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Author Topic: It's getting more Orwellian by the day
G2
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This post from multiple sources around the web; we've seen the following:
  • Lobbyists in the Administration = No Lobbyists Allowed
  • 9,000 Earmarks in a Spending Bill = The First Step Toward Ending Earmarks
  • Running Roughshod Over the Minority = True Post-Partisanship
  • $2,000,000,000,000.00 in Debt-Growing Wasteful Spending = a Return to Fiscal Responsibility
But let's look at 2 more recent Orwellian events. A Politico article stated: Obama’s “rejection of public funding for his presidential campaign is widely considered to have killed the Watergate-era reform” that was “intended to reduce the influence of big money in presidential politics.” Sen. McCain, who stood by his pledge to take public funding, certainly agrees with that sentiment, as he told The Washington Times on Friday that the system is now “dead.”

Obama's staff denies this saying it is McCain that wrecked the public funding system. See, Obama's reneging on taking part in the system actually helped the system. It's obvious right? I guess if you don't understand then you're racist ... or something.

The second is from a press briefing last week with Peter Orszag, Obama's budget guy:
quote:
Hi, Peter. Thanks for joining us this morning. Two questions, both are related to the task force. One is, could you be clear — a little clearer, do you intend to raise revenue only through enforcement of the tax gap, or do you also intend to raise revenue from tax simplification and the review of the corporate structure?

And secondly, a related question, you know, when you all unveiled this budget you talked a lot about fiscal responsibility, and the end result is spiraling debt, basically. And I’m wondering if you see this task force as a means to begin to address that.

MR. ORSZAG: Well, let me answer that second question first. Again, I don’t know what spiraling debt you’re referring to, but we’re inheriting a budget situation that is a mess, and that we’re working our way out of. And under both budget resolutions, the deficit is reduced in half — by more than half by 2013, and actually then is either stable or declining between 2013 and 2014. So I guess I just — I take issue with the conjecture that we’re — you know, there’s spiraling debt here.

The most optimistic White House estimates put the deficits higher each year than anything seen in the past 15 years but somehow that does not add to the national debt. In fact, according to Team Obama, it means the deficit will get cut as it continues to grow. The very definition of doublespeak. How the media let's this kind of thing slide and slide and slide only shows just how deeply in the leg tingling bag they are for Obama.

Over the next few years, we will no doubt see how Republicans are the Great Enemy who socialized this country, brought on the dark days of annual trillion-dollar deficits, demolished health care by nationalizing it, and drained the taxpayer coffers bailing out Detroit’s unions. No doubt in my mind, you can see the beginnings of it all right here in this forum.

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The Drake
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April 1 was yesterday.
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The Drake
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http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/97xx/doc9706/Selected_Tables.pdf

This CBO document was created in September of 2008, before Obama even won.

It shows deficits of $430B and this was before the big crash in October. It doesn't have anything to do with Obama raking America over the coals, it has to do with the economic climate and the fact that both parties have been all about spending and borrowing as fast as they can get their corrupt, greedy hands on our money.

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Daruma28
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Not just Orwellian...but "Huxleyian" too!

[Exploding]

quote:
We were keeping our eye on 1984. When the year came and the prophecy didn't, thoughtful Americans sang softly in praise of themselves. The roots of liberal democracy had held. Wherever else the terror had happened, we, at least, had not been visited by Orwellian nightmares.

But we had forgotten that alongside Orwell's dark vision, there was another - slightly older, slightly less well known, equally chilling: Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. Contrary to common belief even among the educated, Huxley and Orwell did not prophesy the same thing. Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley's vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.

What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions". In 1984, Huxley added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we hate will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we love will ruin us.

This book is about the possibility that Huxley, not Orwell, was right.- Foreward from Neil Postman's, 'Amusing Ourselves to Death'

I think Postman was on to something...but I also think he was quite mistaken.

We've been "Huxley-ed" for quite awhile now...so that most of us wouldn't notice the gradual implementation of Orwell's envisioned police state.

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kenmeer livermaile
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It's a new century. We have new dystopia to ponder.
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G2
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The NYT has even noticed and highlights some new doublespeak.

We are no longer engaged in a "war on terror". Instead, we are conducting “overseas contingency operations.”

Terrorist attacks no longer occur. Instead, there are “man-caused disasters.”

We are sending 21,000 more troops to Afghanistan but it is not a “surge.”

As the NYT notes, even John Stewart has noticed and showed a mocked up photograph of Obama in a pilot’s flight suit on the deck of an aircraft carrier under a banner proclaiming, “Redefinition Accomplished.”

[ April 03, 2009, 07:48 AM: Message edited by: G2 ]

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KnightEnder
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G2, I agree with you on your last post, but on your first post you give us nothing but your word that what Orszag said is a lie.

The fact that any Republican can bitch about the "Deficit" with a straight face amazes me. Bush inherited a SURPLUS and then ran the country into the ground while y'all all cheered. Now y'all are bitching about "what might happen"? In my eyes the GOP has very little credibility left. Obama still couldn't **** up any worse than Bush. And wasn't Bush bailing out companies right up until the End? Now Obama is a Socialist revolutionary for doing the same thing? And that earmark thing is so dishonest I don't know where to start. PORK! PORK! PORK! What? Industries in that Senators district? Republicans and Dems insisting on getting a little piece of the pie and Obama and Company acquiescing to get the bill passed? Bastardos!!! [Exploding]

It's a little more complicated than your short post would lead us to believe, G2.

And, D, personally I'd rather be pleasured to death than the other option. Where's my sexbot? Though the "truth being lost in a sea of irrelevance" is disturbingly prophetic. I really wish we had a news service that wasn't only interested in making money. Damn! There I go being UnCapitalistic again. [Frown]

KE

[ April 03, 2009, 10:50 AM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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The Drake
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I'd respond, but I'd rather spend time with my Monroebot.
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JoshCrow
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quote:
Originally posted by G2:
The NYT has even noticed and highlights some new doublespeak.

We are no longer engaged in a "war on terror". Instead, we are conducting “overseas contingency operations.”

Terrorist attacks no longer occur. Instead, there are “man-caused disasters.”

We are sending 21,000 more troops to Afghanistan but it is not a “surge.”

As the NYT notes, even John Stewart has noticed and showed a mocked up photograph of Obama in a pilot’s flight suit on the deck of an aircraft carrier under a banner proclaiming, “Redefinition Accomplished.”

Actually I find fascinating the difference in language being used, but not for the same reason you do. I think it speaks to the audience. The GOP is more fond of sloganeering things, giving its supporters some idea to grab hold of and rally behind. The Democratic language being used tends to be clinical, couching ideas in technical and unemotional terms.

edited to add: Does a serious newspaper use "man-caused disaster"? That's the lamest description ever... it doesn't even sound good to the ear. When I hear it, I think of a messy bed or nachos left out on the table overnight.

[ April 03, 2009, 11:13 AM: Message edited by: JoshCrow ]

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KnightEnder
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This is kind of in the realm of what Daruma was talking about. Or Huxley.

Remember when we were told that soon we could do all our work from home over the Internet blah blah blah? Well, it's here! I could do all my work over the Internet and it would save me an hour and fifteen minute commute both ways every day. And I'm sure help the environment, traffic, etc etc. But, my company is sure, rightly or wrongly, probably rightly, that people need to be in the same place and see each other, build relationships etc, to get things done. So, even when I was just an outside salesman I still had to come in the office for a little while every day.

I guess I say that to say that just because things have and will change doesn't mean they won't stay the same. [Smile]

KE

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KnightEnder
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I agree Josh. And wouldn't man-made disaster sound better, even if it still would be a pussified description of terrorism?

KE

[ April 03, 2009, 11:19 AM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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Wayward Son
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And what do you expect the Obama administration to do? After Bill O'Reilly declared that Bush won the War on Terror, how can they continue to refer to a war that is over? [Wink]

You want them to call it "The War on Terror II?" [Smile]

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IrishTD
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quote:
Actually I find fascinating the difference in language being used, but not for the same reason you do. I think it speaks to the audience. The GOP is more fond of sloganeering things, giving its supporters some idea to grab hold of and rally behind. The Democratic language being used tends to be clinical, couching ideas in technical and unemotional terms.
And if you believe that, I've got a bridge for sale on line 3.
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Greg Davidson
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KE,

My company (a large aerospace one) has gotten heavily into telecomuting. Our site has about 60 people responsible for small purchases, so they had them telecommute for six months before they told anyone else. No one noticed any lack of productivity, so they made the experiment permanent

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KnightEnder
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I wish that would catch on here. And maybe it will. The majority of our people in management and on the shop floor are over 50 and not all that comfortable with the Internet much less communicating over it. Maybe it will change with the next generation. I hope. It would be a lot better for a lot of reasons.

KE

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G2
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It keeps getting better; last week we had the VP of the United States tell us the only way to avoid bankruptcy to to spend even more. I'm not sure what's sadder, that he can make the ridiculous pronouncements or that he gets a free pass in the press for making them or that people will actually accept it as a valid comment. It's a tragic comedy.

And now there's this (via QandO):
quote:
Turns out the $787 billion “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act” (AARA) was not designed for full economic recovery, but rather to “stabilize” the downturn. That’s the word from White House officials today, who held off-camera briefings with reporters on how the AARA is working so far.

“This legislation was designed to cushion the downturn,” said White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. “That’s why we have always talked about this as one function of economic recovery.”

When pressed about the change in terminology, Gibbs said he was not trying to temper expectations after the fact. “I can probably find 15 or 20 occasions when I said this in the lead up,” Gibbs said, explaining that he had always defined the AARA as part of a “multi-legged stool.”

Well how about that. It was *never* supposed to be a economic stimulus package. It was always intended merely to 'cushion the downturn'. This administrtaion gets away with the most incredible lies and revisionism.
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TomDavidson
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Well, I wouldn't say they're the most incredible lies and revisionism. I mean, the previous guy set that bar pretty high.
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TommySama
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I get it. You make ridiculously exaggerated claims so the general impression we're left with is only a slightly exaggerated mirror of reality
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cherrypoptart
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I always said that if things got worse they'd just say things would be even worse than they are if they hadn't done the crazy things they did.

These people are nothing if not predictable.

But you know it's getting bad when even the media can't keep a straight face anymore.

-------------------------------------------

One example of the stories I keep seeing about how things aren't so bad for everyone was in the news the other day.

Car repair shops and people who rebuild engines and transmissions are doing quite well. Business is booming.

It seems that in the down economy people are holding onto their vehicles as long as possible, and sinking a few thousand into an old car instead of ten or more into a new one makes a lot of economic sense.

Well, I have to give them credit for finding every single silver lining they can in every thunder cloud on the horizon. Just the opposite of what they did for Bush.

But like I said... predictable.

---------------------------------------------

The media now are like the guys with Brian up on the cross as he's being crucified, just like our country is getting hammered now, and they are singing and whistling, do it with me now, "Always look on the bright side of life... dedee, dedee dedee dedee..."

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TommySama
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So do you have any evidence or reason to believe that things wouldn't be any worse if they hadn't done "the crazy things they did" or not?
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Rallan
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quote:
Originally posted by cherrypoptart:
I always said that if things got worse they'd just say things would be even worse than they are if they hadn't done the crazy things they did.

These people are nothing if not predictable.

So are the Republicans. If things get better they'll say the economy was turning around anyway and the bailouts and stimulus packages from the Democrats had nada to do with it. If things get worse they'll say that the bailouts and stimulus packages were a mistake that exacerbated the problem. And you'll see governments and opposition parties across the western world dancing exactly the same dance, because there's few things more predictable than political rhetoric about recessions.

Only place where they won't do this is in dinky little third world dictatorships, where the government will blame the recession on America and the opposition parties will be arrested and beaten [Smile]

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hobsen
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Even in a depression some people prosper. My father-in-law did very well with his shoe repair shop in the 1930s and 1940s, enabling him to provide for his wife and my wife and her sister, even if he did free repairs for everyone who walked into his shop with a sob story. (And in a depression that was no bad thing, for which he certainly deserves a reward in heaven, as otherwise hundreds of people would have been walking in the snow with holes in their shoes.) But when the country began to prosper in the 1950s, his wife had to go to work in a local factory to make ends meet. (Which she probably enjoyed once her children were in school, as it was light work and she made a host of friends among her fellow workers.) That does not mean the Great Depression and World War II were loads of fun, and the 1950s a period of general misery, just that his particular skills were more needed when people were broke and when leather was rationed. Even now enterprising individuals are making fortunes by providing things which are needed. And assorted crooks are stealing fortunes by such schemes as embezzling from charities, and making fake job offers to the desperate, and selling worthless correspondence courses. But a recession amounts to a de facto pay raise for the majority who do not lose their jobs, as prices drop so their earnings buy more. Otherwise Rallan's description of the behavior of politicians is shockingly cynical, and almost self-evidently true.
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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by TommySama:
So do you have any evidence or reason to believe that things wouldn't be any worse if they hadn't done "the crazy things they did" or not?

Demanding proof something wouldn't happen is one of the classic is one of the classic logical fallacies (proving a negative can't be done). You (and every Obama supporter left) are reaching for something that you know is deeply flawed logic to hold onto this.

[ July 20, 2009, 08:08 AM: Message edited by: G2 ]

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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by Rallan:
So are the Republicans. If things get better they'll say the economy was turning around anyway and the bailouts and stimulus packages from the Democrats had nada to do with it. If things get worse they'll say that the bailouts and stimulus packages were a mistake that exacerbated the problem. And you'll see governments and opposition parties across the western world dancing exactly the same dance, because there's few things more predictable than political rhetoric about recessions.

Even the democrats (including the white house) now say the stimulus package was not a stimulus package and was not designed to do anything about helping the economy recover; it was only to "cushion the recession". If things get better it will suddenly turn into a stimulus package again.
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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
Well, I wouldn't say they're the most incredible lies and revisionism. I mean, the previous guy set that bar pretty high.

I see, you think Bush did it so that excuses Obama doing it blatantly. How far is that logic going to take you I wonder? Is there a limit?
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TomDavidson
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quote:
I see, you think Bush did it so that excuses Obama doing it blatantly.
No. I make no excuses for Obama. I'm simply pointing out that you're engaging in ridiculous hyperbole.

If you read my posts, G2, instead of inserting your own presuppositions into them based on what you think I think, you'd see I do very little "defending" of Obama. Ever.

But I had hoped that a little taste of your own medicine might give you a bit more perspective on the odious slime that was the Bush Administration. Sadly, you remain a close-minded partisan to the end.

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JoshCrow
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Oh G2... you're over there riding the teacups all by yourself when the rest of us are having a good time eating cotton candy and throwing rubber balls at the target in the dunk-a-failed-prez game.

We'd really love to have you on our team, dude. You'd be welcomed with open arms, especially with that wicked curve ball of yours.

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0rnery
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Leaning toward Seinfeldian, with a tax cheating Treasury Secretary, overweight Surgeon General, empathetic Supreme Court Judge, and even a pedigreed "shelter dog". What's next? A deficit reducing health care bill... oh wait!
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Viking_Longship
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Actually there are many breed specfic "rescues". I got a a purebred Britney from a shelter once. (Of course that Obama's dog is blood reletive of Ted Kennedy's dog is bit weird, but it's not like it's been a common breed.)
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0rnery
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“Amigo’s New Hope”, aka Bo, is the product of a breeder, which is 180 degrees from the family dog promised in the campaign. Pretty much epitomizes the "Hope and Change" wrought by this administration. The reality is actually too far fetched even for Seinfeld!
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OpsanusTau
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Did the President really promise a dog that was not purebred during the campaign? I must have missed that. I thought he said that the family would prefer a shelter dog.

The little looking that I did suggested that Bo's previous owners did not want to keep him, which does make him a rescue. I don't know about this case, but many breeders have clauses in the selling contract stating that if the buyer decides not to keep the dog, they must return it to the breeder for rehoming or to an appropriate breed rescue.

I'll just say in passing that I'm pretty glad the President did not adopt a shelter dog. I remember raising my eyebrows when I first heard that he wanted to, and hoping he'd change his mind. Frequently, shelter dogs have behavioral problems that require a fair amount of focused attention to work through, and you'll forgive me if I'd rather the President's focused attention were not taken up by the family dog and his persistent inappropriate urination.

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msquared
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I would love to see the President out at 2AM in the morning, in the rain, walking the dog. Or the dog making itself the Presidents pillow during a thunderstorm. [Smile] I would connect more with him. We would have something in common then.

msquared

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OpsanusTau
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Me too.

Do you think that those things are only likely to happen with a dog that came from an animal shelter, or are you just making a general comment?

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msquared
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Since I have never had a pure breed, I would say a general comment.

msquared

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edgmatt
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"Republicans do X which is bad.."

"Democrats did the same thing! But it was worse!"

"Democrats are now doing X which is bad..."

"Republicans did the same thing! And it was worse!"

Aren't you sick of this argument?

Politicians are doing all these bad things to the citizens. I have to keep telling myself that. When Dems do stupid stuff, we should say so, when Repubs do stupid stuff, we should say so.

Right now the Dems are in charge, and are doing stupid stuff. It makes no sense to say "Well when BUSH was in office...."

When and if the Repubs get back in charge and are doing things we don't agree with, it will make no sense to say "well the Dems did this way back when and no one complained..."

Let's address the stupid stuff happening today, and not dismiss it as "O.K." because someone else also did it ( stupidly so ) in the past.

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hobsen
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quote:
Frequently, shelter dogs have behavioral problems that require a fair amount of focused attention to work through, and you'll forgive me if I'd rather the President's focused attention were not taken up by the family dog and his persistent inappropriate urination.
OpsanusTau, it is really good to have you on this thread!
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Wayward Son
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quote:
Politicians are doing all these bad things to the citizens. I have to keep telling myself that. When Dems do stupid stuff, we should say so, when Repubs do stupid stuff, we should say so.

Right now the Dems are in charge, and are doing stupid stuff. It makes no sense to say "Well when BUSH was in office...."

When and if the Repubs get back in charge and are doing things we don't agree with, it will make no sense to say "well the Dems did this way back when and no one complained..."

Let's address the stupid stuff happening today, and not dismiss it as "O.K." because someone else also did it ( stupidly so ) in the past.

Very much agreed, edgmatt.

But you must forgive me when I do make comparisons with Bush.

Mainly to get a bit of perspective on the issue.

It's hard to listen to Conservatives being outraged--outraged!--on how Obama lied about getting a dog from a shelter, when Colin Powell lied to the international community about how we know Iraq has WMD and we know where they are. And we having heard nary a word of outrage from Conservatives about that.

Yes, Democrats should be held to high standards. Republicans, too. But when offenses of the other side elicit outrage, it's useful to remind the person that they neglected to feel such outrage when their side did something equivalent or worse. [Wink]

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OpsanusTau
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quote:
Since I have never had a pure breed, I would say a general comment.
I haven't either, and sometimes I really get going about the health and behavior problems purebred dogs are likely to have. I'll refrain from that right now.

(surrounded by three adorable mutts)

But Portuguese Water Dogs are really, in my experience, very nice dogs.

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edgmatt
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quote:
But when offenses of the other side elicit outrage, it's useful to remind the person that they neglected to feel such outrage when their side did something equivalent or worse
Eh, seems to do nothing useful really. Certainly they are hypocritical, ( although that doesn't make them wrong ) certainly you would be in the right to do so....but why bother?

The "outrage" part is just posturing. Both "sides" do it...its just part of the political game, and in my opinion, just a lot of fluff. They aren't really outraged...they just say they are to bring attention to it in an effort to discredit the target.

Don't sink to their level of pettiness.

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Viking_Longship
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quote:
Originally posted by 0rnery:
“Amigo’s New Hope”, aka Bo, is the product of a breeder, which is 180 degrees from the family dog promised in the campaign. Pretty much epitomizes the "Hope and Change" wrought by this administration. The reality is actually too far fetched even for Seinfeld!

They needed a hypo-allergenic dog. That really narrowed things down to purebreds of a very few breeds. Good breeders, and by all accounts his breeder is a good one, tend to lead to very good dogs.

Would that more people got carefully bred dogs and didn't let their dogs out to design their own breeding program, thus flooding the shelters with labrador-pitbull crosses.

Adopting Bo probably didn't rescue him from certain death, but it probably did vastly improve his life by giving him two little girls to play with.

It's not a symbol, it's a dog. Perhaps you'd like to go after Michelle's garden as being elitist or his daughters as being too precocious?

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