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Am I too giddy?

Justin Webb | 22:15 UK time, Thursday, 21 August 2008

In case anyone is interested He Has Decided.

I will not stray again Into the Evangelical Bear Pit except to note that some of the Biblical scholarship on offer was above my pay grade...

As ever, on the subject of health I am taken to task by Americans who see their system as flawed to the point of immorality - that is a wholly defensible view but if you turn up bleeding at a major hospital in the US they will not turn you away and my sole point was that for large number of Britland folks (thanks to whoever it was who suggested that moniker) that is a surprise, and that, my friends, is ignorance.

In response to A Woman Scorned, David_Cunard writes "no Hillary, no victory". We will hold him to this...

Finally, TimothyR444 complains of the narcissism of the Big Text Message. And MikeIL accuses me of giddiness when really my giddiness is faux giddiness. I am not in the least bit giddy.

Hang on I think that's a text coming in...

Comments

  • 1. At 10:50pm on 21 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    This is like being a little child on Christmas
    Eve, waiting for the packages to arrive...

    Of course, there were those of us who tried
    to find out ahead of time where Santa hid
    his packages...

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  • 2. At 10:52pm on 21 Aug 2008, Mark wrote:

    Obama is managing the tension beautifully .,. which means the choice is not going to be obvious: to turn around and say 'It's X' of the media favourites would lead to 'oh yeah, OK'. On the other hand you are probably right about the announcement being tomorrow.

    PS. Of course, I won't go back there, but the compulsory book every evangelical should be required to read is Martin West's 'East Face of Helicon' (Oxford, 1997). West is a fellow of All Souls and a specialist on the influence of Near Eastern cultures on archaic Greece ... along the way he has a few things to say about oral traditions in the Old Testament, and he knows 17 ancient near eastern languages (like Uguritic, Hittite, Samaritan, etc ...). I'll put it this way: the evangelicals would probably think it heresy ... it is one of the smartest books I've ever read.

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  • 3. At 11:03pm on 21 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    Justin, McCain made a major gaffe today about not knowing how many houses he owns, and yet there is hardly any coverage of it.

    Obama is often often labelled an elitist but how much more elitist can you get than owning 7 homes, let alone not remembering what the exact figure is!

    As for the Big Text Message, it may be a stunt, but it's an effective one.

    I don't think it will be Joe "I'm not the guy" Biden. I wouldn't rule out Hillary at this late stage either.

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  • 4. At 11:06pm on 21 Aug 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Re "faux giddiness." A fair number of posters don't seem to know when you're kidding. I assume it's pretty nearly always, otherwise I couldn't see any point to it.

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  • 5. At 11:16pm on 21 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    On the issue of health care I am going to cite a problem that is affecting my family at the moment. One of my six grandchildren was born over 3 months premature in a hospital that did not have respirators for newborns. He was transported to a wonderful facility near Baltimore where they, literally, saved his life. Unfortunately, he suffered a massive brain hemorragae and in addition to being paralyzed from the waist down and barely moving one arm he has cerebral palsy. My son's insurance only covered catastrophic illnesses, with large deductibles and a cap. A charity called Shriners and family members paid most of the bill for his care, which amounted to $120,000. Today, I learned that my grandson, who suffers from depression, is suicidal. The psychiatrist prescribed a medication that costs $6,000 a year. When my son, an outside salesman, called the insurance company they told him that they would not pay for the prescription that my grandson needs.
    The problem with our medical system has nothing to do with quality, but affordability. If you are wealthy, our system is wonderful, but if you don't have the financial resources to pay high insurance premiums or pay cash you might as well let nature take its course.
    Incredibly, most Americans object to a system that would make health care - including medication - available to all because we are convinced that we have the best system in the world and that embracing a "socialist" concept will doom our country to substandard care!

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  • 6. At 11:17pm on 21 Aug 2008, neil_a2 wrote:

    Who has decided?

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  • 7. At 11:24pm on 21 Aug 2008, vagueofgodalming wrote:

    Zeno said it best.

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  • 8. At 11:27pm on 21 Aug 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Neil_a2 (#6), "who"? Did you just return from Mars?

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  • 9. At 11:32pm on 21 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 3

    "Obama is often labelled an elitist but how much more elitist can you get than owning 7 homes, let alone not remembering what the exact figure is!"

    Facts have never been an impediment to outlandish charges. Not surprisingly, many believe the garbage they are being fed and in this instance are truly convinced that a middle class young man who has risen to the top because of his intelligence and hard work is, indeed, an elitist; while the view the son and grandson of Admirals, married to a multi-millionaire, as an every day Joe!
    Give credit where credit is due, the GOP propaganda machine is second to none.


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  • 10. At 11:51pm on 21 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #5, Dominick, I hear this kind of story every
    day.

    To me, the key issue is the cost of health care.
    Without lower costs, no kind of insurance
    system, public or private, can possibly work.

    Why is it that health care costs have risen
    at 3 times the rate of inflation for the last
    20 years or so? Could it be that we are being
    ripped off on a massive scale?

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  • 11. At 11:55pm on 21 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Stirring the tension

    "Obama planned to appear with his pick Saturday at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Ill., where he launched his presidential campaign in February 2007. Obama then planned to travel to the battlegrounds of Wisconsin, Iowa, Missouri and Montana before arriving in Denver to accept his party's nomination Thursday.

    One person who had been vetted for the position told The Associated Press there had been no contact from Obama or his campaign about the decision.

    The Illinois senator was widely thought to be considering Sens. Joe Biden of Delaware and Evan Bayh of Indiana along with Govs. Tim Kaine of Virginia and Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas. None of them gave anything away _ at least not in words."
    Masterful!

    ;-)
    ed

    Meanwhile
    "Facing a Democratic Party positively giddy over his recent admission that he didn't know how many houses he owned, John McCain quickly returned to a political trump card: his POW experience.

    Speaking to the Washington Post, aide Brian Rogers, in full damage-control mode, acknowledged that his boss had "some investment properties and stuff," but added: "This is a guy who lived in one house for five and a half years -- in prison.""




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  • 12. At 11:57pm on 21 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    Dominick, sadly you are correct. Someone like Obama is quite easy to caricature as an elitist because he's so different and many white blue collars cannot relate to his background (or his name). This was not the case with Bill Clinton.

    McCain's military background seems to make him immune to attacks on his personal integrity.

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  • 13. At 00:07am on 22 Aug 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    Just this afternoon, around 3:30 p.m on the West Coast, my local news radio mentioned that Hillary was back in the running (as VP) since Mr Obama's numbers have become diminished; a check of other news sites shows that The Day is supposed to be Saturday, not Friday. I believe he would be better advised to wait until the Nomination is officially delivered and do as many of his predecessors have done, make the announcement after considering the polls and the mood of the Convention.

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  • 14. At 00:16am on 22 Aug 2008, KathyinTN wrote:

    The folks in Britland might also not be aware of the US government's healthcare program for families and certain others who fall below the poverty line, Medicaid. There is also Medicare for anyone over 65 or with certain disabilities. Now, does the US healthcare system need help? Absolutely! Do we just toss out needy people and say too bad? No.

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  • 15. At 00:17am on 22 Aug 2008, justcorbly wrote:

    The Obama text message has nothing to do with narcissism. It's a way of rewarding people who signed up and gave the campaign a cellphone number. Why shouldn't they be the first to know?

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  • 16. At 00:23am on 22 Aug 2008, mary gravitt wrote:

    My vote is against Right-wing religionist. If they want to stay home good. For the past 7.5 years their vote have been making America Hell for US and the rest of the world.

    If the Right-wing is the only one making it to heaven, why bother the rest of US. Take up all the space WE may have used.

    Listen to the people Obama, leave religion in the Church and bring peace to the White House.

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  • 17. At 00:41am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    Justin, What is wrong with being giddy? (You have made me self-conscious.)

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  • 18. At 00:51am on 22 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 10

    In my opinion, the abuses that American consumers suffer at the hands of corporate America are facilitated by government officials - from both parties - who do everything they can to help their "clients".
    Clearly, the voters that pay their salaries and put them in office are just an inconvenient after thought to them.
    Policies such as de-regulation, advanced using the preposterous premise that corporations can police themselves, tax breaks to corporation that are making record profits and are not even asking for additional help, subsidies, and other examples of government largesse and irresponsibility are contributing to the socio-economic problems we are experiencing.
    Sadly, it is becoming increasingly apparent that nothing is going to change any time soon. In fact, I would not be a bit surprised if McCain wins in November and the Republican fiscal, economic, and social policies of the past 7.5 years remain in place for four more years.
    If that happens, our country may very well be beyond repair regardless of what we try to do after the end of McCain's term.

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  • 19. At 01:22am on 22 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    come on Justin. most people in the UK have a far closer idea of the truth than the americans have about the killer hospitals in the UK. Or not. but here is a bland link [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator] these issues come into effect and mean americans will get treatment. mophine to die with less pain because they never saw a doctor. Thats about it for health care. If you do get in early enough then you face those crippling bills that the guy who's story I linked in an earlier post. Are you trying to convince everyone the NHS is not worth it or are you trying to convince america that there is no need to change.

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  • 20. At 01:31am on 22 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Giddy is not quite the word, but close. About time Obama took a swipe at McCain and the many houses presented a perfect opportunity. On our public radio, they noted McCain's campaign did not want to talk about it, but obviously Obama's campaign does. Time to get fired up and carry it through to November.

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  • 21. At 01:34am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    15, Just.

    I think everybody has signed up to be on Obama's list, not the least of whom are the media and the republicans.

    So I think the real point was, not to flatter his supporters with being the first to know, which was a bonus, but to compile a list of mobile phone numbers.

    Clever devil! Now let see if he is clever enough to get elected.

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  • 22. At 01:45am on 22 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Has anyone else noticed a change in Hillary's demeanor the last couple of days? She suddenly looks very relaxed, chirpy, and full of enthusiasm. In fact, I noticed the same transformation in Bill's demeanor when I was watching CNN a few minutes ago. He was beaming with happiness!
    Does this mean they have accepted the reality of Hillary's defeat, or could it be something else?
    Thank God the Veep climax is coming to an end!

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  • 23. At 01:48am on 22 Aug 2008, proles wrote:

    Let's be perfectly clear about this: "if you turn up bleeding at a major hospital" (perish the thought, no you probably will not be turned away. But that and a public health threat disease are about the only times you will not be turned away for purposes of public order. If however you turn up for any other reasons, i.e. a checkup that can often prevent future problems , a slowly developing problem, chronic infirmities, eye care, dental care, etc., etc. - anything short of an urgent primary emergency then YES you will be turned away. Is that a health system worthy of the name? The last time there was even a token effort to establish a single payer universal health care system in the US during Clinton's first term in the White House, the committee was chaired by his ambitious wife who made such a hash of the whole half-heated effort that it was completely abandonded. The major parties are more interested in pleasing insurance companies, pharmceutical companies and other major corporate interests in this enormously profitable business than in taking care of the proles. The vast majority of Americans agree with Europeans that America's social system in this and other ways is brutal. The main reason that new proposals are being floated now is that many manufacturers are unable to keep up with these costs for their workers and want the government to assume more of the burden. So there are new conflicting corporate interests that will steer any new plans that are crafted by the political parties depending on which corporate lobbies exert the most influence - or make the biggest donations (bribes) to them. That's how it works in always BRUTAL America!

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  • 24. At 01:51am on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #22, you mean Hillary and Bill are a couple
    again? I thought that would never happen!

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  • 25. At 01:57am on 22 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Re: #22. Perhaps it's the coffee.
    What ho old bean
    Starbucks beware.

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  • 26. At 02:01am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    22, Dominick.

    Maybe she's pregnant.

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  • 27. At 03:53am on 22 Aug 2008, OldSouth wrote:

    Not at all too giddy--you've the unenviable task of looking at this political scene, and attempting to make sense of it...

    And, flawed as it is, the US health care system delivers more quality care to more people any other system in place, and produces a great deal of the innovation and research needed for the future. It looks a bit like a huge patchwork quilt, but that's what markets look like when they are functioning.

    It drives the liberals, who believe in 'one size fits all, and only the literati like us can run it' absolutely over the edge--precisely because it works as well as it does, and they don't control it!

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  • 28. At 04:04am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    24, Guns.

    I don't think they were ever on the outs, but the publicity obviously bothered her. They always seemed to have an odd marriage and one reporter said that right in the midst of the Lewinsky fiasco, they were holding hands, laughing and joking in high good humor. This was not in front of a TV camera. Maybe it is more of a question of soul mates.

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  • 29. At 04:04am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    24, Guns.

    And maybe the rumors are right.

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  • 30. At 04:27am on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Well, allmy, perhaps they enjoy politics
    and strategic thinking so much together that
    this forms the basis of their relationship.

    Of course, we could take a tip from Swaziland,
    where Western mores are apparently not
    in vogue.

    Of course, they don't take half of what you
    own in Swaziland, unlike California, otherwise
    the king would be in bad shape.

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  • 31. At 04:43am on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    allmy, the possibility of Clinton as VP gives
    rise to the notion of Bill "giving" her to Obama
    as a political "bride."

    What a spectacle this would be! This kind
    of crazy thing couldn't possibly happen anywhere
    else - only here.

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  • 32. At 05:01am on 22 Aug 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    bland as white bread, chewy like a week old tortilla.

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  • 33. At 05:28am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    30, 31, Guns.

    We have progressed from the giddy to the creepy.

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  • 34. At 05:29am on 22 Aug 2008, erankew wrote:

    Oh dear... I urge the democrats to unite. During such a crucial election, is it not a little silly to let the over-enthusiasm of two presidential campaigns cloud the judgement of your vote. It would be a betrayal of the most fundermental convictions and values that an individual democrat should hold dearest, to not vote for your party. It is 'your' party because you decide so, if however you suddenly realised that life begins at conception, or that the war in iraq should continue or that the current economic direction will succeed, then by all means vote republican. But if you're just 'bitter' about the primaries, and you vote against your own fundermental beliefs, out of spite even... then good luck to you, and god bless the United States of America.

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  • 35. At 05:54am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    34, erankew.

    I was not aware that my judgment was clouded. After all, I have all my marbles. And I can't think of anything I am bitter about. In fact, I feel giddy.

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  • 36. At 05:58am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    34, erankew.

    Am I too giddy?

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  • 37. At 06:30am on 22 Aug 2008, nigel777 wrote:

    For the benefit of Dominick Vila:

    Elitist o Americans does not mean having more money than someone. Elitist means "I know better than you do about how you should be living your life".

    McCain: wealthy, yes? Elitist, NO CHANCE.

    Obama: wealthy, yes (unless you think $75mm is chickenfeed) elitist NO QUESTION.

    The difference is stark: McCain thinks the greatest freedom we have as citizens is to live our lives as we choose (for better or for worse). Obama thinks citizens should run their lives as he dictates.

    If you want historical precedents for that, I suggest you look up Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao. When you do, the giant rallies in Berlin, Portland and Denver will all make sense.

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  • 38. At 06:59am on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    37, Nigel.

    Come on, fella, lighten up.

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  • 39. At 08:37am on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #38, allmy, or, as we say in these parts,
    "giddy-up"

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  • 40. At 09:08am on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    27. OldSouth wrote:

    "the US health care system delivers more quality care to more people any other system in place"

    I have experience with systems that deliver better care to all: France and Germany. (Before the greedy got political control, Canada also had a better system).

    "It drives the liberals, who believe in 'one size fits all, and only the literati like us can run it' .." (This encapsulates the propaganda line of the small-time exploiters.)

    _________________________________

    The foregoing exemplfy the assertions of the exploiter, trying to rally the rednecks against the threat of a fair deal.

    Despite the propaganda and control of the media and the schools- the American people know that they have been badly had

    Many millions- perhaps more than forty million, cannot receive adequate medical care because they cannot afford it.

    A few are becoming very, very rich and a great many are seeing their lives sink toward the poverty level

    Good factory jobs are disappearing.

    The situation looks like 1929.

    Will people still respond to the manipulation or will they realize that the Republican government is corrupt and a failure, and the line promulgated by exploiters a lie?

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  • 41. At 10:12am on 22 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhuMgUkiVOY

    How many houses?!!

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  • 42. At 11:01am on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #40, Xie_Ming:

    "Despite the propaganda and control of the media and the schools- the American people know that they have been badly had"

    Which has been shown to be biased toward the liberal, progressive point of view. I believe the problems of the American health care system are due to government ham-handedness in understanding the impact of policy. These policies may be enacted within entitlement programs, but they have an impact on hospitals, doctors, clinics, and pharma.

    "Many millions- perhaps more than forty million, cannot receive adequate medical care because they cannot afford it."

    This is unsubstantiated misinformation.

    According to Julia Seymour of the Business and Media Institute, "Each of these people and media outlets incorrectly claimed the number of uninsured to be 40 to 50 million Americans. The actual total is open to debate. But there are millions of people who should be excluded from that tally, including: those who aren't American citizens, people who can afford their own insurance, and people who already qualify for government coverage but haven't signed up."

    "A few are becoming very, very rich and a great many are seeing their lives sink toward the poverty level. "

    Again, misleading. Being poor in America means having a mere 140 sq. meters for your house, a dishwasher, one car, only one or two TV's, cable, subsidized food, subsidized housing, subsidized health care, and a stipend for each child as well. But, the loaded word of 'Poverty' to most implies an inability to provide a family with nutritious food, clothing, and reasonable shelter.

    "Good factory jobs are disappearing."

    This is true, but unrelated to your preceding inaccuracies. Factories are migrating to nations with less regulation, and lower cost of labor. AND, factories have seen as much labor reductions in the use of automation, and other productivity enhancements. For example, China is also losing good factory jobs. Yet, for China and the US GDP continues to increase.

    "The situation looks like 1929."

    Fear mongering? This economic situation looks nothing like 1929. It looks like 1992, where the US emerged from a correctional recession. There is a risk of stagflation as well, with the "new price" of oil not yet being fully factored into the costs of goods and services. I would love to see you produce a rational comparison of the economics of 2008, and that of 1929.

    "Will people still respond to the manipulation or will they realize that the Republican government is corrupt and a failure, and the line promulgated by exploiters a lie?"

    Not from your misleading, inaccurate proselytizing.

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  • 43. At 11:29am on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #23, proles wrote:

    "Let's be perfectly clear about this: "if you turn up bleeding at a major hospital" (perish the thought, no you probably will not be turned away. But that and a public health threat disease are about the only times you will not be turned away for purposes of public order. "

    Under “anti-dumping” laws, all hospitals with emergency rooms must treat people who have emergency medical conditions, regardless of their ability to pay.

    "If however you turn up for any other reasons, i.e. a checkup that can often prevent future problems , a slowly developing problem, chronic infirmities, eye care, dental care, etc., etc. - anything short of an urgent primary emergency then YES you will be turned away. Is that a health system worthy of the name? "

    Check out http://www.minuteclinic.com/en/USA/
    The prices seem affordable to me, even without insurance.

    "The last time there was even a token effort to establish a single payer universal health care system in the US during Clinton's first term in the White House, the committee was chaired by his ambitious wife who made such a hash of the whole half-heated effort that it was completely abandonded."

    Many people in America are resistant to Socialism. In fact, there is a growing segment of disaffected limited government, socially liberal, free market conservatives who have yet to organize as an effective (small L) libertarian third party. This group would be more interested in the likes of Ron Paul. This would not have been the case 10 to 15 years ago.

    "The major parties are more interested in pleasing insurance companies, pharmceutical companies and other major corporate interests in this enormously profitable business than in taking care of the proles."

    Obviously, they give more in campaign donations than you do. Outlaw PAC's, and limit(eliminate) corporate gifts.

    "That's how it works in always BRUTAL America! "

    Is it brutal to pay for a good or service you receive? Is it equitable and fair to take money from those who are well off to pay for the goods and services of those who are less well off? This is the political question. Obviously there will be some who are chronically infirm who will need to rely on charity (provided by governments or others) to exist. But, the debate here is on the merits of a socialist model for government. Which of life's requirements (food, shelter, clothing, health care, education) should be provided for you by the government?

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  • 44. At 11:30am on 22 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    #37 Nigel 777 wrote:
    For the benefit of Dominick Vila:

    Elitist o Americans does not mean having more money than someone. Elitist means "I know better than you do about how you should be living your life".

    McCain: wealthy, yes? Elitist, NO CHANCE.

    Obama: wealthy, yes (unless you think $75mm is chickenfeed) elitist NO QUESTION.

    The difference is stark: McCain thinks the greatest freedom we have as citizens is to live our lives as we choose (for better or for worse). Obama thinks citizens should run their lives as he dictates.

    If you want historical precedents for that, I suggest you look up Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao. When you do, the giant rallies in Berlin, Portland and Denver will all make sense.


    ........
    The only Hitler comparison I can make here is the one about the big lie.

    Actually I think the definition of elitist as used by the American right is "Anyone who thinks carefully about major issues, does not take a populist stance and distances himself from the NRA and the ahem "moral majority".

    Obama did not come from a particularly privileged background and speaks intelligently about the issues. McCain comes from a long line of Admirals, who themselves were descended from southern plantation owners. You can't get much more elitist than that.

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  • 45. At 11:34am on 22 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    Further McCain family history

    http://archive.salon.com/politics2000/feature/2000/02/15/mccain/print.html

    Arizona Sen. John McCain is learning a lot about his family history in the course of this presidential campaign.

    Because of his bestselling family memoir, "Faith of My Fathers," which details the lives and military careers of his father, Adm. John McCain II, and grandfather, Adm. John "Slew" McCain, veterans flock to his campaign appearances and book signings. They trade stories about his heroic forebears and share anecdotes.

    The family's storied military history stretches back to Carroll County, Miss., where McCain's great-great grandfather William Alexander McCain owned a plantation, and later died during the Civil War as a soldier for the Mississippi cavalry.

    But what McCain didn't know about his family until Tuesday was that William Alexander McCain had owned 52 slaves. The senator seemed surprised after Salon reporters showed him documents gathered from Carroll County Courthouse, the Carrollton Merrill Museum, the Mississippi State Archives and the Greenwood, Miss., Public Library.


    This documentation includes slave schedules from Sept. 8, 1860, which list as the slave owner, "W.A. McCain." The schedules list the McCain family's slaves in the customary manner of the day -- including their age, gender and "color," labelling each either "black" or "mulatto." The slaves ranged in age from 6 months to 60 years.

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  • 46. At 11:39am on 22 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    #37, Nigel


    You're kidding me, right? McCain is pro-choice, and Obama dictates? I hope you were joking.


    McCain, in my eyes, is just another religious creep trying to impose his personal beliefs on the rest of his country. I can live with the fact that he thinks life starts "at conception", but personally I disagree, and I base that on this wonderful thing called medical science.

    Obama, on the other hand, when speaking on the matter of abortion, said that these things weren't really his business, and that it should be up to the woman- not the government- to make a decision, and they "do not do so lightly".

    Browse around a few recent BBC articles and you're guaranteed to find the exact quotes.

    I believe in freedom of religion for everyone- not just for the people who supported the current government. McCain is pro-religion... pro his OWN religion, and to hell with anyone who doesn't follow.

    Making it hard or impossible for women to decide on the matter of abortion based on religious principles these women may not even share IS dictating your lifestyle.

    Obama would leave women free to choose and to act as they see fit (for better, or worse), McCain would tell them they'll just have to live with their babies.


    As a woman, I can say with certainty I would never abort a pregnancy on a whim. In fact, if I ever were to face such a decision (for whatever reason), it would be something that would distress me immensely regardless of the outcome. I may decide to keep the child, but I could also decide to abort it... ultimately, the choice is mine. My body, my womb, and McCain has nothing to do with that- heck, I wouldn't want to even think of McCain having to do *anything* at all with my womb.

    I'm sorry, but I find that basing policies like these on religion is patronising, and it discriminates those who do not share these beliefs. Whichever way you look at it, that's dictating lifestyle, and Obama is much more reluctant about these things than McCain.

    So now that we've looked at your claim in terms of abortion... wanna have a look at the candidates' views on something like gay marriage? Euthanasia, maybe?


    McCain - eltist? According to your definition, YES.
    Obama - elitist? According to your definition, NO.

    Obama: 1 - McCain: 0

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  • 47. At 11:47am on 22 Aug 2008, RFK2008 wrote:

    I refrained from commenting a few days ago when Justin wrote about a heavily Clinton focused convention. Mainly because of the petty comments like 'she is crazy', that were being made. What rubbish. Obama is a clever man and he knows how important it is that Hillary's supporters are appeased. He has months, maybe years, to be the sole focus. Why not let Hillary have the spotlight at the convention. That way he gets to look calm, NOT arrogant, supportive and graceful in victory. It makes me like him even more.

    However, I notice David Cunard mentions the relevance of the day. Why announce early unlike your predecessors? Well how about if you are announcing early because there will be nobody else to accept the nomination once you do? I'll be explicit here, Hillary only suspended her campaign, so technically is not history until he accepts the nomination. Maybe it could be a dream ticket after all... All conjecture, but what fun the wit is.

    I'm sure he quite likes the idea of Hillary's full 18 million votes.

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  • 48. At 11:47am on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #40

    Will the same old lies work again?

    Will the impoverished of Arkansas believe that things are getting better?

    Do Americans really think that the Health system is serving the population?

    Will they still be convinced Cheny and Bush have not lined their pockets and are working for the interests of the American people?

    Do they still believe the lies about WMDs in Iraq?

    The importance of the analogy is that, in 1929, the falsity became painfully obvious.

    Has it reached that point yet in the USA?

    As #27 illustrates, there is an obvious attempt to play to the redneck emotions and deceive with worn cliches.

    Will it work again?

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  • 49. At 11:51am on 22 Aug 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #3

    a gaffe by mcCain no doubt. But the response was good and will defuse the situation except nf democratic surrogates like MSNBC, NBC and NYT.

    They pointed out the Rezko connection to Obama

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  • 50. At 12:00pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Well! In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that my great grandfather also owned slaves, as did his wife and my other great grandparents, so far as I know. I suspect that my great great grandfather was actually involved in the trade. This brings me no pride, but neither do I feel personally responsible beyond the apparently felt need to acknowledge the facts.

    Although I share this familial guilt with Senator McCain, it makes me no less repelled at the prospect that this shlimiel might be elected to lead the land of Jefferson (who died owning 300 slaves), Washington (who freed his slaves in his will), Franklin, Adams, Madison, Monroe, and my ancestor George Mason, who owned slaves, but is credited with writing the Virginia Declaration of Rights, and thus inspiring the first ten amendments....

    To all my virtual siblings, I hope you have prospered down the generations. We are in truth one large family.

    Salaam/Shalom/Shanthi/Dorood/Peace
    ed

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  • 51. At 12:04pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #46

    The essential thing about is that he grew up in a military environment (as much as it possible under such circumstances to grow up).

    The implication is: one does NOT think, one reacts.

    The second characteristic, apparently continuing from his escapades climbing over the wall at Annapolis, is OPPORTUNISM.

    He made speeches against torture and then signed a bill continuing the practice- it was the opportune thing to do.

    He made speeches about religion and then went to Falwell's "university" to make speeches in support of fundamentalism-
    is there a real person here, or is it again the opportunist?

    The third aspect comes from those who know him: he is said to be a hothead and one whom they would not want to see near a "war" button.

    Will American voters analyze these points or will they absorb catch phrases from spin
    specialists?

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  • 52. At 12:04pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #45. , The Notting Hill Hammer:

    Mr. McCain's ancestry linked to slavery is about as irrelevant as Mr. Obama's father being Islamic. Most white people who have an ancestor who lived in the south before the American Civil War, are related to slave owners.

    I've even heard a rumor that McCain and Obama share ancestry to Scottish king William the Lion (William I).

    What does this add to proper discernment of the views of two men seeking the Presidency?

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  • 53. At 12:21pm on 22 Aug 2008, politicsisfun wrote:

    He said he was looking for not just a partner but a sparring partner. ‘I want somebody who’s independent, somebody who can push against my preconceived notions and challenge me so we have got a robust debate in the White House.’

    This from the New York Times so it has to be Hillary

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  • 54. At 12:29pm on 22 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    #51, Xie Ming

    The whole thing about reacting and not thinking is one more reason why I'd never vote for someone like MrMcCain- I was never a big fan of the whole "shoot first, ask questions after" kind of attitude.

    I'm not too familiar with McCain as a person, but if he's really a hothead, and really has that attitude, then one wonders what sensible citizen of the USA could possibly vote a man into the Oval Office who won't think things through once he's there?

    Personally, I'd prefer a president who thinks before he makes important decisions, but hey, that's just me.


    Then again, I don't think McCain is fit to be candidate in the first place... surely the Republicans could do better? Maybe the Democrats should ask Teddy Roosevelt to be their candidate to make the race more fair... they're more equal in age, and frankly, I think the one is as likely to live all 4 years in office as the other.

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  • 55. At 12:32pm on 22 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    That's what I get for not having coffee today... Kennedy, not Roosevelt. Obviously.

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  • 56. At 12:36pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #48, Xie_Ming:

    "Will the same old lies work again?" Maybe. It would be helpful if you added the detail of "which" lies we are talking about. Remember the old joke about knowing when a politician was lying? Their lips are moving.

    "Will the impoverished of Arkansas believe that things are getting better?"

    Did you just pick a state where you think people are starving in America? Arkansas is suffering because of the policies of the government of Arkansas. According to ArkansasOnline, "Arkansas GDP was up 2.3 percent in 2006, compared with national growth of 3.1 percent. For the past 10 years, Arkansas GDP growth has averaged 2.3 percent, said John Shelnutt, the administrator for economic analysis and tax research for the state’s Department of Finance and Administration. For the past four years, even in the middle of what was an economic boom nationally, Arkansas GDP growth has hit the brakes. It grew by 4.8 percent in 2004, 2.3 percent in 2005, 2.3 percent in 2006 and 1.5 percent last year. Arkansas isn't "set up to take full advantage of the boom times when they come," said Kathy Deck, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. "The reason, primarily, is because of the educational attainment of our labor force and the historical industry mix we've ended up with," Deck said. "It doesn’t mean we don't prosper during the good times but we maybe don't prosper quite as much and maybe we are a little bit quicker to weaken."

    "Do Americans really think that the Health system is serving the population?" Overwhelmingly No. But, the reasons are not easily revealed. You need to look at the complex business relationships of Insurance, and Medical Providers, with massive interference by government, both in massive entitlement programs, but also in regulations. If it was government that made the mess, why do you think more government will resolve it?

    "Will they still be convinced Cheny and Bush have not lined their pockets and are working for the interests of the American people? Do they still believe the lies about WMDs in Iraq?"

    I'm not sure why you are beating that drum here. I will take it as a symptom of BDS.

    "The importance of the analogy is that, in 1929, the falsity became painfully obvious." I will take that as a "No, I can't make a reasonable comparison".

    "Has it reached that point yet in the USA?"

    What is "it" and what "point" are we seeking to attain? Did you do that thing with the stuff? Vagueness and obscurity are not helpful.

    "As #27 illustrates, there is an obvious attempt to play to the redneck emotions and deceive with worn cliches."

    I'm not sure what prompted the ad-hominem "red neck" monicker other than his handle being "OldSouth" -- I also see no cliches in #27. What are the "Red Neck" emotions?

    "Will it work again?"

    Again, "it" is a little vague. If you are asking if pandering to special interests and promising the use of vast tax payer funded programs which drive America further into debt will succor voters into electing another incompetent American president and congress, then probably yes, it will work again.

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  • 57. At 12:36pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    "it has to be Hillary"
    God help us!

    ;-(
    ed

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  • 58. At 12:47pm on 22 Aug 2008, Mark wrote:

    53. politicsisfun

    Yes, that description is important, but the criteria is not exclusive to Hillary ... why not Bill? or Kerry? or Warren Buffet? or more conventionally, Joe Biden ... or, for all we know, Caroline Kennedy ...

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  • 59. At 12:54pm on 22 Aug 2008, neil_a2 wrote:

    To #8 Gary - Mars

    With all due respect, my world does not revolve around Obama, sensationalism, or hype. If that places me on "Mars", I am OK with that.

    My world is more pragmatic. I make decisions that meet my parameters, and go with the decision. I respect the same in others.

    I believe that firmly places me on Earth.

    (I am withholding my sarcastic retort.)

    The "how many houses" was a poison question. Any answer had consequences. He had good reason to pause.

    If you asked McCain, "how much debt does he carry from lifestyle he could not afford?", you'd tee off those who ran up their credit cards or overbought real estate. (No offense intended for those who had their employment disrupted.)

    If you asked him, "How much school tax did he pay on his properties without having any kids in school?", you'd get a different picture.

    I would rather ask him, "How many people his investments employ?".

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  • 60. At 1:03pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    "I would rather ask him, "How many people his investments employ?"."
    Plenty, if he's got shares in Halliburton or Lockheed...

    Salaam, etc.
    ed

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  • 61. At 1:07pm on 22 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 37

    "McCain: wealthy, yes? Elitist, NO CHANCE.

    Obama: wealthy, yes (unless you think $75mm is chickenfeed) elitist NO QUESTION"

    I am well aware of the difference between elite and elitist, but I still maintain that Obama is neither a member of the American elite nor an elitist. He is a product of the middle class and represents the best that America has to offer. He seized the opportunities that are available to all of us, worked hard, and has risen to prominence based on his personal attributes and determination. I consider his positions on social issues populist not elitist. Unfortunately, until the last few days, his discourse was too high level, giving an opportunity to the GOP to distort it.
    Conversely, McCain was born rich, managed to graduate from the Naval Academy because of his father's influence, and has demonstrated time and again that he is an opportunist. I admire his patriotism and his moderate record in Congress, but I find his flip flops on religion, the environment, torture and other issues very troubling.
    On the issue of McCain's "real estate knowledge" I would say the problem is not how wealthy he is, but the fact that his response reinforces the perception that he is becoming senile.

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  • 62. At 1:08pm on 22 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Re:#53. Hillary is not a partner or team player and her message is not one of change. Obama also said he needs someone he can get along with, and the Clintons are like having two 800lb gorillas in the room.

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  • 63. At 1:19pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #60, Ed Iglehart:

    "Plenty, if he's got shares in Halliburton or Lockheed..."

    Nope.

    Cindy wears the portfolio's in their family, and they are heavily invested in beer. Yup, she is chairwoman of Hensley, the nation's third-largest distributor of Anheuser-Busch. She also sits on the board of CARE. http://www.care.org

    Most of her wealth was received the old fashioned way, she inherited it. Her father James Hensley left her, and her children each a trust fund and was very philanthropic in the Arizona area. He started the Hensley Family Foundation.

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  • 64. At 1:30pm on 22 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Re:#63. And dear old Dad left sweet FA to her older half sisters

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  • 65. At 1:36pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #62, Candace9839:

    "...the Clintons are like having two 800lb gorillas in the room."

    I might add "dysfunctional" as well. I often believe the Clinton career plan was not "public service", but rather "feed at the public trough".

    But, what's new? Cronyism, pork barrel projects, graft, influence peddling, illegal contributions, voting irregularities, election tampering, profiteering, etc. Then go back and watch that old Jimmy Stewart movie, Mr. Smith goes to Washington. Is it better or worse than at that time?

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  • 66. At 1:36pm on 22 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    52 RealFrigid wrote.

    In reply to #45. , The Notting Hill Hammer:

    Mr. McCain's ancestry linked to slavery is about as irrelevant as Mr. Obama's father being Islamic. Most white people who have an ancestor who lived in the south before the American Civil War, are related to slave owners.

    I've even heard a rumor that McCain and Obama share ancestry to Scottish king William the Lion (William I).

    What does this add to proper discernment of the views of two men seeking the Presidency?

    ......

    I was descending into the gutter. Where Neil777 took the debate. To suggest that Obama is not just an elitist but also a totalitarian, is the kind of slur the right throw around pretty freely in the USA. I was merely pointing that McCain is the candidate from a privileged background. The fact that he now positions himself as a "regular kind of guy" shows that his presentation is less honest than that of Obama who answers questions and speaks in the manner of the intellectual that he actually is. I think it is Obama's cerebral presentation that lays him open to the charge of elitism by the right. In the USA, as in the UK, intellectuals are treated with suspicion and derision. We are amongst the few nations where people can be described as "too clever".

    Neil777's position was pretty disingenous anyway. McCain has aligned himself with the authoritarian right on some issues. These people believe in a very strange version of freedom. Freedom to do what they sat.

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  • 67. At 1:40pm on 22 Aug 2008, Mark wrote:

    Well, 8.30ET has come and gone, so he is certainly not looking to hit the first news of the day. Perhaps he will send the message as he speaks at Springfield tomorrow.

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  • 68. At 1:43pm on 22 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    In response to #63 RealFrigid

    Something your forgot to mention about the philanthropic Mr Hensley.

    From the PhoenixNewtimes:

    A federal jury in U.S. District Court of Arizona in March 1948 convicted James Hensley on seven counts of filing false liquor records in addition to the conspiracy charge. Eugene was convicted on 23 counts of filing false statements and the conspiracy count. Eugene was sentenced to one year in prison, and James to six months. Neither brother testified during the trial, relying instead on their lawyers, who included Louis B. Whitney, a prominent attorney who served as mayor of Phoenix from 1923 through 1925.

    After a two-week stint in the Maricopa County jail, the men were released on bond on May 17, 1948, pending an appeal to the U.S. 9th Circuit. The appeals court affirmed the conviction on February 8, 1949.

    Two weeks later, a judge sentenced Eugene to one year in a federal prison camp near Tucson, but suspended James' sentence, placing him on probation instead. Both men were fined $2,000. United Sales and United Distributors were also convicted and fined $2,000.

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  • 69. At 1:49pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #66, The Notting Hill Hammer:

    "Neil777's position was pretty disingenuous anyway. McCain has aligned himself with the authoritarian right on some issues. These people believe in a very strange version of freedom. Freedom to do what they say."

    I agree. Anytime you use the force of law, you deny a freedom. Granted, some laws are needed to provide a civil society, but the restriction of freedom through bigger government is what both Obama and McCain are about. The difference is which way would you like your freedoms restricted.

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  • 70. At 1:58pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #68, The Notting Hill Hammer:

    Again, what James Hensley did in 1948 is not relevant. On the positive side, he flew B-17's out of Britland during WWII.

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  • 71. At 2:17pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    I found an account of CHARLES D. CROOK CREW - 360th BS, which included James Hensley.

    http://www.303rdbg.com/360crook.html

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  • 72. At 2:39pm on 22 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    RealFrigid wrote:


    Again, what James Hensley did in 1948 is not relevant. On the positive side, he flew B-17's out of Britland during WWII.


    "Neil777's position was pretty disingenuous anyway. McCain has aligned himself with the authoritarian right on some issues. These people believe in a very strange version of freedom. Freedom to do what they say."

    I agree. Anytime you use the force of law, you deny a freedom. Granted, some laws are needed to provide a civil society, but the restriction of freedom through bigger government is what both Obama and McCain are about. The difference is which way would you like your freedoms restricted.
    .......

    His criminal record is as relevant as the reference to his philanthropy or indeed his war record. McCain makes great play of his military past and that of his ancestors, forgetting the slave owning confederate past. His father in law is remembered as philanthropic business man rather than as a crook. These details become relevant when politicians use partial family history to support their political ambitions. Use the whole story or none of it.

    On the second point, I have some sympathy for libertarianism. I tend towards social liberatarianism and economic regulated capitalism. Obama's domestic policies don't concern me hugely now I live in the UK, the promise of a less aggressive USA does.

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  • 73. At 2:43pm on 22 Aug 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    Jay Dubya,

    Melba Toast. Melba Toast and Milk, warm.

    Free Healthcare in America sucks... I have a hernia, and I'm having to save 20% of my unemployment checks and hopefully get a job before it runs out so that I can get the fifteen hundred dollar deductuctable saved up for my blue cross blue shield 600$ a month family insurance policy to pay for a two thousand dollar operation.

    Serious, nothings free

    Melba Toast and Milk,... warm

    more

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  • 74. At 3:05pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Cool one,
    Another plane shot down leading to a stretch as POW...some family!
    ;-)
    ed

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  • 75. At 3:39pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    We now have the advent of a paid political poster.

    Perhaps it attests to the impact of the otherwise sincere and thoughtful individuals who post here!

    The long-term effect will be beneficial, for reasons that the corrupt could not comprehend.

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  • 76. At 3:40pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    The one hint that made me curious was Senator Obama's statement that his running mate would bring economic expersise.

    Suggestions?

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  • 77. At 4:11pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    An American Prayer

    "Earlier this year when I was recording "American Prayer," a song I originally co-wrote with Bono, the phrase, "When you get to the top of the mountain, remember me" seemed to take on a whole new resonance, given the inspirational candidacy of Barack Obama.

    The song always contained one of my favorite passages from Dr. King, which was hauntingly delivered the night before he was assassinated. King says: "I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land!"
    An Anthem For Change
    Nice song!

    ;-)
    ed


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  • 78. At 4:12pm on 22 Aug 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    Real Fridgid,
    Thank so ever much for that link, I got lost there for two hours reading flight journals and such. I hope you don't mind, but I'm posting it again.

    tears for .....

    http://www.303rdbg.com/360crook.html

    Follow the links there for pictures and flight journals from crew and pilot. 'Dang' is all I can say.

    prayer is all offer

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  • 79. At 4:20pm on 22 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    Keep those mobiles ready! He's calling the unlucky candidates now......

    I genuinely have no idea who it will be, but I put a bet on Al Gore a few weeks ago

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  • 80. At 4:36pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Walkabout persons in the street Very amusing.

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 81. At 4:44pm on 22 Aug 2008, MikeIL wrote:

    Justin:

    Sarcasm does not translate well in text.

    Giddy is as giddy writes.

    Why is it when the head of Canada's Medical Association attacks the heathcare system there and accuses it of killing people, it is ignored in the US and elsewhere?

    http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/fullcomment/archive/2007/10/22/brian-day-s-diagnosis-the-president-of-the-canadian-medical-association-explains-how-to-fix-our-health-care-system.aspx

    On Healthcare -- Yes Justin, and these same people who are shocked to learn that poor Americans are not dying by the truckload outside of US hospitals for lack of ability to pay -- are also normally shocked to hear that Canadians by the thousands have fled across the border to avail themselves of medical services in the US rather than face certain death or unbearable pain the Canadian system would have required them to experience.

    Most people critical of the US system fail to realize it is indeed a mix of public and private. Depending on what study you believe and how you calculate that mix -- in the US, the government picks up somewhere between 50% - 70% of the tab on all healthcare spending in the US.

    I tis also little known there are a myriad of private programs in the US that that help Americans with medical expenses. "Evil" like companies like Walmart have more than 200 generic drugs they provide customers for only $4/month. Most large urban areas usually have public hospitals that offer services at low or no cost. And just like other free public hospitals in socialized medicine countries -- the waiting times can be horendous in these.

    The other "Inconvenient Truth" to the doubters is that the rest of the developed world beneifts greatly from the financial motivation Healthcare companies have to bring new products to market in the US, where they can not only recoup their research investment but also make a profit -- the size of which is dictated by the market (supply/demand) vs. government bean-counters.

    I have a great deal of experience with healthcare companies in Canada, though I am an American. Most Canadians and other socilist medicine proponents would probably be shocked to learn that even in ost rural US towns, Americans are able to get MRIs and other services even for non-emergency cases usually in less than a day and rarely need to drive more than 20 minutes.

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  • 82. At 4:45pm on 22 Aug 2008, magnificentpolarbear wrote:

    Jason

    Are you as giddy as a schoolgirl on the 4th of July?


    (or whatever the line is from whatever musical it came from)

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  • 83. At 4:46pm on 22 Aug 2008, Mark wrote:

    The Independent is reporting that Chet Edwards has been fully reviewed bhy the panel: perhaps Pelosi was floating his name a while ago to test negative reactions ...

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  • 84. At 5:06pm on 22 Aug 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 85. At 5:08pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Another dark horse, and one for Doug.

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 86. At 5:24pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #81

    It is a fact that the Canadian Medical system has slipped badly.

    Also that, for certain operations the Canadian health systems (plural-for each province) pay for operations in the United States.

    The REASON is very simple: conservative leaders decided, for ideological (and perhaps for kickback) reasons

    that the way to force a shift to private insurance systems was to reduce the number of doctors per capita.

    One province built hospitals, but would not hire adequate people for them, etc.

    Thus, what WAS a very good system has degenerated badly because of the accession to power of right wingers.

    The French system works quite well, and doctors still make house calls.

    The German system works well, and is excellent if you have private insurance. However, without the public alternative, the private system would probably be as abused by the insurance companies as it is in the USA.

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  • 87. At 5:27pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    And Hillary was never even vetted!

    Yay!
    ed

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  • 88. At 5:32pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #84 Doug

    Well, you man is talking about an isolationist position, and, as you know, GWB is NOT (unfortunately) an isolationist.

    There is no reason why your man could not come on here and present his points one at a time.

    [When Bolton was in the UN, I would have favored moving the whole operation as fast as possible to Montreal]

    As you well know, the snarls of a fellow in a beer hall may not be very rational, but they tell us that there is a problem that needs to be addressed.

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  • 89. At 5:35pm on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    If it's Hillary I hope he has insurance.

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  • 90. At 5:44pm on 22 Aug 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    I've decided. My last-minute guess is Chet Edwards, Representative from Texas.

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  • 91. At 5:56pm on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Now, I have to toss in my $.02.

    Obama's position in the polls has changed in
    the last 2 weeks. He can't win on the issues,
    because the McCain campaign has apparently
    connected with John Q. Public on a "sound bite"
    level.

    Somehow, McCain has Obama in a box where
    he is now perceived as being a wishy-washy
    liberal, tree-hugging academic.

    So, Obama can't win by picking a running-mate
    to appeal to issue voters. He has to go for
    demographics now, and Hillary is the best
    pick for that.

    Not only that, but Bill is now an asset, as
    opposed to the Ruprecht that he was just
    a few weeks ago, because, after all, those
    pipelines that are under the Bear's paw
    were his idea.

    I'll bet it's Hillary. Biden can't deliver the
    demographics.


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  • 92. At 5:59pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Is this the best you've got, McCain't?

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 93. At 6:02pm on 22 Aug 2008, Canadiancharles wrote:

    Can't believe that little old Canada seems to have upstaged the world on this. According to our CTV news an hour ago, Kaine is the man.
    Not even the American elction coverage page has it yet

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  • 94. At 6:05pm on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    79, Cyril.

    No Gore. He is shopworn.

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  • 95. At 6:09pm on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #92, isn't that sad? But, it seems to be working.

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  • 96. At 6:10pm on 22 Aug 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    Mr Obama's latest statement says he wants "someone who will challenge him" - note, not "a man" - and who else could possibly challenge him more than his (former) opponent?

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  • 97. At 6:23pm on 22 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Justin,

    Just heard you on thr radio. Not bad.
    "formiddable campaigners" indeed.

    Salaam, etc.
    ed

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  • 98. At 6:23pm on 22 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Re: #85 and #87. Chet Edwards (hope they clarify with first name) is definitely 'textable' and would be a nice surprise. I would guess Bill Clinton's secret list of library contributors was the issue behind not being vetted.

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  • 99. At 6:24pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #96

    But where is the "economic expertise"?

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  • 100. At 6:27pm on 22 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 91

    For whatever is worth, I agree with your analysis. In fact, I think the question right now is not so much whether or not Obama wants Hillary as a running mate, but whether Hillary wants to be part of what is starting to look like a sequel to the Dukakis disaster. Obama has to do something fast to connect with mainstream America or it is going to be too late for him to gain momentum.
    Instead of wasting time with evangelicals, who will not vote for him under any circumstances, he needs to focus on the middle class and senior citizens. Judging by the populist message he delivered the last couple of days it is apparent that someone reminded him that he is not addressing academia but running a presidential campaign.

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  • 101. At 6:42pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #84, DougTexan:

    My thought was that it was a convenient tactic to declare, "If you don't believe in what I believe in, you must be brainwashed by the neocon bourgeoisie capitalist imperialist murderous swine dogs, or be a girl scout axe murderer in hiding.

    So which is it Doug?

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  • 102. At 6:43pm on 22 Aug 2008, Scribesolomon wrote:

    The prospective VP for McCain?
    Now that McCain seems to have the edge in the polls, he must be busy with the task of
    choosing the most suitable running mate to
    consolidate his gains and go on to win the race for the Presidency. The VP most probably will be a relatively young Southern Congressman, Senator or Governor who has a good GOP track record and Washington experience and who will complement McCain in such key issues as
    economics. McCain can hardly afford to have
    anyone embroiled in any kind of controversy.

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  • 103. At 6:45pm on 22 Aug 2008, MikeIL wrote:

    to #86 Xie...

    Interesting how in your world the problem is always " Right Wing Conservatives".

    They are also probably responsible for the national tainted blood scandal in Canada that killed and injured thousands of Canadians there right?

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  • 104. At 6:58pm on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #100, Dominick, that's right. Put Obama in a tank
    with his head popping out, and it's all over.

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  • 105. At 6:59pm on 22 Aug 2008, unionjack666 wrote:

    Yawn

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  • 106. At 7:00pm on 22 Aug 2008, unionjack666 wrote:

    yawn

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  • 107. At 7:00pm on 22 Aug 2008, unionjack666 wrote:

    yawn ;)

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  • 108. At 7:33pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #103

    The tainted blood scandal resluted in the dissolution of the Canadian Red Cross
    leadership.

    You bet they were Conservatives!

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  • 109. At 8:07pm on 22 Aug 2008, Hannathema wrote:

    "if you turn up bleeding at a major hospital in the US they will not turn you away and my sole point was that for large number of Britland folk...that is a surprise, and that, my friends, is ignorance."

    I suppose we Americans really do have a reputation for barbarism. This is rather hilarious though.

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  • 110. At 9:23pm on 22 Aug 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    #88Xieming

    Dougtexan's #84 was a joke!

    At least I hope so. I enjoyed it, especially the part about how many sheep bleat for peace but few have any real plans. I love Robin Williams!

    Thanks Dougtexan, I needed to lighten a difficult day.

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  • 111. At 9:30pm on 22 Aug 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#80Edinglehart

    It may have been a 'geezer moment' rather than total unfeeling for the average American.
    That poor man probably couldn't remember where he was at the moment much less what house he is currently inhabiting!

    LOL to you!

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  • 112. At 9:31pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #110

    Let us wait and see!

    I am familar with this mentality, and it sounds familiar.

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  • 113. At 9:34pm on 22 Aug 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    Hannathema. #109

    "I suppose we Americans really do have a reputation for barbarism. This is rather hilarious though."


    Barbarian is not what I think he ment,.. I've been a 'few' bad auto accidents, one bad jodsite accident and had a staph infection from a cut got a home,.. all almost killed me, all was treated prior to signing anything. The staph deal, caused me to go into bankruptsy... that and my sons four wheeler accident.

    Both times, each of us were in the hospital over six days, me two in intensive, him three in intensive. My medical bill topped one hundred fifty thousand dollars, with no insurance.

    I may have lost everything and paid a ten year plus credit hit, but my boy is alive,.. and walking. That said, our system works, you just have to pay.

    Trust me, insurance like my wife and I have cost six bills a month with fifteen hundred deductable. Pshyicals and perscriptions are free, big whoop. Its got a forty dollar co-pay for dr visits.,..simple shots and words.

    But with this, smokers in Texas, one pack a day equal 160 dollars, beers the same or more(more beer=more smokes). The point is single person insurance is only 150-175 per month, more with less deductable, though people would rather smoke than be insured and for that all of us must pay.

    I would love the rich uncle system every abuser wants, but just like free hamburgers, plenty the first day, but shortages every day after, with less and less places to get them as the money dries up. Free burgers come with free cooks, free kitchens, free farmers etcetra etcetra. Intil no-one does nothing cause...why.

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  • 114. At 9:35pm on 22 Aug 2008, heathergreene wrote:

    Justin, I know what you mean about British ignorance re: the US health care system. I worked for 9 years in public (State) hospitals and clinics in the US before moving to England where I work in the NHS now. When I try to tell Brits that Americans do receive free health care in public hospitals they don't believe me. Mind you, I watched Michael Moore's 'Sicko' last night with great enjoyment; I'd forgotten just how wonderful it is to have the NHS. After living in England for 21 years it's easy to become a whinging Brit.

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  • 115. At 9:46pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #114

    What are you saying?

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  • 116. At 9:49pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #113

    I think we can agree that good medical care is available in the USA, but the personal cost is very high.

    It is also available in France and to everyone without personal cost.

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  • 117. At 9:58pm on 22 Aug 2008, OriginalBlackMambo wrote:

    The VP will be Michael Bloomberg

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  • 118. At 10:10pm on 22 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #113, DT, I hear what you say and have had
    similar experiences, but the fact that we pay
    more as a percentage of our gdp for health care,
    and are not receiving corresponding uniformly
    good results is a cause for concern.

    I don't believe in a cradle-to-grave system like
    the Europeans, because I don't want that level
    of intrusion into my life. For example, I don't want
    someone telling me that I can't smoke or drink,
    which is what would happen here if the liberals
    ever got control of it.

    I just think that our system could be a lot more
    efficient, and therefore more accessible to a greater
    percentage of our population. There are a lot
    of "holes" in the system. Walk into one by
    mistake, and you could lose your family, home,
    or both.

    Oh, and BTW, I think our congressmen should
    be deprived of their plan until they solve the problems
    in ours.

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  • 119. At 10:11pm on 22 Aug 2008, mike wrote:

    Justin, is indeed correct that in an emergency free health care is available. But once you gain consciousness-and before, the hospital is looking for your info so you can be billed.
    Knowing people without health insurance in the US, they know to give false names and info so they are never billed. But plenty of people needing emergency treatment are left paying the bills for many years as a result of one trip to the ER.
    ER's in poor areas are an awful sight in the US. Basically, this is where you go if you are poor and need to see a doctor-even if your ailment is minor.
    A couple of weeks ago, I took my daughter to Urgent Care. We suspected a UTI but it was nothing more than a virus. The 15 minutes with a doctor and a urine test resulted in a $1,600 bill, fortunately we have insurance!

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  • 120. At 10:15pm on 22 Aug 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    #113Dougtexan

    Your experiences of health care are not unusual. I could add to them also. We need to REALLY do something here and not just TALK about it. But I do not think that many in politics really listen.

    I will probably not live long enough to see any real change but I have hope for the health care of my grandchildren. Maybe?

    As a nation, we should be ashamed!

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  • 121. At 10:17pm on 22 Aug 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    My 120 was a very negative comment. Sorry, I am finished here.

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  • 122. At 10:50pm on 22 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #120

    It is something about which the majority should be very negative and vote accordingly.

    The AMA used to be the second most powerful lobby in Washington.

    Perhaps the HMOs are in the game now.

    A real physician will do his job as long as he can feed his family, because his identity in life comes from helping patients.

    The intrusion of the $ is an artifact of what is wrong with America.

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  • 123. At 11:20pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #116, Xie_Ming:

    #113

    I think we can agree that good medical care is available in the USA, but the personal cost is very high.

    It is also available in France and to everyone without personal cost.

    ---

    What is the comparative tax burden, and comparative level of service in France? It appears that even with national insurance, 85% to 95% of people in France purchase supplemental health care insurance to close the gap on what the government does not pay. According to a recent BusinessWeek article, "So far France has been able to hold down the burden on patients through a combination of price controls and increased government spending, but the latter effort has led to higher taxes for both employers and workers. In 1990, 7% of health-care expenditures were financed out of general revenue taxes, and the rest came from mandatory payroll taxes. By 2003, the general revenue figure had grown to 40%, and it's still not enough. The French national insurance system has been running constant deficits since 1985 and has ballooned to $13.5 billion."

    Funny, you don't count "taxes" as a personal cost.

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  • 124. At 11:23pm on 22 Aug 2008, KMM1984 wrote:

    Breaking news - According to the Drudge Report Barack Obama's VP is Evan Bayh - http://www.drudgereport.com/

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  • 125. At 11:24pm on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    106 to 108, Union.

    My sentiments exactly.

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  • 126. At 11:29pm on 22 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    It's Bayh!!

    How boring, but a safe pair of hands who will appeal to rural conservatives.

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  • 127. At 11:29pm on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    117, Original.

    Bloomberg is a republican, at least this year.

    This whole thing is so soul-destroying boring that at this point I wouldn't care if Obama chose McCain as his running mate.

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  • 128. At 11:32pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #122, XM;

    "The intrusion of the $ is an artifact of what is wrong with America."

    Would you rather doctors traded farm animals for services? You can hide the $ exchange within the system, but in the end the goods and services within the system are paid for with real money.

    The US Social Security system is facing an $11 Trillion deficit. That is with every American worker paying 7.65% with the employer making up the difference for a total of 15.3%.

    The US deficit will need to be paid back in $, rather than livestock I'm afraid.

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  • 129. At 11:45pm on 22 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    Well, if it is Evan Bayh, there will be some people on this blog who will be outraged.

    http://www.jewishsf.com/content/2-0-/module/displaystory/story_id/19410/edition_id/394/format/html/displaystory.html

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  • 130. At 11:46pm on 22 Aug 2008, oldnat wrote:

    #126 Cyril

    Political Betting.com isn't convinced.

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  • 131. At 11:47pm on 22 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    The reason none of you know who the running mate is is because it is ME.

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  • 132. At 11:58pm on 22 Aug 2008, Cyril_Croydon wrote:

    Bayh also has a young photogenic family, which will look good alongside the Obama children. A strong youthful image to contrast with McCain and his old codgers

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  • 133. At 00:36am on 23 Aug 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 132

    Evan Bayh is certainly qualified for the VP spot, and considering his record and personal behavior, it would be hard for the likes of Rush Limbaugh to attack (distortions notwithstanding), but he is too bland and from an electoral college perspective he doesn't contribute much to the ticket.
    I suspect Obama, and his campaign strategists, considered the likely circumstances that may exist two months from now - which is admiteddly nothing more than a guessing game - before making a decision.
    If the dominant issue in early November is the economy, picking someone like Clinton, Kaine or Bloomberg would make sense; but if foreign threats - real or perceived - dominate the agenda Wesley Clark or Joe Biden would be excellent choices.
    I suspect that name recognition is also a major consideration, which rules out obscure politicians.
    Wake up early tomorrow morning, when the text messages start to go out, before the joint meeting at 2 pm ET tomorrow.

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  • 134. At 00:56am on 23 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #131, allmymarbles :

    I cannot be! You see, you are unqualified because...

    ... you have all your marbles.

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  • 135. At 01:02am on 23 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 136. At 01:06am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Bumper stickers ?

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 137. At 01:15am on 23 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    134. Real.

    The real problem is, Real, that those high-powered macho meetings would make me giddy.

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  • 138. At 01:40am on 23 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    Having lived in France for years, neither I nor any of my family had any private coverage, yet the service was excellent.

    And, physicians still make house calls!

    In fact, my recollection is that it was only dental service and eye glasses that were outside the system.

    The system was building up a deficit through such abuses as issusing taxi fare vouchers when one could have taken a bus, etc.

    Another abuse was paying for "treatment" in spas.

    (this was a dozen years ago).

    Now, if American media are reporting terrible things about the system in France, I would suspect that, like so many things in the USA, the media are getting $ for reporting with the slant their paymasters want.

    For those with reduced perception, a real physician works because his primary motivation is treating patients well. Family doctors in France do not make a lot of money.

    Those who value everything only in $ display a lamentable lack of ethical and moral compass.

    How typical is that of America today?

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  • 139. At 01:54am on 23 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    It's not Bayh. Obama had signs printed with all short list names for time's sake, and they caught sight of this batch...

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  • 140. At 01:54am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Clubbin' it!

    See y'all down at the club later.
    ;-)
    ed

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  • 141. At 02:07am on 23 Aug 2008, bethpa wrote:

    I was hoping it was Biden for vp

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  • 142. At 02:08am on 23 Aug 2008, bethpa wrote:

    #48 Xie_Ming

    I'm afraid I think McCain has a good chance of winning. Many Americans want a leader with a war like attitude towards conflicts with other nations and
    McCain gives them an aggressive personality by comparison to Obama's intellectualism. The Russian aggression in Georgia is boosting McCain in the polls. Obama needs to be more aggressive to satisfy many Americans ( the fools)

    Its the white male voters in America..a certain percentage of them... that are the problem for America

    but the real weakness for America is its debt...that is made worse with the over emphasis on military machinery.

    --
    “Our biggest financiers are China, Russia and the gulf states,” Roubini noted. “These are rivals, not allies.”

    "The United States, Roubini went on, will likely muddle through the crisis but will emerge from it a different nation, with a different place in the world. “Once you run current-account deficits, you depend on the kindness of strangers,” he said, pausing to let out a resigned sigh. “This might be the beginning of the end of the American empire.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/17/magazine/17pessimist-t.htm

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  • 143. At 02:09am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Speaking of wearing the portfolio...

    Sindy doll

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 144. At 02:15am on 23 Aug 2008, bethpa wrote:

    Reuters says its not Bayh

    http://www.reuters.com/article/politicsNews/idUSN2238347620080823

    And if I were Obama I would feed false information to Drudge and the right wing to make them look foolish.

    I'm hoping for Biden.

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  • 145. At 02:17am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    A blast from the past!

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 146. At 02:30am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 147. At 03:19am on 23 Aug 2008, sarahwaley wrote:

    It is so discouraging that he BBC with its reputation for speaking above the local furore can't even get the pronunciation of "Barack Obama" right.The result of the next US election will make a huge difference to us but nobody seems to take the time to get the US political situation right.
    Please talk to people who are here who actually live the local situation. New York is not America....

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  • 148. At 03:37am on 23 Aug 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    #142

    There are a lot of attitudinal vectors (groups with different views) in the USA.

    Fortunately, the political pros know vastly more about them than I do.

    My perception, from a great distance, is that many more Americans now realize that they have been had by the media and by the system.

    ______________________

    As a guess, I will bet on HRC for VP!

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  • 149. At 04:25am on 23 Aug 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #142, bethpa, Roubini is absolutely correct.

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  • 150. At 04:26am on 23 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #142, bethpa:

    "Obama needs to be more aggressive to satisfy many Americans ( the fools)"

    Aren't you insulting the intelligence of all Americans, and asking the kitten to masquerade as a lion?

    "Its the white male voters in America..a certain percentage of them... that are the problem for America"

    Wow, bigotry, misandry and excoriating all in one breath. America should send all those darn White males back to Europe!

    "but the real weakness for America is its debt...that is made worse with the over emphasis on military machinery."

    What is the percentage of the budget that is used to purchase military machinery?

    The entire military budget is 19%, which pays salaries, feeds, clothes, provides health care, maintains everything and buys some hardware. And, this is a wartime budget. Iraq and Afghanistan account for 25% of the 19%.

    Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid are about 43% of the budget, and growing. Debt service is 8.4%

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  • 151. At 04:58am on 23 Aug 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    In reply to #138, Xie_Ming:

    "Now, if American media are reporting terrible things about the system in France, I would suspect that, like so many things in the USA, the media are getting $ for reporting with the slant their paymasters want."

    Canadian media...

    "Those who value everything only in $ display a lamentable lack of ethical and moral compass. How typical is that of America today?"

    There is a broad spectrum between charity and miserly.

    Here is some data showing that Americans are the most charitable people in the world.

    http://mjperry.blogspot.com/2007/06/americans-are-most-generous-people-in.html

    Of course, when you live under the oppression of socialism, you might have very little money (even as a doctor) to give away to those causes you would like to support.

    Rather, since the bulk of your money is being given to the state, you petition the state(your master) to support your causes on your behalf.

    Freedom involves being able to realize the fruits of your labor, which is ultimately the litmus test of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness".

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  • 152. At 05:07am on 23 Aug 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    AP is reporting thar Bayh and Kaine are out. So much for the Canadian news.

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  • 153. At 06:15am on 23 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    You know what, guys? The running mate doesn't matter at all.

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  • 154. At 08:36am on 23 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    #84, Dough

    "The US will apologize to the world for our 'interference' in their affairs, past and present. You know, Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Tojo, Noriega, Milosevic, Hussein, and the rest of those 'good ' ole' boys', we will never 'interfere' again."


    Might I suggest you pick up a history book and look into some facts? I'm assuming this is a poor attempt at a joke, but the fact that it's got a few major accuracies makes it a rather epic failure.


    1. There was NO "interference" with Hitler. The USA refused to join WWII despite the fact that the allied forces asked for help. The USA intended to stay out of it, but then (lucky for Europe I guess) in 1942 Japan chose to attack Pearl Harbour, giving the USA a legitimate reason to declare war on Japan- and its ally Germany (including Austria and Italy). Ultimately, the liberation was achieved by the efforts of the ALLIED FORCES- these, interestingly enough, consisted not just of US troops, but also Canadians, Brits... oh, and did you know Stalin was fighting against Hitler too? Would have been a damn tough war without him donchaknow. Mussolini got in trouble because Hitler did... essentially the same conflict though.

    2. Stalin interference? What? Stalin died in the USSR while he was in power. The USSR remained the USSR for a pretty long time after his death. Not sure which historical event you were referring to, but it can't have been very impressive. (Go on, give me a laugh and say "Cold War". It'll totally make my day.)

    3. Tojo? I'm assuming that's Hiroshima you're referring to? Again, WWII.

    4. Assuming you're referring to Manuel Noriega... did you know he was an ally of the US for a while? They only got rid of him because he became an inconvenience...

    5. Milosevic? Priceless. Because, you know, the EU sat back and had nothing to do with it... be careful what you let the US take the credit for...

    6. Hussein... good old Saddam was helped into power by the USA. Oops? GW Jr must have thought so, because he started a war that would result in Saddam's death. Not sure if that war was justified though... tell me again, what happened to those ever-elusive Weapons of Mass Destruction?

    7. Speaking of good 'ole boys... found Osama yet?


    "2) We will withdraw our troops from all over the world, starting with Germany , South Korea , the Middle East, and the Philippines Since they don't want us there. We would station troops at our borders. No one allowed sneaking through holes in the fence."

    Not sure where you have been, but it's obviously not Germany. There are no US troops in Germany exercising any power. Those troops left when the Iron Curtain fell and the Wall came down. There's a few troops there as part of UN agreements, in a few military bases, but might I point out to you that they have similar bases all through Europe for the exact same reason? Or were you going to claim that they're also in countries like the Netherlands to exercise some kind of authority? Pretty sure you need to look into some facts there, mate, because you seem a little confused about the how and the why.

    I'm sure parts of the Middle East would be happy enough to see the US forces go, most notably Iraq. Isnt't that exactly what they're planning on right now anyway? Read an article here on the good 'ole BBC that 2011 was the plan...


    "4) All future visitors will be thoroughly checked and limited to 90 days unless given a special permit! No one from a terrorist nation will be allowed in. If you don't like it there, change it yourself and don't hide here. Asylum would never be available to anyone. We don't need any more cab drivers or 7-11 cashiers.

    5) No foreign 'students' over age 21. The older ones are the bombers. If they don't attend classes, they get a 'D' and it's back home baby."

    Excellent plan! Now all we need is for the EU to apply the same rules to US citizens. That'll be fun.


    "7) Offer Saudi Arabia and other oil producing countries $10 a barrel for their oil. If they don't like it, we go someplace else. They can go somewhere else to sell their production. (About a week of the wells filling up the storage sites would be enough.)"

    You honestly think they'll weep to lose the US? They'll gladly do business with Russia and China instead. In the process, they'd link their crude to the euro and get rid of the dollar, almost certain causing the dollar to crash down further into oblivion. Personally I wouldn't lose sleep over that, but US citizens might. They already regularly go into shock when they come here to Europe and discover their currency isn't worth as much as they thought it was. I think I'd get a front row seat at the airport and watch the riots at the exchange offices. Quality entertainment I say!


    "8) If there is a famine or other natural catastrophe in the world, we will not 'interfere.' They can pray to God, Allah or whomever, for seeds, rain, cement or whatever they need. Besides most of what we give them is stolen or given to the army. The people who need it most get very little, if anything."

    They're not getting any food or water anyway. I'm not sure they'd really miss the weapons most if they're dying of famine. Besides, the current US bank balance isn't so strong that it can afford to send a lot of money abroad, and hey, the US isn't the only place that can send money. Did you know that after the earthquake (December 26, 2005) in Asia, the amount of money donated per person in the EU was about 10x that of the amount per person in the US?


    "9) Ship the UN Headquarters to an isolated island someplace. We don't need the spies and fair weather friends here. Besides, the building would make a good homeless shelter or lockup for illegal aliens."

    Talk about paranoia...


    "10) All Americans must go to charm and beauty school. That way, no one can call us 'Ugly Americans' any longer. The Language we speak is ENGLISH.. learn it... or leave... "

    Can they also go to language school, then? Because I wouldn't call that English...

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  • 155. At 09:23am on 23 Aug 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Obama chose Biden!!! Got the text!

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  • 156. At 09:31am on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Biden Videos

    Enjoy
    ed

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  • 157. At 4:47pm on 23 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    MrsEnvy #154

    You are under the misconception along with many others especially in Europe that the United States of America owes you something or is somehow accountable to you for its actions. You are doomed to eternal disappointment. You'd be far better off if you just recognized the realities of the world and of life, and were grateful for whatever benefit you and those you love have obtained from America's generousity and consideration for you when it chose to exercise it.

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  • 158. At 4:48pm on 23 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 159. At 5:29pm on 23 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    american is very bad at actually paying up on it's promises of help.
    the UN is owed some dosh by the americans, who support aid programs for politics but when it comes to paying well they welch.

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  • 160. At 7:19pm on 23 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    154, Mrs.

    I didn't read your comment, but my eye fell on "Ugly American." The ugly American in the novel was the good guy. Everyone seems to get this wrong. Maybe I am the only person who ever read the book.

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  • 161. At 7:42pm on 23 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Ms Marbles,

    "The ugly American in the novel was the good guy."
    But was "The Quiet American" the good guy in the eponymous novel? McCain't would probably think so.

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 162. At 10:03pm on 23 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    #157

    You suffer under the misconception that the USA somehow rules the world. It was a force to be reckoned with for a while, but right now, not a lot of people still take it seriously. That's one of life's realities, and you're going to have to accept that.


    #160

    You would have been far better off reading the text, because that wasn't my line, that was a quote. Try reading next time. It really helps. ;)

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  • 163. At 00:14am on 24 Aug 2008, dennisjunior1 wrote:

    Justin:

    You have a right to be giddy!

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  • 164. At 00:18am on 24 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    alfred e numan was gw right?

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  • 165. At 00:38am on 24 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    162, Mrs.

    Sorry. I don't write very long comments and I don't read those that are. In blogs I look for precise bits of information or concise opinions.

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  • 166. At 01:19am on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    MrsEnvy,

    Those who don't take the United States seriously and act against it with impunity usually live to regret it.

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  • 167. At 02:14am on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment has been referred for further consideration. Explain

  • 168. At 03:02am on 24 Aug 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    167, staph. aureus.

    Hers might be long, but yours are incomprehensible.

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  • 169. At 05:50am on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 170. At 06:02am on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 171. At 06:32am on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    The only thing incomprehensible about this place is the moderators and the rules.

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  • 172. At 12:18pm on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    allmymarbles, one last try to get through the density of BBC. If this doesn't post, you don't get to read the riddle. Here are the clues;

    The riddles are three, death is one.

    Here's your bonus clue; Ice that gives you fire.

    A little more help, the answer to the last riddle is the same word as the answer to my riddle. And another, there was a reason it was posed to Xie_Ming. Not at all incomprehensible, just maybe inscrutable.

    This time I'll let you use the internet. If it gets posted and you don't post the correct reply within 24 hours, I may not respond to any more of your postings as I would consider you an unworthy opponent. C'mon New Yorker, who's smarter than people from New York? Nobody.

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  • 173. At 12:26pm on 24 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    #167

    Perhaps you need to take off the veil as well? You don't seem particularly capable of even getting my name right.

    As for this bit:

    "Those who don't take the United States seriously and act against it with impunity usually live to regret it."

    I never said I'd act against it, but as far as I'm aware I'm entirely free to think little of it- as so many other people do. You can either accept the fact that not everyone will worship the USA and get over it, or you can go on as you have and make petty comments and pathetic threats.

    What's going to happen to me if I don't drop to my knees and worship GW? Will I get a one-way ticket to Guantanamo Bay on charges of terrorism because I laughed at his policies? Yeah, very impressive.

    Or is the USA going to wage war on Europe because most Europeans don't take the US very seriously anymore? That'd be something... tell me again, with the USA suffering its greatest debts in history and the economy crashing... how exactly is it going to pay for another war? I mean, between figuring out how they're going to solve the debts acquired through the war in Iraq, and finding petty excuses to invade Iran (we're still waiting for proof of those WMDs, by the way), it seems to me the USA'll be a little too busy to consider more wars.


    That said... I'm sure Osama lived to regret 9/11 as well. Found him yet?

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  • 174. At 12:56pm on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    MrsEnvy, I think I got your name "spot on."

    You can think whatever you like of the US. Most Americans don't care what the outside world thinks of them. Hatred of America by Europeans is hardly new, it began right after the American Revolution and has rarely abated since. We not only expect it, ignore it, most of us don't even know or care where your countries are. I only know because when I was a small child I liked to trace maps and collect postage stamps.

    You can laugh all you want at America's policies. Saddam Hussein and his two psychopathic sons aren't laughing anymore. They aren't doing anything because they are dead. So are a lot of other Iraqis, those who opposed the US and those who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    In case you hadn't noticed, the US and Europe are already at war and Europe is losing miserably. It's a war of economics and culture, it is not a military war. Europe is highly dependent on America and on what happens with American investments in places like India and China. America is not dependent on Europe. Look around, European society is breaking down and its major economies are in death spirals. It will only get worse. The US has faced far worse economic crisis than it does today and has always recovered to even greater prosperity than before. It will again. Europe might not this time. The only thing it has to offer the world is lots of useless talk....like its 400 page Constitution written in Sanskrit.

    I wouldn't call Iran trying to acquire nuclear weapons and saying it wants a world without America a petty excuse for war. I don't think the Israelis consider Iran's threat to wipe them off the map a petty excuse to react either. Iran is looking for a confrontation with the US and Israeal and just the way Europe wanted one with the US 6 years ago, it will get it. And it will rue the day it started down this fatal course just as Europeans rue their betrayal of the US now. It's too late, there's nothing Gordo, Sarko, or Angel Eyes can do about it. Even Obama knew it and said it in Berlin if you actually listened to what he had to say.

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  • 175. At 1:48pm on 24 Aug 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    MrsMEvE,

    "I'm sure Osama lived to regret 9/11 as well. Found him yet?"
    He's here

    Howdy Ma'am!
    ed


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  • 176. At 1:55pm on 24 Aug 2008, MrsMEvE wrote:

    MarcusAurelius... spot on? I doubt it. If you think we in Europe envy the US, you couldn't be more wrong. We pity you for the crazy idiots you put in charge of your country, we pity you for putting up with groups of religious zealots who are so self-righteous that they couldn't care less about another person's human rights.


    There is NOTHING about US culture I would envy (incidentally, most of the US "culture" is blatantly stolen from far older European traditions, so the concept of US "culture" is laughable at best). You might also be interested to know that if France hadn't supported your Revolution, there wouldn't even BE an America as we know it today. We haven't hated America since the Revolution, either- most of Europe didn't care at that time, and most of us didn't care about it, or even admired the US, right up to the point when GW was proved to be a liar for all the world to see. However, Americans are more likely to have always disdained Europe- they fought for their independence because of this. You are aware that most Americans are descendants of either Europeans or slaves, are you not? I hope so, because that would mean you know that those who left Europe for their promised land did so because they had no real chances of fortune in Europe. Europe didn't care much when they left, but these immigrants had every reason to resent Europe.


    Europeans care about where other countries are because we're not so arrogant as to think we're the only ones in the world that matter. We care about the location of our neighbours, and we care about the location of third world countries because we like to know who we're sending money to. We even care about the locations of nations like the USA, because yes, we also like to know where some of the places are that we're doing business with.


    I hope you're not proud of the casualties of this senseless war the US is waging. If I were you, I'd be ashamed of my country for being responsible for the deaths of innocent people, and I find it both disgusting and appalling that you apparently have no regard for human life. I pity you for lacking empathy, I do not envy you for your ignorance and arrogance.


    The US and the EU are at war? Wow, there's news. In case you're too deluded to check up on facts, here's a few- most European nations are US allies, and a good few of them have sent troops in support of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Oops? I'm very interested to see you come up with a formal declaration of war- as far as I know, there is none.

    European crisis? Uhm... no? There might not be growth, but we're a far cry from the economic recession the US leaders are still denying. Open your eyes- the US is suffering from the credit crunch, the mortgage mess and its banks going... yes, that's right- bankrupt. Over here in Europe, at best there's a few company losses, but we're not suffering a crisis because our banks have done funny things with our money.

    The EU does NOT depend on the US to survive. We have our own oil and gas reserves, and we can rely on those for decades. We can produce our own food, and we can produce our own electronis and cars. The EU is pretty self-sufficient, the US economy relies largely on import from Europe and Asia. Oops? Looks like you're mixing a few things up.

    The dollar is rapidly losing value. 3 years ago it was worth more than the euro, but today you're lucky if you can buy a euro for less that $1.50... so as a matter of fact, our economy is a deal stronger than yours and we have the numbers to back it up.


    I hate to burst your bubble here, but there's no such thing as a European Constitution. It was rejected in 2005 by France and the Netherlands and subsequently it died and was buried. The Lisbon Treaty that was intended to replace it has been rejected by the Irish, and has no plausible hope of survival. As a result, the document as it stands has no significance whatsoever, and absolutely no impact on EU life right now. Before you go off to make a statement, you might want to do your homework on the facts.


    If there was actual proof of Iran trying to acquire WMDs, I might be more inclined to acknowledge it as a good reason. However, the same was given as a reason for Iraq, and that turned out to be untrue. I have little reason to believe that it is any better for Iran.

    EU betrayal of the US? Wow... do you have more nonsense up your sleeve by any chance? The EU rejected the American excuse for going to war with Iraq because it saw Bush's lies for what they were- lies. Eventually the war came about, and the EU sent troops to support an ally (yes, ally), even if it didn't exactly believe in this war. The EU was proved right. Even so, to this day, EU troops are still in Iraq and Afghanistan supporting this madman's cause.

    And in case you were unaware of it, Europe is bigger than GB, France, and Germany. FAR bigger. Do we rue this so-called "betrayal" you mentioned? I'm pretty sure we don't. I wasn't even aware that there was betrayal here, never even mind that the US has apparently punished Europe for it.

    If the US has punished Europe, then the Europeans are entirely unaware of this... in which case I can safely say it's not much of a punishment, which in turn means we have little reason to rue our actions.


    Good try, though. Come back when you can make an argument based on more than base bravado and bluff. I'm interested in that declaration of war, and I'm interested to see this so-called punishment you mentioned. As for European society breaking down... what do you base this on? Because I haven't noticed it.

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  • 177. At 6:34pm on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment has been referred for further consideration. Explain

  • 178. At 7:15pm on 24 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    marcus I didn't come here to help america, and it certainly does me no good financially or health care wise. but it is true.If I met you here in the states I could call you names till you croaked and say ,so wat, his problem.

    I came here despite america and americans.

    AsI have said before I like many people around the world ,even here, but to be honest I find that true less in america tahn other places I have lived.
    they seem nice enough but being decended from terrorists , thugs ,murders and other assorted trash from europe thrown on to the laps of those poor American native(sorry) they are as a majority EurosTRASH.

    plop plop plop

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  • 179. At 7:17pm on 24 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    missEmEve

    ignore him. he'll get back to biting his own tail

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  • 180. At 7:17pm on 24 Aug 2008, jacksforge wrote:

    unless you like goading him, just mention how his parents must have given his coat to the homeless.

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  • 181. At 8:58pm on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    just think Jf, of every thousand dollars you pay in federal income tax, about 1.5 dollars goes to defend the nation of Israel. And now none goes to the so called Palestinians, at least not in Gaza. Thank you for your sacrifice. BTW, do you know that any income you get as barter has to be declared to the IRS and tax has to be paid on it? The IRS now knows :-) Have a nice day.

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  • 182. At 11:28pm on 24 Aug 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    This comment has been referred for further consideration. Explain

  • 183. At 09:44am on 26 Aug 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

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