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This morning: Ross Douthat on what's really giving marriage a bad tummy-ache... Maureen Dowd gets Rocky Mountain High... Nicholas Kristof shows that drugs cost money but probes are free... Steven Rattner sings a closing hymn for the manufacturing revival... Kathleen Parker says there's no war on women, but admits the GOP is losing it... Dana Milbank is sorry about all the non-pologies... and Leonard Pitts breaks the news that MLK made more than one speech.

But first...

The New York Times looks at how these midterm elections are resolving into a determined fight by a fraction of the 1% to wrest control of the nation from the other 99%.

Only a few weeks into this midterm election year, the right-wing political zeppelin is fully inflated with secret cash and is firing malicious falsehoods at supporters of health care reform.

As Carl Hulse of The Times reported recently, Democrats have been staggered by a $20 million advertising blitz produced by Americans for Prosperity, the conservative advocacy group organized and financed by the Koch brothers, billionaire industrialists. The ads take aim at House and Senate candidates for re-election who have supported the health law, and blame them for the hyped-up problems with the law’s rollout that now seem to be the sole plank in this year’s Republican platform.

Democrats intend to counter this campaign with the facts, but few of the candidates have the money to do so now...

it is unlikely that they will be able to match the resources or the cunning of the Kochs, who are using vast pools of money earned through corporate revenues to build a network unrivaled in complexity and secrecy. This weekend, they are bringing together some of the biggest Republican bank accounts at a resort in Palm Springs, Calif., to collect money and plan this year’s strategy...

In 2012, as The Washington Post reported, the Koch network raised $407 million, which was secreted among 17 groups with cryptic names and purposes that were designed to make it impossible to figure out the names of donors the Kochs worked with. As one tax expert told The Post, “it’s designed to make it opaque as to where the money is coming from and where the money is going.”

Make no mistake. This election isn't a contest between Democrats and Republicans. It's not even a tussle among conservatives and liberals.

The most frightening thing about the Obama administration to men like the Kochs isn't the health care plan or any other signature legislation, it's not the president's barely left of Bush position on taxes, and it's not his skin color. What really scares the Kochs & Co. is how the president got there: the efficient raising of small contributions from a broad base of supporters. If politicians can roll their campaigns on $5 here and $10 there, then... how are they to be kept licking at the billionaire's custom boots?

Goliath may have a serious wound to the head, but he's not dead yet.

Come inside, let's talk...

Ross Douthat on what's truly behind statistics showing a decline in marriage.

Honesty from conservatives would begin by acknowledging that policies championed on the right — mass incarceration in response to the post-1960s crime wave, Bain Capital-style “creative destruction” in response to Carter-era stagnation — have often made it harder for low-income men to find steady work and stay out of prison, and made women understandably wary of marrying them.

Then this honesty would continue with a concession that certain kinds of redistribution — especially if tied to wage-earning — might help make men more marriageable, families more stable, and touch off a virtuous interaction between the financial and the personal.

And... you know he's not going to stop there.
A more significant concession would be to acknowledge the ways in which liberalism itself has undercut the two-parent family — through the liberal-dominated culture industry’s permissive, reductive attitudes toward sex, and through the 1970s-era revolution in divorce and abortion law.

In the first case, liberals tend to feign agnosticism about pop culture’s impact on morals (even though a link is common-sensical and well supported), or to blame corporate capitalism for the entertainment industry’s exploitative tendencies (as though the overwhelmingly liberal people making programming decisions had no agency of their own).

So, Republicans are directly responsible for destroying marriages of poor and middle class Americans through policies that tear families apart, but hey, liberals show a lot of sex on TV, and that's the real problem.

Kathleen Parker slapeth with one hand and defendeth with the other.

Democrats point mainly to new state laws that have limited access to abortion, not to mention the unforgettable observations of a few Republican men about “legitimate” rape and so on.

Whatever one’s own position, Republicans could be characterized as waging a war on women only if no women agreed with the premises mentioned above. Protecting the rights of the unborn and fighting for freedom of conscience are not concerns only of men nor should reproduction be the purview only of women.

Get that? Being pro-rape is only a war on women so long as there's one woman willing to fight on your side. Carry on, Professor Quisling.
What Huckabee was saying was that women are not just packages of reproductive parts whose lives are circumscribed by access to birth control. This is the thinking he ascribes to Democrats. Instead, he said, Republicans are fighting a war for women “to be empowered to be something other than victims of their gender.”

Not bad so far, but then . . . uh-oh.

“And if the Democrats want to insult the women of America by making them believe that they are helpless without Uncle Sugar coming in and providing for them a prescription each month for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government, then so be it, let us take that discussion all across America because women are far more than the Democrats have played them to be.” ...

Paging Dr. Freud . . .

As Republicans can’t seem to learn, it’s all in how you say things. Even if Huckabee was only describing how he believes Democrats think of women, he may have parted the curtain on his own unconscious processes. Who, really, is worried about women’s libidos?

Time for more of those "how to talk to women" classes. And this time, maybe Republicans shouldn't pick their instructors from the ads they find in the back of Playboy... or Fox News.

Maureen Dowd in the mountains.

The blooming pot industry here is still more seedy than glossy. Yet the budding bud growers are eager to help Denver elude the stigma of Rocky Mountain Low, a shadowy place overrun by “The Dude Abides” hippies and Jeff Spicoli stoners.

“People are learning not to be ashamed,” the 45-year-old Dyke said. “No more talking in whispers. We’re moving away from the image of dumb stoner teenagers to older successful businesspeople who can admit they’re stoners.”

...they are thrilled to be part of the huge social experiment transforming Colorado as jittery politicians press on the gas and brake at the same time, state government builds a regulatory system from scratch, entrepreneurs deal in “Breaking Bad” cash, and towns decide if they will allow retail pot stores (Aspen) or not (Vail).

It's a good, straightforward article from Dowd that captures the experimental nature of what's happening in Colorado... and the way we're all watching for the results.

Nicholas Kristof looks at how eager the right is to provide certain medical procedures to the public.

IF you think that protests about overzealous law enforcement are over the top, listen to what unfolded when the police suspected that David Eckert, 54, was hiding drugs in his rectum.

... No drugs or weapons were found on Eckert or in his truck, but a police dog showed interest in the vehicle and an officer wrote that Eckert’s posture was “erect and he kept his legs together.”

That led the police to speculate that he might be hiding drugs internally, so they took him in handcuffs to a nearby hospital emergency room and asked the doctor, Adam Ash, to conduct a forcible search of his rectum. Dr. Ash refused, saying it would be unethical.

“I was pretty sure it was the wrong thing to do,” Dr. Ash told me. “It was not medically indicated.”

Eckert, protesting all the while, says he asked to make a phone call but was told that he had no right to do so because he hadn’t actually been arrested. The police then drove Eckert 50 miles to the emergency room of the Gila Regional Medical Center, where doctors took X-rays of Eckert’s abdomen and performed a rectal examination. No drugs were found, so doctors performed a second rectal exam, again unavailing.

Doctors then gave Eckert an enema and forced him to have a bowel movement in the presence of a nurse and policeman, according to a lawsuit that Eckert filed. When no narcotics were found, a second enema was administered. Then a third.

Lesson from the right: socialist medicine, bad. Fascist medicine, good.

The New York Times editorial board hands out a "good job" to the president... and Biden, too.

It’s rare to hear politicians at the national level discuss sexual violence. It’s even rarer to hear them discuss it with real sensitivity. Yet President Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden Jr. managed exactly that last Wednesday, when they announced a task force on campus rape — an area of particular concern. A 2007 study found that one in five women had been sexually assaulted in college. ...

“Our daughters, our sisters, our wives, our mothers, our grandmothers have every single right to expect to be free from violence and sexual abuse,” Mr. Biden said. “No matter what she’s wearing, no matter whether she’s in a bar, in a dormitory, in the back seat of a car, on a street, drunk or sober — no man has a right to go beyond the word ‘no.’ And if she can’t consent, it also means no.”

He added: “Men have to step up to the bar here. Men have to take more responsibility. Men have to intervene.”

Mr. Obama also emphasized male accountability: “We’ve got to keep teaching young men in particular to show women the respect they deserve and to recognize sexual violence and be outraged by it, and to do their part to stop it from happening in the first place.”

Dana Milbank has your non-pology right here, buddy.
I am sorry.

I am sorry that so many people have been making insincere apologies. I hasten to add that I am not to blame for these terrible apologies, but I regret them deeply, all the same.

Chris Christie is terribly sorry that his staff lied to him about things they did without his knowledge, and he feels remorse that the partisan media are targeting him with a witch hunt.

Bob McDonnell is really sorry that an overzealous federal prosecutor is going after him for doing perfectly legal things.

And Glenn Beck feels just awful that people were so “fragile” that they allowed his rhetoric to tear the country apart.

Listening to the non-apologies and finger-pointing brings to mind George W. Bush’s long-ago vow to change a culture that says “if it feels good, do it; if you’ve got a problem, blame somebody else.”

Hey now, Republicans are the party of personal responsibility. They just need a little time to work out which person (lower level, non-important) is truly responsible.

Steven Rattner dashes cold water on the fires of our new industrial comeback.

WITH metronomic regularity, gauzy accounts extol the return of manufacturing jobs to the United States.

One day, it’s Master Lock bringing combination lock fabrication back to Milwaukee from China. Another, it’s Element Electronics commencing assembly of television sets — a function long gone from the United States — in a factory near Detroit.

Breathless headlines in recent months about a “new industrial revolution” and “the promise of a ‘Made in America’ era” suggest it’s a renaissance. This week, when President Obama gives his State of the Union address, he will most likely yet again stress his plans to strengthen our manufacturing base.

But we need to get real about the so-called renaissance, which has in reality been a trickle of jobs, often dependent on huge public subsidies. Most important, in order to compete with China and other low-wage countries, these new jobs offer less in health care, pension and benefits than industrial workers historically received.

Plenty of painful statistics follow.

Leonard Pitts has a dream that pundits might know more than two sentences that came from the mouth of Martin Luther King, jr.

They can’t quote what he said about injustice: “America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked, ‘insufficient funds.’ ”

But they always quote the “content of character” passage from King’s “I Have A Dream” speech. They see it as supportive of their ideal of a so-called “colorblind” society wherein race — and racial problems — are acknowledged never.

Sarah Palin is the latest. Last week on the King holiday, she quoted that passage on Facebook and added: “Mr. President, in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. and all who commit to ending any racial divide, no more playing the race card.”

You will hear President Obama talk about race only slightly more frequently than you will hear Mitch McConnell say, “Get down, with your bad self!” so there was a moment of disconnect in trying to figure out what she was talking about. Apparently, the reference was to a piece in last week’s New Yorker where Obama acknowledged that there are “some folks who really dislike me because they don’t like the idea of a black president.” He also said some people probably cut him slack for the same attribute.

By now, most thoughtful people would take both observations as self-evident. And you have to wonder: If this mild remark is “playing the race card” what, then, may we permissibly say about race in Palin’s ideal world? Apparently, nothing.

Not true! White people are allowed to lecture black people on reverse racism any time they want. Read the rules.

Chris Lee talks about what's really worrying physicists... that they might have it right.

I'm very glad that I'm not a particle physicist. In the excitement of the LHC starting up, breaking, starting up again, performing beautifully, and finding the Higgs Boson, we seem to forget that particle physics is in a really odd situation. In any other field of science, getting experimental results to agree with theory is considered a champagne moment. ... Yet in particle physics, smiles turn upside down and presenters shuffle about uncomfortably as they say, "As you can see, the Standard Model accounts for all our data over umpteen gazillion orders of magnitude." That is a magnificent achievement and should be celebrated. Instead, it is being treated like ashes in the mouth.
The problem is that the Standard Model, which is a messy, lumpy, completely unlovely, unsatisfying, and fails to meet any concept of "that seems right" keeps turning out to be... right. Which kind of limits the magic solutions to be dug from particle physics in the future. Darn it.

Originally posted to Devil's Tower on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:10 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Christie Is A Bully (10+ / 0-)

    Christie Is Corrupt.

    Rand Paul Is No Better.
    Find A Decent Dem!

    honor the treaties. honor the honorable.

    by renzo capetti on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:15:26 AM PST

  •  PolitickerNJ has been down for over a day now. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Onomastic, historys mysteries

    I wonder what's up with that.  Yesterday till about noon they just had a blank page with a stand by notice, now there's a bunch of old stories and editorials with a couple technical difficulty notices.

    Anyone know what's up?

    "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi, 6/30/07 // "Succeed?" At what?

    by nailbender on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:19:29 AM PST

  •  How do you know this? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mark Sumner, hmi, mkor7, gffish
    What really scares the Kochs & Co. is how the president got there: the efficient raising of small contributions from a broad base of supporters. If politicians can roll their campaigns on $5 here and $10 there, then... how are they to be kept licking at the billionaire's custom boots?
    Have they personally told you?

    Just wondering because it goes against all the evidence out there.

    First, Obama received most of his donations (dollar wise) from the wealthy, not the $5 and $10 types (even though there were more of them numberwise - the point being that it takes a lot of $5 donations to add up to $2,200!!).

    And second, once in power, Obama did nothing but continue (or amp up, even) policies that funneled $$s to the billionaires.

    Just perhaps a different set of billionaires - to me that's what has gotten the Koch Brothers all pissy - they're not the most favored billionaires right now (still highly favored to be sure, just not the MOST favored).

    •  Here's a breakdown of the race in 2012 (32+ / 0-)

      a nice table from the New York Times.

      More than half of the president's funds came in donations less than $200, while only 11% gave the max. On the right, those numbers were less than a quarter giving under $200 to Romney while those who maxed out represent the largest fraction (39%).

      Of the top ten outside spenders, eight were on the GOP side.

      Of the Superpacs, the GOP had more than 3x as much funding from Superpacs and just one person (Sheldon Adelson) was behind pacs who put in more money than all superpacs on the Democratic side.

      Should we have rules that limit the ability of these guys to flood the election with cash? Yep, yes, we should, absolutely.  But don't make the mistake of thinking both sides are playing the same game on fundraising.

      Without small donors, Democrats are sunk.

      •  That's 2012 data, not 2008 (4+ / 0-)

        but I'm willing to assume they're about the same.

        But the critical thing is actually not the $2,200 / $2,500 donations - it would be the SuperPac donations where the billionaires can actually flout their wealth in a meaningful way.

        From your link, the Dem & GOP graphics look identical in this regard.

        •  Do they? (8+ / 0-)

          Total contributions of the top ten spenders:

          281.6m on the GOP side

          68.4m on the Democratic side

          And of that spening on the Dem side, 95% came from one PAC -- Priorities USA Action.  This group, founded by Obama campaign officials, was founded in response to Citizens United as a unified place where the big money could go.  Despite representing essentially nearly ALL the funds that came to the Democratic side, it was still significantly smaller than Republican organizations such as that of Karl Rove and brought in only 3/4 the amount of Romeny's equivalent PAC.

          Just as Adelson's individual contributions exceeded all Democratic SuperPACs, Rove's American Crossroads topped all outside spending on the left -- and American Crossroads was just the second largest GOP source for outside spending.

          •  It seems like there are two distinct points here (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Heart of the Rockies, dinotrac

            one is you claim that:

            Without small donors, Democrats are sunk.
            I'm willing to buy that.

            The other is that billionaires are worried.  That still makes no sense because there is NO WAY (even logistically if he actually wanted to, or was inclined to do so) that Obama (or any candidate) could actually listen to and respond to the 4.7 million small donors.

            The way you present it is that there is an even smaller number of Dem megadonors than their GOP counterparts (some billionaires play both sides, of course!) - that works to their advantage in that THEY are the ones who gain the influence in the system as it is currently operating.    THAT is what irks the likes of the Koch Brothers (i..e, like I said earlier that the wrong subset of billionaires is in charge) - NOT the fear of small piddling individuals taking over.

            •  Billionaires are worried (11+ / 0-)

              because, as Mark pointed out above, they spent $268 million dollars, and then lost the Presidential election, lost seats in the House and lost a Senate seat.
              Not a very good return on their huge investment.

              Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

              by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:40:33 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Again, I see no evidence of "worry" (3+ / 0-)

                Sure, they spent a lot of money (but the them, a pittance) but much of that was infighting amongst themselves that had nothing to do with whether they as a group would lose influence or not.  Because they're not.  I seriously don't get where this meme is coming from - they continue to consolidate their wealth at the expense of most everybody else at record pace.

                In fact there are diaries about that (e.g., under the guise of income inequality) right here at DailyKos on a daily, if not hourly, basis.

              •  Billionaires didn't lose any seats at all. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                All the seats are held by Republicans and Democrats and all have done quite nicely by billionaires.

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 08:59:29 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  The lesson of 2012 really should be... (0+ / 0-)

                that money, when campaigns and outside groups are basically free to raise and spend as much as they can, doesn't win elections.  There are only so many people who are open to convincing, so many states that can go one way or another, so many minutes of TV advertising that can be bought in Columbus, Ohio and Tampa, Florida before people stop paying attention.  Running for president is an expensive undertaking---it probably costs $750 million to run an effective nationwide campaign with an adequate presence in all swing states.  $20 million is more than enough to fund a senatorial or gubernatorial campaign in a big state.  But if you spend much more than that, you're basically wasting your money airing the same TV ad over and over again, sending the same mailer to people for the third or fourth time.  

        •  Campaigns vs. Super PACS (5+ / 0-)

          Since there is no coordinating between Super PACS and political campaigns, your concern is without merit.

          The previous post delineated small and large donations for each presidential campaign.

          President Obama received countless more donations from a far larger group of people than did his opponent.

          As to who gave to Super PACS - democratic leaning organizations are far more transparent than republican leaning groups.

          But here's the sinful part - our Constitution enshrines the notion of equal rights under the law, but since Citizen's United ruling, those with more money have seemingly been given more rights to express themselves.

          For instance, we could each stand on a soapbox and equally shout our First Amendment rights back in 1776, but TV and radio ads are only the province of the wealthy.

          •  If you believe there's no coordination (7+ / 0-)

            I can show you a bridge in Brooklyn. . . .

            There is also little transparency, thanks to the labyrinth of entities and organizations through which the big money is passed. Little people donate to campaigns, and their names are public. The big guns donate to back-channel entities.

            I wonder how the Supreme Court feels about the nightmare they legalized in Citizens United.

          •  Since Citizens United? (0+ / 0-)

            I'm sorry, that's been the case for a very long time.
            I see no convincing evidence that CU has made any difference that matters.

            The sums are a bit higher, but the results seem to be the same.

            And -- oh -- have you noticed?

            In the only complete nationwide election cycle to take place since the Citizens United decision, Democrats pretty much mopped up the house with Republicans.

            Not exactly the story the spin-doctors would have you believe.

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:04:30 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

              •  Were you asleep in 2012? (0+ / 0-)

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 11:34:44 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  You disputed several of my posts where (0+ / 0-)

                  I made that point

                  For example you posted this:

                  Billionaires are worried (11+ / 0-)
                  because, as Mark pointed out above, they spent $268 million dollars, and then lost the Presidential election, lost seats in the House and lost a Senate seat.

                  Not a very good return on their huge investment.

                  The Koch Brothers alone have annual revenues of $100 billion.

                  Thus, if the $268 million you mention was spent entirely by them, that would amount to between 2 and 3 cents on each $10 they earned - or about 0.268%

                  IOW, that's a tiny, tiny investment that yielded them vast returns (largely in the form of a gerrymandered house that ensure that the status quo that benefits them so much will continue, not the senate or administration would change things anyways).

                  You also disputed the fact that their losses in coal are minimal (because they don't have much invested in that sector) in a way that could only be interpreted to show that they have suffered pain from their losses in this economic sector (because that was the point that I made that you objected to).  Then you through in a smokescreen about petroleum coke, which although it has some functional similarities to "real" coal - it's not really the same thing at all.


                  •  Ummm...The premise was "since Citizens United" (0+ / 0-)

                    The first full election cycle run since Citizens United resulted in overwhelming gains for Democrats.

                    2010 was an historical whipping of Democrats, but Citizens United wasn't even decided until the election cycle had begun.  I know you would like to blame Citizens United because that lets you deny that Democrats played any role in their own defeat.

                    I understand that and will not begrudge you your security blanket.  But, if you want stick with facts, 2012 was the first full national election cycle since the decision and it didn't go the Kochs' way.

                    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                    by dinotrac on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 03:29:35 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

      •  And this is another twist (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Rikon Snow, StrayCat, dankester, cruz

        that makes it almost impossible to determine the exact donor profile:

        Over all, 55 percent of the Obama campaign’s money through the end of September came in donations of less than $200, including from many people who have repeatedly sent in small checks over the course of the campaign.
        In any event, the small donors were completely ignored wrt policy, so if the Repub billionaires (or Dem billionaires for that matter) are seeing that, they have no concerns about their influence.   It is safe.
        •  Give it up, RG (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          trillian, allensl, on the cusp, CJB2012

          you lost this one. Mark proved you wrong on every point you tried to make, so you change the argument.
          Small donors!
          No, wait, SuperPACs!
          Never mind, it was never about the money anyway!

          Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

          by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:42:48 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  My point was that the billionaires (5+ / 0-)

            are not concerned, worried, scared or whatever, like was the claim made in the diary.

            I have yet to see any proof at all that they are.

            In fact methinks that the hundreds of millions of dollars that they are now spending is solid empirical evidence to the contrary - they can use these mega$$s to promote their views while at the same time they can laugh at the peons who bother contributing (to either side) whose concerns are then subsequently completely ignored - or worse, trampled on deliberately it would seem.

            And I frankly have no idea why you are taking such pains to point out the pain the Koch Brothers are allegedly suffering under Obama (in your other posts).  When they're not.  They continue to prosper mightily.  As do all billionaires, really.

            •  Please point out where (0+ / 0-)

              I "took such pains" to point out the pain the Koch brothers are suffering under Obama? I'll wait.

              Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

              by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 01:34:45 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Why are you then disputing my (0+ / 0-)

                posts over and over and over?  Because that's the point I'm trying to make (or actually the opposite - that they are feeling NO pain) and you're constantly objecting.  I don't see any other interpretation for you posts.

                Bottom line - so * do * you agree with me that they're doing fabulously under Obama?

      •  Alternate tables (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Floande, Roadbed Guy

        These show 2012 Obama small individual contributions of $233,215,440 and large of $489,660,089, vs. Romney at $79,806,091 and $366,336,696 large (small is defined as under $200). If this is correct, then Obama surely had a greater proportion of small contributors, but much less than the Times' claim (more like 35%). I note an oddity of the Times chart is that its graphs portray November, but the legend at the top says that the data is only through September.

        •  Yes, thanks - I have seen those numbers (0+ / 0-)

          as well - I'm not sure what the Times is trying to pull here - but being owned by billionaire types themselves I wouldn't doubt that they are trying to downplay their very own influence in a somewhat self-serving manner.

    •  I had the same thought. Seems like a bit of a (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roadbed Guy

      simplification (good vs. bad) rather than real analysis.  On the other hand, I'm always surprised by how simplistic the thinking of the hard right is, so there may be more to the argument than I credit.

      "Where some see a system for encouraging discussion . . . others see an echo chamber of bad grammar, unchecked stupidity, and constructive interference . . . " -- Ars Technica

      by Rikon Snow on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:33:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Obama has done little or nothing (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, skohayes, I love OCD

      to funnel $$$ to the Koch brothers, and he has taken steps publicly to regulate their largest enterprises, particularly in the coal industry to reduce pollution and make their workplaces safer.  All those rules and regulations cost the Kochs' money.  The brothers' free spending to upset the current administration, regardless of where the money comes from, is all a function of protecting and enlarging their business income.  

      The more regulation the Kochs' companies have to meet to clean up their operations; the more regulation their suppliers have to meet to safely use and store the necessary chemicals and maintain their channels of distribution, and the more taxes the brothers and their industries have to pay, the lower their companies' profits and the less money in their own pockets.  

      Remember, Koch Industries is not a public company - there are no shareholders who would dilute their personal income.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:19:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You are kidding, right? (3+ / 0-)

        Here's a link to their industries - there's no mention of coal to be found, much less to support the claim that it is one of their largest enterprises.

        Instead their heavily into petroleum (including NG) and pipelines, both of which are operating flat out due to Obama's fracking boom.

        Plus, by blocking KXL, that makes existing pipelines more valuable (i.e., the Koch Brothers) and also provides their refineries in the Midwest with cheap feedstock (i.e., "stranded" Bakken and Tarsands oil, which can sell for up to $40 / bbl off global prices - all of those $$s go straight into the Koch Brothers pockets)

        Now, Obama could do MORE for them for sure, but they are making out very, very well under his policies.

        •  Um (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Roadbed Guy, Onomastic, 1BQ

          Koch Industries home page

          Koch Minerals, LLC and its subsidiaries are among the world’s largest dry-bulk commodity handlers, annually marketing and trading more than 40 million tons product, as well as petroleum and natural gas properties. Subsidiaries include Koch Carbon, LLC; The C. Reiss Coal Company; Koch Exploration Company, LLC, and KM Proppants, LLC.

          Koch Carbon, LLC specializes in the global sourcing, supply, handling and transportation of bulk commodities such as petroleum coke, coal, sulfur, pulp and paper products, and other related commodities, utilizing a network of bulk import/export terminals in the United States and Europe. Information about petroleum coke is available here.  

          The C. Reiss Coal Company is a leading supplier of coal and related products used in industrial applications and power generation.

          Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

          by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:50:28 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Don't they own the coke piles (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes, Floande, Onomastic

            that are polluting the lakeshore near Detroit?

          •  Good catch, but in a way (0+ / 0-)

            it reinforces my point that coal is a minor aspect of their business (it's just one of many things).

            Moreover,  the link you gave claims 40 million tons of production - the total for the US is about 1,000 million tons so they're about 4% players in that arena. IOW, rather minor.

            •  You ignore their other companies (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              that exist to market coal, transport and sell coal, makes chemicals used in coal mining and refinement and sells it all over the world. Coal is a big part of their conglomerate.
              And your insistence that they would welcome the KXL being blocked flies in the face of reality:

              Koch Industries has been involved in tar sands operations for half a century. Koch refines 25% of tar sands crude oil entering the U.S. and operates a terminal at the proposed pipeline's origin in Hardisty, Alberta. Koch Industries has repeatedly denied any financial interest in TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline. After 6 months of public insistence that Koch Industries had nothing to do with Keystone XL, news emerged that Koch's wholly-owned subsidiary Flint Hills Resources told Canada's Energy Board it has "direct and substantial interest" in a government filing.

              Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

              by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:49:56 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  In a way, they win either way (0+ / 0-)

                But consider this alone:

                Koch refines 25% of tar sands crude oil entering the U.S.
                Let's say this represents 500,000 bbls per day.  If they get a $20 /bbl discount on buying this from Northern Alberta because of lack of pipeline capacity (sometimes the differential is up to $40 /bbl but I will be conservative here), that works out to a windfall profit of $10 million a day.  That's three and a half billion dollars a year in their pockets for doing nothing, a $3.5 billion windfall that would evaporate if KXL was built and functioned as advertised.  You seriously want to claim they wouldn't notice that? (they might not, I actually don't know how precious $3.5 billion is to them).

                The other aspect is that their own pipelines have gotta be doing well / better by not having competition from KXL.

                Of course, the railroad folks have caught onto all of this, and moving KXL-sized amounts of crude oil themselves (this is where other billionaires - Warren Buffet types for example benefit mightily) and this windfall won't last for ever - so they seem to be switching gears and investing big time in tar sands production, at which point the above considerations essentially become moot.

                But as for now, it is really, really difficult to crunch the numbers and come to any other conclusion that the absence of the KXL pipeline is not benefiting them handsomely.

    •  Think you're missing the underlying point and that (7+ / 0-)

      is grass roots activism, whether done by the volunteers at OFA, the spreading North Carolina's Moral Monday's movement, the expanding Overpass Light Brigade, or the work of Battleground Texas to turn Texas Blue, etc, etc, etc.

      A rising organized liberal populism is what scares the Koch Brothers and their ilk spitless.

      And that rising populism is reflected in the number of small donors made to the Obama campaign.


      There is something in us that refuses to be regarded as less than human. We are created for freedom - Archbishop Desmond Tutu

      by Onomastic on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:57:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, I think the real point is that (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Roadbed Guy

        we have no idea what the mental state of the Koch brothers is.  We can analyze the available donation data and make some statements on the type of support Obama has had vs Romney or McCain and the implications of that, but to say anything about the Koch brothers being scared is total speculation and quite ludicrous, IMHO.

        What we can say is that they apparently are very interested in the mid-terms and willing to get money behind what they consider vulnerable candidates. We need to oppose that in any way we can, including getting out a record setting mid-term Democratic vote

        •  Yes indeed, who knows what their mental state (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Heart of the Rockies


          Except to muse that sometimes the processing centers don't appear to be functioning on all cylinders:

          Feted at the opening of the MIT Koch Integrative Cancer Institute on Friday, $100-million donor David Koch decried Republican cutbacks in federal cancer research funding. The American Cancer Society said the proposed $1.6 billion cut in funding for the National Institutes of Health in the House budget would “set back the longstanding national effort to conquer cancer.” The cuts, supported by the Tea Party Republicans Koch helped elect, greatly dwarf the private support Koch has offered for cancer research, which amount to about one percent of his vast petrochemical wealth

          Either there's not a whole lot of good thinking going on in David's head, or there's something else - perhaps quite sinister and/or cynical - afoot here . . . .

  •  Got a call from my brother night before last, from (11+ / 0-)

    Denver, where he was doing some work on the Super Bowl programming (interviews, etc) and he had just bought his first legal weed.  It was a fun conversation even though he woke me up around mindnight because he forgot that I was in Maine and not Hawaii.

    "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi, 6/30/07 // "Succeed?" At what?

    by nailbender on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:25:11 AM PST

  •  Standard Model issues are issues of a model (11+ / 0-)

    attempting to explain the workings of an exploded engine block from examining the debris and then inferring what kind of explosion had to have occurred leave such remains.

    One more wrinkle: the explosion is still underway.

    •  I'd certainly like to think... (9+ / 0-)

      that there's some neat system behind all those flying distributors, cylinders, and O-rings (not to be confused with strings).  But it keeps looking like junk all the way down.

      That best of all possible things, anomalous results, keeps getting harder to find.

      Please, please, please someone out there with a clever experiment and a thought, make me one of those people who declared "physics is done" right before relativity.

      •  Explosions at all scales are chaotic events (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        StrayCat, Rikon Snow, Stude Dude, mkor7

        The most appropriate explanations by definition have a lot of moving parts that interact with one another in dynamic ways.

        No one's going to find a Yahoo Serious Einstein "EMC" answer... though I, too, would love that because aesthetics.

        Perhaps the issue is something out of the box - as in outside our cosmos. There's an interesting brane test proposal involving neutron swapping, idea being that if we place neutrons in a perfect sealed bottle and come back a year later, and there's any difference in the physical properties, then some neutrons 'leaked' across a cosmological frontier.

        I'm unconvinced the experiment is doable, never mind if it will obtain the results the proponents desire. Still, it's someone trying, so yay.

        But until such a time as someone explains that all the answers are simple, because this zombie universe wants branes, the answers are in here with us, inside the cooling remnant of the Big Bang.

        And if not, they're unavailable and stuck churning really huge stacks or really huge numbers to describe rather than explain why stuff's the way it is.

        •  Of course, I'm still convinced... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          that there is no such thing as dark matter or dark energy in the sense of undiscovered particles (or undiscovered species of neutrino).  I still suspect that we're seeing something more akin to frame shear between adjacent branes, or leakage of gravity across multiverse boundaries-- in which case distribution of dark matter represents the adherence of our own universe to a statistical mean, allowing not just gravity but true information about the multiverse structure to leak.

          But I only believe this because I like the consequences, and because it strikes me as neat.

          •  I had a nifty idea once about dark matter.. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            that it was space time curvature caused by quantum oscillations - so called virtual particles.

            This 'virtual mass' per cubic centimeter is quite low, but it's everywhere, thus at ever larger scales you'd see an ever greater disparity between observable 'fixed' matter and its predicted effects on other observable objects ... and what you actually see.

            Only oops is that I don't have an explanation for why gravitational lenses associated with dark matter are both physically tied to observable objects... and often offset from them, as if they were shadows.

            So that one's probably wrong, in which case 'shadow' effects from other branches of the cosmological family tree might be in play.

            Which might have legs because if there are parallel universes, complete with parallel galaxies, the initial variations of Big Bang conditions and interactions with other parallel galaxies might mean that OUR parallel Milky Way(s) might not necessarily be close by.

            In which case you'd see a dark matter 'shadow' a bit offset from our own.

            Eh, but this is more in the realm of 'fun' thoughts. :)

            •  By 'bit' I mean several 10,000s of light years n/t (0+ / 0-)
            •  Well of course, that all makes perfect sense... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              ...if I had the slightest clue what you're talking about. (I shoulda paid more attention to Beakman's Lab when it was on.)

              The most interesting thing about all this high-falutin' particle stuff is that there may indeed be such a thing as a "multiverse," with alternate universes (ie, "dimensions") living side by side, just like in the sci-fi novels, cartoons, comic books, Dr. Who episodes I've read or watched.

              Now if only I could get out of this one and into one of those - no matter what, it's got to be better than this one.

              You can't stop progress (or is that "profit"?)

              by Miscweant on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:02:30 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, that was kind of what I was wondering about (0+ / 0-)

                The gates to those 'alternities' might not actually be 'close' in conventional 3D terms.

                You might have to take a road trip of some thousands of light years to get to your other, better life.

                If so, just taking a starship out a few hundred light years, turning around, and checking back up on Earth in the year 2500 AD (wash, rinse, repeat) might be the ticket.

            •  Mostly dark matter galaxies have been discovered. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              (i.e. galaxies with much more gravitational pull than the light matter would suggest.)

              So a physical link between light interacting matter and dark matter "shadow" is unlikely to exist.  Also, in galaxy collisions dark matter can be donated from one galaxy to another.

              A lot of current theory about the cosmology of the radiation era** depends on dark matter clumping freely while the light interacting matter is getting held in stasis by the high energy photons.

              **When the radiation left over from the first second matter anti matter annihilation was strong enough to knock electrons off of hydrogen atoms as soon as they formed.

              The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

              by NCJim on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:19:49 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  You refer to dwarf galaxies I assume (0+ / 0-)

                And that's a good point re non-EM interacting matter shaking out early, though it invite the question of what 'solvent' keeps dark matter from precipitating out of the primordial soup (ie. why do we observe the amount that we do, not some other amount?)

                It couldn't have been THAT long an era if DM is only a magnitude, tops, more prevalent than photointeractive matter.

                •  Why would dark matter be any different. (0+ / 0-)

                  Current theory suggests anti-dark matter.

                  For the standard model to exist there must be virtual dark matter.

                  Also an experiment on the International Space Station recording cosmic rays suggests a lot of cosmic rays come from dark matter anti dark matter collisions.

                  They would be rare because they don't attract each other, like matter and anti-matter neutrino collisions.

                  The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

                  by NCJim on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 08:12:59 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  One reason for very weak interaction (0+ / 0-)

                    There might be MANY flavors of 'dark', they only interact within their flavor.

                    We interact with ours, for example. The analogy might break down and immediately but I'll chuck  that out there.

                    •  Oh I think that is absolutely true. (0+ / 0-)

                      That there could be multiple varieties (Super Symmetry predicts four varieties I think), and each would of course have its anti-matter variety.

                      The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

                      by NCJim on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 11:37:20 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

  •  Douthat's Modest Proposal (21+ / 0-)
    So one hypothetical middle ground on marriage promotion might involve wage subsidies and modest limits on unilateral divorce, or a jobs program and a second-trimester abortion ban.
    I'm kind of blown away here.  Isn't it conservatives who pride themselves on individual freedom and who decry the federal government's forays into social engineering?

    Yet Douthat laments liberals' assumed refusal (damned right!) to accept limits on divorces.  Not to mention safe abortions.


    I really am blown away, and we don't even need to get into the infantile logic that assumes a marriage, no matter how unstable or loveless, or downright acrimonious, will lead to higher economic mobility and better conditions for raising a family.

    This is seriously one of the stupidest columns I have ever read in the Times.

    Christie is toast.

    by deminva on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:50:18 AM PST

    •  A second trimester abortion ban (21+ / 0-)

      promotes marriage? Sometimes I wonder if Douthat just writes down random thoughts and then ties them together with conjunctions.

      It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

      by Desert Rose on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:00:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  You must not read (12+ / 0-)

      Douthat very often, then, because this piece sounds like his typical MO: start off with a good dose of moderation and reasonableness, accurately point out errors the right has made in the past, and once you've got your reader roped in, unleash the crazy.

      Full disclosure: of today's piece, I've only read the excerpts here thus far, but I read him most Sundays if my digestive system is up to it.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:11:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    • know...idiots...hypocrites... (10+ / 0-)


      Here in North Carolina, the idiot teabag-majority Legislature of Fools actually introduced a bill to force potential divorcees to stay together two years before a divorce could be granted. And, of course, they passed many laws making gun ownership and carrying easier and more widespread. What could possibly go wrong?

      Fortunately, the bill went nowhere last session, but the Teabag Clown Car will be reconvening in Raleigh in May, so there's no limit to the amount of idiocy they might pass this session.

      "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

      by blue in NC on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:12:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  would be especially cute in adultery cases (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stude Dude, skohayes, blue in NC

        where one partner (or both) already has another sweetie. Living in a house with your spouse while said spouse is spending every available moment with new sweetie is a recipe for misery, even without guns. And no, it does not lead to reconciliation.

        If this law were to pass (I doubt it, as GOP politicians seem to need quick divorces at least as often as anyone else), it would be widely disregarded by anyone with a hint of sanity. People might retain the marital homestead as their legal address, but no way would they actually live together.

      •  A few years ago in Kansas, (2+ / 0-)

        the right wingers tried to introduce "covenant marriage" to the state:

        The law mandates three significant requirements for couples who choose to enter into a covenant marriage: (1) the couple must legally agree to seek marital counseling if problems develop during the marriage; and (2) the couple can only seek a divorce or legal separation for limited reasons. In addition, before obtaining a covenant marriage license, the couple must receive premarital counseling from a priest, minister, rabbi, clergyman of any religious sect, or a professional marriage counselor.
        But even they couldn't get a majority in their caucus to vote for it, so it went down in defeat.

        Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

        by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:36:01 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wow. And that from the "Party of Freedom", (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Heart of the Rockies, skohayes

          the party that constantly brays its garbage about the grave threat of Sharia Law to 'Murkin Freedomz.

          "Bernie Madoff's mistake was stealing from the rich. If he'd stolen from the poor he'd have a cabinet position." -OPOL

          by blue in NC on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:14:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Good (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          This points to what could be an ideal situation for marriage equality.  The biggest problem with marriage is that churches continue to be involved.  Churches should marry couple based on a covenant, but few churches do.  They marry whomever they wish under whatever fraudulent conditions they wish.  Look at the Catholic church and the serial adulterer and fornicator Gingrich.

          Look at no fault divorce which the churches blame on our current problem.  Sure it makes it easier to get divorced, but would people be so likely to randomly get married and divorced if they knew that they could randomly walk into any church and marry any random person.  Right now the only thing most churches do is use their state sanctions power of bigotry and hate to push an agenda that will maximize cash flow.

          So this is what we should do.  Make church marriages non legal bindings.  If you want to go to a church and get married, fine, go and do it but it will get you no legal benefits.  My church married gay people long before it was publicly acceptable. It meant something in the eyes of the congregation, but that was it.  Let the catholic church promote and create a sacrament out of adultery, but that does not mean it has to be legal.

          Then focus on civil unions.  Allow people to choose how they want to be joined.  For some it might be a five year union.  For others it might be to raise children, which, is, after all a primary purpose of marriage, after the rogering only one person at time provision.  For others it might be a lifetime commitment where the state provides counseling in exchange for a cooling off period before filing for divorce, along with additional penalties if adultery is involved.  And without the church, men will not be able to use 'my wife got fat' as an excuse.

          Of course widely available cheap or free contraceptives, along with a program denouncing the church's retrograde policies against sex for pleasure and sex prior to marriage as well as the promotion of marriage due to pregnancy  .  Abortion counseling will include the risk to certain mothers of carrying a baby to term,  the failure rate of  marriages based only on  pregnancy, and the rate of parents abandoning their children when not in a committed relationship.  Gingrich again would aid as an example as the danger of someone marrying young, presumably just to have sex, then running off on those children.

    •  Douthat's making it too complicated... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StrayCat, Mark Sumner, a2nite

      Improved employment prospects and stability and relationships tend to improve themselves.

      My idea of the ideal GOP speech invariably involves negligent intoxication together with breathing helium for that special vocal nuance.

      by Superskepticalman on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:16:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  As I said in a comment over there, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Desert Rose

      I really dislike the conservatives' idea that they must "save" marriage, but their only solution is to ban gays from getting married and women from having abortions.
      And in the vein of "you must burn the village in order to save it" theme, some Oklahoma state legislator wants to ban marriage altogether to prevent gay marriage.

      In response to a federal court ruling that Oklahoma’s same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional discrimination, a state lawmaker says he wants to skirt the equal protection argument by banning all marriages in the state.
      “[My constituents are] willing to have that discussion about whether marriage needs to be regulated by the state at all,” Rep. Mike Turner (R) told News 9. He said the idea has the backing of other conservative lawmakers, and could be achieved through a shell bill he filed in the state legislature, intended to adapt to any court rulings on same-sex marriage.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:25:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's because he is floundering, grasping wildly (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      to maintain some kind of readership, when growing numbers of folks who are drifting away from extreme conservative social positions.

    •  Some of us remember when it (3+ / 0-)

      was almost impossible to get a divorce and often involved smearing your spouse to do it.  Or the difficulty to procure contraception (illegal in some states) or abortion.  Absolutely stunning to see support for these out of date restrictions come roaring back in public discourse and policy.

      And the intrusion of the "small government" people into our private lives is likewise mind boggling.

  •  Apology Lesson 101 (6+ / 0-)

    As taught to every child I ever had in my classroom, my own children and several people considered to be adults.  

    Rule #1: I'm sorry   (means you are taking responsibility for what you did on yourself without qualification, qualification negates honest apology i.e. I'm sorry, but...)

    Rule #2: If you say you're sorry and yet repeat the same or similar action (like lying, cheating, stealing etc.) You were Never sorry in the first place, not really.

    What you should have said if you default to #2 is: I'm sorry you CAUGHT me!

    Rule for receiving an apology: Fool me once, shame on you, Fool me twice, shame on me.

    ~Arianna_Editrix-- I willingly accept Cassandra’s fate, To speak the truth, altho’ believ’d too late

    by Arianna Editrix on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:55:15 AM PST

    •  Not a good lesson. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DLWinMI, tb mare

      There are times when we unintentionally hurt people -- sometimes through an oversight -- sometimes because they misinterpret something -- and so on.  To only express regret when you are completely responsible for something bad would be to ignore the feelings of people you unintentionally and/or through no fault of your own hurt.

      We don't have to accept responsibility for things we aren't fully to blame for just because somebody else thinks we should and it's perfectly OK and compassionate to express regret for things for which we are not responsible.

      If your kid ran in front of my car and was hurt -- I would be truly sorry it happened  and would tell you so -- even if there was no way I could have predicted and avoided hitting him and therefore didn't take responsibility for the accident.

      I mean no offense -- but this is a good example for why I told my children's teachers to leave the moralizing to me so that we could avoid me contradicting them and them feeling like I was undermining their authority.

      Oh -- and yes -- people can be truly sorry for impulsive/compulsive things they do.  I hope you never told some ADHD child his apology was phony.  They often feel so badly about things they sometimes do that it affects their self esteem -- and telling them that would only make them feel worse.

      •  Misinterpretation (0+ / 0-)

        Children and adults often use, "I'm sorry" in a knee jerk fashion as if it will make it all better and they don't have to look at their own part in it.  This is what I meant about taking responsibility.  Apologies come way to easy to to many these days, imho, and no one holds them accountable for repeating the same actions as if the "I'm sorry" gives them a blank slate.

        ~Arianna_Editrix-- I willingly accept Cassandra’s fate, To speak the truth, altho’ believ’d too late

        by Arianna Editrix on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:28:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I taught my kids to apologize (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CJB2012, seefleur

      As you know, kids are constantly inflicting injuries, physical or emotional on each other when small because they don't realize other people have feelings just like they do.

      I taught them to listen when the injured party spoke and hear how their actions had injured another. I taught my kids to apologize for their actions that had inflicted the hurt. And I taught the injured party to accept the apology and move on.

      Some parents I have discussed this with have had problem with the acceptance and moving forward, explaining that they felt it was more fair for the injured party to nurse their grievance for as long as they wanted regardless of the injury or apology.
      My feelings are when you're dealing with essentially equal players in the dishing it out and getting hurt games, I felt it was important that the injured party was heard, so others could learn how their actions could affect another and that they didn't go around full of pent up grudges, plotting revenge . I think we have to learn the art of forgiveness too.
      I found that the many of the kids who were allowed to nurse their grievances were highly protective of their own boundaries but had no idea of others' or much respect for them.

  •  Thoughts on the economy... (6+ / 0-)

    The US has a s**t pile of money in the hands of a few, but for the rest of us, we are living in a developing economy, competing with the rest of the low wage peasants toiling away in second-world jobs.

    TV sets in Detroit?  Give me a break.  For those of you who do not live in Michigan: Detroit is a smoking ruin, a hole in the ground, abandoned, used up, and forgotten.

    If we are ever to regain our place in the world, the first thing we need to do is throw a wooden shoe into the gears down on Wall Street, and demand some social justice.

    Labor was the first price paid for all things. It was not by money, but by labour, that all wealth of the world was originally purchased. - Adam Smith

    by boatwright on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:56:14 AM PST

    •  Yes, a wooden shoe in the right place, but do (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude, freerad

      We have a certain "place" in the world?  Do we regain something that we may never have had, or go forward and fine a balanced place, a moderate place where the strengths and beauty of the U.S. is on a par with the strengths and beauties of the other peoples off the world?

      Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

      by StrayCat on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:27:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Haven't made it through all yet, but Dowd's piece (5+ / 0-)

    is a must read today.  It's quite likely that legalizing marijuana will happen in a good many more states so this is a good preview should your state be so lucky.  

    Also worth keeping up on is how well/quickly the federal government will assist in getting them away from a "cash only" business.  It may be sooner rather than later: U.S. to adjust rules to let banks handle marijuana money

    U.S. treasury and law enforcement agencies will soon issue regulations opening banking services to state-sanctioned marijuana businesses even though cannabis remains classified an illegal narcotic under federal law, Attorney General Eric Holder said on Thursday.

    Holder said the new rules would address problems faced by newly licensed recreational pot retailers in Colorado, and medical marijuana dispensaries in other states, in operating on a cash-only basis, without access to banking services or credit.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:59:03 AM PST

  •  The 2014 election (9+ / 0-)

    Let's not fool ourselves into thinking that the 1% loses when the Democrats win. By all means, the Republicans are worse, as the Koch brothers effort illustrates. However, the Democrats are very receptive to the needs of finance capital, fossil fuel companies, and the MIC. The difference is mainly that they, for the most part, do support some reforms that will help the rest (often just incrementally and insufficiently, but still substantively) and are more responsive to pressure from the organized groups of the left than the Republicans are.

  •  This part of Kathleen Parker's column (7+ / 0-)

    is intersting.

    She compares Huckabee's Uncle Sugar comment to incestuous advances.

    Does Huckabee really think that Democrats are wedded to the idea that women can’t function without “Uncle Sugar” offering medications to thwart ovulation and fertilization? Even Uncle Sugar is creepy. No doubt intended as a clever twist on Uncle Sam, he sounds like the lurking uncle who trades chocolate for a smooch on the upstairs landing.
    And in the end, she actually gets it!
    Rather than end the idea of a Republican war on women, Huckabee has merely provided fresh fodder to Democrats, while reminding women why they don’t want to associate with this crowd. Clue-less.

    It is ridiculous to pretend that firing teachers based on student test scores, starting charter schools, giving out vouchers or implementing merit pay will overcome the challenges facing a child living in poverty. -Jersey Jazzman

    by Desert Rose on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:07:45 AM PST

  •  Is the small one ALG? (0+ / 0-)

    Because the big one resembles a turtle... Hmmm, I wonder how that turns out...

  •  Snowden to describe NSA economic espionage (7+ / 0-)

    the story that does not go away

    "I don't want to pre-empt the editorial decisions of journalists but what I will say is there is no question that the US is engaged in economic spying," Snowden told veteran NDR journalist Hubert Seipel. "If there is information at Siemens that they think would be beneficial to the national interests, not the national security, of the United States, they will go after that information and they'll take it."
    Snowden NSA economic espionage claim broadcast as teaser to first TV interview
    German public broadcaster ARD will air a half-hour interview with NSA contractor turned whistleblower Edward Snowden on Sunday. The first snippet, aired late Saturday, accuses the NSA of conducting industrial espionage.
  •  Gov. Huckabee, you're doing it wrong. (9+ / 0-)

    I live under the bridge to the 21st Century.

    by Crashing Vor on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:19:05 AM PST

  •  "Who, really, is worried about women’s libidos?" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Egalitare, LookingUp

    asks Parker.  Kathleen, it's your guys, the same guys who in discussions about homosexuality or same-sex marriage move easily to the topics of child molestation and bestiality, those forbidden barnyard pleasures that Southern conservatives, many from rural areas, seem all too familiar with.

    •  Men who have passed their prime and look back (0+ / 0-)

      with envy on all those other guys (who they believe) got more than they did.  

      "Where some see a system for encouraging discussion . . . others see an echo chamber of bad grammar, unchecked stupidity, and constructive interference . . . " -- Ars Technica

      by Rikon Snow on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:42:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Actually rural conservatives everywhere. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Charles Hall

      Not just in the south you regional bigot.

      The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

      by NCJim on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:26:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not to say anything about the South (0+ / 0-)

        one way or the other.

        But here in the Soviet Republic of Massachusetts, it's the rural west that votes for progressives. Some ancestral memory of Shay's Rebellion seems to have lingered.

    •  Those who believe in their gut of guts (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      that women aren't supposed to have libidos at all. Libidos are man-things.

      When Huckabee describes a woman as "strong," he means strong enough to rein in the man's libido before marriage, and accommodate it after.

  •  To state the obvious.... (5+ / 0-)

    All that Right Wing money in a midterm where the Democrats are weak to begin with scares me.

    OTOH, what can we do to practically counter it?

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:32:26 AM PST

  •  why (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Why is Obama going on TV with O'Reilly?  Seriously, is there a rationale?

    Actions speak louder than petitions.

    by melvynny on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:54:34 AM PST

  •  Is this supposed to be (0+ / 0-)

    ...some kind of a joke?  Poor little Barack could not get any money, but for a nickel here and a dime there?  C'mon, you know that's not true.

    As I was going to St Ives, I met a man with seven wives. The seven wives had seven sacks, the seven sacks had seven cats, the seven cats had seven kits. Kits, cats, sacks and wives... how many were going to St Ives...?

    by AsIwasgoingtosaintIves on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:54:42 AM PST

  •  This is a comment caught on the fly..... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Mark Sumner, CJB2012

    I heard the tail end of a conversation as I walked into work on Tuesday, " how would they feel if we had a James Earl Ray holiday?" (emphasis, mine)

    A white, male in his mid to late 60s saying this to a couple of other white guys aged 40ish.

    Racism IS NOT dead, it thrives in the upper echelons of society.  No, I am just contract labor, I am not a member of this elite group which the commenter obviously resides.......

    "A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered." Ralph Waldo Emerson

    by Yo Bubba on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:57:10 AM PST

  •  Totally as I Predicted: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, on the cusp

    Mr Snowden just came out and stated the NSA is also doing "industrial espionage".

    For months here I've been stating they are involved in corporate espionage.

    BTW corporate espionage-- probably most likely being done related to the weapons industry and oil industry, is considered an important part of the federal government's _foreign policy",

    "It is essential that there should be organization of Labor. Capital organizes & therefore Labor must organize" Theodore Roosevelt

    by Superpole on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:18:31 AM PST

    •  Industrial espionage (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      directed by governments has been going for decades. That's nothing new. The Chinese are masters at it.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:08:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  OK, So WHY is Obama and his (0+ / 0-)

        administration so BENT about Snowden revealing this??

        why do they want him in the prison cell next to Manning?

        also, WHY do we the sappy taxpayers have to pay for spying done for the benefit of U.S. corporations?

        They can't afford to PAY for their own espionage??

        weak, very weak.

        "It is essential that there should be organization of Labor. Capital organizes & therefore Labor must organize" Theodore Roosevelt

        by Superpole on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:12:56 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  You may want to ask yourself... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    why hedge fund billionaire James H. Simons  made a killing in 2011 and was also one of the POTUS' largest campaign donors.  Is your true concern not being raped, but rather who is raping you?  Is anyone paying attention any more, or too busy playing my rhetoric is better than your rhetoric?

    As I was going to St Ives, I met a man with seven wives. The seven wives had seven sacks, the seven sacks had seven cats, the seven cats had seven kits. Kits, cats, sacks and wives... how many were going to St Ives...?

    by AsIwasgoingtosaintIves on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:37:32 AM PST

    •  In case you haven't noticed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Anyone who invested in the stock market since 2009 has made a killing. Simons made a killing before and after the stock market crash, so if you're trying to imply he couldn't have done it without Obama, you'd be wrong.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:06:11 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Gee and here I thought (0+ / 0-)

        Everyone was on board with the "Warren Buffet" bill...  What a load of BS!  And no, that is not what I am implying.  What I am saying is exactly what I said above.  Same game/new players.  Wake up!  This is NOT a R vs. D thing and anyone who still believes it is, is completely blind!

        As I was going to St Ives, I met a man with seven wives. The seven wives had seven sacks, the seven sacks had seven cats, the seven cats had seven kits. Kits, cats, sacks and wives... how many were going to St Ives...?

        by AsIwasgoingtosaintIves on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:09:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why wouldn't I be on board (0+ / 0-)

          with rich people paying more taxes?
          And if you seriously think there's no difference between the two parties, I would point you to that dead body in Texas that was someone's mother and wife, which is currently being used as an incubator. Those aren't Democrats doing that.

          Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

          by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 01:29:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  So...if the Standard Formula is right after all, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    does that mean that

    1. They're out of jobs?


    2. Where's my warp drive?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:52:33 AM PST

  •  Don't ever just take a person's word for it. (0+ / 0-)

    Take a look at this.  This is the POTUS' #1 campaign donor.  Too bad he does not want to pay his taxes

    As I was going to St Ives, I met a man with seven wives. The seven wives had seven sacks, the seven sacks had seven cats, the seven cats had seven kits. Kits, cats, sacks and wives... how many were going to St Ives...?

    by AsIwasgoingtosaintIves on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:52:45 AM PST

  •  Speaking of Goliath... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Patango, Mark Sumner

    Just saw this on our local "newspaper" website:

    Report details how DeVos family slayed Goliath in push for Michigan right-to-work law

    KENT COUNTY, MI – Dick DeVos and other conservative political and business leaders “felt like a rag-tag grouping of Davids” setting their sights on the Goliath of organized labor as they prepared to push right to work through the Michigan Legislature in late 2012, DeVos said in a Mother Jones report.
    Though quoting the (and I quote) "left-leaning magazine" for this insight, the short article cuts out any analysis the Mother Jones reporter might have supplied.

    In case you've never heard of them, the DeVos family are the heirs of the Amway fortune, and have been using their billions to distort state politics for the past coupla decades. Ah, Michigan.

    •  Rather a tall tale (0+ / 0-)
      Goliath's stature grew at the hand of narrators or scribes: the oldest manuscripts — the Dead Sea Scrolls text of Samuel, the 1st century historian Josephus, and the 4th century Septuagint manuscripts — all give his height as "four cubits and a span" (6 feet 9 inches or 2.06 metres); later manuscripts increase this to "six cubits and a span" (9 feet 9 inches or 2.97 metres) -- Wikipedia
      Six cubits and a span is what I recall being told when I was young and naive.

      Furthermore, per the New World Encyclopedia,

      A little known later account (2 Samuel 21:19) reports that it was actually not David, but one of his warriors named Elhanan, who killed Goliath. In this version, the battle takes place not at the beginning of Saul's reign, but just after its end. The recently enthroned King David has turned on his former Philistine allies and seeks to drive them out of the territory of Judah. In the course of the ensuing battles, Goliath and his three brothers—the sons of Rapha—are slain. None of them are killed by David himself.

      There's no such thing as a free market!

      by Albanius on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 11:41:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  ...That's not what Huckabee said... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:16:32 AM PST

  •  Kathleen Parker (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    wonders what happened to Huckabee. Remember in the 2008 primaries, even people here were saying "I wouldn't ever vote for him, but he's really a likable guy".

    Gail Collins takes a look at the old Mike Huckabee:

    Huckabee was always a social conservative — as governor he once tried to stop a mentally retarded girl who had been raped by her stepfather from getting an abortion. But he also signed a law requiring Arkansas employers to cover contraceptives under their insurance plans.


    This version of Mike Huckabee ran for president in 2008, and he was a front-runner for a while, because he was the most likable candidate. Huckabee was the one who smiled and wanted everybody to get along. He also calmly accepted flak from his opponents for having supported the idea of allowing the children of illegal immigrants to qualify for state scholarships in Arkansas. (“We’re a better country than to punish children for what their parents did.”)

    That Mike Huckabee was the author of a book — well, actually he is the author of an entire library of books. But the precampaign book for 2008 was “From Hope to Higher Ground” in which he suggested that the best solution to illegal immigrants was a path to citizenship. (In his to-do lists for readers, he suggested attending a naturalization ceremony — along with buying Girl Scout cookies and always saying “thank you.”)

    Well, the lovable Mike lost and went on to a career as a radio commentator and a Fox TV host. Perhaps he wanted to juice ratings. Perhaps he wanted a new path to the presidency in 2016. But over the past five years, as his party got raw and angry and mean, Huckabee got raw and angry and mean.

    Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

    by skohayes on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:18:55 AM PST

  •  Diary (0+ / 0-)
    As Carl Hulse of The Times reported recently, Democrats have been staggered by a $20 million advertising blitz produced by Americans for Prosperity
    They are running those ads here in Iowa against our Rep Bruce Braley who will be running for retiring Sen Tom Harkin seat

    IMO they are worthless ads , they are meat for dunderheads who will never vote for him any way , Braley has toured this state from the beginning of the ACA and shot down all the lies these people offer , I think it is great they are wasting their cash like morons  

    Dems should counter these ads by pointing out they are all "paid for" with tax write offs , Koch bros get massive tax returns buying these political ads while these same GOP scream about THE DEBT

    Beer Drinkers & Hell Raisers

    by Patango on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:30:02 AM PST

  •  Eckert may be permanently scarred by his ordeal (0+ / 0-)

    but he should wind up being one of the wealthiest men in America, and law enforcement will probably not do cavity searches for drugs anymore, after all the lawsuits and appeals are done.

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 07:43:33 AM PST

  •  My blood pressure was dropping precipitously (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mark Sumner, marina

    So I turned on Face the Nation and spent a minute watching smarmy Bill Kristol and insufferable Peggy Noonan and now I'm about ready to stroke out.

    They're just so awful.

    Dear future generations: Please accept our apologies, We were roaring drunk on petroleum -Kurt Vonnegut

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 08:30:24 AM PST

  •  Are the Kochs frightened or intrigued? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Honestly, it's got to be some kind of revelation that Democrats could raise so much money from small donors and still get away with working for the 1%.

    I can imagine the Kochs sitting in some well-padded getaway wondering how they can do exactly what they've been doing without having to spend their own money.

    Great scam.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 08:56:06 AM PST

  •  Did you mean..? (0+ / 0-)
    Get that? Being pro-rape is not a war on women so long as there's one woman willing to fight on your side. Carry on, Professor Quisling.
    ..or do I just need more coffee?

    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    by notKeith on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:11:07 AM PST

  •  The reason the Dems are "staggered" by the Kochs (0+ / 0-)

    is that the D.C. Dems are incompetent political hacks. A moderately-intelligent 14-year old could have predicted two years ago that the Kochs were going to spend hundreds of millions to defeat Dems in 2014, but because national Dems are blithering, feckless, and fuckless idiots, they're surprised by this development.

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