Comments by tabatha

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Posted on July 14 at 8:14 a.m.

While many of the OP sentences reflect reality, "corporations in charge of birth control" is patently false (for now).

Having ordered items large and small online, where the choice is wider and prices are better, I have had excellent experiences. Maybe, I'll avoid buying a fridge online if the need ever arises.

On People Need Not Apply

Posted on July 12 at 9:35 a.m.

Capitalism only works if citizens are employed at decent wages. Period.

If a society is based on the exchange of money, then those with most have the most of everything else.

People cannot have money if they cannot work and they cannot work if they are not educated to find jobs in the culture in which they live.

And beyond that, the obesity in this country is thanks to corporations making money in selling and advertising junk to make money. They do not care about the "quality" of their products but the "quantity" of money that they make.

Because money exchange is the basis of capitalism, those that do not have money and cannot find jobs will go to any lengths to get it - stealing, dealing drugs, scams, decimating rhinos, etc. And those that do have well-paying jobs and want more money, create junk bonds, junk real estate, junk healthcare plans.

I don't know what a better system is, but some societies in other countries did better without capitalism.

On The Food Crisis in South Chad

Posted on July 12 at 9:12 a.m.

"One of the most vocal of those critics is Bill Sinkele. A former alcoholic originally from the U.S., he has worked for 18 years with some of Kenya’s most marginalized groups, from prostitutes on the coast to alcoholic kids in the capital’s slums. He has just concluded research in Kenya for the WHO that shows underage drinkers know what brand they’ll drink well before they hit the legal drinking age of 18. “The alcohol industry is prepping these kids!” he says. Billboards in the capital Nairobi present “the Snapp sisters,” three shimmering women who look like a young Destiny’s Child drinking Snapp, a sugary apple-flavored alcopop. The advertisements are aimed at women, a group in which, according to Sinkele, alcoholism is rising alarmingly."

Hip, hip, hooray for capitalism !!!

On The Food Crisis in South Chad

Posted on July 12 at 9:11 a.m.

Yes, Ken. And culture destruction. A culture, with which they were not familiar, was imposed on them.

The people who imposed the culture had centuries to come to terms with it, going through their own poverty and hardship, and enduring despotic dictators, let-them-eat-cake rulers, shipping "criminals" out of the country, etc. The newly independent African heads of state thought they should emulate their previous White heads with luxury, palatial homes, servants, etc, in cultures that had no clue or experience of this imposed culture.

And, it is a common theme throughout countries, whether capitalist, socialist, communist, none-of-the-above, that for those who find themselves with money, continue to accumulate wealth to the detriment of the rest of the population. Saudi Arabia, Libya under Gadaffi, Syria under Assad, Russia, N. Korea, Zimbabwe, etc, and the 1% in this country who shipped good-paying US jobs to workers living in subhuman conditions in other countries - just to be able to afford their luxury, boats, and mansions.

And the indigenous populations have paid the price with loss of land, pollution of land, and culture destruction, etc. Drink has become their refuge, whether the Aborigines in Australia, the Native Americans in this country, and in Africa.

Too many people with too few resources is a big problem in this world. All creatures in this world have predators that keep their numbers in check, except for humans. How can humans keep their numbers in check? Family planning throughout the world, with free contraception. Another commentator said that birth control pills do not treat a medical condition, but Viagra does. The problem is actually a "medical" condition - the health of human societies and the planet. And the right have it backwards - Viagra can result in more offspring, just as lack of birth control does.

And to stop abortions - I think women should just give up having sex with men, period. Then there would be no problem pregnancies. But, then rapes by frustrated men would sky-rocket. It takes two to tango, and since women do not fall pregnant without men, then men should not have sex with anyone else but their wives. Yeah, right, that is going to happen.

When you point a finger, remember that there are three pointing back at you. People can extol the "values" of capitalism in the world, but it was done at enormous costs to those who were conquered.

On The Food Crisis in South Chad

Posted on July 8 at 9:54 p.m.

"There are around 46 different types of "intersex" conditions that can result in individuals having both male and female characteristics, according to a leading British gynaecologist.

The claim that Caster Semenya, the world 800metre champion, has demonstrated both sexual attributes suggests she may be what would once have been called a hermaphrodite.

There are four ways of determining sex, said Dr Peter Bowen-Simpkins, of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. The problem is that they can be at odds with one another. Chromosomal sex is defined by x and y chromosomes. The default position for mammals is that they will develop as females unless there is y chromosome present. In one rare condition, androgen insensitivity syndrome, the body is insensitive to the male hormone and develops to become a woman.

"It's very complex area," said Bowen-Simpkins, a consultant gynaecologist. "The male hormone is what gives bulk to muscles and bones so they are at an advantage. I have seen pictures of this girl and she has no waist and very masculine musculature."

As many as one in 3,000 are born with some kind of intersex disorder. "Some people are brought up as females even though they have no uterus or vagina. The sporting bodies don't have an agreed definition of sex. Cases like this may force them to define this particular issue.""

On Republicans Should Move to Center

Posted on July 8 at 9:49 p.m.

I think that some people need to take biology courses. There is a large variation of sexuality in humans; it is not 100% male and 100% female.

Consider the case of runner Caster Semenya — a person with both male and female sexual characteristics. And there are examples of kids who know from an early age that they are different. Homosexuality has also been observed in other species besides humans. Some species can be both male and female, or change from one to the other, depending on various circumstances that affect continued viability of a species.

There is a whole spectrum between 100% female and 100% male in humans. While it may have nothing to do with procreation success, it may have much to do with both environmental factors (chemicals in the environment or in the womb), or just plain DNA mixing. Homosexuality has been known from the earliest days of recorded human history.

"We can now appreciate that biological sex is multi-dimensional and is ultimately determined by the sexual differentiation of the human brain; rather than that of body parts such as external genitalia. We now know that a person's legal sex (as per their birth certificate) can be different from their predominant biological or innate sex (as per their "brain sex") and their common law sex as determined by a court. Our society has now begun to understand transsexualism and some other traditionally known intersex conditions and to appreciate the life experience of the people who live with these conditions, whose brain sex differentiation is at odds, or incongruous, with the sexual differentiation of some or all of their body parts and assigned legal sex and that such conditions are nothing more or less than natural variations in human sexual formation. "

The extreme right do not understand or want to understand science, where often the "truth" is not what is appears to be on superficial observation. I could never judge others for their sexuality or impose social norms upon them. They are what they are as nature created them, and they should be accepted for what they are. We cannot choose the color of our eyes, hair, height or other physical features, just as we do not choose our sexuality. Why sexuality should be the only characteristic not subject to variation, is not something that is obvious.

Those who cannot understand this are blinded by artificial dogma.

On Republicans Should Move to Center

Posted on July 5 at 11:24 a.m.

Apologies for the overkill, but many do not know/understand the mechanics of these things.

"In summary and for the millionth time, the detention provisions do not apply to the NDAA. The law itself states that it does not apply to American citizens. Some people will still continue to feed their mistrust of government, but it is in black and white. It was written in the revised legislation.

The NDAA is a terrible law because it forbids the funding to close GITMO. It is a terrible law because the language of the bill contains a predisposition towards indefinite detentions. The language used is the right’s attempt to revive the policies of the war on terror. The NDAA is lousy because what it is advocating runs counter to who we are as a people and what this great nation stands for. The NDAA stinks for all of these reasons and many more, but it is NOT lousy because it allows for the detention of US citizens.

Those who believe that Obama should have vetoed the NDAA don’t seem to realize that what they are asking for is that the military go unfunded. The NDAA is a yearly funding measure, and as such could be amended when a new, and hopefully saner Congress is sworn into session to remove the war on terror language that this Congress foolishly in a bit of near election year pandering passed.

Too many Democrats went along with supporting the NDAA, and those members of Congress along with their detention and torture loving GOP colleagues must be held accountable. I know that it is easier to blame the president for everything, because he is but one man, but the truth that we need to clean out and disinfect this Congress.

Yes, Obama signed the NDAA. Even if he would have vetoed it, an override would have been likely. His veto would have been nothing more than an empty symbolic gesture that would have caused more problems than it solved."

- The language used is the right’s attempt to revive the policies of the war on terror.
- Yes, Obama signed the NDAA. Even if he would have vetoed it, an override would have been likely.

On Happy Birthday, America

Posted on July 5 at 11:18 a.m.

December 31, 2011
Statement by the President on H.R. 1540

Today I have signed into law H.R. 1540, the "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012." I have signed the Act chiefly because it authorizes funding for the defense of the United States and its interests abroad, crucial services for service members and their families, and vital national security programs that must be renewed. In hundreds of separate sections totaling over 500 pages, the Act also contains critical Administration initiatives to control the spiraling health care costs of the Department of Defense (DoD), to develop counterterrorism initiatives abroad, to build the security capacity of key partners, to modernize the force, and to boost the efficiency and effectiveness of military operations worldwide.

The fact that I support this bill as a whole does not mean I agree with everything in it. In particular, I have signed this bill despite having serious reservations with certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of suspected terrorists.

Obama then strongly debunked once and for all the notion that the NDAA detention provisions apply to American citizens, “Section 1021 affirms the executive branch’s authority to detain persons covered by the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) (Public Law 107-40; 50 U.S.C. 1541 note). This section breaks no new ground and is unnecessary. The authority it describes was included in the 2001 AUMF, as recognized by the Supreme Court and confirmed through lower court decisions since then. Two critical limitations in section 1021 confirm that it solely codifies established authorities. First, under section 1021(d), the bill does not “limit or expand the authority of the President or the scope of the Authorization for Use of Military Force.” Second, under section 1021(e), the bill may not be construed to affect any “existing law or authorities relating to the detention of United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United States.” My Administration strongly supported the inclusion of these limitations in order to make clear beyond doubt that the legislation does nothing more than confirm authorities that the Federal courts have recognized as lawful under the 2001 AUMF. Moreover, I want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens. Indeed, I believe that doing so would break with our most important traditions and values as a Nation. My Administration will interpret section 1021 in a manner that ensures that any detention it authorizes complies with the Constitution, the laws of war, and all other applicable law.”

On Happy Birthday, America

Posted on July 5 at 11:10 a.m.

"Still, even though Obama was critical of the law as a senator, Republican lawmakers suggest they will resist any move to change the Patriot Act.

"Recent terror attacks, such as those at Ft. Hood and on Christmas Day, demonstrate just how severe of a threat we are facing," said Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), according to the Associated Press. "This extension keeps Patriot's security measures in place and demonstrates that there is a growing recognition that these crucial provisions must be preserved." "

Sometimes, Obama's hands are tied, as he indicated in the signing statement of this extension. Thorn take note: "Republican lawmakers suggest they will resist any move to change the Patriot Act."

The contents of the Act are defined in Congress, and are often tied to other important things (e.g. defense spending) that have to pass, thus forcing the hand of the President.

"The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a United States federal law specifying the budget and expenditures of the United States Department of Defense. Each year's act also includes other provisions. The U.S. Congress oversees the defense budget primarily through two yearly bills: the National Defense Authorization Act and defense appropriations bills. The authorization bill determines the agencies responsible for defense, establishes funding levels, and sets the policies under which money will be spent.[1]"

Often, there is a disconnect between what Congress authorizes and the fact that Obama has no other option but to sign, which he attempts to indicate in a signing statement. If claims of Obama extending the Patriot Act are made, it would be more truthful to say that Congress extended the Patriot Act - see Jeff Sessions' comments.

Signing statements to follow.

On Happy Birthday, America

Posted on July 4 at 11:25 a.m.

"In March 2009, about a month after President George W. Bush and Dick Cheney left office, Scott Horton declared that “[w]e may not have realized it, but in the period from late 2001-January 19, 2009, this country was a dictatorship. That was thanks to secret memos crafted deep inside the Justice Department that effectively trashed the Constitution.” Some of the most infamous of these memos were drafted by John Yoo, an Office of Legal Counsel attorney from 2001-2003. Yoo and others – most notably, Cheney’s counsel, David Addington – advanced the unitary executive theory, a theory of presidential power Cheney had personally favored for decades.

The unitary executive theory, as implemented by the Bush administration, was claimed to justify effectively unchecked presidential power over the use of military force, the detention and interrogation of prisoners, extraordinary rendition and intelligence gathering. According to the unitary executive theory, since the Constitution assigns the president all of “the executive power”, he can set aside laws that attempt to limit his power over national security. This is an enormous power: critics charge that it effectively places the president above the law. Advocates of broad presidential power argue it is necessary to defend the nation against the threat posed by terrorism."

Where was Thorn's letter about Bush's dictatorship and Cheney's promotion of the unitary executive theory ?

On Happy Birthday, America

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