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Sunday, December 02, 2012

OTP December 2012 - Pushing G.O.P. to Negotiate, Obama Ends Giving In

Mr. Obama, scarred by failed negotiations in his first term and emboldened by a clear if close election to a second, has emerged as a different kind of negotiator in the past week or two, sticking to the liberal line and frustrating Republicans on the other side of the bargaining table.

Bitter Mouse Posted: December 02, 2012 at 11:15 PM | 6172 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: politics

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   5001. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 26, 2012 at 08:53 PM (#4332696)
...flop.
   5002. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:01 PM (#4332700)
Tagg Romney is taking this evil worse than his father. Just what the heck does Tagg do for a living?
   5003. DA Baracus Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:02 PM (#4332701)
Tagg Romney is taking this evil worse than his father.


That's an interesting autocorrect.
   5004. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:04 PM (#4332704)
That was an autocorrect? Really? 'Cause "evil" totally works there.
   5005. Joe Kehoskie Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:08 PM (#4332706)
Heh... there's a blast from the past (the last I heard of [Bob Beckel], he was the guy who artfully dispatched Gary Hart for Mondale in 1984) - I honestly had to check his wikipedia page to answer my own personal "alive or dead" question... and surprise! Still very much alive - but working for Fox and apparently, writing occasionally for USAToday... which might be the same as 'dead', relevancy speaking.

In Zonk's world, appearing several times per week on TV's highest-rated cable news shows and writing for a national newspaper that has the second-highest circulation in America "might be the same as 'dead,' relevancy speaking." Funny stuff.
   5006. The District Attorney Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:13 PM (#4332711)
No one becomes their party's Presidential nominee without wanting to be President very, very, very badly.

I can easily believe, though, that Romney didn't have a very firm grip on why precisely he wanted to be President so badly. That's the case with surprisingly many candidates, it seems to me. Not as surprisingly, it seems to be the case more often if one is the son of a politician who fell short of the Presidency. (Candidate Al Gore was much the same.)
   5007. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:22 PM (#4332713)
Do you have to care about becoming The District Attorney?
   5008. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:57 PM (#4332724)
You do, and you have to have a super-hot daughter to be The District Attorney just so some high-powered criminal's son will fall in love with her, causing said criminal much consternation.
   5009. tshipman Posted: December 26, 2012 at 09:58 PM (#4332725)
By the way, I'm sure this was just an honest oversight by Shipman, but in all of his many citations of Australia as the model for gun control, he's left out one key fact: According to the Sporting Shooters' Association of Australia, "93 percent of those who were forced to surrender a firearm during the buy-backs replaced it with one or more firearms almost immediately" [source].

Thus, the alleged huge reduction in the number of privately owned firearms in Australia appears to be little more than a mirage. 93 percent of Australia's gun owners who were impacted by the new law simply traded one type of gun for another.


I didn't reply to it because it's a non-sequitor. Under Australian gun law, the vast majority of those trades were for what Australian law refers to as a Category A Weapon:

Category A: Rimfire rifles (not semi-automatic), shotguns (not pump-action or semi-automatic), air rifles, and paintball markers. A "Genuine Reason" must be provided for a Category A firearm.


So if people traded an Assault Weapon for a Bolt-action, it counts as part of that 93%. To me, that is a great example of how policy can improve outcomes for people without unduly restricting liberty.

If you want a gun, you can get a gun! You just can't have some types of guns. That sounds like a success story to me.
   5010. Joe Kehoskie Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:08 PM (#4332729)
I didn't reply to it because it's a non-sequitor. Under Australian gun law, the vast majority of those trades were for what Australian law refers to as a Category A Weapon:

Category A: Rimfire rifles (not semi-automatic), shotguns (not pump-action or semi-automatic), air rifles, and paintball markers. A "Genuine Reason" must be provided for a Category A firearm.


So if people traded an Assault Weapon for a Bolt-action, it counts as part of that 93%. To me, that is a great example of how policy can improve outcomes for people without unduly restricting liberty.

If you want a gun, you can get a gun! You just can't have some types of guns. That sounds like a success story to me.

Weak sauce, Shipman. Very weak sauce. (And incorrect usage of "non sequitur," which my prior comment assuredly was not.)

A person reading your comments over the past week would have been left with the distinct impression that there were far fewer guns in private hands after Australia's gun-buyback law. But this isn't true, and it's not close to being true.
   5011. Lassus Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:26 PM (#4332736)
In Zonk's world, appearing several times per week on TV's highest-rated cable news shows and writing for a national newspaper that has the second-highest circulation in America "might be the same as 'dead,' relevancy speaking." Funny stuff.

I am reasonably sure I'm not the only lefty here who's never heard of Beckel. Then again, plenty of people on the right don't know the Podheretz's of the world either, so.
   5012. rr Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:31 PM (#4332741)
You're not; this thread is the first time I have heard Beckel's name.
   5013. The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB) Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4332743)
A "Genuine Reason" must be provided for a Category A firearm.


I'm going to go ahead and state that having to provide the government with a "genuine reason" in order to purchase an air rifle is an undue restriction of liberty.

And that's not to mention the utter absurdity of a government having any honest interest in restricting citizens' access to *paintball guns*.

Pass.
   5014. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4332744)
Ahmadinejad is a bit of a nutbar, don't you think? He said AIDS was created by Western nations to weaken poorer countries


He's as nutty as a Creationist. I wouldn't trust him with a slingshot.
   5015. Accent Shallow Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:34 PM (#4332745)

You do, and you have to have a super-hot daughter to be The District Attorney just so some high-powered criminal's son will fall in love with her, causing said criminal much consternation.


HIS FATHER IS THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY!

Check it.
   5016. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:48 PM (#4332747)
A person reading your comments over the past week would have been left with the distinct impression that there were far fewer guns in private hands after Australia's gun-buyback law. But this isn't true, and it's not close to being true.
This has been bandied about a while, and I think what happened after the 1996 Australia massacres was that Australians' attitude towards guns changed. It wasn't just the 35 dead in Tasmania, but 77 dead in 10 other shootings as well that year. While the total number of guns on the street didn't decline dramatically, there was clearly a cultural shift in how Australian viewed guns.

Other countries have guns but don't have rampant gun death problems or weekly shootings by angry or unstable people. Other countries are terrified by guns, while millions of Americans see guns as a source of recreation. The question I want answered is this: What is wrong with America that we as a culture seem to shrug off death after death after death by guns?
   5017. Joe Kehoskie Posted: December 26, 2012 at 10:58 PM (#4332750)
The question I want answered is this: What is wrong with America that we as a culture seem to shrug off death after death after death by guns?

Ask the wrong question, get the wrong answer.

***
Heh... there's a blast from the past (the last I heard of [Bob Beckel], he was the guy who artfully dispatched Gary Hart for Mondale in 1984) - I honestly had to check his wikipedia page to answer my own personal "alive or dead" question... and surprise! Still very much alive - but working for Fox and apparently, writing occasionally for USAToday... which might be the same as 'dead', relevancy speaking. — zonk
I am reasonably sure I'm not the only lefty here who's never heard of Beckel. Then again, plenty of people on the right don't know the Podheretz's of the world either, so. — Lassus
You're not; this thread is the first time I have heard Beckel's name. — robinred

And you guys scoff when accused of living in a lefty bubble? How can liberals who spend so much time arguing politics on the internet not have heard of Bob Beckel?
   5018. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4332754)
Ask the wrong question, get the wrong answer.
Ask any question, get the answer: MORE GUNS.
   5019. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4332755)
Maybe, just maybe, you aren't the only person who gets to have an opinion about what the right questions are?
   5020. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:10 PM (#4332757)
And you guys scoff when accused of living in a lefty bubble? How can liberals who spend so much time arguing politics on the internet not have heard of Bob Beckel?
... I've never heard of Bob Beckel.

Edit: And now that I've googled him, I'm not sure that critique matters. If liberals haven't heard of a liberal, how do you figure they're living in a liberal bubble?

Answer: MORE GUNS.
   5021. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:14 PM (#4332758)
Who the hell is Bob Beckel?

   5022. zonk Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:16 PM (#4332759)
I am reasonably sure I'm not the only lefty here who's never heard of Beckel. Then again, plenty of people on the right don't know the Podheretz's of the world either, so.


Beckel was a former Carter administration guy who ran Mondale's campaign in '84... He was so successful in that endeavor that by the 90s, I think he was relegated to running losing Democratic campaigns in NYC. Think Bob Shrum, but you know -- less successful at running campaigns. I'm fairly sure that somewhere, in a bizarro universe, he's occupying Chris Matthews timeslot on MSNBC, while Tweety is reduced to whoring on Fox (he's kind of loud and love spittle flecks like Chris). I think it was a fairly open secret that he had big issues with drugs and alcohol for a while - I know the end of his career in Democratic politics was getting kicked off a fat chance campaign in Idaho for a transplanted Manhattanite running against Larry Craig for Senate because a prostitute was blackmailing him.

There's really no reason any lefty should have heard of him -- unlike Podhoretz's, who at least have a history of being foreign policy whack jobs regardless of whether such whack jobbery is in vogue in the GOP or not -- Beckel was/is really just a "Party guy".

Forget finding any lefty that takes cues from Beckel -- I'd be shocked if anyone could track down a lefty who knows someone that incorporates Beckel into some small space of his or her thinking. Based on what I can find of him from the last 10 years -- it appears he's now settled into Alan Colmes spot as Fox's House Lefty... He must have a better agent though, because it appears he doesn't have to sleep in Hannity's doggie day bed.
   5023. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:17 PM (#4332760)
... I've never heard of Bob Beckel.


Me either. But I have a terrible memory, so maybe I heard of him but don't remember.

Ask the wrong question, get the wrong answer.


The absolute best part of this silly reply is the fact that it is asserted, but no better question is put out there. So Joe what is a "right question"?
   5024. Joe Kehoskie Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:21 PM (#4332761)
If liberals haven't heard of a liberal, how do you figure they're living in a liberal bubble?

Right-wingers watch MSNBC all the time, even if it's just for laughs. But the lefties here apparently haven't watched any Fox News (or read USA Today) in the last decade, if they haven't heard of Bob Beckel or know that he's alive.
   5025. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:29 PM (#4332762)
Random note: Steam really needs to stop offering good deals on video games. My wallet can't take it anymore.
   5026. steagles Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:31 PM (#4332763)
Right-wingers watch MSNBC all the time, even if it's just for laughs. But the lefties here apparently haven't watched any Fox News (or read USA Today) in the last decade, if they haven't heard of Bob Beckel or know that he's alive.
does anyone read USA today?
   5027. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:32 PM (#4332764)
Who in the hell is on MSNBC now? I'll be honest, I get most of my news from AP reports, cnn.com, Reason, youtube, and from this thread. Its been a long while since I actually parked in front of a television to get the news.
   5028. Tripon Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4332765)
does anyone read USA today?


Apparently, only to laugh at Bob Nintengale.
   5029. zonk Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:36 PM (#4332767)
does anyone read USA today?


People who get confused by sections denoted solely by things like 'words' and prefer the comfort of color-coded cues, bored hotel patrons, and 80s era roto players who signed up for lifetime subscriptions for the Tues/Weds stats and couldn't foresee something like the 'internet'?
   5030. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:43 PM (#4332769)
bored hotel patrons


Yup, the only time I read it is when traveling when I have nothing better to do (and with smart phones there is always something better to do). I also don't watch TV news, well except for election night I did.
   5031. spike Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:48 PM (#4332771)
You're not; this thread is the first time I have heard Beckel's name.

Never heard him pontificate. Don't get cable teevee neither so I've never watched MSNBC, for that matter.
   5032. tshipman Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:49 PM (#4332773)
A person reading your comments over the past week would have been left with the distinct impression that there were far fewer guns in private hands after Australia's gun-buyback law. But this isn't true, and it's not close to being true.


Uh, I never said or implied that. I said that Australia banned assault weapons (and handguns apparently), unless you go through a very strict licensing procedure. Those steps had a dramatic effect in reducing the suicide and homicide rate--both in guns and overall (to a slightly lesser extent).

I think your confusion is that you seem to think that Progressives (or Liberals or lefties) want to ban all guns. That is not the case. They want to ban the guns that have the most negative impact on society. Australia did that.

Your bringing up the fact that according to one survey, 93% of Australians re-bought different, less harmful guns was a non-sequitor because it didn't follow the argument. You're bringing up tangential information that isn't relevant to the discussion since most of the people you're talking with don't want to ban rimfire rifles.
   5033. CrosbyBird Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:56 PM (#4332775)
What is wrong with America that we as a culture seem to shrug off death after death after death by guns?

I don't think we shrug it off at all. Tobacco, for example, is fairly limited in regulation and it kills a lot more people each year than guns. Are we shrugging off those deaths by not banning tobacco?
   5034. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 26, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4332777)
And you guys scoff when accused of living in a lefty bubble? How can liberals who spend so much time arguing politics on the internet not have heard of Bob Beckel?

Maybe some liberals don't need to visit cocoons in order to get useful information. I've never heard of Beckel, either, but then I don't spend much time in the wasteland of Cable "News" TV. And hell, with you and Ray posting here about 100 times a day, who needs FOX to learn all the right wing talking points?
   5035. steagles Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:02 AM (#4332779)
Your bringing up the fact that according to one survey, 93% of Australians re-bought different, less harmful guns was a non-sequitor because it didn't follow the argument.
also, that's not what the original claim was:

By the way, I'm sure this was just an honest oversight by Shipman, but in all of his many citations of Australia as the model for gun control, he's left out one key fact: According to the Sporting Shooters' Association of Australia, "93 percent of those who were forced to surrender a firearm during the buy-backs replaced it with one or more firearms almost immediately" [source].
that's not exactly an impartial source, now is it?

and the survey wasn't just measuring all australians who surrendered their firearms, it was measuring australians who were FORCED to surrender a firearm.
   5036. Howie Menckel Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:04 AM (#4332780)
I'm a moderate who watches, and winces at, both Fox and MSNBC at times.

Beckel is a pretty big player on the Fox landscape; I can't think of a right-winger who gets the airtime on MSNBC that Beckel gets on Fox (well, Michael Steele seems to be settling into that role). Buchanan used to get that kind of time with Maddow; unfortunate that ended years ago as it was good theater.

Beckel is quite upfront about his past booze problems, occasionally to reasonably profound effect. When some politician does something incredibly stupid and it's easy to just point fingers, it's refreshing to have at least one guy who admits that, uh, most of us can't claim a lifetime of uninterrupted ideal behavior.


   5037. tshipman Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:33 AM (#4332785)
I'm a moderate who watches, and winces at, both Fox and MSNBC at times.


Oh really, we had no idea that you were a self-proclaimed moderate who is superior to partisans on both sides.

Do, tell us more.
   5038. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:36 AM (#4332787)
Right-wingers watch MSNBC all the time, even if it's just for laughs. But the lefties here apparently haven't watched any Fox News (or read USA Today) in the last decade, if they haven't heard of Bob Beckel or know that he's alive.
Does watching Shep Smith two to four times a week count? I like Smith a lot. On the other hand, I have literally never watched an entire show of anything on MSNBC, ever. Also, when I traveled for work (monthly, up until I quit my job this summer) I read USA today regularly since it's usually the free newspaper for many, many hotels. I'm apparently terrible at being bubbled.
   5039. Howie Menckel Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:51 AM (#4332789)
"Oh really, we had no idea that you were a self-proclaimed moderate who is superior to partisans on both sides. Do, tell us more."

And if I didn't preface with that, you'd probably accuse me of arrogance for assuming that a relatively obscure poster on political threads would be remembered for his leanings by the main cast. I can assure you that many/most who read here don't keep nearly as close a track of the posters as you do.

That's ok. If you have some sort of neurosis that leads you to believe that a 'self-proclaimed moderate' must believe he is 'superior to partisans on both sides,' that tells us a lot more about you than it does about me.

You sound like George W. Bush, ironically: "You're either with us, or a'gin us!"

   5040. steagles Posted: December 27, 2012 at 01:10 AM (#4332791)
And if I didn't preface with that, you'd probably accuse me of arrogance for assuming that a relatively obscure poster on political threads would be remembered for his leanings by the main cast. I can assure you that many/most who read here don't keep nearly as close a track of the posters as you do.

That's ok. If you have some sort of neurosis that leads you to believe that a 'self-proclaimed moderate' must believe he is 'superior to partisans on both sides,' that tells us a lot more about you than it does about me.

You sound like George W. Bush, ironically: "You're either with us, or a'gin us!"
interestingly, in this single post you manage to confirm both accusations by patronizing one of the liberal partisans on this board and then by dismissing him with a comparison to george bush.


if that was your intent, bravo.
   5041. tshipman Posted: December 27, 2012 at 01:33 AM (#4332792)
That's ok. If you have some sort of neurosis that leads you to believe that a 'self-proclaimed moderate' must believe he is 'superior to partisans on both sides,' that tells us a lot more about you than it does about me.


I'm a moderate who watches, and winces at, both Fox and MSNBC at times.


What does "winces at" do there except demonstrate how clear and level headed you are? After all, you watch BOTH cable news networks. This gives you the credibility to say this:
Beckel is a pretty big player on the Fox landscape; I can't think of a right-winger who gets the airtime on MSNBC that Beckel gets on Fox


I can assure you that many/most who read here don't keep nearly as close a track of the posters as you do.


Don't worry, you tell us how moderate and superior you are with almost every post you make in this thread! Sooner or later everyone will know!

You sound like George W. Bush, ironically: "You're either with us, or a'gin us!"


I actually prefer Kehoskie's or DiPerna views on politics. At least they have a worldview. I might disagree with it, but it's based on some principle.

If I want to know what the Superior Moderate (or the Mustache of Understanding) thinks, all I have to do is remember that they'll claim to disagree with the centrist Democrat position before incoherently explaining how both sides are somehow to blame.

Frankly, I'd rather talk to someone who is at least interestingly wrong.
   5042. Jay Z Posted: December 27, 2012 at 01:39 AM (#4332794)
I don't think we shrug it off at all. Tobacco, for example, is fairly limited in regulation and it kills a lot more people each year than guns. Are we shrugging off those deaths by not banning tobacco?


No, we have not banned tobacco. BUT its use has been banned in many public places. People used to smoke at their desks at work. Who does that today?

Tobacco also mostly affects the people who use it directly. To the extent that it affects others (second hand smoke), people have become intolerant of that and made changes.

Save for suicides guns are entirely intended to harm people other than the user.

A major part of the problem is indeed the "peculiar" American attitude towards guns. And a lot of the attitude problem does have its roots in the 2nd amendment. As can be witnessed on this board, with the posters expressing their concern that if guns are taken away, the citizenry won't have the the ability to foment a revolution against a hypothetical totalitarian state.

But you know, if a totalitarian state could guarantee its existence until the end of time by taking the guns out of the hands of the citizenry, then WHY HASN'T IT WORKED? I don't know if the British did or tried to keep weapons out of the hands of the colonists, but it didn't work. The colonists won anyway. They don't win the war, nobody cares what constitution they would have drawn up. They won, so they got to draw one up. Then (according to those who believe this anyway) they included an amendment to enable the citizenry to foment a revolution if necessary. But they themselves apparently did not need such an amendment to have a successful revolution. It's a classic paradox, if the only way you could have a revolution is with the citizens having guns, then you'll never have one because the bad government guys will simply take the guns away and they'll be in power forever.
   5043. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: December 27, 2012 at 02:39 AM (#4332795)
Tobacco, for example, is fairly limited in regulation and it kills a lot more people each year than guns.


That's not the way the good folks at the Tobacco Research Institute saw it.
   5044. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: December 27, 2012 at 05:11 AM (#4332807)
Bob Beckel? I had some vague recollection of him having run the Mondale campaign, but assumed he was dead. Anyone working at Fox is intellectually and morally dead, so perhaps I wasn't wrong. The idea that anyone would take him seriously, though, is a chuckle. Apparently he does point-counterpoint with Cal Thomas, of all people, so that clues you in to what his deal is. Beckel's probably as serious as Alan Coombs.

Beckel's wiki:

In December 2010, with reference to Julian Assange, Beckel commented, "This guy's a traitor, he's treasonous, and he has broken every law of the United States. And I'm not for the death penalty, so [...] there's only one way to do it: illegally shoot the son of a #####."[12]

On April 16, 2012, Beckel appeared on Hannity with Jennifer Stefano and Neal Boortz. After Jennifer claimed that the Head Start Program, which aims to help poor children, did not work, Beckel replied, "You don’t know what the #### you’re talking about!" Beckel did not realize the show was back from the commercial break, and initially refused to apologize. When persuaded that the show was, in fact, live, Beckel apologized for his choice of language, but stood by the overall intent of the statement.[13][14]

In August, 2012, Beckel reportedly offended some Jews when he referred to Jewish Americans who had participated in a Mitt Romney fundraiser in Israel as "a bunch of diamond merchants we don’t know the names of."[15]

In November, 2012, Beckel concluded, while commentating on the San Francisco public nudity ban live on Fox News, that most nudists were, as children, "probably gang-banged, I don't know!", and then proceeded to laugh about his comment and saying, "they were probably sexually assaulted, I don't know!".[16]


Lawrence O'Donnell, on the other hand, is hugely awesome, but from time to time has the worst makeup on television. I'm not sure there's anyone I'd look to before O'Donnell when it comes to how the Senate works.


edit: youch. That's some large coke I owe zonk. I really do think it's funny as hell that someone thinks that liberals should be familiar or even aware of a nonentity. You'd have to spend a whole lof of time watching Fox to think Beckel matters.

does anyone read USA today?


I know no one serious about the news who does. I might look at it once in a blue moon to see how the would-be dead center (but desperately status quo and therefore center right) media imagines the news to be, and to wonder at why some of the people I know, know so little; but that's about it. Hate to be that dismissive, but hasn't it always been known as "McPaper"?

Edit: And now that I've googled him, I'm not sure that critique matters. If liberals haven't heard of a liberal, how do you figure they're living in a liberal bubble?
That had to have been in regard to Joe. God, he's so confused.

Who in the hell is on MSNBC now? I'll be honest, I get most of my news from AP reports, cnn.com, Reason, youtube, and from this thread. Its been a long while since I actually parked in front of a television to get the news.


Don't miss Rachel Maddow. She's a worthy successor to Molly Ivins. She did some remarkable coverage of managers appointed by the Republican dominated legislature in Michigan supplanting elected representatives. It's an astonishing story, and she was the only newsperson with a national audience who addressed it. She's a proud liberal, but never skews the facts, and has kept a good sense of humor.
.
As I mentioned above, O'Donnell's an excellent policy guy, but very angry at times. Chris Hayes has a weekend morning show. It's everything you want a political talk show to be. He rarely gets bogged down by bringing in a nominal righty who merely gainsays and spouts fox talking points, and he's always dealing with current subjects. If you watch him, pick him up through the net, where you can skip right over the commericals with adblock. It's probably the smartest couple of hours on televsion, fwiw.

I know Melissa Harris-Perry through a friend and she's terrific, but I don't really like her show. She's one of those people who succumbs to the idea of balance and brings in rightwingers who simply submarine the possibility of taking the conversation anywhere meaningful. Kinda like when Joe pops up here. Good on women's issues, but sometimes the estrogen's a little thick.
   5045. Lassus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 08:24 AM (#4332822)
I watched FOX during the debates and election coverage about 65% of the time, sometimes as entertainment, often because MSNBC was cloying. I still have never heard of Beckel. Might know him if I saw him.

Googles...

Nope.
   5046. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 27, 2012 at 09:43 AM (#4332834)
I'm a moderate who watches, and winces at, both Fox and MSNBC at times.

Oh really, we had no idea that you were a self-proclaimed moderate who is superior to partisans on both sides.


I'm a moderate who watches neither Fox nor MSNBC, which makes me superior even to Howie!
   5047. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: December 27, 2012 at 09:53 AM (#4332837)
I actually prefer Kehoskie's or DiPerna views on politics. At least they have a worldview. I might disagree with it, but it's based on some principle.

I mean, say what you will about the tenets of National Socialism ... Dude, at least it's an ethos.
   5048. Jay Z Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4332841)
Further on the 2nd amendment.

Since the amendment specifically says the right to bear arms is for the defense of the country, not for some revolutionary force, the intent was never there to allow for a revolutionary force.

All countries defend themselves, it's the primary mission statement. The USA had plenty of physical opponents; the Tories, the British, the Spanish, Native Americans. The USA has consistently defended itself physically against all comers. Yes, the intent was to give states lots of rights. Yes, the intent was for balance of power. Yes, the intent was for citizens to be able to have rights and redress. NO, the intent was NOT for citizens to be able to physically overthrow the government. They could have kept the Tories around for that. No sane country is going to build in an escape clause into its constitution. The USA had enough other enemies as it was.
   5049. Lassus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:03 AM (#4332844)
In defense of Howie, I'm not a moderate at all and I do wince at MSNBC quite a bit.

   5050. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:08 AM (#4332849)
Ehh, you're a Mets fan. You have years of experience wincing at those you support.
   5051. Howie Menckel Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:10 AM (#4332851)
So much inanity, but I'll just try one:

"What does "winces at" do there except demonstrate how clear and level headed you are?"

It says that I think both channels suck. That indicates no claim of superiority, especially if one or both channels do in fact effectively and thoughtfully reflect a popular viewpoint in the country (you decide). A person might watch both channels at times for a lot of reasons. I am sometimes curious about what the latest talking points are from the two camps.

My post subject was a liberal guy who is prominent on Fox but unknown to liberals here apparently. That's fine; I was hoping to shed some light. When I finished typing the post, it occurred to me that it might help to explain my own background since I don't post in this section so often. That's all. "winces at" were the last two words posted, and you'll be disappointed to find out that there was no grand agenda behind it.

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar - except at BBTF, where a cigar is a reason to lace into somebody, however contrived the reason needs to be.
I wonder if your gripe with me is for some perceived slight from months ago. Or maybe this is your Airing of Grievances, so that we can all start fresh in 2013. I dunno.


   5052. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:30 AM (#4332859)
My post subject was a liberal guy who is prominent on Fox but unknown to liberals here apparently. That's fine; I was hoping to shed some light. When I finished typing the post, it occurred to me that it might help to explain my own background since I don't post in this section so often. That's all. "winces at" were the last two words posted, and you'll be disappointed to find out that there was no grand agenda behind it.

You go out of your way in these treads to point out that you're a moderate who thinks that both sides are wrong. It gets tiresome after a while. And the notion that the truth is always at some midpoint between the extremes of the left and right is just silly.

I don't think we shrug it off at all. Tobacco, for example, is fairly limited in regulation and it kills a lot more people each year than guns. Are we shrugging off those deaths by not banning tobacco?

To follow up on 5042 -- I wouldn't say that tobacco is fairly limited in regulation. There are many restrictions on advertising, sales to minors, smoking in public areas, etc., plus sin taxes. And those regulations combined with a massive public health campaign have contributed to a drastic decrease in the number of smokers over the last 30 years. In fact, these efforts could be a great model for guns.
   5053. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:36 AM (#4332862)
You go out of your way in these treads to point out that you're a moderate who thinks that both sides are wrong. It gets tiresome after a while. And the notion that the truth is always at some midpoint between the extremes of the left and right is just silly.


Name one issue where the extremes of left or right are at the point of truth. There isn't a single one, unless you define "left" and "right" far too broadly.
   5054. Howie Menckel Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:40 AM (#4332863)

"And the notion that the truth is always at some midpoint between the extremes of the left and right is just silly."

Amen. Does any poster make that claim?

   5055. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:52 AM (#4332870)
Since I don't watch any of the cable "news" stations, let me ask this: How many of those stations have reporters who do actual digging and break (not just play off) stories like these:

From today's Washington Post:

Antidepressants To Treat Grief? Psychiatry Panelists With Ties To Drug Industry Say Yes

Or from Monday's New York Times:

Real and Virtual Firearms Nurture a Marketing Link


AFAICT from the (very) brief experience I've had watching MSNBC and FOX, at their very best they'll present viewers a series of partisan talking points that are about on the level of the best you might find here on BTF. And at their worst, they're about on the level of a BTF flamefest. Entertaining, maybe, but about as informative as the unskewed guy who Kehoskie seemed to think was better at forecasting elections than Nate Silver.

Honest question: Why would anyone choose to watch cable "news" when there are so many other, and infinitely better sources of information and / or intelligent opinion available with a click of a mouse? Not just the Times and the Post, but websites like globalpost.com or Arts & Letters Daily, just to name two among many. I can understand the need to be continuously entertained by clownshows and comforted by cocoons, but isn't pretty much everything those networks present utterly predictable and repetitive? At what point don't you recognize that you're watching nothing but a political version of Groundhog Day?
   5056. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 27, 2012 at 10:56 AM (#4332871)
To follow up on 5042 -- I wouldn't say that tobacco is fairly limited in regulation. There are many restrictions on advertising, sales to minors, smoking in public areas, etc., plus sin taxes. And those regulations combined with a massive public health campaign have contributed to a drastic decrease in the number of smokers over the last 30 years. In fact, these efforts could be a great model for guns.

Amen, brother, although Big Tobacco in its wildest dreams could never command the political clout of the NRA.
   5057. DA Baracus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:00 AM (#4332877)
Honest question: Why would anyone choose to watch cable "news" when there are so many other, and infinitely better sources of information and / or intelligent opinion available with a click of a mouse?


Because the average viewer of cable news channels is in their late 50s to early 60s and they either don't know about such things or choose cable news over them out of habit.
   5058. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:06 AM (#4332881)
So ... and I mean this genuinely ... why is a moderate espousing moderate views (thinking they are better than liberal or conservative views) worse than a liberal (like me) doing the same for liberal views, or a conservative (Joe K) or libertarian (Ray), doing that for their views. Of course we all think our viewpoint and tribe are best.

Unless the charge is a moderate (either in general or just Howie) has no philosophy, no base for thought and is a mere construct of seeking the midpoint between whatever the prevailing left and right consensus is, which is annoying but is pretty common as a low information citizen strategy.

I think you can be a moderate without being a "midpoint construct", and in fact I think there are a couple flavors including using the social/fiscal scales (social liberal, fiscal conservative for example).
   5059. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:06 AM (#4332882)
People watch cable news channels because they prefer the spectacle of politics to the substance of politics. The spectacle is entertaining and entertainment is what sells.
   5060. bunyon Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:07 AM (#4332883)
I actually prefer Kehoskie's or DiPerna views on politics. At least they have a worldview. I might disagree with it, but it's based on some principle.

I am sympathetic to this. My own world view is fairly sharply defined. So it depends if you're debating an ideal world or the one we live in. A lot of the problem with how the government functions at the moment is that the people running the show are running it with a fairly sharp world view that the adhere to with almost religious fervor. Actually governing a diverse and complex nation involves compromise, picking battles and not burning bridges.

IOW, before criticizing someone for being extreme, or moderate, its important to determine what perspective the debate takes. If it is how the world should be, I'd argue for more extremism. If it is for how to hold a heterogeneous people together in prosperity, I'd argue for more moderation.


   5061. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:11 AM (#4332885)
Amen. Does any poster make that claim?

You said earlier in the dicussion (I'm too lazy to find the comment) that you like it best when politifact criticizes both sides. That suggests that you start from the presumption that both sides are wrong and that the truth is in the middle.

Of course, sometimes that's absolutely right. But if you start from that premise you allow the extremists to the define the middle by pulling the debate in one direction or the other. And that's exactly what the far right was done over the last 30 years for many issues. e.g., by staking out the position that we should never, ever raise taxes (thanks to Grover Norquist), the GOP has fundamentally changed the debate on that issue.
   5062. DA Baracus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:12 AM (#4332886)
People watch cable news channels because they prefer the spectacle of politics to the substance of politics. The spectacle is entertaining and entertainment is what sells.


That too. Debate shows and idiots saying idiotic things gets ratings.

IOW, before criticizing someone for being extreme, or moderate, its important to determine what perspective the debate takes.


You must be new to the internet. If someone says something that you disagree with then clearly they are on the complete opposite side of the aisle from you.
   5063. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:12 AM (#4332887)
IOW, before criticizing someone for being extreme, or moderate, its important to determine what perspective the debate takes. If it is how the world should be, I'd argue for more extremism. If it is for how to hold a heterogeneous people together in prosperity, I'd argue for more moderation.


I think of this as the divide between ideology and governing. Both are important, but they are very different (though there is obviously interdependence) and often people here (and elsewhere) yell past each other when one party is talking ideology and the other governing.

One major complaint I have with the current GOP that goes beyond their policy positions is they have elevated ideology above governing to the detriment of the nation and that is (in my view) nearly unforgivable.
   5064. Lassus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:14 AM (#4332888)
Oh pfft, give me a break you snobs. There's nothing wrong with cable news watched in moderation and to complement other sources.

Now, I'm not saying that everyone DOES this, obviously; but to toss it away out of hand is simply high-horsery that hinders your understanding of the world, not helps.
   5065. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:17 AM (#4332890)
Unless the charge is a moderate (either in general or just Howie) has no philosophy, no base for thought and is a mere construct of seeking the midpoint between whatever the prevailing left and right consensus is, which is annoying but is pretty common as a low information citizen strategy.

That's part of it. It's also that self-proclaimed moderates often seem to be lecturing people on the left and right..."I'm above all of that partisan bickering, unlike you fanboys." But IMO partisanship is an important part of our system and, for the most part, not a bad thing, and being non-partisan isn't inherently a good thing.

I don't think Howie is saying that, but that's how his posts sometimes come across.
   5066. zonk Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:18 AM (#4332892)
It says that I think both channels suck. That indicates no claim of superiority, especially if one or both channels do in fact effectively and thoughtfully reflect a popular viewpoint in the country (you decide). A person might watch both channels at times for a lot of reasons. I am sometimes curious about what the latest talking points are from the two camps.

My post subject was a liberal guy who is prominent on Fox but unknown to liberals here apparently. That's fine; I was hoping to shed some light. When I finished typing the post, it occurred to me that it might help to explain my own background since I don't post in this section so often. That's all. "winces at" were the last two words posted, and you'll be disappointed to find out that there was no grand agenda behind it.

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar - except at BBTF, where a cigar is a reason to lace into somebody, however contrived the reason needs to be.
I wonder if your gripe with me is for some perceived slight from months ago. Or maybe this is your Airing of Grievances, so that we can all start fresh in 2013. I dunno.


FWIW... since I suppose I spawned what has now been more discussion on Bob Beckel than has been had by anyone in quite some time...

I scowl at Fox and also sometimes wince at MSNBC... I watch neither with anything regularity - or even infrequently. Election night - if only because the blogs are all ultimately waiting for networks to call races anyway, and occasionally for big political events (I watched about 90 minutes of Fox, CNN, and MSNBC when Boehner's Plan B blew up with great aplomb).

I'll admit to be something of a cable news junkie many years ago - and I do still very much have a soft spot for Rachel Maddow - but I find cable news to be incredibly tedious, repetitive, and unproductive as an information source, as a discussion starter, and even as 'infotainment'. I think it's a medium that has been rendered wholly useless, with few exceptions. The shows rarely break any news, the discussions are predictable, and all it's really become good for is the occasional soundbite that makes someone look stupid (in which case, the moments almost instantly go viral on the blogs).

The point is that with a few exceptions - Maddow, maybe Sharpton in some cases on the left; Hannity and probably O'Reilly on the right -- none of the peoples yammering away hold much influence. The 'roundtable types' - Beckel being one from the left on Fox; Steele and Steve Schmidt from the right on MSNBC - have virtually ZERO influence on right/left thinking. They're party operatives who now earn paychecks by contributing the silly point/counterpoint nonsense. I doubt any of them alone could rouse more than 5 people to do or believe anything - calling congress, signing a petition, whatever - unless a Maddow, a Hannity, an O'Reilly or whatnot got behind such an effort.... In other words - yes, they (Beckel included) ARE irrelevant...except perhaps as pinatas when they say something stupid or as 'proxy isolaters/supposed 'voices of reason' when they break orthodoxy.

For political news - I pretty much stick to Josh Marshall's TPM and I also read The Hill regularly... I'd be happy to incorporate a right-leaning source to add some 'balance', but I know of no good ones... The Daily Caller just isn't very good, Drudge is embarrassingly dated (and really, nothing more than an aggregater/regurgitator).

I do read both Dailykos and RedState pretty much every day -- as well as a sprinkling of other sources both right and left (Atrios, TNR, Mother Jones and TAP on the left; National Review, Commentary, and Reason on the right)... but I would say 90% of what I end up at comes from DK, RS, and TPM via links.

   5067. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:19 AM (#4332893)
from the wall street journal:

Republicans now believe that Mr. Obama wants to go over the cliff in order to embarrass them, especially after last week's failed Plan B in the House. The president sees a "political victory at the bottom of the cliff," says Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming. Mr. Boehner, we are told, will make one last ditch effort at a resolution with Mr. Reid and the White House. But with less than a week to go, it's all about whether Mr. Obama wants a deal. If he does, Republicans appear eager to strike a New Year's Eve bargain.
   5068. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4332894)
One major complaint I have with the current GOP that goes beyond their policy positions is they have elevated ideology above governing to the detriment of the nation and that is (in my view) nearly unforgivable.

That's right, and a fundamental difference between older republicans like George H.W. Bush and their successors, like his son. W's people (esp. Rove) made it clear that they saw very little distinction between the campaign and the administration and politics and policy.
   5069. Spahn Insane Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4332897)
For political news - I pretty much stick to Josh Marshall's TPM and I also read The Hill regularly... I'd be happy to incorporate a right-leaning source to add some 'balance', but I know of no good ones... The Daily Caller just isn't very good, Drudge is embarrassingly dated (and really, nothing more than an aggregater/regurgitator).

What, no love for Hot Air? 8-p
   5070. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:31 AM (#4332902)
y:

it's helpful to keep in mind that the gop was responding to voters. there is a strong collection of gop supporters who have decided that compromise generated poor policy and worse results

just like the gop republicans who refuse to budge they are responding to voters.

now, if folks want to claim the voters are stupid or whate have you feel free. but i think it's important to note that in a representative system the representatives are doing what their office entails.

   5071. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:40 AM (#4332907)
now, if folks want to claim the voters are stupid or whate have you feel free. but i think it's important to note that in a representative system the representatives are doing what their office entails.


When I blame the current GOP I am blaming the result, I don't know how to parcel out the blame. Though I would suggest that part of being a politician should be leadership. You need to represent your voters, but you also need to lead. And I am pretty sure all the federal officeholders swear an oath ...

“I, (name of Member), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God” (5 U.S.C. §3331).


Above is the House oath, which doesn't say anything about being useful or doing a good job so I guess they are clear on that anyway, but I am still annoyed by the whole thing.
   5072. Howie Menckel Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:42 AM (#4332909)

Well, I think I've come to learn a few things in the last 24 hours, and thanks for that.

I have this notion that on this board, it wouldn't matter whether posters have offered a well-defined narrative of their political philosophy.

That's not how it works here, though - and no, that does NOT mean I think "my way" is better. I don't know how to fend that off, so I'll just apologize in advance.

I understand how someone can prefer that posters have such a well-defined approach. Like a jousting match, and everyone has their weapons clearly displayed. The point is made, the battle is joined, and so on. If it was so ineffective, I wouldn't be reading these, would I?

When I feel the need to mention "where I'm coming from," even in passing, I am trying to communicate to that casual follower who I assume doesn't recall any posts I've made. But it is perhaps understandably taken the wrong way by regulars who think, "Geesh, we GET it already!"

I'll either have to change my approach, I think, or retreat to the peanut gallery. I'm not effectively getting my message across, obviously.


   5073. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4332910)
bitter

if you can solve the impact of the off year election and how a minority of voters can kick a congressperson or senator out of office based on having apparently violated a promise and/or voter trust that would address a lot of what is happening in the gop

   5074. zonk Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4332911)
Further on the 2nd amendment.

Since the amendment specifically says the right to bear arms is for the defense of the country, not for some revolutionary force, the intent was never there to allow for a revolutionary force.

All countries defend themselves, it's the primary mission statement. The USA had plenty of physical opponents; the Tories, the British, the Spanish, Native Americans. The USA has consistently defended itself physically against all comers. Yes, the intent was to give states lots of rights. Yes, the intent was for balance of power. Yes, the intent was for citizens to be able to have rights and redress. NO, the intent was NOT for citizens to be able to physically overthrow the government. They could have kept the Tories around for that. No sane country is going to build in an escape clause into its constitution. The USA had enough other enemies as it was.


Any further readings on the 2nd amendment are irrelevant --

SCOTUS has rendered its opinion, and that's the one that counts... at least until court composition changes and a different court decides a previous iteration got it wrong.

FWIW -

While I guess there are some here that would support a complete rewrite/elimination/gun ban (though - can anyone point to someone specifically? I know a few lefty friends - though, lefty friends who are emotionally vested in the issue having lost a father to gun violence - who support full bans... but it seems an awfully minority opinion, even on the left).

Personally, if I could wave my hand and magically make guns disappear, I would... but I'd have to also have to magically disappear a ton of jurisprudence, do something about the 250-300 million guns already floating about, and likewise do away with a whole lot of mythos and cultural history.

So realistically - I don't consider it an option in anyone's lifetime and I have zero inclination to join any liberal Sisyphus's on the issue.

As stated previously, my version of 'gun control' would come in the form of two or three specific actions:

1) Universal background checks for gun purchases/transition of ownership of all types.... as I've also said - I'm willing to work up and even pay for (at gunpoint!) whatever taxes are necessary to ensure that such a system doesn't become a backdoor to blocking ownership - let people buy ID cards that speed the process if they wish, or, create easy access to a federalized db that incorporates the necessary info to perform the checks. Fer chrissakes -- I can now have you pay me with a credit card using some cheap and freely available smartphone accessories... Don't tell me there isn't some cost effective way to perform background checks at gunshows or if an individual wishes to buy from another individual. I understand the details matter - I'm not interested in interfering with two people trading 18th century blunderbusses or what not, but I have yet to hear anyone present these details as insurmountable.

2) Setting a federal limit on clip size. No - it's not a universal salve... but it likewise seems pretty darn reasonable to say that it might save some lives here and there if, when someone acts on whatever causes to shoot up a public place (be it a mall, a theater, or a school) - the body count will be lower, there will be more opportunities for... whatever -- a police officer or even private citizen to get a shot off, people to rush the gunman as he swaps clips, whatever. Again - I haven't seen any good reason to oppose this other than the largely philosophical argument around "but it won't do any good..."

*3) Assault weapons bans... this one, I care least about because I know it's near impossible to statutorily define. Ban this particular model; the manufacturer inevitably creates a slightly different model, smacks a new name on it, etc. An "assault weapon" really seems to be defined as "I know one when I see one" - and laws predicated on such are always crap. I would say that instead of this "3)" -- I'd probably prefer to add more subsets to 2) above... banning of things like armor piercing ammunition. tighter restrictions on the firing action - i.e., what is "semi-automatic" -- emptying the clip with rapid trigger squeezes? How about limiting guns to 3 'rapid trigger squeezes'? Most gun enthusiasts I know would say that whether hunting or operating for self-defense -- if you have the need to spray off 5-6-7 rounds, you're not a good hunter and ain't getting your game anyway, or, in the case of self-defense - you should have spent more time on the range and you're probably more likely to hit something you didn't intend.
   5075. steagles Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4332912)
Republicans now believe that Mr. Obama wants to go over the cliff in order to embarrass them, especially after last week's failed Plan B in the House. The president sees a "political victory at the bottom of the cliff," says Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming. Mr. Boehner, we are told, will make one last ditch effort at a resolution with Mr. Reid and the White House. But with less than a week to go, it's all about whether Mr. Obama wants a deal. If he does, Republicans appear eager to strike a New Year's Eve bargain.
is there anyone in the republican party who even has the clout to negotiate with obama? if boehner couldn't even deliver his own caucus to pass his own bill, what faith should obama have in him to broker a deal that can pass both houses?
   5076. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4332913)
howie

you need to brush off the posts

don't let anyone take away your voice

scr8w the b8stards

that's my motto
   5077. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:45 AM (#4332914)
Honest question: Why would anyone choose to watch cable "news" when there are so many other, and infinitely better sources of information and / or intelligent opinion available with a click of a mouse?

Because the average viewer of cable news channels is in their late 50s to early 60s and they either don't know about such things or choose cable news over them out of habit.


But does that describe the typical BTF Primate who keeps referring to those networks? Those were the ones my question was directed to, not some guy passing a kidney stone in a nursing home.

-------------------------------------------------------------

People watch cable news channels because they prefer the spectacle of politics to the substance of politics. The spectacle is entertaining and entertainment is what sells.

Hard to argue with that, but I'm trying to see if there are reasons that go beyond watching Karl Rove melt down on election night. (Admittedly an irresistible spectacle that I'm glad I was tipped off on just before it was about to happen.)

-------------------------------------------------------------

Oh pfft, give me a break you snobs. There's nothing wrong with cable news watched in moderation and to complement other sources.

Now, I'm not saying that everyone DOES this, obviously;


Obviously.

but to toss it away out of hand is simply high-horsery that hinders your understanding of the world, not helps.

Okay, I can understand the value of immersing yourself in FOX or MSNBC for a day or three, which should (I'd imagine) give you a pretty good idea of what those two networks are all about and where they're coming from.

But after that, then what do you get out of it? Other than the same talking points you should be able to figure out for yourself if you keep up with other, and better, sources of information.

And if keeping up with Rachel Maddow or Sean Hannity is so vital to an "understanding of the world", aren't their opinions widely available on liberal or wingnut websites**, and without all the commercials?

**No false equivalency here, my brothers. Any website that would post Sean Hannity with a straight face is wingnut by definition.
   5078. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:47 AM (#4332918)
I'll either have to change my approach, I think, or retreat to the peanut gallery. I'm not effectively getting my message across, obviously.


Well I think you are fine the way you are (we are all special snowflakes in our own way) and I prefer a variety in posting styles and opinions - so I suggest you should ignore the haters, defend your positions when needed (or concede if you decide you were wrong - I know it is the internet, but I hear it is possible to change one's mind) and post when you have something to say.

EDIT: Coke to HW (who said it better, go figure)
   5079. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:47 AM (#4332919)
steagles

a very legit point.

it might make for amusing optics but the speaker may have to bring 20 people with him to make sure all the fractured views are represented

this one on one thing isn't working

maybe like the trailer scene in 'snatch' where the speaker does the speaking but in between comments by the president he whispers to his larger group
   5080. BrianBrianson Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4332922)
is there anyone in the republican party who even has the clout to negotiate with obama? if boehner couldn't even deliver his own caucus to pass his own bill, what faith should obama have in him to broker a deal that can pass both houses?


Reading that quote, it seems pretty likely to me the Republicans have abandoned any hope of making a deal, and are sending out press kits that are trying to shift some blame to Obama.
   5081. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:55 AM (#4332926)
Howie (#5072),

Don't sweat the pushback so much. Not everyone here appreciates everyone else's opinions, but if we all took the pushback to heart, then we'd quickly die on the vine.

But it also might help if over time, your self-described "moderate" position were made more specific in cases of contentious issues. Without that sort of elaboration, I can understand the eye-rolling. It doesn't mean you have to be a Marxist or a DiPerna, with their respective one-size-fits-all answers to everything. It just means to have to go beyond decrying "both sides" and begin describing in concrete terms what you favor, not just what you oppose. This is not a hostile comment, just a suggestive one.
   5082. steagles Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:56 AM (#4332927)
maybe like the trailer scene in 'snatch' where the speaker does the speaking but in between comments by the president he whispers to his larger group
rush is terribly partial to the periwinkle blue.
   5083. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:56 AM (#4332928)
I'll throw my hat into the ring as someone who finds Howie's posts smug and superior, with a clear message that his moderate philosophy is better.

That being said, and even as someone who would be hugely partisan if there was a conservative party to be partisan for, I strongly believe that moderate views and moderate governance is overwhelmingly superior. It's a simple as this: if 50% (or 45%, whatever) hold a different view to yours, it is vastly more likely that they are right in some respects and you are right in others than you are 100% right. This rule isn't always true, whole countries (let alone half-countries) can go crazy. But the null hypothesis, if there's a strong partisan split, is that somewhere in the middle is the "best" answer.

If you consistently find yourself with views that are at odds with some large chunk of the country, that's a pretty good sign that your views are consistently wrong, to at least some degree. I mean, I guess if we're having debate tournament the libertarians get points for consistency, but in terms of governance, that and $5 gets you two slices and a coke.
   5084. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:58 AM (#4332930)
brian

not an unreasonable assessment

what the gop doesn't 'get' is that the president getting out in front of this before the holiday hit embedded in the public's mind who was being 'reasonable' and who was not.

i give the president a lot of credit for how he has handled the packaging.

now, i think the deal being proferred before things went south was a poor deal though i freely acknowledge the gop's hand in this was sh8t. but the president was not required to make the speaker eat sh8t and tell him it was tasty.

both from an actual 'what was good for the country' and what the speaker could get his caucus behind would be a 1 to 3 balance between tax increases and spending cuts. this 1 to 1 thing is chump change

i know my post will be twisted into something it's not meant to be

i am a practical guy and this was not a practical deal
   5085. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: December 27, 2012 at 11:59 AM (#4332933)
if you have the need to spray off 5-6-7 rounds, you're not a good hunter and ain't getting your game anyway, or, in the case of self-defense - you should have spent more time on the range and you're probably more likely to hit something you didn't intend.


There's a great scene at the start of a Breaking Bad episode, one where Walt is buying a gun from an illicit dealer played by Jim Beaver, the guy who played Ellsworth in Deadwood. The dealer suggests a snub nose .38 for stealth and Walt says: "5 shots? And how much in the automatic? "10 in mag, one in the chamber. But if you can't get it done in 5 then you're into spray and pray, in which case I wouldn't count on another 6 closing the deal."

   5086. CrosbyBird Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:01 PM (#4332936)
No, we have not banned tobacco. BUT its use has been banned in many public places. People used to smoke at their desks at work. Who does that today?

Use, but not possession. Plenty of people carry their cigarettes with them in places where it is not legal to smoke them. Gun use, outside of self-defense, is already pretty much illegal in public places.

Save for suicides guns are entirely intended to harm people other than the user.

Also, to deter others from harming the possessor. There is a defensive element to gun ownership that often doesn't even require the gun to be drawn, let alone fired.

A major part of the problem is indeed the "peculiar" American attitude towards guns. And a lot of the attitude problem does have its roots in the 2nd amendment. As can be witnessed on this board, with the posters expressing their concern that if guns are taken away, the citizenry won't have the the ability to foment a revolution against a hypothetical totalitarian state.

That's a distortion of the position. Guns are neither necessary nor sufficient for a revolution, but possessing guns facilitates revolution. It's also not just about fighting, but having the negotiating position that comes with being able to fight.

But you know, if a totalitarian state could guarantee its existence until the end of time by taking the guns out of the hands of the citizenry, then WHY HASN'T IT WORKED?

It's not impossible to have a meaningful revolution without guns, but just much, much harder. Essentially, you need to convince people that do have guns to join your cause, either the military of your own country, or some other country.

By the way, let me know "at the end of time" if it worked out for China.

Then (according to those who believe this anyway) they included an amendment to enable the citizenry to foment a revolution if necessary. But they themselves apparently did not need such an amendment to have a successful revolution. It's a classic paradox, if the only way you could have a revolution is with the citizens having guns, then you'll never have one because the bad government guys will simply take the guns away and they'll be in power forever.

They didn't need an Amendment, but they kept their guns. The British started their efforts to confiscate guns a bit too late in the game, but had they succeeded, the militia would have been far less effective and we might well have lost the Revolutionary War. This is perhaps the worst example you could have come up with.

The Second Amendment is a direct acknowledgement of how important gun ownership was to revolution. It was, at least by some of the Founding Fathers, to prevent the issue from being a matter of how capably the government worked to disarm the populace, and instead protect gun ownership as a fundamental right.

Since the amendment specifically says the right to bear arms is for the defense of the country, not for some revolutionary force, the intent was never there to allow for a revolutionary force.

No, it says it is necessary for the security of a free state. Nor does the plain text show intent, or all of intent. (I posted a pretty detailed article earlier in the thread, with citations. If you want to refute the idea that there was some intent to protect against tyranny of government in the Second Amendment, you've got quite a few quotes and a bit of historical evidence to refute.)

Let's be clear. The Second Amendment could have said "people should have the right to form a militia and bear arms in support of that militia," which would be a lot less supporting of an individual right than "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

The right protected is "to keep and bear arms," not to form a militia. The stated necessity of a militia to protect the security of the state is a reason, but it's not at all clear that it's the only reason.
   5087. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:01 PM (#4332937)
to clarify the above

the gop trying to point the finger at the president the day before christmas is just stupiod. nobody is paying attention except for the diehards. same now. it's holiday. the public has mostly checked out

the president has all the positive press and that is becuase he laid the groundwork
   5088. The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB) Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:03 PM (#4332939)

maybe like the trailer scene in 'snatch' where the speaker does the speaking but in between comments by the president he whispers to his larger group


Now there's a reference I never saw coming ...

Dja like dags?
   5089. zonk Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:04 PM (#4332940)
from the wall street journal:

Republicans now believe that Mr. Obama wants to go over the cliff in order to embarrass them, especially after last week's failed Plan B in the House. The president sees a "political victory at the bottom of the cliff," says Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming. Mr. Boehner, we are told, will make one last ditch effort at a resolution with Mr. Reid and the White House. But with less than a week to go, it's all about whether Mr. Obama wants a deal. If he does, Republicans appear eager to strike a New Year's Eve bargain.


I understand Boehner's political predicament - and the House GOP's predicament - but I have a real, serious problem with Boehner's proposal to move forward.

In his presser falling the Plan B debacle - he was asked about the cliff aversion bill that had already passed the Senate - and stated quite clearly that he was leaning heavily on what amounts to a technicality (the "blue slip" problem - i.e., revenue bills have to originate in the House).

Now... this is a technicality because there are myriad of ways around this - Boehner could simply take the bill as passed in the Senate, give it an HR number, then ping-pong it back to the Senate under its HR number (where passage would presumably be pro forma, since it already passed once). In fact - unless I'm mistaken - even the "blue slip" itself is wholly under his/House control... Bills of any sort have to pass both chambers - so it's the House that "blue slips" Senate legislation, not some external body. It all comes down to whether the House invokes its right to blue slip anything.

Consequently - unless Boehner presents a promise to put whatever the Senate passes up for a vote, regardless of where the caucus chips fall - it's wholly unworkable for him to say "it's up to Obama and the Senate..." He can't keep the blue slip trump card in his pocket to play whenever it might make him or his caucus look bad.

The impasse only ends Boehner lets something which will piss off a big chunk of his caucus come up for the vote.

I understand the 'majority of the majority' concept - but as Nancy Pelosi recently pointed out - she was willing to forego this during her term as House Speaker... in 2007, after the Dems took the House -- she did indeed let a Defense funding bill (in effect, an Iraq funding bill) come to floor which passed (and became law) with a minority of votes from her caucus but a majority of votes from the minority/GOP caucus.

Boehner simply has to let go of the idea that his caucus and his caucus alone must wholly pass the bill... He can't keep playing this game with 253 votes, needing 218 of them to vote yes.... He has to start looking at this from a 435 vote perspective, where 218 are needed, and those 218 are going to be a mix of D and R votes.

He's the Speaker of the House -- not the Majority Whip... He's been playing Majority Whip for months now... Clearly, he either sucks at it, or, his caucus is so intransigent that anyone would suck at it. It's time for him to get back to being the Speaker - not the Whip.
   5090. Lassus Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:04 PM (#4332941)
Okay, I can understand the value of immersing yourself in FOX or MSNBC for a day or three, which should (I'd imagine) give you a pretty good idea of what those two networks are all about and where they're coming from.

But after that, then what do you get out of it? Other than the same talking points you should be able to figure out for yourself if you keep up with other, and better, sources of information.

And if keeping up with Rachel Maddow or Sean Hannity is so vital to an "understanding of the world", aren't their opinions widely available on liberal or wingnut websites**, and without all the commercials?


I bolded those words because they are not what I said. Not completely writing something off is not equal to immersion, and a lack of exposure being a hindrance does not equal something being absolutely vital. Perhaps I'm being the hated moderate here, but taking what I wrote to an extreme that I did not write will not necessarily be relevant to what I wrote.

   5091. tshipman Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:05 PM (#4332943)
If you consistently find yourself with views that are at odds with some large chunk of the country, that's a pretty good sign that your views are consistently wrong, to at least some degree. I mean, I guess if we're having debate tournament the libertarians get points for consistency, but in terms of governance, that and $5 gets you two slices and a coke.


I disagree to an extent. Some things, like opposition to the death penalty or torture, are quite simple questions that the majority of the population fails.

now, i think the deal being proferred before things went south was a poor deal though i freely acknowledge the gop's hand in this was sh8t. but the president was not required to make the speaker eat sh8t and tell him it was tasty.

both from an actual 'what was good for the country' and what the speaker could get his caucus behind would be a 1 to 3 balance between tax increases and spending cuts. this 1 to 1 thing is chump change


That's what was offered. You don't get to ignore the all spending cut deal from a year ago and pretend those cuts never happened. I mean, if a 3-1 deal was better for the country, why didn't Republicans take the 5-1 deal offered 12 months ago? Obama is quite rightly not forgetting the events of one year ago.

I sort of doubt there's any deal. There's not enough time, and any deal would break the Hastert rule. The fact of the matter is that from the start a deal has been unlikely due to the lack of desire on the Republicans side to support any tax increases. Given that, Boehner was probably unable to make a deal that complied with the Majority of the Majority, and was remotely acceptable to the President.
   5092. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:05 PM (#4332944)
cob

i kept getting compared to one of the movie characters, bricktop, so had to watch it to understand why
   5093. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:06 PM (#4332945)
I know it is the internet, but I hear it is possible to change one's mind) and post when you have something to say.
You wouldn't know it from reading this thread.
   5094. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:08 PM (#4332947)
the president has all the positive press and that is becuase he laid the groundwork
Harvey, I'd also say the electorate helped lay that groundwork. Without the beatdown of Nov. 6, there's no narrative of "America backs POTUS."
   5095. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:09 PM (#4332948)
i kept getting compared to one of the movie characters, bricktop, so had to watch it to understand why
The shoe fits, Harvey, the shoe fits.
   5096. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:10 PM (#4332950)
tship

you know it's about context. the situation now is different now than it was then

and remember from the election cycle every candidate felt they had to state that they would reject a deal that had even one dollar of tax increase for 10 of spending cuts.

you know this stuff but post as if these things are not known to you so that you can argue for the sake of arguing.



   5097. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4332951)
I disagree to an extent. Some things, like opposition to the death penalty or torture, are quite simple questions that the majority of the population fails.



Ok, but I and lots and lots of other people, many of which are highly intelligent/have strong moral convictions etc., strongly disagree with you with respect to the death penalty. So either (1) you have some astonishing insight that(more or less) half the country doesn't see, or (2) you're missing something, which is why you think the other folks are inexplicably wrong.

It's impossible to know where, and how we are wrong, because if we could recognize that then we wouldn't hold the views that we do. But it it IS possible to recognize that we must be wrong, lots, and adjust our fervor for our views accordingly.
   5098. Bitter Mouse Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4332952)
HW,

So the Dems won the election, have a stronger hand and did a much better job of messaging (according to you and I agree), so why shouldn't the President make the GOP eat a sh8t sandwich? I am not saying it is really that bad (not surprisingly it is too right for me, but whatever), but elections do matter.

The thing is moving more to the right just to help the Speaker sounds nice, but there are actual consequences to the policy. It is not just reaching a deal, but the results of the deal impact real people who depend on the money (billions of dollars) that you seem to be hand-waving as an easy way to bridge the gap. That money matters.

Plus it is clear that Obama has decide he wants to be able to govern in his next term, and if he thinks at some point he has to get the GOP to compromise on something to maybe break the habit of total "No" on their side then it might as well be on something where he does have such an advantage.

Put simply Obama has to get something out of the deal also. He wants a deal and wants to do right (avoid cutting things that he views as critical) and also wants to set up the next four years as best he can. You may not agree with hi strategy/tactic but it is not just about making the deal OK for the GOP.
   5099. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4332953)
Guns are neither necessary nor sufficient for a revolution, but possessing guns facilitates revolution. It's also not just about fighting, but having the negotiating position that comes with being able to fight.

Really? How many guns did the suffrage movement bring into play? What about the civil rights movement? What about the women's and gay movements? Were they sponsored by Winchester?

The labor movement in the early 20th century was often violent**, but it was only when they organized around non-violent sit-ins and the ballot box that they ever got anywhere.

During the Jim Crow era, blacks in the South were heavily armed. Admittedly that deterred a few lynching parties, but when the "revolution" came, it was a purely nonviolent one. And when it came to protecting their homes against the lynch mobs, they weren't using Bushmasters.

**Though 99% of the violence was instigated by the labor movement's opponents.
   5100. The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB) Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:18 PM (#4332959)
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