Friday Open Thread

“The humblest citizen of all the land, when clad in the armor of a righteous cause, is stronger than all the hosts of error.”

–William Jennings Bryan

21 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Conserv. Head Banger says:


    I'm starting this now rather than waiting for the weekend open thread. June 7 is the 50th anniversary of the splendid 7-2 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Griswold v. Connecticut. Griswold overturned a state law banning sale of contraceptives to married couples. As the law was worded, it was illegal for doctors to even mention birth control in their counseling with patients.

    In these times of continuing assaults on womens' health options, family reproductive rights, and individual privacy by repressive religious groups and their puppet politicians, it's important to remember decisions like Griswold and how bad things were "way back when." It's not just a matter of remembering, but all who value freedom and liberty must remain vigilant, as the attacks continue, and work against the "baddies." Citizens can not take these basic rights for granted. This is not a liberal or conservative issue; nor a Republican or Democrat issue. It's an issue for all citizens who support individual rights, freedom of conscience, and genuine religious liberty.      C. H. B.

    • ajb says:

      If it's nonpartisan, then why do the attacks come from Conservatives/Republicans? And why is it that any Republican who defends "womens' health options, family reproductive rights, and individual privacy" can never win a primary? 

      And btw, Democrat is a noun.

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        Read what I said about repressive religious groups and their puppet politicians. Common sense conservatives slept through the takeover of the party some years ago by the far right and the religious right. It will be a long, hard haul to reclaim it

        Democrat can be either. 

        • BlueCat says:

          You're delusional. The boots on the ground reality is that it is those who call themselves conservative Republicans and comprise the overwhelming majority of elected Republicans who spend most of their time trying to legislate these repressive policies into being and their voters are with them all the way. This is not a characteristic of the Democratic party. It is now the chief characteristic of the Republican party, the first thing Republican majorities at every level try to do. 

          Where are all of these common sense conservatives you keep talking about? Meeting on the head of a pin? Or perhaps in an equally near extinct phone booth? They certainly aren't meeting within today's GOP. They aren't winning in today's red districts and states. Whatever conservative Camelot you're feeling nostalgic for (God knows why. Even classic conservative economic policy has proved over decades to be nonsense that just doesn't work and is unsupported by the facts ) no longer exists. 


          • Conserv. Head Banger says:

            We're talking Griswold v. Connecticut, not economic policy. You may want to do some homework before spouting off.  Visit    .  

            Your attempt to decry those Republicans who don't fit the mold you've created is inappropriate ("on the head of a pin;" "meeting in a phone booth").

            Regards,  C.H.B.

            • BlueCat says:

              If you read my reply you will see that I was talking about repressive religious motivated policy in direct response to your comment about "repressive religious groups", "puppet politicians", "common sense conservatives" and "Democrat can be either" whatever you meant by that. I merely added, in an aside, that conservative economic policy is just as bad as the repressive religious based policies pushed by today's conservatives. 

              Had I wished to discuss Griswold, the time and atmosphere and political arena in which that decision was reached I would have chosen the reply button for that comment instead. I didn't screw that up this time. I'm in the correct comment reply box.

              You will also see that I'm not "decrying" Republicans who don't fit the mold but simply noting that what you call common sense conservatives no longer exist in elected politics in sufficient numbers to have any significant influence.

              So, in response to the comment noted I'll try again. It is Republican majority legislative bodies that concentrate with great energy and persistence on passing repressive religious based social legislation, most often in partnership with Republican Governors. Only a tiny minority of Republican self described conservative legislators ever stand in opposition to any of this type of legislation at present. Democratic majority legislatures do not pursue this type of legislation, nor do Democratic Governors encourage it. 

              Is that simple enough for a clear reading? You seem to think ajb and I are misreading or incorrectly responding to your remarks but it appears to me that you are the one with the reading comprehension problem and/or lack of desire to confront the reality that there is very much a partisan divide on the issues you cite with the Republican party and the majority of today's self labeled conservatives being on what you claim to regard as the wrong side. Sorry if that gets your undies in a bunch but it's both accurate and relevant to your remarks. 

            • mamajama55 says:

              I remember plenty of those salty pro-choice Republican women – my godmother, my cousins to this day, neighbors, friends of my family. 

               I was a kid so I didn't quiz them on economic policy, but I'd bet that they were Eisenhower and Goldwater Republicans, which would make them flaming liberals by today's standards. 

              Apparently, whether GOP voters are pro-choice or not  depends on the state – New Hampshire's GOP voters are evenly split on the issue, while in the South only 22% of Republicans self-identify as "pro-choice" leading to a Gallup average of only 27% Republican respondents nationwide  as "pro-choice". 

              Anyway, CHB, I appreciate your trumpeting the virtues of Griswold v Connecticut and personal liberty. Long may you wave. 


              • BlueCat says:

                The operative words here are "remember" and "flaming liberals by today's standards".

                While a minority of 27% of ordinary Republican respondents nationwide may have identified themselves as pro-choice, I doubt seriously that you could find anywhere near that large a percentage so identifying and willing to say so among elected Republicans or Republicans hoping to win a primary ad run for election.

                It's the kind of sensible conservatives and sensible Republicans that CHB identifies with and seems to want us to acknowledge as the real thing who have become the fringe outside the Camelot of nostalgic recollection. The old fringe is the new norm and has neither the need nor the intention to indulge a small dissenting minority when it comes to nominating, electing or legislating. Today's GOTP couldn't care less about CHB's sensible conservatives. 

        • Duke Cox says:

          Democrat can be either. 

          only if you are illiterate.

          Please cite your source for using Democrat as an adjective.


          • FrankUnderwood says:

            Wasn’t that famous bug killer and TV dance star, Tom Delay, one of the leaders of the movement to change reference to the party opposite the GOP to the "Democrat Party" because "Democratic Party" sounded too majestic?

        • BlueCat says:

          Democrat cannot be either, BTW. It was made up to replace the proper Democratic as adjective by righties who didn't want to use something that sounds all American like "democratic" in reference to anything to do with Democrats. It's a childish and uncouth usage.

          • Chickenheed says:

            +5 for using "uncouth"

            Bonus points for adding "rapscallion" next time.

            • BlueCat says:

              If you are implying that uncouth is as antiquated as rapscallion I beg to differ. It's a perfectly good and accurate word to use, not obscure or antique. Look it up. 

              • Chickenheed says:

                I'm just being a rapscallion. Don't mind me. Use any words you want. I was just entertained with someone using an uncommon word correctly.

                Wait… don't use the word "phat." that word needs to stay dead in the 90s. Other than that, use any word you want.

                • BlueCat says:

                  Trust me… "phat" was never in my vocabulary. Too old for "phat", not old enough for "rapscallion".  Within the parameters for "uncouth".  But thanks a lot for labeling the 90s as ancient history which makes me quite the old fossil.sad.

  2. Zappatero says:

    Here's some of that good, old fashioned bipartisanship we always hear about:

    you most likely know about President Obama's push to fast-track a secret trade deal. There has been word from elected officials and WikiLeaks that it is going to harm American jobs, give corporations the right to sue governments for cutting into corporate profits via worker protections or environmental regulations,

    ….and do a bunch of other things for corporations that don't seem too urgent right now. We all know they are doing fantastically well for their managers and shareholders these days.

    Part of all this hog trading, back room/top secret negotiations, and pleas for us to just trust our duly elected leaders includes something that's supposed to mitigate for any lost jobs that result:

    Trade Adjustment Assistance is how the government says sorry for shipping American jobs overseas. It sets up funding to provide assistance and training for those workers.

    Hey it's something. You train your replacement making 1/4 your pay, you get laid off, and something is supposed to happen. We'll pretend it helps. 

    But! (And you knew there'd be one, didn't you?)

    Guess where the TPP pulls that money from? MEDICARE.

    And as Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) pointed out (he's in the Progressive Caucus, just like Jared Polis) that's not just a senior issue, that is an everyone issue.

    Bottom line: The mega-corporations that are crafting this horrible trade deal are making children who live in poverty, the disabled and the elderly pay to retrain the men and women whose jobs they will ship to countries that enslave workers and/or pay them deplorable wages.

    And so it's bipartisan. It's a "win-win". And Democrats who care more for the health and welfare of America's corporations that its workers can say they did something which may or may not help if and when you lose your job so our largest and most profitable corporations and get larger and more profitable.  


  3. Chickenheed says:

    Summer training is on for Colorado’s conservatives

    Whether you’re out to save state’s rights, your school board or your submachine gun, there’s a serious slate of right-wing political-leadership intensives coming up this June.

    I'd love to go to one of these just to see what it's like, but I'm sure my constant look of horror and disbelief would out me as an outsider. I'm sad that the following talks are not listed in their descriptons:

    – The Joys of Groupthink

    – How to Cite Opinions as Facts

    – How to Blame Anything on Obama

    – Talk Radio Fearmongering 101

    I could do this all day…

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