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Before we can diminish our sufferings from the ill-controlled aggressive assaults of fellow citizens, we must renounce the philosophy of punishment, the obsolete, vengeful penal attitude. In its place we would seek a comprehensive, constructive social attitude—therapeutic in some instances, restraining in some instances, but preventive in its total social impact.

In the last analysis this becomes a question of personal morals and values. No matter how glorified or how piously disguised, vengeance as a human motive must be personally repudiated by each and every one of us. This is the message of old religions and new psychiatries. Unless this message is heard, unless we, the people—the man [and woman] on the street—can give up our delicious satisfactions in opportunities for vengeful retaliation on scapegoats, we cannot expect to preserve our peace, our public safety, or our mental health.

Can we? Will we?

I must stop here, leaving this unfinished. The whole subject is an area of accelerated change. This in itself is heartening.

    —Karl Menninger
        The Crime of Punishment, 1966

Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2005House, Senate approve 2006 budget: is Arctic drilling inevitable?:

Now that the House and the Senate have confirmed the federal budget, it looks like oil drilling in the Arctic is closer to reality:

After decades of trying to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil exploration, backers of drilling said Friday that they were closer than ever now that Congress had adopted a budget.

The $2.56 trillion federal budget for 2006, adopted late Thursday night by the House and Senate,includes a provision that Congress can open the refuge by enacting a particular kind of legislation, called "a reconciliation," that is not vulnerable to Senate filibusters, which have been used to kill such drilling measures in the past.

Majorities in both chambers have already voiced support of Arctic drilling this year. The House approved broad energy legislation last week that includes a drilling provision. In the Senate, lawmakers voted narrowly in favor of drilling last month, when the issue came up in connection with the budget.

"A majority in the Senate support it and a majority in the House support it," Representative Richard W. Pombo, Republican of California and the chairman of the House Resources Committee, said on Friday. "So I think it's going to happen, after 25 years of fighting over it."

Tweet of the Day:

OUR Kids are going to be Saddled with Enormous Debt so the 1%ers can enjoy low tax rates and leave the Wealth they Grabbed to THEIR Kids.

On today's Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin brings us The Upshot's "Who Will Win The Senate?" simulation, the latest polling on approval ratings, 2016 contestants, ACA, foreign policy, the economy, etc. Reactions to the Sterling ouster. Pediatricians: high-deductible plans are crap. Joan McCarter reviews the week's craziness, the demise of "repeal & replace," and the millions more with insurance. Rick Scott gets his bald head handed to him on Obamacare. FBI trouble for Sam Kickback, er, Brownback. Scalia muffs it. And, the Daily Kos endorsement of Daylin Leach in PA-13. Finally, the role of the player's union in Sterling's ouster.

High Impact Posts. Top Comments.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I have a teaching job for next year (16+ / 0-)

    and I explain a bit about it in this post which I invite you to read


    "Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is more people who have come alive." - Howard Thurman

    by teacherken on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:31:53 PM PDT

  •  Unattributable Original Quote (7+ / 0-)
    “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.”
    George Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde, et al.
    David Brenner did a brilliant stand-up on this in his, "Kill the Messenger," bit. Singing and dancing: "We're gonna raaaape your women. We're gonna burrrrrn your village."

    Lying is sooooo much safer. And a hell of a lot more profitable.

    Don't hate me, I'm just a messenger.

    To quote the greatest philosopher of the 20th century: "I yam what I yam, and that's all what I yam."

    by franklyn on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:33:56 PM PDT

  •  Intense heat and drying winds in SoCal this week. (13+ / 0-)

    And the fires inland are blowing smoke out to the coast as the Santa Anas blow from the desert areas out there in a nice funneling action to us here in Long Beach. Feels like Phoenix right here near the Pacific Ocean.

    I've watched CA weather since we came to the Los Angeles area when I was a kid, and there used to be some sort of a pattern.

    Now, NO pattern, NO predictability, and constant ping-ponging of extreme, goofy weather. And just when we have more ammunition against the climate-deniers, an El Nino might come along next season which might give us some near-normal or even above-normal rainfall, which will deliver an "I told you so" from the Foxers and other imbeciles.

    In the meantime, when things get into this tinder-box a condition, even the silly, infuriating weathercasters here can stop saying what "gorgeous" weather we're having in Los Angeles, and this is why people want to come here!

    "The soil under the grass is dreaming of a young forest, and under the pavement the soil is dreaming of grass."--Wendell Berry

    by Wildthumb on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:42:14 PM PDT

  •  Last Moon of April setting tonight (14+ / 0-)


    Pistachios are like our politics - when the two sides are divided, that's when the nuts come out! - Stephen Colbert

    by Fordmandalay on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:46:58 PM PDT

  •  BENGHAZI!!! (7+ / 1-)

    exploding head photo: Head Exploding HeadExploding_zpse473007d.gif

    Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi. Benghazi? Benghazi! Benghazi Benghazi, Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi. Benghazi: Benghazi Benghazi Charles Krauthammer is a hinge-free jelly of oozing futility Benghazi Benghazi. Benghazi; Benghazi BENGHAZI.

    “I would like to get rid of the homophobes, sexists, and racists in our audience. I know they're out there and it really bothers me.” ― Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 08:47:22 PM PDT

  •  When this asshole (Ailes) kicks the bucket, (7+ / 0-)

    I'm going to throw a block party.

    How Fox News Shoved Shepard Smith Back Into The Closet:

    Or it could be that, when Smith tried to come out last year, Fox silenced and punished him.

    In the summer of 2013, according to multiple sources with knowledge of their exchange, Shepard Smith approached Fox News president Roger Ailes about publicly coming out. The newly attached anchor was eager, at the time, to finally acknowledge his sexuality. “It’s time,” he told Ailes and other colleagues. “It’s time.”

    Instead, Ailes informed Smith that the network’s famously conservative audience would not tolerate a gay news anchor. Ailes’ answer was definitive: Smith could not say he’s gay.

    “I would like to get rid of the homophobes, sexists, and racists in our audience. I know they're out there and it really bothers me.” ― Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:03:12 PM PDT

    •  But then there's this, regardless of what one (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LinSea, Jeff Y, JeffW, Eric Nelson

      thinks of Politico in general or Dylan Byers in particular.

      The report, which Fox News calls "a complete fabrication," states that Ailes told Smith he was not allowed to come out because Fox News viewers would not tolerate a gay news anchor. The report states that the exchange took place during Smith's contract negotiations, and that these negotiations took place after a July party at which executive vice president Bill Shine "flipped out" when Smith showed up with his boyfriend.

      POLITICO has learned that Shine was not in attendance at the party cited in Gawker's report, but rather in Charleston, South Carolina, with his family. Moreover, the party in question took place on July 4, after Smith renewed his contract with the network in June -- which means the contract negotiations were over by the time Gawker's alleged exchange would have taken place. Though as a Fox News spokesperson told POLITICO, “No such meeting ever took place in regard to Shep, nor would it ever.”

      Max Read, Gawker's editor-in-chief, said Wednesday afternoon that the story had been updated to note that Shine was not at the party. "Otherwise we stand by our reporting," he said.

      I would say in Magic 8 Ball speak, "situation unclear".

      "Go well through life"-Me (As far as I know)
      This message will self-destruct upon arrival in the NSA archives in Utah.

      by MTmofo on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:31:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Punishment is not a philosophy (5+ / 0-)

    it is a visceral reaction. Discipline is a philosophy. Punishment for some always seems to be accepted as par for the course, while objected for others. Let us not forget that punishment, above all else, is about emotion, and not logic or end result! Perhaps we should treat each other as we hope to be treated. Now that's a Philosophy!

    •  Any philosophy that doesn't take into account (6+ / 0-)

      the existence of sociopaths/psychopaths is doomed to failure.  

      Likewise, I very much want to see the banksters behind bars for their crimes, including fraud on a massive scale.

      Is there some emotion involved in this?  Damn right.  It makes me angry that those who caused the global financial crisis have gotten away with it.  But it also involves logic:

      1) They are clearly not competent to run a global financial system, and yet they do, and the political and justice systems are rigged to their benefit, to the loss of the rest of us, and

      1) If the last crimes aren't punished, and I mean high level criminals, and real punishment, not "fraction of the fraudulent profits" fines, then these crimes will occur again, and worse.  They're not "done".  They don't recognize "enough."  They want to own it all, profit from every scintilla of our lives and our cities, towns, homes, and countryside.

      In other words, we are all in DANGER from the banksters being on the streets.  

      © cai Visit to join the fight against global warming.

      by cai on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:25:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  How did the thread get hijacked by one (0+ / 0-)

    unrelated posted tweet. Not that student debt isn't important but why not make this subject a 2nd diary or post?

  •  The red states make (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    tons of money from the prison system

    and that is not likely to change any time soon

  •  Today I feel good about single payer by 2017 in CA (8+ / 0-)

     photo b80a2441-25b2-4674-a969-f62600aef8a1_zps0df8272b.png

    Trust me.

     photo champagne.jpg

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:21:45 PM PDT

    •  ...Pending another Roberts Court 5-4 FAIL. (0+ / 0-)

      Their last raised middle-finger continues to hurt states like mine, where a lot more people who needed Medicaid could have gotten it (but instead got screwed by Republican governors).

      Stop the FCC from killing the Internet! E-mail them. Call them. Tell the President & your congressmen to help save Internet freedom!

      by Brown Thrasher on Thu May 01, 2014 at 01:12:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  These people exist. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KenBee, Shockwave, Krush, Lying eyes, eeff

    These libertarians claim to love our Constitution even MORE than conservatives and liberals, and yet they seem to have no understanding of what the First Amendment does and does not do. Here's some brain droppings from popular libertarian "thinker" Mark Dice.

    Maybe the entire NBA should be shut down for obviously being racist against white people. Or maybe the league needs affirmative action to help balance out the teams by adding more white guys. The NBA is comprised of 78 percent black players, 17 percent whites, four percent Latinos, and one percent Asian. The whole "white men can't jump" joke is just a symptom of the institutional racism found in basketball. Let's not stop with banning the LA Clippers owner for life to solve the NBA's racism problem (for him making statements off the job in the privacy of his own home), let's stop racism in the NBA for good with some new affirmative action measures that will equal out the numbers of whites, Latinos and Asians in the NBA. And let's start firing every black player who has ever used the word "cracker" or "white trash" in the privacy of his own home too. You're not racist, are you? Then you should have no problem agreeing with this new policy. Thanks. Signed, the Politically Correct Police.
    So I guess you're cool with being fired from your job for the things you say in the privacy of your own home? Donald Sterling being banned from the NBA and fined 2.5 million dollars is a terrible assault on privacy and freedom of speech and here's why. (and yes he is a racist scumbag, that's not the point, you just won't get it until the politically correct police come for YOU, will you?) (Links to Alex Jones' conspiracy website InfoWars)
    These people really do need a refresher course on the Constitution.  And these free market libertarians seem disgusted the free market was actually working here, with sponsors pulling out like crazy BECAUSE of the racism that was exposed being toxic to their name brands.  These idiots then conflate that with the ultimate meritocracy of pro sports.
  •  University and city divesting from fossil fuels (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LinSea, Shockwave, fb, greenbird, Eric Nelson

    This machine kills Fascists.

    by KenBee on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:32:15 PM PDT

  •  Solar Power / Bird Kills (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Interesting summary of solar generating effect on birds

  •  Actually, ethics is the philosophy...which implies (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    a partular code of ethics consisting of proper virtues, justice is one of the virtues and methods of punishment and reward are both aspects of justice -or something like that.

    Best Scientist Ever Predicts Bacon Will Be Element 119 On The Periodic Table

    by dov12348 on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:48:01 PM PDT

  •  there is only one real punishment: (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, Eric Nelson, OLinda, ejoanna

    i will write about it in my book:
    "How To Successfully Get Older Without Enjoying It
    -- and Still Have Money Left Over"

    in progress.

    TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes? -- Addington's Perpwalk.

    by greenbird on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:54:57 PM PDT

  •  Just saw the monarch butterfly migration (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    on NOVA. It showed their journey from Canada through the Midwest to along the Sierra Madre in Mexico.

    But nowhere did it show them migrating through the western United States or California specifically, and I see bunches of them on our milkweeds (caterpillar food) and other native CA plants that the adults use for nectar. So wtf? Will look into this.

    "The soil under the grass is dreaming of a young forest, and under the pavement the soil is dreaming of grass."--Wendell Berry

    by Wildthumb on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 10:01:04 PM PDT

  •  Rachel Maddow does history on execution.. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DerAmi, Lying eyes, 714day, a2nite

    ..methods and drug cocktails with a 1977 NBC report on Gary Gilmore execution, first in a decade
    NBC special report Jan 17, 1977 when after a decade, executions begin again in America:

    “His name was Gary Gilmore but it is only by an accident of timing that we are talking about him tonight..  about him and what happened here at the Utah state prison today. But what we are really talking about is each of us; our society and the fact that our nation as of today is back in the business of capital punishment.

    The purpose of this program is to mark this turning in our history and to ask the question; ’where did we come from?.. And where might we now be going?’

    Historians tell us there have been executions in this world for perhaps about four thousand has been a grisly history.  In that time legal killings have been carried out by crucifying people, stoning them, burning them, boiling them, roasting them, dismembering them, choking them, poisoning them, beheading them, gassing them, electrocuting them.

    The state of Utah gives the condemned person a choice; shooting or hanging. Gary Gilmore chose to be shot at sunrise today.”

    (short ad – sorry)


    In the last analysis this becomes a question of personal morals and values. No matter how glorified or how piously disguised, vengeance as a human motive must be personally repudiated by each and every one of us.
  •  I recently told my son (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, 714day, KJG52, Fabienne, JeffW

    who spent part of his adolescence in residential programs, that he didn't have to give up getting angry, he just had to give up on acting it out. I told him that I sometimes imagine all the terrible things I'd like to do to someone, and because I know I would never do them, I can enjoy the fantasy.

    He thought for a moment, then asked if I had ever done that with him. I just smiled. He looked at me differently.

    Menninger got lots of things right.

    Being attentive to the needs of others might not be the point of life, but it is the work of life. It can be ... almost impossibly difficult. But it is not something we give. It is what we get in exchange for having to die. - Jonathan Safran Foer

    by ramara on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 10:33:37 PM PDT

  •  If Menninger thought old religions rejected (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, JeffW

    vengeance, he was full of shit. This is exactly where vengeance came from in 1966 during the Vietnam War and precisely where it is coming from today.

    ...vengeance as a human motive must be personally repudiated by each and every one of us. This is the message of old religions and new psychiatries.
    Religion abetted by greed furthered societies by binding them together into common purpose, common mobs often enough. They are the problem, not the solution to what ails society.

    What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. Henry VI Part II Act 3 Scene 2

    by TerryDarc on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 10:49:51 PM PDT

    •  Maybe he was being altruistic and if asked.. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      714day, TerryDarc

      ..would blame people themselves that use religion to justify their own conquests and killing as you correctly point out - the crusades

      And that the actual religion as, for instance President Jimmy Carter views religion or 'Nuns on the Bus" view it, as loving and respecting thy neighbor and those in need; that aspect was his focus.

      That's what I thought was meant an I'm not a believer/supporter organized religions myself. Don't know for sure though

  •  No. More. Death Penalty. Period. (6+ / 0-)

    "Why you sockdologizing ol' mantrap, you!"

    by ejoanna on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 11:49:04 PM PDT

    •  some people deserve the death penalty (0+ / 0-)

      but unfortunately people in Texas will kill you for fucking up their bar be que

      So I think none of the red states should be allowed to administer the death penalty

      because they do not understand who deserves it and who does not

  •  The "Crime of Punishment" is just the half of it. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The whole of it is the Culture of Obedience. The other half of punishment is license. Total obedience merits the license to kill and commit every other atrocity. The culture of obedience relies on punishment and reward. Both, however, are socially destructive  even as the individual survives like a super-intelligent predator.
    The predator's family unit is not a social unit, certainly not a microcosm of society, contrary to what the Cons are won't to argue. The biological family is not a social unit. The biological family is an exploitative cohort. The household, providing a material base, is both the basic economic and social unit. The social unit is characterized by transformation and production -- creation. Creation has a material, not a spiritual base.
    Imagine that. Man is basically matter (clay) not idea.
    But, treating man, once created, like matter is wrong.

    by hannah on Thu May 01, 2014 at 01:01:18 AM PDT

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

    We have created a culture of death as human beings, acting on our need to satisfy our desires for self justification and status, no human culture is exempt and we all kill. We do not value life or living, the experience of life as an absolute value of being, we put a judgement on it as not "worth living," if certain conditions aren't met. Our egos have made the experience of life ridiculous, the list of labels dividing us is endless and the conditions we place on each other have become intolerable.

    Our hubris as humans is incredible, we initiate war and act as if it is not wholesale murder, we kill millions by starvation, poverty and indifference, and talk about "national security policy," as if a peaceful, prosperous world is our goal.

    Justice is not attainable without perfect knowledge and no one has perfect knowledge; therefore, to call our system of retribution through legal processes "Justice," is laughable. As long as there is a possible remedy for an act of "Justice," then we can claim some justification for our legal processes, but there is no remedy for death. Therefore, death should never be considered as a means of implementing "Justice." But the death penalty is not about "Justice," it is about vengeance and the sickness of a culture that demands blood as a price for social peace.

    Which returns us to the culture of death that demands the society be sacrificed to the idol of vengeance and retribution so we may have "social peace." I weep for my children...

    "Intelligence is quickness in seeing things as they are..." George Santayana

    by KJG52 on Thu May 01, 2014 at 02:40:48 AM PDT

  •  Jeers to winger commenters on the Sterling (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    stir-up.  It seems over in Wingertopia that the conversation has already shifted from the overt racism of a wealthy billionaire to discussions of how mercenary his girlfriend is (hey, beautiful girlfriend almost 60 years the junior to her married wealthy boyfriend who looks like an extra from LOTR movies, of course it had to be true love, right?).  The other discussion has moved over to the discussion of what impact the fact that Sterling is Jewish would have on his racism.  

    I think I could see the criticism of the girlfriend coming and I watched the meme that Sterling was a Democrat debunked and resurrected a half a dozen times.  However this insistence that his being Jewish is the governing factor in his remarks leaves me gobsmacked.  It would seem to show, IMHO, that antisemitism not only runs deep among the RW, as does racism, but it also runs very close to the surface as well

  •  Menninger (0+ / 0-)

    Yes a thousand times over to what Menninger wrote.  Punishment serves no purpose except vengeance and only continues the cycle of hostility.  It's time for us to mature as a species and move beyond it.

    Perhaps everything terrible is, in its deepest being, something helpless than wants help from us.

    by Fabienne on Thu May 01, 2014 at 07:47:46 AM PDT

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