3.17.2015

Apartheid Forever: Netanyahu

Apartheid Forever: Israel's Netanyahu rules out Palestinian Citizenship Rights | Informed Comment:

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, under extreme pressure over the real possibility that he will lose the March 17 elections, has made a powerful appeal to his far right wing constituency by openly admitting that he will never allow a Palestinian state and that he intends to flood Israeli squatters into East Jerusalem and its environs to make sure this Occupied territory never returns to the Palestinians.
(emphasis by TNB)
This should end the US support of all-things-Israel. Our policy and promises to the Palestinian people (and the world) has been for a two-state system. Netanyahu has never wanted that and has openly trashed our attempts to help but now he's openly against the plan. Thirty years of peace work shot to hell.

We should pull all support of Israel immediately.

3.15.2015

Evan Bayh

Evan Bayh

  • American Royalty.
  • Title: Duke of Indiana, (inherited) Son of Birch
  • Wife: Susan. Princess of Anthem and other corporate boards.
  • Born: Indiana
  • Home: Never really Indiana.
  • Kids: A couple. Never really from Indiana though at least one will probably return someday to take their fathers title. Private schooled. Again, not in Indiana but with the other royalty in the DC area..
  • Accomplishments: Few. Mainly building a fortune by taking round-a-bout payments from large corporations through his wife's many Board of directors seats. Pretending to represent the people of Indiana.
  • Poster child for most of what is wrong in the US today.

Weekend Reading: Ezra Klein on Evan Bayh (Brad DeLong's Grasping Reality...):

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3.02.2015

Lawyers, Guns and Money on Dershowitz

There Is No Constitutional Obligation to Listen to Speeches - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money:
"So one has a solemn obligation to listen to a foreign leader’s views unless Alan Dershowitz finds them particularly objectionable. This is, in its own way, a kind of “principle,” but it has nothing to do with free speech or checks and balances or the separation of powers."

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2.27.2015

Shale Boom Town Hurting

Texas shale boom town ‘hurting bad’ in oil slump - FT.com:

Well, maybe we can bomb-the-hell out of some oil producing country to get the price going in the right direction. I guess we could also send troops, arm some rebels, maybe call some loans to pressure on their economies. I'm sure something will happen to make that oil price go up a little.

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Security / Privacy

Schneier on Security: Everyone Wants You To Have Security, But Not from Them:
"We'll never solve these security problems as long as we're our own worst enemy. That's why I believe that any long-term security solution will not only be technological, but political as well. We need laws that will protect our privacy from those who obey the laws, and to punish those who break the laws. We need laws that require those entrusted with our data to protect our data. Yes, we need better security technologies, but we also need laws mandating the use of those technologies."

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2.25.2015

Political Irony › Agressive Obama?

From the always good: Political Irony › Agressive Obama?:
Speaking of ISIS, according to Congressman Ted Poe (R-TX), the Obama administration is “more aggressive toward Americans, Republicans, conservatives, Christians” than toward ISIS.

First, how many bombing runs has Obama made against ISIS? Around a thousand or so?

How many bombing runs has Obama made against Republicans, conservatives, or Christians?

Second, how many terrorist attacks have been committed by right-wing extremists? Not counting anything prior to the 2001 September 11 attacks (which means we leaving out things like the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, which killed 168 people and injured more than 680 others), right-wing extremists have committed at least eight lethal terrorist attacks in the US.

How many terrorist attacks has ISIS carried out in the US?

Third, how aggressive was the US government against left-wing groups during the anti-war and civil rights movements? Way more than anything that has ever been done against right-wing groups in this country.

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2.23.2015

We'll all be Independent Contractors

Robert Reich (Why We're All Becoming Independent Contractors):

GM is worth around $60 billion, and has over 200,000 employees. Its front-line workers earn from $19 to $28.50 an hour, with benefits.

Uber is estimated to be worth some $40 billion, and has 850 employees. Uber also has over 163,000 drivers (as of December – the number is expected to double by June), who average $17 an hour in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., and $23 an hour in San Francisco and New York.

But Uber doesn’t count these drivers as employees. Uber says they’re “independent contractors.”

What difference does it make?

For one thing, GM workers don’t have to pay for the machines they use. But Uber drivers pay for their cars – not just buying them but also their maintenance, insurance, gas, oil changes, tires, and cleaning. Subtract these costs and Uber drivers’ hourly pay drops considerably.

For another, GM’s employees get all the nation’s labor protections.

These include Social Security, a 40-hour workweek with time-and-a-half for overtime, worker health and safety, worker’s compensation if  injured on the job, family and medical leave, minimum wage, pension protection, unemployment insurance, protection against racial or gender discrimination, and the right to bargain collectively.

Not to forget Obamacare’s mandate of employer-provided healthcare.

Uber workers don’t get any of these things. They’re outside the labor laws.

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2.21.2015

Israel vs U.S.

Netanyahu claims to know 'details' of Iran deal -- and State Dep't mocks him:

NIAC ad in NYT


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Decriminalize Drugs.

Deputy at PBSO: Planting Evidence, Lying, Part of the Game:

Quote from a Cop.....
"Mouthy drivers, street lawyers, assholes and just anyone else trying to make my job difficult. Under my floor mat, I keep a small plastic dime baggie with Cocaine in residue. Since it’s just residue, if it is ever found during a search of my car like during an inspection, it’s easy enough to explain. It must have stuck to my foot while walking through San Castle. Anyways, no one’s going to question an empty baggie. The residue is the key because you can fully charge some asshole with possession of cocaine, heroin, or whatever just with the residue. How to get it done? “I asked Mr. DOE for his identification. And he pulled out his wallet, I observed a small plastic baggie fall out of his pocket…” You get the idea. easy, right? Best part is, those baggies can be found lots of places so you can always be ready. Don’t forget to wipe the baggie on the persons skin after you arrest them because you want their DNA on the bag if they say you planted it or fight it in court.”

Decriminalize Drugs and this wouldn't happen. I guess you could also make cops play by the rules but I don't think there's much chance of that.


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2.19.2015

Demographic Changes

New Census Bureau data on young adults provide insights into demographic changes and forces of creative destruction » AEI | Carpe Diem Blog » AEIdeas:


Table 1. Characteristics of Young Adults Ages 18-34, 1980 vs. 2009-2013

Demographic Characteristics1980   2009-2013
Percent of total population29.6%23.3%
Foreign Born6.3%15.4%
Speak language other than English at home10.9%24.6%
Bachelor’s degree or more15.7%22.3%
Minority21.6%42.8%
Never Married41.5%65.9%
Live with a Parent22.9%30.3%
Live Alone7.5%7.1%
Military Veteran9.4%2.4%
Employed69.3%65.0%
Income Below Poverty Line14.1%19.7%
Median Income (2013 dollars)$35,845$33,883

Poorer and less Real-Umeracun.

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Wingers

NEGATIONISM | Gin and Tacos:
When we see news items like the Oklahoma Legislature banning AP History courses, we are horrified but we also think it is funny. It is not funny like a whoopee cushion or a pie to the face, of course. It is funny in the sense that right-wingers are too stupid to see the irony in their own actions or how much they resemble the groups and ideologies they identify as enemies. Evangelical Christian fundamentalists do not grasp how similar they are, for example, to Islamic extremists. And right-wing culture warriors and historical revisionists will never be able to see how closely their mission to create their own version of reality mimics Stalinist communism. In an effort to ward off the evils of things like socialism, these dipshits are reaching into the bag of tactics employed by the ultimate in socialist boogeymen.

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