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Wednesday, January 02, 2013

OTP - Jan 2013: Jewish Journal:E1: An error in baseball and Mideast politics

Tripon Posted: January 02, 2013 at 02:48 PM | 2805 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: ot, politics

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   1101. steagles Posted: January 12, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4345731)
Is Joe himself even real, or is he just the resurrected spirit of Doug Kenney?
oh, he's real...and he's spectacular.
   1102. CrosbyBird Posted: January 12, 2013 at 06:09 PM (#4345742)
I would like to hear some details on how this is supposed to work. Seems like it would necessitate for more infringement on people's property rights, than simply requiring businesses to serve everyone.

The simplest solution would be the government opening a food distribution center that supplies food to those in need. A less direct solution would be offering subsidies for establishments that don't discriminate. An even less direct solution would be to offer subsidies to residents of states that policed their own localities.

Once you accept that a base level of service is a guarantee, you accept that you're taxing whatever it costs to pay for it.
   1103. zenbitz Posted: January 12, 2013 at 10:21 PM (#4345887)
Beyond that, there's plenty of middle ground between non-violence and suicide bombers attacking school buses.


Yes, a bunch of middle ground that results in the destruction of Palestinian goals. I mean - they should challenge the IDF to a rocket duel?
   1104. DA Baracus Posted: January 12, 2013 at 10:46 PM (#4345903)
The Treasury has announced it will not mint a platinum coin.

I was hoping they would do it for the absurdity of it.
   1105. Tripon Posted: January 12, 2013 at 10:56 PM (#4345909)
GOP looks for ways to stop the rape comments

Rep. Phil Gingrey’s attempts to explain Todd Akin’s rape remarks are leaving many Republicans beyond frustrated that a few in their party can’t help but insert rape into the already contentious abortion debate.
“This is actually pretty simple. If you’re about to talk about rape as anything other than a brutal and horrible crime, stop,” said Republican strategist Kevin Madden, who was a senior adviser in Mitt Romney’s campaign.

/quote]
   1106. DA Baracus Posted: January 12, 2013 at 11:04 PM (#4345917)
“This is actually pretty simple. If you’re about to talk about rape as anything other than a brutal and horrible crime, stop,” said Republican strategist Kevin Madden, who was a senior adviser in Mitt Romney’s campaign.


Pathetic isn't strong enough a word to describe that this needs to be said to a group of elected officials.
   1107. Lassus Posted: January 12, 2013 at 11:21 PM (#4345925)
   1108. zenbitz Posted: January 12, 2013 at 11:35 PM (#4345936)
The Treasury has announced it will not mint a platinum coin.


... they decided it was more cost effective to mint 1,0000 billion dollar platinum coins!
   1109. Jay Z Posted: January 13, 2013 at 12:54 AM (#4345991)
No one is obligated to provide, to prevent the death of the traveler. Then what?

The government is obligated to provide. That's the sort of social safety net I'm suggesting.


So you are recognizing that the discrimination is creating an externiality that the government has to fix. Government action requires resources, money, and taxation. So the whole populace, some of whom are not discriminating, have to pay the cost created by the discriminating parties through their "free" actions. That doesn't seem fair.

I suppose you can fine the discriminators, but if you're going to do that, you're pretty much where we are now, right?
   1110. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 03:00 AM (#4346019)
1078. YR Misses Reggie Bars Posted: January 12, 2013 at 11:06 AM (#4345550)

Boy are you whiny.

Not good at reading sarcasm, huh?

***
1083. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: January 12, 2013 at 12:29 PM (#4345583)

One highlight:
(Jokes aside, what's with this recent effort here to paint me as someone who's constantly backtracking and/or claiming to have been misquoted or misconstrued? I literally can't recall the last time I did either of those things here.)
9:11pm

None of the above is even remotely an accurate representation of anything I've said in this discussion. I never said "non-violence never works," I never said "Gandhi and Mandela were frauds." It's all fiction.
3:54am

Pointing out fiction isn't the same thing as backtracking from a comment by claiming to have been misquoted. Also, the example you cited is from after the comment I made. If I said I couldn't recall the last time I had pizza for lunch, and then I go have pizza for lunch, there's no "gotcha" there. The "gotcha" would have been if I had pizza yesterday but claimed not to have remembered it. Glad I could clear all of this up for you.
   1111. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 03:16 AM (#4346024)
What's crazy is suggesting that the same tactic that makes sense in the case of defense of one's home is one that can be applied to political demonstrations whose point is to change public opinion, with the ultimate end of changing the laws. You might notice that not even your usual group of allies is backing you up on this one.

My "usual group of allies" numbers no more than about four, none of whom seem to be overly pro-gun.

No, you just said it was a stupid tactic in a specific historical situation (the Freedom Rides) where the unanimous opinion of every historian is that non-violence was a key factor**, if not the key factor, in that movement's success.

**You might say that organization was "the" key factor, but the same organization without non-violence would never have been able to achieve its goals.

Violence brought an end to slavery (after hundreds of years), but it "never" could have brought a faster end to Jim Crow? Not buying it.

Beyond that, you're making the classic lefty mistake of assuming that the presence of guns automatically increases the odds of violence — when, in fact, the opposite is true. I know you think it's just a big coincidence that the so-called "gun-free zones" are the most popular target of mass murderers while police precincts and military installations have tended to be immune, but the facts are the facts.

As far as the Freedom Riders are concerned, for all you know, one or more of them were packing. (And I never said the Freedom Riders should have ridden into the South with guns blazing; I simply replied to your comment that they risked their lives by saying that their lives would have been in less danger if they had been carrying in self-defense.)
   1112. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: January 13, 2013 at 03:23 AM (#4346025)
i mean, our current infrastructure is based upon 19th and 20th century ideas of urban planning, so if we made the decision to start over by designing and building new cities that take advantage of new technologies, instead of just retrofitting our old ones, we would be much better off.

The costs for that would run in the order of magnitude of building that Death Star. And in 50-100 years, we'd be right back where we started.
   1113. Morty Causa Posted: January 13, 2013 at 03:39 AM (#4346027)
Edge's Annual Question for 2013 is out: What should we worry about?

This is Sam Harris's entry:

The Power of Bad Incentives

He concludes: "We need systems that are wiser than we are. We need institutions and cultural norms that make us better than we tend to be. It seems to me that the greatest challenge we now face is to build them." That's what we hope to do with government: institutionalize what's best in us and depersonalize the conflict among us and our competing interests.
   1114. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 13, 2013 at 08:52 AM (#4346048)
Violence brought an end to slavery (after hundreds of years), but it "never" could have brought a faster end to Jim Crow? Not buying it.

Violence---Union army violence---certainly did bring about slavery's demise, but it had nothing to do with slave uprisings, which is what you'd been suggesting.

Beyond that, you're making the classic lefty mistake of assuming that the presence of guns automatically increases the odds of violence — when, in fact, the opposite is true. I know you think it's just a big coincidence that the so-called "gun-free zones" are the most popular target of mass murderers while police precincts and military installations have tended to be immune, but the facts are the facts.

That's a whole separate issue that I haven't mentioned once during this conversation, since I was specifically referring to the strategies of the civil rights movement, and the Freedom Rides in particular---a topic that you raised in the first place.

As far as the Freedom Riders are concerned, for all you know, one or more of them were packing.

Right, and for all you know, Wayne LaPierre is an undercover agent for the ATF Bureau. The people chosen for the Freedom Riders were screened and re-screened for their attitudes on retaliatory violence of any kind, and put through all sorts of training in order to gauge their reactions to violent attacks---which everyone knew were bound to happen. There isn't one chance in ten million that any of them were "packing", as you put it.

(And I never said the Freedom Riders should have ridden into the South with guns blazing; I simply replied to your comment that they risked their lives by saying that their lives would have been in less danger if they had been carrying in self-defense.)

For reasons that have been gone over time and again, the idea that the Freedom Riders would have been safer "packing" guns** is one of the two looniest concepts you've ever offered here, the other one being that slaves could have obtained their freedom with their own guns.

**For point of information, not a single Freedom Rider was ever killed during that entire campaign, which lasted many months and traveled time and again from Virginia to Mississippi and all points in between and around. Brutally beaten, yes, but no fatalities. How many deaths might have resulted from even a single demonstrator firing a single shot into an armed mob of angry whites, who would have had absolutely nothing to fear in the way of any sort of legal consequences after pleading "self-defense" to a local all-white jury.
   1115. Tilden Katz Posted: January 13, 2013 at 09:44 AM (#4346058)
the presence of guns automatically increases the odds of violence — when, in fact, the opposite is true.


Prove it.
   1116. Lassus Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:20 AM (#4346072)
I feel I am getting a better grasp of Mr. Heterodoskie's emulation of Cuban freedom fighter Antonio Maceo: "You cannot beg for liberty, you must conquer it at the point of a machete."
   1117. CrosbyBird Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:31 AM (#4346074)
So you are recognizing that the discrimination is creating an externiality that the government has to fix. Government action requires resources, money, and taxation. So the whole populace, some of whom are not discriminating, have to pay the cost created by the discriminating parties through their "free" actions. That doesn't seem fair.

Fairness, while certainly a noble goal, is not my primary goal. The driving force behind what I'd consider to be a good society are the protection of certain fundamental rights (the right to bodily autonomy, the right to mental and emotional autonomy, and the right to use one's personal property as one wishes) and the maintenance of a structure that permits the protection of these rights.

It's not fair that some people are born with more wealth than others. It's not fair that some people are born healthier, or smarter, or more talented. I don't want a government that is concerned with leveling out those legitimately unfair aspects of the human condition. I do want a government that works to prevent people from being left behind by society, or worse, seeking to overthrow society.

I suppose you can fine the discriminators, but if you're going to do that, you're pretty much where we are now, right?

Not at all. Right now, you prevent people from exercising their right to control their private property. If you properly assess the cost of discrimination and charge accordingly, you allow people to do as they wish, but hold them accountable for the costs of their behavior. You can assess that cost individually, at the local level, or at the state level.
   1118. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 13, 2013 at 01:00 PM (#4346146)
the presence of guns automatically increases the odds of violence — when, in fact, the opposite is true.

Prove it.


You think he doesn't have John Lott on speed dial?
   1119. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 13, 2013 at 01:30 PM (#4346156)
Right now, you prevent people from exercising their right to control their private property.


Nobody is forcing you to open a restaurant. When you choose to open your property to the public, there are certain consequences from that decision -- you will have to pay business taxes, people might track mud into your building, people might engage in fisticuffs in your property, and you have to serve everyone without discrimination on the basis of race.
   1120. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 13, 2013 at 02:39 PM (#4346199)
So apparently there are a few nut cases calling sandyhook and govt conspiracy so they could pass gun control measures, sadly one is a professor at UF
   1121. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 13, 2013 at 04:48 PM (#4346264)
.

Pop Quiz (and no fair googling):

1. How much money was actually involved in the TARP bailout?

2. How much TARP money has been repaid?
   1122. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 13, 2013 at 04:52 PM (#4346266)
i think 1.8b and If I recall correctly we have gotten most of it back and made money off some of it as well.
   1123. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 13, 2013 at 05:22 PM (#4346321)
@1122: interesting. Not saying you're right or wrong. This group is much more politically aware than the average. I'll be fascinated to see what people think.

It's not fair that some people are born with more wealth than others. It's not fair that some people are born healthier, or smarter, or more talented. I don't want a government that is concerned with leveling out those legitimately unfair aspects of the human condition.


Why on earth not? Iirc you favor an expansive form of health care. Doesn't that involve a govt 'concerned with leveling out those legitimately unfair aspects of the human condition"?

I do want a government that works to prevent people from being left behind by society, or worse, seeking to overthrow society.
I think the two are too interrelated to warrant that kind of distinction. A government that helps create and sustain an un-level playing field, is itself not worth sustaining.

Not saying you do, but I think it's interesting how many people who think they're arguing for government to keep its hands off what people do, are going to great lengths to overlook how much work government has to do to give the appearance of keeping its hands off what people do.
   1124. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 13, 2013 at 05:34 PM (#4346338)
Jack that was just a random guess odds are my memory of these things have replaced by shiny things like keys and that light that changes colors...
   1125. spike Posted: January 13, 2013 at 07:23 PM (#4346413)
Colin Powell sure wasn't mincing any words this morning. I realize he doesn't have any cred with the conservatives here, but I think he is still a fairly respected voice of centrism with many Americans. I realize it doesn't matter with respect to the House members, but it's tough to tack to the center nationally when the voices of moderation from your own party are dubious of your motivation
   1126. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 09:03 PM (#4346477)
the presence of guns automatically increases the odds of violence — when, in fact, the opposite is true.
Prove it.

The above needs a citation like "2 + 2 = 4" needs a citation. (But if you're truly curious, #1118 was right — John Lott's studies would be a good place to start.)
   1127. Tilden Katz Posted: January 13, 2013 at 09:10 PM (#4346482)
The above needs a citation like "2 + 2 = 4" needs a citation.


Ummm no it doesn't. Western Europe, Australia, and Japan have much lower violent crime rates and much lower gun possession rates.
   1128. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:11 PM (#4346496)
Ummm no it doesn't. Western Europe, Australia, and Japan have much lower violent crime rates and much lower gun possession rates.

LOL. I thought we were talking about the United States? Next you'll be citing the relative safety of North Korea.
   1129. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4346498)
The above needs a citation like "2 + 2 = 4" needs a citation. (But if you're truly curious, #1118 was right — John Lott's studies would be a good place to start.)


You wouldn't prefer to start with Mary Rosh?
   1130. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:17 PM (#4346500)
More immigration pandering from Obama ...

That routine check revealed that Ms. Arreola had been returned to Mexico in 1998 after she was caught trying to illegally cross the border into Arizona with Erika and two of her siblings in tow. As a result, she was placed on a priority list for deportation.

After being seized on Thursday, she could have been sent back to Mexico in a matter of hours, but Obama administration officials moved quickly to undo the arrests. Officials had been pressured by the robust response from advocates — through phone calls, e-mails and online petitions, but primarily on Twitter, where they mobilized support for Ms. Andiola, a well-known advocate for young illegal immigrants, under the hashtag #WeAreAndiola.

I guess we've reached the point in the United States where the rule of law means so little that some idiots posting messages on Twitter is enough to get the arrest and deportation of a felon "undone."
   1131. Lassus Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:26 PM (#4346501)
She wouldn't have needed Obama if she had just had a gun. Tsk.
   1132. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:29 PM (#4346502)
once again peaceful means of demonstration succeed!

Also wasn't the arab spring spread/started online?
   1133. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:40 PM (#4346508)
I guess we've reached the point in the United States where the rule of law means so little that some idiots posting messages on Twitter is enough to get the arrest and deportation of a felon "undone."

Glad to see Obama is starting to really stand up to the Arpaio coalition, but personally I won't be satisfied until that lowlife ############ is dressed in a pink striped prison suit and cleaning latrines for the rest of his ugly life.
   1134. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:42 PM (#4346510)
Glad to see Obama is starting to really stand up to the Arpaio coalition, but personally I won't be satisfied until that lowlife ############ is dressed in a pink striped prison suit and cleaning latrines for the rest of his ugly life.

Are there going to be charges and a trial first, or are we going to dispense with those unnecessary trivialities?
   1135. RollingWave Posted: January 13, 2013 at 10:57 PM (#4346514)
LOL. I thought we were talking about the United States? Next you'll be citing the relative safety of North Korea.

Right, because Western Europe is as different to the US as North Korea.
   1136. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 13, 2013 at 11:07 PM (#4346517)
Glad to see Obama is starting to really stand up to the Arpaio coalition, but personally I won't be satisfied until that lowlife ############ is dressed in a pink striped prison suit and cleaning latrines for the rest of his ugly life.

Are there going to be charges and a trial first, or are we going to dispense with those unnecessary trivialities?


I'd give him a trial before a jury filled with future Dream Act beneficiaries whom he otherwise would have deported.
   1137. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 13, 2013 at 11:11 PM (#4346519)
I'd give him a trial before a jury filled with future Dream Act beneficiaries whom he otherwise would have deported.

A jury of illegal immigrants? As I've said, you really don't care about rights or the rule of law.
   1138. Manny Coon Posted: January 13, 2013 at 11:15 PM (#4346522)
Ummm no it doesn't. Western Europe, Australia, and Japan have much lower violent crime rates and much lower gun possession rates.


Some countries in Western Europe allow more guns than other countries in Western Europe but don't really have significantly more crime than countries with less. There are also plenty of countries with less guns than the USA and have more crime. It really doesn't correlate well at all.
   1139. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 13, 2013 at 11:31 PM (#4346527)
I'd give him a trial before a jury filled with future Dream Act beneficiaries whom he otherwise would have deported.

A jury of illegal immigrants?


They won't be illegal forever, and until that time comes we can put Mr. Pink Stripes in a preventive detention cell that's patterned after the ones he's used for his own suspects.
   1140. DA Baracus Posted: January 13, 2013 at 11:41 PM (#4346532)
I'd give him a trial before a jury filled with future Dream Act beneficiaries whom he otherwise would have deported.


Oh come on. Give him a jury of the legal citizens he falsely arrested.
   1141. Tilden Katz Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:19 AM (#4346543)
Gotta give it up for Arpaio for being one of the few politicians to openly advocate for explicitly racist positions (i.e. birtherism).
   1142. RollingWave Posted: January 14, 2013 at 02:45 AM (#4346571)
Some countries in Western Europe allow more guns than other countries in Western Europe but don't really have significantly more crime than countries with less. There are also plenty of countries with less guns than the USA and have more crime. It really doesn't correlate well at all.


Generally speaking homicide rates tend to correlate most with

A. GDP per capita (wealthy country have less crime with other factors being similar)
B. Population density (hard to kill people when they live very far away from you, shocker!)
C. Demographics (younger / more diverse population tend to be more at risk for crimes)

Still, with these factors, the US stand out as the one very rich country that have considerably higher homicide rate. most very rich country have around 1 murder per 100k give or take some, the US have about 5.

the US have 4.8 murder per 100k last year according to UNODC, amongst Western and Northern European country (everyone north east of France until Germany / Sweden / Finland) . the highest murder are .... Finland and Belgium both at a bit more than 2 (well there is also Liechtenstein but it had only 1 murder... it's small population obviously ruins any sample size.) everyone else is under 2.

yeah, the US demographic is certainly a negative in this regard, but on the other hand it's population density isn't as high as alot of those other places.


My problem with the more gun = more safety argument is that if that was the case, then the US which has twice as many guns per capita as the SECOND HIGHEST country and about 10x the world average. should have long been the safest country by a mile, given that their lead in this factor is so huge that it should easily outweigh any other factor.

If the general pro-gun argument is to go the Swiss route, then I would totally support that, but the interesting thing is that the pro-gun advocates are also the strongest individualist 2nd amendment advocates.

Anyone with a decent objective view of the early US history should see that while it is not entirely clear that there wasn't a individualist argument in the 2nd amendment when it was written, there clearly was a very strong collectivist view , and that was how it was interpeted you know... when the Found fathers were actually still alive, or shortly after it.


i'd like to point out that this was a state high court writing in 1842... you know.. just 6 years after James Madison passed away.

"That the words "a well regulated militia being necessary for the security of a free State", and the words "common defense" clearly show the true intent and meaning of these Constitutions and prove that it is a political and not an individual right, and, of course, that the State, in her legislative capacity, has the right to regulate and control it: This being the case, then the people, neither individually nor collectively, have the right to keep and bear arms."
   1143. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 14, 2013 at 02:50 AM (#4346576)
Anyone with a decent objective view of the early US history should see that while it is not entirely clear that there wasn't a individualist argument in the 2nd amendment when it was written, there clearly was a very strong collectivist view , and that was how it was interpeted you know... when the Found fathers were actually still alive, or shortly after it.

I suspect this would be news to more than a few of the Founding Fathers.
   1144. steagles Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:18 AM (#4346581)
I suspect this would be news to more than a few of the Founding Fathers.
cite?

preferably a first person source.
   1145. CrosbyBird Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:52 AM (#4346589)
Iirc you favor an expansive form of health care. Doesn't that involve a govt 'concerned with leveling out those legitimately unfair aspects of the human condition"?

No, it is protection against societal collapse. If people are dying in the streets, they (and their families and friends) will have strong incentive to revolt or otherwise seek to tear down society. It's a domestic version of national defense.
   1146. Joe Kehoskie Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:56 AM (#4346590)
cite?

preferably a first person source.

Old and/or disabled people whom no one would consider viable members of a "collective" rights militia were still allowed to keep and bear arms. Women were allowed to keep and bear arms before they were allowed to vote. Blacks were often allowed to keep and bear arms before they were fully considered people. The whole "collective" rights interpretation of the Second Amendment is revisionist nonsense.
   1147. Lassus Posted: January 14, 2013 at 08:18 AM (#4346608)
The whole "collective" rights interpretation of the Second Amendment is revisionist nonsense.

Unlike your interpretation of the civil rights movement.
   1148. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 14, 2013 at 09:46 AM (#4346625)
The above needs a citation like "2 + 2 = 4" needs a citation.


As an aside, in Math you do in fact have to prove (and I have) things like 2 + 2 = 4. It turns out to be a non-trivial exercise to rigorously prove it.

More to the point it was not random "gun violence" which ended slavery. It was a war/treason, started by the slaveholders. Random dudes with guns had little to nothing to do with it, it was armies - the end of slavery has basically nothing to do with either second amendment or non-violent protest. Bringing it up in terms of the end of Jim Crow, civil rights era non violent protest, and so on is a complete red herring.
   1149. Bitter Mouse Posted: January 14, 2013 at 09:49 AM (#4346626)
allowed to keep and bear arms


So what? Being allowed to do something does not mean it was because of the second amendment. There are plenty of things that are allowed, but that does not mean each and everyone supports an amendment.
   1150. GregD Posted: January 14, 2013 at 11:15 AM (#4346668)
There is no simple answer to the question of the relationship between guns and violence since there are lots of factors. It is interesting that the publication of addresses of gun permits in upstate NY has led to what police think is an increase in crime...against households that have guns by people looking to steal them. link
   1151. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4346686)
A few months ago on on of these OTP threads I mentioned that gun control was a dead political issue, the NRA side had won as decisively and completely as any political group in this country ever does, and that it was the NRA and others who were trying to keep the appearance of a live issue as a fundraising (and the GOP who perhaps viewed it as a "wedge issue").

I may have been wrong... I don't think any significant legislation will come out of this, the NRA side still has the upper hand, but the pro gun control crowd isn't quite as dead as I'd thought.
   1152. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 11:58 AM (#4346694)
EDIT: Wow, I was way off. Never mind.
   1153. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:07 PM (#4346703)
The whole "collective" rights interpretation of the Second Amendment is revisionist nonsense.


One of the problems with the 2nd amendment is that if you could go back in time and poll each of the people who voted on the amendment, both congress and in state legislatures... you likely wouldn't get a majority to agree on what it meant.

There's an argument to be made that it was intended to allow individuals to possess guns in order to resist the government.
There's also an argument to be made that it was indeed intended to be a collective right, the people/militia could collectively keep and bear arms, and the people could determine who should or should not be allowed arms, and what kind of arms...

The text of the 2nd (and many other amendments)was almost deliberately fuzzy in order to attract votes- once you start specifying things, you'd start losing votes.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

What does that mean? To some it meant simply that the Federal Government was not allowed to establish a state religion/church- what they didn't want was a situation like England, where everyone was compelled to support (pay taxes to) the Church of England, whether they were a member or not.

To many "religion" meant CHRISTIAN religion, if it was specified that "free exercise" meant the right to practice Islam or Hinduism, many of the "founders" would have blanched.
   1154. BrianBrianson Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:27 PM (#4346723)
I guess we've reached the point in the United States where the rule of law means so little that some idiots posting messages on Twitter is enough to get the arrest and deportation of a felon "undone."


Most've us are middle-aged white collar men, so we're used to being able to commit more or less any crime we want without legal repercussions. Why shouldn't we want everyone else to enjoy the same privilege?
   1155. Tilden Katz Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:38 PM (#4346733)
If only we treated Maria Arreola with the same degree of harshness we treated Scooter Libby or Tom DeLay.
   1156. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:41 PM (#4346735)
yeah, nothing collective about a "well regulated militia"
   1157. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:53 PM (#4346749)
Seriously, where do they get these clowns? Is it possible that people like Savage are nothing but one big Onion put-on? Has anyone ever seen him in person?


he briefly had a show on MSNBC...
I think someone mentioned earlier in this thread that Beck was a crazy true believer, but that Savage just said what he says to sell books/get ratings...

I actually met someone who'd met Savage, said that Savage was, in real life, the same mean spiteful narrow minded little troll that you hear on the radio. Basically he's Oliver Crangle (Old Twilight Zone character)
I used to listen to Savage for maybe 10 minutes on the car ride home, it was kind of fascinating, he has this low hiss to his voice, as if he censoring himself from saying something even worse...

   1158. The Good Face Posted: January 14, 2013 at 12:55 PM (#4346750)
Most've us are middle-aged white collar men, so we're used to being able to commit more or less any crime we want without legal repercussions.


Do you really believe this?
   1159. CrosbyBird Posted: January 14, 2013 at 01:28 PM (#4346773)
One of the problems with the 2nd amendment is that if you could go back in time and poll each of the people who voted on the amendment, both congress and in state legislatures... you likely wouldn't get a majority to agree on what it meant.

Just like today.

I strongly suspect that was deliberate. The Second Amendment, written in a definitive way that guaranteed an individual right or written in a definitive way that rejected an individual right, likely would not have been ratified.
   1160. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 01:37 PM (#4346779)
I've been enjoying the baseball/football related threads exclusively the past several days. Just poking my head in to make sure things haven't gone totally crazy in here.

I see the usual suspects are still at it.
   1161. BrianBrianson Posted: January 14, 2013 at 01:41 PM (#4346783)
Do you really believe this?


More or less does some light lifting here. It's not like I could go on a shooting spree without being arrested/shot. Illegally immigrating to the United States as an middle aged white collar English speaker is easier than pissing in the shower (and not half as fun), and nobody will bother to do anything about it. Mexicans worrying about being deported. Canadians don't.
   1162. Morty Causa Posted: January 14, 2013 at 01:54 PM (#4346794)
1153:

There's some truth in what you say, but it shouldn't matter all that much. The earth belongs to the living, as Jefferson once put it, I think.

People that insist on reverting to interpretations of a text on the pretext and pretense that they can know what was are living and promoting lies and delusions. We can't possibly definitively know what the Constitution meant to the Founders--and that's assuming that the promulgators mean is all that matters--and it isn't. In any contract or covenant situation there is a transmitter and a receiver, they can differ about what was transmitted and agreed to.

So, what the constitution means in the sense of what it meant back then to the "founders" is not determinable.

Moreover, it's 225 years ago this thing was articulated. Interpretations and actions since that time have changed what it meant. Meaning is just about what we say; it's also about what we do in light of what has been said--that is a gloss words, one I submit that has binding power also.

Yet, we insist on pretending that it is this holy writ that is THE WORD. Like the libertarians and their natural rights somewhere out there, the Constitution's meaning exists divorced from context--and guess what, that meaning always coincides with what the enunciator of this wants. As what's her name on SNL would say, how conveeenient.

We do know that Founders such as Jefferson, Madison, Adams, and Hamilton certainly didn't view it that way, in the way that it is Mosaic absolutes etched in stone--not only that, their views conflicted. Even then, there was contradiction.

For instance, they certainly did not think that the United States Supreme Court was supposed to be the trump card that it has set itself up to be (funny, but this is one of the least controversial developments). It was never intended to have the last word, certainly not to the extent it does now. It was never meant to be the great reconciliator. Frankly, with a federalist system of three equal branches, it is contemplated that at some point, it just ain't going to work unless the branches, the institution, the leaders, and we want it to work. Instead, the SC dictates in the final analysis, and the other branches are supposed to bend their knee to that. It was definitely not always so--not always thought so.

But that all goes with having sacred text and a ruling class of priests who have the last word.

And it's lies, from beginning to end. We pretend we're after truth; we just want our lie to prevail.

The first question to always be asked is not, what does holy writ say, which usually means what do I want it to say, but what do we want to do. There's a stricture in testamentary law that holds that you can not will from the grave--and that in a broader sense should be kept in mind when asking what was intended in 1787. We can't know that, and it is anyway ultimately irrelevant. And demeaning.

And this is just putting one side the fact that the second amendment does not express on its face clearly or in unambiguous language that can be taken as an axiom or absolute dictate. That's not how you word an absolute right. We've gone through this with Kehoskie, and he's been rendered a gibbering fool as to this, but his capacity for unmitigated gall being what it is, bottomless, he simply reverts to his, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.
   1163. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 14, 2013 at 01:55 PM (#4346795)
I've been enjoying the baseball/football related threads exclusively the past several days. Just poking my head in to make sure things haven't gone totally crazy in here.

I see the usual suspects are still at it.


And welcome back to the lineup. You're the one with the glasses and the softball mitt, right?
   1164. DA Baracus Posted: January 14, 2013 at 02:04 PM (#4346804)
Most've us are middle-aged white collar men, so we're used to being able to commit more or less any crime we want without legal repercussions.

Do you really believe this?


Absolutely. Want to see the trunk of my car?
   1165. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: January 14, 2013 at 02:16 PM (#4346807)
To quote a friend - a lifelong GOP loyalist who saw the light of reason somewhere in the mid-aughts, Congratulations to Cheap Labor Republicans: your policies have been extremely effective.
   1166. Tilden Katz Posted: January 14, 2013 at 02:35 PM (#4346821)
When your party has to have a meeting to tell members how to talk about rape, it's time for some serious soul-searching.
   1167. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:02 PM (#4346835)
re 1165: the logical consequence of woeful ignorance. When Americans don't understand that unions are their bulwark against stagnant (and worse wages), this is what they get.

Too bad the working class and working poor on the right aren't able to grasp that unions are indispensible wrt to one of the essential economic freedoms--the ability to negotiate meaningfully; without being at a perpetual disadvantage. It's almost funny that corporations (this seen on the order of a natural right), bargain from a position created and enhanced by a collective of talent and resources, but workers wanting the same ability are perverting the natural order. From your link:

FEDERAL income tax rates will rise for the wealthiest Americans, and certain tax loopholes might get closed this year. But these developments, and whatever else happens in Washington in the coming debt-ceiling debate, are unlikely to do much to alter one major factor contributing to income inequality: stagnant wages. For millions of workers, wages have flatlined. Take Caterpillar, long a symbol of American industry: while it reported record profits last year, it insisted on a six-year wage freeze for many of its blue-collar workers.

Wages have fallen to a record low as a share of America’s gross domestic product. Until 1975, wages nearly always accounted for more than 50 percent of the nation’s G.D.P., but last year wages fell to a record low of 43.5 percent. Since 2001, when the wage share was 49 percent, there has been a steep slide.

“We went almost a century where the labor share was pretty stable and we shared prosperity,” says Lawrence Katz, a labor economist at Harvard. “What we’re seeing now is very disquieting.” For the great bulk of workers, labor’s shrinking share is even worse than the statistics show, when one considers that a sizable — and growing — chunk of overall wages goes to the top 1 percent: senior corporate executives, Wall Street professionals, Hollywood stars, pop singers and professional athletes. The share of wages going to the top 1 percent climbed to 12.9 percent in 2010, from 7.3 percent in 1979.

Some economists say it is wrong to look at just wages because other aspects of employee compensation, notably health costs, have risen. But overall employee compensation — including health and retirement benefits — has also slipped badly, falling to its lowest share of national income in more than 50 years while corporate profits have climbed to their highest share over that time.


You'd think the right, with its endless assertions that more guns = greater safety, shouldn't have beyond its grasp the plain fact that more unions = higher wages. It's not a difficult graph to construct.


   1168. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:32 PM (#4346849)
re 1165: the logical consequence of woeful ignorance. When Americans don't understand that unions are their bulwark against stagnant (and worse wages), this is what they get.

Too bad the working class and working poor on the right aren't able to grasp that unions are indispensible wrt to one of the essential economic freedoms--the ability to negotiate meaningfully; without being at a perpetual disadvantage. It's almost funny that corporations (this seen on the order of a natural right), bargain from a position created and enhanced by a collective of talent and resources, but workers wanting the same ability are perverting the natural order.


Do you really not understand that this is nolonger true in the age of globalization and trade?

Unless you join my bandwagon, and endorse protectionism, unions have exactly zero ability to raise American wages in the private sector. All they can do is force more jobs overseas to keep up the pay/benefits of a dwindling US work-force.

shouldn't have beyond its grasp the plain fact that more unions = higher wages. It's not a difficult graph to construct.

Higher wages for the "Ins", lower wages for those not in the union, or who can't get jobs b/c they've gone overseas.

And, if you had reasonable protectionism, you wouldn't need the unions. If goods and service from China, India & co. were subject to a tariff that equalized for the costs of our greater health, safety and environmental protections, Americans would be really competitive in many more area, and wages would rise.
   1169. zonk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4346872)
Do you really not understand that this is nolonger true in the age of globalization and trade?

Unless you join my bandwagon, and endorse protectionism, unions have exactly zero ability to raise American wages in the private sector. All they can do is force more jobs overseas to keep up the pay/benefits of a dwindling US work-force.


Not true --

at least not wholly...

There are still two - three, depending on how you where/how you want to classify Teamsters -- big union chunks that simply cannot be outsourced because of the nature of the work:

1) Public sector and Service unions (i.e., AFSCME and SEIU)

2) Trade Unions (Pipefitters, electricians, et al)


However, the attacks on these unions continue unabated --- presumably, everyone's well aware of the battles being waged to weaken the public sector unions and the service unions are essentially leaning on their urban government allies to force union busters like wal-mart to make concessions.

On the trade union side of things -- this when things like card check, prevailing wage, et al come into play...

Neither of those two union types work in fields where "offshoring" is even possible.... the nature of the jobs are such that they'll have to remain onshore.

I support both those union types - strongly - even though, in the case of public sector unions, it's more than likely going to cost me more in taxes.... but ultimately -- better wages/compensation/benefits to public employees inevitably mean that my employer has to compete (thus offering ME better compensation/wages/etc).

People still need to build buildings -- be they homes, offices, hospitals or schools... People still need to get licenses renewed...
   1170. zonk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 04:04 PM (#4346889)
Just to underline -- I'm assuming the numbers in wikipedia are correct -- here's the classification of union membership:

? Management, professional: 13.4%
? Service: 11.9%
? Sales and office: 7.4%
? Natural resources, construction, and
maintenance: 17.7%
? Production, transportation, and
material moving: 16.4%

The first and I suspect 3rd bullet points (and part of the 4th) would be the public sector unions....

Only the last bullet --- 16.4% --- would be "outsourceable", and even then, it's not WHOLLY outsourceable... I assume "transportation" would be the Teamsters, while the "material moving" would be longshoremen, etc.

In effect - Snapper is "correct" about the "we build things" unions losing power, but he's incorrect in that they make up a very, very small slice of remaining US union membership.

   1171. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 04:46 PM (#4346927)
Not true --

at least not wholly...

There are still two - three, depending on how you where/how you want to classify Teamsters -- big union chunks that simply cannot be outsourced because of the nature of the work:

1) Public sector and Service unions (i.e., AFSCME and SEIU)

2) Trade Unions (Pipefitters, electricians, et al)


However, the attacks on these unions continue unabated --- presumably, everyone's well aware of the battles being waged to weaken the public sector unions and the service unions are essentially leaning on their urban government allies to force union busters like wal-mart to make concessions.


Yeah, but those people aren't the ones seeing declining wages.

Public sector pay and benefits are up massively in the last 20 years. Skilled trade unions are also doing fine (except where hurt by the buidling bust).

If you want to help the semi-skilled trades and unskilled laborers, then you have to go after illegal immigration. Those $30/hr jobs aren't lost to non-union citizens making $20/hr, they're lost to illegal immigrants making $100/day.
   1172. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 04:49 PM (#4346929)
In effect - Snapper is "correct" about the "we build things" unions losing power, but he's incorrect in that they make up a very, very small slice of remaining US union membership.

Yes, but those are the people seeing falling wages. Manufacturing workers, and low to moderately skilled office workers (call centers, systems maintenance, data processing, basic accounting, etc.).

Those are also really bad jobs to lose, b/c they're among the areas where you get the most productivity gains, which leads to wage growth. If you want to increase median wages, you have to stop manufacturing jobs from going to China, and service jobs from going to India.

I am the rare conservative that thinks our widening gap in income distribution is a really bad thing. But no one except the real paleo-conservatives and the radical anti-globalization anarchists sees that its inevitable with free trade.
   1173. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 14, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4346938)
I am the rare conservative that thinks our widening gap in income distribution is a really bad thing.


It's funny . . . every self-described conservative who I actually know personally (a very small number, but still) thinks this. We have a case where the party leadership is extraordinarily at odds with its supporters' actual points of view on issues (none of the conservatives I know could care less about gay marriage, either).
   1174. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4346943)
It's funny . . . every self-described conservative who I actually know personally (a very small number, but still) thinks this. We have a case where the party leadership is extraordinarily at odds with its supporters' actual points of view on issues (none of the conservatives I know could care less about gay marriage, either).

That's b/c both parties positions on trade/immigration are driven by the same corporate interests that provide much of campaign contributions. The top 0.1% of the income distribution is getting filthy rich on trade, and (Democrat or Republican) they don't give two shits about working Americans, or, often, even about America itself.

The fundamental problem is the coalition for trade protection is the right-most 50% of the Republicans (minus a few libertarians) and the left-most 50% of the Democrats. Very hard to get them to work together.
   1175. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 14, 2013 at 05:19 PM (#4346956)
I agree 100%.
   1176. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: January 14, 2013 at 05:27 PM (#4346968)
The fundamental problem is the coalition for trade protection is the right-most 50% of the Republicans (minus a few libertarians) and the left-most 50% of the Democrats. Very hard to get them to work together.
Can't recall where I read it, but someone made a very good point that if Glenn Beck and Michael Moore could ever stand to be in the same room together they'd find they have quite a bit in common.
   1177. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 14, 2013 at 05:59 PM (#4346999)
Can't recall where I read it, but someone made a very good point that if Glenn Beck and Michael Moore could ever stand to be in the same room together they'd find they have quite a bit in common.

Sure, until they tried to come up with an idea of what to do about the problems that they both love to decry. At that point you'd quickly discover why they aren't running for president on a common ticket.
   1178. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:06 PM (#4347004)
I do think that there is a broad agreement among people about what some of the problems are--possibly most of them--and that the debates are mainly about the solutions. But a more explicit realization that we agree on the problems might lead to more productive collaboration.
   1179. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:07 PM (#4347006)
Can't recall where I read it, but someone made a very good point that if Glenn Beck and Michael Moore could ever stand to be in the same room together they'd find they have quite a bit in common.


I have no doubt they share some bizarre counterfactual beliefs, but that alone is not enough to keep nutcases together, the reason most nutcases are loners is that they tend to argue with and reject people once it's obvious they do not share all of eachother's beliefs.

The current apparent uniformity of evangelical wingnut beliefs has smoothed that over a bit, but put Beck in a room for a few hours with some of his protestant evangelical fans and let Beck go on with his version of US/Western hemisphere History (altered to fit Beck's version of Mormonism) and he and his fans would probably come to blows as well
   1180. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:08 PM (#4347007)
Sure, until they tried to come up with an idea of what to do about the problems that they both love to decry. At that point you'd quickly discover why they aren't running for president on a common ticket.

That doesn't mean people can't work for common goals, even if they oppose each other on other issues.
   1181. McCoy Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:08 PM (#4347008)
Those $30/hr jobs aren't lost to non-union citizens making $20/hr, they're lost to illegal immigrants making $100/day.

What are these semi-skilled jobs that are only getting paid 10 to 12 dollars an hour? Hell, that's dishwasher pay in most restaurants and it's probably even higher than that nowadays in various cities. $100 a day is very close to no skilled ag work in California. I'm not sure why semi-skilled workers should be making over 62,000 a year while only working 8 hours a day 5 days a week. If an illegal immigrant with virtually no education or training can do the job for half that or less then that isn't the proper pay level for that job.
   1182. DA Baracus Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:10 PM (#4347010)
I have no doubt they share some bizarre counterfactual beliefs, but that alone is not enough to keep nutcases together, the reason most nutcases are loners is that they tend to argue with and reject people once it's obvious they do not share all of eachother's beliefs.

The current apparent uniformity of evangelical wingnut beliefs has smoothed that over a bit, but put Beck in a room for a few hours with some of his protestant evangelical fans and let Beck go on with his version of US/Western hemisphere History (altered to fit Beck's version of Mormonism) and he and his fans would probably come to blows as well


This is why they need to be put together in a room full of snakes with their only hope to exit being to realize that things that unite us are far greater than the things that divide us. Or put into a rocket with Nancy Grace.
   1183. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:11 PM (#4347012)
Sure, until they tried to come up with an idea of what to do about the problems that they both love to decry. At that point you'd quickly discover why they aren't running for president on a common ticket.

That doesn't mean people can't work for common goals, even if they oppose each other on other issues.


And what issues do you think Messrs. Beck and Moore would be likely to "work together" on? Empowering unions? Immigration? Voter fraud? Health care? You tell me what common ground solutions they'd be likely to come up with on issues like those.
   1184. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:14 PM (#4347017)
I am the rare conservative that thinks our widening gap in income distribution is a really bad thing.

It's funny . . . every self-described conservative who I actually know personally (a very small number, but still) thinks this.


As far as the people I know, almost the only people who do not think widening income disparity is bad are libertarians- and some of them think its bad, but reject all proposed policies meant to alleviate same as being even worse.

Many conservatives I know think its bad, but are at a complete loss as to how to alleviate (of course they reflexively rule out any New Deal/Great Society style "solutions" at the outset)- except most will admit that the rich should be taxed more, the estate tax should remain, corporate welfare should end... but I swear to god they whisper that as if they don't want any fellow conservatives to hear...
   1185. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:18 PM (#4347018)
Or put into a rocket with Nancy Grace.


What are her show's ratings?
The belief/opinion that she is vile (which I share) has to be the most universally held belief in this country, left/right, white/ black, Jesus freaks/godless atheists...

I will sometimes watch/listen to shows I find repugnant out of fascination (exceptions being Grace and Francessa- and I used to watch/listen...), but Grace is just so surrealistically vile.
   1186. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:19 PM (#4347020)
As far as the people I know, almost the only people who do not think widening income disparity is bad are libertarians- and some of them think its bad, but reject all proposed policies meant to alleviate same as being even worse.

Many conservatives I know think its bad, but are at a complete loss as to how to alleviate (of course they reflexively rule out any New Deal/Great Society style "solutions" at the outset)- except most will admit that the rich should be taxed more, the estate tax should remain, corporate welfare should end... but I swear to god they whisper that as if they don't want any fellow conservatives to hear...


Well, you need to distinguish "God, guns and Country" Conservatives from Wall Street Journal/Country Club Conservatives.

The problem I see is that we've got lots of New Deal/Great Society "solutions", extended UE benefits, greatlly liberalized disability benefits and food stamps, etc., but they aren't doing any good. Also, we've learned for the Great Society that paying people not to work wreaks havoc on the social structure, and leads to all kinds of social disfunction.
   1187. zonk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:21 PM (#4347021)
Yes, but those are the people seeing falling wages. Manufacturing workers, and low to moderately skilled office workers (call centers, systems maintenance, data processing, basic accounting, etc.).

Those are also really bad jobs to lose, b/c they're among the areas where you get the most productivity gains, which leads to wage growth. If you want to increase median wages, you have to stop manufacturing jobs from going to China, and service jobs from going to India.

I am the rare conservative that thinks our widening gap in income distribution is a really bad thing. But no one except the real paleo-conservatives and the radical anti-globalization anarchists sees that its inevitable with free trade.


I'm assuming you transposed are/aren't (i.e., 1171 & 1172) -- but I don't quite agree... those workers in unionized settings other than the production unions (UAW, etc -- unionized factories) are I think, seeing wages at least stagnate... if you want to say that they've been trading wage growth for hanging onto benefits (generous pension plan and other benefits, etc), then I might agree. I would also agree that those areas are hanging on to wages/compensation (i.e., 'stagnating', rather than actually seeing compensation packages fall) better than the production areas where the unions have been decimated (textiles, et al) due to offshoring.

However, this is really my point --

The assault on public unions and trade unions -- the union jobs that can't be offshored -- isn't going to a do a thing to halt, help, or otherwise impact those other areas.

All it will do is put another big group of 'workers' is the same boat -- instead of mere 'stagnation' -- service, public, and trade unions will just start to share the same boat of ever-decreasing wages, compensation, and job security.

Ultimately - that's my point.... while, yes, there are differences in skillsets, educational background, etc between service/building trade/etc unionized employees and those in the production unions -- they're a heck of a lot closer to each other than not (and I'm a heck of a lot closer to them than not).

Rather than continually squeezing subsets of workers/employers who are "like me" or "somewhat like me" -- I want to salvage/hang onto as much of their negotiating power to drive wages up as I can.

When a teacher's union negotiates a good contract - it's going to inevitably help "me" because my industry has to worry about "me" (in a broader sense) deciding it's more lucrative to get a teaching certificate... ditto trade unions... etc.

The union busters have done a quite effective job of turning the great masses onto subsets of themselves -- "You're poor because those greedy teachers/city workers/whomever are screwing you out of your tax dollars!" -- but the reality is that it's just much more a matter capital getting a lot better at winning the battle against labor.

I'll now cede the floor so folks can comment on well I'm channeling Marx...
   1188. DA Baracus Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:23 PM (#4347022)
What are her show's ratings?


Middling. When she is put into orbit, the ratings will... wait for it....

Skyrocket.
   1189. zonk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:27 PM (#4347026)
As far as the people I know, almost the only people who do not think widening income disparity is bad are libertarians- and some of them think its bad, but reject all proposed policies meant to alleviate same as being even worse.

Many conservatives I know think its bad, but are at a complete loss as to how to alleviate (of course they reflexively rule out any New Deal/Great Society style "solutions" at the outset)- except most will admit that the rich should be taxed more, the estate tax should remain, corporate welfare should end... but I swear to god they whisper that as if they don't want any fellow conservatives to hear...


Well, I think it's the reflexive rejection anything that hints at 'collectivism'....

I.e., again - unions...

Even in a non-union setting, the efficiency and skill at which I perform my job has a ceiling for compensation growth... I might well be the best in the world at what I do, but that will only grow my compensation so far because ultimately, there comes a point where it's no longer worthwhile to pay me X when my employer can just hire someone who is maybe, 3/4 as good as I am for 1/2 the compensation.

This is why I absolutely and always steadfastly support:

1) Raises in minimum wages... don't care whether at the federal and state level, don't care what the impact is on my own wallet -- I've never met a minimum wage hike I didn't. Really sorry to all the small businesses -- but again, I'm an employee, not a small businessman.

2) Unions... public, service, trade, manufacturing -- you name it... I support card check, I support unions having as much influence as they can accumluate, I support public union bargaining positions, etc


In the grand scheme of things -- any upward pressure on wages/compensation from the bottom helps me more than anything else.... but ultimately - that requires some manner of 'collectivism'... employers want potential employees to battling each other for jobs - because then they can simply make the calculation where the lowest bidder at the optimal efficiency gets hired. It depresses wages. I support things like collective bargaining and any and all unions because it drives UP wages.
   1190. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:29 PM (#4347027)
When a teacher's union negotiates a good contract - it's going to inevitably help "me" because my industry has to worry about "me" (in a broader sense) deciding it's more lucrative to get a teaching certificate... ditto trade unions... etc.

But it also hurts you b/c your school taxes are going up.

The public sector union issue comes down to this; the average gov't worker does much better in pay/benefits than the average private worker. It used to be public sector workers traded low pay for good benefits and security. Now their pay has caught up, and they still have the great benefits.

In an era when taxpayers are seeing their wages stagnate or fall, and their housing values crater, they are not going to accept public sector workers gettinga 3% COLA every year, and a pension of 50-100% of their pay, with full medical benefits at 55. It's not politically sustainable.
   1191. zonk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:37 PM (#4347032)

But it also hurts you b/c your school taxes are going up.

The public sector union issue comes down to this; the average gov't worker does much better in pay/benefits than the average private worker. It used to be public sector workers traded low pay for good benefits and security. Now their pay has caught up, and they still have the great benefits.

In an era when taxpayers are seeing their wages stagnate or fall, and their housing values crater, they are not going to accept public sector workers gettinga 3% COLA every year, and a pension of 50-100% of their pay, with full medical benefits at 55. It's not politically sustainable.


But that's the thing -- their pay didn't "catch up" --- everyone else's pay fell.

In effect, it's become a race to bottom...

I.e., now that 'labor costs' in every other employment sector have fallen -- we must also cut the remaining sector's pay to match.

It makes no sense to me -- as a non-entrepreneurial, non-business owner, non-income via cap gains/investments type -- why in the world should I want to see the few remaining segments of other 'payroll types' also see their compensation fall?

I want to see wages rise across the board -- teachers, factory workers, sewer maintenance workers, public transit employees, dockworkers, teamsters, electricians, plumbers/pipefitters, painters, service and retail workers -- because ultimately, MY compensation relates much more closely to them as a class than anyone else's.

Yes - I'm salaried and many/most of those segments are not -- but at the end of the day, what good does it do me and my compensation if the few remaining segments that haven't had their balls caved in capital's dominance over labor finally do have that happen to them?

EDIT: Or to put it more succinctly -- people have been suckered to hell and back regarding "taxes"... just take the Illinois income tax hike of last year -- yes, it took a bite of out of my paycheck... however, after you include all factors -- that 'hike' (largely to support the pension shortfalls for public employees) is still smaller than what I would expected in wage growth a generation ago. As it is - even now, my compensation after the tax hike still few by a very small amount (despite the overall wage growth pool in my company mirroring everyone else's in shrinking).

Like anyone else - I don't particularly like paying taxes... but I'm not falling for it - taxes are a distant second concern to me. Wage growth is far and away first, and I'll always and every time support anything that drives wages up from the bototm.
   1192. Mefisto Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:44 PM (#4347034)
The public sector union issue comes down to this; the average gov't worker does much better in pay/benefits than the average private worker.


As you've phrased it, this sentence is true. However, it's incomplete and therefore misleading. Basically, public sector jobs have a higher percentage of white collar, higher educated workers. Once you account for education levels and job similarity, public sector workers actually get paid LESS than private sector workers, even accounting for benefits. See, e.g., here.

Complaining about government employees -- and the average government employee is a teacher -- is a way of stoking intra-class resentment for the benefit of the upper class. Note that I'm not accusing you of doing this. But there are those who do.
   1193. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: January 14, 2013 at 07:20 PM (#4347053)
But that all goes with having sacred text and a ruling class of priests who have the last word.


So another words that's why we have lawyers?
   1194. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 08:03 PM (#4347074)

As you've phrased it, this sentence is true. However, it's incomplete and therefore misleading. Basically, public sector jobs have a higher percentage of white collar, higher educated workers. Once you account for education levels and job similarity, public sector workers actually get paid LESS than private sector workers, even accounting for benefits. See, e.g., here.


That's not true. It's an artifact of treating Teaching degrees as equivalent to other graduate degrees. They are not. A Masters or PhD in a subject area (Math, English, Chemistry, etc.) is much more difficult to acquire (both in terms of getting admission, and the work require to complete) than an MAT or PhD in Education.

But that's the thing -- their pay didn't "catch up" --- everyone else's pay fell.

In effect, it's become a race to bottom...


Also not true. If everybody pay fell, the cost of living would fall and we'd all be about the same.

What has happened is the pay/benefits of the top 20-25%, plus pretty much all gov't workers, has risen a fair bit, the pay/benefits of the top 10% has risen a lot, the pay/benefit of the top 0.5-1.0% has risen tremendously. Meanwhile, the consumption of the elderly (largely in the form of medical care) and of the non-working poor has risen (due to increased welfare benefits, particularly Medicaid, SS Disability and Food Stamp expansion).

So, you have the private sector workers in the 20th to 75th income percentiles caught between falling real wages and benefits, and rising costs (particularly housing and healthcare) driven by the consumption power of the other groups.
   1195. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 08:25 PM (#4347080)
So basically a degree for teaching is not the same as others? That seems like a rather condescending view point.
   1196. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2013 at 08:29 PM (#4347084)
So basically a degree for teaching is not the same as others? That seems like a rather condescending view point.

It's a fact. Simply look at how many MATs are awarded vs. MAs in subject areas. Ask any teacher who has both which was harder.

The existence of the MAT is an artifact of the teacher credentialization and pay scale that give more pay for more credits of Ed.

And to be clear, I'll state my MBA is not nearly as impressive a credential as an MA in a subject area.
   1197. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: January 14, 2013 at 08:57 PM (#4347097)
On the plus side, Justice Clarence Thomas is not a mute, and that the last 6 and a half years he was just bored.
   1198. Mefisto Posted: January 14, 2013 at 09:16 PM (#4347103)
It's an artifact of treating Teaching degrees as equivalent to other graduate degrees.


Cite or assumption? Most teachers -- my mother was one, my father in law was one, my daughter was one -- have masters degrees in subject areas. That's how they got extra pay. A Masters in teaching was comparatively worthless.
   1199. RollingWave Posted: January 14, 2013 at 09:41 PM (#4347117)
1146 : given that immediately after the Bill of Rights was ratified, the militia act was passed the following year (granted, it was the 2nd congress, but the people were largely the same), which stated that ALL able white men with property must report for duty WITH THEIR OWN weapon that must meet a certain standard. if there was no collectivist argument in the 2nd amendment, it would mean that the state is solely responsible for the raising of militias, so asking militia to come with their own weapon would have clearly been unconstitutional.


1162 : yes there was some deliberate murkiness in the Amendments, but we can at least get some obvious insights by looking at what other laws they passed which would have surely been relavent in the context. such as my example, the Militia act of 1592, if a significant portion of the folks really thought there was no collectivist views on the 2nd amendment, a law requiring militia to come with their own weapon would have obviously been badly shot down. instead it was passed without much debate.

Certainly, we can argue that the thoughts of people who are dead for 200+ year should have no weight on modern subjects, but seeing that is not what the majority of Americans think, it is probably better to debate within that limit.

   1200. Morty Causa Posted: January 14, 2013 at 10:00 PM (#4347128)
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