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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#18921 User is offline   pilowsky 

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Posted 2021-October-04, 18:54

View PostChas_P, on 2021-October-04, 18:08, said:

If electricity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?


Shocking - do you charge for mangling your metaphors?
non est deus ex machina; även maskiner behöver lite kärlek, J'ai toujours misé sur l'étrange gentillesse des robots.
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#18922 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2021-October-04, 18:57

View Postpilowsky, on 2021-October-04, 18:54, said:

Shocking - do you charge for mangling your metaphors?

Yes. Please tell me where to send the bill.

#18923 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2021-October-04, 20:20

View PostChas_P, on 2021-October-04, 18:57, said:

Yes. Please tell me where to send the bill.

Send it here.
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#18924 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2021-October-05, 18:26

View PostGilithin, on 2021-October-04, 20:20, said:

Send it here.

Another mindless retort from another mindless Bozo. May the Schwartz be with you.

#18925 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2021-October-05, 18:45

View PostChas_P, on 2021-October-05, 18:26, said:

Another mindless retort from another mindless Bozo. May the Schwartz be with you.

May you get a big black Helmet where you deserve it.
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#18926 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-05, 18:51

From Bloomberg Opinion Today

Quote

What if this newsletter operated like a social media company? You sign up, and at first everything is peachy. You get an email every day that keeps you informed and shows you interesting stuff by interesting people. You laugh at some memes. You read wayyy too much about the debt ceiling. Everything is as expected.

But then one day, there’s a change. The kickers are somehow at the top! The ICYMI section is nowhere to be seen! Bloomberg Opinion Today has been turned upside-down, and there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it. The worst part? Your best friend, who also receives this newsletter because she has good taste, gets a completely different newsletter in her inbox, despite you both signing up for the same thing.

This is exactly what happened to Facebook users in 2016 when the company decided to turn off Instagram’s chronological order in exchange for “engagement-based ranking.” This ranking, along with a whole host of other bad ideas, sent Facebook into a downward spiral, much of which was illuminated today in a Senate testimony by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen.

Parmy Olson believes Haugen could finally force changes at the social network, partly because she’s so well-versed in its business. This is critical because:

  • Facebook will struggle to discredit someone who knows the ins and outs of algorithms.
  • Congress now has a source with inside knowledge of how Facebook and engagement algorithms operate.

Haugen suggested a few remedies, some of which we’ve heard before, such as reforming Section 230 protections against legal action. But her most radical proposal gets to the heart of the problem: “I’m a big proponent of chronological ranking with a little bit of spam demotion.”

If Haugen’s wish came true, then our newsfeeds would once again be ordered by time, and not by what people find most exciting, gross or enraging. “I cannot emphasize enough what a big change that would be for Facebook and, almost certainly, its bottom line,” Parmy wrote in today’s Terminal Live Blog. It would also be a big change for public health, democracy and, like, [gestures at everything]. Facebook probably won’t let it happen without a fight. But it may be a fight worth having.

Haugen was impressive.
If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#18927 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-October-05, 22:52

View Posty66, on 2021-October-05, 18:51, said:

From Bloomberg Opinion Today


Haugen was impressive.


I removed my FB about 3 years ago and haven't missed it at all.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#18928 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-06, 06:32

Thomas Edsall at NYT said:

https://www.nytimes....0-election.html

On Sept. 30, for example, the University of Virginia Center for Politics and Project Home Fire released a survey showing unexpectedly large percentages of voters agreeing with the statement:

“The situation in America is such that I would favor states seceding from the union to form their own separate county.”

Among Trump voters, 52 percent agreed, with 25 percent in strong agreement; among Biden voters, 41 percent agreed, 18 percent strongly.

There are credible reasons to find this alarming.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#18929 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-06, 07:08

Stephen Colbert said:

Stephanie Grisham worked in the White House for four years, and as press secretary, she famously never gave a single press conference. But now she’s spilling all the tea in her new book, ‘I Just Recently Grew a Spine.’

In the book, Grisham uses a lot of colorful language to describe the administration, calling it ‘a clown car on fire running at full speed into a warehouse full of fireworks.’ Or as Fox News would put it, ‘a brave band of flaming harlequins rushing patriotically into the explosive jaws of danger.’

Yeah, just a reminder: She knew all about the fiery clown car and she still called shotgun for four years.

Grisham goes on to write, ‘I can give you endless metaphors: living in a house that was always on fire, or in an insane asylum where you couldn’t tell the difference between the patients and the attendants, or on a roller coaster that never stopped.’ Ooh, ooh, let me try: Being in his administration is like sliding blindfolded down a 50-foot razor blade into a tub of gin. It’s like walking through a minefield led by a baby trying to change his own diaper. Driving a manure truck over a cliff into a pit of other manure trucks. Deep-sea diving surrounded by sharks who won’t shut up about winning Wisconsin.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#18930 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-October-06, 08:58

Isn't it odd that the One America Network was a love child of AT&T. Built to help separate Americans.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#18931 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-07, 09:32

Linda Greenhouse at NYT said:

In January 2001, the Supreme Court was hurting. Thirty-six days after Election Day, on Dec. 12, 2000, the justices had divided 5 to 4 in its vote that stopped the Florida recount and effectively called the presidential election for the Republican candidate, George W. Bush.

In the ensuing weeks, with the court in a monthlong winter recess, justices on both sides of Bush v. Gore fanned out across the world to reassure the public, and perhaps themselves, that normal life at the Supreme Court would resume.

“If you can’t disagree without hating each other, you better find another profession,” Justice Antonin Scalia told a group of law students in San Diego on Jan. 23. The justice, whose side had prevailed, assured the students: “Trust me, there was no bitterness at the court after the decision was made.”

Speaking at the University of Kansas on Jan. 25, Justice Stephen Breyer, one of the four dissenters, insisted that the decision had reflected neither ideology nor politics, but simply competing legal views. “When you’re talking about the judicial system, what you’re talking about is people carrying on a discourse completely informed and civilized,” he said. He quoted a statement Justice Clarence Thomas, a member of the Bush v. Gore majority, had made the day after the ruling: “I can’t remember an instance in conference when anyone has raised their voice in anger.”

And in Melbourne, Australia, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, whom the decision had infuriated, adopted a measured tone in addressing a law school audience. “Whatever final judgment awaits Bush v. Gore in the annals of history,” she said, “I am certain that the good work and good faith of the U.S. federal judiciary as a whole will continue to sustain public confidence at a level never beyond repair.”

Two decades later, as a new Supreme Court term begins, the court is hurting again. The majority’s refusal a month ago to prevent Texas from shutting down access to legal abortion while lower courts weigh challenges to the state’s bizarre vigilante law — a law paused yesterday night by a federal judge — has once again turned a harsh public spotlight on a 5-to-4 division among the justices. And once again members of the court have taken to the road in defense of the institution’s ability to render impartial justice.

But there is a difference. The justices’ defensiveness comes with an edge. The conservatives appear to have deflected any impulse toward self-examination to a critique of how the media has covered the court’s recent actions. The problem isn’t the court, in other words; it’s those who presume to explain the court to the public.

Speaking last month at the University of Notre Dame, Justice Thomas complained that “the media makes it sound as though you are just always going right to your personal preferences.” He continued: “They think you become like a politician. That’s a problem. You’re going to jeopardize faith in legal institutions.”

Justice Samuel Alito, following Justice Thomas to Notre Dame a week later, attacked critics of the court’s growing use of its emergency “shadow” docket to resolve important cases without setting them for full briefing and argument. (The court’s unsigned order in the Texas abortion case is the most prominent but hardly the only recent example of this problematic practice.) “The catchy and sinister term ‘shadow docket’ has been used to portray the court as having been captured by a dangerous cabal that resorts to sneaky and improper methods to get its ways,” Justice Alito said. “This portrayal feeds unprecedented efforts to intimidate the court or damage it as an independent institution.”

Justice Amy Coney Barrett, speaking not at Notre Dame, where she taught law for 15 years before becoming a federal appeals court judge, but at the University of Louisville, told her audience last month that “my goal today is to convince you that the court is not comprised of a bunch of partisan hacks.” Media coverage of the court “makes the decision seem results-oriented” but that is not the case, she said. “Judicial philosophies are not the same as political parties.” Justice Barrett chose a distinctly discordant venue to make her case that the Court is nonpartisan. Her speech was part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the university’s McConnell Center, named for the Kentucky Republican whose engineering of her confirmation to the court on the eve of last November’s presidential election, without a single Democratic vote, set a new standard for Supreme Court-related partisanship.

The Supreme Court got off easy in the aftermath of Bush v. Gore. Opinion polling during the ensuing months revealed, to the surprise of the decision’s many critics, that the court had not suffered much in the public’s estimation. One reason may have been that during the period surrounding the decision, the court did not appear to the public to be as polarized along partisan lines. Two of the liberal justices, John Paul Stevens and David Souter, had been appointed by Republican presidents. Two other Republican-appointed justices, Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony Kennedy, departed from conservative orthodoxy with some regularity.

Justice Kennedy, in fact, wrote the majority opinion in the first important case the court decided following Bush v. Gore, holding that Congress had violated the First Amendment by restricting lawyers who received money from the federal Legal Services Corporation from bringing lawsuits to challenge existing welfare law. That decision, Legal Services Corporation v. Velazquez, issued in February 2001, was an unexpected liberal victory.

The composition and public perception of the court now is very different. All six of the court’s conservatives are Republican appointees, and the three remaining liberals were all appointed by Democratic presidents. A Gallup Poll conducted shortly after the Sept. 1 order in the Texas abortion case showed that public approval of the court had plunged from 58 percent a year ago to 40 percent today, the lowest in the 21-year history of this particular survey.

A poll conducted during the same period by the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania and released on Monday found that 34 percent of Americans agreed with the statement: “If the Supreme Court started making a lot of rulings that most Americans disagreed with, it might be better to do away with the court altogether.” Two years ago, when Annenberg last asked that question, only 20 percent agreed.

My point is not to suggest that the court should be running a popularity contest, but rather to reflect on the erosion of the traditional reservoir of public regard for the institution. Three polls within the past month show that fewer than a third of Americans want to see the court overturn Roe v. Wade. Yet it appears that only a third of the justices can be counted on to preserve the right to abortion as defined by the court’s current precedents. The culture war that brought us to this point may acquire another tangible manifestation as women unlucky enough to live in red states are forced to travel hundreds of miles from home to exercise what for 50 years was their constitutional right.

I’ve quoted conservative justices defending the court from what they portray as unfair misrepresentation, but some liberal justices also shared their own views in off-the-bench remarks. It was Sonia Sotomayor, speaking in an American Bar Association-sponsored virtual “fireside chat” last week, who came closest to the truth. “There is going to be a lot of disappointment in the law,” she predicted. “A huge amount.”

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#18932 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-07, 19:48

Paul Krugman said:

That was the summer of our discontent. Early this year many of us were expecting to see dramatic improvements in the quality of our lives. Miraculous vaccines offered the hope of a quick end to the pandemic and a return to normal life. The return to normality would, we hoped, also set the stage for a rapid economic rebound. When President Biden predicted a “summer of joy,” that didn’t seem unreasonable.

But it was not to be. The vaccination drive, after early successes, stalled in the face of widespread resistance, intensified by politically motivated misinformation and disinformation; and in an inadequately vaccinated nation, the Delta variant led to a deadly third wave of infections. While job growth has been fast by historical standards, the economy has been crimped both by the persistence of Covid-19 and by snarled supply chains. And a surge in homicides has revived some of the old dystopian fears of social breakdown.

The result has been widespread frustration, with many people predicting that things will stay bad or get worse in the months ahead.

But what if the current gloom is overdone? As regular readers know, I’m not an optimist by temperament — and I’m as terrified as everyone should be by the threat right-wing radicalism poses to U.S. democracy. But there’s a good case that in the quite near future we’ll see substantial progress against the three C’s: Covid, containers (i.e., supply-chain issues) and crime. We didn’t get our summer of joy, but we might be heading for a spring of relief.

Start with the state of the pandemic. At this point the Delta wave is clearly receding in the United States. Furthermore, there are reasons to hope that this won’t be another false dawn, because the federal government and a growing number of private employers have been getting serious about requiring that workers be vaccinated.

And the wall of vaccine resistance is proving a lot less solid than it may have seemed. A few months ago surveys suggested that many workers would quit their jobs rather than accept mandated vaccinations. In reality, employers that have already imposed such mandates, for example in health care, are typically seeing only 1 or 2 percent of their workers make good on this threat.

None of this means that we’re going to stop worrying about Covid anytime soon. But we do seem, finally, to be on a path toward a situation in which Americans who have been vaccinated can feel fairly safe going back to the office, going out to eat and — most important of all — sending their children to school.

What about supply-chain problems? I think it’s fair to say that almost nobody predicted the Great Snarl — the logistical mess that has scores of container ships steaming back and forth off California waiting for a place to dock, automakers unable to meet demand because of a shortage of semiconductor chips, and more. But two of the main factors behind this mess seem to be abating.

First, the easing pandemic should directly help mitigate supply issues, because at least some disruptions have been caused by Covid-related shutdowns and the inability or unwillingness of some workers to engage in risky activities. As the rate of new cases falls, such disruptions should become rarer.

Probably even more important, many of our supply-chain woes were caused by the unusual shape of demand during the pandemic, which saw consumers buying fewer services but more stuff — buying exercise equipment because they couldn’t go to the gym, home entertainment systems because they couldn’t go to the movies. Purchases of consumer durables surged far above the prepandemic trend, and the world didn’t have the capacity to move all those goods without major delays.

But the rush to buy stuff has greatly slowed down over the past few months and should slow even further as ordinary life returns. This should reduce pressure on the system. Christmas gifts may still be a bit hard to come by, but it would be surprising if the stress doesn’t ease substantially by early next year.

Finally, crime. There was a sharp rise in homicides last year, although one that still left murder rates lower than they had been in the 1990s. But did the spike in murders herald a return to the bad old days, or was it a pandemic-related aberration?

Well, data from New York, at least, suggest that 2020 wasn’t the start of a trend. Homicides so far this year have run below their rate in the corresponding period of last year; over the past four weeks they were down 14 percent from a year previous.

All in all, there’s a pretty good case that we’ll all be feeling a lot better about life early next year than we are now.

Such an improvement in the nation’s mood would, of course, have big political implications — and we should expect Republicans to do all they can to make things worse again; Mitch McConnell may have flinched at the prospect of creating a global financial crisis over the debt ceiling, but there’s undoubtedly a lot more mischief ahead.

But I find myself feeling cautiously optimistic. Maybe it was something I ate?

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#18933 User is online   kenberg 

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Posted 2021-October-07, 20:10

Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer...
I'm trying to recall. How did that work out for Richard?
Oops, time for my nap. I keep forgetting.
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#18934 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2021-October-07, 22:17

I suspect Krugman would be pleased if he knew his words had the power to rouse his critics from hibernation if only to mock his optimism in a highly literate and entertaining fashion before heading back to sleep. I am.
If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#18935 User is online   kenberg 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 05:46

View Posty66, on 2021-October-07, 22:17, said:

I suspect Krugman would be pleased if he knew his words had the power to rouse his critics from hibernation if only to mock his optimism in a highly literate and entertaining fashion before heading back to sleep. I am.


And only gentile mocking, he could be right although I think any optimism about covid is premature.

This illustrates an issue. After posting my comment I reflected that no one will be saying "Golly, I never knew that Ken doesn't always appreciate Krugman". If I were to make a vow not to post anything unless I thought there would be someone somewhere who was surprised to learn of my thoughts on the matter then I would not be posting much.

But Krugman borrowing from Richard III to write optimistically? I could not resist.

Thanks
Ken
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#18936 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 10:04

View Posty66, on 2021-October-07, 22:17, said:

I suspect Krugman would be pleased if he knew his words had the power to rouse his critics from hibernation if only to mock his optimism in a highly literate and entertaining fashion before heading back to sleep. I am.


York, york, york. Posted Image
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#18937 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 13:20

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-October-04, 11:28, said:

There is a distinction between “right to be born” and “right to live”. The libertarian simply wants to impose his beliefs in others without admitting that as the true aim.

I was listening this morning to an interview with the director of one of the organizations behind the Texas law. She never used the word "fetus", she always referred to it as a "preborn child". As far as these people are concerned, it's already alive. So if you take any action that knowingly causes it to die, it's equivalent to murder.

#18938 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 13:26

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-October-08, 10:04, said:

York, york, york. Posted Image

To tell us whether they will come or no!

And, in good time, here comes the sweating lord.
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#18939 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 13:37

View Postmycroft, on 2021-October-04, 11:33, said:

But the libertarian also says "you can't force me to stop on the side of the road and save the life of the person dying from the accident".

So if the fetus is extracted from the mother, and left on the side of the road to live or die as it decides, it's not murder.

That's ridiculous. The fetus doesn't "decide" to live or die. If it's extracted before it's viable, death is inevitable, and if you take action that you know will cause death, you're a murderer. I doubt any libertarian would subscribe to this strawman argument.

Quote

In fact, requiring the pregnant person support the fetus without consent or a contract would be an immoral use of force. There is no reason why the fetus should win.

Unless the pregnancy was the result of rape, the mother willingly engaged in action that resulted in conception of the fetus. So pro-lifers would contend that she's not being forced to carry the fetus, she volunteered by having unprotected sex, and going back is a violation of the baby's right to life.

In the case of rape I think they just don't care about the circumstances and think that an innocent child inherently has a right to life, and it's murder to abort it. There's a conflict between her right not to be forced to do something, and the prohibition against killing, and they think the prohibition should take precedence. Note that even Texas has exceptions in their anti-abortion law when the life of the mother is at risk.

What SCOTUS essentially decided in Roe v. Wade was that prior to the third trimester a fetus is not actually a person, so it doesn't have the right to be born and live, and the mother's life and choice takes precedence -- abortion isn't murder. Pro-lifers mainly disagree with this, and they've been chipping away with it for decades, and hope that they'll get a new SCOTUS that agrees with them.

#18940 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-October-08, 15:07

I don't think libertarian very well - my philosophy that other people matter and I should actually care what happens to them makes it very difficult. So, sure, I may be talking fwaffle.

But I have absolutely heard that argument from them - as an argument for abortion pre-viability being perfectly moral. Actually, I believe (IANAL, IANAA, Morgentaler applies to me instead of Roe,...) that that was in fact the argument for why pre-viability, a fetus is not a person.

But you will hear libertarian arguments that people have no right to life, and certainly no requirement that they must use any of their precious property ensuring people don't die. And that includes some direct actions that are not strictly violence.

Of course, there are the kinds of libertarians who seem to actually believe that rules shouldn't apply to *them*, unless they meet their strict definition of "what's right". But somehow, that doesn't apply to anyone else. And their rules just happen to make what they want to do acceptable, and what they don't want to do - or what can't happen to them, or what they think can't happen to them, anyway - regulated.

I have my own opinions of whether abortion should be legal or is moral; because I won't end up pregnant barring some serious medical advances, *those opinions don't count for much*.
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