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« Local Government—An Oxymoron?! | Main | A Reader’s Complaint Answered »

07 November 2011


Barry Pruett

Thank you George. That was a beautiful read for the morning.

Michael R. Kesti


Todd Juvinall

Excellent George. I think the socialists/communists have hidden in the environmental movement here in America after the fall of their mentors in 1991. They use the all or nothing mantra on every issue to scare the people into more government controls.

Account Deleted

The corollary to this is folks from the socialist side saying 'capitalism has failed - witness the (fill in the blank-financial problem de jour)'. It only works when it's free market capitalism, not the sort of crony capitalism we've been experiencing for quite a while. That will quickly lead to cries of the conservatives wanting 'no govt controls at all' - ie: anarchy. Sigh. No, Virginia - we want a stable system of law that will maintain our rights as enumerated by the Constitution. That document does not in any way ask govt to ensure any sort of outcome in an individuals life. That's why our current president called it 'fatally flawed'. The left wants a govt to control and maintain to varying degrees (depending on who is speaking) the supply of goods and incomes to each individual.
Call it social justice or what ever trendy name - it's all un Constitutional. That sort of govt sounds all warm and fuzzy, until it's put into gear. Certain folks end up getting to decide 'what's fair' and some how, the very self-same folks end up with a lot more stuff than everyone else. In free market capitalism, Bill Gates ends up with a lot of stuff because he came up with a product that millions of citizens felt was worth digging in their pocket and paying him for. In anything to the left, some one ends up with more stuff because they could use the govt to take it from you and I without regard to whether or not we felt we were getting our money's worth. For more on that subject, (just as one example) please educate yourself on the latest absurdity from the California High Speed Rail so-called business plan. The rich crony capitalists get richer because they know how to game the un Constitutional govt. And the middle class get poorer because they tend to be ignorant, lazy and greedy. It's that simple.

Mikey McD

Very well done George. It has been fun to watch and listen to collectivists discount the crisis in the EU. They can't accept Thatcher's prophetic summary of socialism playing out in real time.... "The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

Coming to America...
Any good artist (writer, director, poet, intellectual, philosopher etc) will note that foreshadowing will be lost on some folks.

Douglas  Keachie

"That's why our current president called it 'fatally flawed'."

Common misstatement, taken out of context, for "fundamentally flawed" in a discussion on WBAZ in 2001, of what the Warren Court did and did not accomplish for civil rights, and how a redistribution of wealth needed to be accomplished through the legislature, moat likely via progressive taxation, not the executive branch or the courts.

Obama says the Constitution is fatally flawed and wants to redistribute wealth through the administrative branch is total elephant excrement, promulgated by the usual suspects, especially Rush Limbaugh.

Douglas  Keachie

We really should have left the development of interstates highways to the private sector. We all know how much better they would be, and how much less they'd cost the taxpayers, just like having every airport and its controllers be developed and run as private businesses would be. The airport in Mountain View would of course be Apple soft and hardware only, and if your plane wasn't so equipped, you could just go off and crash in the fog at Half Moon Bay.

This is a three sentence paragraph, because George says that's all Americans can cope with anymore.

Ben Emery

Once again talking about the chatter instead of the substance. The debate is two pronged.

One, who controls those in our government and for what purposes. You have done many misleading pieces on this subject once again focusing on the chatter instead of the core issues.
As the big business world gains more control over our government the less money they put into the transparent system, which is referring to the peak spending that led to the Citizens United decision. This US Supreme Court is the most activist (corporate friendly) court in living history.

Two, What type of nation do we want in the future. Right now we have a system that has created the biggest wealth gap since the 1920's. A system that allows multi-national companies and their capital to cross international borders but not labor. A system that is only benefiting a small few at the top while the rest struggle to maintain.

These are the debates and it should be the issues associated with them not labels that lump issues into one group or another.

Wanting much stricter regulations on banks and Wall St isn't a socialist or communist issue but a common theme throughout American history from all political stripes. There has been one consistent opponent of this idea the bankers themselves and those who believe that a small few should control and run our nation.

Paul Emery

The duck test is a humorous term for a form of inductive reasoning. This is its usual expression:
“If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck."

Not so on this blog. This blog expresses that. "I and only I know what a duck is. Therefore if I think it's a duck it is indeed a duck."

This delusional rant that all countries that have elements of socialistic economics are destined to be Communist dictatorships ignore post WWII history to an astounding degree.

Account Deleted

Well - OK, fundamentally, not fatally, flawed. There isn't a whole lot of difference. But he raised his hand and took an oath to uphold and defend it. "Obama says the Constitution is fatally flawed and wants to redistribute wealth through the administrative branch" I never said anything about the executive branch and I never mentioned Rush. I rarely listen to him and never heard him talk about this quote from Obama. Why did you bring it up?
I found this quote online - you can dispute it if you like. It's accurate as far as I know.
"If you look at the victories and failures of the civil rights movement and its litigation strategy in the court, I think where it succeeded was to invest formal rights in previously dispossessed people, so that now I would have the right to vote. I would now be able to sit at the lunch counter and order and as long as I could pay for it I’d be OK

But, the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth, and of more basic issues such as political and economic justice in society. To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn't that radical. It didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it's been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can't do to you. Says what the federal government can't do to you, but doesn't say what the federal government or state government must do on your behalf.

And that hasn't shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court-focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that."

So Obama thinks the Supreme Court shouldn't follow the law. That persnickity darn Constitution just gets in the way. All we have are "Negative liberties". Say what?
Go on and keep defending this piece of garbage. Remember - It's your negative right!

Todd Juvinall

Excellent smackdown Scott!

Douglas  Keachie

Let's se you smack down Jessie Ventura:

Douglas  Keachie

This is as much of the interview as i've been able to find, much more than your several paragraphs:

WBAZ is most unhelpful, as it's search engine keeps replacing constitution with construction.

Account Deleted

Uh - Doug? Jessie is a private citizen and can say what he wants. It doesn't concern this topic of George's and it doesn't concern me. Just keep posting more of that "redistributive" president - it doesn't change the fact that he doesn't want to follow the Constitution.
Mike - glad to see the meds are kicking in. Just relax and go back to sleep.

Douglas  Keachie

The Constitution is not fixed in stone, it can and was to be amended, to grow with the times.

Todd Juvinall

Jesse Ventura is a nut. Is he your pal and mentor DK? The Constitution can certainly be amended and it has been. The process is one of legislation though. Unfortunately, the courts have circumvented that.

George Rebane

DougK 623pm - the Founders gave us a way to modify the Constitution to reflect changing times and needs. I don't think anyone in these pages has suggested that the Constitution should be "fixed in stone", but its modifications should come about according to the amendment processes contained therein. Do you find anything here that disputes that?

Mike Thornton

The problem isn't with the process for amending the Constitution. It's with who has been legally charged with the power to inflict their interpretation(s) of it, on the rest of us.

Todd Juvinall

I agree, mainly liberal/socialist judges.

D. King

The Liberal Mind

Here you go George!

Douglas  Keachie

"The process is one of legislation though. Unfortunately, the courts have circumvented that."

Which, if you had actually bothered to listen to the video I listed, is precisely one of the things that Obama said. He clearly indicated it was NOT something the courts should be doing.

here's a sidenote for George and Greg:

In other news: I LOVE this movie. (currently watching)

" You mean we are all gonna die because you screwed up on the MATH?"

Account Deleted

Poor Mike Thornton - afflicted with those awful nasties that insist on freedom of speech and freedom of religion and goodness knows what else. The Constitution can be altered but we should always follow the original intent. The govt is not the originator of any 'rights'. If the govt is given the power to do so, then it will have the power to also take away our rights. And it will. You have no Constitutional right to food, medicine, shelter or any 'good'. If the govt is made to provide you with said goods, it will have to confiscate the good or money from some one else. Citizens then essentially become slaves to the govt. And so we have. I must work now for others who do nothing. I'm having a hard time understanding how you lefties think this is good. Unless, of course, you are one of the non-producers using the govt to enslave me.

Bonnie M

Very interesting and true George. However, You left out the German Nazi socialists that the world recognizes as being evil, while mentioning the Communists. They even had their back to the earth environmental green movement, hence the protection that created their beautiful Black Forest. It doesn't matter what name is used...the past governments with the bad reputations were all totalitarian. In other words, they were in the business of controlling and redistributing the wealth of productive people.

George Rebane

Good point BonnieM. The piece was really about tactics of debate and argumentation most often used by the Left. The examples that I used were for illustration, and could have also included Germany's National Socialists.

Jo Ann Rebane

BenE- 10:59 AM -

A more careful read of the "Citizens United" decision reveals that Unions and their spending habits are given exactly what corporations were given. What's good for Unions should be good for corporations.

Greg Goodknight

Thornton, it's a shame you confuse 3rd rate science fiction movies with reality. Perhaps that's a feature of modern leftists George missed.

Greg Goodknight

Ben E, you really do need to widen your reading list.

Now, about that widening gap between rich and poor since 1920... there have been Democratic Speakers of the House for something like 65 of the last 92 years, more than twice the tenure of Republicans. Do you really think there'd be more equality of outcomes if Dems had a *complete* monopoly on the writing of tax law and budgets?

Ben Emery

So no real talk about the issue just the chatter. BenE what about unions BenE what about the democratic party. Talk about the issues that affect our lives not the crap that substitutes for politics.

Please watch this series on Democracy and understand none of us would be anything except peasants in the early years. Women didn't have the right to vote

George Rebane

BenE - this might sound a bit harsh, but the central topic here is still debate tactics and what grows out of that. Don't be so hard on your fellow commenters if they don't follow your lead completely. But I do maintain that in the mean we have been talking about "issues that affect our lives not the crap that substitutes for politics." For winery openings, deaths of prominent sports figures, and schedules of local events, there is another blog in these parts that will fill the bill.

While not always reasonably dissecting topics of national and international import, we do seem to cover much of the waterfront as time goes by.

Mikey McD

Ben, I will take a constitutional republic thank you. Got any solutions for today's crisis that doesn't require force?

"Stuff that affects our lives"-

Americans forced to contribute approx 15% of wages to SS/Medicare programs against their will.

Employers are forced to collect taxes for employees.

My savings earns .05% because The FED is trying to manipulate me to spend or take risks that I don't want to take.

The FEDs are devaluing US Dollars (inflation tax) by printing money, decreasing the purchasing power of our wages (hurts the poor/middle class the most)

Ridiculous public employee wages/benefits are crippling local/state/fed governments (Nev Co decreased the # of employees from 1011 to 777 and the line item for wages/benefits WENT UP! = Less value to taxpayers)

Immoral tax system which does not equitably spread the burden and penalizes the producers among us (47% of americans pay ZERO Federal income tax).

Corporations are labelled as buying elections even though they don't contribute squat to campaigns.

Local librarian/building dept manager/etc (tax payer funded) makes more than my doctor/nurse, engineer, accountant, electrician, etc.

Todd Juvinall

I will watch maybe one link BenE but your obsessive behavior posting so many is tiring. Let us hear your opinions and leave the video series for your cable TV.

Ben Emery

Basically the content on this blog is how Socialist don't get it. In Socialist it means anybody left of the tea party.

It is very tiring to have the same dialogue no matter what issue is being discussed. It degrades into partisan politics and generic broad brush adhominems almost 100% of the time.

Seriously, can you please try and have a real discussion on what are democracy/ republic/democratic republic are and what is their importance or downfalls.

I'm pretty sure that most people in the US don't have any real idea what the differences are outside of saying someone is a communist, fascist, or anarchist. Supporting democracy doesn't make someone left or a communist but at RR it is implied. For that matter what is a capitalist? I talk to people all the time who work low wage grunt labor jobs who claim they are a capitalist. I ask them "A capitalist in the fact that you support capitalism or that you personally are a capitalist?" More times than not they say the latter or both. I know this plays into your point that people don't have the intellect to understand what they are voting on. If we actually had a government that represented the people instead of special interests we would have a system that had real news, schools that worked, and an economy where a vast majority of the people would have enough. None of these are the case and it is due to the fact everything in our government is controlled by these special interests distorting their policies.

Mikey McD

A drastic decrease in federal power = solution. Even the 'low wage grunt laborer' can understand that a decrease in federal government power = decreased special interests power. Ben, you might be a libertarian.

"everything in our government is controlled by these special interests distorting their policies."

Todd Juvinall

BenE complains about personal attacks and then commits personal attacks. The left thinks we can be fooled. He then states, "In Socialist it means anybody left of the tea party. ?, Now why would you Bt benE? Could that be your attempt to denigrate? Yep.

The Tea Party is the middle if there is such a thing. They are the old farts who saved the country and created most of the wealth that you on the left are trying to swipe. If anyone is out of touch with reality I say perhaps upi need to look in the mirror.

Douglas Keachie

"Thornton, it's a shame you confuse 3rd rate science fiction movies with reality. Perhaps that's a feature of modern leftists George missed."

That's MY third rate sci fi movie, Greg!

You can do math but can't read?

Douglas Keachie

"Corporations are labelled as buying elections even though they don't contribute squat to campaigns."

Remember in junior high when the bullies would grab something belonging to the dork and then pass it behind their backs from one to another until the poor dork didn't know who had it, but he knew damn well one of them had it because they were all grinning ear to ear?

Same story here. First to the foundation, then to the institute, then to the resaearcher, then a buddy foundation makes a grant for an ad, based on the researcher's "findings," or whatever. Same game, played by adults. No different from the TPP claiming not to be ultra right Repubbys, lying with a smile on your face. i know you think we're stupid, but we're certainly not THAT stupid.

Ben Emery

No that is the atmosphere at RR.

Todd are you a capitalist or a worker, in the true sense of their meanings?

Todd Juvinall


Douglas Keachie

Smartest thing Todd has said to date.

Todd Juvinall

Still waiting on you.

George Rebane

BenE 912am - Your complaint requires a more comprehensive answer which I attempt at

Douglas Keachie

So many to chose from, Todd, can't make up your mind?

Todd Juvinall

I think DK is trying to change the subject.

bill tozer

Funny how the Constitution is basically a list of prohibitions what the Federal Government cannot do. Its pretty clear. James Madison was opposed to the Bill of Rights because he felt that even listing them was redundant and one might think these were additions rather than inherent in what Government cannot do. Just the idea of listing rights which government cannot intrude upon was opening a can of worms and might tempt government to feel they could infringe upon rights not specifically listed. No human rights are government granted per the Constitution of the United States of America. It is curious that the term "States' Rights" has become a dirty word among those who seek more power from Washington and look to Washington to exert its tentacles in every aspect of our lives, even what we whisper under our breath if they could. "States' Rights" to the far left has become a code word for racism and the Separatist Movement, unless, of course, it comes to growing pot. To me, "States' rights" thwart the Fed Gov't from reaching beyond its Constitutional Prohibitions as our founders knew Big Brother would try to do. Big Brother cannot help itself from trying to rule from Washington and cannot resist the delicious temptation to micro manage. Its inherent in the nature of the beast. Like the bumper stick "I love my country but fear my government".

Steve Enos

Arizona, Ohio, Mississippi and Kentucky just sent a masive message to the Tea Party and to the hard right R"s .

Did you guys see Perry in the last debate? This is the guy Dan Logue went to Texas to beg to run? The R's are in full melt down and the Tea Party is being sent packing... even Fox News says that's that case

George Rebane

So it looks like it's over SteveE. Where will the happy dancing take place, and will there be a hosted bar?

Steve Enos

George, can you offer a real response to what just took place in the elections?

Can you offer a real response about Perry's latest melt down at the last debate?

Dan Logue went to Texas to beg this guy to run? Perry WAS the Tea Party guy, but then they bailed on him and went to Cain. Cain is not a viable candidate for President... that is very clear. What next? Is the Tea Party going to now jump to Newt?

Even most of the folks speaking on Fox News say the Tuesday message was a big message that the Tea Party, hard right folks over reached and the backlash has now started.

The R's are in melt down, you have no one out of the current candidates to run that can beat President Obama.

What next?... who you gonna call?... Call Ghost Busters!

Todd Juvinall

George, it is obvious that SteveE knows nothing of which he speaks. I did a roundup of the Tuesday elections and the dems were spanked and the R's were victorious. The liberals try their propaganda but we have their number.

George Rebane

SteveE - calling the results of something as open and complex as American elections one full year in advance is the self-appointed errand of political naifs.

Steve Enos

The following covers what took place across the U.S. on Tuesday.

Todd Juvinall

The SacBee Enos? Please. I canceled them many years ago for their incompetent reporting, if you can call it that. It is a liberal rag on its way to th dustbin. Sheesh!

Steve Enos

Sorry Todd but the folks on Fox are saying the same thing as the Bee is about what took place Tuesday and why it took place.

Barry Pruett

Sorry are spinning.

Ohio was very telling. Kasich’s law was overturned by the union muscle pushing and getting out the vote in Ohio…but the very same people voted against Obama (by a wider margin) in connection with his healthcare act. The Virginia, house-senate-governor…all Republican for the first time in forever.

I envision a rerun of 1980. The unions and the rest of the left muscle a high voter turnout who then vote for the Republican presidential candidate.

I say keep pushing the agenda. A campaign of ideas will always beat a campaign of rhetoric. Gingirch versus Obama in 2012.

Steve Enos

So now Barry is a go Newt guy... what a hoot!

First Bachmann goes down in flames and the Tea Party runs from her. Then Tea Party Dan Logue goes to Texas to beg Perry to run and they ran from Perry. Then they get behind Cain and now seem to be dumping him too and moving to Newt!

The folks on Fox are saying the same thing as the Bee is about what took place Tuesday. Many smart Republicans are also saying the same thing too.

Denial is not a river in Egypt, but it seems to be alive and well in our local Tea Party clans minds.

What took place Tuesday is a direct result of hard right, Tea Party over reaching... more is on the way!

Todd Juvinall

StyeveE you are simply wrong and you need to admit it. The R's kicked butt Tuesday, even taking the state of Mississippi away form the D's since reconstruction. Your ilk is toast.

Steve Enos

"The R's kicked butt Tuesday"... you bet! Just like Charlie Sheen... you are both "winning" big time!

Todd Juvinall

State legislators scorecard Tuesday. R's 17 plus, D's 19 minus. Yeah those R's are losing nationally. NOT!

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