Thursday, July 08, 2010

Vets Get Some Good News

New York Times: "The government is preparing to issue new rules that will make it substantially easier for veterans who have been found to have post-traumatic stress disorder to receive disability benefits, a change that could affect hundreds of thousands of veterans from the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam."

They get good news, too bad they had to go through hell to get it. After being used as pawns by Dubya in less than justified wars, it's fair they get the help they deserve.

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Republicans Want To Screw You, Then Expect Your Vote

From now until Nov. 2, the Republican Party will be the party of unemployment. The logic is straightforward: The more people who are unemployed on Election Day, the better the prospects for Republicans in the fall election. They expect, with good cause, that voters will hold the Democrats responsible for the state of the economy. Therefore anything that the Republicans can do to make the economy worse between now and then will help their election prospects.

While it might be bad taste to accuse a major national political party of deliberately wanting to throw people out of jobs, there is no other plausible explanation for the Republicans' behavior. The Republicans have balked at supporting nearly every bill that had any serious hope of creating or keeping jobs, most recently filibustering on bills that provided aid to state and local governments and extending unemployment benefits. The result of the Republicans' actions, unless they are reversed quickly, is that hundreds of thousands more workers will be thrown out of work by Election Day.

Country first, my ass. Republicans are never looking to govern, only control.

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Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Christian Cults Calling Out Beck Cults

Head Of ‘World’s Largest Interactive Christian Website’ Calls Out Beck’s ‘Deception’ About His Mormonism

BeckFaith Glenn Beck often speaks about faith on his radio show and Fox News program, but he almost never mentions his own faith — Mormonism. Beck’s audience largely consists of conservative Christians, many of whom consider Mormonism to be a “cult.” So as to not alienate his followers, Beck obscures his religion, and focuses instead on broad themes common to many Christian faiths.

But out of view of his general audience, Beck readily explains that the Church of Latter-Day Saints made him who he is today. “I was baptized on a Sunday, and on Monday an agent called me out of the blue,” Beck said in a Mormon promotional video. And the Church has rewarded Beck. For example, the Mormon-affiliated website is currently promoting Beck’s 8/28 rally in Washington, D.C., offering travelers an entire day as part of a seven day tour of the East Coast.

Today, Bill Keller, the “leader of the world’s largest interactive Christian website” — an internet ministry with over 2.4 million subscribers — is attempting to expose Beck’s “deception” about his faith, explaining Beck “lies to people by stating he is a Christian”

Keller states, “Beck likes to call out people for their lies and deception, yet he portrays himself daily as a Christian. The fact is, the beliefs of the satanic Mormon cult are totally inconsistent with Biblical Christianity. He uses the words “god” and “jesus,” yet the god and jesus of the Mormon cult are NOT the God and Jesus of the Bible!” [...]

Keller concludes, “I could care less what Beck chooses to believe, but I do care that he lies to people by stating he is a Christian when a person who believes in the lies of the Mormon cult is no more a Christian than a Muslim is.

Keller — who said during the 2008 campaign that a vote for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney “is a vote for Satan” — is clearly an intolerant bigot, but his attack on Beck exposes a potential rift between Beck and his largely conservative Christian followers.

Indeed, Beck’s appearance at Rev. Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University in May “generated an unusual amount of public infighting among evangelicals.” Conservative Christians share many of Beck’s political and social views, but “many of them also remain extremely suspicious of Beck’s Mormon faith.” Several evangelical pastors said they were “shocked and disappointed” that the school had allowed Beck to speak there.

Beck fans are idiots and would be the first to fear Mormons as wackos, yet they listen to Beck the Mormon. Can't make this shit up.

The Right Wing and religions are just a total disaster. One bigoted side denying the other bigoted side over who has the best myths at justifying them being mean to non-members.

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This Seems To Miss The MSM

“If the Medicare cuts in the health care bill are to be believed and CBO's estimates pertaining to the health care bill are to be believed, President Obama has already done more to reduce in magnitude the long-term budget problems for the U.S. than the previous administration, who undoubtedly made the problem worse. That's true despite the amount added to the deficit from the stimulus bill and the costly coverage provisions in the health care bill," - Tax Foundation.

Obama has done more in 18 months than Bush in 8 years. How many times will we hear facts like these? Not really a surprise considering Bush was the worst President ever.

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Iran Unveils Approved Hairstyles

So sad it's almost funny. Some of the approved cuts are very "Growing Up Gotti".

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Tuesday, July 06, 2010

NYT Op-Ed - Supreme Court "Activism"

IT is no secret that the current Supreme Court is an activist one in striking down congressional legislation — just look at the prominent cases from the court’s just-completed term, most notably Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, in which a 5-4 majority of the court’s more conservative justices struck down key provisions of Congress’s bipartisan campaign finance laws.

But “activism” can be measured in ways other than striking down legislation. Indeed, this term’s leading cases highlight another type of Supreme Court activism that hasn’t received much attention: vigorously policing and overturning district court judges who ordinarily would have much more leeway — particularly when those judges had used that leeway in a liberal direction.

Conservatives use "activism" as an attack on liberals, hiding behind false claims of governing from the bench and, even more bogus, claiming they are protecting the Constitution.

Once again, it's say one thing, do the opposite for the conservatives. The Roberts Supreme court are no longer content to just rewrite legislation, they want to second guess the lower courts. Checks and balances and transparency are not a strength for the Right.

"This kind of activism is lower profile than overturning Congressional legislation, since it’s internal to the judiciary itself. But it should get more attention than it has, because it is another important way the current Supreme Court is using its power to shape and restrict government decisions." - Paul Gewirtz, Yale Law School

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This Is Why You Separate Church And State

A group of Afghan women who braved an enraged mob yesterday to protest against an “abhorrent” new Afghan law had to be rescued by police from a hail of stones and abuse.
The protest by about 200 women, unprecedented in recent Afghanistan history, was directed at the Shia Family Law passed last month by the Afghan parliament which appears to legalise marital rape and child marriage.
Religious fairy tales and inconsistent man-made myths from the Bronze Age have nothing to do with how a modern government works.

We are moving forward, not backwards. Your private life is private. Don't pretend your relationship with a cloud god entitles you to anything.

The fact that the Constitution calls for the separation doesn't seem to matter to these very same morally unemployed and mentally unspectacular Americans.

Photoshoping The World To Meet A Desired Image

"It’s just not quite the same for a president to be glancing down at the water while chatting with others on the beach as it is for the president to be solemn and depressed and alone while contemplating oil-soaked sand. But the Economist didn’t have a picture of the latter. So they made one." TPM

Photoshop reality until we can't tell the difference.

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Monday, July 05, 2010

Krugman: Punishing the Unemployed

There was a time when everyone took it for granted that unemployment insurance, which normally terminates after 26 weeks, would be extended in times of persistent joblessness. It was, most people agreed, the decent thing to do.

But that was then. Today, American workers face the worst job market since the Great Depression, with five job seekers for every job opening, with the average spell of unemployment now at 35 weeks. Yet the Senate went home for the holiday weekend without extending benefits. How was that possible?

The answer is that we’re facing a coalition of the heartless, the clueless and the confused. Nothing can be done about the first group, and probably not much about the second. But maybe it’s possible to clear up some of the confusion.

By the heartless, I mean Republicans who have made the cynical calculation that blocking anything President Obama tries to do — including, or perhaps especially, anything that might alleviate the nation’s economic pain — improves their chances in the midterm elections. Don’t pretend to be shocked: you know they’re out there, and make up a large share of the G.O.P. caucus.

Unemployment checks go right into the economy through rent payment, groceries, bills, expenses. No one is banking their checks. Without unemployment checks, you wold have less spending, more empty apartments, more court cases. Maybe you would have more crime is things got more desperate.

Why is America spending on Americans so contested? Blowing billions in the deserts of the Middle East was a no-brainer. Killing gets unlimited budgets, saving lives gets the opposite treatment.

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