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Friday Talking Points [340] -- Obama Earning His Nobel

[ Posted Friday, April 3rd, 2015 – 16:49 PDT ]

President Barack Obama is finally earning his Nobel Peace Prize, it seems. A few months back, he announced a major shift in U.S. policy towards Cuba, ending a half-century of frostiness, and this week the outlines of a deal to avoid a war with Iran were unveiled, thawing a relationship that froze over back in 1979. Both of these foreign policy accomplishments go a long way towards deserving the Nobel Peace Prize Obama was prematurely awarded in 2009. At the time, many (this column included) joked that the Nobel committee was really awarding the prize to Obama for the sole achievement of "not being George W. Bush." But it seems now that by the time he ends his term in office, Barack Obama will indeed have earned the world's foremost peacemaker's prize. Since this is Good Friday, perhaps a Bible quotation is in order: "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God."

Of course, President Obama's critics are already denouncing the deal with Iran, even before the ink was dry in some cases. There seems to be a misconception among Obama's opposition that there is another acceptable path forward that doesn't involve an outright war with Iran. Republicans (and some Democrats) in Congress seem to think that if they scuttle this deal, a better one will somehow appear on the horizon. This is wishful thinking, though. "More sanctions will do it!" cry the critics, who are ignoring the lesson Cuba provided.

Right now, seven nations have reached a preliminary agreement: the U.S., Iran, China, Russia, France, the U.K., and Germany. The "P5+1" nations (the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) have built a unified sanctions regime that has been a big incentive in getting Iran to the table. Republicans in Congress want even more sanctions rather than this agreement, because they think upping the pressure on Iran will force them to accept further concessions. But what could easily happen if Congress shoots down a deal and imposes stricter sanctions is that the P5+1 alliance may fall apart. If the rest of the world sees that Congress isn't going to agree to any deal with Iran, then Russia and China may just decide to lift their sanctions altogether. Why bother restricting trade when absolutely nothing will satisfy the hardliners in the U.S. Congress, after all? If Russia and China bolt the negotiations and end their sanctions, then Iran will actually have less sanctions imposed on it than it does now, even with increased sanctions from America.

This is the end game that Congress could unintentionally create. This is where the Cuban example comes in. Most Americans aren't even really aware of it, but for the past half-century, America has been going it alone with their economic sanctions on Cuba. Europeans can walk into a tobacco store and buy as many Cuban cigars as they please, and have long been able to do so. Because Cuba has sunny shores, Europeans can easily book a vacation there to escape their winter weather. There are no restrictions upon doing so whatsoever. Cuba is not only free to trade with Europe, but also with Central America, South America, Africa, and Asia. We stand alone among nations in trying to crush the Cuban economy.

For fifty years, our unilateral sanctions just did not work. Fidel Castro outlasted every president since Kennedy. All the U.S. sanctions did was to give Castro an easy excuse for why communism was failing on his island. But it certainly didn't achieve the goals America set out, by any stretch of the imagination. It may have hindered their economy slightly, but they were always free to trade with the rest of the world, so it didn't mean much in the long run.

That should be an instructive lesson on Iran. If the rest of the world sees the United States (Congress, in particular) as being so intransigent that it'll never agree to any deal with Iran, then there would be no point in even holding further negotiations. If China and Russia decide to drop their sanctions, then it would free up the pressure on Iran to a very large degree (China, in particular, would likely buy all the oil Iran wanted to sell them). America (or perhaps America plus a few European countries) wouldn't have anywhere near the influence over the Iranian economy without Russia and China backing sanctions up. If Iran became similar to Cuba -- ultimate sanctions from the U.S., but not from anyone else -- then we would have essentially lost any leverage we had over them. So to anyone in Congress advocating unilateral sanctions against Iran, the question should really be: "because that worked so well against Cuba, right?"

The other big political story of the week was the huge victory over legalized bigotry in both Indiana and Arkansas. Because conservatives know full well that in just a few months the Supreme Court is going to legalize marriage equality across every one of these United States, they had the bright idea to codify state-level discrimination against gay weddings. But it didn't go quite as they had planned.

The outcry was immense, and it was almost universal in nature. It was led, notably, not only by the usual suspects of gay rights organizations and liberals, but also by big businesses -- including, surprisingly, the N.C.A.A. and NASCAR. Not to mention Wal-Mart. I mean, it was no surprise that Apple and other tech companies came out against the bills, but they were joined by a wide spectrum of other businesses who collectively put an immense amount of pressure on the governors and state legislatures. In the end, both Arkansas and Indiana backed off in a major way. In Indiana, in fact, they were forced to begrudgingly pass the first law which outlawed discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation that the state has ever seen. Meaning gays and lesbians, after the dust settled, actually had more legal protection in Indiana than before (although they still aren't as legally protected as they are in other states -- there's still room for improvement in Indiana).

That is a stunning turnaround, and shows how powerful the court of public opinion can be, at times. But we'll have much more on this in the talking points (where I'm going to get downright Biblical...), so I'll just move along for now.

This week contained the first of April, and we have to give Mike Honda, House member from California, some deserved credit for his tongue-in-cheek April Fool's Day joke. Honda put up a press release on his official website calling for passage of the "Accountability and Congressional Responsibility On Naming Your Motions (ACRONYM) Act of 2014," which would ban adding superfluous words to bill titles just so they can spell out something cute. The press release went on to cite, as examples of how this has gotten out of control: the TERSE Act, the VERBOSE Act, the UNDERFUNDED Act, the NEVER OUT OF COMMITTEE Act, the PASS ME PLEASE Act, and (our favorite by far), the "People Are Ready To Inhabit Saturn And Neptune Act."

Well done, Representative Honda! We love April Fool's Day, personally (as our own spoof article proves), and we have to unabashedly applaud Honda's humorous celebration of it this week. We need more levity of this sort in Washington, folks.

Speaking of spoofing, we were indeed saddened to hear of the passing of the inventor of the Pet Rock. For those not alive in the 1970s, the Pet Rock was the greatest marketing campaign of all time, bar none. This guy got over a million people to give him their hard-earned money for a rock in a box. They were admittedly rather cute -- the box came complete with air holes and "care and training" instructions, but still, even P. T. Barnum would have been in awe of such marketing genius. To paraphrase: "there's a Pet Rock buyer born every minute." Gary Dahl will indeed be missed.

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

We've got a number of Honorable Mention awards to hand out before we get to the big prize, this week (this actually kind of covers the last three weeks, as this column has been on vacation for a while). The first goes to Harry Reid, for announcing very early that he won't be running for re-election. There was a good chance Reid would have been defeated, as Nevada has a very popular Republican governor who is said to be eyeing Reid's seat in 2016. Instead of ending his political career with a loss at the ballot box, Reid chose instead to gracefully exit the stage. Because he chose to announce his retirement so early, Reid will give other Nevada Democrats plenty of time to campaign and take a shot at retaining Reid's seat. This may be a longshot (because the Republican is so popular in the state), but at least it clears the way for an up-and-coming Democrat to make a good clean run for it. For announcing his retirement in such a timely fashion, Reid is worthy of at least an Honorable Mention.

Scott Peters, House member from California, is also deserving of some praise this week. He just introduced what can only be called a commonsense bill, which would force the House of Representatives to work a full five-day workweek. This would end the disgraceful practice of breezing in on Monday or Tuesday afternoon, and then adjourning before noon rolls around on Thursday -- essentially working only two or three days per week. Peters put out a statement explaining his bill:

Average Americans work five days a week so there is no reason Congress should not be required to as well. A five-day work week would increase the time members of Congress are able to spend together working on substantive legislation and would help foster bipartisan working relationships. It would also save taxpayer money by reducing travel costs of members traveling between Washington and their districts.

Since we've been complaining about the pathetic and disgraceful work ethic of Congress for years now, we heartily applaud Representative Peters and encourage all other House members to support such a great plan. But we're not exactly holding our breath waiting, if you know what we mean.

And our third Honorable Mention goes to President Barack Obama, who in one fell swoop this week doubled the number of prison sentences he has commuted (using his executive pardoning power). All 22 were drug offenses, with harsh and overlong sentences which would not be handed down under today's guidelines. Since he got into office, Obama has only commuted 21 other sentences, so this was a significant move by the president. To be fair, I should mention that he has in the same time period issued 64 full pardons. In any case, Obama certainly deserves mention for the mercy he showed these 22 prisoners, eight of whom were serving life sentences.

But the coveted Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award this week goes to none other than Secretary of State John Kerry, who tirelessly kept negotiating with the Iranians -- working far into the night, and pushing beyond the self-imposed deadline -- until a preliminary framework was successfully hammered out. While Barack Obama will doubtlessly get the lion's share of the credit by history for pushing hard to get this agreement, John Kerry was the one down in the trenches doing the hard bargaining. Kerry absolutely refused to give up on the possibility of reaching some sort of accord, and in the end got a deal that surprised many for how comprehensive it will be and for how much he got the Iranians to agree to.

Of course, this is just a preliminary framework, and there is no guarantee that a final agreement will be achieved later this year. There are still endless problems to be worked out. But for even getting this far, Kerry deserves a lot of credit. The negotiations with Iran have been going on for years now, with nothing concrete to show, right up until this week. Kerry managed to do something nobody else has even gotten close to, through patient and tireless hard work.

For achieving the first step on the road towards ending the Iranian nuclear threat, John Kerry was easily the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week this week.

[Congratulate Secretary of State John Kerry via the official State Department contact page, to let him know you appreciate his efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

This one was pretty easy to pick this week. Senator Robert Menendez was formally indicted this week by the Justice Department on a list of corruption charges which included multiple bribery charges, fraud, conspiracy, and making false statements.

Menendez sounded pretty defiant after the indictment was announced, vowing to fight to clear his name. Which could indeed happen, as political corruption can be notoriously hard to prove in court. So, as always, we issue this week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week with the caveat that we will rescind it should Menendez win his case.

But until that point is reached, having a sitting senator face multiple serious corruption charges is pretty downright disappointing, we have to say.

[Contact Senator Robert Menendez on his Senate contact page, to let him know what you think of his actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 340 (4/3/15)

What with all the attention given this week to the "Turn Away The Gays" laws in Indiana and Arkansas (and elsewhere), and seeing as how Easter is right around the corner, I feel compelled to get a bit preachy today. I know this isn't my usual format -- in fact, I don't believe I've ever done something like this before -- but I felt it needs saying. I should mention that I am not a Christian preacher of any sort, merely someone attempting to point out from the sidelines the inherent contradictions in so-called Christians getting all sanctimonious over their supposed religious beliefs. For some of them, it's like they've never actually read anything Jesus actually was reported to have said in the Bible.

The Bible (especially the Old Testament) has long been used to justify intolerance and bigotry and racism. It was used to justify God's acceptance of slavery, in fact, for hundreds of years right here in this country. It was also used to justify banning people with different skin color from getting married, not so long ago. The same arguments are always trotted out: "Look, here's a verse that supports my position, therefore I am right and everyone else is sinful."

Sometimes this is done through selective reading. In particular, quoting Old Testament verses banning this or that. But this ignores all the rest of the laws that Christians feel free to ignore on a daily basis, from the exact same books of the Bible. Ever eaten ham or sausage or pepperoni on a pizza? Well, that's an abomination according to the Old Testament, sorry. But nobody gets very worked up about it these days. To put this another way, you don't see many Christian pizza shop owners refusing to serve pork on any of their pies, do you?

So today, I'm going to focus on what Jesus was reported to have said in the Bible. Because Jesus was pretty intolerant of certain behaviors, when you get right down to it. He actually said nothing about gays getting married, instead he was much more concerned with others who deserved chastisement more. So instead of my usual seven political talking points, here are instead seven things Jesus was intolerant of, just as food for thought. So sit down, have a slice of non-discriminatory pizza, and consider who Jesus was talking about when he reportedly spoke about the following.

 

1
   Sanctimonious hypocrites

From Matthew 6:5-6.

"Jesus had little tolerance for those people who tried to impress others by public displays of sanctimony. In fact, he called such people flat-out 'hypocrites.' I can't think of a better example of what Jesus might have to say about a business owner interjecting religion into the public square, in the hopes of proving their own religious righteousness."

 

2
   Those eager to condemn others

From John 8:3-11.

"Jesus was not very tolerant of those eager to follow the letter of religious law who were not themselves pure. Since we've done away with stoning as a punishment, today perhaps he'd say something along the lines of: Let those without sin among you be the first ones who refuse to provide food to a wedding."

 

3
   Merciless xenophobes

From Luke 10:25-37.

"Jesus taught mercy and compassion for strangers, no matter their circumstances. He was intolerant of those who looked away from a stranger in need, refusing to see such as their neighbor. You'll note that in this tale of mercy the good Samaritan didn't ask if the stranger was religiously pure or a sinner, he merely offered the help that was so obviously needed, with no qualifications whatsoever."

 

4
   The rich

From Mark 10:21-25 (or Matthew 19:21-24), as well as Luke 16:13, and Luke 16:19-25.

"You know who Jesus was really intolerant towards? The wealthy. Over and over again he warns that rich people face very long odds on getting into Heaven. In fact, Jesus was quite plain on what a rich man should do to be saved: sell all possessions and give the money to the poor. He warns again and again that love of money and love of worldly things is an enormous impediment to getting in to Heaven."

 

5
   Tax whiners

From Mark 12:13-17 or Matthew 22:15-21.

"Jesus also had little tolerance for those who complained about earthly taxes. When asked if taxes should be paid to the hated government of Caesar, Jesus pointed out that riches in this world mean nothing to God. Therefore, stop whining and give Caesar his due. Amazing how many Christians today forget this parable, isn't it?"

 

6
   Religious profiteers

From Matthew 21:12-13.

"Jesus had no tolerance whatsoever for those who would make a fat profit from selling religion to others. When he threw out the moneychangers from the temple, he actually called them 'a den of thieves.' Wonder what he'd say if he saw a so-called 'megachurch' in America today, eh? Think Jesus would be tolerant of televangelists riding around in Cadillacs and Learjets?"

 

7
   Those who have no love for their neighbor

From Matthew 22:36-40 or Mark 12:28-31.

"Jesus boiled his entire message down to two fundamental laws: love God and love your neighbor as yourself. Everything else sprang from those two simple concepts. Now, please explain how refusing to provide food for your neighbor's wedding fits in with that, because to me it seems to be in direct conflict with the actual words of Jesus."

-- Chris Weigant

 

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Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

165 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [340] -- Obama Earning His Nobel”

  1. [1] 
    Michale wrote:

    All the brouha over the Indiana and Arkansas laws seems to forget one salient fact...

    Those laws are identical to the RFRA Law that was sponsored by Democrats and overwhelmingly passed Congress and was signed by President Clinton in 1993...

    The laws are identical to the law that Illinois passed in 1998 and that then State Senator Barack Obama voted for..

    In all the partisan hysteria, these facts are ignored..

    Funny, iddn't it.. :D

    But it simply proves what I have said all along..

    The Hysterical Left is as bigoted and discriminatory as they accuse the Right of being..

    Michale

  2. [2] 
    Michale wrote:

    $828,000 raised for Indiana pizzeria that said it won't cater gay weddings
    http://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-indiana-pizzeria-gay-rights-20150403-story.html

    I have some delicious irony with extra pepperoni!! :D

    Michale

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    By the bi...

    Nice ta have ya back, CW... :D

    Michale

  4. [4] 
    Michale wrote:

    As far as Iran goes...

    Obama's National Security assistant said it best..

    “It doesn’t appear as if Iran agreed to do anything specific.”

    But more delicious irony..

    The Left is condemning Indiana and Arkansas for their alleged "anti-gay" legislation, yet applaud the deal with Iran, a country that executes people for being gay..

    Extra EXTRA pepperoni on that irony, please... :D

    Michale

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    I mean, it was no surprise that Apple and other tech companies came out against the bills

    Yet Apple doesn't have a BIT of problem doing business in countries that execute people for being gay...

    That's why it's so hard to take anyone like that who speaks out against Indiana & Arkansas... If their own interests are in play, they support people who do a LOT worse to gays...

    I believe the term is HYPOCRITE...

    OK.. I OWE I OWE... So Off To Work I Go.... :D

    Michale

  6. [6] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Je$u$ is my shepherd; I shall not think.
    He maketh me to lie about religious freedom.
    He leadeth me to withhold my christian pizzas.
    He demandeth my purity.
    He teacheth me the value of trolling for my bank account’s sake.
    Yea, though I asked for the bad Yelp reviews I got, I will fear no evil homos.
    Because the haters art with me.
    My delusions & hallucinations, they comfort me.
    Thou prohibiteth the use of the English word “marriage” by mine gay enemies.
    Thou filleth my head with persecution fantasies.
    My homophobia runneth over.
    Surely, resentment and hypocrisy shall define me all the days of my life
    and I shall wallow in the idiotic self-righteousness of the Republican Jesus forever and ever.
    Or else.

  7. [7] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    All the brouha over the Indiana and Arkansas laws seems to forget one salient fact...

    Those laws are identical to the RFRA Law that was sponsored by Democrats and overwhelmingly passed Congress and was signed by President Clinton in 1993...

    As long as we are being totally factual Michale, let me point out that you are totally WRONG about them being identical.

    The Indiana law differs substantially from the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, signed by President Clinton in 1993, and all other state RFRAs.

    There are several important differences in the Indiana bill but the most striking is Section 9. Under that section, a “person” (which under the law includes not only an individual but also any organization, partnership, LLC, corporation, company, firm, church, religious society, or other entity) whose “exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened” can use the law as “a claim or defense… regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.”

    Every other Religious Freedom Restoration Act applies to disputes between a person or entity and a government. Indiana’s is the only law that explicitly applies to disputes between private citizens.

  8. [8] 
    John M wrote:

    Further Michale

    Indiana's law was also the only one that explicitly stated that a for profit corporation was to be included under the exercise of religion statement.

    As for the reaction of the hysterical left, I think they had good reason to be concerned. Otherwise, why was the original law signed by the Governor in a ceremony closed to both the public and the press? With supporters like; Micah Clark of the American Family Association of Indiana, Curt Smith of the Indiana Family Institute and Eric Miller of Advance America in attendance at the ceremony surrounding the Governor?

    Curt Smith equates homosexuality with beastiality and adultery. He helped write the original bill. Micah Clark believes homosexuality to be a treatable disorder and publically railed against a lesbian high school student over a prom tuxedo. Eric Miller distributed a flier falsely claiming that pastors could be jailed for preaching against homosexuality.

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Every other Religious Freedom Restoration Act applies to disputes between a person or entity and a government. Indiana’s is the only law that explicitly applies to disputes between private citizens.

    So??

    How does that make the Indiana version any more discriminatory?? Just because the government is not one of the Partys involved??

    Otherwise, why was the original law signed by the Governor in a ceremony closed to both the public and the press?

    Ahhhh....

    So ANY time a government ceremony is closed to the public and the press, that auto-magically means that something nefarious is going on....

    Are you SURE you want to stick with that story?? Because I could list DOZENS, if not HUNDREDS of events by the Obama Administration that have been closed to the public and press...

    Do you REALLY want to use that argument??

    Curt Smith equates homosexuality with beastiality and adultery. He helped write the original bill. Micah Clark believes homosexuality to be a treatable disorder and publically railed against a lesbian high school student over a prom tuxedo. Eric Miller distributed a flier falsely claiming that pastors could be jailed for preaching against homosexuality.

    So you have a bunch of loonies on the Right who say stoopid shit..

    Is that any reason to discriminate against those who are christian and just want to have the freedom to live their lives AND run their business according to their beliefs??

    Let's face it.. The Left is only tolerant of those who believe as the Left WANTS them to believe..

    The threats and attacks on the MEMORIES Pizza Place is proof positive of that...

    Michale

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    Every other Religious Freedom Restoration Act applies to disputes between a person or entity and a government. Indiana’s is the only law that explicitly applies to disputes between private citizens.

    "A difference which makes no difference IS no difference."
    -Commander Spock

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's face it.. The Left is only tolerant of those who believe as the Left WANTS them to believe..

    The threats and attacks on the MEMORIES Pizza Place is proof positive of that...

    Iddn't it funny that ya'all fall all over yerselves to condemn alleged christian "bigots" but say nothing about the terroristic threats that these so-called "bigots" receive...

    Those who are intolerant of those who are intolerant are just as much bigots as the people they accuse...

    Think about it...

    Michale

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Iddn't it funny that ya'all fall all over yerselves to condemn alleged christian "bigots" but say nothing about the terroristic threats that these so-called "bigots" receive...

    By "ya'all" I mean the Hysterical Left in general rather than Weigantians in particular...

    My bust...

    Michale

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    "Jesus taught mercy and compassion for strangers, no matter their circumstances.

    So, ya'all should be merciful and compassionate towards Republicans, right?? :D

    Michale

  14. [14] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    Is that any reason to discriminate against those who are christian and just want to have the freedom to live their lives AND run their business according to their beliefs??

    Oh please! Some Christians want now to try to play the victim card! Really???

    You can believe whatever you want, in your own home. You can choose to not have gay people, or black people, or whoever you want, not enter your home. if you enjoy baking, you can bake wedding cakes for family or friends of your choosing in your home. But once you go out and rent a building and open a business, and start advertising that you bake and sell cakes for a living, or pizza, or whatever it might be, then you must serve ALL the public. Your religious rights end where someone else's rights begin. You also knew the terms and conditions up front and beforehand that you were agreeing to when you applied for and got your business license. And before you try to bring something up like requiring wearing shoes or shirts to enter a business or not selling something to underage minors, those are health and safety issues, required of everyone and not based on who they are as a person or what group they belong to.

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    But once you go out and rent a building and open a business, and start advertising that you bake and sell cakes for a living, or pizza, or whatever it might be, then you must serve ALL the public.

    What you are saying is that there is NO ROOM for personal morality or ethics in ANY business..

    OK... So, using your reasoning, if you open up a political consultancy firm, you would HAVE to work to elect Republicans that choose to hire your company..

    So, a PETA member who runs a catering service would HAVE to cater an AFTER SLAUGHTER Lunch at the local slaughter house..

    So, a black baker would HAVE to bake a cake for a KKK Birthday bash...

    So, a jewish baker would HAVE to bake a cake and cater a NAZI celebration...

    All of those things you would fight tooth and nail against...

    But we don't even have to make up hypotheticals...

    What about the guy posing as a gay guy and wanting Muslim bakeries to bake his same-sex wedding cake.. EACH and EVERY Muslim baker refused..

    Why isn't the Hysterical Left up in arms over that??

    Simple...

    Because the Hysterical Left are nothing but a bunch of anti-christian bigots....

    It works both ways, John M much as you want to ignore that.

    If you want tolerance, then you need to be tolerant...

    It's THAT simple...

    Michale

  16. [16] 
    John M wrote:

    "So you have a bunch of loonies on the Right who say stoopid shit.."

    Wow Michale, real progress at last!!! At least I got you to agree that it was in fact stoopid shit! Now if we can only prevent them from actually trying to write such stuff into law in the first place, we'll all be much better off!

    If only FOX News would follow your example of acknowledgement!

  17. [17] 
    John M wrote:

    "Because the Hysterical Left are nothing but a bunch of anti-christian bigots...."

    "If you want tolerance, then you need to be tolerant..."

    BULL

    I have heard that from the right wing before. People who are civil have civil rights. It's a load of crap. It goes along with "you have your right to equality, just as long as you know your place and stay in the back of the bus." It's the same condescending attitude that pats women on the head and says ok honey, now go fetch me a drink out of the kitchen while us men talk about the really important stuff.

  18. [18] 
    John M wrote:

    "So, a jewish baker would HAVE to bake a cake and cater a NAZI celebration..."

    Yes they would.

    Under the law you are supporting, where you can deny service because of your deeply held religious belief....

    A Muslim could deny service to a Christian. A Christian could deny service to someone who is Jewish. So Michale, you would be perfectly ok with that?

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow Michale, real progress at last!!! At least I got you to agree that it was in fact stoopid shit!

    yer new here so you can be forgiven.. But as ANYONE will tell you I am often slamming the Right for their stoopidity and their moronic-ness..

    I just do it to the Left more often because it's a "target rich environment".... :D

    Michale

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    A Muslim could deny service to a Christian. A Christian could deny service to someone who is Jewish. So Michale, you would be perfectly ok with that?

    I am perfectly OK with that.. I don't give a rip about ANYONE's religion... Religion is a con on a galactic scale, pure and simple...

    My "business philosophy" is simple...

    I have the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason...

    Michale

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK... So, using your reasoning, if you open up a political consultancy firm, you would HAVE to work to elect Republicans that choose to hire your company..

    So, a PETA member who runs a catering service would HAVE to cater an AFTER SLAUGHTER Lunch at the local slaughter house..

    So, a black baker would HAVE to bake a cake for a KKK Birthday bash...

    I noticed you didn't address these...

    Freudian Slip?? :D

    Michale

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK... So, using your reasoning, if you open up a political consultancy firm, you would HAVE to work to elect Republicans that choose to hire your company..

    So, a PETA member who runs a catering service would HAVE to cater an AFTER SLAUGHTER Lunch at the local slaughter house..

    So, a black baker would HAVE to bake a cake for a KKK Birthday bash...

    And if the above 3 business owners REFUSED to provide the requested service, then they should be run out of business and threatened with death, etc etc etc..

    And you would be OK with THAT!???

    Michale

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    John M...

    Let me give you an idea as to where I am coming from...

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2012/08/27/embracing-bigotry/

    Read it in good health... :D

    Michale

  24. [24] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Barack Obama must be mulling over Woodrow Wilson right about now. The President is going to have to win over a few Republicans that aren't exploring their party's nomination for president, plus John McCain, a few hawkish Democrats and Senator Netanyahu. The latter might be able to call off all but the most rabid war dogs if he were so inclined. A little pork for the State of Israel? Well, not literally pork, for obvious reasons, let's change that to - a nice piece of fish. I'd say watch that metaphorical space in the coming weeks.

  25. [25] 
    TheStig wrote:

    M- 800K$ for a pizzeria to hire a few lawyers vs Apple, plus pretty much all of the fortune 500,NCAA, NBA, a few state governors ...... all of which have plenty of lawyers on staff and with the resources to find more. Charming of Beck, but a bit outgunned. The wrong side of history is bad enough, but the wrong side of Corporate America sends politicians running for cover as if their very political lives depended on it.

  26. [26] 
    Michale wrote:

    TS,

    a few hawkish Democrats and Senator Netanyahu.

    hehehehehe Now THAT was funny!! :D

    The wrong side of history is bad enough, but the wrong side of Corporate America sends politicians running for cover as if their very political lives depended on it.

    In other words, politicians are scum...

    Tell me something I DON'T know??

    Now if I can just convince ya'all that Democrat Politicians are no different than Republican Politicians I could retire from Weigantia... :D

    Michale

  27. [27] 
    Michale wrote:

    A little pork for the State of Israel?

    The only "pork" that Israel wants is an acknowledgement of it's right to exist..

    I am simply gabberflasted that this concept would be pooh-poohed away by Democrats who are on Israel's side... Or so they claim...

    Couple that with the fact that Iran executes gay people and is the world's go-to-country for terrorism and this euphoria over the Iran deal takes on Kafka'ian dimensions...

    Michale

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    M- 800K$ for a pizzeria to hire a few lawyers

    Why would the pizzeria need to hire ANY lawyers, let alone a few of them....

    Just in case it's escaped notice, the Pizza owners haven't done anything wrong or illegal...

    All they did was give a truthful answer to a hypothetical...

    But, apparently, that is all it takes in America to set the fascists on them...

    Michale

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    But, apparently, that is all it takes in America to set the fascists on them...

    I mean, honestly......

    Whatever happened to the concept of "I don't agree with what you say but I will defend unto death your right to say it.."

    These days it's "If you say something we don't like, we will hound you, attack you, threaten you and basically make your life a living hell!!!"

    I miss back when....

    "Back when a hoe was a hoe
    A coke was a coke
    And crack's what you were doing
    When you were cracking jokes
    Back when a screw was a screw
    The wind was all that blew
    And when you said I'm down with that
    Well it meant you had the flu"

    -Tim McGraw

    :D

    Michale

  30. [30] 
    TheStig wrote:

    M-26

    "The only "pork" that Israel wants is an acknowledgement of it's right to exist.." whooo, I'm rubbin' my sides over that howler!! Israel want's an acknowledgment? What are they going to do, frame and hang it on the wall? If anybody else in the Wacky World of Weigantia had posted such a thing, YOU of all people would have gone on a tear that would include at least 6 Star Trek quotes, plus one from a Few Good Men, and maybe one from Larry the Cable Guy. Per post mind you, and there would be at least five of those.

    No, the Senator from the Great State of Israel desires something with more structure to it. Something tangible that enables Israel's existence. Let me offer up a potential modest proposal to get enough hawks in all 51 states on board.

    Israel has a pretty advanced nuclear triad deterrent, but the submarine leg of the stool is the weakest. Israel has cruise missile subs, not ballistic missile subs. The cruise missiles can just about reach Tehran, but not a lot of other states with nuclear capability. Cruise missiles are slow and Iran could intercept them. In addition, Israel's subs are small, and don't roam the oceans on long patrols. This makes them more vulnerable to sabotage and/or surprise preemptive strike.

    It seems the US Navy has a surplus of ballistic missile submarines:

    http://fas.org/blogs/security/2013/04/ssbnpatrols/

    What if the US were to retain the right to give or sell 3 decommissioned US SSBMs to the Israelis, but only if the Iranian's renege on the signed trip wire agreement

    What if the deal included US built sea launched ballistic missiles. There are precedents for this called Great Britain and Italy. No atomic warheads though. Israel can put whatever it chooses in the nose cones. Israel can still play the opacity game. ("Uhhh they only carry commandos....dozens and dozens of commandos"

    Finally, throw in US basing rights, so that Israeli SSBNs can roam oceans without having to routinely cross choke points.

    Would this convince the Hawks in both Israel and the USA? After all, it would substantially boost Israel's deterrent capability, and deterrence is the only proven countermeasure to the nuclear weapons.

    Would Iran buy it? I think they might very well. Israel doesn't get SSBNs if Iran hews to the deal. It's not like Israel hasn't already got the means to nuke the snot of Iran, this just increases the odds it would actually work if push came to shove.

    Would Obama? I think he might if Congress balked...and I think Congress may very well balk. No need to play the card early, but nice to know it's there. Better than war.

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    TS

    #29....

    yes, yes yes.. Israel would like all that from the US I am sure...

    But from Iran (and the like) is an acknowledgement that Israel has a right to exist...

    Of course, they would need to put deed to the words...

    What boggles my mind is that the majority of the Left (including the majority of Weigantians) doesn't think Israel has a right to ask that...

    THAT's what's so frustrating about this whole topic... The utter irrationality and illogic of it all...

    Michale

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    TS,

    #29 (cont)....

    Grrrrrrrrrrr..

    Would Iran buy it? I think they might very well. Israel doesn't get SSBNs if Iran hews to the deal. It's not like Israel hasn't already got the means to nuke the snot of Iran, this just increases the odds it would actually work if push came to shove.

    The problem with your supposition is that once a deal is inked, the US loses ALL control over Iran, the sanctions and everything else..

    Obama is doing (another) end run around Congress... So, to bypass Congress, Obama is turning everything over to the UN...

    You remember what a fiasco it was with Iraq??? What makes you think with Iran it's going to be any better??

    Plus it gives China and Russia veto power over everything...

    So, to sum up...

    A big cluster-frak of an organization, who uses things like this to make BILLIONS of dollars, is going to be running things...

    AND

    Our #1 and #2 enemies are going to have a say so in the process...

    Yea.... What could POSSIBLY go wrong!?? :^/

    You may have been born at night (as I was) but I am absolutely positively sure you weren't born LAST night...

    Neither was I....

    Michale

  33. [33] 
    Michale wrote:

    Would Obama? I think he might if Congress balked...

    What evidence do you have that Obama might??

    His undying devotion and love for Netanyahu?? :D

    Would this convince the Hawks in both Israel and the USA? After all, it would substantially boost Israel's deterrent capability, and deterrence is the only proven countermeasure to the nuclear weapons.

    Correction...

    Deterrence is only a proven countermeasure when dealing with sane responsible leaders...

    Deterrence worked during the Cold War because the US wasn't evil and the Soviet Union weren't crazy... Nuclear proliferation was an abstract...

    But in the current moment in the Mideast, we’re not talking “nuclear proliferation” in the abstract. It’s more like talking about the spread of nuclear weapons among the inmates of an institution for the criminally insane.
    -Peggy Noonan

    Iran's leaders are religious nutjobs who think it's their destiny to bring about the end of the world???

    Would a nuclear deterrence deter Hamas or Al Qaeda???

    Why would you think it would be any different with Iran??

    Michale

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    The *only* people who think the Iran deal is a good deal are those who are beholden to Obama and want Obama to have a "win"...

    The simple fact that it's IRAN (remember, executioner of gays, sponsors of terrorism) precludes ANY deal from being a "good" deal...

    Replace "IRAN" with "NAZI GERMANY" and you'll approach the idea of the fallacy of ANY deal....

    Being as religiously agnostic as I am, I am not a huge fan of the concepts of "good" and "evil"...

    Having said that, Iran is as "evil" as it gets...

    Michale

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    Since we're on the subject, maybe you can explain something of the thought processes of the Left.... Because I am having a LOT of trouble following the logic...

    We have a midwestern girl who, in all sincerity, says that she would not want to cater a gay wedding...

    The Left castigates and denigrates and attacks and threatens and demonizes this poor girl...

    Yet, this same Left, this EXACT SAME LEFT turns around and says that making a deal with a country that ***EXECUTES*** people for being gay is a good thing...

    Some religious and sincere girl in the mid west says she doesn't want to cater a gay wedding and she is threatened and vilified and demonized...

    But a country that ***EXECUTES*** gay people??? Well, we can deal with them just fine and dandy... No problemo.... Peachy keen wonderful...

    Could you explain the logic??

    Because it somehow escapes me......

    Michale

  36. [36] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I loved "7 things Jesus actually cared about" CW. It would make a great separate post.

    I almost jokingly wrote a piece called "Atheist opens pizza parlor - offers to serve everyone" but there just wasn't enough there other than the title.

    the wrong side of Corporate America sends politicians running for cover as if their very political lives depended on it.

    Ain't that the truth, Stig. Pence really stepped in it. When even WalMart is coming out and saying "Hmmm, maybe we should tone down the hate a little" that's saying something.

    Anyways, was an interesting week w/ the doings in Indiana.

    -David

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ain't that the truth, Stig. Pence really stepped in it. When even WalMart is coming out and saying "Hmmm, maybe we should tone down the hate a little" that's saying something.

    Why is it always about "hate" with you people???

    "What do you mean, 'YOU PEOPLE'!?"
    -Robert Downey Jr, TROPIC THUNDER

    :D

    I mean, seriously...

    Isn't it even SLIGHTLY possible that it's more to do with a sincere desire to honor their religion and it's not about "hate"...

    There has NEVER been an even SMIDGEN of a fact that would suggest that 'hate' has anything to do with it...

    Aren't we better than having to demonize people we disagree with just to make a point??

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    THE CHURCH OF THE LEFT
    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/416421/church-left-yuval-levin

    Very well said..

    It seems the Left is well on it's way to establishing a State Religion, despite our Founding Fathers attempts to prevent exactly that...

    Michale

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    If one REALLY wants to see "hate" all they have to do is look at the vitriol from the Left against Republicans..

    Calling them vile names such as "terrorists" and "hostage-takers" and "arsonists"..

    Now THAT'S hate...

    Pure, unadulterated, hysterical and irrational hate...

    I'm just sayin'.....

    Michale

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    I loved "7 things Jesus actually cared about" CW. It would make a great separate post.

    That's what's so great about the bible...

    It can be used to justify anything at all... :D

    Michale

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    Aren't we better than having to demonize people we disagree with just to make a point??

    Said Mr Pot to Mr Kettle.... :D

    Michale

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    In 2012, a gay hairdresser in Sante Fe, New Mexico refused to continue to provide services to NM Governor Susana Martinez because of Martinez's stance against gay marriage..

    The gay community treated the hairdresser as a hero, willing to stand for his principles..

    As I have been saying all along..

    The Left doesn't mind bigotry or discrimination as long as it's the RIGHT (pun intended) people who are being discriminated against..

    If you are on the Left's side of the debate, it is perfectly acceptable, nay even encouraged and rewarded, to discriminate and be bigoted towards anyone that doesn't follow THE CHURCH OF THE LEFT's teachings..

    Michale

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    Apparently, it's only gay people and those on the Left that are able to stand on their so-called "principles" and alleged "morality"...

    Anyone who doesn't follow THE CHURCH OF THE LEFT can go pound sand....

    :^/

    Michale

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    In 2012, a gay hairdresser in Sante Fe, New Mexico refused to continue to provide services to NM Governor Susana Martinez because of Martinez's stance against gay marriage..

    The hairdresser was quoted as saying, "I have every right to deny service"

    Of course, according to the Left (Hysterical or otherwise) that "right" is solely the exclusive domain of the Left.....

    Apparently.. :^/

    Michale

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    You have a WordPress related note in the NNL filter.. :D

    Michale

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    There seems to be a misconception among Obama's opposition that there is another acceptable path forward that doesn't involve an outright war with Iran.

    It's not a "misconception"...

    There IS a way forward that doesn't involve an outright war with Iran....

    That way is called *SANCTIONS*

    And we KNOW for an absolute fact that they CAN work..

    How do we know that??

    Because they FORCED Iran to come to the negotiating table..

    And the Obama Administration has thrown that away...

    In favor of a "deal" that, in the words of an administration official, doesn't require Iran to do ANYTHING specific...

    Iran still has ALL of it's facilities...

    Iran will STILL be able to enrich uranium..

    And Iran will be able to do all of that and more unfettered by inspections...

    And we'll be bankrolling all of it thru the removed sanctions...

    Yea... GREAT deal...

    For Iran...

    Michale...

  47. [47] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale[44]

    Comments like this one, and they are countless here in this thread and in others, cannot be allowed to stand without a person of authority setting the record straight. Yes, I mean CW.

    Your assertions betray a deep misunderstanding of the Iran negotiations, at best, and an outright fabrication, at worst. And, what's more is that your view of all of this is so distorted that you actually make an argument against your own position on sanctions without even realizing it and let me start there. You say sanctions have worked to bring Iran to the negotiating table. So, now that Iran is at the negotiating table, negotiating with six nations, you want to apply more sanctions. To do what? You think that the application of new sanctions will "FORCE" Iran to throw away its nuclear program? And, more importantly, what do you think might happen to the international sanctions regime - the regime that actually "FORCED" Iran to the negotiating table - if the US imposed more sanctions on Iran in the middle of negotiations? Think about that for a long while and you may begin to see how counterproductive that course of action could be.

    You are right to say that sanctions do work. And, I'm not talking about US sanctions alone but a muscular set of international sanctions - the strongest ever put in place against one country in the history of the world. It is this kind of sanctions regime that has helped to move Iran towards the negotiating table, as you say.

    However, to assert - with your usual brand of certitude - that even stronger sanctions on Iran than the US has managed to coalesce the international community behind if these negotiations fail will work magic to destroy Iran's nuclear program is not based on any cogent arguments that I can detect. Moreover, your assertions on this ignore what might happen to the international sanctions regime if these negotiations are scuttled by the US through the imposition of more sanctions before the negotiations are even concluded and before we know if a deal to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon can even be negotiated.

    These negotiations have already produced good results in that Iran has lived up to the terms of the nascent agreement. Iran has halted its program in some tangible and measurable ways.

    >>> Iran still has ALL of it's facilities... Yes, but you leave out all of the restrictions and substantially reduced number of centrifuges.

    >>> Iran will STILL be able to enrich uranium.. Yes, but not nearly to the extent that would be necessary to make a bomb. What percentage of enriched uranium do you think these negotiations would ultimately permit through the term of the deal, if concluded.

    >>> And Iran will be able to do all of that and more unfettered by inspections...

    That is simply false.

    I'm sorry to say, Michale, that your non-serious arguments on this issue preclude any serious discussion with you.

  48. [48] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale[44] ... edited for clarity

    Comments like this one, and they are countless here in this thread and in others, cannot be allowed to stand without a person of authority setting the record straight. Yes, I mean CW.

    Your assertions betray a deep misunderstanding of the Iran negotiations, at best, and an outright fabrication, at worst. And, what's more is that your view of all of this is so distorted that you actually make an argument against your own position on sanctions without even realizing it and let me start there. You say sanctions have worked to bring Iran to the negotiating table. So, now that Iran is at the negotiating table, negotiating with six nations, you want to apply more sanctions. To do what? You think that the application of new sanctions will "FORCE" Iran to throw away its nuclear program? And, more importantly, what do you think might happen to the international sanctions regime - the regime that actually "FORCED" Iran to the negotiating table - if the US imposed more sanctions on Iran in the middle of negotiations? Think about that for a long while and you may begin to see how counterproductive that course of action could be.

    You are right to say that sanctions do work. And, I'm not talking about US sanctions alone but a muscular set of international sanctions - the strongest ever put in place against one country in the history of the world. It is this kind of sanctions regime that has helped to move Iran towards the negotiating table, as you say.

    However, to assert - with your usual brand of certitude - that even stronger sanctions on Iran than the US has managed to coalesce the international community behind if these negotiations fail will work magic to destroy Iran's nuclear program is not based on any cogent arguments that I can detect. Moreover, your assertions on this ignore what might happen to the international sanctions regime if these negotiations are scuttled by the US through the imposition of more sanctions before the negotiations are even concluded and before we know if a deal to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon can even be negotiated.

    These negotiations have already produced good results in that Iran has lived up to the terms of the nascent agreement. Iran has halted its program in some tangible and measurable ways.

    >>> Iran still has ALL of it's facilities...

    Yes, but you leave out all of the restrictions and substantially reduced number of centrifuges.

    >>> Iran will STILL be able to enrich uranium..

    Yes, but not nearly to the extent that would be necessary to make a bomb. What percentage of enriched uranium do you think these negotiations would ultimately permit through the term of the deal, if concluded.

    >>> And Iran will be able to do all of that and more unfettered by inspections...

    That is simply false.

    I'm sorry to say, Michale, that your non-serious arguments on this issue preclude any serious discussion with you.

  49. [49] 
    TheStig wrote:

    M-32

    "Iran's leaders are religious nutjobs who think it's their destiny to bring about the end of the world???"

    From the context I think you intended those question marks to be exclamation points!!!???

    Your position seems to be that Iranian religious leaders are crazy nut jobs. Then why did sanctions drive them to the negotiation table? Why not just crazily keep enriching uranium and producing plutonium? It looks to me that somebody in Iran is sane enough to do a bit of cost to benefit reasoning. We may not like their reasoning, but they do reason.

    Obama didn't throw away sanctions. (We know this because they haven't shown up on Ebay, nor are homeless people living in them). The sanctions have been suspended. They could be reactivated, but their function was always to get Iran to the negotiating table, by artificially inflating the cost of Iran's nuclear weapons program and putting brakes on their R&D time table.

    Sanctions aren't blockade. Given regional geography, I don't think a blockade of Iran is feasible. I don't think invasion and subsequent occupation of Iran is feasible either. Air strikes are feasible, but I seriously doubt their effectiveness and blow back would be serious (serious as in deadly airborne fallout if you attack reactors or resort to brute force atomic wastelanding (new word) of Iran.

    I think you need to get a bit more specific on how you propose to force Iran to halt research and development with sanctions.

    One more thing. Peggy Noonan is a speechwriter. A thousand points of bullshit to make her bosses look better and smarter than they really are. Op-ed is just another word for advertising.

    One more one more thing: I do love Tropic Thunder. I must rent it.

  50. [50] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Anybody West Coast Weigantians get a look at yesterday's 4 minute "Blood Moon?"

  51. [51] 
    akadjian wrote:

    It can be used to justify anything at all... :D

    Ain't that the truth. I wrote about the morality of atheism recently. One of the interesting things about atheism is that you can't pawn off decisions on some other text, you have to own them. Now people who use the bible as a guide but still own their decisions are fine. The ones I have a hard time with are the ones who think God is talking to them :).

    Isn't it even SLIGHTLY possible that it's more to do with a sincere desire to honor their religion and it's not about "hate".

    Did you see the lobbyists who were there for the signing?

    Rabbi Yisrael Gettinger was one of them. He says stuff like this:

    "One cannot be more certain of something being inappropriate if it's called an abomination in the Bible. Those are not my words. Those are the Bible's words. Those are God's words."

    The rest of them are a who's who of religious zealots that would like nothing better than to legislate their morality.

    -David

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    That is simply false.

    Actually, it's all completely factual...

    There will be no inspections on Iran's military facilities...

    Even if there were inspections allowed, they will be done under the auspices of the UN..

    And you recall how accurate THAT was in Iraq...

    David,

    One cannot be more certain of something being inappropriate if it's called an abomination in the Bible. Those are not my words. Those are the Bible's words. Those are God's words."

    Yea?? So???

    People have been saying the bible is "god's word" for thousands of years...

    Doesn't make it so....

    Try this...

    Imagine that christians who oppose homosexuals and gay marriage are as sincere as you are opposed to money in politics...

    One of the main benefits I have in being politically and religiously agnostic is it allows me to see BOTH sides of an issue clearly...

    In this particular issue, I see all the hatred coming from the Left. All the terroristic threats and threats of violence against this poor girl who never done anyone any harm..

    Yet, the Left welcomes Iran with open arms...

    Non sequitor...

    It does not compute....

    Michale

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    Anybody West Coast Weigantians get a look at yesterday's 4 minute "Blood Moon?"

    I caught the beginnings of it here on the east coast of Florida... Wish I coulda saw the whole thing... :D

    Michale

  54. [54] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I don't doubt they're sincere, Michale. I'm sure they are. And they can believe whatever they want.

    This doesn't give them the right to some kind of special exemption from U.S. laws.

    -David

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    This doesn't give them the right to some kind of special exemption from U.S. laws.

    And yet, the Left wants exemptions for themselves and not others..

    See comment #42

    Funny how that is, eh??

    It's about respect for people's values...

    Gay activists want respect for theirs, but refuse to respect anyone else's....

    If they don't give respect, they don't get respect...

    Imminently fair, in my book...

    Michale

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    I don't doubt they're sincere, Michale. I'm sure they are.

    OK, so you don't believe it's about hate...

    Great.. Common ground..

    Michale

  57. [57] 
    mathewrule wrote:

    Very nice column. I've enjoyed it for a long time and this is perhaps your best, compelling my first blog, ever... I would vote that the Nobel Peace Prize should be awarded to all who contributed to the Iran Peace Accord, from the negotiators who engaged in dignified, true diplomacy, to the security people who kept them safe, to the maids & butlers who must have worked tirelessly to keep them sustained. I am impressed. They all deserve the honor.

  58. [58] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    You'll be taken more seriously if you stop pretending that you know what's in the deal before there is a deal.

    To put it another way, there is no sense discussing this issue with you as you persist in making non-serious assertions until there is a deal to discuss.

  59. [59] 
    Michale wrote:

    You'll be taken more seriously if you stop pretending that you know what's in the deal before there is a deal.

    That's what's in the deal per the Obama Administration and the Iranians..

    It's actually one of the few things that is actually agreed on..

    There will be NO INSPECTIONS of Iranian military facilities..

    Michale

  60. [60] 
    akadjian wrote:

    OK, so you don't believe it's about hate.

    Ummmm. How about I believe they are sincere in their hate :)

    Here's the reason why I say this. Leviticus 20:9 -

    For every one that curses his father or his mother shall be surely put to death: he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood shall be upon him.

    So according to their faith, they should be putting to death any kids who curse their mother or father.

    If you take the bible literally as they say they do, why don't they put kids to death?

    As you mentioned, you can justify anything with the bible. This is why people's actions (such as choosing to hate gay people) say more about them then they do any religion.

    -David

  61. [61] 
    akadjian wrote:

    I also don't understand why some of these religious people don't focus more on helping others.

    I mean, isn't that what Jesus did?

    -David

  62. [62] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There will be NO INSPECTIONS of Iranian military facilities..

    Oh, I'm sorry, Michale ... I thought we were talking about the nuclear infrastructure of Iran.

    I'm done discussing this with you. However, if CW fails to set the record straight on your non-serious statements on the Iran negotiations I may be compelled to step in and do so, from time to time.

  63. [63] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    David,

    As I understand it, there are a certain number of religious people who don't care what Jesus would do.

    These are the same people who think that their religious freedom is under attack in America.

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    I also don't understand why some of these religious people don't focus more on helping others.

    It's their religion and no one has the right to sit in judgement...

    Isn't that ya'alls complaint against them??

    As I told John M. above...

    If one wants tolerance, one must BE tolerant..

    If one wants respect, one must BE respectful..

    It's amazing how well it works.. :D

    Michale

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm done discussing this with you. However, if CW fails to set the record straight on your non-serious statements on the Iran negotiations I may be compelled to step in and do so, from time to time.

    I look forward to your.... ahem.. corrections.. :D

    Just keep in mind one thing..

    We have already had a preview of what UN Nuclear Inspections are like.....

    Didn't do much to prevent war in Iraq, now did it??

    You also might want to review Iran's lack of response on PMDs...

    Finally, review the UNIEAE report on Iran's non-compliance to date...

    I am *STILL* waiting for someone to provide ANY factual evidence that Iran can be trusted, what with their executions of gay people, their sponsor of terrorism, etc etc...

    I'll be waiting.. :D

    Michale

  66. [66] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hay CW,

    Another one for the NNL filter. :D

    Liz, you'll have to wait and see the completely awesome, totally factual and awesomely stupendous comment... :D

    Michale

  67. [67] 
    akadjian wrote:

    If one wants tolerance, one must BE tolerant.

    If we're tolerant of hate they won't hate?

    By and large, however, I agree with your principle. There are certain situations, however, where it doesn't make sense to me.

    For example, the religious folks beheading people in the Middle East. I don't know as being tolerant of that type of behavior is going to see tolerance returned.

    -David

  68. [68] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm not that patient.

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    Have ya'all ever noticed that no one here condemns those of the islam faith...

    All ya'alls scorn and hate is reserved solely and utterly for christians...

    Funny how that is, eh?? :D

    Michale

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    If one wants tolerance, one must BE tolerant.

    If we're tolerant of hate they won't hate?

    Again with the hate...

    There is no hate...

    By and large, however, I agree with your principle. There are certain situations, however, where it doesn't make sense to me.

    The problem there is that those "situations" are completely determined by the political ideology..

    Hence, no one wants to comment on #42 or #34

    Michale

  71. [71] 
    Michale wrote:

    For example, the religious folks beheading people in the Middle East. I don't know as being tolerant of that type of behavior is going to see tolerance returned.

    And if christians here in the US start going that route, MY intolerance will far FAR surpass ya'alls.. :D

    But we're not talking about that.

    We're simply talking about people of faith wanting to run their businesses according to that faith..

    The gay activists should respect that and not be so aggressively violent against people who don't want to accept their lifestyle...

    Michale

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    And it's not that I am defending religion and religious people. By and large a bigger sanctimonious group of prigs you will ever find..

    But I respect their rights to have their values..

    I wouldn't go to a christian catering service and force them to cater a Couples Swing Lifestyle party because that would be disrespectful...

    THAT's the entire point..

    Gay activists are going to these places SOLELY to produce the Leftist feeding frenzy that they KNOW will happen...

    They are assholes of the highest caliber that don't deserve any sympathy..

    My sympathy goes to the poor mid-west girl who spoke from the heart and was rewarded with threats of death and arson and the like..

    Funny how no one here has condemned any of THAT, eh?? :^/

    Michale

  73. [73] 
    Michale wrote:

    It’s Reprehensible to Punish Thoughtcrime
    If, following a breathless media report, it’s okay to destroy the business of someone who objects to you or your lifestyle on religious grounds, why not burn their home down? Does someone like that really deserve to have a place to live? Why not torch his cars? His kids are allowed in school? Hell, why not drag those hateful, homophobic bigots outside and hang them, pour encourager les autres? Of course, it couldn’t happen here, says America’s justice-warrior class, “We just want you to stop having Wrong Thoughts.”

    http://thefederalist.com/2015/04/03/heres-what-happens-when-its-okay-to-punish-peoples-beliefs/

    The problem in a nutshell..

    It's about creating punishments for thoughtcrime..

    Because, when one discards all the hysterical hyperbole from the Left, THAT is the only "crime" this poor mid-west girl committed...

    She made a comment regarding a hypothetical situation, a comment that was true to her christian values..

    And her life was threatened, her well-being was threatened and her family was threatened...

    And no one from the Left said "boo" about that...

    Michale

  74. [74] 
    Michale wrote:

    She made a comment regarding a hypothetical situation, a comment that was true to her christian values..

    And her life was threatened, her well-being was threatened and her family was threatened...

    Granted, she also made almost a million bucks as well from the kind generosity of real Americans..... :D

    But the point is still valid...

    Michale

  75. [75] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    My "business philosophy" is simple...

    I have the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason...

    No, actually you don't. You haven't since at least the late 1960's. Part of the segregation laws from the 1950's made it impossible for someone who was black for instance, to be able to find either a single public motel or hotel room or public restroom available for them to use anywhere in an entire state like Alabama.

    So the civil rights and public accomodation laws changed that by prohibiting certain forms of discrimination. And we are all much better off for that.

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    Just let me point out one obvious fact that will end the debate...

    If it had been a GOP President that made this deal with Iran, ya'all would be making the EXACT same argument that I am making, using the EXACT same points that I have been using, pointing to the EXACT same facts that I have been pointing to..

    And, once again, there would be complete and utter agreement all across the vast Weigantian empire... :D

    Any country that executes people for being gay simply cannot be trusted...

    Any country that supports terrorism on a world wide scale simply cannot be trusted...

    And I am simply gabberflasted that I am the only one here who sees that...

    Michale

  77. [77] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    OK... So, using your reasoning, if you open up a political consultancy firm, you would HAVE to work to elect Republicans that choose to hire your company..

    So, a PETA member who runs a catering service would HAVE to cater an AFTER SLAUGHTER Lunch at the local slaughter house..

    So, a black baker would HAVE to bake a cake for a KKK Birthday bash...

    And if the above 3 business owners REFUSED to provide the requested service, then they should be run out of business and threatened with death, etc etc etc..

    Actually I did address those when I used your Jewish example regarding the Nazis. Different group, same principle. No, they should not be threatened with death. But, if they lose their business for refusing to comply with a non discrimination law would I be ok with that? You bet I would!!!

  78. [78] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    In 2012, a gay hairdresser in Sante Fe, New Mexico refused to continue to provide services to NM Governor Susana Martinez because of Martinez's stance against gay marriage..

    The gay community treated the hairdresser as a hero, willing to stand for his principles..

    As I have been saying all along..

    The Left doesn't mind bigotry or discrimination as long as it's the RIGHT (pun intended) people who are being discriminated against.

    You seem to be confusing a couple of very important points. One is this; there is a difference between fighting to expand rights for people, as the hairdresser was doing, and fighting to contract or restrict rights for people, as the Governor was doing, or as your poor midwestern girl was doing in her expression of bigotry.

    The other is this; Refusing to print a hate message on a cake, for instance, is not the same as refusing a wedding cake to gay people. If you sell the product to one person but refuse another simply for who that person is, that is discrimination. When you refuse to make a product that you wouldn't make for anyone, it is NOT discrimination.

  79. [79] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    The gay activists should respect that and not be so aggressively violent against people who don't want to accept their lifestyle...

    Obviously Michale, before we can have even the begining of a rational discussion with you, you need some serious education.

    There is NO such thing as a gay lifestyle! Being gay is an orientation, not a lifestyle. Lifestyle implies a choice, which it is not. Is there a heterosexual lifestyle? A single gay man going out to the clubs every night, a lesbian couple raising a child together, and a monogamous gay male couple who have been together the past 20 years may all be gay, but that is practically the only thing they have in common, and they sure don't all share the same "lifestyle."

    For your further education, by the way, you can also be gay and still be totally and completely a virgin. That's for the people who claim that being gay is purely a behavior and a choice, and confuse behavior with the term orientation.

    I hope this helps. :-)

  80. [80] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    Gay activists are going to these places SOLELY to produce the Leftist feeding frenzy that they KNOW will happen...

    Actually something of yours Michale that is totally not true. The gay couple, for instance, who had been refused a cake for their wedding, were longtime customers of the business. The business had been more than happy to provide them with cakes in the past, and in the future. They just didn't want to provide a cake for their wedding only.

    Let me bring up something else while we are sort of in the subject. Lets say I work as a cashier for Walmart, I refuse to sell alcohol to someone because of my sincerely held religious belief. I work in Wisconsin that has a newly passed right to work law. Walmart says I either sell the alcohol or find a job elsewhere. Which takes precedence? The right to religious liberty law? Or the right to work law that gives my employer the right to fire anyone at anytime for any reason?

  81. [81] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    Just let me point out one obvious fact that will end the debate...

    If it had been a GOP President that made this deal with Iran, ya'all would be making the EXACT same argument that I am making, using the EXACT same points that I have been using, pointing to the EXACT same facts that I have been pointing to..

    Actually, no I would not Michale, and you want to know why? Because there is a very old saying, and I will quote Spock on this, "Only Nixon could go to China."

  82. [82] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    Yet, this same Left, this EXACT SAME LEFT turns around and says that making a deal with a country that ***EXECUTES*** people for being gay is a good thing...

    Well, we signed all kinds of agreements with the Soviet Union didn't we? Ronald Reagan signed arms control agreements with them at the same time he was condemning them as the evil empire, telling Gorbachev to tear down this wall, and castigating them for their human rights record.

    Are you really going to say now that we can't do the same thing with Iran???

  83. [83] 
    Michale wrote:

    As I am wont to do, I have to give credit where credit is due..

    Menendez sounded pretty defiant after the indictment was announced, vowing to fight to clear his name. Which could indeed happen, as political corruption can be notoriously hard to prove in court. So, as always, we issue this week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week with the caveat that we will rescind it should Menendez win his case.

    It was a stroke of genuis for Obama to direct his DOJ to indict Menendez at JUST the right moment to scuttle opposition to the Iran Giveaway...

    It served as a shot across the bow to other Democrats..

    "Cross the boss and we will come after you. "

    Obama deserves a MIDOTW award for that nifty political dirty trick...

    Michale

  84. [84] 
    Michale wrote:

    John M.

    No, actually you don't.

    Yes I do. And I exercise that right each and every day, every hour, every SECOND my business is open.

    And no blatantly hypocritical government is going to tell me different..

    For example, if a gay person comes in my shop and says, "You HAVE to serve me because I am gay!!" guess what??

    He will be out on his ass so fast it will make his head spin...

    Such is my right...

    :D

    No, they should not be threatened with death.

    But the christian who stays true to her values?? It's OK if SHE is threatened with death...

    Got it.. {{wink}} {wink}

    Just kidding... I know you are against that, even if it's like pulling teeth to get you to admit it. :D

    The other is this; Refusing to print a hate message on a cake, for instance, is not the same as refusing a wedding cake to gay people. If you sell the product to one person but refuse another simply for who that person is, that is discrimination. When you refuse to make a product that you wouldn't make for anyone, it is NOT discrimination.

    Which has absolutely NOTHING to do with the gay hairdresser in Santa Fe, NM who refused to continue to provide service to the NM Governor..

    So, obviously you support discrimination as long as it's the RIGHT (pun intended) people being discriminated against..

    Again, I completely understand where you are coming from. As I pointed out in that link above (way WAY above), we're all bigots.. We ALL discriminate..

    The only difference is the groups we choose to discriminate and be bigoted against..

    Ya'all are bigoted against Republicans but support Democrats..

    I am bigoted against ALL politicians, Democrats AND Republicans...

    There is NO such thing as a gay lifestyle! Being gay is an orientation, not a lifestyle. Lifestyle implies a choice, which it is not.

    That's your opinion based on SOME science..

    It is not scientifically factual...

    Being gay is a choice. We have already established this as factual right here in Weigantia..

    The only difference of opinion is how MUCH is choice and how much is genetics..

    But being gay is a choice. This is settled..

    I understand where you are coming from on the issue.. And there ARE scientific facts to support your position..

    But, like with many other so-called "science based" issues the political dimension far FAR exceeds the actual science..

    The gay couple, for instance, who had been refused a cake for their wedding, were longtime customers of the business. The business had been more than happy to provide them with cakes in the past, and in the future. They just didn't want to provide a cake for their wedding only.

    If they were "long time customers" then they would KNOW that the business was a christian business and would not want to be involved in a gay wedding..

    The fact that the gay couple went ahead and forced the issue and THEN publicized the issue proves beyond any doubt exactly what their agenda was..

    At least, it proves it to me.. Y M M V :D

    et me bring up something else while we are sort of in the subject. Lets say I work as a cashier for Walmart, I refuse to sell alcohol to someone because of my sincerely held religious belief. I work in Wisconsin that has a newly passed right to work law. Walmart says I either sell the alcohol or find a job elsewhere. Which takes precedence? The right to religious liberty law? Or the right to work law that gives my employer the right to fire anyone at anytime for any reason?

    That's actually a very good point. Kudos...

    But the answer is simple...

    One is artistry, the other is not...

    Let me give you an example..

    Let's say you are a DMV photographer and a muslim. You take pictures of people for their driver license... Day in, day out, that's all you do. Take pictures for driver's license..

    You cannot refuse to take a picture of a woman who'se face is uncovered because of your religion.. That would be completely illogical and irrational..

    Now, let's say you are a christian photographer who creates fantastic works of art with your photos... Some couple comes in and wants you to take pictures of them in various sexual positions with a large group of men and women..

    As a christian, you would refuse to take such pictures. Such refusal would be logical and rational...

    To put your WalMart example into this context...

    No, if you are mormon or amish and you work at a WalMart, you cannot refuse to sell a gay couple a bottle of wine because your religion forbids alcohol.. That would be illogical and irrational..

    BUT, if you are the CREATOR of that bottle of wine, it is completely logical and rational that you would have complete control over where that wine goes..

    The key point in this particular case is the artistry....

    It's why I could not force you to get me elected if you were a DEMOCRAT consultancy and I wanted you to get me elected as if I was a Republican..

    Consultancy of that nature is artistry...

    But, again. That was a damn good point...

    Actually, no I would not Michale, and you want to know why? Because there is a very old saying, and I will quote Spock on this, "Only Nixon could go to China."

    Damn!!! Now yer really getting good!!! :D

    Again, you weren't around during the Bush years.. You didn't see what it was like. Day in, Day out BUSH IS HITLER!!! BUSH IS A WAR CRIMINAL!!! BUSH IS THE ANTI-CHRIST!!!.

    I know for an absolute fact that if it was a GOP POTUS, the vast majority of Weigantians would be on the same side as me over the Iran Giveaway..

    Now, you claim you would be all for it, even if a GOP POTUS was making the deal?? OK, kewl.. I don't know you well enough to dispute that so I will accept yer word on that..

    But the rest?? Yea, I am pretty sure I can safely say that... :D

    "Good talk.."
    -Dr Rodney McKay, STARGATE: ATLANTIS, McKay And Mrs Miller

    Michale

  85. [85] 
    Michale wrote:
  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    Being gay is a choice. We have already established this as factual right here in Weigantia..

    The only difference of opinion is how MUCH is choice and how much is genetics..

    But being gay is a choice. This is settled..

    Look at it this way...

    Being an alcoholic has genetic properties...

    But there is also an element of choice...

    I mean, imagine what you are saying....

    Imagine a world where there is absolutely NO CHOICE over matters such as this. That free will is non-existent and one is a slave to their genetic make-up..

    That it's all genetics and choice doesn't enter into it at all..

    That if your genes say you are gay, then you are gay.. No matter HOW much ya like big jugs, you HAVE to go with men because your genes say so...

    That sounds suspiciously like a christian talking about "destiny"??? Hell at least christians have their "free will" mantra... Which I find MIGHTY convenient, I don't mind telling you.. :D One of the many "convenient" issues found in religion... :D

    The proponents of NATURE in the NATURE v NURTURE argument don't even allow for that free will...

    Michale

  87. [87] 
    Michale wrote:

    For example, if a gay person comes in my shop and says, "You HAVE to serve me because I am gay!!" guess what??

    He will be out on his ass so fast it will make his head spin...

    Such is my right...

    For the record, if a christian comes into my shop and says "You HAVE to serve me because I am christian!!" THEY ALSO would be out on their ass....

    If anyone tries to tell me I *have* to serve Group A, then I will deny Group A service simply on principles.. :D

    "I run my unit how I run my unit!!"
    -Colonel Nathan R Jessup
    Commanding Officer
    Guantanamo Bay, Cuba
    A FEW GOOD MEN

    :D

    Michale

  88. [88] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Verifying Iran Nuclear Deal Not Possible, Experts Say

    Past Iranian cheating to be codified by future accord

    Despite promises by President Obama that Iranian cheating on a new treaty will be detected, verifying Tehran’s compliance with a future nuclear accord will be very difficult if not impossible, arms experts say.

    “The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action will not be effectively verifiable,” said Paula DeSutter, assistant secretary of state for verification, compliance, and implementation from 2002 to 2009.
    http://freebeacon.com/national-security/verifying-iran-nuclear-deal-not-possible-experts-say/

    Reagan said, "TRUST, BUT VERIFY"...

    Obama is trusting without any verification possible...

    That's not what I am saying..

    That's what the experts are saying...

    I am also constrained to point out (AGAIN) that Obama is trusting a regime that executes people for being gay.. That supports terrorism world-wide...

    And ya'all think that Iran will do the right thing here??

    Based on nothing more than wishful thinking and the desire to support Obama no matter what...

    Michale

  89. [89] 
    Paula wrote:

    Michale 1:

    Those laws are identical to the RFRA Law that was sponsored by Democrats and overwhelmingly passed Congress and was signed by President Clinton in 1993...

    This assertion is being used by right-wingers to try to excuse Indiana Republican's flirtation with legislated bigotry and it is factually incorrect. But since Michale came out of the gate with this one, I am reminded he is a silly, silly man.

    Amanda Marcotte wrote an excellent (I thought) piece about where the lines get drawn between "my freedom versus your freedom": Up until recently, most of us seemed to understand that the best way to maximize religious freedom for everyone was to stay in your own lane: You can choose what to believe yourself, but if you start trying to force your beliefs on others, that is when a line has been crossed."http://talkingpointsmemo.com/cafe/how-conservatives-hijacked-religious-freedom-indiana-pence

    Meanwhile: Yay President Obama and Secretary Kerry. (Yay to the President for ending the stupid, stupid, stupid Cuban embargo.) Blessed are the Peacemakers.

  90. [90] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Again, you weren't around during the Bush years.. You didn't see what it was like. Day in, Day out BUSH IS HITLER!!! BUSH IS A WAR CRIMINAL!!! BUSH IS THE ANTI-CHRIST!!!."

    Thanks for the flattery! But what led you to make that totally unfounded assumption? I am actually just old enough to remember seeing President Lyndon Johnson, the Martin Luther King assassination riots, the death of Robert Kennedy and the manned moon landings live on television, in black and white no less!

  91. [91] 
    Michale wrote:

    Paula,

    This assertion is being used by right-wingers to try to excuse Indiana Republican's flirtation with legislated bigotry and it is factually incorrect.

    Says you...

    The facts and the text of the 1993 Clinton Law and the Indiana Law says different.. :D

    The *ONLY* difference in the laws is that the 1993 Clinton Law is that it only applies when a Government entity is involved and the Indiana Law applies whether it's government or private party...

    "These are the facts. And they are undisputed."
    -Kevin Bacon, A FEW GOOD MEN

    Amazing how often that quote is so applicable around here, eh?? :D

    But, I'll give ya an "E" for effort.. :D

    JM,

    Thanks for the flattery! But what led you to make that totally unfounded assumption? I am actually just old enough to remember seeing President Lyndon Johnson, the Martin Luther King assassination riots, the death of Robert Kennedy and the manned moon landings live on television, in black and white no less!

    You misunderstand..

    You weren't around HERE..

    Weigantia...

    It was here in Weigantia that there was daily BUSH roasts etc etc..

    Which is why I can state with absolute CERTAINTY that everyone here would be making the exact same arguments I am making over the Iran Giveaway if it were a GOP POTUS who was making the deal...

    I am actually just old enough to remember seeing President Lyndon Johnson, the Martin Luther King assassination riots, the death of Robert Kennedy and the manned moon landings live on television, in black and white no less!

    I actually remember watching the moon landing at my grandparents house in Banning, CA...

    Don't remember any of the rest, but I do vividly recall that..

    Michale

  92. [92] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Being gay is a choice. We have already established this as factual right here in Weigantia..
    The only difference of opinion is how MUCH is choice and how much is genetics..
    But being gay is a choice. This is settled..
    Look at it this way...
    Being an alcoholic has genetic properties...
    But there is also an element of choice..."

    This is one issue on which I will argue with you about until I am blue in the face, because no matter how much YOU say it, it does not make it true. IT IS NOT SETTLED. BEING GAY IS NOT A CHOICE.

    If being gay is a choice. Then being black is also a choice. If being gay is a choice, then being born male or female at birth is a conscious choice by the baby.

    Once again you are confusing orientation with behavior. You talk about how much of a choice it is. BULL! You can choose to be celibate or not, but that is the only choice you have in the matter. You cannot choose how much you like girls as opposed to boys. You either are attracted to them or you are not. You don't get to choose how much or to the degree to which your body is aroused to someone on a conscious level.

    "That if your genes say you are gay, then you are gay.. No matter HOW much ya like big jugs, you HAVE to go with men because your genes say so..."

    That is such an illogical statement. If you are gay, if your genes say you are gay, then you would never have any kind of attraction to big jugs in the first place! Unless of course you are a lesbian. :-)

    If being gay is a choice, then so is being heterosexual. So tell me Michale, assuming that you are straight and male, when did you decide to become heterosexual instead of homosexual? How much gay sex did you have before you made the choice to be heterosexual instead? If you didn't, then why not? If it was something that just happened to you during puberty, that you became aware of without having to consciously decide or experiment about, then why do you assume it was any different for anyone else?

    If someone who is gay tells you that being gay is not a choice, and you are not gay yourself, then who are you to try to tell them something different? That would make about as much sense as a white man trying to tell Oprah that he knows better than she does what it is like to be black and female.

  93. [93] 
    Michale wrote:

    If being gay is a choice, then so is being heterosexual. So tell me Michale, assuming that you are straight and male, when did you decide to become heterosexual instead of homosexual?

    I could tell you the exact moment, but it would probably gross you out.. :D Suffice it to say it was 1968... :D

    As I said, you can point to scientific evidence that INDICATES being gay is genetic..

    And I can point to scientific evidence that being gay is a product of the environment..

    But, like with other Democrat so-called "science" issues, it's really a political issue...

    People *HAVE* to be born gay.. Because if they weren't, if it IS a product of experiences and environment, then a MAJOR plank of the Democrat Party platform completely collapses..

    That's why it *MUST* be genetics...

    Science has nothing to do with it..

    It's all political ideology...

    As someone unfettered by political ideology, I can look at things rationally and objectively...

    Michale

  94. [94] 
    Michale wrote:

    As for the RFRA laws..

    Ya'all are making the wrong argument.

    Ya'all are trying to argue that the laws are textually different..

    It's a proven fact that, with that one minor exception I already mentioned, the laws are textually identical...

    The Indiana RFRA is identical to the RFRA law that Democrats championed and that Clinton signed into law in 1993...

    The Arkansas RFRA is identical to the Illinois RFRA that State Senator Barack Obama voted for....

    The argument you SHOULD be making is that the INTENT of the laws are different...

    THAT is an argument that is more reasonable and has a lot more chance of success..

    Of course, I have an answer for THAT argument as well :D but it's a much more logical and rational argument than the one ya'all are trying to make...

    Just tryin' ta help out a little.. :D

    Michale

  95. [95] 
    Michale wrote:

    If I may, as I am wont to do on Fridays, I would like to go off on a completely utterly non-sequitor tangent...

    Let me preface the hard left turn with the following..

    The SyFy network is not known for it's quality entertainment programming.. The programming decisions made at SyFy remind me of the programming decisions that "Beavis & Butthead" (AKA Rick Berman & Brannon Braga) made regarding the direction of STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE..

    To whit, they were worried about dollar signs rather than the fan base...

    BUT......

    There is a new SyFy series that seems to actually be good...

    12 MONKEYS

    Like many, I wasn't expecting much from this new SyFy series...

    Time travel shows usually fall into one of two categories.. They are either impossibly complex and you need a degree in Temporal Mechanics from Starfleet Academy to understand them..

    Or they are dumbed down so much as to be totally implausible and more than a little boring...

    But being a sci-fi fan of many MANY decades, I decided to give it a try. The REAL test, however, would be my lovely wife.. She is no where near a sci-fan at all, plus her grasp of Temporal Mechanics is non-existent..

    Happy to report that we BOTH enjoy the show. The switch from time period to time period is smooth and easy to follow without being condescending..

    When they throw you a curve with an alternate timeline, you are thinking more, "WHOOAAAA" rather than, "HUH W.T.F.!!!???"

    In short (too late! :D) 12 Monkeys is complex enough to be exciting and easy enough to follow without being insulting...

    I am just curious if anyone else has watched it and what their thoughts were...

    We now return you to our regularly scheduled partisan bloodshed and political mayhem.. :D

    Michale

  96. [96] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "I could tell you the exact moment, but it would probably gross you out.. :D Suffice it to say it was 1968... :D"

    If that is really the case Michale, then I would argue that probably like most people, you are actually bisexual, and not really gay or heterosexual. BIG DIFFERENCE!

    Also, even if being gay is a product of the environment, all indications are that the orientation is set while you are a toddler, long before you reach puberty, probably by the time you are 5 years old. So in practicality, there would still be little difference from it NOT being a choice.

  97. [97] 
    Michale wrote:

    If that is really the case Michale, then I would argue that probably like most people, you are actually bisexual, and not really gay or heterosexual. BIG DIFFERENCE!

    Actually, I have tried the male on male thing... Doesn't float my boat..

    Now my lovely wife, on the other hand, loves to play with the ladies as much as she does with the gentlemen...

    Does that mean she gets special privileges?? :D

    Also, even if being gay is a product of the environment, all indications are that the orientation is set while you are a toddler, long before you reach puberty, probably by the time you are 5 years old.

    Yes, there is evidence to suggest that..

    Just as there is evidence to suggest that adult traumas can "turn people gay"...

    I have family members that are gay... I have very VERY close friends whose daughter was gay, then she wasn't, then she was and now she's not...

    I put gay people in the category of WOBs... Yea, it's fun to be different for a while...

    But then reality sets in and the consequences of our CHOICES rear their ugly heads...

    I realize that I have no hope of changing your mind on the issue..

    Telling a devout liberal that it's possibly NOT a product of genetics is like telling a devout christian that it's POSSIBLE that there is not a god...

    But that doesn't mean we can't get shit-faced drunk together... :D

    Michale

  98. [98] 
    Michale wrote:

    Are you really going to say now that we can't do the same thing with Iran???

    Not when you are championing gay rights while Iran is EXECUTING gay people...

    Don't you even find that the LEAST bit weird??

    I mean, what line WON'T be crossed??

    Let's say you have a billionaire who has provided so much to the poor.. His philanthropy is un-matched... He is a saint....

    But once a year, he abducts a child, rapes and then murders that child...

    Only 1 child a year...

    Match that against ALL the good this uber-philanthropist has done and has yet to do.... Hell, with his billions, he will ultimately find the cure for cancer...

    Does all the good that is possible in the world for one man to do erase that one act of barbarity??

    Ever see STEPHEN KING'S STORM OF THE CENTURY??

    I completely understand having to deal with evil people to accomplish good..

    I was a cop for a long time. I have been a federal FSO and was an MI Elltee with the US Army during Desert Storm...

    I am INTIMATELY familiar with the concept of THE ENDS JUSTIFIES THE MEANS...

    And, if you state for the record that Obama getting a "win" is worth a bunch of executed gay people, then I will accept that...

    I just find it hard to believe that you... That ANYONE here would make/support that claim...

    Michale

  99. [99] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Re. "Obama getting a win"

    This sums up why your assertions about the Iran negotiations are wholly non-serious.

    It's not about "Obama getting a win" ... it's about the US and the other P4, plus one ensuring that the pathways to a nuclear weapon are blocked for Iran for 10 to 25 years.

    And, if a comprehensive negotiated agreement can be reached to achieve that, then it will be a win for everyone.

  100. [100] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's not about "Obama getting a win" ... it's about the US and the other P4, plus one ensuring that the pathways to a nuclear weapon are blocked for Iran for 10 to 25 years.

    But that is EXACTLY where you are wrong..

    Obama's *STATED* goal is to limit Iran's ability to build a nuclear device (their "breakout" time) to just ONE YEAR...

    But even if you were right, even if preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon for 10-25 years...

    It is ALL completely and solely based on TRUSTING Iran...

    TRUSTING a regime who is the world's sponsor of terrorism...

    TRUSTING a regime who *EXECUTES* people for being gay...

    No one... Not ONE SINGLE person.... has addressed this one simple fact..

    How can the world trust a regime that commits such heinous acts of barbarity???

    It's like trusting Adolf Hitler when he says, "No, seriously.. I harbor no ill will towards Jews..."

    How can such be trusted???

    Michale

  101. [101] 
    Michale wrote:

    I mean, honestly..

    No one here trusts the GOP when they say they have the best interests of the country at heart...

    Yet, ya'all are going to TRUST a regime that executes people for being gay!??

    How is that not totally and completely whacked??

    Michale

  102. [102] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm not sure where you've been or what you've been reading for the last couple of years but, trust has nothing to do with negotiating a nuclear agreement with Iran, whatsoever.

    Which is yet another example of your non-serious assertions about these negotiations that only tells me that your understanding of these negotiations is far less than you would have readers here believe.

  103. [103] 
    Michale wrote:

    Put it in this context...

    If someone wanted to elect Charles Manson as a California State Representative, they could make the argument that his crimes really have nothing to do with his ability to represent constituents properly...

    However, one could ALSO make the argument that his brutal murder of a bunch of people, including a pregnant woman, just MIGHT have some bearing on his trustworthiness...

    Replace "California State Representative" with a "Nuclear Proliferation Deal".

    Replace "Charles Manson" with "Iran"???

    I fail to see ANY relevant difference...

    Please.. Someone explain to me how I am wrong here??

    Michale

  104. [104] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm not sure where you've been or what you've been reading for the last couple of years but, trust has nothing to do with negotiating a nuclear agreement with Iran, whatsoever.

    Trust has EVERYTHING to do with the agreement..

    Because, as NUMEROUS Nuclear Proliferation experts have testified to, it is simply IMPOSSIBLE to verify Iran's compliance...

    Which is yet another example of your non-serious assertions about these negotiations that only tells me that your understanding of these negotiations is far less than you would have readers here believe.

    Actually, my understanding is dead on ballz accurate because it deals in REALITY...

    The world as it really is...

    Rather than the world as some would WISH it to be...

    Michale

  105. [105] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Because, as NUMEROUS Nuclear Proliferation experts have testified to, it is simply IMPOSSIBLE to verify Iran's compliance...

    Name a couple or three of those experts for me ... I'd like to read more about their reasoning.

  106. [106] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's not about "Obama getting a win" ... it's about the US and the other P4, plus one ensuring that the pathways to a nuclear weapon are blocked for Iran for 10 to 25 years.

    And, if a comprehensive negotiated agreement can be reached to achieve that, then it will be a win for everyone.

    It will be a "win" for everyone except the gay people that are executed...

    Not much of a "win" for them, eh??

    I'm just sayin'....

    Michale

  107. [107] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Don't give me links! Just some of those numerous names, please. You know how I feel about links. :)

  108. [108] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    What are you doing? ... trying to use the Google to find those names? Heh. Good luck with that.

  109. [109] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I know what's taking you so long to give me those names ... even you are not sure about their reliability as experts or about the veracity of what they say ... so, you are searching for evidence of their reliability ...

    Well, just give me the names of those experts whom you believe to be reliable ... I can wait, for a little while ... :)

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    Don't get me wrong..

    I REALLY feel bad for those gay couples who won't be able to have their wedding, their VERY special day, catered by a small town pizzeria....

    They must be DEVASTATED...

    I join with everyone here in feeling the pain and suffering of those poor POOR gay couples...

    (as an aside, my lovely wife just called.. We're having Little Caesar's Pizza tonight!!! WOOT!!!! )

    Anyways, I feel the pain of those poor hypothetical gay couples who can't have their Pizza Wedding...

    We all are ONE on that point..

    BUT......

    I *ALSO* feel the pain of those gay people in Iran who have been executed...

    **KILLED**.....

    I feel the pain of the families in Iran who have lost loved ones because of the fanatical and tyrannical regime in Iran who thinks it is perfectly OK to execute people of a certain lifestyle...

    Apparently, with all the euphoria of an Obama "WIN", I am alone in those feelings.... :^/

    Michale

  111. [111] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, just give me the names of those experts whom you believe to be reliable ... I can wait, for a little while ... :)

    I gave you the link...

    Comment #84...

    Despite promises by President Obama that Iranian cheating on a new treaty will be detected, verifying Tehran’s compliance with a future nuclear accord will be very difficult if not impossible, arms experts say.

    “The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action will not be effectively verifiable,” said Paula DeSutter, assistant secretary of state for verification, compliance, and implementation from 2002 to 2009.

    Obama said Saturday that the framework nuclear deal reached in Switzerland would provide “unprecedented verification.”

    International inspectors “will have unprecedented access to Iran’s nuclear program because Iran will face more inspections than any other country in the world,” he said in a Saturday radio address.

    “If Iran cheats, the world will know it,” Obama said. “If we see something suspicious, we will inspect it. So this deal is not based on trust, it’s based on unprecedented verification.”

    But arms control experts challenged the administration’s assertions that a final deal to be hammered out in detail between now and June can be verified, based on Iran’s past cheating and the failure of similar arms verification procedures.

    A White House fact sheet on the outline of the future agreement states that the new accord will not require Iran to dismantle centrifuges, or to remove stockpiled nuclear material from the country or convert such material into less dangerous fuel rods.

    The agreement also would permit continued nuclear research at facilities built in violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which Iran signed in 1970 but has violated repeatedly since at least the early 2000s.

    The centerpiece for verifying Iranian compliance will be a document called the Additional Protocol of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), according to the White House.

    However, the State Department’s most recent report on arms compliance, made public in July, states that Iran signed an IAEA Additional Protocol in 2003 but “implemented it provisionally and selectively from 2003 to 2006,” when Tehran stopped complying altogether.

    “The framework claims that Iran will once again execute an Additional Protocol with IAEA,” said William R. Harris, an international lawyer who formerly took part in drafting and verifying U.S. arms control agreements. “This might yield unprecedented verification opportunities, but can the international community count on faithful implementation?”

    Harris also said Iran could cheat by shipping secretly built nuclear arms to North Korea, based on published reports indicating Iran co-financed North Korea’s nuclear tests, and that Iranian ballistic missile test signals reportedly showed “earmarks” of North Korean guidance systems.

    “So what would prevent storage of Iranian nuclear weapons at underground North Korean sites?” he asked. “If there is to be full-scope inspection in Iran, the incentives for extraterritorial R&D and storage increase.”

    U.S. intelligence agencies, which will be called on to verify the agreement, also have a spotty record for estimating foreign arms programs. After erroneously claiming Iraq had large stocks of weapons of mass destruction, the intelligence community produced a 2007 National Intelligence Estimate that falsely concluded that Iran halted work on nuclear weapons in 2003.

    The IAEA, in a restricted 2011 report, contradicted the estimate by stating that Iran continued nuclear arms work past 2003, including work on computer modeling used in building nuclear warheads.

    White House officials who briefed reporters last week on the new framework agreement said the key to verification of the future pact will be the new IAEA protocol. The protocol will provide greater access and information on the Iranian nuclear program, including its hidden and secret sites, they said.

    The nuclear facilities at Fordow, an underground facility where centrifuges will be removed, and Natanz, another major centrifuge facility, were both built in violation of the NPT and will not be dismantled.

    Additionally, the nuclear facility at Parchin, where Iran is believed to have carried out most of its nuclear weapons work, is not mentioned in any of the fact sheets by name.

    The sole reference to Iran’s work on nuclear arms is the reference in the fact sheet to a requirement that Iran address “the possible military dimensions” of its nuclear program.

    Officials who briefed reporters also said that under the new agreement inspectors would have access to Iran’s nuclear “supply chain”—the covert system used to circumvent global sanctions and procure materials and equipment.

    DeSutter, the former State Department arms verification official, said the transparency measures announced after talks in Lausanne, Switzerland, on Thursday at best could detect quantitative excesses at known locations, but not secret illegal activities, like those that Iran carried out on a large scale in violation of its obligations under the NPT.

    The transparency regime for the new deal also will “undermine the already challenging verifiability of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty by legitimizing Iran’s illegal enrichment and reprocessing programs,” DeSutter said.

    Thomas Moore, former professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who specialized in arms control matters, also said Iran’s past cheating on the NPT makes verifying a new agreement nearly impossible.

    Iran, in its statement on the framework, also denied it would sign a new IAEA protocol. Tehran said of the protocol that it will be implemented on a “voluntary and temporary basis” for transparency and confidence-building.

    The imprecise language is a sign “Iran is keeping its weapon option open but refuses required openness to confirm it no longer wants one,” Moore said.

    “Iran would not divert centrifuges or the material they make from a declared site,” Moore said. “Rather, it will instead cheat at an undeclared site.”

    Because Iran will not ratify the new protocol, the IAEA will be unable to verify the completeness and correctness of Iran’s declarations, Moore said, both declared and undeclared materials and activities.

    Iran is already the single most IAEA-inspected nation in the world and additional IAEA inspections are not expected to be better, although Iran’s nuclear expertise will grow, he added.

    “The deal is silent on Iran’s actual military dimensions, except to the extent that its supporters claim the IAEA will be able to verify the absence of a weapons program in Iran. They won’t,” Moore said.

    “Contrary to the imprecise political rhetoric, this deal does not yet contain the ‘most intrusive’ inspections ever tried,” he said.

    David S. Sullivan, a former CIA arms verification specialist and also a former Senate Foreign Relations Committee arms expert, said confirming Iran’s compliance with new nuclear obligations will be difficult.

    “U.S. national technical means of verification is always difficult, fraught with the political process of monitoring, collecting, analyzing, and [achieving] consensus on usually ambiguous evidence of cheating that opponents are trying to hide,” Sullivan said.

    “These difficulties are even greater for the UN’s IAEA, which is a multinational political agency.”

    Past cheating by Iran, confirmed as recently as July 2014 raised questions about why there are negotiations with Tehran, Sullivan said.

    “Why are we negotiating for a new agreement, when existing Iranian NPT violations remain in effect, ongoing, and unresolved, suggesting that Iran is unlikely to comply with any new agreement?” Sullivan said.

    “Iran alarmingly is officially within three months of having nuclear warheads, according to the international negotiators, and is therefore about to become another nuclear-armed North Korea,” he said, noting that Pyongyang also cheated on the NPT and now has nuclear-tipped missiles.

    By not requiring Iran to correct past violations of the NPT, the new agreement will in effect codify its current cheating. “The negotiations started as an attempt to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program, but now they have legitimized it,” Sullivan said.

    There's yer names....

    Michale

  112. [112] 
    Paula wrote:

    Michale: one of the many discussions about the difference between the 1993 law and the Pence/Repub debacle: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/religious-freedom-difference-indianas-law/story?id=30019729

    Not that I expect you to read it or admit it.

  113. [113] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Well, I have done some checking on these experts and the only one who has written or spoken about technical and effective verification of nuclear agreements is Paula Desutter. Unfortunately I have been unable to find anything from her related to the current Iran negoations that details why she believes a nuclear agreement with Iran cannot be verified.

    The lack of written documents on this issue by the others in the article you cite leads me to believe their assertions about verification are not very reliable.

    So, I'll be sticking to the experts at the institutions I know have a proven track record for reliability - Ploughshares Fund, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Brookings, International Crisis Group.

  114. [114] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    And, here is the statement issued by the head of the IAEA on April 2, 2015:

    IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano issued the following statement today regarding the announcement by E3+3 and Iran in Lausanne:

    "The IAEA welcomes the announcement by E3+3 and Iran on the key parameters for a joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. With the endorsement of the IAEA's Board of Governors, the Agency will be ready to fulfill its role in verifying the implementation of nuclear related measures, once the agreement is finalized."

  115. [115] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Hey everyone, sorry for being too busy this weekend to monitor things.

    First off, a warm welcome to matthewrule, whose comment is now #57 on the above list, or just click:

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2015/04/03/ftp340/#comment-58417

    Sorry your comment was held so long for moderation, I'm usually quicker than this. And thanks for the kind words.

    Your first comment was held automatically for moderation, but from now on you should be able to post comments and have them appear instantaneously. Just don't post more than one link per comment, as these get held for moderation.

    Again, welcome to the site!

    I'm getting ready to post today's article, will try to get back here later to answer some comments.

    -CW

  116. [116] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    http://www.armscontrol.org/files/Parameters-for-a-Joint-Comprehensive-Plan-of-Action-regarding-the-Islamic-Republic-of-Irans-Nuclear-Program-2015-04-02.pdf

    Here is the framework of the hoped for agreement with Iran on its nuclear program, released by the P5+1 and Iran. This is a great starting point for any serious discussion on the matter.

  117. [117] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:
  118. [118] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Just one more, Michale ... because, I know how much you love links! :)

    http://www.armscontrol.org/ACT/2015_04/Focus/A-Historic-Nonproliferation-Opportunity

    Here is just a small sampling from the piece ...

    The Senate has advice-and-consent authority on treaties, but the Iran deal is not a treaty. Rather, it is an arrangement between Iran and the six countries to bring Iran into compliance with its obligations.

    It is understandable that lawmakers want a say in the matter, but there are other, genuinely constructive ways for Congress to weigh in, such as requiring frequent reports on the implementation of any nuclear deal, establishing presidential certification requirements that relate directly to Iran’s obligations, providing the financial resources for the IAEA and its added work, and being ready to put sanctions back in place on an expedited basis if Iran commits a flagrant violation.

    Eventually, Congress will need to take legislative action to permanently remove U.S. nuclear-related sanctions on Iran, once Iran takes the steps required by the agreement.

    The emerging agreement with Iran would be a major boost for U.S. and international security, for Israel and other U.S. friends in the region, and for global efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. Congress should strengthen, not undermine, this vital diplomatic effort.

  119. [119] 
    Michale wrote:

    Paula,

    Michale: one of the many discussions about the difference between the 1993 law and the Pence/Repub debacle:

    Difference #1 and #4 are pretty much the same. And that's the ONLY difference between the laws. And it's a difference that I have already acknowledged..

    And who the law applies to makes no difference to the basics of the law itself...

    "A difference which makes no difference IS no difference."

    As to "difference" #2 and #3....

    2. IN SOME OTHER STATES, NONDISCRIMINATION LAWS TRUMP ‘RELIGIOUS FREEDOM’ LAWS

    This isn't a difference in the RFRA law, it's simply a difference between Indiana and the other states that have an RFRA law and it's also a difference between the State Of Indiana and the Federal Government vis a vis the RFRA law..

    It's no difference in the law itself..

    3. THE POLITICAL CONTEXT IS DIFFERENT, AND SO ARE THE POLICY AIMS

    Now THAT is a good point to argue..

    INTENT..

    Well, at least it's a better point to argue than the law is different then all the others.

    As I have pointed out, with the exception of that one point, who the law applies to, there is absolutely NO DIFFERENCE in the RFRA laws that already exist..

    Now, you claim that the INTENT of the law is different than the previous laws and the federal law..

    How do you know!??

    You can't POSSIBLY know the intent unless you can warp back in time to when the past laws were written and enter the minds of those writing the laws and voting for the laws and then warp forward in time back to the future and enter the minds of those writing the current laws and voting for the current laws..

    That is the ONLY way that you can divine INTENT...

    Otherwise, your ONLY claim must be, "In MY OPINION, the intent of the laws are different"...

    I respect your opinion.

    I simply disagree with it...

    Michale

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    The Senate has advice-and-consent authority on treaties, but the Iran deal is not a treaty. Rather, it is an arrangement between Iran and the six countries to bring Iran into compliance with its obligations.

    Has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the deal with Iran is a bad deal..

    Obama has said over and over that he would NOT let Iran get a nuclear bomb..

    Yet, this deal does absolutely NOTHING to prevent it..

    The *ONLY* thing this deal does is make it so it takes LONGER for Iran to build a bomb..

    From the 2-3 months it is now to a year..

    Even if the deal is adhered to TO THE LETTER by Iran it means Iran STILL CAN MAKE A NUCLEAR BOMB...

    This is a fact that Obama himself has stated over and over again...

    The *ONLY* thing this deal does, even if it is EVERYTHING that Lefties say it is, the ONLY thing the deal will accomplish is to increase Iran's breakout time...

    That's it...

    And THAT is why it's a bad deal..

    I noticed that you, nor anyone else, has addressed the TRUST issue..

    THAT is am even bigger issue than all the others...

    Michale

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz

    I noticed that you, nor anyone else, has addressed the TRUST issue..

    My mistake. You DID address the "trust" issue...

    By saying it's not an issue, despite ALL the evidence to the contrary...

    Michale

  122. [122] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Even if the deal is adhered to TO THE LETTER by Iran it means Iran STILL CAN MAKE A NUCLEAR BOMB...

    I've got news for you, Michale ... even if Iran's nuclear facilities were magically eliminated through sanctions or destroyed through military attacks by Israel and/or the US, Iran would still retain the capability to make a bomb, though it would take a few years to regain the capacity to do so.

    But, then you would have to deal with the dangerous fallout of economic disaster in Iran or of yet another all out war in the Middle East, especially considering current conditions in the region.

    And, to address your obsession with trust ... no one who is negotiating with Iran over the restrictions and monitoring of its nuclear program trusts Iran. In other words, the P5+1 negotiators DO NOT TRUST IRAN. Which is why verification is so important and not the impossibility some experts say it is.

    If the Israeli government and US Congress, not to mention AIPAC, want to be constructive here, they could ensure that the IAEA has all of the resources it needs to carry out this new inspections regime, a regime which is unprecedented in its intrusiveness and will need to be well resourced.

    Finally, if you think that reducing the break-out time for Iran to make a nuclear bomb is the only thing this deal accomplishes, then your understanding of what is being negotiated is extremely limited, at best and purposefully destructive, at worst.

    The critics of this deal have only dangerously flawed arguments. Which makes me wonder what they really want.

  123. [123] 
    Michale wrote:

    I've got news for you, Michale ... even if Iran's nuclear facilities were magically eliminated through sanctions or destroyed through military attacks by Israel and/or the US, Iran would still retain the capability to make a bomb, though it would take a few years to regain the capacity to do so.

    Yer absolutely right...

    BUT.....

    Sanctions or military attacks will likely result in a regime change..

    And THAT will eliminate the nuclear threat..

    And, to address your obsession with trust ... no one who is negotiating with Iran over the restrictions and monitoring of its nuclear program trusts Iran. In other words, the P5+1 negotiators DO NOT TRUST IRAN. Which is why verification is so important and not the impossibility some experts say it is.

    We already know for an absolute fact that verification is impossible..

    Because Iran has already been reneging on all the deals that they have made to date...

    Finally, if you think that reducing the break-out time for Iran to make a nuclear bomb is the only thing this deal accomplishes, then your understanding of what is being negotiated is extremely limited, at best and purposefully destructive, at worst.

    I KNOW that it's the only thing the deal has accomplished..

    Do you know how I know?

    Because Obama himself stated so...

    The entire idea behind the deal, the reason that the Obama Administration gave the American people to even START the diplomatic process, the ENTIRE goal was to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons..

    NOW that process is near it's end game, NOW what the Obama Administration is saying is that it pushes the breakout time further out..

    So NOW the goal is not to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons.. NOW the goal is to just to make it take longer..

    Obama lied. AGAIN...

    Finally, on the trust issue.... It's not so much a verification issue as it is a morality issue..

    How can one say that they are pro-jewish and are wholly concerned with the welfare of the jewish people and then turn around and advocate and support a deal with Hitler's Germany after the death camps were exposed??

    It seems to me that, logically and rationally speaking, each position is mutually exclusive..

    You can't be the former while doing the latter...

    Michale

  124. [124] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya know, ultimately it doesn't matter what you or I think of the deal, Liz...

    It doesn't matter whether Iran or the Obama Administration think it's a good deal or not..

    The ONLY opinion that matters is the opinions of those countries in the region..

    And THEIR opinions are clear..

    They think the Luasanne Deal is a paved path for Iran to acquire nuclear weapons..

    And they will follow suit because the ONLY proven defense against a nuclear strategy is the MAD defense...

    So, it matters not one whit whether ya'all think this is a deal made in heaven...

    It only matters what the people in the region think..

    And their opinions are crystal clear by their statements..

    There WILL be a nuclear arms race in the Middle East..

    All thanks to Obama's ego...

    Michale

  125. [125] 
    dsws wrote:

    What good would it do, to have members of Congress spend five days a week in the chambers, instead of being out interacting with constituents (aka begging for campaign donations)?

  126. [126] 
    Michale wrote:

    What good would it do, to have members of Congress spend five days a week in the chambers, instead of being out interacting with constituents (aka begging for campaign donations)?

    Bigger chance that they kill each other off?? :D

    Michale

  127. [127] 
    Michale wrote:

    THERE IS NO IRAN NUKE DEAL
    http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2015/04/06/iran-nuke-deal-goldberg-plan-column/25335783/

    The author makes the exact same point I am making..

    Even if this so-called "deal" is everything that Obama says it is, it will not prevent Iran from creating a nuclear arsenal...

    This is a simple fact that is utterly undeniable and it's what makes this "deal" completely and utterly useless..

    It's actually WORSE than useless because not only is Iran's nuclear infrastructure completely and unequivocally intact, it will also give Iran a grand infusion of cash and capital that will accelerate Iran's nuclear program...

    It will also, as I pointed out before, guarantee a nuclear arms race in THE most volatile and unstable region on the planet...

    But this "deal" *DOES* give Obama a "win".. An "accomplishment" of sorts...

    And THAT is the sole reason, the ONLY reason, this "deal" is being trumpeted...

    It all comes back to Obama's ego...

    Israel... A Nuclear Arms Race.... All of that takes a back seat to Obama's ego...

    Michale

  128. [128] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Sanctions or military attacks will likely result in a regime change.."

    This is one of the statements you have made that I am prepared to take issue with. What, without any evidence whatsoever, makes you think that?

    Did sanctions lead to regime change in Iraq? Did over 50 years of sanctions lead to regime change in Cuba? Have years of sanctions led to regime change in Iran yet? If they were going tow work, wouldn't they have done so by now?

    Also, isn't is much more likely that a military attack on Iran, rather than leading to regime change, going to have the opposite effect on patriotic Iranians just like it would among Americans, and lead to more support for their current government? A rally around the flag effect?

  129. [129] 
    John M wrote:

    Would not a military attack on Iran also lead to the opposite conclusion instead? That Iran absolutely needs a nuclear weapon as fast as possible, no matter the cost, in order to deter more American attacks? Would you be prepared to bomb Iran every couple of years, as far into the future as you can see, no matter the cost?

  130. [130] 
    John M wrote:

    Also, I might point out, that for sanctions to work at all, they can't be JUST American sanctions. If you have no support from Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, China, how is anything America does unilaterally with respect to Iran possible going to succeed, other than an American ground invasion and occupation of Iran all by ourselves?

  131. [131] 
    Paula wrote:

    Michale: 119:

    Now, you claim that the INTENT of the law is different than the previous laws and the federal law..

    How do you know!??

    We know because the case that started it all was about Native Americans smoking peyote in a traditional religious rite and then flunking drug tests for a job. The originating issue was about whether the government, as embodied in various laws, should discriminate in a tangible way on the basis of a religious act. I'm paraphrasing and over-simplifying. Another example was Muslim women being allowed to wear their burkas. The concern was protecting individuals from the government -- it was not to allow individuals to discriminate against other individuals (or corporations against individuals).

    The intent of laws is generally spelled out -- doesn't mean there won't be unintended consequences or nuances, but the goals have been discussed and debated.

    Unless you're a repub who surrounds himself with anti-gay activists and passes a law that opens the door to anti-gay discrimination while pretending you had no anti-gay intent at all. And five minutes later people are announcing they can refuse service to gay people. And then all sorts of repubs run around, as you did, and try to defend the law based on something Dems passed 20 years previously, in a different context, for a different purpose. Its disingenuous and dishonest.

  132. [132] 
    Michale wrote:

    Did sanctions lead to regime change in Iraq?

    War did...

    Have years of sanctions led to regime change in Iran yet?

    They would have if they had continued and were increased...

    Also, isn't is much more likely that a military attack on Iran, rather than leading to regime change, going to have the opposite effect on patriotic Iranians just like it would among Americans, and lead to more support for their current government? A rally around the flag effect?

    Possibly.. But unlikely.. Considering how bad the Iranian people are suffering under the current regime..

    That Iran absolutely needs a nuclear weapon as fast as possible, no matter the cost, in order to deter more American attacks? Would you be prepared to bomb Iran every couple of years, as far into the future as you can see, no matter the cost?

    Wouldn't need to since sanctions would have done the trick..

    It was the punishing sanctions that FORCED Iran to the negotiating table...

    Let me ask you...

    In your opinion, is a nuclear armed Iran acceptable??

    Michale

  133. [133] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "I have family members that are gay... I have very VERY close friends whose daughter was gay, then she wasn't, then she was and now she's not..."

    Then it proves my point. It sounds like your friend's daughter is bisexual, not gay.

    Also, you yourself did not choose not to be gay, or to be straight instead. You have always been straight and had no choice in it. Otherwise your one try at male male sex would have floated your boat, if you were gay or bisexual. It in fact proves that you didn't have a choice in the matter, not that you made a choice.

    "But then reality sets in and the consequences of our CHOICES rear their ugly heads..."

    By the way, I know of gay couples who are very happy, are married now, and have been for years.

  134. [134] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "In your opinion, is a nuclear armed Iran acceptable??"

    The simple short answer to that is, YES.

    How is a nuclear armed Iran different from a nuclear armed Soviet Union, or China, or North Korea, or Pakistan? Mutual assured destruction still works.

    The longer answer is that a nuclear armed Iran is preferable to a middle east in even more chaos than it already is, an endless cycle of war with direct American involvement like Iraq and Afghanistan, and a even more terrorism in response to American military action than we have now.

  135. [135] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Did sanctions lead to regime change in Iraq?

    War did..."

    Exactly My point entirely Michale.

    "Have years of sanctions led to regime change in Iran yet?

    They would have if they had continued and were increased..."

    Total supposition on your part, with no proof. Again, see my reference to 50 years of sanctions against Cuba.

    "It was the punishing sanctions that FORCED Iran to the negotiating table..."

    Ok, so then what Michale? If the point was to force Iran to negotiate, then how can you be against a negotiated settlement? By the way, total capitulation by Iran to your point of view is not negotiation, it's surrender.

    If your goal is surrender or regime change, then why not just say so and go for the proven method, a ground invasion of Iran?

  136. [136] 
    Michale wrote:

    Then it proves my point. It sounds like your friend's daughter is bisexual, not gay.

    But she SAID she was gay... Isn't that enough??

    Maybe these "gay" couples that are getting married aren't really gay either...

    That proves MY point...

    It's a choice. Pure and simple..

    By the way, I know of gay couples who are very happy, are married now, and have been for years.

    And I know of gay "couples" who are no divorced and miserable....

    What's the point??

    How is a nuclear armed Iran different from a nuclear armed Soviet Union, or China, or North Korea, or Pakistan? Mutual assured destruction still works.

    It only works if the leaders are rational and sane...

    Iran's leaders are not...

    The simple short answer to that is, YES.

    Let me put it another way..

    Would a nuclear armed Nazi Germany have been acceptable??

    The longer answer is that a nuclear armed Iran is preferable to a middle east in even more chaos than it already is,

    And you think that a nuclear armed Iran is going to calm things down??

    What do you base that on??

    an endless cycle of war with direct American involvement like Iraq and Afghanistan, and a even more terrorism in response to American military action than we have now.

    And adding nukes to the equation is BETTER than the status quo??

    HOW???

    Michale

  137. [137] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote"

    "Maybe these "gay" couples that are getting married aren't really gay either...

    That proves MY point..."

    No it doesn't. How many examples can you point to of two straight men who got married to each other?

    It is NOT a choice, pure and simple.

    I also know of more straight couples than gay couples who are divorced and miserable. So what was your point?

    "It only works if the leaders are rational and sane...

    Iran's leaders are not..."

    Again, pure supposition on your part. No Proof.

    "Would a nuclear armed Nazi Germany have been acceptable??"

    Not relevant, since Germany was embarked on both genocide within its own borders and territorial expansion outside them, while Iran is engaged in neither.

    "And you think that a nuclear armed Iran is going to calm things down??

    What do you base that on??"

    That since acquiring nuclear weapons, no nuclear armed power has gone to war directly against another, even in a convention manner, and that includes both India and Pakistan.

    "And adding nukes to the equation is BETTER than the status quo??

    HOW???"

    See my statement above.

  138. [138] 
    Michale wrote:

    It is NOT a choice, pure and simple.

    That's an opinion...

    But if you are right than anyone born an alcoholic is doomed to become an alcoholic..

    Anyone born as sex addict is doomed to become a sex addict..

    It's a choice.. Pure and simple..

    How MUCH of a choice?? OK, that is opened to debate..

    But the evidence clearly shows that it IS a choice..

    Again, pure supposition on your part. No Proof.

    Ex-squeeze me!?? Baking powder!!??

    No proof??

    THEY EXECUTE GAY PEOPLE!!!

    THEY SPONSOR TERRORISM WORLD-WIDE!!!

    If that is not proof of insane and irrational behavior, then NOTHING is...

    That since acquiring nuclear weapons, no nuclear armed power has gone to war directly against another, even in a convention manner, and that includes both India and Pakistan.

    So, to calm down Hitler, the US and it's allies should have just given him nukes...

    Interesting world strategy ya got there.. :D

    Again, your position postulates that Iran's leaders are rational..

    There is absolutely no evidence to support such a claim..

    Michale

  139. [139] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, Obama just made it official...

    His Munich-style deal with Iran simply "delays the inevitable" of Iran obtaining a nuclear arsenal..

    After months and months and months of saying that Iran WILL NOT obtain nuclear weapons, Obama just admitted that he was lying the whole time..

    There you have it..

    Michale

  140. [140] 
    Michale wrote:

    The incompetence of the White House continues..

    How the U.S. thinks Russians hacked the White House
    http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/07/politics/how-russians-hacked-the-wh/index.html

    Ya just HAVE ta know that Putin is laughing his ass off at America and it's leader... :^/

    Michale

  141. [141] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    I'm trying to understand where you're coming from vis-à-vis the Iran negotiations.

    You don't like the deal as it currently stands, with the details still to be agreed upon, or not.

    I'm guessing you wouldn't like any deal that doesn't completely shut down Iran's nuclear program and destroys all of its current infrastructure.

    And, yet, a deal that would do that is not possible.

    So, where does that leaving your thinking on the matter?

    I mean, do you think that more sanctions will do the trick. There is no basis in history that more sanctions would do what this deal, if finalized, will do, at least for the next 25 years.

    You don't seem to be taking into account that it's not just the US negotiating with and putting sanctions on Iran - it's the p4+1 and others in the international community who believe this deal, if finalized, is a good one. If the US is the only one reneging on the deal, how quick do you think the rest of the international community will lift sanctions on Iran? The international sanctions are the strongest sanctions against Iran.

    How is it that you think a failure of these negotiations will be good for Israel and the rest of the civilized world when Iran will have no restrictions on its nuclear program?

    You see where I'm going with this ... the only way to prevent Iran from breaking out and developing a nuclear weapon in two to three months would be war by the end of August 2015. You can't possibly view this as a better option than putting substantial restrictions and a camera on Iran's nuclear program while phasing in the suspension of some nuclear-related sanctions if Iran lives up to its end of the bargain with the lifting of those sanctions eventually if Iran does not violate any part of the agreement.

    Also, a nuclear agreement with Iran doesn't preclude other agreements with Iran on the other issues that it needs to address. In fact, a nuclear agreement may lead to progress on other issues. War with Iran would not.

    Finally, can you explain to me why you think that a deal like this is impossible to verify?

  142. [142] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm guessing you wouldn't like any deal that doesn't completely shut down Iran's nuclear program and destroys all of its current infrastructure.

    Yep, you DO understand where I am coming from.. :D

    I mean, do you think that more sanctions will do the trick. There is no basis in history that more sanctions would do what this deal, if finalized, will do, at least for the next 25 years.

    The simple fact that sanctions drove Iran to negotiate PROVE that sanctions would have worked.

    If we had increased the sanctions, coupled with the huge drop in oil prices, then Iran would have either destroyed their nuclear program or there would have been a regime change in Iran..

    Probably both...

    ou see where I'm going with this ... the only way to prevent Iran from breaking out and developing a nuclear weapon in two to three months would be war by the end of August 2015.

    There is another option to war.

    Increase the sanctions..

    They WERE working.

    They would have accomplished the goal..

    Finally, can you explain to me why you think that a deal like this is impossible to verify?

    Because of the inspection regime.

    There will be no NO NOTICE inspections. Iran will have final say over what facilities are to be inspected.. And the BIGGEST nuclear facility, Iran's most secret and valuable nuclear facility will be OFF LIMITS to UN inspectors..

    Plus, we already know how well UN Inspectors perform because we saw it happen in Iraq..

    There is an excellent piece written by the head of the Iraq UN Inspector team that details all the problems there is going to be with Iran... It lays out quite clearly the problems that are going to come up..

    Finally, the agreement does not require Iran to account at all for it's previous violations of the Nuclear Proliferation Treaty and thereby will codify those violations in the current agreement..

    Iran has NEVER lived up to ANY agreement it has made regarding it's nuclear program..

    NOT... ONE.... SINGLE.... AGREEMENT....

    What makes anyone think THIS agreement will be the one that Iran lives up to??

    Michale

  143. [143] 
    Michale wrote:

    Don't take my word for anything...

    Under the new approach, Iran permanently gives up none of its equipment, facilities or fissile product to achieve the proposed constraints. It only places them under temporary restriction and safeguard—amounting in many cases to a seal at the door of a depot or periodic visits by inspectors to declared sites.
    http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-iran-deal-and-its-consequences-1428447582

    Dr Kissinger says it much better than I...

    The one burning question that must be answered is the one I posed at the end of the previous comment..

    Iran has never lived up to, never followed, never adhered to a SINGLE agreement it has made regarding it's nuclear program..

    Why does anyone think this agreement will be any different??

    Michale

  144. [144] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There's a first time for everything, Michale. You should know that!

    Sanctions are NOT the panacea you make them out to be. If that's what you're relying on to prevent war with Iran, better start running for the hills now.

  145. [145] 
    Michale wrote:

    Sanctions are NOT the panacea you make them out to be. If that's what you're relying on to prevent war with Iran, better start running for the hills now.

    yet, the simple fact that the drove Iran to the negotiating table PROVES that sanctions were having the desired effect..

    There's a first time for everything, Michale. You should know that!

    And yer willing to risk a nuclear holocaust in the Middle East that this time, Iran really WILL follow thru on it's agreements??

    And what of a nuclear arms race in the most unstable and volatile region on the planet??

    That's another by-product of this "wonderful" deal...

    Does it make sense to INSURE that nuclear weapons proliferate in the region??

    Michale

  146. [146] 
    TheStig wrote:

    OMG!!!!

    145 posts!!!!!!

    Granted, most of them are Michael's, but clear evidence that this column can practically write itself, even when it shouldn't.

    Welcome back CW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  147. [147] 
    Michale wrote:

    Granted, most of them are Michael's, but clear evidence that this column can practically write itself, even when it shouldn't.?

    Yer welcome.. :D

    Michale

  148. [148] 
    Michale wrote:

    OMG!!!!

    145 posts!!!!!!

    For the record, that's a little on the low side of normal for an FTP commentary.. :D

    Michale

  149. [149] 
    Michale wrote:

    Granted, most of them are Michael's, but clear evidence that this column can practically write itself, even when it shouldn't.?

    Barely half are from me.. :D

    Michale

  150. [150] 
    Michale wrote:

    The concern was protecting individuals from the government -- it was not to allow individuals to discriminate against other individuals (or corporations against individuals).

    That's one interpretation. Ironically enough, an interpretation that serves a partisan agenda..

    ANOTHER interpretation is that the Indiana and Arkansas laws serves to protect individuals who want to discriminate against other individuals..

    For example, the New Mexico hairdresser that discriminated against Governor Martinez..

    Or the Colorado baker that discriminated against a christian..

    As I said, INTENT is a good argument to make.. It's not accurate, but it's a LOT better of an argument than to claim that the laws are not identical..

    Because the facts CLEARLY show that the laws are identical..

    But because "intent" is such a gray area and only open to opinions, it's a much better argument to make..

    Michale

  151. [151] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "Does it make sense to INSURE that nuclear weapons proliferate in the region??"

    To play devils advocate here, why not? Why wouldn't that be a good idea?

    The gun rights lobby contention is that everyone is safer if everyone is armed with a firearm, a gun. Crime goes down, so wouldn't conventional warfare between nations also go down? Even more so if someone who is crazy has a gun. Then another rational person with a gun can stop that crazy person with a gun before they do too much damage.

    So, how is that any different from nations armed with nuclear weapons, except being the same situation writ larger? If every single nation has a nuclear weapon, doesn't that by the same logic make all nations safer?

    How can you be for or against gun control, and then take exactly the opposite position on nuclear weapons?

  152. [152] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "So, to calm down Hitler, the US and it's allies should have just given him nukes...
    Interesting world strategy ya got there.. :D
    Again, your position postulates that Iran's leaders are rational..
    There is absolutely no evidence to support such a claim.."

    I never said we should have given Hitler nuclear weapons. But I might point out that Hitler did have weapons of mass destruction. He had chemical weapons. He could have put them on V2 rockets and fired them at London, but he never did. That was because of Hitler's experience in the trenches during WWI.

    Iran's leaders so far have proven themselves to be very rational. Your claim that they support terrorism proves they are irrational does no such thing. In fact, in proves just the opposite. That they are very shrewd manipulators of unconventional means of power. How else could they manipulate situations with very little cost to themselves directly? No direct use of their own military power, and plausible deniability.

    The USA could be accused of terrorism too. Nicaragua would call the Contras who we supported terrorists. The Russians would could the Mujahideen who we supported terrorists. Does that therefore make the leadership of the USA irrational?

  153. [153] 
    Michale wrote:

    JM,

    So, how is that any different from nations armed with nuclear weapons, except being the same situation writ larger? If every single nation has a nuclear weapon, doesn't that by the same logic make all nations safer?

    If every single nation was a Switzerland or Israel, then you would be right...

    But not every nation is like Switzerland or Israel...

    Some are like Nazi Germany or Iran...

    We keep nuclear weapons away from countries like Iran for the same reason we keep M-16s away from chimpanzees...

    The USA could be accused of terrorism too.

    An accusation does not a fact make...

    Iran's leaders so far have proven themselves to be very rational.

    So executing gay people for their lifestyle and promoting terrorism world wide are the marks of a "very rational" government???

    Errr....

    We'll just have to agree to disagree on that.... :^/

    Michale

  154. [154] 
    Michale wrote:

    To play devils advocate here, why not? Why wouldn't that be a good idea?

    Hmmmmmm

    Why would it be a bad idea to have a nuclear arms race in a region of the planet where "civilization" is regressed a couple thousand years.... Where people are executed for their lifestyle choices or just because of who their great great great great great grandfather was. Where women are subjugated and treated worse than a Western family treats their dog...

    Hmmmmmm

    I am going to go with the above answer..

    For the same reason it would be a bad idea to give a bunch of chimpanzees full-auto M16s....

    Michale

  155. [155] 
    Michale wrote:

    That they are very shrewd manipulators of unconventional means of power. How else could they manipulate situations with very little cost to themselves directly? No direct use of their own military power, and plausible deniability.

    Most pyscho-paths are also "shrewd manipulators"...

    I dunno if I would label them "rational"...

    Maybe that's just the cop/military man in me... :^/

    Michale

  156. [156] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's approach this from a different angle.. See if we can establish some common ground..

    Iran is insisting that ALL sanctions be lifted immediately upon signing of the "deal"...

    Do ya'all agree with that??

    That ALL sanctions should be lifted solely and completely based on Iran's word that they will adhere to the deal??

    Michale

  157. [157] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya'all wanna know why verification in Iran is impossible??

    http://www.charlesduelfer.com/blog/

    Talk to the guy who led the verification teams in Iraq...

    Michale

  158. [158] 
    Michale wrote:

    "Iran needs to recognize that the United States is not going to stand by while the region is destabilized or while people engage in overt warfare across lines — international boundaries — in other countries.We have an ability to understand that an Iran with a nuclear weapon is a greater threat than an Iran without one. And at the same time we have an ability to be able to stand up to interference that is inappropriate or against international law, or contrary to the region’s stability and interest and those of our friends."
    -SecState John Kerry

    Heh

    John Kerry got jokes...

    Who knew that Kerry could be such a funny guy.... :D

    Michale

  159. [159] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Yeah, that was pretty funny. I would have phrased it differently.

    But, heck, Secretary Kerry was tired. He should have had some proper rest before being interviewed by the geniuses at PBS. Ahem.

  160. [160] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale wrote:

    "For the same reason it would be a bad idea to give a bunch of chimpanzees full-auto M16s...."

    So, in other words Michale, unlike the NRA, you would be in favor of the very liberal position of gun control? Nice to know!

  161. [161] 
    Michale wrote:

    So, in other words Michale, unlike the NRA, you would be in favor of the very liberal position of gun control? Nice to know!

    Not sure how you got there from here..

    For me, "Gun Control" means being able to hit your target....

    So, yea.. I am WAY in favor of gun control...

    Michale

  162. [162] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yeah, that was pretty funny. I would have phrased it differently.

    Yea, me too...

    Something along the lines of "Iran's interference in Yemen will constitute a RED LINE that the US will respond forcefully too!!"

    :D

    Michale

  163. [163] 
    Michale wrote:

    “The U.S. fact sheet is a U.S. version and not acceptable to Iran”
    -Iran Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham

    So much for Obama's "deal", eh???

    Even Iran is telling Obama he is full of carp....

    Michale

  164. [164] 
    Michale wrote:

    Khamenei said that if the U.S. wants a deal, then all sanctions must be dropped as soon as the agreement is finalized. Khamenei also put strict limits on the reach of the inspectors who would be tasked with this verification process in the first place.

    So......

    My fellow Weigantians...

    Deal or No Deal???

    What say you??

    Michale

  165. [165] 
    Michale wrote:

    And the hits just keep on coming..

    Democrat Senator Charles Schumer of New York has announced he will "strongly" back legislation sponsored by Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker, R-Tenn.

    That is the legislation that will require that Congress vote on any Iran deal.

    If Reid Heir-Apparent is backing the legislation, it's all be certain that the legislation will have a VETO-proof bi-partisan seal when it goes to Obama for signature...

    Obama has really stepped in the doo-doo this time... :D

    Michale

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