I will die on this hill…

I will die on this hill…

CBS News: Growing measles outbreak in Washington spreading fear among parents

I have lots to say about people who think it’s okay to skip vaccinations out of fear of something that an asshole FAKED. People who are more afraid of dealing with hidden, likely genetic, disabilities rejecting the concept of herd immunity should keep their unvaccinated children out of the public. Continue reading “I will die on this hill…”

Burden of Proof…

Burden of Proof…

This nugget showed up on a friend’s FB post, which I can now no longer find. Chances are, either the friend decided it had to go, the genius who posted it blocked me, or I blocked him.

At the time, (sometime just after Christmas, I think) I thanked the guy for posting virtually every propaganda-driven talking point Alex Jones and Fox News have shoved into his brain in the name of truth. Here it is, folks. GOP trash talk, all in one convenient comment.

He said:

Stop watch mainstream media it’s bad for your brain. If we look back in history even JFK said Tax cuts like these would bring economic boom like no other. As far as healthcare goes the ACA screwed that up a long time ago anyone who tried to tell you that trump is the one that caused premiums to almost tripe this year in some places it out right lying. Also those so called environmental regulations had nothing to do with protecting the environment and everything to do with eliminating clean coal. Just look at the Democratic controlled Flint, Michigan they still don’t have clean drinking water. Stop looking at the virtue signaling idiots saying everything is bad and open your eyes markets up, costs are dropping, companies are pledging billions in Christmas bonuses to their employees, you are no longer forced to buy health insurance that most cannot afford, you also won’t be penalized for not buying health insurance you can’t afford, and last but not least we now have evidence of the Russian collusion that liberals have been so desperate for. Unfortunately the proof is the Hillary Clinton sold 40% of our uranium stockpiles to Russia and the Robert Mueller as well as Obama were in on it.

Fallacy Ref: Burden of Proof

Then he told me I had to debunk all the claims he made. First I said no. Normally I’d have called him on the fallacy, because it’s not MY job to prove he’s wrong. It’s HIS job to provide his source.

But then I thought about it and decided to make an example of him. It’s too good to pass up, because this is a dump truck load of bunk.

Note: If you find the text out there, you’re doing better than I. And I left every grammatical error, all the fallacious bullshit, all the propaganda where it is.

I’ve addressed each point. You’re welcome to follow (and read) all the articles below. Obviously there’s a lot to read. Heck, took me almost a month just to sit down and compile this post, but then it’s been sitting in my draft folder all this time and frankly, I need some time to process the current spy novel that is our political situation in the US, so this is acting a little like a sewage-based palate cleanser.

Your mileage may vary. Additions to the debunking are welcome, as are corrections. This stuff is like a fast moving freight train. Four of the articles came out in just the last week.

Onward…

But whatever. It’s an exercise in researching and I’ve got nothing better to do. Well, that’s not true either. I’ve left all the impressive typos and grammar as an exercise in identifying a fool. Feel free to interpret his prose the way I did.

Best way to do this is to break it down, one bogus claim at a time.

Here goes:

1. If we look back in history even JFK said Tax cuts like these would bring economic boom like no other.

Well, no. Forbes: The Laffer Curve Files: JFK’s Advisor Said Tax Cuts Raise Revenue

Also: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: Kansas Provides Compelling Evidence of Failure of “Supply-Side” Tax Cuts

2. As far as healthcare goes the ACA screwed that up a long time ago anyone who tried to tell you that trump is the one that caused premiums to almost tripe this year in some places it out right lying.

From a conveniently timed article posted TODAY by the NY Times:

Why Is U.S. Health Care So Expensive? Some of the Reasons You’ve Heard Turn Out to Be Myths

In a new, detailed international comparison, the United States looks a lot more like its peers than researchers expected.

There were two areas where the United States really was quite different: We pay substantially higher prices for medical services, including hospitalization, doctors’ visits and prescription drugs. And our complex payment system causes us to spend far more on administrative costs. The United States also has a higher rate of poverty and more obesity than any of the other countries, possible contributors to lower life expectancy that may not be explained by differences in health care delivery systems.

3. Also those so called environmental regulations had nothing to do with protecting the environment and everything to do with eliminating clean coal.

Um…

National Geographic: Can Coal Ever Be Clean? It’s the dirtiest of fossil fuels. We burn eight billion tons of it a year, with growing consequences. The world must face the question.

Coal ISN’T clean. That’s a lie told by coal and oilmen who don’t want to see their profits cut through advances in renewable energy like solar, wind, or hydro-energy. And this guy has forgotten what life was like before the EPA.

4. Just look at the Democratic controlled Flint, Michigan they still don’t have clean drinking water.

That’s a massive oversimplification of the problems that led to Flint’s water disaster, and it ignores Republican Governor Rick Snyder’s role in the decision-making process. From Politifact:

Who’s to blame for the Flint water crisis?

Our conclusion

Based on what is currently known, Snyder does bear a significant share of the responsibility. His fiscal approach helped set the stage for the water switch that led to the poisoning, and it was his hand-picked emergency managers who implemented the changes. Snyder also oversaw the state environmental and health departments that have come in for sharp criticism for their failures to act quickly and forcefully when the first indications of a problem cropped up.

However, experts say that claims from Clinton and Sanders that focus on Snyder alone oversimplify matters — and give a partisan spin to what is more fairly characterized as a broad failure of governance at all levels. Such one-sided accounts gloss over the responsibility borne by local Flint officials who supported the decision, by an EPA that failed to press harder for changes as the problem worsened, and by officials of both parties who contributed to the longstanding fiscal problems at both the state and city level.

5. Stop looking at the virtue signaling idiots saying everything is bad and open your eyes markets up, costs are dropping, …

Well, not exactly…

NY Post: Wall Street surges on strong hiring, low wage growth

The Dow Jones industrial average soared 440.53 points, or 1.8 percent, closing at 25,335.74 Friday after the Labor Department reported the US economy added 313,000 jobs in February — blowing past analyst estimates of 200,000. Unemployment remains at 4.1 percent — its lowest level since December 2000.

Meanwhile wages, although still climbing, grew only 2.6 percent in February over the last year. That’s down from the 2.9 percent year-over-year growth initially reported for January.

But that’s not the whole story either:

NY Times: Are Wage Gains Picking Up? Stalling? Questionable Data Makes It Hard to Say

When the Labor Department reported last month that average hourly earnings had jumped 2.9 percent in January, it looked as though the long, steady recovery in the American job market might at last be translating into faster wage gains for the nation’s workers.

Then came Friday and the latest jobs report, which showed that wage growth was weaker in January than initially reported and that the gains in February were weaker still, up just 2.6 percent from a year earlier.

The muddled data on wages was a potent reminder that even the strongest job market in a generation has not been robust enough to reverse a longstanding pattern of lagging pay.

With flat wages and a reduction in what your money actually pays for (like, for example, the quantity of orange juice in a carton, which used to be 64 fl. oz. but is now almost always 59.5 fl. oz. instead, for more than we paid 10 years ago), the wages haven’t kept pace with the actual costs. While it looks like goods are getting cheaper, they’re just less high priced. When the prices return to the same level as they were when people first started earning these wages, come talk to me about lower costs.

6. …companies are pledging billions in Christmas bonuses to their employees, …

Yeah, about that…

Fox Business: Bankrupt Toys R Us execs could still get up to $21 million in holiday bonuses

Chicago Tribune: AT&T hands out bonuses to 200,000 workers, pink slips to 600 others

Newsweek: COMCAST FIRED HUNDREDS OF WORKERS BEFORE CHRISTMAS ALONGSIDE PLEDGE TO GIVE $1,000 ‘TRUMP TAX CUT’ BONUSES

7. … you are no longer forced to buy health insurance that most cannot afford, …

Sure we’re not…

Idaho Statesman: Nebraska groups rally behind Medicaid expansion ballot drive

He’s got a nasty surprise coming, in about a year, I’m thinking because…

8. … you also won’t be penalized for not buying health insurance you can’t afford, …

Still not correct. As a matter of fact, the IRS has a bit to say on that subject:

IRS: Affordable Care Act (ACA) Tax Provisions

And his crowning achievement, the 2017 equivalent of Benghazi:

9. … and last but not least we now have evidence of the Russian collusion that liberals have been so desperate for. Unfortunately the proof is the Hillary Clinton sold 40% of our uranium stockpiles to Russia …

*eyeroll*

Snopes: Hillary Clinton Gave 20 Percent of United States’ Uranium to Russia in Exchange for Clinton Foundation Donations? Allegations of a “quid pro quo” deal giving Russia ownership of one-fifth of U.S. uranium deposits in exchange for $145 million in donations to the Clinton Foundation are unsubstantiated.

Unsubstantiated. That’s because this is bullshit. See below.

10. … and the Robert Mueller …

No. Just no.

Snopes: Did Hillary Clinton Tell FBI’s Mueller to Deliver Uranium to Russians in 2009 ‘Secret Tarmac Meeting’?
Hyperpartisan web sites mischaracterized a State Department cable alerting the U.S. Embassy in Russia of a transfer of criminal evidence obtained in a sting operation.

Mischaracterized. Meaning twisted, slanted, or otherwise spun to tell something that isn’t true. Go figure.

11. … as well as Obama were in on it.

Oh, the conspiracies. But never about the Republicans, only the Democrats. The poor guy just isn’t going to get it until after the 2018 elections are over, and when he realizes how screwed he really is, he’s going to turn around and blame everything on the Democrats, just like his masters have told him to do.

This *just in* (and right on time, too).

Washington Post: The ‘dossier’ and the uranium deal: A guide to the latest allegations

As a service to readers bound to be confused by an increasingly complex story, here’s a brief guide to the latest developments in the tangled allegations involving Russia, President Trump and Hillary Clinton.

But wait. There’s more!!!

Reuters: Informant had no evidence Clinton benefited from uranium sale

An informant whom House Republicans have said could reveal a link between a 2010 sale of U.S. uranium supplies and donations to the Clinton Foundation provided no evidence of that during a four-hour interview with congressional staff last month, Democrats said on Thursday.

The informant, lobbyist William D. Campbell, “provided no evidence of a quid pro quo involving Secretary (Hillary) Clinton or the Clinton Foundation and no evidence that Secretary Clinton was involved in, or improperly influenced” the uranium sale, the Democrats said in a five-page summary of the Feb. 7 interview.

And that’s that.

No cries of foul, no backpedaling. Once you toss the junk out into the Internet wild, like those tiny microbeads of plastic in the Great Lakes, it’s out there, suitable for framing or tossing into an otherwise sensible discussion of politics. And no need to declare truth because who wants to take the time to sort it all out?

Seriously.

This guy used virtually every Alex Jones/Breitbart/Daily Caller/Gateway Pundit PROPAGANDA-based talking point to try and refute a legitimate source for something he disagreed with, and that’s what’s wrong with American Conservatives today.

They have no idea they’re being told lies, have no filters for this BS, and think liberals like me will waste our time trying to tell them the truth when they’re not going to listen or believe it anyway.

I tell ya, I ought to get paid for this stuff.

Now where’s my Soros check?

*kidding*

Fact-Free Ideology (Part Two): Election 2018 Edition

Fact-Free Ideology (Part Two): Election 2018 Edition

On June 2, 2016, I wrote Part One of this post.

Yeah, so I’m still here. I did all the checking before the election and the path out no longer exists for someone my age, without marriage and/or migration to another country as an ex-pat with the clothes on my back, and that’s so far from impractical it’s not even worth discussing. So I’m here. And I’m pissed.

Wasting my time with fact-free members of the “Let’s Pretend” Party or the “Screw You, I Got Mine” Party isn’t going to move us forward. The bold fact is that there are NO Third Party candidates strong enough to garner more than a hundred votes to every thousand in any House district, and the two Independents in the Senate vote with Democrats because there are ONLY two of them.

The only Independent in the whole House lives on the Northern Mariana Islands and he can’t vote because it’s a territory, not a state.

This rich fantasy life, brought to you by Ralph Nader and Jill Stein and Gary Johnson, is the most vile congregation of uneducated idealists I have ever connected with and that’s saying something, given my 46-year history as an aware citizen of the US.

Blind assumption that if we just push a little harder, everything will collapse and we will somehow reach the new day of the Green forgets that Gary Johnson (a Libertarian who is only one step removed from the GOP, and that step is to the RIGHT) was the guy who came in Third in the 2016 election. Stein was a distant fourth in all but two of the races, in which case she was FIFTH or even SIXTH.

As for the rest of us, who understand pragmatism and the U.S. Constitution, we have our work cut out for us. We are at eight months, two weeks, give or take a day, to THIS YEAR’s election. If we want to see change, we’d better start stepping up that game.

Leave the Greens to their delusional fantasy world and step around them. Do not engage. It’s not worth your time or energy to try and convince them that they are complicit in where we are today. Stop wasting your breath trying to convince them that they bought all the propaganda the GOP have sold them, and then some. They refuse to hear that they are complicit in this, that Russia took advantage of naive wishful thinking precisely because they could.

THIS is the reality we’re dealing with. Either we wipe the GOP out, completely, or the Russians win. And if you think their interference was restricted just to Trump supporters, pay attention to this nugget at the bottom of this article from CNN.com: The unwitting: The Trump supporters used by Russia:

Trump supporters were not the only people duped by the Internet Research Agency. As CNN has previously reported, Black Lives Matter activists and Muslim groups were also targeted.

Micah White, a co-founder of the Occupy Wall Street movement, also fell victim to the Internet Research Agency. In June 2016, he gave a telephone interview to the website Black Matters US, which was run by the group.

He told CNN last fall that Russia’s ability to successfully mimic American grassroot movements was concerning.

“If it is true that a Russian-based activist group is indistinguishable from an American-created activist group, that will have negative impacts on our ability to create social movements that are positive, that actually benefit ourselves and not some sort of foreign power.”

Think I’m kidding? This came out in September of LAST YEAR:

Russian-funded Facebook ads backed Stein, Sanders and Trump”

At least one touted Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate, who Clinton says “may well have thrown the election to Trump.

Just stop. It’s like playing Pigeon Chess. Save your energy for the fight that’s coming!

If you want to push the Democratic Party to the left, by all means, do it. That’s what the Primaries are for. That is, if you’re registered in the Party. If not, you get no right to complain. That’s how Party politics works, whether you like it or not.

At the end of the day, if you don’t want a Republican in office, vote for the Democrat. You don’t get any other choices here.

Wishful thinking…

Wishful thinking…

I try.

Really, really, I do. I try not to get caught up in wishful thinking, which often leads to disappointment when I discover that the thing I really want to be true turns out to be propaganda designed to tie up the Internet and my brain space.  Continue reading “Wishful thinking…”

I was writing, and then I checked Facebook…

I was writing, and then I checked Facebook…

I’ve been using FB and LJ as a place to blow off steam or to collect thoughts between writing jags. I was all set to post that I’d broken into the 15k mark, but then I poked into FB and found More Outrageous Extreme Right Wing Hatred _ DCCC

Go ahead. Click the link. Even you conservative Republican types, because this is your party putting out this crap.

From the page: “Among the leaders that addressed the crowd were: Republican Leader John Boehner, Republican Whip Eric Cantor, Republican Conference Chair Mike Pence, and Republican Representative Michele Bachmann.”

Be warned. It’s incendiary, all right. And yeah, it’s on the DCCC web site, so you guys wearing the red banners might have an issue with reading what’s there, but I still think you need to go there. This is what the ultra conservatives in YOUR party think is okay to put out there in the name of defense of MY country. Considering my heritage, I find the photo and the whole concept mortifying and hideous, but not for the reasons they want me to.

I’m trying really hard to practice tolerance of dissenting points of view. It’s hard. Sometimes I just have to blow past the rhetoric and skip through the links because I’d rather stay friends than argue politics with folks who aren’t moved by my brand of reason.

So here’s a different request: If you lean in the direction above, why don’t you have a chat with these folks? Do it for my sake or for the sakes of my friends who are single moms or simply uninsurable.

Last time I had to get insurance for myself, I wasn’t married, hadn’t had two c-sections or been diagnosed with an annoying (but persistent) coughing problem. I had not had back surgery for a ruptured disk, had never taken an antidepressant in my life. I can’t say any of that now. Back then I had a near run-in with the folks at BCBS about pre-existing conditions. It’s been 10 years or more since a company I worked for offered me a health insurance plan of any stripe. Until now I’ve been covered by my soon-to-be-ex-husband’s plan.

The COBRA clock starts ticking as soon as I sign the paperwork. There will come a time sometime in the next 36+ months when I will have to worry about this, unless (by some miracle) I am hired by a company that provides health insurance. By then I will be on the plus side of 49. Based on my past employability rate, I have every reason to worry. Without insurance, I run the risk of losing my house and everything in it to a single medical emergency. I carry a disability policy but it has a low cap and cannot be increased because…you guessed it…pre-existing conditions.

The arguments presented by the dissenters range from merely annoying to actively insane. It’s not helping your cause one bit. Hate is still hate.

Take a good look at the photo. What would Ben Franklin, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson have to say about this crap?

Stop this madness before we lose everything we stand for in this country! Last I checked, that would be “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Life.

First on the list.

Theme: Elation by Kaira.