Forum posts made by principessa

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 15 Oct 2017 09:06

Sorry, Dear, but you have absolutely no idea what makes me happy.

Anyway, traditionally, the anti-birth control vote in the USA comes from the "fish on Friday" crowd. The evangelicals are generally just fine with the pill and condoms, just not so much with abortions.

"I am opposed to abortion and to government funding of abortions. We should not spend state funds on abortions because so many people believe abortion is wrong." -- Arkansas Governor William Jefferson Clinton in 1986.

I don't know or care what makes you happy. I do know that "dear" is a patronizing way to address a woman that you don't know. Cut it out.

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 14 Oct 2017 13:49

There are reasons to believe that if a single payer plan existed in the USA today it would not include funding for abortion and might not cover any other form of birth control either.

I don't see any reason to think that a single payer plan would be any easier to pass than the ACA was, and Obama had to agree to limit coverage for birth control as a way to get pro-life Democrats to vote for the ACA.

SCOTUS has seemed reluctant to force people to pay for things they strongly oppose, as the Hobby Lobby case and the Friedrichs case show. And there are a lot of Americans who still oppose some or all forms of birth control.

America is becoming a Christian right theocracy dominated by a group that is not a majority of the population, but is is significant segment of Trump's base. (Ironic considering that they criticize Iran for being a Muslim theocracy.) This is demonstrated by the fact that he is the first sitting president ever to address the Value Voters Summit, a right wing evangelical group, and he promised a return to Christian values in the country. They want time turned back to the good old days prior to the 1960s where women and minorities knew their place and immigrants were second class citizens - all good so long as white Christian men were dominant in society.

It is interesting that he and these people interpret the constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion not as liberty for every person to practice their religion, but rather as a weapon to impose their extreme right values on everyone. I realize that elections have consequences, some short term until the next election, and some long term like the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court. It seems that the aim is to undo the progress of the past fifty or sixty years and to eradicate anything that has Barack Obama's imprint on it.

So, Seax, I understand that this will make you happy. I hope it will mobilize Americans to redress all of this in the next two elections.

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 14 Oct 2017 08:05

I suggest a single-payer health insurance system. A health insurance tax on businesses and corporations based on number of employees. Take the decision away from the businesses and put it in government's hands. That way a moral objector to birth control can wash their hands of it and blame it on the government or on Buz. I'll take the fucking blame.

The vast majority of mainstream American Protestant churches do NOT have problems with birth control but the Catholic church does and some of the extreme independents and talking-in-tongue snake handlers. The non-birth-controllers are not the majority of American Christians and it is certainly not the majority of American non-Christians so don't let a minority shove their views undemocratically over the majority's healthcare.

For-profit health insurance companies should not be making our medical decisions! And that comes from me, a capitalist. Make that a common-sense capitalist.

Dammit! We should look at Canada and Western Europe and see what they are doing and then do it better than them. Then wave the Stars & Stripes because that would be something for patriots to be proud of, not a nation where one's health care depends upon how fucking rich they are. Until then Old Glory is sagging rather sad.

All people created equal – all people medically treated equal. The richest fucking country on the planet shouldn't have a fucking huge medical disparity.

Thank you, Buz. I have been saying precisely the same things, but having it come from a common sense American capitalist may carry more weight with some people than hearing it from a Canadian. Look at us, look at Europe and amalgamate the best of ideas. You Yanks will say your plan is better whether it is or not, but get one done.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 13 Oct 2017 09:55

Oh I so wish I could agree with you. You have so muddied the waters and nothing could help Mr Weinstein more. You have expanded the area of blame to the whole universe rather to the man currently under the spotlight. That is exactly what will happen to allow this man to have the best chance of escape.

If you don't work for a political party you should. Have you read Hillary's book?. She lists all the peeps that caused her to lose the election. It covers the universe but not her. None of it was her fault. Spred the balme over as many as possible and you get away with it?.

Of course Mr Weinstein is the same. He was ill. After years of being ill he had an epiphany and turned to rehab to sort his problems out, immediately he knew his trangressions would errupt. Thank God for the British Press and their digging.

So there are other cheaters and God knows what else in politics. Who would know that?. Does Meryl Streep know?. She will be shocked all over again.

You can satisfy yourself with generalisations. I want to focus on this man, and if you want, others. And I want to focus on those that helped him hide his conduct. Sorry they are probably Democrats, but probably not all of them. Friends in high places is always a good place to start. We are at the tip of an iceberg that is far worse than Newt Gingrich cheating on his wife. He will either be a politician or a member of the Hollywood set, probably both. Politician rings a bell. I want to focus on those who used their political influence or their position to influence the judiciary.

Of course it won't happen. So sad. Rehab will 'work' and he'll return a better man and a more careful repeat offender?. Perhaps not.

Could we agree on bringing back lynch mobs?. Peeps tell me Trumpites are good at those.

I have made no excuses for Weinstein and thoroughly condemned him. I do not work for any political party and I have no idea why you said that other than my assertion that this behaviour has nothing to do with politics when you made an issue of Weinstein being a Democratic donor. This has nothing to do with politics or Hillary Clinton or anything else like that. It is a criminal matter. I mentioned Trump's bragging about sexually assaulting women and I have no doubt that he did it. His supporters and the GOP did what you described above in relation to Weinstein: they glossed over his conduct. Whatever standard we apply to Weinstein we should apply to Trump. That is not politics. That is equal protection of the law for women from predators. So why aren't you arguing for charges to be laid against Trump as well. That is not muddying the waters at all.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 13 Oct 2017 09:36

His predatory bullshit could have been stopped years ago but did victims go to the police? No. They went to their lawyers first and settled out of court. ELEVEN women, took the money and ran. If I was sexually assaulted, the first place I would be going is the police station not my lawyer.

I'm not saying they deserved it, nobody does but if they had pressed charges he wouldn't have been able to continue that behaviour for so long.

The men who do this are exerting their power, especially when it happens in a work-related situation. It is that power imbalance that puts the women in a vulnerable position. Actresses might have feared being blacklisted from future work and also had trepidation about going up against a man with connections and lots of money based on their word alone. It is easy to be judgmental when you have not lived it. You should think again about how brave you would be and have a little more compassion for victims of sexual assault.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 12 Oct 2017 18:04

So was Trump.... But really.... what does that have to do with anything?

The fact that conservatives are jumping all over this like Trinket on a tube of cookie dough ice cream indicates the state of American politics. But by all means...let's round up the scum bags and put them in categories depending on what political party they threw their lot in with....

Because obviously that's the issue..... Lets take a horrible situation and turn it into make it a left vs right thing. the way... I heard Jeffrey Dalmer and John Wayne Gacy were pro gay...

SNL tried out a lot of Weinstein jokes and they didn't work. The general public just doesn't relate to it. SNL is not political propaganda. It simply caters the views that the majority of their viewers have. But since right wingers obviously don't understand comedy, I would never expect any of them to understand how that works. SNL has skewered every president since the 70s regardless of political party. In fact, Bill Clinton was the most lampooned pres until your current orangutan in chief.

The guy is a fucking scumbag. But this has nothing to do with politics.

And as for your comments on celebrities.... Congrats on posting the same meme as Dragonfly... It takes a seriously special person to ride those coat tails...

In the meantime, why don't you take a couple minutes out of shopping for shoes and stepping over homeless people to Google "Canadian celebrities." After diddling yourself to either Ryan Gosling or Rachel McAdams (depending on your sexual preference) Come back and see if you can make yourself seem even more ignorant.

Why is it that republicans seem to see "Hollywood" as representative of all people that think the world is older than 6 thousand years?

In case I didn't make it clear... This has nothing to do with fucking politics!

Thank you. Trump is a flim flam man, a con artist, and a master of deception and deflection always giving us a new shiny object to take our attention away from his many failings. This discussion is getting the same treatment with an effort to make it political, but that is counterproductive since Trump is and has been at least as much a predator as Weinstein but the GOP and his voters have allowed him to get away with it as he panders to their worst instincts.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 12 Oct 2017 17:53

Which one?. Both are under investigation are they not, but for different reasons?.

Precisely. Trump is being investigated for possible obstruction of justice, collusion with the Russians, ethical violations, enriching himself in his position, and God knows what else. He has gotten away with years of sexual predatory behaviour because the GOP and its voters gave him a pass. I would be happy to see him pay a price for his behaviour similar to what Weinstein is going through now - banished from his company, his wife seeking a divorce, and in peril of criminal charges. That would be Trump's just deserts along with whatever the Mueller investigation finds and acts upon. So by your logic Trump should face charges for numerous instances of sexual assault along with whatever he did during his campaign and in the White House. I agree.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 12 Oct 2017 16:34

Oh my, you've joined the Lush grammar police. But I think you understood me perfectly. I disagree with you. To agree would be to say that SNL have never used the President's audio tape as either a point of reference for a joke or a source of content for an ongoing series of jokes. SNL did prepare a whole set of skits on Mr Weinstein, so well done their writers. Production pulled them. SNL is hardly a religious institution, all innocence and whatever.

Well the NY Atorney General, or whatever his correct title is, did really try and do his best to explain why there were not interested now or in the past. Friends are friends afterall. The big turn around today is really politics at its best. This is a really hot issue for the politicians coming on the heels of the Weiner mess.

As for getting out of this without a scratch, that is not possible. He has already been wounded but whether he bleeds to death or is incarcerated, or both. Will depend very much on the remains of his political influence. If it's as deep as the SNL affair signifies, he'll get away with a suspended sentence based on rehab. Or just rehab, which he has suddenly, after all these years, found he needs. Such an epiphany! As you should expect, he has the best legal scriptwriters in the business.

There is, of course, the distinct possibility that he will not be charged with anything. In that case, perhaps we can expect him to make a run at the Presidency in 2020. Afterall, we like our bad boys here and joining Clinton and JFK is surely ok with the Democrats. I'll leave others to draw my attention to our incumbent POTUS.

As I said above, this is not a partisan political issue. However, everything that you say should apply to your beloved Trump as well as to Weinstein. I am just taking up your suggestion as you left it to others to mention him. To thunder with disapproval about Weinstein who was not an elected official like Clinton and JFK, and be willfully blind and deaf to the dear leader's history with women is the height of hypocrisy. There are many others who could be added to this list. Newt Gingrich was cheating on his wife with his current wife (I think it was this one. She is number three.) while seeking to impeach Clinton for his sexual sins. He even asked her for a divorce while she was in hospital getting chemotherapy. It ill behooved him to wag his finger in disapproval of Clinton. There is a long list of GOP politicians as well as Democrats to add to this list. So, let's be fair in our approbrium. There is plenty to go around. This is about power and influence and exerting that over women who are less powerful regardless of political orientation. It is about predatory behaviour. So stop putting the left/liberal label on it.

Topic Harvey Weinstein
Posted 12 Oct 2017 15:00

Harvey Weinstein is a pig and deserves everything that is happening to him. So does every other man who behaves this way. Those who enable such behaviour and turn a blind eye because they put profit before ethics have also earned a special place in hell.

I can tell you that this happens in every profession and workplace. At the beginning of my professional career there was a client who would always put his arm around me, accidentally on purpose touching my breast. When I complained about it to a partner, he laughed and told me to lighten up.

This is not, repeat not, a partisan political issue. Weinstein's support for Democratic candidates has nothing to do with his behaviour. And it is disingenuous for Republicans and Trumpites to make a meal of this. After all, they elected as president a man who boasted about sexually assaulting women as part of his modus operandi for years. Until they criticize Trump with the same vehemence as they do Weinstein they are hypocrites.

This is however a political issue in the sense of women having to gain power in the workplace to put an end to such despicable behaviour. As well, I would like to hear more men denouncing this.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 12 Oct 2017 13:54

Family Guy finally has some actual relevance! I wish it wasn't true, though.

I guess that is Steve Bannon's version of America.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 12 Oct 2017 13:41

Thank god for Martin Luther Seax Jr.

Now is the time to make gun ownership a reality for all of God's white children. It would be fatal for the nation to overlook
the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of 2017 is not an end but a beginning. Those who hope
that he gun owners needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns
to wearing jack boots, kicking in our doors, and taking all our guns from our cold dead hands.

There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the middle aged white man is granted his carry and conceal rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright days of shooting anything that makes us feel threatened emerge.

While we are at it let's repeal the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act as well as the equal protection clause in the Constitution. Life was so much simpler and better when women knew their place (in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant), minorities knew their place (separate and unequal, in the back of the bus) and immigrants were all from European countries and were either Protestant or Catholic. We need to restore white men to their rightful place in the order of things. They have suffered enough. Maybe we should start requiring everyone to have at least one gun in their home too. That would make us all so much safer.

Of course all of this would be the prayer answered for certain people, their fever dreams realized.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 12 Oct 2017 06:25

So it's not real unless some authority figure "recognizes" it?

That is how the legal system and the Supreme Court in your country and mine (and many others) work by interpreting the Constitution or the Charter of Rights respectively. Just like some authority figure gives you the right to all those guns.

Edit: I understand that sometimes it takes a while for the law to catch up on discrimination as it did in 1960s America, but I don't think that an argument can or will be made that gun owners are a group that is subject to discrimination.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 11 Oct 2017 18:51

Some deny that there was a Defensive Gun Use unless the coroner fills a body bag with a dead criminal. You deny discrimination exists unless a legislative remedy has been attempted.


No. What I was saying is that being a gun owner is not a recognized ground for discrimination.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 11 Oct 2017 18:09

No, I think your opinion of this has been warped a little to put yourself in the victimisation seat.

We all agree that discrimination against race, gender, sexuality, religion, ethnicity, political views (yes, even political views) is wrong and something to be shunned. Of course, it is. All discrimination is, really, regardless. Let's address the actual basis of racial, sexual, gender and religious discrimination, though - as they are the main area that beleaguered society.

These types of discrimination create negative assumptions of the people they affect, purely based upon their race, gender, religion, etc. These are factors that people cannot control, but these are also not determining factors in someone's mental faculties, desirability or anything else. It's an unfair and ill-conceived judgement, based on what is only a very narrow-minded viewpoint on life. There's no REAL reason to avoid someone because they're black, gay, male, female or any other denomination, other than someone's own utter ignorance. There's no real basis requiring avoidance.

So we all agree that's wrong.

What you're describing is a little different.

These neighbours of yours weren't removing their child from your premises for unfounded reasons, such as skin colour or sexual preference. They identified that there was a danger in your house that they don't want their child around. Now you will counter this and say that your weapons are safe, but that's the opinion of every gun-owner until there's an accident - especially where children are concerned.

You yourself just said that your son knew where the guns were and knew he could get access to them. I think, more than anything, your neighbours took a very cynical, albeit realistic perspective: that allowing their son (who obviously wanted to lead your son down some path already) into a home where he might be able to access weaponry that he wasn't trained and safe to use was a bad idea.

Do you think they were doing it to isolate you and your family, or to protect their son from any trouble he might cause, or find himself in? Trusting a professional is one thing. Trusting your child to make the right decision is another and it's often a decision that's best taken away from them. What your neighbours did is remove their son from any chance of accessing weapons and there being an accident. They were looking out for their son in what they perceived to be a dangerous environment. You can't blame them for that.

Not to mention the fact that they don't know you and your gun control, or how safe you are. They just heard that the neighbour had guns and he was willing to show them to their son. If they don't want their son exposed to weapons, that's a perfectly valid, safe standpoint to take for a small child and you can't blame them for taking him away from there. They don't know you, they can't trust you with their son's life.

It's not discrimination. It's not picking on you for owning a gun. It's about removing their child from a potentially hazardous environment.

Thank you for taking the time to really explain it to him. I did not have the patience to do it.

There are two aspects of this that are related discrimination, one that does not exist and another that he is oblivious to in his own words. The first is that he sees himself as a victim when he is not. The second is that he found it necessary to point out that his neighbours were Jewish when that has absolutely nothing to do with making a decision to keep their child away from guns, a decision that is perfectly reasonable considering how many incidents there are of horrible accidents happening when children play with them.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 11 Oct 2017 17:49

I can and have explained it to you. But I obviously can't understand it for you. You believe things that are not there, and don't believe things that are. A classic psychology experiment proves that people see with their brains, not with their eyes. I this case your brain is simply refusing to believe something that goes against your world view. I cannot help you with that. Have a nice day.

Physician, heal thyself. I know of no human rights or equality legislation that mentions gun owners as a target of discrimination.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 11 Oct 2017 17:22

The ironic part? My neighbors and their son were Jews.

After all my efforts, my son's first lesson in prejudice came from a Jew.

What does their being Jewish have to do with wanting to protect their child from guns? It doesn't matter what race or religion or ethnic group your neighbours belonged to. The pertinent factor here is that they were anti-gun. If you are equating gun ownership with other forms of discrimination, what can I say? I will use a Quebec expression, "Tu reves en couleur" which translates as you are dreaming in colour (literally) and means it is a crazy idea.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 10 Oct 2017 15:52

One New York woman told Waters, "Are you really asking me to pick out the shiniest turd in the punch bowl? I'll pass. I really don't feel qualified!"

IOW, Trump's obvious behavioral flaws do not mitigate Clinton's in any way shape or form.

The unknown and unknowable is how much of the vote total wasn't "for" either of them so much as "against" the other.

So one could just as easily say that 3 million more people voted against Trump than voted against Clinton.

Anyway, as Perry Mason's straight man Hamilton Burger would say "the popular vote was irrelevant and immaterial."

You're right, but it was a binary choice. Trump was by any measure not qualified for the office, never mind less qualified than Clinton. The presidency of the US is a hell of a way to express a protest vote against the establishment and the status quo. Aside from all of the other reasons why Trump should not be there (as listed previously in my post quoting the NY Times) and so many more I could add, let me just say that a face off of escalating schoolyard insults between two narcissistic, childish boy men, Trump and Kim Jong-un, could lead us to world war. So, Clinton, with all of her flaws, would have been the better choice and an infinitely better president.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 10 Oct 2017 15:08

More obvious answer to the title of this forum " Because I didn't want to vote for a bitch like Hilary Clinton."

Except she got 3 million more votes than he did. The obvious answer is that a lot of people just like you voted for Trump.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 09 Oct 2017 17:47

Will do.

My intent wasn't to refute all of the article, just to refute the NYT point that the list was stuff unique to Trump.

I went over the rest of the list and picked up a few more:

Nixon -> Obstruct justice

John Kennedy -> Hire relatives for key White House posts

Obama -> Display complete ignorance about international relations, your own administration’s policies, American history and the basic structure of our system of government

Obama -> Skip daily intelligence briefings

Given that he taught constitutional law before he became a senator, I have to push back on the one I have bolded. I disagree with you.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 09 Oct 2017 12:54

Will do.

My intent wasn't to refute all of the article, just to refute the NYT point that the list was stuff unique to Trump.

I went over the rest of the list and picked up a few more:

Nixon -> Obstruct justice

John Kennedy -> Hire relatives for key White House posts

Obama -> Display complete ignorance about international relations, your own administration’s policies, American history and the basic structure of our system of government

Obama -> Skip daily intelligence briefings

Perhaps some of them are not unique to Trump, but cumulatively they are a resounding indictment of a man with no moral compass who has no place in the office he holds. The more we find out, the more convinced I am that he will be impeached at the least and also subject to criminal charges for actions before his inauguration. Whether he can be charged with obstruction of justice as a sitting president is an open question, but if there is sufficient proof it would certainly support impeachment.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 09 Oct 2017 12:07

I didn't go through the whole list. But there's at least one standout that makes me discount the whole article. And that's the last: Lie.

The NYT knows damn well of the lies of previous Presidents:

Johnson lied when he used the Gulf of Tonkin Incident to justify putting US combat troops into South Vietnam.

Nixon lied when he famously declared "I am not a crook."

Clinton lied when he said under oath "I did not have sex with that woman, that Ms. Lewinski." He lost his law license as a result of that perjury.

Two more possible/probable lies:

Bush the Younger said that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction yet none were found after his overthrow. It is certain he had some at one point because he used them against the Kurds in northern Iraq and against the marsh Arabs in southern Iraq. When he got rid of the last of his stockpiles, and whether or not Bush knew he had done so is unknown and possibly unknowable.

Obama famously said "If you like your health care plan you get to keep it. If you like your doctor you get to keep him." Whether or not he knew that the bill written by Pelosi's staff made both impossible is again unknown and possibly unknowable.

Anyone, anywhere who tells you that politicians do not lie is either a fool or a liar in their own right.

I'll leave it to you to decide which is true in the case of the NYT.

If your only response is that all politicians and all presidents lie, that doesn't exactly refute it. You should really take the time to read the rest of the list.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 09 Oct 2017 12:05

That's some list, there. Damn, that is some list. I wish I could say that it was all faked, but it's really not, is it?

'God bless America'? I think he might have to.

It was not faked. They have been keeping tabs of his lies too. It makes interesting reading.

Topic Why I voted for Donald Trump
Posted 09 Oct 2017 07:57

The editorial in the NY Times today has ""The Republican's Guide to Presidential Etiquette" which lists what Trump has done contrary to past presidents. It is a long list. Perhaps it will make some who voted for him wonder about that choice.

Mock a foreign leader with a demeaning nickname and threaten his country with nuclear annihilation over Twitter

Call for the firing of “son of a bitch” athletes who choose to exercise their right to free speech

Refer to the White House as “a real dump”

Spend the weekend golfing at your private club while the mayor of an American city wades through sewage-filled water to help citizens after a catastrophic hurricane, then accuse that mayor of “poor leadership” when she criticizes your administration’s slow response to the storm

Criticize victims of that hurricane still living without drinking water or electricity by saying they “want everything to be done for them”

During a visit to some of those victims, throw rolls of paper towels at them and tell them they should be “very proud” that only 16 people have died so far, unlike in a “real catastrophe”

Attack a senator battling terminal cancer

Pick nominees to the federal bench who call a sitting Supreme Court justice a “judicial prostitute” and refer to transgender children as part of “Satan’s plan”

Campaign hard for a Senate candidate; then when he appears likely to lose, say “I might have made a mistake” and later delete your tweets supporting him

Behave so erratically and irresponsibly that senators of your own party resort to saying you’re treated like an adult day-care student to keep you from starting World War III

Spend one of every three days as president visiting at least one of your own properties

Publicly and privately humiliate your own attorney general for recusing himself from an investigation into your campaign

Say nothing when a foreign leader’s bodyguards brutally attack peaceful protesters in the streets of Washington, D.C.

Tweet GIFs of yourself violently attacking the media and your former political opponent

Encourage police officers not to be “too nice” when apprehending criminal suspects

Help draft a misleading statement about the purpose of a meeting between your son, other top campaign aides and representatives of a rival foreign power intent on interfering in the election

Deliver a speech to the Boy Scouts of America that includes mockery of a former president and winking references to sexual orgies, and then lie by claiming that the head of that organization called and told you it was the best speech ever delivered in Boy Scout history

Hang a framed copy of a fake Time magazine cover celebrating your business acumen in your golf clubs around the world

Mock a female television anchor’s appearance, saying the anchor was “bleeding badly from a face-lift” at a holiday gathering at your private resort

Force your cabinet members to take turns extolling your virtues in front of television cameras

Welcome into the Oval Office a man who threatened to assassinate your predecessor, whom he called a “subhuman mongrel,” and who referred to your political opponent as a “worthless bitch”

Continue to deny that Russia attempted to influence the presidential election, despite the consensus of the American intelligence community — and yet also blame your predecessor for not doing anything to stop that interference

Grant temporary White House press credentials to a website that, among other things, claims that Sept. 11 was an “inside job” and that the massacre of 20 schoolchildren in Newtown, Conn., was a hoax

Block people who criticize you on Twitter

Claim that an investigation into your campaign’s possible collusion with a foreign power is “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”

Pressure multiple intelligence chiefs to state publicly that there was no collusion between your presidential campaign and the Russian government

Without consulting anyone at the Pentagon, announce a new policy barring transgender soldiers from serving in the military

Pardon a former sheriff who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for refusing to obey the law

Continue to repeat, with admiration, a false story about an American military general committing war crimes

Mock the mayor of a world city for his careful, sober response to a terrorist attack

Tell Americans that a march of torch-carrying white supremacists and neo-Nazis includes “some very fine people” — and when one of those marchers murders a peaceful counterprotester, condemn violence on “both sides”

Run an administration whose ethical standards have, in the words of the federal government’s top ethics enforcer, made the United States “close to a laughingstock”

Hide data that don’t support your pre-existing policy preferences

Admit to trying to intimidate a key witness in a federal investigation

Leave hundreds of executive branch positions unfilled

Profit off the presidency, accepting millions of dollars from foreign government officials, businesses, politicians and other supporters who pay a premium to patronize your properties and get access to you — while also attempting to hide the visitor lists at some of those properties from the public

Promise to drain the swamp, then quietly grant ethics waivers to multiple former industry lobbyists who want to work in your administration

Tell a lie, on average, more than five times a day

Call for criminal investigations of your former political opponent, seven months after winning the election

Appoint your family wedding planner to head a federal housing office

Shove aside a fellow head of state at a photo-op

Attack private citizens on Twitter

Delegitimize federal judges who rule against you

Refuse to take responsibility for military actions gone awry

Fire the F.B.I. chief in the middle of his expanding investigation into your campaign and your associates

Accuse a former president, without evidence, of an impeachable offense

Employ top aides with financial and other connections to a hostile foreign power

Blame the judiciary, in advance, for any terror attacks

Call the media “the enemy of the American people”

Demand personal loyalty from the F.B.I. director

Threaten the former F.B.I. director

Accept foreign payments to your businesses, in possible violation of the Constitution

Occupy the White House with the help of a hostile foreign power

Intimidate congressional witnesses

Allow White House staff members to use their personal email for government business

Neglect to fill thousands of crucial federal government positions for months

Claim, without evidence, that millions of people voted illegally

Fail to fire high-ranking members of your national security team for weeks, even after knowing they lied to your vice president and exposed themselves to blackmail

Refuse to release tax returns

Hide the White House visitors’ list from the public

Vacation at one of your private residences nearly every weekend

Use an unsecured personal cellphone

Criticize specific businesses for dropping your family members’ products

Review and discuss highly sensitive intelligence in a restaurant, and allow the Army officer carrying the “nuclear football” to be photographed and identified by name

Obstruct justice

Hire relatives for key White House posts, and let them meet with foreign officials and engage in business at the same time

Promote family businesses on federal government websites

Tweet, tweet, tweet

Collude with members of Congress to try to shut down investigations of you and your associates

Threaten military conflict with other nations in the middle of news interviews

Compare the U.S. intelligence community to Nazis

Display complete ignorance about international relations, your own administration’s policies, American history and the basic structure of our system of government

Skip daily intelligence briefings

Repeat untruths

Share highly classified information with a hostile foreign power without the source’s permission


Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 08 Oct 2017 10:12

Except for trump... I refuse to capitalize his name, regardless of where in a sentence it appears. Also, if a pronoun referring to him starts a sentence, I won't capitalize that either. he just hasn't earned the respect IMHO.

That made me smile because I never refer to him with the title President, also as a matter of respect and my lack of it for him.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 08 Oct 2017 09:59

Here here. I think that whole section ought to be strung up on the front of the White House.

I just cannot understand the mentality that defends the 'right' to own what are essentially weapons of warfare, designed not for self-defence but for mass killing. To own one of these would be bad enough, but allowing people to own their own arsenal is asking for trouble. What sensible, defensible need could anyone have to own a weapon like that, other than the occasional 'pleasure shoot' in the back yard? It's not for hunting. It's not for sport. It's not even for self defence. It's for murdering people by the multitude. If you're determined to fire one for fun, there are ranges where you can do that. You don't need to buy your own - and definitely not a collection of them.

The mental health argument has been passed around to death. It's tiring, and it's people passing the excuse down the line. If this man was mentally ill, it just proves that it can come in a moment, with no warning or any chance of stopping it. He was perfectly sane just days before, if you believe the reports. In which case, as you say, he's corrupted in some other way that you can't control. Mental health acts won't change a person's vindictive, selfish, aggressive nature when that little bit of sanity in their head finally snaps. But if, when that person cracks, the only thing they can lay their hand on is a kitchen knife, do people really think he's going to manage to injure ~600 people?

There needs to be more done for the mentally ill, that's a given - and it goes for almost every state in the world. We could all do more for the mentally ill. But again, limiting their access to deadly weaponry should be #1 on the list, with a big ring around it, highlighted in red. Nevermind the extra few guns the gun companies will sell. It's not worth people's lives.

There's a gun culture in America, that's so deep-rooted, I genuinely can't see it changing for a long, long time. It's almost religious, if you listen to some people. It's a scarily blind attitude to hold, but people do. I don't see anything happening to change things just yet. There's too much good hard cash to be made selling these guns for the Americans to allow something like a few thousand people a year dying to change things. Change is a slow process, but the more people shouting for it, the more likely it is to succeed.

I think it's maybe easier to see these things from the outside. Maybe it is just too deep-seated a philosophy amongst much of the American populace. Maybe the reliance on guns is something we just can't relate to, because our societies function perfectly well without them. The attitude towards race is something I see through-out, though. Terrorist, lone gunman, mentally unsound... What's the difference? These are all people who, for their own twisted, irrational reasons, decide to vent their anger, frustration and hate into killing and maiming the lives of innocent people. Label them however you want, but regardless or religion, race or belief, they all suffer from the same sickness, the same twisted perspective on reality that drives them to these acts. Don't put them into separate boxes, as though they're a different breed. These are all symptons of the much bigger problems we all face. Anyone can be a terrorist. Anyone can be a shooter, or a bomber. If this proves anything, it's that we need to focus on society as a whole and not the little boxes we put people into, because no one is safe and no one is beyond suspicion.

When you treat everyone as a suspect; when everyone has the capacity and potential to be a mass murderer, suddenly the prospect of all those guns becomes a lot more terrifying. That's the truth of it. We make the mistake of thinking that these actions, and these beliefs in people, are somehow rare and to be ignored; but it keeps happening, and it keeps proving that maybe they're not as rare as we thought they were.

Thanks, Lupus. I think you are on to something as well.

There was a book written by Hannah Arendt called "The Banality of Evil" about Eichmann's trial in Jerusalem for war crimes. Part of what it described was the normalization of human wickedness. That is what is going on with the gun debate. People don't want to accept that these shootings are done not by madmen or terrorists but by ordinary Americans, the situation becomes much more frightening as does the ability of just about everyone to get a gun. It is much easier to say "That is not someone like me. That person is a terrorist who hates America or a person with deep mental health issues." It also reminds me of something my father used to quote out of an old comic strip called "Pogo", "We have met the enemy and he is us." If you look around you in the US, a large percentage of those people you see may well be gun owners. How do we know if they have a conscience and empathy or if they are sociopaths? We don't. We have no idea what any of them are capable of doing. Many people get along well in society, are accomplished professionally, have friends and family and are capable of pure evil. There is no test or gene for that. So, it is not just those with a history of violent crime, domestic abuse, or mental health issues that are the threat.

As well, as I touched on above, the societal acceptance of guns has to be broken in the US. If it could be done for smoking, it can be done for this. It will not be easy, but the security people think they have with guns (unless they live in rural or wilderness areas where they truly need them for safety) is a false one. If some of the concertgoers in Las Vegas had been armed and started shooting (as is often suggested by gun proponents) they would have killed and injured more innocent people. Guns should not be some kind of security blanket for Americans. The rest of us in the developed world live happy and safer lives without them.

Edit: There is something I have to add. American society has become divided and remains so. People get their news from sources that confirm their biases. The immunity to false information and propaganda have broken down and there is a flood of bogus information. Trump has delegitimized any fact checking and criticism by labeling reliable news sources as fake news. He has also unleashed a torrent of hatefulness out in the open, things that people would have been embarrassed to say outside of their homes that are racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic and more are now said without shame. That David Duke should thank Trump for his support for his remarks on Charlottesville says it all. This is a long way of saying that the current atmosphere is another way that evil has become an accepted everyday thing.

Topic Las Vegas shooting: Dozens killed in Mandalay Bay attack
Posted 08 Oct 2017 07:48

It is easy to say that the shooter was insane and that there should be more stringent vetting that would not allow those with mental health issues to buy guns. But the shooter had no history of mental health issues. Saying so is a dodge of the real problem. He was an evil man. You cannot legislate or regulate against that. And the truth is that an Obama era measure that made it more difficult for those with mental health problems to get guns was quashed this year.

Speaker Ryan is disingenuous on this issue given that the proposals for replacing Obamacare cut funding for community and medical supports for people with mental health needs. This is an attempt to divert attention from the main issue: guns. The gun death rate of the US is ten times that of other developed democracies: 30,000 annually vs. almost zero in Japan. The rate is almost 41 times higher than in the UK. The US has 15 times as many guns as the UK and if you look at state statistics those states with more gun ownership have higher rates of gun deaths. The CDC has been forbidden by law from doing any research related to guns and public health. This law was pushed by the NRA to disallow any research that might advocate any measure of gun control.

Banning the stock is a tiny step. Disallowing gun ownership for those with backgrounds of domestic violence and substance abuse as well as mental health issues. There must be universal background checks no matter how or where guns are purchased. Weapons of war should be banned. The stubborn inaction in the face of continuing mass shootings is irrational. If the shooter had been a Muslim this would have been the worst terrorist attack since 9/11 and one can only imagine what Trump would do about it. When the perpetrator is a foreigner, the immediate reaction is what can be done to that country to punish them. When it is an American, the reaction is a willful blindness and nothing is done.

It is, we are told, a cultural phenomenon. Americans love guns. Forty-five states allow you to openly carry a handgun. Forty-two states allow you to carry a concealed weapon after obtaining a licence to do so. The remaining eight allow you to carry a concealed weapon with no particular licence. There has to be a cultural change that will be difficult to achieve. Americans have to be convinced that you can live your life without owning an arsenal. As the world is changing and some people feel powerless against that change, guns may make them feel powerful again. That connection has to be broken.

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 07 Oct 2017 17:46

Why should employers have to cover birthcontrol pills? I mean it's not a symptom or a pre existing condition. It's just birth control isn't that a more personal thing and not something that a boss needs to cover?

First, if you read through this thread carefully you would have seen that there are many reasons other than birth control that are medically sound for women taking birth control pills. This is no more a personal decision than taking chemotherapy is for cancer.

By your logic, men should not have ED drugs covered, because that is a personal thing too. However, men in power will never make a decision like that. Their pompous religiosity is a transparent move to exert power over women, women who should be making their own healthcare decisions and have them supported in their insurance.

You should also know that pre-existing conditions are usually not covered in US healthcare plans, so why did you mention that?

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 07 Oct 2017 15:48

feel free to ask me how much my medical bills amounted to over the past 18 months. thankfully, i do have good health insurance, but i do pay some healthy premiums. btw, if we ever lose the pre-existing conditions clause at this point, i'm toast.

It seems to be that the issue of pre-existing conditions is a way for insurance companies to cherry pick the healthiest people and maximize their profits. What kind of plan is unavailable if you ever have been ill or if you become ill and have to change insurers with a job change. The capitalist system at its best. I understand that insurance companies routinely deny coverage of procedures and medications without a physician being the decision maker. Another thing that makes no sense in the US system.

The very idea that healthcare should be run with profit as its primary goal is immoral. Everyone in the richest country in the world deserves healthcare as a right of citizenship, not a privilege.

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 07 Oct 2017 13:27

That's awfully close to the argument made by Blackstone, Locke and Jefferson about the right to keep and bear arms. If and when single payer comes to the USA, it will likely be decided on just such grounds.

But you may instead see a system where things related to life and health are covered while things outside of those groups are not.

There probably should be a for profit system in place to cover elective things that single payer does not.

Should taxpayer funded single payer health coverage pay for facial reconstruction after an accident? Probably yes. Should it pay for a cosmetic face lift? Probably not.

Should taxpayer funded single payer health coverage pay for abortions? Get ready! There's going to be a heap of push back on that no matter which way it goes.

BTW, I consider the phrase "single payer" to be a bit of a smoke screen at best. The truth is that the government won't pay for any health care, The taxpayers will in fact pay for all of it.

Of course we pay for our healthcare out of our taxes in Canada, but much, much less on a per capita basis than we would pay for similar insurance in the US. Everyone is covered for medically necessary care. Face lifts and breast augmentations, etc. are not. So you are right about that. Abortions are covered.

No one goes bankrupt because of medical bills. After 65 prescription medications are covered as well. I have extra coverage for dental, eye exams, prescription drugs, and a private hospital room. It also covers a certain amount of physio, massage, and other services so long as they are prescribed by a doctor.

By the way, the horror stories about long waits in Canada that are used as an argument against single payer in the US are grossly exaggerated. As well, we rank much higher than the US on measures like infant mortality rates despite being outspent. Of course ours is not a for profit system.

Topic Employers now will be able to deny contraception coverage for employees
Posted 07 Oct 2017 11:10

The obvious answer here is comprehensive healthcare through a single-payer system.

Everyone is covered for everything in exactly the same way.

And, yes, I'm fine with my taxes covering something like this. Viagra. Birth Control. Chemo. Hospice care. Eye Health. Dental.

If you have the right to life, you have a right to health. Your income shouldn't determine how much/how good your care is. Eyesight shouldn't be something you pay extra for. It's ridiculous that my insurance company, and not my doctor, set the set the standards for when I can get an insulin pump or continuous glucose monitoring. Now I have to jump through my employer's religious hoops as well?

Health care shouldn't be a for-profit system. It's gruesome.

Exactly. Healthcare is a right of citizenship in every western democratic country except the US, and not a for profit industry as in the US. The scores of people who were injured in Las Vegas may well be in debt for years or bankrupted if they do not have adequate coverage for their hospital stays. What does that say about the US system?