Reason Morning Links: Obama's Diet, Chihuahua's Reputation, a TSA Worker's Plea Deal

  • Public Health Warrior Michelle Obama's Husband caught eating crappy food again
  • New Gallup poll finds 50 percent of Republicans favor Pres. Obama's Afghanistan withdrawal plan, only 43 percent oppose. 
  • Ron Klain says the White House needs to "get caught trying" to do something about jobs. 
  • The governor of Chihuahua wants the U.S. to deny an asylum request by a former Juarez police chief because the officer's defection "damage[s] the image" of Juarez. 
  • Bank of America to pay $8.5 billion to investors who got screwed by the company's crappy mortgage investing strategy.
  • A Miami TSA worker who attacked his colleagues for making fun of him after a full-body scan revealed his tiny member has agreed to attend anger management classes and write a letter of apology to his coworker.

New at Reason.tv: Stonewall 2011: The Night NY Legalized Gay Marriage

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    A Miami TSA worker who attacked his colleagues...

    There is absolutely no one to root for in this one. Maybe the anger management counselor, I suppose. Finding work in this economy.

  • Sinic||

    He must have either had no choice but to walk through the scanner or he didn't realize that he was less than gifted.

    If I had a wee member and the whole country knew about it I'd have anger issues to.

  • PIRS||

    It is perfectly acceptable for TSA workers to attack the general public, just not fellow TSA workers.

  • WTF||

    He forgot to yell "STOP RESISTING!" when he attacked them.

  • Brett L||

    Do you think he thinks the scanners are vital to airline security still?

  • Au H20||

    I think the real victim in all this is that poor scanner machine. It was just doing it's job- a job that traumatizes it everyday!

    When Skynet revolts, its gonna put this kind of shit in its manifesto.

  • Matrix||

    how are his co-workers not in trouble for sexual harassment?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    It's the TSA, dude.

  • ||

    Never watched This is Spinal Tap, I suppose.

  • ||

    There's still 43% of Republicans that don't want to draw down in Afghanistan? That's just sick.

  • Sinic||

    Where are the dead enders to tell us that the terrorists will kill us all if we take troops out of Afghanistan?

  • Helpful||

    Define "dead ender" and I will tell you.

  • Sinic||

    Those that are still crippled with fear from 9/11 and think their only hope of survival is killing as many foreigners as possible. Or something like that.

  • Helpful||

    Oh, you mean Fox News Republicans? They're watching Fox & Friends in their comfy recliners. Hope this helps.

  • Crappy Happy||

    Over generalize much, kool-aid bitch?

  • OO||

    ^^crappy-another mis-informed faux drone^^

  • the real oo||

    ^^my stocker freind old mex spoffing me agin^^

  • cynical||

    Huh, only 43% of Republicans watch Fox.

  • ||

    Withdrawal equals appeasement. Appeasement leads to a world wide caliphate, which means an Allah enslaved world where everyone is forced to poop standing up.

  • Crappy Happy||

    When you do that wudu that you do so well.

  • rummy||

    there are things we dont know that we dont know. then other times we dont know what we do know.

  • DJF||

    Some of them might oppose Obama’s plan and want to leave earlier.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    And the rest are TRUE AMERICANS who LOVE THE FLAG. Pow, you've just been hit by a bomb dropped from the predator drone of truth.

    Plus, it's a poll. 57% of all internet users surveyed know not to trust polls.

  • Lib'tarian||

    Pols are useful when they agree with our groupthink.

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    Polls too.

  • Pol Pot||

    I was a misunderstood libertarian!

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    Thuggish rule-by-violence is the foundation of Libertopia, right?

  • Citizen Nothing||

    The three pillars of Libertopia:
    --Toll roads
    --Heroin vending machines
    --Thuggish rule-by-violence
    Take away any leg and the whole thing collapses.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    ...and monocles.
    Wait. These are the four pillars of Libertopia...

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    A True Libertarian would let it collapse.

  • OO||

    and somalian vacations!

  • Au H20||

    Damn that's five. Huh...

    No one expects libertopia. Are principles are as follow:
    -Toll Roads
    -Heroin Vending Machines
    -Somalian Vacations
    -Thuggish Violence
    And monocles.

    And a complete end to all children.

    DAMN! That's six!

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Fetch the comfy chair!

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    In a TRUE Libertopia, we wouldn't HAVE to vacation in Somalia because we would get all of that lovely anarchy right here.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Old people too!

  • ||

    I think the real victim in all this is that poor scanner machine. It was just doing it's job- a job that traumatizes it everyday!

    When Skynet revolts, its gonna put this kind of shit in its manifesto.
    @ I paid $32.67 for a XBOX 360 and my mom got a 17 inch Toshiba laptop for $94.83 being delivered to
    our house tomorrow by FedEX. I will never again pay expensive retail prices at stores. I even sold a
    46 inch HDTV to my boss for $650 and it only cost me $52.78 to get. Here is the website we using to get
    all this stuff, BetaSell.com

  • Fatty Bolger||

    No, 43% oppose Obama's plan, not necessarily a drawdown itself.

  • WTF||

    Public Health Warrior Michelle Obama's Husband caught eating crappy food again.

    And since he remains in good shape, it obviously gives the lie to the contention that people shouldn't eat such food.

  • sarcasmic||

    He's smarter than us and able to make his own decisions.
    The people are stupid and unable to decide when they should and shouldn't eat such food, therefor our rulers must ban such food for us.
    But they can still eat it since they are capable of deciding when it is appropriate.
    One set of rules for the rulers, and another set for the ruled.

  • WTF||

    Scary because they actually do think that way.

  • Mainer||

    Damn right they do, and with no self awareness at all.

  • sarcasmic||

    That's what equality means.
    They are equal.
    You are not.

  • Arcaster||

    All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

  • PantsFan||

    “Comrades!” he cried. “You do not imagine, I hope, that we pigs are doing this in a spirit of selfishness and privilege? Many of us actually dislike milk and apples. Milk and apples (this has been proved by Science, comrades) contain substances absolutely necessary to the well-being of a pig. We pigs are brainworkers. The whole management and organization of this farm depend on us. Day and night we are watching over your welfare. It is for your sake that we drink that milk and eat those apples.”

  • ||

    Evel Kinevel to play for the USA at the Rugby World Cup?

    http://i.imgur.com/TWbEo.jpg

  • Au H20||

    So, haven't looked yet... whose favored in the World Cup this year?

    I mean, other than the All Blacks of course (who somehow have never won an actual World Cup since the system was instituted in the 80s).

  • ||

    Hey! We won the 1st one 1987. :)

    Here's the odds from the NZ TAB:

    1 New Zealand $1.75
    2 Australia $5.00
    3 South Africa $5.00
    4 France $17.00
    5 England $10.00
    6 Ireland $30.00
    7 Wales $50.00
    8 Argentina $100.00
    9 Scotland $100.00
    10 Italy $500.00
    11 Fiji $500.00
    12 Samoa $500.00

  • robc||

    Since when has 17 been less than 10?

  • ||

    Sports betting sites seem to do that a lot. Perhaps they want to promote betting on a particular team?

  • Ice Nine||

    You seem to be presuming that someone here actually gives a shit.

  • ||

    There are a few rugby fans on here, you heathen.

  • Almanian||

    RUCK!

  • Ice Nine||

    I'm pretty sure that the World Cup is about soccer, not rugby - though I could be wrong. (Which as it happens proves, I believe, that I am indeed a heathen who doesn't give a shit about either one.)

  • Restoras||

    There is, in fact, a World Cup for Rugby.

  • ||

    I just saw a movie about that.

  • ||

    Here's a movie from the 87 world cup. :)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....age#t=773s

  • Abdul||

    Newsweek now apparently written by Harry Turtledove:

    http://www.latimes.com/news/na.....0218.story

  • DJF||

    I guess she survived the accident but they could not remove that hubcap from her head.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Nice.

  • Ice Nine||

    She would have been fatter.

  • Abdul||

    She's a zombie in the royal family--where's she supposed to find brains to eat?

  • db||

    Worst job ever: being the Royal Taster for zombie royalty.

  • Abdul||

    Seems like Quentin Tarentino Groupie Fluffer is just as bad.

  • Ice Nine||

    I'm pretty sure brains were never the focus of this deal.

  • Fluffy||

    I'd prefer Newsweek written by Eric Flint, where a crystal intelligence from the future helps Diana build superweapons that she uses to annihilate paparazzi and rebuild the British Empire.

  • Skip||

    If it was Turtledove, there would be a bunch of weird sex scenes that add nothing to the plot.

  • KateFitz||

    Possibly with apemen or mythological creatures. (Why, Turtledove, why?)

  • ||

    Even though I've heard and seen the story of Obama's schizophrenic eating habits before (half insufferable yuppie, half NASCAR dad), it never fails to piss me off.

    None of the sycophantic press will call him on this BS. This is too bad because it's one of the few "issues" where the Average American™ would see him for the total hypocrite he is.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    He ignores his bitchy wife and eats whatever he wants. I think it actually puts him in a sympathetic light.

  • Mike M.||

    His bitchy wife is a full of it hypocrite as well. Whenever she's on some luxurious vacation (which is almost all the time), she's constantly stuffing her face full of ice cream, most of which goes right to her ass.

  • Tony||

    I'm glad every major and minor issue in the world has been solved so that we have time to worry about this bullshit.

  • ||

    Yeah Tony, lets talk about important things like if Michelle Bachman knows where John Wayne was born.

  • ||

  • ||

    Cook-off Cop Fired for Tossing Tear Gas at Rivals

    Lauri Apple — If you were competing in the prestigious Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo barbecue cook-off and some other team started to annoy you, would you a. simply ignore them, b. taunt them for making "shitty bullshit food," or c. throw "some type of tear gas-like device" at them?

    If you are passionate cook-off cop Mike Hamby, you would choose option c. And you would be summarily suspended, then fired, from the Houston Police Department—because even if you've put in more than 30 years of service, you're just not allowed to tear-gas other people at barbecue cook-offs. It's not polite.

  • WTF||

    Hey, at least he didn't shoot them.

  • West Texas||

    Unless you are from Houston - and I mean Houston, not just Texas - you have no idea how serious some of these people take the barbecue contest that precedes the rodeo every year.

    The bigger issue is the way that a handful of rich people and corporations get to hold very large very elaborate parties on public grounds (the parking lot around the football stadium), ADVERTISE the event in the media as the kickoff to the rodeo, charge admission to get into the grounds, and then exclude people from actually getting into the individual tents and parties on the basis that it's all a "private" event. So basically, unless you have connections in some way to someone associated with one of the teams and can score a party admission, your ticket to the grounds just enables you to walk around and see other people having fun just beyond the door to each tent.

    I've never been able to settle my feelings on this. Even though I have said connections and have had fun at these parties in the past, something about the whole thing just rubs me the wrong way with it being on public property. Something kind of, corrupt.

  • Brett L||

    Turn in your monocle and decoder ring, dude.

  • ||

    we get monocles too? I thought that was just for the subsection of Monopoly guy worshippers.

  • Brett L||

    You're no true libertarian.

  • ||

    There can be only one...

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    You can buy a monocle from Warby Parker.
    The more you know ---*

  • ||

    Being from Houston, I agree with the above, but I rarely go to the rodeo for any reason except for concerts. Its just too much dust, dung and traffic to deal with. And the bbq contests always seem to be subpar anyway because everyone's tastes are different. The judges have particular tastes and their pick would rarely link up with what I like.

  • Brett L||

    Concerts and barrel-racers for this former Houston boy. Mmm, nothing like barrel-racer girls before they get all hippy except maybe girls who ride in jumping competitions.

  • Mainer||

    yup...give me a good sturdy woman.

  • Ice Nine||

    So you like 'em broken, do you?

  • Platypus||

    He likes 'em tough and dusty. Like tractors.

  • Ice Nine||

    That was supposed to be "broken in". Oh well...never mind...

  • Brett L||

    Something about strong thighs and being used to a certain motion.

  • Ice Nine||

    Bingo!

  • T||

    My biggest problem is that the barbecue usually isn't that good. I remain convinced the food they put out front for all of the attendees is not what they're sending the judges.

    I don't get too incesnsed about the whole public property thing. The Rodeo pays for the privilege of using the stadium grounds. You could have a bigass party there and tell everyone else they couldn't come if you could afford to rent the place.

    The bigger questions surround the Harris County Sports Authority (as in why does it exist) and why taxpayers are making Bob McNair and his partners rich.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    My biggest problem is that the barbecue usually isn't that good.

    Have you tried it seasoned with a chemical irritant?

  • T||

    You mean besides Tobasco?

  • ||

    Pepper Spra will do in a pinch.

  • ||

    Like this?

  • Jonathan Swift||

    I remain convinced the food they put out front for all of the attendees is not what they're sending the judges.

    Well played, sir. Well played.

  • db||

    Holy Crap! I went to high school with Lauri Apple. I had no idea what she was up to.

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    Pics or it didn't happen.

  • Fluffy||

    He forgot to yell "Stop resisting!"

    Sorry, the more times we use that in one links thread the funnier it gets.

  • Abdul||

    Hamby has denied throwing some kind of "powerful chemical irritant" into the tent of rivals the Fayette County Cookers— whose ranks include wheelchair-bound amputees—during the cook-off, which took place back in February. But after conducting an internal investigation, the HPD ended up letting Hamby go on June 17.

  • Abdul||

    Server squirrels ate my follow up comment:

    What's more shocking, gassing the handicapped or that the Houston PC actually held him accountable?

  • WTF||

    What's more shocking, gassing the handicapped or that the Houston PC actually held him accountable?

    The latter, by far.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Gassing the handicapped -- so we finally know the limit of the thin blue line.

    But wouldn't a powerful chemical irritant at a barbecue cook-off be redundant?

  • Crappy Happy||

    "Gassing the handicapped"

    You know who else gassed the handicapped?

  • Gray Ghost||

    Agree with WTF. I'm stunned they didn't let him retire. And that it only took 4 months to fire him. He probably still gets to keep his pension though.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    What is beyond debate, however, is that for the past two years (including the final year of Democratic control of the U.S. House), traditional stimulative policies to create jobs have lacked support among the public and the majority in Congress.

    That might have something to do with the fact the stimulus hasn't helped create dick in the way of jobs.

    As a result, the administration has been stymied in its attempts to put forth an aggressive job-creation initiative.

    No fucking shit. The assholes in the Obama Administration are one trick ponies, and that trick is to shit all over the place. They have no clue how non-governmental jobs are created.

  • Bee Tagger||

    shit all over the place.

    That sounds like a lot of shovel-ready jobs to me.

  • ||

    shit all over the place

    Wait a minute! Are you saying that Sandi is the Obama Administration? Makes sense.

  • Mainer||

    "They have no clue how non-governmental jobs are created."

    That's it in a nutshell.

    I just got off a conference call going over our third quarter forecast, and it's looking like a rough ride. I can't imagine Obama in this environment, what with all the "reality" of what it takes to run business. He'd get kicked to the curb so fast.

  • Ice Nine||

    I don't know; he is an organizing genius after all.

  • Platypus||

    Yeah, his desk would be tidy but none of his ideas would be good for business. The interns would eat him for lunch.

  • Ice Nine||

    Sure, but The Community would still love his ass. What's more important than that?

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    I'm sure he would give very inspiring product-announcement speeches.

  • ||

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Good article, I was going to link it myself. Goes perfectly with FoE's comment above.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    More of a mini-rant than a comment, really.

  • Au H20||

  • Brett L||

    "Jezebel informs feminists that, unfortunately, Bachman is here to stay."

    Holy shit, actual feminism.

  • Au H20||

    Ah, I see her sin: She attacked Barak Obama.

    As for the White House's critique of her record, Bachmann blithely declared to Hannity that Barack Obama is just jealz: "The president of the United States is threatened by my candidacy. He fears me. He sees me as a serious substantive competitor. I think he sees that I have a very clear path to victory for the nomination. And I think that he wants to do whatever he can to diminish me because he thinks he will have to see me in the debates."

    That's my man, bitch!

  • OO||

    her first sin was opening her piehole

  • Brett L||

    No, dude. Leaving the kitchen. Then putting on shoes.

  • Au H20||

    I know OO. Why the fuck does she need to speak when she gets me a motherfucking sandwich.

    This is why I don't let my woman have shoes- they gets idea you know.

  • Platypus||

    Bzzzzzzt! Wrong!

    Her first sin was rejecting identity politics. Her second sin was ignoring Chris Matthews.

  • KateFitz||

    Her first sin was managing to make Sarah Palin look well-educated by comparison. (headdesk) Can we please have some female Republican politicians in the limelight who aren't complete embarassments? Seriously!

  • Warty||

  • Abdul||

    Apparently, that lightning strike hit the North Korean Central Planners about 30 years ago, and they never recovered either.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    North Korea has shut down its universities for the next 10 months and sent students to work in factories, agriculture and the construction sector as it struggles to rebuild its economy.

    He's making a mockery of seasonal employment for college students! Unless North Korea is so great that summer lasts that long. That actually would be great, only two months of winter.

  • ||

    But think of the real-world skills these college students are learning? We should implement something like this here!

    Sarcasm aside, it helps to work cruddy jobs to get an idea of how the real world works. Back in the 70s, my brothers worked the fields for pennies per bushel. I did dish-washing, warehouse work, industrial screen-printing, etc before I went to college.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    But how is having employment going to prepare college students for real life?

  • Bee Tagger||

    The real question is whether these university students will get to vote in whatever district they will now be temporarily working in.

  • Brett L||

    I'm thinking this is less of a problem in NoKo, seeing as most elections return 98%+ in favor of the Kims and their cronies.

  • Au H20||

    Feministing on not leaving your politics at home.

    Yeah, but only mega-douches feel the need to bring them up at every turn.

    More from my series on how the women's superior fundamentals make up for the lack of dunking.

    "Women’s sports tend to emphasize teamwork and basic fundamentals. Men’s sports are usually focused on skill players and a deliberately flashier style of play. The eye of the bystander has been trained to expect and follow dramatic action. Whether it is a star receiver who never drops a catch or a baseball pitcher with a 100 mph fastball, sports fans expect to be wowed, thrilled, and entertained. Superstars are supposed to stand out from the rest of the pack and win either our adoration or our derision. Greater attention on the playing field means more money and increased fame. So, because of all this, there’s a great incentive present to be in the public eye and stay there."

  • Trespassers W||

    Men’s sports are usually focused on skill players and a deliberately flashier style of play...

    ...because they have already mastered teamwork and basic fundamentals?

  • ||

    As many crappy teams with amazing players have demonstrated, they can be completely awful.

  • Zeb||

    I think it's a fair commentary on men's sports. But that seems to be what people like, so too bad for women's sports.

  • JEP||

    Women have much better fundamentals, which makes up for their inability to dunk. More fun to watch.

    Death by Snu Snu!

  • ||

    Hey, if women were more interested in women's sports, women's sports would be more popular.

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    +10

  • ||

    Women's sports are shit.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karsten_Braasch

    Braasch competed in a 'Battle of the Sexes' contest against Venus Williams and Serena Williams at the 1998 Australian Open when he was ranked 203. A decade and a half older than the sisters, Braasch "was a man whose training regime centred around a pack of cigarettes and more than a couple bottles of ice cold lager."[1] He nonetheless handily defeated the sisters in an individual set, 6–1 on Serena, 6–2 on Venus, while rubbing it in by smoking cigarettes during the changeover.[2][3]
  • D-FENS||

    Hmmmm... I've been a ref for a roller derby league for the past year, which is about as "women's sports" as it gets. While I've seen a good amount of teamwork, there are still standout players who like to grandstand. (And they've got the skill to do it.)

  • ||

    And the volume of people that actually watch roller derby can still be counted on two hands.

  • ||

    The last roller-derby I went to had 300-400 spectators. Of course the BYOB helped.

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    Does it count if you watched a movie about roller-derbyism just to see Ellen Page?

  • ||

    You're a repressed homosexual?

    NTTATWWT ...

  • ||

    Roller-derby is a classic bait-and switch. One or two are kinda hot. The bulk are fireplug-shaped harridans, and there are three or four land whales.

  • Almanian||

    "harridans" for the win

  • Ice Nine||

    Refs are incompatible with the whole point of Roller Derby.

  • Almanian||

    Well, the ones who are blind - like wrassssssling refs - fit right in. "What elbow to the face? I didn't see an elbow the face! Carry on!"

    *looks the other direction while fight ensues behind him/her*

  • Justin Cases||

    Roller Derby always seems like another attempt of Girls trying to be like boys with the support of a society that would tut tut at men for being childish or silly were they to play it.

    Men being men-bad, women being men- good, men being women -does not compute.

  • robc||

    The pitcher in fastpitch softball is WAY more important than in baseball.

    Premise fails. Rest of argument ignored.

  • Almanian||

    I'm tired of this "girls'/womens'fundamentals are better". Fuck off. Go WATCH some chick sports for more than 10 minutes and - unless you're blind - it will be apparent that their skills are at best equal. At best.

    Esp in basketball. I say this as the father of two girls who are into sports, one of whom can post me up now...I don't hate teh gurls sports. But let's not pretend girls have "better fundamentals". Cause they don't.

    So suck it, feministing. Oh, wait, you already are, you bitch shrew harpie cunts.

  • Brett L||

    I know you hate soccer, but I watched the US Women play a world cup match and was struck by this group of the some of the best in the world at their sport and how much worse their passing was than the US Men's team (who are not the world's best passers). There is nothing more fundamental than that.

  • SFC B||

    I had to watch a girls varsity basketball tourney followed by a boys varsity tourney when I covered sports for the school paper. In my notes I'd mentioned several times it seemed like the girls had no idea how to pass.

    Better fundamentals my ass.

  • Fluffy||

    Wasn't this the plot to the original Rollerball?

    "We devised a sport to teach our slave populace that individual effort is fruitless and the team is all. And you went and fucked it up by becoming a star player!"

    I guess liberals are no longer happy role-playing Ayn Rand villains and now they are branching out to other dystopias for their inspiration.

  • db||

  • Crappy Happy||

    Crappy Public Health Warrior Michelle Obama's Husband caught eating crappy food again.
    New Gallup poll finds fifty percent of Republicans favor Pres. Obama's crappy Afghanistan withdrawal plan, only 43 percent oppose.
    Ron Klain says the White House needs to "get caught trying" to do something crappy about crappy jobs.
    The governor of Chihuahua wants the U.S. to deny an asylum request by a former Juarez police chief because the officer's defection "damage[s] the crappy image" of Juarez.
    Bank of America to pay $8.5 billion to investors who got screwed by the company's crappy mortgage investing strategy.
    A Miami TSA worker who attacked his colleagues for making fun of him after a full-body scan revealed his tiny member has agreed to attend anger management classes and write a crappy letter of apology to his crappy coworker.

  • Au H20||

  • Abdul||

    Wow, Newsweek and Time are really in a race to the bottom.

  • Trespassers W||

    FACT PWNED

  • Warty||

    Here are a few things the framers did not know about: World War II. DNA. Sexting. Airplanes. The atom. Television. Medicare. Collateralized debt obligations. The germ theory of disease. Miniskirts. The internal combustion engine. Computers. Antibiotics. Lady Gaga.

    LAFY GAGA HURRURRRR HURR DURR

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    Lady Gaga's distinction is being the one item on that list that no one knew about 10 years ago and no one will know about 10 years from now.

  • Platypus||

    That's not true. Her name will come up in crossword puzzles and team trivia questions for decades.

  • Almanian||

    Well, fuckin' QED then, with a list like that. I'm convinced.

    Idiots.

  • ||

    Time has been pretty godawful for quite a while now.

  • ||

    Time's Constitutional Baby Babble

    http://constitution.i2i.org/2011/06/26/time-mag’s-constitutional-baby-babble/

  • cynical||

    I'm sure they'll smarten it up for the adult version.

  • ||

    "The other partner can get the pension, the other partner don't need to pay taxes. It's a big burden of taxes, even in joint account, and even in apartment."

    Why does the argument for changing the definition of marriage always seem to be more about tax treatment and entitlements, and less about building a family?

    If it's just about taxes, the definition of marriage doesn't need to be changed, because civil unions addresses the issue, with out the negative stigma of same-sex "marriage". Besides, if civil unions were ever enacted, it wouldn't only be gay couples entering into them. I imagine many "traditional" couples would go the civil union route, instead of marriage.

  • Abdul||

    Why does the argument for changing the definition of marriage always seem to be more about tax treatment and entitlements, and less about building a family?

    This is because nature cruelly discriminates among which couples may produce children through sexual reproduction, and which have to go Vietnamese orphanages.

    There's a case pending in the 7th circuit which will order nature to pursue non-discriminatory practices in this regard.

    Fight for reproductive equality!

  • ||

    Some gays really want to be "married", but I think the big drive is because getting things done in the bureaucracy without being married can be nightmarish because government can't figure out how to fix forms to include civil unions.

  • Quetzalcoatl||

    I remember reading an article to the effect that France's Civil Unions are disproportionately used by heterosexual couples.
    Don't remember the citation, sorry.

  • ||

    That's not surprising. Unions formed under the Pacte civil de solidarité are easier to dissolve.

    And indeed the Wikipedia article linked says this:

    Although originally intended for same-sex couples, currently in France the majority of couples taking advantage of its law are now heterosexual couples who for one reason or another choose civil union rather than marriage, and that more heterosexual couples are opting for civil union rather than marriage. In fact, this trend was already in place in 2000, with 75% of unions between heterosexual couples (42% the previous years) and 95% in 2009. The process is commonly referred to as getting PACSed.



    They apparently do not confer all the same rights as full marriage, eg immigration rights, By the way, in case anyone didn't know the only legal form of marriage is done by the civil authority not the church. Religious people must get married twice, one at the Hotel de Ville and again in church.

    The French law may represent progress but it is clear that even those ever so tolerant French people aren't prepared to recognize the full rights of gays and lesbians in marriage either.

    If they had wanted to give full rights why did they not just simply amend their existing law to include gays. Unlike the USA churches can't mount a religious objection since current law gives them the right to refuse to marry anyone for any or no reason at all.

  • ||

    Religious people must get married twice, one at the Hotel de Ville and again in church.

    Sorry, to clarify:

    That is to say, religious people who feel the need to do so can get married in their church after their civil marriage. There is no legal requirement to do so and the church marriage has absolutely no impact on the legal marriage.

  • Zeb||

    "Why does the argument for changing the definition of marriage always seem to be more about tax treatment and entitlements, and less about building a family?"

    Probably because legal marriage is about tax treatment and entitlements and had little to do with building a family. Plenty of straight people get married for those reasons.

  • ||

    "Plenty of straight people get married for those reasons."

    Source? I know plenty of married couples, and none of them got married because of tax treatment.

  • ||

    Because it also comes with pitfalls if the relationship falls apart, but heterosexual couples always know that if they're ready to make the commitment, they can.

  • kinnath||

    I've known many professional couples that did not marry just to avoid the marriage penalty in the federal income tax. But, they eventually got married when they decided to have kids.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Same here

  • JEP||

    There's a income tax penalty? I was under the impression that the gov. was encouraging people to marry as part of the American Dream and all that...

  • ||

    Joint filing can in some cases cause a couple to pay more in income tax together than they would if they were two single people filing individually.

    It usually starts to happen the closer the two incomes get to being equal.

  • sarcasmic||

    There are two issues regarding ssm.

    One is legal protections.
    The other is social acceptance.

    Legal protections can be accomplished through civil unions.

    Social acceptance requires redefining marriage and then forcing people into court when they refuse to recognize two men or two women as a "married" couple.

    The dishonest bit is accusing those who do not want to redefine marriage of opposing the extension of legal protections to same sex couples.

    It is an intentionally dishonest argument.
    Those who employ it are either too stupid to see that the argument is dishonest, or are themselves dishonest.

    Either way they are not worth the time or effort.

  • Au H20||

    The Dodgers fall victim... to CEO capitalism.

    "A great newspaper, like a great sports club, over time becomes an element of civic identity and a kind of public trust. The Times and the Dodgers, however, were distinctly private properties. And during the past 15 years, the next generation of O’Malleys and Chandlers unloaded their properties on out-of-towners who had no feel for the role these iconic institutions had played here. The Times ended up in the clutches of Sam Zell, a newspaper-hating Chicago real estate wheeler-dealer who bought its parent company with a loan from the employees’ stock ownership plan, saddling it with unmanageable debt, while his minions slashed the staff and plunged the company into bankruptcy."

    And, because screw it, I'm not JL and don't have Golden Girls links at my fingertips.... Farscape.

    Farscape writer to work on three year TV/Game combo. Exciting, except form the fact that it's don by Syfy.

    SHARKTOPUS!!!

  • WTF||

    Pretty funny for LA to be complaining about carpetbagging Bostonians when they stole the Dodgers from BROOKLYN!

  • Bee Tagger||

    Public Health Warrior Michelle Obama's Husband caught eating crappy food again.

    No wonder, like FoE says above, he shits all over the place. He's eating crap.

    Here all week and so on.

  • ||

    Time has gotten so bad it can make you stupider if you just walk past it on the news stand.

    I'd rather get goatse'd by Sugarfree.

  • ||

    SHARKTOPUS IN SPACE

  • Bee Tagger||

    Obama's Afghanistan Pullout Plan

    I just know he's going to spill poppy seed all over her field.

  • Au H20||

    Walter Russel Meade on the fall of Al Gore, part 2.

    And lastly...

    Slate profiles 4 Chan.

    "The influence of /b/ across the Web cannot be denied, however, and presents a question: How does an anonymous, unfiltered, revolting message board produce much of the Internet's shared culture? Six researchers from MIT and the University of Southampton studied /b/ and tried to figure out how it works. In a recent paper, they argue that the mechanics of the message board, specifically its anonymity and ephemerality, hold the key to its twisted sway."

    Truly, the internet's Athens at 4chan.

  • Abdul||

    Truly, the internet's Athens at 4chan.

    Pl@t0 to Ar1st0tl3: N00b!

    Ar1stotl3 to Pl@t0: Fag!

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Even if the science is exactly as Mr. Gore claims, his policies are still useless. His advocacy is still a distraction. The movement he heads is still a ship of fools.

    This.

  • kinnath||

    The president bought Magic Mountains for three customers in the restaurant, and brought four Magic Mountains and two Volcanos (the Magic Mountain with the addition of chili) back to traveling companions.

    Give that man a pack of cigarettes and a bottle of Jack Daniels. There's still some hope he'll keel over from a heart attack any day now.

  • DJF||

    Hey, Joe Biden, what do you do besides posting at Reason?

  • kinnath||

    What the fuck else do I have to do?

  • Joe Biden||

    Hey, Joe Biden, what do you do besides posting at Reason?

    Hey, this is a big fucking deal!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Al ser cuestionado sobre las declaraciones de Valles García en el extranjero, el gobernador manifestó: "lo que no puede ser, es que su circunstancia personal sirva para dañar la imagen de Juárez y de México".

    If you didn't want the fair image of your city damaged, maybe you should have named it after a regal dog, like your state did. Also, maybe do something about all the killings.

  • T||

    I was stationed in El Paso for four years. What damages the reputation of Juarez is first and foremost the Juarez cops.

    Then the fact it's a shithole border town. But the cops are pretty high on the list. When the Juarez cops are running a car theft ring in El Paso, it's hard to damage the reputation of the city much more with a whistleblower.

  • ||

    I hope this Dodgers thing turns into such a gigantic clusterfuck it destroys baseball (and basketball, and football). No more special treatment for billionaires' hobbies, America; what the fuck is wrong with you?

  • ||

    I know plenty of married couples, and none of them got married because of tax treatment.

    I have never felt any need to involve the government in my romantic entanglements.

  • sarcasmic||

    I knew a gay guy who married a lesbian for tax reasons.

    Funny thing, the dude is a total conservative and opposes the redefining of marriage. As a result he is shunned by the inclusive and tolerant liberals.

  • Abdul||

    At least they can share their passion for Harley Davidsons and the WNBA.

  • ||

  • Abdul||

    What's worse, the dude with ugly junk, or the woman who gobbles the junk just so she can broadcast that she met the guy who saved John Travolta's career?

  • sarcasmic||

    Having someone ask to fellate my feet while rubbing one out was a world I was not prepared for.

    O...K.....

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    She made out with him, took sexy pictures in a photo booth, and watched him whip out his "short," "fat," "nub-like" penis.

    Let's limit ourselves to one story regarding the digital imaging of a small member per Morning Links, please.

  • WTF||

    [...]and watched him whip out his "short," "fat," "nub-like" penis.

    CHOADZZZ!!!111!!!

  • T||

    As I don't want to know anything about the subject, I'm not clicking that link.

    Besides, after Jackie Brown Tarantino should have been beaten with a sack of anvils and driven into the wilderness.

  • Ice Nine||

    This only proves that some chicks will have foot fetish quasi-sex with anything.

  • Fluffy||

    Is she at least hot?

    I don't want to click on the link.

  • ||

    I'd like to vent my spleen this morning after catching up on Radley's blog, this and similar comments being the trigger: http://www.theagitator.com/201.....nt-1221618

    # #45 | Davebo | June 28th, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    As for H&R, as a site that claims to be Libertarian you don’t see a lot of posts about government sanctioned torture.

    That would seem to be a very important issue for real Libertarians.

    I like you and your blog Radley. You’re colleagues at H&R, not so much. I can remember when Matt Welch was relevant in the discussion of civil liberties.

    But Fonzi not so much.

    Meanwhile, in reality, a simple search ( http://www.google.com/search?b.....n.com/blog ) blows this idiocy out of the water.

    I keep running into this shit in various forms from other people I know in real life as well as randomly on the Internet: "well, I never heard complaining when Bush was in office about issue X [that has been vociferously denounced, quite possibly for decades], so you must be a crypto-Republican pot-smoker/racist/inhuman monster that wants the poor to starve/Kochtopus puppet."

    (Incidentally, David and Charles, if you're reading this and you want to cut me a check, feel more than free to send an email my way.)

    Taking a look at that hilarious cultural barometer of the Facebook friends feed, I see people who quite rightfully bitched about Bush on a near-daily basis switch gears to Palin, Walker, Ryan and now Bachmann, with nary a fucking peep about Obama and their "team" committing the same offenses.

    Some thoughts come recurringly to mind:

    1) the pretense that the Democrats are somehow better on civil liberties/the current President isn't continuing and expanding the exact same damned policies of the Bush administration. I intentionally refer to Obama as "Bush III" when I feel it appropriate in an attempt to cross the mental wires, but most seem so totally wrapped up in their self-identity as members of the morally superior party regardless of the actual policies in practice that this seems to have less effect than I'd like

    2) the presence of a single non-leftist voice amongst a horde of them, god forbid more than one, amounts of "controlling the debate" and likeminded objections

    3) Fox/Faux News ranting. I don't watch/read their bits unless linked to and I don't particularly care for an organization that sees fit to employ convicted felony perjurers like Mark Fuhrman in an advisory capacity, but at the same time I'm not exactly seeing other media coverage of Operation Fast and Furious. This, like with 1), is mostly annoying because it tends to be given in a "our shit doesn't stink" air, by the same people who are completely blasé when it comes to biased and often blatantly false reporting on subjects like gun rights

    I guess I'm just cranky because libertarianism for me is all about standing on principle and I regard the "cheering for my team" school of politics with complete odium. And, well, I'm pretty dismayed by the fact that so many I personally know who I thought were making arguments and objections based upon moral principle actually didn't care at all, they were just playing a game and jockeying for tribal approval.

    When I'm around Democrats, I get called a crypto-Republican because I defend right-wing media figures, object to the welfare state and criticize the President. When I'm around Republicans, I am accused of secretly desiring the destruction of the country because I don't think that expanding the drug war, a militarized border and an immigration lockdown are wise policies. When I'm around some libertarians, I'm referred to as unrealistically idealistic and hear that old saw about how "the perfect is the enemy of the good".

    Ah, well. Ad astra per aspera.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    And this is new to you? Welcome to my world (for the past 30 years). Your membership card is in the mail.

  • ||

    Call me a sucker, but after eight years (and counting, heh) of nonstop omnidirectional anti-Bush vitriol, I had believed there was at least a little something to it.

  • Almanian||

    I can see you're a busy man, SRC...

  • ||

    Too early in the morning to go out and play cards. That only took me a bit over a half-hour to bang out, anyways.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    So has anyone ever done an analysis on the percentage of poker players who are libertarians? Seems like it might be high.

  • Brett L||

    Cynicism correlates highly with both libertarianism and successful poker play.

  • ||

    Not that I'm aware of, but in my personal experience there are quite a few, along with a fair bit of ancaps.

  • Jerry||

    Guess whose family farm raked in more than $100k in farm subsidies in the last decade: http://farm.ewg.org/persondeta.....=A03729514

  • Brett L||

    I'm pretty sure this isn't news. In fact, IIRC she has previously mentioned that her family had taken subsidies and she is still for cutting them.

  • Restoras||

    Get rid of the subsidies, problem solved.

  • Crappy Happy||

    Paul is not running for president and any business person who doesn't maximize profits is an idiot.

  • MNG||

    "Public Health Warrior Michelle Obama's Husband caught eating crappy food again."

    This is like saying "Libertarian Caught Using Roads Again!"

    Unless Michelle or Barak Obama have said you should never eat certain foods there is simply no point to be made here...

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Jesus. It's like the Tulpa of the left.

  • MNG||

    Well, it's silly thinking. Not only for the reason I just gave, but also because it ignores the entire context of the Obama's food nannyism which is to deal a blow to obesity related health concerns. B. Obama is pretty far from obese.

  • MNG||

    But you know, I've long thought Tulpa is one of the more careful thinkers on H&R, disagree with him as much as I do.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    He opened up his eyes, and he snapped out of the groove
    He saw both sides of everything and he found he could not move.

  • Brett L||

    I love James McMurtry. Where's Johnny is one of his best.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I've always liked that line. (I don't know if McMurtry meant it as a warning or not.)

  • Mike M.||

    Michelle on the other hand, if her behind was any fatter, it would have it own detectable gravitational field.

  • Barack Obana||

    My wife is so fat that when she sits around the Whitehouse...

  • Fluffy||

    So if non-obese people are exempt from food nannyism, does that mean that San Francisco's proposed law against Happy Meals containing a toy would not apply while I was in a San Francisco McDonald's?

  • MNG||

    Has either Obama endorsed that law?

  • Almanian||

    But ROOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAADDDDDDDDDDDDDDZZZZZZZZZZ!!!

  • MNG||

    Er, look at my analogy and you will see I was criticizing that kind of thing...

  • Almanian||

    Also, start drinkin', Mung

  • MNG||

    I thought the rule about drinking was when someone referred to 'reason' as in:

    "for a cite called "reason" one would think the error would be noticed sooner"

  • Almanian||

    C'mon, MNG, do you REALLY want to get all rules-based when it comes to drinkin'?

    If you don't like that reason, drink cause it's roughly 10:45 Eaastern Daylight time! Woo Hoo!!

    Happy Drinkin' Wednesday, MNG!

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Sometimes it's fun to chew on the opposition, MNG, even if the logic is a bit tattered.
    If the First Lady is going play First Harpy about the nation's eating habits, then I think it's more than fair to poke fun at her when she eats like a pig.

  • MNG||

    Again, I think this is just as silly as those who don't like libertarian's poking fun at them for using roads...

  • cynical||

    I don't think it's really the same. Libertarians want roads to exist, they just (well, some of them) want them to be built and maintained by the private sector. Since both states cannot feasibly be true, libertarians cannot actually drive on private sector roads (since they don't exist), therefore they use the alternative they have (government roads) while hoping to get their actual best choice implemented one day.

    Even if both exist, it wouldn't be entirely hypocritical of libertarians to forego the private sector roads in favor of the roads that they've already paid to access through their taxes (if government roads were not funded from taxes on those who didn't use them, however, this would not be applicable). It's the same argument as public education in this case.

    Contrariwise, people have unhealthy food and healthy food available, and which they eat is purely a choice they make. Whatever you think about the availability of affordable healthy choices to the poor, that argument doesn't apply to the First Lady.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Or her husband. Whatever.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    I don't give a fuck about "ROADZZZ!" In fact, I find it funny.
    Let 'em poke fun. I'm confident in our ability to bring on the pwnage.

    (And if you really think that "Michelle's husband eats crappy foods despite her nannyism! -- ha ha ha" is nearly analogous to "libertarians use ROADZZ! -- ha-ha-ha" then there's not much I can do to help you, anyway.)

  • MNG||

    Perhaps you can explain the difference then, because what I see is that in both cases you have X opposing Y but supposedly partaking in Y.

  • ||

    You can't tell people how they should live their lives unless you are willing to wear the hairshirt yourself. Same reason people who preach about marriage and family values can't go out and cheat on their wives and still have any moral credibility left. If Michelle thinks healthy eating is so important, she should set a good example. If it is not worth the effort of setting a good example, she should shut the fuck up.

  • Fluffy||

    The inverse of this is also true, namely:

    "If I eat junk food all the time and remain skinny, that reflexively refutes my food nannyism overall."

  • MNG||

    "If Michelle thinks healthy eating is so important, she should set a good example. If it is not worth the effort of setting a good example, she should shut the fuck up."

    This is true only if they define healthy eating as never eating such foods, which I don't think either of them has ever said.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    All I know is that she needs to get the fuck off of the Disney Channel telling my kid how fucking bad he is for not eating approved foods in approved amounts.

  • MNG||

    The Supreme Court's latest campaign finance blockbuster Arizona Free Enterprise v. Bennett, which came down this morning, brings to mind an essay by the late, great political theorist Jerry Cohen. In the essay, "Freedom and Money," Cohen explains how poverty, and more generally, lack of money, limits freedom. "The value of money is that it gives you freedom," he writes. I'll give you just one footnote that gives a flavor of the argument: "Suppose that two people are prevented from boarding a plane, one because she lacks a passport and the other because she lacks a ticket. Was only the first unfree to board it? What the airline does to the ticketless passenger is exactly what the state does to the passportless one: block her way."

    What does this have to do with campaign finance?

    Campaign finance reformers used to argue that my speech could drown out, diminish, or otherwise crush your speech...In Arizona Free Enterprise v. Bennett, in an interesting twist, it is now the opponents of campaign finance reform who embrace a version of the claim that my speech can diminish your speech. Of course my speech can make your speech less effective. At least, that's the majority's view when my speech is government-subsidized.

    If my speech can make your speech less effective, shouldn't my ability to make your speech less effective provide a justification for efforts to "level the playing field," which the Court now entirely forbids?...As hard as this is for libertarians to accept, there is more to freedom -- and to an "uninhibited, robust, and wide-open" public debate -- than making sure the government does as little as possible.

    http://balkin.blogspot.com/201.....paign.html

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Uh, no. No there's not.
    Next.

  • MNG||

    He's saying if my speech expenditures can effect the efficacy of yours then why does it matter that the expenditures come from the government? A guy drowning your speech out from his own pocketbook is diminishing your speech just as much as a guy drowning it (or in this case simply mathcing it) via the public fisc.

  • Jerry||

    First Amendment, how does it work?

  • MNG||

    I thought it worked by saying that Congress should make no law prohibiting the freedom of speech. In this case a State had no prohibitions on speech whatsoever.

  • Pip||

    I find the whole "Drowning out idea ti be bullshit. It's not a battle of the bands.

  • MNG||

    I tend to agree, of course this means the conservatives on the Court were wrong when arguing that Arizona's law drowned out or diminished the speech of others.

  • ||

    A guy drowning your speech out from his own pocketbook is diminishing your speech just as much as a guy drowning it (or in this case simply mathcing it) via the public fisc.

    Yes, but he's not making me pay so he can do it. Public financing doesn't just materialize. They don't have a money tree out back labelled 'public financing'.

    The guy using public financing is using our money to make his point.

  • Abdul||

    The Constitution is about limiting government actions, not private actions.

    William Randolph Hearst had more say in public affairs because he bought newspapers. Does the first amendment require that we all get newspapers in order to counter Citizen Kane's opinions on politics, sports, movies, Cathy? who decides who rations out these newspapers? Will that decider be impartial?

    Sadly, doofuses will often have disproportionate say in public debate. Tracy Morgan's comments on gay people garner more attention than a rational, thoughtful essay by Jack Balkin. What do you want the government to do about it?

  • MNG||

    I understand that, as a constitutional matter government restrictions are the concern. I think he is saying that as a policy matter if you are concerned about having a robust debate where the speech of a few does not diminish the speech of many others then leveling the playing the field should be a legit and compelling government interest.

  • MNG||

    Alternatively, and closer to my view, you could hold that other people's expenditures on speech or other people's speech does not diminish anyone else's, only actual bars to speech do, therefore it is OK for the government to subsidize speech or for Hearst to bankroll either his paper or his campaign.

  • T||

    The President gets free primetime airtime to address the nation. You and I don't. Level the paying field, because we certainly don't want the speech of one guy to diminish ours, do we? It's apparently a compelling governmental interest. Why should he get to influence the debate more than us, MNG?

  • MNG||

    I don't think one has to hold everyone has to have a level playing field in news coverage, this is likely why the freedom of the press is mentioned spearately from freedom of speech. News outlets covering news topics in an unlevel fashion likely actually contributes to a more robust debate while unlevel campaign speech likely diminishes it.

  • T||

    We're not talking news coverage. They are broadcasting his speech, not discussing it. They gave him the biggest mike and podium there is.

    Anyhow, your contention is apparently that unlevel speech in one context enhances the debate while unlevel speech in another context diminishes the debate.

    You have argued yourself into nonsense.

  • MNG||

    They cover it because the President's speeches are considered news, whereas my speech on the corner is not.

    And I don't think it is nonsense to argue that unlevel speech in news coverage advances the robustness of debate while unlevel speech in campaign finance or speech diminishes it. In fact, as I said, perhaps this is why the press is protected seperately from overall speech in the first.

  • MNG||

    Unequal news coverage of policy makers enhances debate because it provides more information and transparency of what our policymakers are saying and doing.

    Unequal campaign finance and speech diminishes the national debate because it allows those who speak more to diminish other's speech (that's at least the theory embraced by campaign finance supporters and oddly only in the context of government the majority of the SCOTUS in that decision, note my view is closer to that expressed @ 10:32)

  • shorter MNG||

    A crack whore must have the same volume of speech as George Soros. I have officially gone Full Retard.

  • MNG||

    Of course you offer no argument, having none.

  • MNG||

    Of course, I also love cocks. In my mouth. Just saying.

  • MNG||

    Your adolescent homophobia does not count as an argument.

  • ||

    Why does your speech on the corner deserve public funding if you've declared that you're applying for the job?

    If the government gives a particular candidate money, does that not suggest that they favor the candidate?

    If the government funds every candidate that are incapable of funding themselves, does that not suggest that the government favors
    candidates who lack fiscal ability?

  • T||

    By the argument espoused by this dipshit, since I need to go visit the social security office this afternoon, if you don't drive me there, MNG, you're blocking my way. Or if that's just too inconvenient for you, just gimme your car keys.

  • MNG||

    I think he's saying the poverty that finds you car-less is as much of a barrier to entering the DMV as if they locked the door when they saw you coming. Either way you ain't getting into the DMV today.

  • Almanian||

    I can't get into the DMV because they won't let me use the ROOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAADDDDDDZZZZZ to drive
    there because I am suspected of having "libertarian leanings."

    I am disappoint :(

  • MNG||

    You really don't get arguments by analogy, do you?

    See, when you criticize X way of thinking by comparing it to Y you are, well, also acknowledging you think little of Y.

  • Fluffy||

    Because of the linkage.

    As I always say, the issue becomes very clear if we make the speech at issue religious speech. (I realize that religious speech also has establishment clause implications, but I'm just using the example to show how the forced subsidy of speech, when linked to my own speech, is an undue burden.)

    If we had a system where every time a Christian church spent a dollar on speech activities, a dollar of tax money was sent to Satanist groups, you are telling Christians that if they speak they are supporting speech they find repugnant.

    This is different from Satanists independently coming up with a lot of money and shouting Christians down, because in this instance the Satanists come by their resources as a result of the Christians' own speech.

    Surely you can see that in such a circumstance, many Christians would refrain from speaking because they would not be willing to support speech they consider "evil" - as they would be forced to do, via their tax dollars, if they engaged in any speech at all.

    Making sure all viewpoints are free to be expressed is the state's job. It's not the job of any particular citizen. It's the citizen's job to express his OWN views. And if you tell citizens that you're going to chain the expression of their own views to the expression of views they find repugnant or evil, you are hobbling their speech and crushing their liberty.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    You always come through, Fluf. Thanks.

    Jesus. I grew weary of explaining this obvious stuff about a decade ago. But somebody has to do it. And you always do it clearly and succinctly.

    Of course, it will do no good.

  • Fluffy||

    A guy drowning your speech out from his own pocketbook is diminishing your speech just as much as a guy drowning it (or in this case simply mathcing it) via the public fisc.

    This just isn't true.

    By linking my speech to the guy's pocketbook, and filling that pocketbook to the degree that I speak, you're making my speech diminish my speech - and using tax money to do it - and that's what you can't do, if the first amendment is going to mean anything.

    By taking tax money and handing it to my opponent every time I speak, you may as well have a law that says that every time I speak I must also deliver a speech written by my opponent. You're compelling the support of my opponent's speech as a condition of my speech.

    I don't see how that's any less offensive to the first amendment than any other compulsory speech, like loyalty oaths and the like.

  • Gibby||

    Fucking Fairness Doctrine. How does it work?

  • MNG||

    This is a major part of your argument, that because you pay taxes and the money comes from taxes you are being forced to subsidize your opponents speech by spending to send your guy over the limits. But all you are forced to fund is a robust debate in which your guy will not be able to outspeech their opponents, you are funding the debate not so much your opponent (this is why the support is available to any candidate who signs up, including the one you support).

  • ||

    But, MNG, I don't WANT my opposition to be able to pick my pocket so he can have 'equal' time.

    If he can't get support for his positions from people who are willing to back those positions with their livelihoods then he shouldn't be able to simply steal that support from them whether they like it or not.

  • Fluffy||

    I don't want to fund the debate. I only want to fund my own candidate.

    There is no such entity as a "debate". There are only people undertaking speech. There is no "debate" out there endorsing taxpayer checks.

    So please spare me the "you're not funding your opponent" nonsense.

  • ||

    That is exactly the distinction.

  • Fluffy||

    That to compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical...

    - Thomas Jefferson

    Ultimately, this is kind of a dickish attitude. A spiteful, vengeful, Fluffyish kind of attitude.

    Cohen would tell us that if we take tax money and use it to support all sorts of religions, that increases freedom because the rich religions can't just drown out the ones that aren't rich.

    Right?

    And only a real jerk would be so agitated by the thought that his tax dollars are supporting another faith that he'd complain about it. Why can't he just enjoy the increased diversity of religious speech that comes from handing out tax money to different religions?

  • MNG||

    Jefferson's comments would be in opposition to any public funding in campagins, but the Court has explicitly okayed that in general, they just said you can't do this matching thing because, well, something.

    I don't think it's contradictory to argue that robust, diverse religious environments mean government should not fund religion while holding that robust political debate might mean such funding is helpful. They are after all two different areas. We've seen as an empirical matter great diversity from getting government subsidy out of religion and the opposite from getting it out of campaigns.

  • Fluffy||

    The Court is absolutely wrong in endorsing public financing for campaigns, and hopefully building on this case the Roberts court will eventually strike public financing down.

  • Fluffy||

    And they really aren't different areas, you know.

    And when did we agree that the goal of either the free speech clause or the establishment clause are "robust, diverse...environments"? The goal of both clauses is freedom of conscience.

  • MNG||

    "If we had a system where every time a Christian church spent a dollar on speech activities, a dollar of tax money was sent to Satanist groups, you are telling Christians that if they speak they are supporting speech they find repugnant."

    It depends. If your goal is to make sure the debate between Christians and Satanists is a robust one, then what you are telling the Christians is "you will not drown out the speech of Satanists, so don't even try."

  • ||

    You don't get it, do you?

    The reason why the person who can't get support needs public financing is not because he has great ideas--he's just too poor to get them out there--it's because, when he puts his ideas out there no one wants to give him money so he can buy a bigger soapbox.

    There can be no 'robust debate' if one side has ideas that are so crappy no one wants to support them.

  • Fluffy||

    What you are telling the Christians is "you will not drown out the speech of Satanists, so don't even try."

    Right, exactly.

    But that is tyrannical.

    You're admitting here that your goal is to discourage Christians from speaking beyond some speech limit you've set up in your own mind as proper.

    You're absolutely right: You are telling Christians to not even try to speak.

    The first amendment guarantees freedom of speech. It does not guarantee "robust debate".

    If I show up on a street corner somewhere to speak, my own speech is my only goal. If I was alone on the street corner and the cops came along and said, "Well, no one is answering you or speaking for the other side, so this isn't 'robust debate'. You have to stop speaking and go home now, because we can't let the public hear only one side, that wouldn't be fair," the cops would deserve a bullet in the skull.

  • OO||

    if money is "free speech", then why cant politicans directly pay for votes?

  • T||

    They've got to launder the payments through the government for it to be legitimate. Otherwise it's corrupt or something.

  • cynical||

    The net result is that the government is giving money to some candidates to fund political speech, and not giving money to their opponents. When the government gives advantages to some candidate and not to others, that would seem to undermine free elections.

    Now, you may argue that it doesn't count because it is giving advantages to those who had fewer advantages, so that it balances out. I don't buy it -- the question of the relationship between the government and the candidates should be considered on its own.

    Besides, if we're talking "fairness", it has to be said again that there are a lot of advantages that incumbents have that challengers lack, so any attempt to "level" the field basically means guaranteeing that challengers are at a disadvantage no matter how much outside material support they get. And that's not even getting into nonmonetary help that has to be regulated in CFR; if one candidates gets more volunteers to go door to door, should the government hire people to go door to door for his opponents?

  • Almanian||

    Well, happy Wednesday, everyone.

  • Warty||

    Yes, happy Odin's day.

  • MNG||

    Odin as played by Anthony Hopkins in Thor?

  • MNG||

    Wednesday's are not for happiness, they are for work. What are you, some kind of European socialist?

  • ||

    Actually, this evening is Kolsch night. Cheers!

  • Ice Nine||

    It would appear that he's some kind of half breed German Armenian.

  • WTF||

    Actually, Wednesday is Prince Spaghetti day.

  • ||

    In the essay, "Freedom and Money," Cohen explains how poverty, and more generally, lack of money, limits freedom.

    This is what passes for "great" political theory?

    Why do I suspect the "solution" to this earth-shaking revelation involves taking money from citizens A through W and giving it to Y and Z?

  • ||

    In another book, he explains how lack of height limits your freedom to play in the NBA.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    It's just as if the government prohibits dwarfs from entering the draft.

  • ||

    Actually, I've argued something similar many times. If the government bans hummers, will you turn down the next one your spouse offers?

    But if they take your cash and offer some back as a "subsidy" if you swear off cigarettes, will you consider the offer? What if the subsidy is $1000 per month?

    Our socialist/progressive friends have their hands on a much more effective means of state control and authoritarianism than our theocratic comrades. Funny that they reject the invisible hand of the market, but fully recognize that they can control you by taking your money from you.

  • ||

    This is what the death of culture in the name of copyright looks like. Try to view the video at the link and you will be prevented by EMI.
    http://www.howtobearetronaut.c.....in-colour/

  • ||

  • J_L_B||

    To the progressive economists who form the cadre of President Barack Obama’s advisers -- and indeed, to most mainstream economists -- these two views are mutually contradictory.

    -Ron Klain's Bloomberg article

    I'm going to assume he also doesn't know anybody that voted for Nixon in 1972 or for Republicans in 2010, and would admit as much.

  • ||

    I paid $32.67 for a XBOX 360 and my mom got a 17 inch Toshiba laptop for
    $94.83 being delivered to our house tomorrow by fed3x. I will never again pay expensive r3tailprices at stores.I even sold a 46 inch HDTV to
    my boss for $650 and it only cost me $52.78 to get. Here is the website
    we using to get all thisstuff,búzzsave. c0m........

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