Recent comments

  • "The Moral Chasm Between Israel and Hamas"   12 hours 38 min ago

    humanitys team wrote:

    by on large they are .
    We are separate from each other and God / life and it's the fittest that survive .

    That is an interesting conlusion.
    It is the opposite of Christian thinking as I know it.
    That is, a true Christian puts the interests of others before himself.

    However it does seem to be the prevailing mindset in America.
    This is a paradox that has long puzzled me.
    America claims to be overwhelmingly Christian
    but has an ethos that is basically not Christian.
    Very strange !.

  • Taxes and redistribution of wealth   12 hours 54 min ago

    Try thinking as a Commoner where our Democracy is "the Commons" and the infrastructure of security and opportunity for democratic society.  "We, the People," get to pool "our" money in as many ways as we can where it serves the interest of "the people" and the justice required for a secure and free country.  We should own our healthcare system, and ownership does not mean central command and control at all.  It does mean non-profit and public interest driven rather than a way for a number of people to "make money."

    Economic systems analysis tells us that economic stability means redistributing the money to keep the whole alive instead of allowing some parts to expand while others shrink or disappear.  Or, to be more specific, the social needs and interests for which the economy is designed must receive their needed level of support no matter who is making or losing money doing what.  The issue is how to serve the areas that have been failed and not how to write them off as economically inefficient or inconvenient.  "Growing the economy" means nothing unless you "grow the society" to greater justice and inclusion.

    Slavery is a system of full employment and zero income redistribution.  There is a supply chain for slavery and a small consumer economy for the elites and their households, but the slaves get next to nothing in overhead for their labor.  If you don't work in the slavery industry, your economic opportunities are limited with your social opportunities.  Competing as a freeholder in a corporate/slavery world is worse than David v. Goliath because David never makes it to the fight.

    The way you fight deficits is to have everyone engaged in productive work from which taxes will be paid.  Full employment maxes the productive capacity of an economy AND redistributes it for inclusion and the end of poverty.  This is the economic law of a democratic economy, so the question is how to achieve this?  Part of the answer is that you can judge productive re-investment according to the justice goals of a democratic society.  Does the investment increase democratic inclusion and participation in being power bearing citizens?  Do they give us more for less in power, healthcare, education, transportation, communication, dealing with drug addiction or even the arts than we get from the Private Sector?  Why draw the line on how much democracy we are free to exercise?

    Wealth gluts and unemployment put the pressure on those in the Middle where there is some money.  The cause of high taxes on the Middle is not the high cost of the unemployable poor, it is the wealth glut of money not included in the real tax base and not creating jobs or value for the society or the real economy.  

    Because charity is a minor player in any successful democratic redistribution of wealth, the breaks given for "charitable contributions" ought to be a lot stricter than they are.  Too many "foundations" have too high an overhead and/or favor causes that do not have any public priority.  On the other hand, I am all for giving private research in some areas beyond the public priorities the opportunity to demonstrate alternatives and special interest issues where there is a real minority need involved.  Baldness will not get public funding, but sexual help should.

    The Dressage Team should raise its own money, not get tax breaks.  But, I like good sports and arts programs in schools and communities and am glad to see that in the budget.

    Anyway, I think the problem is not as you have put it as a dilemma but as good public policy v. bad.  Invest in what is socially good and not in what increases the problems.  One should avoid jumping to conclusions about the solution to "problems" as one rethinks both their cause and "what works" v. what other people "ought" to do.  The Right is always legislating morality while decrying any legislation of social morality on the Left as a violation of their 'precious' freedom.

    Keynes' point about paying people to do meaningless jobs being better than not paying them can justify paying them for doing nothing at all other than being.  If everyone stops working to live off the guaranteed annual income, we will know that it is very popular and the question will be how to do as little work as we (collectively) need to do to avoid the curse of work for the pleasures of the life of ease?  I strongly suspect that few will be satisfied just lying around eating bonbons or even climbing every mountain for their own personal delight.  Doing things that benefit others is part of our normal DNA.

    And, I am sorry, no matter how hard it is to accept, "individualized self-interest" does not provide the perspective needed to honor that DNA.  Were we rational beings, I suppose it might, but we are not, and it does not.  Even if it could rationalize the facts of mutuality and calculate the bottom line of the individual interest, it would have no heart.  No soul.  It would just be the costs of doing business.

    Instead, mutuality and morality require a social consciousness and appreciation of oneself as interdependent.  Individuality, you bet.  Being a responsible self responding to being human, yes!  But that "responsible self" is not an isolated or autonomous individual in conscience or mind.  Being human is about being a moral being, not an autonomous one.  All this "free market" dogma fails to appreciate Smith's highly interdependent model of social economics.  There is no "invisible hand" left, only the Finger.

  • Israel's Action in Gaza: 'Is This Not a War Crime?'   13 hours 7 min ago

    Thank you mjolnir. I'm glad to see that there's someone who hasn't completely lost their marbles. I was beginning to think I was watching a re-run of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers". :)

  • Israel's Action in Gaza: 'Is This Not a War Crime?'   13 hours 12 min ago

    You might consider reading the entire comment and posting that, since I indicated she/he might not be a paid shill, but a shill just the same.

    In any case, you're wrong:

    Jewish Internet Defense Force wrote:

    Our ACTION ALERTS are now well known throughout the Jewish and Israel advocacy world, and by our many enemies, as they have led to the removal of thousands of antisemitic and jihadist pages online. Whether it's an antisemitic Facebook page with millions of members, or a YouTube video promoting global jihad, our team is on it, monitoring it, and urging companies to adhere to their own rules.

    We believe in direct action both to eradicate the problems we face online and to create the publicity that will cause those with the power to take action (companies like Facebook and Google) to do the right thing...

    ...At this time, there is no official membership or dues to be a part of the JIDF. However, we welcome everyone that's supportive of the cause and respectful of our views to join thousands of others in our various online forumshttp://www.thejidf.org/2008/10/about-jidf.html

    Quote:

    ...Military's 'sock puppet' software creates fake online identities to spread pro-American propaganda...

    ... US military is developing software that will let it secretly manipulate social media sites by using fake online personas to influence internet conversations and spread pro-American propaganda...  http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2011/mar/17/us-spy-operation-socia...

     

    Quote:

    The passionate support for Israel expressed on talkback sections of websites, internet chat forums, blogs, Twitters and Facebook may not be all that it seems. 

    Israel’s foreign ministry is reported to be establishing a special undercover team of paid workers whose job it will be to surf the internet 24 hours a day spreading positive news about Israel.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/2009/07/21/israel-s-internet-war/

    I'm still waiting for your "I was wrong."  So far, I've never seen such an admission on your part, at least not on this thread, even though you've been shown to be wrong many times over.

     

  • Doomsday Trigger for Megadrought?   13 hours 17 min ago

    Salmon are a great example of a species suffering from global climate change.

     

  • Taxes and redistribution of wealth   13 hours 29 min ago

    A fund cannot lose anything until it is actually sold.

  • Israel's Action in Gaza: 'Is This Not a War Crime?'   13 hours 33 min ago

    Zenzoe wrote:

    somae wrote:

    ...Hamas wants to kill all Israelis and to destroy Israel...

    So what? You’re confusing wishes with real possibilities. Wanting is not achieving; wishes are not fulfillments. Or, let’s put it this way, just to torture an old cliché— if wishes were one-ton bombs, Hamas could kill and destroy with the same terrible force that Israel is killing and destroying within Palestinian territory. As it is, not so much.

    Now, you're the one hitting the nail on the head. Somae has confused rhetoric with actual violence. In rhetorical terms, sure, the Palestinians are more aggressive. In dead child terms, the Israelis are WAAAAAAY more aggressive. I too believe that justifying Isreal's actions based upon thier history of oppression can be used, at some point, by the Palestinians as well. If the precedent works on Jews, it works on Muslims. The only question is, who will we authorize the Palestinians to oppress when we free them from Israel?

    Quote:
    I want the U.S. government to stop the enabling Israel’s war crimes and crimes against humanity; I want that, but I don’t have the power to stop them. When you have an imbalance of power as great as that between Israel/USA and the Palestinian people, the danger of Hamas’ achieving its aims is practically nil. After all, we’re talking Hamas’ 2500 rockets at 10 pounds each, killing very few (Iron Dome + shelters) compared to Israel’s 400 tons of bombs dropped on civilians and militants alike, killing more than 1500 now.

    [sarcasm]Yes, but the Israelis aren't exactly saying they'd like to wipe the Gaza strip off the map. Don't you see, words hurt too? Maybe even more than bombs [/sarcasm].

    Quote:
    somae wrote:

    ...while Israel wants to protect Palestinian civilians and Palestine. Unfortunately Israel is not very good at accomplishing what it wants. They are like surgeons who aren't able to pinpoint a disease and end up destroying good parts of the body with the bad. If they had a better method, that would only destroy the diseased parts, they would want to use it...

    Hello?  On what planet?  News flash: You’re delusional:

    Hey, those are words and they hurt. Couldn't you just blow up his neighborhood and reserve the word "delusional" as a last resort?

    Quote:

    somae wrote:

    Of course, Hamas is making this extremely difficult by making sure that their weapons are in civilian areas, which is against International Law

    There’s nothing but “civilian areas” in Gaza, my dear. And Israell targets them, willy-nilly, without the slightest worry of being held up for violating international law which prohibits the targeting of civilians.

    Quit muddying the Muslim trial with unwanted facts. This is about what people say, not what they do. Geez!

     

  • World breaks temperature record for June after hottest May   13 hours 43 min ago

    .ren wrote:

    douglaslee wrote:

    http://thoughtmaybe.com/topic/propaganda/ has a great menu.

    This one on that list looks like it's addressing the same issues that Oreskes and Conway do in Merchants of Doubt. 

    Climate of Doubt

    I'll let you know what I think, eventually.

    Ok, now that I've finally found time to get through Climate of Doubt I can make some comments.

    It's not a bad documentary, but I think I benefit from having first experienced all that goes into Oreskes and Conway's  Merchants of Doubt. because they provide the basic theory that helps reveal how the climate of doubt is created and how the science skepticism is twisted by these merchants interviewed in Climate of Doubt work their magic, and I do mean magic, like a Vegas magic act. 

    At around 43:33 into the documentary they finally give passing mention to Naomi's "Tobacco Strategy" by simply saying "borrowing tactics used on behalf of the tobacco industry," in an effort to speak out against and influence the outcome of the 1997 Kyoto Accords, Exxon Mobil transformed the idea of CO2 as a cause of global warming into it being a good thing for the environment.

    Seventeen years later, in 2014, we are still subjected to this deceptive transformational skepticism about anthropogenic-induced greenhouse gas effects by the visiting denialists posting on this site, and of course elsewhere throughout the media system -- especially the corporate owned and managed media system. 

    And, as they point out a number of times throughout Climate of Doubt, the corporate media happily goes along (controversy draws viewers' attention, which is where you can place the most expensive advertising, after all) with this pretense at scientific skepticism by following the notion of "balance in the media." That's where they'll present a balance of the 99.9% of scientists, who recognize the ever accumulating evidence about increasing levels of CO2 as a greenhouse effect on the warming global troposphere, while the stratosphere experiences cooling, with a small percentage of people with a science degree of some kind who find ways to obscure that evidence with a version of doubt that employs half truths deceptively borrowed from what science actually does, which is to agree that almost nothing in a peer reviewed science is ever settled completely like the word of God in a Koran or a Bible. 

    Scientists tend to settle one level of evidence as far as they can skeptically go in questioning that evidence, and then move on to other questions of why.  Most of them were never psychologically prepared to be Swift-boated as these think tank drive PR operatives sometimes have.  They don't operate on that level.  They aren't politicians, they are geeks.

  • World breaks temperature record for June after hottest May   14 hours 3 min ago

    I too am a work in progress.

  • World breaks temperature record for June after hottest May   14 hours 12 min ago

    ren, you proclaimed youself a curmudgeon, as drc2 just praised you, I think I have you beat on the curmudgeon scale. I just read some comments on another site about the 57k children refugees and the bile that reached my speak/write/think  committee in my head would've burned anyone near it had I not bit my tongue, and breathed. My farfar Swedish for  Dad'sDad used to shout at the tv and when I was home I heard my Dad unloading to company message machine before he died. I laughed at both of them, and I laugh at myself often for all the stupid things I do or say, I just have to slow down my frustrated response gene. My Dad's name was Gene, coincidentally. I used to call him almost every day when he got sick and was home while Mom was still working. The most calming soul I have ever known. I ought to revive his wisdom within me more often.    

  • Doomsday Trigger for Megadrought?   14 hours 17 min ago

    This just in! Methane interaction confirmed in creation of Siberian mystery hole.

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/08/01/3466466/siberian-craters-permafrost-climate-change/

  • Again.....no water......no life......and yet we continue to frack it up!   14 hours 19 min ago

    FRACKING WASTE PUTS AMERICA'S DRINKING WATER AT RISK

    http://ecowatch.com/2014/07/29/fracking-waste-drinking-water-at-risk/

    ALSO.....GAO REPORT

    http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/664499.pdf

     

     

  • people that were behind ronald reagan's sending jobs over seas ?   14 hours 21 min ago

    It is absolutely sad and unfortunate,  and contrary to what you seem to think, there isn't any "celebration by the right" that  people lost jobs, and various industries have seen increasing outsourcing of jobs overseas.  It's sad, but reality.  And, a lot of which may have never happened if it hadn't become increasingly difficult to handle increasing corporate tax rates,  increasing regulatory and litiginous costs,  while still trying to deliver a reasonably priced product or service.  When faced with situations of  uncertainty of maintaining future solvency,  this is what happens.  Jobs are shifted elsewhere.  And, obviously each business/industry had/has its own realities and decisions to make, some more marginally competitve than others, some able to hang on longer, etc.   but it wasn't Presidents or "the right"  that sent jobs oversease, or has any pleasure in the realities involved, for execs or hard working average citizens.  Reality, and a desire to try to stay viable and competitive is to thank/blame.

    "The right" would be very happy to see  shifts in government policy involving reasonable streamlining of currently often byzantine, contradictory and unpredictable regulations, let alone modest reductions in corporate tax rates.  Many are very confident that would result in the trends reversing themselves, and many execs are just waiting for a less punitive tax/regulatory climate to occur, with much capital held overseas returning here,  more expansion of business, more hiring, more people employed to follow.  Presidents like Obama will never think of such policy changes, moralizing about it being the "wrong thing to do."  With a less punitive business climate, business can expand, hire people, and more easily accomodate labor costs, union or nonunion.  With higher taxes and regulation, scream all day if you will about "immoral" companies, etc.  the simple reality is business shrinks, sometimes disappears.  (Always interesting to me how leftists, who usually detest moralizing, "legislating morality,"  etc..  are always suddenly quick to about face about invoking moral arguments with economics.

  • WILDFIRE MAP & SATELLITE IMAGES...MANY FIRES CURRENTLY IN OREGON, WASHINGTON, IDAHO, COLORADO AND ARIZONA   14 hours 23 min ago

    stwo wrote:

    Burn acreage so far this year in the US is lowest in a decade, less than half of normal, and one of the lowest on record.

    THE RECORDS ARE MOST LIKELY GOING TO CHANGE! THERE ARE MANY NEW FIRES LISTED ON THE MAP!

  • WILDFIRE MAP & SATELLITE IMAGES...MANY FIRES CURRENTLY IN OREGON, WASHINGTON, IDAHO, COLORADO AND ARIZONA   14 hours 25 min ago

    OMG THERE ARE MANY NEW FIRES!!! WE'RE ON FIRE OUT WEST!!!!

  • Israel's Action in Gaza: 'Is This Not a War Crime?'   14 hours 39 min ago

    Zenzoe wrote: "And you’re probably being paid to do it." What a frickin joke. You've joined the "lunatic fringe" with s alle. I've seen you people make this charge repeatedly and repeatedly I've asked for a link to a site I could join to be paid for debunking Left wing propaganda. So far, instead of  "silence is golden", "silence is telling".

  • World breaks temperature record for June after hottest May   14 hours 52 min ago

    Here in SW Ky, 10mi. from the Tenn. border we just had the coolest July on record. If this is global warming bring it on!

  • Taxes and redistribution of wealth   14 hours 54 min ago

    Personal capital loss is not fund capital loss.

  • Legalization of Pot.   14 hours 56 min ago

    We can put an equal tax on your drug of choice, Dex.   The point of intelligent reform here is to get the law from being counterproductive and perverse in its incentives to the social goal of low to no drug "abuse."

    We know how Prohibition fails, and we see it happening again.  Instead of booze from Canada, this time we have cocaine from Colombia coming through the gangland of Central America and Mexico, created by the money they make in the farcical War on Drugs.  Prohibition created some mobs and gave others a great piece of business for those who knew how to skirt the law and had the infrastructure to operate "underground."

    Weed is not a dangerous drug, but heroin is.  The refined substances tend to be beyond "recreational" in the sense of safe, although alcohol shares more of these dangers than weed categorically.  Some people use cocaine recreationally and some chippy on heroin.  I don't know any casual meth users.  What I do see is this categorical difference between the natural and the refined where sensual goes to sensational and the latter becomes a trap real sensuality is not.

    The first question in drug use is why the individual is using it.  The second question is whether that goal is being achieved; and the third puts the goal into focus in terms of life goals.  I know many people who use weed successfully in successful lives.  We all know people who can drink and still do business or maintain a conversation without going 'beery and cheery.'  It is those who drink to escape who need to deal with the desire to escape.  It is the same with the use of other drugs.

    The best way to help people on drugs, it turns out, is to give them their drugs in a safe and free form so they don't have to steal or worry about doseage.  Establish a contact between the provider and the user so the human bridge can connect.  After a while, the user will find the life goals not being served by the habit.  The thrill will be gone and the problem persists.  They have somebody they can talk to about it and get help.  Most do.

    Jail and consequent unemployability is not a great way to help people move off of dangerous drugs.  Jail for weed is pure intimidation without any evidence of it being dangerous at all.

  • Taxes and redistribution of wealth   15 hours 3 min ago

    douglaslee wrote:

     A lot of debts got erased with the '08 crash, capital losses are tax deductible.  

    I cannot speak to tax laws in Sweden where you live, but here in the USA, as an individual on Form 8949 and Schedule D,

    As an individual, I can only deduct $3000/year long term capital loss.

    A top earner with a million dollar capital gain will produce a capital gains tax rate of 20% + 3.8% obamacare tax.  Quite different from mythical 15% rate that Hartmann continually claims the wealthy pay.

    A million dollar loss carried forward may take over 333 years to recover on form 1040.

     

     

  • Urgent Appeal to the Governments of Europe: Do You Support Argentina or the Criminal Speculators?   15 hours 22 min ago

    Here's what I saw on LPAC this morning...

    LPAC wrote:
    Argentina Slams Obama Administration on Vulture Fight;
    Says Sovereignty Is the Only Relevant Issue
    August 1, 2014 | 9:57AM

    After having been declared in "selective default" on July 30, after no agreement was reached with the Queen's vulture funds, the Argentine government has made very clear it will not—and did not—capitulate on the fundamental issue of sovereignty and national dignity, and laid blame right where it belongs, on the doorstep of the White House, for the failure of negotiations.

    In his press conference Thursday morning, Chief of Staff Jorge Capitanich slammed the U.S. government directly for its lack of "rationality," and biased court officers, accurately characterizing Judge Thomas Griesa and special master Daniel Pollack as "agents of the vulture funds."

    In developing his arguments, Capitanich made very clear why Obama should be immediately impeached.

    Quote:
    "The United States is responsible for not acting appropriately," Capitanich said. "Don't come to us with the excuse that the judiciary is independent." What the United States is independent of "is rationality. It is independent of decisions that are compatible with the functioning of the international financial system, but it is not independent of the vulture funds."

    The U.S. judicial system has shown "bad praxis," Capitanich charged.

    Quote:
    "We've seen the marked incompetence" of [special master] Pollack, who failed to "create the conditions for reasonable negotiations...he didn't understand the process, or respect Argentina's condition as a sovereign nation."

    Griesa's failure to reinstate the stay on his ruling, was deliberate, the chief of staff charged, for the sole purpose of diminishing the "government's decision-making possibilities. But, make no mistake," he warned.

    Quote:
    "The government will meet its responsibilities... Let there be no doubt that... Judge Griesa is not an independent judge; he is an agent of the vulture funds. Pollack is an agent of the vulture funds. So, what justice system are you talking about? What independent judiciary are you talking about? We are talking about the responsibility of a State, that is, the United States, to create the conditions of respect for the unrestricted sovereignty of nations. This is Argentina's position — a rational position. ...Argentina will stand up for its rights before the international community,"

    especially because it has overwhelming international support.

    Capitanich also addressed the insanity of the global situation, both in strategic and financial terms.

    Quote:
    "The international community cannot endorse the actions of minuscule groups which aim to undermine the process of a sovereign country's voluntary restructuring," he said. "But, what can we expect from a world leadership which is not even capable of intervening in wars, where people are killed? They don't even care—it doesn't matter to them that the sovereignty of nations is undermined. They don't care that people get killed, and they won't do what they're supposed to do in dealing with these tiny groups" (of vultures).

    "This situation can't go on indefinitely," he warned. "It is not possible for the world to coexist with these types of minuscule agents who distort the functioning of the international financial system, relations among nations, the exercise of sovereignty and, above all, the will of nations."

    Argentina's position is totally firm and clear, he stated.

    Quote:
    "The defense of the Argentine position is the defense of our sovereignty, the defense of our resources, the defense of our children's daily bread....[International leaders] haven't hesitated to provoke wars, to intervene in nations for the sole purpose of appropriating resources..."

    "We are going to continue what we're doing," he said, "in a complex world."

    Capitanich outlined several options Argentina is considering, including taking its case to the International Court at The Hague, or initiating a debate at the United Nations. He also mentioned the need to "convene an international conference" to deal with regulatory issues that would prevent vulture funds from running amok.

  • World breaks temperature record for June after hottest May   15 hours 23 min ago

    A lot of my 'stupid Americans' are an attempt to shout WAKE UP! I would think when a people are told they've been fooled they would not like it and seek to change. It's my brand of 'Scared Straight' motivational posturing. Why I used it here is just my writing thoughts first before judging perception, especially by those whose opinions I care about. However, the trolls are stupid, and I stand by that. I saw Joni Mitchel lose it and express the same thing, Barney Frank equated an absurd fox questioner with a wooden desk. I also have a bit more freedom as an outside observer, and I compare cultures I know  to the current state of America.  I thought if Americans thought they were perceived as stupid they would demonstrate in their behaviour that they are not. I do not lump a whole species or peoples into a collective bin personally in a prejudicial manner, I know who the idiots are. The late great Molly Ivans had to live with her Texan crowd that were not stupid, just the 'Bless Their Heart' crowd. Low information is the PC term, I'm not always subtle and ought to work on that. I still think the IN law that asserted pi would no longer be 3.14 but 3.2 was misguided. See? I didn't say stupid. I am improving already.. Wrongheaded is a better choice too.     

  • Far-right Israelis celebrate Gaza kids’ deaths   15 hours 36 min ago

    And where are the posts about pro-Palestinians demonstrators in Europe and Scandinavia trying to kill Jews inside a synagogue, burning Jewish stores and cars, and screaming "Death to the Jews"?

  • Israel's Action in Gaza: 'Is This Not a War Crime?'   15 hours 44 min ago

    somae wrote:

    ...Hamas wants to kill all Israelis and to destroy Israel...

    So what? You’re confusing wishes with real possibilities. Wanting is not achieving; wishes are not fulfillments. Or, let’s put it this way, just to torture an old cliché— if wishes were one-ton bombs, Hamas could kill and destroy with the same terrible force that Israel is killing and destroying within Palestinian territory. As it is, not so much.

    I want the U.S. government to stop the enabling Israel’s war crimes and crimes against humanity; I want that, but I don’t have the power to stop them. When you have an imbalance of power as great as that between Israel/USA and the Palestinian people, the danger of Hamas’ achieving its aims is practically nil. After all, we’re talking Hamas’ 2500 rockets at 10 pounds each, killing very few (Iron Dome + shelters) compared to Israel’s 400 tons of bombs dropped on civilians and militants alike, killing more than 1500 now.

    somae wrote:

    ...while Israel wants to protect Palestinian civilians and Palestine. Unfortunately Israel is not very good at accomplishing what it wants. They are like surgeons who aren't able to pinpoint a disease and end up destroying good parts of the body with the bad. If they had a better method, that would only destroy the diseased parts, they would want to use it...

    Hello?  On what planet?  News flash: You’re delusional:

    The Nation wrote:

    Five Israeli Talking Points on Gaza—Debunked : 

    ...In contrast, Israel has the eleventh most powerful military in the world, certainly the strongest by far in the Middle East, and is a nuclear power that has not ratified the non-proliferation agreement and has precise weapons technology. With the use of drones, F-16s and an arsenal of modern weapon technology, Israel has the ability to target single individuals and therefore to avoid civilian casualties. But rather than avoid them, Israel has repeatedly targeted civilians as part of its military operations...

    somae wrote:

    Of course, Hamas is making this extremely difficult by making sure that their weapons are in civilian areas, which is against International Law

    There’s nothing but “civilian areas” in Gaza, my dear. And Israell targets them, willy-nilly, without the slightest worry of being held up for violating international law which prohibits the targeting of civilians.

    RS Allen is right— you come here to post Israel’s talking points, without the tempering influence of facts against the bulwark of propaganda. And you’re probably being paid to do it. If you're not being paid, and your posts represent your "independent" judgment, then I say you're a true friend to Israel's war crimes and crimes against humanity, and you ought to be paid for your service to them. As it is, though, you're obviously not very effective, as we're not buying it. We're just not that stupid and uninformed.

  • Taxes and redistribution of wealth   15 hours 54 min ago

    The tax code as it stands allows all capital expenses in business and operating costs, to be tax deductible. George Miller D CA  proposed a bill that disallowed corporate tax deductions for any compensation to execs or management that exceeded 25 times their line level employees. A company could still pay whatever they want but the country would not subsidize pay disparities above 25x.  The current carry trade formula allows hedge fund managers to pay no taxes at all while making millions from unproductive financial paper shuffling, or now it's just keystroke juggling*.  Trillions in lost revenue are offshore. Mitt was guest speaker at a Cayman Island tax avoidance retreat seminar the weekend after he lost.

    * They have to pay cap gains but only if they sell, and  they never sell. They borrow from their own hedge funds at an interest rate of their choosing (1.5% is average), and they borrow millions to live on instead of salary. Technically they are in debt, but it's like the national debt, the debtor chooses when to settle. [probably the estate when they die].  A lot of debts got erased with the '08 crash, capital losses are tax deductible.