Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Durbin, Law Professor Argue Over Gun Magazine Limits (VIDEO) | TPM LiveWire

Logic is not a wingnut strong suit,  even when the wingnut is a law professor.--SS   

Durbin, Law Professor Argue Over Gun Magazine Limits (VIDEO) | TPM LiveWire:

"If you can rationalize a 100-round drum that someone can strap onto a semi-automatic weapon, as it did in Aurora, Colo., and turn it loose, killing dozens of people there and saving lives only because it jammed, then you certainly ought to object to the laws that have been on the books for 80 years about machine guns. Why aren't they allowed under the Second Amendment?" Durbin said.

Kopel responded that machine guns aren't allowed because they are not "commonly used by law-abiding citizens for legitimate purposes."

"But 100-round magazines are?" Durbin said.

Monday, January 28, 2013

What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days? - Esquire

Charles P Pierce on the Sunday Showz:

What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days? - Esquire:

Then came Jim DeMint, the former senator from South Carolina who is now running the ideological chop-shop known as the Heritage Foundation. DeMint sat down with the Dancing Master and gave a very convincing impersonation of a political lunatic. When the Dancing Master asked him about Colin Powell's comments regarding what Powell saw as the thinly veiled racism behind much of the criticism of the president, DeMint exploded in a cloud of snowflake Jeebus babies.
The fact that we are losing over 3,000 unborn children a day is an important issue...But Republicans or conservatives should not engage in a wish list about exceptions for abortion when the other side will not even agree that we have real people, real human beings. And we need to fight the battle where it should be fought. Life is important. We know from all the new technology and improved sonograms that we do have a baby...Instead of just offering my opinion on some hypothetical debate about exceptions for abortions, we need to move it back and particularly work with the states that are fighting just for the personhood of the child. And if we can start there, I think America will move with us.
I think I speak for the entire class when I say — what in the unholy fk is this man raving about? When a waiter asks him what he'd like to start with this evening, does he deliver an impassioned defense of the automatic transmission? When he's buying a plane ticket, and the agent asks him for his destination, does he go on for five minutes on the relative merits of pickles with tuna fish? How does this man get through the day, what with his various sequiturs so thoroughly non?

Read the whole thing: What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days? 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Where there’s a Will … theres a way to distort the truth | Open Mind

When I first saw this story, I thought it was from Dog House Riley, who is known for taking George F'ing Will down a few notches every time Will's fingers hit a keyboard. Instead we have global warming blogger Tamino ripping Will a new one. There's math and science involved, so Republicans might want to brace themselves.--SS  

Where there’s a Will … theres a way to distort the truth | Open Mind:

"In his editorial in the Washington Post, he starts with “raging fires” by saying:
Are fires raging now more than ever? (There were a third fewer U.S. wildfires in 2012 than in 2006.)
Here’s a clue for those who want to know the truth of the matter rather than George Will’s “spin.” When you hear a phrase like “a third fewer U.S. wildfires in 2012 than in 2006,” you know you’re being played for a sucker."


Let’s look at acres burned. Let’s look at all the data available from NIFC:
All of a sudden George Will’s “a third fewer U.S. wildfires in 2012 than in 2006″ seems like a blatantly misleading indicator. That’s because it is a blatantly misleading indicator. The 2012 tally of acres burned is one of the highest on record. And even if it weren’t there is still an evident trend.
Go read the whole thing if you like to watch George Will have his old, saggy ass handed to him. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Unpublished Carl Sandburg poem about power of guns uncovered at U. of I. library -

What a timely find.--SS    

Here is a revolver.
It has an amazing language all its own.
It delivers unmistakable ultimatums.
It is the last word.
A simple, little human forefinger can tell a terrible story with it.
Hunger, fear, revenge, robbery hide behind it.
It is the claw of the jungle made quick and powerful.
It is the club of the savage turned to magnificent precision.
It is more rapid than any judge or court of law.
It is less subtle and treacherous than any one lawyer or ten.
When it has spoken, the case can not be appealed to the supreme court, nor any mandamus nor any injunction nor any stay of execution in and interfere with the original purpose.
And nothing in human philosophy persists more strangely than the old belief that God is always on the side of those who have the most revolvers.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Journalists in the service of Pete Peterson | Remapping Debate

A great story on our Galtian Overlords and the sycophants who stroke their enormous egos.--SS     

Journalists in the service of Pete Peterson | Remapping Debate:

Peterson, however, is hardly a disinterested and dispassionate observer of such discussions. In fact, he is now beginning his fourth decade of arguing that there is no alternative to enacting “entitlement reform” (read: cut Social Security and Medicare) and “tax reform” (read: raise regressive taxes and lower progressive ones) in the name of curbing the country’s “unsustainable” debt and deficits. 
An essential and successful element of the Peterson strategy is to create an environment where it is widely if not universally believed that there is no alternative to his vision. In this view, it’s “not realistic” to believe the country can afford the same programs it once did. Those who are prepared to be “adults” will look at these “hard truths” without flinching and recognize that it is time to take citizens-have-to-do-with-less medicine. 
The conceit is that those with “courage” will see past narrow, partisan concerns and embrace an ideal: a bipartisan consensus that has the strength to demand “shared sacrifice” from a childish and selfish populace. 
A review of the proceedings of the Fiscal Summits of the last three years makes agonizingly clear that most of the journalists who conducted interviews or moderated panel discussions both reflected and amplified the Peterson worldview — entirely unselfconsciously, it would seem. 
So, for example, Lesley Stahl, the CBS “60 Minutes” reporter, was fully a part of the Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson deficit-cutting team during her interview with both men: “You are going to have to raise taxes and cut things, big things, put restrictions on Social Security. Everybody knows that.” 
Virtually none of the reporters thought to ask about or suggest an alternative path, such as preserving Social Security benefits and bolstering the system’s reserve by raising the cap of wages subject to Social Security taxes (currently annual wages above approximately $110,000 are not subject to any Social Security tax).

Saturday, January 19, 2013

California lawmaker: Guns are ‘essential to living the way God intended’ | The Raw Story

Yeah, right. The way God intended for us to live. Whatever. Keep talking, wingnuts!--SS   

California lawmaker: Guns are ‘essential to living the way God intended’ | The Raw Story:

“They are used to defend our property and our families and our faith and our freedom, and they are absolutely essential to living the way God intended for us to live.”--California Assemblyman Tim Donnelly

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

ClubOrlov: The Image of the Enemy

Great piece from Dimitri Orlov.-SS    

ClubOrlov: The Image of the Enemy:
Now, for me, fervent passion for the works of Ayn Rand has served as an accurate litmus test for a mediocre mind. The best that Ayn Rand's thinking can offer is a way of getting in touch with one's “inner asshole”: if you are the sort of person who is driven to distraction by the idea that somebody somewhere might be getting a free lunch at public expense, Ayn Rand is there to help you nurture such feelings. Ayn Rand is beloved of America's self-styled “libertarians.” The real Libertarians were socialists, but Americans have a way of borrowing words they don't know and then using them to mean things they don't understand, like saying “football” instead of “hand-egg” and then having to say “soccer” instead of “football,” never mind that the entire world finds this unintelligent and impolite. As the character Inigo Montoya put it in the film The Princess Bride, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
So here we have a country in severe crisis (the United States) holding an important election, which should, theoretically, be over whether it should stay on course of runaway debt and government spending, or to reinvent itself and so to avoid national bankruptcy and collapse. And it turns out that all the opposition candidates it can field happen to be followers of a mediocre methamphetamine-addled Russian novelist. Now, let me ask you this: does this pathetic excuse for a democracy still have the right to lecture others about democratic governance? Perhaps the wounded beast of American democracy would be better off finding a dark place to go and lick its wounds for a couple of years.

Go read the whole thing. It's a great read.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Chuck Hagel Defense Nomination - The Hagel Nomination - Esquire

Charles P. Pierce puts boots on the ground.--SS   

Chuck Hagel Defense Nomination - The Hagel Nomination - Esquire:
"Hagel is a grunt. He always has been. He always will be. He's one of the people who has to kick in the doors. He's one of the people who has to look gingerly around the corner. He's one of the people who had to live at war 24-7, and who walked through Indian country and nearly died there. (By comparison, as he himself has said, until he got shot down, John McCain had a pretty good Vietnam war, flying back to the carrier every day for hot meals.) "