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  1. What Palin Reads

    I never said she was "near totally ignorant" of Supreme Court history. What's garbled and speculative about what I wrote? Clearly Palin had no idea of the ramifications of her answer.
  2. What Palin Reads

    I can point you in the direction of many corrupt Republicans at the state and local levels. Democrats, as a rule, run large cities, but Republicans, as a rule, run surrounding suburbs. As a rule, surrounding suburbs tend to be very corrupt politically. I'd be hard pressed to find an honest Democrat or Republican in village halls or the general assembly. In the Chicago area, Tribune columnist John Kass coined the term "Combine" to describe the unholy alliance between the Democratic machine that dominates Cook County and the Republican machines that dominate the 5 surrounding counties.
  3. Intervention is Incomprehensible

    First, what did he say to Dr. Peikoff? Second, why should we believe what Greenspan said to Dr. Peikoff, and even if we do, why should we believe that Greenspan was right that he averted "all kinds of disasters"? I'm looking at the landscape in 2008 and it's really hard to see how he averted all kinds of disasters. Also, lest we think the Left isn't going to try to pin Greenspan on Ayn Rand's legacy, they already have: (all this is from a quick search of Google News with the words "Greenspan" and "Ayn" - try it yourself). The sad thing is, this time, people will actually pay attention to this criticism-by-reverse-association.
  4. What Palin Reads

    But consider her response to Couric's question on Roe v. Wade. She admitted she believed the Constitution guarantees a right of privacy, apparently not realizing that a) it doesn't, B ) that mythical constitutional right forms the basis of Roe v. Wade, and c) most importantly, the Constitution shouldn't guarantee a "right" of privacy because it isn't a negative right, but is instead a "positive right" of the type that the left constantly invents to justify another government intervention. Consider her denunciation of Kelo in that context. Was she so passionate because that's what she truly believes, or just because she's afraid of someone taking her property? Plus, she was a mayor. Did she ever apply or threaten eminent domain to advance her pet projects or a local business? I don't know the answer to that, but it's worth looking into before we conclude that she truly denounces Kelo.
  5. What Palin Reads

    To borrow a phrase from the Gipper, I didn't leave the Republican Party. The Republican Party left me. I grew up in a GOP-leaning family, and even after reading Atlas Shrugged (in 1995, right about the time the 104th Congress had just come to power), I still harbored hopes that they would live up to their stated ideals. By the 1996 election, I was pretty disillusioned with them, but still cast a reluctant vote for Dole. Gore truly scared me, and I couldn't figure out why people didn't see much difference between him and Bush II. In late 2001, I thought I'd made the right choice. However, I became skeptical once the focus shifted to Iraq. Then Enron hit, and I saw the Bush administration's lousy defense of capitalism (the only one who even came close to getting it right was Paul O'Neill, whom the administration shoved out) and capitulation on Sarbanes-Oxley. Then "Homeland Security" became increasingly onerous. Then he nominated Greenspan yet again. Then Congress got wrapped up in the same kind of scandals that the Democrats had gotten into in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Finally, I'd had enough, but was still willing to give the Republican candidate a shot in 2008 depending on who it was. McCain/Giuliani/Romney weren't much of a choice, but I figured I could tolerate one of them. Then McCain picked Sarah Palin when there were many other women* he could have chosen who are equally philosophically consistent as Palin claims to be, while being far more savvy (Hutchison and Dole come to mind). * - Make no mistake about it, McCain wanted a woman to "shake things up" and reclaim the "maverick" mantle.
  6. What Palin Reads

    Another point, that I think is being lost in the whole debate over whether "Democrats" or "Republicans" lie more is this. Remember Tip O'Neill's quip that all politics is local. How many in Congress are members of their political parties not out of ideology, but simply because that's the party in power in their area? Just about anyone aspiring to a position of political power, especially Congress, where I live would run as a Democrat. Move that person a few miles west of me to DuPage County, and he or she would run as a Republican. Why? Mostly because the two parties have consolidated their bases of power and have gerrymandered districts to maintain the status quo. There isn't much difference between the two parties at the local level except whether the candidates have a "D" or an "R" after their names. A lot of municipalities (Chicago, for instance) have done away with the two-party charade and simply hold "non-partisan" primaries, though it still exists in nominal form at the county level. It's this structure that explains why Dan Lipinski, a social and fiscal conservative who voted against both versions of the bailout bill, is a "Democrat," while Mark Kirk, who proudly advertises that "he stood up to President Bush" to fight for an environmental bill, is a "Republican."
  7. What Palin Reads

    True. I was simply following the editorial style of Thales in my reply.
  8. What Palin Reads

    Also, what about Thales' suggestion that Democrats lie as their main means of survival, but Republicans don't, and only lie "occasionally"? What evidence is there to prove those assertions?
  9. What Palin Reads

    I'm not asking him to prove a negative. Stated otherwise, my assumption is that a politician is probably lying to me about future promises and behaviors unless he or she establishes a pattern of actually following through those promises and behaviors. Can Thales present evidence of such a pattern?
  10. Intervention is Incomprehensible

    You are on to something, Phil O. My question to the Forum is why Greenspan gets the full force of your wrath, but not the politicians, Republican and Democrat, who praised Greenspan as a hero for 17 years? Don't Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II, along with the Senates (Republican-controlled and Democratic-controlled) who appointed and reconfirmed him 5 times get the blame for keeping him in such a position of power?
  11. Evidence for that last point, Betsy? I'm not connecting facts to conclusions at random by mere association, at whim, or by accident. Looking at 25 YEARS of experience does not a hasty generalization make. Over and over and over again the Republicans say one thing and do the exact opposite. Tell me how you have reached the conclusion that they are still the lesser evil and not just the wolf in sheep's clothing? What is your understanding of the ideas of the Republican politicians that you reluctantly vote for that makes you conclude that, as bad as they are, they are better than the alternative? I'd really like to know so I can learn to distinguish degrees of evil as precisely as you can. From my perspective, about the only thing good the Republicans ever do is cut taxes. But they don't "get" the point of cutting taxes and then spend like drunken sailors, leaving future generations to pay the tab through higher taxes or inflation. I've mentioned many times a series of laws and thousands of pages of regulations that THEY proposed and forced upon us. I have thought long and hard about how the leadership of an entire political party supposedly grounded upon less government intrusion and individualism could possibly allow as much bad legislation to pass, and the more I think about it, the more I come to the conclusion that either they arrive in Washington corrupt, or because of their weak philosophical grounding, they easily succumb to the corrupting influences of power.
  12. Intervention is Incomprehensible

    Your last sentence is exactly my point. A lot of people voted for conservatives because they wanted tax cuts not knowing the reason why they should want tax cuts (i.e. smaller, less intrusive government). They got tax cuts, all right, but at the expense of a huge debt that the Federal Reserve seems bent on inflating out of existence. Now they are looking at their 401K statements from 9/30 (which are overstated by about 15-20% right now), seeing the Dow below 8700, and thinking that this is what "capitalism" did to them. All of this happened while a Republican was president, and during 6 years out of 8 when his party had control of Congress. They might think back to the days of Clinton and conclude that things were "better" before "we let deregulation run amok."
  13. Death to Islam!

    Yes. The Amish and the Mennonites reject modern science. People can do what they want so long as they aren't harming me, but I don't need to approve of it, and I certainly don't approve of their religion. We'd be better off if it went away.
  14. What Palin Reads

    That's not the right standard to hold politicians to. What evidence do you have that she is telling the truth?
  15. Intervention is Incomprehensible

    If Betsy's recollection from the other thread is correct, Ayn Rand's opposition to Reagan was based more on his role in weakening Ford than it was a repudiation of her views that in general, the Republicans were the lesser of two evils. I don't know enough about Greenspan's role in the Ford Administration to know whether or not Rand should have dissociated herself with him. However, he "saved" Social Security and ran the Fed after her death, so it's impossible to know for certain how seeing such a close associate do such things would have affected her views on the Republican party, in general. However, I think it is entirely possible she would have concluded that the American economy's regression to Socialism would be just as rapid under Republican rule as under Democratic rule. At that point, other concepts start becoming more important. Certainly atheism is more tolerated in left-leaning circles than right-leaning circles. Science, while misused, also gets a little more respect from Democrats than from the right-wing, provided it comes to the "right" conclusions. My point is not to defend Democrats, but to point out that if an Objectivist reaches a conclusion that the Republicans and Democrats are a wash on economic issues, who is the "lesser evil" is a very different question.