Link roundup for 9/16/15

Thanks to Gov. Abbott (I guess), Obama failed to conquer Texas with his Jade Helm gambit

From the Atlantic, What College Football Means in the South

Best Simpsons reference of the day: Why Bernie Sanders’ radical economic ideas could be disastrous for America

Full text of Bernie Sanders’ speech at Liberty University

GOPLifer flashback: Peak Farmland

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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94 comments on “Link roundup for 9/16/15
  1. objv says:

    Hmmm. It is obvious that no one else watched the Republican debates. I was expecting a lively discussion on this blog. How disappointing.

    • Griffin says:

      It was like the first debate but even dumber what is there to say? None of them are going to be president at any rate, regardless of whether the Democratic nominee is Hillary or Bernie. The only thing that scares me is whether the GOP is about to fully embrace vaccine denial thanks to Trump and Carson (Christie is also an anti-vaxxer), it would do serious damage to this country if the GOP base went off that cliff.

      • 1mime says:

        I watched the Charlie Rose hour long interview of Stephen Breyer, US Supreme Court Justice, who was there to promote his new book, “The Court and the World: American Law and the New Global Realities”. The subject is so timely and Breyer a most interesting conversationalist. I felt I would learn a great deal more watching him speak for an hour than any of the Republicans for ten minutes. Good call on my part, evidently.

  2. 1mime says:

    Chris, I ordered two copies of the book you linked, “What-college-football-means-in-the-south”, one for my husband, and one for our son who shared many great football moments with his dad. Thanks for sharing this…I’ll have to wait my turn to read it!

    As an interesting aside, on NPR today, H.G. Bissinger, the author of the original book “Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream”, (published in 2000), was interviewed. He talked about how controversial the book was when it was released because he openly addressed the social (aka “racial”) issues prevalent in the sport of football in a town where the sport dominated everything. It was most interesting. I couldn’t help but think about how this book interfaces with the one just released by Stuart Stevens, “What College Football Means In the South”. Bissinger commented that at that point in time, year 2000, things were tough for the town. Football was the only thing that brought joy and excitement to everyone. In fact, he noted that the town built a football stadium that accommodated nineteen thousand spectators, which was a monumental testimony to how much people would sacrifice for a sport they loved even in the midst of a recession!

    Great interview and I’ll look forward to my turn with Stevens’ book.

  3. Anse says:

    For yet another example of how spectacularly f*ed up the American right wing has become, consider the latest poll that found that about 40% of Republican voters would support a military takeover of the US government. It is hard to be shocked by anything one sees happening in the Lunatic Movement anymore, but this one stunned me a great deal.

    Then you think about the Jade Helm hysteria, and you just know there is some overlap between those two groups. This takes the “Keep the Government Out of My Medicare” thing to a new level of crazy.

    I know people will roll their eyes at what I’m about to say, but I’m gonna say it anyway (or, type it): everybody blames our woes on politicians. But look at us. Who can effectively govern a country like this? We’re angry and we’re incoherent. We claim to have a long list of grievances but then we dispense with any notion of having actual ideas in favor of a platform that amounts to one long screaming fit by a child with a mental handicap. We’re not a country that would recognize good leadership even if we had it.

    • vikinghou says:

      I imagine the 40% comprises the group Chris has been talking about that is realizing it’s ability to win elections is fast disappearing due to demographics, socioeconomic factors, etc. Rather than accept the results of democratic elections, they’ll settle for a coup.

      • 1mime says:

        FYI, if you “dig” into the detail of the survey, you’ll find that only 224 Republicans responded to this particular question, which means that (40%) or, approximately 90 would support overturning the government. While still an alarming number (after all, only 16 men were involved in executing 9/11), it is not 40% of ALL Republicans. That said, not ALL Republicans were interviewed, so the number could be much larger. Still shocking and very disturbing.

        I have learned to scroll down to the bottom of surveys that interest me to see how many people were surveyed, how the percentages break out (race, gender, age, party affiliation), and standard deviation. You also get to look more specifically at the full text of the survey questions. It makes it much more interesting if you have time to explore more deeply.

      • Anse says:

        These are probably the same people who, after 9/11, told pollsters they’d be willing to give up some of their rights for extra security. I recall many pundits asking whether or not the Constitution’s guarantee of individual rights is a “suicide note”, and argued that perhaps some of them should be suspended. A few years later, the same nuts are howling about Obama’s supposed trampling of the Constitution.

  4. Griffin says:

    Jonah “LIBERAL FASCISM” Goldberg just said something hilariously insane and nobody’s noticing. In a piece where he attacked Trump he said the following:

    “And when I say “the people” I don’t mean “those people.” I mean my people. I mean many of you, Dear Readers. Normally, when conservatives talk about how the public can be wrong, we mean that public. You know the one. The “low-information voters” Rush Limbaugh is always talking about. The folks we laughed at when Jay Leno interviewed them on the street. But we don’t just mean the unwashed and the ill-informed. We sometimes mean Jews, blacks, college kids, Lena Dunham fans, and countless other partisan slices of the electorate who reflexively vote on strict party lines for emotional or irrational reasons. We laugh at liberals who let know-nothing celebrities do their thinking for them.”

    Read more at:

    Did Goldberg just call Jews and blacks “partisan slices” who are too dumb to use logic in their voting? White men are not “partisan slices”? He’s aware he’s essentially using a white nationalist filter while criticizing Trump right?

    • Turtles Run says:

      “The director, Jan Moberly, said she hired a “very socially and fiscally conservative” former social studies teacher who “watches Glenn Beck on a regular basis” to seek out any Islamic bias in CSCOPE.

      “I asked her to look for anything she would consider the least bit controversial,” Moberly told the board. That entailed reading through every textbook and cross referencing each religious reference with the CSCOPE guidelines.”

      WTF!!! Now the Irving ISD considers “watching Glenn Beck” a qualification for reviewing course studies. These people are horrible. Can you image the outrage if a group use “watches Rachel Maddow” as a job qualification. The hypocrisy and stupidity of these people is mind-numbing.

      • Crogged says:

        So how is evolution going to work here? The animal instinct, ‘fight or flight’, is now married to a mind capable of abstraction and learning what happened an hour ago (from an ‘unbiased’ observer) in any tiny corner of the globe from anywhere on the globe? I wonder what patterns of thought will be successful in living in this environment in thirty years, when the US will be BROKE AND PRINTING MONEY RIGHT AND LEFT TO GIVE TO ALL THOSE LAZY LIBERALS WORSHIPING BABYLON.

        I’m also sure many liberal teachers really appreciate the difference the “CSCOPE” makes in getting parents and children involved in education.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      this story stinks like crazy.

      1. First teacher says “good job, but don’t show the other teachers”. So this guys clearly knows it’s not a bomb, but he also knows his fellow teachers well enough to know thhat they’re going to automatically think “terrorist” when a brown kid names Ahmed is playing with anything with electronics. Considering this teacher ostensibly socializes with these teachers in the staff room and whatnot, the fact that he knew right away what they would think is troubling.

      2. This one is worse:The tracher that turned him in saw his clock in class took his “bomb” and had the cops pick him up in 6th period a few classes later. The disturbing thing is, this teacher CLEARLY also knew it wasn’t a bomb. If she thought it was ACTUALLY a bomb, she’s not confiscating it and having him picked up hours later. That’s what you do when kids are passing notes in class, not bomb. If she actually thinks it’s a bomb she’s pulling the fire alarm and evacuating the building, and SWAT is grabbing this kid 5 minutes later. NOT in f’n 6th period.

      So then what is this teachers deal? Was it just to “teach him a lesson”? How dare a brown kid named Ahmed play with electronics. Who does he think he is? A white kid named Johnny?

      3. The cops that bring the kid in knew it wasn’t a bomb. For them to say “this looks like a movie bomb” is ridiculous. THAT’S HOW YOU KNOW ITS NOT ONE. In real life, bomb look nothing like movvie bombs. In real life, bombs don’t have digital timers ominously counting down to boom time. Just like in the movies, grenades explode with a huge fireball. But in movies, grenades are much less sexy. a puff of smoke and a strong concussive effect (I threw my share in my early career as an infantry soldier in the Canadian Forces). Anything more then a rudimentary look over the device would show it wasn’t a bomb. And yet they still arrested the kid anyway. Again, clearly to send a message to any other brown kids who get any ideas about playing with electronics. The cop that said “that’s the one I thought it was” is also pretty distrubing.

      And to top it all off, the fact that they even still stuck the kid with a 3 day suspension when all was said and done and they knew it was just a clock is absurd.

      Texas looks just horrible here. I didn’t think they could look like more of a bunch of simple minded bumpkins affter the Jade Helm debacle, but they keep impressing me.

      • fiftyohm says:

        This story is just twisted. I don’t know what else to call it.

      • texan5142 says:

        It must be the heat, my thought process and logic skills greatly improved after I moved from Texas. Maybe it has to do with not breathing all the crap from the refineries in the Houston area. To be fair, there is some crazy shit that happens in Minnesota, but it nothing like the crazy shit I read about in Texas or Florida.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        yikes, sorry. My mistake for jumping the gun. I saw Irving, TX and immediately assumed we were discussing the “bomb” scare.

        Isn’t my face red 🙂

      • 1mime says:

        Don’t worry about it, Rob. Everything you said about the Ahmed incident was relevant. Truth is, there’s so much low-hanging fruit in Texas that it’s easy to get confused (-: Of course that means you have so many more opportunities to comment upon!

      • Doug says:

        “How dare a brown kid named Ahmed play with electronics. Who does he think he is? A white kid named Johnny?”

        Maybe he thought he was Andrew Nussbaum (jewish). Or Daniel McClaine Jr.(white) Or Tito Velez (hispanic). Or a hundred other kids of all races who have been arrested and/or suspended by paranoid, inflexible, zero-tolerance idiots. And they’re everywhere, not just Texas.

      • texan5142 says:

        Agreed Doug, it dose happen all over the country and it is stupid.

        “The principal, Kelly Schlaak, originally suspended Drescher for three days because she appeared truthful and was cooperative. District Superintendent Jeremy Johnson and the local school board saw things differently, informing the Drescher family she was being expelled for six weeks, the remainder of her junior year of school.”

        The principal used common sense, looks like Jeremy Johnson was getting an erection wielding his power.

      • 1mime says:

        “Zero tolerance” as applied in schools, should be outlawed. It came into being because administrative personnel couldn’t manage discipline on their campuses. It’s an abhorrent concept and unfairly penalizes victims, who, consistent with the policy are suspended (or expelled) along with the perpetrator of the attack. How can that ever make sense or be fair? What lesson are we teaching kids? To let bullies win? To fight back at risk to one’s safety? To keep silent?

        Nope, I never was for it and think it should be banned.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Texan – that situation is ridiculous, and I think the original 3 day suspension was fair, more as a remeinder to be more careful next time.

        That said, I wouldn’t say the two examples are exactly comparable. Even though it’s heavy handed, the fact remains that this student DID have a weapon in school, which was against the rules. Clocks are allowed in school.

        A comparable would be if this student had something that LOOKED like a pocket knife but upon closer inspection was actually just some lipstick. If that happened would this student have even been given a 3 day suspension?

        Maybe. Somehow I doubt it though.

      • texan5142 says:

        No comparison intended except for the ludicrous idea of zero tolerance that Doug is referring to. Apples and oranges otherwise.

  5. Stephen says:

    In regards to Peak Farmland article , I read Demographic Winter awhile back. Population decline will be a concern in the latter part of this century. Which as your article explained means immigrates are very good for a country as well as diversity and opportunity for women. As the book explain there is great cost to the mother and dad raising children which in fact benefits society overall but society overall does not share in that cost. It takes much money and time before little Susan or Jimmy become productive citizens. The incentive is for women not to have kids. But for society as a whole we need woman to do that. That is one reason cutting the safety net for women and their children is not smart. and most abortions are performed on women over 25 yrs old who already have kids. Economics is the reason most do that. This is one reason why I am against the ruthless cutting of social spending. And we are going to need that little Hispanic , Black and Asian child too. Children are going to be our true measure of worth in the coming world. When I make comments like this in more progressive sources like the New York Times those readers mainly go ballistic as this reality is at odds with a lot of their paradigm. We need pragmatic problem solvers in government. I sure hope the GOP can be reformed and provide it’s share of such leaders.

    • flypusher says:

      While I agree that society benefits from people having children and absolutely should lend some tangible support, we need to start backing away from the purpetual growth models. The planet has a limit as to how many people it can support. We need to figure out how to keep economies going without depending on always bringing in more people.

      • Stephen says:

        First off we really do not know how many people the planet can support. Imaginative people keep figuring out ways around what we thought were limits. And the population growth rate is in decline and soon as a whole the planet will face depopulation.

        Inflation is bad. But far worst is deflation. what you want is stable prices or slightly rising prices. This keeps the economy vibrant. Deflations are what comes from Depressions. Same for population growth. You want a stable or slowly rising population. To see why falling populations are bad just check in on towns, cities , states and countries that have that problem. Resources become more limited as population falls. This decreases wealth and power. Which is why this will not after all be China’s century. We are going to change from growth to negative growth eventually. We are I think the only developed country that still is replacing it’s self. And that only because for several generations after immigrating here people have a higher birthrate than the older population. Mexico’s population will eventually be in decline and people will lament where have all the Mexicans gone. This does not fit in with the paradigm of many progressives. But never the less it is a reality.

      • 1mime says:

        Stephen, all you said is true except: women should not have more children than they can care for and afford. Period. To do so perpetuates the cycle of poverty and welfare assistance. Just as man is figuring out how to grow crops more efficiently on less land, we will also invent or figure out other ways to get jobs done with fewer people. The bigger question is how to care for the remaining people as they age, and age they will.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Stephan, where’s the inclusion of immigration in this assumption?

        The developed countries that “aren’t replacing themselves” such as Canada, western Europe, scandanavia etc are all among the most desirable places to live and as such have their pick of the most desirable immigrants.

        If depopulation eventually becomes a serious threat to the growth and vibrancy of these countries, why would we assume that these countries will just lay down and accept their fate instead of open up their borders to replenish from without?

        These countries will still have their pick of the global litter and demand to enter will always be sufficient to meet these countries needs.

      • texan5142 says:

        Wow you dudes are way over my head, thank you, my knowledge of the world around me has multiplied. Chris I have learned much from your blog. To accept knowledge is all I can do to make myself a active member of society, well done.

      • 1mime says:

        TX, I always enjoy your posts and learn from them. Each of us, in our own way, add to the blog. The sum of our parts make for a very nice “whole”.

    • Stephen says:

      @ 1mime, Which is why we need to make it easier to afford children. And honor women who choose to have children. We need to make it easier for women to have both kids and careers. Men need to step up to the plate and assume their fair share of the domestic burden not leaving it all on their partner.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Stephan – paid maternity leave and expanded vacation are an excellent way to achieve those ends through policy

      • 1mime says:

        Rob, it would also help if women were paid the same rate for doing the same job (-: and, if they were given more opportunity for major positions.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Mime, no doubt. I have a feeling (and I believe I read a study some time back which supports this) that at least some of the gap is due to the unfortunate fact of biology. Women who choose to have kids remove themselves from the rat race for extended periods of time. If a woman has 3 kids, what would that mean in terms of time missed? Probably at least 1-2 years, if not more. I would posit that if you had a large group of men take several years off of their career, that group would also have a wage gap between them and the group of men who never took such time off. Not only would the missed income contribute, but also that woman would likely not be as likely to be promoted over the course of her career. Out of sight, out of mind kind of thing.

        Not to say the wage gap isn’t a problem, it is. But maybe at least SOME of it isn’t due to discrimination per se, but the unfortunate biological fact that men CAN have children and not miss a day of work (if they choose) while that option is not available to women. So I think any solution needs to come at it from that aspect too. I think generous paid maternity leave could somewhat compensate women over the course of their career for taking large chunks of time to have kids. Perhaps their employer must continue to pay her salary and the federal government even matches it, providing almost like a bonus for having a kid. Because as has been mentioned here, society as a whole benefits when women have kids, especially when that woman is middle class or higher (I know that sounds cold and horrible, but it’s an undeniable fact) and we need to incentivize that.

      • 1mime says:

        The problem starts when women are “first hired” with their male counterparts at a different wage scale for the same job and is perpetuated in their careers with disparate promotions and wage increases. Logically, performance should drive promotion and wage increases assuming you start at the same place for the same job, regardless of gender or race. I support that. But, there is no justification for a lower starting pay for women with same skills and same job. Paid maternity leave should be standard as it is in every other major (and many third world) countries. Again, it’s a bottom line issue for most American companies who fail to see their employees as valuable assets and contributors to the company’s success.

        As for more middle and upper class women needed for the “American birthmobile”, I assume you are thinking of increasing caucasian birth numbers, where presumably households have higher educational attainment and income stability. When a nation starts encouraging birth for reasons like this, or for labor pool (China birth cap changes), we are moving into a real murky area. There is really no legitimate argument other than one based upon women’s choice (as to when and how many). The old capitalism “supply and demand” theory….should kick in if women feel they can afford more children. Otherwise, they fall into the trap of having children they can’t afford and the risk of falling into the welfare pool, which produces yet another round of criticism….Why not simply let women decide, give them affordable, accessible contraception and supportive work environments? Most women would get it right.

        Women are not cattle; they are human beings who have great intellectual ability as well as the unique ability to bear children. As such, if women want to work or need to work, the decision about having children should be theirs.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Mime, with regards to the comment of middle/upper class, it wasn’t in any way meant to imply we need to raise the number of white kids (although that is likely to be the practical result). I was just thinking that the best indicator for success of a child is the education/income level of their parents, and as such, children born to middle/upper class children are most likely to be the most “valuable” to a society.

        And please don’t misunderstand, I’m speaking strictly from an economic standpoint, i.e. the more “valuable” children are those that grow up to have high paying jobs and thus pay the most money in income/consumption taxes.

        Not saying any child is anymore valuable in a human sense then any other. We all know that is not true. I think that career working women though are more likely to put off having kids until later and thus may have less then they’d like, or even none at all. That would be unfortunate both from the personal perspective of the woman in question and the wider perspective of society in general. And so I think it would be sound policy to remove (or at least minimize) the “career” aspect out of the child making decision process altogether as much as possible. I think it is sound policy that, as much as possible, the decision about when/if to have a child should be free of outside input as much as possible. i.e. no woman should have to choose between her career she loves and having a child she wants.

      • 1mime says:

        I got that, Rob, but promoting birth among specific demographics is a dangerous path to go down…Children add so much to a family, but the issue remains that women should be the “deciders” for reasons I’ve already expressed. I agree that careers can delay childbearing decisions which can reduce the number of children and pose safety issues for an older mother. If our society offered the kind of support that most other industrialized countries practice, it wouldn’t have to be an “either or”. I know we agree upon that. The constant criticism from conservatives on the issue of contraception is antithetical to encouraging women to have children.

        We’re good (-;

  6. Griffin says:

    “Add them all up, as The Wall Street Journal has, and it comes out to at least $18 trillion in new spending over a decade”

    This ones already been debunked and is quickly becoming a PRATT, albeit a (cynically) effective one.

    “If I were to create a list of questions to ask potential managers of my money, one of them would be: “Do you read the WSJ OpEds?” If the answer were yes, I would not walk but run in the opposite direction.” – Barry Ritholtz

  7. 1mime says:

    Re: Peak Farmland. You note: “A declining population confronts us with some surprising policy challenges. Countries that adapt most successfully to this shift will probably be ones that: (meet six criteria…) In reading your list, I immediately thought of Germany. This country seems to meet all six criteria, whether this is part of a master plan or not. As other countries become more attractive due to their economic and social stability, might the U.S. begin to lose its lure as the land of opportunity?

    I have read that China is relaxing its population cap for children in recognition of their need for labor. (such an altruistic decision) I emphatically agree with you observation that economic and political rights for women dramatically impact birth rates. As it should. Who better to make the decision about having more children than the ones who bear them? One of the things I have never understood is the Republican abhorrence for contraception. IMHO, this totally reinforces the concept of free enterprise and capitalism. There is something else at play here and my guess would be that it is rooted in the southern evangelical concept where women are vessels for procreation (as opposed to recreation (-: ) Hogwash!

    The impact of a lower birth rate and long-term support for the elderly is complicated. The realistic capability of low income earners to adequately and independently fund their own retirement is a problem that continues to grow. Erosion of income due to inflation and management-centered profit distribution is leaving this sector behind. Is the basic income concept a viable solution or merely a hedge? Couple this issue with longer life expectancy and you have a problem that deserves more pragmatic discussion than political mumbo jumbo talk. It will affect all of us in one way or another.

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      I heard, when Germany first agreed to accept lots o’ refugees, their decision was influenced by the hundreds of apprenticeship positions that are currently unfilled because they don’t have enough working age population.

      While it seems their open-border policy has changed, I still find that interesting.

      • 1mime says:

        And, their decision was accompanied by a $3.2 T financial commitment, as I recall. Someone over there is doing some deep, long-term thinking. Good. for. them. Meanwhile, we can’t build a wall high enough or long enough to keep people out or in. Perversely humorous.

      • 1mime says:

        Correction, Germany is setting aside six billion euros for refugee resettlement…not 3.2 T as I stated. Still a substantial sum for 800,000 refugees, but hardly in the 3+ Trillion range I cited.

    • 1mime says:

      When the WSJ was purchased by the Murdoch empire, I worried whether it’s objective quality reporting would suffer. It has. Fortunately, there are other journals that are not afraid to take the Journal on and rebut stories which conveniently reinforces Murdoch’s views. If one looks at what other successful countries in the world are doing, they are already implementing most of the ideas in Sander’s plan. The man is putting his proposals out in plain sight for all to read and there is much to like.

    • Crogged says:

      The ‘newspaper’ part of the WSJ is still top class journalism-the editorial pages, not so much. The original story in the WSJ does point out that the spending is ‘changed’ from out of your pocket via expenses to taxes (well, a further search on the WSJ states it is noted in the original story). The problem isn’t ‘bias’, but readers who stop reading (and thinking) after 18 TRILLION or ‘just raise taxes on rich people’………..

      • 1mime says:

        Not being a WSJ subscriber anymore, I couldn’t read but the first paragraph so thanks for filling in the blanks. Bernie is the only candidate out there who is broaching all the “tough” issues and offering specific proposals. As for designated spending sources, that’s always a guessing game. It’s the ideas that merit closer examination, particularly since the most successful nations in the world are already offering these benefits to their citizens….which gives us a comparison, if nothing else. It’s not so out there – they are actually working ideas.

        I salute Bernie Sanders for walking the walk alone. He’s one brave fellow and I like his can do attitude and his passion.

  8. flypusher says:

    Posted this in the old thread before I saw the new one:

    flypusher says:
    September 16, 2015 at 10:34 am
    Hey Cruz, Hey Huckabee, since you are all about fighting for religious liberty, here’s a cause to fight for:

    I have the same amount of sympathy for this person as I do for Kim Davis, I.e. none. You knew what the job required when you accepted it.

    • 1mime says:

      Absolutely, totally agree.

    • 1mime says:

      I am reminded of the Hasidic Jew who held up a flight in order to force a seating change. He knew when he bought his ticket that you couldn’t guarantee who your seat companion would be. They should have escorted him off the plane. Tired of placating bullies like this!

      • objv says:

        Mime, crogged, Texan and 50, I’m trying my best to understand your outrage.

        As far as the Hasidic Jew is concerned, I don’t quite get why you are reacting so hysterically.

        People change their seats for all kinds of reasons and most people do their best to accommodate them. Some of the reasons are:

        -They want to sit with spouses or other family members
        -They want to sit with friends
        -They want to get away from a crying baby or active toddler.
        -They have an injury or medical condition where they are more comfortable in an aisle or handicapped seat.
        -The corpulent person sitting next to them is overflowing into the adjoining seat like lava from a volcano and they can barely breathe.

        Once my kids were sitting together (well behaved and old enough to sit alone – with my husband and me in the row behind them). An older woman took one look at them and asked to have her seat next to them changed immediately.

        On one flight, the guy to my left pulled off his shoes and the smell of his socks become overpowering. I changed my seat as soon as possible to get away from Mr. Stinky Feet. 🙂

        So, on your next flight, realize that you will have to be tolerant of a vast range of people and just “chill” – and be sure to order that drink from the non-Muslim flight attendant. 🙂

      • 1mime says:

        When a passenger “demands” not requests, that another passenger “move” to accommodate his personal beliefs, that is unreasonable. When the Jewish man’s demand kept an entire flight with hundreds of passengers from taking off, that is not only unreasonable, it could result in other passengers missing connecting flights and a runway jam. If the Hasidic Jewish man had simply requested the change, no one offered, and he sat in his assigned seat, no harm would be done. Frankly, Ob, I not only do not agree with your description of me being “hysterical”, I found the rest of your remarks condescending.

      • Crogged says:

        Where’s Fitty when you need him-outlaw stinky socks!
        If by ‘outrage’ you mean ‘furious eye rolling’ I’m in.
        I’ve lost weight and mostly occupy only my seat, but I’m not any shorter.

        My only experience with Hasidic Jew is that I lived as a child in Meyerland (what a name). And I saw Zelig.

      • objv says:

        Crogged, you would be welcome to sit next to me (as long as you don’t have stinky feet). I can stand a bit of seat overflow since I’m small (5′ 2 1/2″) and slender. Most problems occur when two big people try to squish into seats next to each other. 🙂

        I’ve noticed that the worst disagreements on flights are usually over leg room. Again, that is not a problem for me. I don’t mind keeping my seatback up if there is someone tall sitting behind me, however some people feel that they are entitled to bang their seatbacks on to the knees of another passenger and keep the seat that way for most of the trip. Ouch!

      • objv says:

        Mime, I am sorry if you found my comment condescending. Whether you agree or not, people should not be discriminated against because of their religion. I believe the “bullies” are the ones who would try to make the Hasidic Jew violate his beliefs.

      • 1mime says:

        So, you’re going to “double-down” from being condescending to inferring that I am a bully. We flatly disagree on this issue. This is the problem I have with the religious right. Your beliefs are more important than anyone else’s. You are free to do whatever you believe until it intrudes into my space. Then we’ve got a problem.

      • objv says:

        No, Mime, I do not believe that my rights are more important than anyone else’s rights. I do believe that a person should not be subjected to discrimination because of their gender, race or religion – that includes the Muslim flight attendant and the Hasidic Jew.

      • fiftyohm says:

        Crogged – I was on vacation in Quebec. (With immaculately fresh socks!)

    • objv says:

      fly, personally, I believe that there should have been some kind of accommodation made for the Muslim woman. She converted to Islam after she had been working awhile. To me, this is a different situation than someone who knows full well what their job entails going in.

      Accommodations are often made for situations other than religion. I noticed that a few of the cashiers at Sam’s club had to get someone else to handle alcohol sales. In this case it was probably due to the cashier’s age since they looked under 21. If accommodations can be made for age surely, accommodation can be made for religious belier.

      • fiftyohm says:

        Absolutely not. Age is involuntary. So is sex, disability, and all the rest. Religion is voluntary. Look at it as a self-imposed defect. It deserves no “accommodation” what so ever.

      • objv says:

        50, you only get 1/2 point for that one. Being born Jewish is not voluntary.

      • fiftyohm says:

        Tutt – Your use of the term “Jewish” here refers to an ethnicity, and not a religion. Ethnicity is not a choice.

        Judaism is a religion and is therefore a choice. So, do I get 100% now?

      • 1mime says:

        So, tell me, Fifty, given your clear understanding between Jewish ethnicity and religion, would you want your wife to be forced to give up her seat on a plane to a Hasidic Jew?

      • fiftyohm says:

        Why, of course not, and I’d be damned if I’d let that happen. What a strange question! What am I missing here, mime?

      • 1mime says:

        In a prior post, I indicated my disagreement with people using religion to pressure others to achieve their end goal. A fairly recent one involvled a Hasidic Jew who boarded a flight and refused to be seated in his assigned seat as he would have been seated next to a woman who was not his wife, which is forbidden in his religion. He demanded that She move! The flight was delayed for about fifteen minutes while he stood until another passenger offered to give up their seat so he would be seated next to a man and the plane could depart. I cannot get that scene out of my craw and when the subject came up between you and Tutta, it clicked with me.

        Further reading revealed that Hasidic Jews are causing problems like this on subways, buses and trains over the same issue. Respect for religion cuts two ways. It was the arrogance of this man using his religion to bully an innocent person and delay an entire flight that royally pissed me off. I didn’t know if you were aware of this recurrent problem up north and posed a hypothetical for you to get your reaction. When it becomes personal, it is personal. The man should have been escorted off the plane.

      • fiftyohm says:

        I see. As you are probably aware, I have no respect whatever for religion.

        H. L. Mencken said it best: “I’ll respect the other man’s religion about like I respect his opinion that his children are smart, and his wife beautiful.”

        Yes, he should have been escorted off the plane. On the tarmac.

      • 1mime says:

        I must say, however, that should such a situation ever arise for Mrs. Ohm, I ‘ll bet she would handle it quite easily. She wouldn’t even ask for help (-:

      • fiftyohm says:

        I suspect here, and once again, you are quite correct.

    • Crogged says:

      I’m bloody sick of trying to think of how to ‘accomodate’ all these people and what they ‘believe’. It’s the believers who need to accomodate and pray for forgiveness or kill a helpless animal or rub a crystal, I thought they had everything figured out anyway. Public religion is under attack because of the religion, not because of the unbelievers.

      • 1mime says:

        Agree, the woman knew what her “existing” job responsibilities were when she made her conversion. The job requirements haven’t changed, she changed. She should get another job, as should Kim Davis, while we’re on the subject of people who think the world revolves around them.

      • texan5142 says:

        We have had this problem in Minnesota and no there should be no accommodations. The employer is caught in a catch 22, if you don’t hire them because their religion interferes with your business, you get sued for religious discrimination. If you do hire them, you get sued for not making “special” accommodations for their religion. Personally I think making an employer bend over backwards for ones personal religious views is wrong. Interesting read on the subject.

      • Crogged says:

        I really mean the other workers try to serve drinks while she shines their shoes. More than likely it was another religious nut who thinks she ‘believes’ something wrong who made a complaint and they truly deserve to be stuck with each other in a metal tube thousands of feet in the air.

      • Crogged says:

        My real ‘belief’ is that some of the prescriptions the author has provided as way forward for our society, such as guaranteed minimum income, empower the individual to live a life as the individual believes, and if you believe that is communism or immoral, you can return the check, leave your home and eat the lilies of the field.

  9. Turtles Run says:

    Here is one. In Irving, Texas a 14 year old boy made a clock to show his engineering teacher. The clock starts beeping in English class. The teacher takes the device away and latter in the day the student is handcuffed by five police officers.

    The police and the teacher have accused him of making a bomb. During questioning the boy asks for his parents and the police tell him no.

    There are so many things wrong with this story.

    1. If the police and school thought this clock was a real threat then why wasn’t the school evacuated.

    2. Why did the police refuse to contact his parents, that is unconstitutional.

    Did I also mention this boy is from the Sudan and named Ahmed Mohamed.

    • texan5142 says:

      The police jumped the shark big time, and they still might charge him? What a total crock of shit. What happened to the Texas of my youth, first it was Jade Helm, and now this. Now it is a state where most of the population are armed and stupid. My God what is in the water down there?

      • flypusher says:

        Fox News in in the water (or the air). Some of my kinfolk are definitely freaked out over all the scary Mooslims.

      • 1mime says:

        It gets worse. The Houston Chronicle reported yesterday that “the Houston Zoo has been forced to remove long-standing “no guns” signage from the city-owned property after a prominent gun rights attorney filed a complaint….the first test of a new state law that targets government entities illegally restricting concealed carry.” If these entities refuse to comply, they face a $10K daily fine, depending upon the number of violations.

        Really? The Houston Zoo as a test case? From the law: “Texas law lists certain places where concealed handguns are not allowed to be carried. These include bars (a business which derives 51% or more of its income from the sale of alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption), sporting events, jails, hospitals, nursing homes, amusement parks, churches, synagogues, and other established places of religious worship.”

        Maybe one of the gun rights legal eagles here can tell me if concealed weapons are permitted in courts and the legislature. If not, why not? Why go after locales that serve families? Come on.

    • flypusher says:

      If the kid was really trying to pass his project off as a bomb, I doubt he would have willingly shown it to 2 teachers.

      Looks like some miscommunication with a side of CYA. Does the school have a clear policy of what students are/are not allowed to bring to school and if so, how was it communicated to the students? Weapons & drugs are obvious noes, but electronic things are more complicated.

      • Turtles Run says:

        From the comments section of Crooks & Liars

        “Police also confiscated what appeared to them to be some sort of terrorist manual, one that was filled with mysterious unfamiliar symbols with the word ‘Al Gebra’ on the cover.”

      • flypusher says:

        “…mysterious unfamiliar symbols with the word ‘Al Gebra’ on the cover.”

        I so love educated snark!! I wonder if any of those admins know where algebra originated.

      • Turtles Run says:

        The better question is “would they believe where algebra originated.”

        For some good news that Islamofascist known as President Obama has invited the young man to the White House for a visit.

    • texan5142 says:

      “lilyannerose • an hour ago
      Too much, we live in a society that allows folks to walk around with military grade weapons and we’re supposed to be fine with that, however, let a not white Muslim child build a clock and there are no bounds to fear.”

      I had to post this, sums it up nicely.

    • 1mime says:

      The American Muslim community has demonstrated great class in handling abusive treatment and comments by bigoted American people. I am sure the family of this young innocent boy and their Muslim friends will handle this experience with the same gentle manner they’ve exhibited countless times. Shame on the school district and law enforcement for such poor judgement. Someone should be fired. I hope young Ahmed will be able to continue his inventive ways without the interference of such xenophobic adults, and bully for Pres. Obama for inviting Ahmed to the White House. It will not erase the bad experience, but it does show Ahmed and his Muslim family and community that not all Americans are stupid or prejudiced.

    • Crogged says:

      After watching last nights debate, I completely understand how this happened. Everything is terrible, we are so weak (TINY Navy), ISIS ISIS ISIS. Leadership, peace through strength, the awesome threat of an organization that provides health services to women, productivity in Colorado threatened by all those pot smokers……….it was hard enough to watch these things in 2012. Is it possible that things could be better now than they were in 2008? Of course, but I don’t think doubling down on what we did from 2000 through 2007 is an answer most people will choose.

      • 1mime says:

        With eleven people on stage, all with egos the size of a Mac truck, how could anyone expect a substantive debate? Lots of bombast…and, as Crogged stated, lots of “same old, same old”. For a party which has railed against the Democrats ineptitude for years, Republicans are sticking to the GOP script. They make Bernie Sanders look absolutely like the only sane, thinking person in the race, as crazy as that sounds to many who post here. At least he is fighting to address substantive issues that affect the majority of American people, not a donor pak, and he definitely is NOT afraid of his own shadow nor hewing to party pablum.

        Did I really hear Marco Rubio state that earth was not a planet? Surely I am mistaken….Someone help me out here.

    • 1mime says:

      You know what’s funny about this? The police decided they aren’t going to “charge” Ahmed with a crime!!!!! What they all need to be thinking about is if Ahmed’s family is going to charge them! Of course, this gentle family will take no such action but it is an ugly blot on all of the principles involved that this was handled so poorly. The positive outpouring from the rest of the sane world to this young man and his family is somewhat compensatory; however, it will not erase what must have been a frightening experience for an innocent 14 year old boy who wanted to share something special he had created with his teachers.

  10. 1mime says:

    Actually, I support a dedicated value-added tax to retire the existing federal deficit with a prescribed deadline. The idea has been floated by others and possibly it is time to have a serious discussion as to its merits.

    • moslerfan says:

      Mime, Mime, please! The public debt originates when the Federal Government spends more than it taxes. It can only be retired by the Federal Government taxing more than it spends. Taxes come out of private sector savings; there is no other possible source. When the Government removes $17 or $18T from private savings what are we going to use for money? Chickens? What will this do to the economy?

      An economy that is expanding due to population growth and rising productivity needs a commensurately increasing money supply to continue operating efficiently. Under our current monetary system, the only way for the private sector’s dollar savings to permanently increase is for the Federal Government to spend more into the private economy than it takes out in taxes.

      If you think about this for a while, you will reach the following conclusions: the Federal Government’s public debt and the private sector’s dollar supply are exactly the same thing. We will never pay off the debt and in fact generally need a moderate Federal deficit on an ongoing basis to support a healthy economy.

      • 1mime says:

        We don’t disagree, Mosler, on the folly of the balanced budget concept. We may disagree on the need to retire some of the federal deficit with a vat tax, but that’s ok. It doesn’t make me right, or you wrong. If you look at Paul Ryan’s plan to eliminate the federal deficit in ten years through budget cuts, that is going to go after private sector’s dollars as well…just not “everyone’s” dollars.

      • 1mime says:

        Crogged, as a follow up to your comment, how do we get to a “moderate” federal deficit? Do you advocate cutting your way to it (a la Paul Ryan) or have another way of getting this problem under control without savaging America’s economy? As I appreciate the situation, like a credit card balance that continues to be carried forward, the interest plus the base debt will continue to grow. What would you recommend to deal with this very real problem?

      • 1mime says:

        Mosler, I mistakenly directed my follow up question on managing our federal deficit to Crogged. Please see my question below and respond if you care to.

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