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Member since: Sun Sep 16, 2012, 12:48 PM
Number of posts: 7,279

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The revival of the Death Penalty

For the record:
I have been opposed to the death penalty because innocent people have been executed. If, as most conservatives and liberals would say, life is precious. If you are a Christian, it is covered by "Thou Shalt Not Kill"


Rolling Stone via MSN

The Trump Administration’s Revival of Federal Executions Is a Cynical Election-Year Move

July 26, 2019

Andrew Cohen

The only surprising part of the Trump administration’s choice to restart federal executions is that it took the president this long to make it. As a matter of pure politics, Donald Trump would probably like nothing more than to have a national debate over the next year about what sort of justice ought to be meted out to convicted murderers. Such a dialogue during the primary season will likely rile his base, track his “American carnage” motif, and distract reporters away from coverage of the administration’s malfeasance and the president’s own legal troubles.

The Trump administration quietly until now has been increasing the rate of federal capital cases, a policy entirely consistent both with Trump’s own odious views of the death penalty and the views of both of the attorneys general who have served in this administration. Like Trump, Jeff Sessions pushed to begin killing federal death row inmates again last year and famously suggested that capital punishment was applied too restrictively; that drug dealers, too, should be executed.

William Barr, the current attorney general, now simply is implementing what Sessions started. The feds say they will not fight in court, as so many capital states have, over the efficacy of a three-drug lethal injection cocktail or other deadly brew. Instead, following the lead of capital punishment states like Missouri, the Bureau of Prisons will try to kill condemned prisoners using a single drug: pentobarbital. And so the feds announced Thursday that five federal inmates at the death chamber in Terre Haute, Indiana, already have been issued their death warrants.

It doesn’t matter to Trump, or to Barr, that violent crime rates are down in America and at generational lows in many jurisdictions. It doesn’t matter that, as more states abolish the death penalty, executions are down across the country and that the imposition of death sentences in murder cases also is waning for good and practical reasons. It does not matter to this administration that conservative opposition to capital punishment has grown significantly over the past decade or so. Or that the American people, slowly but surely, are turning away from it as well, with less than half of Americans saying that the death penalty is applied fairly……
Entire article available at link
Posted by saidsimplesimon | Fri Jul 26, 2019, 01:11 PM (4 replies)

Change the narrative

Why do we allow others to make this election about immigration? If we had a functioning White House and patriotic, Republican Congress members, they would be focused on the best interests of all Americans. Republicans, please stop playing a zero sum game. It's unAmerican and ugly to encourage a civil war.
Posted by saidsimplesimon | Fri Jul 19, 2019, 06:36 PM (5 replies)

It's Friday, gearing done with a song

Enjoy the weekend, it's ok to point out that I'm political even during my trips into music appreciation.

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Posted by saidsimplesimon | Fri Jul 19, 2019, 05:33 PM (0 replies)

Was Shakespeare a Woman?


Updated at 6:33 p.m. ET on June 7, 2019.

Was Shakespeare a Woman?

The authorship controversy has yet to surface a compelling alternative to the man buried in Stratford. Perhaps that’s because, until recently, no one was looking in the right place. The case for Emilia Bassano.

On a spring night in 2018, I stood on a Manhattan sidewalk with friends, reading Shakespeare aloud. We were in line to see an adaptation of Macbeth and had decided to pass the time refreshing our memories of the play’s best lines. I pulled up Lady Macbeth’s soliloquy on my iPhone. “Come, you spirits / That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here,” I read, thrilled once again by the incantatory power of the verse. I remembered where I was when I first heard those lines: in my 10th-grade English class, startled out of my adolescent stupor by this woman rebelling magnificently and malevolently against her submissive status. “Make thick my blood, / Stop up th’ access and passage to remorse.” Six months into the #MeToo movement, her fury and frustration felt newly resonant.
Pulled back into plays I’d studied in college and graduate school, I found myself mesmerized by Lady Macbeth and her sisters in the Shakespeare canon. Beatrice, in Much Ado About Nothing, raging at the limitations of her sex (“O God, that I were a man! I would eat his heart in the marketplace”). Rosalind, in As You Like It, affecting the swagger of masculine confidence to escape those limitations (“We’ll have a swashing and a martial outside, / As many other mannish cowards have / That do outface it with their semblances”). Isabella, in Measure for Measure, fearing no one will believe her word against Angelo’s, rapist though he is (“To whom should I complain? Did I tell this, / Who would believe me?”). Kate, in The Taming of the Shrew, refusing to be silenced by her husband (“My tongue will tell the anger of my heart, / Or else my heart concealing it will break”). Emilia, in one of her last speeches in Othello before Iago kills her, arguing for women’s equality (“Let husbands know / Their wives have sense like them”).

I was reminded of all the remarkable female friendships, too: Beatrice and Hero’s allegiance; Emilia’s devotion to her mistress, Desdemona; Paulina’s brave loyalty to Hermione in The Winter’s Tale; and plenty more. (“Let’s consult together against this greasy knight,” resolve the merry wives of Windsor, revenging themselves on Falstaff.) These intimate female alliances are fresh inventions—they don’t exist in the literary sources from which many of the plays are drawn. And when the plays lean on historical sources (Plutarch, for instance), they feminize them, portraying legendary male figures through the eyes of mothers, wives, and lovers. “Why was Shakespeare able to see the woman’s position, write entirely as if he were a woman, in a way that none of the other playwrights of the age were able to?” In her book about the plays’ female characters, Tina Packer, the founding artistic director of Shakespeare & Company, asked the question very much on my mind.
Posted by saidsimplesimon | Wed Jul 10, 2019, 04:16 PM (23 replies)

Mr. Mueller, betrayal

I remember your days in previous Republican administrations. Many like me were willing to give you the benefit of doubt. I no longer consider you an honorable public servant.

Rot in hell, you have betrayed your obligation to the Rule of Law and our fragile republic. You are just another partisan hack. May history record the betrayal of your oath and disgusting behavior while in public office.
Posted by saidsimplesimon | Mon Jul 8, 2019, 07:04 PM (17 replies)

Russia on the Ritz

Vlad is a fan of western music. He plays the piano and our resident.

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Posted by saidsimplesimon | Mon Jul 8, 2019, 11:31 AM (1 replies)
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