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Member since: Thu Apr 29, 2010, 03:31 PM
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Elizabeth Warren: "So here's my question ...

(cross posted from GD)

GOP Policy Guide

Fun Fox Facts

Rape jokes in HS hallway, no big deal. Report on it and you'll be censored.


Fond du Lac High School student's 'rape culture' article sparks free-speech debate

When Tanvi Kumar wrote an article about what she perceived as her high school's casual attitude toward rape, she talked to victims of sexual assault, visited an abuse treatment center and combed through the article with her adviser before publishing it.

Still, she never thought that her story would be read aloud and discussed in Fond du Lac High School classes, or that a teacher would approach her in the halls with her own story of sexual violence. "I was never prepared for something like that as a student," said Kumar, a senior. "I think that just goes to show how powerful these topics can be."

That power has reverberated through Fond du Lac this month. District administrators reacted to Kumar's story by enacting a censorship policy, touching a nerve among students and faculty and leading to a controversy over First Amendment rights that has made waves in national forums.


Kumar said she was stirred to write the story after hearing rape jokes in school hallways and seeing what appeared to be a student-run Twitter account that poked fun at rape. "I was appalled by that, and it upset me to the point that I felt like I had to say something or do something about it," Kumar said.

"Hunger is not caused by a scarcity of food ...

Elizabeth Warren: "So here's my question ...

Since they're now major funders of both parties, why not just name the country for them?

DU Members, please read: The Lost Art of the Unsent Angry Letter

I have more than once regretted clicking "Send" or "Post my thread!" Perhaps you too have regretted acting, or reacting, while your temper was still hot. Anyway, I found this piece to be both informative and a good reminder.


WHENEVER Abraham Lincoln felt the urge to tell someone off, he would compose what he called a “hot letter.” He’d pile all of his anger into a note, “put it aside until his emotions cooled down,” Doris Kearns Goodwin once explained on NPR, “and then write: ‘Never sent. Never signed.’ ” Which meant that Gen. George G. Meade, for one, would never hear from his commander in chief that Lincoln blamed him for letting Robert E. Lee escape after Gettysburg.


Harry S. Truman once almost informed the treasurer of the United States that “I don’t think that the financial advisor of God Himself would be able to understand what the financial position of the Government of the United States is, by reading your statement.” In 1922, Winston Churchill nearly warned Prime Minister David Lloyd George that when it came to Iraq, “we are paying eight millions a year for the privilege of living on an ungrateful volcano out of which we are in no circumstances to get anything worth having.” Mark Twain all but chastised Russians for being too passive when it came to the czar’s abuses, writing, “Apparently none of them can bear to think of losing the present hell entirely, they merely want the temperature cooled down a little.”


Now we need only click a reply button to rattle off our displeasures. And in the heat of the moment, we find the line between an appropriate response and one that needs a cooling-off period blurring. We toss our reflexive anger out there, but we do it publicly, without the private buffer that once would have let us separate what needed to be said from what needed only to be felt. It’s especially true when we see similarly angry commentary coming from others. Our own fury begins to feel more socially appropriate. We may also find ourselves feeling less satisfied. Because the angry email (or tweet or text or whatnot) takes so much less effort to compose than a pen-and-paper letter, it may in the end offer us a less cathartic experience, in just the same way that pressing the end call button on your cellphone will never be quite the same as slamming down an old-fashioned receiver.


But even though a degree of depth and consideration may well have been lost along with the art of the unsent letter, something was also lost with those old letters that weren’t sent because their would-be sender overthought their appropriateness. I’d have loved for Truman to have actually sent this one off to the red-baiting Republican senator from Wisconsin, Joseph R. McCarthy: “You are not even fit to have a hand in the operation of the Government of the United States. I am very sure that the people of Wisconsin are extremely sorry that they are represented by a person who has as little sense of responsibility as you have.” Truman may have ended up regretting lashing out, but at least he would have had the satisfaction of knowing that he’d told off one of the blights of the American political scene when so many kept quiet. What survived as a “hot letter” would have made for quite the viral email.

Meanwhile, folks in Wisconsin have feelings of deja vu.

Farragut, TN high school student Kenneth Ye schools the school board

This needs to go viral.

Wisconsin: Republican's midnight shenanigans fuck over cancer patients

These bastards are the devil incarnate ...


“Poison pill” amendment added to WI cancer treatment parity bill

An amendment written by Rep. Pat Strachota was added to the cancer treatment parity bill SB300 last night after midnight in the Wisconsin Assembly.

The amendment was added to SB300 despite the fact that 28 state senators out of 30 very recently passed the bill with no amendment and that a bipartisan majority of at least 66 of the 99 Wisconsin Assembly members were signifying support for what members called “The Clean Bill”.


Peter Barca directed an emotional and pleading speech to his GOP colleagues after listing the names of the cancer survivors who testified at a SB300 public hearing, saying, “I would get down on my hands and knees and plead with you if I thought it would make a difference”.

After the amendment was adopted with a 54 to 40 vote, Robin Vos gave a long speech about how he honors family members at a cancer “Hope Walk”. He said many people on his side are “philosophically opposed to mandates on insurance policies” regardless of the discussion because they think more options leads to cheaper prices and he called Strachota’s amendment changes “reasonable”.

and more ....


Wisconsin Republican political strategy: We were against being for it, before we were for being against it

But public outcry -- led by blistering newspaper stories detailing what was not about to happen -- makes them reconsider. Fitzgerald suddenly, at the last minute, schedules the measure and it passes the Senate easily. Fitzgerald, whom a day or two earlier was talking all about how the bill was unnecessary because "Obamacare" covered the problem (yes, the hated Obamacare that in the nominal GOP mindset doesn't solve any problems, except when it's convenient to claim that it does), even did a complete 180 and voted in favor. Despite the fact that his brother Jeff, a former Assembly leader and now lobbyist, apparently was pushing to dump the bill on behalf of insurers.


And Vos came around -- although not really. Yesterday, in a past-midnight move, he moved the bill to the floor and it passed, but in significantly altered form. Thus it would have to return to the Senate for further consideration. But of course as it turns out that will be very hard, since the Senate is wrapping up its session by the end of the month and the schedule is just so very, very packed. This from Republicans who can move complicated tax legislation through both houses in under a week, when they want the measure, there's little public criticism and they feel like it.

With their gyrations on the chemotherapy bill they nice-sounding headlines about passage and stuff. And yet no bill! And Walker can always claim he'd have signed it if it came to his desk, which everyone in GOP leadership is still working hard to make sure won't become necessary.

Hey, Repubs, nifty little ju jitsu moves, there. The bill will still die, but you can claim you supported it and voted for it. After, of course, you didn't support it, and really never did support it, and still don't support it. But if the firestorm of public criticism continues, you can still pass a watered down version that will lead to cancer patients unnecessarily dying for lack of sufficient medication, and still try to claim you're all about quality health care in Wisconsin.
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