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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 5:42 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
No. 9 wrote:
..As for comparisons . . . Sandra Bernhard to Ann Coulter? The parallels are lacking . . .


Yeah, Coulter is a hell of a lot funnier! :o :lol: :lol: :lol:

ZM



Bernhard isn't funny when she's trying to be. Coulter is funny when she isn't trying to be.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:11 pm 
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I find nothing funny about either of them.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 7:35 pm 
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Az Bucco fan wrote:
I find nothing funny about either of them.



Come one....you can't find anything funny with a Michigan grad who didn't know that Canada didn't send troops to Vietnam.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 11:09 pm 
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Bob in Boston wrote:

No, No. 9., the Economist did not say the lobbyist who set up that anti-Hillary group was a Republican. That would have been a curious waste of time and effort, given that she got off to a poor start in the Democratic primaries and was mathematically out of contention with a couple of months left.

Now, perhaps the lobbyist was a Republican; I don't know. Clearly, you remember it that way. But here, word-for-word, is how the relevant paragraph from the Sept. 11 issue reads:

Quote:
But it was Mrs Clinton who got the whipping. She not only lost an unlosable primary race. She was dissed and denounced in the process. Chris Matthews of MSNBC said that she owed her Senate seat to her husband’s infidelity. One lobbyist created an anti-Hillary pressure group called Citizens United Not Timid. A couple of young men ordered her to “iron my shirt”. Mr McCain, whom she regards as a good friend, looked on benignly when a Republican asked him “How do we beat the bitch?”



Geez Bob. Give me a break. I didn't stop at the article in The Economist. I looked further into the referenced lobbyist. It is Roger Stone. Now . . . you want to claim that Stone is either a Democrat or even an Independent?

I also seem to recall John McCain making a joke about Janet Reno fathering Chelsea Clinton. I believe that the joke was "Why is Chelsea Clinton so ugly? Because Janet Reno is her father." If that isn't pandering to a certain population that held beliefs about (1) Janet Reno being unattractive; (2) Chelsea Clinton being unattractive; (3) Hillary Clinton's purported lesbianism and (4) Janet Reno's purported lesbianism . . . .

Sorry but its my opinion that anyone who refuses to see that vitriol comes from both sides is just putting their head in the sand and refusing to see the obvious. I can find examples on both sides of the aisle easily.

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:00 am 
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No. 9 wrote:

BBF -
Our firm does a lot of medical malpractice defense work. I admittedly have handled only a handful of cases over the years. However, I have done a fair amount of reading on the subject as Tort Reform is interesting to me. If you look at the studies done over the last 10 - 15 years, the number of jury verdicts against doctors has gone down markedly, the number of cases filed against doctors has gone down markedly, the amounts paid for verdicts against doctors have gone down and the total amounts paid in settlement for doctors have gone down. The only rising costs involve the hourly rate charged by the attorneys over those 10-15 years. So . . . a fair question to ask is this: With decreasing costs overall, why are premiums going up? Who is pocketing the difference? And, once you reach the answer to this question, I think it is fair to ask: Who owns the medical insurance companies?
From a philosphophical point-of-view, I have no problem with caps on non-economic damages.
However, there is more to the picture than just verdicts and claims.
I can also tell you this. From my experience, the average billable rate for a med mal defense lawyer is at least 50% less than a corporate transactional lawyer and the amount of money that is spent on attorneys for corporations for ridiciulous disputes (costs which are ultimately borne by the consumer) is far more appalling than costs for defending a physician.
While the litigation system may not be perfect, I'm not sure that it is broken to the extent that the medical insurers want everyone to believe.
As for a physician's take home pay . . . I have a fair number of physician friends and am privy to the methods for setting up a medical practice and how the corporation can be structured. Yeah, they may be showing $60,000 to the IRS but I can assure you that they are not living $60,000 lifestyles. A very good physician friend of mine in Denver, CO claims take home of about $50,000. She has a full time nanny, drives a very expensive car, lives in a home worth more than $750,000 and has taken vacations to Europe, New York and San Diego since January 1.


No. 9-

I definitely defer to you in all legal matters, as my entire legal experience consists of watching Judge Judy one time and trying to figure out how to get out of jury duty next month. You'll also notice that I was very careful with my wording of this particular point, even stating that I don't know if it would have an effect or not. I do find the issue of tort reform interesting, but having been tied to a lab bench the past 4 years instead of working on the clinical side, I've become somewhat detached from the arguments (I've yet to have a lab mouse sue me). I remember reading a study, however, comparing med mal insurance rates in PA (which has no caps on non-economic damages) to rates in a state that had instituted caps (I THINK it was California, but I'm probably wrong...Maryland maybe? I don't know). I don't remember the numbers, and have been unable to find that study since you've posted, but my recollection is that rate at which premiums in PA increased 10-fold (maybe even 100-fold?) higher than the rate at which they increased in the capped state.
You raise a good point that if awards and settlement costs have gone down, premiums should be doing likewise, yet they aren't. Again, I am far outside my area of expertise, but I would imagine a large part of that is due to the fact that insurance companies don't just manage the budget sheets for the past year(s), they also have to manage risks. If there is a risk of having to pay out a $125 mil settlement, they have to budget for that, even if we are trending away from that territiory. If you remove that risk, then premiums would more than likely follow the trends that you described. Again, though, that is just my understanding and idle speculation, as I am far removed from my area of expertise.

And referring back to the standard of living of physicians, I certainly didn't mean to imply that doctors are lining up at the door of the poor house. Many physicians, as you note, live quite the lifestyle while claiming much less income. However, not all medical settings are the same. A doctor working in a large academic medical center (even a small academic medical center these days) do reap a lot of benefits, including travel, etc. And I would never claim that there weren't docs out there that are in bed with pharmaceutical companies and reaping the financial benefits of those relationships (though those relationships are being increasingly scrutinized and as a result fewer and further between). But there are truly physicians practicing in small community hospitals and private practices that really are bringing home far less than $100K a year, living in working class neighborhoods, and essentially living the middle-class lifestyle. I would also note that these physicians are harder and harder to find, as docs in training tend to gravitate towards these academic medical centers, for economic reasons, for research opportunities, etc. And it is these community-based docs that are squeezed the most by malpractice insurance. I can tell you that of my medical school class, less than 2% intend to practice out in the community, with financial limitations being among the reasons they (we) cite. Definitely a recipe for a shortage of docs in the future.

Also, as I mentioned before, the risk of being sued leads many docs to disregard evidence based medicine, and instead order excessive testing and medication, because they want to "be on the safe side", drastically driving up healthcare costs. The question is not whether or not to throw out malpractice suits (as I said before, we need ways to compensate patients who are harmed and punish physicians who make blatant mistakes, repeated mistakes, or intentionally commit malpractice), but how to balance the need for malpractice litigation with the fact that physicians are so afraid that they may commit an honest mistake that they over-prescribe, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:13 am 
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Bernhard is just plain disgusting and Coulter is just plain mean. Can you imagine being married to her? She probably doesn't even make left turns.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:54 am 
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I watch "Law and Order", does that qualify me above BBF in lawyereeeze?? :D


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 12:46 pm 
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I have a Get-Out-Of-Jury-Duty-Free card: I just say, "I'm going to law school."

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 1:03 pm 
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Az Bucco fan wrote:
Bernhard is just plain disgusting and Coulter is just plain mean. Can you imagine being married to her? She probably doesn't even make left turns.


Which is why I cannot fathom using them as anything resembling the mainstream of either side.

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:50 pm 
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Bob -
At risk of resurrecting what appears to be a somewhat dead topic, I was forwarded an email today by an attorney in our office with whom I previously spoke about both sides making extreme comments about one another.

She forwarded me an email which references an Alaska radio talk show host, Eddie Burke, who apparently responded strongly to a group of people forming an anti-Sarah Palin rally. According to the email, Eddie Burke referred to anyone who attended this rally as "socialist baby-killing maggots" and broadcast the phone numbers of the organizers. I have checked to confirm that Burke is a conservative radio talk show host and apparently he is. See http://www.kbyr.com/ebs/

After reading the email and in an attempt to confirm whether this story was accurate or not, I found this: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/251/story/52576.html This story seems to confirm that Burke broadcast the phone numbers of the organizers and was suspended for doing so. There is no reference to "socialist baby-killing maggots" in the story or any suggestion that Burke urged individuals to make threatening phone calls to the women.

In further digging, I found this: http://www.ktuu.com/Global/story.asp?S=8996315
On its face, this seems to do a pretty decent job of reporting what happened and also seems to confirm the "socialist baby-killing maggot" comment.

Seems to me that calling organizers who want to exercise their right to freedom of political speech "socialist baby-killing maggots" is extreme and ugly. And, at least in this case, his comments seemed to inspire action by his listeners which were reportedly threatening to the organizers.

Yet, I would not try to paint all conservatives as being aligned with Burke. Just another example of the fact that extremes exist on both sides. You can point to Bernhard's comments as extreme, I can point to Burke's comments as extreme. The vast majority of people in this country, whether they call themselves Democrats, Republicans, Liberals, Conservatives or Independents are reasonable people who do not hold extreme views. What I see is a distortion of what is portrayed as "mainstream" by both sides of the aisle. Frankly, although it is reality, I find it disappointing and increasingly disturbing (on both sides).

I'm off the soapbox . . . at least for now. :mrgreen: ;)



I

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 1:13 pm 
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I will add this if I can.

The focus, when most talk about a liberal media, is not the Anne Coulter's or Burkes, or Franken's of this world.

It is how the major news networks treat the candidates/news. Watching the major outlets, one notices a range, but by and large, it is certainly left-leaning. Some (CNN) have shifted a bit to center over time (lost viwership), others stay out there (MSNBC, NBC). Others (CBS, ABC) just seem to be motivated by ratings splashes.

And, I believe treatment of Palin proves it fairly clearly. These outlets took what was fed them by bloggers and party hacks whole and swallowed it without fact checking. They ran with story-types that only a couple of months ago were "off limits" or "right wing attack" on Obama's campaign.

You want a more salient, relavet topic? Look at the responses by the news hosts on the major outlet's to Palin's position questioning man made global warming. The look, response and reporting is of incredulity that any "serious" pol would even take such a luddite stance. This even though many of us in the scientific community have never bought fully into this theory, and that the data are showing the complete opposite as we speak.

I fully expect a "yeah but Fox News" to follow.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 2:10 pm 
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Fox News is what it is. I don't expect them to offer me anything of substance. They're a celebrity and ratings driven machine that panders to the mouth breathers on the right the same way CNN and MSNBC pander to the mouth breathers on the left.

And Sarah Palin made her own bed. She comes off as the President of your local school board and not a Vice Presidential candidate. Sorry, but my politicians should be smarter than me, or at least better educated. Palin fails on both fronts. Not that I was going to vote for a Big Government ticket like McCain-Plain anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 2:12 pm 
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ZM -
While I don't agree with you wholeheartedly about portraying various news outlets as being as left-leaning as claimed, Bob's initial post wasn't about lambasting a "liberal media." Far from it. It was sarcastically attempting to paint a picture of what he calls the "Left." I attempted to argue that both sides are guilty of extremism.

It is my personal opinion that human nature is such that we tend to remember a story or comment that we disagree with and tend to forget those stories that support our opinion. Consequently, any person or network that does not spew stories which mimic a person's own beliefs is viewed as contrarian and anti-one's beliefs.

When the networks kept showing Reverend Wright's speech on YouTube and reporting stories about Obama's attendance at that church, then Obama's friendship with Rev. Wright and then that Rev. Wright married the Obamas, was that "left leaning?" We saw stories about this night after night after night. We were also presented with commentor after commentor who claimed that Obama's relationship with this pastor was relevant and disturbing.

The stories played in the press about whether Obama wore an American flag on his lapel . . . is that "left leaning?"

Now . . . without getting into whether Obama's friendship with the Reverand or attendance at that church is relevant to the issue of him potentially being president . . . how can showing a You Tube video of Sara Palin speaking at the Pentecostal Church in which she grew up and making comments about "God's Will" be off-limits, sexist and unfair?

You think that Palin is being treated unfairly? Watch this video (http://www.thedailyshow.com/video/index ... ender-card) and pay particular attention to Bill O'Reilly's comments when Jamie Lynn Spears was pregnant. Who did he blame? The parents. But . . . when Bristol Palin's pregnancy is raised as an issue . . . its a sensitive subject that we should simply leave alone.

Did the "mainstream" media run with some poorly sourced stories when McCain chose Palin? Yep. I see that as less an liberal agenda as media laziness with someone who was a surprise pick and relatively unknown.

Both sides are guilty of trying to play the "victim" card.

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 2:30 pm 
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The "right wing" of this country has been hijacked by a lot of hypocrites. Bristol Plain and her boyfriend deserve the same treatment as Jaime Lynn Spears and her boyfriend. There's not a bit of difference between them.

What scares me the most about Palin is her belief that the war in Iraq is the will of God. It scares me because it reflects a deeper sentiment within conservative circles. Just in the last 6 months, I've heard two different high ranking military types from the Pentagon speak at my unit. Both of them have used the same phrase when talking about the Iraq war. They both used "God's work" when talking about it.

I have always seen Western Pennsylvania as a very libertarian place. It's a live and let live kind region where people get along as long as nobody tries to force their beliefs on anyone else. It's because of this that I struggle with national politics and their inherent hypocrisy. Bristol Palin is as much of a sinner as Jaime Lynn Spears, so treat them the same way. Either that, or leave them both alone.

It's the hypocrisy that drove me away from both the Democrats and the Republicans. For every Bill Clinton, there's a Bob Packwood. Neither side has clean hands.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:33 pm 
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Jeremy wrote:
The "right wing" of this country has been hijacked by a lot of hypocrites. Bristol Plain and her boyfriend deserve the same treatment as Jaime Lynn Spears and her boyfriend. There's not a bit of difference between them.

What scares me the most about Palin is her belief that the war in Iraq is the will of God. It scares me because it reflects a deeper sentiment within conservative circles. Just in the last 6 months, I've heard two different high ranking military types from the Pentagon speak at my unit. Both of them have used the same phrase when talking about the Iraq war. They both used "God's work" when talking about it.

I have always seen Western Pennsylvania as a very libertarian place. It's a live and let live kind region where people get along as long as nobody tries to force their beliefs on anyone else. It's because of this that I struggle with national politics and their inherent hypocrisy. Bristol Palin is as much of a sinner as Jaime Lynn Spears, so treat them the same way. Either that, or leave them both alone.

It's the hypocrisy that drove me away from both the Democrats and the Republicans. For every Bill Clinton, there's a Bob Packwood. Neither side has clean hands.


Are you absolutely sure that its not the Will of God?


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:35 pm 
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Quote:
Bristol Palin is as much of a sinner as Jaime Lynn Spears, so treat them the same way. Either that, or leave them both alone.


I vote to leave them both alone, I am pretty sure I've got some things in my past that doesn't give me any right to judge.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:54 pm 
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No. 9 wrote:
You can point to Bernhard's comments as extreme, I can point to Burke's comments as extreme. The vast majority of people in this country, whether they call themselves Democrats, Republicans, Liberals, Conservatives or Independents are reasonable people who do not hold extreme views. What I see is a distortion of what is portrayed as "mainstream" by both sides of the aisle. Frankly, although it is reality, I find it disappointing and increasingly disturbing (on both sides).

I'm off the soapbox . . . at least for now. :mrgreen: ;)



I


I agree that the vast majority of people are reasonable and don't hold extreme views. I ought to know; I live in a one-party state, in a neighborhood full of people who would rather be jabbed in the eyes with a fork than vote for a Republican. Doesn't stop them from being likable.

But then, why wouldn't they be? They're comfortable. Everywhere they look, their side dominates. The Left rules the communications media, public and higher education, organized labor, both houses of Congress, the civil service, the governments of every major city, the judiciary, the trial bar, high-tech, the entertainment industry, the clergy, the philanthropies, and the civil rights, civil liberties, feminist, "pro-choice," and environmental movements.

What happens when the Right dares to make itself heard via bloggers and talk radio? Nancy Pelosi responds by threatening to reimpose the Fairness Doctrine and Hillary Clinton by calling for federal regulation of the Internet.

Members of this board may argue all they like that there isn't a liberal bias in the news media. They're simply wrong. There is -- at every TV network except Fox, at NPR, at Time, Newsweek, US News & World Report, the wire services, and at every major metro daily newspaper except the New York Post, the Washington Times, and a few lesser lights (Pittburgh Tribune-Review), and the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal -- and it is as insidious this election cycle as it ever has been. If not moreso.

(Go ahead, y'all: Tell me Fox News has a conservative bias. Cite me Sean Hannity, Britt Hume, Bill Kristol, Fred Barnes, O'Reilly, and Karl Rove as evidence of Fox's right-wing bias. I'll counter with Alan Colmes, Juan Williams, Susan Estrich, Bob Beckel, Shepard Smith, Greta van Susteren, and Geraldo -- all of them articulate and all seen regularly.)

As for Eddie Burke up in Alaska, I never heard of him before. And I don't excuse his outburst. But I suspect that he -- like millions of other conservatives -- is frustrated. He deserved to be suspended, although I think it's fair to suggest he wouldn't have dared do that in a market larger than Anchorage (metro area: roughly 300,000 people).

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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 4:07 pm 
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I fear we may have divided ourselves significantly in this nation, I, am on the conservative side, but I am beginning to get sick of all that is politics.

Quote:
In Federalist Paper Number Ten, James Madison argued against political parties. He said , "The public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties . . ." In his Farewell Address, George Washington also warned against the creation of political parties. He called them "baneful," very harmful, for the nation.


I definitely am beginning to feel as though "public good", is not being served by anyone in Washington. I am voting for the McCain/Palin ticket because I believe that Gov Palin is the no BS kind of leader we need. I want someone who is going to smack both the Left and the Right. I want someone who is holding one of the top offices that is concerned about me. That IS what this country was founded upon right? "We the People"


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 4:55 pm 
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Bob in Boston wrote:
What happens when the Right dares to make itself heard via bloggers and talk radio? Nancy Pelosi responds by threatening to reimpose the Fairness Doctrine and Hillary Clinton by calling for federal regulation of the Internet.


And yet, despite the existence of the ALL POWERFUL LEFT, there is no shortage of conservative talk radio hosts and conservative blogs. In fact, I'd go so far as to bet that there are two conservative talk radio hosts for every one liberal radio talk show host.

Are there examples of racism that exist in today's world? Absolutely. Does the race card get overplayed? Without question. And I roll my eyes in those instances.

Are there examples of left-leaning bias in the media? Absolutely. Does the liberal media card get overplayed? Without question. And I continue to roll my eyes.

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Obsessive proponent of situational bunting and 2 strike hitting approaches, reflexively pro-catchers calling good games and tasteless proponent of the value of a RBI.


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 Post subject: Re: Liberalism's finest hour
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 5:23 pm 
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Jeremy wrote:
Fox News is what it is. I don't expect them to offer me anything of substance. They're a celebrity and ratings driven machine that panders to the mouth breathers on the right the same way CNN and MSNBC pander to the mouth breathers on the left.

And Sarah Palin made her own bed. She comes off as the President of your local school board and not a Vice Presidential candidate. Sorry, but my politicians should be smarter than me, or at least better educated. Palin fails on both fronts. Not that I was going to vote for a Big Government ticket like McCain-Plain anyway.

I can't believe I'm actually agreeing with Jeremy. BBF, can you take my pulse?

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