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Robert Baratheon

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Robert Baratheon last won the day on May 16 2014

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  1. Jon Stewart: Unfunny Hypocrite and Liar The Daily Show has always leaned progressive, but it has made the full jump to left-wing propaganda outlet with its dishonest and lopsided coverage of the Gaza-Israeli conflict: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tmPJb6Mcu6g What is Stewart’s point exactly? The rockets Hamas fires at Israeli population centers to indiscriminately harm as many people as possible don’t count because Israel manages to shoot down many of them? In true pundit fashion, Stewart – in the course of ridiculing a smartphone app which warns Israelis of incoming rocket attacks (har har) – selectively omits that Israel does warn Gaza citizens of impending strikes using technology via phone messages, air-dropped pamphlets, loudspeakers, and a variety of other methods besides warning shots before engaging in air strikes. How often does Hamas warn Israel of impending rocket attacks? (Never.) Stewart conveniently decides not to air footage from the same interview he samples showing an Israeli pilot calling off an airstrike after being notified that there are children in the target zone. Doesn’t fit the narrative. Later in his segment, Stewart (reluctantly) acknowledges that Israel makes phone calls to Gaza residents in many cases to get them to evacuate buildings being bombed, but yells indignantly at the camera that in Gaza they have nowhere to which they can evacuate. The false inference is that the evacuation request is to evacuate from Gaza and not from the building being bombed to save their lives. Stewart is a frequent critic of Fox News for its biased, pundit-style conservative reporting and commentary. How his program is any different from a Bill O’Reilly or Sean Hannity report using humor to mislead viewers and slam political opponents is a question he is unlikely to answer anytime soon. Source: http://wp.me/p4yevN-ak
  2. People were and still are very upset about the Citizens United ruling. Most of the polls show at least an 80-20 unfavorable-favorable split. Not sure this logic holds up.
  3. I’m going to make a bit of a liar out of myself by not ignoring the Hobby Lobby case entirely - as I previously suggested we all do - although I am still entirely of the opinion that the decision: is unlikely to affect any of our lives, is unlikely to affect the lives in anyone we know, and is unlikely, in any event, to significantly affect the small number of women who choose to: 1) work for a few private company with a sincerely held religious belief against contraception; 2) use that employer’s health care plan; and 3) use contraceptives. In fact, it’s not so much the irrelevant Hobby Lobby case I want to address (here’s an idea – don’t work for Hobby Lobby – catastrophe averted) as the hysterical nonsense the woman who will likely be our next president is pushing on the subject: (Admin please embed - I can't figure out how to embed a video on this forum for the life of me)--> {media}url{/media} using [...]url[/...] (Special BBCode icon--> left of font drop-down) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-9tnAB_r9As “The corporation’s employers can impose their religious beliefs on their employees.” Hobby Lobby is not imposing its religious beliefs on its employees. It allows people of any faith to work in its stores on an equal basis and practice their religions as they see fit. It is allowing employees to purchase and use contraceptives. It simply refuses to pay for them. “[Women] are often the canaries in the mine. You watch women and girls being deprived of their rights. Some of them never have them. Some of them lose them. And among those rights is control over their bodies. Control over their own healthcare.” If anybody lost control over their own healthcare, it is only because the Affordable Care Act has imposed exchanges and mandates – the only reason this became a court case in the first place. There is nothing women are being prevented from doing to their own bodies, and they remain free to purchase any health care services or insurance they wish (besides what government has prohibited or driven out of business). “It is a disturbing trend that you see in many societies that are very unstable, anti-Democratic, and frankly, prone to extremism, where women and women’s bodies are used as a defining and unifying issue to bring together people – men – to get them to behave in ways that are disadvantageous to women but which prop up them, because of their religion, their sex, their tribe, whatever.” What “trend”? This single case recognizes an extremely narrow religious exemption for employer-provided health insurance plans. Hobby Lobby choosing not to fund contraception sends the United States down a path of Wahhabi savagery against women? “We’re always going to argue about abortion. It’s a hard choice. And it’s controversial.” Indeed. “And that’s why I’m pro-choice. Because I want people to make their own choices.” Not so hard a controversy to resolve after all. Except she hasn’t correctly identified the controversy at all, which instead focuses on to what extent human rights apply to the early stages of our development. “I know it’s a spectrum, but all these kinds of decisions about women’s rights, and women’s bodies, and women’s roles are on that spectrum. Thankfully, we’re far away from a lot of countries that don’t even issue birth certificates to girls because they’re so worthless, why record their births? So we’re very far from that. But this kind of decision raises serious questions.” True, we are nowhere near that point on the “spectrum.” So why make a comparison that she admits is not even remotely proportional? Because that is the outrageous false equivalency she wants to stick in the mind of her audience. “I think there are a lot of interesting questions. But before we get to the interesting questions, I think that there should be a real outcry against this kind of decision.” Outcry first, ask questions later. That’s putting the horse squarely in front of the cart. “Many more companies will claim religious beliefs.” How many companies are likely to falsely espouse a religion just to take advantage of a narrow insurance exception? Even if there were such a company, isn’t this why we have juries, to find such facts and render verdicts based on what strains credibility and what is most likely? We should expect more from a presidential candidate and trained attorney than such blatant pandering to social identity groups with uninformed and exaggerated analysis. Even as the case has very little practical effect on anyone, it’s unfortunate that progressives have successfully hijacked yet another social cause to divide and conquer the American citizenry. Source: The New Versailles Blog
  4. The decision begged another case through which to overturn the 1970's precedent that unions may coerce membership dues. Hopefully next year or the year after the Court will expand its holding to all union environments.
  5. Today, the Supreme Court is scheduled to release two decisions. There is the case everyone will be talking about - Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius, which doesn't matter - and Harris v. Quinn, which could upend the union landscape across the country. In all likelihood, the Hobby Lobby case won't affect you or anyone you know. For those it will affect, it will make essentially no difference in their day to day lives. It focuses on the extremely narrow issue of whether a few companies so stupid as to conflate contraceptives with abortion have to pay for them under the Affordable Care Act. This case is getting all the media attention because Obamacare, and Sebelius, and religion, and abortion. Harris v. Quinn could impact the lives of everyone in this country by radically restructuring how unions are allowed to operate. At issue is whether unions may compel representation and coerce dues from those who don't want to be union members. It impacts free speech rights, free association rights, and could significantly affect how many workforces in the U.S. operate, not to mention your municipal tax bill. So pay attention today to the case that matters, and don't be trolled into mistaking Hobby Lobby for a case that does. http://thenewversailles.wordpress.com/2014/06/30/ignore-hobby-lobby-case-harris-v-quinn-is-where-the-action-is
  6. Dream Weaver - You understand I am not a progressive and am therefore not making that argument, correct?
  7. There is nothing inherently wrong with striking either. The problems arise when force begins to be used. I think these distinctions are worth making to avoid the progressive argument libertarians and Objectivists are against free association.
  8. There is nothing about collective bargaining that inherently violates the rights of employers, anymore than I would be violating the right of my employer by unilaterally asking for a raise. However, unions have been very successful in lobbying the government to limit the free speech and property rights of employers and employees in other ways, and this is what makes the "golem" so dangerous.
  9. I don't think labor unions are inherently bad, and they have done a lot of good throughout American history. The problem is when they are mandatory and enjoy all manner of special protections from government. MADD brought a lot of awareness to the drunk driving problem, but now they have morphed into more of an anti-alcohol campaign and their demands have become unreasonable.
  10. Three of the most successful social movements in American history have been the women's rights movement of the early 20th century, the civil rights movement of the mid-20th century, and the gay rights movement of the late-20th and early-21st centuries. Each movement brought with it a mixed bag of equal protections under the law and expansions of the nanny state, and as a result, liberty advocates have often fallen into a limbo of qualified support and justified hesitation. Setting aside whether the positives outweighed the negatives in each case, the pressing matter today is what to do when the machinery of a movement has outlived its usefulness. At the outset, there might have been the implicit assumption that operations would naturally cease or scale back once objectives had been achieved. But through a combination of mission creep and basic human reluctance to relinquish power, organizations like the National Organization for Women, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, national labor unions, and even Mothers Against Drunk Driving have persisted long after achieving their once noble goals. Worse, many of these groups, in their attempts to hold sway and relevance, now actively undermine the causes of equal opportunity and social harmony they once sought to promote. In many ways, social movements are like the Prague golem of Jewish/European mythology, brought to life to protect its creators from harm at the hands of vile oppressors. After completing its duties, the golem became uncontrollable in many accounts, even harming those it was once sworn to protect. Only by scratching the word "truth" off the golem's forehead were the townspeople able to crumble the golem back into the earth from which it was formed. If the analogy holds to its conclusion, only by standing up to our golems armeds with the courageous truth when they are no longer necessary can we prevent them from becoming the monsters of legend. Source: The New Versailles http://wp.me/p4yevN-8H
  11. Harrison - You are really tripping here. It's been stated many times already: people are not responsible for "whatever" thoughts others form- they are responsible for only reasonable and foreseeable interpretations of their behavior. I don't know where anarchy or the "evils of libertarianism" play into this.
  12. That's much my feeling on the subject as well. It is not the job of others or especially government to even out the natural gifts or limitations of humankind like in Harrison Bergeron. Thank you.
  13. Splitprimary - I'm assuming you are a woman (please correct me if I'm wrong). What is your take on the whole "rape culture"/#YesAllWomen phenomenon?
  14. I did mention in the article that I had been that guy a few times, meaning I offered the pretext of going back to my place for some mundane reason or other. I know many people who have done similarly and would immediately understand the meaning. Usually "personal anecdotes" are frowned upon, but if they are being considered, I have plenty.
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