point there is no way the Tea Party could have existed pre Internet and ISIS is proving adept at using it to expand and recruit.

    I'd say that, in the US, the Internet has shifted the US away from a Constitutional Republic towards a democracy. The jury is still out as to if that is good or bad.


    Don't stand up yet, Jim (none / 0) (#152)
    by Zorba on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    The earth may move for you once again.
    I also second MOBlue's agreement with your reducing nursing homes comment.   ;-)
    Have a Happy New Year!

    Sparrows aren't native to the Americas (none / 0) (#123)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:52:51 AM EST
    So forgive me if I'm not choked up about their disappearance due to the popularity of this new-fangled horseless carriage.

    Sigh..... (none / 0) (#127)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:29:58 AM EST
    The point, of course, is that there are always winners and losers when technology provides us a way to have new devices. Cellphones have almost eliminated phone booths. Travel agents by computers.  The most famous, of course, buggy makers by cars. Etc, etc.

    Of course the GPS, which is one of the  key enablers of driverless cars, has impacted map publishers and I speculate hits on Mapquest and Google maps. Like others I don't need a GPS. I can read a map, remember the directions and proceed. I use to hunt and have never been lost. I have been like this all my life. Don't know why. Probably genetic. It has always been a mostly useless trait in this modern world but would have been a great advantage in a hunter/gather society.

    Like several here I am hopeful for a quick introduction of the cars because, at age 76, I expect various physical difficulties to impact my ability to drive in coming years.

    The sparrows bit is a paraphrase from, if I remember right, an Ogden Nash poem about cars replacing horses thus reducing horse manure as a food source for the birds......of course they now have the blogosphere...feeding cyber sparrows????



    Well, given the regurgitation (none / 0) (#130)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:52:08 AM EST
    Of Fox News you perform on a regular basis here, I can see why you'd be sympathetic to birds that perform a similar function in real life.



    Outside of the fact that my (none / 0) (#134)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:29:14 AM EST
    comment says nothing about my being "sympathetic" to sparrows I do quote FNC from time to time.

    As well as CNN, WSJ, MSNBC, NYT, etc.... Why don't you make yourself useful and give us a scorecard???

    Now, what are you trying to accomplish outside of a personal attack??

    And yes, sparrows were imported. Along with other species. Take the Burmese Python now in FL... some uninformed people thought they made good pets....


    Yes, picking the facts from (none / 0) (#135)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:32:59 AM EST
    The bull hockey Fox News peddles is a tedious business, and I just thought you were sympathetic to the sparrows because of that.

    And why is it an attack (none / 0) (#137)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:46:33 AM EST
    To point out the obvious?  That Fox News is what you overwhelming quote here, followed by TWSJ, and the other networks, rarely and usually when you want to  bash Obama and/or anyone to the Left of you, many, of whom, according to you, are in a "Blame America First" crowd.

    Ah, yes, it finally makes sense now.

    And you shouldn't whine about snark if you are dishing it out yourself, Jim.  Surely at some point in your education you've heard of the old saying about folks in glass houses and rocks, haven't you?

    As usual...........


    You are so angry and excited (none / 0) (#139)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:54:41 AM EST
    that you have to post two comments???

    My point is that the thread had nothing to do with politics. Just an enjoyable discussion re technology and how it changes the world.

    Again, why don't you provide us with a scorecard? It would give you something to do this morning and you could update it from time to time.

    Now, I'm done with this back and forth.


    Just had another thought (none / 0) (#142)
    by Mordiggian 88 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 11:45:14 AM EST
    So I added it.  Is that so hard to understand?

    As for angry and excited, that would exclude about 90% of your posts here if that standard were to be applied to you, but who,is keeping track here?


    I've always loved libraries (5.00 / 3) (#27)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 10:35:16 AM EST
    Whether it was wondering through the aisles of one of our branch libraries or going through the books on the bookmobile that use to our neighborhood when I was a child, libraries have always been a source of pleasure and knowledge.

    When ebooks first came out, my reaction was NEVER - I love my paper books. Well you know the old adage - Never say never. I still love paper books. I love the feel and the smell of them as well as the positive memories they invoke when holding them in my hands. But as I age and my lifestyle has changed somewhat I've come to appreciate the advantages of ebooks. Old hands tend to ache after holding a paper book after a while and old eyes tend to prefer larger print and more light. The lighter iPads or ebook readers solve both of these problems. When traveling it is so much easier to download a couple of ebooks from the library then add the weight of books to your carry on. Then there is the ease of selecting and returning ebooks from the comfort of your favorite armchair.

    My library now has an arrangement with hoopla that allows me to download movies, TV shows and music which I think I will enjoy. While they have newer TV series available, I chose an old Ellery Queen series as my first download. It presents all the clues and then challenges you to figure out whodoneit. I'm normally pretty good at this but failed completely last night.

    Bottom line, libraries are one of our great treasures. They open up the world for everyone who takes advantage of all they offer. I hope everyone supports their local library in every way you can.

    Was it the one.... (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by unitron on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 06:48:33 PM EST
    ...with Jim Hutton and David Wayne?

    Or something from even further back?


    The one with Jim Hutton (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by MO Blue on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:46:00 AM EST
    I have always liked whodoneits so this was right up my alley.

    The one thing (none / 0) (#30)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 11:26:41 AM EST
    or rather one of the things my little town does not have is a good library.  We have one but it svcks.  The upside being the librarian is my only close neighbor so she keeps me updated if anything good happens.  The closest good one is about 25-30 miles away but the one in a small town a couple of miles away in MO is better than ours.

    So far, we seem to be able (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:02:18 PM EST
    maintain good libraries in our area. Here in St. Louis County we are in the process of renovating several of our branches to improve the facilities. St. Louis County libraries are the busiest libraries in Mo. Luckily our voters are willing to support our libraries. This increase puts St. Louis County library tax  in the mid range of our area. So bottom line, throughout the area we value our libraries enough to pay for them.

    The passage of proposition L on November 6 will usher in a new era of advancement of St. Louis County Library. Proposition L, approved by 58% of the voters, increases the library's tax ceiling by 6 cents to 26 cents per $100 valuation. That mount will be sufficient to build new branches where needed, repair and remodel others, and enhance service at all 20 locations.

    Library Director Charles Pace thanked voters by saying, "We are proud that the voters of the library district had confidence in our vision for taking the St. Louis County Library into the future to benefit our children, families and seniors. The County Library is already one of the finest and most used libraries in the nation and, with these new resources, we will strive to make it the best."

    Our computer labs and computer access areas are always busy and the library supports various other on-site programs for the community. I feel very lucky that I have such a great resource available to me and my community.


    I spent many an hour (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by Zorba on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 02:17:02 PM EST
    at my local St. Louis County Library branch, way back in the Pleistocene Era when I was in high school, and later when I was attending college in St. Louis, doing research for assignments.  It was great even back then.

    BTW (none / 0) (#33)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:11:59 PM EST
    Here is a link to an overview of the St. Louis County Library system.

    St. Louis County Library

    While we have problems in other areas, we do some things right. I am very proud of our library system.


    The one in Thayer (none / 0) (#36)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:57:55 PM EST
    is not that bad and pretty new.  I plan to investigate Monday.

    Thanks for the heads up.


    Seems you can't cure stupid (5.00 / 4) (#28)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 10:58:52 AM EST
    FERGUSON, Mo. - The Ferguson Police Department's Public Information Officer (PIO) has been placed on unpaid leave, effective immediately, after responding to an inquiry from a Washington Post reporter regarding the destruction of the Michael Brown memorial.

    "I don't know that a crime has occurred," the Ferguson PIO told the Washington Post. "But a pile of trash in the middle of the street? The Washington Post is making a call over this?"

    The City of Ferguson released a statement Saturday evening stating the PIO admitted to making the remarks and misleading his superiors after being asked about the contents of the interview.


    Trash (none / 0) (#38)
    by Uncle Chip on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 01:50:49 PM EST
    Seems you can't cure stupid

    Nor that lying habit from the Ferguson Police Department.

    It's telling that he wasn't disciplined for calling what was in the street "trash", but for lying to his superiors.

    Lying to the public or to his inferiors or to  investigators or to a Grand Jury is acceptable -- but not to your superiors in the FPD.


    The reports are stating (none / 0) (#41)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 02:42:47 PM EST
    that the disciplinary action is for both. The department has issued a statement which states:

    "The City of Ferguson wants to emphasize that negative remarks about the Michael Brown memorial do not reflect the feelings of the Ferguson Police Department and are in direct contradiction to the efforts of city officials to relocate the memorial to a more secure location," the statement reads. It went on to emphasize that the "City of Ferguson and the Ferguson Police Department in particular, are focused on creating a trusting relationship with the entire community and taking impactful steps to improve the effectiveness of the department."

    Even if many members of the FPD share the PIO opinion, that is not the face that they want to present to the public.


    Zoll (none / 0) (#44)
    by Uncle Chip on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 03:57:34 PM EST
    I think this is what got him too:

    Officer Timothy Zoll, the Ferguson Police Department's public relations officer said no crime had been reported in connection to the memorial's destruction early Friday morning.

    So since no crime has been reported then none occurred -- according to Zoll. It has to be reported in order for it to have occurred -- according to him.

    Zoll suggested the department would look at any video of the incident, but did not specify whether the department would investigate after a vehicle allegedly ran over the memorial on Canfield Drive.

    And unless you have video footage of the crime they're not going to waste their time.

    I think Zoll's days there are numbered.


    Ok funny (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:35:15 PM EST
    i was just chatting with a friend who lives in NW AR.  Known since college, maybe my best friend.   He tells me he met someone so of course I want to know all about it.  Which is when he tells me he met them on, wait for it-
    Farmersonly.com.  We've all seen the lame commercials, yes?

    Wait, what?  Farmersonly.com has a gay section?  Oh yeah, he says.  You should check it out.  Weeeeellll, I'm not a farmer and honestly not that interested in making hay with one.   Suite yourself.  He says.
    So, you probably see where this is going.  I haven't told hIm yet but I had to check it out from pure curiosity and, holy sh!t.
    Who knew there was hundreds of gay farmers.  And cowboys. LOTS of cowboys.
    So what's one more web membership more or less, right.

    I've seen the lame commercials (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by sj on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 03:47:45 PM EST
    And your comment has me still laughing. Good luck!

    Just in case you city folks (none / 0) (#68)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:39:15 PM EST
    have never seen the lame commercials

    You may understand my surprise.


    So, James Risen isn't buying the whole (5.00 / 3) (#82)
    by Anne on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 11:24:12 AM EST
    "the war in Afghanistan is over" meme; check out his Twitter feed from yesterday.

    My favorite:

    The war in Afghanistan is over, the President says. The sky is green, the President says. The sun rises in the West, the President says.

    And this one:

    Mission Accomplished! I'm glad we ended the war in Afghanistan! Except for that part about the war.

    Marcy Wheeler reminds us of this NYT report, from November:

       President Obama decided in recent weeks to authorize a more expansive mission for the military in Afghanistan in 2015 than originally planned, a move that ensures American troops will have a direct role in fighting in the war-ravaged country for at least another year.

        Mr. Obama's order allows American forces to carry out missions against the Taliban and other militant groups threatening American troops or the Afghan government, a broader mission than the president described to the public earlier this year, according to several administration, military and congressional officials with knowledge of the decision. The new authorization also allows American jets, bombers and drones to support Afghan troops on combat missions.

        In an announcement in the White House Rose Garden in May, Mr. Obama said that the American military would have no combat role in Afghanistan next year, and that the missions for the 9,800 troops remaining in the country would be limited to training Afghan forces and to hunting the "remnants of Al Qaeda."

        The decision to change that mission was the result of a lengthy and heated debate that laid bare the tension inside the Obama administration between two often-competing imperatives: the promise Mr. Obama made to end the war in Afghanistan, versus the demands of the Pentagon that American troops be able to successfully fulfill their remaining missions in the country.

    The more things change, indeed.

    Ah, mais oui (5.00 / 2) (#85)
    by Zorba on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:15:11 PM EST
    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.
    Quel dommage!

    Even Fox Business News is saying (5.00 / 1) (#91)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:28:11 PM EST
    that US economy is in good shape. link However, true to form, they will never give credit to the President for anything. If things continue to move well in 2015, the Republican Congress will however get credit. And when ObamaCare becomes more successful and popular, they will find a way to drop the name "Obama" from ObamaCare. Their man crush on Putin is looking quite comical now while Putin is on the ropes because of the tanking Russian economy. I will of course confidently predict that this will not prevent them from strutting their foreign policy "vision" in 2016.

    ::shrug:: (5.00 / 1) (#108)
    by sj on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 03:50:01 PM EST
    The economy has been good for business for a long time. Hardly news. Even from Fox.

    FBI brief on SONY hack alt.theory (5.00 / 3) (#126)
    by Mr Natural on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:10:40 AM EST
    - Was it disgruntled ex employees?

    FBI agents investigating the Sony Pictures hack were briefed Monday by a security firm that says its research points to laid-off Sony staff, not North Korea, as the perpetrator -- another example of the continuing whodunit blame game around the devastating attack.

    Researchers from the cyber intelligence company Norse have said their own investigation into the data on the Sony attack doesn't point to North Korea at all and instead indicates some combination of a disgruntled employee and hackers for piracy groups is at fault.

    Ok (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:42:12 PM EST
    i registered at the new site and got the email with the new password.

    The problem seems to be the new site keeps trying to replace my password for this site which is of course not the correct password for the new  site.  I guessed that from the number of dots it keeps replacing for the new password when I hit login.  They are fewer.   I have tried resetting the password twice and I get this message

    Sorry, that key does not appear to be valid.

    With a place to request a reset of the password.  Again.

    Obviously I could use another username and email but I assume you want to know this instead.

    Have you had an account (none / 0) (#3)
    by nycstray on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:52:29 PM EST
    there before? Mine worked with my reg wordpress password, which it autofilled. And that was a good thing because I have no clue what password I used there :P

    I think that might be the problem (none / 0) (#4)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 03:54:37 PM EST
    that didn't occur to me so I assumed it was trying to use this pass word and requested a reset and now seem to be caught in a loop

    Have no idea what the new site (none / 0) (#6)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 04:07:28 PM EST
    Is doing or how it works.

    Had to reset password. That seemed to work o.k. But now when I go to new site all that comes up is the first 2 comments by nystray and when i try to reply to her that does work either.

    If at first you can't reply (none / 0) (#7)
    by nycstray on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 04:11:02 PM EST
    try refresh and see if it lets you. I had the same prob, but thought it was me. After I refreshed the page, it worked fine.

    I was able to reply after going back in (none / 0) (#9)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 04:19:14 PM EST
    but when I first went into the new site there were comments by more people. I remember seeing a comment by Zorba and one by Scott. Now all I see are your comments and comments by Jeralyn.

    Do you see any other comments?


    O.K. Was able to reply to (none / 0) (#8)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 04:13:01 PM EST
    one of nycstray's comments this time  but comments by Scott, Zorba etc. are not showing up.

    are you still not seeing all the comments? (none / 0) (#18)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:51:04 PM EST
    I think there are 23 right now.

    Everything seems to be (none / 0) (#19)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 06:18:41 PM EST
    O.K. now. New comments are showing up and I am able to reply without having to refresh the site.



    Can't seem to find a preview function (none / 0) (#22)
    by MO Blue on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 07:31:28 PM EST
    Does that function currently exist and if so, how do you do it.

    I just went to the new site and logged in with (none / 0) (#10)
    by Angel on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 04:22:41 PM EST
    no problem and posted a test comment.  Going to take some time getting used to the new site.  

    Cannot seem to log in there (none / 0) (#11)
    by Zorba on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:21:36 PM EST
    with my previously-existing WordPress log-in info.
    And I am an active WordPress user on other sites.
    Have requested a "new password" from the WordPress Talk Left site, but I haven't heard back from it yet.
    If that doesn't work, I guess I will say "Sayonara" to Talk Left, and I'll be seeing you all somewhere else.  Maybe.
    And if this totally screws up my ability to access those other Wordpress sites that I normally do, I'm going to be really, really unhappy.  

    PS (none / 0) (#12)
    by Zorba on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:28:03 PM EST
    And also, my current TalkLeft log-in does not work there, either.
    I don't know what the he!! is going on with it, vis a vis me, but I'm not going to spend much more time on this.
    If anyone wants to contact me for recipes and such after the changeover, and if I am still not able to access the new site,  you are welcome to use my email on my User Info page.

    The same thing happened to me (none / 0) (#13)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:32:58 PM EST
    it keeps autofilling your old Wordpress password instead of the one you are trying to enter, right?

    I got around it by using a different email address and a slightly different user name Capt.Howdy instead of CaptHowdy.

    J then said I was registered under both emails but I was never able to use the original.  It's seems to get caught in an endless loop of changing my password.

    Hope this helps


    I was also logged out of TalkLeft temporarily (none / 0) (#14)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:34:25 PM EST
    but I was able to log in again.  If you don't know your password you can request a new one.

    Oh (none / 0) (#15)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:35:18 PM EST
    check the spam folder.  It took me a while to find it.  That's where it was.

    One more (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:40:52 PM EST
    nystray got in using the old Wordpress password.  So it should not effect your other Wordpress locations.

    I think mine only screwed up because I did not understand what was happening and tried to change it.

    Shorter version, check your spam folder and use your old password .


    Okay, thanks Howdy (none / 0) (#17)
    by Zorba on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 05:48:54 PM EST
    The email was in the spam folder.
    So far, so good.  We shall see whether it screws up my other WordPress stuff or not.  

    Automata (none / 0) (#23)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 27, 2014 at 08:42:57 PM EST
    this was on the 1.99 PPV channel today.

    I had read about it.  And some unfavorable reviews but I was surprised how much I liked it.  

    Decades into the future, an environmental catastrophe has turned earth into a decaying wasteland. A few wretched specimens of humanity survive by using a mix of old and new technologies. Everything is grimy and gritty. Oh, and there are robots. If this sounds like a story you've heard before, join the club. These are some of the most tired, weatherworn elements of dystopian sci-fi, a genre that has been ticking along for almost as long as the motion picture itself. But they are given an enchanting new lease on life in Automata, an ambitious film by fledgling Spanish director Gabe Ibàñez, which opens in the US in limited release and on-demand on Friday, October 10th. Don't let the familiar images in the previews dissuade you: this is a richly atmospheric, lovingly detailed movie that is a must-see for any sci-fi fan.

    Automata gets so many things right, especially when it comes to world building. Ibàñez, who came up as a visual effects artist, decided early on to create his robots using practical effects -- full-scale puppetry -- rather than relying on CGI. The results are impressively authentic.  A robot beggar with a staticy voice caught on loop, pleading for money on behalf of its human owner, who lies curled up beside it in a darkened tunnel, is almost profound.

    If the props and scenery are the root of Automata's success, it's the cast that sells the rest of the film. Antonio Banderas, who has had a long career playing both a romantic strongman and a psychopath in various movies.......Robert Forster, who received wide praise for his guest-starring role toward the end of Breaking Bad's run, is also superbly cast as Jacq's hapless boss. Dylan McDermott, who seems to relish taking on increasingly unsavory characters, gets to be more despicable than ever as a drug-addled corrupt cop. The fact that Melanie Griffith and Javier Bardem lend their voices as robots seems almost too good to be true, but there they are (Griffith also appears briefly as a black market, human mechanic).

    Some thoughts on "The Interview"... (none / 0) (#24)
    by lentinel on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:40:27 AM EST
    These comments contain some spoilers...

    I found the film to be amusing - and some outright laughs - and an interesting satire. That is, for the most part. It deteriorates into pure propaganda at the end. Unfortunate.

    At its best, it is reminiscent of "Dr. Strangelove" - with both sides, ours and the Commies, being lampooned in a pretty even fashion.

    Some funny lines include the Kim Jong-Un character, when asked by the American interviewer if he could see some of his tanks, answers, "F-ck yeah!". Things like that could even cause some optimism in the viewer, imo.

    One line I enjoyed was one of our people referred to John Kerry as an "oak-tree lookin' f-ck". I do really like irreverence - especially when it is well deserved.

    When all is said and done, however, the film does descend into propaganda - depicting Kim as truly evil and manipulative, and the CIA folks who are using the interviewers as assassins are left pretty much alone - kinda stupid perhaps, but basically OK.

    I do think that a film depicting our potus being incinerated - with an actor made up to look just like him - would encounter serious outrage here - faux perhaps - but outrage none the less.
    That is just my opinion. I cannot really imagine how such a scenario would play out when bounced off of today's politicians and talking heads. A field day for CNN and the rest I expect.

    Mr. Obama making a special appearance to chastise Sony for initially withdrawing the film from distribution put an American face on the film. In my opinion, that is. That is what makes me speculate about a similar film that had one of the members of the axis of evil - or the "list of state sponsors of terrorism" - one of their faces on it - with Kim or someone urging the release of  a film with a potus lookalike being burned alive... Well, I don't think that would go over so well here.

    One last thing.
    I believe, if I read the story correctly, that initially the word was that people considering going to theaters to watch the film would be in danger of attacks from terrorists. Hence the withdrawal by Sony. Then come the exhortations urging the film's release. I don't know - but this reminds me of Bush urging us to go about our daily chores as usual even as he is releasing terror alerts.

    We are the ones who are not supposed to give in to the terrorists by staying away. No. We should not give in.

    I don't know about that.

    It reminds me of the old saw - used over and over in sci-fi films, in which the government has knowledge of an invasion of aliens or some such, but decide with definite certainty to not tell the public - so that we won't panic.

    Personally, if I know that an attack has been threatened at a theatre or some other public venue, I would prefer to avoid the site of the threat. I would, in short, prefer to "panic" than walk into a dangerous situation without having been given proper warning.

    To my knowledge, people seeing the film have emerged unscathed. So the whole terror business was either phony or overblown.

    Lastly, North Korea was definitely labeled as the source of all the threats and hacking by the potus. They denied it and invited the US to join them in investigating the source of the hacking.
    We have yet to do so.

    Of course, as usual, this issue fades from our consciousness.
    Accusations and denials. Both unproven. What else is new?

    Until the next "crisis"...

    Are you serious? (4.25 / 4) (#48)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 04:49:53 PM EST
    lentinel: "Lastly, North Korea was definitely labeled as the source of all the threats and hacking by the potus. They denied it and invited the US to join them in investigating the source of the hacking. We have yet to do so."

    Even a cursory glance at North Korea's sordid history begs the question, why in the everlovin' world would we or should we conduct a joint investigation with them?

    Look, the North Koreans were squawking about "The Interview" for the better part of six months prior to the cyberattack on Sony Pictures. Nobody else had a motive to attempt to stop that film's release. Further, they have a documented history of having engaged in this sort of cybervandalism in the past. And finally, their fingerprints were all over the scene of the crime. So, if the North Koreans didn't do it or contract some third party do it for them, then please pray tell who did, or would even want to?

    Honestly, lentinel, there are times when I just don't get you at all, and this is one of them. Because when you accept the word of Kim Jong-un -- a guy who recently executed not only his own uncle, but apparently also that uncle's entire family line as well -- over that of Barack Obama on this particular issue, then as far as I'm concerned you've clearly jumped the shark.



    FBI conclusions should be viewed with (5.00 / 4) (#92)
    by caseyOR on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:44:21 PM EST
    a jaundiced eye. As recently as 2012 we learned of mistakes at the FBI crime lab that led to the wrongful convictions and imprisonment of many defendants around the country.

    And, of course, the FBI and the Justice Department were less than forthcoming about all of it.

    And let us not forget the Brandon Mayfield case. Mayfield was a Portland OR attorney, and a muslim, whom the FBI accused, falsely, of being one of the Madrid, Spain train bombers in 2004. He was arrested on a material witness warrant and held in federal prison. The FBI insisted that Mayfield's fingerprint was found on a blue bag that contained detonators. The FBI stuck to this assertion even when Spanish investigators told them Mayfield's print was not a match.

    It was not Mayfield's fingerprint, and eventually the citizens of the U.S.A. paid him $2 million in damages because of the ineptitude of the FBI.

    So, when the FBI asserts that they know the Sony hack was done by the North Koreans, even in the face of the skepticism of other cyber security experts, I say a healthy skepticism on our part is warranted.


    I'm not accepting (none / 0) (#52)
    by lentinel on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:26:52 PM EST
    anybody's word on this subject.
    How dare you say that I "accept the word" of Kim Jong-Un?

    As I repeatedly say to you, when you pepper your replies with personal invective it seriously diminishes my desire to converse with you.

    But here goes:

    It was reported by several news organizations, including the New York Times, that North Korea denied that it was behind the hacking.

    Obama says he has information that they were.

    The reports go on to say that North Korea proposed that we, the United States, conduct a joint investigation with them into the subject. The US has ignored the idea, to the best of my knowledge.

    I endorse that idea of a joint investigation.
    You don't. You see no reason to do so.
    I see obvious advantages in doing so.

    For example: If the FBI or whomever has definite proof, a joint investigation would give them the golden opportunity to make their information public, shame NK and expose its psychotic head of state as a liar. You would enjoy that, would you not?

    If, on the other hand, the FBI's information should turn out to be flawed, as sometimes happens I'm told, as a citizen I think we have a right to know about it. They are, after all, reporting to the President.

    In any case, it doesn't appear as if you have seen "The Interview", and since that was the predominant thrust of my comment, there isn't much to talk about.



    I've said on countless occasions ... (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:44:46 PM EST
    ... over the past week that I had no intention of seeing "The Interview." I've also been entirely consistent in my criticism of both Sony Pictures and North Korea throughout this extended online discussion about this issue.

    As for yourself, you've also been entirely consistent in your quest to ultimately lay the fault for this current controversy at the foot of the Obama administration.

    I've long known and understood that you don't like President Obama, and further that your dislike of him will often and invariably work its way into your narrative. And when your end point is that baldly predictable, it's rather hard to get excited about reading how you got there.

    We all have our overt and latent biases. For my part, I recognize most of my own and try to account for them whenever I'm seeking to analyze a given situation, so that I don't misread the ground I'm presently treading and wind up fooling myself. And while I've been accused of a great many things over the years and am likely guilty of more than a few, being delusional isn't one of them.

    Honestly, it's an uncommon event to see you make that same effort here. And that's a shame, because I think you're actually a very thoughtful, astute and observant individual whenever you detach yourself emotionally from your political views and the moment, and try to assess a situation for what it truly is.

    It's those times when you don't curb your bias, when you allow your emotions to lead you instead of you following the evidence and facts to a logical conclusion, that you tend to see and hear only what you want to see and hear.

    Therefore, when others are dismayed that North Korea's request for a joint investigation should appear entirely reasonable to you, you really ought to ask yourself whether your innate hostility toward Barack Obama has perhaps compromised your ability to look at this issue dispassionately and reasonably.



    Innate hostility to Barack Obama (5.00 / 2) (#79)
    by Dadler on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 10:49:23 AM EST
    Personally, Donald, I find this accusation difficult to swallow. I have never met ANYone even remotely progressive, and I am as left as you get, who has any INNATE hostility to Barack Obama. The hostility stemmed from his utterly incompetent political "strategy" coming into office. His utter lack of psychological insight into the right wing, into himself, was pitiful, inexcusable, and set the tone for, yet again, a Democratic Prez who never comes close to defeating the utter idiocy of right wing paradigms, and simply continues to prop them up. Obama's failures were entirely his and no one else's. When you come into office making absurd statements about liberals being the problem, you cease to be a serious person, and you reveal yourself to have NOTHING resembling a free American imagination. THAT is Obama's problem, himself, more than anything else. The only people with that innate dislike of Obama are on the right. To claim otherwise is to justify Obama's nonsense about left and right being "equal" in some way. He was never right about that idiocy, and the American people paid for his nonsense.

    Our standards are so ridiculously low that a completely minor league political intellect like Obama is considered "all that."


    When one goes out of his or her way ... (5.00 / 2) (#84)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:14:43 PM EST
    ... to criticize or find fault with the president even tangentially for things that happen in this world, I think that falls under the definition of innate hostility.

    Either that, or the person retains the sort of hyper-inflated personal sense of moral authority which allows one to freely pass judgment upon the actions of others, without ever having even bothered to walk in their shoes.

    And really, Dadler -- Barack Obama has a "completely minor league political intellect"? And you base that derisive opinion of the man upon what, exactly -- your vast personal experience in the political arena?

    From my perspective, Obama can probably be characterized as overly cautious and calculating to a fault, especially when the winds are at his back and in his favor. But regardless of how one feels about Obama personally, he certainly can't be accused of possessing a subpar political intellect.

    After all, the guy managed to leap from the State Senate in Springfield, IL to the White House, all in the course of six years' time. One doesn't achieve that without possessing a fortuitous amount and combination of political skill, acumen, audacity, timing, and luck on his or her part -- and not necessarily in that particular order at any one time.

    And years from now with the benefit of hindsight, I believe -- as does Paul Krugman, who's been one of the president's frequent critics -- that Obama's administration will eventually be seen as a presidency of considerable positive consequence.



    Donald, this is a place where (5.00 / 6) (#87)
    by Anne on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:51:30 PM EST
    political talk rules the day, where issues are constantly being discussed and picked apart, so while it may seem to you that someone is going out of his or her way to be critical of the president, I think it's more the case that people are responding or reacting to what's on the table on any given day.

    Let's try to remember that Obama didn't make that State Senate-to-US Senate-to WH leap all by his lonesome; he had a considerable effort behind him, one that I believe identified him as being malleable and amenable and solidly in the tradition of the Third Way/DLC model.  Had he identified as a moderate Chicago Republican - where his middle ground positions should have put him - he might still be toiling away in local politics.  So, to the extent that he identified which party was most likely to help him climb the political ladder, yes, he had some skills.

    Speaking as a die-hard liberal, for me he's been a huge disappointment - not so much because I thought he would be someone else than who he clearly was, but because I think the Democratic Party just continues to flail and fail and collapse in the face of GOP insanity.  Over and over and over.

    Has it been all bad?  No, there have been some bright spots, but many of them haven't come as a result of his leadership, but as a result of him calculating it was politically safe to go where we needed him to go.  On a number of other issues, he's just been terrible.

    This isn't the Stuart Smalley show; we don't come here to affirm the wonders of Barack Obama, and sign loyalty oaths to the Democratic Party - although there are a few (yes, christine, I am looking at you) who seem to think that's what this place should be.

    christine's comments about lentinel, comparing her to someone like jim, were uncalled for.  It's not the first time that she - or you - have assigned extremely negative personal attributes to someone with a different opinion, whose views are decidedly more liberal than either of yours.

    As for how Obama's presidency will one day be viewed, I'm sure those whose personal wealth has grown tremendously, those who defrauded and swindled and manipulated without consequence, those who spied and tortured and lied with impunity and immunity will look upon it kindly; I don't know about everyone else.


    I wish I could give you (5.00 / 2) (#94)
    by Zorba on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:49:21 PM EST
    A "10" for this comment.  I am in total agreement.

    Oh, Anne (none / 0) (#96)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:25:44 PM EST
    Just a note: I stand by my comments to which you refer here as being as legitimate as yours.  IMO and upon further reflection, my personal comments on the matter were quite "called for" in that they reference what many political scientists/sociologists have theorized for years: The far right and far left can and do eventually meet in absolutism.

    Oh, christine...you're absolutely entitled to (5.00 / 1) (#99)
    by Anne on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:49:24 PM EST
    stand by ("this is me standing next to a big pile of my thoughts - or maybe they're just words"), on ("look at me, standing on a big pile of my thoughts), in ("Ooh, up to my hips here, kinda squishy!"), over ("feeling territorial, just a little") and under ("yoo-hooo! here I am, just to the left of the adjectives and right next to the oxymorons!") whatever it is you have to say.

    But so glad to see you finally admit your antipathy for the "far left;" 'course, as far to the right as things have moved, the "far left" isn't nearly the radical bunch of loons you seem to want it to be.  

    Still kind of chuckling over your certainty that you don't dwell in absolutism, but then maybe it's hard to see through the film the oatmeal and Cream of Wheat leave behind.


    Oh, Anne (#2) (none / 0) (#115)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 06:43:30 PM EST
    No need to make things up or otherwise invent what I meant to say/what I did say.  My point--surely--was to emphasize further my position.  No one is asking you to agree.  Nor does the sarcasm or whatever would best describe your language usage add anything to the fact that you do not agree with me.  Again: Absolutism on the right & on the left tend to converge ... that political and sociological finding is nothing new ... nothing more, nothing less.

    And, one more "oh," and one that is more hopeful: Peace to you and your family in this New Year.  Truly, Good Will to you as well.  Chris


    Absolutism in the (5.00 / 3) (#125)
    by MO Blue on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 08:58:31 AM EST
    mushy middle converges nicely to support corporate agendas and those of the super rich that are pursued by both the Democratic and Republican Parties. Under the guise of being pragmatic and partisan loyalty, you and the rest of the mushy middle has supported continued expansion of executive powers, cuts to needed domestic programs and the elimination of Constitutional rights.

    Perception & personality (5.00 / 1) (#140)
    by christinep on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 11:16:29 AM EST
    First, I admit to a preference for mush WHEN that mush is served as oatmeal.  On a cold day like today in Denver, few things are better than a hot bowl of oatmeal ... especially flavored with cinnamon and berries.

    Remember that old ad that told the audience "you call it corn, we call it maize."  Well, what some may term "mush," others--say, long-ago others like Aristotle--might view as moderation, measured, and the Aristotelian Mean.  Don't we all look at approaches/styles through our prism of personality? In that sense, Anne hits it with the observation in this thread along the lines of all of us getting entrenched in our own view of things.

    I'd also add: Very few are all this or that ... we tend to give & take in different areas of our life.  For me, since I am a believer (Catholic), it may be that the tendency toward "absolutism" is satisfied/met in the spiritual realm. That is what I have been thinking during my aging process, in any event.  In recent decades, I've noticed more of a "try-but-give-it-time" or "one-step-at-a-time" outlook about myself than characterized myself as a youth.  That change in perspective is certainly not unusual.  

    One specific personal motif: From my life experience as well as the reported experience of others--friends, writers, philosophers--whom I admire, my preference for seeking mediated resolutions, workable consensus, and real & lasting change in governmental and other institutions has become pronounced.  My desire for historical and lasting movement in a liberal direction may well be as strong as yours, MOBlue, but ... my style and interpretation of how to achieve it appear quite different.

    As the New Year comes, I want to acknowledge my respect for your straightforward style and direction, MOBlue. You impress me as one who knows what she is and what she believes and how she wants to accomplish something. IMO, that is a positive sense of urgency ... it is the hallmark of the optimist at heart.  (Please know that my adverse comments recently are not directed toward you nor toward those with a different approach toward furthering society.  Rather--bluntly speaking--what causes the steam to rise from me is the eternal pessimism/cynicism/closed-minded absolutism vented by a few forever naysayers. I own up to the fact that forever naysaying pushes every negative button on me.)


    Thank you for your good wishes, chris; (5.00 / 2) (#129)
    by Anne on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:39:43 AM EST
    please know that I wish you nothing but the best, as well, now and in the year(s) to come.

    That being said, I think it's only fair that we ALL acknowledge that we tend to be fairly well-dug in with respect to our respective positions on any number of issues; I can't think of many - if any - issues where I'm indifferent or agnostic or undecided about what I think and feel.  Certainly, I have been known to modify and adjust where I stand as new information is acquired and situations change and develop.  I'd like to think that's what everyone does, but we see evidence daily that that is not the case.  I'd offer as a prime example, jim on climate change: it doesn't seem to matter what information he is provided with, he's not changing his mind.

    I actually do understand that the constant criticism that gets leveled at Obama and his administration can get quite tiresome - and I also get that you must feel a need to defend against it.  Way back in 2008, in the face of constant criticism of Hillary Clinton, I found myself feeling that way on another blog; that surprised me, as I wasn't really a Clinton supporter at the time.  That criticism led me to doing a lot of research on what was being said about her, and eventually to my supporting her for the nomination.

    But what I also found was that attacking the people doing the criticizing doesn't refute the criticism, and I suppose that's the problem I have with your comments.  It can be quite time-consuming to counter with facts and links what is being said about Obama's actions and policies and comments, but it carries far more weight than just trying to shoot the messenger. Perhaps if you took a more factual approach you might have some success changing minds.

    Truth be told, I would much rather go head-to-head debating someone with strong opinions, than someone who seems to think the path of least resistance is an effective form of leadership.

    Have a happy and safe New Year.


    Anne, I understand the criticism of Obama. (none / 0) (#112)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 05:49:59 PM EST
    In many cases, I don't think it's necessarily undeserved, and anyway, criticism will always be part of our country's political landscape. Lord knows, I've certainly expressed my own concerns about his conduct and policies on any number of occasions.

    But that said, I nevertheless do take issue with those persons on both the right and the left who are constantly going out of their way to find Obama at fault for something or anything, no matter what he does or doesn't do. (And frankly, I think we all know who we are!)

    I generally find such criticism to be neither constructive in substance nor conducive to in-depth policy discussions. And for me at least, it sometimes goes so over the top as to become quite annoying. Democracy works best when it's a participatory sport. If you have serious disagreement with the direction things are going -- whether on the local, state or federal level -- then you need to get your butt out there into the arena and make your case, and not just stand in the bleachers throwing tomatoes at everyone else who's out there.

    I think there are a great many people throughout our country who need to acknowledge -- not just understand on some intellectual or academic level, but genuinely and personally acknowledge -- that at its heart, democratic politics is the art of the possible.

    Because with that understanding comes the realization that it really doesn't matter if President Obama, Speaker John Boehner or you and I have the best ideas in the world to solve our present-day problems. If we enjoy little or no political support for our ideas amongst our own peers -- support which we will clearly need to effectuate our proposals -- then we're obviously going to go nowhere fast despite our best intentions otherwise.

    To that effect, a good political leader knows not only how to make his or her case, but also how to count votes -- and further, he or she knows where to get them if and when they're ever needed. At his core, Obama undoubtedly knows that. (And further, that ability is what's made Nancy Pelosi such an effective leader of House Democrats over the past 15 years. You have to count the votes, and you have to correctly anticipate how far you can actually go policy-wise to maximize your edge in that count.)

    For example, there's been a lot of criticism of this president both here and elsewhere over his approach to the economic stimulus package in 2009, and his failure to get behind single-payer as part of his 2010 health care reform efforts. And admittedly, some of it has come from me, too.

    But looking in hindsight at both those cases, it's readily apparent that the political support was simply not there in Congress to go any further beyond what was ultimately placed on the respective floors of the House and Senate for a final vote. Obama thus took what he could get at the time. And while we can argue over whether or not it was enough, as Paul Krugman noted in the piece I linked above, in both of these instances getting a little bit of something was still much, much better than grasping a whole lot of nothing.

    Further, I think I probably know as well as anyone here that any ambitious politician is never going to rise to prominence, without first asking for and receiving a lot of help from others in the arena. Speaking for myself, I've built my own career out here upon my willingness to play such a supporting role. That's what happened in Hawaii with the recent election of David Ige as our governor, which came about despite the 10-to-1 spending advantage enjoyed by his opponents during the campaign.

    For the better part of 18 months, Gov. Ige consciously and painstakingly sought out grassroots support from citizens around the islands as a political counter to the established and moneyed interests. And in response he received help from thousands of people, who stood up in their own communities and made the difference on his behalf. As a result, he won decisively -- and that's the precise moment when we demanded and got a seat at the table. That's how you play the game.

    After all, as Elizabeth Warren has rightly noted, nobody ever does anything entirely on their own. But again, a good politician will know how to put a good team together that can formulate an achievable strategy to seize the moment, implement the vision and attain the goal.

    And in that regard, Barack Obama clearly has superior political instincts, as demonstrated by his meteoric rise to political prominence. You're absolutely right that he didn't do it all by himself -- but by the same token, it also never would have even happened at all, had he not had the personal audacity and initiative to actually go there in the first place.

    From my observation and perspective, I think Obama just needs to show more self-confidence in his own initial instincts than he actually does. Whenever he's tripped himself up, it's likely because he was already second-guessing the route he and his administration had charted before they even departed from the gate.

    The late UCLA basketball coach John Wooden, per his much-admired and celebrated "Pyramid of Success," admonishes us that windows of opportunity do not remain open in perpetuity, and that our own conscious failure to act timely and propitiously when presented / confronted with a given situation will often come to represent our biggest failure of all.

    In politics, once you've committed yourself to a course of action, your own subsequent hesitation at key moments will often prove to be your biggest obstacle to achieving ultimate success. Whenever you take the political initiative, you really can't worry about how your opposition will react, because such a reaction is both given and inevitable, and they're going to do what they most always do anyway.

    Rather, you need to compel your opposition to worry about what YOUR next move will be. And trust me, in the political arena there's a big difference between the two, and a good politician will know instinctively how to use that in order to get inside his or her opposition's head.

    The subject of immigration reform is one example. I personally believe President Obama should've trusted his instincts and exercised his executive authority before the 2014 midterms, and not ex post facto. By hesitating as he did, both he and the Democrats willingly surrendered a potentially potent political initiative. (But then again, I'm not in Washington and was hardly privy the all the information he had at his disposal, so my hindsight's obviously 20 / 20.)

    And finally, I totally agree with you that the Obama administration's present stand-down regarding financial fraud, domestic espionage and torture, by which no indictments of the principals involved will likely ever be forthcoming, is simultaneously abhorrent as an undertaking and appalling as a general policy matter.

    Should that ill-considered decision return to haunt us at some later date, perhaps long after Obama's left office, I'd offer that his own standing in history will be considerably (and rightly) eroded by his administration's conscious failure to act decisively and demand personal accountability in the face of such obvious and intentional wrongdoing.

    Anyway, Anne, it's always enlightening to discuss such matters with you. If nothing else, you do challenge me to more fully consider what I'm saying or believing. May you and your family have a blessed and joyful new year. Have fun with the grandkids.



    Donald (none / 0) (#114)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 06:37:02 PM EST
    "And finally, I totally agree with you that the Obama administration's present stand-down regarding financial fraud, domestic espionage and torture, by which no indictments of the principals involved will likely ever be forthcoming, is simultaneously abhorrent as an undertaking and appalling as a general policy matter."

    When the slightest voice of support (not even any action) for protestors against police heavy handedness by a liberal mayor of one of the bluest cities in the country, forces him into an uncomfortable and awkward position due to pressure from the NYPD, opportunist politicians and the media, it is difficult to believe that the general public would have stood by the President if he supported prosecution of perpetrators of torture against "scary non-citizen, Islamic terrists".

    All it would take was one terrorist incident to create a backlash against the President with the CIA and the media trumpeting that the CIA was not getting adequate support from the President and creating a hostile environment for agents to do their jobs. Just see how quickly the NYPD has been able to turn the tables on Mayor de Blasio  after the killing of two police officers by a person suffering from mental illness.

    I strongly felt that more efforts should have been put in prosecuting the banksters. However, most of the crimes were of a highly technical nature if you just address it from a legal standpoint (not a moral standpoint). It is not clear at this point that even prosecutions would have led to convictions. However it should have been done.


    Politalkix: "[I]t is difficult to believe that the general public would have stood by the President if he supported prosecution of perpetrators of torture against 'scary non-citizen, Islamic terrists'."

    The general public actually respects politicians who stand forthrightly for something, particularly on a profound moral issue like opposition to torture.

    If you're assuming that voters support torture and the malefactors who effectuated such a rogue and unconstitutional policy, then I'd say that you've spent way too much time reading Beltway talking points, and not nearly enough time talking to the person on the street or even fellow Democratic rank-and-filers.

    IMHO, any elected official who's not willing to do the right thing on this particular issue because he or she fears what the loud little handful of knuckledragging right-wing malcontents will say or do, really has no business holding public office.

    "For what does it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his soul?"
    - The Gospel According to Matthew, Chapter 8, Verse 36

    Sorry, Kix, but some matters are actually worth risking your political career and even sacrificing it entirely, if need be. This is one of them.



    The Constitution (none / 0) (#154)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 02:15:35 PM EST
    ...is not subject to a vote as to whether it applies.

    The United States is required by its own international agreements to prosecute torturers.

    Am I really reading this as SUPPORT for these CIA criminal?  AFAIK, torture, rape and murder are about the most heinous things one can do to another.

    By comparison to the CIA, ISIS is relatively merciful with its messy but quick form of execution, which is not "death by two weeks of torture."

    This is the same CIA that killed 4000 Americans, 100,000 (or so) Iraqis, and stuck us with a $2T tab by being wrong about WMD.  If the CIA had been a terrorist organization, their damage to America would eclipse all other terrorist attacks combined.


    Non prosecution (none / 0) (#156)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 02:33:59 PM EST
    at this time is not support for torture. I have made it very clear in various posts in the past that I am interested in prosecution in the future when the political climate is more favorable for a conviction (when we so not have a John Roberts Supreme court and such a politically polarized country). I think it was important to release the report. I supported that. The people named in the Senate report will have to live with the fear of arrest and prosecution for the rest of their lives. I agree with you that we should prosecute, just differ with you on the timing/strategy.

    Quite frankly, Politalkix, that appalls me. (5.00 / 4) (#162)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 04:58:02 PM EST
    I've said this before, and I said it again one week later. But apparently, I need to once more repeat myself because its core point is apparently lost to you:

    "Torture is spiritually immoral in its conception. It is ethically impractical in its consideration. It is statutorily illegal in its implementation. And its victims are wholly unreliable as a credible source of useful information. I honestly don't think it can or should be explained any more plainly than that."

    You consider yourself opposed to the practice of torture as it was conducted by the prior administration. Yet you're simultaneously opposed to prosecuting that illegal policy's willful participants and unrepentant advocates, until such time as "the political climate is more favorable for a conviction," whatever the #@%! that's supposed to mean.

    Therefore, not only have you obviously chosen the path of political expediency, you've further done so by setting aside a truly moral position until such time as you consider its adoption to be convenient for your political purposes.

    In that regard, you're not unlike the spouse of an alcoholic, who professes to revile the consumption of liquor yet will hasten to hide all the spent bottles from the view of others, and will further refuse to discuss the matter publicly until such time as his or her beloved renounces demon rum, detoxes and joins Alcoholics Anonymous. In short, you're an enabler.

    To be blunt, torture is a crime against humanity. Period. As far as I'm concerned, there's really no room here for your "ifs," "ands" or "buts."

    And speaking for myself only as both an American and a card-carrying Democrat, I refuse to engage in such ethical contortions in order to justify a political premise that's entirely dubious at best. I really don't want to be associated in any way with your argument, so I honestly think we're done here.

    I'm sorry if I've somehow offended you, but that's just the way I feel. And for your own sake, I do hope that eventually, you'll come to realize that your present position is truly a road to nowhere.



    Prosecution (none / 0) (#163)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 05:52:27 PM EST
    without being able to get a conviction is only going to legitimize torture. I do not believe that we can get a conviction at this time.  

    Without being able to get a conviction, it will just be seen as a political attack on the previous administration.

    Don't tell me that the present Supreme Court is above partisan politics (the present court is more partisan than the one that rendered the Bush Vs Gore verdict).

    The analogy to recovering alcoholics is wrong IMO. The senate report has been published, so the names of perpetrators and torture methods used are known (not a case of hiding spent liquor bottles to use your example). Such techniques have been discontinued. The only issue that remains is getting convictions and punishments for the perpetrators (or in your example punishment for the alcoholic(s)). Since I do not think that with the present Supreme Court we can get a conviction (IIRC correctly, one of the justices is a duck hunting buddy of the former VP, 2 other justices are appointees of the previous administration, I am doubtful that they would have been appointed if the GWB administration did not have atleast some clue about the nominees attitudes on this subject), it will set backwards everything that you are trying to achieve.


    As a liberal... (5.00 / 1) (#128)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:35:28 AM EST
    ..I am not that fond of Mr. Obama, but as a realist, he is a vast improvem3ent over GW Bush, and if you will recall, his most recent opponents were McCain/Palin and Romney/Paul.

    I'll take Obama over those any day.  Who did you vote for?


    Liberalism & Realism (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:34:37 AM EST
    Not just a vast improvement over GWB or McCain/Palin and Romney/Ryan but...

    in foreign policy BHO has been nothing short of transformative. He has upended decades of foreign policy dogma (not just the FP of GWB years) by engaging with Cuba (which has the potential to improve US relationships with the whole of Central and Latin America) and Iran (which can entirely re-shape middle-east policies) and not interfering militarily as we are always wont to do with the break out of the Arab Spring. It was another matter if indigenous Arab Spring movements could not sustain themselves and lead to democratization of politics in most of those countries; we did not interfere in most cases and that was a big change from the long held FPs that we have followed.

    Domestic policy has not been transformative, however it has been a big improvement over preceding administrations. This administration has made significant efforts in investing and promoting science, technology and manufacturing within the United States (from electric vehicles, space exploration, climate change initiatives, etc). Changes in domestic policy require loosening of purse strings which is not always within the President's control. As long as white working class folks see minorities as their rivals for pieces of the economic pie instead of understanding how rigged tax policies are towards favoring the ultra-rich, nothing significant can be done in domestic politics.
    In a country where we cannot prosecute NYPD officers for causing the choking death of an American citizen that was captured on videotape in one of the bluest cities of the country, it is a fantasy to think that we can prosecute a former VP and CIA personnel for being responsible for torture of brown, Muslim, non-citizens that may or may not have been responsible for the 9-11 attack or atleast morally support such attacks. In a country where single payer healthcare will not be put on the table in one of the most liberal states by a liberal Democratic governor, it is a fantasy to imagine that the President could have provided it to people in the whole country, if he wanted to.

    I will put it very bluntly. There are some commenters in this blog here who live in a fantasy land and take pride in doing so for various reasons. There are some others who willfully distort realities because of their innate hostility towards the President.


    And there are others (5.00 / 4) (#141)
    by Yman on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 11:19:16 AM EST
    ... who live in a fantasy land and willfully distort realities because of their investment in a mediocre POTUS.

    ... "mediocre," Yman. But that said, I certainly think that his overly cautious nature when he holds the political advantage has resulted occasionally in notable underachievement, particularly in the way he positioned Democrats for both midterm elections after they had scored some pretty solid accomplishments.

    Were he a head coach in football or basketball, he'd be the type who builds a significant early lead, then deviates from his original game plan and starts running the clock out and playing not to lose, rather than finishing off his opponent and securing the win. Obama's really at his best when he's compelled by circumstances to take calculated risks.



    A slight adjustment, perhaps, politalkix (5.00 / 2) (#146)
    by christinep on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:14:25 PM EST
    The ACA has "transformed" our heretofore-going-nowhere medical insurance system.  It is a combo system, to be sure ... but, without question, it is a transformation (or the initiation of further transformation) that took generations to birth.

    Good foreign policy summary. In years to come, I'm thinking that the FP change-process will become much clearer as we reconsider how the steps that you describe did come together.


    Transformative of FP? (none / 0) (#143)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 11:53:34 AM EST
    Hmmm....I'd say fair to middlin'.

    Let's see - there was the "Kobe moment" and his dismissiveness of ISIL.  Oops - completely underestimated that threat, as they then took over territory in Lebanon and Syria.  (And then of course, the subsequent beheadings and other activities, which go virtually ignored except for some "tut-tutting").

    Then there was the surprise by Putin by going into Crimea that no one in the administration saw coming. (After the Russian "reset" comment.)

    Syria, itself.

    The Bowe Berghdal fiasco...... (not as much a foreign policy failing as more of a political failing)

    Iraq has been a disaster this year.

    Just to name a few.

    These offset things like Cuba, which are good, so I think to say "transformative" is not even remotely accurate.


    Yes (none / 0) (#145)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:10:20 PM EST
    Yes, it is transformative foreign policy. I was replying to Repack Rider who has identified himself as a liberal.

    You are providing neoconservative talking points.

    The progressive position on foreign policy is non-interference in other countries or interference as a defensive measure after we are attacked or interference when gross human rights abuses occur in a country.

    Pre-emptive strikes and occupation of other countries for harnessing their natural resources is a neoconservative doctrine.


    HA! (5.00 / 3) (#147)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:18:14 PM EST
    You are providing neoconservative talking points.

    No - I am providing things called "facts".

    Even all the liberal blogs will talk about these as "not good" to "disaster".

    But you are proving the point that you are an ostrich who will blindly defend Mr. Obama, instead of seeing the reality.


    Like I said (5.00 / 1) (#148)
    by jbindc on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:26:43 PM EST
    Fair to middlin'.

    Which is what he will be remembered as - a president who is somewhere in the middle of the list of presidents ranked from best to worst.

    Just average.


    Paul Krugman (none / 0) (#150)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:40:22 PM EST
    rated him as the most consequential President since LBJ and puts him just behind FDR and LBJ among modern American Presidents (and he does not have any albatross like Vietnam that LBJ had). I will always rate Krugman's analysis higher than yours.

    BTW, it is quite delicious for me to note your heartburn.


    Good for Krugman (5.00 / 3) (#151)
    by Yman on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:58:29 PM EST
    His opinion and a dollar will get you a co of coffee at McDonald's.  Not to mention that many other liberals disagree with Krugman's assessment.  

    How's his approval rating doing?  I know it z started with near historic highs in 2008, but then reality set in.


    If those "liberals" are so dogmatic ... (5.00 / 1) (#158)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 03:47:27 PM EST
    Yman: "Good for Krugman[.] His opinion and a dollar will get you a [cup] of coffee at McDonald's. Not to mention that many other liberals disagree with Krugman's assessment."

    ... as to not understand that in politics, you're not always going to get exactly what you want all of the time, then in fact they're fringe elements who are living in the reflected glory of past triumphs.

    As liberals, we need to realize that we are currently in no position to demand "my way or the highway," as we once were back in our heyday. Because whenever we issue such ultimatums nowadays, guess who'll soon be told to hit the road, more often than not?

    Therefore, if you're a liberal / progressive politician who's actually in the game -- as opposed to members of the liberal commentariat who are apparently content to boo their own players from the sideline grandstands -- then your immediate task in the political process is to move the ball farther downfield toward your eventual objective, the goal line.

    And while the "Hail Mary" is without a doubt a spectacular play from a spectator's viewpoint, it actually seldom works, either in football or in politics. (See "Obamacare, 50-plus GOP votes to repeal.") Because life itself is generally a series of "give and take" propositions, overall and sustainable progress is often best garnered incrementally, as in "three yards and a cloud of dust."

    And to accomplish that as liberals in politics, we need to be disciplined and pragmatic in our play calling, and resist our urge to repeatedly lob the "Hail Mary" downfield, particularly when the odds clearly don't favor its success.

    Remember, the Social Security program upon its initial enactment in 1935 was actually quite limited in its scope, and was nowhere near as encompassing as it is today. Further, its enabling legislation would never have passed Congress, had its proponents not agreed to compromise. (And of course, the liberal commentariat accused FDR and his congressional allies of selling out.) The program's subsequent expansion to present day was accomplished over the course of a number of decades.

    We need to remember, too, that politics is also a numbers game, and right now those numbers are obviously not with us. What we want to do at this juncture is to adopt a "long game" approach, and ensure to the extent possible that those numbers don't necessarily or consistently work against us over the course of the contest.

    So, if you're on defense, as congressional Democrats will be come January, your task is to hold the line and cede ground grudgingly, and not repeatedly give your opponent a fresh set of downs and the further opportunities to score which always accompanies it.

    I can't tell you how many times over the years that I've watched with dismay, as fellow liberals refused time and again to take that "long game" view and compromise during the legislative process. Instead, they chose to take their ball and go home.

    While they might comfort themselves by believing that they're somehow standing on principle, what they've effectively done is silence their own voices during ongoing deliberations or negotiations on important policy matters. And really, how does that sort of petulant self-exile serve the liberal / progressive cause?

    Dogs bark, and the caravan passes.


    What?!? (5.00 / 1) (#164)
    by Yman on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:14:22 PM EST
    I have no problem with compromise.  I do have a problem with citing Krugman as the arbiter of Obama's presidency, simply because it's the most favorable one Politalkix could find.  Obama is a mediocre leader/POTUS, and the American public knows it.

    If you let Gallup be the final arbitrator (none / 0) (#165)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:28:31 PM EST
    of a Presidency, it should also be noted that GHWB had a higher average approval rating than Bill Clinton and GWB had a better approval numebrs than Truman. link

    And John Kennedy and Ike trump everybody!



    "Oops"? (5.00 / 3) (#167)
    by Yman on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:45:48 PM EST
    Not at all.  GHWB's rating were artificially inflated by the rallying effect after 9-11.  Of course, once people had a record to judge by, his ratings quickly fell - much like Obama's - and ended.  Clinton, OTOH, left office with the highest approval ratings of any POTUS ever.

    I guess that's the difference between "hope" and ... 'ya know ...

    ... an actual record.



    whatever (2.00 / 1) (#168)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 07:09:38 PM EST
    makes you feel happy! GWB received a 9-11 bump and Clinton received an impeachment bump. I did not bring up Gallup but you did. Now you are left with the job of massaging selective data to convince people about the outcome you want and I get to enjoy your childishness. It is a wonderful world!

    "Whatever" indeed (5.00 / 2) (#169)
    by Yman on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 09:13:45 PM EST
    "Whatever" is reality ... something you Obama acolyte have difficulty with:

    1.  Fact - GHWB went from 51% approval ratings to 90% immediately after 9-11.  Then it declined steadily until he left office with one of the worst EOT approval ratings of any POTUS

    2. Fact - Clinton's approval rating was steadily climbing long before he was impeached.  He was at 66% before he was impeached, and left office with the highest approval rating of any EOT rating of any POTUS with 66%.

    3.  Fact - Obama came into office with extremely high approval ratings at 66% and now sits at 44%.

    The difference between "hope" and an actual record.  The difference between facts and fairy tales.  Hey, ... maybe that's why you enjoy "childishness".



    The paradoxes of Gallup polling (none / 0) (#166)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:37:50 PM EST
    IMO, the best year of Bill Clinton's presidency for progressives was his first year and his first term was better than the second. However, his Gallup poll numbers sucked in his first term compared to the second, reaching a low of 37.1% in June 1993. link

    No (none / 0) (#149)
    by Politalkix on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 12:34:08 PM EST
    You are providing "facts according to jbindc" which seems to agree with neoconservative doctrine.

    Most liberal blogs that I know of, are not blaming BHO for not sending troops to Iraq when ISIL started taking over territory. They are not blaming him for withdrawing troops from Iraq. They are blaming him for sending some troops back to counter ISIL because they feel that we may once again get mired in war for a long time.

    That is very different from your position.



    Ok (none / 0) (#54)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:35:37 PM EST
    with due respect if you actually knew anything at all about Kim and his regime you would know that the idea of a joint investigation is literally laughable.

    Second a joint investigation would be no reason at all for the FBI to reveal their sources.  Not to us and certainly not to NK.  Particularly if any of those sources happened to be in country or even in SK if they would like to continue living.

    I am afraid I have to agree with DfH.  You are sounding more absurd with each new comment.  
    May I ask, did you watch the BBC doc I liked to?  Most consider BBC a fairly unbiased source and if you did I am at a loss to understand how you can post the above comment with a straight face.


    There is jim and there is lentinel ... (1.67 / 3) (#62)
    by christinep on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:12:34 PM EST
    and, imo, months & months of comments from both indicate that--in terms of having an almost impenetrable mindset and dogmatic agenda--the two are more similar than dissimilar. That is, the duo dislike (maybe detest, even) the present US President to such an extent and with such emotional totality that the North Korean isolated tyrant and nutcake can be defended rather than appear to "side" with Obama.  Insofar as lentinel's comments go, the aversion to supporting the US executive leadership appears to extend to the entire US government when compared to almost any government (including the most despotic)extant today.  Who the heck knows what makes that person tick ... frankly, who cares anymore.

    Well IMO (5.00 / 5) (#64)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:21:35 PM EST
    the comparison does not work.  lintinel often says things I agree with.  I don't ever remember that from the other.  I have said before he/she has, IMO, a blind spot.

    Many of us have them christine.


    There's no polite way to respond to your post. (5.00 / 5) (#65)
    by Mr Natural on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:51:54 PM EST
    Kudos to Captain Howdy for giving it a shot.

    With all due respect, christine, ... (5.00 / 3) (#72)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:58:59 PM EST
    ... while I may occasionally express my disagreement with lentinel, I have never doubted her sincerity and heart and I see no reason to do so here. While she and I might differ on the particular route to pursue, we are both in agreement about the ultimate destination.



    'Appreciate your comment, Donald ... but, (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by christinep on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 09:17:28 PM EST
    I can't get past the tableau of resentment writ all over the commentary to which I referred.  Undoubtedly, you are kinder than I ....  Again, I appreciate your input.

    Thanks (none / 0) (#56)
    by lentinel on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:49:38 PM EST
    for your analysis.

    The doc (none / 0) (#58)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:52:49 PM EST
    is 30 minutes.  And it was very recent.

    calling nycstray and CaptHowdy (none / 0) (#25)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 09:59:46 AM EST
    When going through the ebook selections at my library, I found this book for dog lovers who like to cook.

    In the Dog Kitchen
    Great Snack Recipes for Your Dog
    by Julie Van Rosendaal

    Thanks (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 11:19:17 AM EST
    love cooking for dogs.   They are so easy to impress.

    Lizard Mafia vs Tor Anonymity net (none / 0) (#26)
    by Mr Natural on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 10:18:01 AM EST
    The crew that wrecked Xbox-Mas (and Sony Playstation-Mas) is back at it.  Now they're taking a shot at subverting the Tor anonymizing network by spawning thousands of Tor network nodes.
    "The hacker group appears to be attempting to dominate Tor's relays to the point where it can comprise anonymity. Tor keeps you anonymous by bouncing your communications around a network of volunteer nodes. But if one group is controlling the majority of the nodes, it could be able to eavesdrop on a substantial number of vulnerable users. Which means Lizard Squad could gain the power to track Tor users if it infiltrates enough of the network.

    So far, they have already established over 3000 relays, nearly half of the total number. That's very not good."

    And if you consider that we don't know how many of those already extant nodes are NSA controlled...

    Is the plan for the new site (none / 0) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 11:30:34 AM EST
    That it will become a pay site?  I remember past talk of this possibility.

    No, it will be free (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:17:11 PM EST
    and no longer called "premium". It will just be TalkLeft.

    Since I have not been able to find a workaround to import the posts here into the new site, the current site may be flattened (and preserved for posterity) and moved to TalkLeft.net, with the new one being TalkLeft.com. But that's still an open question.


    or this one may move to (none / 0) (#35)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 12:19:24 PM EST
    old.talkleft.com (instead of talkleft.net). Once "flattened", there will be no option to do anything but read it.

    Here's what I just posted ... (none / 0) (#37)
    by unitron on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 01:46:56 PM EST
    ..."over there"--

    unitron says:   
    December 28, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Well, I registered an account and got a password a few months back when our gracious hostess first announced this bold new step into the future (he said, stifling the kind of unkind thoughts he usually has whenever WordPress.com is involved), so let's take this puppy for a spin and see if my avatar shows up.

    I'm less than thrilled to be giving up the preview function.

    Unless it's there and I just can't find it, but other WP sites don't seem to offer it.

    Personally I'd be willing to trade (none / 0) (#40)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 02:26:37 PM EST
    preview for an edit function. If neither is available, I will be less than thrilled.

    Says she is considering (none / 0) (#43)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 03:54:25 PM EST
    an edit button and preview can be done with the "view" button

    Thanks for the update (none / 0) (#45)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 04:12:25 PM EST
    An edit button would be awsum. Forever leaving out words, the computer gremlins constantly add or subtract the letter  "s" from the end of words and autocorrect tends to change words to something other than what I want.

    I just added an edit comment plugin (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:25:39 PM EST
    It gives you five minutes to edit your comment and there's a countdown timer in your comment to show you have much time you have to edit.

    I also swapped out the comment box to the old one because the threaded comments stopped threading after 50 comments. So that should be fixed now too.


    Yes (none / 0) (#46)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 04:35:40 PM EST
    goes without saying I could use an edit function.

    In other news
    AMC is rerunning Breaking Bad from the beginning.   I am now watching S2E1.  Where Jessie tries to dissolve the body in his bathtub and dissolves the bathtub.  And floor. Etc.


    Not trying to give (none / 0) (#47)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 04:38:01 PM EST
    an example of my need for an edit function but that would be



    HBO is running all seasons of The Wire, (none / 0) (#49)
    by Anne on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 04:56:25 PM EST
    which I never saw, so am now completely hooked - no pun intended.  Noon to midnight, and since I can't just sit in front of the TV for 12 hours at a stretch, I'm recording.

    Am midway through Season 3.

    Now I know what it was people were raving about.


    Oh man (none / 0) (#50)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:04:44 PM EST
    the semi liquified body just crashed through from the second floor to the first floor hallway while the stare in horror.

    One of the great scenes in TV history.

    The wire is still one I have to look forward to.  I will get to it.


    Awesome series (none / 0) (#61)
    by Yman on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:04:35 PM EST
    One of my favorites of all time.  Also fun to see some of the Bal'mer neighborhoods ...

    I'm happy not to have known most of (none / 0) (#88)
    by Anne on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 12:58:37 PM EST
    those neighborhoods - although the names of the streets are familiar, and some of the location shots are recognizable.

    Happier still that I didn't have to live that life.


    amazing series (none / 0) (#90)
    by CST on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 01:21:47 PM EST
    I just re-watched the first episode now that it came out in HD.  I'm thinking of re-watching the whole series, but I don't watch much TV so it could take a while.  I think season 3 might have been my favorite, although season 4 is spectacular (and sad of course) in it's own way.  Season 5 is good, but doesn't quite live up to the promise of the two before it.

    I recognize many of them (none / 0) (#119)
    by Yman on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 08:10:50 PM EST
    Used to teach in east Baltimore when I was young.  No idea how I would've turned out had I grown up in those neighborhoods.

    Winter is officially here (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 03:53:10 PM EST
    i put on the flannel sheets

    I have to say (none / 0) (#53)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:28:14 PM EST
    Wordpress doesn't have a lot of features that this site has. I like the way the new site looks better, but under the hood, it's very limiting.

    Your comments over there have been very helpful, please keep them coming.

    Nothing is a done deal.

    I might be the only one who likes it (none / 0) (#57)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:50:09 PM EST
    but I always liked Wordpress sites.  For my part, if it saves you money so you can more easily do what you do for a longer time, I say go for it.

    Everyone will get used to it.  My 2cents.


    Since my (none / 0) (#59)
    by lentinel on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 05:56:33 PM EST
    post was about "The Interview", and you say you have been avoiding discussing it, it is pretty evident that we can in fact have no discussion on the subject.

    But thanks for letting me know.

    move on, all of you (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 08:45:40 PM EST
    from this childlike sniping. It's unpleasant to read and hogging comment space.

    Final: Seattle Seahawks 20, St. Louis Rams 6. (none / 0) (#63)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 07:16:22 PM EST
    Seven weeks ago, the pundits were saying that the Seahawks needed to win out just to make the playoffs. Well, they did exactly that in rather striking fashion, having surrendered a miserly 6.5 points per game during the team's stretch run. They've now given up the fewest points in the NFL for the third straight season.

    The road to the Super Bowl in the NFC now goes through Seattle, with a home team that's won nine of their last ten outings, and a defense which has allowed only three touchdowns during that six-game stretch.

    We'll see what happens. But years from now, if the fates decree an as-yet-unrealized Seattle Seahawks dynasty, we may look back and reflect upon the end of the 2014 regular season as the moment when that dynasty really came of age.

    I've been watching the NFL since I was six years old, and this Seahawks defensive unit is quite possibly the best I've ever seen.


    The new site is great, (none / 0) (#74)
    by fishcamp on Sun Dec 28, 2014 at 10:47:43 PM EST
    the words are easier, for me to read, without the yellow background.  I love the fact that everyone, including Jeralyn, is working out different situations simultaneously.  I'm having trouble understanding Gravatas, but I'm way tired from fishing all day.  I'm determined to get a photo by my name, but which one, since I have over 5,000 to choose from.  Buenos noches.

    Agree about the new site (none / 0) (#76)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 09:33:55 AM EST
    and its GRAVATAR. 😜  If there was a service that provided gravatas I would be a member.  And probably would not make jokes about a farmer dating site having a gay section.  But I might.  I can't say for sure.  

    GRAVATAR took me a bit too.  You will get.  


    So, (none / 0) (#95)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:00:14 PM EST
    As Medicaid Rolls Swell, Cuts in Payments to Doctors Threaten Access to Care

    WASHINGTON -- Just as millions of people are gaining insurance through Medicaid, the program is poised to make deep cuts in payments to many doctors, prompting some physicians and consumer advocates to warn that the reductions could make it more difficult for Medicaid patients to obtain care.

    The Affordable Care Act provided a big increase in Medicaid payments for primary care in 2013 and 2014. But the increase expires on Thursday -- just weeks after the Obama administration told the Supreme Court that doctors and other providers had no legal right to challenge the adequacy of payments they received from Medicaid.

    The impact will vary by state, but a study by the Urban Institute, a nonpartisan research organization, estimates that doctors who have been receiving the enhanced payments will see their fees for primary care cut by 43 percent, on average.

    Stephen Zuckerman, a health economist at the Urban Institute and co-author of the report, said Medicaid payments for primary care services could drop by 50 percent or more in California, Florida, New York and Pennsylvania, among other states.

    For a number of political & state financial (none / 0) (#97)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:29:29 PM EST
    realities, I'm guessing that the dilemma will be solved.

    But maybe not to the liking (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:39:14 PM EST
    of the law's supporters.

    It may require (none / 0) (#102)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:55:25 PM EST
    (1) influx of more foreign born doctors or even the threat of more immigrant visas for foreign born doctors to bring doctors to the negotiating table with hospitals or (2) use of more nurse practitioners to manage the shortage of doctors. Not an insurmountable problem!

    i wouldn't count on it getting (none / 0) (#103)
    by caseyOR on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:58:43 PM EST
    resolved. A Republican controlled Congress would have to approve the increases, and that seems unlikely. The GOP would rather drown the ACA in the closest puddle of water it can find.

    Majority of foreign born doctors (none / 0) (#104)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 03:11:42 PM EST
    vote Republican and many of them even raise campaign cash for Republican candidates. Hence the GOP controlled Congress will not be so firmly against increasing the number of immigrant visas for foreign born doctors. The hospital and health insurance lobby will also push for increasing number of visas for foreign born doctors.

    Social conservatives will have a freak out if these doctors come from Latin American or Asian countries, not so much if they come from Russia or Eastern European countries. Chamber of Commerce Republicans may make some noise about trying to drown the ACA while bolstering it with support from the hospital and health insurance lobby.  


    Bless their hearts (none / 0) (#100)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 02:50:19 PM EST
    Former Governor Bob McDonell's daughters - "It's all mom's fault."

    Too bad these spoiled brats don't realize that they too, along with their brothers (who have had their own run-ins with the law - again, the rules don't apply to them), are to blame since they were recipients of Jonnie Williams' largesse. I thought Republicans were all about personal responsibility??

    Well, to be fair, I think that ... (none / 0) (#113)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 06:14:23 PM EST
    ... most everyone is in favor of demanding personal responsibility and accountability -- as long as the discussion remains on an abstract level or is centered primarily on someone else.

    But when either we or our loved ones are caught in that glaring spotlight with our hands in the cookie jar, it's quite likely that we'd also be just as prone to grasping at straws and making excuses as anybody. We generally like to think of ourselves as noble and unselfish creatures but truth be told, relatively few of us actually qualify as such candidates for sainthood.

    So, not to excuse any of the McDonnells' egregious behavior and all Schadenfreude aside, I'd offer that the children's reaction to their parents' sudden political ignominy and precipitous downfall is also a very human one.



    For the criminal defense attorneys (none / 0) (#106)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 03:36:55 PM EST
    When someone hits and kills someone, leaves the scene, and then returns, how long qualifies as "hit and run"?

    I'm no criminal defense counsel, but ... (none / 0) (#117)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 07:02:03 PM EST
    ... regarding the actual law itself, here are the relevant statutes you're seeking from the State of Maryland. From my own experience in writing law, the prevailing word for your purposes here is "immediately," as found in all four subclauses of §20-102, Maryland Revised Statutes:

    §20-102. Driver to remain at scene -- Accidents resulting in bodily injury or death. (a) Bodily injury. --

       (1) The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in bodily injury to another person immediately shall stop the vehicle as close as possible to the scene of the accident, without obstructing traffic more than necessary.

       (2) The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in bodily injury to another person immediately shall return to and remain at the scene of the accident until the driver has complied with § 20-104 of this title.

    (b) Death. --

       (1) The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in the death of another person immediately shall stop the vehicle as close as possible to the scene of the accident, without obstructing traffic more than necessary.

       (2) The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in the death of another person immediately shall return to and remain at the scene of the accident until the driver has complied with § 20-104 of this title.


    §20-104. Duty to give information and render aid. (a) Rendering assistance -- The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in bodily injury to or death of any person or in damage to an attended vehicle or other attended property shall render reasonable assistance to any person injured in the accident and, if the person requests medical treatment or it is apparent that medical treatment is necessary, arrange for the transportation of the person to a physician, surgeon, or hospital for medical treatment.

    (b) Duty to give certain information -- The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in bodily injury to or death of any person or in damage to an attended vehicle or other attended property shall give his name, his address, and the registration number of the vehicle he is driving and, on request, exhibit his license to drive, if it is available, to:

       (1) Any person injured in the accident; and

       (2) The driver, occupant of, or person attending any vehicle or other property damaged in the accident.

    (c) Exhibiting license -- The driver of each vehicle involved in an accident that results in bodily injury to or death of any person or in damage to an attended vehicle or other attended property shall give the same information described in subsection (b) of this section and, on request, exhibit his license to drive, if it is available, to any police officer who is at the scene of or otherwise is investigating the accident.

    (d) If no one able to receive information. -- If a police officer is not present and none of the specified persons is in condition to receive the information to which the person otherwise would be entitled under this section, the driver, after fulfilling to the extent possible every other requirement of § 20-102 of this title and subsection (a) of this section, immediately shall report the accident to the nearest office of an authorized police authority and give the information specified in subsection (b) of this section.

    (Sorry, Jeralyn, but LexisNexus wouldn't let me reference via hyperlink either of the two relevant statutory provisions. So for purposes of any discussion I pasted both in their entirety for jb and everyone else. Here's a hyperlink to the Maryland Revised Statutes, in case anyone wants to examine the law for themselves, which can be found under "Title 20, Transportation Code.")



    Paul Waldman on HRC and 2016 demographics (none / 0) (#109)
    by Politalkix on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 04:13:51 PM EST

    I hope that if HRC courts the white working class, it will only be through economic populism and not foreign policy positions that are to the right of BHO. We will soon find out. The article that I have linked is interesting. There is more support for progressive politics in the country at this time among white college educated and minority demographics than white non-college educated folks. I hope that HRC or any other Democratic candidate that gets nominated is able to bring more white working class folks into the progressive coalition without driving away other groups that are already there.

    politalkix: There is a way to do both. (5.00 / 1) (#116)
    by christinep on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 06:57:48 PM EST
    Think about it a bit. I hailed from Pennsylvania ... the combo of domestic economic populism & a straightforward (robust but not warmongering, e.g.) foreign policy is par for the course.  Hillary Clinton surely understands & demonstrates that approach.

    Yeah, because ... (4.00 / 4) (#120)
    by Yman on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 08:19:04 PM EST
    ... that's the issue upon which white, working-class voters are going to base their decision.

    Do you really think your one-trick, pony show isn't blatantly transparent?  You think she's "to the right of BHO" - even if they're barely distinguishable - so you keep beating that same, dead horse as an excuse.  Let me take a wild guess at where you're going to fall.


    Yaaaaaaawwwwwnnnn ...


    Seems you can't hack everyone (none / 0) (#110)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 05:01:23 PM EST
    We took the grandbabes to (none / 0) (#118)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 29, 2014 at 07:55:32 PM EST
    Into the Woods.  Enjoyed it, but it is long.  The middle grandchild has always had an amazing attention span, she is five now.  We didn't lose her toward the end but we did lose the three year old and the seven year old.  There is a duet with prince brothers that's pretty funny, my daughter and I laughed together all the way through it.

    If any of you listened to "Serial," (none / 0) (#122)
    by Anne on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 06:31:56 AM EST
    there is the first of a three-part interview with "Jay" at The Intercept, in which he discusses his relationship with Adnan, and his role in the events.

    Interesting development (none / 0) (#132)
    by Uncle Chip on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 10:17:48 AM EST
    Arrest warrant for ex-Korean Air exec in nut rage

    A South Korean court on Tuesday approved the arrest of a former Korean Air Lines Co. executive who delayed a flight over a bag of macadamia nuts....

    Overlooked (none / 0) (#155)
    by Uncle Chip on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 02:30:11 PM EST
    According to the author of this article:

    Everyone should not be allowed to "write their own story" about the Michael Brown shooting.  An audiotape of the shooting exists, as well as substantial related physical evidence.And yet I have seen very little discussion of this evidence, particularly from Michael Brown supporters.

    Many seem to be more interested in discussing "the lessons of Ferguson" or some other broad topic.  Indeed, some of Brown's supporters candidly concede that the facts are irrelevant. But for those who want to know whether the grand jury reached the right conclusion, the facts are paramount....

    This author tells us that this is the scenario that detectives presented and that the Grand Jury likely bought:

    That Brown ran ~205 feet from the gunshots at the Tahoe, then turned around and raced back to catch the first of 10 additional shots at about the 185ft point.

    We know for a fact by the shell casings in this diagram that Wilson was 150 feet from the Tahoe running towards Brown when he fired his first of the 10 shots. And according to an indisputable audiotape and police dispatches that that would be ~7 seconds after exiting the Tahoe.

    That puts Wilson at ~150ft point with Brown at ~185ft point both running towards each other when Wilson begins firing. Really??? Does any witness describe them both charging each other when Wilson fires???

    That also means that a second earlier [6s] Brown would have just started back from where he stopped [205ft] and turned around as Wilson reaches the 128ft point and is still running.

    That also means that a second earlier still [5s] as Brown stops at 205ft point, Wilson reaches the ~107ft point and is still running.

    Brown is 98 feet ahead of Wilson almost home free when he stops for no apparent reason to go back??? Really???

    Was Brown really that fast and Wilson that slow??? If so then why not just keep running???

    Did he have that big a lead to start with??? How long was that call to dispatch that Wilson made???

    Even if you grant Brown a 3.8 second head start for Wilson to make his call, it would mean that Brown ran that 205 ft distance in 8 seconds at a blistering 25.625fps as opposed to Wilson covering only 107 feet over 5 seconds at a respectable 21.428fps.

    And Brown did so carrying 280lbs, with marijuana in his system, bleeding from a bullet wound, in flip flops part of the way, then one flip flop, finishing in just socks.

    Apparently some jurors didn't believe that they were getting all they needed from the prosecutor because at one point in the proceedings the prosecutor admonished the Grand Jury because it had come to her attention that some members were conducting their own investigation.

    Did they catch someone trying to use a calculator???

    your comment.

    I'll just lay all of your "misstatements" out:

    1. "We know for a fact by the shell casings in this diagram that Wilson was 150 feet from the Tahoe running towards Brown when he fired his first of the 10 shots."

    2. "And according to an indisputable audiotape and police dispatches that that would be ~7 seconds after exiting the Tahoe."

    3. "That puts Wilson at ~150ft point with Brown at ~185ft point both running towards each other when Wilson begins firing."

    4. "That also means that a second earlier [6s] Brown would have just started back from where he stopped [205ft] and turned around as Wilson reaches the 128ft point and is still running."

    5. "That also means that a second earlier still [5s] as Brown stops at 205ft point, Wilson reaches the ~107ft point and is still running."

    6. "Even if you grant Brown a 3.8 second head start for Wilson to make his call, it would mean that Brown ran that 205 ft distance in 8 seconds at a blistering 25.625fps as opposed to Wilson covering only 107 feet over 5 seconds at a respectable 21.428fps."

    7. "And Brown did so carrying 280lbs, with marijuana in his system, bleeding from a bullet wound, in flip flops part of the way, then one flip flop, finishing in just socks."

    Dam near everything you wrote...

    SUO recital (none / 0) (#159)
    by Uncle Chip on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 03:56:10 PM EST
    I'll just lay all of your "misstatements" out

    So what??? All you are doing is a reciting what I wrote???

    Hows about trying to refute them.


    You made the statements, you prove them to be true.

    SUO (none / 0) (#161)
    by Uncle Chip on Tue Dec 30, 2014 at 04:26:04 PM EST
    I don't need to prove any of those statements because I made them.

    And I prefer the statements that I make to the ones that you don't make.


    On the final day of 2012 (none / 0) (#170)
    by Palli on Wed Dec 31, 2014 at 02:40:28 PM EST
    Again the STLPD deliberately violate the federal restraining order against the enforcement of any rule, policy or practice that grants the law enforcement the authority or discretion to use "chemical agents" for the purpose of dispersing groups of individuals [American citizens] who are engaged in peaceful, non-criminal activity in the City of St Louis or the county of St Louis.

    Once again, the number of cops standing around watching their comrades strike, drag and gas citizens, mostly women Protestors, seems to indicate football is no longer the preferred spectator sport for the men in blue who still are not wearing visible name tags & badges.

    BTW, Here is a good read for the New Year
    Just Justice by Bryan Stevenson.  Recommended by Davis Menschel, Defense Atty. and documentary film producer