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October 21, 2011 03:39 PM UTC

Open Line Friday!

  • by: Colorado Pols

“Romney cracked–not cracked, but this is the first time Romney got rattled in one of these because of this and some other people started piling on…the way it looked, the way it all sounded, I found it funny so I started sending notes to friends, ‘I’m laughing my butt off here,’ and they wrote back, ‘This is not good if you’re laughing, this is not good news.'”

–Rush Limbaugh, on this week’s GOP presidential debate


119 thoughts on “Open Line Friday!

  1. from Location matters for your startup

    All creatives, including entrepreneurs, need to hang out with others in order to do the best work, and so creatives of different types congregate in hot spots for their activity.  For tech entrepreneurs that is Silicon Valley and to a lesser (but increasing) extent London, New York, Berlin and Tel Aviv.

    And by the writers calculation, Boulder clocks in as the best city of any for the most advantageous location. This bodes very well for the future of high-tech in Boulder.

  2. The Styrofoam Cube In This Letter Serves A Bureaucratic Purpose

    The Styrofoam cube enclosed in this envelope is being included by the sender to meet a United States Postal Service regulation. This regulation requires a first class letter or flat using the Delivery or Signature Confirmation service to become a parcel and that it “is in a box or, if not in a box, is more than 3/4 of an inch thick at its thickest point.” The cube has no other purpose and may be disposed of upon opening this correspondence.”

  3. Flip it all upside down.

    “The “occupy” protest movement is thriving off the claim that the 99% are being exploited by the 1%, and there is truth in what they say. But they have the identities of the groups wrong. They imagine that it is the 1% of highest wealth holders who are the problem. In fact, that 1% includes some of the smartest, most innovative people in the country – the people who invent, market, and distribute material blessings to the whole population. They also own the capital that sustains productivity and growth.

    But there is another 1% out there, those who do live parasitically off the population and exploit the 99%. Moreover, there is a long intellectual tradition, dating back to the late middle ages that draws attention to the strange reality that a tiny minority lives off the productive labor of the overwhelming majority.

    I’m speaking of the State, which even today is made up of a tiny sliver of the population, but is the direct cause of all the impoverishing wars, inflation, taxes, regimentation, and social conflict. This 1% is the direct cause of the violence, the censorship, the unemployment, and vast amounts of poverty, too. ”

            1. in one big grand CONSPIRACY.  First it was the POTUS who set out to steal the election from Andrew.  Now its the Koch Brothers meddling in the DPS race.  That you (or I) can’t see it is just proof that we are its willing enablers or duplicitous pawns.  

                1. and I think he’s a good guy overall. He’s just wrong about education policy, and he tends to act unreasonably when challenged on the subject.

                2. Which includes a lot of time on various school committees both at PISD (Plano, TX) and BVSD (Boulder). It also includes a lot of reading on the subject.

                  I don’t think anyone knows what the answer is (other than “be like Finland” with a million arguments about what that means). But I do think it is fair to say that the present drop out rate is a disaster and improvement will require fundamental change.

                  And it will require experimentation to find out what works. And by definition some experiments will fail. But the alternative is the status quo and that is also failing for a lot of kids.

                    1. I think it’s a good sign that we’re all so passionate about fixing the schools. And with research all over the board on what works, it really still is an opinion based argument.

                1. B) I have no way of knowing what policies you advocate, if any, because all you’ve been doing is hurling insults instead of addressing issues substantively.

              1. As to the point I believe you are raising – that we should require a teaching certificate for all teachers, it only requires a single data point showing an exception to disprove a theory. And I provided that single counter-point.

                This concludes today’s lesson in scientific literacy. (Sorry for the snark but this is basic science. If you make an all-encompassing claim all a counter-proof requires is 1 data point.)

              2. Hello childish? I’d like to introduce clueless.  That’s what I think of both of you on this subject.  And don’t bother. Why don’t I just call myself “Dickhead” for you on my way out. Jeesh.


      YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!  Son, we live a world that has walls and these walls have to be guarded by men with guns.  Whose gonna do it?  You?  You Lieutenant Weiberg?

      I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom.  You weep for Santiago and curse the Marines.  You have that luxury.  You have the luxury of not knowing what I know – that Santiago’s death, while tragic, probably saved lives.  And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives.  

      You don’t want the truth because deep down in places you don’t talk about in parties, you want me on that wall.  You need me on that wall.  We use words like honor, code, loyalty.  We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something.  You use them as a punchline.

      I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide and then questions the manner in which I provide it.  I would rather you just said “thank you” and went on your way.  Otherwise I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post- either way I don’t give a damn what you think you’re entitled to.  ~ A. Sorkin, A Few Good Men

      Bolding is mine.

      Mark G?  Lew Rockwell? von Mises?

      What do you know about building an economy?  You weep for the rich, because you have that luxury. Von Mises was born rich, liived rich, died rich. But only because others less rich than he was provided the labor and security and freedom for him to do so.  He was right about some things – when it works the free market,  is astonishingly efficient and effective. But -a) it isn’t free. And b) sometimes it doesn’t work.

      A bunch of wild animals were running around Ohio yesterday. No regulation or rule needed there.

      NATO forces helped the Libyan insurgents kill Gadhafi.  No free market needed there. Just people with guns guarding freedom.

      And the wealthiest of the wealthy- the Wall St 1% – figured out a way to privatize their gains but socialize their losses.  Too big to fail is too big to exist in a truly free market.

      So you and Lew would rather the 1% freeloaders are what – left to die? Left alone?   Well guess what? You got your wish – they are.

      Try being poor and homeless sometime. It’s not like you can get whatever Lew thinks you can.  You get almost nothing.  Try doing it when you are sick and in need of medical care.  You make me sick.  Not because you’re rich, but because you make the common mistake of believing your rich because of you and only you.  Just like von Mises.  At least Hayek had the decency to admit that he was poor and accepted the British pension the UK offered him – even though he never earned it, and was not British.

      When and for whom did you ever serve?

      Go back to your ivory tower, even if it is your mom’s basement, and thank someone for giving you what you have. And start paying it back.

    2. greed with the imprimatur of holiness — MG is one special fucking idiot

      more Lew cut & paste — you really can’t do any better?  or did you just splurge on the newsletter and feel the need to justify your 2-dollars somehow?

    3. This evening, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) will give a speech at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business about how to address income inequality, likely trying to capitalize on the 99 Percent Movement he once derided as unruly “mobs.” Although exactly what policies Cantor will suggest to deal with this social problem are unknown, it’s unlikely that he will touch on one of the chief drivers of American income inequality: the decline of unions.

      As CAP’s David Madland and Nick Bunker show in the following chart, (found here: ( middle class’s share of national income has steadily declined as the percentage of the population in labor unions has fallen. At the same time, the top 1 percent’s share of national income has exploded:

      Strong unions have traditionally been the free-market solution to income inequality, allowing people to get higher salaries without government intervention. Unionization has allowed middle class and working-class Americans to have the ability to bargain for stronger wages and benefits and a larger share of national income. Highly-unionized countries tend to have far less income inequality.

      Sweden, where 85-90 percent of the population is unionized, is both a prosperous country and one of the most economically equal societies – and that’s in a nation that doesn’t even have a national minimum wage.

      If Cantor really wants to address income inequality, he could endorse legislation similar to the Employee Free Choice Act, which would break down barriers that have been erected to American union membership.

      h/t Thinkprogress

      1. Apparently he heard that the Occupy Philadelphia folks were going to come out for a friendly meet-and-greet with him, and he abruptly cancelled.  The university said that these speeches are always open to the public and that’s how the speech was advertised; they were terribly sorry if there was a misunderstanding that caused this little whiny-ass titty-baby to soil himself.  http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo

        Also, the text of his prepared remarks show that he never planned to mention the words “income” or “inequality,” but just a bunch of bullroar about lifting yourself up by your bootstraps like he did, or his grandmother did, or whatever.

  4. Interesting question that was a real possibility back during the time of Peace, Properity, and Clinton. From Planet Money

    Banks buy hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth, because they’re a safe place to park money.

    Mortgage rates are tied to the interest rate on U.S. treasury bonds.

    The Federal Reserve – our central bank – buys and sells Treasury bonds all the time, in an effort to keep the economy on track.

  5. Reality check, spending per student has skyrocketed. We spend the following per student each year (adjusted to 2008 dollars):

    1961-62: $2808

    1971-72: $4552

    1981-82: $5718

    1991-92: $7857

    2001-02: $9309

    2007-08: $10,441

    SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2011). Digest of Education Statistics, 2010 (NCES 2011-015), Table 188 and Chapter 2 .

    During this same period of time, all standards of academic excellence have fallen dramatically, from grades to drop out rates.

    You all know that DPSs graduation rate is 43.5% based to studies published by PEBC, correct?

    Liberal or conservative or in the middle, there’s no arguing the fact that throwing money at this the chronic education problems has made them better. Quite the contrary.

    103 might have some standing, if it came with reforms for education and PERA. Frankly we could dump a ton more into education (tied to reforms) if we quit advancing the agendas of some many other pet programs.

    Are liberals and conservatives willing to make the PERA, transportation, healthcare, energy policy and other state level reforms needed to free up more money for education?

    1. to DPS’s spending over the same period?

      What changes have occurred in the classroom that might explain the need for a higher budget?

      Are those figures adjusted for inflation?

      Are there other changes in education, such as the decline in trade schools, the focus on test scores, white flight, and school choice, which may have had a detrimental effect on graduation rates?

      How has blaming the teachers affected things? Has it lowered the prestige of the profession and been less attractive to the best and brightest in recent decades?

      1. Libby’s figures come from the NCES report and are adjusted for inflation (CPI).

        There does not appear to be one category of school spending that has grown faster than any other, at least from ~1990 when the report begins breaking down data.  Transportation costs have grown alongside teacher compensation, which has grown with the amount spent on outside services.

        Teacher salaries now make up a lower percentage of the overall school spending pie, but that is almost offset by the increase in benefit costs.

        The Pupils per teacher ratio (which is not the same as class size) has gone down over time.  Some of this is due to the decrease in agricultural and technical students and corresponding increase in college prep curriculum.  A bit more of it is due to specialized classes mandated in 1975 for disabled students.  (Is there also a change from the 1960’s in girls completing high school?)  Some of the lower figure comes from a drastic increase in instructional aides and supervisors, not in actual teaching staff.  And some of it comes from a Reagan era push to lower class sizes, which has been only moderately successful.

        At the same time, classes have become more technical, and students are spending more time in increasingly difficult classes, especially in the sciences.  Standards have been increased somewhat over the years, and a much higher percentage of students are getting their degrees while meeting national science and math standards.

        And with stagnant to declining household wages and standards of living, students today do not have the same support at home, and often face more difficult environments in their neighborhoods.

        Is it any wonder we’re in a world of hurt?  The American economy rose on the rising wages of the middle class, and will sink as those wages decline and it becomes harder for families to provide for themselves.

        1. And I’m sure Libby does, too, as I’m positive he didn’t know any of this, either.

          There aren’t any easy solutions, but I fail to see increased funding as making the situation worse. And although it’s not guaranteed to make it better (I’d be mighty surprised if it did, frankly), it can only help as educational costs continue to increase.

          * Paranthetically, there are other costs modern schools have that weren’t around 50, or even 15 years ago. Like surveillance cameras.

            1. When we take out schools in the poorer areas and look at only those that are well-funded (and happen to have students who aren’t distracted by the other side-effects of being poor), we see that these schools are among the best in the world.

              Like our healthcare system, it seems our education system works great – for those who are already in decent financial shape.

              Maybe we should put it in corporate earnings format: the class war against the working class and poor has been going well, and given the relatively poor education of their children, we project that we will continue to have a captive workforce for the next generation.

              1. Although part of that, and this is true in other countries too, is that the higher income means we can hire tutors when our child is struggling or a teacher is weak.

                But yes, the horrible situation is what occurs in working class and poorer districts. It is locking those children in a cycle of poverty.

    2. But we did pass SB-191, they are working on implementing it, and some of the key parts of that implementation will require more money. We are looking at a significant attempt to change the system for the better. I think we can afford 1 Latte/week to fund that attempt.

  6. use this one:

    “President Obama has deployed troops to another war, in Africa…Obama has sent 100 US troops to Uganda to help combat Lord’s Resistance Army…and here we are at war with them.  Lord’s Resistance Army are Christians…They are fighting the Muslims in Sudan…Obama has sent troops…to wipe out Christians in Sudan, Uganda.”

    1. Rush’s utter ignorance.  Obviously, just because the word “Lord” appears he assumes these are just a bunch of Sunday school teachers or something.  In reality the Lord’s Resistance Army is infamous for atrocities including forcing very young children, children not yet so much as preteens, into service as soldiers forcing them to kill or be killed, to brutalize others or be brutalized themselves. Their bestiality is legendary.

      They are Christian if this is your idea of Christian:

      The Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), led by Joseph Kony, operated in the north from bases in southern Sudan. The LRA committed numerous abuses and atrocities, including the abduction, rape, maiming, and killing of civilians, including children. In addition to destabilizing northern Uganda from bases in Sudan, the LRA congregated in the Bunia area in eastern Congo. They linked up with the Army for the Liberation of Rwanda (ALIR) and other rebel groups that were battling with forces from the Rally for Congolese Democracy (RCD).

      The LRA continued to kill, torture, maim, rape, and abduct large numbers of civilians, virtually enslaving numerous children. Although its levels of activity diminished somewhat compared with 1997, the area that the LRA targeted grew. The LRA sought to overthrow the Ugandan Government and inflicted brutal violence on the population in northern Uganda. LRA forces also targeted local government officials and employees. The LRA also targeted international humanitarian convoys and local NGO workers.

      The LRA abducted large numbers of civilians for training as guerrillas. Most victims were children and young adults. The LRA abducted young girls as sex and labor slaves. Other children, mainly girls, were reported to have been sold, traded, or given as gifts by the LRA to arms dealers in Sudan. While some later escaped or were rescued, the whereabouts of many children remain unknown.

              1. when you’re ready I’d be happy to talk with you about some of the great membershp packages we offer:

                – Funding Freethinker

                – Ardent Apostate

                – Investing Infidel

                – Helping Heathen

                * wish I thought of these myuself but actual membership levels from AAI

          1. You’re an atheist feigning the perspective of a fundamentalist Christian in order to exploit religious fervor as a propaganda wedge and incite unwarranted political unrest among the American people. That’s much better!

              1. But your citation of Limbaugh’s statement included no hint that you were holding it up for ridicule. So based on your previous posts, it’s easy to see why I and others perceived your citation as an endorsement of Limbaugh’s statement.

                1. I believe that my previous posts have demonstrated that I like to troll.

                  So, let’s get this on the record.

                  1. atheist (small a, not an active member of any coven)

                  2. libertarian (small l)

                  3. Provocateur (Love to troll. Take the opposite side of an argument just to take the opposing view.)

                  4. Obnoxious (see 3 above)

                  5. Love sarcasm.

                  6. Love being politically incorrect.

                  7. Believe in the 1st Amendment. Absolutely. With zero restrictions.

                  8. Grammar Nazi (see 4 above).

                  And, you apology is gratefully accepted.

      1. Check out the history of the Taiping Rebellion in China sometime, both for the knee-jerk support from America and the UK, as well as the, uh, unique theology of its leader, Hong Xiuquan.

      2. Still wishing that ColPols had chosen your favorite pro-Christian Rush quote?  Will you be surprised if this Christian group isn’t raptured en masse today, the new end of the world deadline?

      3. He is relying upon the ignorance of his flock, to continue promoting the line that Obama is a Secret Muslim out to destroy Christians.

        Limbaugh is an evil, sick, twisted person. Far worse than ignorant.

      1. Good cooks are an endangered breed. If he can’t wait to come home to dinner, afterwards he’ll probably park on the couch and dose off before he can go out again and get into any trouble.  That’s my advice. Oh and the sex at home needs to be good, too.

        1. Wait, no, HURRAY, I get to stay single! 😀

          I can’t cook worth a damn. I can make maybe three things decently.

          Baking though? Oh, that I can do. I can bake anything. I guess in the unlikely event that I find someone who meets my ludicrously high standards and yet is foolish enough to be interested in me anyway, I’ll just have to make sure he has a sweet tooth. Or she. I mean, according to Herman Cain, I could just choose to become gay at any given time, so you never know!

  7. We can stop worrying about everything we’ve been squabbling about here in Friday’s open thread.  Remember that preacher who forgot to carry a one or something when he claimed the world would end May 21st?  Well he’s cleaned up his arithmetic and today, October 21st, is the day. So we’re all either getting raptured or cashing it in.  Best part? No more GOP primary debates!

    1. No more GOP primary debates!

      Baseball will be over in a week.  No NBA.  The Broncos suck.  I haven’t bonded with this year’s Avs yet.

      Except for “Nova” on PBS, I need entertainment.  And I damned sure ain’t watching “Jersey Shore.”

      1. try bonding with the new Avs.  They’re showing great promise and I think they’ll get over this home game problem they’re having.  Lots of great big talented players who can skate and lots of room for hope for the best on the goal tending front.

          1. Ye of little faith.  And don’t forget it still counts at 11:59 PM in California. What about Alaska?  I get confused about Hawaii. So… still counting….

  8. After reading everything I can get my hands on, I am leaning Leisha Conners and Sam Fuqua, but I don’t feel like I know enough to have firm opinions.

    1. But too bad Savage perpetuates the misapplication of “gay” or “straight”, which may or may not include c-sucking, and, in any case, encompass so much more than sex in any of its forms. Much better would have been a challenge to Cain to choose between paint samples of Antique Ivory and Country Cream to match with a swatch of Art Deco drapery fabric. 🙂

  9. If these school board races, or the opposition to 103, are an example of the private industry money being poured into future elections to help corporatist Republicans, G-d help us all in the general.  

    1. Nancy, people can honestly disagree with you based on their philosophy and the conclusions they draw from the available evidence. And in terms of corporate money, there is a ton of corporate money trying to improve K-12 because it is key to their future success. That’s the whole purpose behind DFER.

      I support 103 but I can understand voters coming to the conclusion that nothing will improve K-12. Not that it’s not important to them, just that more money will have no impact.

  10. “We can’t arrest our way (out of homelessness),” says Mayor, while proposing to do exactly that.

    Apparently Mayor Hancock has spent months trying to figure out what to do about growing homelessness in Denver, only to come up with… an ordinance prohibiting sleeping on city property. Apparently the homeless will magically find apartments, maybe buy a nice condo, if we arrest them for sleeping.

    And guess why this is necessary?

    Yup, business owners don’t like how it looks to have so many homeless people on the mall.

    So why not…

    * Volunteer to be taxed to support the building of a new nighttime shelter for sleeping only; this could be quite inexpensive if it is simply a covered space where tents and sleeping bags can be set up out of the weather.

    * Ask for a program to help businesses safely hire the homeless and get them off the streets for good.

    * Support decriminalization of addiction, taxation of drugs, and the use of that tax money for rehabilitation and job training for recovering addicts.

    Or any of the many other solutions that don’t involve a ridiculous “see no homeless, hear no homeless, speak about no homeless” plan that pretends arrests cause homeless people to go to some magical unicorn land where they’re not inconveniencing any business owners.  

    1. Like Skyline Park, which also attracted the homeless and hackiesackers and rollerskaters and other ne’er-do-wells that irked the businessfolk along its plazas, so had to be destroyed to save it. Your solutions are way too creative for City Hall, PC.

      Hancock’s such a tool. I have to remind myself why I voted for him. Oh, that’s right: to keep Romer out. Ok, good ’nuff.

      1. I cannot friggin’ STAND Romer.

        But with Romer we would have gotten Mejia, and Romer is always so busy looking for the next thing that James would basically have been Mayor.

        I’d have had a hard time marking the box for Romer if I were in Denver, though, so I don’t blame ya. But Hancock has turned out worse than I expected.

    1. He was online long enough to see this, and other responses to his posts (the others all being on topic to what he was saying today); but no dice. The ArapaGOP is a wily creature.

  11. from globalpost

    “Folklore has it,” Martin said, “that the Canadian beaver will bite off its own testicles when it is threatened and offer them up to its tormentors. I think that is a fitting metaphor for the way our Canadian government reacts to bullying on trade issues by carving off pieces of our nation and offering them over to the Americans.”

    Definitely the way the Democrats in D.C. respond to the Republicans.

  12. Sent this afternoon by certified mail, signature required, receipt requested, so I get a postcard back with the signature and date & time it was received. Will arrive Monday since they won’t be there tomorrow.

    So by Friday (3 days to respond one day for mail) I assume we will have our rejection.

    Thanks to the Polsters who helped me format my request–ClubTwitty and another who knows who he is 🙂

    A columnist that you have probably heard of is awaiting either the rejection or any information I receive and will consider the story for his column whichever way the request goes. If he doesn’t want to be written about on CO Pols, let’s see if he likes this better!

            1. It’s hard to imagine you doing anything productive.

              But if you must know, I’m retired.  Any time I spend debunking your bullshit doesn’t cost anyone a damned thing.

              Now how do you explain your 50+ posts to a single thread yesterday?  

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