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Journal: Just how much lying is acceptable in support of "Higher Truth"? 28

Journal by smitty_one_each

On Thursday, footage surfaced of Jonathan Gruber, an MIT economist and chief architect of Obamacare, discussing the issue at the heart of the latest ACA court cases: whether subsidies are only available for state-run insurance exchanges or can also be paid as part of a federal exchange.
During a January 2012 lecture Gruber said, "I think what's important to remember politically about this, is if you're a state and you don't set up an exchange, that means your citizens don't get their tax credits."
Gruber spoke with Jonathan Cohn, a senior editor at The New Republic, about the video on Friday and said the remarks were a "mistake" made while "speaking off-the-cuff."

Since ObamaCare is just a river of lies anyway, this sort of blatant falsehood must be deemed entirely in character.
Just don't forget to salivate when these deceivers are done with the whole ObamaCare falsehood and offer to "fix" the whole situation with Single Prayer.
No matter the magnitude and frequency of the falsehoods spewing from these liars, you have to give them the benefit of the doubt. Because "it's the right thing to do". Also, you've been stupid enough to vote them power thus far, America: why change now?

User Journal

Journal: Practical socialism 16

Journal by smitty_one_each

So, past all of the theorizing, what ends up happening in pretty much any political system you can name is that power gets concentrated, corrupts leaders, and ruin follows.
The act of trying to separate the theory of a system from the ensuing existential wreckage is among the more amusing acts one can watch other human beings undertake. No Christian wants to admit that Adolf himself made Christian utterances, for a bit of auto-Godwinism.
Thus when evaluating the goodness of a system of thought, I submit that not only should the abstract ideas be considered, but also the historical results of the ideas, and the subjective effects.
For my observation, Socialism offers some emotionally pleasing notions, but, like every single bureaucratic solution I've ever seen, winds up loving the problems it purports to "solve", and leads to stagnation.
Restated: you'll always have a statistical distribution of income. What matters not is that there are rich and poor (that's inevitable), but that there is a current flowing inside the distribution, so that people can reap as much/little as their genius and effort supports.
The big fib of Socialism is that, with just a few more pages of legislation, we can make that current flow "fairly".
Socialism, for some, seems a substitute for a proper faith in something that will endure beyond the final heartbeat.

User Journal

Journal: niwdoG 17

Journal by smitty_one_each
Playing the Godwin card when the topic is really the meaning, ownership, and usage of the symbol "Socialist" (by, for example, the U.S.S.R) is really kinda l4m3.
Yet, strangely, in character.

Journal: Burn, Baby, Burn! 1

Journal by Jeremiah Cornelius

"Sustainability" is, as far as I can see, a project designed to keep this culture - this lifestyle - afloat. The modern human economy is an engine of mass destruction. Of course, I am conflicted about this. I live at the heart of this machine; like you, I am a beneficiary of it. If it falls apart, I will probably suffer, and I don't want to. ...

I don't think any "climate movement" is going to reverse the tide of history, for one reason: We are all climate change. It is not the evil "1%" destroying the planet. We are all of us part of that destruction. This is the great, conflicted, complex situation we find ourselves in. I am climate change. You are climate change. Our culture is climate change. And climate change itself is just the tip of a much bigger iceberg, if you'll pardon the terrible but appropriate pun. If we were to wake up tomorrow to the news that climate change were a hoax or a huge mistake, we would still be living in a world in which extinction rates were between 100 and 1000 times natural levels and in which we have managed to destroy 25 percent of the world's wildlife in the last four decades alone."


Journal: Gimme Gimme Penicillin! 3

Journal by Jeremiah Cornelius

China 'seals off' town after man dies of bubonic plague
"A Chinese town has been sealed off and 151 people placed in quarantine since last week after a man died of bubonic plague, state media said Tuesday.

The 30,000 people living in Yumen in the northwestern province of Gansu are not being allowed to leave, and police at roadblocks on its perimeter are telling motorists to find alternative routes, state broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) said.

Other reports said that earlier this month the 38-year-old victim had found a dead marmot, a small furry animal which lives on grasslands and is related to the squirrel.

He chopped it up to feed his dog but developed a fever the same day. He was taken to hospital after his condition worsened and died last Wednesday."

The Matrix

Journal: Property is Moral Opposite of Liberty 10

Journal by Jeremiah Cornelius

Think about that, while you make absolute positions...

"...Liberty, as defined in its truest negative sense, is freedom from external restraint. This, along with the principle of self-ownership, commands that nobody shall have the right to act on the body of another without their consent. But "property rights" as Gobry slyly calls them gives people precisely that right. For a right to property is not a right over a piece of the world, but rather a right to act on the bodies of others: to attack and externally restrain those bodies without consent.

In a world that respects liberty, people are free to do whatever they'd like, provided they do not act on the body of another (e.g. externally restrain it). This requires that people may walk about the world as they please, grabbing and utilizing any of its various pieces and resources as they go. No person may stop them from doing so because such stopping would impose an external restraint on their body, a destruction of their negative liberty.

Yet, this kind of liberty-destroying external restraint is precisely what property ownership is. In fact, it is the only thing that property is: a social relation of violent exclusion wherein the "owner" has claimed a right to attack other human beings if they try to act on a particular piece of the world. Claiming a "property right" does not change the piece of world that it is meant to attach to, nor the person claiming it. It merely advertises a terrifying threat: everyone else's pre-existing liberty to use this piece of the world is hereby extinguished at my violent hands whether they consent to have their liberty so destroyed or not."

The Internet

Journal: Was the Internet Created for Covert Domestic Surveillance?

Journal by Jeremiah Cornelius

"From its creation by DoD contracts and grants to research institutions, there have been aspersions cast by those easily dismissed as "fringe" commentators, on the nefarious, or at least covert, motivation to create the Internet. Conspiracy theory may have been met by reality in recent months with now commonplace reporting, first by Wikileaks and later, in the more extensive Edward Snowden revelations. It is still almost canon, that NSA mass-surveillance and warrantless information analysis occurred through coopting the burgeoning Internet, and diverting traffic in a way that is counter to the ideals of its creators and promoters. But what if the social, commercial Internet were always intended as a sort of giant honeypot? The idea would still seem farfetched, if it weren't recently disclosed by William Binney that the NSA is recording 80% of all US phone conversations â" not simply metadata. Closer examination of the record shows that ARPAnet was being used to clandestinely gather information on the legitimate activities of US citizens â" and transmit the information to the US Army Intelligence Command NSA â" as far back as 1968! According to articles published in 1975 by MIT in "The Tech":

  "via the ARPANET, a computer network connecting more than 50 government agencies and universities throughout the country. The network is funded by the Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA)... The information, according to intelligence sources, was transferred and stored at the headquarters of the National Security Agency (NSA), at Fort Meade, Maryland. The Army files were transmitted on the ARPANET in about January 1972, sources say, more than two years after the material â" and the data banks maintained at the [Army's] Fort Holabird facility â" were ordered destroyed."

MIT officials were worried 40 years ago, about this abuse of interconnected TCP communications and the complicity of their own research scientists. These concerns arose at the height of the Watergate fallout and downfall of President Nixon for illegal wiretapping and information theft allegations. The danger of Government "record keeping" was outlined by Senator Sam Ervin, in an address to MIT that was also profiled in the same publication. Clearly, this did not begin in the last decade, and clearly pre-dates the 2001 "Global War on Terror" pretext. It is important to remember, the NSA was an almost unknown agency at this time, and was chartered to strictly forbid intel on US citizens and those dwelling within US borders."

User Journal

Journal: Funniest /. article in a while 32

Journal by smitty_one_each
As my wife is German and my in-laws are visiting, we had a good laugh about it.
Formerly East Germans have a less than stellar reputation.
My wife also wished that the research had included a question of religious affiliation, as Germany is split between Protestant and Catholic regions, and she felt that there might be a similar statistical significance along those lines.
I don't care to offend either group by revealing her suspicion. As a Baptist, I only support the Pope when he's rightly dividing the Word of Truth, but don't recognize him enough to feel there is anything to Protest against.

...this is an awesome sight. The entire rebel resistance buried under six million hardbound copies of "The Naked Lunch." - The Firesign Theater