Among the many advantages Europe has in keeping its abortion rates low is that they start giving good sex education very early. The other, of course, is easy access to contraception, which should be a no-brainer, but apparently you need some brains to work this one out. Laws against abortion, of course, do not stop or reduce abortions, but they do kill women. I say people who want to ban abortion should be put on the spot about this: "How can you call yourself 'pro-life' when you won't do anything that reduces abortion but you want to kill women?"
Scott Brown gets photographed in scanties and becomes a US Senator. A woman models underwear when she's 18, and years later gets fired from her job as a high school guidance counselor. Even though she'd already disclosed her prior career when she was hired and everyone knew about it. What causes this? (via)
Scalia would probably have an easier time of it if he'd just read what Jefferson and his pals actually wrote instead of trying to read their minds after death.
Matt Stoller had a number of things to say about the debate and why the media can now get the horse race it wants, and this:
The reason Obama did poorly is simple. He is bad at governing America. He hasn't solved the foreclosure crisis, the jobs crisis, the climate crisis, the energy crisis, the financial crisis, the debt crisis, the health care crisis, or really, anything. He can't point to very much that Americans broadly like, except killing Bin Laden and the auto bailout. His second term agenda is to cut Social Security, Medicare, frack, cut corporate taxes, bust more teachers unions and pass more neoliberal trade agreements. He is proud of this record. So are his people. But he knows he can't run on it because it's unpopular, so instead, he presented himself as a nice likeable guy.Mike Lofgren in The American Conservative on the Revolt of the Rich:
He frequently complimented Romney, agreed with him on most core policy arguments, and just generally avoided pointing out the many times Romney was lying. He didn't bring up social issues like abortion, or really, any weak spots for Romney. He tried to present himself as a fighter for the middle class, but he doesn't actually respect people he perceives have less strength than he does. Obama believes in pity for the middle class, not respect. Nor does Obama like Romney. So Obama came off passive and unpersuasive, making a case he didn't believe in. It's like George W. Bush, who couldn't put two words together fluently unless he was talking death and destruction, and then he was a virtuoso rhetorician. Obama is at his best when he is talking about himself and his family, because that's what he likes and believes in. That's why his 2008 campaign worked, because it was all framed around Obama The Savior. It was mass narcissism (and even then, he only narrowly beat John McCain). If you're wondering why Obama is a bad speaker now, where the old Obama went, just recognize that he's only a great speaker when it's all about him, because that's where his interest is. The talent is there, the character, not.
Stephen Schwarzman, the hedge fund billionaire CEO of the Blackstone Group who hired Rod Stewart for his $5-million birthday party, believes it is the rabble who are socially irresponsible. Speaking about low-income citizens who pay no income tax, he says: "You have to have skin in the game. I'm not saying how much people should do. But we should all be part of the system."
But millions of Americans who do not pay federal income taxes do pay federal payroll taxes. These taxes are regressive, and the dirty little secret is that over the last several decades they have made up a greater and greater share of federal revenues. In 1950, payroll and other federal retirement contributions constituted 10.9 percent of all federal revenues. By 2007, the last "normal" economic year before federal revenues began falling, they made up 33.9 percent. By contrast, corporate income taxes were 26.4 percent of federal revenues in 1950. By 2007 they had fallen to 14.4 percent. So who has skin in the game?
If you formalize it and do it right up front and in public, it's not called bribery. We do this with large and small things, and pretend that's not what it is.
I really don't find it at all surprising to hear that an Obama campaign official threatened an NAACP employee who was critical of Obama. It's bad form, but not surprising.
RoboRomney Agrees with you! (But I can't understand why Dave says he needs a new category on his blog. He's been running that blog for over a decade, and liars have been a constant feature of the political landscape. He only noticed now?)
I'd forgotten all about this, but it's nice to see the Smothers Brothers do one straight.