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Member since: Fri Jul 4, 2008, 01:39 PM
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False Equivalency Software for the Lazy Pundit on Sale Now!

Do you make your living on television news as a political expert? Do you have your own Sunday morning talk show, or maybe you’re Chuck Todd or David Gregory? Or maybe you just like to sound smart and don’t have the time read anything? Well, have we got a product for you! Instaquivalency!

With Instaquivalency! one can feed any wrong-doing by any Republican into our patented software, and in less time than it takes to say, “War on Christmas” a story about a Democrat is on your monitor. But what if it’s an issue like the Iraq War, or climate change that needs equating? No problem for Instaquivalency! Just give us a headline, and we’ll give you a chance to sound balanced!

That’s right! No more scouring the news reports, or risking picking the incorrect story for your next appearance on CNN. Who hasn’t wondered, “Um, is using a teleprompter as bad as lying about the Iraq War, or should I stick the old standard, ‘But Clinton…?’” And if you’re in a hurry – there’s an app for that! You can find an equivalent story on the cab ride to the studio!

Mountains of evidence, all the science and your own observations about global warming got you down? No worries mate! You have Instaquivalency! Now you can say, “No it’s not,” with the best of them! “The last the 333 months were all warmer than the average 20th century temperature.” Retort: “Glenn Beck and Exxon said it’s not.” Problem solved!

And for you non-pundits out there who love a good talking point, but like to sound smarter than average, Instaquivalency! is perfect for you too. Usually when you say, ‘They’re all crooks,’ or ‘Both sides do it,’ there is nowhere to go. But not now! Imagine you’re at a party and someone says, “The Texas Republicans have come out publically against critical thinking.” You can retort, “Both sides do it,” while you punch in ‘Texas Republicans Thinking’ into the Instaquivalency! app, and out pops, ‘John Wayne Gacy was a Democrat.’ Is it relevant? No, but that’s not the point. The words ‘Republican’ and ‘Democrat’ are equivalent, the rest is filler! Just like on TV!

Honest, Adult Debate. Gun Violence, Goddamnit!

There is no easy answer and there is no one ‘answer.’ Like every complicated problem, more than one factor went into causing it, so more than one solution will be needed to solve it. Every tragedy involving guns that happens in the US is greeted immediately with a chorus of, “It’s too soon to talk about it.” Followed by, “You have an agenda… and it’s too soon,” then a few weeks later…it’s too late – on to the next tragedy. And nothing changes. Tragedy, after tragedy, after tragedy. The truth is we needed to have this national dialogue years ago. This time we can’t let it be put off. But we should have a few ground rules.

No fanatics, liars or simpletons should be allowed in the discussion. And they certainly shouldn’t be allowed to run it. Fanatics cannot accept a fact that doesn’t fit their worldview, and simpletons can’t understand them. Liars are just, well, liars. This has to happen with serious adults that can act as least as mature as a seven-year-old child told there is no Santa Clause.

One cannot solve a real world problem with partial or fantasy remedies. Fanatics get irate when anything contradicting their pet beliefs are challenged in any way. They yell, scream, insult, attack with ad hominems and demand that their issue be off the table. It’s sacrosanct. So important information needed to solve a problem is left out of the discussion. Hence, the problem can’t be solved. Guns are off the table when talking about gun violence? Really? It has NOTHING to do with it?

Simpletons also need to be ignored from now on. When one’s answer to a mass shooting in a crowded theater, is to have everybody armed, you’re not thinking things through. Grow the hell up! You’re not Rambo, John Wayne or Dirty Harry. Professional soldiers kill people on their own side in every war. Trained police sometimes end up killing more innocent people than the criminals they were trying to stop during a shootout. And these are professionals who do this for a living and have trained together. But if forty wannabe Rambos who have never met each other, never mind trained together, stood up in that theater in Aurora, Colorado and started shooting…well, everything would have worked out great!

There is some crossover between simpletons and liars in some examples, but at the very least, these types of arguments hold in common one major theme – they’re insulting. “You can kill someone with a pencil, too.” Or “Lots of things can kill people, a knife, or whatever.” Why should logical adults have to explain to supposed adults the differences between a pencil and a automatic weapon? People who make that, and similar arguments can only drag the conversation down to ridiculous, childish and time wasting levels. They should be allowed back into the conversation when they have learned to think and can bring something useful to the table if we are ever to have any hope of solving this.

Don’t like this and think it’s too hard on some? Anger you, or hurt your feelings? Tough shit. Because this will keep happening if your feelings keep taking precedence over other’s lives. Innocent children dying are a tragedy that hopefully will never happen again. There are no guaranties, but doing nothing is the worst possible course of action. (Or inaction, as the case may be.)

I don’t know what the answers are, but I do know we need to talk about all the factors like adults do when they want to solve a problem. All aspects should be discussed, honestly. Health care, mental health clinics, training, cultural awareness, education, and even gun control. Everyone that is not completely crazy believes in some form of gun control. No one wants the criminally insane to have access to Stinger missiles. So different people draw lines in different places. Why can’t we talk about where that line should be drawn, like adults?

Fox News to Use Fewer Talking Points.

In an effort to uncomplicate issues for their viewers, Fox News has decided to cut the number of usable talking points in half. “There has been some confusion as to what this change actually means,” said Fox News Chairman, Roger Ailes. “We’re not making the talking points themselves less complicated; that would be impossible. We’re just going to use fewer of them so people will be able to keep them straight.”

“We’ve studied this problem at length,” Rupert Murdoch added in a heavy Australian accent. “When we have every money-hungry talking head out there trying to make a name for themselves - it gets a little confusing to some…Too much to remember. So, we’ve asked Sean Hannity to give a class to all the part-time talkers. You know, kindda whittle down the works, if you will.”

“If I may, Rupert,” Sean Hannity said in a low voice waiting for assent from Murdoch. When Sean got his nod, he faced the reporters from Murdoch’s many tabloids. “You see, we’re broadcasting at a third grade level here at Fox, but many of our viewers have a second grade intellect. They get confused and start mixing up the talking points at the water cooler. ‘Rape babies and trade is socialism.’ ‘Unions cause tax cuts.’ ‘Gay marriage is a threat to all death taxes.’” Sean paused for a moment, shaking his head. “Without meaning to, they’ve weakened their own arguments.”

“If I may,” Steve Doocy said, holding up four fingers and wearing a big grin. “We’ll only use five talking points in any given week! ‘Tax cuts create jobs…and I can’t remember the other two….”

“That’s okay, Steve,” Sean Hannity said, breaking a short silence. “You’ll have a prompter. The other four are ‘Unions out-lived their usefulness,’ ‘We’re a Christian nation,’ ‘Obama is a socialist,’ and ‘Global warming is a hoax.’”

“Now you folks know why we have Sean runnin’ the class,” said Murdoch with a smile. “He may not understand the issues, but he can recite talking points with the best of ‘em.”

“Don’t forget,” added Ailes. “’The War on Christmas’ always takes precedence in December. You can’t very well call yourself a news organization without spending a month or so making people irate about the correct way to wish others, ‘greetings.’ It’s that type of hard hitting journalism that keeps us number one!”

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