Thursday, October 30, 2014

UC Berkeley Administration Displeased...

Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

News relese by the UC Berkeley:

Campus statement on commencement speaker
By Public Affairs, UC Berkeley
| October 29, 2014

UC Berkeley issued the following statement today (Wednesday, Oct. 29):

For many years it has been the responsibility of UC Berkeley undergraduates, through a committee known as the “Californians,” to select speakers for the university’s commencement ceremonies. In August the “Californians” chose Bill Maher as the speaker for the December commencement ceremony. However, last night the “Californians” reconvened without administration participation and came to a decision that the invitation should be rescinded.

The UC Berkeley administration cannot and will not accept this decision, which appears to have been based solely on Mr. Maher’s opinions and beliefs, which he conveyed through constitutionally protected speech. For that reason Chancellor Dirks has decided that the invitation will stand, and he looks forward to welcoming Mr. Maher to the Berkeley campus. It should be noted that this decision does not constitute an endorsement of any of Mr. Maher’s prior statements: indeed, the administration’s position on Mr. Maher’s opinions and perspectives is irrelevant in this context, since we fully respect and support his right to express them. More broadly, this university has not in the past and will not in the future shy away from hosting speakers who some deem provocative.

Finally, the unfortunate events surrounding the selection of this year’s winter commencement speaker demonstrate the need to develop a new policy for managing commencement ceremonies. The new process will ensure that these events are handled in a manner commensurate with our values and enduring commitment to free speech. We will be announcing the new policy as soon as it is ready.

Interesting. I guess it is unacceptable for the Californians to reconsider and change their minds and selection without the expressed approval of the university administration. Perhaps it's just that some speech (politically approved speech?)is more free than other forms of speech or expression. To be expected one must suppose. But it would admirable if the administration provided more details.

Via: Memeorandum

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Right Wing Shrink and His Un-American Ideas...

Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

The following is not America. It is not our founding principles and were it possible our Classical Liberal Founding Fathers would be rolling over in their graves.

Make NO mistake, Dr. Keith Ablow is a dangerous man. While free speech and exchange of ideas is a everyone's right we can only hope rational networks and rational people will soundly denounce this nitwit and his ideas.

TPM - Conservative psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow, the biggest race-hustler on Fox News, issued a fatwa on Tuesday in a column for the channel's website calling for "an American jihad" and "war or struggle against unbelievers."

"An American jihad would embrace the correct belief that if every nation on earth were governed by freely elected leaders and by our Constitution, the world would be a far better place," the Fox contributor wrote.

Ablow's American Caliphate would wipe out the "psychological plague" brought on by the reign of Barack Obama, from the President's "apology tour" onward.

The screed demanded that America pressure countries, including allies such as Germany, Sweden and Italy, to "adopt laws similar to our own." Ablow even suggested U.S. politicians obtain dual citizenship so they may run for office in other nations.

"We might even fund our leaders' campaigns for office in these other nations," he wrote.

Ablow admitted that you can't have a crusade without war: "We would accept the fact that an American jihad could mean boots on the ground in many places in the world where human rights are being denigrated and horrors are unfolding," he wrote.

"[W]e have a God-given right to intervene," he added.

Ablow appeared on "Fox & Friends" on Wednesday morning to further discuss his proposal for "jihad."

"I looked it up, to make sure I was being consistent with the spirit of the word, which is a struggle against nonbelievers," he told co-host Steve Doocey.

"We need to again embrace the fact that we have Manifest Destiny as this country, as Americans," Ablow said, "to not only remain American — fundamentally, in our own national character — but to spread our national character to other nations."

Co-host Brian Kilmeade thanked Ablow for the interview and said the idea deserves to be discussed.

Ablow smiled. "What's to discuss?"

View the video HERE.

Dangerous indeed.

Via: Memeorandum

Where is Affordable Housing Most Prevalent...

Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Why Middle-Class Americans Can't Afford to Live in Liberal Cities

Blue America has a problem: Even after adjusting for income, left-leaning metros tend to have worse income inequality and less affordable housing.

Excerpt from the article linked above, "Even after adjusting for differences of income, liberal markets tend to have higher income inequality and worse affordability,” Kolko said.

Kolko's theory isn't an outlier. There is a deep literature tying liberal residents to illiberal housing policies that create affordability crunches for the middle class. In 2010, UCLA economist Matthew Kahn published a study of California cities, which found that liberal metros issued fewer new housing permits. The correlation held over time: As California cities became more liberal, he said, they built fewer homes.

"All homeowners have an incentive to stop new housing," Kahn told me, "because if developers build too many homes, prices fall, and housing is many families' main asset. But in cities with many Democrats and Green Party members, environmental concerns might also be a factor. The movement might be too eager to preserve the past."

Complete article BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

How Will the MILLENNIALS Vote in 2014 Midterm Election...

Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Harvard University poll shows slightly more than half MILLENNIALS favor republicans in 2014.


In contrast to 2010, Millennials reporting they will “definitely” vote in November
prefer Republican-led Congress by slim four-point margin

Cambridge, MA – A new national poll of America’s 18- to 29- year-olds by Harvard’s Institute of Politics (IOP), located at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, finds slightly more than half (51%) of young Americans who say they will “definitely be voting” in November prefer a Republican-run Congress with 47 percent favoring Democrat control – a significant departure from IOP polling findings before the last midterm elections (Sept. 2010 – 55%: prefer Democrat control; 43%: prefer Republican control). The cohort – 26% of whom report they will “definitely” vote in the midterms – appear up-for-grabs to both political parties and could be a critical swing vote in many races in November.

The IOP’s newest poll results – its 26th major release since 2000 – also show race and ethnicity continue to be a strong predictor of political attitudes.

“The IOP’s fall polling shows that young Americans care deeply about their country and are politically up-for-grabs,” said Harvard Institute of Politics Director Maggie Williams. “Millennials could be a critical swing vote. Candidates for office: ignore millennial voters at your peril."

"While Democrats have lost ground among members of America's largest generation, millennial views of Republicans in Congress are even less positive," said Harvard Institute of Politics Polling Director John Della Volpe. "Both parties should re-introduce themselves to young voters, empower them and seek their participation in the upcoming 2016 campaign and beyond."


In Contrast to Four Years Ago, Slightly More Than Half of “Likely” Young Voters Prefer a Republican-controlled Congress.

President Obama’s Job Approval Rating Decreases, Nears Low-Water mark.

Deep Political Divisions Harden Along Racial Lines.

Millennial Interest in Midterm Voting Similar to 2010 Levels; Conservatives Seem More Enthusiastic.

Hispanic Support for President Obama is Weakening.

Concerns Over Terrorism Exist, as Support is Seen for Expanded U.S. Campaign Against ISIS.

Social Networking Preferences Vary by Race and Ethnicity.

Get the full report BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

USA and Israeli Relations Fraying...

by:Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

America's relationship with Israel has always stood on solid bedrock. Our relationship with the state of Israel has insured it's survival in a hostile and predominately Muslim region. Most states in the region would prefer if Israel simply were vaporized.

Standing strong in support of Israel also insured we had a strong (strength built with American military hardware) ally in the region. While there have been ups and downs as there always is in relationships between allies from time to time the present relationship between the Obama administration and the Netanyahu administration is the worst USA/Israeli relations have ever been.

This certainly does not bode well for Israel and may, over the long run, have undesirable consequences for the USA if differences are not ironed out and the relationship improved. Pressure being put on Israel by the Obama administration over the West Bank settlements and the "Palestinians" may be warranted, but given the constant threat Israel faces from those who refuse to recognize her right to exist and those who desire her destruction gives weight to Netanyahu's positions.

A perspective from left leaning The Atlantic. Worth contemplating while recognizing that neither Obama or Netanyahu are completely right nor totally at fault for the icy relationship.

The Obama administration's anger is "red-hot" over Israel's settlement policies, and the Netanyahu government openly expresses contempt for Obama's understanding of the Middle East. Profound changes in the relationship may be coming.

The other day I was talking to a senior Obama administration official about the foreign leader who seems to frustrate the White House and the State Department the most. “The thing about Bibi is, he’s a chickenshit,” this official said, referring to the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, by his nickname.

This comment is representative of the gloves-off manner in which American and Israeli officials now talk about each other behind closed doors, and is yet another sign that relations between the Obama and Netanyahu governments have moved toward a full-blown crisis. The relationship between these two administrations— dual guarantors of the putatively “unbreakable” bond between the U.S. and Israel—is now the worst it's ever been, and it stands to get significantly worse after the November midterm elections. By next year, the Obama administration may actually withdraw diplomatic cover for Israel at the United Nations, but even before that, both sides are expecting a showdown over Iran, should an agreement be reached about the future of its nuclear program.

The fault for this breakdown in relations can be assigned in good part to the junior partner in the relationship, Netanyahu, and in particular, to the behavior of his cabinet. Netanyahu has told several people I’ve spoken to in recent days that he has “written off” the Obama administration, and plans to speak directly to Congress and to the American people should an Iran nuclear deal be reached. For their part, Obama administration officials express, in the words of one official, a “red-hot anger” at Netanyahu for pursuing settlement policies on the West Bank, and building policies in Jerusalem, that they believe have fatally undermined Secretary of State John Kerry’s peace process.

Over the years, Obama administration officials have described Netanyahu to me as recalcitrant, myopic, reactionary, obtuse, blustering, pompous, and “Aspergery.” (These are verbatim descriptions; I keep a running list.) But I had not previously heard Netanyahu described as a “chickenshit.” I thought I appreciated the implication of this description, but it turns out I didn’t have a full understanding. From time to time, current and former administration officials have described Netanyahu as a national leader who acts as though he is mayor of Jerusalem, which is to say, a no-vision small-timer who worries mainly about pleasing the hardest core of his political constituency. (President Obama, in interviews with me, has alluded to Netanyahu’s lack of political courage.)

“The good thing about Netanyahu is that he’s scared to launch wars,” the official said, expanding the definition of what a chickenshit Israeli prime minister looks like. “The bad thing about him is that he won’t do anything to reach an accommodation with the Palestinians or with the Sunni Arab states. The only thing he’s interested in is protecting himself from political defeat. He’s not [Yitzhak] Rabin, he’s not [Ariel] Sharon, he’s certainly no [Menachem] Begin. He’s got no guts.”

I ran this notion by another senior official who deals with the Israel file regularly. This official agreed that Netanyahu is a “chickenshit” on matters related to the comatose peace process, but added that he’s also a “coward” on the issue of Iran’s nuclear threat. ...

Maybe one day the realization will strike usb and the rest of the world the Palestinian "government"ghas no interest in peace nor do the other antagonists aligned against them.


Via: Memeorandum

Quotes About Wisdom...

“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.”
― Socrates

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”
― Aristotle

“It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”
― Aristotle, Metaphysics

“The unexamined life is not worth living.”
― Socrates

“Any fool can know. The point is to understand.”
― Albert Einstein

“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”
― Albert Einstein

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”
― Mark Twain

“I'm not young enough to know everything.”
― J.M. Barrie

“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. If you realize that you have enough, you are truly rich.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

“Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens”
― Jimi Hendrix

“Don't Gain The World & Lose Your Soul, Wisdom Is Better Than Silver Or Gold.”
― Bob Marley

“The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his enemies but also to hate his friends.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

“The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.”
― Albert Einstein

“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”
― Bruce Lee

Monday, October 27, 2014

Hillary's Misspeak... Or Was It it?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Hillary Clinton said the following.

“Don’t let anybody tell you that it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs.”

Then later.

“Trickle down economics has failed. I short-handed this point the other day, so let me be absolutely clear about what I’ve been saying for a couple of decades,” she said. “Our economy grows when businesses and entrepreneurs create good-paying jobs here in America and workers and families are empowered to build from the bottom up and the middle out — not when we hand out tax breaks for corporations that outsource jobs or stash their profits overseas.”

Are they one in the same, with the second simply clarification of the first? What is is the logical extension with the tying of the two together? Is she suggesting something without saying it outright?

Answers to the above questions will remain obscure, H. Clinton is a politician and politicians never seem to speak with clarity and steely consistency. And we wonder why the people of our nation have little confidence in it's leaders.

Which begs the question, is it the leaders and the politicians or is it the people who elect them, often without understanding the complexity of issues facing the nation? And, we often continue to elect those who fail to act in the best interests of their constituency or the nation.

Via: Memeorandum

Boston Globe Endorses Charlie Baker for Governor of Massachusetts...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Massachusetts has two individuals both qualified to be Governor of the state. Charlie Baker, the republican candidate and Martha Coakley, the democratic candidate. The race has been an interesting one and slowly Baker has closed the gap and pulled ahead of Coakley. Good news, but the best news is the Boston Globe has thrown it's endorsement behind Charlie Baker giving his candidacy the weight of the highly respected news publication. So, it's on to November 4th and with hard work down the home stretch and a bit of good luck Massachusetts will have Governor Baker on Beacon Hill steering the state to even bigger and better things. Excerpt from the Boston Globe follows.

Effective activist government isn’t built on good intentions. To provide consistently good results, especially for the state’s most vulnerable and troubled residents, agencies need to focus on outcomes, learn from their errors, and preserve and replicate approaches that succeed. Baker, a former health care executive, has made a career of doing just that. During this campaign, he has focused principally on making state government work better. The emphasis is warranted. And in that spirit, the Globe endorses Charlie Baker for governor.

Baker splits from the national Republican Party on social issues such as abortion rights and same-sex marriage. The commitment he expresses to avoid raising taxes shouldn’t be mistaken for an allergy to the public sector; Baker spent the formative years of his career deep in the weeds of government — first as secretary of health and human services under Governor William Weld and then secretary of administration and finance under Weld and Governor Paul Cellucci. In those years, he learned how agencies work (or don’t) and how budgets are balanced (or not).

Read the full story BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Party and Ideology Aside Senator Rand Paul Makes Valid Arguments...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

This fiscal conservative and social libertarian certainly does not agree with or advocate all of Senator Rand Paul's positions. Nor is it clear at this point the Senator from Kentucky has the attributes to eventually assume and execute the duties of the presidency of the United States of America. However, the points the Senator makes in the following video with respect military action and how our nation has reacted to current world events, especially in light of our Constitution, are worth serious consideration. Our world has changed and continues to change at an ever accelerating pace.

With the above in mind can someone, anyone, point out errors in Senator Rand Paul's speech? If so what are they and why do you believe they are errors in judgment?

Full text of the Senator's speech and be found BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Cross posted @ THE SWASH ZONE.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Could Non Citizens Determine the Mid Term Election?...

How many non-citizens participate in U.S. elections? More than 14 percent of non-citizens in both the 2008 and 2010 samples indicated that they were registered to vote. Furthermore, some of these non-citizens voted. Our best guess, based upon extrapolations from the portion of the sample with a verified vote, is that 6.4 percent of non-citizens voted in 2008 and 2.2 percent of non-citizens voted in 2010.

Above from The Washington Post's Monkey Cage. Could it be true?

Certainly a 2016 Possibility...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Ya just have to kind of like this guy. If for no other reason than he bucks the most conservative fringe element in the republican party and he speaks the truth about FOX News and it's incessant negativity. From TPM...

No stranger to taking on his party's most conservative voters, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) is now calling out the bastion of conservative media.

CNN's Peter Hamby reported that during a speech Thursday night at a South Carolina fundraiser, Bush "singled out Fox News" while expressing "annoyance with the polarizing fights and constant negativity of the political news media."

Bush reportedly said that he only watches Fox "for a few minutes a day before switching over to SportsCenter."

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) has been similarly critical of Fox, but the remarks from Bush are notable given how strongly he broke from conservatives on immigration earlier this year.

And with the Republican National Committee's stringent controls over the party's 2016 primary debates, Bush, a possible presidential candidate, might have made an enemy of one of the few media outlets that is allowed to moderate.

It's too bad the republican party members have allowed the party to be hijacked and controlled by it's more extremely conservative element. Now with FOX being zinged by Jeb it is quite probable the deck will be heavily stacked against him if he decides to throw his hat in the ring in 2016.

Via: Memeorandum

Thursday, October 23, 2014

FreeThinke My Arse...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

The following is from the weblog known as FreeThinke, although his site is without doubt void of free thought. FreeThinke is as intolerant and closed minded as any blogger publishing. He sees his world slipping away and it frightens him so he feels he must demand agreement with his cherished paradigms. He can brook no disagreement with his views. Those who question him, or his right wing commenter’s comments, no matter how mildly, causes him to lash out and react as you see below. Yet he is often not above allowing his fringe right wing visitors to taught, belittle, slander, and demean the positions of those he disagrees with.

I post this not as a defense of myself for there is nothing to defend. Rather to point out the what the Tea Party and the fringe right has morphed into. One time a proud conservative and Republican I can honestly say the party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Calvin Coolidge, Gerald Ford, and even Ronald Reagan has morphed into something almost unrecognizable.

All anyone can do is pity the fool(s).

FreeThinke said... 2:24 PM 10/23/14

I resent being forced to restate this demand, but I see I have no choice:

In the recent past I have ordered Les Carpenter otherwise known as "RN" to STAY AWAY from this blog. I REPEAT that order NOW:

GET OUT and STAY OUT, LES. YOU ARE NOT WANTED HERE. From now on -- no matter how "rational"you may appear at any given moment, your comments will be summarily REMOVED without comment.

Please don't try to respond. I will neither read nor consider anything you might have to say from now on.

This is MY property, so you must abide by MY rules.

The same goes for anyone who tries to make further reference to you, "RN," Shaw, or anyone else who represents nothing but antagonism and stupidity.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

WHO Knew?...

Oh My!!! From The American Conservative we now find out that our Socialist, Marxian, Commie, Muslim President is more like a Nixon Republican than a Marxist Commie? S*it, what are those Patriotic Tea Party folks and the rest of the right wing going to do now?. Probably ignore the evidence as they usually do and barrel ahead as they look for more scandals to imagine.

Back in 2008, Boston University professor Andrew Bacevich wrote an article for this magazine making a conservative case for Barack Obama. While much of it was based on disgust with the warmongering and budgetary profligacy of the Republican Party under George W. Bush, which he expected to continue under 2008 Republican nominee Sen. John McCain, Bacevich thought Obama at least represented hope for ending the Iraq War and shrinking the national-security state.

I wrote a piece for the New Republic soon afterward about the Obamacon phenomenon—prominent conservatives and Republicans who were openly supporting Obama. Many saw in him a classic conservative temperament: someone who avoided lofty rhetoric, an ambitious agenda, and a Utopian vision that would conflict with human nature, real-world barriers to radical reform, and the American system of government.

Among the Obamacons were Ken Duberstein, Ronald Reagan’s chief of staff; Charles Fried, Reagan’s solicitor general; Ken Adelman, director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency for Reagan; Jeffrey Hart, longtime senior editor of National Review; Colin Powell, Reagan’s national security adviser and secretary of state for George W. Bush; and Scott McClellan, Bush’s press secretary. There were many others as well.

According to exit polls in 2008, Obama ended up with 20 percent of the conservative vote. Even in 2012, after four years of relentless conservative attacks, he still got 17 percent of the conservative vote, with 11 percent of Tea Party supporters saying they cast their ballots for Obama.

They were not wrong. In my opinion, Obama has governed as a moderate conservative—essentially as what used to be called a liberal Republican before all such people disappeared from the GOP. He has been conservative to exactly the same degree that Richard Nixon basically governed as a moderate liberal, something no conservative would deny today. (Ultra-leftist Noam Chomsky recently called Nixon “the last liberal president.”)

Here’s the proof: BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

2014 Mid Term Elections to Cost Almost a Whopping 4 Billion Dollars...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

If one wants to know the problem with our political system they need look no further than the money. has pegged the cost of the upcoming mid term elections at almost four billion dollars. Given the gridlock, political ineptitude, lack of serious statesmanship (predominately on the art of republicans), and the generally dismal state of the nation that has dogged us for the last six years and more shouldn't this colossal waste of resources be questioned?

Almost $4 billion will be spent for this year’s midterm election, the Center for Responsive Politics is projecting. That figure makes this year’s election by far the most expensive midterm ever. The candidates and parties alone will combine to spend about $2.7 billion, while outside groups will likely spend close to $900 million on their own — a figure that veers close to the $1.3 billion spent by outside groups in 2012, when the hyper-expensive presidential race was fueling the fire.

By the end of the battle, when totals for every category are added together, Team Red will outspend Team Blue, CRP projects. GOP and conservative-leaning candidates, party committees and outside groups will spend at least $1.92 billion, compared to at least $1.76 billion their rivals on the Democratic and liberal-leaning side will spend.


As with the 2012 cycle, the explosion in outside money is a dominant theme of this election’s spending story. So far, at least $663.3 million has been spent by outside groups like super PACs and 527s (a figure that is current within the last 48 hours), but CRP’s projections based on the pattern in the 2012 cycle indicate that at least another $233.5 million remains to be spent in the 12 days before Nov. 4; that’s a rate of $19.4 million a day.

Overall, liberal outside groups — including 527s — have spent $308.9 million so far, while conservative groups have spent $327.1 million. CRP is projecting that by Election Day, that dynamic will have flipped, with liberal outside groups slightly outspending conservative outside groups, $433 million to $424 million.

Those figures, however, come with a major caveat. Our estimate is based on spending disclosed to the FEC. Again, certain ads don’t have to be reported, and it’s difficult to get a fix on exactly how much they cost. ...

Overall, it’s likely that at least $100 million in spending is not being counted, and that money leans distinctly to the right, records filed with the Federal Communications Commission indicate. If that’s an accurate estimate, any advantage the liberal outside spending groups have over conservative ones will be washed away by Election Day.


Via: Memeorandum

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Ron Paul Takes the Rational Road While Son Rand Takes the Hysteria Highway...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Again, as he so often is on many issues, Ron Paul is on the rational side of the Ebola air travel ban hysteria. He opposes a ban on travel to and from Africa while his more mainstream right wing son Senator Rand Paul supports a ban. Of course Ron Paul is right in his assessment that the current hysteria is largely (if not completely) driven by political motivations.

POLITICO - Ron Paul on Monday said that calls for a ban on travel from West African countries affected by Ebola are primarily “politically motivated” — just days after his son Sen. Rand Paul announced his support for one.

Appearing on Newsmax TV’s “America’s Forum” with former Arizona Republican Rep. J.D. Hayworth, Ron Paul said he wouldn’t support a travel ban. “Right now, I would say a travel ban is politically motivated more than something done for medical purposes,” the former Texas congressman and three-time presidential candidate told Hayworth.

Rand Paul, the Kentucky senator openly considering a 2016 presidential bid, said on a radio show last week that a temporary travel ban is “only reasonable,” BuzzFeed noted Monday.

Many lawmakers and elected officials, mostly Republicans, have called for the Obama administration to ban travel to the U.S. from West Africa, the region where Ebola is having the heaviest impact. On Monday, GOP Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida announced he would be introducing legislation to create a temporary ban on new visas from the affected West African countries. The White House and many public health experts have pushed back against a ban, saying it would be ineffective and potentially harmful and make it more difficult to root out the disease for good.

Ron Paul, a favorite within the libertarian community, said the death of Thomas Eric Duncan, who died earlier in October in the U.S. after apparently contracting Ebola in Liberia, was not enough to justify a travel ban. “We’re talking about one person that’s died, and we want to close down the world travel system, and yet right now, it doesn’t look anything like that kind of a problem,” he said. He also noted that the expected U.S. death toll for influenza is far higher than that for Ebola.

Complete story BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Cruz(in) the BS Highway Without a Cogent or Rational Thought to Offer...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Okay, I'll say it straight out. If this is considered intellectual thought or intellectual honesty by the republican party brass it is only a matter of time before the party is dead. Because this is pure intellectual dishonesty and political BS.


Via: Memeorandum

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Criticism Of Obama's Pick To Serve As Ebola Czar Has Begun...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Video via You Tube:
WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — President Barack Obama on Friday turned to a trusted adviser to lead the nation’s Ebola response as efforts to clamp down on any possible route of infection from three Texas cases expanded, reaching a cruise ship at sea and multiple airline flights.

Facing renewed criticism of his handling of the Ebola risk, Obama will make Ron Klain, a former chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden, his point man on fighting Ebola at home and in West Africa. Klain will report to national security adviser Susan Rice and to homeland security adviser Lisa Monaco, the White House said.

Klain does not have a medical or a health care background.

Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md., slammed the decision on Twitter.

“Worst ebola epidemic in world history and Pres. Obama puts a government bureaucrat with no healthcare experience in charge. Is he serious?” Harris tweeted.

Hold it right here. Klain's function as I understand it will be managerial and administrative, to coordinate efforts and manage responses in the most efficient, productive, and effective manner. He brings to the table the strengths to make important and tough decision, after listening to and considering input from the HEALTH CARE PROFFESIONALS, LIKE REASEARCH SCIENTSTS AND DOCTORS IN THE FELD. Sometimes there is just no understanding individuals like Harris.

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., praised Obama’s decision.

“I’ve known Ron Klain for over twenty years. He is smart, aggressive, and levelheaded; exactly the qualities we need in a czar to steer our response to Ebola. He is an excellent choice,” Schumer told CBS News in a statement.

Full story BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Cliven Bundt In Campaign Ad,,,

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Cliven Bundy, that rootin tootin Nevada rancher is back in the news again.

Excerpt from Mediaite - “I know black folks have a had a hard time with slavery and you know, the government was in on it. And the government’s in on it again,” Bundy says as spaghetti western music plays in the background. “I worked my whole life without mistreating anybody. A man ought to be able to express himself without being called names.”

In case you don’t recall, it was Bundy who suggested that “the Negro” was “better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things.”

Video via You Tube:

I do like Kamau Bakari, what little he said sounds damn reasonable. Bundy, I guess he needs to make up his mind.

Full article BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Friday, October 17, 2014

Republican Racial Stereotyping, or Legitimate Concern?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

This ad from the National Republican Campaign Committee used the case of convicted killer Nikko Jenkins to show alleged negligence by Democrat Brad Ashford, who is running against Rep. Terry Lee (R) in Nebraska's 2nd district. (NRCC via YouTube)
The Washington Post (excerpt) - The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee blasted the ad on Friday afternoon, accusing the ad of "race-baiting" and demanding that it be taken down.

“Republicans should be ashamed that they have resorted to divisive rhetoric, playing up racial stereotypes and fear-mongering to save their sinking candidate," said DCCC Deputy National Press Secretary Ashley Lewis.

Full story BELOW THE FOLD.

Are the democrats allegations of racial stereotyping grounded in reality or is the ad really addressing legitimate concerns over what appears to be a weak law and the democratic candidate that supports the "good time" law.

Obviously an argument can be made both ways and to a degree both arguments have merit. Having said this, there certainly are better ways to demonstrate the argument against "the good time" law without running into a hornets nest.

It is most probable the ads intent is to demonstrate the weakness of the "good time" law, but really, republicans should have seen this coming. While not stated this ad certainly gave democrats the opportunity to claim racial stereotyping or "race baiting" by the republicans.

Sometimes it makes a great deal of sense to be aware of the possible implications of an act and find a better more appropriate way to make the point.

Unless maybe you are aware and just don't care.

Via: Memeorandum

Ebola - The Obama Response...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

President Obama has responded to criticism of his handling of the Ebola crisis by appointing a Ebola Czar. We will now wait and observe public reaction (especially republican politicians and pundits) to the President's decision to create another Czar.

Washington (CNN) -- President Barack Obama will appoint Ron Klain his "Ebola czar," knowledgeable sources tell CNN.

The president on Thursday signaled his openness to the idea to have one individual coordinating the entire federal response to any threat of an outbreak in the United States.

"It may make sense for us to have one person ... so that after this initial surge of activity, we can have a more regular process just to make sure that we're crossing all the T's and dotting all the I's going forward," Obama said.

The administration has been criticized for its response to the incidents of Ebola in the United States, in terms of how prepared hospitals have been for potential Ebola patients and also how prepared healthcare workers were in terms of their personal protective gear. Some lawmakers have called for a travel ban on individuals coming from West Africa where the outbreak is most serious but the administration has so far not embraced that idea.

Klain is highly regarded at the White House as a good manager with excellent relationships both in the administration and on Capitol Hill. His supervision of the allocation of funds in the stimulus act -- at the time and incredible and complicated government undertaking -- is respected in Washington. He does not have any extensive background in health care but the job is regarded as a managerial challenge.

"He's strong. He's very tough," said CNN Political analyst David Gergen. "It's important in this job to be a coordinator; you have to knock heads together. He's tough enough to do that."

Gergen said that while Klain doesn't have a health care background, he does have both domestic policy and foreign policy assignments on his portfolio and both will come into play as the administration deals with Ebola.


Via: Memeorandum

Ebola Hysteria Hits Syracuse University...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

SYRACUSE, NY (October 16, 2014) – Three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Michel du Cille of The Washington Post, who returned from covering the Ebola crisis in Liberia 21 days ago and who is symptom free, was asked by Syracuse University officials today not to come to campus where he was scheduled to participate in a journalism program.

"I just got off the phone with the Dean [Lorraine Branham], and I am pissed off," du Cille told News Photographer magazine this afternoon. "I am disappointed in the level of journalism at Syracuse, and I am angry that they missed a great teaching opportunity. Instead they have decided to jump in with the mass hysteria."

Full article BELOW THE FOLD.

Yep, America approaching full hysteria mode. Ebola, which is not a airborne virus is transmitted in humans through close body contact, see below.


It is thought that fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are natural Ebola virus hosts. Ebola is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines found ill or dead or in the rainforest.

Ebola then spreads through human-to-human transmission via direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, and with surfaces and materials (e.g. bedding, clothing) contaminated with these fluids.

Health-care workers have frequently been infected while treating patients with suspected or confirmed EVD. This has occurred through close contact with patients when infection control precautions are not strictly practiced.

Burial ceremonies in which mourners have direct contact with the body of the deceased person can also play a role in the transmission of Ebola.

People remain infectious as long as their blood and body fluids, including semen and breast milk, contain the virus. Men who have recovered from the disease can still transmit the virus through their semen for up to 7 weeks after recovery from illness.

More on Ebola at Progressive Eruptions.

Via: Memeorandum

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Democratic Party Seen In Most Negative Light In 30 Years...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

New poll just out shows democrats at a 30 year low in favorability ratings. 51 percent of Americans now view democrats (the blue team) unfavorably while 39% view them favorably.

Americans still view democrats more favorably than republicans (the red team)who have a 56% unfavorable rating and a 33% favorable rating.

It comes as no surprise that both blue team and red team are viewed unfavorably. American politics has become so polarized, so fringe driven it is no wonder the American people see politicians of both parties in such poor light. Americans view their government in even lower esteem. It is certainly not complicated to understand why.

The Washington Post - The Democratic Party is held in worse regard than at any point in the past 30 years, according to a new poll.

The poll, from the Washington Post and ABC News, shows 39 percent of Americans now have a favorable impression of the blue team, while 51 percent have an unfavorable impression. Both are new records.

Through it all, of course, Democrats continue to have a better image than their GOP counterparts, whose favorable/unfavorable split with the American people is currently 33/56.

But the Democrats' drop is particularly notable given they have never polled below a 46 percent favorable rating. (The data go back to 1984, including Gallup polls in the 1990s and CBS/New York Times polls in the 1980s.) That previous low for Democrats was registered during the 2013 government shutdown, when both parties and Congress hit what at the time was a new low.

The last time the Washington Post and ABC polled the Democratic Party, in August, 49 percent had a positive image of the party. Since then, its image his declined by 17 points among African Americans (from 82 percent favorable to 65 percent) and by 13 points among women (from 54 percent to 41 percent). As it happens, these are two of the most valuable Democratic-leaning constituencies that the party hopes will vote in high numbers in the Nov. 4 midterms.

As mentioned above, Democrats remain nominally more popular than the GOP. But the six-point gap in their favorable ratings has rarely been that small in recent years.

With the mid term elections looming large the blue team must e quite nervous. Is it possible cone January 2015 the republicans could have both houses of Congress? Brace yourselves for the next two years, it should be very interesting and likely maddening for most Americans.

Full article and graph BELOW THE FOLD

Via: Memeorandum


Washington Post - Heading into the final weeks of the midterm campaign, the political landscape continues to tilt in favor of the Republican Party, with President Obama’s overall approval rating at the lowest level of his presidency and GOP voters signaling greater likelihood than Democrats that they will cast ballots, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll .

Americans look to November and beyond with dissatisfaction about the state of the country and the political leadership in Washington. Two in three say the country is seriously off-track, and more than 6 in 10 say that neither the president nor the Republican contingent in Congress has a clear plan for governing (emphasis mine).

Find the complete article BELOW TH FOLD,

Via: Memeorandum

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Quips From the Far Right...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Where do these "people" come from? Either they worked their way out of some prehistoric slime of they are just hateful, ignorant, and...

Rep. Steve Stockman yesterday chatted with End Times broadcaster Rick Wiles, telling the “Trunews” host that President Obama may be delaying the government response to the Ebola epidemic because he wants the virus to spread. Once it spreads, Stockman argued, Obama will use the Ebola outbreak as a justification to declare emergency powers.

For the interested here is the rest of the story.

Via: Memeorandum

Monday, October 13, 2014

Has There Ever Been a Greater Truth?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

"The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected." by G.K.Chesterton born 1884 died 1936

Such is the truth.

Nowhere is this more evident than on conservative web logs such as FreeThinke (a true misnomer), where commentary contrary to his line of thinking is deleted post haste, Who's Your Daddy" where irrational reactionary sock puppets run rampant, and to a lesser degree Always on Watch where occasionally reasoned discourse can be found.

Conservatives are truly their own worst enemy. When suppressing opposing views are commonplace, and creating alternate realities become the norm, you can be sure it is indicative of a dying poliotical ideology. Web logs such as those named above are the dying whimpers of a movement that fails to recognize what their own rational self interest really are.

Hat tip goes to my Dad, a truly independent thinking conservative that gets it.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Does President Obama Have Enough Power?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA Purveyor of Truth

My previous post, "What Obama Needs Is More Power...?", was all about the gushing of Gwyneth Paltrow about how wonderful it would be to give the President the power to get all the things he wants to accomplish accomplished. For the rational thinkers amongst us this is precisely what they don't want.

Our desire to limit the power of the president and the executive branch of government is a sound and admirable pursuit. It's not personal, it has absolutely nothing to do with race or the heritage of a specific individual, nor is it ideologically driven. Rather it is about the desire the accumulation of power in the hands of one individual r branch of government. Checks and balances are every bit as important today as they were when our founders instituted a government based on checks and balances.

One of this sites regular visitors, Dervish Sanders , and resident progressive irritant left the comment below in response to my previous post. His comment while perhaps being as much off the mark as on nevertheless is deserving of further discussion and debate.

It isn't about "power", it's about others in Congress working with instead of against the president. Obama was elected TWICE, after all. But so far a lot of the Change the president promised has been obstructed.

How I would rephrase what she said...

I think it would be wonderful if the voters selected representatives willing to work with the president so that the Change we all (the majority that voted for Obama) wanted could be put into action... as opposed to yet more obstruction.

First, it is about power. One of the flaws of our current two party system is it creates the winner take all mentality that in fact feeds into the desire to concentrate power in the hands one or the other of the major party structures. Given our diverse population, combined with the reality there is a multitude of political thought at play, doesn't it makes sense for Americans to seat multiple parties in congress thus forcing the situation that requires a coalition to form a "ruling" government? It certainly would result in the people "being heard." But I digress.

As for the rephrasing. It is true the president won the popular vote and over 50 percent of the states in both 2008 and 2012. Yet in 2010 the people chose to elect a republican Congress and retain it in 2012. If in fact the people of the nation were desirous of implementing all of the President's policy desires why would they elect in majority to Congress representatives opposed to the Presidents policy initiatives? Is it because they realized the need of a conservative moderating force to balance the more progressive initiatives of the President they elected?

Further, is it really obstruction to vote in the manner the majority of your constituencies would have you vote? Certainly a conundrum when the national political atmosphere is as overheated as it is in America today? Our winner take all mentality of 2008, 2010, 2012,and likely 2016 precludes any possibility of arriving at that reasonable, measured, rational, and workable compromise that will in fact make for a stronger and better America. Hence my argument for a multi party government that would require a coalition to form a ruling government. It would require compromise and it would more accurately represent American interests IMNHO.

Those are my thoughts on Dervish Sanders comment. Feel free to leave yours.

Friday, October 10, 2014

What Obama Needs Is More Power...?

by: Les Carpenter
rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

At a recent democratic fundraiser attended by the President a blithely partisan Gwyneth Paltrow uttered the folowing.

Paltrow noted the approaching Nov. 4 midterm elections in which Democratic control of the Senate is at risk. She called it a "critical time" for Democrats and seemed to urge everyone to vote. "It would be wonderful if we were able to give this man all of the power that he needs to pass the things that he needs to pass," she said.

What is troubling is specifically this. It would be wonderful if we were able to give this man all of the power that he needs to pass the things that he needs to pass.

No Gwyneth, it would not be wonderful to give this man or any man, regardless of ideology or party affiliation "all the power he needs to pass the things that he (feels he) needs to pass. Hell, why not just call him King Obama and abandon the Constitution and the concept of being governed by the rule of law. It is clearly obvious that Paltrow, and others like her no danger in one party rule.

From here's the rest of the gushing story.

LOS ANGELES(AP) - Gwyneth Paltrow has won numerous awards for her acting, but speaking apparently came with some difficulty Thursday with President Barack Obama standing beside her.

"You're so handsome that I can't speak properly," the actress, singer and food writer gushed after introducing Obama to several hundred supporters seated on white fold-out chairs in the lush backyard of her home in the movie star haven of Brentwood, a neighborhood in Los Angeles.

In a not-so-subtle reference to her "conscious uncoupling" earlier this year from husband Chris Martin, Paltrow said it was a "profound honor" to have Obama in the home she shares with Apple and Moses, her two children with the Coldplay lead vocalist.

Paltrow hosted a reception and dinner benefiting the Democratic Party that marked the start of a three-day, California fundraising swing for Obama. He is scheduled to attend three other Democratic National Committee fundraisers in Los Angeles and San Francisco before returning to Washington on Saturday.

Tickets to the reception at Paltrow's home started at $1,000, while dinner tickets cost a minimum of $15,000.

Actors Julia Roberts and Bradley Whitford were among those attending.

In a brief introduction punctuated by "ums," Paltrow declared herself to be one of Obama's biggest fans and said he's an "incredible role model."

"I am one of your biggest fans, if not the biggest, and have been since the inception of your campaign," she said, adding that she thinks both of his campaigns and his presidency will be one of the most important and most scrutinized of all time.

Paltrow noted the approaching Nov. 4 midterm elections in which Democratic control of the Senate is at risk. She called it a "critical time" for Democrats and seemed to urge everyone to vote. "It would be wonderful if we were able to give this man all of the power that he needs to pass the things that he needs to pass," she said.

She mentioned equal rights for women in the workplace, and investments in sustainable energy and "everything green" before commenting on Obama's looks.

"I'm taking her to the next event," Obama quipped when it was his turn to speak.

He also thanked Paltrow and her kids for "letting us crash your house."

Via: Memeorandum

Schlafly Believes Obama Intentionally Allowing People Infected With Ebola Into the USA...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

“Obama doesn’t want America to believe that we’re exceptional. He wants us to be just like everybody else, and if Africa is suffering from Ebola, we ought to join the group and be suffering from it, too. That’s his attitude.”

Above quote by Phyllis Schlafly. Have the followers of conservative politics really sunk this low? Or is this just the blathering of one old person locked into the paradigms of her lifetime? We hope she represents a steadily declining minority.

Full story can be found HERE.

Via: Memeorandum

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Police Mistake Teen Male for Burgler, Pepper Spray Him Inside His Home...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Spray first, ask questions later.

Honest mistake or racial profiling?

FUQUAY-VARINA, N.C. (WTVD) - It happened Monday afternoon on England Avenue in Fuquay-Varina.

Ricky and Stacy Tyler have fostered 18-year-old DeShawn Currie for about a year. The Tylers, their three young children and DeShawn moved to Fuquay-Varina in July. They said while they're still getting to know their neighbors, it's hurtful someone would assume DeShawn was a burglar just for going about his normal routine of walking home after school.

"He's my baby boy just as much as my other three children are," said Stacy.

She left the side door to their home unlocked Monday for DeShawn, who was coming home early from school.

You be the judge.

Find the rest of the report BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Have Only Biblically Correct Sex, Phil Robertson...

by; Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

So sayeth the "Duckman." Technically speaking he would be correct. A bit naïve but correct nonetheless.

I was a just wonderin, has there ever been such a time as this? ya know, before the "librul" invasion and the degenerate morality Mr., Robertson apparently believes it unleashed.

( – The Bible teaches that God made one man and one woman to come together and be married, a union through which they can procreate and “fill the Earth with offspring,” said Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson, who added that if the married couple are monogamous, “they can’t catch a sexually transmitted disease” and this “Biblically correct sex is safe.”

Robertson further said the reason why there are so many sex-related “debilitating diseases” affecting people in America and abroad is because many people “follow liberal orthodox opinion” and breed with “anything and anybody,” refusing to “live a life of restraint before God Almighty.”


In a sermon at the White’s Ferry Road Church in West Monroe, La., as part of Duck Commander Mission Sunday on Sept. 14, Phil Robertson, an elder at the church along with his oldest son Alan Robertson, began his talk by quoting from a Merriam Webster’s dictionary about political correctness.

“Political correctness, conforming to what is regarded orthodox liberal opinion in matters of – are you ready? – sexuality,” said Robertson, head of the family that stars in the popular Duck Dynasty reality-TV show on A&E. “The Bible said one man, one woman: that’s what [God] made to begin with. For this reason, we have a male and a female. For that reason, those two can come together and be married. And when they marry, what God has joined together, let man not separate.”

“Man marries a woman,” said Robertson. “They can procreate, fill the Earth with offspring – they need to stay together just like that. You know what those two will never have? They will never have a sexually transmitted disease. You know why? They keep their sex between

More interesting reading BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

A Majority of Americans Now View President Obama as a Failure...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Six years into the presidency of Barrack H. Obama and a majority of the American public view his tenure as one of failure. At east according to this IBD/TIPP survey. 53% of adults believe Obama is a failure while 41% still believe he has been a success. The presidents strongest support is found in the 18-24 year olds with 75% believing he has been a success. 54% of single women also se the President as a success.

One half of people residing in states won by Obama consider his presidency a failure and 59% of those age 24-44 consider him a failure as well.

Full report from THE HILL BELOW.

A clear majority of Americans describe President Obama's tenure as a "failure" according to a new poll released Monday.

The survey from IBD/TIPP indicates that 53 percent of adults in the United States now characterize Obama's presidency as a "failure," while 41 percent chalk it up as a success. Half of the people who live in states won by Obama see his tenure negatively, as do 59 percent of those aged 25-44 years old.

Some of the key groups remain solid in their support of the president, though. More than three-quarters of voters aged 18-24 see Obama's presidency as a success, as do 54 percent of single women.

By contrast, only 32 percent of married women describe Obama as a success while 58 percent of independents see him as a failure.
The survey also found that only 43 percent of U.S. adults say they would vote for Obama, who has been besieged by international crises, were a presidential election held today. Some 49 percent would favor 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

The slide in approval of the president seems to be primarily driven by concern over his economic record. While three in four Americans say they place a "high importance" on the economy and jobs when evaluating candidates, just 31 percent say Obama is doing a good job at growing the economy.

At a speech last week at Northwestern University, Obama looked to reverse those perceptions, arguing it was "indisputable that our economy is stronger today than it was when I took office." Obama said progress "has been hard, but it has been steady, and it is real."

Continue reading BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Monday, October 6, 2014

Senator Ted Cruz on the SCOTUS Refusal to Review State Laws Prohibiting Same Sex Marriages...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

WASHINGTON, DC -- U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, today issued the following statement regarding the Supreme Court’s decision to reject requests from five States to review state laws that prohibit same-sex marriage.

“The Supreme Court’s decision to let rulings by lower court judges stand that redefine marriage is both tragic and indefensible,” said Sen. Cruz. “By refusing to rule if the States can define marriage, the Supreme Court is abdicating its duty to uphold the Constitution. The fact that the Supreme Court Justices, without providing any explanation whatsoever, have permitted lower courts to strike down so many state marriage laws is astonishing.

“This is judicial activism at its worst. The Constitution entrusts state legislatures, elected by the People, to define marriage consistent with the values and mores of their citizens. Unelected judges should not be imposing their policy preferences to subvert the considered judgments of democratically elected legislatures.

“The Supreme Court is, de facto, applying an extremely broad interpretation to the 14th Amendment without saying a word – an action that is likely to have far-reaching consequences. Because of the Court’s decision today, 11 States will likely now be forced to legalize same-sex marriage: Virginia, Indiana, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Utah, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, Kansas, Colorado, and Wyoming. And this action paves the way for laws prohibiting same-sex marriage to be overturned in any state.

“It is beyond dispute that when the 14th Amendment was adopted 146 years ago, as a necessary post-Civil War era reform, it was not imagined to also mandate same-sex marriage, but that is what the Supreme Court is implying today. The Court is making the preposterous assumption that the People of the United States somehow silently redefined marriage in 1868 when they ratified the 14th Amendment.

“Nothing in the text, logic, structure, or original understanding of the 14th Amendment or any other constitutional provision authorizes judges to redefine marriage for the Nation. It is for the elected representatives of the People to make the laws of marriage, acting on the basis of their own constitutional authority, and protecting it, if necessary, from usurpation by the courts.

I am by no means a supporter of Senator Ted Cruz, R-TX and find most of his utterings to be somewhat like, well, Sam I am and green eggs and ham. But I find the reading of Senator Cruz's denunciation of the Supreme Courts decision to allow lower courts to define marriage to have legal merit. Broad interpretations are often as Cruz points out judicial activism as work. SCOTUS took the low road in not reviewing the request of 5 states to review their laws prohibiting same sex marriages in their states.

Having said the above, ethically and morally the lower courts made the right decision. I would like to believe the SCOTUS, had they chosen to hear the cases would have ruled the same. Human rights and basic tenet of the pursuit of happiness certainly should trump ignorance and the bigotry that is quite often born out of ignorance.

Continue reading BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Is President Obama Really a War Hawk?...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Senator Tim Kaine (D-Va)

Is it reasonable to argue that the President is, in fact a war hawk? Given his significant increase in drone attacks and his unwavering position he does not need Congresses blessing to wake war against ISIS it is reasonable to answer yes to the foregoing question. Senator Tim Kaine, an early supporter of the President thinks he overreaching his authority.

ORANGE, Va. — In June, after he had written a scorching opinion article seeking to constrain the president’s unilateral power to make war, Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia, one of Barack Obama’s earliest supporters, buttonholed the commander in chief at the White House for what he called “a spirited discussion.”

The militants of the Islamic State were pouring across the Syrian border into Iraq, and seizing cities where so much American blood and treasure had been spilled. But Mr. Kaine said he told the president in no uncertain terms that if he intended to go to war, he would have to ask Congress’s permission. President Obama politely but firmly disagreed.

They have been battling ever since.

Mr. Kaine is an unlikely leader in the fight between Congress and the White House over a declaration of war. Genial and junior, the former Virginia governor was on Mr. Obama’s short list for the vice presidency in 2008. He became Mr. Obama’s handpicked Democratic Party chairman, then his handpicked senatorial candidate after Senator Jim Webb, a Democrat, announced his retirement in 2011.

But Mr. Kaine established his position in May, when he introduced legislation to repeal the 2002 authorization of force that paved the way for the invasion of Iraq. Then in September, he drafted his alternative, a narrowly tailored resolution to give Congress’s blessing to a war against the Islamic State, with a one-year time limit and explicit language ensuring the mission could not expand, either to ground troops or to other targets.

Mr. Kaine traces his defiance on the subject of war powers to his state’s deep military ties, from the vast Pentagon apparatus to the sprawling bases in Norfolk, but also to Virginia’s unique place in the nation’s founding.

“It’s no surprise, and it’s heartening that a Virginia legislator is taking this back to the foundations,” said C. Douglas Smith, vice president for the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution, housed in James Madison’s ancestral home here. “Someone so close to the president, appearing to want to constrain the president, he wants to rise above.”

Mr. Kaine’s beliefs also have roots in the gracious estate of Montpelier, where Madison began drafting the Constitution, and down the road at Thomas Jefferson’s more famous mansion, Monticello, where checks on executive power were nurtured with religious fervor.

“They know I feel strongly about this because I’m a Virginian,” Mr. Kaine said of the White House. “Until we have a vote, and we live by that vote, I am going to keep pushing them hard.”

Senator Kaine is right and the nation should stand solidly behind him on this. Regardless of party affiliation or political views in other areas.

Continue reading BELOW THE FOLD

Via: Memeorandum

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Reince Priebus on Republican Abortion Smoke and Mirrors...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus talking about abortion and why republicans are so inclined to support government regulation of women's reproductive rights, aka abortion clinics. Of course Priebus fell back on the age old argument that republicans are opposed to using taxpayer money to fund abortions.

If only that were the full truth. But it is isn't and Priebus and most of the rest of the nation knows it. The recent 5th Circuit Court of Appeals decision to allow Texas to move ahead with shutting down most of the abortion clinics in Texas is the driver of this exchange.

Truthfully, the reason republicans support regulation of clinics that provide abortions is because they want Roe -v- Wade overturned. Since this is, at least for now this is unlikely, republicans will find and support back door ways to curtail a women's reproductive rights. In this case by making it as inconvenient as possible for women, especially those with limited means.

CROOKS AND LIARS - NBC host Chuck Todd on Sunday pressed Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus about why his party opposed most regulations on business, except when it came to abortion clinics.

"One of the things is you don't like a lot of regulations on business," Todd noted during an interview on Meet the Press. "Except if the business is an abortion clinic."

The NBC host pointed out that 80 percent of the clinics in Texas could be forced to close because of a strict Republican-backed anti-abortion law.

"Too much regulation, is that fair?" Todd wondered. "Why regulate on the abortion issue now [instead of waiting until] you win a fight in the Supreme Court and ban abortion altogether? Why restrict a business now in Texas?"

"The fact of the matter is we believe that any woman that's faced with unplanned pregnancy deserves compassion, respect, counseling," Priebus replied.

"But 80 percent of those clinics are gone," Todd pressed. "So they have to drive for 2 or 300 miles. Is that compassion?"

Priebus, however, shot back that Republicans were most concerned with "whether you ought to use taxpayer money to fund abortion."

"I mean, that's the one issue that separates this conversation that we're having," he insisted, adding that the 2014 election would be decided on other issues.

"Obamacare, jobs, the economy, Keystone pipeline," Priebus opined. "So you can try to steer -- talk about abortion again, but the fact is of the matter is, if you're in Skagway, Alaska, you're thinking about the fact of why my life isn't better off today than it was when this senator was elected six years ago."

For the record Priebus got one thing right, the hard working American taxpayer should not have to pay for an abortion. Perhaps it makes more sense to subsidize effective birth control to prevent pregnancies that may ultimately result in a child being mistreated and or much greater cost to society in other ways.

Just food for thought.

Via: Memeorandum

Friday, October 3, 2014

The GOP and Its Militarism...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

GOP war hawkism is experiencing a revival. No doubt driven by circumstances in the Middle East, old time "militarists" and warriors like Sen. John McCain, and the ever influential MIC with its insatiable appetite. Plan on hearing a lot of rhetoric supporting increased military presence and an expanding role for the military again. Of course expect the push for renewed growth in defense budgets.

Can hardly wait for the 2016 presidential election campaigns to get started. Just imagine all the fertile fodder it will provide for pundits and bloggers on all sides of the issue(s).

One thing we must do at all times is maintain an effective and mobile defense, whatever the cost. Visability has its cost and they are indeed high.

the weekly Standard The Republican flirtation with dovish noninterventionism is over. It wasn’t much of a fling.

For five years, we’ve been hearing that foreign policy and national security issues would split the Republican party. The new noninterventionists, we were told, buoyed by war-weariness and deep concern over government spending, would mount a serious challenge to the more hawkish, internationalist traditions of the Republican party.

The supposed paradigm shift was always much more about big personalities and media hype than substantive change. That’s not to say there was nothing to the speculation. Some Republicans celebrated the automatic cuts in defense spending required by the sequester, and others contributed to the misinformation about the terrorist surveillance programs. But whatever the real temptations of a GOP return to Robert Taftian isolationism and permanent cuts to national security budgets, they’re pretty much gone.

Republican Senate candidates in North Carolina, Alaska, New Hampshire, Iowa, Arkansas, and elsewhere are running with a heavy emphasis on their hawkishness. New Jersey governor Chris Christie is hitting Barack Obama on his handling of ISIS. Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal will deliver a speech on October 6 at the American Enterprise Institute on rebuilding U.S. defenses—three weeks after Marco Rubio gave a speech entitled “American Strength: Building 21st Century Defense Capabilities.” Rand Paul, the most outspoken of the new noninterventionists, and a man who has spent much of his time in the Senate railing against hawks like John McCain and Lindsey Graham, is now echoing their calls for airstrikes on terrorists in Iraq and Syria.

“The conservative coalition has always been hawkish,” says Brad Todd, a Republican strategist involved in several campaigns this cycle. “The few doves in the Republican coalition like Rand Paul always get exposed for not being conservative on foreign policy in times of crisis. The doves believe in a false premise—that disengagement brings peace instead of chaos. The same theory has failed in every era of American foreign policy since the 1800s, and it will fail again.”

He adds, “I do think the mess Obama is creating overseas will be a major factor—and a disqualifier—in the 2016 primaries.”


Fifth Circuit Court Rules to Allow Texas to Begin Enforcing Tough New Abortion Restrictions...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

The 5th Circuit, in allowing Texas to close all but eight abortion clinics statewide, resulting in the nearest clinic being a 150 mile drive for many, Texas is taking the lead in restricting a women's reproductive rights. Many will say options are still available, they are simply improving safety and all that. But most recognize what the real intent of the new law is.

Stay tuned folks cause it ain't over till it's over

msnbc - The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Thursday allowed Texas to begin enforcing tough new abortion restrictions that will effectively close all but eight abortion facilities in the nation’s second-largest state. Unless the Supreme Court steps in, the law is poised to have the most devastating impact on abortion access of any such restriction across the country.

Under the law’s force, which will close 13 clinics, one out of six Texan women seeking an abortion will now live more than 150 miles from the nearest clinic. A lower court judge had previously ruled on August 28 that the law was unconstitutional, because it “would operate for a significant number of women in Texas just as drastically as a complete ban on abortion.” But in Thursday’s ruling, the three-judge panel in New Orleans said the law would not impose an “undue burden,” staying the district court decision as the state appeals.

In the past year, about half of Texas’s clinics that provide abortion have already closed, since a separate portion of the law was allowed to go into effect by the Fifth Circuit and then the Supreme Court. The provision at issue in the most recent ruling requires all abortions to take place in ambulatory surgical centers, or expensive mini-hospitals that cost over $1 million to construct.


“Today’s ruling has gutted Texas women’s constitutional rights and access to critical reproductive health care and stands to make safe, legal abortion essentially disappear overnight,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which represented clinics against the law.

Lauren Bean, spokeswoman for the Texas Attorney General’s Office, said in a statement, “This decision is a vindication of the careful deliberation by the Texas Legislature to craft a law to protect the health and safety of Texas women.”


The law in question was famously filibustered by Wendy Davis in June 2013, but Texas Gov. Rick Perry subsequently convened another special session to pass it anyway. It also includes an unconstitutional ban on abortion after 20 weeks (which has not been challenged in court) and restrictions on medication abortion (which the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, ruling on an Arizona version of the law, said defied medical evidence and was an undue burden on women).

All eight of the clinics that can comply with the ambulatory surgical requirements are in major cities, leaving rural women with few options, and none south of San Antonio. In recent months, Planned Parenthood has announced new ambulatory surgical centers in Dallas and San Antonio.

Continue reading BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Nuge...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Pitched by one of the giants of highly questionable journalism and ultra partisan right wing politics two books you will certainly want to miss.

Ted Nugent, a man with a checkered background, has managed to cash in on the ultra right wing hysteria that seems to have griped the country with the advent of the so called Tea Party.

A man with views far to the right of mainstream America his views should be seriously questioned.

Rock 'n' roll legend Ted Nugent contends that a lot of what is wrong with this country could be remedied by a simple but controversial concept: gun ownership. Nugent shares his “Warrior spirit” – a strict code of ethics, safety and discipline – and offers suggestions on how to live like a hero and pass that code down to your children

Cocked, locked and ready to rock, the Motor City Madman – the thinking man’s Abraham Lincoln – has unleashed the ultimate high-octane political manifesto for the ages in "Ted, White and Blue" – the most important patriotic statement since the Constitution.

Via: Memeorandum