Prophet 451's Journal
Member since: Wed Jul 27, 2005, 05:10 PM
Number of posts: 8,264
Number of posts: 8,264
With WWE wrestler Darren Young coming out yesterday, someone asked Steve Austin (legendary performer and biggest drawing card in history) his opinions on same-sex marriage. His response:
“…I believe that any human being in America, or any human being in the Goddamned world that wants to be married – if it’s the same sex – more power to ‘em.”
Posted by Prophet 451 | Sat Aug 17, 2013, 11:40 AM (1 replies)
Hillary is an obvious pick. She's been First Lady, Senator and Secretary of State. There's a clamor for her to run and I just don't see anyone on the horizon who could take frontrunner status away from her. My guess is that by 2016, her vote for the Iraq War Resolution will be a distant memory. Assuming she's the nominee, expect every scandal the Republicans tried to pin on Bill and a few new ones to be thrown at her.
Why Christie? Because of two things. Firstly, he's trying to lose weight. That will appeal to both those who are overweight and to the people who tune into the weight-loss reality shows. Don't kid yourself, a lot of people really are that superficial. They'll vote for a good story instead of a good president. Secondly, he has a type of bluntness that Republicans confuse with plain-speaking charm. I think he's a bullying prick but Republicans like to run mean guys. He's also very conservative but not a Teabagging whacko.
I could be wrong, of course, but my gut tells me it'll be those two.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Wed May 8, 2013, 08:54 AM (18 replies)
I've actually been running a homebrew RPG set in this timeframe. Since it's a homebrew, I haven't fully fleshed out the background as yet but here's the Cliff Notes version of what I've got so far (minus the psychic powers and alien incursion).
Since there seems to be a determination among both politicians and a section of the public to not do anything about global warming, the oceans will rise and become too acidic to support life (at least, not anything we could eat). Homes will become much smaller and several cities will be completely lost as coasts creep inland. Much of teh public will chalk this up to the wrath of god. With the rising temprature, more revealing fashions will become teh norm. Due to increasing pressure on grazing land, most people eat a mostly vegetarian diet with only the rich being able to afford meat more than once a week or so. For a more complete overview of this kind of society, see the first half of Ben Elton's Blind Faith.
The US will split into two distinct nations. The South will be a theocracy ruled by the dictates of fundementalist (Southern Baptist) Christianity, combined with a view that capitalism is sacred. Contrary to expectations, they won't reinstate slavery but only because wage slavery is cheaper. No social support or unemployment insurance of any kind. If you lose your job or get sick and are poor, you die. Labour unions will be outlawed; wages will be low, capitalising on a population too desperate to turn down work even if it's for pennies. Most of the population lives in company-owned shacks. Public education is limited to basic literacy and numeracy. The North bans handguns and smoking outright, has a form of universal (albeit basic) health insurance and maintains friendly trading ties with Canada. Economy is based around service industries and IT. Public education, now federally controlled, is comparable to other first-world nations. Public housing is expanding but not fast enough to keep up with a rising population. Porn is banned in both North and South but for different reasons. The North experiments with building artificial islands to contain the growing prison population.
The Commonwealth becomes a formidable trading empire but the UK becomes very much the junior partner in that empire. The UK's health system has now become a combination of tax monies being paid to private healthcare providers. Welfare benefits continue to be cut, eventually leading a situation where only three months of benefits are provided. The Church of England is disestablished when King Charles chooses to take the title "Defender Of The FaithS" i.e. of religion and spirituality generally, rather than any specific denomination. With the loss of land due to global warming, most of the population are herded into high-population blocks akin to those from Judge Dredd, purpose-built to combine housing, work and recreational areas with as little wasted space as possible. Life expectancy is now around 88 and retirement age is 75. Retirement income is savings and work pension, state pension having been abolished (leading to a rising incidence of poverty in the elderly). Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have almost fully devolved powers with Whitehall only setting a UK-wide agenda on the broadest matters.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Sun Apr 28, 2013, 05:26 AM (0 replies)
Modern medicine can look like a miracle to us. Through modern medicine, we can allow the blind to see, we can replace worn-out hearts and give a new lease on life to someone who, only twenty years ago, would have been waiting for death. We can really and truly save lives and medicine does so, every single day. But these miracles rely on the donation of blood and organs from people like you. Blood donation is relatively painless and takes about twenty minutes. What are you going to do with twenty minutes? Flick through your paper, maybe have a cup of coffee? Or you can help someone live. Organ donation doesn't happen until you die. You're not going to be using your organs but they can help someone else live. I'm not going to ask anyone to violate the tenets of their faith but this is life and it is precious and it is fragile and it is up to us to save it. Won't you please, give a gift of life?
US Organ Donor Register
American Red Cross Blood Donors
UK Blood Donors
UK Organ Donor Register
Australian Red Cross Blood Service
Australian Organ Donor Register
New Zealand Organ Donor Register
New Zealand Blood Donors
Posted by Prophet 451 | Sun Apr 14, 2013, 12:43 AM (17 replies)
Firstly, you have to remember that the media, then and now, loved her. They were largely based in London and the city of London did very well because her privatisation of everything in sight made the City (financial sector) a lot of money.
Secondly, she was elected during the epic Winter of Discontent, when an overreaching by the unions had resulted in a backlash of hard-right feeling.
Thirdly, she was extraordinarily lucky to have an opposition that was determined to self-destruct. The Labour party was falling apart in the Eighties and in no shape to actively oppose her. They fell out with the unions, which cut off most of their funding, so they had no cash to fight elections; elected as their leader a man who, with the best will in the world, was too easily distracted and too prone to windbaggery to effectively oppose her. Labour wouldn't really recover until the mid-Ninties when they took a hard swing to the right under Blair and effectively ran as Tory-lite. The Liberal and SDP parties were characterised during this period by fratricidal in-fighting.
Fourth, she promised the earth and the media covered for her when she failed to deliver (the power of the media in this country really can't be overstated). The people who did well out of Thatcher's reign were the same people who had the ear of the media.
Fifth, the British Constitution means that we don't vote for Prime Ministers, we vote for parties and the head of the winning party becomes PM. While a huge amount of people loathed Thatcher, most people liked their local MP and voted for them. That meant that the Tories got a majority in Parliament and Thatcher became PM even though many people disliked her as a person.
Six, this was during the same time as Reagan was effectively telling America that greed is good, the same period when much of the world was trending to the right. We thought this was how things were done.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Tue Apr 9, 2013, 05:45 PM (2 replies)
You didn't live through her reign of terror, I did. And that gives me every right to be pleased when a monster like that no longer stalks our fair land.
I despised her, so did most of the working class. She came to power amid a national crisis and then proceded to use that crisis to justify diabolical policies. She decimated the mining and manufacturing industries and then told us to hate the poor bastards who ended up on welfare as a result, all purely to break the unions. She stopped the free milk that had been given to pre-schoolers to aid their bone growth. She deliberately under-funded the NHS, resulting in mass shortages that we haven't fully recovered from even today. She forbid teachers to refer to homosexuality as even an abstract concept. She denied there was any such thing as society. Some will tell you she lifted everyone into the middle class, this is a lie. She simply pretended the working class didn't exist. She stopped students from claiming housing benefit, a massive effective cut to their finances. She told poor people to choose between voting and eating and then described the resulting riots as "wickedness". Her cuts to the NHS led to the deaths of both my in-laws. She defunded the mental health institutions in favour of "Care in the community" where the mentally ill were abandoned. Like Reagan, she ushered in a culture of ruthless selfishness, pretended it was good and used that to demonise the poor as undeserving of help. She used the Falklands, a war that any British PM would have fought, to prop up rampant militarism. She pushed unemployment to 10% and didn't give a toss. She supported Pinochet, the Khmer Rouge and apartheid. She wanted to put AIDS victims into camps. She intiiated the housing crisis by insturcting social housing to sell their houses off. She wanted to nuke Argentina and ordered the Belgrano to be sunk even when it was retreating. She ran her Cabinet like a dictator.
As a person (I've read her autobiographies), she was petty, incurious, vindictive, uninterested in anyone else's viewpoint and surprisingly small-minded.
I despised her. I don't use the word "evil" much because I think it's overused to the point of being meaningless but Thatcher was evil. She is far more admired abroad than she is here, largely because those abroad didn't have to live through her reign of terror.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Tue Apr 9, 2013, 02:50 PM (1 replies)
I believe that each and every person has the right to the freedoms enumerated in the US Constitution. That should go without saying but these days, it sadly doesn't.
I believe that being gay is just as random and morally neutral as having brown hair or green eyes. Just one more variation in the human condition.
I believe that love is the melding of two souls and none of us has the right to get in the way of that.
I believe that every person should have the right to decent, affordable healthcare and, if necessary, the state should intervene to ensure that.
I don't believe that the free market corrects all problems. In fact, I think the USA's “free market's uber alles” approach to things is responsible for many of the country's problems.
I believe that rape is a horrific, traumatic crime; that the perpetrators of that crime should be imprisoned for a considerable length of time; that none of us have the right to judge what a victim chooses to do if that rape results in pregnancy and that those who do should be exiled from polite society.
I believe that abortion would be unnecessary if we lived in a perfect world but we don't and so, it is.
I believe that it is illegal, ineffective and morally evil to torture anyone at any time for any reason.
I believe that everyone has the right to a decent education. That includes tuition at a college or trade school.
I believe that corporate fascism is a far more realistic danger to the USA than socialism or communism.
I believe that if you cannot work or cannot find work, that the state has a moral duty to take care of you until you can.
I believe that, as long as one person sleeps on the streets or one person goes to bed hungry, taxes are not too high.
In the end, I'm an old lefty. I believe that the ultimate reason to have the state exist is to redress the balance between the powerful and the powerless and to care for the people who cannot care for themselves.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Fri Nov 9, 2012, 11:04 PM (0 replies)
His follow-up, The Dark Knight Strikes Again was atrocious and ended with Superman effectively declaring himself dictator (and this was presented as a good thing) and his Holy Terror! was so racist that DC refused to let him use Batman in it.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Wed Jul 25, 2012, 12:02 AM (1 replies)
It's obvious to everyone that the Congressional GOP is abusing the filibuster in a way that was never intended either by the Founders or by those who used the filibuster in gentler times. Hence, just as a kind-of "sense of DU", this poll.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Fri May 18, 2012, 08:11 AM (29 replies)
- I BELIEVE that everyone has a right to decent healthcare, regardless of their income or social class.
- I BELIEVE that everyone deserves the right to a decent education, up to and including college. I BELIEVE in equality of opportunity, including the opportunity to return to education later in life.
- I BELIEVE that money brings power and with great power comes great responsibility. I BELIEVE that if you achieve great wealth, you have a responsibility to pay out some of it so someone else gets the chance to do the same. I BELIEVE that taxes are the price we pay for civilization.
- I BELIEVE that being gay is just one more variation in the human condition and as morally neutral as having green eyes or blonde hair. I BELIEVE that love is the joining of two souls and none of us have the right to get in the way of that.
- I BELIEVE that putting human rights to a vote sets a bloody dangerous precedent.
- I BELIEVE that no-one, not begger or king, president or pauper, is above being called to account for their wrongdoings. Fiat justitia, ruat caelum.
- I BELIEVE in a deity but my beliefs do not require you to believe them. I BELIEVE that life would be significantly easier if we just kept our beliefs between ourselves and our chosen deities. I also hope that your chosen faith (or lack thereof) brings you happiness and/or peace.
- I BELIEVE that something is wrong when the democratic republic jails more people than the communist dictatorship.
- I BELIEVE that once you have paid your debt to society, society should give you the chance to turn your life around.
- I BELIEVE that if you cannot work or cannot find work, society has a duty to provide for you. I BELIEVE that a humane society does not let it's citizens starve because of their misfortune.
- I BELIEVE that a just society would execute it's citizens only rarely for the most heinous of crimes and with absolute proof of guilt.
- I BELIEVE that justices should, well, administer justice.
- I BELIEVE that the law should be a protector of the weak, not a tool of the powerful.
- I BELIEVE that it is possible to be both a democracy and a republic.
- I DON'T BELIEVE in evolution. It would be like believing in the milkman. I just accept it.
- I BELIEVE that conservatism, as it currently stands, is detrimental to the USA.
- I BELIEVE that our planet is warming and human activity is the main cause. I BELIEVE we can overcome this obstacle.
- I BELIEVE in the capacity of human imagination and ingenuity to overcome any obstacle.
- I BELIEVE that the liklihood of failure is no excuse for giving up the fight.
- I BELIEVE that the search for truth is it's own justification.
- I BELIEVE in the power of one human spirit to change the world.
Posted by Prophet 451 | Sat Apr 7, 2012, 08:05 AM (13 replies)