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The Weekly Planet - May 20, 2012

Planet Politics

Mitt's past is right in step with the republican party.
 Bullying is what it's all about; a new target every week. I think everyone should keep in mind that when Mitt was asked about the incident, he actually chuckled as he talked about his prankster days.

Strike one; you don't laugh about bullying. Secondly, though the incident left horrifying memories for the witnesses, Mitt doesn't even remember. Either he committed so many of these, "pranks," that he can't remember all the faces, or he never felt that bullying and attacking another person is anything bad. Strike two; takes a cold man to ignore another's pain. Then there's the so-called apology. “If anybody was hurt by that or offended; obviously I apologize.” Strike three; apparently he doesn't have any remorse

Just who we need to lead the country.
Governor Walker of Wisconsin is leading Barrett by six points in the
latest poll, and two thirds of his war chest is from
out of state big donors. Thank the Supreme Court's ruling on Citizen's United. Money rules.

Vice-President Biden has started to
campaign. His, "these guys don't get us," is a message that may resonate with blue collar workers. Biden is a weapon that needs to be used more often.

In Arizona, where they can now claim to be the, "most lame state in the union," the birther issue is again at the forefront of conservative politics. The state's second in command, Secretary of State Ken Bennet, is now not sure that the President is a U.S. citizen and
wants to keep him off the ballot. He says he had to take the stance because of 1,200 emails he received after crazed Sheriff Joe Arpaio's nonsensical investigation. Senator McCain says Obama will remain on the ballot and I would think he is right.

The House passed a
defense budget that contradicts last years agreement with the President on the deficit. No surprise there, why would anyone believe a conservative would honor his word?

Greece may be heading in a totally different direction than the rest of Western Europe.
Alexis Tsipras is looking to get the most votes on the June 17 election. "It's a war between people and capitalism," is his mantra.

Michigan is watching the Wisconsin governor's recall election closely. With a similar attempt being made to oust their own tea party governor. Governor Rick Snyder has actively worked against having a democracy in Michigan by using Emergency Financial Managers to take over local governments. His eminence decided to take a walk in Benton Harbor's Blossomtime Parade.

Wicked Women


The Friday before last the state
rolled back access to contraceptives for women. This one is a Separation of Church and State issue; it allows religious employers to restrict access.

Friday before that they
defunded Planned Parenthood. In spite of the fact that public funds for abortion are already restricted.

The month before they decide when you may have an abortion, (if you could find anyone that would give you one). Pregnancy starts before a
child has been conceived.

Here you need to
wait three days before you can have an abortion. There are many comments on this one, mostly mocking the legislation. The reasoning behind the law is that women can contemplate the ramifications of their decision. You know, because they didn't think about it at all before wanting the procedure.

The House has given final passage to a bill that would
ban insurance coverage for an abortion. They are also moving on a bill to restrict abortions by mandating physicians have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and more.

Doctors can lie to women about their babies health and not be sued. If your baby has birth defects,
they can omit that information so you will not have an abortion, and you can't even take them to court for doing so. At the same time, doctors
can be sued for performing an abortion. If he didn't do an ultrasound, didn't give pamphlets concerning abortions to patients and more.
Kansas:A 69 page anti-abortion bill passes the legislature and Governor Sam Brownback says he will sign, even though he hasn't read it. A sales tax on abortion, establishing when personhood begins, and even mandates that doctors spread the lie that abortions cause breast cancer.

Passes abortion bill that criminalizes the act after 20 weeks, no exemptions for rape or incest. Called the "Women as Livestock," bill, it is a disaster.
Washington, D.C.:

The face of evil pictured is Arizona's Congressman Trent Franks. He is trying to impose anti-abortion laws on the
District of Columbia. Why is someone from Arizona trying to impose their beliefs on the District of Columbia is the question.

Education Enemies

The enemy is capitalism. It allows public schools to be shut down as private enterprise takes over.
In Philadelphia forty public schools are set to close this year and sixty-four in all by 2017. This is an informative article on public school closings in major cities and elsewhere that, for the most part, are targeting poor and ethnic students.
For-profit schools are scamming the military now. Swindles and hoodwinks rampant. When the President has to step in, you know there's something wrong.

anti-science law is old news, but shows how religious ideology is making inroads into public education. The good news is that the legislation is failing in other states.
In Oklahoma two
anti-science bills failed. Apparently the Oklahomans for Excellence in Science Education won this round.

In New Hampshire, the,"
Evolution is a a Theory," bill was shot down. This one included a provision that included informing the students on the theorist's political and ideological viewpoints and their thoughts on atheism.

A recent
attack on education in Alabama has recently failed as well. Representative Blaine Galliher sponsored a measure that would allow public schools to establish creationism courses that students could take off campus and earn credits for those courses.

There is another way that the education system in this country is being sabotaged, and that is by attacking teachers. I think this is where my attention will be for awhile. If you get rid of well payed educators, you get rid of well educated students. As I've stated, the privatization of the public education system is about profits only. The way to increase profits is to destroy unions and benefits that protect the pool of educators. Less pay and benefits equals less qualified teachers.

No matter what you hear, you get what you pay for.

If you have inaccessible higher education because of cost, you have a developing nation of ignorance.

Ecosystem Earth

Fracking is still being investigated.
recent study hows how fracking could impact our water supply. Hint; it has to do with abandoned wells and the well itself.

Another new study shows that the more fracking we do, the better a job we do at it and the less of an impact the process will have on the environment. This study is from the University at
Buffalo's Shale Resources and Society Institute. Go ahead and read the nonsense if you want, but I suggest scanning the article and clicking on the bios of those who did the study. If you do, you will find that everyone of these fools is working for an Energy company or the CATO Institute. No truth to be found here.

I bring this up because it's starting to feel like climate science. Bring in the industry and lobbying, "experts," to defend profits from science. Why is it that we allow those who have a conflict of interest publish anything?

France banned fracking last year, Vermont is the first state to
ban fracking in the U.S., though that procedure hadn't been used in the state as of yet. A complete source of perceived problems with the procedure can be found at

Something new for doone's, "The Beer Facts," discussion. Brooklynites against fracking. The
Brooklyn Brewery brewmeister warns against the toxins that could be in a beer near you soon.

Occupy Oasis

In education,
Quebec students still upset. How do you deal with the protests? End classes early and hope that the protests stop. 122 students have been arrested so far. The emergency laws and masks ban have been ineffectual in stopping the protests. Yesterday, 69 protestors were arrested.

In the United States, college tuition has increased 500 percent since Reagan; did your income keep up?

My favorite
Occupy story this week has to do with Occupy the Farm at University of California's Gill Tract. As an educational tool and as an example for other communities, it seems to be well intentioned. What if there was no land for you to farm? What if all land that could be used for agriculture is owned by corporations? Though most of us are at ease with our food sources and have no intention of farming, what if you didn't have that choice? An interesting story on many fronts.

In New York,
Occupy legal battles seem to be helping the protestors. Apparently arrests are being made that are being overturned by videos of the arrest.

Final Fixations

The Martin/Zimmerman case is still grabbing headlines. They found trace amounts of THC in Martin's blood.
Some spin that information by simply saying Tayvon Martin had marijuana in his system the night he was shot. If it was trace elements it would mean he hadn't smoke an a while, or seldom smokes. If he was high that night he wouldn't be aggressive. Useless data. What makes it even more nonsensical is that Zimmerman was
not tested for drugs the night of the shooting.

The National Review's Andrew McCarthy seems to think this fully
exonerates Zimmerman. Adam Serwer has an interesting take on the thought, comparing rape with the incident. Martin deserved to be shot because he was high, much like the
woman rape victim, "had it coming," debates of the past. Interesting analogy.

Some people are excited about the news that more, "minority," babies were
born than white in the U.S. for the first time. Am I the only one that realizes that some non-white babies are being born to white mothers or fathers? So many mixed relationships out there effect this statistic. Some may look at this as a threat, (like those supporting keep them women pregnant contraceptive laws), while others realize it's a normal progression. We will not be a white or black country in the future, but we will be a mixed heritage populace of browns.

Maybe some day the little ones will grow up to rule the world.

Could happen.

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Comment was by MJ on June 3, 2012 at 10:37pm
Keely! Way to speak your mind. Nice job Neal. Sounds like Bill accepts Zimmerman being guilty of least manslaughter. I can accept that from some one of his experience and choice of perception. Thanks for the stimulating conversation.
Comment was by Neal on May 22, 2012 at 7:55am

That I do understand Bill. The same understanding that I have about the prosecution; they do not normally charge someone with a crime unless they believe they can convict.

That is another oddity of the trial. They have either the evidence to convict, or if not, then they are purposely letting him go. They are lawyers, they have seen all the evidence, they shouldn't be that ignorant of the law that they make nonsensical charges that they can't prove.

Those that state the prosecutor shouldn't have charged him with second degree murder are not privy to all the evidence, how would they know?

Comment was by Willson Stoner on May 22, 2012 at 1:54am

@ Neal

Well, we will see what happens but personally I don't believe the jury is going to find Zimmerman guilty of second degree murder because he got out of his car. You do understand how this works.  It is not about whether Zimmerman is completely innocent or not, its about whether the prosecutors can prove a second degree murder charge, that Zimmerman intended to kill Martin with a depraved mind, in a rage, gone berserk. The evidence for that isn't there. They may have sold a jury on manslaughter-Zimmerman's actions lead to a man's death, which is what you are describing, but they're going for second degree murder. Unless the prosecutor's have some surprises its going to be hard for them to win.

Comment was by Neal on May 22, 2012 at 12:10am

I doubt if Zimmerman will walk free. He had no right to follow, he was told not to. If he didn't get out of his car, Martin, who was doing nothing illegal, would be alive. 

Simple as that. No matter how much the defense wiggles, they can't escape that fact. Chasing down someone means you were the instigator, not the victim.

Comment was by Willson Stoner on May 21, 2012 at 11:27pm

@ Keely

Nobody knows exactly what happened that night except George Zimmerman. We don't know that Martin wasn't attacked first but there is no evidence that he was. No cuts scratches are bruises. Just a gun shot wound and scraped up knuckles. Zimmerman on the other hand had two black eyes, a broken nose, scratches on the back of his head and an injured back. I don't think that the two had time to exchange words, I think Martin jumped at Zimmerman, knocked him down and attacked him. If there was time before the attack our intrepid cop wannabe most likely would have pulled his gun out not giving Martin the chance to jump him. When someone has a gun on you, you do what the man with the gun says. I was held up at a convenience store years ago, I know what I'm talking about. I just don't believe Martin would have attacked Zimmerman if Zimmerman had his gun on him. The evidence seems to back up Zimmerman's story. As I said earlier, Alan Dershowitz has said the prosecutors are overreaching with a charge of second degree murder. There is a very good chance that Zimmerman will be acquitted. Two things that I have learned in this case. 1) People are going to believe what they want to believe and 2) never bang a man's head against the ground if he can reach his gun.

Comment was by Willson Stoner on May 21, 2012 at 7:18pm


All I'm saying is that if somebody was stalking/following me and I had no place to run I would have to defend myself. I think that makes sense. =)

I see what you're saying but I think attempting to leave Zimmerman's brains on the sidewalk may have been an overreaction as well as perhaps, a fatal mistake.

Comment was by Neal on May 21, 2012 at 7:12pm

@ Bill

It is apparent that Zimmerman thought Martin was a bad guy, the why he thought that is in question. No, I do not think Zimmerman had any intention of killing Martin, at least I would hope not. 

Comment was by Willson Stoner on May 21, 2012 at 6:48pm

@ Neal

Isn't it far more likely that what he intended to do was capture the "bad guy"?

OK, that may have been a poor choice of words. I thought it was obvious who George Zimmerman thought the bad guy was. There is no question that Zimmerman thought of himself as a semi-official junior police officer. What I meant was isn't it more likely that Zimmerman was staying on the case in his semi-official junior sort of capacity rather than stalking Treyvon to kill him.

Comment was by Neal on May 21, 2012 at 5:34pm


Isn't it far more likely that what he intended to do was capture the "bad guy"?

Now that is a troubling thought. Who was the bad guy?

Comment was by Neal on May 21, 2012 at 5:24pm


All I'm saying is that if somebody was stalking/following me and I had no place to run I would have to defend myself. I think that makes sense. =)

I wouldn't know what the man was up to. Is he going to rob me? Hurt me? Grab my ass? I would have no clue, scary. 

Well, not really scary. He/she had better be carrying because I will break the fool in half and claim self defense.

Now if said fool didn't follow me, there'd be no discussion. Simple as that.

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