xaminmo: (Josh 2004 Happy)
Political Compass 2013-01-20 JDSD

The scale is -10 to +10, and I'm I'm economically -3.75 (left vs right), and socially 3.28 (liberal vs authoritarian).

That means I lean towards:
* regional vs government control
* voluntary vs mandatory controls
* collectivism vs libertarianism

Info on privacy: http://www.politicalcompass.org/
The test: http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Explanations: http://www.politicalcompass.org/analysis2
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
Charlie Chaplain's speech in The Great Dictator with music and video inserts to which add even more power.

The speech is from 1940, and was speaking out against Nazi Facism, but it seems appropriate for most any time of civil discontent.


True Colors

May. 2nd, 2011 03:47 pm
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
I'm really disappointed at the amount of hatred that's being spewed.

I recently got an email telling me, "I hope they wrapped his body in pigskin before the dropped him in the ocean!"

I feel that for a nation that claims to be so heavily Christian, this is about the most un-Christian sentiment possible.

Further, it's exactly this kind of disrespect, hostility, anger, etc that has perpetuated this global feud.

Finally, I fear it will fuel anti-American movements, just as the 2001 "now the Americans get to see what it's like..." statements fueled anti-Islam and anti-middle-east sentiment in the US.

On the flip side, I know people need to vent. I'm just worried about global escalation.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
"The national budget must be balanced. The public debt must be reduced. The arrogance of the authorities must be moderated and controlled. Payments to foreign governments must be reduced. If the nation doesn't want to go bankrupt, people must learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."
quote source )
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)

"Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sunday she might be willing to have workers' wages garnisheed if they refuse to buy health insurance to achieve coverage for all Americans."

She doesn't get the premise of universal coverage.

It's specifically to help the poor.

Even reduced rates being enforced = difficult.

So, let's raise taxes, raise spending, and THEN garnish your wages.


CUT SPENDING, and fund the important things. Universal Health is fairly important and there are many good ways to go about it.

I think a voucher system would be good. Each ins co is required to have a specific "universal" plan. It would have minimum coverages and a set rate, matching the gov't vouchers. Rate would be at a real rate, so the ins co's aren't being ripped off. Then, companies and individuals would have the option of paying more for options, riders, etc to improve the policy.

Ins would be provided to everyone who is a citizen, permanent resident alien for any condition. For Work, School or visitor visas, I'm not sure, but for visitors, no coverage for most preexisting conditions, but probably for inexpensive maintenance items like diabetic supplies, etc.

That edge is where things get fuzzy/tricky.
xaminmo: (Josh 200107 Rant)
Why do we have an electoral college in a democracy? We don't live in a democracy. We live in a federation/republic. The electoral college allows small-population states to have a minimum voice during votes (7 states have the minimum of 3 electors due to low populations).

Why can electors change their votes? Because YOUR STATE does not prohibit it. Electoral votes are for the STATES to vote for presidency. Anything translating popular vote into state vote is a STATE issue, not a federal issue.

What would happen if the electoral college were abolished? Small-population states would lose voice and large-population states would gain voice. This would be similar to abolishing the Senate and would be one step larger to a giant federal government and weaker, more homogenized state governments.

I'm not sure about you, but I personally thing the Federal government already is too large, too wasteful, and too powerful. I'd prefer it stick to constitutional basics, protection, and state-majority approved projects.

More Details on the electoral college )
xaminmo: (Josh 200107 Rant)
My predictions for 2008:
I think there will be 55-65% voter turnout for this election.
I think that the age disparity will be insubstantial,
- because youthful voters are substantially overrepresented on FaceBook.
I think the electoral college will give a slight benefit to Republicans.
I think Clinton and Paul will benefit substantially from older voters.
I think Obama will have a slightly lower percentage,
- because Chicago is overrepresented on FaceBook.
I think Clinton will battle to the end against Obama and Paul.
I think Obama will get 32-33%
I think Paul will get 25-28%
I think Clinton will get 22-25%

I think the real test will be whether the underdog candidates will cede voter support to their top-end candidates. If all of the Republicans bowed out and asked support of Paul, then he *could* win because of the battle between Clinton and Obama.

If Clinton or Obama bows out, then the other of the two would most likely win by picking up 70%+ of the other's voters. Optionally, if Clinton and Obama teamed up to be a president/vice president pair, then I think they'd combine 90% of their votes together.

Supporting information follows )
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
Partly to show I'm not biased against Republicans any more than I am Democrats, I'm angered and frustrated by Nancy Pelosi and the House gang.


The Ottoman Empire included roughly 2 million ethnic Armenians. The empire was technologically backwards compared to much of Europe. The Armenians were embracing technology and education. In 1895, the empire ordered the massacre of 300,000 Armenians as being a westernized threat. Within the next decade, the "Young Turks", three Turkic men, completed a coup and bolstered nationalism. The Armenians were a minority, with most of the Turks being impoverished peasants. As the rise of Germany continued, the Turks killed off 1.5 million Armenians in order to expand westward.

Since then, 24 other countries have formally recognized this as "The Armenian Genocide". The US never FORMALLY made this acknowledgement.

A House of Reps committee has approved a bill formally stating that the US will recognize this not as war, but as genocide. It will be up for a vote soon.

Bush and much of his administration has warned that making this ascertation right now would be dangerous, since Turkey is intstrumental in our logistics for Iraq. We use their airspace for 70% of our cargo into and out of Iraq. They are also taking casualties along the border for their support of our efforts.

Now, I'm not saying that what happenned 100 years ago was right. I think it's deplorable. But, we're punishing and enraging the wrong generation and we're going to cut off our troops from supplies in trying to do this.

This is the WRONG way to end the Iraq war.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (president)
Just swap out country names from HERE, and this is what you get:
USA - The US government under George Bush has amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Washington's commitment to democracy.

"In any country, if you don't have countervailing institutions, the power of any one president is problematic for democratic development," Rice told reporters after meeting with human-rights activists.

"I think there is too much concentration of power in the White House. Everybody has doubts about the full independence of the judiciary. There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Congress."

Telephone messages left with White House spokesman, Scott Stanzel, were not immediately returned Saturday evening.

Activists are encouraged to build institutions of democracy. These would help combat arbitrary state power amid increasing pressure from the White House, she said.

The public is concerned about the centralization of power and democratic backsliding ahead of USA's legislative and presidential elections in 2008. Bush will step down next year as president.

"I talked to people about the coming months and how they see the coming months. How these elections are carried out will have an effect on whether USA is making the next step on toward democracy."

But as she has in the past, Rice declined comment on Bush's possible political future and said she did not raise the matter in her official discussions.

Although she would not speculate about Bush's ambitions, Rice said there were signs that whatever transition occurs could be smooth.

"To the degree that anyone can predict, it looks like it will be fairly stable," she said. "But, I would just caution that change is change."

Earlier, Rice said she hoped the efforts of rights activists would promote universal values of "the rights of individuals to liberty and freedom, the right to worship as you please, and the right to assembly, the right to not have to deal with the arbitrary power of the state."

In the meeting with business, media and civil society leaders, Rice said she was "especially interested in talking about how you view (the) political evolution of the US, the economic evolution of the US."

"The United States is a country that's in transition and that transition is not easy and there are a lot of complications and a lot of challenges," Rice said. "If the US is to emerge as a democratic country that can fully protect the rights of its people, it is going to emerge over years and you have to be a part of helping the emergence of that US."

Participants in the meetings said they outlined their concerns but that she did not offer any judgments about the state of human rights and democracy under Bush.

Lyudmila Alexeyeva of the Moscow Helsinki Group told the Interfax news agency her organization sees "the purposeful construction of an authoritarian society and an onslaught on the people's rights, elections are being turned into farce, and human rights and opposition organizations are experiencing pressure."

Alexander Brod, head of the Moscow Human Rights Bureau, said the discussions touched on "authoritarianism and the crisis of human rights."

"Not all is ideal in America. We see protests against the war in Iraq and violations of human rights on the part of security services and violations of human rights in countering terrorism," Brod said.

The public frequently has criticized what is regarded as creeping authoritarianism among Bush and other top US leaders.

Its most recent human-rights report on the US notes continuing centralization of power in the White House, a compliant legislature, political pressure on the judiciary, intolerance of ethnic minorities, corruption and selectivity in enforcement of the law, and media restrictions and self-censorship.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
My bottom picks are:
Senator Clinton is too resentful, angry, and hostile for my tastes. This assessment is my own and based on her questioning officials regarding the budget. She wasn't trying to figure things out, she was acting sort of like the beginnings of a McCarthy type investigator. Her policy doesn't matter because her character is not OK to me. I feel she would be detrimental to the nation. This is a pity, because she has the skills and ability to work wonders, and would be good in modernizing our country by showing that a woman in charge can be OK

Senator Obama is too young and naive (eg nuclear action/middle east comments recently). He has charisma and a heart, which is good, but it's too soon for him. I think he would make too many mistakes and would harm US image. I think he would be ineffective in many areas due to lack of experience.

Here are my personal top picks for 2008, based on vote-smart, wikipedia, and campaign websites, in order of preference:

Vice President Albert Gore (D) is really popular and has good ideals. He could get the presidency if he started running any time this year. He's strong on the environment. He has a good vision it seems, but wouldn't make radical, chaotic changes. He's run for presidency before. He's been VP, Senator, in the House of Representatives. He's on the board for Apple Computer, and is an advisor to Google. Unfortunately, he has said effectively "I don't see any circumstances under which I would run for president." I can see that he would garner ill will from the Democratic party, and would have to step down from several important and paying positions were he to run.

Senator Ron Paul (R) is actually more of a constitutional Libertarian. He knows the history behind the middle eastern and US conflict. Senator Giuliani gave him hell for bringing up history, because it implies the US is partially to blame for the 9/11 and other terrorist attacks. I applaud him for being willing to speak the truth. I think he has really great ideas, and he actually has some support out there, but has less chance than Gore, even though Gore isn't running. I need to find out more about him.

Senator Dennis Kucinich (D) has really good ideals and was the only Democrat to oppose the resolution to allow the invasion of Iraq. He wants a Department of Peace. He has some good ideals, and leans towards repairing the constitution in many places. Unfortunately, this means he's a bit radical, and doesn't have enough clout. He has even less support than Ron Paul. He's 5th in popularity on the Democratic ticket.

Senator John McCain (R) is really old. This could be an issue. He's "in really good health" but it still worries me. He'll be 72 next year. I like that he wants campaign financial reform. One of his biggest hindrances is that he doesn't fit the mold, so to speak, and upsets many conservatives, while not being liberal enough to be embraced by many of the Democratic party followers.

Senator Rudolph Giuliani has has some good principles. My biggest gripe so far is about his immigration policy. He's all about borders and enforcement. Sure, protect the borders, but also cut the red tape and cost for people who want or need work here. It's not an either/or, and it's not one before the other. Temporary worker permits should be easier and faster to get so they can be on the books and paying taxes. To compensate, there should be limits on social services received by nonresident aliens and procedures for safely handling exploitation of the system. I couldn't find much on immigration policy for the others above.

The other candidates and hopefuls did not strike me enough to be worth my time to research at this juncture.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
I like when governments think they should get involved with civic affairs.

An acclaimed author was knighted recently. He has published 13 or 14 books, many of which have won awards.

But, one of them portrayed the religion of his childhood in less than ideal light.

So, religious leaders basically put out a contract on his head.

The guy stayed in hiding for over a decade because of it.

So, now he's been knighted for his literary contribution, but a country's government which neighbored his childhood homeland, has declared that this honour be retracted. They say that this award is an attack on them as a people, and that the UK is just hatemongering by awarding this author any acclaims. Further, they state that that anyone would do well to suicide bomb themselves if they killed this author.

How can you possibly consider any request of a religious subgroup and of a national government that authorizes, condones, and publicly promotes this sort of behavior?
I'm not saying our government or leaders are "good". I mean, hell, the US puffs its chest internationally. The undersecretary of state, Mr. Burns, publicly hatemongers and amplifies things. Our international reputation is not sufficient to support the level of pride and command we try to exert.

Anyway, our world is full of jackasses.
If you can't filter what you say and when you say it, then you have no fucking business representing me or my people to anyone, let alone the world media.

This is one of the major reasons I should never be in politics, but these fuckers... not historians, not PR experts... They're oil tycoons.

So, I ask you, as a friend. When you vote for the leader of your country, vote for someone who is clear, concise, and has a strong background in history, geography, social and political sciences, and who is not a religious extremist.

Let them be intelligent, educated, moderately tempered, patient and understanding of the diversity of people.

Let them not be motivated, hatemongering businessmen.

Time to do some research, no?
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
Max tends to help people, listen, talk, and overall be very socially motivated.

He also likes Age of Empires and World of Warcraft.

In AoE, he started the game, but was urged to play outside.

So he says, "I will leave my game going so my people can keep working."

"So you're going to go play while they work?"

"Yah! I need 500 stone and they will keep working for me."

I told Erica he'd be an excelleng corporate executive, though in retrospect, maybe a government official too. Go play while the people work, then come back when you have the resources to complete your personal goals...

xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
8 year old kid got suspended (2005-06-06) for reciting his own version of the pledge:
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United Federation of Planets, and to the galaxy for which it stands, one universe, under everybody, with liberty and justice for all species.

Also, Bill O'Reilly proof of stealing ideas and lying about senators.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
DALLAS, June 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/
Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) joined with the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, American Airlines, and DFW International Airport today to announce all parties have agreed to seek the enactment of legislation to repeal the Wright Amendment.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
Morality police turn witch hunters
RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's powerful morality police is launching a witch hunt in the birthplace of Islam.

The Authority for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice is setting up special centers in all cities to "register complaints on sorcerers and charlatans, track them and terminate them," the authority's chief Sheikh Ibrahim bin Abdallah al-Ghaith told al-Madinah newspaper.

Islam forbids magic and practicing it is considered blasphemy.

Saudi newspapers often report incidents involving so-called sorcerers, mainly from the Indian subcontinent and Africa.

Some Saudis pay them vast amounts of money, hoping to uncover hidden treasures or get jobs, according to the papers.

The religious police have wide powers in Saudi Arabia, which imposes a strict version of Sunni Islam, to prevent the spread of drugs, alcohol and prostitution as well as stop unrelated men and women mixing in public.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
ATHENS (Reuters) - A helicopter landed in the middle of the high security Athens Korydallos prison, picked up two prisoners and flew away in a Hollywood-style escape that has left Greek police stunned.

A criminal on the run hijacked the helicopter Sunday to get his brother out of prison, police said. Vassilis Paleokostas, 40, who was serving a 25-year sentence for kidnapping and bank robbery, and an Albanian convict escaped.

"The guards thought it was a surprise inspection by ministry officials and did nothing," a police official said.

The helicopter pilot, who said he was forced at gunpoint to undertake the mission, flew the inmates to a nearby cemetery and they made their escape on motorbikes. Greek police have launched a manhunt for the convicts.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
Reuters article about the HPV vaccine, to be released in June. Merck is trying to get it made mandatory for school-aged kids.
xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)
From the FedEx site
What is Advance Cargo Information (ACI)?
As mandated by section 343(a) of the Trade Act of 2002, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) now requires truck carriers to electronically transmit information regarding cargo entering the United States at least one hour prior to reaching the first port of entry. This advance information must be submitted through the Pre-Arrival Processing System (PAPS) or Automated Broker Interface (ABI).

Advance information for shipments that qualify for the Free and Secure Trade (FAST) program must be submitted through the CBP-approved EDI system at least 30 minutes prior to the carrier reaching the first port of entry.

FAST means you don't get blocked if you send the info 30 mins rather than 1 hour in advance,
and the acronym "Free and Secure" is used to try to trick you into believing that impediments to free trade are "free and secure".

Your papers please.
Scan your IdenTag here.
Tongue print here.
DNA sample here.
Pledge allegiance and solemn oath on the Christian Bible recorded here.
Oops, you didn't meet criteria. We're taking your shipment.
Oops, you fussed about it, we're impounding your vehicle and imprisoning you.

Am I too paranoid, or is everyone else not paranoid enough?


xaminmo: Josh 2016 (Default)

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