User Profile: HappyStretchedThin

HappyStretchedThin

Member Since: January 09, 2011

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  • [4] February 24, 2015 at 9:42pm

    Ripe: That’s not the long and short of my argument AT ALL. But then, for someone who ALSO defines USPS as NOT a business, perhaps your struggles with reality and definitions run deeper than I suspected.
    Let me say it more slowly: f r e e p e o p l e m a k i n g f r e e c h o i c e s i n a f r e e m a r k e t m i n i m i z e u n f a i r n e s s b e t t e r t h a n g o v t i n t e r v e n t i o n i n t o m a r k e t s c a n. Look, govt DOES have a legitimate role in creating fairness: it should punish criminals for their acts and protect our country from terrorists. But when it comes to deciding FOR people (and for corporations of people organized for providing goods and services for other people) what is fair and what is not, kills not only competition, but also the principle that free people should be the ones deciding what to do and think for themselves.
    Or maybe, perhaps, you think the USPS running $2B+ deficits is a GOOD thing.
    Govt isn’t a business–you’re right–and should therefore not be run like a business. But as the democratically elected republic that our federal state IS, it has NO business getting its hooks INTO business.
    Or perhaps you’re a closet former Solyndra executive still clinging to false hopes?
    Seriously, when has govt intervention into markets EVER worked well? One good example, please.

  • [1] February 24, 2015 at 9:15pm

    Ripe: not much of a jump, and although expressed in theoretical terms to capture generalities, they’re hardly without real-world examples. Compare UPS and FedEx to USPS. Compare Private charities to Food Stamp program. Compare charter schools to public schools. Compare getting a security badge on the first day of your job with getting a passport from the State Dept.
    This is experience talking, not complete abstraction. And I don’t claim net neutrality to be equivalent to the DMV EXCEPT in the one parallel that DOES apply: if the govt decides who to say no to, we all become beggars, not choosers.
    But then again, maybe its your inability to see the that “worst case” scenario is actually the COMMON problem with govt that’s the real problem in your arguments here…

  • February 24, 2015 at 9:04pm

    Real, for a Libertarian, you sure have a lot of Bastiat’s principles yet to absorb…or maybe it’s that you’ve absorbed a little TOO much of Ron Paul’s fantasy reasoning.
    For example, if you don’t think you’re at the mercy of corporate media for your internet access now, you’re delusional.
    But seriously, the way to think about this is NOT who has your best interests at heart: only YOU do. The libertarian way to frame this is to understand that govt has ONLY political ad bureaucratic interests to serve, and compete with no one, so they will always tend to grow their control. Private interests, on the other hand compete with each other, and tend to provide growth in service, rather than growth in control. Given a critical mass of competing interests in a given economic system, the ones that conflict with yours are VASTLY more likely to cancel each other out than if the govt was the one who decided what’s fair and unfair. Once they establish the PRINCIPLE of control, they will mission-creep to other forms of it.

  • [1] February 24, 2015 at 8:53pm

    I’m afraid you’re the one misinformed on this, Ripe. The issue isn’t WHETHER bits get throttled up or back, it’s WHO DECIDES.
    If the government is doing it, Internet becomes the DMV.
    If private companies are doing it, at least there’s the THEORETICAL possibility that many interested parties will have enough conflicting interests that they cancel each other out and the general public gets the fruits of competition between interests, rather than the leftovers after the govt expropriates all the profit-motive and reduces the number of companies in the game by attrition as they do in every other sector touched by tax.

  • [31] February 20, 2015 at 1:31pm

    If we’re playing the “how would history have been different if…” game, it’s far WORSE. The voting power of the South able to count slaves to get more Reps in the House, and yet deny them the right to vote FOR those Reps, may well have tipped the scales into imposing slavery as a FEDERAL law applicable in all states, not just the South.
    The 3/5ths compromise was PRO-black.
    Thanks for making sure it got stated, John.

    Responses (1) +
  • [3] February 12, 2015 at 1:01pm

    If you have Harry Potter sighing, you’re doing something right.
    He loves to project:
    1. He’ll pretend it’s you who won’t bend your opinion to scientific fact in the very act of posting to a scientific study adding evidence to the falsity of HIS beliefs.
    2. He’ll cite the name of a study he claims is debunked to try to make you feel like he’s educated on the subject and you’re not informed while in the very act of demonstrating complete ignorance of the many defenses of that Regnurus study that actually qualified commenters (i.e. scientists) have written.
    3. He’ll go full on ad hominem on the writer of this study because that scientist also happens to be a priest while in the very act of claiming you’re the ones unfairly judging things.
    4. He’ll claim to be taking only scientific evidence to support his opinion to set himself up in opposition to all of you (who he thinks are irrational, anti-scientific, uber-religious, and ideologically blind) while in the very act of admitting that it’s a CHOICE who to believe on these matters, and demonstrating that he’d choose to side with his pre-conceived notion over that of the scientific study in the article above his post.
    Oh yeah, and besides the projection, he’s lying and has been corrected on it before: the studies claiming to show equal or better outcomes for children under SSM are the ones that have dubious scientific merit.

    Responses (3) +
  • [4] February 12, 2015 at 12:40pm

    Actually, NO major scientific study has found what you claim. There have been many studies but they are ALL either non-scientific because methodologically flawed, or because their sample sizes were tainted.
    For example, the last time you and I went at it on this, you touted the Crouch study where 315 SS parents were handpicked as TEST subjects to survey because they were ADVOCATES for SSM. Sound like a sound methodology to you?
    And even Regnurus, with all its flaws, was a huge improvement over the methodologies of previous studies (15k+ test subjects). Look, once you get to a certain sample size, the argument that methodology has “cherry-picked” things cedes ground to the preponderance of the evidence: are you REALLY going to try to claim that 200k surveys of kids doesn’t provide a sufficient baseline? Are you REALLY trying to discredit a finding that there’s 200% jump in emotional issues that correlate with rearing by SS parents? I mean if it were 10%, 20%, maybe 50% you could try to explain it away by some untested factor, sure. And even here, the scientist (Why can’t a scientist be a priest? Or a priest a scientist? Why do you go full ad hominem here?) in question isn’t claiming to test all the factors–he’s just pointing out that with this HUGE sample, there’s a SUPER strong correlation.
    Let’s face facts, Mr. Potter, maybe magical thinking is your strong suit. Science sure isn’t.
    Here, try this: http://bit.ly/1w9Kazy

  • [43] January 31, 2015 at 12:16am

    I disagree. Let him keep talking.
    First of all, people who are acquainted with his movies find it rich that the person who made a name for himself as the documentarist who made an art form of the ambush interview is now lecturing us on what true courage is.
    Secondly, he just reveals, in a ham-handed way, how twisted he comes at things that are so manifestly good. He knows that the purpose of a sniper in an American military unit is to protect troops and save civilians by using extreme skills and patience to remove irredeemables from a position where they could do any more harm to innocents. But he can’t admit it, or he’d lose face and stand exposed as an ideologue. So he refuses delivery on the true moral framing of an American sniper’s job description, re-frames it with his morally relative worldview, and comes out with tripe like “snipers are cowards”. Killing someone who can’t see you is ONLY cowardly when you completely IGNORE the context of war. It’s NOT a fair fight, with Marquis of Queensbury rules–it’s a WAR. The REAL cowardly thing here is impugning the moral character of the trigger-men when it’s the decision makers you really have a beef with, Mr. Moore.
    As to Eastwood’s threat: humor or not, his aim is protection of his own, not aimless evil intentions. Moore’s the one cowardly threatening a public shaming of all who oppose him.
    The more Moore talks, the fewer believe him.

  • January 30, 2015 at 12:08pm

    Yes, Joe. Because nothing says “fighting corruption” like announcing $1B to be given to govt officials in Central America…

  • [8] January 19, 2015 at 10:42pm

    Bigger headline: NOAA scientists so uncertain of own results that they poll themselves instead.
    Come on people! Do the data show a record-breaking year or not? (Hint: it did, but God’s green earth isn’t conforming to their hockey-stick model perfectly enough for the alarm bells to swing votes just yet, so the MSM needs to tout the result LOUD).
    In other news, NFL referees are almost certain (>99%) that the Pats won their game (not a fan, just need an example to illustrate the ridiculousness of polling people whose job it is to make a one-way-or-the-other call.)

  • January 16, 2015 at 11:00am

    @Realliib
    You understand neither anarchy nor Christianity if that’s your pick.
    Are you really so overcome by ideological tunnel-vision that you can’t distinguish between censorship and public decency standards? No one’s trying to tell you that you can’t be a porn-monger if you want. But you’re deluded if you think there’s no “basis” for a societal anti-PUBLIC porn standard except in “one old book”.
    The effects of porn on individuals and societies is well documented, and convincing for all who will be open enough to honestly look for the truth on the matter (yeah, that’s right, I just called your “libertarianism” out as being fundamentally CLOSED-minded).
    Start here, since I know you already read the Blaze: http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/12/04/infographic-provides-stunning-look-at-pornographys-impact-and-what-happened-when-some-chose-to-give-smut-up/

  • [6] January 15, 2015 at 2:28pm

    Mr. MA in History who claims the vast majority of men had gay sex wants evidence from me that this is not so. I’ll begin by citing the current estimation of the population of planet earth at around 7B. Biology, which until recent decades has dictated hetero conception of new life, doesn’t seem to bear you out. Of course, you’ll argue that men can be hetero and STILL have **** sex, and you’d be right, but given that in the current gay positive cultural climate gay men stand at around 2% of the population, you could only argue that the majority of men have gay relations if you ALSO claim that before this gay-positive climate there was NOT widespread non-acceptance of gay sex choices. And that claim would get you in trouble with every other gay activist out there claiming victim status for their kind.
    Sorry bub. Evidence of widespread gay (and polygamous, btw) practice in EVERY culture has only ever been MARGINAL, despite how much exaggeration you want to make of its acceptance, centrality, and importance. Furthermore, Mr. MA in history, the times that it HAS become prevalent have been a few short generations from societal collapse, with Rome and Greece as my 2 showcase examples.
    The IDEA of marriage I defined started MUCH earlier than you claim, and citing “dark ages” reveals your “evidence” as remarkably Eurocentric. You’d get an F in the history courses I teach.
    As to current research: Start here:
    http://winst.org/wp-content/uploads/WI_Marriage_and_the_Public_Good.pdf

  • [8] January 15, 2015 at 12:49pm

    The MA in history claims that in ancient history: “the vast majority of men had sex with both genders”.
    I think he’s been reading the Symposium, and exaggerating it in his own mind, overapplying it to the rest of humanity. In other words, he can’t be trusted with ANY of his claims.
    But what can one expect from a coward hiding behind his own humor and attempting to skitter out from under its implications.
    You think we’re sexist bigot racists for opposing your political idea. Just be honest and come at us straight.
    When I expose your meaning, you deny. When I expose your logical fallacies, you double-down.
    I think the true enemy to science, historical truth, tolerance, and a happy society here is much more likely you than the defenders of marriage.
    But let’s try the experiment, then, Mr. MA in ancient history: When did the IDEA of marriage become exclusive, monogamous and heterosexual with a core objective in procreation? You claim it’s never really been that, so when did that start?
    (btw, there is ONE study that attempts to show, with SEVERELY limited longitudinal data, with CHERRY-PICKING advocates for the results as data providers that claims gay marriages are no worse than straight ones for kids. But the bulk of the evidence isn’t even close: having both a mother and a father VASTLY decreases risks to individuals and societies for the children involved. Be open to truth, not doctrinaire, otherwise I’ll expose you as projecting…)

  • [24] January 15, 2015 at 11:42am

    My PhD in a literary field trumps your MA in history (and by the way, you’re still logically wrong, no matter your credentials) when it comes to interpreting the messages in what you wrote.
    Sarcastically pointing out that SOME self-proclaimed Christian churches condemned interracial marriages as a way (a logically bankrupt way, btw) of claiming gay marriage opponents are animated by a parallel bias cannot avoid insinuating that you believe there is something inherently bigoted in opposition to gay marriage: you’re calling us racists.
    Sarcastically claiming that SOME traditions surrounding marriage treated pre-teen girls as sexual property to be exchanged cannot avoid insinuating that wanting the state to return to supporting only the traditional definition of marriage is akin to endorsing misogynist and pedophilic lusts: you’re calling us pedophiles.
    But few here are fooled by your logical sleight of hand. Blest correctly notes that you’ve set up a false-choice fallacy. Fortherecord correctly notes that you’re attacking real manifestations as if they were the ideal–which is the essence of the straw-man fallacy.
    Marriage as an idea promotes unity, harmony, stability, and has proven over and over in experience AND in the social sciences to be the BEST environment for the progress of the young.
    Despite your objections, you stand exposed as a dishonest, insulting hate-broker.
    Please continue posting–it adds to the clarity of your exposure.

  • [24] December 19, 2014 at 11:02pm

    The fact that you felt compelled to defend your own lifestyle tells me that you can barely contain your own self-denial. Despite your protests to the contrary, you’re NOT feeling fulfilled. Somewhere deep down, you know there are moral consequences to your choices and your lifestyle, that true fulfillment is eluding you, and that as wonderful as it may feel on the surface to have a willing partner in crime, your relationship is NOT, in fact, healthy.
    You’re drifting apart without wanting to open your eyes to it.
    You’re after selfish indulgences, not the kind of self-sacrificing service that true fulfillment requires.
    Should you be free to pursue whatever you call happiness? Not in dispute.
    But I’m also free to point out that based on your own description of your relationship, you’re mutually satisfying materialist hedonists after cheap self-absorbed thrills, not interdependent, mutually reinforcing, other-serving partners in the pursuit of a common purpose beyond themselves.
    You’re trading fun for joy, and fooling yourself into defensively claiming the fun IS joy.
    Oh, and no mention of children…I wonder why?…

  • [5] December 19, 2014 at 6:04pm

    No conservative is denying the impact free trade could/would have. But what YOU’RE not getting, is that you’d be a FOOL to attempt is with the Castro’s. They’ll let you in, let you spend, let you build, then confiscate it in the name of nationalization. Joke’s on you.
    Reason magazine sounds more like “blind faith” magazine if it thinks trade with Cuba will magically be “free and fair” without HUGE changes in the Castro position FIRST.

  • [9] December 19, 2014 at 5:59pm

    Rand, I love your spirit, bro. But don’t get sucked down the morally relativistic, doctrinaire rabbit-hole with your dad.
    1. The embargo IS hurting Cuba–the people mostly. But it’s not US responsible for that–it’s their RULERS who are withholding from them. If they dropped their bad-neighbor policies, we’d be happy to talk trade.
    2. It must be delicious for a Paul to accuse someone ELSE of isolationism, but they BOTH should know better. Rubio’s NOT calling for refusing to engage, he’s saying the best FORM of engagement is to be RESPONSIBLE, and hold them accountable to standards of fairness BEFORE offering to trade with them. Or maybe, I should reverse the tables and claim Paul’s an interventionist (because he clearly is, in the same way Rubio’s isolationist–not at all).
    3. The Why not Cuba question is the most insidious. They’re NOT morally equivalent! The Chinese and Vietnamese weren’t perfect, but HAVE loosened their command and control over their people, and ALLOWED free and fair markets to some degree. We engage with them TO that degree.
    4. Rand should know better than most that we operate on principles of rule of law FIRST, democracy SECOND because simple majorities aren’t always trustworthy on some things. Why all the moral relativism all of a sudden, Rand? Are we on an embargo because it’s POPULAR? Or because it’s RIGHT?
    5. Look, I like the idea of fresh approaches, even to dictatorial bullies…when the bully stops threatening.

    Responses (1) +
  • December 19, 2014 at 5:48pm

    This column is totally mislabeled. It’s not a CONSERVATIVE case being made, but a LIBERTARIAN one. And that’s before I get into all the straw men…
    Look, no one disputes that trade links people, and that the links will bring prosperity and that prosperity tends to make people resist authoritarianism, because the more independent you are, the less you need government. But that ALL assumes a baseline of free and fair trade.
    China, Vietnam, Russia, all of them NEEDED something we had, and were WILLING (by treaty, and by baby-steps-established practice) to trade more or less fairly for it, and so both parties grew in wealth in a simple Adam Smith sort of way.
    Castro’s game is NOT fair trade. It’s a fake at fair trade long enough for us to build his Digital Age infrastructure FOR him so he can nationalize and claim another victory over the useful capitalist idiots (read progressives).
    No one is arguing that we only should trade with lily-white-innocent leaders, as Tom Nichols implies by comparing Chine to Cuba. It’s not about morality. It’s about security of investment and reasonable assumptions of rationality–and I’m sorry, but China’s a yes, and Cuba’s a firm no.

  • [10] December 19, 2014 at 5:37pm

    Mojo-thanks for this thoughtful comment, and for your reply to biggle.
    Can I spell out what will happen? And offer a different way to frame what the purpose of the embargo is?
    1. NPR just did a story this morn (here: http://www.npr.org/blogs/alltechconsidered/2014/12/19/371779358/for-an-island-trapped-in-the-50s-an-instant-digital-revolution) about how something like 5% of Cubans have internet access. The Castros know their web-era infrastructure needs MAJOR investment. What a wonderful useful idiot we must have in the White House to offer normalization, leading to “trade”. The Castros’ plan is obviously to let us build it, then confiscate and nationalize. With ALL the other Communists with which we trade, we have SOME measure of assurance that they’d lose theirs if we lost ours, so we both trade fairly. We’ve built up confidence in baby steps over the years. Does anyone believe the Castro’s are actually interested in permanently liberalizing their markets? At all?
    2. The purpose of an embargo is NOT to harm the people, but to SHOW them that their LEADERS are unreasonably withholding NORMAL benefits from them. It exposes dictators for the heartless, thugs they are. We’re not withholding anything from the Cuban people–their stubborn, oppressive rulers are.

  • [3] December 16, 2014 at 9:27am

    Full ironic circle.
    Apple made their marketing bones with an anti-commie commercial using George Orwell’s 1984 imagery to smash the surveillance state, stand out from the crowd, and go your own direction. Standing against the evil totalitarian empire was the ultimate act of individualism, and Apple wanted to be associated with that individualism.
    Now they’re citing lyrics from a band named the Orwells to ask you to join the growing throng rejecting individual liberties by undermining their foundations and by reducing the concept of liberty itself into one limited to the pursuit of happiness, pledging allegiance only to oneself.
    Apple wants to be associated with the FEELING of revolution, not to any CONTENT of revolution that might be morally right, honorable, or praiseworthy. Just destruction of whatever status quo there is.
    Good thing a free capitalistic society has created the purchasing power for even clueless parents to put their disposable income where they choose. Maybe Smokey’s right that the spoiled brat 12-25 yo target audience will just get new toys. God bless America, and maybe they’ll use their new Mac Air to read stories on the Blaze…

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