The Republican Dream
The Republican Dream:
A sweatshop America where compliant workers live in ignorance, fear, illness and poverty, while the 2% laugh and invest overseas.
Republicans in the US House of Representatives are reportedly including blockage of net neutrality among their laundry list of demands tied to the passage of an increase the government's debt ceiling. This news comes courtesy of National Review Online, which reports that it received the outline of the GOP bill, which " …
Is this the 14th amendment whose current interpretation justifies Team America World Police and subjecting anyone and anywhere to american law when USA sees fit? Same 14th amendment which mandates that America ignores international law in favour of whatever drivel their own legilslature produce?
That does sound like the GOP and it did not change much either.
And no big government interfering in yourlife unless it's to do with something their cloud father doesn't like and all hail Ayn Rand because we loved the movie but never bothered to actually understand objectivism and that it would mean supporting gay rights and abortion as Ayn did. There's morons on both sides, but boy does the far right specialize in them.
This is nothing more than a low attempt to appease from the loony toon Tea Party crowd. Seriously, to espouse the sanctity of the constitution, one of the most important documents written since 1215, and stand up in congress and read bedtime stories in a fittingly childish attempt to subvert the very process created by that constitution, hypocritical and moronic.
A sweatshop America where compliant workers live in ignorance, fear, illness and poverty, while the 2% laugh and invest overseas.
Oh, please. Yes, net neutrality and the debt ceiling shouldn't be tied together. That is lame but there is no need to go overboard with your statements. Democrats and Republicans both suck.
"Don't go overboard" with criticism of republicans? Oh I think we need to go a hell of a lot *more* overboard. This story yet again shows republicans peacocking around the senate, proudly wearing sandwich boards that advertise their gross corruption. Oh, I'm sure that each of the house representatives has endured a torrent of calls and letters from their constituents, begging for an end to net neutrality. That these senators have the lack of respect for their country to openly trumpet their status as corporate shills is absolutely disgusting. These wretches deserve to be dragged out of the senate by their hair and shot in the street. Here's hoping the people of the US show some balls for a change, and do just that.
No they pretty much nailed it on the head. They want to remove minimum wage laws, remove unions, remove all regulations pertaining to amassing wealth and environmental issues, not pay any taxes, remove all social welfare programs, defund public schools, let them play with your social security, and Frack and drill where ever they want.
They pretty much are a collection of fat cat 1890's bank types. I would modify their statement though, it should be:
A polluted sweatshop America where compliant workers live in ignorance, fear, illness and poverty, while the 2% laugh and invest overseas from their luxury homes on private islands.
A polluted sweatshop America where compliant workers live in ignorance, fear, illness and poverty, while the 2% laugh and invest overseas from their luxury homes on private islands.
So yeah, allow me to respond with some extreme generalization about the left that we've all heard before. That will get a lot accomplished. As I said, Democrats and Republicans both suck.
The "pox on both houses" sentiment is valid only if you want to take the most cynical look at politics. Not to say that you are of this ilk, but time and again, attitude and behavior research shows that the so-called "indepentents" and "both parties are the same" folk are ones who talk big but don't tend to know a lot about the political process, party platforms, or even basic information like their Congressional Representative. To put it lightly, such attitudes are the provence of folk who don't care but want to pretend they have a good reason not to care.
You could be an exception, but in that case I would question your knowledge of what the core principals of each party are, the various splinter groups within each party, the regional differences that can explain a lot more about the propensity of a Representative or Senator to vote in a way that might seem counter-intuitive or like they are "in the pocket" of lobbiests.
If you are trying to come up with another way to say, "I don't like either party because they don't represent my views," that's fine. But then you should at least have an idea of what other organizations out there represent you. As I tell others who complain about the current process: It's fine if you don't like it, it's fine if you feel left out. But if you want to be taken seriously, stop hand-waving the entire thing away and using it as an excuse to be apathetic and apolitical. If you truly care about these issues, you would expend some of that energy finding like-minded folks, something that is easier today than finding a lobbiest in Congress. Stop complaining and do something or stop pretending you care.
> to vote in a way that might seem counter-intuitive or like they are "in the pocket" of lobbiests.
Oh you mean like how Obama has really pushed hard for Frank Dodd to be implemented (especially after the big Wall St. donations last election) or the fact he uses Homeland Security to go after the biggest threat to the homeland copyright infringers? I follow the system much closer than I probably should and can tell you the more you know the more crushing it really is. Really almost all of the time you are playing defense voting for the candidate that you think will screw you over the least. Anybody that says Obama is a socialist is a retard. The guy is only slightly more liberal than NAFTA Clinton was and is half as effective at governing.
Actually I find that Republicans and Democrats are exactly alike, just like most other political parties / constituencies: They want government to promote or 'free' any activity that they think is good and they want government to ban, tax or regulate any activity they think is bad.
Of course "activity they think is good" really means "activity that will personally benefit them and their peers", but is framed in the language "activity that will benefit the country". And the opposite for "bad".
Current version of Republicans are by far the worst, though, their take on "democracy" is "I don't care if we lost the elections and majority of USAians don't agree with us, we're going to do everything in our power to get our way coz the bible and Ayn Rand said so"
Really? Is that really any different to the democratic aim of subjecting America to a foreign led ideology which frankly is by far the worst of all options? Trouble with closed minds and political dogma is that you rarely see the wood for the trees. Not that I would support Republicans but when you have a two horse race in any system you get pretty much the same outcomes either way.
And a lot more.
This is the basic laundry list of their demands:
-Return to chained CPI
-Reduction of SNAP benefits (food assistance for the poor)
-Zero funds for Obamacare (Affordable Care)
-Neutralizing the Consumer Protection Agency
-Roll back of almost all financial sector reforms
-Unrestrained domestic spying and neutralizing of civil rights
-Preservation of offshore tax havens and loopholes for the corporations
Essentially, they are demanding the repeal of anything that would benefit the average person and slow down the juggernaut of the corporate plutocracy.
Sigh... Congress (especially, but not limited to the Republicans) used to at least *pretend* that its proposed legislation was for the benefit of the average person. Now they've even dropped the pretense. Guess they figure that with single-digit public approval ratings, the PR isn't worth the effort.
"Reduction of SNAP benefits (food assistance for the poor)"
I actually WANT this one. Limit the eligible food list to wholesome foods, as the program is frequently abused to splurge on junk food. If you're going to be on the dole, lay down some tough ground rules to encourage better behaviour.
>when WalMart wants to open stores in underserved areas.
Only time people really bitch is when its in middle class neighborhoods that already have money and food options or when Walmart gets some corrupt local official to use public domain to allow them to put up the store (sadly this actually more common in blue states).
I think you mean "eminent domain" where the government condemns the land, pays a 'fair' price to the owner (fair being defined as the lowest amount they can get away with) and gives the land over to a developer for a specific purpose. What Walmart does is get a multi-year tax abatement, a store built for free (due to all of the jobs they will create) and other incentives. Once the the tax abatement ends, they pack up leaving a monstrous building that can't be easily subdivided in a town now bereft of most other businesses and sets up shop just over a city or county line where they have negotiated another sweetheart deal to avoid taxes and get a new building.
Ask yourself if the poor on food assistance are eating junk food because they want to or because it is the cheapest option? I can't find the article at the minute but there's a lady who wrote about living on the poverty line, and how she would have loved a little education as to what foods can be both cheap and nutritious.
"...and how she would have loved a little education as to what foods can be both cheap and nutritious...." Ah but surely educating someone to help themselves get the best out of what they can afford would be seen as some form of "socialism" to the enlightened members of the GOP and therefore to be declared "unAmerican"
Murrica' F**k Yeah!
SNAP today is limited to "healthy" items. It's not just a cash benefit; there are very specific items that qualify. For example, many fruit juices don't qualify, because of the massive amounts of sugar they have for very little nutritional content.
Also, the reduction that is going into effect after Oct 1 is happening because it was a temporary increase as part of the stimulus bill in 2009. What Republicans want to do is remove a provision from a 1996 bill that allowed states the leeway to suspend a the 3 months of SNAP in 36 months for able-bodied, unemployed, childless adults. In times of economic duress, states are allowed to suspend the requirement that such folks get jobs or go to job-training programs if they want to continue in SNAP. Many states have suspended that requirement because of the economy. Republicans want to do away with that, in addition to reducing the already scheduled to be reduced SNAP benefit (which is about $4/day/person for those with the lowest income... not exactly Oscar-style filet mignon... or even McDonalds-style "food".)
This topic came up yesterday at work. I said somewhere there's a serious disconnect because I've seen more programs to get food to people in the US who are below the poverty line than I ever have before in my life. But I know we have all these programs so how are people under-nourished?
The answer from my two black co-workers: because they sell their SNAP cards for pennies on the dollar to buy drugs.
If you want a pony, work for it and go buy it yourself.
As to your list, let me fix some things for you:
-Return to chained CPI not quite sure what shorthand you are trying to use here, but right now the CPI is fucked. You can't print money at the rate the Fed has been pumping it out without causing serious inflation (I lived through the Carter years when they didn't fiddle with the CPI). So yes, it needs to be fixed. I'm sure both single and married mothers would love to ignore the inflation rate for fuel and groceries just like the feds do.
- Reduction of SNAP benefits (food assistance for the poor) Reducing corporate welfare. And yes I damn well do want SNAP benefits reduced. Too many people sitting on their asses not doing anything.
-Zero funds for Obamacare (Affordable Care) Which so far has cost at least a couple hundred thousand jobs, billions in increased consumer expenses on their insurance assuming they can keep despite proposals, and is destroying the actual healthcare market in the US. I'm quite sure this isn't an unintended consequence.
-Neutralizing the Consumer Protection Agency Which, unlike the NSA, actually has an explicit license to spy on consumers. They aren't likely to do a damn thing for me except drive up my expenses. The sooner they are gone the better.
-Roll back of almost all financial sector reforms Which so far have added only sand to the gears of industry during the middle of the worst recession/depression since 1932 and haven't done a damn thing to stop any real fraud on Wall Street.
-Unrestrained domestic spying and neutralizing of civil rights Only in your dreams. The IRS wasn't working against commie groups, only the TEA Party and Patriot groups.
-Preservation of offshore tax havens and loopholes for the corporations. Republicans favor either the FAIR of the FLAT tax. Either of which would eliminate all of those loopholes. Most likely including the cherished "home mortgage" deduction. But if you aren't going to adopt those, fair is fair. All corporations should be treated equally by the IRS and not penalized because of the political beliefs of the party in charge.
Most of what you are said was subjective, conjecture, gross exaggeration, or outright distortion. And then you delved into the world of paranoia and tin foil hats with the spying and the IRS, followed up with a healthy dose of "woe is me” martyrdom. Bush spied, Obama spied. The IRS went after crock-o-crap groups who filed like mad in 2010 to exploit a loophole, and those groups got mad they were caught being utter cocks. The fact that liberal groups also were checked at roughly the same rate (and rejected, something the right can't claim happened) doesn't register in your mind, because, you know, tin foil.
I’m not looking to engage you in discussion, mostly because it would be fruitless and filled with your own personal rants about particular grievances you or the website you couched your talking point from have against the government, people who work for the government, people who used the government, or people who might have six degrees of separation from government. Just wanted to make sure you and others knew how off-base and completely meritless you “responses” to another person’s post were.
You're not looking to engage in disucssion because you're just another leftist bomb thrower.
What I posted is objective, proven, spot on, and true. Yes the TEA Party is diametrically opposed to your communist beliefs. That doesn't make them a crock. Yes they filed like mad in 2010 to use a loophole in the law. The same loophole you and your Soros related groups exploited in 2006-2008. We just used it to level the playing field. Liberal groups were not checked at anywhere NEAR the rate TEA party groups were. The raw numbers are all 87 TEA Party groups, only 12 liberal groups with an unknown number of applications. And those 12 groups got immediate rejection. They weren't left twisting in the wind until this day.
I'd recommend you updated your talking points but it would be pointless. Because I don't work from talking points, I work from facts and personal observations. I don't live in my basement. I live in the belly of the beast and I see how it abuses people on a daily basis.
By no means am I a Democrat, but this just irritates the Hell out of me. This is a budget discussion and it needs to stay on budget issues.
Dodd-Frank bailout fund. This is a legitimate issue considering they are discussing how to spend money they have rather than just printing more.
Net Neutrality?? That is a separate discussion.
Stay focused on the job at hand.
They don't lose elections, but they have a huge demographics issue impending. Basically if they don't reform and target normal people (human beings as opposed to psychopaths) they're not going to win many more if any elections (nationwide ones).
The nation handed both parties a mandate, work together. One party has vaguely tried although not convincingly, the other has simply treated it as a reenactment of the Jerry Springer show. It's sad to see that they could not work with that mandate as it has hurt both of them. Even the Republicans have had some decent idea's but we have had stagnation and that has hurt us.
We really need a none of the above box, more than 33% of people tick none of the above and the candidates are catapulted towards the Antarctic and we start over.
The Greenland plan is ideal- assuming the American politicians are correct and there is no such thing as climate change, all the polar bears will be out on the ice floes hunting seals, so they will be completely safe.
If they are incorrect of course, they will be hunted and eaten by starving polar bears, but I'm sure they would have the courage of their convictions even without millions of lobby group dollars being thrown at them to disagree with accepted science.
Another election with new candidates, there's a chance it may cause parties to represent peoples wishes and not the companies donating money to them. Lobbying aka bribery, should be illegal in its current form. it certainly would be if I did it at work, but one law me us another for them.
Well, actually over the past few years they've used every district-gerrymandering trick in the book to make sure they have a big house majority even though house votes were pretty even. Dems also do it of course but Reps are shameless in it's use. And in working hard to disenfranchise poorer and minority (ie majority Dem) voters.
I am probably in the same position as yourself. Politically neutral, sat somewhere in the middle despairing at the insanity of it all.
Put basically the Republicans are either going to have to massively change their core philosophies away from being racist homophobes or breed like rabbits and wait 18 years or the changing demographics of the country will take any future wins away from them. Rather than grow a pair and adopt the philosophy the pretend to follow of objectivism and say whilst I oppose certain practices I support the persons liberty to perform them they will throw childish fits like this until they are relegated to gibbering wrecks. The only chance they really stand (and given the dems history) is that the democrats will self destruct. Remember the quote, maybe Will Rogers? "I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat".
Hate how people use the word liberal like it's an insult.
You interpreted what I said as an insult? That amuses me so please continue. Now, I will award you bonus points if you can show me where I actually used the word liberal as an insult. Don't be shy, go ahead.
Yes I'm a liberal, I believe in equal rights for all, fair pay for working, and helping those less fortunate than myself. What a horrible human being I must be.
And you're also going to show me where I said you don't stand for any of the above, yes? Eagerly awaiting your response.
Nope, none at all. Not to make excuses for them but to win you have to advertise more than the other guy, that takes more money and frankly they have to whore themselves. This is the natural conclusion to that. GMO laws and the Monsanto rider are further examples. The system has moved from them being our representatives to being nothing more than flunkies for hire to the highest bidder. Something both parties are guilty of to be fair.
There is a serious need for more parties in America!
As long as you're stuck with (basically) two parties bickering about things, it'll either be one party ruling everything with a majority (well super-majority, otherwise they'll just be filibustered), or two parties bickering endlessly.
If you had 4-5 (or a lot more) parties, then there'd be many more opportunities for give/take deals.
The assholes who make too high demands - or too stupid demands - for something that pretty much has to happen, will simply be cut out of deals.
"Wont help us raise the debt ceiling so we get to pay our debts and not go bankrupt, unless we hire 4 prostitutes for each of you to service you day & night? I guess we'll just have to deal with those other guys who only want our support for a bill regarding agricultural oversight"
Politics is (or perhaps is supposed to be) the act of various interests coming together to cooperatively develop a working framework within which the citizens of a country can prosper and thrive. These politics should be based on the people they are supposed to represent (at least in what purports to be a representational democracy of sorts), which explains why some countries are more liberal and others more socialist - or whatever leaning you might have.
When these various interests can only be represented by 2 major parties, then there isn't a lot of room for nuance.
My country has ~6 million people and something like 10 political parties. And even these are hardly able to properly represent the varied interests of the people. What are the odds that 2 parties will be able to represent the varied interests of 318 million people?
It's of course a very ingrained system and it'll take a lot to change it, even a little. One could hope that the internet would be a way to challenge and change the system. Bringing us back to the topic, this could be one reason why some lawmakers would like the internet to be under a bit more control.
First past the post voting systems always end up with only two parties, since a vote for anyone else is a vote wasted. If you want more parties, you need some kind of preferential voting system, so votes for the least popular candidate are distributed according to next preferences amongst the remaining candidates - repeat until one candidate has more than 50% of the vote.
If you want more parties, you need some kind of preferential voting system, so votes for the least popular candidate are distributed according to next preferences amongst the remaining candidates - repeat until one candidate has more than 50% of the vote.
Actually, not true. The simplest and probably best system (except never tried on a large scale) is approval voting. You mark every candidate who you'd be willing to see holding office. You can vote for one, or all-but-one, or anything inbetween. The votes for each candidate are counted. The one with the most votes is elected.
One huge advantage is that several candidates from the same party can run, representing different nuances of one party's platform. There's no such thing as "splitting the vote" under his system. If you want to vote for a party, then just vote for all members of that party.
Personally I'd make one further refinement: a "none of the above" option. If "none of the above" won, all of the candidates would be disqualified from the re-run of the election that would then take place.
"The simplest and probably best system (except never tried on a large scale) is approval voting. You mark every candidate who you'd be willing to see holding office. You can vote for one, or all-but-one, or anything inbetween."
I have an improvement on that.
You get to vote for a candidate and that gets them a +1.
Leaving their checkbox blank gets them a 0.
Voting against them gets them a -1.
No one without a positive result (not just "less negative than everybody else on the ballot") gets elected.
If no one gets above zero, you have a second election where none of the original candidates are eligible.
Most of the time I vote it's to vote against someone, this eliminates the part where I have to hold my nose in the voting booth.
More parties is one possibility, but that goes wrong as often as it goes right. Coalition governments can cause issues, you can end up with more instability, constant reelections etc, more time spent bickering over who gets what job and what compromise gets made.
A 4-10 party system generally requires a very level headed, well educated populous. I am also reminded of the 2 party system sketch by spitting image :)
There are plenty of other official political parties. Just none of them qualify for state or federal campaign dollars and the networks don't allow them into debates. They don't have to, Reagan did away with balance/neutrality of TV and radio. Killing the fairness doctrines was also responsible for commercials being 10x louder than the show you were watching. That practice was prohibited prior to that. The Republicans ruined TV and radio for the consumer a long time ago. It will be a real shame if they ruin the Internet too.
Or, to state it more succinctly, there are plenty of other official political parties, but mostly they have nothing to say that anyone much cares to hear, most people don't know they exist, and fewer yet vote for their candidates. That's not to say that the deck isn't stacked against them - in most states it is, and badly so. But if they had a reasonable amount of support they would have supporters to campaign door to door, host meetings, and the like, could gain ballot status, raise a bit of money, and occasionally win a few elections. The fatal problem, of course, is that when a splinter party raises a point that gets a bit of traction, one of the main stream parties will adopt the idea and divert the new party's support to their candidate.
" Killing the fairness doctrines was also responsible for commercials being 10x louder than the show you were watching. That practice was prohibited prior to that."
Actually it's compression that's responsible and that was going on prior to the end of the fairness doctrine and even before the enactment of the fairness doctrine.
"There are plenty of other official political parties. Just none of them qualify for state or federal campaign dollars and the networks don't allow them into debates."
Now that part you got right.
It used to be that The League of Women Voters ran the debates.
Then the 2 major parties formed their own "debate commission", i.e., mechanism for maintaining a monopoly on the debates.
Boffin icon because there's not one specific to "I spent a lot of years in broadcasting".
There is absolutely nothing laissez-faire about the Republican Party. They're completely behind strategies that massively rig markets, but just the markets they like. They absolutely love legislation that gives their buddies an advantage.
Nearly any financial or market policy the Republicans (and tea party) endorse is absolutely 100% guaranteed to fuck you. Don't take my word for it. Look at the laws they support going back to the late 19th century. There sure are a lot of market manipulation bills and every single one paints a target on the common citizen. I would say fuck them and the elephant they road in on, but their active support of a continued ivory trade (with the global ivory trade leaders in the US) has pretty much seen the end of their own totem. Jesus, those guys are such slugs.
I've always wondered why the country didin't keep possession of the critical infrastructure like spectrum and so on and simply leased them to private firms to manage under terms and conditions? IOW, make the stuff held in trust instead of just flaw owned to be exploited?
Then again, perhaps I'm not seeing the whole picture, and I'm pretty sure such a concept has its flaws. Please feel free to post counter-arguments, as I'd like to find a way to manage this most efficiently while at the same not allow it to be exploited and hoarded.
"why the country didn't keep possession of the critical infrastructure like spectrum and so on and simply leased them to private firms to manage under terms and conditions? "
Simple. "the country" does not decide anything, only people elected to represent other citizens get to decide. Supposedly they SHOULD decide in favour of solutions that benefit "the country" aka all the citizens who voted for them, but in reality they decide in favour of solutions that benefit themselves / their buddies who own the now-privatised networks / phone / rail / utilities etc etc.
Just look at what happened in post-Soviet Russia
Universal suffrage was a mistake. It was never part of the US to begin with but the system they had to begin with (must be a male landowner), while it made sure the voters had skin in the game, also wasn't flexible enough to allow for the rich who didn't own land (which started appearing more with the Industrial Revolution). The vote needs to be a privilege given only upon passing a knowledge-based test (and naturalized citizens go through it already--a civics test is prerequisite). IOW, you shouldn't be able to vote unless you know what's involved in the process.
Yes, I know, as long as it's manmade, the test can be corrupted and skewed against certain demographics, but do you have any better ideas to keep out stupid votes driven by impulse with no knowledge of the consequences (since nowadays ten stupid votes easily swamp one intelligent vote)?
I don't see this. Some of their stuff is reasonable enough.
Dems are pretty evil in their own way. Controlling people and making them dependent "for their own good" (actually to placate union interests and liberal fantasies) is not a Good Thing.
@Destroy All Monsters
Wow, just wow. What flavor Kool-aid was that?
Really? Providing food to hungry people is super evil? You do realize that the reason you work 8-hours a day and not 14 is because of unions, the reason you don't work weekends is because of unions, the reason you can take a vacation is because of unions, the fact that most people get paid a "living wage" is because of unions, the fact that children get a childhood is because of unions. Then you roll in, in the eleventh-hour and on the back of millions of union workers and declare the "Evil" that unions do. What a peach you must be? No, no, continue on about how dems make people dependent on luxury things like food.
They do have a few good ideas. There's no getting around that. The problem is, anything that is a good idea is completely cancelled out by another part of their massively contradictory platform.
An easy example is abortion. Regardless of your personal feelings, that's an understandable thing to support. But they also support not having birth control, food, healthcare or education for the poor. They support creating an entire class of people but support not ensuring they are cared for. It isn't that they don't not support those things, it is that they actively campaign against them.
Almost every stance the GOP has on any issue is completely counteracted by something else they support and the net contributions to society end up in the negative. They're very confused people.
Ok I'll risk my neck and say that I hate the concept of abortion. Nothing to do with being catholic (I'm not) but I believe some people don't take it seriously enough. However, as distasteful as I find it I recognise there are situations where it is appropriate, or at least it is the least worst option (incest, rape, invitro defects, risk to mother etc). I don't believe it should be used as a form of contraception. The problem with the USA is there cannot ever be any debate, one lot think I'm satan because I can see a set of circumstances when it's ok and the other lot think I'm Hitler because I can see circumstances when I believe it isn't ok. There should never be threats or violence against either the doctors or the patients. Some loons actually kill the doctors?? I can also accept that my opinion may not be shared by the majority of people and therefore I have to accept that the laws may not reflect my opinion.
Theres never any middle ground in this country, it's always black or white. Nobody debates on merit, they resort to vitriol, look at the comment above about Obama being the magic negro? Seriously, that is just a tacit admission you don't understand the situation well enough to form a valid opinion.
Sure Clinton was a twat who parked his bike in the wrong shed, but if you want to really blame him, talk about deregulating the banks and creating the environment for one of the largest financial collapses in history. Bush could keep us here for weeks dealing with his fickle clown economics and unfinanced tax breaks and wars and now we have Obama who can barely get his own party to support his policies. All three of them also did some things right as well, but too many people see them as the hummer guy, the incoherant idiot and 'the magic negro'.
So yeah, thats a huge reason why we are shafted. People get the government they deserve (forgot who said that but it seems appropriate).
Somewhat ironic, really: Hitler himself was opposed to abortion. One of the first things he did on taking power was create a new division within the police focused on what he regarded as the two most terrible crimes against morality: Abortion and homosexuality.
His eugenics and genocide policies took priority over his opposition to abortion, though. When they were in conflict, he was happy to make an exception to the abortion ban.
I don't know. The British were fairly awful to the colonists. Besides, your comment is nearly irrelevant in this discussion. Connection speeds were unbelievably slow in the 18th century. They wouldn't have noticed a difference if certain sites were/faster or slower. It took a very long time just to get a picture of some lady flashing her sexy ankles fully rendered onscreen; streaming movies or music was impossible.
Forget screens. They were lucky to have printers. And the average transatlantic round-trip time in the early 19th century was, what, two or three months? It wasn't until telegraph systems appeared that textual communications sped up considerably, (to the point that text streaming became possible for the first time) and even then there were no pictures (early attempts at facsimiles were too clunky for practicality, and it wasn't until the 1920's, I think, that sending pictures over the phone became practical for industries like journalism). And it was all still printed.
Actually, the pushers (the ones well-connected to bent LEOs) are the biggest fans of the War On Drugs. If their tame coppers didn't have a completely legal and very public way to put their competition out of business, they wouldn't get that "hazard bonus" for their goods.
I don't know that you can pin the entire drug war on the red shirts. The tipping point was when Len Bias died from a cocaine overdose and that caused the blue shirts to become drug warriors en masse.
To me it's just more proof that when the red and blue shirts agree the result is the people get the worst of it.
The legalization campaigns aren't funding themselves. Who funds them? No one knows, because there's zero transparency. All one can say for sure is that hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent on legalizing marijuana - who has that kind of money?
"All one can say for sure is that hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent on legalizing marijuana - who has that kind of money?"
Tens of millions of people?
There's nothing writ in stone that says funding has to be provided in one gigantic lump sum from a single donor.
Criminal organizations WANT the status quo, as it creates a "forbidden fruit" effect that makes their trade valuable (just as Prohibition allowed mobs to make a killing off distilleries, breweries, and speakeasies in the 1920's). Legalization would mean above-the-board businesses could grow and market the stuff, increasing the supply and undercutting the criminals.
The only 'vast' sums of money involved in the marijuana business are those spent by the government in prosecuting users and dealers. Which is really, really stupid. I can get an entire city block high with commonly available stuff we have here at work but if somebody wants to grow a plant and smoke it, that's somehow worse? Honestly, you sound like exactly the sort of person who should be smoking. You're all uptight about things you don't understand.
"that all traffic must be treated equally when coursing through the intertubes" / "that those who own said tubes should be allowed to manage and price their carriage any way they see fit" - these things are obviously not the same thing for reasons I shouldn't have to point out.
Secondly - why exactly shouldn't people be able to charge different for different things? If youtube wants to pay for junk bandwidth that does the job and can reduce costs versus netflix who might want to get better quality but still cheap bandwidth because they are making money off the use of that bandwidth directly, versus financial institutions paying even more but not necessarily having to group together to lay their own cables because they can't deal with competing with everybody watching videos of cats.
The net neutrality debate is a bad one because it starts from a false premise - that it ever existed.
There are many reasons why your view is incredibly simplistic; but the biggest reason for neutrality is that the federal government (using taxpayer dollars) spent billions of dollars and spent decades underwriting the research, land acquisitions and backbone infrastructure that makes the Internet go.
The core infrastructure was put in place through federal grants and stack-on bits of legislation and tax incentives so that the Internet would be available for the general public. Not so that a few big service providers who just added a bit of wire at the end can manipulate it to meet their own ends.
What you are suggesting is no different than allowing companies to directly manipulate the accuracy of the GPS signal based on the brand of GPS receiver you bought. Or phone companies making your connection intentionally poor depending on your level of service plan. It is plain wrong to do this to the same people who paid for the system that runs it all.
Oh God Don, now you'll have them trying to do that to GPS.
Basically I pay for broadband, 1mbps is 1mbps, as long as I don't break the law there is no reason for them to interfere with it, especially when the only reason they want to do it is to make more money and stifle small companies.
You have to understand who wants to get rid of net neutrality and why. The consumer doesn't stand to benefit, only service providers and large customers. It sets a higher bar for entry to a market place, allowing a companies size rather than the quality of its product win out which is contrary to how things are supposed to be here. Telcos just see it as a chance for more revenue which will not get returned to customers in lower rates as in many places there is very little choice in who you can buy from. Right here we have a copper line adsl provider who is pretty much bankrupt and a cable co who is under no pressure to change anything and doesn't exactly innovate. Satelite is not usually an option as the dish needs to be the size of a small town and most HOA's refuse to allow them (which I can understand).
Customers always get screwed in legislation like this. You're absolutely correct. Not having a Moen faucet in the kitchen doesn't mean your water pressure is greater, or the water isn't quite hot enough to be useful. The Internet is a public utility and should be treated as one. Different providers can charge differently than other providers, sure, but they shouldn't be allowed to degrade the product they are delivering.
Actually, if the faucet is designed with a wider mouth or some other physical aspect, your water may come out at a different pressure or quality. You want your water hotter? Perhaps a different water heater. Just saying some things can be controlled by your decisions.
Thing is, the Internet is very much like the highway system: built mostly out of public funds with a sprinkling of private investment, used a lot, and getting crowded. So the argument is basically boiling down to how best to manage it. At its core, Net Neutrality is saying not to allow the equivalent of HOV lanes or the like, as one can't tell at a glance what's really important (especially as more and more traffic starts going encrypted end-to-end, obscruing its nature). They have a point, but it's also fair to ask them for a better idea, as bandwidth demands aren't currently keeping up with infrastructure.
As for the person who has no choice but cable ATM, hasn't there been competition from an alternate cable provider or a FTTP provider?
But in those examples you are modifying a product after it comes into your home. Like using a wireless router in your house. You are choosing to do that and it in no way has an impact on the product prior to it entering your home. The utility company isn't scaling back your water pressure based on the manufacturer of the faucet. The design of the faucet modifies the water, not the service provider. Nothing you can do inside your house affects the water pressure or heat of the incoming supply. You get a (mostly) standardized level of service into your house depending on the infrastructure in the area. That's the way the utilities operate and that's the way the Internet should operate.
Except that those HOV lanes are cut from the existing lanes. It's more like those VIP passes at ride parks, only in this example we helped pay to make the park in the first place.
They need to lay new cable, they need to lay new cable, they need to lay new cable. Dividing up the existing into smaller and smaller pieces, and then choosing what I have access to is not want anyone wants.
Basically, if the U.S. Republicans get their way, they'll be no need to lay new cable, and there will be no new innovation on the Internet from anyone in the U.S. that doesn't have the deepest of pockets and an army of lawyers.
Anyone that doesn't see why this is a bad idea shouldn't be allowed to vote.
"As for the person who has no choice but cable ATM, hasn't there been competition from an alternate cable provider or a FTTP provider?"
Of course not.
(I'm assuming that ATM, in this context, means "at the moment")
At least not in a bunch of places.
When someplace that doesn't offer the density to attrract a cable company decides to start their own, the established company that's been ignoring them pops up and says they were going to serve that area "real soon now" and bribes the state legislature to prevent municipally owned cable companies.
And in places where cable is already franchised and strung on the telephone poles or buried in the right of way, even if there were a second company with the money and desire to duplicate that infrastructure, you can be sure the incumbent company will grease as many local palms as necessary to get it legally prevented.
Even if you just want cable for cable TV, you most likely have only one choice.
"The consumer doesn't stand to benefit, only service providers and large customers"
The consumer doesn't *need* to benefit, only the companies pushing data to them. Buying bandwidth by the gbit/95th isn't a consumer thing. See how this works?
People who think net neutrality is a tangible thing today or indeed was 10 years ago don't live in the real world and/or have never seen what routers do to their traffic, or have never worked with companies who use kit like internap fcp.
"the biggest reason for neutrality is that the federal government (using taxpayer dollars) spent billions of dollars and spent decades underwriting the research, land acquisitions and backbone infrastructure that makes the Internet go."
In which case the argument for Net Neutrality is dead in the water.
The Government did indeed fund academics to research networking protocols 30 years ago - but the internet you use today was built by private capital. It may amaze you to discover capitalists don't do this because they're nice people, but to make a profit.
It is not public infrastructure. Freeways are paid for and maintained by the taxpayer. The GPS system is too. The internet is not. You are deluding yourself to think that $150bn of fibre and 4G investment is "a bit of wire".
Since your argument is based on the internet being public infrastructure, you need a new horse to ride.
But practically all of that cable and telco infrastructure runs over or under "right of way", which is often public land, just like the road it's next to.
And it's only because the public allowed this that the companies who installed the infrastruture had a money-making opportunity in the first place.
Let me tell you what net neutrality means: that you as a european can watch youtube without having your videos crawl.
Loss of net neutrality means that the internet gets divided along national + financial lines, based on which regions commercials are relevant for. It means that your ISP restricts access to other networks, and uses that as a sales point. It means that not only companies but especially you get to pay extra for NOT having bandwidth cut.
Loss of net neutrality is a fraud, designed to generate vast wealth for ISP:s and give an unfair competitive advantage to large corporations, without either actually doing any work. That is the GOP wants to kill net neutrality.
I love you, but you make me vomit. I have had the same feeling with retarded persons. You know they are innocent but they still scare you. You just have to do something about your education, and that, for the whole population. You have brilliant guys in the country, learn to read, learn to listen, And remember that with great power should come great responsibility. And that, my friends, is not the picture one gets nor regarding how you Americans are treated nor anybody else. You have started to feel and behave like some in the Soviet Union would have liked to, but never succeeded. And that is a problem much deeper than just about the Republicans or the Democrats
Yeah, it's due to American exceptionalism: the USA is God's chosen country and ~: AMERICAN CITIZENS :~ are the only real humans on the planet. Everything else on the planet is at best irrelevant.
American exceptionalism is taken to its logical extreme by the tea party, who are isolationists and opposed to everything from intervention in Syria and combating global warming to humanitarian aid and trade treaties because nothing and no one outside US borders matter.
No, that's the neocons, who believe that morals take second fiddle to securing raw materials and maintaining the American Empire. To the isolationists in the Tea Party, foreign oil and other raw materials doesn't matter - they're firmly convinced that if only all environmental regulations and all corporate taxes were removed, the USA would be self-sufficient in everything.
Article:tube-owners such as, say, Comcast and Verizon are against net neutrality regulation, while businesses whose livelihoods depend upon speedy, easy, low-friction – and low-cost – access such as, say, Google and Amazon are pro–net neut.
But isn't Google also building tubes of its own these days? Wonder if that will make it switch camps?
Pretty sure that's Google advertising to show it's not evil - or hedging it's bets by diversifying.
Google still make nearly all of their money through online advertising, which means it most definitely needs as many consumers as possible to see them.
What would happen if an ISP could charge more for ad traffic from some ad brokers than others, or even block adverts altogether?
Now swap "adverts" for something your employer makes their money from.
IINM those tubes of theirs are completely private, meaning they sidestep the neutrality issue the way a privately-funded highway does. They don't have to be neutral because they didn't built the lines with government money. As long as that condition exists, it's basically "my line, my rules".
The thing that should ACTUALLY alarm people is that the "debt ceiling" is being raised.
Where did all the money go? The
magic negro most liberal president ever spent it on weaponry, warfare and surveillance mostly, I guess. And bureaucracy, i.e. people solving the problems that they create in the first place (aka. the invisible jobless support program)
Did I mention that quantitative easing is still transferring peoples' wealth to well-connected interests and wallstreet playas? It's not like Republicans aren't already getting their coffers filled.
Let's not start pretending that the debt ceiling is this new-fangled idea invented by Obama to bankrupt America
It's America telling itself that it's okay to keep borrowing money. So I guess it's America acting like quite a lot of Americans seems to act/have acted. Except it wont be America's car that gets repossessed it'll be the world that gets stuck in a WW3 situation because America - like its banks - is too big to fail (or at least would like to think that it is)
"Except it wont be America's car that gets repossessed it'll be the world that gets stuck in a WW3 situation because America - like its banks - is too big to fail (or at least would like to think that it is)"
Someone gets it.
I don't think people have any idea how close we just came to WW3 this last go 'round.
If the US does collapse (and it seems likely that it will happen sooner or later) then the rest of the world will be screwed.
1) Loss of US food exports will lead to huge numbers of deaths due to starvation
2) US government bonds becoming worthless will destroy the economic system of the rest of the world as banks and governments across the globe go bankrupt. The collapse will be far worse than the 1930s great depression.
3) Expect an internal bloodbath in the US that makes what happened in Yugoslavia seem peaceful as each group blames others.
Someone missed the dick.
You do know it's the Repubs that want to raise the debt, right? You do know this? Right?
Warfare? The president bought home the troops.
You must be thinking about the $17 TRILLION* bailout given to Wall St. by... wait, who was controlling all three branches of the government in 2007?
Do try and keep up.
* why yes, I do have a link for that. Several in fact. From impeccable sources.
You must be thinking about the $17 TRILLION* bailout given to Wall St. by... wait, who was controlling all three branches of the government in 2007?
There. I added an appropriate icon for you.
* why yes, I do have a link for that. Several in fact. From impeccable sources.
> it's the Repubs that want to raise the debt
Strike one. The democrats want to raise the debt limit, the republicans are blocking the raise, holding the US economy hostage to get their extremist proposals through congress.
> the $17 TRILLION* bailout given to Wall St.
Strike two. The bailout was $700 billion, and it ended up **turning a profit**: http://money.cnn.com/2011/03/30/news/economy/tarp_program/index.htm
> who was controlling all three branches of the government in 2007?
Strike three - you're out. Obama came to power in 2008.
Please don't post.
"You must be thinking about the $17 TRILLION* bailout given to Wall St. by... wait, who was controlling all three branches of the government in 2007?"
It was SPLIT in 2007. No one party controlled the entire government. Dems retook the House in the 2006 elections, giving them control of the ENTIRE Legislature (they'd been holding the Senate for a while and still do).
Obama had next to no say in creating or managing that debt since it's mostly coming from wars (that he didn't start and is winding down, expansion of drone program notwithstanding) and 'obligatory' spending (pensions and social security).
He had to jam it down Republicans throats to cut military funding and sunset the Bush tax cuts. Bush, on the other hand, started with a huge surplus and first gave the surplus away to the richest people in the US with his tax cuts, and then started 2 hugely expensive wars without raising any funding for them (except through borrowing).
Obama is no saint and his track record is no more than decent, but considering the gigantic mess he inherited and the obstructionism he ha faced every step of the way, he's doing a good job of playing with the crappy hand he's been dealt.
Then core group of GOP voters thinks what is happening is wrong, but they are the core and won't shift their vote much; the GOP already has their vote. That core group isn't big enough to control congress though so they've got no choice but to cater to the suicidal desires of extremist Republicans and tea party voters. They used to try and lure the independents to their camp, but the last 12+ years of extremism has eliminated most of those independents and future GOP voters. They have to appeal to the nutters to prevent them from voting for some 3rd party candidate and "wasting their vote".
There will be no resolution to any of this until the GOP decides to take responsibility for their half of the bargain and be willing to negotiate and find balance with the Democrats. The Democrats don't really even have to do much to interfere, the GOP is killing itself and will solve its own problems by ceasing to exist if they don't grow up.
And the GOP won't budge because they feel the threat is existential (meaning, do this or the USA is DEEEEADDDD!). The troubling thing about existential threats is that it tends to relax any taboos you may have at the time. All bets are off, no holds barred if your future existence is at stake. That's why the Tea Party won't budge. It's not just reflexive drivel to them--THEY ACTUALLY BELIEVE IT!
Do they actually believe it? I'm sure some of them do, the illeducated types like Palin, but it occurs to me that some of them either just want it to be true or simply don't care because true or false they will end up better off. Lets face it, if they are right and we have small government, low taxation, christian value led society and the economy booms, they make out like bandits. If it doesn't and we end with dark satanic mills, penny to the pound it's them buggahs that will be owning the mills and making out like bandits.
Personally I cannot understand how a group of people who want a strong economy do not support giving every kid a good start in life (great education, healthcare etc). Financially it makes sense, even ignoring the ethical side, it is a solid investment in the countries future. It isn't objectivism, frankly it's just selfishness.
Unfortunately many of the more vocal Republicans seem to think that even Fox News is too left wing!!!!
(Anyone who has looked at Fox News knows that the adverts are closer to being accurate than the programs.)
Unfortunately the majority of US politicians are owned by the people who pay their election expenses - for many of the Tea Party group this is the Koch brothers. One of the aims of the Tea Party group is to neuter the Environmental Protection Agency which has prosecuted Koch Industries on many occasions. (A Google search for "koch industries epa violations" will return many links.)
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