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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 749253  
Subject: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:52 AM
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The recent post about the NY Times really pressed my hot button, as have a number of other events that have coalesced to form the rant I now dispense at risk to whatever reputation I might have on this board.

Most of you are pre-occupied with FIRE thoughts, as am I, but lest we all become complacent, there is---if not an active conspiracy---at least a conspiracy of thought and ideology afoot that I believe is taking America slowly down the tubes toward collectivism. I'm not obsessed with this, so don't get the impression I'm not hinged together right, but in my weaker moments I do fear for the future and for my kids. And I do believe this may impact my ability to RE, even though I made this OT.

The pattern / trend I see emerging has been getting clearer now for many years, and has quite a few elements to it. To wit, I reveal to you what I see:

1) Political Correctness. This is nothing more than a euphemism for the new fascism that is not so subtly sweeping across the country. Examples abound of people who are being forced to think a certain way; to disagree is to commit a crime. Non-conformers are to be attacked, harassed, ostracized. Hate crimes, the boy scouts, zero tolerance policies, sensitivity classes are just a few examples of fascism in the form of political correctness that come to mind, they are far from the best examples.

2) Media Convergence. Symbolized by the merger of AOL with Time Warner, the media today is a vital part of the dumbing down of America in order to help bring about utopian collectivism, whether it be socialism, communism or fascism (the media doesn't seem to care). I can't speak badly enough of the media, which has completely abdicated its role in a democratic society—a watchdog over government. Instead, the media has gotten in bed with government. The media is fast becoming an oligopoly, controlling every element of mass communication: tv, radio, newspapers, magazines, cable, movies, news, entertainment, the Internet. The result is objective news is today almost non-existent, but there is a lot of pop culture babble, info-tainment, consumer reports, trivia, and politically correct issues masquerading as news. News has nearly disappeared. The replacement is at once homogenize and monolithic. Don't like what's on tv? Switch to radio, switch to newspaper, the Internet, it doesn't matter. All the choices are owned by the same corporations, and the viewpoint is the same, the news is the same, the entertainment is the same. The recent hype of Disney's Pearl Harbor is but a hint of what's to come. As this kind of dumbed-down "news" is presented to the public, real news will go unreported, giving the government more flexibility to do what it wants without the public having a clue to what's going on.

3) Huge government. With the help of a media that provides garbage instead of news, the government has free reign to do almost anything, with the confidence that most people won't find out, and if they do, won't understand what is happening. People tune in the news, and see stories about whether or not Tom Cruise is gay, or whether minimum wage jobs are good for children. To understate the case: this crap isn't news. People are not told what is going on, or what their government may be doing behind their backs. Seven members of the Supreme Court recently ruled the central government of a nation of 280 million people has the right to tell a private sports association (the PGA) to change its playing rules. If national government can rationalize intruding here, it can micro-manage every element of our lives, no matter how trivial or basic. There is simply no logical way one can read the Constitution and get to that kind of a Supreme Court decision from there. Government is so damn big and getting bigger so fast, even dedicated opponents of big government cannot track all the fronts government is moving on.

4) Courts. The courts assist by systematically stripping away our freedom and liberty. Constitutionally guaranteed rights are now trumped by government and court-created rights. Hence, the right of free speech is trumped by the "right" of others not to be offended (hate speech, sexual harassment laws). The right to self-expression is trumped by "zero tolerance" policies (usually found in public schools and colleges), the right to free association is trumped by the "rights" of homosexuals to inject themselves anywhere (boy scouts, the clergy), the rights to private property are trumped by a myriad of health, safety, environmental and discrimination laws. Targeted industries rights to sell legal products are trumped by the state's opinion that what they do is evil. Hence, Phillip Morris can win countless lawsuits regarding smokers deaths, but the courts continue to allow identical lawsuits to be filed. The lawsuits will continue until the outcome desired by the state is produced, which is not the reduction of smoking. The aim as we all know, is the confiscation of profits and the nationalization of private corporations. Separation of church and state has become perhaps the most widely regarded inaccuracy to ever be perpetuated, but even that is bastardized to the point where nearly all references to Christian religion can be expunged in the public sector, but every child learns about Kwanza, and the President of the US can deliver the nation a Kwanza message. The irony is particularly acute because Kwanza is neither religious nor a holiday. The shrinking portion of America that still knows this can't say anything, though, because to do so would offend a protected class and get themselves branded as racists. (That takes us back to #1 above.)

5) Dependence. Perhaps the most insidious propaganda endeavor being undertaken, the government / media complex is conditioning people to become dependent for everything at every level. We are being taught to be helpless. The owner of a nightclub calls 911 to report Jenna Bush using a phony ID. Forget the politics. This is not an emergency. Over two-thirds of the calls to 911 do not constitute emergencies, yet no one is fined for such mis-use. The Emergency Broadcasting System is now routinely used to announce thunderstorms. Yes, thunderstorms can be dangerous, but do they constitute an emergency the likes of which was envisioned by the EBS? Could not a simple local news bulletin do the same job? Yes, but that would take the matter out of the hands of the National Weather Service. The Americans With Disabilities Act, one of the worst pieces of law to come out since the sexual harassment laws, encourages everyone to think of themselves as disabled or handicapped in some way, to the point where it is now becoming common to hear so-called "experts" announce with authority that up to 80% of the country "suffers" from some disability. And Americans are lapping it up, using any excuse to avoid taking responsibility for any act of self-indulgence or laziness they or their children undertake. Witness the increasingly prolific news magazine and reality-based tv shows highlighting "heroic" people "overcoming super-human challenges" in dealing with ordinary problems dealt with by countless generations before them. Look at the apocalyptic way the news media reports on hurricanes, fires, floods, school shootings, random acts of violence, etc. You would think the end of life as we know it has occurred, yet these tragedies have been going on for centuries, and people have been surviving them just fine. The press reports are truly monolithic here, zeroing in on some blubbering woman who DEMANDS to know where FEMA is. The message, as subtle as a brick, is we must all be totally helpless until the government comes to our rescue; and, of course, the only entities on earth who might even begin to address the situation are A) the government and B) grief counselors. Grief counselors and psychologists are now ubiquitous figures in public schools, yet kids today are more screwed up than they've ever been, and no one asks why.

6) Public Schools. Have become little more than expensive day care centers, and places of inculcation. The schools are rapidly becoming homogenized and monolithic. In kindergarten children will learn more about Martin Luther King Jr and Harriot Tubman than they will George Washington by the fourth grade. Environmentalism has become the fourth "R." Gay and reproductive "rights" are understood by the eighth grade, even by the 50% of students who still cannot adequately read by that time. The government has found the public schools a useful tool for politics, and the captive audience that is our children is simply too irresistible. This genie will never go back into the bottle, and the public schools will continue to become more monolithic, more political and less academic than today—which is scary to imagine because they are pretty bad now. Many of you have no doubt seen stories about "zero tolerance" violence policies, which is the most naked form of fascism I've seen in this country in a long time. Perfectly innocent kids get punished for perfectly innocent acts by clueless administrators who haven't the vaguest idea how to stop violence in the schools. When adults cannot or will not discern innocuous behavior from truly threatening behavior, how can they be expected to do anything rational at all? That is but one reason why the schools are becoming increasingly chaotic. Politics has superceded common sense.

These main elements are combining to produce an irresistible lurch to the left that I don't believe will be reversible. We have become the French, with entrenched bureaucratic constituencies whose self-interest is at odds with our Constitutionally protected rights to freedom, liberty and limited government. Self-proclaimed victim groups, increasingly agitating for greater handouts, are at odds with the right to private property and the right of the individual to keep the fruits of one's labor.

This erosion into collectivism won't happen overnight; it never does. It may take scores of years, but if history is a guide, it will eventually happen, and I suppose this rant is because I can't think of anything I can do to oppose it, and I hate feeling helpless. I've often told the DW, we need to make our money and get out before the whole damn thing implodes, but of course, one cannot hide from it.

This has been a long rant, and I feel better, and I've probably self-indulged at your expense. Perhaps I'm a non-conformist who bristles when I find a pattern of conformity rearing up at me, but I wonder if any of you see the things I see. I'm also a realist, I'm not going to despair just because I see something coming I don't like. I intend to enjoy life as much as possible, and to provide as best I can for my kids. But it would be nice to see the big picture looking a bit brighter.

For those of you who despise political rants and think mine has nothing to do with FIRE, think again. There is no way these trends will not directly impact your ability to retire, if they move quickly enough. FIRE, after all, is about independence.
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Author: brewer12345 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41301 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:12 PM
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So when will you be departing for your shack in the woods (Chateau Unabomber)?


All the dependence, lack of education, sheepism, etc. is fine with me. It'll be easier for my kids and I to compete with the brainwashed dolts.

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Author: msbruno Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41303 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:20 PM
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I stand with you. It will be lonely.

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41304 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:35 PM
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Great post Pablum.

Unfortunately, many people refuse to accept the harsh reality of the state of affairs as you put them. They attribute any situation, no matter how rediculous, to the ebbs and flows of democracy. The obvious problem with such a carte blanch assumption is that when it is learned that the premise was wrong, it may be too late.

I am ever fascinated by Doris Kearns-Goodwin (sp?), a historian who is interviewed frequently for Presidential perspective. She often makes the point that much of the divide in our country is from the 20 year void of an *inspiring leader*; one that motivates the public to consider interests greater than their own self. Granted Goodwin is a big liberal (worked for Johnson), but she is objective in this regard, having graded Clinton with an "F".

I happen to think she's right, and I think that the *inspiration factor* is one of the few useful Presidential powers. She often refers to Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Jack Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan as leaders who were able to use their prescence, and character to inspire the country to unite, and see beyond their political differences.

I dont think our current President will inspire. But I DO think he will take alot of the froth out of government with a business like approach. Say what you will, he has surrounded himself with talent.

Perhaps after some of the muck is cleaned out, a leader will follow that will inspire us all.

Golfwaymore





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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41307 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:52 PM
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All the dependence, lack of education, sheepism, etc. is fine with me. It'll be easier for my kids and I to compete with the brainwashed dolts.

But don't you see, competition isn't "fair." Your income and savings will be used to help the less "fortunate", since the sheeps are in the majority.

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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41308 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:54 PM
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I dont think our current President will inspire. But I DO think he will take alot of the froth out of government with a business like approach. Say what you will, he has surrounded himself with talent.

Perhaps after some of the muck is cleaned out, a leader will follow that will inspire us all.

Did someone say Collin Powell?



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Author: dizzyy Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41309 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 12:55 PM
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brewer12345 wrote:

All the dependence, lack of education, sheepism, etc. is fine with me. It'll be easier for my kids and I to compete with the brainwashed dolts.

Be careful. All those brainwashed dolts can vote for congressmen who can then pass a bill to make it illegal to have an IQ over 90.

That is democracy in the US of A.

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Author: brewer12345 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41311 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 1:14 PM
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Be careful. All those brainwashed dolts can vote for congressmen who can then pass a bill to make it illegal to have an IQ over 90.

That is democracy in the US of A

*************

Ah, but those with brains, money or both are able to figure out (or pay someone else to) a way around any onerous laws that our idiot government cares to pass. Why do you think there are always new ways being thought up to "tax the rich" and yet there are still all these wealthy folks wandering around? Case in point: approx. 10% of the life insurance industry exists purely as a way around estate taxes for high net worth individuals.

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Author: natvio One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41314 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 1:30 PM
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Pablum,

I see where your rant is coming from, but I don't really think that the big picture is different from the past in terms of political correctness. It seems I am in the minority on this thread or maybe on this board.

Media convergence is also accompanied by the explosion of ideas and other trustworthy news content on the net.

The Federal goverment is actually smaller as a percentage of percapita than in 1960. The country gets bigger, the guv'ment gets bigger. The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules, just to let this guy use a cart so his legs won't fall off. All other people still can't use carts, so the rule isn't changed. I mean, how could a cart give the guy an advantage over Woods, Kite, etc?

Courts: Yea, they are holding up the rights gaurenteed by the Constitution. BTW, neither the scouts nor the clergy are required by law to let anyone other than they want into their ranks, so they just might be a bad example. Later on, you stated they right of free association is being taken away from them. How? By the protests and boycotts? Those are Constitutionally given rights, no? The example *I* would give is the Supreme Court deciding the election. I know that at least 49% of the voting public agrees with that. :)

Dependence: Well, yes, I do see some of what you are saying. I'm tired of the blame game that happens,ect. I also see incredible stories of kids rising above their poverty and other problems to make a difference, without saying that their problems are all caused by someone else.

I do think alot needs to be done with the public schools, but there are alot of options if the ideology of the school or community isn't appealing. Parents should be more involved. There is more information out there than before, so it is tough to decide what to teach. Private schools are available.

Anyway, I don't think it is a gloomy as you would project, and we won't devolve into collectivism in 5, 10, 15 or even infinity years. Every time the media writes the American public off as needing a seeing eye dog, we go and do something entirely different. And, that is true of the world public, too. The Mexican citizens elected Fox to the suprise of the entire world population. And within all that mass, there are many, many groups of individualism that just isn't covered by the media because it isn't mainstream. I find that the mainstream is really just a part of the real world. Who here has had a life like those on 'Friends' or 'Frazier'?

Oh, and I would be careful of those 'mindless idiots' that others have talked about, it might just be an act. Dubya got into office, didn't he? Or maybe it's a conspirocy by those around him to get all that power by using a mindless idiot? :)

Nate



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Author: spl241 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41315 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 1:34 PM
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I won't attempt to respond to all of your 6-part tome, pablum. I'll address only your final point: "public education." Doing so will lurch into the OT mode, I realize. Just as you claimed your "hot button" has been pressed recently, mine's a bit warm right now. To wit:

[ The schools are rapidly becoming...monolithic.]

monolithic: "Characterized by massiveness, uniformity, rigidity." In a country of circa 280 million, I honestly don't know how to avoid the "massiveness" segment of the definition. However, our schools are distinctly leaning away from uniformity and rigidity in many facets. They are, in fact, becoming more "in loco parentis" all the time. Social workers, juvenile officers in-house, 4-6 differing areas of special education, & teachers' aides in abundance. These comprise monolithism? I suggest instead that they constitute a move in the opposite direction: academic fragmentation borne of carrying society's K-12 ills on their backs and attempting a Band-Aid veneer of "cure." Who's at fault largely? ("See the Latin "parentis" above.)

["zero tolerance" violence policies...the most naked form of fascism I've seen in this country in a long time]

Yes, I grit my teeth, too, when I read about some 4th grader who's expelled for a semester b/c of a plastic gun he/she was going to use at recess. But you & I, pablum, differ in our teeth-gnashing. When I grind mine, it's usually at night after a day of teaching high school. Therefore, I don't find it surprising that "the most naked form of Fascism" is the all-too prevalent panacea--at least for now--for the most inconceivable, unconscionable tidal wave of mayhem in schools in history. I don't AGREE with zero-tol. policies, but I DO understand them in the way that only an insider can. I witness the palpable fear on the part of administrators much more concerned right now with where the "Violence Buck" may stop than they are with effective pedagogy.

You label administrators "clueless." Hell, yes, they're clueless. They're in the unenviable position of confronting a heretofore-unknown phenomenon in schools; accordingly, I will make two dismal projections, neither very surprising: 1)the phenomenon won't abate appreciably--if at all--anytime soon, and 2)"cluelessness" will remain the appropriate administrative label for quite some time. I think we'll see a case-by-case approach in the nearer term but am unable to tell you when. I view the distasteful zero-tol policies as I do stop signs and those electronic buzzers in place at many retailers: their implementation is there to guard against the vast minority rather than the law-abiding, commonsensical majority.

Teaching for 34 years has been my pathway to imminent FI/RE. It's a rocky path sometimes, particularly now. It's become a more divergent path in terms of "be all to all." Viewed against the ever-changing backdrop of 2001 America, however, I still exalt what we do as somewhat above an "expensive day care center" or a "tool" of the Beltway Boys.

--241

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Author: entivore Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41316 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 1:45 PM
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The following may give you the impression that I'm insane. I'm not, I'm just being romantic and maybe even a little funny. This should not be used as a judgement of my competence or sanity, even by foolish standards. ^_^


___

Evil shall always prevail. There will be two types of nonconformists in the fascist future, the good ones and the evil ones. The good ones are the logical why should anyone be given more _____ than everyone else types. They will be powerless to stop their own lynchings and unlawful arrests due to their insistance on using 'the truth'. Then there are the evil ones who are like the ones who conspired in the first place. They recognize bullcarp when they see it but also know how to spout it. The bullcarp makers in charge will see that they are hard to eliminate through the normal means so they will assimilate them instead. Evil will prevail!

People won't listen to you just because your right, and people won't stop oppressing you just because you won't fight back. The reason oppressers stopped in the past was because a 3rd party got involved. For instance the north part of the united states during the civil war. Gandi or whatever his name is wouldn't have had much influence if the OUTSIDERS didn't see what was going on and feel bad. The oppressers themselves will never have remorse. Unfortunatly this is a lesson that doesn't come naturally, and by the time any "good" person who is resistant to propaganda arises it'll be too late for them.

Evil shall always win in the end! Good always winning is propaganda spread by evil to keep good people unmotivated. God and Satan are also made up and are exploited to distract from the real causes of good and evil. Evil even has ways of making itself sound reasonable because it can say there really is no such thing as good or evil because everything is just matter and energy without purpose. If good actually wins a battle, it's optimism and mercy will permit evil to regroup and sprout again. Evil cannot be destroyed, it's carriers are humans but the humans themselves aren't evil. Killing and locking up evildoers won't stop evil from spreading. Evil will use crackdowns as an excuse to spread itself. Those people are criminals, monsters, not human. They deserve to suffer/die for their crimes. Yes, evil loves talk like this. Spread the inhumane mentaility. Yes, it's alright to violate the rights of the inferior. The inferior have no rights.

Evil loves it when people get this mentality. The loop of evil can then take hold. The people with the inhumane mentality will violate the rights of another group. Maybe foreigners, or different religions, or people with different views, or a different race, or the young, or the old, or the rich, or the poor. It really doesn't matter. Then there is a double edge sword. The oppressed will lose respect for the oppressors, themselves so disillusioned that they will get the inferiority mentality. Those people are monsters to do that to me, they have no rights. Evil will spread again. Evil is unstoppable!

Evil shall rule the world forever, HAHAHAHAHAHA! So go ahead and blame, blame away. You'll never rise en masse to the level where abstract concepts get the blame instead of people and groups. You'll never rise to the point where all people are valued as equal, that's right ALL people, not just people you like.

But I can be a fair ruler too. I'll allow MOST of those who silently conform to me to live a reasonable life. See, evil isn't so bad. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!


___

The preceding was not intended to make any sense or convey any meaning whatsoever. Any attempt to extract meaning from that nonsense will forfeit your right to eat curly fries. Thank you for your time.

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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41317 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 1:54 PM
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The Federal goverment is actually smaller as a percentage of percapita than in 1960. The country gets bigger, the guv'ment gets bigger.

False.

"Federal tax revenues in 2001 are projected to consume 20.5 percent of domestic economic output--the highest level of taxation the United States has ever experienced. It is matched only by the level reached in 1944, at the height of World War II."

http://www.heritage.org/library/backgrounder/bg1443es.html



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Author: mrhowell Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41319 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 2:04 PM
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This dollar amount of government equaling it's "bigness" is a bit of a divertion. How intrusive it is; it's ability and intent to run more of the lives of its citizens down to lower and lower levels of daily living, THAT is Big Government. Technology could allow Government to do that with very few people and lower expenditures but we still wouldnt call that Small Government. Of course, the money thing still counts too but a very costly gov could still be a wholly ineffectual gov which would probably not be considered "big government"

**************
The Federal goverment is actually smaller as a percentage of percapita than in 1960. The country gets bigger, the guv'ment gets bigger.

False.

"Federal tax revenues in 2001 are projected to consume 20.5 percent of domestic economic output--the highest level of taxation the United States has ever experienced. It is matched only by the level reached in 1944, at the height of World War II."

http://www.heritage.org/library/backgrounder/bg1443es.html



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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41321 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 2:15 PM
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This dollar amount of government equaling it's "bigness" is a bit of a divertion. How intrusive it is; it's ability and intent to run more of the lives of its citizens down to lower and lower levels of daily living, THAT is Big Government.

True, but taxes as a percent of GDP is probably the most accurate measure we've got. It's a bit difficult to claim that government is too big without some quantifiable measure of it's size.

Computerizing operations may make them more efficient, requiring less employees and reducing waste. It could then be more intrusive at the same or lower cost. There are also regulatory intrusions, which may be less measureable, but at some point a new restriction or mandate will likely appear on the income statement since money must be spent on enforcement.

A combined measure of local, state and federal tax burden would more accurately reflect all the unfunded mandates imposed by the federal government on lower levels of government.

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Author: HamletsMill Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41324 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 2:28 PM
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"We have become the French,"


No, we don't have their month long vacations, or cheese, or as few children living in poverty, or clothing style, or as demanding an educational system.

Nor, given how praised your post has been, do we apparently have much of their joie de vive.

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Author: UncaMikey Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41325 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 2:32 PM
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I'd like to think that intelligent, reasonable people can disagree about politics without accusing each other of bringing on the end of Western Civilization, but that seems to be less and less possible in this country.

I know nothing about you, Pablum. But I assume that anyone who can operate a puter, find the Internet and TMF, and discuss FIRE, must be intelligent. You are probably a nice guy, loved by family and liked by friends. There's even a chance that if we sat down and had a beer, we'd enjoy each other's company.

But after your post, that would be difficult; I'm not sure either of us would be comfortable. Even if we were outwardly civil, we would both know that you believe that I (middle-aged WASP male, combat veteran, advanced degree, successful career, married with kids, trying to lose weight, working towards FI) am a threat to all that you hold dear. You believe that I am part of an implicit conspiracy to bring fascism and communism and socialism to America. You believe that my political opinions result from either stupidity or a desire to oppress you.

You say you consider leaving the country because of the slide into collectivism. I, on the other hand, am not enjoying the descent into mistrust and suspicion. There seems to be no effort to find common ground and mutual interest, and that makes us all very much poorer.

*>UncaMikey

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Author: natvio One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41327 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 2:39 PM
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<me>
The Federal goverment is actually smaller as a percentage of percapita than in 1960. The country gets bigger, the guv'ment gets bigger.
</me>

<PMcMullenCT>

False.

"Federal tax revenues in 2001 are projected to consume 20.5 percent of domestic economic output--the highest level of taxation the United States has ever experienced. It is matched only by the level reached in 1944, at the height of World War II."

http://www.heritage.org/library/backgrounder/bg1443es.html
</PMcMullenCT>

Actually, I wrote that wrong, here is the quote from the nytimes.com site:

<snip>
At this stage, it seems more likely that the surpluses will be smaller than that they will be larger. That is because the estimates assumed rigid limits on government spending that probably will not be maintained. Government spending is already smaller as a percentage of the national economy than at any other time since the 1960's, and the estimates of the surplus assume the proportion will drop another 25 percent in the next decade.
</snip>

http://www.nytimes.com/2001/06/08/politics/08TAXE.html

That makes us both right, unfortunately.

Nate


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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41333 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 3:24 PM
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You believe that my political opinions result from either stupidity or a desire to oppress you.

UncaMikey, I think you misunderstand. Pablum, myself, and likeminded folk dont believe that you desire to oppress us. We just think the bi-product of the heavy handed, governmental involvement you support, accomplishes the same.

Your intentions may be good, but there's little proof to show that they're effective after 30 years of the *Great Society*.

There's even a chance that if we sat down and had a beer, we'd enjoy each other's company. But after your post, that would be difficult

Now this is going to far. When I worked for the Japanese, they had a thing called "nomication". Essentially, if you had a grievance with a boss or co-worker, you both went out together and got plastered. Unbelievably, it was a pretty effective way of resolving differences, though likely tough on the liver.

Golfwaymore,
Who will agree with UncaMikey, every time he's right. <grin>



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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41334 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 3:36 PM
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Spl241 writes:

monolithic: "Characterized by massiveness, uniformity, rigidity."

I agree, and repeat, the schools are becoming homogenized and monolithic. It is readily and widely apparent. And do you honestly believe the schools are moving back to local control? Parents are treated as hostile enemies by most school systems I know. Even at the local level, parents are informed of very little that goes on in school.

"Who's at fault largely? ("See the Latin "parentis" above.)"

I also agree. Parents are largely to blame, but then again, they are egged on and encouraged to be irresponsible by government and the media. The fact that parents are primarily at fault does not negate the fact that schools are largely becoming dens of political correctness that do a poorer and poorer job of teaching.

"...I don't find it surprising that "the most naked form of Fascism" is the all-too prevalent panacea--at least for now--for the most inconceivable, unconscionable tidal wave of mayhem in schools in history. I don't AGREE with zero-tol. policies, but I DO understand them in the way that only an insider can. I witness the palpable fear on the part of administrators much more concerned right now with where the "Violence Buck" may stop than they are with effective pedagogy."

You are making my point, 241, the administrators are more concerned with politics than with pedagogy. They don't care about the kids, they care about their jobs.

"You label administrators "clueless." Hell, yes, they're clueless. They're in the unenviable position of confronting a heretofore-unknown phenomenon in schools."

I respectfully disagree. These people aren't stupid. They've seen this coming for a long time. Schools in this country were extremely effective for most of this nation's history. We have years of experience to draw from, and we know exactly how to effectively teach children. It's not hard. But the left, administrators and teachers unions decided it was more important to instill political values in children instead, and have been doing so increasingly over the last 35 years. The left took dead aim at a target, and the highly trained academic administrator didn't see it coming? This is laughable.

"Teaching for 34 years has been my pathway to imminent FI/RE. Viewed against the ever-changing backdrop of 2001 America, however, I still exalt what we do as somewhat above an "expensive day care center" or a "tool" of the Beltway Boys."

You take offense where none is intended. I, too, worked on the inside, and saw a good number of teachers who heroically tried to teach in an increasingly hostile and chaotic environment. But I also saw many bad teachers and administrators, people who had no business being in education but were. The ones who had tenure were the worst; trapped in jobs they didn't like, but were afraid to leave the cozy confines of tenure, they hung on hurting themselves, the kids, and the better quailed teachers they kept out by staying on. It's no secret that one of the areas most needing reform is the tenure system. It is simply impossible to fire a bad teacher or administrator.

I have no personal animosity directed towards teachers, 241, and certainly none toward you, but you have to have blinders on not to admit that the public school system has become awful. It doesn't work. The stewards of that system---the administrators, the unions, the teachers, the government---are to blame, not the children and not the parents. It will not reform itself unless real competition is introduced, and I don't see that day coming.

I fear you are reacting defensively because of your 34 years in the system, not because you don't see these things for yourself. I don't indict you. I'm not trying to be personal about this. I indict the system. Most people who suffered under communism were intrinsically good. To attack communism is not to attack those living under it.




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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41336 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 3:52 PM
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You say you consider leaving the country because of the slide into collectivism. I, on the other hand, am not enjoying the descent into mistrust and suspicion. There seems to be no effort to find common ground and mutual interest, and that makes us all very much poorer.

The problem is that government has gotten into the business of taking from one group, in order to give to another. We have an increasing dictatorship of the majority, and the majority only pay 9% of all income taxes. Suppose someone want to take your income or assets, would finding "common ground" mean surrendering only half your stuff?

A flat tax may be the only answer. Voting to increase someone else's taxes is no way to run a country.

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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41337 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:06 PM
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"Federal tax revenues in 2001 are projected to consume 20.5 percent of domestic economic output--the highest level of taxation the United States has ever experienced. It is matched only by the level reached in 1944, at the height of World War II."

"Government spending is already smaller as a percentage of the national economy than at any other time since the 1960's"

Taking in more, spending less. I suppose that explains the surplus.



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Author: Kestral Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41339 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:15 PM
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Be careful. All those brainwashed dolts can vote for congressmen who can then pass a bill to make it illegal to have an IQ over 90.
That is democracy in the US of A.


I think Ayn Rand said it best when she called it "the Moratorium on Brains".

Kestral

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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41341 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:17 PM
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UncaMickey wrote:

<<I'd like to think that intelligent, reasonable people can disagree about politics without accusing each other of bringing on the end of Western Civilization, but that seems to be less and less possible in this country.

I know nothing about you, Pablum. But I assume that anyone who can operate a puter, find the Internet and TMF, and discuss FIRE, must be intelligent. You are probably a nice guy, loved by family and liked by friends. There's even a chance that if we sat down and had a beer, we'd enjoy each other's company.

But after your post, that would be difficult; I'm not sure either of us would be comfortable. Even if we were outwardly civil, we would both know that you believe that I (middle-aged WASP male, combat veteran, advanced degree, successful career, married with kids, trying to lose weight, working towards FI) am a threat to all that you hold dear. You believe that I am part of an implicit conspiracy to bring fascism and communism and socialism to America. You believe that my political opinions result from either stupidity or a desire to oppress you.

You say you consider leaving the country because of the slide into collectivism. I, on the other hand, am not enjoying the descent into mistrust and suspicion. There seems to be no effort to find common ground and mutual interest, and that makes us all very much poorer.>>


You disappoint me, UncaMickey. I don't believe what I posted was personally directed against anyone, so I find it hard to understand why you might be taking personal offense. Nor do I believe what I posted to be unreasonable or lacking in intelligence. In fact, I thought it just the opposite.

I know nothing of you, either, but find many of your posts rather enjoyable. Why, then, do you presume we would find each other's company "uncomfortable?" More curious: why would you think that I would view you---in your words, a "middle-aged WASP male, combat veteran, advanced degree, successful career, married with kids, trying to lose weight, working towards FI"---a threat to all I hold dear? You sound like my old boss, who I got along famously with. Where have I implied that you are part of "an implicit conspiracy to bring fascism and communism and socialism to America?" I don't know what your political opinions are, so how could I believe that those opinions result from either stupidity or a desire to oppress me?

It may be true that it's becoming less and less possible to sit down and have a disagreement about politics, but I respectfully submit that I am not the one who appears to be taking that attitude. Certainly if you disagree with me we can discuss it, but since you have not elaborated, there is not much else I can do except ask if you wouldn't mind doing so.

Also, I didn't mean to imply I would leave the country. By getting out, I sort of meant getting out of the rat race, and moving to the country. I was hopelessly unclear on that.


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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41342 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:18 PM
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Pablum writes,

.....but you have to have blinders on not to admit that the public school system has become awful. It doesn't work. The stewards of that system---the administrators, the unions, the teachers, the government---are to blame, not the children and not the parents.

I don't know about that last point. I blame the fathers. To quote my favorite Republican (from a comedic standpoint) former Tennessee governor and 1992 Presidential candidate,

"Find the fathers and make them pay." <LOL>

intercst

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41344 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:23 PM
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Whoops, I didn't give you the guys's name. It's former Gov. Lamar Alexander,

"Find the fathers and make them pay." <LOL>

intercst

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Author: d26343 One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41347 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 4:37 PM
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I can't speak badly enough of the media, which has completely abdicated its role in a democratic society—a watchdog over government.

Let's not confuse one of the many roles with the job of the media in America. It is to maximize profit. The more markets are deregulated, the more consolidation you are going to get.

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Author: spl241 Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41352 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:12 PM
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Pablum,

You're "going down" a lot harder in this missive than your gastronomic namesake that I consumed aplenty as a kid...a bit harder to swallow, if you will. Since the issue is huge, again I'll reply to just very specific ideas.

{{Parents are treated as hostile enemies...informed of very little that goes on in school.}} Obviously, school systems vary, so I speak here only of what I know. We attempt to form partnerships with our parents. They're invited to many things via mailers. Announcemt's. are put in the paper. At times, kids are told to take something home. We even have a form letter of good news about a kid that we can mail that has a checklist of all positives plus ample space for comments. Yet...some parents have asked perplexedly when the next report card is due & shrivel when told that it came out last week. What about Open House?? We like to call it "the night you see all the parents you don't need to see." Where are they?

{{..fear on the part of administrators much more concerned right now with where the "Violence Buck" may stop than they are with effective pedagogy--241 (vs.)...the administrators are more concerned with politics than with pedagogy. They don't care about the kids, they care about their jobs--pablum}}

Pab, how the heck do you equate fear of violence with "politics?" Admin's. don't want to look over their shoulders (& into bookbags). They don't want to devote a lot of attention to this issue that won't go away. Their "care about their jobs" has had to factor in being a sergeant-at-arms now. This is not their fault. It is only what communities, school bds., etc. WANT them to do. I submit that if a principal in "Dismal Seepage OH" (graduating class of 11) even hinted that he had no School Action Plan in place, his job would be at more risk than if all 11 grads couldn't read the label on a can of Green Giant Niblets. That's where priorities are right now--and they're sure as H not the principals'. Can't you "get" that?

{{the left, administrators and teachers unions decided it was more important to instill political values in children instead, and have been doing so increasingly over the last 35 years.}}

Those remarks remind me of a bad dessert like overbaked brownies, fallen angel food cake, etc. Nevertheless, I've still saved it for last. (Civility, don't fail me...) I must be the dumbest *** that ever taught a day. You cry "Politics!" WHERE? HOW? I concede that politics enters the educational arena a lot vis a vis funding. But course content? Values conveyed via subtle inferences in "Leftist" texts? UNH-UNH. Finally, concerning the last 35 years of "instilling political values," thus bringing educ. to a grinding halt...

...35 years ago, more than the current paltry 50% of couples meant "I do" at the altar; their progeny stood a better chance of success in many aspects of life;
...35 years ago, call the ol' man an MF b/c you sneaked out of your room & got caught, the ol' man just might leave a red mark on your gluteus maximus & not have to answer to Protective Services 8 hrs. later;
...35 years ago, what some people--not necessarily me--now deem detrimental to values, e.g. lyrics, v-games et al, didn't exist;

...35 years ago--and maybe most importantly--Blame-Shifting didn't rival baseball as the national pasttime. There was a hell of a lot more "Do It-Face It."

In short, I see you as guilty of Blame-Shifting, too. In the process, you appear to be somewhere to the Right of Atilla the Hun. Having said that, you probably perceive me as being to the Left of Timothy Leary. Well, I'm not. "Politics" as it relates to your perceived failing of the public schools just doesn't wash, IMO.

This is It from me...the last word is yours if you so desire. --241







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Author: UncaMikey Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41357 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:23 PM
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I don't know what your political opinions are, so how could I believe that those opinions result from either stupidity or a desire to oppress me?

I am one of the few remaining liberals who posts occasionally on REHP, but I think our numbers are dwindling fast. <GGGG> Earlier, you said the "[liberal] aim is to transfer unlimited power to government." As a liberal all of my adult life, this is news to me. I strongly support many of the things that you believe are part of the "conspiracy of thought and ideology" that "is taking America slowly down the tubes toward collectivism." I don't see a "lurch to the left" but a retreat to the right.

I think turning the US into France would be a great improvement -- it'd be worthwhile for the cheese alone. I like the Western European style of government as it has evolved since WWII, and think we would do well to learn from it. If this causes you to "fear for the future," well, there's nothing I can do about that.

Personal offense? Me? Nope. I agree with a few of your points, and am quite confident that my politics -- more social programs and all the rest -- is just as American as yours.

Besides, this is just a TMF message board. <GGGG>

What I really want to know is, if the liberals think the conservatives are getting their way and ruining everything, and the conservatives think that liberals are now controlling it all, where the heck are we?

*>UncaMikey

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41358 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:28 PM
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I see where your rant is coming from, but I don't really think that the big picture is different from the past in terms of political correctness.

A case study of the "Brown vs Board of Education" lawsuit is instructive here.

The Brown family lived more or less across the street from an elementary school. However, that school was designated "whites only" and the Browns weren't. So, IN ORDER TO ACHIEVE THE GOVERNMENT-DECREED RACIAL BALANCE, the Brown children were bused across town to another school.

They wanted to send their kids to the school across the street. They sued. Eventually, they won in the US Supreme Court.

Unfortunately, while the school had been whites-only, most of the surrounding neighborhood was black. The elimination of racial segregation made the school majority-black, out of proportion with the local community. And the courts had not been satisfied with decreeing that legally mandated segregation was illegal. They legally mandated DEsegregation.

So, IN ORDER TO ACHIEVE THE GOVERNMENT-DECREED RACIAL BALANCE, the Brown children were bused across town to another school.

Exactly what they had sued to put an end to in the first place.


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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41360 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:30 PM
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The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules

Yeah, they did. I believe the rule is (was) that no one can use a cart. The Supreme Court said the rule now is Casey Martin can use a cart. You don't think that's a rule change?

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41363 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:36 PM
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However, our schools are distinctly leaning away from uniformity and rigidity in many facets. They are, in fact, becoming more "in loco parentis" all the time.

Yes, the schools ARE becoming more "in loco parentis" all the time.

What is confusing is that you seem to be arguing that this clear move TOWARD uniformity and rigidity, decreases uniformity and rigidity.

A babysitter acts as the agent of the parents, and has no authority save by a grant from the parents.

The public schools act in place of the parents (that's what "in loco parentis" means). Their authority does NOT derive from that of the parents, and is routinely used in a manner which overrides and revokes that of the parents.


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Author: natvio One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41364 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:42 PM
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The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules

<tmeri>
Yeah, they did. I believe the rule is (was) that no one can use a cart. The Supreme Court said the rule now is Casey Martin can use a cart. You don't think that's a rule change?
</tmeri>

That isn't how the PGA head looks at it. He sees it as an individual case. He has stated that they will still enforce this except for this person. I'm sure he has had legal advice on that.

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41365 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:46 PM
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{{Parents are treated as hostile enemies...informed of very little that goes on in school.}} Obviously, school systems vary, so I speak here only of what I know. We attempt to form partnerships with our parents. They're invited to many things via mailers. Announcemt's. are put in the paper. At times, kids are told to take something home.

As you say, school systems vary. In the schools our children attended, we saw ALL of that stuff, and more.

Here's some of the "more":

* We were asked not to teach our daughter's education at home, because she was getting ahead of the class and that was disruptive.

* We volunteered at the schools. We'd get letters from the school staff thanking us for doing such a wonderful job at something, with a copy to the district administration. A week later there'd be a new edict from the administration saying that volunteers weren't allowed to do that.

* Teachers were allowed to leave a classroom of twenty third-graders UNsupervised, but were not allowed to leave them supervised by a parent.

* The PTA was not permitted under any circumstances to ask for an accounting for PTA funds which had been put in the care of any school employee.


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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41368 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:52 PM
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Whoops, I didn't give you the guys's name. It's former Gov. Lamar Alexander

Oh, good, I got it right!



What? You say it wasn't a quiz? Oh, well, nevermind.

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Author: natvio One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41370 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 5:55 PM
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tmeri,

This is a contuation of my last post, as I need to clarify.

I didn't make my point as clear as maybe I could have. I was responding to what I percieved as someone thinking that *all* the people would now use carts, and that something *cherished* was lost on the game of golf. Yes, it is a rule change, but a *specific* rule change, so Pablum is right on the semantics, but insinuated that a great American past time was interfered by the courts.

Anyway, a better rebut would be, "so what, it's just an individual ruling for someone that can play the game and can stand, etc, but just can't walk for long distances. The argument the PGA has is that the walking will tire you out sooo much that your 18th hole drive could be worse than your 1st tee shot. I think that is foolish, especially with the great majority of the great players (winners) being in great shape. Oh, and please, layoff the, 'they got that way because they had to walk'! I'm tired and I just made the argument wrong, OK? :)

BTW, Pablum, I do agree the Courts are getting too involved and taking away some rights, just look to the Texas case where the woman was handcuffed in front of her children for not wearing a seatbelt. The supreme court said it was alright, and this is the same court that has gone down hard on the Indiana(?) police for unlawfull auto searches.

Nate

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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41381 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 6:55 PM
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The argument the PGA has is that the walking will tire you out sooo much that your 18th hole drive could be worse than your 1st tee shot.

What difference does it make WHY the PGA has the rule? It's part of the game, man!

In baseball, if a batter has 2 strikes, swings and misses the next pitch, the catcher fails to catch the ball, and the batter makes it safely to 1st base (without being tagged or thrown out), then the results are as follows:

1) The batter is considered to have struck out for that AB.
2) No out is recorded.

Does this make sense? No. But no fan that I know argues about it -- it's just part of the game. It doesn't matter why, it's just the rule.

Baseball also defines the strike zone. Do you think that if Ankiel went to the Supreme Court and said, "Hey, I can't hit the strike zone like Greg Maddux and now they've demoted me to the minor leagues" and the Supreme Court agreed that the strike zone favors Maddux and therefore is unfair to Ankiel because he has less control, would that be a good decision? In my mind, it's the same thing as their ruling in the Martin case.

Do you know Jim Abbott? He pitched for the Yankees a few years ago. Never spent a day in the minor leagues, which is pretty unusual. No rules were changed for Jim Abbott. Why should they be changed? Well, Jim Abbott only had one hand. Think about that. He played major league baseball not because rules were changed to accomodate him, but because he was good enough in spite of his handicap.

What I think you don't see is that we sports fans are outraged at the Supreme Court because it is having rules that you can depend on that makes the game a sport. Think about it -- when do players and fans get really mad? At poor judgment calls by the refs. Whenever an outcome is dictated by the rules, no one gets mad, they accept it as part of the game. They know ahead of time that regardless of how unfair it seems, the rule has provided a certain (meaning sure) limitation that all players can count on.

What about golfers that can't drive as far as Woods? Should the Supreme Court say that the PGA has to shorten all of the links?

The rules always favor some players over others. That's the way games are. For physical reasons I'll never be a professional athlete. Should I sue until all sports accomodate my physical limitations so that the playing field is leveled? Absolutely not.

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Author: natvio One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41386 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 8:19 PM
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<tmeri>
What I think you don't see is that we sports fans are outraged at the Supreme Court because it is having rules that you can depend on that makes the game a sport. Think about it -- when do players and fans get really mad? At poor judgment calls by the refs. Whenever an outcome is dictated by the rules, no one gets mad, they accept it as part of the game. They know ahead of time that regardless of how unfair it seems, the rule has provided a certain (meaning sure) limitation that all players can count on
</tmeri>

Oh, I know that there are outraged fans out there, and I *do* know why. But I also know that there are fans out there that don't give a rip about this guy riding a cart. You don't talk for all of them, and neither do I. I know there will always be purists out there, and I say, good for them, but for me, and at least a few columnists at SI (did you read the last page of the SI a few weeks ago?), we can enjoy watching golf anyway. My opinion is it doesn't take anything away from the golf (It is slow anyway), and that is *MY* opinion as a sports fan.

To get back on OT, I just don't think it signals the decline of American civiliazation toward Facism and similarity.

SO, there! :)

Nate

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41387 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 8:21 PM
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tmeri writes,

<<<<<<The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules>>>>

Yeah, they did. I believe the rule is (was) that no one can use a cart. The Supreme Court said the rule now is Casey Martin can use a cart. You don't think that's a rule change?


Actually, that's not quite true. The PGA allows the use of carts in the Qualifying School Tournament -- mostly to speed the pace of play. I suspect that was the reason the Supreme Court had a tough time swallowing the PGA's argument that "walking was an integral part of golf", when walking wasn't even required in the Qualifying Tournament.

Also, if they let all PGA Tour players use carts, I suspect the majority would still elect to walk the course. If we were really worried about making golf an athletic event, these guys should be carrying their own bags and raking their own sand traps. <grin>

intercst

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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41389 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 8:49 PM
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Pablum,

No, you have self-indulged in order to help raise our level of awareness of these important issues, and I commend you for that.

The movie "Dr. Zhivago" is very interesting because it teaches us some lessons that illustrate collectivism at its worst. At one point, for instance, the doctor's house (or maybe it was his father in law's house) is taken over by a crowd of people. The head of the local soviet proclaims,"This house is too big for just one family..." or something to that effect, as you see at least 50-100 people busily taking up residence.

Then,later on, after the good doctor is forcibly conscripted into a partisan unit, a commissar remarks to Dr. Zhivago, "when this is all over, everyone will be judged politically." This came to pass when Stalin began the practice of labeling ordinary citizens "enemies of the people," and subsequently stripping them totally of their humanity as punishment for daring to take on "the soviet man." This is where we are headed, and God help you if you are judged unfavorably in a political sense.

One of the hallmarks of free capitalist societies is a total lack of labor camps for political prisoners. Expect to see a change here within 20 years. We WILL eventually see political reeducation camps, for those of us opposed to the prevailing political doctrines. And our society will become the land of the "tolkach" (fixer) and the "stukach" (stool pigeon) just like the old Soviet Union.

And, for the truly incorrigible, it will be exile in the dead of winter to Buffalo, New York. <grin>


allocatorx


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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41392 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 9:09 PM
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I don't buy your argument, although I'm on incredibly thin ice here with you. I've never swung the first club (unless you count Putt Putt), and clearly you have more knowledge of the game.

What about pro basketball? Could a slow player claim that he needed more time on the shot clock? It's not integral part of the game, after all, because in college roundball the clock is 45 seconds.

I'm not a purist. I just believe the lines have to be drawn some where, and if the rules don't work well, they can be changed. But there is a proper process to change the rules, and whining your way through the courts is not it.

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41394 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 9:20 PM
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tmeri counters,

I don't buy your argument, although I'm on incredibly thin ice here with you. I've never swung the first club (unless you count Putt Putt), and clearly you have more knowledge of the game.

What about pro basketball? Could a slow player claim that he needed more time on the shot clock? It's not integral part of the game, after all, because in college roundball the clock is 45 seconds.


No. I wouldn't favor messing with the shot clock in basketball, but football is a different story. I would give a handicapped running back the use of a big SUV to plow through the middle of the defensive line.

We didn't even get to see anything like that in the XFL. <grin>

intercst


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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41395 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 9:27 PM
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"Personal offense? Me? Nope. I agree with a few of your points, and am quite confident that my politics -- more social programs and all the rest -- is just as American as yours."

"Cradle-to-grave" social programs is NOT the American way (it really originated with Otto Von Bismarck,a German). Rugged individualism is. This French/German approach will become so expensive that we will have to tax all FIRE people OUT OF EXISTENCE to pay for it.

Social Security and Medicare are the Baby Boomers' MAGINOT LINE. They purport to defend EVERYBODY and in the end defend NOBODY (because they only provide subsistence levels of income and medical care at an exorbitant price).

Remember, someone has to pay for these social programs as they continue to grow by leaps and bounds. And, just who might that be?

Unca Mikey, if you ever come to Dallas, I promise I will have a beer with you. I think we both might enjoy that, our differing politics notwithstanding.


allocatorx

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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41396 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 9:27 PM
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I cannot BELIEVE you are going to bring up SUVs again! You are one brave soul, for sure.

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Author: mhtyler Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41400 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 9:59 PM
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"For those of you who despise political rants and think mine has nothing to do with FIRE, think again. There is no way these trends will not directly impact your ability to retire, if they move quickly enough. FIRE, after all, is about independence. "

Unfortunately, the more crowded this planet becomes, the more the law is about crowd control....the more EVERYTHING is about crowd control.

Ironically, people are so certain that life is sacred that they will create it in huge volumes until it is meaningless.

The big problems and the big tyrannies will come after we're all dead, and that is the only comfort to be taken.

mark

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Author: mhtyler Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41401 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 10:01 PM
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""We have become the French,""

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!

Shrieks and runs off in horror...

mark

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Author: sonarhawk One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41409 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 10:51 PM
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"We have become the French,"


No, we don't have their month long vacations, or cheese, or as few children living in poverty, or clothing style, or as demanding an educational system.

Nor, given how praised your post has been, do we apparently have much of their joie de vive.

...or their drinking age! ;>/

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Author: sonarhawk One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41412 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:07 PM
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In the process, you appear to be somewhere to the Right of Atilla the Hun.


Didn't Attila the Hun bring together the nomadic tribes of Europe and obtain the utmost respect from the Roman Empire? Attila demanded as much of himself as he did his men; he led by example. He reportedly said before a battle "If any man can stand at rest while Attila fights, he is a dead man."

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41413 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:08 PM
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The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules

Yeah, they did. I believe the rule is (was) that no one can use a cart. The Supreme Court said the rule now is Casey Martin can use a cart. You don't think that's a rule change?


It seems pretty clear it's a rule change to me. Frankly, as an avid golfer, I've had a difficult time determining how I feel about this ruling by the courts.

While I've heard alot of people support the court's decision, I cant say I've heard any golfers support it as of yet. I'm wondering if this is due to people not understanding the game of golf? Most of the arguements in favor have said "the game is about the shot, riding in a cart is no relation to making the shot".

I'm not so sure. I play both riding and walking, depending on what time of day it is and course traffic. I prefer to walk, but have to ride most rounds to keep the course tempo.

It seems to me, that golf is about 60% mental, and 40% physical/talent. Those who have never played will laugh at that. Those who love the game will agree whole heartedly.

My point is, the average golf course is about 3.5 miles; not necessarily flat miles (unless you're in FL). I can say with certainty that I physically feel much more exhausted, which effects the mental game, when I'm walking.

Ironically though, I generally score lower when walking. I attribute it to playing a slower game, and having more time between shots to think about my next shot.

So in other words, I dont know what I think about the ruling, but there's no question it's a rule change. Any golfers care to sound off?

Golfwaymore

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Author: FlyingCircus Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41414 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:09 PM
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There's even a chance that if we
sat down and had a beer, we'd enjoy each other's company.

But after your post, that would be difficult; I'm not sure either of us would be comfortable...


followed by
I, on the other hand, am not enjoying the
descent into mistrust and suspicion. There seems to be no effort to find common ground and mutual interest, and that makes us
all very much poorer.


These two thoughts represent everything that Pablum is ranting about, yet the author could never see the point. "We wouldn't be comfortable having a beer" because you, Pablum, disagree with me and my approach. This starts down the slippery slope into "Pablum is dangerous" (a favorite of the left) and the very neo-fascism he writes about. By contrast, one of Winston Churchill's most effective tactics was to frequently invite his opponents (the ones he respected, anyway) to dinner to debate the issues of the day. If nothing else, as an intellectual exercise.

Which leads to "there's no effort to find common ground..." This is classic. There's no effort to move to your common ground - based on the assumption that "I'm right, you could never be anything but wrong". Looking over the cliff again into "and we're going to make sure these nasty people are re-educated into our Correctness". Why does the effort to move to common ground always have to come from the people who disagree with you, and never you?

Why is it that when the left (who are now conservatives of the new fascism) speak out against the right, the major media frame it in terms as if the right were errant, selfish children that just need to be taught the enlightened way? But when the right (who are now liberals against the new fascism) speak out against the left, the major media frame it as inflammatory, racist, classist, whatever-ist and especially dangerous anti-socialist radicalism that needs to be crushed?

FC (who doesn't approve of religious fascists any more than leftist fascists)

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41415 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:10 PM
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Pablum:

1) Political Correctness. This is nothing more than a euphemism for the new fascism .....Hate crimes, the boy scouts, zero tolerance policies, sensitivity classes

The Boy Scouts, a private organization, openly discriminated. If you are worried about individual rights, I'm sure that you might be concerned, especially if tax money, tax subsidized meeting places, and other gov't favored conditions allowed them to prosper. The Scouts discriminate on religious basis (won't allow in atheists). I'm sorry, I can't support them and won't see my tax money (local, state, or national going to support them). Actually, I'm surprised you didn't hop on the Boy Scouts for being fascist like - it was the Nazis who weeded out the 'undesireables' and those of unfavored ethnic & religious backgrounds, no?

2) Media Convergence. Symbolized by the merger of AOL with Time Warner, the media today is a vital part of the dumbing down of America

I'm sorry, but folks in NY city have been reading the city scandal sheet/slock news rag for 100 years, and the main topic for discussion for 98% of American males is not politics, not school districts, but beer, beer drinking, hunting, and sports, with FOOTBALL being number one. The main interest for females seem to be shopping, shopping, 'fashion', 'raising a family', haridos, nail polish, etc.

The main fair on TV is soap operas, shoot em up violence and wrestling. I'm not sure that is all that much different than 70 and 60 years ago where people listened to Molly and Fibber McGee on the radio, and othe similar programs for hours a week. Did Ed Sullivan, Red Skeleton, I Love Lucy, and the like really set a great precedent for TV?

Yes, I think the amount of violence on TV is ridiculous, the number of bullets/car crashes per hour is mind numbing, but it is there precisely because 100 million idiots (viewers ) will watch that over anything else!

3) Huge government. Seven members of the Supreme Court recently ruled the central government of a nation of 280 million people has the right to tell a private sports association (the PGA) to change its playing rules.

No, the Supreme Court intepreted laws which Congress had passed providing equal access for handicapped people. It upheld a lower court decision.

4) Courts. ......... and some count major changes like providing equal rights to all citizens....regardless of race, religion, or origin as important, but it took court intervention to make it happen. Or the rights of all Americans to be told ahead of time that they do have certain rights when arrested? Yes, we swing between liberal and conservative court. Your vote counts. If you want a conservative court, you know which way to vote for those that nominate/approve them, right? Feel free to be a part of the political process to have things go the way you want.

Yes, there are, and I personally know, dozens if not hundreds of male boors who seem to think that derogatory comments about women are "OK". I don't. In a public work place or other situation where there is mixed company, I see every reason for people to act appropriate. If they get out of line, they should be responsible for their comments intended to wound. No different taking a verbal versus a physical hit.
You almost seem to justify this type of comment by saying it infringes on someones right to insult, demean, and intimidate employees and co-workers.



6) Public Schools. ....The schools are rapidly becoming homogenized and monolithic.

You don't think the public schools in just about every other country in the world are homogenous? Try Germany - identical schools, no? England? France? Japan? Care to tell us where there is more diversity and at least 50 state gov'ts with some control vs one national school board system?


In kindergarten children will learn more about Martin Luther King Jr and Harriot Tubman than they will George Washington by the fourth grade.

So? Both were alive in their parents time, and made significant impact on life today. Most kids who learned about GW remember he was the first President, chopped down a Cherry tree (maybe) and threw a silver dollar across the river. That's about it. Are 4th graders really set to understand civics? I thought most American history was taught in high school, no?

Environmentalism has become the fourth "R."

Maybe when you live in Los Angeles, or NYC, or Denver, and for 3 months a year, the sky is brown instead of blue, you might appreciate that. Maybe when your neighborhood is a toxic dump, or you have 5 superfund cleanup sites within 10 miles of your house, it means something to you. Maybe when you go to the beach, and it is closed because of sewerage overflow, it means something to you. Maybe, because you have to be careful what food you eat, and what pesticides have been used, you get concerned about DDT and other chemicals impact. No? So? Someone needs to worry about this, no? Or is it pollution as usual?


I think people need to get set for a major shift in education over the next generation. The internet, the ability to acquire/process information in different ways, the sharing of resources, will all make major impacts. Will printed books even exist in 30 or 40 years...or even 20 years? When will kids have their own teaching robots and databases of information with every known enclycopedic fact imbedded in there 100 petabit memory chips, with a femtosecond computational speed?

Yes, America is both getting homogenized and fractionalized. 100-200 years ago, every region had it's own dialect. Travel took weeks, months, or days. People were born, lived, and died often within a 25 mile circle, their entire life. Now, it is world wide interaction. So?

.
For those of you who despise political rants and think mine has nothing to do with FIRE, think again. There is no way these trends will not directly impact your ability to retire, if they move quickly enough. FIRE, after all, is about independence.

I'm sure many retirees would love to have medical coverage they didn't have to pay for. FIRE is building a nest egg, which ever way you have to to avoid the BIG tax man, so you can retire comfortably on your nest egg. If you LBYM, you can save the money to get there. More people have more disposable income than at ANY time in history, and I don't see people voting themselves less disposable income.




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Author: sonarhawk One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41417 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:12 PM
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The Supreme Court didn't tell the PGA to change the rules

Yeah, they did. I believe the rule is (was) that no one can use a cart. The Supreme Court said the rule now is Casey Martin can use a cart. You don't think that's a rule change?

It depends on what your definition of a rule change is. Kind of sounds like the excuse of a five year old, huh?!

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41419 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:13 PM
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Regarding the Casey Martin victory, something everyone should know.

Even riding in a cart, he hasnt been able to score well enough to retain his tour card. Additionally, a rung down the ladder at the Buy.com tour, he has not performed either.

So it looks like the usual: The defendants are pissed, the plantiff isnt doing what they intended to in the first place, and the lawyers prolly made a bundle <grin>.

Golfwaymore

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Author: mrhowell Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41423 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:22 PM
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He wasnt that noble. He was a practitioner of brute force and mass murder. Did he "bring people together"? Yes, they all wanted by force what they were unable to provide themselves. "let's all wet our beaks". If we band together we can take more stuff.

Respect of the Romans? No. Just fear. Don't confuse the two

And as far as his leadership abilities: Well, like all leaders and "great people" he was just there and it happend to him. His managerial skills amounted to the usual "career success by killing all your friends." That is what people consider "greatness" many years after the fact.

Any man that can stand at rest while Atilla fights can #1 Let somebody else do the hard work.(That's what most people call leadership) and #2 Kill Atilla and go down in history as some kind of a "great leader"


*************
In the process, you appear to be somewhere to the Right of Atilla the Hun.


Didn't Attila the Hun bring together the nomadic tribes of Europe and obtain the utmost respect from the Roman Empire? Attila demanded as much of himself as he did his men; he led by example. He reportedly said before a battle "If any man can stand at rest while Attila fights, he is a dead man."

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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41425 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:27 PM
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It depends on what your definition of a rule change is. Kind of sounds like the excuse of a five year old, huh?!


No, it sounds just like the excuse of a President caught with his pants down.

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Author: mrhowell Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41426 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:27 PM
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You are correct, sir!

**********************
There's even a chance that if we
sat down and had a beer, we'd enjoy each other's company.

But after your post, that would be difficult; I'm not sure either of us would be comfortable...

followed by
I, on the other hand, am not enjoying the
descent into mistrust and suspicion. There seems to be no effort to find common ground and mutual interest, and that makes us
all very much poorer.

These two thoughts represent everything that Pablum is ranting about, yet the author could never see the point. "We wouldn't be comfortable having a beer" because you, Pablum, disagree with me and my approach. This starts down the slippery slope into "Pablum is dangerous" (a favorite of the left) and the very neo-fascism he writes about. By contrast, one of Winston Churchill's most effective tactics was to frequently invite his opponents (the ones he respected, anyway) to dinner to debate the issues of the day. If nothing else, as an intellectual exercise.

Which leads to "there's no effort to find common ground..." This is classic. There's no effort to move to your common ground - based on the assumption that "I'm right, you could never be anything but wrong". Looking over the cliff again into "and we're going to make sure these nasty people are re-educated into our Correctness". Why does the effort to move to common ground always have to come from the people who disagree with you, and never you?

Why is it that when the left (who are now conservatives of the new fascism) speak out against the right, the major media frame it in terms as if the right were errant, selfish children that just need to be taught the enlightened way? But when the right (who are now liberals against the new fascism) speak out against the left, the major media frame it as inflammatory, racist, classist, whatever-ist and especially dangerous anti-socialist radicalism that needs to be crushed?

FC (who doesn't approve of religious fascists any more than leftist fascists

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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41428 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:28 PM
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"Nor, given how praised your post has been, do we apparently have much of their joie de vive."

Ah, but we do, we have Peppy La Pue.<grin>

From the land of Robespierre, Dreyfus, Petain, and Vichy, I give you joie de vive. <LOL>


allocatorx

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Author: tmeri Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41430 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:36 PM
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golfwaymore:
I've had a difficult time determining how I feel about this ruling by the courts.

A question for you -- philosophically, do you think the Supreme Court should have decided whether or not a rule change was warranted?

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Author: carylanne Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41431 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:38 PM
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Regarding the Boy Scouts decision, as a private voluntary organization, to not allow homosexual young men to be LEADERS of boy scout troops is akin to not allowing heterosexual young women to be leaders of boy scout troops. Boy Scouts did not deny that some boys might, were, are, would become, homosexual, but that nearly grown men who professed to be homosexuals should not be placed in positions of authority, of intimacy (living in tents, camp grounds for days or weeks), with young boys and teenage boys. For similar reasons, young women would not be placed in positions of authority and intimacy for prolonged periods of time with young boys and teenage males. Hellooooo! Pretty clear picture to me. Nor should heterosexual young men be placed in positions of authority and potential intimacy with say, girl scouts. Who has a problem with this common sense approach? No boy member has been excluded because he is of the X% of humanity who will be or is homosexual; he is not, however going to be a leader. Let's lighten up here.

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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41433 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:48 PM
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Actually, I'm surprised you didn't hop on the Boy Scouts for being fascist like - it was the Nazis who weeded out the 'undesireables' and those of unfavored ethnic & religious backgrounds, no?

fas·cism (fshzm) n.
often Fascism
A system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism.
A political philosophy or movement based on or advocating such a system of government.
Oppressive, dictatorial control.

www.Dictionary.com

The Boy Scouts are not a government, and did seek to impose their rules upon others. They are a private organization and as such are entitled to exercise freedom of association. In fact, it would be a fascist act for a government to impose "stringent socioeconomic controls" by forcing the BSA to accept memebers opposed to it's principles.

Care to tell us where there is more diversity and at least 50 state gov'ts with some control vs one national school board system?

Private schools. Education is too important to be trusted to union teachers who are dependent on liberal politicians who protect their monopoly.

I'm sure many retirees would love to have medical coverage they didn't have to pay for. FIRE is building a nest egg, which ever way you have to to avoid the BIG tax man, so you can retire comfortably on your nest egg. If you LBYM, you can save the money to get there. More people have more disposable income than at ANY time in history, and I don't see people voting themselves less disposable income.

1. There's no such thing as a free lunch.
2. The problem is that those without nest eggs will be the ones voting to take the eggs we've put aside. After years of sacrificing to ensure a secure retirement, we will likely find ourselves subjected to means tests as our benefits are redistributed to those who have not saved for their retirements.

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41434 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/8/2001 11:55 PM
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tmeri asks,

<<<<<golfwaymore:
I've had a difficult time determining how I feel about this ruling by the courts.>>>>

A question for you -- philosophically, do you think the Supreme Court should have decided whether or not a rule change was warranted?


Why not? We let the Supreme Court pick a President. Deciding the rules of golf ought to be easy -- and a lot less damaging. <grin>

intercst

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41441 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:36 AM
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golfwaymore:
I've had a difficult time determining how I feel about this ruling by the courts.

A question for you -- philosophically, do you think the Supreme Court should have decided whether or not a rule change was warranted?


Philosophically, no.

It's not so much that I mind this guy riding in a cart. It's more to do with the precident it has set for other cases to come for all sports and organizations.

As grandma used to say, "You cant unbake bread and you cant unscramble an egg".

I'm curious, of the justices who play golf, how many of them walk the course? If they dont, I wonder why?

Golfwaymore



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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41442 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:41 AM
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A question for you -- philosophically, do you think the Supreme Court should have decided whether or not a rule change was warranted?

Intercst wrote: Why not? We let the Supreme Court pick a President. Deciding the rules of golf ought to be easy -- and a lot less damaging. <grin>

I'd say that's a fair trade. <grin>

Golfwaymore



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Author: Rimbo Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41443 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 1:02 AM
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I used to read Fahrenheit 451, my favorite novel in the world, every once in a while because I enjoyed it so. I can't read it any more, though.

It was more pleasant to read when it seemed like something that could happen, as opposed to something that already has happened.

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Author: HamletsMill Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41444 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 1:14 AM
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"The Boy Scouts are not a government, and did seek to impose their rules upon others. They are a private organization and as such are entitled to exercise freedom of association. In fact, it would be a fascist act for a government to impose "stringent socioeconomic controls" by forcing the BSA to accept memebers opposed to it's principles."

I believe that basic issue in regards to the Boy Scouts was that while they are a private organization they also heavily rely on publicly owned infrastructures, and in some cases, funding.
The Courts, both from a strict constructionist point of view and a progressive one, have long held that private groups that directly, and from choice, benefit from government can be required to play by the government's rules.

All the Boy Scouts have to do is avoid using public facilities and decline any public funding and then they are free to establish whatever rules they wish (short of clearly criminal ones, of course).

I would think that conservatives would generally agree with the Courts in this instance: You can do what you want, just don't expect me to pay for it. And if I have to pay for it, I get a say.

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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41452 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 8:58 AM
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allocatorx wrote:

<<We WILL eventually see political reeducation camps, for those of us opposed to the prevailing political doctrines.>>

I submit to you that the re-education camps are already arriving. Have you ever been to a "gender awareness sensitivity" class? Another is "sexual harassment" training. I have been forced to attend "sexual harassment" training, where two people from the FEDERAL government told us all how we should look, act, use body language and talk to members of the opposite sex. Apart from the fact that they treated everyone like we were 6 years old, the actual recommendations were comical, but nonetheless chilling. These people were dead serious, and I don't think any individual will ever figure out how NOT to be perceived as offensive by someone determined to be offended.

Of course, years ago, how you act with a member of the opposite sex was called "manners," and were taught pretty effectively by parents....

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41456 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:10 AM
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One of the hallmarks of free capitalist societies is a total lack of labor camps for political prisoners. Expect to see a change here within 20 years. We WILL eventually see political reeducation camps, for those of us opposed to the prevailing political doctrines. And our society will become the land of the "tolkach" (fixer) and the "stukach" (stool pigeon) just like the old Soviet Union.

They may not need these political reeducation camps. They've decided to do it a lot slower this time. They've created political education centers (public schools) and started the indoctrination as soon as they could get the kids away from their parents. Actually, I could claim that they get to the kids even sooner through the TV. They have the impressionable minds under direct influence through university and union until well into their voting years and they all teach the same thing, "Big Government is your friend. Independant thought is dangerous. The enemy is those who don't agree with us. We will protect you from them."

1HappyFool


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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41458 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:44 AM
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I have been to "sexual harassment" training. I have also been to "diversity and inclusion" training. As you say, proper training at home does teach one basic manners. These sessions should be totally unnecessary.

The problem here is that these training sessions are not really designed to modify one's ongoing behavior.

They are designed to scare people, thereby ensuring that no one will dare question the prevailing political currents.

You are therefore correct: the camps are already here.


allocatorx

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Author: whd23 Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41459 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 11:31 AM
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I like the Western European style of government as it has evolved since WWII

This would be the same Western Europe whose chestnuts we had to pull out of the fire twice last century, and who wouldn't act on their own to confront ethnic cleansing in their backyard? The same governments who cry out that the US should "do something" but then piss and moan if we want to develop missile defense?

Europe? You can have it. I'll take the stubborn, "ill-mannered" US any day.


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Author: whd23 Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41460 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 11:48 AM
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Why not? We let the Supreme Court pick a President. Deciding the rules of golf ought to be easy -- and a lot less damaging. <grin>

intercst


Uh, no.

The rules laid out in the US Constitution and the voters of the USA picked the latest President.

I must have missed the re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-count in Floriduh where Gore finally had enough votes to win the electoral college.

P.S. I'm truly amazed at your (intercst's) political leanings as shown by your postings. Under the folks that it seems you would like to see in power I doubt if you would have ever been able to RE.


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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41463 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:09 PM
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whd23 writes,

The rules laid out in the US Constitution and the voters of the USA picked the latest President.

I must have missed the re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-count in Floriduh where Gore finally had enough votes to win the electoral college.

P.S. I'm truly amazed at your (intercst's) political leanings as shown by your postings. Under the folks that it seems you would like to see in power I doubt if you would have ever been able to RE.


I made about ten times as much money during the Clinton administration than I did under Reagan and Bush the First -- and I never voted for Clinton.

As you get older (and, hopefully, make more money) you'll come to realize that political debate, while fun, is for the most part irrelevant. The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge. <grin>

intercst


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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41466 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:29 PM
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Nor should heterosexual young men be placed in positions of authority and potential intimacy with say, girl scouts. Who has a problem with this common sense approach? No boy member has been excluded because he is of the X% of humanity who will be or is homosexual; he is not, however going to be a leader. Let's lighten up here.

I remember the outcry in my junior high school 30 years ago when it was discovered that the girl's gym teacher, who would touch girls' backs as they exited the shower to make sure they were wet, was confirmed as a lesbian. The teacher's union fought to keep her. The parents withheld their daughters from gym classes until the teacher promised to remain outside the locker room while the girls were changing clothes and showering. The girls started smoking in the locker room before and after class. It was a fiasco.

1HF


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Author: mhtyler Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41470 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:48 PM
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"Regarding the Boy Scouts decision, as a private voluntary organization, to not allow homosexual young men to be LEADERS of boy scout troops is akin to not allowing heterosexual young women to be leaders of boy scout troops"

When you think about it, the formation of "boy" scouts is already a discriminating position. Its a decision that only young people with male genitals can belong. A further disqualification for being attracted sexually to the same sex is just a refinement, right?

Before the quoted post I was for letting gays into the scouts, but when you think about it, the very nature of the program is discriminatory...and its worth while to discuss whether such discrimination has a proper place. My last post on race and prejudice pointed out that there are certain realities to be dealt with.

Maybe this is one? Maybe a don't ask don't tell policy would be the easiest. That keeps the girls out of the boyscouts because they wouldn't have to tell we'd know<g>.

OR...maybe we should consider people scouts and put them all together after all. I'd have been for that when I was young<g>.

mark

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41472 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:50 PM
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Philosophically, no.

It's not so much that I mind this guy riding in a cart. It's more to do with the precident it has set for other cases to come for all sports and organizations.


The justices did what they were supposed to do. They ruled on a finding of law based on findings of fact that this case was covered by law. They didn't make new law as the Florida Supremes did during the election. The question of whether the law was Constitutional is moot. It was not found to be unconstitutional. The question of whether the law was a good law is not moot. It can be changed by Congress.

Professional sport has become less and less sportlike. It is employment, entertainment, etc. It is susceptible to the laws of employemnt because the laws were not written to exclude it. The Supremes cannot do anything that proper application of the Constitution cannot undo.

Philosophically, they had to rule as they did. It just unfortunate that they were forced to by a poorly written law.

1HF -- not a golfer or sports fan, but one who wishes the ruling could reasonably have gone the other way


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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41474 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:51 PM
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As you get older (and, hopefully, make more money) you'll come to realize that political debate, while fun, is for the most part irrelevant. The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge. <grin>

Spoken with the usual wisdom, Intercst.

In running a business through the 90's, and while despising the Clinton's and all their clan, in making any business decision, I never once gave a consideration to who controlled the White House or Congress.

Politicians control the economy like a rooster controls the sun coming up.

Golfwaymore



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Author: mhtyler Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41475 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 12:57 PM
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"I have been to "sexual harassment" training. I have also been to "diversity and inclusion" training. As you say, proper training at home does teach one basic manners. These sessions should be totally unnecessary."

I used to work with a woman with whom I had a discussion about sexual harassment. I pointed out that the problem was defining what it was.

She had a simple answer, "its whatever the women thinks it is".

Now isn't that grand? A perfect solution.

mark

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Author: Chipsboss Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41476 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 1:11 PM
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http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/fr.html

Some things about France that the United States might well emulate (estimates for the years 1999 or 2000):

Population growth rate (annual): 0.38% versus 0.91% in the USA

Net migration rate: 0.66 migrant(s)/1,000 population, versus 3.5 migrants/1000 population in the USA.

Total fertility rate: 1.75 children born/woman, versus 2.06 in the USA.

Infant mortality rate: 4.51 deaths/1,000 live births, versus 6.82 in the USA.

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 78.76 years versus 77.12 in the USA.

GDP - real growth rate: 2.7% versus 2.4% in the USA.


Some things about France that it must be hard to envy, even for the Social Democrats of the USA (1999 or 2000 estimates):

Unemployment rate: 11% versus 4.2% in the USA.

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $23,300 versus $33,900 in the USA.

Electricity - production by source: nuclear: 76.24% versus 28.61% in the USA.

Here, I think, is what really concerns the redistributionists among us and makes France admirable to them:

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10% of households: 2.5% in France versus 1.5% in the USA.
highest 10% of households: 24.9% in France versus 28.5% in the USA.

(Failing to distinguish between income and consumption is misleading, since consumption is supported by things other than reported income, such as government welfare, private charity, unreported income, and maybe even savings. I let that pass for now.)

Evidently, people like UM would willingly depress the average income in the United States by a third, in emulation of France, to reduce slightly the gap between rich and poor. Actually, that gap in the United States is largely attributable to out-of-control immigration, which harms our poor most of all.

Chips, big on checking the numbers (pun intended)







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Author: Earble Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41480 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 1:35 PM
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They've created political education centers (public schools) and started the indoctrination as soon as they could get the kids away from their parents.

Well, then, given the effectiveness of the public schools -- at least according to the consensus of this board -- we have nothing to worry about, do we?

-- Earble

Trust me, my kids are independent thinkers...

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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41482 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 1:51 PM
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"As you get older (and, hopefully, make more money) you'll come to realize that political debate, while fun, is for the most part irrelevant. The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge. <grin>"

It is true that to a great extent, political debate is irrrelevant (ie.talk is cheap). It is also true that the rich and resourceful seem to do ok in most instances.

It is also true that the rich and resourceful have been converted to poor, resourceless, and LIFELESS status by statist regimes whose terroristic impulses could not be controlled by their hapless SUBJECTS.

In the end, perhaps what is most important is that we as a citizenry are able to ensure that existing constitutional limits on state power are respected by those in charge. If these limits are ever successfully circumvented in a big way, we may all be in trouble.

allocatorx




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Author: markr33 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41485 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:02 PM
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I am one of the few remaining liberals who posts occasionally on REHP, but I think our numbers are dwindling fast. <GGGG> Earlier, you said the "[liberal] aim is to transfer unlimited power to government." As a liberal all of my adult life, this is news to me. I strongly support many of the things that you believe are part of the "conspiracy of thought and ideology" that "is taking America slowly down the tubes toward collectivism." I don't see a "lurch to the left" but a retreat to the right.

The liberal aim is "to help people", but the long-term effect is that a larger and larger share of the overall economy goes towards this purpose.

I think turning the US into France would be a great improvement -- it'd be worthwhile for the cheese alone. I like the Western European style of government as it has evolved since WWII, and think we would do well to learn from it. If this causes you to "fear for the future," well, there's nothing I can do about that.

This is very interesting. The Western European nations are trending to a lower percentage of GDP spent on social programs, in some cases with drastic reductions over the past 10 years. Meanwhile, the USA had been trending upwards, though admittedly still quite a bit less than the average Western European nation. As a matter of fact, Ireland just slipped below the USA in government consumption percentage of GDP in 1998. This weeks issue of the Economist has an article about just this issue with a very interesting graph - all the W. European countries have been trending down for at least 7 years while the USA is trending up.

Does this mean that the Europeans are trying to be more like the USA and the USA is trying to be more European ? It seems so. Look at some of the elections recently in Europe, fiscal conservatives seem to have become quite popular, even the Labor government in Britain has suddenly become very fiscally conservative. (so much so that the Tories had nothing much to differentiate themselves from Labor in the recent election) Imagine, Berlusconi was even elected in Italy with a sizeable margin !

Personal offense? Me? Nope. I agree with a few of your points, and am quite confident that my politics -- more social programs and all the rest -- is just as American as yours.

This is the major problem we have with your politics - always "more" - can you tell us exactly which social programs and how much they will cost and what limit you might put on such cost ? Never have I heard a liberal put an upper limit on costs. (nor have I ever heard a conservative put an upper limit on the costs of their pet programs) The problem is not Democrat or Republican, each spends money excessively with hardly any checks and balances.

What I really want to know is, if the liberals think the conservatives are getting their way and ruining everything, and the conservatives think that liberals are now controlling it all, where the heck are we?

Basically, it seems to me that we have let government grow out of control, our 2 parties have drawn so close to each other in the effort to target the large center and we the people have let them do it.

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41486 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:03 PM
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Pablume wrote:
I submit to you that the re-education camps are already arriving. Have you ever been to a "gender awareness sensitivity" class? Another is "sexual harassment" training. I have been forced to attend "sexual harassment" training, where two people from the FEDERAL government told us all how we should look, act, use body language and talk to members of the opposite sex.

Oh, you're right. I forgot about those. They aren't yet mandated for most citizens, but employers sometimes incur penalties for not having these mandatory programs in place when lawsuits crop up.

I can cite two good examples and one bad example of cultural awareness/diversity training from my former career. I had to attend "Saudi School" because I would be working with Saudis (common in oil companies). I attended the training with a batch of US American coworkers and a batch Saudis on temporary assignment to our refinery (the same guys I would be working with). These guys had to learn how to work alongside women and not to be offended if somebody put their feet up on the desk and other things we take for granted. In a discussion about Saudi marriage customs, I asked if there was any kind of family "deal" involved (dowry, etc.). My US coworkers were shocked that I would ask such a thing, but none of the Saudis were the least bit offended. We all learned valuable things and found common ground that day.

Second example. A Phillipino immigrant flipped out and shot a white US American supervisor just before an off-site instrument maintenance training session. It seems the supervisor, whom everybody said was a great guy, had a habit of picking on everybody (pretty much equally) in a harmless and joking fashion and nobody ever took offense at it. Most people even returned it and he never took offense. Nobody (especially him) ever suspected that he was forcing this Phillipino guy into a position of defending his manhood. Pop goes the weasel and the white supervisor was dead with two shots to the heart, another white coworker was wounded with one in the chest and one in the leg. A third man (a Costa Rican) was skipped over and two others (one black one white) barricades themselves behind a locked door. Finally, the Phillipino guy sat down and waited for the Police to arrive. His honor was satisfied. He's in prison now. I received my "diversity training" from the Costa Rican. The message was this, "Don't pick on anybody who doesn't pick back. Take any threat of violence seriously and try to talk it out before reporting it because friends make better coworkers than enemies."

In sexual harrassment training, we were told that we could be fired for sharing a sexual joke with a coworker of our same gender because we're "excluding" the other gender, but we can also be fired for sharing the same joke with a coworker of the opposite gender because that can be perceived as harrassment, no matter how harmless the joke or how equal the two employees. The net result was that women were more likely to be covertly excluded from friendships with men of equal salary level until they proved that they could be trusted by using sexual innuendo. There has to be a better way.

1HappyFool


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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41488 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:14 PM
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They've created political education centers (public schools) and started the indoctrination as soon as they could get the kids away from their parents.

And the indocrination continues well beyond childhood. Last year I decided to take some courses toward a certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language. I enrolled in an on-line course through UCLA's extension program. It was a course about diversity in the classroom and was taught by a professor in UCLA's Department of Education. One of the readings, by a well-known left wing radical journalist, blamed capitalism for racism. Of course, I objected to this in the chat room (on-line version of class discussion), pointing out how racism has existed under all forms of government since time began, giving specific examples, but the professor was adamant. Another reading accused capitalism of being responsible for sexism. Neither of these articles was balanced by divergences of opinion. The failed bilingual education program was defended as well.

The saddest part of all this was the level at which the rest of the students (everyone in the class but me was a working teacher taking the course for some advanced certificate and a raise) functioned. I was astonished to see many teachers unable to construct coherent sentences (we shared our homework), unable to spell (or at least proofread), unable to utilize the simplest elements of logic or common sense to justify their conclusions. I know that the dismal pay doesn't exactly attract the best and brightest (I'm generalizing here--please don't take offence, InParadise), but this was a real eye-opener. On the other hand, they all really wanted their own students to do well and worked very hard to try to accomplish this. I'm convinced that the fault lies in the schools that these teachers themselves attended when they were young. They were all a generation younger than I, who finished high school in 1965, just before the loony left began the systematic destruction of public education.



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Author: markr33 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41490 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:20 PM
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<<As you get older (and, hopefully, make more money) you'll come to realize that political debate, while fun, is for the most part irrelevant. The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge. <grin>>>

Spoken with the usual wisdom, Intercst.

In running a business through the 90's, and while despising the Clinton's and all their clan, in making any business decision, I never once gave a consideration to who controlled the White House or Congress.

Politicians control the economy like a rooster controls the sun coming up.


Absolutely true, the government doesn't make many decisions which cause microeconomic decisions to change, BUT they do make lots of decisions which cause macroeconomic changes. Things such as percentage of GDP spent by government, interest rates, etc. If you were expanding a business using debt, you would certainly feel a change in interest rates !

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41493 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:29 PM
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markr33 writes,

Absolutely true, the government doesn't make many decisions which cause microeconomic decisions to change, BUT they do make lots of decisions which cause macroeconomic changes. Things such as percentage of GDP spent by government, interest rates, etc. If you were expanding a business using debt, you would certainly feel a change in interest rates !

I guess that was the magic of the last eight years. Most of the big money was made in equity plays (IPOs, venture capital, etc.) Loading up on debt seemed to be limited to the poor and uninformed using VISA cards with 24% interest rates.

intercst

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41497 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:43 PM
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, the government doesn't make many decisions which cause microeconomic decisions to change, BUT they do make lots of decisions which cause macroeconomic changes.

Including the Reagan tax cut which started the economic growth cycle that increased intercst's wealth so much.

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41498 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 2:54 PM
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fleg9bo writes,

Including the Reagan tax cut which started the economic growth cycle that increased intercst's wealth so much.

Wasn't that the same Reagan tax cut that quadrupled the national debt?

intercst
(who doesn't think the Gov't needs to load up on debt any more than the uninformed folks with the 24% VISA cards)

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Author: markr33 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41501 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 3:28 PM
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<<Absolutely true, the government doesn't make many decisions which cause microeconomic decisions to change, BUT they do make lots of decisions which cause macroeconomic changes. Things such as percentage of GDP spent by government, interest rates, etc. If you were expanding a business using debt, you would certainly feel a change in interest rates ! >>

I guess that was the magic of the last eight years. Most of the big money was made in equity plays (IPOs, venture capital, etc.) Loading up on debt seemed to be limited to the poor and uninformed using VISA cards with 24% interest rates.


The "poor and uninformed" like Lucent Technologies, Motorola, MCI, etc...

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41503 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 3:31 PM
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intercst wrote:
fleg9bo writes,

>>Including the Reagan tax cut which started the economic growth cycle that increased intercst's wealth so much.<<

Wasn't that the same Reagan tax cut that quadrupled the national debt?

intercst


Actually, it was the spending compromises that Reagan made to get the military budgets increased that quadrupled the debt. The tax cut spurred the economy, leading to higher tax revenues, but with a long lag time.

But to be fair, Jimmy Carter's appointment of Paul Volkker as fed Chairman probably had as much to do with the '90s prosperity as Reagan's tax cut. That may seem like a really long lag time, but double digit inflation (probably attributable to the Johnson era) takes a long time to overcome.

Fed spending has immediate effects. Tax raises and cuts and fed policy shifts have both short and long term impacts. We're feeling Clinton's tax hike now.

I'm definitely not an economist, so I won't be supplying any numbers to support my statements, but I've heard very plausible reasons for all of them, offered by economists and detailed in peer reviewed forums. Of course, put any two economists together and you'll get at least three conflicting opinions. Engineers can usually keep it to two or less.

1HF


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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41506 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 3:52 PM
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When you think about it, the formation of "boy" scouts is already a discriminating position. Its a decision that only young people with male genitals can belong.

No more so than a womens college, or a womens studies program.

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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41507 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 3:55 PM
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In running a business through the 90's, and while despising the Clinton's and all their clan, in making any business decision, I never once gave a consideration to who controlled the White House or Congress.

But you, I presume, obeyed the laws that were handed down from Washington. As such, politicians, either through action or inaction, did influence your actions.

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Author: mhtyler Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41508 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 4:05 PM
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PMcMullenCT said, "When you think about it, the formation of "boy" scouts is already a discriminating position. Its a decision that only young people with male genitals can belong.

No more so than a womens college, or a womens studies program. "

Yes, that is true, but what was your point?

mark

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41509 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 4:16 PM
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Earble wrote:
Well, then, given the effectiveness of the public schools -- at least according to the consensus of this board -- we have nothing to worry about, do we?

I wasn't going to reply to this, because I couldn't think of a relevant real life experience to relate it to. Then I remembered reading about an elementary school Thanksgiving play in the next county over. Bear in mind, this happened in the heart of blue-collar deer hunting country in rural Michigan (where the opening day of rifle season is a defacto school holiday). The Thanksgiving play wasn't about the Pilgrims and Indians, probably because that message about acceptance of diversity wasn't meaningful enough. This Thanksgiving play was about how a wiley fawn with a self esteem problem that made him treat the other animals with prejudice, eluded hunters, gained self esteem and overcame his prejudice. The parents (of course) had to hypocritically praise their kids for their performances in the play. The following PTA meeting included a request from parents that in the future, the PTA would review and approve play scripts and teachers from urban areas and suburban metro areas would be excluded as job candidates for the local elementary schools. Since I'm childfree, I didn't follow the fracas beyond that point.

Trust me, my kids are independent thinkers...

I wonder what you'll think (and how you'll feel) when they tell you that you're the enemy.

1HF


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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41511 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 4:22 PM
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PMcMullenCT said, "When you think about it, the formation of "boy" scouts is already a discriminating position. Its a decision that only young people with male genitals can belong.

No more so than a womens college, or a womens studies program. "

Yes, that is true, but what was your point?

That any private organization should be free to accept, or decline to accept, as members whoever they choose. It just seems to be more politically correct to attack male-only groups.

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Author: carylanne Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41514 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 4:31 PM
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Regarding walking the golf course, many golf courses REQUIRE carts in order to speed play. The object of the golf course resort is to make a profit; slow play means fewer players per day during the high season. High quality (ie. expensive) courses MAY allow walking during the off season subject to managment's guestimate of traffic that day, week etc. Personally, I am not experienced enough to pay $150 a round at Desert Mountain (for example), at Scottsdale, AZ only to be chased by a ranger to "Hurry the play!" and in a cart at that. (Humbly, that is because I usually have to look for my balls in the rough.)

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41526 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 6:27 PM
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"Why not? We let the Supreme Court pick a President. Deciding the rules of golf ought to be easy -- and a lot less damaging"

If no one had taken the matter to the courts, then the Supreme Court (and all the other ones along the way) would not have been involved.

When you take things to court, then the courts will rule on the merits of the suit according to the law that is passed by the gov'ts of Florida and of the country.

Plain and simple.



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Author: gurdison Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41527 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 6:36 PM
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>I made about ten times as much money during the Clinton administration than I did under Reagan and Bush the First -- and I never voted for Clinton.

As you get older (and, hopefully, make more money) you'll come to realize that political debate, while fun, is for the most part irrelevant. The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge. >


Intercst:

Thank you for adding some simple common sense to the "discussion". I think you are 100% correct. We have had many threads on political leanings in the past. One should know that on this board if one puts down Bush it does not make them a Clinton/Gore supporter at all. If you combine the Independent and Libertarian leaning people on the REHP you will find Dems and Reps to be in the minority.

I too made significantly more during the Clinton years, but am no big fan of his at all. While GWB should be better for me financially, I cringe every time I hear him speak. I think the tax bill is much ado about nothing. Except for the $300-600 we all should be getting, I think that very few provisions of of the plan will ever actually come to pass or remain in effect if they do start. If one were to lay out their FI/RE plan based on something as flimsy as this, the boat would sink in the harbor.


BRG

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41528 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 6:39 PM
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"She had a simple answer, "its whatever the women thinks it is"."

Sensitivity training/harrasment headaches.

And indirectly, it IS going to backfire, and women are going to find themselves less promoted and less selected by male bosses who just don't want to put up with the B.S. Of course, it will be done on 'neutral' factors. Or they won't get hired for the job in the first place. Or they will get railroaded into useless positions, and then that job eliminated.



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Author: arrete Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41545 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 9:30 PM
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1HappyFool says: But to be fair, Jimmy Carter's appointment of Paul Volkker as fed Chairman probably had as much to do with the '90s prosperity as Reagan's tax cut. That may seem like a really long lag time, but double digit inflation (probably attributable to the Johnson era) takes a long time to overcome.

Wow - someone who actually realizes that. Of course, Jimmy made a few (!) mistakes early on, but Volcker was one good choice. I am an economist, but no one would ever listen to what we said. Maybe they'll listen to you :) It's a lot easier to blame the last guy for mistakes and take credit for anything that goes well.

And I also liked the Great Communicator - so don't flame me.

arrete

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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41546 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 9:42 PM
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Intercst wrote:
<<Wasn't that the same Reagan tax cut that quadrupled the national debt?>>

Reagan didn't quadruple the national debt. Congress did. Reagan kept his half of the bargain, Congress reneged when it came to controlling spending. Tax cuts do not cost money, and they never in history have increased the national debt.

Pablum (whose enjoying the debate immensely)

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41547 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:12 PM
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<<If no one had taken the matter to the courts, then the Supreme Court (and all the other ones along the way) would not have been involved.

When you take things to court, then the courts will rule on the merits of the suit according to the law that is passed by the gov'ts of Florida and of the country.

Plain and simple.
>>


Actually, the Presidency is supposed to be decided according to the constitution, which has an elaborate set of political processes for deciding close elections, all of which were ignored by the courts. The role specified by the constitution for the courts is none --there isn't one.

While I thought that having the favored instrument of liberal power (the Supreme Court) used by Republicans to outfox the Dems was the last great joke of the XXth century, it is still shameful the way the courts have intruded into political questions they have no business deciding.



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41549 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:27 PM
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While I thought that having the favored instrument of liberal power (the Supreme Court) used by Republicans to outfox the Dems was the last great joke of the XXth century, it is still shameful the way the courts have intruded into political questions they have no business deciding.

The US Supreme Court did act within their purview once the Florida Supreme Court crossed the bounds of making new law. The Constitution says the state legislature, not the state supreme court has the power. Of course, their ruling was a closely split decision and did involve a questionable call that a recount could not occur within a certain deadline, but at least every final post-election recount I've heard of said the results would not have changed.

1HF






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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41550 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:31 PM
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Pablum objects,

Intercst wrote:
<<Wasn't that the same Reagan tax cut that quadrupled the national debt?>>

Reagan didn't quadruple the national debt. Congress did. Reagan kept his half of the bargain, Congress reneged when it came to controlling spending. Tax cuts do not cost money, and they never in history have increased the national debt.


Reagan had to sign the appropriation bills after Congress passed them and before the money was spent.

Certainly the Republicans haven't shown any fiscal restraint over the past 6 years they've controlled Congress. Federal spending continues to rise whether the Democrats or Republicans are in control. The only difference is where the money's spent.

intercst



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Author: Madness Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41551 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 10:52 PM
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Certainly the Republicans haven't shown any fiscal restraint over the past 6 years they've controlled Congress. Federal spending continues to rise whether the Democrats or Republicans are in control. The only difference is where the money's spent.

intercst,

You just don't seem to grasp the Real Problem. It's not the fault of the Congress, or the President, or even the courts, per se. Everything that is wrong must be blamed on The Other Side(*).

I hope that helps :^)

--Madness

(*) Other Side is short for "The Evil Unamerican Thought Police Who want to Destroy Our Society" Membership varies by observer.

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Author: JEDIKNIGHT Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41554 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 11:03 PM
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Pablum...

I could not agree more with your post. I have no clue whether we would agree on politics in general, but I really loved that post.

This is unrelated...but if you (or others) get a chance, please see what you think:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=15123061

USE THE FORCE!!! JEDIKNIGHT

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41556 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/9/2001 11:07 PM
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"it is still shameful the way the courts have intruded into political questions they have no business deciding. "

The election officials in Florida DID decide the case. It was the losing party that took it to court. And the election officials in Florida then again decided the case. Once the courts got brought in, your are going to see court rulings.

The system in Florida was broke - in the sense that the losing party looked for every excuse to re-write existing procedures. Even with every attempt to re-write existing procedures, they didn't prevail, and you haven't heard much out of them, except to tacitly acknowledge, that even if everything was counted in their favor (hanging chads, double votes, etc) they still would have lost.

SO, it is hard to get, in retrospect, too excited about a Supreme Court decision that actually was correct no matter how the losing party tried to manipulate the ballots. The votes weren't there.

That some found ballots confusing, one can only counter that BOTH parties approved the ballots before the election. That they dispute it afterwards is like saying, we really didn't mean to run that losing candidate, it turns out we had someone better, let's rerun the election because we goofed.

So, for those who insist the court decided the election continue to propagate false information. The press did their recounts, and recounts, and every which way they counted them, they still couldn't find their supposed 'missing votes'. So obviously they weren't there to start with. There is not one paper that continues to claim that if the parameters for counting ballots were changed, the outcome of the election would have been different.

Maybe the question should be, why are people so willing to take every little argument, and every perceived fault or injury to court to sue someone else? Stub your toe - sue the store owner. Drive into a brick wall - sue the contractor who built the brick wall. And on and on. A smoker being awarded 300 billion dollars for being stupid enough to smoke?





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Author: HamletsMill Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41560 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 12:29 AM
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"Maybe the question should be, why are people so willing to take every little argument, and every perceived fault or injury to court to sue someone else?"

Perhaps it is because it is deeply ingrained in our culture going back to colonial times. Students of that period and the early post-independence era have long known that one of the widest complaints to various legislatures was the overwhelming amount of lawsuits -- American's were apparently from the beginning an extremely litigious bunch (some legal historians believe that based on the frequency of lawsuits filed, we sued far more often back then, as a percentage of population, then we do now.)

On a positive note, the fact that lawsuits are American as, well, the turkey, is testimony to both our unwillingess to be passive in the face of our discontent and to our basic faith that through our Courts and legal system we can receive fair redress.

That we go off sometimes into ridiculous excess is unfortunate (and also very American), but that is the price of freedom. All things considered, it's not that high a price -- given the alternative.

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Author: stephan1000 Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41562 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 1:34 AM
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They may not need these political reeducation camps. They've decided to do it a lot slower this time. They've created political education centers (public schools) and started the indoctrination as soon as they could get the kids away from their parents.

Select a kid who's starving for recognition. Have his teacher expound the virtue of recycling and then assign the kid an essay on how his family recycles at home.

With the right kid, this approach should create a little recycling nazi in no time.
; )


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Author: gurdison Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41565 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 1:59 AM
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<SO, it is hard to get, in retrospect, too excited about a Supreme Court decision that actually was correct no matter how the losing party tried to manipulate the ballots. The votes weren't there.>


I do not wish to start the whole election debate mess again, but...a decision cannot be deemed to be correct well after the fact if a different result could not have altered the original judgement. It has to be correct or incorrect only at the time it is made. If Gore was found to be the clear winner in a full recount, it would not change the outcome of the event because the SC decision was final.

I am not arguing the politics of either side (FWIW, I intensely dislike both sides). I also do not think it is simply a highly technical matter. We had a circumstance where the margin of error with our election equipment and procedures was larger than the actual margin of votes. It "looks" like Florida has initiated some steps to reform the process for 2002. There has been a resounding silence from the other 49 states.

BRG



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Author: whd23 Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41567 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 8:05 AM
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I made about ten times as much money during the Clinton administration than I did under Reagan and Bush the First -- and I never voted for Clinton.

You were also working your way up the wage scale, and accumulating more stock investments. Once again, you're not comparing similar things/situations.

The rich and resourceful seem to do OK no matter who is in charge.

Ah, but what about the ability to become rich? I stipulate that if the pols that share your viewpoints really had their way not only would the minimum wage be much higher, but there would be a maximum wage because there are people who need your money more than you.


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Author: bobcat713 Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41573 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 9:48 AM
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"Federal tax revenues in 2001 are projected to consume 20.5 percent of domestic economic output--the highest level of taxation the United States has ever experienced. It is matched only by the level reached in 1944, at the height of World War II."
<snip>
At this stage, it seems more likely that the surpluses will be smaller than that they will be larger. That is because the estimates assumed rigid limits on government spending that probably will not be maintained. Government spending is already smaller as a percentage of the national economy than at any other time since the 1960's, and the estimates of the surplus assume the proportion will drop another 25 percent in the next decade.

That makes us both right, unfortunately.


It seems to me that the purpose of govt is to create and maintain the conditions that allow individuals to prosper. By that standard, I would say that American govt is wildly successful, since we now enjoy the most powerful economy in the history of humankind.

Bob

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41578 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 11:04 AM
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""Maybe the question should be, why are people so willing to take every little argument, and every perceived fault or injury to court to sue someone else?"

Perhaps it is because it is deeply ingrained in our culture going back to colonial times. Students of that period and the early post-independence era have long known that one of the widest complaints to various legislatures was the overwhelming amount of lawsuits -- American's were apparently from the beginning an extremely litigious bunch "
______________________________________________________________

A while back, there was a folk song about the "1 million lawyers" then in the country. I'm sure by now, there are significantly more.

Yes, one reason why Americans sue so frequently, compared to elsewhere, is our system where each party usually winds up paying their own legal expesnes. In England, and many other countries, the losing party pays both sides legal expenses, which cuts down on frivilous lawsuits tremendously, or encourages other settlements.

Another reason is the jury system, which has gone haywire in tobacco cases, and other cases of sheer stupidity on the part of the plaintiff. Yet, 300 Billion dollar judgements are in the news every day of the week, it seems. People see it as a 'lottery ticket' and jump on the bandwagon for every mass lawsuit. During the day on TV, you see ad after ad for legal services - the general gist in two categories - Have you been injured on the job? (no matter what or how) - or are you eligible to participate in this or that Class Action Suit against big company XXXXX????? In both cases, they seem to clearly state you could be eligible for BIG BUCKS with no cost on your part.

It's coming down to if you every worked, or every took a pill or prescription drug, you are probably eligible for a mass extortion attempt from some company or industry to force them to pay lawyers tens of millions or hundreds of millions (or maybe even billions) so that individual plaintiffs wind up with a 10% off coupon or $2.77 in settlement.

If you make the legal system into a lottery, with over 1 million lawyers living on extorting settlements from businesses (of course which consumers pay anyway in higher prices), that only forces subtle changes which, in the end, benefit no one. Companies move overseas. Products get made by 'fly by night' companies that disappear at the first lawsuit, and reappear under a different name. Other products just disappear, or wind up costing twice as much (the extra being liability insurance against any claims).





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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41579 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 11:04 AM
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whd23 opines,

<<<<<I made about ten times as much money during the Clinton administration than I did under Reagan and Bush the First -- and I never voted for Clinton.>>>>>

You were also working your way up the wage scale, and accumulating more stock investments. Once again, you're not comparing similar things/situations.


I retired in 1994, so I haven't been "working my way up the wage scale" for most of the Clinton administration. I also haven't added any new cash to my invesment portfolio since 1994, I've been making retirement withdrawals.

I'm afraid you'll need to find another reason to explain why I did so much better under Clinton than Reagan/Bush the Elder. <grin>

intercst

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Author: whd23 Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41583 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 11:48 AM
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I wrote:
You were also working your way up the wage scale, and accumulating more stock investments. Once again, you're not comparing similar things/situations.

and intercst replied:
I retired in 1994, so I haven't been "working my way up the wage scale" for most of the Clinton administration. I also haven't added any new cash to my invesment portfolio since 1994, I've been making retirement withdrawals.

Must you deliberately mis-intepret what I post? Obviously in 1982 you had a smaller portfolio than you did in 1994 (otherwise I'm sure you would have retired in 1982). Simple arithmetic will show that with an equal return on investment you made more money in 1994 than in 1982 because you had more capital to earn return upon. Also, I'm sure it's fair to say that your pre-retirement salary in 1994 was higher than in 1982. To say you "made ten times as much" might also be an embarrassment if you had twenty times the capital on which to earn your returns.

Furthermore, I'm arguing that the policies you seem to favor (perhaps not, maybe you're simply acting as Devil's Advocate) would have reduced, if not eliminated, your ability to retire early.

I'm afraid you'll need to find another reason to explain why I did so much better under Clinton than Reagan/Bush the Elder.

Without supporting facts on either side, I see no evidence that you did better or worse under either administration.

P.S. More than any Liberal pol, I'm sure Mr. Dell deserves your thanks.

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41599 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 1:45 PM
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Politicians control the economy like a rooster controls the sun coming up.

Absolutely true, the government doesn't make many decisions which cause microeconomic decisions to change, BUT they do make lots of decisions which cause macroeconomic changes. Things such as percentage of GDP spent by government, interest rates, etc. If you were expanding a business using debt, you would certainly feel a change in interest rates !


Not to be argumentative Mark, but let me be argumentative.

What you state may be true for others, but it was never the case in my business.

Granted, the macroeconomics may change and can be influenced by politicians to a certain extent. However, I tend to believe that those conditions float to and fro between workable boundaries.

If a business has a viable product or service, I believe it will endure, even if the macro conditions near the *unworkable* boundary. Certainly, I never saw the unworkable boundary (I'm thinking the Depression would have been such).

Regarding interest rates, we could argue the impact of that forever. I believe it's different for every situation. It really never effected my business, we never carried a large debt service. Even if it had, we have a high demand product/service with little competition, and any increased interest expense would have been rolled into the product cost as all of our environmental expenses were.

Arguably, it's believed that high interest rates pinch the consumer and slow spending. I suppose I've accepted it as fact, though the housing market has been the only industry to remain full steam through the recent slowdown.

I do understand your point, and dont want to argue Economics, I'm only stating the implications to my business specifically, which was the root of the original post.

Golfwaymore,
Who has never met a rich Economist





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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41605 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 2:36 PM
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If a business has a viable product or service, I believe it will endure, even if the macro conditions near the *unworkable* boundary. Certainly, I never saw the unworkable boundary (I'm thinking the Depression would have been such).

While fed economic policy may not have much impact on a business (unless they employ debt), fed regulatory policy can sink a business in a competitive market. I mentioned in another thread about approximately 100 little stinkpot gasoline refineries that have closed in the past few decades. Some of these were owned by big comapanies with newer more efficient refineries. Some were single independent refineries which bought there crude from the spot market and sold their gasoline to the spot market. The combination of not owning their crude sources, not owning a marketing stream and federal and state regulation conspired to drive these businesses under. When coupled with the risk of building new refineries, due to uncertainty about permits and regulatory climates, fed policy is a factor in the shortage of refining capacity. We are seeing the impacts at the pumps and it is having macroeconomic impact.

This isn't necessarily good or bad. It's economic Darwinism in action. I just have this niggling doubt that the voters understood that there desires for clean air would come back to bite their @sses in this fashion. I'm not saying their desires for clean air are misplaced, but perhaps incentives for cleaner more efficient refineries would have been less painful than gestapo tactics, rampant nimbyism and waffling on permits.

Refineries, it seems, have become a part of our critical infrastructure. I suppose we could replace them with distilleries for ADM corn, but I'm not sure we could call that an environmental benefit.

1HappyFool


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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41606 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 2:39 PM
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<<They may not need these political reeducation camps. They've decided to do it a lot slower this time. They've created political education centers (public schools) and started the indoctrination as soon as they could get the kids away from their parents.

Select a kid who's starving for recognition. Have his teacher expound the virtue of recycling and then assign the kid an essay on how his family recycles at home.

With the right kid, this approach should create a little recycling nazi in no time.
; )
>>


The Duwamish River flows through an industrial area in Seattle. Enviro interest groups are working to promote the idea that salmon are more important than human beings. Last week, I was bicycling down a rode next to the river and stopped at a newly constructed park that was being dedicated by the usual gaggle of politicians and media. Upon concluding her speech, the politician announced she had special salmon to distribute courtesy of the county arts commission. These salmon cut outs had been treated so that if you answered a series of questions with the "right" answer, the salmon image stayed, but if you answered with the wrong conservation answer, the salmon "disappeared." Very symbolic.

At the conclusion of this little moment of symbolism, I remarked in a loud voice that I was sorry to hear that the arts commission was engaging in this kind of crude political propaganda.

Does anyone think this kind of thing is "good art" or appropriate for public arts funding?



Seattle Pioneer



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: Earble Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41619 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 4:23 PM
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I wasn't going to reply to this, because I couldn't think of a relevant real life experience to relate it to.

I have an even more relevant real life experience. I didn't read this; I experienced this first-hand myself. (By the way, you shouldn't trust what you read. You know how the liberal media establishment distorts things to fulfill their mission as propagandists.)

I attended an awards ceremony at my son's high school last Thursday evening. At the ceremony, my son was given an award from the Sons of the American Revolution for his exemplary efforts in his Military Science (JROTC) classes. There were awards given out by a VFW post and an organization of retired reservists (sorry, don't remember the name). I think the Marines were there too, as were a couple of corporations and societies to hand out scholarships.

The district was pressured a couple of years ago to drop JROTC and to ban military recruiters because of the military's policy on gays and lesbians. They refused.

And this is not some upscale suburban school district. This is an urban district, where my son is often the only upper-middle-class white kid in the class.

So we're tied 1-1 in anecdotes, although I'll give you half a point because they also "honored" kids who had perfect attendance -- for a single marking period.

I wonder what you'll think (and how you'll feel) when they tell you that you're the enemy.

They're teenagers. By definition, I'm the enemy. :)

-- Earble

P.S. I attended Catholic schools for 11 years. The Publics are rank amateurs when it comes to thought control.

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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41622 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 4:51 PM
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But you, I presume, obeyed the laws that were handed down from Washington. As such, politicians, either through action or inaction, did influence your actions.

I don't believe I ever said my actions. I said I never made my business decisions, i.g. making this reinvestment or that, taking this risk or that, based on who was in Congress or the White House.

Actions is a bit of a broader term than the context of which I posted. In such a broad context, I could say that a politician has influenced me not to drive drunk tonight.

Golfwaymore

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Author: markr33 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41629 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 5:11 PM
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I retired in 1994, so I haven't been "working my way up the wage scale" for most of the Clinton administration. I also haven't added any new cash to my invesment portfolio since 1994, I've been making retirement withdrawals.

I'm afraid you'll need to find another reason to explain why I did so much better under Clinton than Reagan/Bush the Elder. <grin>


Well, just for arguments sake, lets say you went from $0 to $300k under Reagan, and from $300k to $2m under Clinton, which has a higher CAGR ? :-)


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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41633 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 5:32 PM
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I'm afraid you'll need to find another reason to explain why I did so much better under Clinton than Reagan/Bush the Elder.

Intercst, you dig interns too? <grin>

Golfwaymore



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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41635 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 5:53 PM
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While fed economic policy may not have much impact on a business (unless they employ debt), fed regulatory policy can sink a business in a competitive market. I mentioned in another thread about approximately 100 little stinkpot gasoline refineries that have closed in the past few decades.

I agree entirely 1HF. Add to this the free trade agreements, and you can hear that *giant sucking sound south* that Ross Perot warned of.

This is another driver for my choice to RE now. Our business has been a relative monopoly since it's origin, but I can feel the squeeze coming on from Asia a couple of years down the road. I dont want to be around when it happens.

If I owned a commodity mfg business, I'd throw in the towell immediately. The risk simply isnt worth the reward to manufacture in America now days. It's ugly, but there it is.

Golfwaymore

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Author: bradley3 One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41642 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 6:43 PM
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Seattle Pioneer wrote:
The Duwamish River flows through an industrial area in Seattle. Enviro interest groups are working to promote the idea that salmon are more important than human beings. Last week, I was bicycling down a rode next to the river and stopped at a newly constructed park that was being dedicated by the usual gaggle of politicians and media. Upon concluding her speech, the politician announced she had special salmon to distribute courtesy of the county arts commission. These salmon cut outs had been treated so that if you answered a series of questions with the "right" answer, the salmon image stayed, but if you answered with the wrong conservation answer, the salmon "disappeared." Very symbolic.

At the conclusion of this little moment of symbolism, I remarked in a loud voice that I was sorry to hear that the arts commission was engaging in this kind of crude political propaganda.

Does anyone think this kind of thing is "good art" or appropriate for public arts funding?


Let me say I am not agreeing or disagreeing with SP's view of the Salmon, as I do not have any info about the specific issues at hand there.

In my experience since most publically funded artists are liberal, they want to do art that is perceived as liberal by the art world but also keeps the govt. money teat flowing with milk. When the funding government is populated by liberals, then the artists have a win-win situation and you see more extreme leftist stuff. When the funding govt is conservative, as we've had in the last 6-7 years and with the conflict as with Congress and the NEA, there is pushback.

I think public art is probably one of the least of our worries, as whenever there is an issue of propriety, it seems to get on the local news and almost always is resolved to the general public's satisfaction. This is due to the fact that the art is out in the open and visible to people every day with its presence. If the art is contentious to any sizable voting block, it will be removed as no politican wants that kind of reminder to the voting public if the potential outcome to them is remotely bad.

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Author: nas90skog Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41644 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 7:03 PM
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So in other words, I dont know what I think about the ruling, but there's no question it's a rule change. Any golfers care to sound off?
As an ex-avid golfer, I have had this discussion on several occasions. It seems that those against it do so on the grounds of tainting the sanctity of the game. Golf certainly has built its image on tradition [if I hear that putrid music and Jim Nance one more time during the Masters] and conservative values, and a rule change runs counter. Rule changes happen all the time in sports. The PGA is about growing the game so that all those who profit from that growth will profit more. My sense is that people just don't like being told what to do. Truth is, if Tiger fell down tomorrow and tore up his knee so he could no longer walk the course, the whole tour would have the option of carts the next day! I agree with the point that Davis Love in a cart has an advantage over Phil Mickelson. I just don't buy the argument that walking is instrumental to the game.

nas90skog
temporarily overcome by topic drift

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Author: intercst Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Top Recommended Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41653 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 8:19 PM
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markr33 argues,

Well, just for arguments sake, lets say you went from $0 to $300k under Reagan, and from $300k to $2m under Clinton, which has a higher CAGR ? :-)

Unfortunately, I didn't start keeping good records of my investment returns until 1990, so I can't tell you what my investment performance was under Reagan. I suspect I about matched the S&P500.

Here's the returns (CAGR) for the S&P500 from 1981-date.

Reagan/Bush the Elder

CAGR for 01/01/1981 to 01/01/1993 for the S&P500 with dividends reinvested = 13.3% per annum.

Clinton

CAGR for 01/01/1993 to 01/01/2001 for the S&P500 with dividends reinvested = 21.9% per annum.


intercst


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Author: PMcMullenCT Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41662 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 9:02 PM
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I don't believe I ever said my actions. I said I never made my business decisions, i.g. making this reinvestment or that, taking this risk or that, based on who was in Congress or the White House.

But when considering what benefits to offer employees, didn't you consider whether certain expenses were deductible? When evaluating a new business venture, didn't you compare the likely after-tax profit to alternative investments?


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Author: golfwaymore Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41672 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 9:46 PM
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But when considering what benefits to offer employees, didn't you consider whether certain expenses were deductible? When evaluating a new business venture, didn't you compare the likely after-tax profit to alternative investments?

Again, for my situation, no. Tax policies, i.g. deductability issues havent changed significantly at all in the past decade of running my business.

Even if they had, items such as benefits, etc. are about 1% of our Gross Revenues. Our net margins have never been low enough to where that would matter tremendously. I'm sure in a highly competitive industry it would be more of an issue. Additionally, this area is extremely industrialized (one of the top 10 in the U.S.). Highly competitive labor market, we all pay the same and offer the same benefits; we have to - it may as well be a fixed expense.

I started the business as Clinton was coming in. I was just lucky enough to have leaped into the high income bracket just when we started REALLY soaking the rich. I saw it coming, with Congress AND the White House being (D). Frankly though, I was *pumped* to be an entrepaneur, I'd have gone ahead if a monkey had been running the gov't. [Hold the cheap shots there!]

Had I had a business in the 80's, I could have likely retired several years earlier. But I was in school then so I really cant complain.

Golfwaymore




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Author: 1HappyFool Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41684 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 11:26 PM
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Earble offered:
So we're tied 1-1 in anecdotes, although I'll give you half a point because they also "honored" kids who had perfect attendance -- for a single marking period.

Thanks, but I want another half point because I'm handicapped (oops, parentitiously challenged) by being childfree. :)

>>I wonder what you'll think (and how you'll feel) when they tell you that you're the enemy.<<

They're teenagers. By definition, I'm the enemy. :)

You're right, I didn't need no stinking teachers to come to that conclusion about my parents when I was a teen (but at least I wasn't a recycle nazi). ;)

P.S. I attended Catholic schools for 11 years. The Publics are rank amateurs when it comes to thought control.

Right again, but think of the resources the public schools have. 99% of university academia directing the efforts of all those lab assistants (teachers). They'll have those trained rats jumping through flaming hoops before you know it. Then again, some of my profs weren't all that swift. :)

1HF -- who thanks you for the diversion.


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Author: Melman Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41687 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/10/2001 11:46 PM
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Reagan/Bush the Elder

CAGR for 01/01/1981 to 01/01/1993 for the S&P500 with dividends reinvested = 13.3% per annum.

Clinton

CAGR for 01/01/1993 to 01/01/2001 for the S&P500 with dividends reinvested = 21.9% per annum.


But wouldn't you agree that much of the return in the "Clinton" period is really the long-term result of Reagan/Bush policies?

We may now be getting a taste of Clinton's long-term economic legacy - the lack of an energy strategy, etc.




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Author: ChocoKitty Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41705 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/11/2001 8:03 AM
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<flippant post warning>

I think turning the US into France would be a great improvement -- it'd be worthwhile for the cheese alone.

But wait....the FDA was considering banning the importation of raw milk cheeses into the US, under the guise of "protecting the consumer". Ugggggghhhh....

And let's not get started about the wine thing (after all, we can't possibly lower the drinking age, right?). I'd love it if American culture embraced the eating and drinking habits of the French (I think they really know how to enjoy themselves in this area), but I doubt that will ever fly here because of our puritanical stance on food and alcohol.

If we're going to follow the examples of other countries, we'd better consider *everything* they have to offer. The thought of a Western Europe-style government without the benefits of their cheese, wine, bread, etc. would just be unbearable.....

CK

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Author: Pablum Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41714 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/11/2001 10:33 AM
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Intercst retorts:
<<Reagan had to sign the appropriation bills after Congress passed them and before the money was spent.

Certainly the Republicans haven't shown any fiscal restraint over the past 6 years they've controlled Congress. Federal spending continues to rise whether the Democrats or Republicans are in control. The only difference is where the money's spent.>>

And a fine retort it is, too! You're absolutely right, but at least Reagan publicly opposed the spending increases....

As for the Republicans in Congress, they're not worth any more warm spit than the democrats.....

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Author: Kaell One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41772 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/11/2001 5:17 PM
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fleg9bo:

I enrolled in an on-line course through UCLA's extension program. It was a course about diversity in the classroom and was taught by a professor in UCLA's Department of Education.

This weekend I'm going to LA to attend the graduation of a close friend from the UCLA Dept. of Education, with a Ph.D. His comments on the department over the years have confirmed my first impression, as do your own notes. Do you remember the prof's name? I'd like to find out if he/she is still there, and well regarded or not.

It's really a pity; how people learn, and how the schools can work better, are both worth studying, but few graduate education programs do either effectively.

Kaell

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Author: uwalum Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 41781 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/11/2001 6:39 PM
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"At the conclusion of this little moment of symbolism, I remarked in a loud voice that I was sorry to hear that the arts commission was engaging in this kind of crude political propaganda.

Does anyone think this kind of thing is "good art" or appropriate for public arts funding? "



Seattle,

I was a member of the Citizens for Water Quality with METRO (Seattle) some years back. They want members of the public to be part of the process, not! They have this committee for the purpose of looking like they actually listen to the public. One of the sub-committees was "public art." A percentage of the monies that METRO collects must be given to public art, and it's a lot of money. I'm sure that you could become a member of that sub-committee and help to level the pc on the board. Just a thought.

L





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Author: reader99 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 42427 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/15/2001 1:31 PM
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And, for the truly incorrigible, it will be exile in the dead of winter to Buffalo, New York.

This dreaded future should be a piece of cake for me then, I went to school in Buffalo, 1972-76, some bad weather years. I didn't realize I was enduring hardship though becasue I grew up in Rochester NY which has a similar lake effect weather pattern.



Reader99
Now in Florida

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Author: allocatorx Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 42517 of 749253
Subject: Re: OT - I hope I'm Wrong (long rant) Date: 6/16/2001 3:52 AM
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"This dreaded future should be a piece of cake for me then, I went to school in Buffalo, 1972-76, some bad weather years. I didn't realize I was enduring hardship though becasue I grew up in Rochester NY which has a similar lake effect weather pattern."

Actually, I lived in Buffalo for over 20 years, 1960-1981. You missed the blizzard of 1977. That weather phenomenon featured a wind chill factor, at times, of about minus 100 degrees F.

allocatorx
Now in Tx

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