Archive for April, 2009

The Will of the People

Monday, April 20th, 2009

From a Seattle Times editorial a few days ago:

But government is also hurting, and wants to shift the hurt somewhere else. The latest idea is a 0.3-point increase in the state sales tax, offered by Rep. Eric Pettigrew, D-Seattle, chairman of the House Health and Human Services Appropriations Committee.

Pettigrew’s idea comes less than a month after the sales tax in his district was raised to 9.5 percent generally, and 10 percent on prepared food, because of last November’s vote on Sound Transit. Pettigrew’s bill would raise those rates to 9.8 percent and 10.3 percent for three years.

Notice the passive voice there. The sales tax in his district just magically was raised. They do mention the ST vote, but don’t even bother mentioning the Pike Place or Parks levies. All three passed by the people pretty overwhelmingly. Over 60% for the Pike Place levy; just under 60% for parks; over 60% for Mass Transit Now in King County and 58% across the 3 county district.

We all knew we were in a recession, and that it was going to be pretty bad back in November. So there is a will at least in Seattle and King County for more taxes if we know we’re going to get our money’s worth.

In any event, remember this the next time the Mercer Island Mutt Murderer mentions the will of the people on some dumbass Eyman initiative that passed by a few percent in an off year. A sales tax, or an income tax, or a whatever tax would be put in front of the people, but if they vote to raise those taxes, well, it’ll somehow represent less than the will of the people. It’ll just happen.

Late Update: Having just read Goldy’s piece on the same editorial, it occurs to me that the Times thinks that having 5000 people at a protest is a better measure of the will of the people than 3 concurrent votes of the people.

Heading in the Wrong Direction

Saturday, April 18th, 2009

– posted by thehim

From the always-entertaining Max Redline:

Is That A Light At The End Of The Tunnel

Or an oncoming train? Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 37% of voters say the United States is heading in the right direction.

Still, the majority of voters (57%) believe the nation is heading down the wrong track.

That majority is likely to increase as the administration’s intentions and policies clarify. Opposition is pushing toward two-thirds already.

Fascinating. So what was it in April, 2008?

Americans’ views on the economy and the general state of the country have hit an all-time low in the history of the CBS News/New York Times poll. Eighty-one percent of those polled say the country is on the wrong track, while only 14 percent believe it is heading in the right direction.

So unless there’s a major gap between the views of voters and the views of all Americans, there’s been a 23% increase in those who believe that the country was on the right track from April 2008 to April 2009, yet this is somehow proof that Americans are concerned about Obama.

Someone needs to shop for an Arithmetic for Dummies book.

Shorter Michael Medved*

Saturday, April 18th, 2009

How dare the Obamas find the right dog before they find the right church?

(more…)

Re: Re: Simple Test for a Simpleton

Thursday, April 16th, 2009

– posted by thehim

Apparently, Jonathan has deleted my latest comment, claiming it’s “too long and boring”. It’s below the fold in case you’re curious
why he really deleted it.

(more…)

Re: Simple Test for a Simpleton

Thursday, April 16th, 2009

– posted by thehim

Carl, I saw this post yesterday and left the following comment:

Ok, so let’s try this one again. If I grow a marijuana plant in my house do you “live and let live” or do you demand that government involved to “punish injustice”?

He responded, and here’s my breakdown of that response (it’s still in moderation):

Marijuana does no one any good. It’s that simple.

That’s irrelevant. You wrote:

The only times conservatives want government involved is to punish injustice or secure the liberties of the people.

Growing a marijuana plant is not an “injustice”, nor does it threaten the liberty of another person. Again, why should government be involved?

Marijuana and other harmful substances should be forbidden just like gambling, prostitution, and slavery should be forbidden.

I don’t know how this isn’t blindingly obvious to you, but if you believe that marijuana, gambling, and prostitution should be forbidden, you do not, in any way, believe in “live and let live”. Not even close. In fact, what you believe in is the exact opposite of “live and let live”.

Let me put it to you another way.

Please do.

Let’s suppose I sold a product that once you bought and consumed it, it affected your mental capacity negatively and made you an addict to the substance.

Ok.

By allowing me to sell such a product, am I increasing people’s freedom and liberty or decreasing it?

If the people you selling it to are unaware of the effects of the substance, then yes, I believe that you are decreasing liberty. In fact, this is somewhat similar to the trouble the tobacco industry got itself into when they tried to cover up the harmful effects of its product.

However, this has nothing to do selling a product. All I’m talking about is growing a plant for my own uses. I don’t plan to sell it to anyone. I’m well aware what it does and how it affects me.

By the same argument, if people choose to become slaves, why should I forbid it? After all, it’s their freedom whether or not they want to become slaves or not, right?

That’s right. You shouldn’t. If a person desires to work for no money, why should we stop them?

Again, this is irrelevant to your main hypocrisy here. If you really believe that you’re a conservative and that you have a “live and let live” philosophy, you have to accept that others willingly make moral choices different from yours. That’s what “live and let live” means. I don’t understand what’s so hard to understand about that.

I understand that marijuana addles the brain to the point where understanding simple concepts such as these is difficult.

Actually, no it doesn’t. It makes me enjoy music, sex, and junk food more, and it makes your posts even more hilarious.

I understand it tends to increase the paranoia and decrease the ability to reason soundly as well as do basic arithmetic.

Nope, it doesn’t. In fact, I’ve been a very successful person in the high-tech industry for the past 12 years despite being a regular marijuana user.

Understanding these things, why would you consume it?

Again, if any of your misconceptions of marijuana were true, that still doesn’t change the fact that you’re being a massive hypocrite by claiming that “live and let live” is part of your political philosophy. You might be the last person on Earth who’s capable of claiming that.

Why would you allow anyone to consume it?

Because unlike you, I actually believe in a “live and let live” philosophy. That’s why.

Wouldn’t you chase it out of your society the same way you would chase out a rapist, murderer, or thief?

No, and the fact that you do try to “chase it out of your society” is proof positive that you don’t have a “live and let live” philosophy. Rape, murder, and theft are injustices. Growing a marijuana plant is not. Until you begin to comprehend that distinction, you’re a hypocrite for claiming what you claimed in this post.

Simple Test for a Simpleton

Thursday, April 16th, 2009

Post by Carl Ballard

FW Con thinks he had a brilliant insight.

The fundamental difference between liberals and conservatives can be summed up in one simple test.

If President Bush had said 2+2=5, what does 2+2=?

Conservatives live at the expense of no one. They simply want to live and let live. The only times conservatives want government involved is to punish injustice or secure the liberties of the people.

No conservative has ever used a public road, or a public library, or called the fire department, or been to a public hospital, or gone to a public school, I guess.

Liberals live at the expense of everyone. They need to take from one to help another. Liberals want government involved to create justice, not by punishing injustice, but by punishing success. Liberals try to secure the liberty of the people by taking it away and giving it back in their own name.

Robby, when you were in the Army, you were totally sucking the nation dry with your free housing, and all that food, and your training, and those free trips to Iraq. Damn liberal freeloader. Stop punishing success!

This difference has been given a name throughout history. This is the difference between liberty and tyranny. Liberty lives and let lives, and fights to preserve, not create, liberty. Tyranny kills and let kills, and fights to create their own vision of what liberty should be.

All that illegal spying and the unnecessary war, and of course torture are in defense of liberty. That’s how it works kiddos. No matter what they do as long as they justify it by saying that it’s about liberty, then it’s totally about liberty.

Hissy Fit

Wednesday, April 15th, 2009

John Cole explains how to understand the tea bagging today.

But What if he has an on air Melt Down Before Then?

Monday, April 13th, 2009

So the EFF will be hosting Crazy Glenn Beck in September. I for one can only assume he, FW Con and Pam Roach will have a good oldie timey crazy-Mormon-off.

Glenn Beck Coming to Seattle!

Yes, this Glenn Beck! This Glenn Beck! He deserves an exclamation mark!

EFF will be hosting a Glenn Beck Event in Seattle on Saturday, September 26, 2009. Lunch will be followed by a book signing for Glenn’s soon-to-be-released book, “An Inconvenient Book: Real Solutions to the World’s Biggest Problems.”

Mark your calendars.

More details coming soon.

I hope we get to find out in advance who he’s going to light on fire.

HA Comment Thread All-Star of the Day

Sunday, April 12th, 2009

– posted by thehim

With all of the excitement in my life recently (send me an email if you’re curious what I mean), I haven’t been down in the HorsesAss comment threads much recently. But holy shit does the stupid still have a powerful presence there. Today saw a legendary meltdown from the always retarded Rick D, who got caught trying to pass off an Obama quote taken completely out-of-context and somehow tried to ameliorate the situation by throwing out conspiracy theories about his birth certificate. Let’s go to the amazing replay (and keep in mind that this was a post where I was criticizing Obama):

[Obama]’s in fact a socialist bordering on a communist. He has advocated the forming of a Nazi SS force National security force which would be as well funded and trained as today’s military. If that doesn’t scare the shit out of you, lee, I don’t what will.

I’ve heard a lot of crazy shit from the wingnuts, but this was a new one to me. He then posted this YouTube video that took a snippet of an Obama speech where he refers to a “National Security Force”. Unfortunately for Mr. D, the quote is a wee bit out of context, and is referring to groups like AmeriCorps and other service organizations. No matter, though. In Rick’s mind, he’s still somehow right about Obama wanting to have something that resembles the SS of Nazi Germany. And the fun began.

I finally posted the full YouTube video and even blockquoted the text of the speech, foolishly believing that this would be enough for Rick to recognize that he was being a moron. But for numerous comments afterward, he continued to insist that I was wrong about Obama not wanting to set up a National security force (and throwing in some bonus crazy about Obama’s unwillingness to release his birth certificate).

He’s still going, over 5 hours since I posted the full text of the speech, and even calling me an Obama-bot (in the comment threads of a post where I called Obama a hypocrite).

Priceless.

Cut out that middleman!

Thursday, April 9th, 2009

- posted by demo kid

Shorter Federal Way Taliban: Why bother prosecuting criminals when you can execute them yourself without a trial?