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Gender: Male
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 10,236

Journal Archives

Snowden set back WikiLeaks

Suppose you are entrusted with highly sensitive data. You've taken an oath and signed contracts saying you won't divulge it. Maybe if you divulge it, it will get someone killed. Whoever gave you your job or worked with you or recommended you will probably have their career ruined. Legally, you can't divulge the information or a jury of your fellow citizens will smilingly send you off to infiltrate prison.

What do you do? You just know you've gotta divulge. You feel it in your big heart. You think it in your big brain. Your inner Einstein tells you how right you are, and your inner Galahad says you are pure as the driven snow. Where do you take your info, oh radiant being? Do you take it to WikiLeaks?

Sure you do. You give it right to Julian Assange. Because that worked out so well for Bradley Manning.

Nope. You do it the Snowden way. You find an unscrupulous quasi-journalist with sales talent, drop your record, and skeeeeedaddle.

WikiLeaks is toast thanks to Snowden.

Snowden set back young IT people.

Another disastrous Snowden tragedy is his affect on the careers of young people in Information Technology. It's going to be harder for them to get higher responsibility/confidentiality jobs. A whole lot of IT jobs are high-confidentiality jobs, and Snowden is going to be a major cautionary tale for human resources folks. They will probably start looking for longer track records and kicking tires harder to weed out flakes like Snowden.

Snowden's no hero folks. Breathe deeply. Think about it.

Snowden set back civil liberties badly.

He's a grotesque misfire. Anyone backing him is being foolish. Maybe the government shouldn't be doing something or maybe it should. But the last thing civil liberties backers needed was a guy like Snowden, the weakest possible vessel for the message.

His exaggerations and his flight to Hong Kong turn him into poison. Maybe if he comes back to the United States to actually make his case and accept whatever happens to him, then you can call him courageous. Foolish, crazy, yes. But he would then be courageous. I don't know which book has heroes in it who run away to save their own skins. Not mine.

Yup but it hooked a few fish so they'll do it again.

Glenn Greenwald, star reporter, uncovers proof that water is wet. And the MSM knows good sucker bait when it sees it. The news cycle needs eyeballs, the more credulous the better. This got a bunch for a short time.

Persuading Mr. Hyde on Medicaid Expansion

Rick Perry is turning down billions in Medicaid Expansion money to score Republican political points. And once again, our Dem and Progressive advocates miss half of the argument. We keep giving the goody-goody, Dr. Jekyll arguments for everything, and we forget to target Mr. Hyde.

You can't say to the largely "conservative" (so they like to think of themselves) people of Texas that they should expand Medicaid to help poor kids in their state. That is exactly the opposite of what they really want to do deep down. The Republican sentiment is to let those poor kids go without care completely. Maybe if a few of them die from medical neglect in Texas their parents will move to some other state or "back to Mexico" or whatever. Kids dying on the sidewalk would be "sad" of course, but maybe it is the only way those people can be dealt with...

If, unlike the majority of Texans, you want to help poor kids, you can't do it by trying to guilt Republicans. Telling a Republican they are heartless only makes them feel better about themselves. Even Rick Perry knows that. No, to help those poor kids and their poor parents, you have to talk to Mr. Hyde in Mr. Hyde's language.

"Mr. Hyde, Texas should accept billions in Medicaid Expansion money. The downside of helping the poor and sick, is far outweighed by the upside, thousands of good-paying healthcare jobs for Texans. We aren't going to let those poor people die anyway (more's the pity), so we might as well take the jobs. Otherwise our federal tax dollars are going to end up going to create jobs in San Francisco. The poor, worthless people will stay (they always do), and a bunch of good doctor and nurse types will leave and go to San Fracisco to chase the jobs we handed over to the Commie states."

"Mr. Hyde, Rick Perry just thinks you are really stupid. He'll let you fork over tax dollars to the leftists, because he thinks he can play on your mean, nasty, stupid side. But Mr. Hyde, we all know you are really smart. You are way too smart to let Rick Perry take billions away from you just so he can get up there and make a fool of himself again in the next presidential primary. Take the money and move on. And let's dump Rick Perry. Sure he's a good guy. But he doesn't have the brains of a George W. Bush. You need a Tea Party version of George W. Bush."

"Mr. Old Hyde, I can't believe that Rick Perry is turning down Medicare (sic) Expansion money. Texas retirees earned that money. Why is Rick Perry turning it down? And your glasses are probably on the nightstand or by the TV."

Why we lost. Why we didn't.

We fixated on Newtown, and that was never a good idea. Too many eggs in one basket. We should have included the safety and effectiveness of our police force, outgunned by unknown, unchecked people wielding assault weapons. We should have brought in the Texas prosecutors case, for example.

But we even though we fixated on Newtown, we failed to marshal even that argument well. You can't make the argument "Newtown, ergo background checks." That is feeble and a non sequitur on its face. The Nancy Lanzas of this world pass background checks.

You can make the argument "Newtown, ergo magazine capacity limits," and that argument wasn't made enough. It would have been more focused. We buried the lede. We took the polls that said what was most popular (background checks) and tried to duct tape it to a Newtown foundation.

Most importantly, we forgot the subtext, to make every NRA member and every assault weapon owner a suspected Nancy Lanza. The villain was left out of the story. If we don't want more Newtowns, one of the best ways is to have no more Nancy Lanzas. To have no more Nancy Lanzas, her foolishness and nuttiness need to be straightforwardly and loudly condemned. Then anyone who has any passing resemblance to her would be shaking in their boots and throwing their assault weapon in the river.

It's not over. People no longer look at these assault weapon, special magazine funny boys the way they used to. Society is starting to hate them. A very good sign. That's a win for sanity.

And it's not even over for gun control laws. People just need to sense their own danger and the ugly, barbarian nature of a gun-infested society. It's coming. There is a difference between a duck hunter or someone who wants to protect their home and an anonymous, Nancy Lanza-esque, assault weapon fondler. We'll sort it out.

To all the Republicans who get laid off in the Sequester

How long are you going to keep doing this to yourself, Bunky? Mitt Romney gets to keep his special deductions. You are out of a job. And you voted for it.

Bunky, I'm very sorry. Republicans aren't fighting for democracy, freedom or virtue. That's just what they put on their T-shirts. Watch a few of them on TV now that you have lost your job. Watch Fox News carefully. You will see it.

Let this be a tipping point.

Why aren't the Republicans trying to repeal the Sequester?

The House Republicans cry about the Sequester and try to blame Obama for it, but they haven't tried to repeal it. That tells you everything you need to know. Republicans know a repeal would be signed by Obama. They think the American people are so stupid that they will blame Obama for something that he would gladly sign out of law.

If the Republicans don't try to repeal, we will know for sure that the Sequester is the Republicans' fault. We will know for sure that they really wanted it to happen.

Winning over Republicans with the Seven Deadly Sins

An easy trick to remember when trying to persuade Republicans (who may also hide under the name "conservatives" of anything is to pepper your argument with appeals to the Seven Deadly Sins: wrath, greed, laziness, pride, lust, gluttony, and envy. Try it. It's fun.

Here is an example. Let's say you want to turn a Republican against mountaintop mining. And let's say you personally care about natural beauty, animal and fish habitat, and the health of residents who live along the rivers and streams near the mountaintops.

If you try to talk about those things directly with the Republican, you will fail. They have a completely different view of the mountaintops, fish, and people. The mountaintops have money under them. There are fish everywhere, so who cares about the fish near the mountaintops. And the people are people they don't know. Case closed. Blow up the mountain.

So instead, base your argument on sin.

(Greed and Envy) If we blow up that mountaintop, it will hurt our tourism. Other places nearby will get more of our rightful tourism dollars than they already are. (Envy) And you can just bet that all the money will end up in the pockets of bunch of fat cats in their mansions.

(Pride) We are better than that. We don't need that pittance of mining business like that other place or state we always tell jokes about. (Greed, Sloth/Laziness, and Anger) That mining company thinks it can take our resources and leave a mess for us to clean up later with our tax money. They've got another think coming.

(Lust) Besides, that area is a great place for parking. The view sets the perfect mood. (Gluttony) And I don't care if there are other places to park. You can't have too many.

Does your neighbor having an AR-15 in his house make you feel safer?

I don't mind people having pistols and hunting rifles in my neighborhood. But if one of these assault weapon weirdos lived in my neighborhood, I would feel a lot less safe. And I would also be angry as hell.

Their kind is simply not needed. I don't want my property values dropping because I have some half-wack numbskull in my neighborhood who "wants" an AR-15. I would be petitioning my property owner's association to get the guy's gun banned in the bylaws.

I feel sorry for people who have to live near these types, and especially sorry for their friends and family. These types think they set themselves apart in some way by having a special weapon. I mean, it's so impressive that they know about muzzle velocities and ammo calibers. My goodness, they even know the names of the parts of the gun!

I think the good news is that most reasonable folks are starting to get the proper perspective on the assault weapons weirdos in their midst. It won't be long before AR-15-type owners will have to leave that phase of their life behind or find themselves shunned and unemployable.
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