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Kelvin Mace

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Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 13,050

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Some interesting context to the Christian Right's opposition to gays and abortion

In 1934, a special Gestapo (Secret State Police) division on homosexuals was set up. One of its first acts was to order the police "pink lists" from all over Germany. The police had been compiling these lists of suspected homosexual men since 1900. On September 1, 1935, a harsher, amended version of Paragraph 175 of the Criminal Code, originally framed in 1871, went into effect, punishing a broad range of "lewd and lascivious" behavior between men. In 1936, Nazi leader Heinrich Himmler created a Reich Central Office for the Combating of Homosexuality and Abortion: Special Office (II S), a subdepartment of Executive Department II of the Gestapo. The linking of homosexuality and abortion reflected the Nazi regimes population policies to promote a higher birthrate of its "Aryan" population. On this subject Himmler spoke in Bad Tölz on February 18, 1937, before a group of high-ranking SS officers on the dangers both homosexuality and abortion posed to the German birthrate.

And a fact I was unaware of:

After the war, homosexual concentration camp prisoners were not acknowledged as victims of Nazi persecution, and reparations were refused. Under the Allied Military Government of Germany, some homosexuals were forced to serve out their terms of imprisonment, regardless of the time spent in concentration camps. The 1935 version of Paragraph 175 remained in effect in the Federal Republic (West Germany) until 1969, so that well after liberation, homosexuals continued to fear arrest and incarceration.


The Supreme Court Allowed A Man To Be Executed, Then They Took His Case

Source: Think Progress

Just over a week ago, the Supreme Court denied a stay of execution to an Oklahoma inmate named Charles Warner over the dissent of the Court’s four more liberal members. According to Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s dissent, the drug cocktail that Oklahoma planned to use on Warner was too likely to result in the “needless infliction of severe pain” to be permissible under the Constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishments. Sotomayor, however, only garnered four votes for her position, and she needed five to halt the execution.

Nevertheless, on Friday, just over a week after Warner received a fatal dose of the poisonous cocktail Sotomayor criticized in her opinion, the Supreme Court announced that it would hear Warner’s case after all.

Under normal circumstances, Warner’s death would moot his case. Subject only to narrow exceptions, the Supreme Court only has jurisdiction over cases where a decision in a particularly party’s favor is likely to redress an injury that party experienced. And the justices only have the power to destroy life. They do not have the power to resurrect the dead.

Warner, however, is one of four death row inmates who challenged the use of a potentially unreliable sedative that may allow inmates to experience considerable pain during their executions. The other three, at least as of this writing, are still alive.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2015/01/26/3615214/supreme-court-allows-oklahoma-execute-man-decide-take-case/

Just a note to the Pope: If ever some Catholics needed excommunication...

This is evil AND malicious.

Now will people believe me when I say we live in a de facto police state?

The CIA and the NYPD have declared themselves above the law and answerable to NO ONE.

The CIA broke into the senate intelligence committee's computers to spy on them and disrupted their investigation. No one was punished.

The NYPD is openly calling for the removal of the legally elected mayor.

Need I mention the refusal to prosecute war criminals?

The words "Democrat" and "Republican" are pretty much meaningless

outside the beltway and the media. The Democratic Party is generally made up of a sprinkling of genuine liberals, a majority block of the Center-Right (ultra pro-business), a shrinking number of "conservative Democrats" (i.e. what we used to call "conservative Republicans") and a sprinkling of delusional folk who think that the GOP can be reasoned with and will keep their word (The Democratic "leadership").

On the GOP side you have 1/3 third paid stooges for the oligarchs (which includes the actual GOP leadership), 1/3 religiously insane Dominionists, and 1/3 barking mad, anti-government, racist teabaggers (who call the shots by preventing pretty much anything they don't agree with from getting done).

I am sure there is more than a little overlap amongst the groups on the Right.

From the Ted Cruz balcony, this translates as:

Genuine Liberals - Goddamn commie-hippie-Nazi liberals
Center Right Democrats - Goddamn commie liberals
Conservative Democrats - Goddamn socialist liberals
"Pragmatic/Bi-Partisan" Democrats - Goddamn liberals

Teabagger conservatives - Patriots™
Dominionist conservatives - God's Chosen People™
Oligarch conservative - Goddamn commie traitors working for the goddamn commie-hippie-Nazi liberals

The Overton Window is now so far to the right that if space/time is actually curved it is about to hit us in the back of the head.

If we are going to have a death penalty, let's add crimes the death penalty will actually deter

Update for folks assuming I am seriously advocating this or wish to engage in a discussion of firearms safety: THIS IS SATIRE! Thank you for your attention.]

One of the top arguments for the death penalty is that it "deters" people from committing heinous crimes, like murder. This is patently not true, since most people kill in the heat of the moment and because getting the death penalty has more to do with your race, the race of your victim and how much of a defense you can afford to pay for.

But let's set that aside and look at crimes where the death penalty would actually deter a crime.

1) Political corruption

If you get caught taking a bribe or abusing the power of your office for personal gain then you should face the death penalty. You were granted a sacred trust by being elected/appointed to public office and you betrayed that trust. Political corruption is absolutely premeditated. The condemned will be slathered in bacon grease then thrown into a pit of jackals. Alternatively, a "first offense" rule may be allowed, wherein the public official is simply branded on the cheek with the name or corporate logo of the person/entity responsible for fomenting the corruption.

2) Injuring or killing someone while "cleaning your gun". A firearm either has bullets in it, or it does not. If it does, you do not "clean it". The penalty in this case will be death by firing squad cleaning their rifles.

3) Killing someone while driving drunk. If you intend to drink, then under no circumstances should you drive. You were sober when you decided to drink, you got drunk, now some one is dead and we need to be sure you NEVER kill anyone else. Means of execution will be drowning in a vat of very cheap beer.

4) Calling a number on the "Do Not Call" list. This one is special for two reasons: First, the penalty for the first ten offenses is not death, but simply removing one finger with an axe. Second, the penalty is applied not to just the telemarketer making the call, but the perpetrator's supervisor and the company CEO. Execution is mandated on the 11th offense, at which time the execution is carried out by 50 angry citizens who have had their time wasted by telemarketers, who will be allowed to beat the condemned to death with a phone receiver (from a pre-1980 pay phone).

5) Rioting because "your team won/lost the big game". Execution is by submerging in a vat containing a slurry made from Hippo feces and cat urine, which is then set on fire.

6) Aiding/abetting the false conviction of an innocent person by means of fraud/deceit/omission. If you have in anyway colluded to convict an innocent person of a capital crime and do so by suppressing/altering evidence, coercing a confession, suborning perjury, or providing false testimony, you are to be executed. Execution to take place immediately after the verdict is rendered, with no appeals allowed. Method of execution is to "humanely" kill you by injecting you with whatever drugs we can find in the medicine cabinets of the jury. In the event that nothing lethal can be found, the jury will simply sit on you until you suffocate.

Special counsel will be provided to the defendant in such cases and must meet one or more of the following qualifications:

a) Be a public defender with ZERO experience in death penalty cases and have a caseload of no less than 100 hours per week.

b) Have a blood alcohol content of no less than .20 during all proceedings.

c) Be an active heroin addict.

d) Be the innocent person you got convicted.

Special counsel may NOT be declined.

These are the crimes *I* think could be deterred by the death penalty. I am sure people around here can think of a few others along with appropriate means of execution.

So, will we ever have an "Innocent Children's Day"?

To honor the deaths of innocent children at the hands of soldiers fighting for their motherland, fatherland, or homeland?

The innocent Vietnamese children burned to death with Napalm™?
The innocent Guatemalan children killed by death squads?
The Innocent Iraqi children killed by two wars waged for cheap oil?
The innocent child soldiers dying every day fighting other people's wars?
The innocent children killed by drug cartels?
The innocent children killed in mines?
The innocent children killed in factories?
The innocent children killed in mass shootings in schools?

Remember, the profits of the arms trade, the drug trade, the slave trade, the oil trade, and the global economy isn't free. It is paid for by the blood of innocent children every minute of every day.

Just wondering...

Where has all the Ebola gone in the U.S.?

Where has all the Ebola gone?

Oh, right science got rid of it without any border closings, quarantine concentration camps, or mass die-offs in the population.

For those of you keeping score for the U.S. 2014 season:

Ebola - 1
Shootings involving more than 4 dead or wounded - 253
Traffic Fatalities - 26,000 (est)
Work fatalities due to accident/disease - 48,000 (est)
Cancer fatalities - 517,500 (est)
Fire fatalities - 1,952
Lightning fatalities - 25
Insect sting/bite deaths - 100 (est)
Dog bite deaths - 25
Bear attack deaths - 6
Autoerotic Asphyxiation deaths - 88 (est)

Ebola has had a truly disappointing season in the U.S. and really did not bring its "A" game. While it has racked up some impressive numbers in three countries in Africa, it has been completely crushed by perennial African champs Malaria and civil war.

So who will the Teabaggers replace McConnel and Boehner with?

Eric Cantor is probably kicking himself for not hanging around, since that would have meant he would have been top candidate for Speaker. Yertle pissed all over the baggers favorite boy in the primary, so he has to go. Besides, both are "too liberal".

Who do you think will replace them? My money is on Cruz for the Senate.

The high price of apathy in North Carolina

Context Check:

There are approximately 6.6 million registered voters in NC. Of that number around 1.4 million voted for Tillis, or 21.4% of the registered voters. There are 9.8 million people in NC, and 14.3% of the population chose the leader for the other 85.7%.

Now we can argue about the cause(s) of apathy, but the disease itself is clearly diagnosed.

The reality about "vote flipping" machines in NC and elsewhere

I swore I would avoid these kinds of threads since I always regret getting involved, but people are wasting a lot of energy better spent toward getting people to the polls.

Those of you who have been around a while may remember me for being involved in the whole e-voting issue as far back as 2002 on DU. I worked with Bev Harris before we parted company for a variety of reasons, but I was right in the middle of the whole Diebold affair. In 2005 I served in the NC Select Committee on E-Voting and helped draft the laws that govern electronic voting in NC.

I coined the term "black box voting"

I have worked with, built, written about and taught about computers for about 30 years. I worked for eight years installing computer networks in local banks and am pretty familiar with what is required to make systems secure and the rigors of auditing.

That said, "vote flipping", while a problem, is not evidence of fraud, it is evidence of a poorly calibrated touchscreen. If you search Google for news stories you will find the same problem happening in lots of places where TS systems are used, but you will also find the other side saying the machines are rigged by Democrats against GOP candidates.

Despite what a lot of people like to claim, stealing an election by rigging voting machines is not that easy, and highly dangerous to your freedom. Voter suppression tactics, on the other hand, are very effective and very HARD to prosecute.

Stop getting worked up about this and get on the phone to get people to the polls. Once again, the problem DOES happen and DOES need to brought to the attention of the poll workers/press, but it is not evidence of fraud.

Also, Diebold hasn't owned a voting machine since 2009. We, meaning activists at DU, drove them out of the business.

Again, yes it IS a problem and it does need to be addressed and we should really get rid of TS systems entirely and replace them with OpScan systems. However, claiming this evidence of fraud discourages people from voting at a time where we need every damn vote we can get.

Update: The same problem, different side in 2008.

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