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Author Topic: Democrat America
G3
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quote:
We noted yesterday that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told the Huffington Post that what he claimed was a Bain Capital investor had called him to say Mitt Romney didn’t pay taxes for ten years – without saying who told him this, or what basis there was for the claim.

Earlier today, he doubled down on the unsubstantiated claim with reporters in Nevada:

“I am not basing this on some figment of my imagination,” Reid said in a telephone call with Nevada reporters. “I have had a number of people tell me that.”

Asked to elaborate on his sources, Reid declined. “No, that’s the best you’re going to get from me.”

“I don’t think the burden should be on me,” Reid said. “The burden should be on him. He’s the one I’ve alleged has not paid any taxes. Why didn’t he release his tax returns?”

Two days ago Harry had one guy, some insider or investor from Bain that somehow had access to all of Romney's personal tax returns and now it's a "number of people". Just like McCarthy, Harry's number keeps changing.

Then there's the idea that a government official accuses someone of a felony and it is the accused that is required to present proof of innocence. I dunno, I seem to recall from my government classes that it's supposed to be just the opposite ...

So let's see:
quote:
Unless a business owner foots the entire bill for his employees’ contraceptives, he must pay ruinous fines even when his religious practice forbids participating in contraception and sterilization. Similarly, business owners who want to open a restaurant in places like Chicago and Boston have to publicly vow to support the Democratic Party’s agenda and stop allying with groups that oppose it, or else have mayors and councilmen threaten to put the business owners out of business. And if a Democratic Party leader accuses you of a crime with no evidence whatsoever, you are expected to be considered guilty unless you prove yourself innocent.
Vote democrat and you vote to continue down this very path.
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msquared
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You know G3, Reid is not implying that Romney did anything illegal. The implication, I think, is more that Romney earned millions in that time and used legal steps to avoid taxes on all that income. While legal it would hurt Romney with the general populace.

msquared

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Pete at Home
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It does seem inappropriate for Reid to make accusations (even of a legal morally dubious act) based on private information which appears to have been obtained illegally.

quote:
“I don’t think the burden should be on me,” Reid said. “The burden should be on him. He’s the one I’ve alleged has not paid any taxes. Why didn’t he release his tax returns?”
Has he pulled a Watergate, or is he just fishing?
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Wayward Son
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quote:
Vote democrat and you vote to continue down this very path.
Yeah, but if you vote Republican, you get to dosado along the exact same lane, but with Rush Limbaugh egging you on. [Frown]
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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by msquared:
You know G3, Reid is not implying that Romney did anything illegal. The implication, I think, is more that Romney earned millions in that time and used legal steps to avoid taxes on all that income. While legal it would hurt Romney with the general populace.

msquared

That's the soft cell when backpedaling alright. But ...

quote:
Last Tuesday, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney shared his tax returns from 2010 and the estimates for what he will pay for 2011 with the media and the public. In 2010, he reported earning $21.7 million in income and paying $3 million in federal taxes, a rate of about 14 percent. The estimates for 2011 show him earning about $20.9 million in income and paying $3.2 million, a rate of about 15.4 percent.
So Romney is actually paying taxes but Harry says he's actually paying *none*
quote:
A month or so ago, he said, a person who had invested with Bain Capital called his office.

"Harry, he didn't pay any taxes for 10 years," Reid recounted the person as saying.

"He didn't pay taxes for 10 years! Now, do I know that that's true? Well, I'm not certain," said Reid. "But obviously he can't release those tax returns. How would it look?

Romney actually did pay taxes and no doubt he used every loophole he could to minimize them but there is no way you pay no taxes on millions in income earned in the US unless you come up with some, almost certainly, illegal means to make it look like you don't owe anything.

quote:
According to a recently released IRS report, almost 1,500 of America's 230,000 millionaires avoided paying any federal income tax in 2009.

So how did they do it? Were they scamming the system? Evading the IRS? Stashing their cash in elusive off-shore, untraceable bank accounts?

Actually, they were probably donating to charity, investing in local and state government bonds and making most of their money overseas.

Most of the millionaires who did not pay income tax to the IRS probably still had to hand over a chunk of their change, just not to the U.S. government, said Roberton Williams, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center.

Instead, many of America's high earners pay income taxes to foreign governments because of profits from overseas investments.

Obviously the above quote can not apply to Romney as he is paying federal taxes - his released returns show us that.

So, connect the dots and you see that Harry is trying to frame it that Romney is like Geithner in that he decided to not pay the taxes he owed (if Romney was a democrat, one assumes he could just blame TurboTax and all would be forgiven).

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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
quote:
Vote democrat and you vote to continue down this very path.
Yeah, but if you vote Republican, you get to dosado along the exact same lane, but with Rush Limbaugh egging you on. [Frown]
I know, you hate Limbaugh but at least cannot put you in jail, fine you, close down your business, etc when you disagree with him. Harry and the mayors can. And that link you provide is a non sequiter.
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msquared
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G3,

I think Reid is on a fishing expidition. I think Romney paid taxes on in those years. But since Romney will not release the returns, Reid has the ability to cheap shot him. Romney is not doing something most other candidates do, so it looks like he has something to hide. Reid is being a jerk by implying Romney is hiding something.

To me this has the smell of the old "Have you stopped beating your wife?" question. Now it is more like "Have you stopped legally avoiding paying taxes on the ill gotten (according to us) money from your company?

msquared

[ August 02, 2012, 12:26 PM: Message edited by: msquared ]

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velcro
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Why not just ask Romney - Did you pay more than 10% in taxes every year from 1990 through 2010?

If he says yes, I believe him. If he refuses to give a yes or no answer, then I think we will know the truth.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Romney actually did pay taxes and no doubt he used every loophole he could to minimize them but there is no way you pay no taxes on millions in income earned in the US unless you come up with some, almost certainly, illegal means to make it look like you don't owe anything.
Are you suggesting that there are, at most, only 9 other years that he could have been expected to have a tax obligation? Because, mathematically that's about the only way that the fact that he released 2 years of returns could have any bearing on whether he went 10 years without paying taxes.

Reid is definitely fishing, and probably amused at himself for turning such tactics around. (He can even say that the statement is perfectly true, because odds are Romney didn't pay a penny for the first 10 years of his life.)

It's goading that brings attention to the fact that he's being tightlipped. Not the most dignified of approaches, but not entirely surprising from Reid, really. And perfectly reflective on the type of unsubstantiated, (if not outright false, in the case of the contraception one) assertions at the end of the original post.

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Pete at Home
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The joke here is, that my Senator, Harry Reid, probably voted for and/or otherwise helped to enact most of the deduction that Romney used. And yet in the partisan freak show that our country turns into around elections, that ends up being Romney's fault rather than Reid's.
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Wayward Son
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quote:
And that link you provide is a non sequiter.
Non sequiter?

You provide the story of a U.S. Representative accusing a person of not paying taxes (which may or may not be illegal, depending on whether he owed any taxes or not [Smile] ) without substatial information about it.

I provide a story about a U.S. Representative accusing a person of being involved with a terrorist organization (which may or may not be a terrorist organization) without substantial information about it.

And you say the two stories are in no ways similar? [Roll Eyes]

Michelle is just as slimy, if not more so, than Reid in this case. At least with Reid, he is not necessarily accusing the person of treason. I'd take that over Bachmann any day!

So, yeah, if you vote Democrat, you're going to continue to get this type of election year innuendos. But don't think that the Republicans are any better. In some cases, they are worse. And as long as we tolerate this stupidity from either side of the aisle, we're going to continue to get it.

In politics, it truly is survival of the fittest, not the moralest or ethicalest. [Smile]

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
The joke here is, that my Senator, Harry Reid, probably voted for and/or otherwise helped to enact most of the deduction that Romney used. And yet in the partisan freak show that our country turns into around elections, that ends up being Romney's fault rather than Reid's.

Why are you talking about fault? Is there a reason that there should be anything that's anyone's fault here, other than discomfort over lack of transparency?
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Pete at Home
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I'm saying that it's stinking hypocrisy for Reid to whine about Romney possibly using loopholes that Reid himself enacted.

If we want transparency, then pass a law that requires it evenly and across the line. Let's not have "transparency" in the style of a drunken Mardis Gras mob demanding that a woman pull her top down.

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Pete at Home
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"Michelle is just as slimy, if not more so, than Reid in this case. At least with Reid, he is not necessarily accusing the person of treason."

While I agree that Bachman is slimy, I think you've picked a poor illustration. The familial connections do give some reason for concern, and she's simply asked that the person be vetted -- hasn't made an outright accusation as Reid did.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
I'm saying that it's stinking hypocrisy for Reid to whine about Romney possibly using loopholes that Reid himself enacted.

Where did he do that. All he did was complaint about the lack of release of the records. I didn't see any value judgment in what he said about not paying taxes being a bad thing.
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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
I'm saying that it's stinking hypocrisy for Reid to whine about Romney possibly using loopholes that Reid himself enacted.

Where did he do that. All he did was complaint about the lack of release of the records.
quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
I'm saying that it's stinking hypocrisy for Reid to whine about Romney possibly using loopholes that Reid himself enacted.

If we want transparency, then pass a law that requires it evenly and across the line. Let's not have "transparency" in the style of a drunken Mardis Gras mob demanding that a woman pull her top down.

quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
I didn't see any value judgment in what he said about not paying taxes being a bad thing.

[LOL]

Did you see any "value judgment" in Michelle Bachman asking VP Clinton if her staffer was associated with terrorists? Wasn't it McCarthy that said that stuff about just asking questions, that's all? [Big Grin]

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LoverOfJoy
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quote:
“I don’t think the burden should be on me,” Reid said. “The burden should be on him. He’s the one I’ve alleged has not paid any taxes. Why didn’t he release his tax returns?”
First, I personally consider "alleged" to not have value neutral connotations. But secondly, why shouldn't the burden be (at least partially) on him as a lawmaker to create laws to require candidates to release X number of tax returns if that is so important to him?

But ultimately I can't help but wonder how a Bain Capital investor could possibly know how much taxes Romney paid or didn't pay. Did Romney use the company accountant to file his taxes? Or was this guy talking about the company not paying any taxes? Did he mean that company had ten years in which it posted a loss and therefore paid little to no taxes? Did he mean that Romney had 10 years in which he had no salary but was only paid in stocks?

I would imagine that only a very very small number of people could possibly know how much taxes Romney paid for 10 years. Most everyone else who knows Mitt could only guess. I doubt his coworkers know, I doubt his children know, I wouldn't even be surprised if his wife only vaguely has an idea.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
If we want transparency, then pass a law that requires it evenly and across the line. Let's not have "transparency" in the style of a drunken Mardis Gras mob demanding that a woman pull her top down.
I don't see any reason why all financial transactions that amount to more than twice median income within one year shouldn't be public record.


quote:
Did you see any "value judgment" in Michelle Bachman asking VP Clinton if her staffer was associated with terrorists?
Absolutely- there's a big difference between pointing out that someone may have done something legal, and casting someone as a terrorist collaborator.
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G3
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
quote:
And that link you provide is a non sequiter.
Non sequiter?

You provide the story of a U.S. Representative accusing a person of not paying taxes (which may or may not be illegal, depending on whether he owed any taxes or not [Smile] ) without substatial information about it.

I provide a story about a U.S. Representative accusing a person of being involved with a terrorist organization (which may or may not be a terrorist organization) without substantial information about it.

And you say the two stories are in no ways similar? [Roll Eyes]

Yes. They're not similar in that, as Pete points out, Bachman is saying we need to fully vet someone on the Sec of State's staff. Bachman did not directly accuse Abedin as Harry has done. When Bachman comes out and says she heard it from a friend who heard it from another that Abdedin actually does have ties to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, just as her mother and borther have been proven to have, then it would be an apt comparison.

quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
So, yeah, if you vote Democrat, you're going to continue to get this type of election year innuendos. But don't think that the Republicans are any better. In some cases, they are worse. And as long as we tolerate this stupidity from either side of the aisle, we're going to continue to get it.

This is a meme that is being pushed a lot lately. Let's leave aside the logical fallacy of that and focus on if it's true. "Well, Republicans are no better!" This has a thin veneer of legitimacy because the Republican party has tilted left and begun to represent "liberalism light".

To find out how inaccurate that is, let's go to the headlines!

The CEO of Chik-Fil-A says his religious belief compels him to have a opinion on marriage that is at odds with the ruling elite in some cities and he directs money to organizations that, among many other things, supports the traditional view of marriage. The result: a threat by Democrat leadership in several cities to remove the company from business.

In contrast, earlier this week, the CEO of Amazon donates $2.5 million to the campaign devoted to the single effort of defending Washington's same-sex marriage law (along with Microsoft, Starbucks. and Nike). How many Republican political leaders called for Amazon and those other companies to suffer similar punitive damages? I think you already know.

There is a very clear and stark difference between the parties.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
If we want transparency, then pass a law that requires it evenly and across the line. Let's not have "transparency" in the style of a drunken Mardis Gras mob demanding that a woman pull her top down.
I don't see any reason why all financial transactions that amount to more than twice median income within one year shouldn't be public record.
Well the fact that such transactions are NOT public record is more Reid's problem than Romney's, since the former pretends to be a leader in the federal system, while the latter only aspires to become such. Fair is fair, dude.


quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Did you see any "value judgment" in Michelle Bachman asking VP Clinton if her staffer was associated with terrorists?
Absolutely- there's a big difference between pointing out that someone may have done something legal, and casting someone as a terrorist collaborator.
Are you so sure? Gee, Pyr, are you totally certain that US laws have always established that useful distinction between legal action within our country and COLLABORATION with TERRORISTS? If so, then pray tell why the collaborators and supporters of BARUCH GOLDSTEIN, are still walking around and spewing their 1st-amendment-protected venom within the United States? Hell, man, why is our dear friend Lisa not in prison, if the distinction you claim exists, actually has any focking influence on the law of our land?>
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Pete at Home
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fyi -- it's "sequitur," not "sequiter." May those that screw it up more have nightmares of getting gang-banged by a legion of Richard Dey's gay legionaries. [Razz]
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Viking_Longship
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quote:
The CEO of Chik-Fil-A says his religious belief compels him to have a opinion on marriage that is at odds with the ruling elite in some cities and he directs money to organizations that, among many other things, supports the traditional view of marriage. The result: a threat by Democrat leadership in several cities to remove the company from business.

In contrast, earlier this week, the CEO of Amazon donates $2.5 million to the campaign devoted to the single effort of defending Washington's same-sex marriage law (along with Microsoft, Starbucks. and Nike). How many Republican political leaders called for Amazon and those other companies to suffer similar punitive damages? I think you already know.

There is a very clear and stark difference between the parties.

That or Republican lawmakers are afraid of being labled as homophobes.

The largely succesful attempt of David Frum, Charles Krauthammer, William Kristol and Rupert Murdoch's goons to purge the GOP of anyone who would put the interests of the US tax payer and soldier ahead of the interests of Israel tells us just as much about the charachter of the GOP.

A plauge on both your houses.

[ August 02, 2012, 07:57 PM: Message edited by: Viking_Longship ]

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Pete at Home
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Thanks, Viking.

Given the astonishing American lefty proclivity for sheer unadulterated IGNORANCE regarding the actual meaning of the word 'fascism,' perhaps I should not be surpised by this undisguised attempt by corporations to shape and control the law regarding such a private and spiritual contract.

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Greg Davidson
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I believe that Reid is acting wrongly by making this unsubstantiated assertion, and he deserves our condemnation.

However, I challenge every one of you who suggested that Reid's behavior had implications regarding the Democratic Party: Do you use the same standard with respect to judging Republicans? Does a single unsubstantiated assertion by a senior Republican Congressman or Senator cast similar aspersions on all Republicans? And would a greater number of unsubstantiated assertion by members of one party be an indication that those making more unsubstantiated assertions were worse in some way than a party whose members made fewer such assertions?

Or are you just selecting an ad hoc incidence independent of principles because it is a useful argument today, but the same principle you are using today you would reject on another day if it did not help your favored cause?

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TomDavidson
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The idea that marriage is a private and spiritual contract baffles me.

If it were private and spiritual, it wouldn't need to be a contract. The only point of making it contractual is that it is public.

If I wanted a private, spiritual contract with someone, I would not need to legally marry her.

[ August 02, 2012, 09:52 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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Pete at Home
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"However, I challenge every one of you who suggested that Reid's behavior had implications regarding the Democratic Party: Do you use the same standard with respect to judging Republicans? Does a single unsubstantiated assertion by a senior Republican Congressman or Senator cast similar aspersions on all Republicans? "

Very well-said, Greg.

My senator is being a dumb-ass. With that said, I'll probably vote for him a third time in the next election, because even though he acts like a partisan whore from time to time, he's otherwise an excellent senator, and he helped stop the nuclear waste from rolling through my town, for which I'm eternally grateful.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
The only point of making it contractual is that it is public.

[DOH]

I don't even know where to begin with that, Tom. But that's OK. We've already established that you and I live in alternate moral and logical universes.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
The CEO of Chik-Fil-A says his religious belief compels him to have a opinion on marriage that is at odds with the ruling elite in some cities and he directs money to organizations that, among many other things, supports the traditional view of marriage. The result: a threat by Democrat leadership in several cities to remove the company from business.
"Among other things" including, mind you, having a company policy of firing women to force them to be stay at home parents and supporting organizations that actively lobby for death sentences for homosexuality.

He's welcome to his opinion, and to direct his company to support it. That doesn't mean that he gets any protection from the social fallout from espousing such views.

quote:
In contrast, earlier this week, the CEO of Amazon donates $2.5 million to the campaign devoted to the single effort of defending Washington's same-sex marriage law (along with Microsoft, Starbucks. and Nike). How many Republican political leaders called for Amazon and those other companies to suffer similar punitive damages? I think you already know.
Their entire platform would unravel if they tried to do that, never mind being smart enough to know when the tide had gone against them sufficiently on an issue for it to be political suicide to put themselves on the line for such bigoted positions. IF the mayors in question have actually misread their constituents on such issues, they won't survive reelection, but otherwise it's their job to help foster productive business environments within their municipalities, and that includes rejecting businesses whose social cost outweighs whatever value they might offer.

It's good for companies to devote some of their resources to social improvement in their communities, but if they're wrong about the value of what they're investing in, then they should have to face the natural consequences for it.

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Viking_Longship
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
The idea that marriage is a private and spiritual contract baffles me.

If it were private and spiritual, it wouldn't need to be a contract. The only point of making it contractual is that it is public.

If I wanted a private, spiritual contract with someone, I would not need to legally marry her.

If we're eliminating spritual and private issues then civil unions would be sufficient for homosexuals to feel they'd achieved "marriage equality". It's acknowledgement of the spiritual and private aspect of their relationships that advocates of SSM desire.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
The only point of making it contractual is that it is public.

[DOH]

I don't even know where to begin with that, Tom. But that's OK. We've already established that you and I live in alternate moral and logical universes.

Marriage is a very directly a contract with between those being married and their community to recognize previously independent members as a family unit. That's why even Quaker marriages, the most simple type of contract available, still requires at least two witnesses to sign off on the form, and all others require the vows to be taken before a community official, be it a sacred (priest) or secular (justice) representative. It's pointless in private- people in a relationship can affirm their commitment however they like- it only has meaning in how it defines relationships and commitment in a community context.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Viking_Longship:
If we're eliminating spritual and private issues then civil unions would be sufficient for homosexuals to feel they'd achieved "marriage equality". It's acknowledgement of the spiritual and private aspect of their relationships that advocates of SSM desire.

Just the opposite- if the issue were private, then the people involved could create it however they like. Nothing stops people from making whatever private and spiritual pledges they like as things stand right now.

On the other hand, it's that "acknowledgement", a community relationship, that's the key issue. That's also why a separate by equal solution falls short- it every explictly denies the appropriate community acknowledgement by branding the relationship differently.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
If we're eliminating spritual and private issues then civil unions would be sufficient for homosexuals to feel they'd achieved "marriage equality"
Since when is social acceptance of equal status a private or spiritual issue? I've always pointed out that the reason "civil unions" are unacceptable is that a separate (and thus inherently lesser) type of union reserved for less socially acceptable unions is not any less discriminatory or bigoted than the status quo.

Having one level of super-special union called "marriage" and another level for the plebes is something that churches can do, but the state should not.

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
If we're eliminating spritual and private issues then civil unions would be sufficient for homosexuals to feel they'd achieved "marriage equality"
Since when is social acceptance of equal status a private or spiritual issue?
Since when would you recognize a spiritual issue even if God herself sat on your face?
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TomDavidson
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Good question. I'll let you know when I see something that looks like a spiritual issue, and you can tell me if it is.
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Pete at Home
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Tom, Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't you deny free will and propound that all human decisions are some ultimate manifestation of chemistry? If you don't believe in a spirit, then why would you worry your pretty little head about what's a spiritual issue?

[ August 03, 2012, 02:26 AM: Message edited by: Pete at Home ]

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cherrypoptart
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Maybe Romney is looking at how long Obama took to release that birth certificate and hoping the same type of theatrics can work as well for him.

Or he could be playing some of his cards close to his vest, holding a little something in reserve perhaps to offer it in trade. He could be looking to put some of his cards on the table when Obama does, exchanging his tax records for Obama's college ones.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
why would you worry your pretty little head about what's a spiritual issue
The question of whether or not people who eat bacon will go to Hell when they die is, for example, a spiritual issue. That I do not believe in Hell does not mean that this is irrelevant to me; people who do believe in Hell may attempt to frame the legality of bacon as a "spiritual" one and thus attempt to make my eating it illegal, for my own sake.

That spirits may or may not exist -- and, IMO, almost certainly do not -- does not mean that there are no issues out there which may be considered "spiritual." It just means that such issues are generally the equivalent of Chinese finger traps.

[ August 03, 2012, 07:35 AM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
why would you worry your pretty little head about what's a spiritual issue
The question of whether or not people who eat bacon will go to Hell when they die is, for example, a spiritual issue.
It is?

Sounds like a culinary issue to me. I doubt that the cooks in hell spend days meditating and praying about it. [Big Grin]

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TomDavidson
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Is your criteria for a "spiritual issue" "something you spend days praying about?"

By that logic, buying a house, running for President, or starting a business is a "spiritual issue" for many people. Which is a pretty stupid definition of "spiritual issue," I'd argue: the idea that every decision that's important enough to pray about is inherently spiritual -- as directly opposed to secular and/or public, to remind you of the alternative options in the context we're discussing -- makes the distinction meaningless.

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by cherrypoptart:
Maybe Romney is looking at how long Obama took to release that birth certificate and hoping the same type of theatrics can work as well for him.

Or he could be playing some of his cards close to his vest, holding a little something in reserve perhaps to offer it in trade. He could be looking to put some of his cards on the table when Obama does, exchanging his tax records for Obama's college ones.

Or maybe we have finally found something Gov. Romney cares enough about that he won't change his position.

[ August 03, 2012, 11:38 AM: Message edited by: kmbboots ]

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