Daily Topics - Monday May 23 2010

Hour One - Isn't the Texas school board reinventing America as the Puritan nation of the Salem witch trials? Jonathan Saenz www.libertylegal.org

Plus - The Oil Spill: Has the privatization of Government failed Obama and us?

Hour Two - Has the economic disaster reached the point where corporate monopolies and rich guys are starting to worry? Economist Floyd Brown www.floydbrown.com

Hour Three - In defense of Rand Paul - Please name one company that doesn't use public services for their existance and therefore exist outside the realm of public law? Libertarian Walter Block www.walterblock.com

Comments

DRichards's picture
DRichards 9 years 39 weeks ago
#1

BP refuses EPA order to switch to less-toxic oil dispersant

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-oil-spill-20100523,...

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#3

Here I sit all broken-hearted;

Came to sit, but only exhorted.

Burma-Shave

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#4

In Texas history, Ronald Reagan and his Ward, George W. Bush, banished the commies and Indians and conquered the Mexicans in order to provide modern conveniences to the hard working Christian settlers.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 39 weeks ago
#5

Well-l-l-l-l look, lets just look at the exact wording of the official documents, and infer our point of view only from that intentionally ambiguous verbiage.

Mr. Saenz, your a complete jack-ass, as it is written, so be it.

N

DRichards's picture
DRichards 9 years 39 weeks ago
#6

The fundamentalist fail to realize that if not for the separation of church and state, they would not exist as we would all be members of the Church of England.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 39 weeks ago
#7

How conservatives can take one scrap of documentation, and infer all intentions of the day from it, is not only a narrow point of view of the reality of the times, its an genuine attempt to rewrite history based only on the jigsaw pieces of the history puzzle that they like and fits their point of view.

N

n8chz's picture
n8chz 9 years 39 weeks ago
#8

The elders among the living are our only first-person sources of historical knowledge.

Mike in Illinois 8th's picture
Mike in Illinois 8th 9 years 39 weeks ago
#9

Texas is a true leader........

....in dumbing down the nation.

gharlane's picture
gharlane 9 years 39 weeks ago
#10

Once again, Thom allows a rightwinger to use him as a floor rag, and his show as a platform for getting his "argument" out. Saenz (Hartmann's guest from the "Liberty" Institute, on at the top of Hour 1) was more articulate, better prepared, knew his arguments better and anticipated his opponent's arguments better than Thom did. This does not mean that he was right of course -- he's not -- but Thom, through poor preparation (among other things), managed to make it appear as if Saenz had won the argument.

I'm not sure why Thom does this, at least not without better preparation and understanding of the other side's talking points, but it happens over and over when he has rightwinger guests on his show, which he appears to like doing, and seems to think he's good at. For the most part, he's not.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#11

Most generally, the school argument is the conflict between those who want to teach people what to think versus the more complicated efforts to teach people how to think.

n8chz's picture
n8chz 9 years 39 weeks ago
#12

Saenz appears to be an aggressive framer intent on backing someone into their 'yes or no' corner. Of course he timed it for the end of the segment. Thom's editorial policy of not dissing a guest who has left the building is self-disempowering. A hit-and-run artist merits no such courtesy.

DRichards's picture
DRichards 9 years 39 weeks ago
#13

Re: Rand Paul

Accidents happen

Hey, It was an accident that I ran that stop sign and totaled your car. And you want me to pay for the damage?

LeMoyne's picture
LeMoyne 9 years 39 weeks ago
#14

Jeff Davis' 1st inaugural is in Texas schoolbooks? I don't know that speech, but it would be OK as the CSA view at the start of the Civil War as long as it is followed by Lincoln's 2d inaugural address from the end. Terse to the point of eloquence it clearly lays out the dilemma created by the horror of war and the horrible inevitability of violence when a society is built on injustice.

Fruit-For-Peace's picture
Fruit-For-Peace 9 years 39 weeks ago
#15

Time to go Electronic!

I think it's time for the school teaching texts to go all electronic. That way there is NO reason any one state will be able to dominate what is and is not put into a text resource. States could easily have their electronic texts customized, but then individual states like Texas would be known for being the bone-head state for teaching or NOT teaching history, and other states can actually produce educated students.

The printing industry would be up in arms, but the printing industry is going the way of manual hand-mixer. It's inevitable that the texts go electronic anyway, and from the sound of it - better sooner than later.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#16

is anybody hearing about new disruptions at the oil spill?

babasaurus's picture
babasaurus 9 years 39 weeks ago
#17

Over the years, through the process of raising 3 kids, our family has accumulated a substantial number of triangles. Some are quite old, but all of them are in good shape, still with 3 solid sides. Thom, could you please let us know how to obtain a copy of the texas school textbooks? We would like to investigate their information on the Atlantic Triangular Trade. Maybe we could find someone out there in the Atlantic area who would be willing to trade our old triangles for newer ones.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#18

@Babasaurus: "let us know how to obtain a copy of the texas school textbooks?" -you can get them in the "fiction" section of any disreputatble book store.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 39 weeks ago
#19

I think there are some major differences between Katrina and the Deepwater Horizon disasters:

Katrina (arguably) was a natural disaster, whereas the Deepwater Horizon was completely man made.

Katrina drowned major portions of a city, killing thousands people instantaneously, whereas the Deepwater Horizon killed 11 instantaneously, but from their only the animal kingdom is directly affected.

During the Katrina aftermath, the President found it hard to be bothered about it, and preferred to eat cake, whereas in the Deepwater Horizon aftermath, the President has focused on the problem and has done what he can.

Katrina happened on a Republican President's watch, and the mainstream media gave him a pass, whereas the Deepwater Horizon happened on a Democratic President's watch, and the mainstream media is blaming him where they can.

End result, SUCKS TO BE YOU LOUISIANA AND THE OTHER GULF STATES.

N

camplunalinda's picture
camplunalinda 9 years 39 weeks ago
#20

Psychosis

often described as involving a "loss of contact with reality" - Wikipedia --

I suggest it is often induced by giving "mixed messages" --

I suggest The Glenn Beck Machine on every US airway is not an accident --

inducing a Psychosis which has created candidates like Randall Paul --

barking one thing and doing another --

and distractions like the "chicken suit" policy --

thank-you for your consideration --

GRATEFULLY EVERYTHING CHANGES --

with so many options -- MM

babasaurus's picture
babasaurus 9 years 39 weeks ago
#21

@harry: good one. that is where they belong. it seems so absurd. if it were not so tragic, it would be funny.

n8chz's picture
n8chz 9 years 39 weeks ago
#22

@Babasaurus: "let us know how to obtain a copy of the texas school textbooks?" -you can get them in the "fiction" section of any disreputatble book store.

Maybe you can get them at the Texas School Book Depository

justmy2's picture
justmy2 9 years 39 weeks ago
#23

John Snow was never Treasury Secretary during a Democratic Congress.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_W._Snow

I would love to understand why Conservative seem so comfortable not having facts behind their arguments.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#24

@Babasaurus: like the warren report. Oh, by the way: Is Babasaurus a guru who died out 65 million years ago?

babasaurus's picture
babasaurus 9 years 39 weeks ago
#25

@ harry. nothing so profound or intellectual. just the nickname of our son when he used to be a toddler.

Blue Mark's picture
Blue Mark 9 years 39 weeks ago
#26

@gharlane,

The guests only need to be an expert on 1 thing. Thom has to be an expert on everything. I think he does a phenomenal job in preparation for his guests. Of course he could always "win" like the conservative talkers do by shouting the guest down and cutting them off when they do too well.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#27

@N8chz:"Maybe you can get them at the Texas School Book Depository" good one! :D

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#28

It seems that those who know the least, know it the loudest.

babasaurus's picture
babasaurus 9 years 39 weeks ago
#29

the oil leak and right wing hypocrisy:

when Katrina hit, Bush abandoned the people of new orleans and blamed their misfortune on the LOCAL government, saying the local democrats did not have a proper response.

when the oil leak hit, the right blames the FEDERAL government for lack of response.

when Obama tries to save the economy ruined by bush and deregualtion, and bring health care to the people, the right screams in horror about a socialist takeover of the financial and auto and healthcare industries.

if last year, Obama would have shut down every off shore oil well and kept them idle until every one of them had an acoustic blow off preventer valve installed, the right would have whined hysterically about how he was trying to crippple big oil and private enterprise by over reaching and micromanaging their affairs.

when the private sector and BP devastate the gulf, the right wing points the finger at Obama for not having the government do enough.

according to ronald regan, the darling of the right, the most frightening words in the english language are "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help you." big guvmt basically is evil and not to be trusted, and the private sector is the answer to everything.

when the private sector trashed the gulf, the right demands action from big guvmt to save the gulf.

wall street and big oil profits are privitized. wall street losses and gulf shore cleanups are socialized.

Obama SHOULD step in, kick BP out and end all off shore drilling. we need to end our dependence on foreign AND domestic oil. it is time to go green.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#30

A great metaphor for the new feudal society is the McMansion. Rich people buy a house in a middle income neighborhood and turn it into a manor house (gated) , 85% impervious cover; taxes go up, neighbors cant afford it anymore, you have a feudal society in a neighborhood.

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 39 weeks ago
#31

Someone should have explained to the con's that wanted to get rid of the instability zone created by the Middle Class "free time". That the unemployed have lots of free time too. The 1920's and 1930's weren't exactly stable periods for America, and the FDR created middle class was yet to emerge.

N

n8chz's picture
n8chz 9 years 39 weeks ago
#32

A manor is a self-contained local economy. The economy of subdivision of McMansions is all consumption and no production, save a few 'home offices' maintained as a tax dodge.

gharlane's picture
gharlane 9 years 39 weeks ago
#33

@Blue Mark (# 26)

First of all, if that's the reality, then what business does Thom have giving these bozos a platform?

But even if your assessment is partially true, it's far from completely true. Thom could be far better-prepared than he is. Saenz's main argument , for example, appeared to be that there's an easily-discernible "plain meaning" to the language of the Establishment Clause, and he threw in a bit of what would be called "legislative history" were this a statute, to spice up his case. He claimed that the phrase "separation of church and state" is not present in the Establishment Clause (true), and that therefore, the idea of church-state separation is not present there either (false). It's not, or shouldn't be, difficult to refute this, but it can't be done in a soundbite. So Thom needs to be prepared to refute the soundbites, as well as to note that real discussion of these issues can't take place in rightwing soundbite-land. He doesn't. Nor did Thom question the identity, training, or credentials of the so-called "constitutional expert" that Saenz mentioned he has at beck and call (or perhaps that should be Beck and call). That "expert" was no doubt trained at some fine educational institution such as Liberty University and well-versed in presenting one-sided "arguments" with little basis in reality and no recognition of any facts that undermine those talking points.

Thom also needs to be better-prepared for the rhetorical attack tactics of the rightwingers, and particularly to be better-prepared to call out this rhetorical dirty pool as it occurs, whether it's their frequent filibustering of him (occasionally, but far too rarely, he calls out this behavior), or aggressive and tendentious framing of issues, or the aggressive "yes or no" framing of questions, timed to be impossible to respond to, as n8chz notes upthread, or the cherry-picking of historical points that Maxrot noted, also upthread.

If Thom can't do that, then IMHO he has little business giving these people Yet More Airtime.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#34

Would the ban on chickens apply to someone who was wearing a chicken hat? I'd like to see someone with a chicken hat showing up at a Nevada polling place. How about a shirt with chickens on it? Chicken shoes? Chicken lips?

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#35

@n8chz: and speed labs....

DRichards's picture
DRichards 9 years 39 weeks ago
#36

Maryland Citizens Face Felony Charges for Recording Cops

In Maryland, it is a felony to record thuggish cops as they push around skateboarding teenagers, beat sports patrons, and pull guns on motorists for speeding.

“Several Marylanders face felony charges for recording their arrests on camera, and others have been intimidated to shut their cameras off,” reports WJZ 23 in Baltimore.

http://tvnewslies.org/tvnl/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=...

Maxrot's picture
Maxrot 9 years 39 weeks ago
#37

I can't agree more with the need to impose practical tariffs. I don't mind the concept of a global economy, but a fair global economy can not exist so long as fair practices are not existent. I would love to see tariffs that are created with the cost of externalities applied fairly to them, and adjusted as those externalities brought inline with America's externalities.

N

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#38

the animal was a Vole. or Phil Gramm

SoloPocono's picture
SoloPocono 9 years 39 weeks ago
#39

I Found Our Jobs!!!!

I stayed up last night to watch a 4 part, 4 hour documentary on China, "China on the Inside". First, what struck me most was how grateful *I* am right now. In the shape I'm in HERE, I would be lucky to be alive in China.

HOWEVER; the other thing that struck me were the following: Rampant, unregulated industrial revolution causing horrifying environmental damage. It's so bad in parts that they are relocating whole cities. They put the people in these beautiful, brand new condos..but there's no jobs for them yet. Much of the environmental damage is at least semi-permanent. Whole lakes and thousands of miles of rivers-DEAD.

Although abortion is banned, because of their population control, it goes on, illegally, and usually with tragic consequences. Sickness and death are prevalent in whole regions without medical care-unless you can AFFORD IT. Most Can't.

Income disparity; while their growing population of "workers", would seemingly produce a new middle class in China, instead-their income disparity is growing wider, with a minimal "middle class". Most children leave their villages and return to support their families-and often their own children-with the money they've earned in their manufacturing jobs. Most don't see their own children for a year at a time,...or never again if the parents stay in the city. They decide to try and make it "big" on their own-instead finding that the Govt is requiring more and more taxes from them. One of the most poignant scenes-a view of a large village with MANY unending staircases built on top of the small one-two story family homes. They lead to nowhere instead of the intended homes for their children-who remain in the city. The parents die sick and penniless. Over 2/3 of these "peasants" have no running water, no electricity,...and no money. They TRY and grown their own food-but the soil has become "spent" and poisoned by the toxic pesticides and "fertilizers". Fewer and fewer children can afford to go to school to better themselves.

BUT-their military numbers in the millions and at least LOOKS good....Especially when they're squashing any opposition to the corruption-which is everywhere...

Income disparity, un-affordable healthcare, expensive schools, rampant pollution that's deemed irreversible, back-alley abortions, a dictatorial Govt who only cares about the "bottom-line" and how the Military looks. Gee, sounds like a republican paradise!! Is THIS where we're heading??

We should mail copies of this documentary to EVERY member of Congress...

DRichards's picture
DRichards 9 years 39 weeks ago
#40

http://www.TheWarIsMakingYouPoor.com

Next year's budget allocates $159,000,000,000 to perpetuate the occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. That's enough money to eliminate federal income taxes for the first $35,000 of every American's income. Beyond that, leaves over $15 billion to cut the deficit.

And that's what this bill does. It eliminates separate funding for the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, and eliminates federal income taxes for everyone's first $35,000 of income ($70,000 for couples). Plus it pays down the national debt. Does that sound good to you? Then please sign our petition in support of this bill, and help us build a movement to end our permanent state of war.

The conservatives should jump aboard! No taxes (on the first $35,000)

mstaggerlee's picture
mstaggerlee 9 years 39 weeks ago
#41

@ Fruit-for-Peace, re:#15 - Many colleges are apparently going that way already. A friend's daughter is starting at SUNY Stonybrook in the fall, and will be REQUIRED to purchase a Kindle, as all textbooks will be distrubuted in Kindle format.

I do see problems with this at the primary level, though, as the e-reader hardware is tantamount to a "price of admission" to public school. I don't know about your district, but my local school district has a seroiusly hard time trying to pass a school budget that provides things like sports and music. Getting one passed that included an e-reader for every student is a pipe dream.

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 39 weeks ago
#42

TX-GOV Dem Nominee: I'll 'Undo Some Of The Damage' Of New Textbook Standards

http://tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/05/tx-gov-dem-nominee-ill-undo-some-of-the-damage-of-new-textbook-standards.php

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 39 weeks ago
#43

Now that 'Meet the Press' is to Rand Paul as Vietnam was to Dick Cheney will the home state of the Colonel ban wearing chicken suits to the polls just like Nevada did to protect the feeling of their front running Republican Senate candidate? Have the GOP traded their mascot, Victor the half-priced Victory Elephant, for Doctor Chicken? Enquiring minds wanna know . . .

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 39 weeks ago
#44

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

Today is Monday, May 24, 2010.

harry ashburn 9 years 39 weeks ago
#45

@Mysterious Floating Head...not in Japan.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#46

I suggest the word "oppress" rather than "discriminate."

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 39 weeks ago
#47

From what I heard, Dr. Block’s ideas are non-existent as flesh and blood humans are in his definition of “society” . . . All he said was it is okay to discriminate because it a fundamental right without acknowledging that the folk discriminated has competing and more compelling rights to be allowed access. Where the farg is the freedom in that self-centered horse-hockey?

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#48

Hmmm.... It could be that whites don't need to immigrate. Satisfaction is such a nasty element in the equation.

rladlof's picture
rladlof 9 years 39 weeks ago
#49

Dear, sweet Harrry,

It is Monday, May 23, 2010 . . . NO WHERE in this omniverse . . . EXCEPT this blog.

Gene Savory's picture
Gene Savory 9 years 39 weeks ago
#50

Studs Terkel spoke at Northern Illinois University a few years ago. During the Q&A session, an audience member started repeating libertarian dogma, and Terkel turned his back with a dismissive wave of his hand and the statement, "sure, you and General Motors have the same power at the bargaining table."

I mss Terkel; what a powerful person.

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