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  • So… evidence of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and torture in direct and manifest violation of international law would incite violence.

    Gee, y’know, maybe it wouldn’t incite violence… oh, if maybe the perpetrators and those who ordered it were called to justice before a court of law?

    It’s like saying, “We can’t release this evidence of an act of mass murder because people will be upset we never bothered to prosecute the crime.”

  • Becca commented on the diary post Pull Up a Chair: Game Night by Elliott.

    2014-08-30 12:04:27View | Delete

    “Settlers of Catan.”

    It’s not new, having been around since 1995, but it’s one of the more enjoyable board games out there.

  • Slightly corrected title: “Americans Support Government Not Paying Ransom for People Kidnapped by Militants…Until It’s a Friend, Family Member, or Loved One.”

    It’s worth remembering that the American culture and psyche has, in recent years, been characterized by an increasing degree of empathic atrophy and tribalism.

  • I see. So Comcast’s definition of “utmost respect” is “belittle, patronize, berate, lie about service capabilities, treat with contempt and nag relentlessly.” Oh and “absolutely refuse to do as the customer asks.”

  • Yes, I read the post, but what you wrote — and the title of the post itself — implied “ASSIGN” a plan rather than “RECOMMEND.”

  • Automatically recommend a plan would probably be a good thing. In fact, I think this would be a great thing.

    Automatically assign a plan? Are you insane?

    I personally am a ‘single payer / universal insurance for all’ advocate. But having the HCEs do an automatic assignment just takes an already bad problem — private insurance companies receiving profit subsidies from taxpayers — and removes the one thing that makes it barely tolerable. That is, being able to choose a plan and, in most markets, which carrier.

    What if you’ve had nothing but horrible experiences with BCBS and want to choose an alternative, even if the other plan on paper doesn’t seem as ideal according to the HCE’s dictatorial algorithms?

    It’s be like the gov’t saying, “We know you might’ve chosen AT&T or Sprint or Verizon or one of these other companies as your phone company, but we’ve decided you have to take Comcast phone service. And you don’t get to choose which level of service or features, we’ve already decided that.”

    The ACA was already a GOP / Insurance Company plan to begin with. Removing what little choice remains just completes its conversion into a monopoly machine.

  • Becca commented on the blog post Plan to Split California into Six States Might Make the Ballot

    2014-07-15 12:35:01View | Delete

    In short: Tim Draper looks to waste millions of dollars of California taxpayer money on a ballot measure that (1) would not pass and (2) would have no effect whatsoever unless Congress voted to break up the state, which would also never happen.

    The chances aren’t just remote. They’re virtually nil.

    Draper’s intentions are clear though. He thinks he can turn Silicon Valley into America’s largest gated community, and to hell with the rest of the state.

  • Tea Bagger wingnuts at the Bundy ranch openly target Federal and State law enforcement with weaponry and say the goal is to have a violent revolution. Not terrorism.

    Some animal rights activists engage in property destruction and vandalism, with no physical harm or threats made to anyone. Terrorism.

    Oh fer f*ck’s sake…

  • Becca commented on the blog post Blackwater Founder Erik Prince To Advise Chinese Firms In Africa

    2014-07-07 14:42:31View | Delete

    Why is it I have no doubt at all that Erik Prince’s advice will consist of:

    - Be heavily armed at all times.
    - When in doubt or even if bored, always shoot to kill so there are no pesky witnesses.
    - Terrify the locals, then hire PR firms like Prince’s to make up slogans that say the opposite.
    - Pay Erik Prince millions and millions of dollars for this advice.

  • I’ll say this much: If I could get medical MJ for my migraines, I could clear off my prescription shelf — get rid of all those meds that only work occasionally — and have nothing but a bottle of ibuprofen.

    But I can’t, and so there are those prescription bottles, all in a row, and complicated instructions as to when I should and can take them. “This one if you think you’re getting a migraine, but don’t have it yet. That one if it’s started but isn’t too bad yet. This other one if you have a bad one, but it’s contraindicated if you’ve taken the first ‘scrip. This other if it’s really, really bad, but you can’t take it if you’ve taken any of the other three…”

  • Becca commented on the diary post HillBilly on the Same Page as Prohibitionist-in-Chief by patrick devlin.

    2014-06-30 21:52:56View | Delete

    Add ‘migraines and cluster-headaches’ to that list…

  • Becca commented on the blog post Facebook And BuzzFeed Violating User Privacy

    2014-06-30 15:24:00View | Delete

    It’s one thing to collect willingly shared information…what Buzzfeed was doing is sleazy as all hell, but what do we expect from that cesspit of click-bait, barely disguised advertising, side-boob salaciousness, and thinly disguised marketing data collecting pretending to be silly quizzes?

    By experimenting on its users without consent however, Facebook crossed a line. This isn’t presenting two versions of a web page to randomly selected users to see which people seem to like better. Or testing two commercials.

    Facebook engaged in psychological manipulation, attempting to influence the emotional mood of tens of thousands of users. This is a breach of ethics…and yet another reason why I myself no longer use FB.

  • Becca commented on the diary post Saturday Art: Influential Authors: Allen Drury by dakine01.

    2014-06-22 21:23:37View | Delete

    I found Drury’s early work to be quite interesting, when it came to his last two in the general ‘Advise & Consent’ world, it was clear he had nothing but utter contempt for progressives and liberals. ‘Preserve and Protect’ posits an almost split ticket — a hard-nosed somewhat militaristic presidential candidate, Orrin Knox, paired basically [...]

  • Sadly, they never seem to add “chronic migraines” to the list…

  • Becca commented on the diary post SNAFUkushima: Updating Meltdowns by williamboardman.

    2014-05-31 12:19:49View | Delete

    Is this how we are now, we humans? We no longer even acknowledge the reality of a regional, national, or world catastrophe?

  • Snowden was an employee working for a security subcontractor, Booz-Hamilton. He took no ‘oath’. That’s one of Kerry’s more obvious lies.

    Snowden was in transit through Moscow because that was the only route available, after the U.S. pressured Hong Kong not to let him stay. The passport revocation did not happen because Snowden repudiated his U.S. citizenship — it was indeed the State Department that did it.

    In the 1970s, a whistleblower and leaker could count on a reasonably fair trial. Now? Drake. Kiriakou. Manning. Especially in this last case, our gov’t has shown a willingness to torture its security prisoners through harsh and degrading conditions and solitary confinement.

    When it comes to national security matters, America’s so-called “justice” system is a joke. How the hell could he even expect a fair trial if he’s not allowed to present evidence, not allowed to argue that his motives were to uncover illegal crimes on the part of our government, and if politicians all the way up to the White House — including Kerry — have already (and erroneously, by the Constitutional definition of such) declared him guilty of treason?

    And volunteering or not for torture and to be thrown into a black hole for the rest of one’s life does not make Snowden’s revelations any less important.

    He’s not the story. The NSA is.

  • Becca commented on the diary post Pull Up a Chair by Elliott.

    2014-05-17 10:30:16View | Delete

    How do I cheer up people? 1. Advise them if they are watching news on TV or reading it on the Internet to stop. Go on a news hiatus. Few things are more depressing than reading or seeing constantly horrible situations about which you can’t do anything. 2. Do manual labor-type things for yourself. It’s [...]

  • OkCupid’s opposition was important, sure — but there was much more at play in all this.

    First of all, members of the Mozilla board had already resigned in protest of Eich’s hire/promotion. Employees and open-source partners were in almost open insurrection.

    Eich didn’t help himself at all in the defensive, self-excusing interviews he gave.

    But the other thing that was happening just this week is Eich’s previous political donations were becoming known. Information available, by the way, in public databases and sites such as the FEC.

    The Guardian, for instance, learned that Eich had made donations to both Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul in the 1990s. More recently — and as recently as 2010 — he was still donating to GOP politicians who ran on anti-gay platforms, including Linda Smith and Tom McClintock. In fact, although Eich was no high-roller in the political donors world, according to the information dug up so far, he gave to nobody but the farthest right and most radically conservative of GOP politicos. Against this backdrop, a donation in favor of Prop 8 is just one of an existing pattern.

    When asked by the Guardian’s reporter why he donated to Pat Buchanan’s 1992 presidential campaign, Eich refused to answer.

    Those are the kinds of questions that don’t just stop being asked.

  • Where did you find that photo of Mark Regnerus, Alvin? It is PERFECT!

  • I don’t feel sorry for Mark Regnerus at all. The lying, bigoted SOB set himself to creating a phony pseudo-academic rationale for discrimination and the oppression of gays and lesbians all over the world.

    In Russia, they’ve been on the verge of passing a law to seize the children of gay and lesbian parents. In multiple nations in Africa, they debate only between life in prison or the death penalty for being gay. Here in America, the Regnerus and Marks studies are promoted as a ‘rational basis’ for denying marriage equality and adoption rights to gay and lesbian families.

    What Mark Regnerus has done is evil. I dearly hope one day he pays the full measure of the karma he’s collected.

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