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Member since: Sat Mar 20, 2004, 10:37 AM
Number of posts: 17,696

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It's time to start challenging the thought terminating cliches

"We're gonna drain the swamp"
(When it's clear the swamp will not be drained and the cabinet will be filled with politically connected billionaires, some of whom are part of the very establishment Trump railed against) "Well, they know how to make money"
"Hashtag he's your president"

These things all have a name, they are thought terminating cliches, they are generic statements that sound true and are meant to discourage critical thinking, cognitive dissonance, and other 'bad thoughts'. These are just some examples of these soundbites we've seen with the whole Trump campaign and is what we will see under a Trump administration from the future president down to people who support him on the street.

We may not convince a lot of the people who spout these cliches, but we might get the support of bystanders and others, so we all need to...
Call them out as thought terminating cliches
Don't let the media use them
Demand more information, these cliches rely on being vague and generic. Who, what, where, when, why, how?

Do not let a thought terminating cliche be the end of the discussion.

The Kleptocracy owner's manual

Congratulations on changing your government to a kleptocracy! We have provided this manual to you so you may see how your government operates now and just some of what these new and exciting things you can expect from it does are all about!

So remember that new public works project that is supposed to really help you and your people out but requires a lot of construction and time? Under your new government you can expect a lot of bribes or a lot more money to be required for this project to continue... maybe, it might not get anywhere anymore. This is graft. Graft can appear anywhere with any leader's authority being used for personal gain, you might have some leader saying he won't need a salary but then, what do you know, his security detail will be living at his pad paying him several times that salary he refused and all on your dime. It pays for itself... well, you pay for it.

Lack of transparency
Your previous government may have had open records, let you see what the laws were, let you know what your leaders made income-wise, etc. Not anymore, thanks to a feature found in your kleptocracy known as lack of transparency, you can expect this information to be shut down, you don't need these pesky facts in your head anyway, it's just a coincidence that some leaders get much richer while in office. You can't prove they are embezzling from the coffers. Your new kleptocracy is working just fine when it starts sealing records, refusing to release financial information, and treating people who want their leaders to be more open as the enemy.

What is nepotism you ask? Instead of using the most qualified person for a task, you know, the expert AKA the nerd, a kleptocracy will instead use a buddy of the leader or more straight to the point, will keep it in the local gene pool and use a relative for the task. This is just nepotism, so don't be alarmed if your new government does this. You may see your leader appointing spouses, siblings, children, etc. to be the heads of departments or meeting with foreign leaders.

Many of the basics of your new kleptocracy have been covered here and we hope you enjoy it... Of course you aren't really the owner of your new government, it's actually now owned by the few, the powerful, and the connected. While you may not own this Kleptocracy, we still hope you enjoy what you voted for.

Trey Gowdy did not know Mormons use drugs?


My question is: How many investigations would he need before he had an answer?

So Trump ally Roger Stone quotes the Shoebat site to smear the Khan family

Which even goes as far as saying Humayun himself, the son who died, might have been a terrorist.


This is multiple things, a new level of ghoulishness, and it also shows the (lack of) vetting of intelligence by Trump and company.

Here are some other gems of wisdom by the wonderful Shoebat clan:
It's 'The State's Job To Kill The Sodomites,' Not Vigilantes (Referring to the Orlando shooting)
The only ones 'moaning' over Orlando are liberals, idiots, and gay lovers... and he also has something to say about 'dumb jews'
Jesus is going to kill all the Sodomites
Radical Islam (The thing Scott Baio always wants you to say lest you be a Secret Muslim) will lead to gay rights and cannibalism
"Outlaw the sodomite before he outlaws you"

And more fun facts: Son Theodore is a self-described fascist and the father Walid has also said he is an ex-terrorist, a claim that quickly collapses when scrutinized in any way.

So if a Trump administration can't handle public (mis)information like this, how are they going to respond to another Curveball?

Are we witnessing a rise of the Cult of the Chromosome?

I was wondering about this when I see some of these religious conscience laws.

Take Mississippi for example:
Male (man) or female (woman) refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth.
-HB 1523

And there's more...

Linking religious beliefs to believing an "individual's immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics of the individual at the time of birth"
-HB 773 in Virginia

"The terms male or man and female or woman refer to distinct and immutable biological sexes that are determined by anatomy and genetics by the time of birth."
-HB 1107 in North Dakota

"For the purposes of this section “biological sex” means the physical condition of being male or female, which is determined by a person’s chromosomes, and is identified at birth by a person’s anatomy and indicated on their birth certificate."
-SB 720 in Missouri

Taking a look at these bills, I don't know about anyone else, but I am seeing something start to stick out.

Items of interest:
* Dichotomies (Often seen in religious fundamentalism. God and Satan. Believer and unbeliever. Heaven and Hell. Faithful and heretic. And in this case... Male and female.)
* "At birth" and "immutable", more and more it sounds like one's genetic code is not just that, but actually something on par with scripture, something divinely inspired and set in stone
* The fact that these bills share the space with religious accommodation merits mention as well.
* These bills make it seem like gender is purely ascribed, that it's 'your place' and not conforming to your gender role as assigned by your birth and your 'sacred and unchanging genetics' is heresy

Now is it bad enough to call it all an establishment of religion? I don't think so, but with the right crazy enough to give Trump the nomination, you can never know for sure just far they will jump off the deep end.

Is Rep. Adam Kinzinger an "Apologist for Terrorism"?

While the shooter was active inside the Planned Parenthood clinic, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) (Apologist for Terrorism) went on live TV and blasted the organization. “We saw these barbaric videos, and that was something that many of us have a legitimate concern about,” Kinzinger said.

He was referring to highly-edited undercover videos that falsely claim Planned Parenthood was illegally selling body party from aborted fetuses.

Kinzinger, the Apologist for Terrorism, also criticized a statement from Planned Parenthood about the incident as “very premature.” He said that, if it was later discovered the shooter was not targeting Planned Parenthood he would “fully expect an apology.” (The statement, while criticizing “extremists” for “creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country,” acknowledged that “we don’t yet know if Planned Parenthood was in fact the target of this attack.”)

The congressman, the Apologist for Terrorism, had no problems, however, diagnosing the motives and influences of the shooter. “This is a person that has a mental health issue, that is to some level psychotic and crazy,” Kinzinger said. He also said the shooter could have had a “legitimate disagreement” with Planned Parenthood.


So that's it, he plays the victim, blames the victims, says the shooter was just mentally ill, and says he has a 'legitimate disagreement' all in one sitting? I'd really like to see how 'legitimate disagreement' leads to murdering three people and wounding others.

So whenever you see Kinzinger mentioned, be sure to drop this link, Apologist for Terrorism (or (link http://kinzinger.house.gov/ Apologist for Terrorism with a colon and a bar), because that's what he is.

Wayne Simmons quietly removed from list of right wing, pro-war group

Paul Vallely and his group, Stand Up America, get mentioned here from time to time.


And here he suggests an overthrow of Obama.

So in the news is Wayne Simmons, the Fox News 'unpaid guest' (According to them) who said he was a big paramilitary ops leader, it all turned out that he is a big fat phony.

It looks like this 'unpaid guest' was also part of the "Kitchen Cabinet" for Paul Vallely's organization. Wouldn't know it now other than the fact the Google search results still show it, but you will get a big 404 error.


It looks like they've scrubbed the site, but hey, what's caching for, right?


And here are some images too:

So these guys want to sell us war, they want to sell us their version of national security, that torture isn't that bad, that we need to invade Iran right now; but yet they can't even vet their own guys? Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me - you can't get fooled again.

It also looks like he was part of the Pentagon's military analyst program, how did that happen?

Google News provides an image of the right wing mindset in a nutshell

So I decided to put the search the story about Muslims being shouted down in Texas and I stopped instantly when I saw the snip that Google News provides on things that are happening, and it was pretty much art in itself. And yes, if you are wondering, the Texas Legislator in the third article is a right wing Republican. So righties, do you want displays of patriotism, or do you not want them?

The 'Bad' Magnifying Glass and the 'Good' Blindfold

"Obama is on vacation... again!"
"Obama is lazy"
"Tell Obama to get off the golf course!"

This is just a microcosm, one that represents what is going on here. Obama has taken vacation, but his 138 days pales in comparison to the 1138 days that Congress has taken.

What causes people to ignore the fact that the Republican-led Congress has taken nearly ten times the vacation that Obama has taken? It's almost comical, and indeed, the perfect point to lead into this because of how disproportionate it is.

Humans have a natural tendency to exaggerate the harm caused by what they deem the 'other', and to dismiss any notion of harm caused by a group that is familiar to them.

It's tribalism at it's core. (In this case, the 'good' Republicans vs the 'bad' Democrats)

Today we have systems, politicians, media, and more that serve to exaggerate the exaggerations already present, entrench them, and enshrine them in our society, and make them ideas that are firmly rooted in our culture.

And it's something that feeds into privilege, whether it be white, male, wealthy, straight, and so on.

Ferguson - They're all rioters and making it about race... no matter how peaceful they will be. But the city has absolutely no problems inside it even though it's putting out more arrest warrants than people who live in the city.

Crime in general - A white person who commits a crime is just mentally ill, an outlier so to speak. A black person commits a crime and the entire community is somehow responsible, they all have to confront what is going on.

Inequality - A safety net for the poor is reprehensible, they should all be viewed with suspicion. But a rich person earned his inheritance and network of other rich people.

And you will find far more examples with even cursory glances, so ask why, and I mean really challenge the people who walk around with this way of thinking... that why some groups are responsible as a whole for their violent members, but other groups are not their keepers. Why the actions of some people merit disdain, but similar (Or even greater) actions by others get a shrug.

The Magnifying Glass of the 'bad other' and the Blindfold of the 'good familiar' will only hold us back a whole, and I think that this kind of increasingly entrenched tribalism will only lead us to ruin in the end.

Tea Party politics vs Unemployment Insurance 2

Back in 2011, I had written this thread:


It was entertaining, but also very frightening to see all the wildy diverging and unsourced data about cutting people off from unemployment insurance.

Next month, it will be three years since I wrote that and many of the links from those things I had pasted have since faded. So I decided, why not make another one, all from articles and discussions after I had posted this thread?

So here goes...

"Disagree...It's been shown that about 1/3 of people on unemployment find a job immediatly when the unemployment ends."
-Here is where it's shown. Ready? Ha! Fooled you.

"Here’s another statistic you should know: two-thirds of people on unemployment find a job… wait for it… within two weeks of their benefits running out. In other words, the job search tends to get serious when the well is about to runs dry.
-Nothing to back this statistic up."

"The vast majority of people on unemployment find a job within the last two weeks of benefits ending."
-Nowhere to be found.

"I think that the records show most people on unemployment get a job about two weeks before their benefits run out."
-Problem finding the record for the record?

"Government stats show that about 70% of people on unemployment get a job shorty after their Benefits run out. Why? Because all of the sudden they really needed a Job."
-Government stats are pretty easy to cite, why didn't you?

"There are a lot of statistics that support people getting "comfortable" on government assistance. For instance most people on unemployment get a job within the LAST 2 weeks of their payments."
-2 weeks? Oh really?

"I cannot find the documentation to support this assertion, but I believe it is true that most people on unemployment find a job right before the unemployment expires."
-Finally someone who says he has nothing to support his assertion and admits it's just a belief, that's all you had to say!

It looks like the right wing echo chamber that we don't see is starting to find something to latch onto with two weeks, so if you ever see a person say something like this, ask them where they got their data, and if they say "Most" and "two weeks before", ask them ten times as hard.
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