Link Farm and Open Thread, Ithaca Edition

Why Ithaca edition? Because I’m in Ithaca visiting family.

This is an open thread; post what you like, for as long as you like, with whomever you like. Self-linking makes the sun shine, flowers grow, children laugh, etc.

  1. Above: An image left on Israel’s barrier wall by the graffiti artist Banksy. Awesome. Via Shalom Rav, who has a couple more examples.
  2. An article about Ezra Nawi, a gay pacifist Jewish Israeli of Iraqi decent activist for Palestinian rights, who may shortly be in jail over disputed charges of assaulting an Israeli police officer. (Via.) And check out
  3. Vancouver feminists open “no trans women allowed” pharmacy. Aaaargh.
  4. Ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel riot to protest child being taken away from alleged abusive mother.
  5. Internalized racism and “third culture kids” (autobiographical essay).
  6. I’m not hanging noodles on your ear (and other intriguing idioms from around the world)
  7. Book recommendation: Exercises designed for fat women (with a stay healthy, not a lose weight, perspective).
  8. When it comes to gay marriage, why is Meghan McCain so much more eloquent than Bill Clinton or Barack Obama?
  9. Lying about the hate crime bill: “A danger to religious freedom.” (And see as well Box Turtle Bulletin’s earlier installment in this series, “There are 30 sexual orientations.
  10. How Global Warming Will Destabilize Pakistan and India
  11. Ron Wyden’s Free Choice Act — an essential part of health care reform. Let’s hope it actually makes it through.
  12. Lawyer asks judge to order opposing lawyer to wear nicer shoes. No, really.
  13. A 72-year longitudinal study of 268 Harvard men. I wish they had done a more diverse group, but still: This is very cool stuff.
  14. It’s way too early to call the stimulus a failure.
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42 Responses to Link Farm and Open Thread, Ithaca Edition

  1. 1
    Aftercancer says:

    Politicians have been ticking me off lately so I’ve written a piece about asking Senator Charles Grassley for a job and giving a reality check to Tom Coburn (this guy makes me nuts).

    I’ve also written of a plea for assistance for a young woman with breast cancer who was fired for being an athiest and in honor of the new Harry Potter, a brief piece about Maggie Smith.

  2. To any latin@ folks here, I’m curious on what you think of this:

  3. 3
    RonF says:

    When it comes to gay marriage, why is Meghan McCain so much more eloquent than Bill Clinton or Barack Obama?

    Speculation: because she’s not an elected official, so she can advocate a minority position without worrying about it costing her votes.

  4. 4
    RonF says:

    Health Care Free Choice Act:

    if I decide that I don’t like any of the health-care coverage options being offered by my employer and would prefer to choose from the many options being offered on the Health Insurance Exchange, my employer has to give me a voucher that covers 65 to 70 percent of the cost of the lowest level of exchange plan. (That is the average portion that an employer pays of his employee’s health insurance premiums.)

    Why not have the voucher equal that employer’s actual contribution to the most basic health plan they offer?

    Third, it begins to build a viable alternative to the employer-based health-care system. Experts think that the exchange will need at least 20 million participants to really start seeing advantages of scale. This will ensure it has much more than that. And if the exchange works? If direct competition between insurers lowers costs and increases quality, if standardized billing and administrative efficiencies save money, if the massive pool of customers helps insurers bargain for discounts with providers, then the exchange will become a progressively better deal, and more people will choose — there’s that word again — to enter it. And if more people choose to enter it, then that cycle happens again, more people enter, and so forth. Soon, you’ve built the system we want rather than the one we have.

    What this paragraph tells me is that the objective here is not to create a better way to provide health care insurance to the currently uninsured (or underinsured) – the objective from the viewpoint of this writer is to get rid of private health care insurance overall. You may of course favor this, but that’s not the way that this is being represented. Lying to people about what your objectives are is dishonorable at the least.

    What’s to stop all of a company’s young employees from buying their way out and leaving their employer with bad health risks and high premiums? According to Wyden’s office, risk adjustment. And they say they’ll risk adjust back to the employer level, potentially.

    O.K. – I don’t know what this means. Can someone enlighten me?

    It’s hard for me to imagine how that would work. But it’s also hard for me to imagine a flood of young people who don’t care much about having good health insurance going through the process of contacting HR, attaining the voucher, going to the exchange, comparing plans, and so forth.

    Then you have a limited imagination. Especially about how much concern young people – especially those who are smart enough to have gotten a good education and then jobs with decent private health insurance – have about their health insurance and how much intelligence and willingness to act they have. This sounds like a gotcha to me, but I need an answer to my question above first.

  5. 5
    FurryCatHerder says:

    The rhetorical scraps we get from these mighty orators should be compared to the simple eloquence of Meghan McCain, who has no trouble saying, “No matter how politically charged the discussions about marriage equality may get, the question is really a simple one: Do the rights and privileges we offer citizens include everyone in our country, or only some of us?”

    Apparently someone has been reading their Constitution and Declaration of Independence lately. A dangerous thing, that is.

  6. 6
    Ampersand says:

    Why not have the voucher equal that employer’s actual contribution to the most basic health plan they offer?

    I don’t know what the authors of the legislation had in mind, but the first thing that comes to my mind is simplifying the implimentation. Doing things the way you suggest would require some form of double-checking to make sure employers were being honest about what their actual contribution is, which costs more money to implement.

    What this paragraph tells me is that the objective here is not to create a better way to provide health care insurance to the currently uninsured (or underinsured) – the objective from the viewpoint of this writer is to get rid of private health care insurance overall. You may of course favor this, but that’s not the way that this is being represented. Lying to people about what your objectives are is dishonorable at the least.

    Ron, who, exactly, are you claiming is the liar here — Ezra, or Ron Wyden? Because it seems to me that all you’re saying is that some of what Ezra says may not be the same as some of what Wyden has said. But if that’s the case, how does that make either of them a liar?

    If you really think that private insurance can do as good or better than government insurance, then you have nothing to worry about — consumers won’t freely choose an inferior product, so private insurance is safe.

    If, on the other hand, government insurance is so much better than private insurance that private insurance can’t compete when consumers are given free choice, then who cares if private insurance can’t survive (or, more likely, needs to move to a different model, like supplementing government insurance for those who want additional protection)?

    About “risk adjustment,” here’s how Ezra described it in a different context last year:

    This is how Germany handles adverse selection, and it’s a smarter model. Basically, you tax the insurers who game the system. In essence, the risk profile of each insurer’s customer pool is evaluated, and those insurers who have a substantially younger, wealthier, and demographically advantaged risk pool have to pay into a central fund. That money is then distributed to insurers who have an older, sicker, risk pool. And the tax is heavy enough to make risk selection a fairly unprofitable way for insurers to spend their time. It’s called “Risk Adjustment.”

    This is the sort of fix the Wyden people are envisioning: You can’t stop insurers from trying to sign up younger, healthier people. If it’s not through plan construction it will be through advertising in rock climbing magazines and on the iTunes’ homepage. But it’s easy enough to see if the insurer’s efforts are bearing fruit: If they have a risk pool that’s demographically quite different than that of their competitors, something is going on. And while it would be hard and uncertain to try and stop their efforts by shaping the market, it’s relatively easy to equalize the playing field through taxes.

    In the case of the public plan, my guess is it wouldn’t be done through “taxes,” but otherwise the same basic mechanism would apply; if the public plan achieves savings through huge demographic differences from the private insurance companies, then those particular savings would be distributed (as tax breaks, maybe?) to insurance companies with older, less healthy demographics.

    Also, a lot of people with allegedly unhealthy demographics would be driven to the public option (because private plans refuse to accept them). That would counterbalance any alleged tendency for the young and healthy to prefer the public option.

  7. 7
    La Lubu says:

    Why not have the voucher equal that employer’s actual contribution to the most basic health plan they offer?

    Hmm…I’m thinking this must be offered as a teaser to get more employers on board. Requiring the voucher to be equal to the employer’s actual contribution means—for many employers—-paying more than the 65 – 70% on the Health Insurance Exchange. At least, that’s the way it would be on my ERISA plan (we don’t have “options” on our plan, and there aren’t “single vs. family” rates—you pay the same whether you’re single or if you have a spouse and ten kids. It’s a self-funded insurance plan with a consortium of Locals and those Locals’ contractors—benefits and any changes to them are determined by the Board of Directors to the Plan, which is composed of Business Managers and Contractors. The Plan isn’t cheap because it’s a PPO; necessary to accommodate Locals from across the country and Local union members who travel outside the geographical boundaries typical to HMOs in order to work).

    So—it’s not just the cost savings of more money in the pocket of the individual doing the choosing that was mentioned in the link, but the cost savings to the employer for paying that amount (the 65-70% in the voucher) rather than the higher actual cost.

  8. 8
    Kenzie says:

    Speculation: because she’s not an elected official, so she can advocate a minority position without worrying about it costing her votes.

    Bill Clinton isn’t an elected official either, currently.

    Last week I wrote about the Utopian Promise of Porn, thus guaranteeing to send any comment mentioning it straight to moderation.

  9. 9
    PG says:

    Amp @5,

    If you really think that private insurance can do as good or better than government insurance, then you have nothing to worry about — consumers won’t freely choose an inferior product, so private insurance is safe.

    Do you mean government insurance that has to take in at least as much money as it spends, or government insurance that is subsidized by tax dollars? Because the former would be running the same way private insurance is run, and I have no idea which would be better. But if the latter, then of course government insurance should be better because there’s more money behind it. A product for which I have a budget limited only by the amount of money the Treasury can print is almost certainly going to be better than a product for which I can spend only as much as I anticipate receiving in revenue.

    I am very much in favor of a public option, but I do get nervous when people suggest that it’s going to be a huge drain on the public fisc.


    And Clinton is now pro-SSM, after having signed DADT and DOMA as president.

    RonF @ 3,

    The linked article says, “McCain isn’t a politician, and can articulate her true feelings with more liberty than an elected official. But Rep. Patrick Murphy is sure in politics, and he, too, leaves both Clinton and Obama in the dust when it comes to us. Watch how easily and authoritatively he responds to the charge that open gays in the military would destroy unit cohesion by saying the very notion is an insult to him and to the military.”

    Or is Murphy not an elected official?

  10. 10
    Jake Squid says:

    Here is another brilliant satirical advanced statistical analysis by a commenter named Attractive Nuisance. He has several other brilliant posts in the same vein.

    Warning: You will not appreciate this.

  11. 11
    Mandolin says:

    I didn’t appreciate it. I mean, mostly, I don’t know enough baseball to understand it. :( Is there a brilliant stastical satire by this gentleman/lady which I’d have a better shot at grokking?

  12. 12
    PG says:

    For sheer “no, it’s not just class, it’s also race”: Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested on suspicion of breaking and entering. Into his own home.

    Don’t read the comments to the article unless you have a strong stomach for people unironically saying stuff like, “Enough of throwing down the race card … we have a Black President now, so that tired old ship has sailed.”

  13. 13
    Jake Squid says:

    I didn’t appreciate it.

    This is really the simplest one to understand and that’s why I selected it. I’ll try to explain it for the non-sports fans but I suspect that I’ll fail.

    A good pitcher allows few runs to the opposition. The better the pitcher, generally, the fewer runs the opposition will score.

    This satire takes wins (which are dependent on a ton of factors other than the pitcher – things like strength of opponent, team defense, strength of pitcher’s team, luck, etc.) and runs scored by the pitcher’s opposition to determine which pitchers are the best. Taking Felix Hernandez as his example, he shows that Hernandez isn’t all that good since pitchers with a similar number of wins allow a lot more runs to the opposition.

    All this is done with appropriate condescension, flawed reference to advanced metrics, a meaningless graph and absurd elevation of non-predictive metrics. And his replies in the comment section are given “with all due respect” sensibility. Pay particular attention to suggestions for improvement of the graph by adding a z-axis.

    But I did warn you.

  14. 14
    RonF says:

    PG, the cite referenced McCain, not Murphy. I didn’t read the article itself and have no opinion on Murphy until/unless I do and get to know something about him and his constituiency.


    If, on the other hand, government insurance is so much better than private insurance that private insurance can’t compete when consumers are given free choice,

    What PG said. I’ve been seeing the arguement you make here a lot and I think that it’s invalid to call this “competition”. Private insurance has to make enough money to pay for health care, pay its employees, and pay investors. Government insurance can merrily run in the red and just grab more taxes. It’s not true competition. Let government-based healthcare insurance have to make a profit off of premiums – or at least break even, including administrative expenses – and then we can talk about competition.

    And that’s what I’m afraid of, and a whole lot of other people as well. The money is just not going to be there. The costs will shoot up past the already high estimates that the Obama Administration is putting out (despite all the talk about cutting the cost side of the equation, I bet they don’t get much done there), and more deficits will get piled up on top of the record deficits (much higher than anything that any previous Administration has run up) that are already projected due to the stimulus package. Raising taxes will only go so far. Like Maggie Thatcher said about socialism, at some point you run out of other people’s money.

  15. 15
    PG says:


    I didn’t read the article itself

    Er, wouldn’t it be a good idea to read what’s being linked in the link farm before commenting on it? It can help one avoid making points that the article itself covers. Presumably Amp is suggesting these for our reading pleasure; otherwise he could avoid doing that extra bit of HTML required to link the websites to his post and instead just throw random ideas out for discussion.

  16. 16
    Renee says:

    When Sexy Isn’t Simple: Looking at the ways in which race influences sexual attraction.

    In Search Of Western Eyes:Looking at the ways in which Asian women have internalized racism.

    Standing Watch On Death Row: When you have a justice system that routinely issues biased judgments based in race and class, how can we possibly issue the ultimate penalty?

    If You’re You Cannot Be A Customer: Many businesses are struggling to survive and even companies that have become socially ingrained, have been placed into a position where they must offer extra services and value to stay competitive, unless of course it means accommodating the differently abled.

  17. 17
    PG says:

    I couldn’t actually finish watching this video myself because I was so embarrassed for Rep. Tiahrt just from his misunderstanding of what constitutes a “financial incentive” (hint: just paying the cost of a medical procedure for someone is not in itself a financial incentive to obtain that procedure; I could get a free colonoscopy at a relative’s clinic, but that isn’t really an “incentive” for me to get something I don’t actually want, whereas if you would give me $100 AND the free colonoscopy, that would be an incentive). But I understand from the video’s title that the Rep. goes on to embarrass himself a lot more than that.

  18. 18
    Ampersand says:

    PG and Ron, every proposed public option, from both the White House and from Congress, has called for the public option to pay for itself from premiums, after start-up costs.

    There are subsidies proposed — but those subsidies have nothing to do with the public option. Quoting Robert Reich:

    Critics charge that the public plan will be subsidized by the government. Here they have their facts wrong. Under every plan that’s being discussed on Capitol Hill, subsidies go to individuals and families who need them in order to afford health care, not to a public plan. Individuals and families use the subsidies to shop for the best care they can find. They’re free to choose the public plan, but that’s only one option. They could take their subsidy and buy a private plan just as easily.

    You can also read the legislation itself (the House version, anyway — pdf link), which says that the public fund “shall establish geographically-adjusted premium rates for the public health insurance option […] at a level sufficient to fully finance the costs of— (i) health benefits provided by the public health insurance option; and (ii) administrative costs related to operating the public health insurance option.”

    And although it provides start-up funding, it also specifies:

    LIMITATION ON FUNDING.—Nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing any additional appropriations to the Account, other than such amounts as are otherwise provided with respect to other Exchange-participating health benefits plans.

    (Those “other exchange-participating health benefits plans” would be private insurance companies.)

    So no, the public option won’t be subsidized by taxes, after the start-up costs. It’s advantages will be the lack of a need to create huge profits for shareholders and overpaid CEOs; low administrative costs; advantages of scale (like negotiating lower prices); potential savings from programs designed with the benefits of large-scale data collection; and whatever greater trust people have in the government than in private insurance companies.

  19. 19
    FurryCatHerder says:

    (Great cartoon — not sure I said that already.)

    Since some people here don’t know me from Eve, and since I seem to get a regular trouncing as an evil Neo-Conservative, here’s an excerpt from when and where I cut my political teeth. Perhaps this will explain some history that people here seem to be missing.

    1979 Louisiana State Senate District 10 (Metairie — fch)

    In 1979 Duke ran as a Democrat for the 10th district seat in the Louisiana State Senate. He finished second in a three candidate race with 9,897 votes for 26.26%.

    Duke allegedly conducted a direct-mail appeal in 1987, using the identity and mailing-list of the Georgia Forsyth County Defense League without permission. League officials described it as a fund-raising scam. (It is detailed in The Rise of David Duke by Tyler Bridges.)

    1988 Presidential Campaigns

    In 1988, he ran initially in the Democratic presidential primaries. His campaign failed to make much of an impact, with the one notable exemption of winning the little known New Hampshire Vice-Presidential primary [4]. Duke having failed to gain much traction as a Democrat then successfully sought the Presidential nomination of the Populist Party [5]. He appeared on the ballot for President in eleven states (was a write-in candidate in some other states), some with Trenton Stokes of Arkansas for Vice President, and on other state ballots with Floyd Parker for Vice President. He received just 47,047 votes, for 0.04 percent of the combined, national popular vote.[18]

    Duke was from my district (Metairie, suburb of New Orleans). I knew of him and knew people who knew him personally. In 1976, when a Freshman in high school, I was asked to join the KKK. I declined.

    When people question my attacks on the DNC, they need to keep in mind that I lived through the DNC and the KKK being bed-buddies up through the mid-1980’s.

  20. 20
    Mandolin says:

    How can we _tell_ you’re in Ithaca visiting family? I have no proof. It would require me to be a _mind-reader_ to know you were telling the truth. I think you’re still in Portland, fantasizing about having a family. If not, how are you online so much of the time? And your stories about being Jewish don’t make sense. I know for a fact you’re an atheist. A fat man playing kickball? Or talking about plans for passover? How can you go to passover, you can’t eat matzo, you’re diabetic. People are too eager to jump to unwarranted conclusions before all the facts are in.

  21. 21
    PG says:

    To clarify for those who might be confused, “DNC” is normally used to describe the “Democratic National Committee,” which is not associated with everyone who registers as a Democrat or even who runs for office as a Democrat. One can determine whether a particular candidate actually has the DNC’s support by looking at whether the DNC has directed any funds toward supporting that candidate’s election. If not, the DNC has no more connection to that candidate than it does with anyone else who merely labels himself a Democrat. Given that in the 1979 state senate election, Duke was beaten by a Democrat, it’s decidedly unlikely that the DNC was supporting Duke in the race.

    Duke’s only success in obtaining elected office has been as a Republican, in the 1989 special election for a state house seat.

  22. 22
    FurryCatHerder says:


    I didn’t post that so you could deny what I know to be the facts because I was there. I did it so that perhaps you’d understand my background.

    (Edited to remove a bunch of stuff that WAS wrong. William Jefferson has very carefully removed all references to having run as a Republican in his early political career, so it’s virtually impossible to find out anything about his ’79 Senate election. Even his “Electoral History” on Wikipedia doesn’t mention that he was elected to the State Senate. It wasn’t until I looked at Duke’s election history that I realized Jefferson didn’t run against Duke. Not that I have a clue who he ran against …)

  23. 23
    PG says:

    The source for my statement that Duke was defeated by a Democrat was this website, which was linked by the very Wikipedia article that FCH blockquoted.

    The winner of the election is listed as a Democrat here (“M. Joseph Tiemann, Senator [G], D-Jefferson Parish”); and in the Louisiana legislature’s listing of past members of its state senate 1880-2004, here (see page 60 or search the document for Tiemann).

    ETA: See that last link to find that William Jefferson served from the Orleans parish, and is listed as a Democrat. Page 88.

  24. 24
    PG says:


    If you have such a clear memory of having worked on an election to defeat a Klansman running as a Democrat, but it turns out that Klansman wasn’t David Duke, are you sure your candidate’s opponent was a Klansman running as a Democrat?

    Also, do you not feel even slightly embarrassed by the statement “you deny what I know to be the facts because I was there” now that I’ve shown that “what [you] know to be the facts” doesn’t fit with anyone else’s facts?

  25. 25
    FurryCatHerder says:


    For crying out loud, I GREW UP THERE. And yes, it can be embarrassing to realize that 30 year old memories are incorrect. That’s part of what 30 years time does — make memories be incorrect.

    But I know with absolute certainty that the Democratic Party in Louisiana was filled with Klan members well into the 1980’s. That racist politics, and Republican reformation were a part of the political process in Louisiana is best told by this quote —

    His (David Treen, Governor (R)) accomplishments as Chief Executive included the appointment of more blacks to office than any other previous governor, the strengthening of teacher certification requirements, and the establishment of the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts.

    I’ll be happy to back this up with writings by Black Panthers (yes, I have Black Panthers — real Panthers — in my cell phone contacts) who have contemporary accounts of Democratic Party mistreatment of Blacks.

    Pay attention to this clip at 2:03.

    I thought I had a photo of Malik and I lying around that I could put up on Photobucket, but I was wrong.

  26. 26
    PG says:

    “That’s part of what 30 years time does — make memories be incorrect.”

    Then perhaps when you’re telling someone that she is denying what you “know” to be the facts (so far you’re 0-2 in remembering whether a candidate you supported — Duke’s opponent? William Jefferson running in Orleans? — was a Republican), you might want to check the facts against something more reliable than 30-year-old memory before making an accusation. Notably, your errors are all running in one direction: the candidate you supported must have been a Republican.

    I have had similar discussions with a Republican friend, who always remembers incidents as going against Republicans. For example, he repeatedly told me that Dan Quayle had been unfairly mocked for calling Samoans “happy campers,” when Quayle had been addressing an RV-traveling group of Samoans who *called themselves* that. At one point I finally checked Google News reports on the incident. Nope, Quayle had traveled to Samoa to address a general group of Samoans — no one who referred to themselves as campers — and American Samoa’s nonvoting representative in Congress was offended by what he considered a patronizing term, particularly after Quayle’s explanation was that he meant no offense and it was something he called his children.

    I am big on verifying factual claims.

  27. 27
    FurryCatHerder says:


    I’m forgetting DETAILS, but not the overall facts. The overall facts — and I wish you’d check out some of the materials I’ve linked to — are that many Southern States, including Louisiana, remained hotbeds of Racism, including Racism by Democratic party members, long after CRA was passed.

    You also are giving a complete pass to the quotes from LBJ, who you seem to think was a great Civil Rights leader, in which he very clearly states that giving Blacks civil rights was more about shutting them up than doing anything productive.

    Here, again, the LBJ quote —

    “These Negroes, they’re getting pretty uppity these days and that’s a problem for us since they’ve got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we’ve got to do something about this, we’ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference. For if we don’t move at all, then their allies will line up against us and there’ll be no way of stopping them, we’ll lose the filibuster and there’ll be no way of putting a brake on all sorts of wild legislation. It’ll be Reconstruction all over again.”

    –Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson (D., Texas), 1957

    Do you deny that LBJ said that? Do you deny that it amounts to conspiring to deprive Blacks of progress with Civil Rights by basically “throwing them a bone”?

    “I have never seen very many white people who felt they were being imposed upon or being subjected to any second-class citizenship if they were directed to a waiting room or to any other public facility to wait or to eat with other white people. Only the Negroes, of all the races which are in this land, publicly proclaim they are being mistreated, imposed upon, and declared second-class citizens because they must go to public facilities with members of their own race.”

    –Sen. Richard B. Russell Jr. (D., Ga.), 1961

    In case you want something more recent.

    “I did not lie awake at night worrying about the problems of Negroes.”

    –Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, 1961
    Kennedy later authorized wiretapping the phones and bugging the hotel rooms of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

    In case you want something about illegal wiretaps.

    “I’ll have those n*ggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.” — Lyndon B. Johnson to two governors on Air Force One according Ronald Kessler’s Book, “Inside The White House”

    Unverified — but it has a reference.

    “You’d find these potentates from down in Africa, you know, rather than eating each other, they’d just come up and get a good square meal in Geneva.”
    — Fritz Hollings (D, S.C.)

    Fairly recent quote. But I guess it’s okay if Democrats call Africans “cannibals”?

  28. 28
    PG says:


    “LBJ, who you seem to think was a great Civil Rights leader”

    Still trying to put words in my mouth because you can’t actually quote my saying anything you’re claiming for me. Doesn’t that ever get old? I guess it’s more fun to be creative than to cite-check.

    “many Southern States, including Louisiana, remained hotbeds of Racism, including Racism by Democratic party members, long after CRA was passed.”

    Sure. Duh. What I have objected to are your claims that racism was peculiar to Democrats or somehow more compatible with liberalism than conservatism.

  29. 29
    FurryCatHerder says:

    PG writes:

    Sure. Duh. What I have objected to are your claims that racism was peculiar to Democrats or somehow more compatible with liberalism than conservatism.


    Could you please back that claim up with actual statements by me? And I don’t mean your usual approach where you twist my words and come up with some bizarre and intentional mistranslation. I mean, show me where I said there were no racist Republicans or racist Conservatives.

    If nothing else, my pointing out that 20% of the Republicans voted AGAINST the CRA of 1964 should be proof that you’re making it up.

    It’s just an absolute and undeniable fact, and one that was supported by Amp, that the Democratic Party, as a collection of voters, was more overtly racist than the GOP at the time of the passage of the Civil Rights Acts of 1957, 1960 and 1964.

  30. 30
    PG says:

    Just to clarify, I was using “peculiar” in the sense of “belonging characteristically (usually fol. by to): an expression peculiar to Canadians.” As in the italicized dictionary example, the fact that something is characteristic of a particular group does not mean that it is exclusive to them.

    As I’ve already quoted in the thread where you said it,

    “The modern ‘Small Government’ movement evolved from 1960’s era Southern Liberal Democrats who advocate for ’smaller government’ as a way to preserve white racial dominance by refusing to enact government protections for protecting racial minorities, as required under the 14th Amendment.”

    This was what you said in objection to someone’s saying that conservatives are the banner-holders of “small government.”

    So yes, you have been arguing, in multiple threads, that racism and various other bad things belong characteristically to liberals, although you’ve never attempted to make much of an argument as to what about liberal ideology (and by that I mean please refer to an actual set of policies or theories, rather than throwing out names and random quotes) would lend itself to those things. Whereas I at least have pointed out how originalism, the conservative-favored theory of Constitutional interpretation, does not fit with most advances in civil rights because if the people who’d had the power to write and pass those documents believed in those civil rights, we probably wouldn’t have be advancing them 100 years later.

  31. 31
    FurryCatHerder says:


    No, I was providing an historically accurate explanation of how the modern Neo-Conservative movement — predominately Republican, I might add — evolved.

    Really — it’s just history.

    But also, as I very clearly also stated, it was the RACIST Democrats who left the DNC for the GOP. Since there were still Democrats left over, I also can’t have been claiming that Racism was somehow a “characteristic” trait of Democrats. And since they found a welcome home in the Republican Party, how the Republican Party was magically immune to racism since it wasn’t — as you also seem to want to assert I’m claiming it was.

    Had I made the statements you are trying to falsely attribute to me, I’d now be dodging and weaving about how the entire DNC and GOP swamped places, instead of pointing out that it was racist members of the DNC who moved to the GOP and non-racist, non-all-sorts-of-things members of the GOP who’ve fled, as I have, to the DNC.

    And your fucking transphobia is really, really getting old with your repeated statements about racist Republican males. I’m not male, and I’ve not been a Republican for even longer than I’ve not been male. So, cut the crap with your clever anecdotes about racist Republican males. I let you slide the first time, I let you slide the second time, and now I’m telling you that I’m tired of your transphobia, this insane vendetta you’ve got against me, and the way you’re distorting the hell out of what I write just to prove some insane point.

  32. 32
    FurryCatHerder says:

    Amp @ 17:

    So no, the public option won’t be subsidized by taxes, after the start-up costs. It’s advantages will be the lack of a need to create huge profits for shareholders and overpaid CEOs; low administrative costs; advantages of scale (like negotiating lower prices); potential savings from programs designed with the benefits of large-scale data collection; and whatever greater trust people have in the government than in private insurance companies.

    The other advantage, and one I’ve debated at great length with Neo-Conservative pundits (I got kudos from Garland Robinette, a neo-Conservative talk show host on WWL-AM New Orleans for expressing this very clearly — read: he admitted defeat …), is that it will result in significant cost savings by moving primary care OUT of the Emergency Room, and capturing health care premiums from health care consumers who do not otherwise pay.

    As I explained to Garland, we should WANT a way to capture additional revenue into the system, and if calling it a “National Health Care Plan” does that, good on the legislators for doing so. Likewise, we should WANT to reduce the inefficiencies that come from Emergency Rooms being the Health Care of first resort for the uninsured and under-insured.

  33. 33
    PG says:

    “And your fucking transphobia is really, really getting old with your repeated statements about racist Republican males.”

    Uh, the most conservative people I know, particularly on race issues, are Republican white men. I don’t have your experience with the hordes of racist Democrats (racist PoC? racist women?). The white male Democrats I knew in East Texas were well aware of America’s bad history on race and not in a rush to pretend that they were devoid of responsibility in it. My (non-white) dad is hyper-conservative on economics but the one Republican he wouldn’t vote for was a guy who engaged in race-baiting and xenophobia; after having donated thousands of dollars to Republicans, Dad in that one election held a fundraiser for the Democrat. White men in America are the group with the least amount of experience being subordinated due to an unalterable aspect of their identity, and Republicans are the most likely to tell people to get over that sort of thing.

    Sorry if you don’t like my pointing out how aligning yourself with conservatism puts you in their company, notwithstanding your being female and declaring that you’re not Republican. If you want, I’ll send you a calling card code to use, and you can commiserate with Condi Rice about how much it sucks to be grouped with those folks.

    But if I didn’t know that you’re a woman, I wouldn’t be calling you “she” when I refer to you in the third person. That’s not the pronoun I use to refer to men.

    Is there a “transphobia card” that can be played, or is calling out bigotry based on “hurt feeling” and no real “harm” only trivial when it’s about PoC, i.e. a group to which you DON’T belong?

  34. 34
    FurryCatHerder says:


    You’re just being dishonest at this point.

    I have been painfully, PAINFULLY, clear that the people you have your beef with are not Conservatives. And if that isn’t clearly obvious to you, I’ve been very, very extremely clear that I have a huge beef People Who Claim to be Conservatives.

    I have repeatedly, and the to best of my ability to be consistent, referred to them as “Neo-Conservatives”. I have lamented, time and again, that there are very few remaining Conservatives who are true to Conservative values. I’ve given examples, on several threads now, of how Neo-Conservatives are not following the claimed objectives of Conservativism. I’ve stated that the proper approach when dealing with Neo-Conservatives is to expose the ways in which they aren’t true to Conservative ideals. In one thread, I rebutted as “unconservitive” the misconduct of the Bush Administration. That is definitely not “aligning’ myself with their values OR their conduct. It is a very clear, and very definitive repudiation of it.

    I’m not going to stop being a Conservative just because you want to keep attacking me. I am not a Libertarian, either. I hold Conservative values — not “Neo-Conservative” racist, classist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, etc. ad nauseum, values because 47 years of being alive have given me the experience to believe they are the correct and proper values.

    I posted to this thread, not to invite you to continue this utterly INSANE vendetta against me, but to explain how someone who is anti-racist, anti-classist (to the point of being called a Socialist by many), anti-sexist (I was involved with North Dallas NOW during Patricia Schroeder’s brief go at the Democratic Party nomination, BTW) grew up within the GOP at a time when many others were fed up with it and leaving. The DNC in Louisiana in the 1970’s and early 1980’s, with its nepotism, corruption, racism, and everything else was NOT a place for me.

    LBJ’s programs worked, not because he wasn’t a racist — LBJ was massively racist, and it comes out in his interviews, recorded conversations, writings, speeches on the floor of the House and Senate, but because the backlash within his own party, against what LBJ intended (as he stated in 1957 — to just be a way of shutting up “uppity Negroes”) caused the parties to realign.

    It was the realignment of the DNC and GOP that made the various Civil Rights acts — 1964, signed by Johnson, as well as 1957 and 1960, signed byEisenhower — work.

    Rice is a tool. Powell had the spine to speak against the idiocy that is the modern GOP (and how can you even claim I’m aligning with the GOP when I call them idiots on a regular basis?) and come out in support of Obama. I supported Obama, even.

    As for the transphobia baiting, yeah, that’s exactly what you’re doing. Before I started posting very clear statements of Racist beliefs by the likes of LBJ, you hadn’t bothered with your “Republican male friend” anecdotes. Not “Wow, I didn’t know that about LBJ.” but “These other RACISTS I know, the REPUBLICANS and MALES (Hint: Just like FurryCatHerder, a “Republican” and a “Male”), they do these RACIST things.”

    As for the “Hurt Feelings” you’re-a-racist dog whistle, I =opposed=, as RACIST, racial profiling even if you didn’t much feel “Hurt” by explaining HOW racial profiling not only caused actual HARM to People of Color, but also how it jeopardized the safety and security (and financial security) of others.

  35. 35
    Ampersand says:

    PG and FCH, you are both forbidden from responding to each other, or addressing each other, in “Alas” comments for the remainder of July.

    Nothing personal, folks — but I can’t moderate this mess, and the conversation is not only unproductive at this point, it’s spreading all over the blog.

  36. 36
    PG says:

    Best Nigerian scam spam I’ve received:

    Important message from an American soldier in Iraq.‏
    From: Lt. Col. Jim Bradford (
    Sent: Wed 7/22/09 9:37 PM

    Dear Valuable Reader,

    How are you doing today?Fine i guess.I hope this e-mail message meet you well? I am in need of your assistance. My name is Lt. Col. Jim Bradford, commander of the 1st Battalion 63rd Armor Regiment here in Ba’qubah in Iraq.

    We have about USD$20 Million (Twenty Million United State Dollars) that we want to move out of this country (Iraq). My partners and I need a good partner out there, someone we can trust to receive these funds on our behalf. It is oil money and legal, there is no room for fear. Please do not disclose this deal to anybody as to protect my duty with the US army; we must keep a low profile at all times. More details regarding this deal will be made available to you as soon as your interest is shown.

    I need your urgent response if you are interested in assisting us to receive the fund because we will be ending our mission in Iraq soon (going back home) because we have already been pulled out of some major cities but now in our Military base or Camp.

    We have made arrangement with a Diplomatic Courier Service that will move the funds out of Iraq as Family Treasures to where you want it and we can as well use the Bank to Bank transfer method. It all depends on the option you think is safe for both of us. The most important thing is TRUST Once the funds gets to you.

    As soon as the fund gets to you, simply take out 20% as your share and keep the remaining 80% for investment on our behalf. Your own part of these deals is to find a place where the funds can be sent to. If you are interested, I will furnish you with more details upon receipt of your response. But I can assure you the whole process is simply and we need to keep this deal as a confidential matter. I do not need lousy or noisy person please. Website:

    I look forward to your reply and co-operation.

    Lt. Col. Jim Bradford

    I find it kind of awesome that the scammers keep track of the news.

  37. 37
    Jake Squid says:

    In New Jersey today we find a triumph of stereotypes.

    You can’t make this stuff up. Well, you can, but still…

  38. 38
    PG says:


    I heard about that today when one of my co-workers came in, panicked, because the Hoboken mayor was supposed to marry her to her fiance in a couple weeks. In the mayor’s office, not in a jail cell or while on house arrest.

  39. 39
    Ampersand says:

    Just to let people know, I’ll be traveling for the next couple of days, with only minimal online access. See you later!

  40. 40
    PG says:

    Interesting example of how the obfuscation between (1) decriminalizing sodomy and (2) demanding that others celebrate sodomy, which obfuscation is so popular among rightwing Christians in the U.S., has successfully spread to some Christians overseas as well.

    I actually might have considered supporting Dr. Thio’s teaching at NYU Law on an academic freedom basis, but her memo reveals her to be either intellectually dishonest, or genuinely incapable of discerning the difference between a real law that criminalized sodomy and a hypothetical law that would ban anyone from expressing their personal opposition to homosexuality. Whichever it is, it doesn’t belong at a secular top 5 law school. Perhaps Liberty University can invite her instead.

  41. 41
    Radfem says:

    I’m happy b/c I did my first cell phone photo to computer to blog and it actually worked. It was a photo of a police review board commissioner napping during a meeting. Their behavior is so bad causing city residents to walk out of meetings in disgust that I’m doing a new series on commissioner “styles” depicted in photos. It’s called “styles” because that’s the term the manager of the commission used to defend their bad behavior. The whole thing is a joke.

  42. 42
    DaisyDeadhead says:

    I wrote about Norma McCorvey (ROE of Roe v Wade) who now identifies as pro-life:

    On Norma McCorvey