The Watering Hole, Monday, August 13th, 2012: Monday Medley

First up: From Foreign Policy magazine:

An article written by George Lakoff, titled “Dumb and Dumber” discusses the term “Low-Information Voter” and the insult implied in the phrase. Here’s a few snippets:

“The liberal use of the term “low-information voters” reveals where liberals need to get real. First, liberals need to recognize that conservatives have a moral system that is different from theirs and that they vote on the basis of it. They need to understand the conservative moral system and how it works, if they are to defeat it. And they need to understand the power of their own moral system and make use of it.”

“…they [liberals] need to understand how brains work: If the facts don’t fit morally based frame-circuits, it’s the frame-circuits that stay and the facts that go out the window.”

“…Never use the other side’s language. And always say out loud the moral framing needed for comprehending the facts. For example, health care is a matter of both freedom and life. If you have cancer and no health care, you are not free and you could die! With the right narrative, it is a powerful message, and one that tells a deep truth.”

Next: At The Weather Channel, an interesting piece about the possible effects of a predicted increase in solar flare activity on our electrical infrastructure.

Third and final: also from The Weather Channel, a look at how the higher temperatures in New York and the Northeast are affecting the breeding rates of certain butterflies. One species is the endangered Karner Blue butterfly – which, oddly enough, “…was first identified and named by novelist and lepidopterist Vladimir Nabokov,” according to Wikipedia.

Karner Blue Butterfly (photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

This is our daily open thread — go ahead, get your coffee (or tea, or whatever) and get your Monday started!

283 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Monday, August 13th, 2012: Monday Medley

    • What a horrible woman she must be. Taking money from the government. Doesn’t she know she can just go to the emergency room if she gets sick?

  1. Language does matter. I read something on Kos a few days ago which made sense to me. The writer (whose name I don’t remember, sorry) suggested that we should stop referring to Ryan’s demand shedding Medicare plan as a program with vouchers and call the vouchers what they are, coupons. The theory was that people perceive a voucher as something you exchange for the desired item, and view a coupon as a discount on the desired item. Ryan’s coupons would not cover the cost of health insurance. For the very old and very sick, they would be as useless as the discount plans that were sold as health insurance to anyone foolish or desperate enough to purchase “insurance” based on a sign stapled to a telephone pole.

  2. This bears repeating:
    “If the facts donโ€™t fit morally based frame-circuits, itโ€™s the frame-circuits that stay and the facts that go out the window.โ€

    Indoctrinate them early – the programing stays. This is why their 3-word slogans are so effective – they fit the programming without requiring anything more than “faith”.

  3. We have a populace of thinkers and believers. And the ones with the money and power (& weapons) know how to manipulate the believers into fighting for them, using whatever means necessary.

  4. Paul Ryan – Randian Poser

    Could there have been a better way to say just what the Romney/GOP platform stands for than this man? And yet ….. he’s sucked from the very teat he intends to bite off.

    My bid for bumper sticker:

    Brigham Young / Koch 2012

    • It starts with the contradiction that Mr. Free Enterprise has spent his life in the bosom of government, enjoying the added protection of wingnut welfare benefactors like the Koch brothers.

      So. He’s not a job creator?

  5. Ben Smith reported yesterday that the Ryan pick was Romney’s idea. According to a “top Republican,” it “everybody was against [Ryan] to start with only Romney for”:

    “Romney’s aides have stressed publicly in the 24 hours since Romney electrified conservatives with his choice that the pick was the governor’s alone. They have been less forthcoming on the flip side: That much of his staff opposed the choice for the same reason that many pundits considered it unlikely โ€” that Ryan’s appealingly wonky public image and a personality Romney finds copasetic will matter far less than two different budget plans whose details the campaign now effectively owns.”

    • I can only imagine that Romney feared losing votes from the Far Right, not to Obama (d’oh) but to apathy. Because other than that, there’s no reason to choose a Wingnut for VP. The people raving for Ryan would never vote for Obama in a million years and this wins no points at all among so-called “moderates.”

      • I don’t think it was about the voters, amazingly enough. Romney was afraid of being de-legitimized as a candidate at the convention by rabid teabaggers, that’s why he had to choose Ryan. Now, Mittens will sail through the convention with few problems, will very likely lose in 2012, and the extreme rightwing has their pretty poster boy to prop up as a Prez candidate in 2016. Romney will be forgotten on November 7.

  6. Michelle Goldberg reviews Ryan’s record on abortion:

    “[O]n abortion and womenโ€™s health care, there isnโ€™t much daylight between Ryan and, say, Michele Bachmann. Any Republican vice presidential candidate is going to be broadly anti-abortion, but Ryan goes much further. He believes ending a pregnancy should be illegal even when it results from rape or incest, or endangers a womanโ€™s health. He was a cosponsor of the Sanctity of Human Life Act, a federal bill defining fertilized eggs as human beings, which, if passed, would criminalize some forms of birth control and in vitro fertilization. The National Right to Life Committee has scored his voting record 100 percent every year since he entered the House in 1999. โ€œIโ€™m as pro-life as a person gets,โ€ he told the Weekly Standardโ€™s John McCormack in 2010. โ€œYouโ€™re not going to have a truce.โ€ ‘

  7. Mitt Romney is too tired to make his Orlando campaign stop. Those theme parks do take a lot out of you:

    “Although Mitt Romney was supposed to visit Orlando on Monday, the campaign announced late Sunday that the presumed Republican presidential nominee was too exhausted to make the trip.

    The news came after Romney spent what one campaign official said was an exhausting 48 hours of championing his new vice presidential pick.”

  8. Paul Ryan has been in the House 13 years, and he’s only succeeded in getting two of his bills passed in all that time:

    Ryan…passed a bill into law in July 2000 that renames a post office in his district. Thanks to Ryan, the post office on 1818 Milton Ave. in Janesville, Wis., is now known as “Les Aspin Post Office Building.”

    Ryan saw one of his bills become law was in December 2008, with legislation to change the way arrows (as in bows and arrows) are hit with an excise tax. Specifically, his bill amended the Internal Revenue Code to impose a 39-cent tax per arrow shaft, instead of a 12.4 percent tax on the sales price. The bill also “includes points suitable for use with arrows in the 11 percent excise tax on arrow parts and accessories.”

    Wow. Whatta powerhouse.

  9. The Commission on Presidential Debates announces moderators for the presidential debates:

    First presidential debate:

    Jim Lehrer, Executive Editor of the PBS NewsHour
    Wednesday, October 3, University of Denver, Denver, CO

    Vice presidential debate:

    Martha Raddatz, Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent, ABC News
    Thursday, October 11, Centre College, Danville, KY

    Second presidential debate (town meeting):

    Candy Crowley, Chief Political Correspondent, CNN and Anchor, CNN’s State of the Union
    Tuesday, October 16, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY

    Third presidential debate:

    Bob Schieffer, Chief Washington Correspondent, CBS News and Moderator, Face the Nation
    Monday, October 22, Lynn University, Boca Raton, FL

    Candy Crowley? Ugh!

  10. Sarah Palin announced that she will not be speaking at the 2012 Republican National Convention, saying itโ€™s time to give others a chance. “This year is a good opportunity for other voices to speak at the convention and Iโ€™m excited to hear them,” she said in a statement to Fox Newsโ€™s Greta van Susteren.

    Sarah Palin is officially yesterday’s news, gone the way of Paris Hilton, et al…

  11. 12 states now have “very high” obesity rates: Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and West Virginia.

    At least 11 out of 12 are red states.

  12. Paul Ryan is totally against abortion and against providing federally funded family planning, as well as international family planning programs, and voted to deny birth control coverage to federal employees, but he and his wife only have three children.

    Why aren’t they up to their necks in squalling brats? Oh yeah, they’re rich and have the best health insurance in the world. “I got mine, fuck y’all.”

  13. Honeybump news:

    After a rough Sunday, I just had our Honey at the vet. She’s either had a stroke or she has a brain tumor. The vet gave her an injection that will give her a sense of well-being. If she had a stroke, she should improve in about five days; if she has a brain tumor, she’ll feel okay for a couple days, and will then decline.

    Given the symptoms I’ve seen over the last few months, I don’t think she had a stroke.

    • The collapse didn’t surprise me. When I read that Cheney was dumping his stock and buying bonds instead, that was a signal to me so I moved my money, just like Cheney did. Every three months, my employer was laying off employees and yet the stock market was high. That too, was a signal that it was a phony high. I got lucky that time.

      • Indeed. Frankly, most sane people saw it coming and that includes the perpetrators. I think that things just got a bit out of hand and the big collapse was supposed to happen after the elections of 2008. Pretty much everyone knew that the Dems would win big even without said collapse. Of course, those same perpetrators have managed to convince a whole lot of people that it was all the Dems fault anyway.

  14. Insider trading. No wonder Mitt picked him.

    “Republican Vice Presidential Pick Paul Ryan sold shares in a number of financial companies including Citigroup, General Electric, Wachovia, and JP Morgan Chase on the same day as then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke held a closed meeting with congressional leaders during the financial crisis.”

  15. An honest discussion about the deficit would include some taxes, cutting military spending, and expanded infrastructure spending.

    But that’s not the type of “honesty” the right wants.

    How will Rep. Paul Ryanโ€™s Medicare plan impact Mitt Romneyโ€™s chances? | You Decide | Politics | Fox News

    How will Rep. Paul Ryanโ€™s Medicare plan impact Mitt Romneyโ€™s chances? It hurts the GOP ticket, seniors are worried the plan will gut Medicare  6.04%  (1,158 votes)     Big help. Voters want to see an honest plan for closing the deficit, and this is it  71.55%  (13,715 votes)     Open question, depends which side does a better job defining it  22.41%  (4,295 votes)       Total Votes: 19,168

  16. QOTD:

    “…what the whole Beltway media crowd has done โ€“ is to slot Ryan into a role…of the thoughtful, serious conservative wonk. In reality, Ryan is nothing like that; heโ€™s a hard-core conservative, with a voting record as far right as Michelle Bachmanโ€™s, who has shown no competence at all on the numbers thing. What Ryan is good at is exploiting the willful gullibility of the Beltway media, using a soft-focus style to play into their desire to have a conservative wonk they can say nice things about. And apparently the trick still works.” — Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winning Economist

  17. It’s a sad day.
    Etsy bans the sale of body parts.
    Bummer, I was really in the market for a shrunken head.

    Zooey, I hope this doesn’t affect your product line.

  18. On The Cycle, SE Cupp is so excited about Paul Ryan as VP, that she’s going to need a fresh pair of panties right after the show.

    Awful woman, had to mute the show.

  19. You know, I sure am getting tired of these Charles Whitman-wanna-bes getting their hands on weapons, aren’t you?

    • The reports are stating this was not on the university proper. This unfolded in a residential area outside the campus. An eviction notice being served – and obviously the renter has a gun ‘for protection’.

  20. Went for a hike yesterday on Prairie Link trail west of Bragg Creek Alberta. This is our favorite hike and do it year round. We have done it over 20 times!

    It’s August so the mushrooms were the big attraction.

      • Thanks Ebb. Just before we saw the cows my wife said “I guess no cows are on their summer vacation.” Around the corner there were a group of 10 or so. Farmers are allowed to put their cows in this area for the summer. Lord knows how they gather them all up before the winter!!

      • There is this hike and another nearby that always have an abundance of mushrooms. Especially if we have a wet spring-early summer. We have seen people picking them. We know as much about mushrooms as Romney knows about living paycheck to paycheck so we are never tempted to pick any.

  21. MIAMI โ€” Mitt Romney is holding a campaign event at a Miami restaurant owned by a convicted cocaine trafficker.

    Romney appeared Monday evening at El Palacio de los Jugos, a restaurant owned by Reinaldo Bermudez. Court records show that Bermudez pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute cocaine in 1999 and served three years in federal prison.

    Media reports in November 1997 said that Bermudez was one of 12 people accused in a Colombian drug smuggling operation. Agents seized about 2,850 pounds of cocaine at Florida ports.

    As a convicted felon, Bermudez wouldn’t be eligible to vote in Florida unless the governor and the Cabinet restore his rights.

    A phone call placed to the restaurant wasn’t answered. The Romney campaign didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

  22. The “Conservative Majority Fund,” and presumably the NRA, is running a super scary commercial about the United Nations, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama having secret meetings to take away everyone’s guns and sign away our national sovereignty.

    Sadly, there are morons in northern Idaho and eastern Washington who will swallow that bullshit, hook, line, and sinker.

    • They’re always touting how weak the President is…that being the case how can he be blamed for the drought? Wouldn’t it take an omnipotent/strong person to control the climate?

      • Exactly! God is punishing us for electing a black guy. Duh!

        In fairness; they did walk it back and assert that they meant to say it’s his fault that we haven’t already passed drought relief but I have yet to see any indication that GOoPers, in the House or in general, have proposed any such relief measures. Indeed. The standard GOP stance is that, if the scientists aren’t lying and there even is a drought, God is in charge of those things and bailing out farmers would just turn them into gay communists.

    • Fux & Friends and their dooshbag viewers aren’t voting for Obama anyway!

      Like I said, picking Ryan for VP was just Mitt’s way of getting through the convention with some legitimacy.

    • I didn’t have a clue what Bain was before this happened,” said Cheryl Randecker, 52. “Now when I hear Romney speak it makes me sick to my stomach.”

      Doesn’t it make us all sick to our stomachs?

        • After 8 years of Bush and/or Cheney…I’m not sure I could last through even a week of Smarmy, Smug Romney. At least I don’t have to listen to a screech from Alaska….

        • Much like Palin, Mittens is prone to the word salad buffet. To wit:

          โ€œThis tragedy raises once again the question of what can be done to help prevent events like this from occurring. I guess Iโ€™m not referring to any particular legislation. Iโ€™m just saying this is something that needs to make thoughtful consideration.โ€ — Romney on the Texas A&M shootings today.

  23. Now I remember why I stopped building fiberglass planes more than 10 years ago. I ruined a shirt and a pair of shorts, have cat hair liberally glued to my plane, and epoxy up to my elbows. But? It’s really, really, strong!

    • Ha. I spent a summer helping build surfboards. I no longer have the ability to smell, but have an abnormal relationship with fiberglass. Gawd I love the feel, the texture, the shimmering reflective color, and above all its strength…I better stop with that. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  24. My baby checks into her dorm at college on Friday. Maybe I’ll be back to my old self after that. Now I’m more worried about Zooey and Honeybump. Do you think I should worry that one dogs ate some cold hot glue sticks?

    • Palin: “This year is a good opportunity for other voices to speak at the convention and I’m excited to hear them.”

      They haven’t started speaking yet, Saruh.
      Are there other voices you’re hearing we’re not being told about?

  25. One more thought on the use of language. SS and Medicare are not “entitlements”, they are earned benefits. Even your teafolk friends will agree on that one.

  26. Gekko & Galt, two peas in a pod:

    “Ryan, in a trying-too-hard outfit of blue jeans, wide leather belt and red-and-white checked shirt, began with a painful effort to establish common ground with the locals.

    โ€œWhat a beautiful day to be at the state fair,โ€ he said. โ€œWe have fairs. Do you have Wristband Day here?โ€

    Apparently Iowans do not have Wristband Day, because the crowd was quiet.

    โ€œThatโ€™s the favorite day for my kids, because Wristband Day, you can buy a wristband and ride all the rides with just one wristband for the whole day.โ€

    The Iowans stood like corn stalks on a still morning.

    โ€œSo itโ€™s just from a Wisconsinite to a neighboring Iowan: Have Wristband Day. Your kids will love it.โ€

    If there were crickets at the Iowa State Fair, you would have heard them chirping.

    Just about then, some in the crowd suddenly came to life. Unfortunately for the candidate, they were hecklers, and they were charging the stage.”

    • Bill Press had John Nichols on this morning. Nichols said some outfit did a poll and 40% of Wisconsin voters didn’t know who Ryan was, and only 36% of those that did approved of him. He said Ryan’s district has no large cities, and no TV stations, and he’s been getting elected largely through just being the incumbent. So he might not even help Romney carry Wisconsin.

      The extra scrutiny of being the VP candidate could even result in him losing his district.

    • Looks like Paul Ryan ran into the townspeople today.
      Oh, there’s nothing halfway
      About the Iowa way to treat you,
      When we treat you
      Which we may not do at all.
      There’s an Iowa kind of special
      Chip-on-the-shoulder attitude.
      We’ve never been without.
      That we recall.

  27. Some Catholic lady was on Andrea Mitchell today saying that Catholic Paul Ryan will help with the evangelical vote. Apparently neither Andrea nor this lady realized that evangelicals don’t consider Catholics “real Christians”. And neither does Mitt Romney.

  28. Bernie Sanders was on The Ed Show right at the end, and I think it’s the first time I’ve seen him with his hair combed neatly! He always looks like he just rushed in out of the wind! ๐Ÿ˜€

  29. Cats with wings, corn dog days, pre-teen mothers, cherries on top, dog with a glued orifice, fiberglass fetishes, Yes it’s monday at the Zoo. Yipee!

  30. Raven, really like contemplative looking goat on your latest gravatar.

    Zooey , the spring green gravatar is very soothing to gaze upon.

    • The high school aged crew I’ve had for the last 8 weeks are whining they didn’t have a summer vacation.
      They have been paid well to come every day (most of them), do a minimum of actual thinking about what they’re doing, show little or no initiative, flirt, disrupt, text, listen to their iPods and throw up objection to any new idea.

      On second thought, except for being paid, I guess it has been a lot like school in their experience.

      • Yeah I remember those high school summers. At 2 bucks an hour wages, that’s what they got. Didn’t have the ability to text, scour the innertubes, listen to my songs downloaded, but I was able to bitch, and ditch. Actually mostly slept. Ah to be a teenager again. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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