Dick Cheney Should be Rotting in The Hague, Not Writing Editorials

If there’s one person who has absolutely zero business criticizing anyone for how they’re running the country, it’s Dick Cheney. This should be obvious to pretty everyone by now, but apparently the Wall Street Journal didn’t get the message. Today, the paper published an editorial by Cheney and his daughter Liz in which the former Vice President blasts the “collapsing Obama doctrine” of foreign policy.”

Taking the rapid advance of ISIS radicals through northern Iraq as his cue, Cheney accuses President Obama of “emboldening” America’s enemies. He writes:

Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many. Too many times to count, Mr. Obama has told us he is ‘ending’ the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan - as though wishing made it so. His rhetoric has now come crashing into reality...America's enemies are not ‘decimated.’ They are emboldened and on the march.

According to Cheney, the “failures” of the Obama presidency - which I guess are to not get the country involved in any more decade-long wars - are proof that our first African-American president is actively trying to take down America. He writes:

Despite clear evidence of the dire need for American leadership around the world, the desperation of our allies and the glee of our enemies, President Obama seems determined to leave office ensuring he has taken America down a notch. Indeed, the speed of the terrorists' takeover of territory in Iraq has been matched only by the speed of American decline on his watch.

Forget for a second that President Obama has continued many of the policies of the Bush administration - the drone wars and NSA spying both started under Cheney’s watch - and just consider the fact that Dick Cheney of all people actually has the gall to call someone else out for “taking America down a notch” and “being so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.”

You don’t need a political science degree to know how ridiculous this is. The Iraq War was the single biggest foreign policy disaster in recent - or maybe even all - of American history. It cost the country around $4 trillion dollars, killed hundreds of thousands, if not millions of innocent civilians, left 4,500 Americans dead, and turned what was once one of the more developed countries in the Arab World into a slaughterhouse.

Make no mistake about it, Iraq would not be the violent place it is today if the Bush administration hadn’t lied its way into a costly, unnecessary, and destructive war. Ironically, things have played out exactly as Cheney said they would when he was asked back in the 1990s about why the first Bush administration didn’t march all the way to Baghdad during the First Gulf War.

Really, there’s no one who’s done more to damage America’s reputation around the world and embolden our enemies than our former Vice President. The Iraq War was the best Al Qaeda propaganda video ever, and whatever Cheney might say about the surge and how successful it was, the truth is that there were no terrorists in Iraq before we invaded.

But Cheney’s hypocrisy on Iraq is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to all the reasons why he’s probably the worst person ever to listen to for advice on, well, everything. Remember, Cheney was the guy who almost bankrupted Halliburton by exposing it to asbestos liabilities and then used his position as Vice President of the United States to bail the company out with no-bid contracts during the Iraq War, all while owning millions in Halliburton stock options.

Remember, Cheney was the guy who played a key role in the Bush administration’s illegal torture program. You know - the illegal torture program that was based on tactics invented by Maoist China and turned our country into a pariah state. And remember, Cheney was the guy who was supposed be on the lookout for terrorist attacks in the summer of 2001, but was too busy plotting out ways to attack Iraq to listen to warning after warning about how Al Qaeda was about to kill thousands of Americans.

Cheney let 9/11 happen on his watch.

American history has had its share of villains - J. Edgar Hoover, Joe McCarthy, and Richard Nixon come to mind as some of the worst - but there is no one in recent history who has disgraced our country quite like Dick Cheney has. He lied his way into an illegal war, profited off that war, and shredded the Constitution. He’s a war criminal and has the blood of hundreds of thousands of innocent people on his hands.

Dick Cheney should be rotting in a prison cell at The Hague, not writing editorials for the Wall Street Journal.


Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Alice, you are so correct. Because if I don't like the decision insurance company 'A' makes, I'll go to insurance company, B, C, D, E etc. etc. to get what I want. When I don't like the decision the govt makes in a single payer system, who do I complain too? I want people fighting for my dollars, not stand in line, give it some bureaucrat, and hope for what I want.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Great, OU! Gee that's swell. We can have Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum, Tweedle Twaddle or Blue-Cross-Double-Cross Extorporation death panels deciding who gets to live and who dies. Lovely.

Should you ever get sick my dear, and have a grievance with one of these honorable healthcare saboteurs, please share that illuminating event with the rest of us, for our entertainment if not our enlightenment. Because even though we on the left side of the fence take ourselves too seriously on occasion; even though we obsess over the fate of this country, humanity and the world... yeah even with all that "downer" shit hanging over our heads, we still manage to keep a sense of humor. And I can think of nothing more amusing than you reporting back to us someday, on exactly what happens when you take your little grievance to Tweedle Dum or Tweedle Dee Extorporation, LLC.

Just the thought tickles me. Hee-hee. So enjoy your stay in lah-lah land honey. Enjoy it while it lasts. Because if the Party Of No has its way, there will be no Medicare waiting to take you in, once you've reached that rainbow bridge at the end of the road... - AIW

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Alice, aren't you the one who's in wonderland:) let me give you a brief overview of the insurance I have at present. $10.00/ visit, perscriptions are $10.00 (Generic) for a 90 day supply, $25.00 (name brand) for a 90 day supply. No deductible on medical or prescriptions...the provider is Aetna, my cost is approximately $70.00/month for me and my spouse...and the best news is I don't have to deal with the Gov't. Why would anybody in their 'Right' mind (pun intended) won't to change.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Well goodie-goodie for yew. Been sick yet? Had any major crises? Until then OU, you don't really know how great your coverage actually is.

Since we're fortunate enough to live in a so-called "blue state", my husband & I have lucked out with Medicaid and pay nothing 'til our income goes up. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we're fine for now. But our friend in Bandon, who is self-employed and works her butt off, must pay $900 a month just for herself, with a HUGE deductible. And another friend in North Bend, in her late seventies, lost valuable medical benefits from a company she retired from thanks to the ACA, and now must pay out of pocket! So you see OU, some win and some lose, all due to circumstance and technicality.

Health care is not a commodity. It needs to be accessible to everyone, not just to some people, without the bureaucracy and the bullshit that has some of us faring better than others. But just like Chicago Matt, you're content, happy and smug. Your little butt's covered, so why change anything?!

You people make me sick. - AIW

P.S. Out of all the world's wealthier developed countries, our healthcare system beat the others only in cost. Overall we U.S. citizens pay substantially more for substantially less, have the worst outcomes and score last in quality of care. God bless America.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 8 years 15 weeks ago

Aliceinwonderland and OU812 ~ I've had a lot of experience with the medical side of our for profit health care from the best plans it has to offer. I've know people who've gotten sick and were completely covered. I've told these horror stories in depth on this blog already and don't want to repeat them. Suffice to say that profit is placed above everything else. Regardless of whether it is how much they can milk from you or your employer in premiums, or how they can deny services, they always find a way to place profit above everything else including your health and your life. Think about this chilling fact, if you acquire a catastrophic illness, or suffer a seriously debilitating accident, if you die quickly they save a fortune if you are fully covered. Face the simple fact that there is no profit whatsoever to be made in simply keeping you alive if doing so sucks up their profit.

What is it about for profit that you trust and that makes you feel so safe? Perhaps because you haven't yet really needed it? Perhaps because you haven't gotten sick yet? Perhaps because you haven't gotten very sick yet? Perhaps because you haven't really sat down and thought about it? We used to think just like you OU until we really needed it. What a rude awakening that was!

Give me single payer any day over this racket. The simple reason is that the Doctor will get paid with single payer only as long as I am alive. That is what I call a good insurance policy!

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Alice, Why do you still live in the USA? You always write about how good life is in other countries. Do you know doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is the definition of insanity:))

ps, It's good you have health coverage!! Since we content, happy and smug people make you sick:)

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

None of your business "OU", on that first question.

"Do you know doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is the definition of insanity" says OU. Really! How insightful. Never heard that one before.

As to your P.S.? Cute. Tah-tah, enjoy your day. - AIW

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU -- Is that your outlook on life, give up and run? I would like to stay and fight the 1%.

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Chuck, I've never ran from anything in my life, and I'll bet I have more years on the planet than you:)

ps, I don't fight mythical enemies.

ChicagoMatt 8 years 15 weeks ago

I might be the exception, or just lucky, but I always get good customer service from United Healthcare.

Of course, I think people my age might have lower expectations from the start. If I call customer service for any company, and I can understand what the person is saying (that is, I was connected to a domestic operator), I already feel like I've been treated well. If they keep me on hold for less that ten minutes, it's like winning the customer-service lottery.

And - the best thing I like about UHC - I don't have to talk to a person at all! Well, not voice-to-voice. They are very quick to reply to my emails, which I would much rather send than actually calling someone.

I've only hit one road bump in my dealings with them, and it was corrected quickly and to my favor. One of my doctors passed away in the middle of a year-long series of visits, which were supposed to be billed as a single visit. (Just pay the copay once.) But when I went to the replacement doctor, I had to pay the copay again. It was only $20, but I called, and they sent me a refund check.

I hear a lot of people older than me complain about customer service everywhere - retail, sporting events, etc... Like I said, I think if you compare the expectations of people my age against people a generation older, they would be very different from the start.

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Thumb up :)

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU --- If you never ran from anything, then why would you suggest that AIW does? Your ignorance of an enemy does not make that enemy mythical.

The bet is on. If you are still teaching, you lose.

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

it wasn't a suggestion, it was a question. I can't understand why anyone wouldn't want to be where they perceive to be best.

I began teaching at age 60 after retiring from business. Eight years later I'm still at it. I love it.

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU -- You lose the bet by 5 years.

If one describes how much better a particular country is for certain things, e.g. healtcare, that does not mean one wants to move there that means we should copy their policy for our country.

Another thing, unless you are very rich no other country wants you.

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Congrats, old people like us are hard too fool. Why not celebrate the things we do well. We lead the world in funding Research and Development. You just can't take bits and pieces of a countrie's policies and expect them to work. Differences in values and cultural would prevent that from happening. I don't think I'll change your mind, and my mind is hard to change. I would welcome ideas from those who post here, but ideas are few. I can't understand all this blaming and name calling. What has happened in the past is just that happened in the past. Without a time machine, there is no way to change the past. Name calling takes place when someone is losing an argument, it serves no purpose. Anyway, I'll stop. I'll watch for more ideas from you.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU, didn't you say you were a teacher? Then don't you know the difference between "to" and "too"? Ditto "countries" and "country's". ("Countrie's"?!! Ahem...) And by the way "won't" and "want" are too different words entirely (see end of post #54).

I feel sorry for your students. - Aliceinwonderland

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU -- Are you calling the Swiss approach to healthcare a bit and piece? Why wouldn't you want to try a "bit and piece" policy of another economic system if the one you are using is only enhacing the top 7% of the society? That is, since the great republican recession of 2008, the wealth of the US has grown by $34 trillion. All $34 trillion went to the top 7%. I am sure that top 7% would love for you to celebrate the growth in wealth and ignore that they are screwing you.

I have a detailed question about your following statement.

Quote OU:We lead the world in funding Research and Development.

Does that refer to the percent of GDP the govt spends on R&D? Does that refer to the % of the federal budget that the govt spends on R&D? Does it refer to all the money that pharma spends on the molecular structure of medicines so they can keep making money on their patented drugs without changine the effectiveness of the drugs? What does it mean?

Why do you not see in any ideas in what we are saying? Rolling back reaganomics must contain at least a 100 ideas. My favorite is to raise the top tax rate to 91% so the rich will not keep paying so much money in taxes. How about paying CEOs a salary vice options so they will make their companies grow instead of manipulating stock prices by doing such things as buying back stock? How about protection of pension funds from private equity firms? How about enforcing the sherman anti-trust act? How about restricting H1B visas? How about stop granting waivers to the Buy America Act of 1936? How about raising tariffs to the level they were in 1980?

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Chuck, I have no idea what the Swiss health care system is, and to be honest, I don't care. The system we have works fine for me, and I'm not interested in changing it. I'm not worried about the top 7%, or the 1%. I've done well in life by working with people, not fighting them. I'm sure you've heard the expression a rising tide raises all boats...most companies are growing, some are dieing, because there time is up...for example, there is not a lot of demand for buggy whips, nor whale oil, thought they were once in high demand. I'm going to touch a sensitive issue for you lefties...The post office has outlived it's usefullness. Want to copy something from another country. Post offices in Canada, and most of Europe are part time. Think about all the carbon postal vehicles pump into the enviroment. How many trees are cut down to produce the useless junk mail they deliver....for growth look at Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Wal-mart, Home Depot. These are companies that didn't exist 40 years ago....

Here's the link read for yourself about the USA leading the world in R&D. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_research_and_development_spending

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 15 weeks ago

OU -- Are you aware that you provided ample evidence that a rising tide only raises yachts. The rising tide ($34 trillion in wealth) raised the yachts (7%). That 7% is composed of the CEOs of Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Wal-Mart and Home Depot.

If you eliminate the post office. who is going to deliver all those packages for Fedex and UPS?

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Not as sorry as I feel for you...you are a bitter, angry, person.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago
Quote chuckle8:Pal -- No other building in the world has ever been built like the WTC. It had its strength in the outside walls. Lots of buildings since 9/11 have had that architectural feature, but they did not try to save money by using gypsum in those walls like the WTC did.

Building seven (the third building?) came down because of the sub-station under it.

Quote Architects And Engineers for 9/11 Truth:Twin Towers Evidence Blows Away Fire Collapse Theory

The catastrophic destruction of the World Trade Center complex is said by government reports to have resulted from structural failure due mainly to fires initiated by the impacts of the airplanes. A closer look at the evidence reveals a much more disturbing crime.

Apart from the fact that no steel-framed high-rise building has ever collapsed due to fire prior to or since Sept. 11, the manner in which the buildings came down is itself a substantial cause for re-investigation. A collapse due to fire would likely proceed gradually with large deformations visible in the building’s perimeter, with the building tipping over slowly in the direction of the steadily weakening structural members – to the path of least resistance.

Yet the Twin Towers both came down quite suddenly, without warning, and without any “jolts” that would indicate the upper mass impacting the lower mass. The smooth rate of descent was measured at 2/3 of free-fall. In other words, the building was accelerating (traveling faster and faster second by second) straight down through what should have been the path of greatest resistance – the 80,000 tons of structural steel below that was at least five times stronger than necessary to resist this load. Physicists and other experts agree that this could have happened only if the underlying supporting structures were removed ahead of the falling upper building mass. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) acknowledges that each building was destroyed in fewer than a dozen seconds, and that they “came down essentially in free-fall”.


Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Regarding for-profit, pay-or-die healthcare: "The system we have works fine for me," says OU812, "and I'm not interested in changing it."

This is who labels me "angry" and "bitter". Guess I can't argue with that. Selfish people bring the "angry" and "bitter" out of me. I just happen to dislike selfish people; especially when it comes to issues like healthcare, literally a matter of life-versus-death for millions.

One of our comrades on this blog lost an eight-year-old daughter to cancer a decade ago, all because he and his wife couldn't pay for the treatment their doctor prescribed. This treatment would have given their kid at least 80% odds for recovery. But they didn't have the MONEY and now she's DEAD.

Just one heartbreaking example to highlight what happens in a sick and twisted system such as ours, that values profit over life. And to be brutally frank, I think anyone who applauds or condones it is a goddam pig. If that makes me "angry" and "bitter", then I guess I'm an "angry bitter person". No apologies. And as long as this forum exists, I will continue speaking out against that mentality, along with its hideous manifestations in our society. And pay-or-die healthcare would top that list. - AIW

P.S. By the way "OU", if you're going to continue teaching, you might try brushing up on your grammar and spelling.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 8 years 15 weeks ago
Quote Aliceinwonderland: Regarding for-profit, pay-or-die healthcare: "The system we have works fine for me," says OU812, "and I'm not interested in changing it."

Aliceinwonderland ~ I'm curious. I know what motivates you and I to participate on this blog. I often wonder that motivates these selfish, self centered, egotistical people. Why should they even care? Why waste their time? Makes no sense; unless, someone is paying them to do it. We do it for free; but, the only reason I see for these others is if they are making money. They certainly aren't convincing anyone of anything. Surely, they would have a hard time explaining to their selfish families why they waste so much time tapping away at the computer just for the hell of it. Surely their families want money out of their time. Surely they feel the same way too. Surely, money is the only thing that is important to their ilk. We should try to keep that in mind. Everytime they say something annoying and stupid, cha ching!

I'd take what comes out of their mouths with a grain of salt and not get too worked up about it. Give them enough rope and they will soil themselves as they have already done so well. Obviously they have no problem wallowing in their own excrement. Just keep quoting everything they say, just incase they grow a conscious some day and try to delete it. There is little we can add to their diatribes that defiles them more than what comes out of their own mouths.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 8 years 15 weeks ago

chuckle8 and Palindromedary ~ Chuck, quite frankly your lack of understanding of even basic physics, metallurgy, or scientific analysis shocks and amazes me even more so than your lack of citation to support your 'claims.' For instance you stated that building 7 came down because of its substation? What's that supposed to mean? What did the substation do, blow up? There is a subway all over New York. I never heard about them bringing down any skyscrapers for no reason. Substructures are reinforced with steel. They don't make a structure weaker they make it stronger.

Furthermore your claim that the outside walls supported the twin towers goes against even the claims of the 911 commission who stated that there were two main supports structures inside the buildings on either side. In addition, gypsum sheetrock is the standard inner wall covering in every building and has nothing to do with support. If you have any support for these wild allegations I for one would love to see them.

The simple facts are that it takes a considerable amount of time to heat metal with a fire until it is pliable. it doesn't disintegrate instantly in a fire, only in a blast. Metal when heated bends very slowly at first; and, only in the area heated in the direction of any force applied. The intense fires were in the upper structure not in the basement. And finally, even if the entire building was torched evenly--which it wasn't--the lower support members would have bent over or buckled in the heat and not cleanly sheared off at an angle sticking straight up into the air like they were seen to have done in the wreckage. Those wrecked pillars showed no signs of bending, twisting or buckling. They were cut off at an angle by highly localized blasts--exactly as is done in a controlled demolition.

Lets move on and try to figure out who did this instead of wasting our time bickering about known facts.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago

DAnneMarc and Chuckle8: And there are even photos that show that there were just the kind of angled cuts to the main, massive, vertical support beams with the tell-tale molten slag along the edges just like are at other steel building demolitions. Why do you think they were so in a hurry to get rid of the evidence and ship all that steel to China for remelting?

And aside from the dust samples taken from around the WTC site that contained molten micro-spheres and particles of nanothermite and chemical traces that perfectly matched that of a thermitic reaction, all of the vehicles near the WTC towers at the time of 9/11 all exhibited corrosive characteristics of what has been known to happen to other vehicles that have been exposed to the extremely corrosive thermitic chemical reactions.

Molten micro-spheres can only be produced by extremely high heat and hurled at high speeds. The airplane and office fires were not hot enough to even weaken steel, let alone melt it. And if it had been hot enough to weaken steel...what we would have seen was a slow deformation, at the site of the crash, of the steel support members in the direction of where the plane entered the building. The top section would have tipped over to that side and probably would not have even fallen over. The under structure, ie: the rest of the building, would have remained intact. But, in no way would the building have collapsed in it's entirety as it did. There is only one way that could have happened and that is a planned demolition using a combination of normal explosives along with nanothermite.


Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Thank you, Marc! I really appreciate your input today. Like you, I don't know what motivates "OU" and her ilk either, unless they feel driven to undermine what we're saying here. What drives them is anyone's guess. It's not entirely impossible that at least some of them are paid shills. But who would be paying them? If all we talked about was healthcare, I'd imagine it was the "health-scare extorporations" in some pathetic attempt to save face. But we're all over the map here, when it comes to topics. So I don't know either….

Regardless of any of that, Marc, you are a true-blue friend and soul brother. I am very grateful for your perspective in the mix, especially in moments like this. Thank you again for sharing those thoughts. - AIW

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago

People who don't even have strong doubts about the Bush Regime's conspiracy theory...ie: that it was all done by 19 Muslim Hijackers and planned by a frail and dying bearded man sitting in a cave in Afghanistan...will never rectify the terrible wrongs that our crooked government and business banditos have done to the rest of us. It's a one way avalanche to oblivion. If you can't even believe your own eyes and some remnants of high school or college physics of what happened to those WTC buildings then you'll never accomplish reclaiming some modicum of dignity through the voting box. You've not only been duped about 9/11 but you have been duped about "democracy", as it currently exists, in this country. So, keep believing all of the crap that you've been manipulated into believing by the "powers that are" and maybe you can be "comfortably numb" when you finally leave this world.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago
Quote cnet:Pepper spray and laser-armed drone receives first orders

A mining company has ordered 25 Desert Wolf Skunk unmanned aerial vehicles for breaking up riots with pepper spray and "blinding lasers."


Quote cnet:Useful! The drone with an 80,000-volt stun gun

At SXSW, a Texas company offers the Chaotic Unmanned Personal Intercept Drone. Yes, it's CUPID, not with a bow and arrow, but with a powerful stun gun.


Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago
Quote Aliceinwonderland: Just one heartbreaking example to highlight what happens in a sick and twisted system such as ours, that values profit over life. And to be brutally frank, I think anyone who applauds or condones it is a goddam pig.

Quote DAnneMarc: I often wonder that motivates these selfish, self centered, egotistical people... Makes no sense; unless, someone is paying them to do it. We do it for free; but, the only reason I see for these others is if they are making money....Give them enough rope and they will soil themselves as they have already done so well. Obviously they have no problem wallowing in their own excrement.
I wonder too! hmmm! And the frequent misuse or misspellings of various words could be the linguistic sty that they are wallowing in. Yes, we expect a better example from those who claim to be educators...especially English teachers. The other "educator" may just be a woodworking or gym teacher that may not be required to have such a rigid command of the English language. But, even still, didn't they have to have a college degree in order to teach? True, even "experts" make mistakes sometimes...I know I do. But then again, I don't claim to be an educator....least of all, an English teacher.

Quote theguardian:Revealed: US spy operation that manipulates social media
Military's 'sock puppet' software creates fake online identities to spread pro-American propaganda

The 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.

"pro-American" ? hardly! Rather: "pro-ruling elite" ! Most definitely!


Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

PD, good to have your input too.

Thanks for those illuminating tidbits from The Guardian. (Yeah, you're right; "pro-American" my ass.) I highly recommend this article to anyone who wants to know what we're up against, here and elsewhere. How much more will it take to convince enough people that you and I are not exaggerating, that we really are living under fascism! It has me more determined than ever to not back down, to keep countering the toxic messages these fascist scumbags are hellbent on hammering into us via our online sites… even if I come across, to "OU" and other conservatives, like a "bitter angry person". If the military wasn't feeling threatened by what we're doing, they wouldn't go to the trouble of setting up something as bizarre as an "online persona management service" to try and control the platform. We must be doing something right, Palin! It's gratifying to learn that at least a few of the people engaged in "sock puppetry" against U.S. citizens have been prosecuted.

I've held onto another article you posted this past winter, describing blog sabotage techniques in detail. You're such a bloodhound, Palin! Every forum like this needs at least one rabble-rousing rascal like you to dig up the dirt.

The format here on Thom's blog is different from other blogs I've visited, which oughta make it a lot harder for the gestapo to crowd us out via "forum sliding".

As for those little grammatical errors, misspellings and type-0 blunders you and most others on this forum are guilty of from time to time… well Palin, your response couldn't have been more spot-on. Like the overwhelming majority of these people, you're not claiming to be an "educator". I tend to come down hardest on the ones who call themselves "teachers", because they really need to know better than to confuse "want" with "won't" (for example) and "their", "they're" and "there"…. If teachers (even gym teachers!) aren't required to be even that literate, I fear for the next generation and their offspring.

When it comes to the English language, I am hardly a purist. But at least when I do break the rules, I'm aware I am doing it and it is deliberate. Nobody is obligated to conform to academic essay-writing standards on this forum, nor would I even want them to.

Anyway PD, thanks again. You and Marc just made my day. I really love blogging with you guys. - Aliceinwonderland

ChicagoMatt 8 years 15 weeks ago

I agree, Alice, that no one should die because they can't afford healthcare. Would a single-payer, not-for-profit system also take over the R&D part of medicine? I only ask because I think the profit motive is what drives medical breakthroughs, not the desire to help people. That is secondary.

My father got an extra two years at the end of his life thanks to a new device they put in his heart: an internal defibrillator. The company that created that may be full of good people who just want to help, but they also want to make money. They saw the need for a device like that, and made it.

Sooner or later, I'm going to have to get my left knee replaced. I want companies out there looking for the best possible way to do this - competing with each other - so that when I have to get it done, I know I'm getting a quality product. I don't mind if someone or some company makes a huge profit from it.

I don't understand how that would work in a not-for-profit system. The employees now are highly motivated to create new medical devices, because otherwise they could go out of business. But if it was the government running it, they couldn't go out of business, so why try as hard. Does that make sense?

ChicagoMatt 8 years 15 weeks ago

Marc - I thought we talked about this already. I can't speak for the other two non-Progressives who frequent this site, but I kind of enjoy the thoughtful dialogue. It's very rare to find online. The thought that someone would hire people to expound right-wing talking points on a Progressive blog with a handful of readers - none of whom are going to change their views anyway - seems egotistical on your part. Particularly if you're not exactly in a "swing state", like me. I know that the righties don't give a damn about me or my opinion while I still live in Illinois.

Plus, like I said before, without differing opinions, it's not much of a discourse. It's just people slapping each other on the back.

And we agree on a lot of things, remember? It's a dangerous standard to set if you start implying that places should only tolerate people with the same views as them. It's only online here, but what if it were like that in the real world? Remember the case of the wedding cake baker who was forced by court order to bake a cake for a gay couple? The righties kept pointing out that there were plenty of other bakeries in the city that were more than willing to make the cake, but the gay couple chose the one who didn't want them, just to make a point. For all of the hot air lefties blow about being all-inclusive, tolerant, big-tent types, they sure look down on people who disagree with them. At least the righties don't even pretend to want everyone in their tent.

ChicagoMatt 8 years 15 weeks ago

Interesting fact: Most teachers, myself included, don't teach spelling at the middle school level. We teach students how to get "close enough so the spellchecker will catch it." I can almost see you baby-boomers rolling your eyes. Yes, things were different when you were in school. But yes, this is actually much more practical for the modern world.

The fact that this site doesn't do automatic spell check is mildly annoying. I have to cut and paste into a word document, check the spelling, and cut and paste back to this site. So sometimes I just say "fuck it" and post it the way it is.

So criticize all you want. If my grammar and spelling are where you find fault, and not my logic, I think I am doing well.

ps - I don't have all that many mistakes anyway. My sentence structure and variance is pretty good, I think.

pps - OU - Seriously, your spelling is atrocious. It's tough to read sometimes.

Ou812's picture
Ou812 8 years 15 weeks ago

Sorry Matt, I write this from an IPad, no key board, I type with my thumbs...it also does this auto-correct thing, that I don't like, but I can't turn it off. I guess I could check before I hit send, but it's a blog, not a thesis. I agree it's the idea, not the spelling. I feel flattered, attacking my spelling and calling me names is all they have. My ideas are are unblemished :))

ChicagoMatt 8 years 15 weeks ago

I usually judge someone's mastery or the written word by their correct use of hyphens, dashes, and semicolons. But you're correct, it's not a thesis. Just a blog.

That's why I hope no one gets offended with anything I say. it's just words on a screen from a man whose opinion doesn't really matter. It's not like I have any political power to make anything happen.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 8 years 15 weeks ago

ChicagoMatt ~ I never complained about anyones grammar except Kend's. His spelling is sometimes so gross it borders on contempt for this blog; and, I don't like being treated that way because I try not to present myself that way. Honest occasional typo's and misspells I don't bother with. You are right that we do agree on many things. However, your occasional selfishness and lack of concern for others is what really blows me away. The idea that it comes from a Catholic school staff member I find even more disturbing. I don't particularly believe that you are a paid sock-puppet like Palindromedary does. However, I would rather believe that than to believe you honestly mean some of the things you say from the heart. Nevertheless, honesty is important in any dialogue so please continue being yourself. I'll get used to it eventually--probably sooner than later.

OU812 ~ You are a different can of worms altogether. From the moment you walked into this blog you announced profound disdain and disrespect for this forum with your statements, avatar, and especially your name. You have the nerve to complain about being called names? You have asked for it! Actually I think most people here have been going easy on you. How would you like it if some stranger walked up to you with his pants around his ankles and his pride and joy swinging from his hand? Most people wouldn't be interested in anything that man had to say and would probably call the police and have him arrested. If that is the kind of juvenile disrespect you show this forum you have no business complaining about people reacting to it. You asked for it! We at least held our nose and listened.

Some of us Christians have a little saying, treat others as you would have them treat you. If you want to blow people off with sophomoric, selfish, and egotistical conversation while at the same time insinuating that they are all whores of the least common denominator you will get rotten eggs thrown your way. Stop complaining; and, be sure to duck!

Personally I doubt either one of you is a paid shill. I think you both, and Kend, are just so off the wall that it is hard for us to believe you are real. You should know this though, for anyone of us to publicly say the thing you guys say, we would have to be paid; and, paid well. I for one could not be paid enough!

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Matt, as long as various sectors of the medical profession are motivated more by greed than by the desire to help humanity, people will continue dying avoidably and unnecessarily. Research & development are no different in that respect. I'll never understand why a comfortable standard of living isn't enough to satisfy some folks; why they have to be billionaires, or strive to be billionaires… I'm inclined to think of greed as a form of mental illness. There are many ways to award people's accomplishments besides giving them gobs of money, such as honorary doctorate degrees, Nobel prizes and so on. Prestige doesn't always have to translate to "McMansions" with olympic-size swimming pools and private jets. Personally, I couldn't care less about being rich; all I want is a certain measure of security and stability in my life, and freedom from fear. I more than suspect many others in this forum feel the same way. Not everyone is obsessed with wealth.

You said to Marc: "The thought that someone would hire people to expound right-wing talking points on a Progressive blog with a handful of readers - none of whom are going to change their views anyway - seems egotistical on your part." Again, Matt, your assumptions are wrong. At the end of Palindromedary's post #80 is a link to an article in The Guardian about that very thing. I suggest you check it out before dismissing the idea as "egotistical", "paranoid" or whatever.

Months ago, Palin posted another article that describes, in great detail, many techniques used by right-wingers to sabotage forums like this. Since Thom's blog happens to be a public forum, it seems inevitable there would be some people reading it without participating. So you've no idea how many or how few individuals that audience is comprised of. Anyone's guess. The idea that the government or the military would want to mess with it hardly seems far-fetched to me, especially after reading those articles.

On another topic, you mentioned the bakery that was in the news for refusing to bake a gay couple's wedding cake. I commend the couple for making a stink about it. When you're in business, you're serving the public, and the public is made up of all kinds of people. I think that when business owners start refusing to serve certain segments of the population, for being gay or black or whatever, they don't deserve to be in business. The only customers I refuse to provide services to more than once (if at all) are the rude ones. If they're going to be rude to me, they can take their business elsewhere.

You said "For all of the hot air lefties blow about being all-inclusive, tolerant, big-tent types, they sure look down on people who disagree with them." Again, that's a mighty broad stroke. Believe it or not, I've worked in the homes of many right-wingers and we've gotten along just fine, long as we steer clear of politics in our conversations! The couple we'll be working for this coming Friday are millionaires who got rich off the health insurance business, and they've been our clients almost twenty years now. They voted for Bush and seemed to think he was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Much as I disapprove of this guy's line of business and abhor his politics, I've grown very fond of him and his wife, because they are lovely clients and have always treated us with kindness and respect. The wife even shares her home-baked cookies with us! Those two would be welcome in our "tent" anytime.

What we progressives tend to look down on are bigots, whether those bigots hate gays, women, Muslims, blacks, Jews… A bigot is a bigot is a bigot, and we don't like bigots. Got a problem with that? - Aliceinwonderland

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

Marc, so much of what you say really resonates with me, and this last post of yours is no exception. It often seems as though you're speaking for me as well as for yourself! Much appreciated.

However one thing Matt has said that I agree with is that we need different points of view on this forum to keep it interesting; otherwise it's just a lot of back-slapping. That said, I could still do without OU's avatar with Michelle Bachmann sucking a giant-size... well, never mind... - AIW

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago

DAnnemarc: There is really no way I can know if anyone on this blog is a paid shill. But, one thing is for certain: if right-wing/conservative people come to this blog, which has an obvious liberal/progressive slant, and express their repulsive views, they are looking for a fight. Some will be right in our faces and crudely utter inanities that are brazenly bogus. Others will try another tact. They will try to appear calm, cool, and collected and smoothly dish out their inanities. They want us to think that they are decent honorable people knowing, of course, that it helps to win people over. And that is just what Machiavelli would have taught. Either way, they are defending indefensible nonsense that is utterly abhorrent to our sensibilities. People are dying from the beliefs and policies of uncaring, selfish, right-wingers. We are in a war that the right-wingers have started against us. So, antagonists that want to stir up trouble on this site are part of the enemy. Don't expect niceties and politeness. We're in no mood for that. And we shouldn't be fooled by someone who pretends to be nice and polite who tries to lure us in to their sway.

Before these guys yell foul they should remember the kind of treatment that liberals/progressives get when they appear on Fox Snooze.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago

Aliceinwonderland: Very well said! Some people just can't see a similarity between refusing to bake a wedding cake for gays and refusing to service blacks at a restaurant. And there are people who still believe that both should be refused service just because of the color of their skin or sexual orientation. Some people should just grow up and just get over it.

And I sure do agree with you about OUs avatar. It's disgustingly suggestive. For a high-school teacher, especially one who is about 68(?), to display such adolescence is shameful. But, that's just my opinion.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 8 years 15 weeks ago

An opinion I share, PD! Clearly, a case of arrested development.

Your #90 post really rings mah bell. Like you, I do not feel obligated to extend niceties to right-wing assholes like OU812 who come barging in out of nowhere to deliberately annoy and offend us. I'll confess, I was shocked to learn how old (s)he is; I'd just assumed (s)he was maybe Matt's age. He/she is even older than ME!

On another note, the English language is so in dire need of gender-neutral labels it isn't even funny. I sure do get tired of all this "he/she", "(s)he" nonsense. - AIW

P.S. I think any liberal or progressive who engages on FOX is a glutton for punishment. I guess they like the paycheck they're getting out of it. But when we had TV, I couldn't stomach watching Hannity and O'Reilley "interviewing" people who could hardly get a word in edgewise. After a short time, I stopped watching FOX altogether. A little of that shit goes a loooonnnng way for me!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago

I have not watched Fox for so many years I don't remember how many. The only reason I know that some liberals have been on their channel was from YouTube praising how the liberal tore the fascist bastards up.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 15 weeks ago


ChicagoMatt 8 years 14 weeks ago

Palin - when I heard about the Supreme Court rulig about needing a warrant to seach a phone, I thought about you first. I thought you would approve of that ruling.

ChicagoMatt 8 years 14 weeks ago
However one thing Matt has said that I agree with is that we need different points of view on this forum to keep it interesting; otherwise it's just a lot of back-slapping.

See, I'm doing a public service. :)

I was thinking about healthcare today, and I have some serious questions for people who are more familiar with it than I am. So I'm throwing this out there for anyone:

1. With Medicare and Medicaid, who determines the reimbursement rate for providers? That is, can a doctor get more money by performing a procedure on someone with private insurance, rather than government insurance?

2. Can a provider refuse to see people with government insurance?

3. Does government insurance provide preventative care? (Specifically, I am thinking of weight-loss surgeries.) Some insurance companies call those "selective cosmetic procedures" and do not cover them. Some companies cover them fully because they know it's cheaper in the long run.

I have more questions, but I don't want to overwhelm anyone.

ChicagoMatt 8 years 14 weeks ago
Believe it or not, I've worked in the homes of many right-wingers and we've gotten along just fine,

I believe it. I feel like the lone non-blue peg in a sea of blue pegs where I live, but we all get along in the real world. I even married a lefty.

If a nationwide Progressive thought revolution ever comes along, I'll jump on the bandwagon.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 14 weeks ago

Chicago Matt: Why would you have thought of me? I hate cell phones. I gave up cell phones when I was no longer required to carry one. But, you are right, I do approve of the ruling. :-)

chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 14 weeks ago

DAM -- The unique structure of the WTC was described by a caller to Thom. I think he said he was one of 200 signers to a report that said more investigation needs to be done. In the LA area we have had several explosions that have killed fireman and destroyed buildings. Several days later after some analysis they come up with explanation of some electrical substation causing it. These are very small substations compared to the one under bldg 7.

With the existence of photoshop, I would be interested in what you or anyone can call a fact.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 8 years 14 weeks ago
chuckle8's picture
chuckle8 8 years 14 weeks ago

Chi Matt -- I think there is significant evidence that the profit motive does more damage than good. I remember Pfizer being fined $2 billion for knowlingly killing people. Ms Washington wrote a book about pharma not developing any new drugs. They find it more profitable to just change the molecular structure a little to keep their patents alive. There are a lot more examples. Do you have any examples where the profit motive may have helped?

Thom occasionally asks`if there is anyone who actually is worth a billion dollars based on their contribution to society. My candidate is Jonas Salk. I do not believe the profit motive drove him.

Thom's Blog Is On the Move

Hello All

Today, we are closing Thom's blog in this space and moving to a new home.

Please follow us across to hartmannreport.com - this will be the only place going forward to read Thom's blog posts and articles.

From Unequal Protection, 2nd Edition:
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