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The Sunday Planet - July 1, 2012

American Angst

The big news is that the Supreme Court of the United States upheld the individual mandate which is the central piece of the legislation. Basically the entire law was upheld except that states can now opt out of medicaid expansion; that was not a part of the original legislation. 

The expected answers from the conservative governed states is that they are happy they can opt out of expanding medicaid and not be penalized for doing so. The expanded medicaid coverage would allow non-elderly individuals with incomes up to 133 percent of the poverty line to receive health benefits. This would cover another 16 million citizens by 2019. 

Silly conservatives. The federal government would pay 100 percent of the expansion for the first three years and then slowly go down to 90 percent of the cost by 2020 and every year after. Sounds like the cost/benefit ratio for individual states would be good thing, unless you are a Republican.

Mitt Romney's campaign is still saying they'll repeal the law, but if they lose this election they might as well give up on the thought. The benefits of the act will by then be effecting millions of Americans, and they will not want to give those benefits away.

No need to point out the states that are claiming they will opt out. If it is conservative led, citizens will be denied that basic human need; health care.

In a bright moment for FOX and CNN, both reported that the ACA had been overturned by the Supreme Court causing ten minutes of insanity from politicians and talking heads. 

Chief Justice John Roberts has been taking a lot of flack for his decision, by those that are supposedly on his side. No good deed goes unpunished in GOPville. It would seem a victory for conservatives in at least one point. Roberts has gutted the Commerce Clause, which in the long run is something conservatives will embrace.

The Supreme Court has been busy. This week they also struck down most of Arizona's immigration laws. Unfortunately they approved the part that allows officers of the law to check the immigration status of anyone they pull over. Still racial profiling to me. 

The court also upheld their Citizen's United case by overturning Montana's long standing "copper kings" law. There was hope that Montana's rejection of Citizen's United might bring the case back up for review; no joy there.

The tea party controlled house voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for giving them everything they asked for. Though possibly not as important as the ACA ruling, it is the oddest political story I've seen in a long time. The history behind the pursuit of Holder by conservatives is one long strange road; think NRA and supposed crazy conspiracies by the left to use the issue for gun control.

Education Enemies

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney stated last Wednesday that students should get as much education as "they can afford." Since he supports the Paul Ryan budget plan to cut Pell grants, and he supports profit driven education, students would be wise to be out in force coming election day. If you're poor, you will always be poor since you will not have access to higher education. 

Another defeat for education was the extension of the student loan interest rate. Though it kept the rates from doubling, it will add 20 billion dollars worth of debt for students. Starting this week all federally subsidized student loans will be charged interest. It used to be that no interest was accrued on loans while in school or for a 6 month grace period after finishing. 

This didn't accomplish the goal.

God's Greatest

American Family Association's pundit Bryan Fischer went all in with his latest rant. If you care about the environment, Satan is behind you. Gay rights and abortion, all the devil's doing. Apparently this is a weekly thing for him now, his last rant was that by allowing gay couple to have families we are all supporting child abuse.

Jan Michelson is upset that nuns are riding around on a bus protesting the Paul Ryan budget. His solution? Drag them off the bus and pistol whip them. Shows the lack of respect christian conservatives have for women, even women believers are fair game.

Nuns, get your guns.

Wicked Women

In Mississippi a new law that requires abortion providers to be certified OB/GYNS and have privileges at the local hospital will apparently shut down the last remaining clinic in the state. 

Starting today in South Dakota, a new law comes into effect that will require doctors to ascertain whether she has been coerced into having an abortion, or if she is at risk of psychological disorders. Happily a federal judged blocked much of the law. No 72 hour waiting period and no visits to anti-abortion clinics.

In New Hampshire, Governor John Lynch vetoed a bill preventing late term abortions. That veto has been overturned by the legislature and will become law. Governor Lynch stated there was already a federal law on the books about late term abortions, but the legislative bodies disagreed. Now if a woman's life is in danger from her pregnancy, two doctors must concur that there is a danger. 

In Florida, a woman is being allowed to sue over denial of contraception. The lady was raped. A doctor gave her two emergency contraception pills, but when she filed the report on the rape, officers found out she was wanted. She was put in jail and her items confiscated, including the other pill that she was supposed to take. The next morning she asked for the pill, the guard refused claiming it was a matter of conscience. 

Planet Politics

I will not being doing planet politics very often. I do not think I have the understanding that a native of a certain country would have on local news and politics. 

So, to all of our members who live around the world, if you have a story of interest you'd like to publish, I'd be happy to edit the article and add it to this blog. Language and grammer I will help with, and I will make sure it represents your thoughts correctly.

Thank you!

Neal's Nook



Clenched fists and tight lips

Squinting bloody eyes, brows furrowed in rage

Slurs at your fingertips, frothing at the mouth

Spittle mixed with words, you can’t wait to get out


The passion is fed

Red, red, red; from birth to death

Corded sinews, heaving chests

Until life’s fire is entirely spent


Keep the blood; boiling

Keep sowing the seeds

Keep the discord; flowing

Hate needs to feed


It’s a living hell, a physical torment

Frozen in agony, hair stands on end

Living heat finally cooled

Living fools, better off dead


Frame the words, in quaint terms

Forge the tool, never let it cool

So called leaders, conservative hate

Definitely the feeders, we are unable to sate


Keep the blood; boiling

Keep sowing the seeds

Keep the discord; flowing

hate needs to feed


Your brothers and sisters, your neighbors and friends

Your list gets bigger, it will never end

So called leaders, conservative cronies

Definitely the feeders, we are unable to sate


A conspiracy born, baseless rumors spread

Keeping dull minds fed, blood runs red

Rile them up, spit in their faces

who do you hate, who must go next


Keep the blood; boiling

Keep sowing the seeds

Keep the discord; flowing

hate needs to feed



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Comment was by Neal on July 7, 2012 at 3:13pm

Should I know who's riding the dino? Fun in so many ways. =)

Comment was by Doone on July 7, 2012 at 12:05pm

Thank you Jesus for the great country we live in.  Your life has been an inspiration to Americans of one skin color whose ancestors came from a few countries.  BTW, your design of our flag was a stroke of genius!

Remember the Reason for the Season

Comment was by Doone on July 6, 2012 at 7:21pm

More stupid facts from David Barton

Ooops. Lousiana GOP discovers that America has more than one religion

by digby

Guess what? Some of those Louisiana politicians who voted to give public education funds to religious schools are having second thoughts. But not for the reasons we might have hoped.

Valerie Hodges is a Louisiana state Senator:

Valarie Hodges admitted that when she supported Governor Bobby Jindal's school voucher program, she only did so because she assumed the religious school vouchers could only be used for Christian schools. Religious freedom means that everyone's free to follow Valarie Hodges' religion! She explains,
I actually support funding for teaching the fundamentals of America's Founding Fathers' religion, which is Christianity, in public schools or private schools. I liked the idea of giving parents the option of sending their children to a public school or a Christian school. (read on ...)

I would guess that most immigrants taking the citizenship test undertand just how Un-American that is. Fundamentally Un-American.

Still, I think it makes some sense in her world. After all, they get their information about the Constitution from pseudo-historian charlatans like David Barton:

Last week we wrote another post in our on-going serieshighlighting social and governmental institutional that David Barton claims came directly out of the Bible. And today we found a presentation that Barton delivered last month where he once again made all of these now standard claims, but this time with the additional claimthat the Constitution's provision regarding treason "is a verbatim quote out of Ezekiel 18:20"

Here is Article III, Section 3 of the Constitution:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.
The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.
And here is Ezekiel 18:20:
The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.

You'd think at least the Bible people would be offended, but apparently not.

The far right has been brainwashed into thinking that America was intended to be an explicitly Christian nation. (Sometimes they'll agree that the Jews have a claim as well.) But even if one is now thoroughly confused about what "free exercise" of religion means due to the shiny new "liberty" argument, one would think that the Constitution is still clear on the establishing part: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion." But then I suppose that anyone who can believe that the Bible says "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them" verbatim isn't going to be dissuaded by the plain words in the Constitution.

Comment was by Doone on July 6, 2012 at 7:18pm

Since having health care is so much worse than slavery

NRA's Nugent: "I'm Beginning To Wonder If It Would Have Been Best Had The South Won The Civil War"


In today's column for the Washington Times, National Rifle Association board member and prominent Mitt Romney endorser Ted Nugent wrote, "I'm beginning to wonder if it would have been best had the South won the Civil War."Ted Nugent

Nugent's remark came in response to what he called "turncoat" Chief Justice John Roberts' "traitor vote" to uphold President Obama's health reform law, including the individual mandate. According to Nugent, Roberts "squandered the opportunity to restore judicial, financial and legislative sanity to a government that by any sane person's standards is insane and addicted to centralized federal control of our lives."

Nugent then stated:

Because our legislative, judicial and executive branches of government hold the 10th Amendment in contempt, I'm beginning to wonder if it would have been best had the South won the Civil War. Our Founding Fathers' concept of limited government is dead.

Nugent is infamous for wearing shirts emblazoned with the Confederate battle standard during his concerts.

(h/t RightWingWatch)

Comment was by Doone on July 5, 2012 at 11:15am

I think he is just saying that since he is never invited to black, muslim or jewish events then they are not invited to white christian events.

Comment was by Doone on July 5, 2012 at 10:18am

Alabama Pastor Holds ‘Whites Only’ Conference

All loving Christians are invited to celebrate the word of God at Rev. William Collier’sannual conference — that is, as long and they are white.

Collier’s Alabama town is outraged over theflyer for his pastors’ conference, which specifies “All White Christians Invited.” The town’s mayor is renouncing the Reverend, saying that such hate speech is unwelcome in the town. But Collier defended the flyer this week, saying that he isn’t a racist — just that “the white race is God’s chosen people”:

The organizer of the event, Rev. William C. Collier says that his Church of God’s Chosen (Christian Identity Ministries) is not a hate group but adds that he believes “the white race is God’s chosen people.”

Collier defends why only white Christians are invited.

“We don’t have the facilities to accommodate other people. We haven’t got any invitations to black, Muslim events. Of course we are not invited to Jewish events and stuff,” Collier said.

Collier does not specify what sort of special “facilities” people of color may need, but the line harkens back to old southern segregation, when water fountains and bathrooms had “whites only” signs similar to Collier’s flyer.

The church hosting the conference is named Christian Identity Ministries. This is the third annual conference — and the Ku Klux Klan is among the attendees this year. The founder of the church, Rev. Mel Lewis, complained that this year’s uproar shows a disrespect for religious liberty.

Comment was by Doone on July 5, 2012 at 9:37am

This kid and his eating of a hot pepper made me think of politics for some reason

Little Kid Sneaks A Yellow Pepper

“Good, no one is looking. I'm going to eat that pepper. Bad idea! I'll never do that again!!”

Via: mpviral

Comment was by Doone on July 4, 2012 at 8:43pm

A 4th of July Picnic

Comment was by Doone on July 4, 2012 at 8:41pm
Comment was by Doone on July 4, 2012 at 9:43am

I think we can conclude the Joe Walsh is a double asswipe

Rep. Joe Walsh Attacks Double Amputee Veteran Again, Says She Uses ...

Despite earning widespread condemnationfor dismissing the military service of a double amputee woman, Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) has decided his original comments didn’t go far enough.

In a statement released this evening on his campaign website, Walsh again refused to apologize, instead attacking Tammy Duckworth — his Democratic opponent who lost both her legs in an insurgent attack in Iraq — for allegedly using “her service and the service of others as a political ploy.”

Presenting himself as the real victim in this ordeal, Walsh claimed he was being accused “of something that is not true.” (Watch his original comments here and judge for yourself.) “Shame on her for using veterans,” he declared, despite having never served in the military himself.

From Walsh’s website regarding the “Duckworth Attack”:


My opponents are once again trying to accuse me of something that is not true. It has become their agenda this Fourth of July week to twist my words and claim I said my opponent is not a hero and have insulted all veterans as a consequence. Folks, if you’re familiar with me and my campaign, you know this is utterly false. Shame on her for saying this and shame on her for using veterans in this fashion. In fact, recently on the Big John and Amy Show I stated, “Tammy Duckworth’s service demands our respect and that is something I will do and say for her throughout this campaign.” I open all my town halls byrecognizing our veterans who served to protect our great nation.

Tammy Duckworth knows this and should know better than to use her service and the service of others as a political ploy to distort my words and distract voters. We as a people are facing great problems in our country, and it is time for us to get serious and address them.

Read the rest of his statement at the bottom here.

Many pundits are referring to Walsh’s comments as a major gaffe, but that’s incorrect. It’s not a gaffe if you mean it.

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