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Gender: Male
Hometown: North Carolina
Member since: Wed Aug 11, 2004, 06:57 PM
Number of posts: 3,813

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The same could be said about gun control overall.

Additional gun control policies require expanded powers by the ATF, "an agency that pins children down" when they are in the path of its enforcement, and is similar to ICE in many other ways.

ICE and the ATF work together routinely, and Ocasio Cortez's idea that one is evil and out of control, while the other deserves more power in the name of "safety" is, frankly, absurd.

See, for example:




I encourage all Democrats, Ocasio Cortez included, to quit pushing more state powers in the name of gun control (which is quite different from actual safety) at a time when firearm deaths remain historically low, but economic inequality and related matters of health, housing, and environmental quality are at their worst crises ever.


Repubs here are agog...

But to the extent that I have read excerpts of the Judge's ruling, it makes complete sense. A racially-gerrymandered legislature that used its power to draft and deceivingly describe Constitutional Amendments that further disenfranchise minority and poor voters has no legitimacy. These Amendments should be null and void.

The appeals will be fast and furious, but I hope that Wake County Superior Court Judge G. Bryan Collins' decision stands.



"Bernie" the person is secondary at this point.

I've said it before (look at my Journal if you want) and I'll say it again: 2020 (or beyond for that matter, given his age) is probably not Bernie's moment to become President. It is a continued opportunity for his voice and ideas to be part of the conversation though...

The Democratic constituency known as "Sandernistas" or "Democratic Socialists" or even "the Economic Left" are emerging into a moment (or hopefully an enduring position of influence) such that they deserve a voice, and a candidate that pays them more than lip service.

No one is asking anyone to "bow" to Bernie. But the Democratic party needs to take the Economic Left seriously, and treat it as an essential and influential piece of the Democratic constituency overall. This was not a problem in the least from FDR to LBJ and beyond (you know, back when Democratic policies shaped America's domestic organization); why should it be a problem now?


Pelosi is masterful and amazing.

I had high hopes for her, and she keeps exceeding them!



The Benefits of a Bernie Candidacy

We're just an hour or two into Bernie being part of the 2020 Presidential Primary, and already I am seeing posts here about him being a "Narcissist" and worse.

I think that any progressive can embrace Bernie's presence in the campaign at this point, whether they endorse him or not. Having Sanders (and Warren) in the campaign already has shifted the discussion on issues like minimum wage, health care, etc. far beyond how they were being discussed at this point in time in 2014 when the first Bernie campaign was just getting going. Love him or hate him, the man has shifted many discussions leftward, creating room for other candidates to take progressive stands while still potentially positioning themselves as more "centrist" (a word which I despise, but it ain't going away...)

Remember that at this point in a Primary, it's all about ideas and building momentum. Bernie's presence will strengthen the Democratic race overall. And I say that as someone who leans toward Warren at this point in time. Seeing and hearing her and Bernie on a debate stage with all the rest of our fine field of candidates is a prospect I relish.


I have no love for Bezos

Union-busting billionaires need to wake up and smell the coffee before guillotines reduce their caffeine habit once and for all as far as I can tell from the direction of late capitalism USA.

But the enemy of my enemies can fuck some shit up when it's a billionaire against the Gropenfuhrer, the Saudis, and fascism-enabling rags like the Enquirer, so I'mma just stand back and watch the fireworks.


I'd vote for the full Carol Kane treatment.


Trump's EPA refuses to regulate pair of chemicals linked to cancer and multiple illnesses

Source: https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2019/1/30/1830891/-Trump-s-EPA-refuses-to-regulate-pair-of-chemicals-linked-to-cancer-and-multiple-illnesses?detail=emaildkre&fbclid=IwAR002EMaZOS0xpSrVsULWPIn4F7UWGv2F-9ATl1hz7v2CpyYU9Ski9rSKN0

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) are man-made compounds that do not occur naturally. They’re created during the manufacture of Teflon and in the creation of a type of fire-fighting foam mostly used by the military. Wide use over a period of decades means that they’re present in drinking-water systems in many areas of the country, particularly in regions containing military bases or chemical plants. They’re also directly linked to multiple kinds of cancer, to high blood pressure, heart disease, and a host of ailments. And ... the EPA is not going regulate them, despite requirements that such chemicals be regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

Preventing the regulation of these chemicals has been a long-term project for the Trump EPA. In 2018, then-EPA administrator Scott Pruitt blocked a public study of the chemicals. Preventing that study’s release meant that, in the most technical sense, the agency wasn’t required to move, even though other studies had already demonstrated the danger, and legislators, both Democratic and Republican, were urging the EPA to take regulatory action. And it wasn’t as if the EPA study hadn’t found a problem with these chemicals. It had. But Pruitt and Trump fought to keep those results under wraps, refusing to release the report for months before finally allowing it to escape in June.


Failure to regulate the chemicals means that water companies will not be required to test for PFOS and PFOA. There will not be a required standard to meet. And, most critically for Team Trump, it will be much more difficult to take legal action against chemical companies such as 3M, which is responsible for generating the chemicals in bulk, or the military for the health damage the chemicals have already created. Across the country, communities had been looking forward to the regulation of these chemicals as a start toward remediating the high levels that remain in the drinking water of millions. Instead, there will be neither regulations nor funds to begin that effort.

This is the family of chemicals in which "Gen X" originates. Gen X and the halogenated firefighting chemicals used on North Carolina's military bases in the eastern half of the state has rendered drinking water unsafe for too many communities.

These halogenated hydrocarbon chemicals persist, bioaccumulate, and harm health for generations. Purposely ignoring their presence and deleterious health effects is a crime against humanity.


This, exactly.

If a certain wing of the Democratic Party would spend half as much energy engaging Bernie Sanders' IDEAS as it does worrying about what Sanders does as an INDEPENDENT who consistently supports the best Democratic initiatives, we could be moving forward a lot more effectively.


Or, I could be reading & paying attention...

This OP does not exist in a vacuum. Emma Gonzalez has in fact specifically called for particular new gun laws. See, for example:


There, Emma writes,

We need to digitize gun-sales records, mandate universal background checks, close gun-show loopholes and straw-man purchases, ban high-capacity magazines, and push for a comprehensive assault weapons ban with an extensive buyback system.

It would also benefit us to redefine what assault weapons are so that when we call for a ban against them, it’s clear that we aren’t trying to ban all guns. No one needs to use an assault weapon to protect themselves while walking home at night. No one should be allowed to use an AR-15...

Let's dissect this quote a bit, shall we?

-"We need to digitize gun-sales records" - Classic first step in national registration, which historically (Australia, Canada, etc.) has often been followed by confiscation or heavy-handed "buybacks" at the least.

-"mandate universal background checks," - Sounds good, but basically means national registration if said background check is tied to a particular firearms purchase.

-"close gun-show loopholes and straw-man purchases, " - Straw purchases are already prohibited by Federal law, so that is literally a straw man. And while gun control activists love to make hay about the "gun show loophole," all it boils down to is a legal sale of private property between two individuals who are meeting up of their own accord. While this surely is at times an avenue by which criminals obtain firearms, it is a small problem compared to thefts of firearms, etc.

-"ban high-capacity magazines," - In the gun control world, this generally means standard-capacity magazines of >10 rounds. Yet, I see no evidence that this would eliminate mass shootings. In fact, there is peer-reviewed science that says exactly the opposite:


Let's just put the whole abstract here for study:

Do bans on large-capacity magazines (LCMs) for semiautomatic firearms have significant potential for reducing the number of deaths and injuries in mass shootings? The most common rationale for an effect of LCM use is that they allow mass killers to fire many rounds without reloading. LCMs are known to have been used in less than one third of 1% of mass shootings. News accounts of 23 shootings in which more than six people were killed or wounded and LCMs were known to have been used, occurring in the United States in 1994–2013, were examined. There was only one incident in which the shooter may have been stopped by bystander intervention when he tried to reload. In all of these 23 incidents, the shooter possessed either multiple guns or multiple magazines, meaning that the shooter, even if denied LCMs, could have continued firing without significant interruption by either switching loaded guns or changing smaller loaded magazines with only a 2- to 4-seconds delay for each magazine change. Finally, the data indicate that mass shooters maintain such slow rates of fire that the time needed to reload would not increase the time between shots and thus the time available for prospective victims to escape.

So what will Emma call for when >10 round magazine bans fail to stop mass shootings? Would a five-round magazine capacity (pushing American firearms owners back to mid-nineteenth century technology) suffice? Does she plan for the same limits to apply to police officers? If not, why not? Regardless, as I said above, the solution to these problems lies outside the gun control arena, not in arbitrary limits on the Second Amendment.

Anyway, onward with Emma's quote...

-"and push for a comprehensive assault weapons ban with an extensive buyback system." - This translates as confiscation. A ban with a "grandfather" clause is a ban with a 1-generation delay (sorry, no dice), and an "extensive" (does she mean "mandatory"?) "buyback system" does not read like she plans to offer citizens a choice. Well, she can pound sand. As an individual, she is a survivor who deserves to tell her story. But once she enters the policy arena and calls to deny Americans' their Constitutional rights, she becomes an opponent with bad ideas, nothing more.

I could go on, but the fact is that she is proposing a ban on the most popular centerfire long rifle sold in the USA today and its close mechanical cousins ("No one should be allowed to use an AR-15" ). These rifles happen to be used in less than 0.5% of all firearms-caused murders across the nation.

This is not moderate.

This is not "common sense."

This is, in fact, "ignorant" of the popular will and Second Amendment jurisprudence about the enumeration of this right explicitly protecting firearms "in common use."

So again, I will say that Emma Gonzalez is saying ignorant things that, as policy proposals, will not keep Americans safer, no matter how fervently she and her anti-2A allies wish it to be so. Pursuing these proposals will alienate rural and Second-Amendment-supporting citizens from the Democratic Party, and help to keep at least the Senate under Republican control for the foreseeable future. If you're comfortable with that, bully for you. But I'd like to see a country governed by leaders that respect the whole Bill of Rights WHILE ALSO addressing violent crime in strategic and effective manners.

This is not "knee jerk" on my part in the slightest, thank you very much.


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