'Murica

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Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Mon Mar 22, 2021 1:56 am
Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 18, 2021 6:26 am The freedom to practice metaphysics and attacks on it are quite tangible.
Why do you hate separation of Church and State?
The separation also means the State doesn't tell people how they can Church, or who can Church, or when, etc.. Various state and local agencies across America have done just that last year.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Grammatron wrote: Tue Mar 23, 2021 8:22 am The separation also means the State doesn't tell people how they can Church, or who can Church, or when, etc.. Various state and local agencies across America have done just that last year.
Indeed, and commendable. Yet I can't escape the impression that a significant part of your political class, because of "deeply held beliefs" *, constantly tries to reintroduce Christianity into the legislative realm. One could summarize it as "Murica is a Christian nation". (Contrary to what the Elder Gods™, uh… I mean The Founding Fathers© explicitly wrote.)

The rules are also so lax that tax-exempt preying on the weak-minded is a juicy business. ("gOD told me I need a second private jet.")

And have you come to some conclusion about the ACLU paper?


* Which happen to align with their opinion on how the smelly rabble should be kept in its place. Just a coincidence.
robinson
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Re: 'Murica

Post by robinson »

So many images and posts missing from the early thread. And pillory posting!


Fortunately this image survived
Witness wrote: Sun Sep 13, 2015 3:35 am http://sixpacktech.com/wp-content/uploa ... ic-06.jpeg
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Hypnosis Discredited, No Longer A Crime-Solving Tool For Texas Rangers

Dallas Morning News: Texas Rangers Stop Using Hypnosis After Dallas Morning News Investigation Reveals Dubious Science

The Texas Department of Public Safety has ended the controversial practice of using hypnosis to investigate crimes. A department spokesman said the hypnosis program ended in January 2021, more than forty years after its inception, because its officers are now relying on better investigative practices. The decision comes less than a year after The Dallas Morning News published a two-part series, “The Memory Room,” which raised serious questions about the efficacy of using hypnosis on criminal cases. The News investigation found Texas built one of the most prolific programs for police hypnosis in the country, repeatedly doubling down on the practice despite scientific evidence that hypnosis can distort witness memories and lead to false convictions.
https://khn.org/morning-breakout/hypnos ... s-rangers/
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 2:33 am
Indeed, and commendable. Yet I can't escape the impression that a significant part of your political class, because of "deeply held beliefs" *, constantly tries to reintroduce Christianity into the legislative realm.
Constantly? That's quite a claim. Relative to what?
One could summarize it as "Murica is a Christian nation". (Contrary to what the Elder Gods™, uh… I mean The Founding Fathers© explicitly wrote.)
Or a nation where representatives are a reflection of the electorate. These people are not Kings, or Dukes, or Lords; they are elected by the population who agrees with them. Then we have system of checks and balances to make sure the all laws are followed. That the system is not perfect but that's not a condemnation of the whole system.
The rules are also so lax that tax-exempt preying on the weak-minded is a juicy business. ("gOD told me I need a second private jet.")
Scams don't need religion so I don't get your point.
And have you come to some conclusion about the ACLU paper?
Their claims have no base.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Constantly? That's quite a claim. Relative to what?
From Merriam-Webster:
Definition of constantly

1 : without variation, deviation, or change : always
2 : with regular occurrence : incessantly
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/constantly

There's nothing "relative" in that.

Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Or a nation where representatives are a reflection of the electorate. These people are not Kings, or Dukes, or Lords; they are elected by the population who agrees with them. Then we have system of checks and balances to make sure the all laws are followed. That the system is not perfect but that's not a condemnation of the whole system.
Sure. Remains that a sizable fraction of your lawmakers & electorate would love to have biblical laws implemented for realz. (Or, more precisely, these laws they agree with – forgetting the inconvenient ones like, e. g., stoning, witches, &c. So Christianity as they see it, very convenient.)

Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Scams don't need religion so I don't get your point.
I'll presume that you don't argue "others do it too so it's OK." But allow me to give a sour laugh seeing the fat mega-church priests enrich themselves tax-free (i. e. with the IRS' benediction) while some of your citizens go hungry or just barely scratch together a living.
It's a free choice of the people, of course, but I fail to see the difference with, say, psychics, quacks and various feel-good coaches and "life improvers". Who pay taxes.

Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Their claims have no base.
Thanks. Perhaps I'll wade through the papers but not now.


As for my "constantly" claim, I'll open a "Cockroaches" thread and we'll see. :mrgreen:
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:05 am
Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Constantly? That's quite a claim. Relative to what?
From Merriam-Webster:
Definition of constantly

1 : without variation, deviation, or change : always
2 : with regular occurrence : incessantly
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/constantly

There's nothing "relative" in that.
Fair enough! Luckily it's not a regular occurrence, so you've convinced me it's not constant.
Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Sure. Remains that a sizable fraction of your lawmakers & electorate would love to have biblical laws implemented for realz. (Or, more precisely, these laws they agree with – forgetting the inconvenient ones like, e. g., stoning, witches, &c. So Christianity as they see it, very convenient.)
Fortunately we have a strong foundation that tries to keep that in check. One of the reason we don't have blasphemy laws.
Grammatron wrote: Thu Mar 25, 2021 7:20 pm Scams don't need religion so I don't get your point.
I'll presume that you don't argue "others do it too so it's OK."
No. I mean if you get rid of religion the scam will just get a new label. Someone will always be willing to sell you a Secret To Happiness (TM).
But allow me to give a sour laugh seeing the fat mega-church priests enrich themselves tax-free (i. e. with the IRS' benediction) while some of your citizens go hungry or just barely scratch together a living.
It's a free choice of the people, of course, but I fail to see the difference with, say, psychics, quacks and various feel-good coaches and "life improvers". Who pay taxes.
Yeah it's fucked up but people are free to decide how to spend their funds. I'd rather err on the side of individual liberty.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Grammatron wrote: Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:57 am No. I mean if you get rid of religion the scam will just get a new label. Someone will always be willing to sell you a Secret To Happiness (TM).
Of course. But. Religion(s) is(are) mainstream – for now – so their proponents don't just get laughed out of the room. Cue prayers at school, at city hall meetings, various blessings of stuff, "thoughts and prayers" as vacuous boilerplate response, "In gOD we trust", &c. I just think all forms of woo should be strictly private.

Grammatron wrote: Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:57 am Yeah it's fucked up but people are free to decide how to spend their funds. I'd rather err on the side of individual liberty.
I agree, in principle. Yet I presume you are not, despite "individual liberty", against driving licenses and red lights, some checks to keep loonies away from guns, some rules/regulations/laws to protect the gullible from the worst scams, children from abusive or negligent parents… The question then becomes "where to draw the line?" (Or one could say that liberty is a fickle concept.)

Religion too often seems to get a free pass. There's no rational reason for that save that it's 1. customary and 2. a wonderful control tool.

The only answer I see is education, but good luck with what's in the works right now.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

https://i.imgur.com/8ZK7sAw.jpg
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:20 pm
Grammatron wrote: Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:57 am No. I mean if you get rid of religion the scam will just get a new label. Someone will always be willing to sell you a Secret To Happiness (TM).
Of course. But. Religion(s) is(are) mainstream – for now – so their proponents don't just get laughed out of the room. Cue prayers at school, at city hall meetings, various blessings of stuff, "thoughts and prayers" as vacuous boilerplate response, "In gOD we trust", &c. I just think all forms of woo should be strictly private.
Sounds like you want to tell people how to practice their religion.
Grammatron wrote: Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:57 am Yeah it's fucked up but people are free to decide how to spend their funds. I'd rather err on the side of individual liberty.
I agree, in principle. Yet I presume you are not, despite "individual liberty", against driving licenses and red lights, some checks to keep loonies away from guns, some rules/regulations/laws to protect the gullible from the worst scams, children from abusive or negligent parents…
Those are all oranges to the apple of donating your own money to a Church, Eco Fund, Animal Shelter, etc..
The question then becomes "where to draw the line?" (Or one could say that liberty is a fickle concept.)
Individual liberty.
Religion too often seems to get a free pass. There's no rational reason for that save that it's 1. customary and 2. a wonderful control tool.
What's too often? This conversation started because ACLU is launching a campaign to challenge multiple laws in several states.
The only answer I see is education, but good luck with what's in the works right now.
What does that mean?
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm Sounds like you want to tell people how to practice their religion.
Can't put it more clearly than what I wrote: I just think all forms of woo should be strictly private.

And as private citizens in a democracy they are of course free to petition, lobby, donate, pray for Trump to win, walk on their knees, &c.

https://i.imgur.com/GGXDVTL.png

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm Those are all oranges to the apple of donating your own money to a Church, Eco Fund, Animal Shelter, etc..
I was just pointing to the fact that "individual liberty" is not freedom to do anything you want.

And that, in the US (or at least parts & periods of them) Christianity (as interpreted locally) has a special status it shouldn't have. In my opinion, at least.

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm Individual liberty.
Ditto.

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm What's too often? This conversation started because ACLU is launching a campaign to challenge multiple laws in several states.
As I said, special status. The hardliners would like to drag things back to the 19th c. when the poor (and the "abnormals", "sinners", &c. – in the ideology of the time) knew their place, i. e. kept quiet and politely said "thank you" when gifted some scraps. I just hope that ship has sailed.

And I don't care much about the ACLU. Did I derail the thread?

As we're at it, what do you think of this:

https://i.imgur.com/14CxDYJ.jpg

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm What does that mean?
Education kills once killed superstition(s).

But I was pointing to the neo-superstitions now taught from higher ed down – see our SJW thread.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Creationism can be taught as science in Arkansas classrooms, lawmakers say

A bill to allow Christian beliefs to be taught in Arkansas classrooms easily passed the state House Wednesday. House Bill 1701 now heads to the Senate side for a vote.

The bill will allow kindergarten through 12th grade teachers to teach students about the Christian theory of creationism, which claims that a divine being conjured the universe and all things in it in six days. The bill specifies that creationism can be taught not only in religion and philosophy classes, but “as a theory of how the Earth came to exist.”

As with so many pieces of legislation churning out of the Arkansas Capitol this session, if HB 1701 passes, a quick court challenge on this blatant mixing of church and state is all but inevitable. The United States Supreme Court already considered this issue in 1987 and ruled in no uncertain terms that teaching creationism in public school classrooms is unconstitutional. But blatant unconstitutionality hasn’t dissuaded Arkansas lawmakers so far this session. One Senate bill that passed recently, for example, declared all federal gun laws null and void within our state’s borders, in clear opposition to the Supremacy Clause that says federal laws take precedence over state laws.

Rep. Mary Bentley (R-Perryville), sponsor of House Bill 1701 “TO ALLOW CREATIONISM AS A THEORY OF HOW THE EARTH CAME TO EXIST TO BE TAUGHT IN KINDERGARTEN THROUGH GRADE TWELVE CLASSES IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND OPEN–ENROLLMENT PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOLS,” said she put forth the bill at the request of science teachers in her district.

“There are phenomena in our nature that evolution cannot explain,” Bentley said. She emphasized that science teachers may teach creationism under this bill, but they don’t have to.
https://arktimes.com/arkansas-blog/2021 ... makers-say

Cockroaches always crawl back. :mrgreen:


In other Murican news:
BREAKING NEWS! FFRF lawsuit ends religious test to register to vote in Alabama

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has attained a huge constitutional victory for secular voters in Alabama.

FFRF sued the Alabama secretary of state last October on behalf of four Alabama citizens who encountered and objected to a religious test to register to vote.

Now that the state of Alabama has amended all its voter registration forms to allow citizens to opt out of the religious oath, both online and in printed forms, the national state/church watchdog is voluntarily dismissing its federal lawsuit challenging the uniquely Alabamian mandatory religious voter registration oath.

“The Alabama secretary of state excludes Alabama citizens from being able to vote if they are unable to swear a religious oath,” stated the suit. “The secretary of state’s official policy is to hinder the registration of voters who are unable to swear ‘so help me God.’ This policy violates the rights of the plaintiffs and others under the First and 14th Amendments to the United States Constitution.”

As part of a settlement, the secretary of state has amended all of the voter registration forms to allow voters to avoid swearing a religious oath. The new “mail in” form provides a check box that says, “OPTIONAL: Because of a sincerely held belief, I decline to include the final four words of the oath above.”

Shortly after the suit was filed, the secretary of state began implementing other changes. In November, the office adopted a new administrative rule that allows voters to strike out “so help me God” and provided guidance to county registrars (who add voters to the rolls) saying that voters could cross out the language.

The lead plaintiff, Randall Cragun, an atheist, had sought to register to vote in Alabama since November 2019. However, voters submitting this registration form in Alabama had to sign the voter declaration, beginning “I solemnly swear or affirm” and concluding with “so help me God.” The director of elections informed Cragun: “There is no legal mechanism to register to vote in AL without signing the oath as it is stated.”
https://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/ite ... in-alabama




And for the usual:

7 people shot in Philadelphia
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Can somebody sum up US healthcare for me? I'm puzzled.

https://i.imgur.com/0GRsO63.jpg





And for the usual:

Man, woman killed in shooting at Asian restaurant in Monterey Park; gunman sought
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 12:29 am Can somebody sum up US healthcare for me? I'm puzzled.
Best in the world.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:48 am
Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm Sounds like you want to tell people how to practice their religion.
Can't put it more clearly than what I wrote: I just think all forms of woo should be strictly private.
That's the matter at hand. The people wanted to woo in private but government told them no.
Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm Those are all oranges to the apple of donating your own money to a Church, Eco Fund, Animal Shelter, etc..
I was just pointing to the fact that "individual liberty" is not freedom to do anything you want.
Never suggested it was.

Grammatron wrote: Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:38 pm What's too often? This conversation started because ACLU is launching a campaign to challenge multiple laws in several states.
As I said, special status. The hardliners would like to drag things back to the 19th c. when the poor (and the "abnormals", "sinners", &c. – in the ideology of the time) knew their place, i. e. kept quiet and politely said "thank you" when gifted some scraps. I just hope that ship has sailed.
What the "hardliners" want is irrelevant since we are discussing what government is doing in preventing people to practice their "woo" in private.

As we're at it, what do you think of this:
I don't.
gnome
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Re: 'Murica

Post by gnome »

Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:08 pm
Witness wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 12:29 am Can somebody sum up US healthcare for me? I'm puzzled.
Best in the world.
For the portion of the population that can afford it.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

gnome wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 9:17 pm
Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:08 pm
Witness wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 12:29 am Can somebody sum up US healthcare for me? I'm puzzled.
Best in the world.
For the portion of the population that can afford it.
You get healthcare before the bill.
sparks
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Re: 'Murica

Post by sparks »

And for some, the bill bankrupts them. What the fuck are you on Grammy? You're nominally a level headed person.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

sparks wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:29 pm And for some, the bill bankrupts them. What the fuck are you on Grammy? You're nominally a level headed person.
I would prefer bankruptcy to death.
gnome
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Re: 'Murica

Post by gnome »

In other countries they manage to not put people through that choice--you can pick neither.

And in many cases here--you do not get healthcare that is needed. All you are guaranteed for no money out of pocket is emergency stabilizing care. That is not all the healthcare someone needs.
gnome
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Re: 'Murica

Post by gnome »

So here is how I see it--the quality of healthcare that this country is capable of is top tier.
This is not available to most.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

gnome wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:52 pm In other countries they manage to not put people through that choice--you can pick neither.
They don't get the same quality of care. The same way people in a rural area will not get the same quality of critical care that a person in a city may.
And in many cases here--you do not get healthcare that is needed. All you are guaranteed for no money out of pocket is emergency stabilizing care. That is not all the healthcare someone needs.
More than likely you will find someone needing daily medical for the rest of their life or extensive physical therapy being the reason for financial burdens.

At any rate, we don't need to replay this healthcare debate. I think the biggest knock, and there are many, on the American medical system is that it makes it expensive and at times prohibitive to practice preventive medicine. We probably mostly agree that there needs to be some serious change and the insurance system is an absurd mess. But the quality of medical care is the best in the world.
sparks
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Re: 'Murica

Post by sparks »

Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:03 pm
sparks wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:29 pm And for some, the bill bankrupts them. What the fuck are you on Grammy? You're nominally a level headed person.
I would prefer bankruptcy to death.
I'm happy you can make so fine a distinction.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

sparks wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:23 pm
Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:03 pm
sparks wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:29 pm And for some, the bill bankrupts them. What the fuck are you on Grammy? You're nominally a level headed person.
I would prefer bankruptcy to death.
I'm happy you can make so fine a distinction.
In some parts of the world you don't get either choice.
sparks
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Re: 'Murica

Post by sparks »

Nonsense. Even those with no money to lose can always off themselves.
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

sparks wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:27 pm Nonsense. Even those with no money to lose can always off themselves.
That's not true either.
sparks
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Re: 'Murica

Post by sparks »

Disagree. Any joker on the planet is capable of offing themselves. Provided they're determined to do so.
gnome
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Re: 'Murica

Post by gnome »

Grammatron wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:36 am They don't get the same quality of care. The same way people in a rural area will not get the same quality of critical care that a person in a city may.
I would rather have reliable access to the second best care than to "have" the best care in the world but I can't afford to use it.
At any rate, we don't need to replay this healthcare debate. I think the biggest knock, and there are many, on the American medical system is that it makes it expensive and at times prohibitive to practice preventive medicine. We probably mostly agree that there needs to be some serious change and the insurance system is an absurd mess. But the quality of medical care is the best in the world.
I think that we do agree on many of these issues.
ed
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Re: 'Murica

Post by ed »

I am curious ... with Obamacare, who is not insured? Other than those that choose to not have insurance I mean?
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

ed wrote: Wed Apr 14, 2021 2:37 pm I am curious ... with Obamacare, who is not insured? Other than those that choose to not have insurance I mean?
Having insurance does not mean the cost will be affordable.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm That's the matter at hand. The people wanted to woo in private but government told them no.
"In private"? How could anybody prohibit that?
But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
Matthew 6:6

Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm What the "hardliners" want is irrelevant since we are discussing what government is doing in preventing people to practice their "woo" in private.
I don't think so: your religious right-wingers constantly try to reintroduce Jeebus into the State. That doesn't mean that the ACLU's move is perfect.

Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm I don't.
Weird answer to "what do you think of this?"

https://i.imgur.com/m2avNmV.jpg
Grammatron
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Grammatron »

Witness wrote: Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:36 am
Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm That's the matter at hand. The people wanted to woo in private but government told them no.
"In private"? How could anybody prohibit that?
With force mostly.
Matthew 6:6
If only it was so easy.
Witness wrote: Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:36 am
Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm What the "hardliners" want is irrelevant since we are discussing what government is doing in preventing people to practice their "woo" in private.
I don't think so: your religious right-wingers constantly try to reintroduce Jeebus into the State. That doesn't mean that the ACLU's move is perfect.
And the religious right-wingers are wrong when they try to do it.
Witness wrote: Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:36 am
Grammatron wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:16 pm I don't.
Weird answer to "what do you think of this?"

I don't think about out of context pictures. If you want to ask me a question please do so.
Hotarubi
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Hotarubi »

Grammatron wrote: Wed Apr 14, 2021 5:31 pm
ed wrote: Wed Apr 14, 2021 2:37 pm I am curious ... with Obamacare, who is not insured? Other than those that choose to not have insurance I mean?
Having insurance does not mean the cost will be affordable.
Despite the fact the government spends a hefty 14.3% of its GDP on healthcare according to OECD figures, the US doesn’t score particularly highly for either the quality or value of care. It ranked in 59th place on the Legatum Prosperity Index for health, while access to care is unequal. According to a recent study one-third of US adults went without the recommended care due to the cost, which, combined with the fact that to receive care you typically need to be part of a medical insurance scheme, is reflected by the low direct out-of-pocket spending by citizens of just under 11% in 2017. In 2019 research found that 66.5% of bankruptcies in America were caused by healthcare, either through high costs or time out of work.
Hotarubi
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Hotarubi »

For the record, Japan was top, followed by several Scandinavian countries.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

Frat party in Columbus:

https://i.imgur.com/EhPalL6.jpg

Article, if you care: College Party Goes Viral After Destructive Students Overturn Cars in Street
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

Post by Witness »

A different bell:
The Myth Of Increasing Violent Crime In America

https://i.imgur.com/tDtj9Wm.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/3kVmgaA.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/BiBlQuu.jpg
https://accidentalfire.com/2021/04/27/m ... e-america/ for details & sources.
shuize
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Re: 'Murica

Post by shuize »

Hotarubi wrote: Thu Apr 15, 2021 10:59 pm For the record, Japan was top, followed by several Scandinavian countries.

Japanese healthcare is not bad.

But "best" in the world?

I can think of half a dozen anecdotes just off the top of my head that cause me to doubt that ranking.

Rural hospitals are almost always crowded. They're often first come, first served. Scheduling appointments apparently being a bridge too far for the "best" healthcare system in the world. I can remember waiting four or five hours with my ex- on more than one occasion for non-emergency doctor's visits that lasted all of five minutes.

In my own case, I remember having a fever and my ex- freaking out insisting I had to go to the hospital. Since the thermometer was Celsius,* it wasn't computing. I didn't feel well, so I wasn't happy about having to look for pencil and paper to do the conversion. When I finally did, I thought I must have made a mistake so I did it a couple more times. Turns out I was running a 104 F (40 C) fever.

So I went to the hospital. When I told the nurse 40 C fever, she told me I was lying. Several times. This was strange. I had insurance but she acted like she didn't want to deal with me at all (if no insurance, they won't). After a very long wait, she finally confirmed for herself and shut the fuck up.

The doctor looked at me for about five seconds and ordered an IV. A different nurse needed about eight (or was it eighteen?) attempts to find a vein despite my requests to please try a vein on the back of my wrist. IV complete, they sent me home ... where I became violently ill. Probably the sickest I've been in my life. When my girlfriend took me back the next day (no overnight services), the doctor was pissed off with me. It was basically, "Why the hell are you back?" Me: "Yeah. Still sick. So sorry."

I know of a case involving a foreign woman a town over who was ill and went to the doctor. He had no idea. They sent her home. She reportedly went back several times. Still no idea. Then she died. Turns out she had diabetes. Opps.

Pre-Wuhan Corona, it wasn't uncommon to hear about hospitals turning "difficult" cases (i.e. elderly patients) away, the ambulance searching for hours for a hospital to accept their patient, and the patient ultimately dying in the ambulance.

I knew a foreign guy who asked his doctor about pain management before his knee surgery, being told "No problem," then, after the surgery, being told "No, pain medication. You might get addicted." He died of a heart attack while trying to recover. Opps.

Dentists. Holy shit Japanese dentists. My favorite anecdote is when I took my ex-wife to a dentist in Atlanta and while checking the X-ray she scoffed and said, "Where'd you get this work done? China?" (Ha! Ha!)** Sure it's cheap. But there wasn't a tooth in her mouth a Japanese dentist touched that didn't end up costing us money in America. And they get around the limit on what they can charge per visit by making you come back three or four times for simple procedures that are almost always finished with one visit in the States. Not to mention, I think it's only recently that most Japanese dentists have started wearing gloves.***

Oh, and American women, if you ever plan to have a baby in Japan, be warned that it's either natural or C-section. Epidurals are almost unheard of here. Before my first daughter was born, I asked my wife's OB-GYN about this. He said -- and I swear this is true -- "The pain of childbirth is good for mothers because it makes them love their babies more."

But, yeah, "best" in the world.

--- ETA: I remembered another one. A while back, I thought I might have a cracked rib so I went to the clinic closet to my house. The very old doctor wheeled out an even older looking X-ray machine. Long story short, the old guy said he couldn't read the fucking X-rays, and wanted to keep taking more. After the second (him angling for a third) round, I said "That's enough." Oh, hey, guess what? He can read them after all. Yes, there's the crack right there. Later, when I mentioned it to one of my neighbors, he said, "Oh, yeah. Don't go there. Everyone knows he's a quack."


* A system that I have still yet to master. I think I must have some kind of learning disability. Kilograms, meters, kilometers, liters, I'm fine. But Celsius remains a fucking mystery.

** I really enjoy telling that story to Japanese people.

*** I ran into a guy about 10 years ago that still was not wearing gloves. So maybe 2010 or 2011. I wouldn't use him, so I don't know if he started since.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

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Alabama debates removing Confederate battle flag from coat of arms

https://i.imgur.com/insG9h3.png
https://www.al.com/news/2021/04/alabama ... -arms.html
Witness
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Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm

Re: 'Murica

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New study explains why a few counties generate most of the death sentences in the United States

New research published in PLOS One sheds light on why the geographic distribution of death sentences in the United States is clustered in just a few jurisdictions. The findings indicate that a county’s legal and racial history plays a more important role than the homicide rate.

“I’m a quantitative social scientist and have been working in the area of the death penalty since publishing a book on how arguments about the death penalty are framed, and the impact of the ‘innocence frame’ on public opinion,” said study author Frank R. Baumgartner, the Richard J. Richardson Distinguished Professor of Political Science at UNC Chapel Hill.

His book, “The Decline of the Death Penalty and the Discovery of Innocence,” was published in 2008.

“Since then, I’ve been continuing with various studies of the death penalty, and I constructed a database of everyone executed in the United States, including the county from which the case derived,” Baumgartner explained. “A shocking pattern is an extreme concentration of cases in just a few counties. That was apparent in my data, but is also well known to those who study the matter, so it was not a new discovery.”

For their latest study, Baumgartner and his colleagues examined factors such as population size, number of homicides, violent and property crime rates, poverty rates, the relative share of nonwhite population, and history of lynchings. But they found a surprisingly weak relationship between the number of homicides in a county and the number of death sentences.

Instead, the better predictor of death sentences was the number of death sentences that a county had previously imposed. In other words, each death sentence made another death sentence more likely.
https://www.psypost.org/2021/05/new-stu ... ates-60317 for the rest.
Witness
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Re: 'Murica

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Justice Department objects to National Rifle Association's bankruptcy plan

The U.S. Department of Justice is objecting to the National Rifle Association's bankruptcy plan, pointing to what the agency says is mismanagement of funds by leaders of the gun advocacy organization.

Lisa Lambert, assistant U.S. Trustee in the DOJ's Trustee Office, said Monday during the NRA's bankruptcy case in Texas that the group's longtime CEO, Wayne LaPierre, used NRA funds for his own purposes and failed to properly safeguarded the group's financial records.

"The record is unrefuted that Wayne LaPierre's personal expenses were made to look like business expenses," she said in a hearing in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas.

Lambert is asking the judge overseeing the NRA's case to halt proceedings and either dismiss it or appoint an outside investigator — known as an examiner — to assess whether the organization had a legitimate reason to declare bankruptcy.

The NRA's lawyer, Greg Garman, objected to Lambert's comments in court on Monday, the New York Times reported. "Your honor, we have natural enemies," Garman said. "This Department of Justice may not see eye to eye with the National Rifle Association, but so be it, we have done the right thing."
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/nra-bankru ... ierre-gun/