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Open Thread - 3/1/2014

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Open Thread )

- 1576 days ago -
Personal news, a Jig Zone puzzle, 3 short takes, and a homemade cartoon (shown).

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Gloria p (304)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 2:40 am
I can't wait to see the statistics on the veteran vote!

Good work with the prisoners, professors, and students TC. Sometimes speaking another language can almost cause headaches. I like the way you stood back to let them figure it out amongst themselves.

My puzzle time was 9:34.

Lona G (79)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 6:11 am
Good to hear about the success of volunteers meeting. Mutual understanding can benefit both groups so much, so this is indeed very worthwhile doing. Also good to hear that your boy's done you proud. That's a compliment for you to, TomCat.

Upworthy: It must feel weird for the more progressive Americans that even Russia lags far behind the US in incarceration rates, while the rate is still on the rise. Add to this the figures for the unmistakable racial inequality and you've got your further proof that there is something terribly wrong with the US system. There is just noway to belittle the numbers given here and elsewhere, but undoubtedly someone is going to try and blame it all on Obama ;-)

The New Yorker: Wow, Andy has certainly overcome the bit of slump he had gotten into since it's become dead quiet around PIGnocchio. Sticking to harassing Mexicans because that's what Arizona does best. Brilliant!

Think Progress: Another lesson learned: if you try to unblock a GOP obstruction, make sure you get more than 1 Republican to vote with you and none of your own to abstain if you haven't got a 2/3 majority in the senate. But it would be wise to make blocking a bill by adding an amendment that has got nothing to do with it impossible. A redefinition of amendment to its original meaning would suffice, wouldn't it? Too bad this happens at the expense of the war vets, next time it will be at the expense of another group in dire need of support, because the GOP won't stop for as long as they can keep this up.

Cartoon: Sadly you couldn't put an end date on it, TomCat, because the witch-hunts have never stopped. For the GOP there is always someone or some group to brand as a witch.


Pat B (356)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 8:53 am
Kudos to you, for volunteering and taking time with your guys, I know that they sincerely appreciate you for what you do for them.
New Yorker: Again, Andy slamming AZ RePugs for what they are doing, great article.
Cartoon: Re: The Salem Witch Hunt/Trials: In 1976, Lisa Caporeal published an article called “Ergotism: The Satan loosed in Salem?” in which she presented the very interesting idea that ergot mold poisoning in the rye crop led to the 'symptoms of possession', which (could) have had LSD type effects on its victims-including hallucinations and mild convulsions, in the girls behavior. Also: Four years later, Ann Putnam, ringleader of the girls who accused people of witchcraft, publicly apologized. In 1711, the colonial legislature passed a bill restoring the good names of those who had been accused and/or executed, and gave £600 to their heirs. Finally, in 1752, Salem Village renamed itself Danvers.
Hope that you have a relaxing day, take care, and Thanks, Tom.

JL A (281)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 11:19 am
AB is indeed in fine fetter.
Kudos to those professors for effective education for their students!
Thanks Pat for those interesting history additions.
So let's not take care of the veterans we have if we cannot create more?

Kit B (276)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 11:40 am

I watched a very interesting documentary and then followed up with reading a few books on the Salem Witch trials. It seems all this can be traced back to a very twisted monk who wrote: Malleus Maleficarum (1486). The handbook for how to detect, torture and try a witch. Though occasionally men were tried and killed but the real focus was women [technically the should be burned]. Those who always hold power by the mere fact that they give birth to the children, cook the food, and care for the family. Whether that power is flaunted by women is less relevant, than the fact that women can (physically) do things that a man can not. And you think we have a war on women now!

Though it was claimed that the church gave their blessing to the recommendations in the Malleus Maleficarum, that was not true. Though I doubt that many men then or now have many qualms about keeping women under their thumbs.

I find this game of blame for veterans benefits a replay of the same old song. Read some history folks, the US and the UK - in fact most countries love those boys dying in far away lands, but sure hate forking over money to care for them, whether that is education or health care. It's not a party issue, McCain should be screaming in favor of veterans, but take a look at his record. He rarely votes for the side of veterans, though he is one - he is also very wealthy and has no need for benefits.

About Andy - TC we fell in the same ditch again.

Kit B (276)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 11:48 am

Yayy! Time 3:29!!!

Lynn S (235)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 1:12 pm
Puzzle — 3:42 I hope I continue to measure up!

Upworthy — The steepest increase appears to have started in the Reagan years. Of course judicial appointments were more right wing and lasted through the Democratic years. Then an additional increase during the Baby Bush years. And wasn't that when "for profit prisons" really took hold? It seems that profit trumps rehabilitation. Profit seems to trump everything!

The New Yorker — Andy has hit the mark yet again! I have friends that travel to Arizona where her parents live for part of the year. We have to agree not to discuss Arizona politics. Unfortunately, they have been indoctrinated to a degree into "what Arizona does best".

Think Progress — The Republicanus/Teabaggers living up to their credo "Profits and power before all else!"

"Senate Republicans on Thursday blocked a bill that sought to provide veterans with greater access to health care and education over an amendment aimed at increasing sanctions on Iran."

The Republicanus/Teabaggers started 2 wars but have proven, more than once, that they are unwilling to see the devastating effects of war on people and unwilling to support the people they send into war . . . their human fodder. They would rather wage "war" on another nation with the possibility of starting yet another war so that defence contractors and other corporations can make big profits.

Cartoon — I wonder if we could send Jan Brewer back to 1692 Salem?

Arielle S (313)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 1:15 pm
Have to wonder how many of the humans in prisons would not be there if pot was legal....those are sad statistics.


David C (129)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 2:48 pm
agree with Arielle...good point...

Terrie Williams (798)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 4:48 pm
You would be surprised, Arielle. It is mind-numbing the numbers of inmates that are there solely for a roach in their ashtray. Not just for a months or a few months.....more like YEARS and in some cases LIFE. All for a dubie or a nickle bag. Disgusting. Don't even wanna get started on the profit angle.

Not going to get my BP up over Rethugs killing the vet bill......especially McCain.....I will blow a fuse this time around.

Still lovin on Andy, he's back in form. :) Angel of Death.....damn, I like that nickname of that hag. Speaking of hags....I really like Lynn's idea...we could always 'midnight requisition' the DeLorian and zap her back there!

Winnie A (179)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 6:00 pm
How do these people live with themselves regarding the killing of the vet bill. It's beyond me . .. . . .

donald Baumgartner (6)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 8:50 pm
I agree w/ you totally Winn Adams!!!!!

Katie & Bill D (107)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 10:02 pm
All good reading, thank You for the Article TomCat

TomCat S (128)
Saturday March 1, 2014, 11:43 pm
Thanks all.

Working with my guys is a privilege.

P A (117)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 1:30 am
Thanks TC – so glad your meeting went so well, and very glad some academics are helping their students THINK for themselves!

Loved Andy again – he has her down pat, doesn't he?! Re ThinkProgress – if after WWII the GI bill had failed like that – America would never have been the world power it became.

Past Member (0)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 3:37 am
Sad and hopeless political shams..believers are the ruination of the nation..GOP..Baaad ! Dems..Baaad..snafu. All bad men. Liars. Traitors. Corporate owned vassals of corruption. Your owners are closing your contracts to you will please the masters. Some will kill your own people for the masters..corporate fascist masters..Zionist Nazim..Nazis.:) Christian hordes..the 3 amigo, Juda, Islam and Christers. Insanity.
NAZIS..get your head around that before it is cut off. One nation under disney world now one nation under disney corporation..hullo..??

Jonathan Harper (0)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 4:13 am

donald Baumgartner (6)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 6:39 am
I'm going to take a chance on this catagory & ask the readers if they know of a house, apt mobile home for rent or for sale, next to a unkept cemetery, please reply. Thanks in advance!!!

Joanne D (38)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 10:10 am
5:46 Talk about looking easy and being wicked.

Upworthy - I also do not need convincing about prisons. Besides the war on drugs (and partially in tandem with it) goes mandatory sentencing, which can lead to unbelievable disparities.

Andy - I'm still impressed that she vetoed it at all.

Think Progress - "Republicans have been trying to get a vote on an Iran sanctions measure, which has stalled after experts and Obama administration officials ..." and don't forget a whole lot of petition signers. I signed most of the petitions on this topic myself.

Cartoon - "Witches" were burned in Europe all right (Joan of Arc was one) but not in Salem. All the "witches" there were hanged. Giles Corey (one of my heroes) was pressed to death because he refused to plead. He knew if he entered a plea, no matter which way, his possessions would be confiscated, and he was determined to protect his family from destitution.

James Maynard (84)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 12:45 pm
Great work you seem to be doing at
the prison TC - Thank you!
Have to do a double take on Andy's
musings as they sound too real.
Eisenhower warned of the Military
Industrial Complex, but do not
recall hearing any warnings of the
Prison Industrial Complex. It is
just as shameful.
Hope all the Vets remember who
didn't have their backs this Nov.
Time didn't measure up on the

TomCat S (128)
Sunday March 2, 2014, 11:57 pm
Thanks all!
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