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Everything posted by bascule

  1. I'm not declaring "catastrophe", only stating how ridiculous it is that misinformed (or should I say lied-to) voters are putting the people who caused the problems back in power... ...which is otherwise stated as Republicans taking control of the House by lying their way back into office. By the standards conservatives purport to have, the Democrats are doing a better job than the Republicans, yet Fox and the Republicans have convinced people that the Democrats are doing a lousier job than the Republicans were, when in fact the opposite is true. Taxes are low, the deficit is down, and jobs are back up.
  2. Conservatives (particularly of the Tea Party variety) want more fiscal responsibility in Washington, lower taxes, and a lower deficit. Obama and the Democrats have delivered in all of these areas: taxes are the lowest they've been in decades (indeed a compromise with Republicans, where Republicans flat out refuse to compromise with Democrats), they've managed to substantially reduce the deficit from where it was left by the Bush administration, and the stimulus is creating jobs. By all quantitative measures Obama and the Democrats are addressing the problems conservatives are concerned about. However, thanks to Fox and a disinformation campaign by Republicans, conservatives think taxes have gone up, spending is out of control, and the actions of the Democrats have cost us jobs. Because of that they want to vote the Republicans back into power when the Republicans were primarily responsible for the increased spending and lost jobs. This disconnect between reality and image was architected by Republicans who are set to gain upwards of 50 seats in the House and thus control of it. This is madness. This isn't about Obama being too liberal. This is about a deliberate distortion of reality on the part of Republicans and Fox. They're spreading lies, and lies are getting people elected.
  3. Let me know when CNN gives Alan Grayson his own TV show like Fox gave Huckabee one, not to mention Sarah Palin. Perhaps the larger issue here... does anyone care about the lies Fox is spreading? Things like Obama has raised/is going to raise taxes [not true], Obama has increased the deficit [not true], the stimulus didn't work [not true], healthcare reform increased the deficit [not true]. The reality of the situation is that Obama and the Democrats have done a great job taming a great deal of out of control spending that was occurring under Bush and the Republicans and have overall come up with good plans for paying for their new proposed spending without increasing taxes beyond simply letting Bush's tax cuts lapse. Yet Fox, Republicans, and conservative PACs are out in force, scaring people about the national debt and scaring people about taxes. They're deliberately manipulating their base to get people to vote them back into power, when in fact the Democrats are actually doing a fairly decent job of addressing these problems and getting the economy back on track. The Republicans have not changed their tune and there is absolutely no reason to assume that if elected back into power we won't see a repeat attempt to reenact the exact same failed policies. If anything the political logjam will thicken, nothing will get done, and our nation's problems won't be addressed. Unfortunately there's no good solutions here. The Republicans are set to take the majority in the house and pick up at least 50 seats, and I expect for the next two years not a lot is going to get done. Perhaps, if anything, people will finally realize the Republicans are the cause of the problems with the economy and debt, but even that's unlikely.
  4. Those numbers correlate with MSNBC being liberal biased and Fox being an appendage of the Republican party
  5. GE gave $1.1 million to Democrats and $731,000 to Republicans. News Corp gave $1 million to Republicans and $0 to Democrats. What's your point?
  6. No. I think the key difference you're missing here is that Fox/News Corp is the one doing the donating to the Republican party, not the other way around.
  7. I don't watch Fox with regularity, but I believe I've seen enough to have observed a representative sample. Beck's program is the worst on Fox. If he is everyman, then everyman is fill with fear, paranoia, and conspiracy theories. Beck is little different from Alex Jones, except with an audience an order of magnitude larger. And that's not even to mention that he shills for Goldline. Compared to Beck, personalities like O'Reilly and Hannity are practically respectable. But if there's something you think I've missed on Fox by not watching it regularly, please let me know.
  8. You still fail to understand what's happening. This isn't about money. Fox isn't doing this for the money, and in fact they're donating money directly to the Republican party. And you continue to equate Fox with others as if Fox is doing the same thing other media outlets are doing. They aren't. Fox is intentionally trying to deceive its viewers as part of their standard practices. This differentiates them from others and making blanket comparisons between Fox and other media outlets is simply invalid. And that's completely ignoring the audience sizes. Fox's audience is over an order of magnitude larger than any of the others you reference. I don't have a cable subscription and can't watch any of these outlets with any regularity, but I do frequently travel and stay in hotels and when I do I watch Fox News to see what's going on. That said even if I were to "just turn them off", they are still the #1 cable news network in the country and influencing the opinions of millions of millions of voters by feeding them a contrived narrative which, among other things, is convincing people that Obama has raised their federal income taxes, which is patently false. You simply aren't paying attention to what Fox is doing.
  9. Sorry, I think you're living in a fantasy world, and worse, as I stated in the last thread I posted you're falsely equating what liberals are doing with what conservatives are doing. Fox is deliberately disseminating falsehoods as part of a specifically directed narrative. MSNBC, well it's not great journalism, but Fox is over 9000 times worse, and has a substantially bigger audience. And really, this just plays back to my point in aforementioned thread. Conservatives not only fail to realize that this is going on, but continue to look for liberal analogues to some extreme conservative treachary and once found, however minor, in their minds the liberals are no worse than the conservatives. No, really, that's not the case. What the conservatives are doing is substantially worse, and all these comparisons are patently false. Comparing Michael Savage to what's going on on the now defunct Air America network was false. Comparing Michael Moore to Glenn Beck is false. The very fact otherwise well-thinking people blindly make these sort of comparisons when they're not valid whatsoever is extremely infuriating to me. Stop doing that. If you're going to compare two radio hosts, their audience sizes cannot be over an order of magnitude apart, or the comparison isn't valid. And worse, what they're saying has to be equally as bad. MSNBC is doing nothing close to what Fox is doing. Fox is literally telling their audience that Obama has raised taxes. He hasn't. He has no plans on raising taxes. Yet people watch Fox and believe that their federal taxes are higher under Obama. They're not. That simply isn't true. Please, stop doing this. It harms rational political discourse. Before you pick arbitrary liberal thing A and arbitrary conservative thing B, take a second, step back, enumerate their qualities, and please determine if the comparison is in any way valid. It is simply wrong to compare MSNBC to Fox. I cannot overstate this.
  10. It's not necessarily that they're stupid. Many of them are being fed a deliberately misleading narrative... primarily by Fox. These people are not doing their due diligence on the information they receive and it has lead them to believe that things which aren't happening... are. Case in point: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/19/us/politics/19taxes.html?_r=1&hp Taxes are the lowest they've ever been in history and yet taxes are one of the top issues you hear conservatives complaining about. The Bush Administration engineered their tax cuts (which were, of course one of the many things responsible for the huge increase in the debt) to expire under the next administration. Obama would like to preserve these tax cuts for the lower and middle class but is not seeking to renew them for the upper class. The Republican take on the matter? Obama is raising taxes on the rich. Hannity is certainly do his part to reenforce this idea on Fox: K88cAq1Lw3o
  11. The Democrats are trying to fix problems the Republicans have largely caused, problems like the economic slump resulting from the financial crisis and the enormous budget deficit which is largely the result of Bush administration policies such as tax cuts coupled with massive military spending on two wars, one of which was completely unnecessary. The Democrats have received nothing but barbs and extreme vitriol from both Republicans and Republican mouthpieces like Fox. The problems have gotten marginally better but are nowhere near solved. We have Republicans running on the platform that the Democrats have not yet fixed the problems the Republicans caused. The Republicans suggest "solutions" which are identical to what caused the problems in the first place. They are succeeding in this platform and are set to possibly take control of the House. The only difference between now and 2 years ago is the Democrats have been in power for 2 years. But the Republicans are right, the money that Democrats are wasting on providing healthcare is just as horrible as the money the Republicans spent on wars. Glenn Beck is no worse than Michael Moore, who is of course as culturally relevant in 2010, because he's done ??? lately which means he's in the cultural mainstream. Things that make absolutely no sense to compare totally make sense to compare. Up is down. Black is white. And people buy it. I'm not sure what can be done. Our country has severe difference of opinion. Our country has severe communication problems. We are a highly polarized country and the two sides hate each other. We don't have any common ground to start from anymore. A political action committee called Fox spends every hour of every day feeding people who vote misinformation which fuels their own predispositions. Can America be fixed? I don't think so. I predict a Republican victory this election, and I predict it will severely harm this country in the way the 2000-2006 years of Republican control severely harmed this country. I predict the responses to this thread will be: How dare you insult the Republicans The Democrats are just as bad as the Republicans Fox isn't as bad as you say it is The Democrats really ARE doing more damage to this country than the Republicans did Let's mince words! The Democrats controlled the House from 2006-2008! That means they were in power, and things continued to get worse! In my opinion, these views are only not defensible, but patently wrong. The Republicans should be subject to criticism. There is no reason to assume a priori that two sides in a particular dispute are equally culpable. I have documented plenty of prior cases of ways Fox is determental to the political process, and now that they're shelling out money to the Republicans this really isn't a point of contention. The Republicans policies have been extremely harmful to our country and that's a point I think I have demonstrated as well. While the Democrats controlled the house from 2006-2008, they didn't control the Senate or the Presidency, and even with two years of a supermajority, they don't have a lot to show for it, and pretty much everything they've managed to pass has been a party line vote. This was not the case when the Republicans were in power: they managed to pass a lot of legislation with a marginal amount of Democratic support. I believe this shows that the Democrats are truly a "big tent" party with diverse views, whereas the Republicans are more of a monoculture and policies which do not fit that monoculture will never receive Republican support. But please, blame the black guy for what Bush did... (or worse, claim my rhetoric is evoking race, rather than actually responding to the substance of my argument, the entire time ignoring that there is a large group of Americans whose votes are racially influenced) Oh, did I mention that the Democrats tried to provide healthcare benefits for 9/11 first responders and the Republicans blocked it? Let's see if any of this forum's conservatives try to defend that deplorable action, and write it off as "spin" by the Democrats. Seriously, denying 9/11 first responders healthcare... I really don't know what to think of anyone who would defend that. I'd have to say that you're an evil person and you hate 9/11 victims. Is that spin? It's certainly not spin compared to what the Republicans pulled off. Year after year after year after year after year after year after year after year after year after year (literally) of showboating about 9/11 and 9/11 victims, and when a vote happens that really matters, the Republicans do not have the backs of the 9/11 first responders. That is deplorable. I don't know what attitude I'm supposed to have about these people except hatred. That is truly hypocrisy in its worst form. Firemen are dying because of toxic chemicals they inhaled in what is the worst terrorist attack in the history of America, and all Republicans have to say is "f*ck you." Republicans have no substance. It's just rhetoric. They have an agenda to advance, and when Democrats try to help the real human casualties of 9/11, the Republicans balk, claim the Democrats are abusing the process, then jump onto the media hype machine and try to divert attention. And they're succeeding. I am truly disgusted, appalled, and clearly angry at anyone who is voting for these people. In my home state, Ken Buck who is pretty likely to take the senate seat in this state just came out with the traditional religious rhetoric about how being gay is a choice on Meet the Press. His tone was that gay couples don't deserve the same rights as straight couples because being gay is a choice and gay people should choose to be straight. I really don't know how to feel about the Republicans getting away with this. It's unfathomable. It makes me angry. I will certainly be voting a straight Democratic ticket this election, but that's a mere drop in the bucket. Somehow the Republicans have a large number of people convinced what they're doing is right, and yet when given power, they have failed miserably. You may have heard the quote "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results." A large number of Americans are expecting different results by voting the same people, or people with the same ideas, back into power. I don't know what else to think of these people but that they're insane. Bottom line, if you vote Republican this election expecting substantial differences in key issues like the economy and the national budget/deficit are addressed by our national government, you are either ignorant or insane. The Republican track record on these issues is deplorable and they have not changed their tune. You are attempting to do the same thing over and over expecting different results.
  12. Well hello all you responders. Let me respond to you! You don't understand me. There's no confusion. These Americans are simultaneously ignorant and deliberately mislead. If there is a specific inaccuracy in what I'm saying please specifically address it. Until then you're a hand-waving substanceless airbag. Hi Pangloss, good to see you again. But you are equivocating (which upon review of my previous post you might gather is something I despise), and no, Jon Stewart does not spend "almost as much time" criticizing the left as he does the right. Really, that's not the case. He really does have a bone to pick, and in your terms, he spends an awful lot of time criticizing "the right", and in my opinion, he is well grounded in his criticisms, especially of the right-wing Republican mouthpiece that is Fox. Hi swansont. Normally I respect what you have to say, but not now. The other side is in full force, and they have no substance, only invective. A fear of invective is what is giving them a platform. They have no platform except fear. There is no substance to the conservative argument at this point in time. They are not running on a platform of substance. They are running on a platform of fear and attribution, except the problems they instill fear about were created by other republicans. I understand your insistence on an even-handed approach. That's what a rational person such as yourself would do. However politics is anything but rational. These people need to be called out for what they are, a bunch of evil, lying manipulators. Hi D H. Thanks for injecting the typical conservative reaction. SILENCE THE INFIDEL! Mmmmmkay. Yes that is how conservatives typically react, by rebuking what their opponents say for the simple fact they disagree, and in the worst cases labeling it sedition and actively trying to suppress it. I think such actions are vulgar and derogatory and humbly ask you rescind your position and instead favor open discourse even if you find the subject mater offensive. Sorry to say, but to do any less makes you an anti-free speech nazi. Not to invoke Godwin's Law... jackson33, I don't refer to conservatism in its pure sense, which is the sense you seem to regard it in. Rather, I am referring to it in a practical sense, namely how the large majority of Americans who self-identify as conservative regard it. You clearly hold libertarian values, which I respect, and equate those with conservatism. But for the majority of American conservatives, this is not their viewpoint, and I can only address conservatives as the exist today. Perhaps you'd be better off branding your viewpoints as libertarianism instead of conservatism, at least for accuracy within the American political climate. That certainly seems to be the case. I'm just being chastised without any contextual concern for what's happening to America. I weep for my country. I'm very much concerned that idiots are going to vote liars into power. Not since the Civil War has the country been this polarized, and yet the opposition to those who would move the country forward is no less ignorant or evil. These people really need to be stopped, re-educated, or removed from the political process. Their say in the governance of this country is having a deleterious effect. Their opinions are not educated and deliberately manipulated by the likes of Fox. Something must be done.
  13. Hello. I haven't posted in these forums for some time, partly because I've recently become too busy to spend time forum whoring, and partially due to my frustration with the moderation of the Politics forum, a frustration which echoes the frustration I feel with American conservatives in general. Now that election season draws near I thought maybe I'd stop by and share some of my thoughts. So let's start with a local republican candidate for state senate. There's posters for him everywhere. It confused the hell out of me... why do so many local businesses and residents want a Republican candidate? Then I actually read about him... he's pretty cool, albeit a bit of a loon, but hey, he doesn't immediately offend me. However, he is not the norm. Elsewhere in my local political sphere, the Tea Party totally backfired on the Republicans. The Good Ol' Boy candidate, Scott McInnis, who got his start as the Congressman from my childhood home district, lost out to the crazy Tea Party candidate, Dan Maes, this despite McInnis spending over an order of magnitude than Maes on his campaign. Maes managed to rally a grassroots movement of people who I probably shouldn't refer to as "ass stupid retarded inbred hicks", but well, there it is. The situation is worsened because the second pick for the traditional Republicans, Tom Tancredo, decided to run as an independent, splitting the conservative vote between Maes and Tancredo and assuring victory for the Democratic candidate, Denver mayor John Hickenlooper. There seems to be a huge group of people out there who have a very different perspective on the problems this nation has been facing since the change of guard to Obama. These people aren't necessarily racist, but people who ignored the many gigantic problems occurring under the Bush administration but started paying attention to them after Obama took power and conservative pundits started drilling these problems into people's heads, perhaps in the case of one Glenn Beck weaving an elaborate conspiracy about how the Democrats are to do all sorts of things they would really probably never ever do. Rock on, Tea Party! Jon Stewart describes the continuing reinforcement of the narrative-driven conservative media such as Fox News as "manufactured reality". Obama recently came down on it as "yellow journalism". I'd call it evil. News Corporation recently gave the Republicans $1 million. I don't think there can be any debate at this point that Fox News is anything more than an arm of the Republican party. While the Tea Party may backfire in cases like Maes, overall it's part of a general movement that's succeeding to bring Republicans back into power. It really sickens me. The Republicans succeeded in restoring the interest of their base by being party (pardon my pun) to a hysteria-inducing screamfest of truly "biased" journalism. And while there are the simpletons who really don't understand the larger issues, there are the people who do understand what's going on but are still driving it on or deliberately manipulating it. The first line of defense is the constant equivocation... Fox is no worse than CNN! On top of the manufactured reality collectively put forth by the Republicans, there's a constant meta-narrative that tries to reenforce that what's going on is ok. Equivocate equivocate equivocate. Pass blame! Problems created by Bush were created by Obama! Democrats are spending like crazy and the deficit is insane and it's all their fault! People fear all of this crazy shit that's not really happening, and they vote! What can possibly save us from this insanity? Well what ho, out of the collective consciousness of the Internet a meme sprung up on the Reddit web site, asking Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert to have a DC rally. And so they did, and we have the Rally to Restore Sanity. I'm excited to see what becomes of the media attention this rally will draw, and whether any of that will filter down to people who may have bought into the manufactured reality. We'll see!
  14. The UN security council has condemned the acts of Israel, and almost went as far as to condemn the entire nation of Israel outright until the US stepped in and convinced them to water down their language. From the rest of the article/transcript it sounds like this may very well spark an international incident between Israel and Turkey. Most of those killed were Turks. The ships were running under Turkish flags. Israel did not contact the Turkish government before proceeding with the raid. And now Turkey claims any subsequent supply ships will be escorted by the Turkish Navy. This isn't going to end well.
  15. A good synopsis of events by The Times: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article7141520.ece JohnB, The Times lays out the following points regarding this raid: • Israel may face problems justifying the legality of its decision to storm the Turkish aid ship in international waters (writes Deborah Haynes, Defence Editor). Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the high seas are regarded as not belonging to any nation • Boarding a vessel is acceptable in certain circumstances, such as when a boat is suspected of terrorist activities or carrying weapons of mass destruction, but even then Israel, for example, would need to seek permission from the country where the boat is registered, in this case Turkey • Jason Alderwick, a maritime analyst at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said that the Israeli raid did not appear to have been conducted lawfully under the convention • Israel declared a 20-mile exclusion zone off its shores, warning pro-Palestinian activists to stay away. Yesterday’s raid took place some 40 miles outside the exclusion zone • Ultimately, it is a grey area, with Israel expected to claim self-defence Turkey has warned Israel that subsequent supply vessels will be escorted by the Turkish Navy
  16. Both the production processes and the IP of the ICs fabricated were developed in America... ...Apple is now the third largest company in the world by market capitalization, FYI. Meanwhile, Foxconn submits its employees to some rather inhumane conditions in order to produce devices like the iPad (and of course they contract to other companies besides Apple). That's how they make money... the human labor.
  17. And that gives them the authority to preemptively raid ships in international waters? I can only look for the aggressor here, and to me it is clearly Israel. I am certainly not surprised by the excuses they are bandying about, like "When we had armed soldiers rappel onto the decks of their ships in international waters, they retaliated!" I'm a strong proponent of peace and nonviolence, but if I had soldiers descending on me from the sky, you better bet I will retaliate. Merged post follows: Consecutive posts merged I'll await the judgment of the international community as to whether Israel's actions are in some way excusable.
  18. Well, to put it in perspective, there's the party that racked up approximately $10 trillion in debt, the Republicans, and the party that's responsible for the other $3 trillion, the Democrats. In the exceedingly unlikely event that the Republicans managed to balance the budget, anyone giving them carte blanche is still rather myopic.
  19. Properly by what metric? You still haven't said what gives Israel the authority to raid ships in international waters, with armed soldiers rappelling from helicopters. You can talk about a violent response from the Palestinians, but the numbers speak for themselves. These are trained, armed soldiers raiding a ship filled with civilians. No soldiers died. Civilians died. The civilian wounded outnumber the wounded soldiers by more than an order of magnitude. Did the Palestinians do something wrong here? Sure. But as far as I can tell what the Israelis did here was at the best piracy and at the worst a flat out act of war. They raided a ship in international waters. How is that in any way justifiable?
  20. I guess we're witnessing a case when one of these ships decided to forego Israel's "request" to "submit". Can you tell me where Israel derives the authority to board these ships in international waters? It's my understanding that doing so is generally regarded as "piracy"
  21. Video from the BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/10195997.stm Additional footage (from Al Jazeera) of IDF boarding the ships: pn-l_JltCB4 While this is true, pretty much the totality of evidence that "this wasn't a peaceful ship" comes directly from the testimony of IDF soldiers, testimony which would seem to contradict the video footage (see link). That's not to say that the IDF forces are lying, but I'd take their testimony with a grain of salt. For example you cite one soldier claiming they had an assault rifle before IDF forces had even boarded with an assault rifles. Where did this rifle go after the fight? I'm not sure the analogy is apt. The Gaza ships were attacked in international waters. I don't know much about maritime law, but what gives Israel the right to set up a naval blockade in international waters?
  22. Do you have a source for that? My understanding, at least from this article, is that they didn't open fire until after their ships had been boarded, and that initially they attacked with "sticks and knives". The article also claims they "confiscated two pistols" which apparently had been fired. Merged post follows: Consecutive posts merged While it sounds like the ship had a small number of handguns, I haven't heard reports it was carrying explosives.
  23. Have I been doing anything else during the duration of this thread, other than attempting to calmly understand the situation before casting judgment? If my understanding of the situation is wrong, by all means, point it out. But my understanding is this is an extremely nuanced issue with improprieties happening on both sides of the aisle (except in the case of one side it involved the actions of a US Presidential Administration). If I'm accusing you of anything it's casting an extremely one-sided judgment far too quickly.
  24. Yes, my bad, although I can't exactly say the other thread was descriptively titled...
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