Drinking Liberally Idaho Falls Chapter Blog

Thursday Night DL at D'Railed

 

All Over But the Poutin’

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Dec 5th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place D’railed, located at 468 N Eastern Ave (next door to the Bonneville Humane Society Thrift Store)
 

NOTE:  Wild Russet is booked for a Christmas party this Thursday, so we’ve been bumped over to D’Railed for just one night.  Heather is holding 20 places for us, though, so we should be OK.


OK, the election’s all over … in spite of getting Ed Marohn elected, the outcome is a disappointment.  We’ll have four years of Barb Ehardt to suffer through.

But it isn’t that bad – especially from the point of view of public accommodations.  I was already thinking that we would have to take our time, no matter what election results we had.  We were probably going to take two years, even under the best conditions.  That’s what Ed said would be needed, and I think Rebecca Casper will be supportive under those conditions.


  • » ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – February 7, 2014, in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)

And if we are going to take a couple years, then we might even be able to convince Dee Whittier.  He is very much like Ken Taylor, and I think Ken would have been converted with a longer, slower effort.

And who knows what Sharon will do in the next two years?

Right now, we have Ed, Mike Lehto, and Tom Hally.  With Rebecca as a tiebreaker, we can get it done.  The best news is that Barb by herself can’t do any damage (i.e., repealing the current ordinance – which she suggested would be her desire).

So let’s commiserate a bit.  But let’s not lose it.  We are in decent shape.  And we did get Ed in office.

One other point.  Here’s a comparison of the results from November and December:

      Nov 5th Dec 3rd
Seat #2 Paul Menser   35.1%   44.1%
Other   64.9%   55.9%
 
Seat #4 Ed Marohn   36.9%   55.0%
Other   63.1%   45.0%
 
Seat #6 Karen Cornwell   41.6%   46.3%
Other   58.4%   53.7%

All three of our candidates showed great improvement.  From 5% up to 18% better.  [Of course, this assumes that all the November voters who cast ballots for people other than Ed, Karen, and Paul, are basically conservatives who were predisposed to vote against them in the runoff, given that the opposition candidates in both cases were basically the same mold of conservative.  That’s probably not strictly true, but I think it’s mostly true.]

So let’s keep the faith!  The dinosaurs cannot win this battle in the long run.  They are on their way out, and they are scared.  We will move forward – that is the story of history!

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

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Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker
Petition:  Support Pocatello’s nondiscrimination ordinance
Petition:  Tell Otter, Crapo, and Risch to help remove the religious sheild law that protects parents who kill their kids with prayer

 

Quotations of the Week

“The way these things happen when both parties are healthy is that the popular, high-priority policy preferences of one party are bundled with the popular, high-priority policy preferences of the other.  However, what exactly do Republicans have that they need to pass and that Democrats could accept?  The Republican policy cupboard is pretty much empty.  There are some wild demands (balanced budgets, repealing Obamacare) that Democrats wouldn’t go along with for any price – ideas that wouldn’t really work anyway.  Other than those, there’s just very little.  I suppose Democrats could trade a solid increase in the minimum wage for cuts in food stamps, but it’s not clear that would be a deal liberals could support – and at any rate, it’s hardly a popular Republican demand, meaning that Democrats would be tempted to just run on the issue rather than accepting what they could get.”
Jonathan Bernstein

 

Poem of the Week

Slave Driven

i barely niggle a living squirreling around
the home office.  I work for myself as my own secretary.
it’s a shitty job, paperwork ceiling to floor.  the
technology changes every few months.  i’m on call
weekends and holidays.  no benefits or perks.
there’s no vacation or overtime.  the pay is less
than minimum wage.
it’s like every job I’ve ever had except I don’t drive
rush-hour traffic and can wear nightclothes if I want.
there are no racist vibes, no gender or sex preference
or intergenerational discrimination, quitting time
is determined by level of exhaustion.
i get no breaks.  i sit all day.
i grab a bite while on duty
the boss never has anything
good to say

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

  If you do nothing else all week:  read this (and a follow-up with video interview)
And amazing legal battle against a scumbag
Measuring sea level (not as straight-forward as you might think)
I expect retailers will be all over this idea like Black Friday on Thanksgiving
The Benghazi Hoax (new ebook from Media Matters)
Reverse racism (comedy)
The myth of the Vietnam POW/MIA
Neat idea
Really cool stop-action video
A fine source of time-wasting quizes
How to beat up a baby
  If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton!

 

Schedule

 

     
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493

 

Another Thanksgiving

 

Thanksgiving

Spontaneous meeting:
  Date Wednesday, Nov 27th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Of course, this Thursday is Thanksgiving.  As good Drinking Liberally members, we must allow Diane and Dane and the staff at Wild Russet a day off to spend with their families.  We must sacrifice our evening of libations upon the alter of our liberal principles.

Oh, wait!  No need to sacrifice!  Let’s just move up one day!

Come join us at Wild Russet on Wednesday night, for an informal, impromptu DL.  Get your Thanksgiving preparations done a little early, and then join us and relax.

And remember:  no shopping on Thanksgiving!


As I look back on seven years of Drinking Liberally, I have to say that this last year has been absolutely amazing.  It really stands out – both for the circumstances (IF Pride, the nondiscrimination ordinance, the city council election, etc), but also for the amazing people that have come into our lives through DL.

If you haven’t come in awhile, it might look a little different.  There are some new faces.  Some new to the area, and some just new to our group.  Some new to liberalism.  And even some newly formed from former, less-happy selves.

I cannot believe how incredibly lucky I am to know all of you.  You make living here not just possible, but something to be proud of.

If we don’t see you, have the wonderful Thanksgiving that you deserve!

Cheers,
Dan

Contact

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Doyle Beck is STILL a Dooty-head!

For any new Idaho Falls visitors, see this post.

Thursday Night DL at Wild Russet

 

You Can Keep Your Insurance

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Nov 21st
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 


Look closely … we’re in the small print!

Special Event:  The IF City Club is holding a debate featuring the candidates for the three City Council seats this Thursday night.  It will be at the University Place Auditorium from 6:30pm to 8:15pm.

Needless to say, DL will be delayed.  We will repair to the Wild Russet afterwards, if you would like to meet us there.  And no doubt there will be people who show up there at 7pm, not having read this.


Did President Obama lie when he said many times, "If you like your current insurance plan, you can keep it"?

No.  Not at all.


You have to twist things and ignore context in order to claim that he did.  Remember, the claim from opponents at the time was that Obama was leading a government take-over of health care.  He was assuring people that Obamacare was a program being enacted to help people without insurance to get it, and was not designed to take away anyone’s existing health care.

Now, they are using those assurances in a different context.  They are trying to say that President Obama is responsible for anybody who has had their insurance plan cancelled by the insurance companies.  How is it possible to make that Obama’s fault?

I didn’t know this:  but all existing insurance plans back when President Obama made those promises were grandfathered in.  In other words, the new insurance plan requirements only affect plans created after President Obama’s promise.  And the only plans receiving cancellation notices because of Obamacare are plans that people signed up for after Obamacare passed – plans that the insurance companies created that they knew didn’t meet regulatory standards when they sold them.

It’s despicable, and our media are falling all over themselves to promote the falsehood that President Obama lied.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

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Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker
Petition:  Support Pocatello’s nondiscrimination ordinance

 

Quotations of the Week

“If you can’t take some joy, some modicum of relief and mirth, in the unprecedentedly spectacular beclowning of the president, his administration, its enablers, and, to no small degree, liberalism itself, then you need to ask yourself why you’re following politics in the first place.  Because, frankly, this has been one of the most enjoyable political moments of my lifetime.  I wake up in the morning and rush to find my just-delivered newspaper with a joyful expectation of worsening news so intense, I feel like Morgan Freeman should be narrating my trek to the front lawn.”
Jonah Goldberg, author of Liberal Fascism and all-around twit

 

“I never drink water.  Dick Cheney tortures people with it, which gives it an awkward taste.”
Grover Norquist

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

Schedule

 

     
Nov 21 Thurs IF City Club Debate – all six City Council candidates (University Place Auditorium, 6:30pm – 8:15pm)
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493

 

Doyle Beck is a Dooty-Head!

 

If you have come here because of a flyer distributed by Doyle Beck and the Bonneville Republican Party (in what is supposed to be a nonpartisan race), then you may have seen a link to this site.  I want to welcome you and provide you with some helpful information.

You might find this interesting:

Did you know that Jilene Burger may be a John Birch Society member?  Check out her campaign disclosures here, but especially here.  The first is the campaign finance report that she failed to file on time, thus violating campaign finance laws.  But the second is very interesting.  She collected 20 different anonymous cash donations of $50 on one night (October 6th, 2013) and then 5 different $40 cash donations from anonymous donors on another night (October 11th, 2013).  Those are likely John Birch Society meetings.

Is that the kind of person who should be on our council?  Forget for a second that she said that she would turn down all federal grants to Idaho Falls – amounting to millions of dollars over the past decade that have gone to great projects such as the Memorial Drive improvement, beautification, new developments like Snake River Landing, as well as projects to help the needy.  She would vote against those grants – money that we paid to the federal government, but would never see again.

Both Dee Whittier and Barb Ehardt are joining up with Jilene Burger to run as a package.  Amazing!  Remember, these people have teamed up together.  They want you voting for them as a block.  Dee Whittier wants a John Birch Society member on the council, along with an extremist bomb-thrower like Barb Ehardt (imagine TWO folks like Larry Lyons on our council!).  That’s Dee Whittier’s vision for Idaho Falls.

Anyway, have a look around and do some reading.  And I hope you will join us at Drinking Liberally every Thursday night, 7pm, at the Wild Russet – 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn).

 

Thursday Night DL at Wild Russet

 

Selfish Freedom

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Nov 14th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 




Barb Ehardt showing how nonpartisan is done!

Special Event:  David Sealander is organizing a presentation of Legalize Democracy:  An Introduction to Move to Amend at the Unitarian Universalist Church next Tuesday night at 7pm.  Discussion will follow.

Move to Amend is the organization backing the We the People Amendment.  This is one of those issues that seems limited at first, but may be really fundamental to fixing America.  Come find out what it’s all about.


Deep thought of the day:  freedom isn’t a single, measurable quantity.  You cannot compare two different societal systems and determine that one has X% more freedom than the other.  There are just too many variables to contend with. Therefore, we cannot say that all countries lie on a continuum of freedom, with totalitarian regimes at one end and ’Murika at the other.


Nor is freedom the single most important concern when judging public policy or political candidates.  General wellbeing is just as important, for example.  So any political philosophy that has as its overwhelming goal the maximizing of a shallow definition of freedom is going to be bad for America.

The goal of our government and our noncommercial institutions is to maximize freedom and happiness for all citizens.  And we all need to realize that maximizing our own personal freedom is just about as unAmerican as … oh, say, slavery.  (Notice that we once practiced slavery in this country, as we currently practice maximizing individual freedom.)

I was thinking about this stuff while reading about the trouble that the atheist/skeptic movement is having with feminism.  Turns out, there are a bunch of boorish dudebros in the atheist/skeptic movement who take any suggestion that they should watch what they say or do in order to improve the environment for women as an attack on their First Amendment Right to be assholes.  They reject any calls to stop harrassing women online, for example.  “If a person can’t take the rough give-and-take of internet verbal sparring, then she should stay out of it,” they say.  Nothing is more important than their right to speak their mind – including sexist attacks.

There was a short comment by Emily Wishessurnameswereneverinventedinthefirstplace in this discussion:  “Simone de Beauvoir’s understanding of the necessity of intersubjectivity for freedom is instructive.  To put it crudely:  selfish freedom is not freedom at all.”

Selfish freedom is not freedom at all.

Selfish freedom is not freedom at all.

That was kind of eye-opening for me, just because if its broader applicability to our politics.  It comes from de Beauvoir’s philosophy presented in The Ethics of Ambiguity, and I will need to get a better education to understand the development fully.

The conservative end of our political spectrum is consumed with the Randian notion of individual liberty, and the maximizing of said liberty over all other aspects of society.  And that single-minded dedication to simple-minded philosophy has resulted in a whole lot of trouble for decent people.  It has also corrupted once-honorable social institutions like Christianity (to a surprisingly large extent, and despite the existence of many lovely Christians and several decent Christian denominations).

The Virtue of Selfishness probably lays it all out, I’m sure.  Anybody want to read it and let me know (I haven’t got the stomach for it)?

I guess that means that Simone de Beauvoir is the anti-Ayn-Rand, and worth paying attention to.  Please be selfless and show up this week to instruct me.

Cheers,
Dan

PS.  Next week’s email will be related:  individual versus societal rights an obligations.

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker
Petition:  Support Pocatello’s nondiscrimination ordinance

 

Quotations of the Week

“I realize now that my prejudices against conservatives were, in many ways, just as uncompromising as the prejudices I’d often projected onto them.  They were just people.  Not issues.  Not votes.  People whose daughters go to school with my daughters, whose dogs run away and come back and run away again, whose hands found my shoulders and who didn’t judge, the night I wept over a friend who had taken her own life.”
David James Poissant

 

“The plan is to allow those things that had been proposed over many years to reform a health-care system in America that certainly does need more help so that there’s more competition, there’s less tort reform threat, there’s less trajectory of the cost increases, and those plans have been proposed over and over again.  And what thwarts those plans?  It’s the far left.  It’s President Obama and his supporters who will not allow the Republicans to usher in free market, patient-centered, doctor-patient relationship links to reform health care.”
Sarah Palin, when asked about the teabagger alternative to Obamacare

 

“This is evangelical Christianity in America in 2013.  White.  Rich.  Right-wing.  Dishonest.  Predatory.  Outwardly pious, inwardly corrupt.  It’s all about political tribalism.  Jesus simply isn’t in the picture.”
Anonymous find on the Internet

 

Poem of the Week

Thought Problem

How strange would it be if you met yourself on the street?
How strange if you liked yourself,
took yourself in your arms, married your own self,
propagated by techniques known only to you,
and then populated the world?  Replicas of you are everywhere.
Some are Arabs.  Some are Jews.  Some live in yurts.  It is
an abomination, but better that your
sweet and scrupulously neat self
emerges at many points on the earth to watch the horned moon rise
than all those dolts out there,
turning into pillars of salt wherever we look.
If we have to have people, let them be you,
spritzing your geraniums, driving yourself to the haberdashery,
killing your supper with a blowgun.
Yes, only in the forest do you feel at peace,
up in the branches and down in the terrific gorges,
but you’ve seen through everything else.
You’ve fled in terror across the frozen lake,
you’ve found yourself in the sand, the palace,
the prison, the dockside stews;
and, long ago, on this same planet, you came home
to an empty house, poured a Scotch-and-soda,
and sat in a recliner in the unlit rumpus room,
puzzled at what became of you.

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

  Good news for Idaho
Related:  Boise Public Radio discusses gay tax filing
Real people hurt by the GOP (food stamp cuts)
The GOP is still the scummiest party
Here’s a great idea, and a turning of tables on the religious right:  Voice of Choice
A parable:  The self-made conservative
Really?  A school district in Florida just now voted to rename a high school named for the founder of the KKK (now we’re seriously post-racial, I guess)
Fascinating:  the link between height and cancer
Traffic stop goes downhill fast (remember:  when stopped, don’t clench)
Amazing footage:  9 skydivers survive mid-air impact (watch the pilot’s story down the page, too)
Rubber band babies
True-to-life science fiction stories
Rapper recommends tha ACLU card
  If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton!

 

Schedule

 

     
Nov 15 Fri IF City Club:  Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
Nov 19 Tues Legalize Democracy:  An Introduction to Move to Amend, 7pm, discussion to follow, Unitarian Universalist Church
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493

 

Veterans Day Vigil

 

Veterans Day Vigil

Special event:
  Date Monday, Nov 11th
Time 6pm
Place Veterans Memorial
 

Today, Monday, November 11th, is Veterans Day, and Lyn is planning her annual Candlelight and Rememberance Vigil as a tribute to honor our veterans.  This is a wonderful event, and always very moving.  Please come out to honor the brave men and women who serve or have served in our nation’s armed services (some of whom are DL members!).  This year we meet at 6:00pm at the Veterans Memorial on Memorial Drive.

Dress warmly – the river bank be is likely to be cold and windy – candles furnished.  Bring your own memories or the names of family and friends to honored.  Questions?  Call 522-8269.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

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Note:  ads and promotions may be appended below this note via Living Liberally’s email system.  Such promotions help support the Living Liberally family, and make it possible to maintain the infrastructure necessary to keep Living Liberally healthy and growing.  However, no approval from either Idaho Falls Drinking Liberally or Living Liberally as a whole is necessarily intended or implied.

 

Thursday Night DL at Wild Russet

 

Election Day

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Nov 7th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 




Notice the similarity?

GET OUT AND VOTE TOMORROW!  This is an important election – the fate of public accommodations depends upon getting the right city council members elected.

Further – the growing power of the liberal presence in Idaho Falls depends upon demonstrating some impact at the voting booth.  That goes for DL, and for the new Pride movement.  We certainly stunned the city with the numbers we could bring on the nondiscrimination ordinance.  But if we can’t bring those numbers out to vote, then it won’t matter.  Our reputation is on the line.

I can’t tell you who to vote for.  Drinking Liberally has to remain nonpartisan.  However, I can remind you of the candidates who visited with us:  Rebecca Casper, Ed Marohn, Paul Menser, and Karen Cornwell.  There are much worse ways to decide how to vote!


  • » Idaho Falls city election Tues, Nov 5th
  • » IF City Club – Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Fri, Nov 15th, Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
  • » ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – February 7, 2014, in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)

I can feel Idaho Falls changing, and you all are a big part of that.  If we can bring it at the polls tomorrow – if we can get LGBTQ-friendly people elected – then we will really have done something amazing this year!  And our reputation is on the line – elections are where it really counts.

Let’s round out 2013 with some victories in tomorrow’s election!  Make sure you vote, and make sure you get three other people to vote!


Speaking of tomorrow’s elections, I have heard just about enough of one particular campaign meme this season.  I bet I’ve heard it at every campaign event where more than one candidate appeared (that’s four events – I missed the Cornwell/Ehardt debate).  What is the meme?

Wants versus needs.

“That’s a want, not a need.”

“We have to focus on needs before wants.”

“I want you to want me.  I need you to need me.” (OK … didn’t really hear Cheap Trick lyrics at the debates.  I wish I had.)

Frankly, it is a shallow and wrong-headed notion that has no place in a grown-up discussion of policy.  And you should seriously consider voting against anyone who utters it.  I hope that none of my favored candidates have used it (I don’t think they have).

First, it is nonsensical on a basic level.  The definitions of wants and needs are not that clear-cut.  Many things I think of as wants are someone else’s needs.  And vice versa.  Very few things are widely and unquestionably recognized as needs.  And something that might look like a want – a spray park, for example – is also a need in the long-term sense.  Idaho Falls needs amenities like parks and play spaces for children.  If we had always prioritized by wants versus needs, we wouldn’t have a zoo, or golf courses.  But those are long-term needs for a thriving community the size of Idaho Falls.

But secondly, and more importantly, it is flat-out ignorant.  A functional city cannot prioritize things by wants and needs anyway.  A functional city has long-term planning in the works for a variety of development activities:  traffic patterns, commercial districts, parks and recreation, public safety, utilities, etc.  And all of those development activities need to be happening in concert all the time.  You can’t ignore three out of those five categories for a period of years while the economy recovers.  And any candidate who says you can is just ignorant.

Actually, that candidate is pandering.  Wants versus needs is just pablum for people who crave easy answers and simplistic solutions.  Much like Idaho Falls should be run like a business (don’t even get me started on that one!).

Remind me again which party it is that uses those slogans …

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker
Petition:  Support Pocatello’s nondiscrimination ordinance

 

Quotations of the Week

[NOTE:  This week is a recap of comments pertaining to the implementation of Medicare Part D, which was not very smooth.]

“The implementation has been horrendous … The good news is that the competition that’s been created has lowered premiums significantly.”
Rep John Boehner (R-OH)

 

“Like most significant programs, the new benefit has not gone without a few isolated glitches and unexpected problems.  But I believe that if there is anything wrong with the plan, most of it has been fixed and that that hasn’t can be fixed over time.”
Rep Nathan Deal (R-GA)

 

“Any time something is new, there is going to be some glitches.”
Rep Tim Murphy (R-PA)

 

“Rather than trying to scare and confuse seniors, I would hope we can work together as we go through the implementation phaes to find out what is wrong with the program and if we can make some changes to fix it, let us do it and let us do it on a bipartisan basis.”
Rep Joe Barton (R-TX)

 

“I voted against it [Medicare Part D], but once it passed I certainly determined that I would try to do everything I could to make sure that New Yorkers understood it, could access it, and make the best of it.”
Hilary Clinton (in 2006)

 

Poem of the Week

Hunger for the Absolute

Earth you know is round but seems flat.

You can’t trust
your senses.

You thought you had seen every variety of creature
but not

this creature.

.

When I met him, I knew I had
weaned myself from God, not

hunger for the absolute.  O unquenched
mouth, tonguing what is and must

remain inapprehensible–
saying You are not finite.  You are not finite.

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

  Should you go see Ender’s Game or not?
TED Talk:  David Deutsch explains what makes good explanations (and therefore, enables progress)
True facts about the cuttlefish
Romney’s VP candidates:  fish nicknames
Fascinating article:  Douglas Hofstadter and the state of AI
I’ve never seen a Ron Burgundy movie, but this is hilarious
  If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton!

 

Schedule

 

     
Nov 5 Tues Election Day
Nov 15 Fri IF City Club:  Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493

 

Thursday Night DL at Wild Russet

 

Our Divisive Leader

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Oct 31st
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Special Event!  The ACLU of Idaho is holding a reception this Saturday, November 2nd, at Whitewater Grill (355 River Pkwy), 5:30-7:30pm.  Come meet the staff and boards, and learn about the ACLU’s successes and action items for the year to come.

Appetizers will be provided.  Pleaes RSVP to Amy Collins (acollins@acluidaho.org, 208-344-9750).



A totally non-divisive charge of divisiveness

I posted the following quote on Facebook.  John McCain wrote it in an email he sent to me  (I know!  John McCain sends me emails!)  Actually, it came from GOP.gov – and I’m probably on their mailing list because I registered as a Republican last year.

“Barack Obama campaigned on the promise that he would bring our country together, reach beyond partisanship to solve our country’s critical problems.

“Instead, President Obama has proven to be one of the most divisive leaders our nation has ever seen.

The charge of divisiveness has bothered me since I first heard it early on in President Obama’s first term.  Since then, conservatives have spent five years creating fake outrage, manufacturing crises, doing everything they can to make sure President Obama’s term is less successful (including doing actual harm to America) – and now claim that it’s Obama’s divisiveness that has caused such discord in our politics.


  • » ACLU of Idaho Reception – Saturday, November 2nd, Whitewater Grill (355 River Pkwy), 5:30-7:30pm; RSVP to Amy Collins (acollins@acluidaho.org, 208-344-9750)
  • » Idaho Falls city election Tues, Nov 5th
  • » IF City Club – Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Fri, Nov 15th, Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
  • » ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – February 7, 2014, in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)

It’s like the KKK saying that Negroes are the most divisive race, when it is racism that causes discord.  Or it’s like calling a battered woman divisive when she files for divorce.  Or an analogy perhaps more in line with recent events:  it’s like Sharon Parry, Barb Ehardt, and Evan Bastow claiming that those LGBTQ people are being so divisive by asking for full equality.

Can conservatives be that self-deluded?  Can they be so confused that they believe the divisive charge?  Are they that unaware of the overwhelming role they play in creating the division?

Absolutely.

If there’s one thing conservatives have mastered, it’s the fine art of projection.  They forced the health care exchange on us in the first place, and are now whining about how it doesn’t work well (when the Medicaid expansion is working great – the part that they opposed).  The individual mandate is the GOP’s idea, but they are blaming Obama for it, and claiming that it’s unconstitutional despite the SCOTUS ruling last year.  They shutdown the government, then complain that national parks and monuments are closed.

Furthermore, the base on the right is capable of being led by incantation and allegory -- they prefer those to reality, actually.  It’s kind of a religious approach they take to politics.  Just think of all the times that you’ve heard them claim that Congress is exempted from Obamacare, when in reality Congress is the only employer forced to participate in Obamacare.  They really worship people who have been set up as figureheads without significant accomplishment (Ted Cruz, Sarah Palin, George Bush, etc) and then defend them with a passion verging on beatification.  They buy books (scripture) in bulk, and pass them out for free like Gideon’s Bibles.  (And then, because of the projection, they accuse the left of doing the same.)

Another reason:  selective, short-term memory.  Conservative ideology seems to have a way of overriding recent history pretty effectively.  How else to explain Bush’s 2004 victory?  I don’t have any deeper insight into this phenomenon, but it seems prevalent on the right.

Tribal mentality is also at work.  We are currently watching Barb Ehardt run a very sleazy campaign, and her supporters are bending themselves into pretzels defending Barb’s dishonesty.  The same can be seen throughout the nation, at all levels.  Victory for their tribe is more important that being truthful, or even adhering to reality.  (And again, they project the same practice onto liberals.)

Finally, as my friend Jim Culleny (see his poem below) suggested, the GOP is a sick party.  Sociopaths do not perceive a difference between right and wrong, or they define the difference in terms of their own desires.  And this is a serious problem.  Our country needs a healthy, two-party system.

Join us this Thursday – Halloween! – and discuss your diagnosis for the divisiveness charge.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker

 

Quotations of the Week

“Someone had posted something with a picture of Barack Obama and across it said ‘traitor.’  And, you know, I don’t always agree with the guy, I certainly didn’t vote for him but I gotta defend him on this one.  I just don’t think it’s right at all to call Barack Obama a traitor.  There’s a lot of things he’s done wrong but he is not a traitor.  Not as far as I can tell.  I haven’t come across any evidence yet that he has done one thing to harm Kenya.”
State Rep Larry Pittman (R-NC)

 

“Just imagine for a moment that Obama fired Sebelius and was forced to appoint a new head of the HHS, who would of course need Senate confirmation.  This person would almost automatically be labeled the new ‘Obamacare czar’ and would be unlikely to win confirmation unless he or she promised to push for, say, the repeal of Obamacare and the imprisonment of everyone who voted for it.  When the Senate goes to unprecedented lengths to block executive branch appointments, it creates a situation where the president is highly unlikely to make personnel changes.  Holder undoubtedly remains in his job largely for this reason.  Any new appointee for Attorney General would be forced to disown Holder’s record entirely and declare the necessity of investigating what Darrell Issa called ‘the most corrupt government in history.’”
Isaac Chotiner

 

Poem of the Week

Falling

Falling’s weightlessness is a troubled one
It’s not like the airtime of up-drafting hawks
or homosapient gliders hung on wires under
silk billows out of their element
snubbing gravity putting on airs,
nor like the honking camaraderie
of southbound geese chasing solar flares

To know that speeding mass
in collusion with collision brings bereavement
in worlds of muscle bone and blood
is usually enough to keep most breathers
from dancing on edges or diving off ledges

By a wise prescience we understand
that freefall without orbit
must be a heavy weightlessness
no matter how long its freedom lasts
if gravity’s die is cast

Bodies are more fragile than stone and steel.
In falling minds minutes are surreal
and time expands as down mind coasts

–as future shortens past grows richer
and now’s edge is honed so fine
as to split the hairs of ghosts,
and life’s full-tipped to spill last hours out
which cling to sides of tissue pitchers

Past becomes a fuller world, more here,
which is why old fallers often go there more
than fresh fallers do, who, still green,
in exhilarated falling feel only wind in hair
the sheen of mornings crisp and new
being blessed to not fully grasp
that they are falling too
.
.

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

Schedule

 

     
Nov 2 Sat ACLU of Idaho Reception, Whitewater Grill (355 River Pkwy), 5:30-7:30pm; RSVP to Amy Collins (acollins@acluidaho.org, 208-344-9750)
Nov 5 Tues Election Day
Nov 15 Fri IF City Club:  Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493

 

Thursday Night DL at Wild Russet

 

Abstract v Concrete

Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, Oct 24th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Wild Russet at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the Guesthouse Inn)
 


Take the Teabagger/Taliban challenge!

So the legislature of the State of New Jersey passed a marriage equality bill.  As it was going into effect, lawsuits were filed to overturn the law – including requests for the courts to enforce a stay on gay weddings until the issue was worked out in court. [Note that Republican governor Chris Christie, to his credit, declined to fight the law.]

But this is what the New Jersey Supreme Court said about imposing a stay:

The State has advanced a number of arguments, but none of them overcome this reality:  same-sex couples who cannot marry are not treated equally under the law today.  The harm to them is real, not abstract or speculative.

[…]

The State identified certain abstract harms … Weighed against them are immediate and concrete violations of plaintiffs’ right to equal protection under the law.  Because plaintiffs cannot marry under State law, they and their children are simply not eligible for a host of federal benefits available to same-sex married couples today.

Isn’t that a thing of beauty?  They are allowing gay people to get married while they decide whether the state has a right to deny that freedom.

Doesn’t that seem miraculous?  That simple, straightforward logic escaped the State of California during their Prop 8 challenges.  And it certainly escaped our own City Council during the nondiscrimination discussions.  The fear of maybe having a potential loss of vague religious freedoms by unidentified people trumped the actual happiness and safety of specific people.


Special Notes


  • » Idaho Falls city election Tues, Nov 5th
  • » IF City Club – Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Fri, Nov 15th, Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
  • » ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – February 7, 2014, in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)

What is also interesting is that the real problem that we faced during the nondiscrimination battle was not the rights of LGBTQ people.  I think that particular argument has been won, and all on the council – and most of the opposition – agreed.  This was evidenced by the easy victory on housing and unemployment.  Nobody argued against them.  Had there been any real opposition on that point, those two issues would not have been givens for us.  (The reason that we have exemptions in those portions of the bill is related directly to the following point.)

The real problem we faced was a new and radical concept of religious freedom:  one that covers not just one’s beliefs and one’s religious practices, but also those activities that directly impact other people.  This new concept asserts that a pharmacist who has to count out certain pills is having his religious freedom threatened.  That a city approving a building permit for a mosque is a violation of the citizens’ religious freedom.  And that baking a cake for someone is approval of that person’s “lifestyle.”

Defeating that radical redefinition is our task now.


Proposal:  should our group champion the minimum wage issue in Idaho?  I haven’t had time to investigate the increase, or the signature window.  But it would be a good activity for us.

Join us this week at The Wild Russet, and bring your pro-minimum wage increase arguments.  There may be some people to convince!

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

Handy email service:  Megavote
… and don’t forget to sign up for Idaho Bill Tracker

 

Quotations of the Week

“That is the state to which the whole thing has devolved.  The denizens of the monkeyhouse are bringing the world economy to the brink of chaos in order to fk their own staffs over on health insurance.  Or at least that’s what they say.  In reality, what this is about is a rump faction of one of our two major political parties that doesn’t think we should have a federal government at all, that wants to roll back its functions to a state half-past the Articles of Confederation, and that is doing so while believing itself to be some unholy combination of the Founding Fathers and the X-Men.  They have cast themselves in their own action adventure movie, and the rest of us serve pretty much the same function as New York City does in The Avengers.  We’re the set decoration that gets demolished as Our Heroes fight evil.  These are pathetic, worthless children, playing dress-up, and smashing things because they like the sound of things breaking…”
Charles Pierce

 

“The power rests with Ted Yoho because the castrato Speaker Of The House, Boehner of Ohio, cares more about his job than he does about his country.  The power rests with Ted Yoho because the American political system has tolerated carefully cultivated ignorance and carefully tailored bigotry for far too long.  Ted Yoho has been coming for years.  Ted Yoho was made inevitable by the NCPAC campaigns of the late 1970s and by the elevation of Ronald Reagan to the presidency in 1980 and, subsequently, to an artificially exalted place in our history after he left office.  The Republican party revelled in all the forces that are now tearing it apart.  The Democratic party was criminally negligent and abdicated its profound responsibility to fight against those forces; indeed, it spent the better part of the 1980s and 1990s trying to surf the wave itself.  The Democratic Leadership Council, and Blue Dog Democrats generally, bear a heavy burden of responsibility for failing to demonstrate to the American people in election after election how extreme the Republicans were becoming.”
Charles Pierce

 

“Ted fking Yoho.

A guy who should be a minor annoyance at zoning board meetings in Florida is suddenly capable of helping to bring down the financial stability of the world.  A guy who should be railing at his local drive-time talk-jock is giving quotes to The New York Times about the essential dismantling of the institutions of self-government.”
Charles Pierce

 

“Yes, the President has won an important battle against the zombies.  But while it’s possible to win a zombie battle, it’s never possible to win a zombie war.  No matter how many individual zombies you dispatch, there will always be ten more where they came from.  The Tea Party doesn’t take legislative defeat as a signal that it’s doing something wrong:  it takes it as a signal that nothing has really changed in Washington and that they therefore need to redouble their nihilistic efforts.  Take it from me:  come February, or March, or whenever we end up having to have this idiotic debt-ceiling fight all over again, the Tea Party will still be there, and will still be as crazy as ever.  A bruised zombie, ultimately, is just a scarier zombie.”
Felix Salmon

 

“I never, ever cheated.  I don’t condone cheating.  But I would sometimes spread misinformation.  This is a great tactic.  Misinformation can be very important.”
Sen Rand Paul

 

Poem of the Week

Gone

It’s that, when I’m gone,
(and right off this is tricky)
I won’t be worried
about being gone.
I won’t be here
to miss anything.
I want now, sure,
all I’ve been gathering
since I was born,
but later
when I no longer have it,
(which might be
a state everlasting, who knows?)
this moment right now
(stand closer, love,
you can’t be too close),
is not a thing I’ll know to miss.
I doubt I’ll miss it.
I can’t get over this.

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

  What Ted Cruz is really like
Conservatives say:  the GOP can’t be trusted
Poverty explained (a good cartoon)
What is creating all those part-time jobs?  Obamacare or the recession?
Rachel Maddow:  What the GOP demanded, and what it got
What’s left for the Left?
America is not a Christian nation
Two atheists complain about atheism
Krystal Ball explains Obamacare
While talking about how Obamacare helps people, Obama helps people
Watch Bryan Fischer fall all over himself praising a completely moronic idea … and then realize it
Stephen Fry interviews a reparative therapist
Check out:  financial statements from all the candidates for office in Idaho Falls
  If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton!

 

Schedule

 

     
Nov 5 Tues Election Day
Nov 15 Fri IF City Club:  Michael Zirinsky, Emeritus Professor of History, Boise State University, “Between Iraq and A Hard Place:  Modern Iran and Its International Relations” (Bennion SUB, noon – 1:30pm)
Feb 7,
2014
Fri ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner – in Boise at the Stueckle Sky Center; Laverne Cox of Orange Is the New Black is the guest speaker (we’re putting together a table and seats will be about $75)
 
Mon The Nation Discussion Group – every 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:00pm, at Sandy and Merrick Brow’s home, 2269 Calkins Avenue, 524‑6230
 
Mon Film for Thought – every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7:00pm, at Marsha and David Nipper’s home, 3031 S. Boulevard, 523‑8493