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January 22, 2016 06:29 AM UTC

Friday Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

“The more one listens to ordinary conversations the more apparent it becomes that the reasoning faculties of the brain take little part in the direction of the vocal organs.”

–Edgar Rice Burroughs


41 thoughts on “Friday Open Thread

    1. Environmental Terrorism inflicted on a city by its Republican overlords all in the name of Austerity. And this after neglecting the infrastructure so the 1% wouldn't have to pay taxes. 

      Bravo, Republicans!

  1. The new Bernie Sanders ad features the beautiful Simon and Garfunkel song about America.

    That's the song they play when you are walking out of Coors Field after the Rockies have lost the game.

    Just sayin.

      1. Said it before and will say it again. Bernie Sanders 2016 = George McGovern 1972. Bernie is not a Democrat, he’s a socialist. For an example as to how socialism can screw life up, look no further than Venezuela.

        1. Yes, because Bernie is proposing that government be structured in exactly the way that Hugo Chavez did and not at all the way that it's been arranged across Western European countries.

          For an example as to how capitalism can screw up life, look no further than, well, Colorado's retired mines, Detroit, the defense industry, political contributions,…

            1. No.  That's part of it.  Another part is that you think it's reasonable to judge a political philosophy by its worst outcomes.  I'm simply pointing out the fallacy of that.  Also, the pitfalls of capitalism are entirely the reason for the development of socialism.

              Bernie Sanders is hardly a radical.  I have what most Americans would consider much more radical ideas than Bernie does, and I'm neither interested in destroying capitalism, nor am I supportive of many of the policies enacted in Venezuela or the authoritarianism and hypernationalism that socialist rhetoric was used to mask there.  The Daily Kos had a pretty good article talking about what Bernie's socialism is and isn't.


        2. That's a ridiculous comparison CHB. People are pretty notoriusly happy in socialist Denmark, a country with a history of democratic institutions far more similar to ours than anything that's ever existed in Venezuela, for God's sake. And Denmark is just one of many socialist northern European countries with solid democratic institutions providing an excellent standard of living, health and education for its people who rank pretty high on happiness compared to our population. 

          I may not think Bernie and his policies have a chance of winning the day here in the immediate future with the present political landscape but any comparison between what he is promoting and Venefrickenzuela is just pain silly and beneath you. 

          1. Scandinavian countries are not socialist. I would call them more center-left in historic orientation, but not so much now. Yes, the standards of living are high, in these rather homogeneous countries, and so are the taxes. Worth noting is that Sweden had a center-right government from 2010-14. About half of the representatives in Denmark's parliament are center-right. Denmark is now closing its borders in terms of taking in Middle Eastern migrants. So much for socialism. 43% of seats in Norway's parliament are held by center-right parties. 

            Comparison between Bernie and Venezuela? You mean you’re not a fan of the Bolivarian revolution? I visited Venezuela in the mid 1990s. Nice country, but typical 3rd world. Worse now due to socialism.

            As for what Bernie is promoting, I hear confiscatory taxation ("if you like your money, you can't keep it because it has to be redistributed"). I hear a free ride in terms of college tuition. Who's going to pay for that? How will he pay for health care; the so-called single payer? Government always knows best in Bernie's world. Bottom line is that the Republican leaning super PACS will have an advertising field day if Bernie is the nominee. 

            Hate to say it but since neither John Kasich nor Chris Christie have much chance of securing the GOP nomination, the next best choice is Hilary. Of course, unless there are those amongst us on this site who really do want a President Trump or a President Cruz…………

            1. I am loath to interject here, since I, like Peggy Noonan, (makes my skin kind of crawl to say that) think handicapping this election is a good way to lose your money. No one knows where this goes, and any predictions from any quarter are weightless…


              please continue, one and all, to speculate about Bernie and socialism and Hillary and capitalism and domestic policy and foreign policy and what not… That's kinda what we do here… 

              But in this case, I think we are in uncharted territory. I told a group this morning I think Hillarys' biggest problem is trust…I heard that suggested by two young women in New Hampshire, tonight on the NBC news. They said (paraphrasing), "well, we feel like she just says what she thinks we want to hear, but Bernie seems more honest."

              I will not vote for someone I don't trust..ever. Unless I trust the opponent even less.

               I don't think I am alone in that..


            2. Oh come on CHB.  You're really going to argue that the Scandanavian countries are less socialist than what Bernie Sanders envisions?  Now you really are just being silly.

              Pretty sure you'd consider the taxes in those Scandanavian countries pretty confiscatory but the citizens get so much in return they're pretty darned happy with their system.  You can afford higher taxes when those taxes provide you with healthcare, education and a comfortable retirement at no additional cost. What Americans have to pay to have those things probably strikes them as pretty condfiscatory. But I forgot. Now those countries are fine with you compared to pretty much the same general ideas, but less extensive, coming from Bernie.

              Bernie apparently has you quite unhinged. While you usually make perfect sense to me in expressing yourself even where I disagree with you, as with the nature of fossil fuel economies, these last posts are fast approaching word salad. What you call socialism in Bernie isn't in Scandanavia because they might want to limit middle eastern immigration (and by the way left and right have entirely different meanings in the European and Canadian context than here. Even rightie Goddess thatcher was a staundh supporter of national health) and Bernie is somehow going to turn the US into Venezuela and all of it somehow has to do with one's position on the Bolivian revolution. Ummmm…. OK.

              Get a grip.

        3. My first stab at politics was canvassing and poll watching for McGovern in 1972.  I remember clearly the stab in the heart when those results came in.  I see my friends and relatives who are staunch Bernie supporters and I see myself 44 years ago.  I don't want to go through that again, and that's a big reason why I'm supporting Hillary.

          CHB, if you're calling McGovern a socialist, you're wrong.  He wasn't, not by any stretch of the imagination.  If you're saying Bernie 2016 will crash and burn like McGovern, I agree 100%.

          1. Oh, me too. One of the finest people to ever seek office in America. First to be Swiftboated. Election night I had to take a gun away from college guidance counselor to prevent her suicide.

            Inauguration Day '72, hung Nixon in effigy from a fountain in KC. No internet in '72, attracted thousands with just word of mouth.

            Being a radical in the 70s was both fun and disappointing

  2. Faint Praise for Bernie Sanders From Bill Clinton: ‘His Slogans Are Easier to Say’

    Without mentioning Mr. Sanders by name, Mr. Clinton dismissed one of his main campaign pledges, to provide free college tuition for all. “She does not agree that tuition should be free for everybody,” he said of his wife. “People like me and Hillary can afford to go to college. The government can’t help everyone. We should have money to put into jobs and infrastructure.”

    1. Whether you support free tuition for all or with qualifiers electing Bernie isn't going to make it happen, just like it's not going to make Medicare for all happen. Having the gift of Bernie making so much noise and forcing more liberal views unto center stage and gaining ground for them does bring the day when those sorts of things can happen closer. Thank you, Bernie. But today is not that day. The Clintons are at least right about that. It would be really nice if we had a viable choice somewhere between the Clintons (so sick of them both I could scream) and Bernie. But we don't.

        1. Doesn't that simply mean people that can afford to send their kids to college don't need, thus shouldn't get, a free ride?

          That portion of the taxpayer's money would be better spent on jobs and infrastructure.

          At some point, we'll need means testing at the upper end for social security and medicare benefits unless we fix their funding too.  The cap on social security taxes makes no sense to me and removing that would go a very long way towards the solvency of the social security trust fund.

            1. Maybe he meant people of his present level of means. In any case Bill is pretty much known for saying stupid stuff about his wife's opponents. See 2008 and stupid stuff about Obama. They both have a very nasty vindictive streak when it comes to their real and perceived enemies.

          1. As for means testing, Bernie's plan offers free tuition at public schools, but other costs are means tested.  Financial supports for the lowest income folks and cheaper student loans for those more able to pay.  Also, I expect folks like the Clintons will generally continue to pay, as Chelsea went to Stanford, Columbia, and Oxford, which wouldn't be covered under this plan (except some interest savings if she has loans).

            1. All good points.  But Hillary's plan to make college more affordable and accessible covers much of the same ground, and has the added bonus of actually, maybe, possibly getting passed into law.

              Mrs. Clinton would pay for the plan by capping the value of itemized deductions that wealthy families can take on their tax returns. The tax and spending elements of her proposal would need support from Congress — a tall order, since it is now run by Republicans — while the plan’s goals would depend on support from state governors and legislators, more and more of whom have been Republicans recently.

              But some education analysts said they believed her debt relief ideas would have a chance in a Republican-led House and Senate because anxieties about high tuition cross party lines.

              “There is a lot of bipartisan interest in issues of college affordability, and bipartisan support for Pell Grants, student loans and other federal programs,” said Robert Shireman, who advised President Obama and President Bill Clinton on education issues, and who offered input on the plan to the Clinton campaign. “The compact proposed by Hillary Clinton is a strong starting point for a discussion that zeros in on the issues that are in the public mind and have been raised by leaders in both parties: accountability, outcomes, college costs, and manageable loan repayment.”


              As for support for private colleges, I'm sure Republicans would get on board with that with taxpayer-funded vouchers as long as they qualified as bonafide religious schools.frown

      1. I'm with you, B.C. I don't really think Bernie has much of a chance, but if he drags Hillary leftward from her center-right positions, he'll have done us all a huge favor. On the other hand, it looks like Cruz and Trump are duking it out for the R nomination. That is such an odious choice that I think Bernie could beat either of them.And I'm still pulling for a Cabinet post for him. Labor or HHS would suit him. 

    1. The Clintons have and will fight dirty. Neither of them is exactly known for personal integrity in that regard. Remember HRC's nasty 3 AM ad disparaging Obama as potential Commander in Chief as a desperate ploy at a time when her chances of beating him were already pretty much none so the ads just handed Rs ammo? One is tempted to think she knew at the time she was going to lose and put out that ad out of spite to hurt her party's by then next door to inevitable candidate, perhaps in hopes of a GOP win that might give her another chance without waiting 8 years.

      This is a pretty bare knuckle political power couple. Have always thought Obama made her SOS in accordance with the old proverb about keeping your friends close and your enemies closer.

      1. Can't stand Bristol Palin – but a kid or two out of wedlock does not make her a "trailer slut". A self-righteous, judgmental, hypocritical deluded shill for Mama Grizz, maybe.


        1. And speaking of the Last Frontier, it was hit last night with a 7.1 magnitude earthquake. I imagine Caribou Barbie will place the blame for that on…..drum roll, please…..Obama.

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