Patterico's Pontifications

2/10/2012

Render Unto Caesar (Obama?)

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:00 am

[The following post was submitted via e-mail by a regular reader of the site who wishes to remain anonymous. — Patterico]

As most readers of PP know by now (astute as you are), Secretary Sebelius released guidelines under ObamaCare that make it mandatory for all employer-provided health insurance to include (free) birth control. There is an exemption proposed for religious groups who find such to be against their beliefs, but the exemption is defined quite narrowly to those within the religious order itself, not to institutions or organizations that until now have operated under the constraints/freedom of their religious convictions. Some have said that Jesus Himself, always involved hob-knobbing with people “outside” of the church, would not qualify for the religious conscience exemption.

The history of “church and state separation” significantly predates Jefferson’s wording on the issue in his letter to the Danbury Baptists (nope, not in the Constitution). In fact, history records such conflict even before there was “church.” One early incident involved Moses and Pharaoh. Moses requested a brief time-off from work for the Jewish people so they could go into the wilderness and worship. Pharaoh, claiming governmental and divine authority in addition to being their chief employer, was not too keen on the idea, resulting in much commotion and tumult — to Pharaoh’s chagrin.

Later there were incidents in the Kingdom of Babylon. The Jewish exiles Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were skilled and wise in their service to the king. But once again being king was not enough and he made a gold statue of himself, demanding that people bow down and worship him as god as well. Once again, the demand for loyalty to the government over loyalty to God did not work out too well for the king.

Some years later the rulers of a new empire again muddled the distinction between human authority and loyalty to the divine. The Roman Empire had a noble start. It was a republic, governed by a Senate and proconsuls who were elected, not a monarchy. But along came a man who felt he knew better than the founders, had no need of a senate to advise him, and decided he needn’t share his power with anyone. So powerful was he that his name became synonymous for the ruler of the empire, Caesar. As happened before, Caesar took unto himself the claim of deity as well.

Perhaps the most well known episode of the “church and state” strife in this time occurred when an itinerate preacher named Jesus was asked whether it was all right for the people to pay taxes to Caesar. Although this predated the age of news networks, sound bites, and “gotcha” questions, he knew a trap when he heard one. So, much to the disappointment of the RNN (Roman News Network), he asked the surrounding folk whose picture was on the gold coins. When told the picture was that of Caesar, he then replied, “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.” The Roman soldiers in attendance, interested only in the money anyway, saw nothing to make a fuss about.

The Roman Republic, to my knowledge of history, was the greatest republic on earth, until our own. But the Roman Republic was taken by force of will to become the Roman Empire. Perhaps it was with that in mind that upon being asked about the proposed United States Constitution, Benjamin Franklin answered that we had a republic, “…if you can keep it”.

Please bear with me for a moment while I draw a parallel. Barack Hussein Obama was elected as President of the United States, and as such declared an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of our Republic. However, prior to the election he clearly voiced his opinion that the Constitution was inadequate and flawed. Now, multiple times in history our government has seen the need to amend the Constitution, to make adjustments where necessary, but has any President suggested that it was inherently “wrong” and should have been made different, not amended? Can someone with such a low opinion of the Constitution seriously pledge to defend it?

Just as Julius Caesar demonstrated his disdain for the Senate by crossing the Rubicon against their orders, so President Obama first demonstrated his disdain for the Senate by appointing a new class of executive officials, honestly enough referred to as “czars,” without any approval by, or guidance from, the legislative branch. One could argue that such a move at least avoided a direct insult to Congress, but he then went further by making appointments without the required Senate approval, by “deeming” them in recess (which was news to them). In other words, Obama loudly proclaimed: “Your presence doesn’t matter!” Chastising the Supreme Court Justices in public gave President Obama the opportunity to demonstrate the fact that his contempt for the other branches of government was not limited to Congress. Whether his directions to AG Holder over which federal laws to defend and which to ignore is an action directed at the legislature or the judiciary is a question that people could debate, I suppose. In either case it is a show of disregard for the American people, who elected representatives to make the laws — and expected the judiciary to uphold them fairly.

But he has further made the comparison appropriate even to the extreme of essentially claiming the prerogatives of divinity. While he did not claim power to heal the sick or control the oceans directly by himself, he clearly stated that the time had come to witness these events with his rise to leadership. But he has now shown a quality clearly reserved to the Divine, that of overruling the petty gods of the people. This is what the HHS High Priestess Sebelius announced from on high recently. You are free to “exercise” your religious beliefs, just as long as you keep them to yourself. Whatever your deeply held religious convictions may be, when they try to get in the way of the will of Caesar, it is the will of Caesar that must prevail.

If no one will be able to limit his power, the comparison to Caesar will be complete.

204 Responses to “Render Unto Caesar (Obama?)”

  1. This was a great post.

    It’s very worrisome that Obama’s apparent disapproval of our constitution has translated predictably to his violating it repeatedly. It’s even more worrisome that the public are largely not alarmed… if they are even aware of it.

    Our next president could somehow take us back to a constitutional republic, but every President in recent memory has run against some issue that he could solve more easily if he simply pretended the constitution didn’t apply. The temptation to follow a precedent Obama has set will be overwhelming.

    Already we’ve had a lot of GOP candidates saying they can just overturn Obamacare, which was passed congress and signed into law and upheld by at least some courts. It’s very amusing to consider the left’s reaction to a GOP president waivering Texas from the EPA, but I worry this is yet another example of how our country is headed down a road of short term solutions to long term problems.

    Obama’s inability to face the challenge of running this country, his thin skin, his too clever by half budget strategy, his constant politicization of everything… that kind of record might look like a powerful leader at first glance, but it’s the exact opposite.

    No matter who the GOP nominates, Romney, Jimmy Carter, Oscar the Grouch… the voters need to reject Obama for the GOP candidate simply because our constitution matters. I already know this argument would be ignored by our country, and I think that relates to the Ben Franklin quote above.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  2. My only quibble would be on your poster’s Roman history. First, it is a gross oversimplification to say that Caesar acted out of disdain for the Senate or the Republic, and it is simply false to suggest the Senate was an impartial democratic body seeking merely to advise him. The Roman system was deeply fractured and corrupt at the time, and Caesar was pitted in a all or nothing struggle with a powerful faction of the Senate. Cato and his allies had boxed Caesar into a corner of either defying the Senate or surrendering his army and being exiled (or worse).

    Moreover, Julius Caesar certainly held the title Dictator, but he was technically never emperor, and it was Augustus Caesar who created the princeps role that later became known as the emperor. It was also Augustus who pushed for Caesar’s divination, in no small part to enhance his own claim to the same status.

    Chris M. (287a38)

  3. Thank you Chris for explicating some of the glosses in the original text.

    It just goes to show, however, that Obama’s actions are in the teeth of a Senate not bent on his destruction as in the case of Caesar; and that Teh One has compressed into 3 years the actions of Caesar and Augustus spread out over decades.

    Quick work.

    Pious Agnostic (7c3d5b)

  4. Anyway, SCOAMF is a traitor and antiChrist.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  5. Notice that when asked Obama did not have the guts to even defend his admin rule.

    SPQR (90d470)

  6. Chris M and Pious Agnostic,

    You both seem to have an interest in Roman history. Do you see any parallels between Obama and the Caesars?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  7. what the whiny catholics don’t understand is that it’s offensive for the fascist government of America to force *anyone* to participate in a plan what requires contraceptive coverage

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  8. DRJ,

    “The Caesars” comprises around 150 different people, so it’d be easy to say “yes” but if you mean strictly Julius and Augustus and their transformation of the Republic into the Empire, I think that even then the parallels are actually fairly superficial.

    Julius Caesar was elected dictator by the Senate, which is obviously different from how Obama became president. Julius returned to Rome and assumed absolute control at the head of an army and through the threat of force. Obama does not have control of the armed forces in a similar way.

    The Caesars didn’t have a written constitution to violate, but instead centuries of law and tradition, so it was actually easier for them to justify their actions, at least in a cynical way.

    I don’t like Obama, don’t get me wrong; but the threat he poses to the Constitution are his own, and are only reminiscent of the Roman Emperors.

    Pious Agnostic (7c3d5b)

  9. The early Caesars were brilliant, ruthless, highly successful doers. There was no Affirmative Action in ancient Rome.

    Manfred (3379b8)

  10. Heh!

    The only thing Obama and Caesar have in common is laziness. But that laziness gave us our modern calendar since Caesar could not be bothered to adjust Rome’s primitive lunar calendar every year to bring it back in line with the diurnal calendar.

    Caesar was a brilliant politician and an even more brilliant military strategist and his name outlived Rome. (The Julii claimed to be descended from Aphrodite, through Aeneas, but the stirps name Caesar became a gens name supplanting the original gens name Julius — quite a feat to divorce yourself and your descendants from divine ancestry.)

    Obama would not make a pimple on Caesar’s behind, let alone Augustus’s. We might compare him to Vespasian, big maybe.

    BTW, there were only six “Caesars”. The line ended with Nero.

    nk (3d837f)

  11. It’s a fairly good post undermined by the flawed use of examples from Roman History. Important parallels exist and could have served to illustrate significant points, but then as now major events are occasioned by the complex interaction of competing interests.

    The fall of the Roman Republic is unfortunately incompletely understood and often misreported. As an example: just as events in the Bible are sometimes taken literally, so too are Shakespeare’s historical dramas assumed to be revealed truth.

    Carsar’s act of crossing the Rubicon was nothing less than the blatant initiation of a coup d’etat. He crossed the boundary river into Roman territory armed and at the head of his legions, an act of war and one absolutely forbidden. That the Senate later acquiesced and voted him honors (under threats of violence) doesn’t change the facts.

    That single act directly challenged the very foundations of republican rule and eventually resulted not only in civil war, but also in the institutionalization of a leader-for-life who ruled Rome not by the consent of the Senate, but by imposing his will by force, an emperor.

    ropelight (3594d2)

  12. One more BTW. Christ’s Caesar was Tiberius, who became Caesar through the mechanations of Livia and Sejanus at too old an age to have any interest in governing Rome. He only cared about orgies. There is a famous exchange between him and the Senate. The Senate wrote him tha they were ready to ratify any and all his decrees. He wrote back, “Since you want to be my slaves, so be it”. But in actuality they were slaves to Livia and Sejanus, Rome’s shadow rulers.

    nk (3d837f)

  13. More religious gobbledygook, instead of well-reasoned thought.

    tadcf (ead2bd)

  14. that was haughty and dismissive in tone Mr. tadcf, what you said

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  15. Tadcf never fails to bring Da Dum

    JD (fda94d)

  16. BTW, there were only six “Caesars”. The line ended with Nero.

    True; I used the term (inaccurately) as a synonym for Emperor.

    Pious Agnostic (7c3d5b)

  17. “but has any President suggested that it was inherently “wrong” and should have been made different, not amended?”

    Woodrow Wilson wrote extensively that the Constitution was outmoded or worse; +/- the same thing.

    Teflon Dad (4bb501)

  18. Well, if you click on my name i come at the issue from a different angle at my blog.

    I think free speech is more important here than freedom of religion.

    Aaron Worthing (73a7ea)

  19. Ogabe’s position on Catholics and contraception is just the logical conclusion of Obamacare.

    And likely another torpedo amidships to Romany Cruise Line flagship, crippled by norovirus, leaking oil, listing and Captain Sleazer taking dinner in his cabin.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  20. Sowell covers my point “on strained federalism grounds”:

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2012/02/09/the_anti-romney_vote_113066.html

    Greasy Sleazer has nothing but ad hoc mouthings in support of conservatism in defensive of his obvious deficiencies on vision. State’s rights figure nowhere in a cohesive understanding of Federal governments failings.

    Sure VT, ID and UT, maybe WA, are big wins to come but they will stand alone. He’s toast.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  21. CSMonitor on CPAC:

    “How rapidly the political conversation has changed. Since the Republican presidential candidates hammered Obama over the August jobs report showing the United States generated no new jobs in that month, the unemployment rate has fallen to 8.3 percent from 9.1 percent and the economy has added an average of 183,000 jobs a month. On Thursday, the Labor Department reported that unemployment assistance had fallen to a four year low.”

    If the economy were growing and more folks working you’d kinda think IRS withholding would be rising, not down $300 Million over 2011.

    But LameStream McBain says Obama can’t take credit for the improving economy.

    Big government can be saved, we just need to manage the decline.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  22. “The ides of March are come, old man!”
    “Aye, Caesar, but not yet gone.”

    mojo (8096f2)

  23. Another CSMonitor CPAC gloss:

    “The results of the CPAC straw poll will be announced on Saturday, and it’s anybody’s guess who will win. Last year, Ron Paul won, with a heavy contingent of supporters in attendance. This year, Congressman Paul isn’t even attending CPAC, choosing instead to campaign in Maine. His son, Sen. Rand Paul (R) of Kentucky, addressed the conference on Thursday.

    This isn’t Romney’s crowd – very few attendees are sporting Romney stickers – and it’s conceivable he could come in last. If he does, that would be embarrassing. In his ideal world, he will do well enough among CPAC-ers – his best friends four years ago, after all – that the conference doesn’t add to the perception problem that Minnesota, Colorado, and Missouri have already given him.”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  24. Chi-town Trib: “If you want to hear the audience cheer at CPAC, just bring up the idea of a brokered GOP convention.”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  25. what the whiny catholics don’t understand is that it’s offensive for the fascist government of America to force *anyone* to participate in a plan what requires contraceptive coverage

    Or toothbrushes, for that matter. IIRC, many Catholic bishops supported Obamacare, force and all. Karma, thou art a heartless bitch.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  26. More religious gobbledygook, instead of well-reasoned thought.
    Comment by tadcf — 2/10/2012 @ 8:23 am

    – And now, some well-reasoned thought from tadcf . . .

    Icy (c10370)

  27. . . . any minute now . . .

    Icy (c10370)

  28. Wait for it!!!

    . . . . .

    Icy (c10370)

  29. Oh, right, I did remember correctly. They however did oppose the final version, solely because it also impacted their beliefs. Other people’s freedoms weren’t so important though.

    Seems like the Chruch views “things which are Ceasar’s” rather more widely than most of us do.

    Kevin M (563f77)

  30. Some have said that Jesus Himself, always involved hob-knobbing with people “outside” of the church, would not qualify for the religious conscience exemption.

    Mark 6:30-44; the miracle of the loaves and the fish. Jesus fed 5,000 with only 5 loaves of bread and two fish.

    Obama would have shut down this “illegal” ancient version of a soup kitchen because Jesus didn’t have a food service permit and he didn’t buy the apostles serving the food adequate health insurance policies that covered contraception, sterilization, and the plan B pill.

    Steve (20a23f)

  31. I read this comparison of Obama and Caesar as an example of leaders who ignored and mocked their nations’ rule of law. Thus, Caesar crossing the Rubicon in defiance of Roman law is similar to Obama’s description of the attack on Libya as a “kinetic military action” and not war in defiance of the War Powers Act; mandating contraceptive coverage by executive order over religious objections; recess appointments even though there was no recess under Senate rules; appointing czars in a government system that doesn’t recognize that position; politicizing the DOJ with partisan new hires, blocking the Fast & Furious investigation, and dismissing the Black Panther default judgment; and the unilateral divestment, restructuring, and redistribution of property interests in the car/bank bailouts and mortgage cases.

    Yes, other Presidents have done similar things but none equal the scope and hubris of what Obama has done … and that’s what reminds me of the Caesars.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  32. Steve:

    True, but also very funny.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  33. EE of RedState:”The other night I was having dinner and Pat Cadell, Jimmy Carter’s pollster and a very honest liberal, came up to me. He said bluntly that if his side’s front runner had lost 3 of the first 8 elections and been swept out last Tuesday, by Wednesday the Democrats would have a new candidate in the race”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  34. Romney addresses CPAC:

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/live-stream-mitt-romney-cpac-speech-163639781.html

    Jim Talent now of Heritage and architect of the MO blitzkrieg feels Ben Bernanke’s pain. Arrows in the quiver embarrassment.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  35. Washington Times: “This race, after all, is about delegates, not about beauty contests,” he said, pointing to three Colorado counties where Mr. Paul lost the popular vote, but came away with more delegates to the eventual regional conventions than anyone else. “We are also seeing the same trends in Minnesota, Nevada, and Iowa, and in Missouri as well.”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  36. Aww and the Belgians just got a government:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/feb/10/hose-belgian-firefighters-soak-police

    There’s a bit of a line at Complaints.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  37. President Everyone-Gets-A-Trophy strikes again.

    Icy (c10370)

  38. JimPethokoukis: “Total Obama deficits 2009-2012 = $5.6 trillion (based on @CNBC reporting of new budget $)”

    Colonel Haiku (5c7e24)

  39. Say, I really don’t think the cavalry is coming:

    http://money.cnn.com/

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  40. By appointing a NEW class of executive officials?

    That’s just incorrect. Unfortunately, there were czars long before Obama.

    That Obama strives to be THE Czar I have no doubt.

    Amphipolis (b120ce)

  41. Why go back to ancient times? (Not that there is anything wrong with that – see my moniker.) How many French constitutions were there in the decades after the revolution? It’s hard to count them all. There are dozens of examples of constitutions being set aside gradually or precipitously, by slow degradation or by coup, since WWII. Indeed, this is the norm on this planet.

    Right, if you can keep it. Do we really need to pay attention to old laws? What have our schools taught since WWII? The bain of democracy has always been that the people would vote other people’s money into their pockets. Been there, done that, on to the next hurdle.

    We have the President we have been working toward for generations. He is popular, could win again. I don’t see people setting up barricades. The tea party was too little too late.

    We are becoming like the Russians who long to have their czars back. We hold our arms out and beg to be shackled, as exampled by the media. The responsibility of freedom has become onerous, so we vote to exchange citizen for peasant.

    Amphipolis (b120ce)

  42. Nero fiddled with his 9-iron while Rome burned.

    Icy (c10370)

  43. Were those Greek or Roman columns at the Denver convention?

    Icy (c10370)

  44. People have been freed from tyranny long enough to believe that true liberty can only be achieved by letting the government control their lives.

    Amphipolis (b120ce)

  45. Just as Julius Caesar demonstrated his disdain for the Senate by crossing the Rubicon against their orders, so President Obama first demonstrated his disdain for the Senate by appointing a new class of executive officials, honestly enough referred to as “czars,” without any approval by, or guidance from, the legislative branch.

    I wish people would stop saying things like this. It’s plainly untrue, and casts doubt on the true message that is being conveyed. “Czars” are not executive official, and they are very very far from new. Don’t pretend that Obama made them up, when every modern president has had them, and nobody has ever suggested there was anything wrong with them until this administration. The president has never needed or sought the approval or guidance of the legislature on what advisers he consults or employs, and it would be a breach of the separation of powers for the legislature to interfere in the matter.

    But he has now shown a quality clearly reserved to the Divine, that of overruling the petty gods of the people. This is what the HHS High Priestess Sebelius announced from on high recently. You are free to “exercise” your religious beliefs, just as long as you keep them to yourself. Whatever your deeply held religious convictions may be, when they try to get in the way of the will of Caesar, it is the will of Caesar that must prevail.

    That rubicon was crossed when the Mormons were forced to give up polygamy, and the Supreme Court nodded in approval, saying that the Free Exercise clause does not exempt anyone from laws of general application, no matter how they go against his conscience or religious beliefs. It’s far too late to complain now.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  46. And now my religious beliefs intrude, and I must bid you all farewell for the next 25 hours or so.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  47. “Now, multiple times in history our government has seen the need to amend the Constitution, to make adjustments where necessary, but has any President suggested that it was inherently “wrong” and should have been made different, not amended? ”

    Did he really call it “wrong”? If you’re talking about the quote I think you’re talking about (“break free from essential constraints”) then I don’t think he did.

    Now, just about anyone can look at some key amendments (and struggles required to get those in there) and tell you there was quite a bit wrong in the original Constitution, and yes, anyone who doesn’t see that should not be fit to be president.

    snaps (5cb04e)

  48. I thought Obama’s remarks were fair, until he added “flaw continues until today” or whatever at the end. That completely ignores that the Civil War amendments removed his main “flaw” in the original document. As for “the original Constitution,” it didn’t have the Bill of Rights, so … flawed.

    carlitos (49ef9f)

  49. Not sure what remarks we are talking about either, but I always thought of it in terms of the Constitution isn’t perfect, and it has a mechanism to address significant problems.

    What I recall seeing of Obama was that he disagreed with the fundamental basis, he wanted a Constitution that “spelled out what the government was to do for the people”, suggesting that he wanted the federal government to take power over things where power was to be left to the people or to the states; such as the power to tell a private health insurer what they must provide, hence what a subscriber or employer/provider of insurance must pay for.

    The great question is what is the limit of power. Can Obama order us all to buy Chevy Volts?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  50. “Snaps” at #49: so, are you “tifosa”? Or are you “imdw”?

    If not, please say so. If so, please contact Patterico and see about posting. Banned trolls should not play name games just to get past moderation or banning.

    Either way, let people know. Avoiding the question is a kind of answer, after all.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  51. Not sure what remarks we are talking about either,

    I’m pretty sure that the anonymous writer meant this interview, since he/she said “prior to the election:”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_xNyrzB0xI

    carlitos (49ef9f)

  52. “snaps” is in moderation until he can explain why he can post from IP’s several hundred miles apart within 30 minutes. More than once. Looks like some more research into IP spoofing/anonymizers might be in order. This was a bit unusual.

    I suspect JD is right (again) about who this really is. ;)

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  53. Stashiu3, I am still mystified why banned trolls do that. Weird beyond belief. There are only 86,400 seconds in one day. Why waste any of them on that kind of thing?

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  54. I think free speech is more important here than freedom of religion.

    I like Mr. Worthing’s analysis cause of how it acknowledges that our piteous little government’s offense in this matter is ecumenical in nature.

    Which it a lot is.

    happyfeet (a55ba0)

  55. Stashiu3, I am still mystified why banned trolls do that.

    Because they are not only fanatical, but dishonest. They’re afraid blogs like this make a difference and want to subvert it.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (a18ddc)

  56. Narcissistic Personality Disorder explains a lot of it. They have important information to share.

    carlitos (49ef9f)

  57. teh shape shifters can
    travel warp speed damn skippy
    do master’s bidding

    Colonel Haiku (a44b1d)

  58. Plus, they are douchenozzles what like domestic terrorists.

    JD (318f81)

  59. 56.I think free speech is more important here than freedom of religion.
    I like Mr. Worthing’s analysis cause of how it acknowledges that our piteous little government’s offense in this matter is ecumenical in nature.
    Which it a lot is. – Comment by happyfeet — 2/10/2012

    Perhaps free speech is more “ecumenical” in our society in that many have religious beliefs that seem “vanilla” enough they would never be threatened.

    But, there is the concept of the order of priorities, the “order of loves”. I am familiar with this as discussed by C.S. Lewis (as well as in the Bible), and/but have no idea if this is a common topic among other writers/thinkers, and if so in the same language/terminology. The basic idea is that if one values or loves things in the proper order, priorities are clear and not in conflict; but if one has values/loves in the wrong order, there will be internal conflict and confusion. For example, “living to eat”, literally followed, will look very different and harmful compared with “eating to live”.

    In terms of religious belief, I believe all monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, make loving/worshipping/obeying God the supreme priority. The freedom to speak is to be used in (and subservient to) the loving of God. One speaks, or not, in obedience to God; one does not obey God in order to speak.

    Perhaps, from a jurisprudence/tactical aspect, there may be reason to frame it as a freedom of speech issue. It is a freedom of conscience issue, which cannot be divorced from a freedom of religion issue.

    FWIW, as I was writing this I was listening to Hewitt, and he had a caller who identified himself as an “atheist with Buddhist leanings” who was in full opposition to Obama on this as a “freedom of conscience” issue. He viewed the threat to religious liberty as an equal threat to liberty to not believe as well.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  60. Oh, I am right. Of that there is no doubt ;-)

    JD (fda94d)

  61. Hi Willie the racist hilljack

    JD (fda94d)

  62. Stashiu–it’s legitimately possible, depending on the poster’s set up. If I log on, post something, go offline, go back online and post again, Earthlink will (potentially) show me as posting from places as far apart as Chicago and South Africa. It’s their proxyserver that does it with no input or control on my part, but as far as I know the IP address may change between sessions, but will not change in the middle of a session. And of course not knowing who “snaps” is, I have no idea whether any of that actually applies to him.

    JBS (ae6ecc)

  63. well if the Catholic church is newly attuned to the oppressiveness of the modern democratic party then that’s all to the good I guess Mr. Dr. MD

    but there’s a lot of oppressiveness in obamacare they’ve ignored a lot blithely

    And I think it’s important that everyone recognizes that whether you believe in contraception or not, the government shouldn’t be able to force you to be in a health plan what provides it.

    Just because the government defers to the church on this issue, doesn’t make what they’re doing right.

    It remains disturbingly wrong.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  64. doesn’t make what the government’s doing right I should say

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  65. when Commie whelp says
    “fundamentally transform”
    Devil in details

    Colonel Haiku (a44b1d)

  66. yup what obamacare needs is an exorcism

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  67. he shares his wet dream.

    Colonel Haiku (a44b1d)

  68. It’s Ron Paul’s pollster, check the figures.

    narciso (87e966)

  69. Everyone say hello to Willie the midget racist hilljack

    JD (fda94d)

  70. JD? Still?

    Simon Jester (59a515)

  71. Cowardly little harpist

    JD (fda94d)

  72. ____________________________________________

    Can someone with such a low opinion of the Constitution seriously pledge to defend it?

    For some reason, that question makes me want to ask: Is the Pope Catholic? Do birds fly? Is the sun hot?

    I guess since I have such a contemptuous view of Obama, symbolically encapsulated by his embracing Jeremiah Wright (or similar types) for almost 20 years, that to me it’s not a matter of just how God damned America will become due to the guy now in the White House. It’s merely a matter of the degree of its damnation. Actually, a society like this one, as it becomes increasingly flaky and leftwing, will probably follow in the footsteps of nations similar to Argentina or Venezuela, or Mexico, or Greece.

    Mark (411533)

  73. No, it’s not possible, some just can’t grasp that, and ascribe other motivations;

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2012/02/super-cool-obama-and-the-spectre-of-the-angry-black-man/252931/

    narciso (87e966)

  74. Toss the midg dwarf!

    Colonel Haiku (a44b1d)

  75. Just because the government defers to the church on this issue, doesn’t make what they’re doing right.
    It remains disturbingly wrong.
    – Comment by happyfeet

    Feets my friend, what are you talking about? What news source are you listening to? What headlines are stuck to your lenses?

    Obama and company didn’t defer anything, other than hot air that along with $5 will get you a latte at Starbuck’s.

    All Obama said was that instead of religious institutions needing to pay for it, the insurance companies had to provide it for “free”. All that means is that somehow the insurance companies are going to push numbers around a little to make it look like the employers with a religious objection aren’t paying for what their employees are getting “free”, but since there is nothing free that money is going to come from somewhere. the comment I heard was something like, “A change without a difference.”

    Any group that goes for this is really stupid or really looking for an excuse to get out of having a problem.

    Yes, many (not all) of the Catholic Bishops thought ObamaCare was good stuff, kind and fair, and that their own faithful Speaker Pelosi would never deceive them. Well, now they found out what was in the bill after it was signed, and as I heard one person say (edited), they had their “Neimueller” moment (first they came for the R wing fanatics, but since I wasn’t a R wing fanatic I said nothing, then they came for the Pro-Life Catholics, but si… WHAT?!?!?)

    This “allowance” doesn’t even qualify as slight of hand in the view of those serious about such things.
    Of course, some have said the smart-like-a-fox (SLAF?) Obama wants to stand this ground so all of these institutions will be forced to not offer health insurance, pay their fines, and send folks into ObamaCare.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  76. did you see that Jeffrey Zaslow died Mr. Jester?

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  77. oops my bad I was out and about all day and I heard some wench on National Soros Radio mourning Obama’s compromising nature so I just assumed he had done the right thing

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  78. Can someone with such a low opinion of the Constitution seriously pledge to defend it?
    For some reason, that question makes me want to ask: Is the Pope Catholic? Do birds fly? Is the sun hot. – Mark

    Mark, if you want the rhetorical answer to be “Yes”, you ask the question: Is the Pope Catholic? or DoeS the bear poop in the woods?
    If you want the rhetorical answer to be “No”, you ask, “Is the bear catholic?, or other permutations.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  79. someone said that the more Obama can get Team R to focus on social issues the more better chance Team R will either get saddled with weirdo Santorum or a bunch of disaffected social con Rs who won’t support the nominee

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  80. $2,800,000,000+ in free care.

    JD (318f81)

  81. Taking a dump on the 1st Amendment is not a social issue.

    JD (318f81)

  82. 82.oops my bad I was out and about all day and I heard some wench on National Soros Radio mourning Obama’s compromising nature so I just assumed he had done the right thing
    Comment by happyfeet —

    WHAT!?!?
    Sound the alarms, feets needs an intervention, not only was he listening to NPR, but he believed it!?!?

    Say it ain’t so, SAY IT AIN’T SO!!!

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  83. it was a hectic day I was in traffic I was tired I um

    yeah that was pretty dumb

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  84. As I understand it, Obama’s change in policy requires insurance companies provide free contraceptives … but surely some of these religious institutions and providers are self-insured. If so, then not only is Obama’s “accommodation” another way to buy off voters with other people’s money, it continues to make religious institutions support policies that go against their beliefs.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  85. DRJ – they can only remain self-insured until they make a change to their policy, at which point they must then come in compliance with the litany of mandates. Regardless, the $2,800,000,000+ of free will be anything but.

    JD (318f81)

  86. Oh, Mr. Feet, that makes me sad. You know how I felt about his work with Randy Pausch. I can’t tell you how many copies of the book with wrote with Randy Pausch I have given to seriously stressed out students.

    RIP.

    Simon Jester (61e066)

  87. yes I remember Mr. Jester I thought of you immediately I still mean to read it myself

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  88. Yes, that’s a shame, the only proper response to
    Soros Radio, is too laugh, unlike the prompted
    humor in ‘Wait Wait , Don’t Tell Me’

    narciso (87e966)

  89. There are two good things about buying several copies of the book, Mr. Feet.

    #1: it is a great reminder of what is really important for yourself (myself) and I always run into people who need it.

    #2: money from the book goes to Dr. Pausch’s widow and children.

    And I smile when I think that, before he passed away from pancreatic cancer, Dr. Pausch got to be in that last “Star Trek” movie as a walk on (he said “We have visual!”).

    My favorite bit? William Shatner, with whom he had worked before, sent Dr. Pausch a photo of his Kirk character, inscribed with “I don’t believe in the ‘no-win’ scenario.”

    Much, much missed, and now his coauthor passes in a car accident.

    Sorry for the off-topic. But Dr. Pausch’s “The Last Lecture” is a wonderful tonic for everyone, especially when a person feels low.

    Simon Jester (61e066)

  90. William Shatner is the epitome of a class act right after Laura Bush

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  91. My understanding,
    University of Notre Dame (for example) is not a church, whether or not it considers itself a religious institution.

    Under the “old” plan, if Notre Dame provides health insurance for their employees, they (Notre Dame) must provide a plan that includes free contraceptives, sterilization procedures, etc.

    Under the new plan, if Notre Dame provides health insurance for their employees, they (the health insurance company) must provide coverage that includes contraceptives, sterilization procedures, etc. free…

    See the difference??? Look hard, look real hard.

    In both cases the employees of Notre Dame will get free contraceptives, etc., in their health insurance policy, it’s just that in the new plan ‘Notre Dame will not be paying for it…”

    Ohhhkaaay. so, where does the money come from to pay for the “free” benefits the insurance company provides for employees of Notre Dame on behalf of the US govt and the insurance co? Is the insurance company going to take it out of its own assets/profits? Are non-religious companies and institutions going to like paying extra to cover N.D.’s contraceptives? Will there be some shuffling of figures in an accounting book to make it work out so the admin at N.D. can say to themselves they are being true to their mission?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  92. The Detroit Free Press has a nice article about Jeffrey Zaslow, although the last paragraph is bittersweet.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  93. everyday they’re shuffling

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  94. MD – you got it. Plus, it is free!!!!

    JD (318f81)

  95. I thought we had already established that “snaps” is Dimwit.

    All it takes is for Worthing to post one comment, and BOOM! there’s his remora!

    Icy (c10370)

  96. “Is the insurance company going to take it out of its own assets/profits?”

    MD in Philly – If they buy their insurance from Church Mutual Insurance Company in Wisconsin, the insurer might have the grace to eat the additional cost, but unfortunately Church Mutual does not write health insurance.

    Seems like President O’Blameless is back on the wacky tobacky.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  97. Romney’s embrace of insuring the minimum wage increases, currently at $7.25, was surprising for a candidate who insists he is a reliable conservative. It was major mistake on his part for three reasons.

    First, from an ideological standpoint, what was he thinking? Has he missed the decades long discussion among conservatives about the disastrous impact of the minimum wage? It has eliminated jobs – hundreds of thousands of them – for young persons on the low rungs of employment. The ill effects have been felt especially by African American youth.

    Not only that, but the minimum wage represents a government intrusion in the economy. Free market economists, most notably Thomas Sowell, have been making this point for years.

    Any self-identified conservative should be aware of this, even if the media has given it minimal coverage. And Romney’s support for jacking up the minimum wage annually only makes his apostasy worse.

    this hasn’t gotten enough attention

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  98. Hey gang,
    I’ve got a question.
    When the media is reporting how Obama has “taken a step back” or “compromised” or whatever language they use…
    Are they just reporting what they’re told without thinking?
    Are they too dumb to understand?
    Are they in on it and “just going along”?

    We could use an insider on the ol’ journolist thing to get info on this

    what do ya’ll think??

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  99. Catholics Split On Obama’s Birth Control Decision

    Some say it resolves the religious liberty issues; others say it’s smoke and mirrors.

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  100. Are they just reporting what they’re told without thinking?

    – What are the odds?

    Icy (c10370)

  101. During the French Resistance I’ll bet it was much easier to IED an SS roadster flying the colors and their black rimmed occupants than the Vichy who mainly wore the uniforms for the newsreels.

    Buck up, not every redneck city will be Homs.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  102. Run this guy in 2016 or whenever those elections are finally held:

    http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/full-text-gov-scott-walkers-remarks-cpac/370011

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  103. Uncle Bernie is becoming verry unkempt and the colonge is oppressive:

    http://hotair.com/archives/2012/02/10/surge-santorum-gains-13-points-nationally-after-tuesday-sweep-now-tied-with-romney/

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  104. 79 “Mr. Zaslow, the father of three daughters, was killed in a crash near the northern Michigan town of Elmira at 9 a.m. Friday, according to FOX 2 Detroit, where his wife, Sherry Margolis, is an TV anchor.

    Police said Mr. Zaslow lost control of his car and was hit by a semi-trailer truck on a snow-covered road. He had been in the area previously for a book-signing.”

    Ah, the things men do for love. Made two trips to the Eagan Airport in 18 hours yesterday. Am convinced hell will be a bitter ND wind running though the bones with a 101 fever.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  105. gary- I watched gov. Walker last night and was thinking can he be brokered.
    This man gets it.

    sickofrinos (44de53)

  106. 108. I was working in his town when he was finishing high school, followed him in State Assembly and as Milwaukee County administrator(had a home in Bay View during his campaign).

    Guys like Walker are the hope of the GOP, if they are to have any at all.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  107. Watching the candidates at CPAC is like watching, honey badger, the spitting cobra and the meerkat.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  108. Walker/West 2012 and beyond.

    sickofrinos (44de53)

  109. Can you imagine if there was a less skilled person at the reins;

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/story/2012-02-10/fast-furious/53037494/1

    narciso (87e966)

  110. Santorum on the minimum wage…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHT6SJd2KFg&feature=youtu.be

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  111. minimum schminimum wage… wake up, friends… stop playing into Obama and the Democrats playbook. Stress his economic, domestic and foreign policy failures.

    No more about social issues. No more attacking our own.

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  112. That is rich.

    JD (318f81)

  113. It should be all about competency and our refusal to let wedge issues be used against us.

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  114. Come on, they write this with a straight face, or something;

    http://www.tnr.com/article/politics/100595/obama-escape-artist-excerpt?page=0,0

    narciso (87e966)

  115. Who has the best chance to unseat Obama? Who is in a better position to attract so-called moderates and independents? Who can attract them to core Republican principles by highlighting Obama’s gross intrusion into our personal lives, his rampant, bald-faced crony capitalism and incompetence vis-a-vis our economy and his rough-shod alienation of our friends and allies?

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  116. ____________________________________________

    Mark, if you want the rhetorical answer to be “Yes”, you ask the question: Is the Pope Catholic? or DoeS the bear poop in the woods?

    MD, since it’s a given that President “Goddamn America” will have no qualms about trashing the Constitution, and since a “no” answer is therefore ridiculously obvious to a question about whether he’d try to avoid doing exactly that, I guess a more fitting corollary would be “is the Pope Jewish?”

    Mark (411533)

  117. Barack Obama has been wholly inadequate as POTUS and it’s time we wiped that smirk off of his face.

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  118. __________________________________________

    Obama would not make a pimple on Caesar’s behind, let alone Augustus’s. We might compare him to Vespasian, big maybe.

    Perhaps this is a bit of an overstatement, but the guy now in the White House seems more like a Caligula to me. Or I should say that certainly some of the most immoral, amoral, unprincipled and peculiarly ruthless, diabolical types of people (eg, friends of or enablers to Mao, Stalin, Castro, Hugo Chavez) throughout American society don’t mind someone like President “Goddamn America” as their leader.

    Mark (411533)

  119. Today’s LA Times seems to act like Obama brilliantly let the Bishops win on the issue by eliminating the required abortion coverage by Catholic employers.

    Unfortunately the LA Times is short sighted. Obama will merely require the insurance companies to offer it.

    So, if you have a basic understanding of how insurance works, will the insurance companies eat this cost or pass it on to the entire pool of policy holders?

    Stupid question. And stupid for the LA Times to pretend ignore the obvious.

    AZ Bob (1c9631)

  120. “Unfortunately the LA Times is short sighted. Obama will merely require the insurance companies to offer it.”

    AZ Bob – Since liberals see constitutional rights to abortion and contraception in our founding documents, Powerline conveniently points out this morning there is an explicit right to gun ownership provided in the constitution. What are the odds of Obama ordering the government or an insurance company or an employer to pay for the cost of my gun?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  121. Stupid question. And stupid for the LA Times to pretend ignore the obvious.

    Comment by AZ Bob

    It’s what they are best at…

    Colonel Haiku (469872)

  122. Obama would not make a pimple on Caesar’s behind, let alone Augustus’s. We might compare him to Vespasian, big maybe.

    Perhaps this is a bit of an overstatement, but the guy now in the White House seems more like a Caligula to me.

    It’s an insult to Vespasian’s memory to compare him to Obama. He had proved to be an able provincial governor. Vespasian also had a distinguished military record leading troops in the field, primarily in Britain and Judea.

    He had earned the respect of his troops as well as other officers. They declared him emperor, as they couldn’t stomach the thought of Vitellius as emperor. He had no military accomplishments, and it always seemed he advanced himself or just got along by sucking up to the emperor or even his own troops (when he was given command of an army which he had no business commanding).

    It just seems wrong comparing a man who had a years-long record of serious accomplishments before advancing to the top position to Obama.

    I haven’t seen this in any other posts, but it has a bearing on the inexact comparison between Obama and Caesar. The Roman Republic had been breaking down for nearly a century before Caesar crossed the Rubicon (although I must admit, that part aptly describes the situation). This breakdown in civil society led to the first civil war between Marius and Sulla in the 80s BC. That didn’t settle the different Senatorial factions’ hash, though. Things got so bad that after Spartacus’ revolt in the 70s the patricians noted just how effective these gladiators had been. So they established “gladitorial schools” of their own in Rome. Romans couldn’t keep private armies but gladiators were cool. But most of these men weren’t trained for the arena (to provide cover, some were) but how to slit throats and break the skulls of rivals. After Cataline’s attempted coup in 63 BC, in which he intended to use his “gladiators” to kill half the Senate, things broke down even further to the point where the Senators dropped the pretense that these men were gladiators at all and openly kept them as private armies of armed slaves used for political thuggery. That’s the sort of Rome Caesar marched against in 49 BC.

    Getting back to Obama, one of the keys to understanding his “render under Caesar” authoritarian approach to governance is Rev. Wright. This is the important aspect of his decades long relationship, not merely Wright’s inflammatory language. Liberation theology is a perversion of Christianity; Pope John Paul II declared it a heresy. It takes Christianity and perverts it into merely a quasi-religious justification for political ends. It isn’t a religion in the sense that it serves God’s interests, but only the openly political interests of those who invent the theology. And it is an invention; I believe the founder of Black Liberation Theology, a man named Cone, said that if Christ couldn’t serve black interests then they would have invented one that could.

    JPII was talking about Marxist Liberation Theology when he declared it a heresy, although his conclusions apply equally to Black Liberation theology, because it reduces Christ the Savior of Souls to Jesus the subversive from Nazareth.

    This is why Obama, the subversive from Chicago, declares some parts of the Bible “obscure” compared to the other parts that serve his interests. This is also why Jesse Jackson Jr. said when Obama was nominated that “another chapter could be added to chronicle its significance.” For Black Liberation Theologians, that’s the purpose of the Bible; to serve their political goals.

    This is why Obama said at the National Prayer Breakfast that his policies coincide with his beliefs as a “Christian.” Higher taxes is the culmination of Christ’s teaching: “but for me as a Christian it also coincides with Jesus’ teaching that for whom much is given much shall be required.” When Jesus said much would be required he meant by God. Obama thinks he was talking about Caesar, the government of the day and the leadership of which he has inherited. Obama, the messiah from Cook County, thinks the Bible means he can require much from those who have been given much.

    To make it clear I don’t believe he knows he was attending a church practicing a heresy and not Christianity. Hence his surprise when the Catholic Church reacted so strongly against his policies. He thought they, too, worshiped at the altar of big government. In a way they do; Father Pfleger hasn’t been removed as pastor of St. Sabina Parish, and he’s just as heretical as Wright.

    The guy who grew up going to a Muslim school in Indonesia and who later only joined a church in Chicago because, he was advised, it would help his community organizing, seems genuinely confused that other denominations don’t always march in lockstep with Wright. And let’s face it; if he believes that he’s been given a lot of reinforcement by the major denominations who often drop the “inconvenient” theological elements to become more “hip” and “relevant.”

    Steve (20a23f)

  123. for clarity, the third sentence in my second para that begins with “He had no…” is referring to Vitellius.

    My fourth paragraph isn’t clear. I intended it to mean that the civil war between Marius and Sulla never really ended. It continued at a low level between senatorial factions in the in-between decades before Julius Caesar turned it back into a hot war. Which is another reason why, besides the fact that it wasn’t until Caesar Augustus that one man had unlimited power, that the historical comparison is inexact.

    James H. Cone did have to invent a Jesus that supported his political ends and racist views. I didn’t mean to imply that he would have had to invent a Jesus if the Biblical Jesus already served his needs. Christ wasn’t a Black Panther, so Cone invented one that was, then reverse engineered the words of the Bible to make him appear legitimate.

    I think that’s all. Sorry for the wall of text. I should have posted these thoughts in smaller bites instead of sitting on the sidelines for 100 or so comments.

    Steve (20a23f)

  124. Carsar’s act of crossing the Rubicon was nothing less than the blatant initiation of a coup d’etat. He crossed the boundary river into Roman territory armed and at the head of his legions, an act of war and one absolutely forbidden. That the Senate later acquiesced and voted him honors (under threats of violence) doesn’t change the facts.

    One could say the same of the “Glorious Revolution” of 1688 of which our founding fathers were such ardent supporters even 100 years later. If you look at the cold facts, William of Orange invaded England with an army, the king and all his supporters were either killed or fled, and then he summoned Parliament to validate what he had done and offer him and Mary the throne. Nobody can claim that Parliament’s vote was free or fair. But this is the birth and foundation of our own freedom. Sometimes history isn’t so pretty when you look at it closely.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  125. If the economy were growing and more folks working you’d kinda think IRS withholding would be rising, not down $300 Million over 2011.

    Don’t bother us with facts.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  126. The handling of these follows the usual scenario for virtually everything with this administration. It relabels the situation, like no “War on Terror” it’s “overseas contingency operations” or it’s not massive debt, it’s an investment in the future. In this case, it’s not the Church paying, it’s some magical mystery benefactor.

    Bobby Baker (d1c681)

  127. All it takes is for Worthing to post one comment, and BOOM! there’s his remora!

    I thought remoras were good things to have, like ibises and crocodiles.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  128. Perhaps this is a bit of an overstatement, but the guy now in the White House seems more like a Caligula to me.

    Sounds about right.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  129. Milhouse, still waiting for your explanation of how my comments were made in bad faith. It seems there has been a sea change in the tone of most of your comments, so perhaps the message got through. I would still like an explanation or an apology. I may be wrong sometimes, but I don’t comment in bad faith. I think enough time has passed that expecting you to answer without this request would be unreasonable.

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  130. Carsar’s act of crossing the Rubicon was nothing less than the blatant initiation of a coup d’etat. He crossed the boundary river into Roman territory armed and at the head of his legions, an act of war and one absolutely forbidden. That the Senate later acquiesced and voted him honors (under threats of violence) doesn’t change the facts.

    … Sometimes history isn’t so pretty when you look at it closely.

    True, Milhouse, but much of the above isn’t history. The Senate had discarded constitutionality while Caesar contemplated hostilities with Rome. The Senate had overthrown the rule of law. It’s hard to have a coup d’etat against an illegitimate government. The fact that the Senate had abandoned its claim to legitimacy is the reason Caesar refused to return to Rome as a private citizen when ordered (which was before his proconsular governorship had expired, by the way). He’d have been at the mercy of prosecution by a lawless out-of-control Senate and the physical threat of Pompey’s legions. The Senate shared much of the blame for causing the civil war, maybe as much as Caesar.

    Also, most of the Senate fled Italy with Pompey as Caesar advanced south. When Caesar went to Rome upon Pompey’s escape and had himself declared temporary dictator, and later the same year when he was declared Consul, he didn’t need to threaten the Senate with violence nor did they fear it. The only Senators remaining in Rome either belonged to the faction that supported him before he crossed the Rubicon or had been appointed by him personally to fill the positions of the Senators who abandoned Italy along with Pompey. Later, after Caesar pardoned Pompey’s Senators they may have acted under duress. I suppose the fact they assassinated Caesar after declaring him dictator for life indicates they at least may have felt that way. But it’s my impression that they didn’t so much fear violence from Caesar as the idea he’d declare himself king and establish a hereditary monarchy.

    Whether that pretties things up or make them uglier I don’t know.

    Steve (20a23f)

  131. I thought remoras were good things to have, like ibises and crocodiles.

    – Aaron Worthing’s remora craps all over its host.

    Icy (c9fff2)

  132. Milhouse, still waiting for your explanation of how my comments were made in bad faith.

    It’s self evident from your comments themselves. No honest person could have made them. Your having made them proves that you are a dishonest person. I have never claimed to be “expert in all conversational topics” or that I “should be the undisputed authority on everything under the sun”, and you damn well knew it when you wrote that. That’s the definition of bad faith.

    There are many topics on which I am ignorant; I generally stay away from opining on those topics. But I am an expert on some topics, and I have every right to expect that those who prate foolishness on those topics back their words up with proof, not unsupported assertion.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  133. So, the tongue-in-cheek winkyface ( ;) ) was not clue enough that those comments were unserious, excepting to illustrate how you usually present yourself? Although I would have expected my later comment to make it clear, even to someone so literal. You instead chose to reply with:

    And F you too.
    Comment by Milhouse — 1/25/2012 @ 7:13 am

    when I said nothing of the sort. Strangely unliteral at that moment. Interesting.

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  134. A winkyface doesn’t change what was written. It’s like being as offensive as you can be and then saying “no offense”, as if that meant anything. In any case, the winkyface did not come after that claim but after your later sarcastic suggestion that you would delete all your bookmarks and just read my blog to inform yourself on all matters. There was no indication that it was meant to include the earlier comments, and I didn’t read it that way.

    As for your later comment, it was just a long-winded way of saying “F you”, so I returned the sentiment.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  135. In any case, the winkyface did not come after that claim but after your later sarcastic [so you can recognize sarcasm? I was wondering.] suggestion that you would delete all your bookmarks and just read my blog to inform yourself on all matters. There was no indication that it was meant to include the earlier comments, and I didn’t read it that way.

    Now you’re just lying. The winkyface was in the comment I linked (and that you omitted when you quoted it). It was my first comment (besides the admin one) in the thread.

    As for your later comment, it was just a long-winded way of saying “F you”, so I returned the sentiment.
    Comment by Milhouse — 2/11/2012 @ 11:44 pm

    It’s funny how you can read the intent of my comment and be absolutely assured that you’re accurate. (You weren’t)
    Others reading intent into your comments are always wrong, unless they agree with you. (They aren’t)

    Which has been my point from the beginning.

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  136. The winkyface in the original comment referred to the entire comment, as everybody else seemed to understand if you read the rest of the comments. I don’t generally leave a smiley after every bit of hyperbole when I’m being sarcastic. So, by your reasoning you weren’t lying, just being obtuse.

    I apologize for saying you lied when you were merely mistaken. The rest stands as written.

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  137. Now you’re just lying.

    No, what I wrote was the exact truth. Here’s the comment and everyone can see that my description of the winkyface’s location is the exact truth, and in denying it you are a bald-faced liar.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  138. The winkyface in the original comment referred to the entire comment, as everybody else seemed to understand if you read the rest of the comments

    On the contrary, other people seemed to take it seriously. In any event, sticking a winkyface after a dishonest attack doesn’t cancel it, it’s just like saying “no offense”.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  139. … and in denying it you are a bald-faced liar.
    Comment by Milhouse — 2/12/2012 @ 12:32 a

    No, I was mistaken on that one point and realized it, hence the apology which you ignored after clearly seeing it. And the comment was not “a dishonest attack”. It was descriptive of how you come across. An honest description taken to the extreme that is probably shared by nearly everyone here. You’re arrogant and dismissive, along with being disagreeable and insulting for little discernible reason other than needing to be accepted as an authority on everything you “choose” to opine upon.

    Good luck with that. I haven’t been dishonest with you at all. Not once. Until you can acknowledge that, we’re done.

    Enjoy your day (sincerely, not an F you, I would prefer everyone enjoy their day… just in case you wanted to read something into it that isn’t there. Again.)

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  140. No, I was mistaken on that one point and realized it, hence the apology which you ignored after clearly seeing it.

    I replied before seeing it. After seeing it I thought of replying to that, until I realised that if you really regretted your mistake you could easily have edited it out and nobody would see it in the first place. Or crossed it out, if you wanted to leave a trail. Leaving it up and posting an apology later is fine for an ordinary commenter who has no other choice, not for someone with the power to edit. It’s like newspapers running little corrections at the bottom of page 2.

    And you still don’t get that I actually do know something about some things, and the reason I’m not often wrong when I comment is not because I’m this huge expert on everything but because I try not to comment authoritatively on subjects I don’t know about. If I don’t know that what I’m saying it true, I hedge it with “I think” or “I was under the vague impression”, or “I heard somewhere”, etc. So when I do make unqualified statements of fact, it’s usually because I know what I’m talking about. If someone think I’m wrong in such a case, they need to cite sources, because their unsupported opinion of how things ought to be is not a match for my knowledge of how that tiny particular thing is.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  141. Milhouse doubles down. Who woulda thunk it.

    Get on that syphilitic camel and ride, Sparky!

    Colonel Haiku (d867e1)

  142. You’re one to talk, Colonel.

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  143. Meh… your shpilkes is like buttah.

    Colonel Haiku (d867e1)

  144. My needles?

    Milhouse (9a4c23)

  145. “But I am an expert on some topics, and I have every right to expect that those who prate foolishness on those topics back their words up with proof, not unsupported assertion.”

    I must have missed the memo on this subject.

    Milhouse – Can you please provide a list of those topics on which you believe you are a qualified expert and believe mere mortals should be forced to rely on your unsupported assertions rather than asking you to support them as any other commenter?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  146. I replied before seeing it. After seeing it I thought of replying to that, until I realised that if you really regretted your mistake you could easily have edited it out and nobody would see it in the first place. Or crossed it out, if you wanted to leave a trail. Leaving it up and posting an apology later is fine for an ordinary commenter who has no other choice, not for someone with the power to edit.
    Comment by Milhouse — 2/12/2012 @ 10:47 am

    You did reply after seeing it (you referenced the beginning of the comment containing the apology) and I find it interesting that your rationale for not acknowledging the apology criticizes that I own my comments and do not edit them after the fact. By your reasoning, I could edit every comment I make and never be wrong or need to apologize for making an error. You apparently don’t see a problem with that. I do. Our standards clearly differ and I leave it as an exercise for the student to decide which is more honest.

    It’s also interesting how I’ve granted you commenting in good faith whenever possible, even to the point of immediately accepting my own error. You have failed to do this in every single comment towards me. It’s almost eerie when I look back at “… you assume others are either dishonest or stupid unless they accept your position.” One of us is blithely unaware of our own flaws. Maybe the exercise is a two-part problem? Depends on how much insight you care to gain.

    (I know I said we’re done, but I think this tied things together too nicely to resist.)

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  147. Milhouse, there has to be some part of you that can read post #143 and recognize how it comes across as arrogant and sounding superior.

    Icy (e11b5b)

  148. “the reason I’m not often wrong when I comment”

    Milhouse – Correction. It is not a matter of you not often being wrong when you comment, you hardly ever admit you are wrong when you comment. You typically flee threads and sulk, not acknowledging your errors. There is a major difference.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  149. I flee threads? Eventually threads fall back to the second or third page and I stop checking them for updates, but I don’t flee them.

    Milhouse (862bfe)

  150. Icy, on the contrary, your comment implies that there is nothing on which I have any definite knowledge, nothing on which I can teach others rather than learning from them as I do on most subjects. If you think I’m wrong in any comment in which I make a definite and unqualified statement of fact, feel free to point it out and give evidence that I’m wrong. I’ll be grateful for the correction. But merely saying that you think I’m wrong won’t usually convince me, because when I make unqualified statements they’re based on what I believe to be solid knowlege. Sometimes that turns out not to be the case; either I misremembered my source, or my source turns out to have been wrong. But not often, because usually my sources turn out to be at least as good as those offered in opposition, if not better. However, I repeat that I am not claiming to know more, in total, than anyone else; I avoid being wrong more often only by refraining from making definite statements when I’m not sure.

    Milhouse (862bfe)

  151. If no one will be able to limit his power, the comparison to Caesar will be complete.

    Sure, but we know what ultimately happened to Caesar, don’t we?

    Benito Mussolini compared himself to Caesar too. And he ended his days hanging by his heels from a gas station girder.

    There are lessons to be learned….

    MarkJ (42fe5b)

  152. “Milhouse, there has to be some part of you that can read post #143 and recognize how it comes across as arrogant and sounding superior.”

    Icy – You must be mistaken:

    “It’s not my fault that there are some very stupid people here who insist on challenging me.
    Comment by Milhouse — 9/10/2011 @ 10:30 pm”

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  153. I must register my offense and complaint with the management that millhouse has not only accused stashiu of being a ‘bald-face liar’ but also refused to acknowledge and accept stashiu’s very reasonable explanation and apology. Most here have been insulted by the insufferable millhouse and we merrily go on our way because it’s just nonsense, however, publicly accusing an honorable man of being a liar should be unacceptable.

    Since when did having to be right trump all else?

    Dana (4eca6e)

  154. “Great Hera!” cried Wonder Woman, reaching for her golden lasso.

    happyfeet (a55ba0)

  155. Thread flea… errr!

    Colonel Haiku (9f9156)

  156. I was struck by Dana’s comment at #156. I have read and commented at Patrick Frey’s blog for a number of years now. Personally, I get irritable become of the antics of rude people, or people who insult or snark too much for my taste. It’s a failing of mine.

    There are several people who post here whom I *always* pay attention to, whether or not I agree with them. In fact, I pay extra attention when I do not agree with them, because of the quality of their comments, their lack of snark, and their demeanor as posters. Stashiu3 is one of them, of course, with the additional bona fides of policing the comments section for bizarre or nasty-minded serial trolls and even less savory individuals.

    I would also add to that list of invaluable posters Dana, DRJ, no one you know, aphrael, MD in Philly, Machinist, SPQR, daleyrocks, and a number of others. But more to the point, I have very seldom (never?) seen Dana react quite as strongly as she did above.

    I too reacted to any besmirching of Stashiu3, but I felt that I might be overreacting. Dana—far more civil, positive, and equitable in temper than yours truly—and her comment suggest my first reaction might have been spot on.

    The comments about Stashiu3 were unacceptable in my opinion. I doubt he cares (let’s face it, he has seen far, far worse), but I for one think he brings a great deal more to this comments section than the other individual.

    It’s not my electronic living room, but I still wanted to give my reaction.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  157. In judging good will or not, I usually take record into account. There is nothing in Stashiu3′s record that I can recall appeared to be said in “bad faith” on other occasions.

    In times past I thought there were usually worthwhile things to learn in reading Milhouse’s comments, but I came to realize, and stated so at the time, that trying to engage in dialogue is typically fruitless.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  158. Simon – I agree that the vehemence of Dana’s comment was unusual for her. Good.

    I grew up with a lot of people very much like Milhouse with their self-perceived intellectual superiority, which was really more just arrogance and attempted bullying. Always certain and sometimes right.

    I get amused by his transitions from hyperliteralism when it suits his purpose to saying his words were only intended as vague generalities when he is forced to back off arguments. The intellectual inconsistency of his bizarre conception of sovereign nations and their ability or rights to control the passage of goods or people across their borders, statutory rape, that people should be free to pick and choose which laws they obey, and religious bigotry, paint a picture of a very disturbed individual, at least to my thinking.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  159. Honestly, daley, I think that so much online is what I call “windshield bravado.” You know, a mild mannered person is driving, and gets cut off on the freeway. The mild mannered person shrieks and carries on, because the windshield of his or her car is magic, and protects them from actually interacting, face to face, with the other person. This usually results in a form of graceless bravado that is most unlike the person in, well, person.

    Who knows?

    What I do know is the value of some commenters. And it is good to see those individuals defended, at least from my point of view.

    As for certitude, I’m with Socrates. There are none of us who “know it all,” or anything close. Certitude too often turns into some kind of ego-driven act that, again, results in uncivil behavior….of the safe, online variety.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  160. Besides, Simon, those who think they know it all are very annoying to us who do. ;-)

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  161. MD, the three most important words in science are “I don’t know.”

    And I see scientists, even very famous ones, who get their ego all tied up in that problem.

    I would argue that this is true everywhere, and good Lord above, it is true in politics.

    Like the saying goes, it’s the things you think are true, that are not so, that get you into trouble. I put that inelegantly, because I can’t find the original quotation. But it is apt.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  162. “Honestly, daley, I think that so much online is what I call “windshield bravado.” You know, a mild mannered person is driving, and gets cut off on the freeway. The mild mannered person shrieks and carries on, because the windshield of his or her car is magic, and protects them from actually interacting, face to face, with the other person.”

    Simon – Knowing the environment in which you work, I believe computers, email, the internet, and lower cost phone service have definitely degraded the communication skills of Americans.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  163. Simon – I guess that comment pegs me as an old fart.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  164. Simon,
    Be it science, medicine, philosophy, or whatever,
    the people I have had the most confidence in always underplayed their certainty

    no daley, that just pegs you as an astute observer

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  165. A nice version of Socrates’ world view on this kind of thing.

    http://www.pbs.org/empires/thegreeks/characters/socrates_p4.html

    Good call, MD. And daley, I think that we all get into horrible trouble by “bumper stickerizing” our opinions (or “twitterfy,” nowadays). It’s very, very difficult to fit complicated ideas—from politics or art or science—onto a bumper sticker, or in 142 characters.

    But politicians love it when we are all simple minded. And that is nonpartisan in nature!

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  166. Yes, and Alcibiades, who I think may have gotten maybe too harsh a bad rap by Thucydides, was one
    who always got the wrong answers.

    narciso (87e966)

  167. when i thought i knew
    enough along came Life to
    knee-cap my dumb ass

    Colonel Haiku (252f3a)

  168. look deep in dog’s eyes
    pain and suffering… squirrel!
    doh biden’s Elba

    Colonel Haiku (252f3a)

  169. the Perry campaign was a lot like the second half of Flowers for Algernon

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  170. I’m not sure I want to ban Milhouse. But I can confidently say that anyone who accuses Stashiu of bad faith or lying is demonstrating horribly flawed judgment.

    Milhouse seems to think that he is always correct when he comments. Yet when he comments on Stashiu’s character he is dead wrong.

    Dead wrong.

    Patterico (733273)

  171. Well, you guys above are entitled to your opinions but IMO are being unfair to Milhouse.

    What would be more fair IMO is for him to get treated with the same courtesies that were extended to Levi, and to The Emperor, when they saw fit to deem others as lacking in integrity when there was no evidence of same.

    Have been watching these “discussions” with Milhouse (and others who hurl “dishonest” and “liar” and “bad faith” at the drop of a hat, because they’re angry and not because they think someone actually, you know, lied. (That someone else could have another POV is apparently not a possibility.)

    Getting called misled, or mistaken, or even stupid, is nowhere in the same universe as getting called lacking in good faith, or dishonest. You’d better have unimpeachable evidence before accusing someone of that.

    Mot my blog so this is just my two cents.

    But Milhouse, you’ve said you admit when you’re wrong. I submit you’re completely wrong about Stashiu and that you ought to (since you don’t flee threads you’ll see this) have the integrity, and the honor, to apologize.

    no one you know (577ce5)

  172. The ironic part, NOYK, is that Milhouse’s response (if he makes any response) to your last two sentences will make you rethink your first.

    Care to wager on it?

    And I write that with what I hope you know is my long standing and deeply felt respect for you and your opinions.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  173. Patterico, I agree. And I would submit that Stashiu3′s comment that he carefully rethinks things before he submits them is one of the best proofs.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  174. The ironic part, NOYK, is that Milhouse’s response (if he makes any response) to your last two sentences will make you rethink your first.

    Care to wager on it?

    And I write that with what I hope you know is my long standing and deeply felt respect for you and your opinions.

    Comment by Simon Jester — 2/12/2012 @ 8:21 pm

    Dittoes for you and your opinions, Simon. But what I meant in my first sentence was that other posters have been tossed out for calling posters who consistently post with integrity, liars, and that it’s “unfair” not to do the same to Milhouse.

    Maybe am a bit better at snark when I’m on the sockpuppet threads I guess. :)

    no one you know (577ce5)

  175. Or perhaps I am more than a little tone deaf, ma’am.

    Simon Jester (ec6cd3)

  176. I predict a late night wall of text.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  177. MD, the three most important words in science are “I don’t know.”

    Very true, Simon.

    Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.

    Richard P. Feynman, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate in Physics 1965, and Renaissance Man.

    Steve (20a23f)

  178. I have a bias. Stashiu put up with my Polish jokes. More than a little. That’s f#$%^& character and a sense of humor. And he has been a mainstay here. So ;) winky to Milhouse from me.

    nk (3d837f)

  179. I can also testify to the strength of Stashiu’s character – particularly as regards his ability to admit that he’s wrong, which seems to be the thing at issue here. One of my clearest memories of my early days on this blog (when I was an acidic, misguided, mindlessly combative little b*stard) involves being on the verge of an argument with Stash, instantly defused when he admitted that he’d misread one of my comments.

    I remember it so clearly because it was one of the things that made me realize how productive good-faith conversation can be; it was a formative moment, one of several that helped me to (usually) change my sh*tty attitude toward political discourse and people that disagreed with me.

    Leviticus (870be5)

  180. poor old johnnie ray sounded sad upon the radio he moved a million hearts in mono

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  181. But what I meant in my first sentence was that other posters have been tossed out for calling posters who consistently post with integrity, liars, and that it’s “unfair” not to do the same to Milhouse.

    He’s being given a chance to reconsider.

    Patterico (13e9ba)

  182. We may need our emoters:

    ‘”Enough is enough!” said 89-year-old Manolis Glezos, one of country’s most famous leftists. “They have no idea what an uprising by the Greek people means. And the Greek people, regardless of ideology, have risen.” Glezos is a national hero for sneaking up the Acropolis at night in 1941 and tearing down a Nazi flag from under the noses of the German occupiers, raising the morale of Athens residents.’

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  183. This is known as prepping the battlefield

    legalinsurrection.com/2012/02/remember-when-no-one-understood-why-abc-asked-about-contraception-at-the-nh-republican-debate/?utm_source=twitterfeed&,utm_medium=twitter&,utm_campaign=Feed%3A+LegalInsurrection+(Le·gal+In·sur·rec·tion)

    narciso (87e966)

  184. Gary #187,

    Yeah, Glezos had torn down the Nazi flag after my uncle had, five years earlier, machine-gunned down three hundred Mussolini soldiers in Albanian and, being saluted, by the Germans, on the
    Yugoslavian front, for his courage.

    F#$% these Greeks who want to keep on living on their credit cards and the work of others. They’re the reason my parents left our beautiful home and lands to come to a factory town (which no longer is).

    nk (3d837f)

  185. Poor King Zog I.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  186. 189, 190. Wiki:

    “In Durrës, a force of only 360 Albanians, mostly gendarmes and townspeople, led by Abaz Kupi, the commander of the gendarmerie in Durrës, and Mujo Ulqinaku, a marine official, tried to halt the Italian advance.[9] Armed with small arms and three machine guns, they succeeded in keeping the Italians at bay for several hours until a large number of small tanks disembarked from the Italian ships. After that, resistance diminished and within five hours Italy had captured the city.[10]

    By 1:30 pm on the first day, all Albanian ports were in Italian hands. The same day King Zog, his wife, Queen Geraldine Apponyi, and their infant son Leka fled for Greece, taking with them part of the gold reserves of the Albanian Central Bank. On hearing the news, an angry mob attacked the prisons, liberated the prisoners and sacked the King’s residence. At 9:30 am on April 8, Italian troops entered Tirana and quickly captured all government buildings.”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  187. 189. The plan for Greek salvation, approved prior to printing, has 81% of the funding going to banks.

    Not certain where the politicians get paid, from the bulk or the remainder.

    But, in any case, Greek GDP is contracting year-to-date at 7% where it needs to grow at 9% for the ‘plan’ to work.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  188. Outside the US this is called news:

    From Reuters: “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel’s arch-foe Iran “stands behind” bombers who targeted Israeli embassy cars in India and Georgia on Monday. Netanyahu linked the incidents to reports of foiled attacks in Thailand and Azerbaijan last month for which, he said, Iran and its Lebanese guerrilla “proxy” Hezbollah were responsible.”Iran, which stands behind these attacks, is the largest exporter of terror in the world,” Netanyahu said, addressing his Likud party faction in parliament.”

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  189. Ruh, roh, when you’ve lost Frum have you lost the target population?:

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/13/opinion/frum-romney-moves/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

    Bbbut Dave, he’s a politician running for office. Have a care, sheesh.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  190. They keep telling us the stiff is popular with Indies:

    http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/2012/02/santorum-moves-ahead-in-michigan.html

    If he craters MI and the Bigs don’t replace him you know their real interest isn’t in winning.

    gary gulrud (d88477)

  191. But he’s a ‘severe conservative’, first you don’t say that phrase, second, you don’t say it about your self.

    narciso (87e966)

  192. Leviticus:

    I remember it so clearly because it was one of the things that made me realize how productive good-faith conversation can be; …

    Well said. I’ve had similar moments here and it’s what keeps me coming back. I’ve especially learned from Stashiu, and I admire and like him more than I can say.

    Milhouse, you can disregard my comment because of my friendship for Stashiu, but I hope you will reconsider. I understand how you feel because I hate to admit that I might be wrong. It’s hard and humbling. But I’d hate it even more if people thought I was too foolish or proud to admit I’m wrong.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  193. Just so nobody says I’m running away from threads, I’m posting a short note to say that I’ve been busy this week, and my cable at home is down so my internet access is spotty and I haven’t had time for blogs. I’ll get back when I can.

    Milhouse (d7842d)

  194. I was just about to say it looked like Milhouse ran away from the thread. Then I hit the last comment. Heh.

    Seriously, Milhouse has had some smart stuff in the past. But I do want to see a response to this, and I hope it is a response that does him proud.

    Patterico (13e9ba)

  195. I appreciate the kind words and will continue doing my best to deserve them. I fall short at times and occasionally hold grudges far too long, but I do my best to comment honestly and not let embarrassment keep me from admitting my mistakes.

    Milhouse may very well be expert in the areas he believes himself to be, I wouldn’t know. Him proclaiming it on the internet, then insisting that others accept it based on those claims to the point of being insulting and otherwise rude, struck me as unhelpful to the discussions here. I tried to point that out in a snarky way rather than be a scold. Rather than take a hint, Milhouse decided to take offense. Turning the focus on my supposed lack of good faith was probably not the wisest course of action.

    The funniest thing is, he criticized me for not using admin privileges to alter my comments after-the-fact. If I was as lacking in honor as he imagines, why wouldn’t I just edit HIS comments? First, because I believe it to be wrong. Second, because that kind of behavior always comes out and will ruin reputations. And finally, Patterico trusts me to act rightly and I would never intentionally do anything to disappoint him.

    Stashiu3 (601b7d)

  196. Him proclaiming it on the internet, then insisting that others accept it based on those claims to the point of being insulting and otherwise rude, struck me as unhelpful to the discussions here.

    I agree with this. I often like Milhouse’s arguments and find it annoying how a few people will constantly insult him (I’m not referring to Stashiu and I would ordinarily think that’s obvious). I think Milhouse’s tone has made him an easy target.

    He should present the basis for his comments clearly, instead of with a tone of superiority. I’ve noticed that when he does this, he actually is often right, even when arguing against a large number of folks who insist he isn’t. If he presented his arguments with his basis first, I think that would work better.

    Nobody’s perfect though. This blog’s comment sections have been quite bad throughout the primary. There’s a commenter saying because of my race I belong under the boot of Romney supporters. There’s also a great deal of provable dishonest, and it’s always responded to with a doubling down and more dishonesty.

    And then there’s the endless parade of comments whining about comments (just this comment I’m typing, for example).

    The ratio of interesting issues based discussion to griping about the commenters is too low, and we all should do our best to self moderate and correct that.

    Anyway, Milhouse is capable of some outstanding comments and I’d say he’s probably one of the better commenters here. His comments about Stashiu are completely wrong, and Stashiu’s summary is completely accurate, though.

    Dustin (401f3a)

  197. My cable service is still out, and the wifi from next door cuts in and out, mostly out. And tomorrow I’m traveling much of the day. But I will get back to y’all.

    Milhouse (843f71)


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