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Friday Talking Points [379] -- Ranting Back At Orrin Hatch

[ Posted Friday, February 19th, 2016 – 19:35 PST ]

It's not often during a presidential election season that the campaigns get shoved aside in the political universe because something bigger happened, but that is what took place last week with the unexpected death of sitting Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. The implications for the future of America run deep, which is why it has already become a monumental and historical political fight.

The immediate ramifications are obvious. We will have only eight justices voting on all of this year's cases, and probably most of next year's as well, if the Republicans follow through with their plans of obstructing anyone Obama names. The only other way out of this mess is if President Obama were to make a recess appointment some time this weekend, which is a longshot at best (although the White House notably hasn't completely ruled such a thing out).

However, we're only going to mention the political fray over the upcoming nomination and confirmation fight in passing, because we are devoting our talking points section this week to a full-on rant about the Republican position espoused most inanely by Senator Orrin Hatch (who really should know better). Also, we devoted two articles earlier this week (on Monday and Tuesday) to how we think all of this is going to play out politically. We'll have many weeks to hash the whole situation over, precisely because this is such a political earthquake.

A lot else happened in the political world (and the presidential campaign) this week, so much so that we're going to have to resort to incredibly condensing it all here. Any other week, these stories would have merited more attention, but this week the best we can do is to just mention them all in passing. So buckle your seatbelts, because we're going to have to move quickly.

President Barack Obama announced he would be travelling to Cuba next month, to get the photo op he deserves after thawing the half-century freeze in diplomatic relations. Republicans' heads everywhere exploded, right on cue.

On the Republican side of the presidential race, Jim Gilmore formally dropped out a week ago, becoming the eleventh candidate to do so (leaving only six). Much to our embarrassment, we didn't even realize Gilmore had ended his run until this week, when Stephen Colbert mentioned him in his "Hunger Games" parody (saluting "the fallen"). We immediately checked, and Gilmore had indeed withdrawn. That is the ultimate statement about his entire campaign, in fact -- when it ended, hardly anybody even noticed. We certainly didn't, at the very least.

The Republican campaign week began with an absolute knife-fight of a debate last Saturday, one of the more vicious examples of Republican-on-Republican violence ever televised, at least in our memory. By week's end, Donald Trump was threatening to sue Ted Cruz and Cruz responded with: "Bring it on -- I'll depose you myself, Donald!"

It was rather hilarious to see all the Republicans get the question: "If you become president and a Supreme Court nomination opened up in your final year in office, would you nominate someone?" It really put the lie to everything else Republicans are saying about the situation, in fact, sometimes in hilarious fashion.

Marco Rubio tacked even further to the right on immigration, announcing he'd end the deferred children policy of President Obama on his first day in office. No matter who emerges as the Republican nominee, he's going to have the same problem Mitt Romney had four years ago, as the primary season forces all the GOP candidates further and further towards the extremes. Rubio also released an ad this week copying Ronald Reagan's famous "morning in America" ad, but inexplicably used film footage of Vancouver in the middle of it (hint to Marco: morning in Canada, maybe?). It was also revealed this week that Rubio skipped almost half the meetings a special Florida committee held after 9/11 -- something which is sure to come up in the next Republican debate when Rubio tries to claim he's got more foreign policy chops than anyone else.

Jeb Bush is about to crash and burn in South Carolina, which might even be the end of the road for his campaign. He's in a tight race (no, really) for fourth place right now, trying to edge out the "surging" John Kasich. After failing for the third time to even crack the top three, the pressure on him to get out of the race is going to become enormous, so he might exit even before Nevada votes. Or he might hang in there, he's certainly still got the money to do so.

Ted Cruz is fighting hard to remove the horrors of gluten-free meals for our troops. Seriously, you just can't make this stuff up, folks.

And to cap off Republican campaign news, Donald Trump and the Pope got into a fracas. So much ink has already been spilled over this fight, though, that we're just going to mention it in passing and move along.

In a bit of rare crossover election news, a supporter of Bernie Sanders is auctioning off a copy of Das Kapital by Karl Marx signed by Carly Fiorina. Again, you couldn't make this stuff up if you tried! Seems the owner of the book went to school a long time ago with Fiorina and had her sign it years ago, as a kind of joke. Now he's going to sell it and send the profits to Bernie Sanders. How ironic! Bidding was up to $690, as of this writing.

In other bizarre "Who are you, and what have you done with...?" news, Charles Koch penned an op-ed for the Washington Post which (are you sitting down?) agreed with Bernie Sanders that our political system is being bought and sold and is thus rigged against the little guy. No, really!

There's a war being waged among economists who support Hillary Clinton and those who support Bernie Sanders, and it's getting pretty vicious. The Clintonistas trashed an economic analysis that said Bernie's economic plans would work great for America, but they didn't actually rebut any of the analysis with specifics, which led to some bad blood. On Bernie's side, renowned (and popular, among liberals) economist Thomas Piketty came out strongly for Bernie's vision of the future.

On the Democratic side, Nevada votes tomorrow night, and the results are absolutely unpredictable (mostly because pollsters ignore Nevada so there is not much data to go on, and it could easily be wrong). Bernie is either tied, down one point, or down six points -- that is the sum total of all the polling that has taken place in Nevada all year (more polls were released in a single day for Iowa or New Hampshire, by comparison). Nevada could swell Bernie's momentum, or it could be the beginning of Hillary's firewall, so it'll be a closely-watched caucus night. Turnout is going to be key, but even the locals have a hard time predicting what'll happen.

And finally, the Democratic side has its lighter moments as well. In Nevada (where such things are legal, we might add), a "Hookers for Hillary" website has appeared. But even this constituency isn't assured, as not all Nevada hookers are on board with the effort. In other (perhaps) Valentine's Day related news, there is now a website called BernieSingles.com for supporters of Sanders to meet each other, but the site reportedly keeps crashing because it's getting so many visitors, so make of that what you will.

 

Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week

This is an odd one, we fully admit before we even begin. Representative Alan Grayson has always been known for pushing the boundaries of political thought. Whether you agree with him or not, he certainly is interesting to watch in action.

This week, he let it be known that his "superdelegate" vote in the Democratic National Convention is up for grabs and will go to whichever candidate wins his online poll.

A good idea? A bad idea? Well, it's certainly a radical idea, that's for sure! But then we'd expect no less from Grayson, really.

Superdelegates are about to be big news, once again. The last time they were big news was the last time Democrats underwent a hard-fought primary fight. They are, inherently, a corruption of what is supposed to be a (small-D) democratic process. All the Democratic voters in all the states only get 85 percent of the decision at the national convention. The other 15 percent goes to "superdelegates" -- all the officeholders and party stalwarts that get a free vote in the nominating process. Republicans don't use this system, making them (say it quietly) actually more democratic than the Democratic Party.

Grayson isn't a fan of this state of affairs, so he's making a point. He's democratically offering up his vote to whoever is more successful stuffing his online ballot box. OK, that's a cynical way to put it, but then again we've seen how lopsided such online voting can get at times (anybody remember Ron Paul's online legions?). Even with that caveat, though, Grayson certainly is drawing attention to the problem long before it becomes a big battleground between Team Hillary and the Bernie revolution.

For creatively drawing attention to the issue, and for his attempt at making his one superdelegate vote somewhat accountable to the democratic process (as naive as that attempt may be, with online voting), we have to give the Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award for sheer creativity to Representative Grayson.

[Congratulate Representative Alan Grayson on his House contact page, to let him know you appreciate his efforts.]

 

Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week

Last week, we handed out the Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week award to a Hillary Clinton surrogate. This week, we're awarding the MDDOTW to a Bernie Sanders surrogate.

The rapper "Killer Mike" is a big Bernie supporter. In a speech to a crowd recently, he used a word that many have taken him to task for. No, it's not an obscenity. It's not even a bad word in any way, in fact. The word he used was "uterus." The context wasn't as awful as many immediately claimed, but the optics were bad enough. Here is the full text of what Killer Mike said that got him into so much trouble:

I talked to Jane Elliott a few weeks ago and Jane said, "Michael, a uterus doesn't qualify you to be President of the United States. You have to have policy that's reflective of social justice." Paying women a fair wage is social justice. Making sure minorities have jobs is social justice. Ending a bullshit drug war is social justice. Making sure our children can go to college is social justice.

He's making a point, and he's using a quote from a feminist to do it. He's saying gender politics shouldn't be valid -- women shouldn't feel they have to vote for the Democratic woman running, just as they wouldn't have felt they had to vote for Carly Fiorina if she had won the Republican nomination. Gender politics, Killer Mike (and Jane Elliott) is saying, is not enough. By extension, the core argument is that Bernie Sanders is stronger on social justice than Hillary Clinton. Killer Mike is a Bernie supporter, so that's the argument he was attempting to make.

Now, we're going to have to split hairs on this one. Killer Mike was immediately raked over the coals for "being sexist." The only way you can intellectually make this argument, however, is to say that Jane Elliott is a sexist, since she's the one who brought up uteri in the first place. To make it a non-sexist argument it would have to be parsed to something like "having a uterus does not qualify you -- and certainly does not disqualify you -- to be President of the United States." Gender just should not matter, in other words. In fact, when Elliott was asked about the reaction, that's exactly what she said:

I think the reaction is because a man said what I said. If a woman had made that statement there would have been no problem, but because a man said it, it becomes a sexist statement. It's a ridiculous thing to be upset about. It should be a fact of life that neither gender nor skin color should determine whether you are appropriate for leadership of the government of the United States of America.

However, it does indeed depend who is making this argument, for the same reason why African-Americans feel that the "n-word" should never be used by people who are not black. People within the group get to decide the allowable language. People outside the group do not.

Killer Mike didn't say anything sexist, he merely repeated what a woman said to him. Jane Elliott may or may not have said something sexist, but we leave that for women to decide. Which is entirely our point. This entire fracas -- really an extension of the fracas from last week involving Madeline Albright and Gloria Steinem -- should be hashed out among women.

This is the reason Killer Mike wins this week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week -- because he was guilty of "mansplaining" an issue to women. Not for using "uterus" (which is ridiculous on the face of it), and not for somehow demeaning all women or reducing them to anatomical terms. If either of those things were done in sexist fashion, then the only person guilty of doing so is Jane Elliott herself. But by repeating the quote -- when he could have made the argument in other ways -- Killer Mike is guilty of wading into a fray that he really should have kept out of. For mansplaining the issue, Killer Mike is our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week.

[Killer Mike is not a political figure, so we suggest you contact the Bernie Sanders campaign if you'd like to let them know what you thought of Killer Mike's phrasing.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 379 (2/19/16)

As previously mentioned, we are pre-empting our talking points this week to present to you a rant, instead. Every so often the mood strikes us to make a more cohesive argument than can fit inside the confines of one (or even seven) talking points. This is one of those weeks.

The death of Justice Scalia has prompted much idiocy on the Republican side of the aisle, which was to be expected, really. The conservatives see the horrific (for them) possibility of losing their decades-long edge on the court and facing the nightmarish (again, for them) possibility of all those 5-4 decisions suddenly going in the liberal direction instead. So they panicked.

Even Republicans who are normally a lot more thoughtful about such things have already joined the obstructionist ranks demanding that the Senate not even hold hearings on any Obama nominee. The worst of these came from Senator Orrin Hatch, which was what prompted this rant. Without further introduction, here's what we have to say in response.

 

My Supreme Court nomination rant, in response to Orrin Hatch

This was a monumental week in American politics, due to the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. For the first time in decades, the balance of power truly hangs in the balance of the next appointment to the court. Instead of a liberal president replacing a liberal judge or a conservative president replacing a conservative judge, we have the prospect of a true shift in the ideological makeup of the highest court in the land. This could have repercussions which last for the next generation, and that's (if anything) understating its importance.

I noticed this possibility about two years ago, when the Democrats were facing the prospect of losing control in the Senate in the 2014 midterm elections (which did come to pass). At the time, some were pushing Ruth Bader Ginsburg to immediately resign, so President Obama could replace her with a liberal and get the Democratic Senate to confirm his choice. At the time, I pointed out that it would be the next few Supreme Court picks which would really matter -- making the 2016 presidential election critical.

Now that we've reached this juncture, I'm reminded of a science fiction novel about a legal system on an alien world. The book is The Dosadi Experiment, written by Frank Herbert (of Dune fame). He defined his alien legal system in bizarre fashion (just one fun fact: everyone in the "courtarena" spoke at risk of their life -- even a judge could be executed, if the proper legal forms had been followed). But one bit has always stuck with me -- the fine distinction between "bias" and "prejudice." Here's the relevant passage, describing what "Gowachin Law" allowed:

The interpretation of bias was: "If I can rule for a particular side I will do so."

For prejudgment: "No matter what happens in the arena I will rule for a particular side."

Bias was permitted, but not prejudgment.

There are two reasons I was reminded of this in all the aftermath of Scalia's death. The first is that not everyone is celebrating Scalia for being some sort of intellectual and moral giant on the Supreme Court. Far from it. Some, in fact, put Scalia in the worst three justices in all of American history. Some "memorialized" him by pointing out some of the worst things he's ever said or written.

Justice Scalia was, to be blunt, biased. Even his admirers would have to admit that, at least if they're honest with themselves. Scalia would rule for the conservative argument without regard to any "original intent" -- in fact, he would bend his concept of "original intent" to fit whatever judgment he deemed the correct one. His detractors would go further, and state that Scalia also fit the Gowachin description of being prejudiced as well. Either way, the concept that Scalia was some paragon of fairness is pretty laughable on the face of it.

His replacement will be political, because the Supreme Court is a political battleground, and has been for as long as I've been alive. Even since long before my birth -- check out the history behind the slogan "Impeach Earl Warren" if you don't believe me. The Supreme Court is the final arbiter of all the nastiest and ugliest political fights of the day, so of course it is political. 'Twas always thus.

What is stunning, however, is the argument Republicans are now making -- that somehow President Obama is not really entitled to appoint Scalia's replacement, since we are nine months away from an election. The stunning part is that this is a naked attempt to reinterpret the Constitution, something Scalia supposedly lived his whole life fighting against.

In even making the argument that no nominee from the sitting United States President will even be considered by the Senate, the Republicans have firmly placed themselves on the side of prejudice. They are literally pre-judging that any Obama nominee will be unacceptable. By doing so, they have made the leap to politicizing not just the Supreme Court, but the very process used to seat supposedly neutral arbiters of the law. They are dragging down the entire process into the swamp of politics and stripping bare any notion of allowing the elected president to -- as the Constitution states -- have his choice of seating a well-qualified candidate, no matter what his or her political leanings may be.

My rant today was inspired by much of the nonsense being spouted by Republicans at the moment, but most especially by Senator Orrin Hatch, who is normally a little more in touch with reality (as opposed to, in Scalia's own charming terminology, spouting "pure applesauce"). Here is Hatch, a powerful member of the Judiciary Committee, being interviewed on the PBS NewsHour recently:

And so I do support Sen. McConnell in saying, but, look, let's get it out of this terrible presidential brouhaha that is going on, and let's get it over to the next year, and be fair to both sides, because what would happen is whoever wins the presidency is going to be able to make this nomination.

Usually, you never nominate anyone during the last year of a president. And the reason for that is because -- well, there are many reasons, but one reason is because there's always a very contested Senate primaries and also election, and, secondly, generally, one side or the other is going to get very, very upset about it.

Well, I'm saying the Republicans shouldn't act on it, because the proper way is to get this done in a way that cools the whole process around electing judges, and in particular justices to the United States Supreme Court.

I just don't want the court politicized. And this would be the biggest politicization the court in history. And that is saying something, because there have been some other times that certainly would come close to matching this.

But, in all honesty, I just don't want to see the court denigrated any further than it would be in this very caustic election year with the way things are going right now.

There is such a mountain of nonsense contained within these statements, it's going to take some serious unpacking. We'll do so one section at a time, by addressing Hatch directly, point by point.

First off, what in the Constitution gives you the right to move a Supreme Court justice selection "out of this terrible presidential brouhaha"? Seriously, what gives you that right? Supreme Court nominations and confirmation battles in the final year of a president's term have happened literally dozens of times in our history. Sure, it's fairly rare for it to happen -- it doesn't happen for every president. But it has happened plenty of times before. Sometimes the nominees were confirmed, sometimes they weren't, but nobody ever before argued that they flat-out shouldn't happen because of an upcoming election.

Second, how is punting a Supreme Court nomination "over to the next year" -- really meaning "over to the next president" -- supposed to be "fair to both sides"? In fact, it is fair to neither side. Court nominations are almost always inherently unfair to one party the other. Please name even one Supreme Court appointment that was in any way "fair to both sides." And are you so confident that America is going to elect President Trump? What happens if President Clinton or President Sanders is sworn in next January? Are you going to then say "let's be fair and confirm anyone the new president selects who is legally qualified"? I truly doubt that. In fact, Democrats have a good chance of taking the Senate back -- are you going to call the process "fair" when they then remove the filibuster for Supreme Court justices? Your delaying tactics now are pretty much going to guarantee that will happen, if control of the Senate switches. So are you going to side with the voters who elected more Democrats to the Senate then, as you now seem to be suggesting you'll cheerfully do? Don't make me laugh.

Your second paragraph is also pure applesauce. The main reason presidents "usually" never make Supreme Court nominations during their last year is that they usually don't get the opportunity. That's it, plain and simple. Why has no president done so for decades? Because there have been no court vacancies during a final presidential year for decades -- that is the only reason. Period.

You can even turn this around. Name me one president -- in all of American history -- who said "I am going to defer nominating a Supreme Court justice to the next president, because I think it's only fair to do so" or anything even remotely similar. I'm not exactly going to hold my breath waiting for you to come up with an example, to put it mildly, because such a thing has never actually happened.

As for "one side or the other is going to get very, very upset about it," see my previous comments on the inherent unfairness of one political party watching a president from the other party make any Supreme Court nomination. As the lawyers say, "Asked and answered." Half the country is going to be very upset indeed over whomever replaces Justice Scalia -- that's just a fact of American political life. Deal with it.

Your third paragraph is just downright laughable, Senator. Your proposal that "cools the whole process" of Supreme Court nominations is to throw it completely into the white-hot political heat of a presidential election? Really? That's supposed to cool things down? In what universe, precisely?

Your biggest glaring disrespect and disregard for the United States Constitution slips out in your own language, too. You use the phrase "the whole process around electing judges." Maybe you should check that Constitution all good Republicans are supposed to carry around in their pockets, because I've actually read the document and you know what it says? Judges are not elected in the United States of America. Federal judges -- all of them, up to and most certainly including the Supreme Court -- are appointed by the president, and confirmed by the Senate. The voters have zero direct input into the process at all -- by design. The original intent -- remember this concept? -- is that the voters have only an indirect say, in the election of the president. Originally, they only had a twice-removed say in the Senate, because originally senators were selected by state legislatures -- the voters didn't even get a vote on them at all. The selection of judges was never meant to be at the whim of the voters, which you could tell if you ever actually thumbed through the Constitution itself.

You obviously don't know much about the history of the Constitution or of the Supreme Court. You display your profound ignorance by your statement that having a sitting president nominate a Supreme Court justice in the final year of his term (something that's happened repeatedly) "would be the biggest politicization of the court in history." This is just balderdash. Depending on how you define your terms, the biggest politicization of the Supreme Court was either Marbury v. Madison, Andrew Jackson's naked defiance of the court, or Franklin Roosevelt's court-packing fight. This doesn't even come close to the impact of any one of those three events. It's not even in the same ballpark. In fact, the only thing I could think of which would indeed be "the biggest politicization" of the Supreme Court ever would be the abdication of the nomination and confirmation of Supreme Court justices to the presidential election. By definition, this would be "politicizing" the nomination. From this point on, whichever political party holds the Senate would argue that they'd have to wait until a president of their party was in office before confirming anybody -- no matter when they were nominated. Republicans refusing to even consider President Obama's nominee would politicize the confirmation process for all time in a way it has never been before. So you're doing exactly what you're arguing should not be done.

Finally, to even suggest that the process the Constitution lays out somehow "denigrates" the court is absurd, because what you are suggesting is replacing what should be a few months of a confirmation battle with the issue being front and center for the entire nine months of the election, plus all the months it'll take after the new president is sworn in before the process finishes.

And be careful about your final thought, too. "The way things are going right now" is that your party seems on the brink of nominating Donald Trump. Ask yourself this: would a Trump nominee get confirmed any easier than an Obama nominee? Or how about a Clinton nominee or a Sanders nominee? Think that might be easier to swallow than doing your constitutional duty right now and holding a confirmation hearing on the sitting president's choice? Because that is indeed the way things are going right now. So you certainly better be ready for such outcomes if you're going to roll those particular dice.

-- Chris Weigant

 

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

 

164 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [379] -- Ranting Back At Orrin Hatch”

  1. [1] 
    Paula wrote:

    Chris: Your Orrin Hatch rant: right on!

  2. [2] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    "Donald Trump and the Pope got into a fracas"

    In 2012, there seemed to be a taboo against criticizing Rmoney's freaky religion. This time around, the competition to out Jesus each other has turned into an all out no true Scotsman food fight. I think this is a positive development. They should all STFU about their imaginary friends, but if they can't, then it's nice to see the idiocy and hypocrisy thoroughly exposed. I'm an angry, militant, fundamentalist new atheist and I could play a more convincing christian than Trump has. It's the best part of his show.

  3. [3] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    "Cruz is fighting hard to remove the horrors of gluten-free meals for our troops."

    I read that the troops can also choose halal MREs. The end is near.

  4. [4] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    I have to say that I think the Canadian Cheater is looking good. He sucker punched Trump with that abortion ad and his new Robio video looks pretty devastating to me. It looks like it'll be useful as long as Marco's donors want to keep lighting their money on fire. The lizard brains are right to be suspicious of RINOs like him.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKcQoFSVvGQ

  5. [5] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    Nicely done rant, CW. Thx.

  6. [6] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    I am under the impression, but not positive, that celiac disease still disqualifies someone from serving in the military and that there are not, in fact, gluten-free MRE options (exc for those that are naturally that with no forethought).

  7. [7] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, just finishing up responding to the week's comments...

    LizM, in particular, needs to see

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2016/02/17/my-picks-for-nevada-d-and-south-carolina-r/#comment-70502

    You have a new title!

    :-)

    -CW

  8. [8] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, done! All comments from the past week have been read and answered... go check it out everyone...

    -CW

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here's my response to the Scalia rant..

    http://nypost.com/2016/02/15/no-the-president-doesnt-deserve-an-ez-pass-in-replacing-scalia/

    I am also constrained to point out that Democrat Chuck Schumer, in 2007, said and I quote

    "[F]or the rest of this president’s term and if there is another Republican elected with the same selection criteria let me say this: We should reverse the presumption of confirmation. The Supreme Court is dangerously out of balance. We cannot afford to see Justice Stevens replaced by another Roberts, or Justice Ginsburg by another Alito. Given the track record of this president and the experience of obfuscation at the hearings—with respect to the Supreme Court, at least—I will recommend to my colleagues that we should not confirm a Supreme Court nominee except in extraordinary circumstances."

    There is a Democrat stating unequivocally and for the video record that he is recommending that Democrats do NOT confirm ANY nominee from President Bush or any future Republican POTUS...

    Now, I axe ya...

    How is that any different than what the Republicans are saying now???

    And, if I may bring a subject up from previous commentaries.. I saw CW's acknowledgement that the White House has walked back it's pledge that it will not make a recess appointment...

    I maintain now, as I did then, that a recess appointment is probably the best way for this issue to end... It allows the Democrats to get their 5-4 edge in the court albeit temporarily and it will give the Republicans their chance to restore the balance of the SCOTUS that reflects the balance of this country..

    It's a win win..

    Michale

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    Probably pushing my luck, but I am going to cross post a portion of my comment to HuffPoo with a "If you want to follow-up with this, please visit Mr Wiegant's blog" blurb...

    :D

    Michale

  11. [11] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    It seems to me we could eliminate a lot of this nonsense by nominating and confirming one or two people to be the next Supreme Court Justice BEFORE one dies or retires. Then there would not be any time without a full court unless more than two retire or die at the same time. The reserve Justice(s) from one president could then be in effect until the next president and Senate either carries those replacements forward or confirms different replacements.
    This would take a lot of the partisan crap out of the process because no one would know for sure when the nomination and confirmation are completed which Justice they would be replacing. This would result in more emphasis on qualifications rather than partisanship in the nomination and confirmation processes.
    This is such an important issue that we should have a replacement ready like the process for presidential succession instead of waiting until after a Justice retires or dies to start the replacement process.
    Of course if citizens participated in Voucher Vendetta it would have no effect on the Supreme Court or the nomination process for the Supreme Court, but I just have to mention Voucher vendetta every time I comment. I just can't stop myself.

  12. [12] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    this morning i decided to create a spreadsheet of the politifact data on the candidates. so if anyone's interested in which candidates lie the most and the least, feel free to click the link:

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1_vcPB-Y1L7zAaueI84ypoKL7nygAeO4po9y13d1aEWE/edit?usp=sharing

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    Oh come'on!!

    Clinton 72% Mostly True???

    On what planet??

    Because it's sure as hell not THIS planet... :D

    Don't make me bring out the Galaxy Quest Lie Detecting Dog!!! :D

    Michale

  14. [14] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @CW,

    great point about bias vs. prejudice - and outstanding job taking hatch to task for his errors.

    @michale,

    as you yourself wrote, schumer's rant (just like mcconnell and hatch now) was just talk, not action. another distinction is that he didn't propose not to hold hearings at all, just to think differently about confirmation votes. bush didn't nominate anyone else, so i suppose we'll never know whether or not schumer was just blowing smoke. if obama nominates a moderate like sri, senators should think long and hard about whether or not they're going to help their cause by voting no, much less refusing to hold a vote at all.

    @don,

    not a bad idea, but i think it would require a constitutional amendment to actually make it happen.

    JL

  15. [15] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Clinton 72% Mostly True???

    On what planet??

    planet politifact says that out of 161 rated statements by clinton, 40 were true, 42 were mostly true and 34 were half-true, for a total of 116, or 72%.

    frankly the results surprised me too. funny how the facts don't always fit our perceptions.

    JL

  16. [16] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    fact... not truth. If it's truth you're interested in, Dr. Tyree's philosophy class is right down the hall.
    ~indiana jones and the last crusade

  17. [17] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Not going to play the establishment game.

    The truth is that a "conservative" justice made gay marriage legal, and upheld the conservative Obamacare.

    The fight over the SCOTUS nominee boils down to various degrees of neolibcon corporatist insiders... so the "liberal" versus "conservative" framing is total bunk.

    Neoliberal versus neoconservative would be a far more accurate portrayal... which is to say that actual conservatives and actual liberals are spectators who will both be denied representation on the court.

    A

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    frankly the results surprised me too. funny how the facts don't always fit our perceptions.

    For the results to be meaningful, we would have to know exactly what statements they were rating..

    If PolitiFact left out all the BS statements Hillary has stated over the years, that would skew the results.

    And, to be perfectly frank, with a 72% truth rate, Politifact would have had to ignore a buttload of BS statements Hillary has made..

    Michale

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    fact... not truth. If it's truth you're interested in, Dr. Tyree's philosophy class is right down the hall.
    ~indiana jones and the last crusade

    {sniffle} I am so proud.. :D

    Michale

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ooooooo I am in a debate on HuffPoo!!! Woot!!! :D

    Michale

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    Aww right....

    Exclusive: On Eve of South Carolina Vote, Nation’s ICE Officers Detail How Marco Rubio Betrayed Them
    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/02/19/eve-south-carolina-vote-nations-ice-officers-detail-marco-rubio-betrayed/

    Rubio is off my xmas card list!!

    Michale

  22. [22] 
    Michale wrote:

    Exclusive: On Eve of South Carolina Vote, Nation’s ICE Officers Detail How Marco Rubio Betrayed Them

    "Dick move, Banner!!"
    -Tony Stark, AVENGERS-AGE OF ULTRON

    :D

    Michale

  23. [23] 
    Michale wrote:

    NEVADA:
    CLINTON 1,782 SANDERS 1,653

    WOW... It's a nail-biter...

    Michale

  24. [24] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    Hey All:

    Many sites consider Daily Kos to be the best at reporting elections as they happen (despite the obviously progressive bias of Kos, a number of both liberal and conservative sites link to Kos for election coverage as it's happening).

    That said, Kos posted the following on their site:

    >>>
    Saturday, Feb 20, 2016 · 12:40:06 PM PST · David Nir

    An important observation from contributing editor David Beard: According to the early entrance polls, Clinton has a 55-42 lead with the 79 percent of caucus-goers who identify as Democrats. Sanders has a 77-18 advantage with the 20 percent who say they are independents. For upcoming states with closed primaries (i.e., those that only let registered Democrats vote), that disparity could have a real impact.
    >>>

    Obviously, their point was that Sanders has a problem in states that don't allow independents to vote in primary elections.

    However, in my mind, there is still a problem. Given the numbers (and ignoring margin-of-error issues and other exit-polling problems), "what's the 'score'"?

    My real question is this: How many Americans can take the data above and tell us who has the lead, how close is it, etc (given this point-in-time result)?

    As a longtime math teacher, I believe that most Americans cannot answer that simple question.

    I'll post the answer a bit later (in case you want to have a go at it), just thought it's an interesting point.

  25. [25] 
    Michale wrote:

    Grrrrrr......

    Michale

  26. [26] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    hehe

  27. [27] 
    neilm wrote:

    Speak2:

    Sanders: 48.6%
    Clinton: 47.1%

    But there is a caveat, so now it's your turn.

    Even if this is the correct answer, why doesn't it count?

  28. [28] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    Very nice, neilm [27].

    For the rest, Clinton has 55% of 79% and 18% of 20%, which means
    0.55*0.79+0.18*0.2=0.4705=47.05%
    Similar for Sanders is 48.58% giving him a 1.5 point lead.

    Which means that the people who chose not to answer (their affiliation or their vote) was nearly 3 times as large as the difference between the candidates.

    Ignoring the idea that not everyone tells the truth or remembers correctly or any number of small human-error factors, we also have an homogeneity question.

    We actually have no reason to believe that those who didn't answer are the same as those who did. Therefore, we have no right to assume that they would vote in the same proportions as the ones who did answer.

    As it turned out, they did not.

    We can also ask whether later voters are the same as earlier voters, and based on the results, the answer seems like they are not.

    Those are the most basic, neilm, anything I missed that would be important?

  29. [29] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    I guess one more would be that these are entrance polls. Another "human error" type thing would be that once the caucus discussion and debates happened, people might change their minds.

    I have no reason to assume, though, that such a thing would favor one candidate over another.

  30. [30] 
    neilm wrote:

    Yup. I went to Scottish schools ;)

  31. [31] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    For the results to be meaningful, we would have to know exactly what statements they were rating..

    @michale,

    if you look at the politifact page, it lists the specific statements that were rated. you'd have to scroll through a few pages to get to all of them, but they're available for your perusal.

    @neil/speak,

    another nonrandom variable would be how convincing supporters of each candidate are at caucus debates. since hillary's supporters tend to be older, i think age could be a mediator variable in terms of how well individuals supported their point of view and convinced others.

    JL

  32. [32] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    so... should i remove jeb bush from my spreadsheet? seems a shame - he was rated even higher than bernie, although sanders remains the only candidate not to have earned a single pants-on-fire rating. ben carson, on the other hand, remains the only candidate who has yet to have a statement rated "true." strange, huh?

    JL

  33. [33] 
    rdnewman wrote:

    All that money and Gov. Bush didn't make it to Super Tuesday.

    "Money can't buy me love."
    -- Beatles

    He didn't even make it to Nevada.

  34. [34] 
    dsws wrote:

    I think Bernie Sanders needed to win Nevada. Close isn't good enough.

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    dsws,

    I think Bernie Sanders needed to win Nevada. Close isn't good enough.

    Sad as it is for me to say, I have to agree with you..

    Bernie appears to have lost the mojo... About the only thing that could save him is if he trounces Clinton in SC...

    Michale

  36. [36] 
    Michale wrote:

    if you look at the politifact page, it lists the specific statements that were rated. you'd have to scroll through a few pages to get to all of them, but they're available for your perusal.

    Link??

    Michale

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hay CW,

    A commenter over at HuffPoo posed an interesting question that piqued my curiosity. I told her I would pose it here and see what ya'all thought..

    Suzanne Salt · University of Arizona, Tucson

    My question is: if the Republicans do refuse to hold confirmation hearings for anyone Obama nominates, and the 2016 election is as close as the 2000 election was and it has to go to the Supreme Court for resolution, what would be the consequences for the country should the Court deadlock at 4 to 4?

    Michale

  38. [38] 
    Michale wrote:

    Did ya'all here Hillary Clinton channeling her inner Mick Jagger and lecturing young people??

    "You can't always get what you want..."

    I am gabberflasted she can say that without her tongue turning to fire.....

    She sounded positively Republican! :D

    Michale

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    For almost a year now ya'all have been going on and on about the Trump candidacy..

    And every time there was a comment or commentary about it, I would always point out that the MOST IMPORTANT factor of the Trump candidacy is missing..

    WHY is Trump so popular...

    The WHY has now been answered..

    The Elephant in the Room
    Trump is right about political correctness.

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/the-elephant-in-the-room/article/2001170

    There's the WHY, people....

    And it's that WHY that will likely propel Trump into the Oval Office...

    Michale

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    And to cap off Republican campaign news, Donald Trump and the Pope got into a fracas.

    Someone needs to clue the Pope in on a (apparently) little known fact...

    Heaven has a fence around it and a manned gate and, apparently, President God has VERY strict emigration standards and only allows a certain group to emigrate..

    I won't even bother mentioning the BIGGER WALLS and even MORE strict emigration standards at the Vatican..

    Something about stones and glass houses come to mind...

    Michale
    (crossposted to HuffPoo)

  41. [41] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale [36]

    here's clinton's page. all of the other personalities pages have the same format. just scroll down.

    http://www.politifact.com/personalities/hillary-clinton/

  42. [42] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale [37],

    when the scotus is deadlocked, the ruling of the lower court stands. if the scotus had been deadlocked in bush v. gore, the ruling of the florida supreme court was that hand recounts of all votes should continue until complete, so that's what would have happened.

    JL

  43. [43] 
    Michale wrote:

    Thanx JL,

    Mind if I post that to HP??

    Michale

  44. [44] 
    neilm wrote:

    With Bush dropping out, the 'pundits' are adding Bush's votes to Rubio's and deciding that he is getting very close to Trump.

    Trump, in his condescension speech, said that what the pundits didn't realize was that some Bush voters would have him as their second choice.

    Frankly, I put this own as just more drivel escaping from the mouth of a massive arsehole.

    Now we will see if there is a 40% ceiling on Trump (and that is 40% of 29%, which speak2 can attest is only about 12% of the voting public).

    Let's hope Cruz is toast. I loved watching his speech - what a loser.

    Rubio walked back some of the anti-immigrant message in his speech last night as well. He is poised to pivot to the middle as soon as he thinks he can take the Rubes for Rubio for granted.

    @Michale: Trump isn't 'anti-PC', Trump is just a rude bigot. It is as simple as that. Last night about 240,000 people in a state of 4.8 million (i.e. 5%) self identified as fellow rude bigots whether they like it or not. Given that at least 1 in 20 people I know are in the 'drunk uncle' category, no big surprise.

  45. [45] 
    neilm wrote:

    If Trump get's stymied at the convention and stomps off to form his own party, he will need a name. Needless to say it will include 'Trump' since, like a dog, he needs to mark everything.

    Here are a few suggestions:

    Trump Drunk Uncles
    Trump Yuge Beautifool Party
    Trump Wallies (bit of a Brit one that)

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    @Michale: Trump isn't 'anti-PC', Trump is just a rude bigot.

    No more so than Hillary or Bernie demonizing the rich and any other fellow Americans who don't agree with their ideology...

    Granted they are more "PC" about it, but their bigotry is well established..

    Trump is Anti-PC.. You can't (or won't) see that because you are Pro-PC...

    Michale

  47. [47] 
    neilm wrote:

    Let's see, I call Trump an 'arsehole' and you label me PC. OK then ;)

  48. [48] 
    neilm wrote:

    OK, I just looked up the demographics of South Carolina to calculate the '5%' number above.

    In a state of 4.8 million people, the largest city is Columbia with a population of 130,000, which makes is, just after Olathe, KS, the 195th largest city in the U.S. It is larger than Charlotte which is in the 200th position.

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    Let's see, I call Trump an 'arsehole' and you label me PC. OK then ;)

    No, you are correct when you say Trump is an arsehole.. That is actually part of his charm..

    *I* am an arsehole.. That's part of my charm.. :D

    Where you displayed your pro-PC'ed-ness is when you claim that Trump is not anti-PC...

    It's universally accepted that Trump is definitely anti-PC.. :D

    Michale

  50. [50] 
    neilm wrote:

    @Michale:

    I read the link to 'the elephant in the room'.

    The 'author' claims (and I'm not making this up, read it for yourself) that the biggest problem facing America today is:

    1. Money in Politics

    (I jest)

    1. Climate Change

    (still pulling your leg)

    Is it: Education, Polarization, or Inequality. No

    Nope.

    According to this clown (his name is David Gelernter, but I like to call him 'this clown' to prove his point) the biggest, most worrying problem the United States is facing is:

    Political Correctness

    You just can't make this stuff up.

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    here's clinton's page. all of the other personalities pages have the same format. just scroll down.

    Here's the problem I have with the stat...

    72% of Hillary's statements are "true"...

    Yet, 70% of Americans think Hillary is "dishonest", a "liar" and "untrustworthy"....

    So, you can see how someone might be confused.. :D

    Michale

  52. [52] 
    neilm wrote:

    Fair enough, Trump is anti-PC and a rude, bigoted arsehole.

    We agree!

    I wonder how long before CW adds 'arsehole' to the PC filter and blocks these posts. The good news is that I have a long list of other British insults so the real question is when does CW tell me to cut it out or I'm banned ;)

  53. [53] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    Clinton loses voters who value honesty by 70 points in Nevada
    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/clinton-loses-voters-who-value-honesty-by-70-points-in-nevada/article/2583768

    Case in point...

    Michale

  54. [54] 
    Michale wrote:

    Fair enough, Trump is anti-PC and a rude, bigoted arsehole.

    We agree!

    We do, indeed, agree..

    But, as I point out, Trump is no more bigoted than the Left Wingery who call political opponents "enemies" and "terrorists", "arsonists" etc etc etc...

    I wonder how long before CW adds 'arsehole' to the PC filter and blocks these posts. The good news is that I have a long list of other British insults so the real question is when does CW tell me to cut it out or I'm banned ;)

    I have been using arsehole here for the last decade..

    I think yer safe.. :D

    Come to think of it, I can only think of one time when CW pulled a comment.. But it was so over-the-top spewage and so disgusting a rant that it was completely acceptable to yank it..

    And yes.. It was my comment. :D

    Michale

  55. [55] 
    neilm wrote:

    Both sides accuse each other of being 'unpatriotic', 'terrorists', etc.

    That is just normal political discourse.

    However, if it offends you, could everybody please stop using terms like 'enemies' or 'arsonist' as we are bruising the sensibilities of Michale, our special little delicate flower.

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    Both sides accuse each other of being 'unpatriotic', 'terrorists', etc.

    unpatriotic, yea...

    Terrorism is new and solely exclusive to the Democrat Party with a minor exception of a Bush flunky calling a Union "terrorists"....

    But you cannot locate a single instance where a Republican CongressCritter or Administration official referred to a Democrat counter part as a "terrorist"...

    It just hasn't happened..

    Michale

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    However, if it offends you, could everybody please stop using terms like 'enemies' or 'arsonist' as we are bruising the sensibilities of Michale, our special little delicate flower.

    Oh, ya'all can use them, I don't care..

    Just don't claim to have the moral or ethical high ground.. :D

    Michale

  58. [58] 
    neilm wrote:
  59. [59] 
    neilm wrote:
  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:
  61. [61] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    72% of Hillary's statements are "true"...

    Yet, 70% of Americans think Hillary is "dishonest", a "liar" and "untrustworthy"....

    yes, those numbers do provide an interesting contrast. even if both happen to be true, they don't necessarily conflict. it's possible to be factually accurate and still present those facts in a misleading way. that's part of what being a lawyer is, no?

    He's gonna show you the bricks. He'll show you they got straight sides. He'll show you how they got the right shape. He'll show them to you in a very special way, so that they appear to have everything a brick should have. But there's one thing he's not gonna show you. When you look at the bricks at the right angle, they're as thin as this playing card.
    ~my cousin vinny

    mind you, i'm not saying that perceptions of hillary as dishonest are necessarily accurate - maybe they are and maybe they aren't. my point is that dishonesty and factual accuracy are not mutually exclusive.

    JL

  62. [62] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    According to this clown (his name is David Gelernter, but I like to call him 'this clown' to prove his point) the biggest, most worrying problem the United States is facing is:

    Political Correctness

    And he is right..

    Because from Political Correctness flows ALL the problems that this country is facing...

    NOW you know why Trump is so popular...

    Michale..

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    Because from Political Correctness flows ALL the problems that this country is facing...

    Take Climate Change for example..

    The climate changing is not a problem. The climate has ALWAYS changed and the climate will continue to change when humans have gone the way of the doo doo...

    Climate change is as much of a problem as the earth's rotation..

    I mean, seriously!!! Do you know how many deaths happen at night! Stopping the planet's rotation will save untold millions of lives..

    STOP DAY/NIGHT CHANGE!!!

    Sounds pretty ridiculous, eh? :D

    But, because of POLITICAL CORRECTNESS, climate change is a hugely successful con...

    Michale

  64. [64] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale: re climate change - you are delusional if you can't grasp the science and believe it is a political problem. We are screwing up the planet whether you want to accept it or not.

    We can fix it, but not by putting our fingers in our ears and shouting la-la-la.

  65. [65] 
    neilm wrote:

    Shaftan said he believes the [confederate] flag removal was a product of "silly political correctness." He said the ad "criticizes Trump for jumping in and telling South Carolina what to do," which he said showed "arrogance" and a "lack of empathy."

    Looks like Trump is just another PCer who called for the removal of the confederate flag from South Carolina.

    http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/donald-trump-confederate-flag-119325

  66. [66] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michale: re climate change - you are delusional if you can't grasp the science and believe it is a political problem. We are screwing up the planet whether you want to accept it or not.

    And yet, not ONE SINGLE thing is being done to stop us from "screwing up" the planet..

    So-called scientists and doomsayers and politicians and lobbyists are STILL driving their cars, STILL smoking their cigarettes, STILL flying hither and yonder... Getting rich by the millions and BILLIONs while they still pollute the planet...

    They claim that we have mere YEARS before the point of no-return is reached...

    And yet... they do NOTHING to stall it...

    They preach and they bitch and they moan about what OTHER people should and should not do..

    But THEY don't do shit..

    So.. Forgive me if I don't accept their political correctness.

    When THEY start walking the walk, then... AND ONLY THEN... will I even consider their talk...

    Global Warming is a political con.. Pure and simple... EVERY prediction... EVERY model has been WRONG...

    There is not a SINGLE prediction, a SINGLE model that has ever come to pass...

    It's really that simple...

    Michale

  67. [67] 
    Michale wrote:

    We can fix it,

    Yea???

    By flying around in private airplanes and driving around in private limos and dumping MILLIONS of tons of carbon into the atmosphere and preaching, "SEND ME MILLIONS OF DOLLARS AND YE SHALL BE SAVED!!!!"

    Face it....

    The facts CLEARLY show that Global Warming fanatics are nothing more than televangelists for the 21st century....

    Michale

  68. [68] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    Wink, Wink, nudge, nudge, EXXON/API, Say no more, say no more....

  69. [69] 
    TheStig wrote:

    A bit off the FTP topic, but the Betfair markets have had the better part of a day to absorb the results of the SC primary. Trump is down, Rubio is up. Trump retains the top likelihood of winning the Republican nomination (48%) but Rubio is right behind at 45%. Cruz is now a distant 3rd, tied with Kasich at 3%

    As for actually winning the Presidential Election, Rubio is now the top BF rated Republican, with an 18% probability compared to Trump's 15%. Cruz is given only 1%.

    As I interpret these results, the Betfair markets see SC as a tactical victory for Trump (a small number of delegates at round one of the convention) but a strategic defeat. With just 2 candidates left, Trump has lost his most potent weapon: the ability to divide and conquer the GOP. It's now a quasi Tea Party candidate Trump vs a quasi Establishment Rubio. It's not that Trump has done badly overall. Far from it, he may yet end up President - but it's basically a dead heat, with Rubio ahead by a nose. That's a big shift in the political landscape as described by the punters of Betfair. Jeb._ is gone and I suspect Cruz will have pull the plug fairly soon.

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    GT,

    Has the planet ever been warmer in the past??

    Yes it has...

    Did human beings cause THAT warming??

    No, they did not...

    So, basically what ya'all are saying is that all the other times, it was something else..

    But THIS time... Ooooo THIS time... it HAS to be humans..

    Human beings could no more affect the climate of the entire planet than they could affect the ORBIT of the planet...

    It's simply not within the realm of their current technology...

    I mean, look at it..

    Humans can't even SCRATCH the surface of WEATHER CONTROL...

    And ya'all want to control the planet's CLIMATE!!????

    What have ya'all been smoking!?? :D

    Michale

  71. [71] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    M [66],
    The green profiteers may be self interested hypocrites, but that doesn't make them wrong. The oceans are warmer, the icebergs are smaller, the human race may not be long for this world. Whether it happens in fifty years or three hundred, we are due for a population correction.

  72. [72] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    M

    So...glad to see that you have completely ignored the fact that one of the worlds most profitable companies and one of the worlds most profitable special interest groups was made well aware of the problems of burning fossil fuels by their own scientists not by some green interest group.

    Answer me this....If the science is so flawed why then did Exxon and the API decide they need to not only bury the science but spend 10s of millions of dollars to set up shell groups to attempt to call the science into doubt before it leaked out. If the science is balderdash why not just publish the hell out of it and let other scientists do the work for you?

    I assume since you don't buy into humans altering the climate, you also have issues with acid rain, holes in the ozone layer, and smog.....

  73. [73] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale:

    I'm not doing the climate science argument with you. I've been there too often on Disqus with deniers to be bothered any longer.

    I've dived right down to the scientific papers, read all the counter arguments from the deniers, and it is obvious to any non-biased person what the reality is.

    I'm just a bit more optimistic than most on the solution side.

  74. [74] 
    akadjian wrote:

    CW- I still don't get the Killer Mike thing. Perhaps the parsing hurts my wee brain.

    I am, however, completely with you that Scalia was one of the worst justices ever. The idea that Supreme Court decisions should come down to who can make up the best bullshit about what some people who've been dead for over 200 years thought about the Constitution should go down as one of the lamest philosophies in history.

    If Scalia had any balls, he'd say "Here's what I think ...". Instead, he takes what he thinks and tries to hide it behind some people who've been dead for over 200 years.

    Worst. Justice. Ever.

    Michale- I think I lose a bet about Jeb Bush. But I can't remember what it was. Only that I thought Jeb would win the primary as the establishment candidate.

    Boy ... did I ever blow that one! What'd we bet again? Do you remember?

    Sorry ... things been real busy lately.

    -David

  75. [75] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    The green profiteers may be self interested hypocrites, but that doesn't make them wrong.

    Those who use Citizens United to their financial benefit may be self interested hypocrites, but that doesn't make them wrong.. :D

    But you are absolutely right. The fact that they are profiting from their con does not make them wrong..

    It's the fact that there has never been ONE SINGLE MODEL that has been accurate, the fact that there has never been ONE SINGLE PREDICTION that has come to pass....

    THAT's what makes them wrong...

    The oceans are warmer, the icebergs are smaller,

    And no other possible explanation?? During the day, do you see that big huge orange/yellow thingy in the sky??

    Are you trying to tell me that 6 billion people are more powerful than that??? :D

    the human race may not be long for this world.

    Probably not... But that has nothing to do with humans effect on the climate..

    GT,

    Of COURSE burning fossil fuels causes problems.. Launching every nuclear missile on the planet will cause "problems"...

    But will it effect the CLIMATE of an entire planet measured out over eons??

    No, it won't...

    Humans on the planet is like a man sitting in a dingy in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.. He unzips and pisses into the ocean.. Yea, it's probably not the best thing to happen for that immediate vicinity.. But the idea that it could affect the entire chemical makeup of the entire ocean and could actually RAISE the level of the entire ocean??

    Ridiculous...

    Basically, Global Warming is a religion.. You have one group of priests (scientists) that say one thing. And then you have another group of priests (scientists) who say that the first group is utterly and completely wrong...

    It's the Protestants and Catholics without the bloodshed and terrorism...

    The Global Warming con is built completely and utterly on faith..

    For every "scientist" you can point to that says Global Warming will kill us all in 30 days, I can point to an equally renown scientist who says the first scientist is full of shit..

    So, you COULD be right about humans effect on the planet..

    But you COULD also be wrong..

    But ya'all can't admit that because you have faith...

    Neil,

    I've dived right down to the scientific papers, read all the counter arguments from the deniers, and it is obvious to any non-biased person what the reality is.

    Do you accept the science of those who dispute the Global Warming theory as valid science??

    No??

    So, who'se the denier?? :D

    That says it all right there..

    You only believe YOUR "priests"...

    The other "priests"?? Well, they must be heretics..

    That's why ya'all simply CAN'T win a Global Warming debate...

    Because your entire argument is based on faith.. Faith that the "facts" you follow are accurate...

    If you could point to a SINGLE MODEL that has been accurate, a SINGLE PREDICTION that has come to pass... Then you MIGHT have a valid argument...

    But you can't, so you don't...

    Michale

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    David!!!

    "GOOD TA SEE YA!!!"
    -Billy Madison

    :D

    Michale- I think I lose a bet about Jeb Bush. But I can't remember what it was. Only that I thought Jeb would win the primary as the establishment candidate.

    Boy ... did I ever blow that one! What'd we bet again? Do you remember?

    I think it was a t-shirt bet, but beyond that.. Lemme see what I can dig up.. :D

    Remember a time-frame???

    Michale

  77. [77] 
    Michale wrote:

    David,

    Well, it WAS a T-Shirt bet..

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2015/06/09/program-note-49/#comment-60163

    Narrowing it down.. :D

    Michale

  78. [78] 
    Michale wrote:
  79. [79] 
    Michale wrote:

    Looks like you need to find an I HEART DONALD TRUMP t-shirt.. hehehehehe :D

    Michale

  80. [80] 
    Michale wrote:

    Something that is happening that has not been widely commented on..

    The GOP has had record turnout...

    The Dem has seen their turnout numbers slide..

    That doesn't bode well for the Democrat Party in the General...

    Michale

  81. [81] 
    neilm wrote:

    The GOP has had record turnout...
    The Dem has seen their turnout numbers slide..

    Do you think the turnout numbers might be driven by people wanting to vote against the crazy? If so, which side will that help in November?

  82. [82] 
    Michale wrote:

    Do you think the turnout numbers might be driven by people wanting to vote against the crazy?

    I am willing to entertain the possibility if there is any factual evidence to support it..

    But being that Trump trounced, I don't think that's the case..

    If so, which side will that help in November?

    IF so it will help the Democrats...

    But what's more likely is that the Right Wingery is enthused and excited about a Trump Presidency..

    If so, which side will that help in November? :D

    Michale

  83. [83] 
    Michale wrote:

    What's ya'all's take on the Apple/DOJ conflict over cracking an iPhone??

    I think the only salient point is that the *OWNER* of the iPhone has stated they want it cracked..

    That should be the only fact that matters...

    Michale

  84. [84] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @michale,

    you're objectively wrong on global warming. predictive climate models have always been inexact. measurements of ocean temperature and airborne carbon, much less so. basically, we've observed a piano hanging over your head by fraying rope, and you're saying it might not exist because nobody has yet accurately predicted just when or in which direction it will fall.

  85. [85] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    What's ya'all's take on the Apple/DOJ conflict over cracking an iPhone??

    The FBI is using an emotionally charged event to unlock a phone of dubious value to get a legal precedent that will reduce the security of everyone's electronic devices. World wide.

    Oh, and your "honorable" James Comey is a lying sack of shit who is doing exactly what you usually rail against but evidently gets a pass because of political (or possibly law enforcement) bias...

  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    JL,

    you're objectively wrong on global warming. predictive climate models have always been inexact.

    We're not talking "inexact"...

    We're talking FLAT OUT wrong. EVERY ONE of them..

    More later... Got to run...

    Michale

  87. [87] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ok doing this from a smartphone by voice. So bear with me. Bashi

  88. [88] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    We're not talking "inexact"...

    We're talking FLAT OUT wrong. EVERY ONE of them..

    And just how many times do I have to prove this is total bullshit?

  89. [89] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @m[85],

    in the grand scheme, the accuracy of predictive models is not particularly relevant to climate observation. i can incorrectly predict twenty thousand times that a piano will fall on you, but that still won't disprove the fact that the piano is hanging above your head.

    that said, newer IPCC models predict fairly well the long-term trends in ocean temperatures and changes in sea level. air holds a much smaller percentage of the earth's heat, so predictions of surface air temperature will be less reliable.

    JL

  90. [90] 
    Michale wrote:

    And just how many times do I have to prove this is total bullshit?

    You haven't yet at all..

    The first time we discussed this, you refused to provide ANY facts until I defined what "accurate" meant.. I responded that is true Clintonian in nature, putting forth the debate as what the definition of "is" is...

    That's where THAT discussion was left..

    Then, a bit ago, you once again brought up the illusion that you have already refuted this.. I then responded with the same facts I mentioned above.. Towhit, you refuse to provide any evidence to support your claims until I give you the definition of "accurate"..

    And that's where it stands..

    You want to provide ANY evidence of ANY *ACCURATE* computer models or predictions made by the Global Warming religious fanatics....

    By all means.. Do so...

    Michale

  91. [91] 
    Michale wrote:

    in the grand scheme, the accuracy of predictive models is not particularly relevant to climate observation. i can incorrectly predict twenty thousand times that a piano will fall on you, but that still won't disprove the fact that the piano is hanging above your head.

    But you have yet to prove that said piano poses a threat..

    Yes, the climate is changing...

    The climate has ALWAYS changed.. The climate will CONTINUE to change with or without humans present..

    PROVE that it's a threat to the survival of the planet..

    You can't...

    Ergo, it's ALL faith...

    Michale

  92. [92] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    PROVE that it's a threat to the survival of the planet..

    global warming isn't a threat to the planet, just to species unable to adapt to dramatic changes, such as us humans. michale, your habit is to demand ironclad proof of scientific claims, but that's not how science works. nothing is absolute; not even those principles so thoroughly proven we refer to them as "laws." just because you treat science as if it were a religion doesn't make it one.

    there is a piano hanging over your head, and the rope holding the piano is fraying. based on the law of gravity, we can infer that it will eventually fall on your head. it may take many years of failed research to figure out exactly when or at what angle, but doubts about whether it will fall are so infinitesimal as to be meaningless.

    climate change theory is new enough that it hasn't yet reached the status of scientific law, but it's getting closer - political movements on either side notwithstanding.

    JL

  93. [93] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Yes, the climate is constantly changing. That is a given.

    The problem is not change in and of itself but, rather the rate of change and the irreversibility of it and what we need to do now in order to be able to both adapt to the change and to mitigate what we can of the destructive consequences of that change.

  94. [94] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    The first time we discussed this, you refused to provide ANY facts until I defined what "accurate" meant.. I responded that is true Clintonian in nature, putting forth the debate as what the definition of "is" is...

    More bullshit, eh? The first time I provided you with an accurate model to which you acquiesced. The next time you brought up the exact same question you challenged the model. It's still a valid question. How accurate does a model have to be? Perfect to a millionth of a degree at all times or just to the constraints of the model builders? Somewhere in between? You are the one dodging the question with the "is is" crap...

    The climate has ALWAYS changed.. The climate will CONTINUE to change with or without humans present..

    And no one has ever disputed that. It's the speed of change that is important.

    PROVE that it's a threat to the survival of the planet..

    You're just a broken record on this subject. How many times do I have to confirm that the planet will still be here even on the extreme end of climate change? Humans will almost certainly be here as well...

  95. [95] 
    Michale wrote:

    global warming isn't a threat to the planet,

    Then you might want to clue in the Hysterical Left Wingery...

    Because that's their whiney cry... Humans are "destroying the planet"...

    climate change theory is new enough that it hasn't yet reached the status of scientific law,

    And yet, the afore mentioned Hysterical Left Wingery is claiming that "the science is settled"...

    Now you are saying that it's a new theory and as such, it's NOT settled science..

    Which is it??

    The problem is not change in and of itself but, rather the rate of change and the irreversibility of it and what we need to do now in order to be able to both adapt to the change and to mitigate what we can of the destructive consequences of that change.

    And yet, humans can't control the weather...

    How do you propose that humans control the climate??

    More bullshit, eh? The first time I provided you with an accurate model to which you acquiesced.

    You haven't provided an "accurate" model..

    You're just a broken record on this subject. How many times do I have to confirm that the planet will still be here even on the extreme end of climate change? Humans will almost certainly be here as well...

    Then speak out against the fear mongering of the Hysterical Left Wingery that claims ad nasuem that humans are destroying the planet...

    Michale

  96. [96] 
    Michale wrote:

    So... We all are in complete agreement..

    The planet is NOT in danger of being destroyed...

    Humans are NOT in danger of becoming extinct...

    Can we now shut up about climate change??

    Michale

  97. [97] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    The planet is NOT in danger of being destroyed...

    Humans are NOT in danger of becoming extinct...

    True, but few if any in the scientific community has ever made those predictions. Millions, possibility billions of humans are likely to die in the next hundred to two hundred years directly from climate change if we keep going in the direction we are currently. Or at least that's the range of predictions I have seen. There are some "worst case we can possibly think of" scenarios that have a human extinction, but more speculative thinking than anything that has been properly investigated.

    Can we now shut up about climate change??

    As the only one around here that consistently brings this subject up, maybe you should be asking yourself that question...

  98. [98] 
    Michale wrote:

    True, but few if any in the scientific community has ever made those predictions.

    Oh bullshit.. That's all we hear from the Hysterical Left...

    We only have 10 years to save the planet!!!

    We're approaching the point of no return to save the planet!!!

    This confab is the LAST chance to save the planet!!!

    It is NOTHING but hysterical fear-mongering..

    As you yourself just admitted...

    As the only one around here that consistently brings this subject up, maybe you should be asking yourself that question...

    Actually, more often than not, I only bring it up in response to someone else bringing it up..

    In this particular commentary, it was Neil...

    Michale

  99. [99] 
    Michale wrote:

    Millions, possibility billions of humans are likely to die in the next hundred to two hundred years directly from...

    .... the DAY/NIGHT cycle..

    WE SIMPLY MUST STOP THE PLANET FROM ROTATING TO SAVE ALL THOSE MILLIONS, POSSIBLY BILLIONS OF LIVES THAT DIE BECAUSE OF THE NIGHT!!!

    Yea.. That sounds as ridiculous as your claim... :D

    Humans CAN'T control the planet's climate...

    What part of that ***fact*** do you NOT understand???

    Michale

  100. [100] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    It is NOTHING but hysterical fear-mongering..

    As you yourself just admitted...

    No, not even close to what I said. Try reading again...

    Humans CAN'T control the planet's climate...

    And there is the problem in a nutshell. We can't control the planet's climate. But we can and have affected it.

    What part of that ***fact*** do you NOT understand???

    The asterisks.

  101. [101] 
    Michale wrote:

    No, not even close to what I said. Try reading again...

    I did.. You said there is no chance that the planet is going to be destroyed and that there is no chance that the human race will become extinct..

    Ergo, anyone who claims that such can happen is indulging in hysterical fear mongering..

    And there is the problem in a nutshell. We can't control the planet's climate. But we can and have affected it.

    That's the theory.. And there IS some scientific evidence that supports that theory.. Just as there is some scientific evidence that DISPUTES the theory. It is THAT scientific evidence that all of you ignore..

    What part of that ***fact*** do you NOT understand???

    The asterisks.

    Emphasis..

    "Dooooyyyyyy!!"
    -Vanillope Von Schweet, WRECK IT RALPH

    :D

    Michale

  102. [102] 
    Michale wrote:

    But, getting back to the iPhone issue..

    The fact that there may be relevant data on the iPhone to prevent another terrorist attack is not relevant to the issue.. It certainly is important and ANY intel gleaned from the iPhone pertaining to terrorism would be useful...

    But all of that is not relevant.

    The ONLY relevant fact of this case is that the ***OWNER*** of the iPhone has requested that it be unlocked...

    THAT is the only fact that matters...

    As to Comey being a "lying sack of shit"... Do you have ANY evidence to support such a claim??

    Or is that just your natural anti-cop bias?? :D

    Michale

  103. [103] 
    Michale wrote:

    And don't think I didn't notice how you, once again, fail to provide ANY evidence of an accurate computer model or prediction that supports the Global Warming theory...

    :D

    Michale

  104. [104] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW nailed the logical fallacy of ya'all Global Warming beliefs in the current commentary..

    "because I believe a thing to be true, it must be true."

    :D

    Michale

  105. [105] 
    Michale wrote:

    "It is my view that if the president goes the way of Presidents Fillmore and Johnson and presses an election year nomination, the Senate Judiciary Committee should seriously consider not scheduling confirmation hearings on the nomination until after the political campaign season is over."
    -Senator Joe Biden, 1992

    From the mouth of god, in a manner of speaking.. :D

    I believe that lays the matter to rest.. :D

    Michale

  106. [106] 
    Michale wrote:

    And there is the problem in a nutshell. We can't control the planet's climate. But we can and have affected it.

    And, to REVERSE that affect means that we would need CONTROL of the climate, no matter how slight..

    Control, which you just conceded is not possible in the here and now..

    Ergo, the entire Global Warming issue is nothing but a redistribution of wealth con...

    Michale

  107. [107] 
    Michale wrote:
  108. [108] 
    Michale wrote:

    Holy crap!!

    I just found out that George Zimmerman works in the gun shop right next door to my computer shop!!

    I have GOT to meet that guy!!! :D

    Michale

  109. [109] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    I did.. You said there is no chance that the planet is going to be destroyed and that there is no chance that the human race will become extinct..

    There is no chance the earth will be destroyed but that is not what I said about extinction. Try reading again. Plus you make these allegations about the hysterical left but can never seem to link to them when asked. Why is that?

    That's the theory.. And there IS some scientific evidence that supports that theory.. Just as there is some scientific evidence that DISPUTES the theory. It is THAT scientific evidence that all of you ignore..

    You mean all the evidence you can't seem to come up with? Are you going to cut and paste from a denier site again? Yawn.

    And don't think I didn't notice how you, once again, fail to provide ANY evidence of an accurate computer model or prediction that supports the Global Warming theory...

    More bullshit, eh? I have linked to it at least twice in previous discussions, and you allegedly looked at it at least once.

    And, to REVERSE that affect means that we would need CONTROL of the climate, no matter how slight..

    Control ever so slightly is another name for affect. Launch every nuke, you will change the climate quite drastically. Stop burning all fossil fuel, you will affect the climate. Turn the Sahara in to a lush jungle? Nope we do not have that control yet.

    Ergo, the entire Global Warming issue is nothing but a redistribution of wealth con...

    Well, that's your accusation. Can you back it up with anything other than faulty logic?

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    There is no chance the earth will be destroyed but that is not what I said about extinction. Try reading again. Plus you make these allegations about the hysterical left but can never seem to link to them when asked. Why is that?

    Not for the same reason that you refuse to link any accurate model or prediction, I can tell you that. :D

    You mean all the evidence you can't seem to come up with? Are you going to cut and paste from a denier site again? Yawn.

    Read the works of Judith Curry or Richard Lindzen plus tens of thousands of other REAL scientists...

    Unlike you, I always source my claims..

    More bullshit, eh? I have linked to it at least twice in previous discussions, and you allegedly looked at it at least once.

    yea, that's what you always claim.. Yet you never actually have any facts to support the claim. :D

    ontrol ever so slightly is another name for affect. Launch every nuke, you will change the climate quite drastically.

    No.. It will change the WEATHER drastically.. Climate is measure in aeons.. You lose.. :D

    Well, that's your accusation. Can you back it up with anything other than faulty logic?

    Can you refute it?

    Nope... Ergo.. :D

    Michale

  111. [111] 
    Michale wrote:

    Control ever so slightly is another name for affect.

    But you have already conceded that humans can't control climate..

    NOW you are claiming they can..

    No wonder you always lose these debates...

    :D

    Michale

  112. [112] 
    Michale wrote:

    And, in other news..

    Obama launches ANOTHER illegal plan to close Gitmo.. Yaaawwnnn...

    I guess MY plan of just taking all the scumbags out, shooting them and feeding them to the sharks didn't get to Obama...

    Republicans *AND* Democrats have told Obama emphatically and without equivocation... NO!

    Which means Obama is going to do it anyways....

    Color me surprised... :^/ NOT...

    Michale

  113. [113] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    The ONLY relevant fact of this case is that the ***OWNER*** of the iPhone has requested that it be unlocked...

    You mean the only relevant fact to the argument you want to make. Quite a few other relevant facts in the situation...

    Also, can you link to this relevant fact? I have yet to see where the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health is asking for the phone to be modified. The court order only specifically mentions the FBI.

    As to Comey being a "lying sack of shit"... Do you have ANY evidence to support such a claim??

    Comey is a lawyer. He has been one most of his career. He knows this is not a one time request. Once Apple succumbs to the All Writs Act, judges will order it again, and not just Apple, other tech companies as well. China and other foreign government will also make these requests. Slathering on the emotional BS while trying to make it seem this is just a one time request in his response to Apple makes him a lying sack of shit. Or possibly a incompetent idiot. Take your pick...

  114. [114] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    So lying and word twisting is all you can come with on climate change, eh? Color me unsurprised...

  115. [115] 
    Michale wrote:

    You mean the only relevant fact to the argument you want to make. Quite a few other relevant facts in the situation...

    By all means. Make the argument... :D

    Also, can you link to this relevant fact? I have yet to see where the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health is asking for the phone to be modified. The court order only specifically mentions the FBI.

    SBCDPH has authorized the FBI to act on it's behalf..

    Slathering on the emotional BS while trying to make it seem this is just a one time request in his response to Apple makes him a lying sack of shit.

    Appealing to emotion makes one a lying sack of shit?? You just incriminated the entirety of the Left Wingery.. :D hehehehehe

    Or possibly a incompetent idiot.

    Funny.. You didn't seem to think that when Comey was slapping down President Bush...

    Funny how that is, eh? :D

    Michale

  116. [116] 
    Michale wrote:

    So lying and word twisting is all you can come with on climate change, eh? Color me unsurprised...

    And the fact that you have yet to show ANY Global Warming prediction or ANY Global Warming model that has been accurate...

    Why wasn't the Global Warming pause accurately predicted??

    Wait.. Don't tell me.. Let me guess. There IS no Global Warming pause..

    Yea.. And there wasn't any MWP either. :D

    Do ya'all make up this stuff as you go along?? :D

    "Do you think he plans it all out, or just makes it up as he goes along?"
    -First Mate, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, On Stranger Tides

    :D

    Michale

  117. [117] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    And the fact that you have yet to show ANY Global Warming prediction or ANY Global Warming model that has been accurate...

    Why do you keep lying?

  118. [118] 
    Michale wrote:

    In their motion to compel Apple to assist in unlocking the Farook’s iPhone, federal prosecutors said the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health had a written policy that all digital devices issued to employees are subject to search at any time. Farook signed the policy as a condition of his employment, according to the court document.

    “It is worth noting as well that the user of the phone is now dead, the user was made aware of his lack of privacy on the work phone while alive, and the owner of the phone consents to both the search of the phone and to Apple’s assistance in this matter,” according to the court document.
    http://www.sbsun.com/general-news/20160217/san-bernardinos-irc-shooting-investigation-thwarted-by-apple-inc

    "No studying... {{harrumph}}"
    -Peter Venkmen, GHOSTBUSTERS

    :D

    Michale

  119. [119] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    By all means. Make the argument... :D

    Yawn. Already have. Try reading...

    SBCDPH has authorized the FBI to act on it's behalf..

    So, you have nothing...

    Appealing to emotion makes one a lying sack of shit?? You just incriminated the entirety of the Left Wingery.. :D hehehehehe

    And still nothing...

    Funny.. You didn't seem to think that when Comey was slapping down President Bush...

    Did I? Please point the post out where I did so...

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    Why do you keep lying?

    Why can't you prove I am lying? :D

    Because I am not.. :D

    Michale

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    Did I? Please point the post out where I did so...

    Exactly... :D

    Michale

  122. [122] 
    Michale wrote:

    Comment #118 is the only argument that matters...

    It's that simple...

    Michale

  123. [123] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Why can't you prove I am lying? :D

    Because I have played this game too many times only to have you bring it up again, and again, and again. I posted an accurate model. You acknowledged it. You brought it up again and I linked back too it. At some point you are either lying or have Alzheimers, which is it?

  124. [124] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Comment #118 is the only argument that matters...

    It's that simple...

    Funny I would have thought the only argument that matters is whether custom building a new operating system for helping breaking in to a single phone would be an "undue burden" under the All Writs Act.

  125. [125] 
    Michale wrote:

    Because I have played this game too many times only to have you bring it up again, and again, and again. I posted an accurate model. You acknowledged it. You brought it up again and I linked back too it.

    Yea, that's what you keep claiming..

    Yet, we never see the evidence to support the claim.. :D

    Funny I would have thought the only argument that matters is whether custom building a new operating system for helping breaking in to a single phone would be an "undue burden" under the All Writs Act.

    "You would think so... Yet, here we are..."
    -Homer Simpson

    :D

    Michale

  126. [126] 
    Michale wrote:

    Rut Roh, Raggey

    U.S. judge orders discovery to go forward over Clinton’s private email system

    A federal judge on Tuesday ruled that State Department officials and top aides to Hillary Clinton should be questioned under oath about whether they intentionally thwarted federal open records laws by using or allowing the use of a private email server throughout Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/us-judge-weighs-deeper-probe-into-clintons-private-email-system/2016/02/23/9c27412a-d997-11e5-81ae-7491b9b9e7df_story.html

    Top aides to a Presidential Candidate being questioned UNDER OATH during the midst of the campaign...

    Something about chickens, coming home and roosting come to mind.. :D

    Michale

  127. [127] 
    Michale wrote:

    Apparently, the Republicans are taking Joe Biden's advice...

    GOP Judiciary: No hearing on Obama court nominee
    http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/270423-gop-judiciary-no-hearing-on-obama-court-nominee

    Uncle Joe has spoken...

    "You remember Uncle Joe.. He was the one afraid to cut the cake."

    :D

    Michale

  128. [128] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    I seem to have a vague recollection of promising you that I wouldn't refer to Joe Biden as Uncle Joe anymore..

    If I had promised that, then I do apologize for doing so..

    Channeling my inner Bob Seger was just too much temptation to resist.. :D

    Michale

  129. [129] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    M-

    I think you forgot some more words so I fixed it for you....

    If the president consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation, then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justices Kennedy and Souter.

    Now don't get me wrong here, I will agree with you that D and R have both placed their stamps on the supreme nom process, it's politics afterall, but this level of obstructionism is quite frankly disgusting and unheard of.

    Perhaps I am viewing it through the simple lens of Scalia, Article 2 section 2....uses the word shall alot and has nothing on time constraints in a presidents term or the Senate not performing the process of nomination in a election year. It clearly states what the Executive and the Legislative branches shall do.

    To me it is simple, the president nominates and the senate either votes yes or no on the individual and in a perfect world of functional government both sides argle bargle about how they got screwed and the american public weighs in if they think the legislative or executive got it wrong. Maybe the congress critters listen or more than likely won't.

    In either case I feel that it is high time that some arseholes that we are paying a nice salary to get to doing their jobs....and if they make the wrong decision they should put on their big boy pants and pay for it at the polls.

    Unfortunately it will be a cold day in hell before that happens since EVERYONE is to busy walking the fine line of getting suckers to vote for them while remaining beholden to their owners...ooops I mean donors...

  130. [130] 
    Michale wrote:

    GT,

    If the president consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation, then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justices Kennedy and Souter.

    Biden may have said those words at a different point in time..

    But that's not what he said when I quoted him..

    In either case I feel that it is high time that some arseholes that we are paying a nice salary to get to doing their jobs....and if they make the wrong decision they should put on their big boy pants and pay for it at the polls.

    I feel the same way.. But I ALSO felt the same way when the Democrats in the Senate refused to pass a budget...

    Unfortunately it will be a cold day in hell before that happens since EVERYONE is to busy walking the fine line of getting suckers to vote for them while remaining beholden to their owners...ooops I mean donors...

    yup.....

    Michale

  131. [131] 
    Michale wrote:

    Now don't get me wrong here, I will agree with you that D and R have both placed their stamps on the supreme nom process, it's politics afterall, but this level of obstructionism is quite frankly disgusting and unheard of.

    You were here during the Bush years, right??

    I heard it PLENTY then... :D

    Michale

  132. [132] 
    Michale wrote:

    Funny I would have thought the only argument that matters is whether custom building a new operating system for helping breaking in to a single phone would be an "undue burden" under the All Writs Act.

    How do you define "undue burden" in the context of the fact that there may be intel on that iPhone that could prevent another terrorist attack??

    Call me silly, but (taking the page from the Global Warming fanatics) if there is even a 1% chance that there is intel on that phone that could save lives, I would think the bar for "undue burden" would be very very high...

    Seems to me that there is no burden that is "undue", if it saves one innocent life..

    But of course, Apple feels that their marketing is more important than that...

    When all is said and done, Apple has a court order and the owner's permission...

    That's all that is needed..

    After all... It's OBAMA's FBI and OBAMA's DOJ...

    They can be trusted... Right???

    "Riiiggghhtt?? Buddy???"
    -Woody, TOY STORY

    :D

    Michale

  133. [133] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    How do you define "undue burden" in the context of the fact that there may be intel on that iPhone that could prevent another terrorist attack??

    Highly unlikely. The two terrorists showed quite good OpSec with destroying their personal phones, running fake facebook accounts and their computer hard drive has yet to be found. The FBI already screwed up by having the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health reset the icloud password in the hours after the attack, preventing a possible backup that Apple could turn over and have done so in other cases (they should have known). It looks like the FBI wants the data on the phone to tie up the investigation rather than uncover terrorist plots. Some of the victims were contacted by that phone in the month leading up to the attack. Considering it's his work phone and he killed his co-workers, I find that a bit dubious in value...

    Seems to me that there is no burden that is "undue", if it saves one innocent life..

    And yet I don't see you calling for the confiscation of all guns or reducing the speed limit to 35 MPH. Both would save countless innocent lives but come with undue burden. So, saving innocent lives only matter when it aligns with your political bias? Or were you just trying an appeal to emotion?

    Some more proof [NYT] that Comey is a lying sack of shit. Nine more iphones waiting for help to unlock under the All Writs Act.

    They can be trusted... Right???

    If Comey is going to blatantly lie to the American people and his agents act somewhat keystone copish, I think there is grounds for some doubt. Can we really trust the FBI's investigation into Hillary's email server at this point?

  134. [134] 
    Michale wrote:
  135. [135] 
    Michale wrote:

    Highly unlikely.

    And your vast experience in the field tells you this?? :D

    And yet I don't see you calling for the confiscation of all guns or reducing the speed limit to 35 MPH. Both would save countless innocent lives but come with undue burden.

    The "undue burden" may be MORE lives lost..

    Apple's undue burden is that their marketing takes a hit.

    Big whoop...

    If Comey is going to blatantly lie to the American people and his agents act somewhat keystone copish, I think there is grounds for some doubt. Can we really trust the FBI's investigation into Hillary's email server at this point?

    Obama trusts him..

    That's always been good enough for you in the past...

    Michale

  136. [136] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    And your vast experience in the field tells you this?? :D

    Yes it does! :D

    Apple's undue burden is that their marketing takes a hit.

    Big whoop...

    A lot more at stake than some marketing...

    That's always been good enough for you in the past...

    Really, could you show me where I have said anything close to this? Or are you going to pull your lazy standby that not saying something means automatic acquiescence?

  137. [137] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    Obama trusts him..
    That's always been good enough for you in the past...

    it's been about six years since that was enough for me. nonetheless, comey seems to be about as straight a shooter as there is. he'd make an interesting supreme court pick were the president so inclined...

    JL

  138. [138] 
    Michale wrote:

    A lot more at stake than some marketing...

    Yea?? Like what?

    Really, could you show me where I have said anything close to this?

    Your fealty to Obama is well documented.. Just read chrisweigant.com Sep of 2006 thru the present.. :D

    Michale

  139. [139] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Your fealty to Obama is well documented.. Just read chrisweigant.com Sep of 2006 thru the present.. :D

    And yet you can't provide an example. Interesting that...

    Yea?? Like what?

    Really? Are you sure you have experience in this area?

    But to answer your question: see comment [113] above.

  140. [140] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yea?? Like what?

    Really? Are you sure you have experience in this area?

    But to answer your question: see comment [113] above.

    So, all you have is hysterical fear mongering...

    Even if true, so what..

    Do you WANT terrorists and child molesters and scumbag criminals have a secure way to commit their crimes???

    Is the personal privacy of ANYONE more important than saving lives???

    Mine sure as hell ain't...

    Michale

  141. [141] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    So, all you have is hysterical fear mongering...

    I already linked [133] to an NYT article about all the other iphones to be unlocked via the All Writs Act. See Google's ventures in China to understand the likelihood of China and other governments demanding whatever access the FBI manages to get. Hardly hysterical fear mongering if it's all in the pipeline already or there is a decent amount of precedent that has already happened, or both in this case.

    Is the personal privacy of ANYONE more important than saving lives???

    Yes. The personal privacy of EVERYONE is more important than saving a few lives...

  142. [142] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes. The personal privacy of EVERYONE is more important than saving a few lives...

    Unless, of course, it's you or one of your loved ones...

    We'll just have to agree to disagree on that point..

    In my book, NO privacy is worth an innocent life...

    Michale

  143. [143] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    M-

    Biden may have said those words at a different point in time..

    But that's not what he said when I quoted him..

    I know it is hard to do sometimes but....try a little leg work vs just relying on click bait. The quote I supplied came later in the speech you were utilizing for your quote....

    Just to make it even clearer...

    As I say, some view this position as contentious, while others, I suspect--in fact, I know, and the Presiding Officer knows as well as I do--will say that I am not being contentious enough. They suggest that since the Court has moved so far to the right already, it is too late for a progressive Senate to accept compromise candidates from a conservative administration. They would argue that the only people we should accept are liberal candidates, which are not going to come, nor is it reasonable to expect them to come, from a conservative Republican President.

    But I believe that so long as the public continues to split its confidence between the branches, compromise is the responsible course both for the White House and for the Senate. Therefore, I stand by my position, Mr. President. If the President consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation, then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justices Kennedy and Souter. But if he does not, as is the President's right, then I will oppose his future nominees as is my right.

    Once a nomination is made, the evaluation process begins, Mr. President. And here there has been a dramatic change from the Bork nomination in 1987 to the Thomas nomination in 1991.

    Gold Five: Stay on target.
    Gold Leader: We're too close!
    Gold Five: Stay on target!

    Star Wars 1977....

    So I still contend that what the GOP is doing is unprecedented and again not doing the job they are obligated to perform.

    The GOPers should go through the process, if they don't like the nominee they don't have to vote for him....isn't that how divided government is supposed to work.? It seems to me that Biden is making that claim.

  144. [144] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    You should listen to the whole speech Biden gave in 1992 Re. nominating Supreme Court justices during a presidential campaign.

    It's easy to misinterpret what Biden says because, what Biden says is so often very lengthy and informative and not too many people have the capacity for listening attentively for the length of time required.

    As always, when Biden speaks, people become better informed ... IF they choose to listen ...

  145. [145] 
    Michale wrote:

    I can only go by Biden's words...

    And the words were very clear and very concise and completely unambiguous..

    Of course he (and ya'all) want to walk them back NOW, because the shoe is on the other foot..

    But that doesn't change the fact that the words were very clear..

    But it's a moot point.. Obama appears to be ready to nominate a Republican to the SCOTUS bench, so, the GOP will likely do what you want them to do and process the nomination...

    Happy? :D

    Michale

  146. [146] 
    Michale wrote:

    GT,

    But, kudos on the movie quote.. :D

    Michale

  147. [147] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes. The personal privacy of EVERYONE is more important than saving a few lives...

    "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few... Or the one.."

    'nuff said... :D

    Michale

  148. [148] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama nominating a Republican to replace Scalia will really be a test for McConnell..

    If McConnell sticks to his guns and refuses to process the nominee, it will indicate that he is confident of a GOP White House win in November...

    If McConnell caves and processes Obama's Republican nominee, it will indicate that McConnell is not real sure of a GOP White House win...

    Michale

  149. [149] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    obama's nomination is only one side of the coin. the other side is the fact that trump will be the likely GOP nominee. in addition to pushback and political fallout from the current president's nominee, mcconnell also has to guard against the possibility that Trump, should he win, will nominate a radical libertarian or an anti-foreign protectionist, which would not serve the establishment repubican agenda well at all. a trump nominee could very well make the republican senators wish they'd played ball with obama when they had the chance.

    JL

  150. [150] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I can only go by Biden's words...

    Well, you must read or listen to them, first.

    And, then you will know that there is no need to walk them back.

    In fact, once you actually read or listen to Biden's full remarks, you will immediately realize who knows what they're talking about on this issue and who doesn't.

    In any event, I expect President Obama to nominate someone whose credentials and qualifications preclude any serious attempt by the congressional Republicans to derail the confirmation process as they may do so at their own distinct peril.

  151. [151] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Just to wet your appetite for more of what Biden said, here is a small snippet of his remarks:

    "I believe that so long as the public continues to split its confidence between the branches, compromise is the responsible course both for the White House and for the Senate,” he said. “Therefore I stand by my position, Mr. President, if the President [George H.W. Bush] consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation, then his nominees may enjoy my support as did Justices Kennedy and Souter.

  152. [152] 
    goode trickle wrote:

    I can only go by Biden's words...

    And the words were very clear and very concise and completely unambiguous..

    They sure are and the entirety of the speech is a fascinating glimpse back to a time when government functioned. Context is important....to some of us.

    Of course he (and ya'all) want to walk them back NOW, because the shoe is on the other foot..

    Again, if you need a paragraph from a speech taken out of context to sleep at night all the more power to you...If one reads the entirety of the speech one realizes quickly there is nothing to walk back. But just in case we need to clarify, here is a little gem from Biden on the matter....

    "Nearly a quarter century ago, in June 1992, I gave a lengthy speech on the Senate floor about a hypothetical vacancy on the Supreme Court, Some critics say that one excerpt of my speech is evidence that I oppose filling a Supreme Court vacancy in an election year. This is not an accurate description of my views on the subject."

    Doesn't sound like a walk back to me...Just saying....

    But that doesn't change the fact that the words were very clear..

    Since we are big on clear words, here is a little gem from McConnell in 2005.

    "regardless of party, any President's judicial nominees, after full debate, deserve a simple up-or-down vote. "

    Pretty clear Eh?

  153. [153] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    In any event, I expect President Obama to nominate someone whose credentials and qualifications preclude any serious attempt by the congressional Republicans to derail the confirmation process as they may do so at their own distinct peril.

    Did I just say that? Heh.

    What I meant to say was that the congressional Republicans remain clueless as to what may hurt them. Who do they think they are, anyway, Donald Trump?

  154. [154] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    gt, (do we have a real name for you?)

    They sure are and the entirety of the speech is a fascinating glimpse back to a time when government functioned. Context is important....to some of us.

    So very true.

    Indeed, read or listen to any one of Biden's speeches on the Senate floor or anywhere else and the glimpse back to an era where politics was actually functional will be just as fascinating.

    The Senate is an entirely different body today than what it was in Biden's time. His farewell address to the Senate was very illuminating.

  155. [155] 
    Michale wrote:

    We can debate what the definition of 'is' is til the cows come home..

    But the simple fact is in 1992, Biden said the EXACT same things that the GOP is saying now..

    In 2007 Schumer said the EXACT same things that the GOP is saying now...

    Now you can try to Gruber-rize it and claim they didn't MEAN what it obviously means..

    But the simple fact is, the words were said and, without the fog of partisan ideology, the meaning is clear...

    Michale

  156. [156] 
    Michale wrote:

    How Biden killed John Roberts’s nomination in 1992
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/how-biden-killed-john-robertss-nomination-in-92/2016/02/25/c17841be-dbdf-11e5-81ae-7491b9b9e7df_story.html

    So goes the myth that Democrats would "NEVER" let election politics taint the judicial nomination process.. :D

    Michale

  157. [157] 
    Michale wrote:

    obama's nomination is only one side of the coin. the other side is the fact that trump will be the likely GOP nominee. in addition to pushback and political fallout from the current president's nominee, mcconnell also has to guard against the possibility that Trump, should he win, will nominate a radical libertarian or an anti-foreign protectionist, which would not serve the establishment repubican agenda well at all. a trump nominee could very well make the republican senators wish they'd played ball with obama when they had the chance.

    That's a very good point as well..

    I would love to see Obama nominate Sandoval and watch the Left Wingery's collective heads explode..

    It would be more fun than watching McConnell as he grimaces, "Oh shit!! NOW what do we do!!???"

    :D

    Michale

  158. [158] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Why won't you read or listen to Biden's full remarks?

  159. [159] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But the simple fact is in 1992, Biden said the EXACT same things that the GOP is saying now..

    Well, that's excellent, if true. But, I've been following things relatively closely and I just have not heard the Republican leader of the Senate nor the Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee say that they will do what Senator Biden advocated and support the president's nominee in an election year so long as the president "consults and cooperates with the Senate or moderates his selections absent consultation."

    If Republicans today have said anything like that, then I missed it but, I'm very happy to hear it!

  160. [160] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, that's excellent, if true.

    It IS true.. And I gave you the EXACT quote...

    Now, you can use ANOTHER quote from Biden to argue...

    But that doesn't change the FACT that Biden *DID* say exactly what the Republicans are saying now..

    But, now that the shoe is on the other fit, NOW all of the sudden, "Biden didn't mean it.."

    OK Fine.. Crawl into Biden's head and divine that Biden didn't mean it..

    But you simply CANNOT argue that Biden didn't SAY it.. Because he did..

    Why won't you read or listen to Biden's full remarks?

    I did.. And I am taking the parts of the remarks that support my conclusion..

    Just as you are.. :D

    Michale

  161. [161] 
    Michale wrote:

    On Jan. 27, 1992, President Bush nominated Roberts to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Roberts was immensely qualified for the job. He had served since 1989 as principal deputy solicitor general of the United States, arguing 39 cases before the Supreme Court, making him one of the country’s most experienced Supreme Court litigators.

    But his nomination to the federal bench was dead on arrival at Biden’s Senate Judiciary Committee. Biden refused to even hold a hearing on Roberts’s nomination, much less a vote in committee or on the Senate floor. Roberts’s nomination died in committee and was withdrawn on Oct. 8, 1992. It was only about a decade later that he was re-nominated to the federal bench by President George W. Bush — and we all know the rest of the story.

    Roberts was not alone in being denied a hearing or a vote by Biden. According to a report by the Congressional Research Service (CRS), in 1992 Biden killed the nominations of 32 Bush appointees to the federal bench without giving them so much as a hearing. And that does not count an additional 20 nominations for the federal bench where Biden did not hold hearings that year, which CRS excluded from its count because they reached the Senate “within approximately [four] months before it adjourned.”

    Basically, ya'all are accusing Republicans of playing politics with Judicial nominations.

    But as I have proven beyond ANY doubt, it's nothing different than Democrats have said AND done...

    So let's drop the holier-than-thou routine.. :D In the case of playing politics with Judicial nominations to further the agenda/advantage of a Party, there is no difference between Democrats and Republicans...

    Michale

  162. [162] 
    Michale wrote:

    So let's drop the holier-than-thou routine.. :D

    Please note the ' :D ' :D

    Michale

  163. [163] 
    akadjian wrote:

    Oh man ... I'm gonna get killed. Ok, you won fair and square though.

    How 'bout this one?

    http://skreened.com/republicantshirts/i-heart-american-flag-donald-trump

  164. [164] 
    Michale wrote:

    Oh man ... I'm gonna get killed. Ok, you won fair and square though.

    hehehehehehehe

    How 'bout this one?

    http://skreened.com/republicantshirts/i-heart-american-flag-donald-trump

    Love it!!!!

    You sir, are an honorable man and I salute you... :D

    If at all possible, get pics of your friends' reaction to it! :D heh

    Michale

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