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August – Week 1 Summary

06 Aug

August 1, 2011

  1. The recall elections in Wisconsin are rapidly approaching and something smelly is going on. American for Prosperity, a political advocacy group, has been sending out absentee ballots to Democratic districts with instructions to return them two days after the election has occurred. The voters in these primarily Democratic districts are not members of AFP so they shouldn’t even be receiving them. Absentee ballots need to be turned in on or before August 9 for them to be counted, but the ballots they’re receiving are saying to return them before August 11. While non procrastinators won’t have any problem, this is certainly some dirty pool to be playing. AFP is known as a primary Republican supporter and, in fact, purchased $150,000 in ad time in Green Bay, Milwaukee, and Madison to help support Republican candidates. Want to know who founded AFP, the Koch brothers, who still have their hands in the organization and, as you may remember, were involved with Scott Walker during the public employee union neutering. This doesn’t quite fit in the realm of voter fraud so it probably won’t be prosecuted. And even if it was they could simply claim it was a misprint and move on. Its nice to see the Republicans think the only way they stand a chance is to cheat. (Full story on Politico)
  2. Government, always so sneaky about getting bills passed that do more than their name implies, is at it again. What do you think the name of this bill implies, “Protecting Children From Internet Pornographers Act of 2011.” Sounds wholesome doesn’t it, I mean, who’s gonna argue with a bill that protects our children from internet pornographers. Therein lies the issue, with a name like that, many members of the House (that recently passed this bill), wanting to protect their position come election time, will vote for it. They know that the many uninformed citizens will see that Representative X didn’t vote for a bill that says in the name that it’ll protect children, so they immediately associate them with some sort of child hating demon. Every bill that goes through the House generally has some unrelated and unnecessary riders included, the writer’s hope is that nobody will read the bill and whatever sneaky tricks they leave in there will pass right through (in some cases, nobody reads the bill and they do pass). In the case of this bill, the problem is with the primary functions. The bill forces your ISP to retain your name, addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, and IP address. Now in this day and age sites and businesses are being hacked all the time, if hackers are aware that your ISP is storing this information then a giant target has then just been painted on their backs. Your sensitive information would yet be in another location, given many ISPs track records, do you trust them to store that information for you? How would this protect children from pornography? It wouldn’t! This information would, for 18 months, be at the fingertips of police and attorneys litigating civil disputes in divorce, insurance fraud, and potentially other cases opening a giant can of worms for abuse by law enforcement. Despite the opposition of over 30 civil liberties and consumer advocacy organizations the bill passed the House, who are they working for again? The bill will still needs to pass the Senate, so hopefully they see the light and shoot this down. Last time I checked, pornography in the US was still legal, but anytime some politician opposes something they consider inappropriate they’ll do whatever it takes to control other people’s lives, even if that means doing it under the guise of protecting children. (Full story on ZDNet)
August 3, 2011
  1. In case you didn’t hear, new federal guidelines approved this week require insurance companies to cover birth control with no co-pay costs. Unless your Catholic, you no doubt can see the many benefits to this. Reduced teen pregnancies, lower costs to families whose female members take birth control to make their periods less distressful, less unwanted children in orphanages, less abortions, fewer families requiring financial assistance due to crap-tons of children, the list goes on. As usual, however, Christian conservatives desire to control everyone’s lives with their “wholesome values.” These guidelines also cover breast feeding aides (I see nothing wrong with that) and abuse counseling (what’s to argue there). Well the illogical morons at Fox, not surprisingly, took issue with that, I’m sure because it’s Socialist or some other BS, comparing the coverage of those items to covering beauty treatments (how shallow). Iowa Representative Steve King takes the cake however. In an effort to hide the true meaning behind his objection, he blasts off with this incredibly illogical argument, showing he truly has no faith in humanity whatsoever. Here’s what he said, “If you applied that preventative medicine universally what you end up with is you’ve prevented a generation. Preventing babies from being born is not medicine. That’s not — that’s not constructive to our culture and our civilization. If we let our birth rate get down below replacement rate we’re a dying civilization.” This may come as a shock to you all, but he’s Catholic, says so right here (he’s a stereotypical conservative Republican, he votes via his religion). Newsflash, families tend to use birth control so that they can be financially and emotionally prepared for having children, when the time is right and they feel best prepared to raise them. Keep in mind, that’s not the only useful outcome of providing birth control to the masses for free. Have you looked at the world population, what in the hell makes you think we’re even close to becoming a dying civilization. Furthermore, do you even understand how birth control works? Just because somebody starts taking it doesn’t mean they can never have children ever again, they’re just flipping a switch, it’s just as easy to turn it back on. Here, let me change your argument so that it’s actually correct based on what you’re really thinking, “My church told me that birth control is wrong, since I don’t think for myself I vote based on what they tell me. Since we’re supposed to maintain the illusion of a true separation of church and state I’ll spout off this completely asinine argument.” (Full story on Salon)
August 4, 2011
  1. This just in…82 percent of Americans think Congress is a bunch of no-talent asshats that are more interested in tarnishing the reputation of their opponent, collect campaign contributions, and work on getting re-elected in 2012 than actually do the job they were elected to do. A fancy building filled with immature man (and woman) children throwing tantrums whenever they aren’t getting their way. (Full story on The New York Times)
August 5, 2011
  1. Well, at least they’re admitting it now. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is warning that cutting the $400 billion (not nearly enough) from the Pentagon’s budget that it would do real damage to our nation’s security. WRONG! You’re spending so much money fighting wars nobody is, has or will ask for, knock that shit off and you’ll need less money and still be able to provide the kind of security this nation is comfortable with. Panetta has flat out said that the bipartisan panel (the one responsible for finding cuts and/or raising tax revenue) should rely on tax increases (I can agree with that part) and cuts to nondiscretionary spending, such as Medicare and Social Security, to provide the necessary savings. I’m sorry, but my pay check shows I’m contributing specifically to Medicare and Social Security, your cuts shouldn’t even consider touching that. If you think you can take money away from a program that we are all specifically paying into than why the hell am I paying into it. (Full story on Salon)
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2 Comments

Posted by on August 6, 2011 in Weekly Summary

 

2 responses to “August – Week 1 Summary

  1. Pat Reagin

    August 13, 2011 at 6:31 PM

    august 5. The problem is that for years our politicians have been raiding the cookie jar of Medicare and Social Security and placing IOUs in it’s place. So even though our paychecks itemize those two deductions a lot of that dough is going elsewhere. I propose a new itemized list on your paystub that would tell us EXACTLY where our tax dollars are going. Since we are all too lazy to do our homework and dig in to see where our dollars are going, if it were staring you right in the face, you’d likely s**t your pants. This itemization should also tell us how much money has been borrowed on our individual behalf. Without doing too much real research (http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/budget_pie_gs.php) (http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/budget_current_gs.php?year=2009_2014&view=1&expand=300080&expandC=&units=b&fy=fy10) our weekly paystub may look like this:

    Gross Pay: $1000.00
    Soc Sec. $62.00
    Medicare $15.60
    State $35.00
    Local $11.00
    Federal Total: $290.00
    (Interest on Debt $15.00 that’s INTEREST only, not toward the principle)
    (Defense $72.00 Yep, the biggest piece of the pie, keeping our ass safe since 1788)
    (Foreign Aid $4.00 this is lumped into the Defense budget BTW)
    (Education $7.00 Yup, only 7, but remember that is a local tax issue)
    (Healthcare $71.00, Obamacare what?)
    (Pensions $69.00 Hey somebody’s gotta take care of those retired Congressmen,etc…)
    (Welfare $12.00)
    (Misc. $40.00 I hope some of this is going toward the principle on the debt)

    Net Pay $582.40
    Yessir, that is livin’ right there. I make $25 per hour and work 40 hours a week. I get to keep almost 60% of my own money. I sure am glad I don’t make $50.00 per hour, I might only get to keep 50%.

     
    • Nick

      August 14, 2011 at 1:05 PM

      This is a great idea, I’m sure a lot more people would sit up and take notice when they saw where all their money was really going, as opposed to the giant D.C. wallet for them to do whatever they please with. While we may agree that government spending is out of control we definitely don’t agree on where that spending is really out of control. I know conservatives such as yourself seem to never think any amount is never too much for our national defense, however, I’m sure if you were to see an itemized list of the military’s spending you also s**t your pants. Wars that many people don’t want aside, even running our normal everyday national security would probably be very mind boggling. How much money is going to selfish contractors for things that don’t really contribute to our national defense. While I’m all for national defense, I even don’t mind if that item has the largest price tag, I am against the seemingly exorbitant spending that our military seems to excel at.

       

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