Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Tone of the Talk

This week Nancy Pelosi said something that has been on my mind, too, and doubtless a lot of people are growing concerned about the tenor of our nation's dialogue. I only finally watched the video just now, you can see it HERE. From the descriptions and discussion, I figured she'd broken down weeping, but really her voice is even, her sentences are carefully and well formed, she has tears in her eyes, that's it.

Pelosi was in San Francisco at the time Harvey Milk was assassinated, and she has compared the tone of today's talk to that. Here is the core of her comment:
"I wish that we would all, again, curb our enthusiasm in some of the statements that are made, understanding that -- that some of the people -- the ears it is falling on are not as balanced as the person making the statement might assume."

I think this was overly generous, I'd say that people like Glenn Beck are just as nutty as the people who listen to them, she is giving them more credit than I would.

Something has started to happen, even here on our blog, that worries me a lot. Certainly in the five years TTF has been busy we have been embroiled in controversies, that's what we're here for, to fight over issues that involve our community, to promote values that we think are important, in the face of outspoken opposition. The other side has always played dirty, starting in the first month when they bought the dot-com version of our domain name, which ends with dot-org, and pointed it at their own site. (Try it: http://www.teachthefacts.com.) Over the years we have tracked and documented the lies, the misconstruals, the nuttiness of the other side, and they have complained about us, and that's the way it works. It happens that our view is the majority position in our county and also courts and boards have decided in our side's favor in the long run, but whatever, there are two sides and we fight it out.

Lately in the blog comments, though, there has been a new level of sentiment. Several times recently, commenters have said that my posts here, or my beliefs, are "evil."

This sounds to me like the voice of desperation. The religious right won some elections, at one point they owned the federal government -- the executive, legislative, judicial branches, all of it. But the people in this democratic country held an honest election and turned things around, now there are liberals in Congress and the White House, and the Supreme Court may shift further during this President's term. Now the other side is screeching that they "want their country back." And, you know, they're tough, they fight hard, they might be able to win an election again, that's how you get it back. You don't do it simply by disrupting meetings and lying on television, we'll have an election in a couple of years and if the people don't like who's in office now they'll elect somebody else.

When you call somebody evil you suck the life out of them, you treat them as a shell, not a person. It's okay to punish evil people, it's okay to kill them, they aren't real people, they aren't good people like you and me, they're bad people. I think that in a fundamentalist Christian context when you say somebody is evil you are saying that they are doing the work of the devil, and in the Bible those who go against God's will are often put to death through some horrible means, stoning or whatever.

I don't like to talk about this. I should be able to write on a blog about sex ed and nondiscrimination bills in a suburban county without fearing for my life. In a free society this should never cross my mind, I am not advocating for anything other than an open mind and open discussion, and I shouldn't have to worry that antipatriotic members of our community feel I'm evil, for crying out loud.

Granted, a lightweight version of this kind of sentiment has existed all along, that really has been the problem since we started. There are, for instance, diverse views on what should be taught in a sex-ed classroom. Our group argued that classes should be informative and thorough, students should learn everything they will need in order to make responsible decisions, including judgments and decisions regarding their own and others' sexual orientation and gender identity. More conservative parents might feel that classes should promote abstinence, and that sex education belongs in the home, not in a public school. Those are both valid viewpoints, and the school district would benefit from an honest discussion between those two groups.

But instead we had a group that wanted to shout out that gay people are dirty, perverted, disease-spreading pedophiles, that the subject is too immoral to be discussed in a health class. The underlying assumption was that their religious belief was correct and everybody else was wrong, and it didn't matter what you said, whether you lied or cheated or twisted the words of the curriculum, the only important thing was to win, to stop the curriculum cold.

When the county added gender identity to the nondiscrimination bill, same thing. You can debate whether discrimination on the basis of this or that should be prevented, including gender identity, it's a fair topic to discuss. But one Republican leader stood up in the County Council meeting and shouted "Heil Hitler!" and added ‘"Wait until little girls start showing up dead all over the county because of freaks of nature." A law says you can't discriminate against someone on the basis of their gender identity, but thse people wanted you to imagine that the result would be dead little girls. Another letter to the Council said, "Hopefully, it will be one of your daughters who gets raped first!" These statements had nothing at all to do with the bill under consideration, and everything to do with frightening people into supporting prejudice and discrimination. The question is: how far will it go?

That kind of talk is nutty, I think we can all agree about that, these are people who have lost touch with reality in some fundamental sense. But lately we have seen the incredible explosion of the tone of it, whether it is racist sentiment, people carrying guns to speeches by the President, incitement to join militias and secede from the US, the desire to "take our country back," or challenges to the qualifications of Barack Obama to hold the office, and I believe Pelosi was onto something, this has gone beyond extremism. It is beginning to sound dangerous.

It seems to me that some people try to live their lives in ways that are reasonable, seeing themselves in the context of a larger society where the individual's needs are limited by the needs of others, while other people see the world as a place of competition where everyone is striving as hard as they can to attain the most personal power. It is very difficult for the two sides to talk to one another, as evidenced in the current health-care debate where the Democrats are trying to work out a way to provide health care to Americans and the Republicans are trying to beat the Democrats. When you see everything in terms of power, violence may appear to be a rational tool for the establishment and enforcement of domination. I hope, with Nancy Pelosi, that the public discourse will cool down a little bit so Americans can focus on solving their problems, but I am not optimistic.

76 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What you never grasp, Jim, is how two-sided the problem you cite is. Nancy Pelosi is one of the serial offenders in attempting to demonize her opponents.

Example:

Joe Wilson calls Obama a liar.

Several Democrats call Wilson a racist.

Which is worse, a liar or a racist?

And, when you get right down to it, the liar charge is not hard to back up while the racist one has no substance.

I called your implication that abortion is justified when a child is economically inconvenient to be evil which I think it is. I hope you will consider the possibility that it is. I haven't use that word for any other post or idea here. I don't think of you as an evil guy, however, at least judging from what I've read here. Most people do and say evil things from time to time and have various rationales and justifications. It's the human condition.

There are strong words used on both sides of this debate. Calling people "hateful bigot" seems about the equivalent of calling someone "evil". It's a worry for people on both sides that when things go out on the internet, there may be some nut will be moved to violence because you never know who's reading. Hopefully, however, no one who calls himself a Christian will do anything violent. If any nut is out there thinking that, read Matthew 7:5.

September 20, 2009 6:44 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Nancy Pelosi is one of the serial offenders in attempting to demonize her opponents.

Example:

Joe Wilson calls Obama a liar.

Several Democrats call Wilson a racist.


I see, Nancy Pelosi is a terrible offender, if you attribute anything that is said by any Democrat to her.

I called your implication that abortion is justified when a child is economically inconvenient to be evil which I think it is.

I have never said any such thing or implied it. The fact that you would create such a fact, attribute it to me, and then call my imputed belief "evil" is an example that shows how the discourse has turned dangerous. I pray that nobody acts on your irresponsible expression.

JimK

September 20, 2009 8:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I pray that nobody acts on your irresponsible expression."

Prayer is good and I wouldn't want to discourage it but I don't know what "acts" you imagine.

Here's one for any "Christians" who would ever dream of such a thing:

"Do not repay evil with evil"

I Peter 3:19

Christians aren't called to respond to evil with evil.

Here's the statement I interpretted as endorsing abortion for economic convenience. If I'm wrong, I'm glad to hear it:

"But in some parts of the country (not necessarily geographical, perhaps demographic cross-sections) teen pregnancy is not seen as a negative outcome, but rather as God's blessing. The result is babies born to mothers who can't take care of them, the perpetuation of poverty and poor health, despair, and a major obstacle for the teen mother who dreamed of a career or even a marriage."

September 20, 2009 9:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'A throwback to Hitlerian racism."

A recent description of public debate in the eighth circle of polemic hell?

No, that was the Rev. Jesse Jackson hurling an accusation at Democratic presidential aspirant Jimmy Carter 33 years ago.

Vitriol wasn't invented this summer.

Carter incensed Jackson during his 1976 presidential campaign when the former Georgia governor declared "there's nothing wrong with ethnic purity being maintained" in a neighborhood.

It was as jarring a phrase then as it is now, but Carter was in search of votes among the white ethnic urban Democratic primary voters hostile to government housing programs that brought racial integration.

Pressed to explain, Carter's venomous piety nearly ended his campaign.

According to Time magazine, "Carter's face reddened with anger, and he began to sweat.

Instead of softening his language, he spoke of housing policies in terms of 'black intrusion,' of 'alien groups' and of 'a diametrically opposite kind of family.'"

Carter apologized for being careless in his choice of words in time to win that year's decisive Pennsylvania primary.

He went on to preside over four years of decline, to give outsiders a bad name, and to declare Americans self-indulgent and acquisitive.

Three years after accusing Israel of creating an apartheid with aspects worse than South Africa's, Carter was at it again last week.

The former president used boorish Republican U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson's shouting at President Obama during his Sept. 9 speech to a joint session of Congress to identify racism as the cause of growing opposition to the president's policies.

The president graciously accepted Wilson's apology for rude behavior.

Grace, however, has never been a Carter hallmark.

He knows that the national debate over health care has raged for decades.

The late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy tormented Carter over the issue for months during their 1980 contest.

Kennedy saw Carter as insufficiently committed to change and made it the centerpiece of his challenge.

Health care was the one issue in that contest in which Kennedy found his voice in the early going.

Carter assured Democratic primary voters that he was "steady in an emergency" and never "panicked in a crisis," stinging references to Kennedy at Chappaquiddick.

Carter always played rough, and at 85 he still does.

September 20, 2009 9:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So does Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

She declared Thursday that the tone of opponents of expanding government's role in health care remind her of the charged atmosphere in late 1970s San Francisco and the murders of Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk by their colleague, former Supervisor Dan White.

Her comparison was short on examples.

Restraint and Pelosi, however, rarely join hands.

The San Francisco Democrat has been cascading her designer demagoguery all over the nation's insurance companies.

They are variously "villains" who have been "immoral all along in how they have treated the people they insure."

By opposing the policies Pelosi favors, they have engaged in "carpet-bombing" and "shock and awe against the public option."

Pelosi is beginning to show the strain of attempting the double act of caroling incendiary rhetoric while warning others to remain silent.

Politics dangles too many temptations before her and her lieutenants.

On the wings of all that ugly talk about insurance companies, Pelosi came Friday to the belly of the insurance company beast, Hartford.

Those immoral insurance companies "have had a good thing going for a long time at the expense of the American people and the health of our country," she has said.

Pelosi wants a piece of that good thing at $1,500 a throw.

A seat at Pelosi's table while she tore through the Insurance City required executives to take some time off from carpet-bombing and hand over $30,000 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

No one will ask how many children could be insured for that.

Congressman John Larson, a Pelosi loyalist, hosted the swank event at The Restaurant on 20, high atop the building named for the Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co.

"Our members have to go out there ready to take on a big special interest that has not made our country healthier," Pelosi said in July.

Except on Friday, when Pelosi and her local disciple cared only about collecting cash.

September 20, 2009 9:52 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, there is nothing in that statement, expressed or implied, about abortion. It is my belief that unmarried teenagers should not get pregnant, for a lot of reasons. That you find such a belief to be evil is very not a good sign.

JimK

September 20, 2009 9:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, were you going to show us where Nancy Pelosi called Joe Wilson a racist? Or did you just want to show disrespect to her?

September 20, 2009 9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It is my belief that unmarried teenagers should not get pregnant, for a lot of reasons. That you find such a belief to be evil is very not a good sign."

I never said that or implied it.

"were you going to show us where Nancy Pelosi called Joe Wilson a racist?"

I never she did. I said the scurvy bamd of corrupt politicians she leads commit the same rhetorical abuses, or worse, than the opponents she complains about.

"Or did you just want to show disrespect to her?"

Well, that was one of things I meant to do. She's earned some disrespect.

September 21, 2009 1:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Showing disrespect, "Anonymous" is your prime reason for attempting to pirate this site. Every one of your blogs includes one or more statements in which you demonize anybody who disagrees with you...whether it is about the current health debate or school curriculum or anyone who doesn't meet your specific definitions of "gender identity" or sexual orientation.

I'm interested in Jim's comments to you, though. He seems only to respond when he feels that he is personally attacked by you, the cowardly "Anonymous". I'm sure he is well aware of your multitudinous entries in which you attack other posters here as:
"idiots", "stupid", "deviants" or other offensive and belittling epithets.

I find it rather amusing, very hypocritical, and disingenuous that you attack Nancy Pelosi as "one of the serial offenders in attempting to demonize her opponents." What a curious statement for you, our prime offender, to make in passing judgement on her behaviours (or, rather, your interpretation of her behaviour). You have earned a huge amount of disrespect yourself.

Two thoughts come to mind: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you", and "Judge not that ye be not judged". A dose of humility and civility on your part would go a long way here in making amends for your own transgressions.
Citizen

September 21, 2009 9:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Two thoughts come to mind: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you", and "Judge not that ye be not judged"."

Isn't your post a judgment, Citizen?

We've gone over this many times before. I'll say "OK, sure. Let's try some civil discourse. Before you know it some TTFer is slinging epithets and personal insults.

The problem is you simply consider my opinions offensive regardless of the manner in which they are presented.

Perfect example is the abortion issue. Abortion is the taking of innocent life. It is evil. And yet you guys think saying that is way over the line.

Tell you what, let's try it. We'll just discuss the issues and refrain from attacking each other and I'll alert you as soon as a TTFer messes it up.

Based on past exchanges, it won't be long.

September 21, 2009 12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Perfect example is the abortion issue. Abortion is the taking of innocent life. It is evil. And yet you guys think saying that is way over the line."

Nobody says having beliefs or saying what your own beliefs are is over the line but both sides feel having someone else's beliefs "shoved down their own throats" is over the line.

Nobody gets pregnant so they can have an abortion.

Miscarriage is a likely outcome of pregnancy.

Abortion is a medical solution to a medical problem called unwanted pregnancy.

If you oppose abortion, don't have one.

No one can force you to have one or to not have one.

If someone did try to force you to have one, or to not have one, that would be over the line.

September 21, 2009 6:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Abortion is a medical solution to a medical problem called unwanted pregnancy."

Now, this is an evil idea. Killing someone because they're "unwanted".

If the mother doesn't want them, someone else will. There are scores of agencies across the country that will take care of "unwanted" children until a adopter can be found.

And how ghastly that you used the word "solution".

Do you know anything about history?

September 21, 2009 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David Patterson, the ultraliberal governor of New York, is extremely unpopular in the Empire State. One reason is that he's been pushing for gay "marriage" there.

As a matter of fact, Barry Obama doesn't want him to run for re-election. He's afraid that will be another Republican takeover of a statehouse after New Jersey and Virginia.

Obama is apparently offering Patterson a federal appointment if he'll agree not to run.

Wonder what kind of czar he'll be.

and why American taxpayers should pay his salary....

September 21, 2009 9:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

looks like this will be known as the autumn of the big purple banana:

"Memo to President Barack Obama: It's a tax. Obama insisted this weekend on national television that requiring people to carry health insurance — and fining them if they don't — isn't the same thing as a tax increase. But the language of Democratic bills to revamp the nation's health care system doesn't quibble. Both the House bill and the Senate Finance Committee proposal clearly state that the fines would be a tax.

And the reason the fines are in the legislation is to enforce the coverage requirement.

"If you put something in the Internal Revenue Code, and you tell the IRS to collect it, I think that's a tax," said Clint Stretch, head of the tax policy group for Deloitte, a major accounting firm. "If you don't pay, the person who's going to come and get it is going to be from the IRS."

During the 2008 political campaign, Obama opposed making coverage mandatory because of the costs. His position has shifted now that it's becoming clear such a requirement will be part of any legislation that Congress sends him. Conservative activists are calling it a violation of his pledge not to raise taxes on the middle class.

"This is exactly what George Bush Sr. did when he said he wouldn't raise taxes, and it cost him the next election," said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. "Obama is doing the same thing, but he's insulting people by telling them that if you don't call it a big purple banana, somehow it wouldn't be a tax.""

September 21, 2009 9:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Isn't your post a judgment, Citizen?"
No, "Anonymous"...not a judgement of you - I was just quoting your Bible and the teachings of the individual you consider to be your saviour.
Curious thing about people like you who profess to be followers of a particular faith: when one points out your own violation of your professed beliefs, you turn it around and continue to pass judgement on others, in violation of those supposed beliefs.
Sheer hypocracy...and, I believe, a sin in the eyes of your church.

Once again...this is not a good home for you; you would feel so much more comfortable amongst your ilk. Get your own blog site and depart from this den of iniquity. Your "followers" will so much admire your obtuse loquaciousness and ENDLESS rants and raves, unlike readers here.
Peace be upon you.
Citizen

September 21, 2009 10:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous, your idiotic talking point about "it's a tax" is itself taxing. Can't you have an original thought? Requiring car insurance is not a tax, requiring health insurance is not a tax, you're just reading the Republican teleprompter and it makes you sound like a moron.

September 21, 2009 10:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not a tax? Then why does Baucus call it well...a TAX?

Page 29, sentence one of the bill introduced by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont) says: “The consequence for not maintaining insurance would be an excise tax.”

And the rest of the bill is clear that the Finance Committee does, in fact, consider it a tax: “The excise tax would be assessed through the tax code and applied as an additional amount of Federal tax owed.”

The bill requires every American, with few exceptions, to carry health insurance. To enforce this individual mandate, the Senate Finance Committee created the excise tax as a penalty for people who don’t have insurance – and it can run as much as $3,800 a year per family.

The House bill also refers to the penalties for not carrying insurance as a tax. It calls for a “tax on individuals without acceptable health care coverage” and amends the tax code to implement it.

September 21, 2009 11:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P.S. The source for the above post about the excise tax is Politico, but if you don't believe them, you can look it up in the bill yourself. I have friends who are in the health policy arena and they all howled when Obama said it wasn't a tax, pointing to the places in the bill where, indeed, it says: TAX!

September 21, 2009 11:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim.
I really want to know...
are you parents still alive and on medicare ?

because if they are, I would think they might be able to explain to you the definition of obamas "evil"

cutting off benefit to seniors who have payed into the system all their lives counting on it to be there for them IS EVIL.

do you have another definition ?

it means denying a heart bypass operationg to my 78 year old mom (now 83)....

do you not have a Mom ?

or do you just hate all the old folks you know ?

because I find them charming, enlightning and to be cherished.

and their memories to be cherished.

and their wisdom to be appreciated.

and I find myself listening to my Mom all the time because SHE IS ALWAYS RIGHT. (I tell my kids this but they don't listen)....


I make tons of mistkaes because I had to learn them for myself because I didn't listen to my mom.... she told me, I didn't listen, and now, as I get older, I ask more, and try to listen. and I try to make her gravy (and have her hand step me through it at Christmas... and I still can't get it right).


I did use to think she was silly. I now cherish her. do you cherish your mom ? How could you stand by and let your govt strip her of the Medicare system she has paid into for years ? don't you love you Mom ? I love mine.

I will not stand by and let my govt hurt her. How can you do this to your mom ?


theresa

September 22, 2009 12:11 AM  
Blogger JimK said...

Theresa

One of my parents is living and one is not. It may be hard for you to believe, but I love my parents and care about them, just like you love yours.

I think you should consider subscribing to some different email lists, watch a different channel, turn the radio to some music. Somebody has given you some weird ideas. This thought that everything is evil does not reflect well on you.

Try it. Turn off the radio. Go outside, look around, talk to your neighbor, see the good world. Even liberals love their parents, Theresa.

JimK

September 22, 2009 7:44 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

What's evil that the richest nation on Earth cannot provide health insurance for all her citizens, especially when so many other nations do. Some Americans get sicker and die waiting for their insurance companies to approve treatments, other American families go bankrupt paying for medical treatments their paid-up health insurance policies refuse to cover, and all the while medical companies make outrageous profits.

It's time for America to reform our broken health care system so that it covers all Americans without exception.

September 22, 2009 9:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In a one-on-one interview with Katie Couric, Glenn Beck says would have much preferred Hillary Clinton to be president instead of Barack Obama, and might have even voted for her against John McCain.

Beck called McCain is "a weird progressive, like Theodore Roosevelt" and said definitively, "I think John McCain would have been worse for the country than Barack Obama. Ha! How's that?"

The full interview will be available tonight at 7 Eastern

September 22, 2009 9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What's evil that the richest nation on Earth cannot provide health insurance for all her citizens, especially when so many other nations do."

What the socialist Obama administration is proposing is not providing, it is compelling. People will be compelled to buy insurance whether they can afford it or not.

"Some Americans get sicker and die waiting for their insurance companies to approve treatments,"

As opposed to getting sicker and dying when the government doesn't approve the treatment you need as cost efficient?

"other American families go bankrupt paying for medical treatments their paid-up health insurance policies refuse to cover,"

Again, the government can deny treatment just as easily as the insurance company.

People will go bankrupt from the increased cost of insurance premiums and excise taxes. And, if you don't pay that tax, they'll arrest and jail you but at least you'll get prison care. fasten your seat belt, Charles Dickens, debtor prison is back.

Furthermore, you'll pay that excise tax even if you do file bankruptcy because tax obligations aren't discharged under current bankruptcy laws.

"and all the while medical companies make outrageous profits."

Insurance companies don't. Pelosi and Obama are telling, uh, untruths about that.

Thr truth is affordability and insurance policies that don't meet people's needs could be addressed without nationalizing the health care industry which would cause more problems than it solves.

If Medicare were so wonderful, we'd be talking about a bill of a couple of paragraphs to extend it to everyone rather than a thousand pages.

Ronald Reagan: Government is not the problem, government is the solution.

btw, Obama didn't help the cause with his media blitz this weekend. His argument with George Stepanouplos about the definition of "tax" was positively Clintonesque and otherwise everyone was bored to the gourd by someone who we increasingly realize is not much of a PR guy.

September 22, 2009 10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim,

Sorry to burst your bubble, but I called your post about teenaged mothers "evil" and I've been to maybe a dozen church services during my entire life, at maybe a dozen different churches, and I couldn't quote a verse from the Bible if you paid me to. That being said...I recognize an evil thought when I see it. And that being said...my comment shouldn't bother you at all, based upon your guidelines surrounding who can and can't use the word "evil."

There's a saying in the iChing which says something like: "when evil is uncovered, it searches for weapons." Translation: You didn't like your evil thought being exposed, and so you lashed back at those who dared to brand your thought as evil. That's very understandable -- human nature is like that.

I don't understand your references to stoning and horrific punishments. Evil lives in our world, just as good lives in our world. If everybody were stoned because they expressed and evil thought, then we would all be stoned. Maybe when you think of evil, you think of Stephen King novels. Many of us, though, understand a much broader definition of evil. I believe you are being too limited in your scope of thinking. Criminal deeds do, indeed, fall under the category of evil, but that is too limited of a definition.

Also, I don't understand why you believe that you are being depersonalized if someone thinks that a writing of yours is evil. I have thought and said things that friends have pointed out is, at its base, inherently evil. They open my eyes and I am able to see where my thinking went awry. I did not think that my friends were plotting to do me in because I had expressed a thought that they felt, and said, was evil.

When someone points out someone else's evil thought, I don't understand at all how you see it as a call to violence. That is absolute nonsense.

September 22, 2009 10:56 AM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, the word "evil" has no meaning in a secular context. Some people choose to classify other people as evil, and the effect is, yes, to depersonalize the classified person, to dehumanize them, and such dehumanization does not in any way increase anyone's understanding of the world or improve the ability of anyone to solve any problem. The concept simplifies reality for the classifier, and I'm sorry if you disagree, but it does seem clear to me that the concept of evil includes the invitation to punish.

I do not find your quote in the I Ching and would be surprised if any Taoist text used such language, except perhaps in a poor translation. I remember being shocked when I first heard GW Bush use the phrase "Axis of Evil" in a speech, it was an early sign of a kind of vengeful, oversimplified thinking that marked his administration and poisoned our country, a sign that the administration intended to deal with those countries by violence instead of dialogue. You may disagree with my thoughts, but the idea I expressed here, which you commented on, that unmarried teenagers should not get pregnant hardly rises to the level of "evil," and I do consider that flavor of language to be overly provocative and dangerous.

JimK

September 22, 2009 11:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the exact iChing quote, which you no doubt found (it took one Google search for me) but neglected to mention. It's from Hexagram 43 of the very respected Wilhelm Baynes, with a foreword by C.G. Young:

"If evil is branded, it thinks of weapons, and if we do it the favor of fighting against it blow for blow, we lose in the end because thus we ourselves get entangled in hatred and passion."

September 22, 2009 12:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim -- By the way, I forgot to mention...does this quote look familiar to you??

"He's actually kind of likable, one of those examples of the banality of evil that so confuse people."

September 22, 2009 12:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Liberals have characterized as wild, weird and kooky any suggestion that Obama is a fascist. Fascist regimes, however, don't arise from nowhere but develop gradually.

Consider this:

"Political intimidation has always been part of the current Congress's health-care strategy: "If you're not at the table, you're on the menu" is tattooed on every lobbyist and industry rep in Washington. But Max Baucus's latest bullying tactics are hard to believe by even these standards, as the Senate Finance Chairman has sicced federal regulators on the insurer Humana Inc. for daring to criticize one part of his health bill.

Earlier this month, Humana sent a one-page letter to its customers enrolled in its Medicare Advantage plans, which offer private options to Medicare beneficiaries. Humana noted that, because of spending cuts proposed by Democrats, "millions of seniors and disabled individuals could lose many of the important benefits and services that make Medicare Advantage health plans so valuable." The Kentucky-based company also urged its customers to contact their Representatives. Pretty tame stuff, as these things go.

Mr. Baucus took it as a declaration of war. He complained to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the federal health-care agency, which on Friday duly ordered Humana to cease and desist. CMS claimed the mailer was "misleading and confusing" and told the company it has opened an official probe as to whether the mailer violated laws about how the insurers that manage Advantage plans are allowed to communicate with their customers, as well as other federal statutes.

"Please be advised that we take this matter very seriously and, based upon the findings our investigation, will pursue compliance and enforcement actions," CMS concluded, ominously. Humana could be fined or booted from Medicare Advantage altogether.

This episode neatly shows how all U.S. health care will operate if Mr. Baucus's bill becomes law. For months Humana and the wider insurance lobby have been among ObamaCare's most prominent cheerleaders, with the exception of Advantage cuts and the public option—even though they'll be converted into government contractors in the business of fulfilling whatever Congress happens to dictate. The insurers are willing to give up their remaining business autonomy because Democrats intend to mandate that all consumers buy their products—but as with Advantage now, that means government will control the funds upon which the insurers' survival depends. They'll have no choice but to genuflect, or else the political class will pull out the tire irons.

Humana merely made the mistake of trying to tell seniors the truth about what will happen to their coverage, and now CEO Michael McCallister had better hire a good team of lawyers. Mr. Baucus and the Obama Administration are out to make him an object lesson to the rest of the business class, and that means they won't stop until Humana cries uncle or is ruined."

The Democrats are telling corporations, don't disagree with us- or else.

How long before they do the same to individuals?

September 22, 2009 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Baucus draft legislation slashes $123 billion over the next decade from Medicare Advantage, which Democrats hate despite the fact that almost one-fourth of beneficiaries have chosen it over traditional fee-for-service Medicare. One reason seniors like it is because private insurers focus on quality and preventive care and try to manage benefits, as opposed to simply paying bills.

A new study from America's Health Insurance Plans, the industry trade group, finds that seniors on Advantage in California spent 30% fewer days in hospitals over fee-for-service patients, based on federal data. Democrats say that insurers are "overpaid," but the cuts—as Humana correctly noted—mean that seniors may lose this coverage.

Mr. Baucus doesn't want seniors to be educated about these facts, and obviously he's willing to use his enormous power to punish any private company that doesn't affirm his, well, creative version of reality. Nearly half of Humana's yearly revenue comes from Medicare Advantage, and the insurer says that it is complying in full with the CMS investigation. Yesterday, the agency also barred all Advantage insurers from providing similar information to their beneficiaries.

September 22, 2009 12:24 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, in response to your comments,
evil is mentioned in the commentary on hexagram 43, as you quoted, but not in the ancient text. There are layers upon layers of interpretation on the original judgments and images, each reflecting its historical era. Further, the phrase "the banality of evil" encapsulates a lesson concisely; I did not look up your quote but it sounds like something I have said.

JimK

September 22, 2009 12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What's evil that the richest nation on Earth cannot provide health insurance for all her citizens, especially when so many other nations do. Some Americans get sicker and die waiting for their insurance companies to approve treatments, other American families go bankrupt paying for medical treatments their paid-up health insurance policies refuse to cover, and all the while medical companies make outrageous profits.

It's time for America to reform our broken health care system so that it covers all Americans without exception."

BEA.
No one disagrees that we should cover the uninsured and the poor (we actually have a system that does that... it is called Medicaid).

My problem with this plan is that it implements rationing. The govt will decide what is covered and what is not covered for EVERYONE. And here's the kicker. They will make these rules AFTER THE BILL IS PASSED. that's like signing a mortgage document without knowing the interest rate.

NO DEAL.

4 different amendments were proposed to keep them from denying care based on their "comparitive effectiveness research". They were all denied.


this is going to devastate the health care available to our seniors. Medicare will be slashed by 500 billion over the next 10 years. they have already cut 1 billion for next year. this will effect the healthcare available to our seniors.

what about this don't you get ?

September 22, 2009 6:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

by the way...

check page 50 and 51 of the bill, the insurance companies ability to not be sued for deaths that they have caused by denying care is perserved.

September 22, 2009 8:57 PM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

by the way...

check page 50 and 51 of the bill, the insurance companies ability to not be sued for deaths that they have caused by denying care is perserved.


Oh brother, if you're talking about HR 3200, you didn't even get the bogus claim about those pages right.

Here's what FactCheck.org has to say about Page 50:

Claim: Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services.

False. That’s simply not what the bill says at all. This page includes "SEC. 152. PROHIBITING DISCRIMINATION IN HEALTH CARE," which says that "[e]xcept as otherwise explicitly permitted by this Act and by subsequent regulations consistent with this Act, all health care and related services (including insurance coverage and public health activities) covered by this Act shall be provided without regard to personal characteristics extraneous to the provision of high quality health care or related services." However, the bill does explicitly say that illegal immigrants can’t get any government money to pay for health care. Page 143 states: "Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States." And as we’ve said before, current law prohibits illegal immigrants from participating in government health care programs.


Pages 50-51 in HR 3200 and in the Baucus bill don't say anything about insurance companies being protected from lawsuits when they cause deaths by denying care.

Stop lying.

September 23, 2009 9:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon-B

I don't know if you or Theresa is right about this but calling her a liar is out of bounds.

Please hop aboard the new civility train!

September 23, 2009 9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the "civility train" anon --I"m detecting a bit of evilness in your remark! And guess what? I don't even think you should be punished! (Just trying to stay on topic here...)

September 23, 2009 10:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there are lots of topics here

just as all roads lead to Rome, all ideas go back to TTF

btw, putting a "ness" on evil is redundant

you think asking anon-B to present her ideas without insulting anyone is "evil"?

please explain, as well as you can

September 23, 2009 10:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"EvilNESS" makes it sound cute, and gives it some flair. Looks like anon was having a little bit of fun that stuck a little toe onto the evil side! BUT -- I realized that I misspoke! Anon had not used the word "evil" but I had used the word "evilness" -- and I hold firm to the belief that I don't think that I should be stoned or horribly punished!

September 23, 2009 11:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you guys know that when you use the name "Anonymous" nobody can tell you apart. It seems that part of being a rightwing troll is being too lazy to sign up for Blogger or to enter a pseudonym when you comment.

September 23, 2009 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm really confused now. Another Anonymous is telling us that being an Anonymous is confusing.

September 23, 2009 11:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I hold firm to the belief that I don't think that I should be stoned or horribly punished!"

is his the first anon or fourth anon who said this

I'm getting confused

let's do an experiment and sign all posts as "anon"

September 23, 2009 11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If using the "Anonymous" tag is so horrible and burdensome to all, then shouldn't the option be taken away? Also, to the sensible anon who called for civility -- I really was just joking about the "evilness" comment. It was funny in my head but fell flat on delivery.

September 23, 2009 12:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's not horrible and burdensome, Anonymous, it is simply ineffective, and it's easy to establish an identity.

September 23, 2009 12:32 PM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

Anon said:

check page 50 and 51 of the bill, the insurance companies ability to not be sued for deaths that they have caused by denying care is perserved.

So I checked those pages in HR 3200 and in the Baucus bill and discovered that Anon's statements were lies.

I told Anon to stop lying.

Anon, as usual, came back and put words in my mouth, saying:

anon-B

I don't know if you or Theresa is right about this but calling her a liar is out of bounds.


I didn't call anybody a liar.

Stop lying.

September 23, 2009 12:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

that anon was just trying to be funny and everyone attacks them

the last surviving legit bigotry in America:

anonaphobia

September 23, 2009 12:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How does Anon know Anon=Theresa?

September 23, 2009 12:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon-B

drop the "Aunt Bea" and come out of the closet as the anon you are

embrace your anonymity and encourage other anons not to make up fake names

anon rights now

anon rights tomorrow

anon rights forever

September 23, 2009 12:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"How does Anon know Anon=Theresa?"

I was guessing anonymously.

She seems to be the one keeping up with the health care debacle.

September 23, 2009 12:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon-c said to anon-b

we're free to be

anoymously

September 23, 2009 12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"we're free to be

anoymously"

With emphasis on the misspelled "annoy"

September 23, 2009 1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

that's an annoying anonymous announcement

or, you could say, an annoying anonymosity

analyze that spelling

September 23, 2009 1:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

just another annoyance

but it's anonymous anyways

September 23, 2009 4:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As the town hall meetings on health care started in early August, the Democratic Party's talking points accused the attending citizens of being "demonstrators hired by K Street lobbyists." Then they started calling them a "mob." Getting into the spirit of his party, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called those who oppose Obamacare "evil." Then House Democratic Majority Leader Steny Hoyer called the dissenters "un-American." For good measure, Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused them of being Nazis.

Former Democratic President Jimmy Carter followed with the assertion that "racism" motivates President Barack Obama's health care opponents. The culmination -- so far -- of this cataract of calumnies was voiced by Pelosi, who, after calling her opposition Nazis, audaciously and chillingly implied that their rhetoric might cause an assassination (as she alleged conservative homophobic rhetoric did in the 1970s): "I have concerns about some of the language that is being used, because I saw this myself in the late '70s in San Francisco. This kind of rhetoric was very frightening."

Then the president lamented the "coarsening" of the civic dialogue, observing over the weekend on CNN that "it's important for the media -- you know, not to do any media-bashing here -- to recognize that right now, in this 24-hour news cycle, the easiest way to get on CNN or Fox or any of the other stations ... is to just say something rude and outrageous. If you're civil and polite and you're sensible and you don't exaggerate the bad things about your opponent ... you might get on one of the Sunday morning shows, but you're not going to be on the loop. And, you know, part of what I'd like to see is all of us reward decency and civility in our political discourse."

I couldn't agree with the president more. And it is true that the media were able to spot a few similarly horrid messages on posters among the hundreds of thousands of anti-Obamacare dissenters at the town halls and the march on Washington.

But it is stunning to note that the foregoing list of outrageous and inflammatory rhetorical attacks came from the mouths of the most senior Democratic elected leaders in the country. No remotely similar language has been reported of any of the senior Republican officials. Of course, no party can directly control the language of the millions of its supporters. Indeed, it is no business of the government how the public talks. But both parties can -- and should -- lead by example.

The president should call on those most senior Democratic Party leaders -- Reid, Hoyer, Pelosi and Carter -- to apologize to the nation for their shockingly irresponsible language. Should any senior Republican leader ever use such language, he, too, should be called on to retract it.

September 23, 2009 5:08 PM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

Thanks for stopping by to share your Conservative Opinion, Tony. It's wrong of course, but that's because everyone except conservatives can see where the GOP has isolated itself.

September 24, 2009 7:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

as Tony makes clear in his post, Dems are the ones who have cheapened the country's discourse

September 24, 2009 8:01 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

Tony's just showing his conservative bias. There's plenty of cheap discourse coming from his fellow teabaggers/birthers/deathers as these photographs of their 091209 March on Washington clearly document.

September 24, 2009 8:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there may be some but that's been covered to death by the media

what hasn't been discussed in the media is the same about the Dems

September 24, 2009 9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Tony's just showing his conservative bias. There's plenty of cheap discourse coming from his fellow teabaggers/birthers/deathers as these photographs of their 091209 March on Washington clearly document."

Read Tony's comments again.

He wasn't discussing individuals who were protesting.

He was talking about elected officials.

Here's his conclusion again:

"The president should call on those most senior Democratic Party leaders -- Reid, Hoyer, Pelosi and Carter -- to apologize to the nation for their shockingly irresponsible language. Should any senior Republican leader ever use such language, he, too, should be called on to retract it."

Remember how "chilled" Jim was when someone called one of his posts "evil"?

Harry Reid said that about opponents of Obamacare.

Steny Hoyer said they were un-American.

Nancy Pelosi said they were Nazis and compared them to Dan White.

Jimmy Carter said they were racist.

As far as I know, the worst any Republican elected official has said is when Joe Wilson said Obama lied.

And Wilson was right.

btw, your "teabaggers/birthers/deathers" pigeonhole is a little ineffective now that it's been revealed that Obama appointed as a czar in his administration a confessed Communist who thinks 9/11 was a plot by Bush to justify war against Iraq.

Give us a person who favors taxation without representation, upholding the Constitution and discouraging euthanasia any day compared to Van Jones.

September 24, 2009 10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boo hoo hoo, "Anonymous". Weep, wail, rant, rave...to no avail. You are the loser; we are the winners! Isn't democracy a wonderful thing?
Take your dollies and go home!

September 24, 2009 10:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think Obama and Pelosi are feeling much like winners this fall.

But keep holding on to that thought.

It will make it a lot easier to retake the Congress in November 2010 if you guys are busy patting yourself on the back for a rare good election for the Dems in 2008.

America's on to you.

September 24, 2009 10:13 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

Here's his conclusion again:

"The president should call on those most senior Democratic Party leaders -- Reid, Hoyer, Pelosi and Carter -- to apologize to the nation for their shockingly irresponsible language. Should any senior Republican leader ever use such language, he, too, should be called on to retract it."


That's not Blankley's conclusion. That's just where Anon The Plagiarist ended the cut and paste. AnonTP is saying elected Democrats should say they're sorry for telling the truth about the Sore Losermans of 2008.

This was the conclusion of Tony Blankley:

But to feel these passions so profoundly and then to be accused of such a base motive as racism for our sincerely held views is almost too much to contain. No good can come from such a flagrant assault on the honor and decency of 60 percent of our people. The president should follow up his good instincts on this with firm leadership of his party and bring a swift end to his Democratic Party's malignant instigation of racial strife.

Tony was trying to say the GOP, who for 40+ years were unrelenting in their employment of the southern strategy, yet seem surprised the are now mostly only electable in the South, are the real victims. That's bull..

Nancy Pelosi said they were Nazis and compared them to Dan White.

Nancy Pelosi did not mention Dan White in her recent statement. She said we should all try to find a balance between freedom and safety because heated rhetoric can incite violence.

"We are a free country and this balance between safety and freedom is is one that we have to carefully balance," she said.

Pelosi then slowed her words as she reflected on her own experiences in San Francisco politics, when Mayor George Moscone and city supervisor Harvey Milk were assassinated in 1978.

"I have concerns about some of the language being used because I saw this myself in the late 70s in San Francisco," Pelosi said. "This kind of rhetoric was...was ...very frightening and it created a climate in which we, violence took place and...I wish that we would all, again, curb our enthusiasm in some of the statements that are made, understanding that the ears it is falling on are not as balanced as the person making the statement might assume."

Pelosi continued, "Our country is great because people can say what they think and they believe. But I also think they have to take responsibility for any incitement that they may cause."

September 25, 2009 8:12 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

As far as I know, the worst any Republican elected official has said is when Joe Wilson said Obama lied.

Oh brother, Anon. You're kidding, right? You don't know of any worse deeds or words Joe Wilson's outburst? But then what can you expect? When you only read editorials, CitizensLink, and watch FOX News, your knowledge of facts doesn't get nearly as far along as your knowledge of spin.

In the three years since George Allen's Macaca Moment cost him his shot at running for President (he's now in private industry), numerous GOP officials have been in the news for their racist deeds and remarks. The most recent GOP racial slurs I've read about include:

The LATimes reported:

This spring in Tennessee, an assistant to a GOP state senator sent an e-mail titled "Historical Keepsake Photo" that featured thumbnail portraits of all 44 American presidents -- except Obama's image was depicted by two white googly eyes against a black background.

In Southern California, the Republican mayor of Los Alamitos sent an e-mail depicting the White House lawn as a watermelon patch, with the caption "No Easter egg hunt this year."


Midwest Voices.com reports:

U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins, a Kansas Republican, is apologizing for using a racially tinged metaphor to talk about the future of the Republican Party.

Jenkins, elected to Congress in 2008, made the embarrassing gaffe last week when she said the GOP was looking for a "great white hope" to thwart the policies of Democrats and (black) President Barack Obama.


If you really don't want your party, the GOP, to come off as racist, why aren't you calling these GOP officials out for their conduct?

September 25, 2009 8:26 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

This one is a few weeks late, but may be of interest to Vigilance readers.

August 12, 2009 was "Macaca Day, 2009:

"...Macaca Day, for those of us who make our living from video on the Internet and elsewhere, is a holy day – the day that marks the birth of YouTube politics, and reminds us that citizens with cellphone cameras and a YouTube account - or at least an election...

The first Macaca Day was the the first famous instance of YouTube and digital video as a crucial tool for democracy. Three years later, it is thriving to expose the political arguments and actions of everyone from Town Haters to those, to be fair, who are legitimately (if usually mistakenly) concerned. And of course, internationally, Web Video democracy continues to play a huge part in the ongoing Iranian crisis, despite the greater attention to Twitter’s much overplayed role.

Perhaps the best illustration came, fittingly, yesterday, served up exactly three years after the original Macaca Day, by another U.S. Senator, in this case, Missouri’s Claire McCaskill.

McCaskill of course held several town halls this week, most notably yesterday in Hillsboro, Missouri, where the Town Haters were out in force. But thanks to YouTube, the Haters were exposed in all their ignorant, bullying glory. As important, the Show-Me-State’s junior Senator was shown at her best, playing in turn the dutiful public servant, the responsible adult, and the deft debunker of her crowd’s ignorance:

“This really can’t be about who is the loudest,” McCaskill told the crowd, continuing on moments later to lead the crowd into a trap forever captured on video.

“How many of you have Medicare?” she asked the crowd. When several hundred raised their hands, McCaskill pounced: “How many of you want to give up that government-sponsored health care plan?”

All hands went down.

A priceless Macaca moment - in this case, with the joke on the Haters, not the Senator - forever captured on Web Video.

Happy Macaca Day.

September 25, 2009 9:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"numerous GOP officials have been in the news for their racist deeds and remarks"

That's right Aunt Bea. Don't forget "RNC chairman candidate defends 'Barack the Magic Negro' song"

September 25, 2009 9:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"That's just where Anon The Plagiarist ended the cut and paste. AnonTP"

a couple more, Citizen

"yet seem surprised the are now mostly only electable in the South"

anon-B is channeling Rip Van Winkle now. Fall 2008 was last year. Republicans and Democrats are now about even in generic polls.

New Jersey, of all places, is about to elect a Republican governor. Democratic politicians outside the South from Harry Reid in the Senate to David Patterson in the Governor's mansion in Albany, are in deep trouble in the polls.

"She said we should all try to find a balance between freedom and safety because heated rhetoric can incite violence."

She could start by not calling her opponents "Nazis".

That's a little inflammatory.

"If you really don't want your party, the GOP, to come off as racist, why aren't you calling these GOP officials out for their conduct?"

Thanks for proving Tony's point, anon-B.

I would say those guys should apologize but, an assistant to a state senator in Nashville and the mayor of Los Alamitos? Not exactly the same as the majority leaders in the House and Senate and the former President of the United States.

Jenkins, while not of the stature of Pelosi, Hoyer, Reid and Carter, is a more significant individual but her remark was mild in comparison with those of the aforementioned Democrats and was probably not done with racism in mind. She also apologized.

I will say, however, that the one top Democrat who has been responsible in the racism conversation is Obama who doesn't blame his falling polls on racism. On Lettermen last week, he noted he was actually black before the election and he susequently had a 70% approval rating at one point.

"Happy Macaca Day"

Lame example, anon-B.

Macaca Day returned to Virginia this year when that champion of working women, Creigh Deeds, snapped at a women reporter, "Look, young lady, I made myself clear!"

September 25, 2009 11:03 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

She could start by not calling her opponents "Nazis".

That's a little inflammatory.


Except she didn't say that, did she? Prove me wrong, AnonTP, find a quote of Nancy Pelosi calling any member of the GOP a Nazi. Until you do, we'll know who's "a little inflammatory."

an assistant to a state senator in Nashville and the mayor of Los Alamitos? Not exactly the same as the majority leaders in the House and Senate and the former President of the United States.

True, but oops (!!!) you skipped the former GOP Governor and Senator from Virginia who ran for President.

September 25, 2009 3:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

George Allen's was a rather minor comment and he apologized and he didn't win the nomination after the comment.

That was an incident years ago.

We're discussing what's going on now.

September 25, 2009 6:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oRCq7mv7HVM

youtube of a reporter asking Nancy Pelosi if there is legitimate grass roots opposition at town hall meetings

her answer is that it's a bunch of people carrying swastikas

September 25, 2009 6:05 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, this is classic.

It really is fascinating stuff. The YouTube video that Anon linked to is titled "Nancy Pelosi Calls Townhall Protesters Nazis," it shows a question by a news reporter and Nancy Pelosi's response. She does not call townhall protesters Nazis in this footage.

The video has closed captioning for those who can't believe their own ears, and it is all wrong. I transcribed the recording, here's what is actually said:

Interviewer: Do you think there's a legitimate grassroots opposition that's going on here or is this an astroturf type of deal?

Pelosi: I think they're astroturf, uh, you be the judge of carrying swastikas and symbols like that to a town meeting on health care.

In our own county we had a Republican leader jump up at a County Council meeting and shout "Heil Hitler!" It's not really very far under the surface.

Anon says (echoing the talking point of the day) that "her answer is that it's a bunch of people carrying swastikas." No, her answer was "you be the judge of carrying swastikas and symbols like that to a town meeting on health care." She didn't say they all do it, but she did call for you -- the autonomous individual -- to judge for yourself. If you can't do that, I'm sure Rush will tell you what to think.

The "Pelosi called us Nazis" meme is debunked at Media Matters -- for one thing, if you follow the link you will in fact see pictures of people carrying signs with swastikas (and one SS sign) at town hall meetings.

JimK

September 25, 2009 7:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think I've got the question and the answer right.

Asked if there was "legitimate grassroots opposition", she didn't say yes, she didn't say no, she didn't maybe, she didn't say judge for yourself.

She said "you be the judge of carrying swastikas".

When you give that answer to that question, you're implying that all the protestors were of that nature, knowing full well that any viewer on TV that wasn't there would assume that.

This is the strategy the Dems have been following since the fall campaign in 2008.

It's backfiring now because so many people have problems with the health care that they know better.

Right now the electorate is angry that Obama misled them about what kind of government he was planning. They want their country and their money back.

September 25, 2009 11:25 PM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

she didn't say judge for yourself.

She said "you be the judge of carrying swastikas".


You got the first part right, Sybil. Here's the rest of what Pelosi said

"you be the judge of carrying swastikas and symbols like that to a town meeting on health care."

Here are some photographs of town hall protesters.

Protester depicts Obama with a Hitler mustache

Protester's toddler carries poster marked with a swastika

(A swastika was painted on Democratic Representative David Scott's Congressional office sign after a town hall meeting in his Georgia district had been disrupted by teabaggers. Rep. Scott is black.)

Protester with poster with a hammer and sickle

Protester with a poster with both a swastika and a hammer and sickle

Here's an interesting protest sign that reads "This sign is the brownest thing on the block"

To quote Speaker Pelosi, "You be the judge."

September 28, 2009 9:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"you be the judge of carrying swastikas and symbols like that to a town meeting on health care."

The impression Pelosi is trying to create is that the protestors are carrying swastikas because they are sympathizers with Nazi type philosophies.

What she fails to point out is that it was a few protestors and the signs were swastikas were on signs and crossed out. Sounds a little hyperbolic but it looks like their point was the Dems were supporting governmental policies that were leading to fascism.

I would agree that is a bit much but that's how protest is and it was not how most were protesting. They weren't elcted to one of the highest offices in the land either.

Pelosi was trying to create the wrong impression.

September 28, 2009 1:15 PM  
Anonymous PasserBy said...

No, she wasn't. It is a simple fact that people were carrying swastikas at the town hall meetings, just as she said. It doesn't matter whether they're saying they support Hitler's policies or are accusing the other side of it, the fact is the country is discussing a health insurance bill that has nothing at all to do with Nazism. It is an inflammatory symbol that has no place in American discourse.

September 28, 2009 1:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It is a simple fact that people were carrying swastikas at the town hall meetings, just as she said. It doesn't matter whether they're saying they support Hitler's policies or are accusing the other side of it, the fact is the country is discussing a health insurance bill that has nothing at all to do with Nazism."

If it has nothing to do with it, why is she bringing it up?

The reporter asked her if there was legitimate grass roots protest at the town halls and she brings up swastikas.

Why didn't she answer the question?

She was using the inflammatory symbol herself to divert attention from the legitimate issues that arose at the town halls.

It's unfortunate but a regular rhetorical tactic on both sides is to accuse the other of being a Nazi. It happened often at protests against Bush.

We should able to expect more out of someone in her position though.

September 28, 2009 2:02 PM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

It happened often at protests against Bush.

What protests against Bush? He didn't let American tax-paying citizens who wanted to protest his policies even close, and certainly not into his town hall meetings or other events. American citizens have been arrested for trying to attend Bush's tax-payer funded Presidential events while wearing anti-Bush T-shirts and even strip searched for holding a sheet of paper that read "No More War" and a wearing a Kerry button.

In addition, on December 15, 2003, The American Conservative reported:
"...When Bush travels around the United States, the Secret Service visits the location ahead of time and orders local police to set up “free speech zones” or “protest zones” where people opposed to Bush policies (and sometimes sign-carrying supporters) are quarantined. These zones routinely succeed in keeping protesters out of presidential sight and outside the view of media covering the event.

When Bush came to the Pittsburgh area on Labor Day 2002, 65-year-old retired steel worker Bill Neel was there to greet him with a sign proclaiming, “The Bush family must surely love the poor, they made so many of us.” The local police, at the Secret Service’s behest, set up a “designated free-speech zone” on a baseball field surrounded by a chain-link fence a third of a mile from the location of Bush’s speech. The police cleared the path of the motorcade of all critical signs, though folks with pro-Bush signs were permitted to line the president’s path. Neel refused to go to the designated area and was arrested for disorderly conduct; the police also confiscated his sign. Neel later commented, “As far as I’m concerned, the whole country is a free speech zone. If the Bush administration has its way, anyone who criticizes them will be out of sight and out of mind.”..."


June 17, 2005, Minnesota Public Radio reported:
"St. Paul, Minn. — President Bush's focus early in his second term has been on promoting his plan for Social Security reform. He's settled into the town hall forum format he used often during the 2004 presidential campaign. The events are typically filled with Bush supporters, whom the president can count on for wild applause as he outlines his agenda.

Political analysts say Bush is using town hall forums so much because he comes across best in informal settings. Critics complain the forums offer no public policy debate and instead are crafted exclusively promote Bush proposals.

"I think it's so typical of the Republican Party to close out everybody they don't agree with," says Howard Dean, chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

Dean says the Bush administration's policy of shutting out opposition in his appearances is emblematic of what he says is an administration that has little respect for people who disagree with the president.

"There's nothing wrong with a town meeting. I think they're terrific," says Dean. "I think the problem is that these meetings that the president's having really aren't town meetings. They're really rallies with the faithful, and I don't think that gets you much in the way of policy."..."

September 29, 2009 8:35 AM  
Anonymous Aunt Bea said...

In "This Modern World," Language is a Virus

September 29, 2009 10:41 AM  
Blogger 1gdc4ge030 said...

Where the reels are marked to stop in order to to} match paylines are generally known as “Reel Stops”. Lining up sure combinations of symbols in three, 4, 5 or extra reels, relying on the slot machine, provides the player a winline. Always maintain this in thoughts, particularly should you love enjoying in} slots with progressive jackpots. Many games provide you with access to the top wins solely if you guess the utmost — and that's the 토토사이트 reason an accurate slot technique and bankroll technique are important to have a chance to winning at slots. All the measures in place are there assist you|that will help you|that can assist you} play slot machine games on websites that use audited random number mills and pay out winnings to their players. We look at at|have a look at} over 25 types if slot machines across the best PA on-line casino and NJ on-line casino websites and we discovered that the payout proportion has very little to do with the games' reputation.

January 26, 2023 3:07 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home