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Member since: Sat Aug 7, 2004, 10:55 PM
Number of posts: 4,187

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They are not pro-life; they are anti-choice.

"Pro-life" is what they want to call themselves, and we shouldn't go along with their whitewashing of their own hatred. They cannot be "pro-life" when they clearly don't consider a woman's life to be a life. What they want to do would result in the deaths of women -- through back-alley abortions, self-induced abortions, and dangerous deliveries that should have been stopped while the woman's life could be saved. Calling them "pro-life" implies that we agree with them that women's lives don't count.

Please always tip at least 15%, regardless of the service.

Another thread has revealed that many DUers -- i.e., self-identified liberals -- think it's OK to tip 10% or less when the service is less than ideal. There are many problems with this.

First, the reasons people give for undertipping are mostly things that are not under the server's control. If the server took too long to bring you your food, it was probably a problem in the kitchen. If the server did not take your order immediately, it was probably the fault of the restaurant owner, who left the restaurant understaffed. Or perhaps a server called in sick and could not be replaced. In those cases, you should speak with the manager, not punish the server or try to send a coded message by leaving a small tip.

Second, most servers in the United States barely make minimum wage, even with tips. This is because the federal minimum wage for tipped employees is $2.13, much lower than the regular minimum wage of $7.25. Although the restaurant is supposed to make up the difference to ensure that every server makes minimum wage, the vast majority don't do so. And many customers, including people who are cheap, Republicans, and foreigners unfamiliar with the system in the U.S., fail to leave any tip at all.

"The servers who make 'good money' are in the minority," says Maria Myotte, a spokesperson for Restaurant Opportunities Center United, which aims to improve conditions for workers in the industry. She notes that tipped workers are hit especially hard by "wage theft," whereby restaurants don't make up the difference when the tips aren't rolling in. Between 2010 and 2012, the Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor conducted nearly 9,000 investigations in the restaurant industry, and discovered that 83.8 percent had some kind of wage and hour violation.

There’s this myth, especially if you live in a place like New York or Washington D.C., that what tipped workers make is largely even, that everyone makes what white guys working at fancy steakhouses make.

But even in places like New York and D.C., seventy percent of tipped workers are actually women, largely working at casual restaurants, like Applebees, IHOP , and Olive Garden, earning a median wage of $9 an hour when you include tips. These people suffer three times the poverty rate of the rest of the U.S. workforce, use food stamps at double the rate, and, the worst part, suffer from the absolute worst sexual harassment of any industry in the United States. When you’re a woman living on tips—even if you’re making a lot of money on tips, which most women aren’t—you’re subject to the whims of the customer, and really encouraged by management to objectify yourself or subject yourself to objectification to make money in tips.

Third, female and minority servers are systematically undertipped. One reason for this is that the most expensive restaurants tend to have white male servers. Another reason is that many people are sexist and racist and will perceive flaws in the service when the server is a woman or a minority that they would not notice if the server were a white male. To avoid contributing to wage inequality, tip a higher percentage at cheaper restaurants.

Studies have shown that tipping is not an effective incentive for performance in servers. It also creates an environment in which people of color, young people, old people, women, and foreigners tend to get worse service than white males. In a tip-based system, nonwhite servers make less than their white peers for equal work. Consider also the power imbalance between tippers, who are typically male, and servers, 70 percent of whom are female, and consider that the restaurant industry generates five times the average number of sexual harassment claims per worker. And that in many instances employers have allegedly misused tip credits, which let owners pay servers less than minimum wage if tipping makes up the difference.

Women, who make up about 73 percent of tipped workers, are disproportionately harmed. Waitresses in some gritty bars and grills say they feel compelled to flirt with customers and laugh at offensive jokes just to preserve their income. Even then, they earn an average of $0.50 less per hour than male tipped workers, government statistics show. Doing away with the tipped minimum and giving these women a steadier paycheck would be the quickest way to restore their dignity.

Please, regardless of whether you were a Bernie supporter or a Hillary supporter, always tip at least 15%. It's a matter of having empathy for a fellow human being.

How has history been to Al Gore so far?

Everything you say would apply much better to Gore than to Rodham Clinton, who has already made history as the first female nominee of a major party, as the first female candidate to win the popular vote, and as the candidate who has won more votes than anyone except President Obama in 2008.

The same criticism that was levelled at Hillary in 2016 was levelled at Gore in 2000. The equivalent of today's Bernie supporters were Naderites back then, with the difference that the Naderites were much quicker to realize the gravity of the mistake they had made. The attacks against Gore ended with the 2000 election, whereas Hillary haters can't seem to contain their hate even now, almost half a year since the election. Those who will look particularly ugly in the eyes of history are Hillary haters, who are no better than those who resisted the civil rights movement. Hillary haters may claim they are not sexist and would have been happy to vote for Elizabeth Warren, but history reveals such claims to be exactly what they are: lies, denial, and hypocrisy.

Look how popular Gore is now. Gore goes against your claim that history is unkind to those who lose. History does not seem to consider winning the popular vote but losing the electoral vote as losing. What is ironic is that some Bernie supporters on DU, who hate Hillary with a passion, are now suggesting that Gore run for president in 2020! They have such a short political memory, or must be so young, that they don't realize Gore was painted as being no less corporate-friendly and lesser-of-two-evils than Hillary was. Indeed, Gore ran a very centrist and cautious campaign compared to Hillary. The fact that Hillary ran the most progressive campaign in history is now being credited to Bernie, but that, too, will be revealed by history as the sexist lie it is.

My prediction is that twenty years from now, Hillary Rodham Clinton will be many times more admired and popular than Al Gore is today. Hillary has paved the way for the woman who will eventually be the first female president of the United States. Thanks to Hillary's campaign, we are now more aware of the depth of our society's misogyny. The next female candidate's campaign will be made a little easier by that new self-awareness. And that is how Hillary will go down in history: as the woman who sacrificed so much to further the cause of women's equality.

Elizabeth Warren is never going to be president.

The moment she announced her candidacy, she would be thrown under the bus by the very people who heaped hate on Hillary Clinton. The same goes for any woman who would display the gall to run for president in this super-macho country that believes that women's natural place is on the sidelines.

Please try to understand that many of us who are currently the most vocal supporters of Hillary are women who have faced the most disgusting forms of sexism and hate in the workplace for demanding to be treated as the equals of men. What HRC was subjected to was eerily familiar to us. We recognized what was going on. Sexism is never overt these days; it's always hidden behind reasoning that seems logical and fools those who are not intimately familiar with the tactics used.

You are never going to convince me that any woman would have been able to win where Hillary lost. She was a very strong candidate. Elizabeth Warren, with her soft voice and gentle, professorial demeanor, wouldn't have stood a chance. Claiming otherwise is a form of denial. Before we run a woman candidate again, we need to recognize and deal with the extent of misogyny in this country.

I agree that "pro-life" is a lie. What they really are is "anti-choice" and "anti-woman".

Calling them "pro-life" allows them to frame their argument as something compassionate, when compassion is precisely what they lack when it comes to the women they want to force into botched abortions and dangerous childbirths.

As a woman, I am offended

that my concerns are less important than those of some working-class white guy in the Midwest who voted for Trump because he couldn't stand the idea of a woman being allowed to control her reproductivity and thereby be in a position to run for president. There is no way the Democratic Party could win enough such bigots over to make up for the millions of women and minorities they would lose by throwing us all under the bus.

I'm watching the Ken Burns documentary of the Roosevelts.

It's amazing. Apparently, during FDR's presidency, the left was unhappy with FDR because he wasn't socialist enough for their taste. There were many Bernie-like politicians criticizing his policies for not being liberal enough, and threatening to primary him. And yet, today, FDR is revered by the ultra-left as a liberal hero. The Nation keeps publishing articles about how we need a "New New Deal".

If HRC had won the presidency, she would have gotten a lot of good stuff done, and a hundred years from now, she would have been similarly admired by the left. But it seems that at any given time, liberals always feel that their leaders are just not liberal enough for them. Unlike right-wingers, we liberals are never happy and too easily lose sight of the forest for the trees.

Just imagine if the right wing were anything like the left wing. They would be marching in the streets against Trump for not being conservative enough for them. But instead, they're all behind him. We might learn something from them. It's easier to change the system from within than from without.

I agree with you about the cult of personality.

I hadn't thought of it this way before, but you're exactly right. The focus on the personality of a politician is something one normally sees in young democracies. Because people don't understand or trust that they can get things done through the political system, they keep hoping for a charismatic leader to swoop in and save them. In a mature democracy, people focus more on ideas than on the person at the top. I'm afraid these cults of personality around Sanders and Trump are yet another symptom of how badly the system has been weakened.

The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship

is that in a democracy, the cops are there to protect the people; in a dictatorship, they're there to protect the state from the people. You can tell whether a country is a democracy or a dictatorship by the attitude of its citizens toward the police: are they trusting, or are they afraid? When people in a country start to be afraid of the police, it's a sign that democracy is eroding.

In this case, we see more and more evidence that the police are there to protect powerful corporations from the people. This is very concerning. You might want to start questioning your tendency to side with them by default.

First they said he was lying about being a doctor.

When it turned out he really was a doctor, they had to dig into his past and find something they could criticize him with. How many of us are so pure and innocent that we could survive such scrutiny? I have never committed a crime; I have never even received a parking ticket or a speeding ticket, but I've had disagreements with disgruntled and jealous colleagues, and a determined journalist could easily find two or three people who would argue, falsely but convincingly, that I have anger management issues. I've also suffered on and off from depression and anxiety over the years. Seriously, how many of us could stand up to that sort of intrusive analysis of our past? Does that mean we all deserve to be physically assaulted the moment we object to unfair behavior?

If we are going to start digging into people's pasts, what's more interesting and relevant is the past of the cop who assaulted the poor man, as well as the United employees who called the cops on him in the first place. I wonder what kinds of mental troubles they have been suffering from. Do they have anger management issues? Any record of spousal abuse? If they've been divorced, has anyone tried to talk to their exes to find out whether they have always had authoritative tendencies? Did the airport and United bother to check any of this when they chose to hire these people?

This is no different than scrutinizing the past of a rape victim to lay the blame on her, and not even bothering to look into the past of the rapist.
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