Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Last Call For YayTeam Torture!

So, how did America react to the Senate torture report?   Well, I certainly got a chuckle out of Fox News host Andrea Tantaros proclaiming that torture made America "awesome" and all, but the problem is that's exactly what America thinks.

Six in 10 Americans say the CIA’s treatment of suspected terrorists was justified, more than half think it produced important, unique intelligence – and 52 percent say it was wrong for the Senate Intelligence Committee to issue a report suggesting otherwise
Those results in a new ABC News/Washington Post poll underscore the public’s sense of risk from the threat of terrorism, and specifically the extent to which majorities support controversial measures to combat it. Indeed just two in 10 flatly rule out torture in future cases. 
A plurality, 49 percent, believes the CIA did in fact torture suspected terrorists; 38 percent think its actions did not amount to torture, with the rest unsure. Regardless, the public by a broad 59-31 percent also says the agency’s interrogation actions were justified. 
One reason is that 53 percent think these interrogations produced important information that could not have been obtained any other way. Just 31 percent reject this claim, a focus of the recent debate.

So yeah, solid majorities in favor of "enhanced interrogation techniques" because they work, and got us intelligence we could not have otherwise gotten, and that the Senate Democrats should never have released the report at all.

47% found the report unfair to the CIA, and 57% think there should be no charges against those responsible (only 1 in 3 want to see prosecution.)  Hell, even 46% of self-identified liberals and 46% of registered Democrats believe the CIA actions were justified.

The majority of the country is no different from Dick Cheney in this respect.  Some 13 years after 9/11, we're still a nation of bloodthirsty monsters. Politically this issue is a loser for team D and they know it, and you'd better believe we'll hear over the next two years how those weak, Neville Chamberlain liberals should never be allowed to be in charge of foreign policy anymore.

Yay Team Torture!  America is firmly a charter member, and it doesn't look like that's going to change anytime soon.

It Was A Library Berate, The Kind You Find In A Second-Hand State

The Tea Party of Kentucky will not be satisfied until the Bluegrass State is a smoking wreck of stupidity, and their next target is to destroy county library systems across the state with a massive lawsuit that, if successful, would force libraries to refund millions in tax dollars to taxpayers and shut their doors thanks to a 50-year old law.

Most of the state's public library systems could be forced to roll back their tax rates and collectively refund millions of dollars to local taxpayers under a pair of lawsuits heard Monday by the Kentucky Court of Appeals. 
The suits, filed by taxpayers in Kenton and Campbell counties, argue that many library districts have improperly raised taxes for decades without the 51 percent voter approval required by a previously obscure 1964 state law. 
"We the people own the library. Every dollar spent in that library comes from us. So we should have a voice," said Charlie Coleman, a Tea Party activist elected last month as a Campbell County commissioner. 
Circuit judges in Northern Kentucky sided with the plaintiffs in April 2013. The Kenton and Campbell county libraries appealed, warning of calamitous budget cuts if the suits succeeded. 
Making their case Monday, the libraries' attorneys said a separate law, House Bill 44, enacted in 1979, was meant to include most libraries among the special taxing districts that are allowed to raise taxes by an amount that increases revenue up to 4 percent each year without voter approval. Libraries were advised to follow HB 44 by state revenue officials in Frankfort. 
"No one objected to this for 30 years. Not one member of the General Assembly said to a library district, 'Hey, you're doing this the wrong way!'" Jeffrey Mando, attorney for the Campbell County library, told the three-judge appellate panel. 
"To now say to the libraries, 'You've gotta go back ...' That would be devastating," Mando said. "More than a 50 percent funding loss for the Campbell County library system. An equal or greater funding loss for other libraries around the state. And these library districts did nothing but operate in good faith."

It doesn't matter.  Government that works has to be government that is destroyed.  Forget the fact that libraries are links to continuing education and internet access for the poor in the state, that's exactly why they have to be shut down.  And yes, these people are looking to destroy Kentucky's libraries over a technicality, and they'll get the judges to sign off on it.

So when libraries across the state are shut down, it'll be a victory for the people, right?

Stupid poor people, get your own access to information and stop being poor!

Read more here:

It Was My Clever Plan All Along

Tennessee's GOP governor, Bill Haslam, says he will call a special state legislative session in order to come up with a plan to expand Medicaid.

In a major policy move, Gov. Bill Haslam has announced the new Insure Tennessee plan, a two-year pilot program to provide health care coverage to tens of thousands of Tennesseans who currently don't have access to health insurance or have limited options. 
The plan would be leveraged with federal dollars, said Haslam, who has been working on a Medicaid expansion plan that could gain approval from both federal officials and the Republican-dominated General Assembly. 
"We made the decision in Tennessee nearly two years ago not to expand traditional Medicaid," Haslam said. "This is an alternative approach that forges a different path and is a unique Tennessee solution. This plan leverages federal dollars to provide health care coverage to more Tennesseans, to give people a choice in their coverage, and to address the cost of health care, better health outcomes and personal responsibility. 
"Our approach is responsible and reasonable, and I truly believe that it can be a catalyst to fundamentally changing health care in Tennessee," Haslam said.

If this sounds like Haslam's having his "It's better than Obamacare because we fixed it!" cake and eating it too, it's because he is.  But he still has to convince Tennessee's heavily GOP legislature to sign off on the plan.

Many federal Republicans who oppose the Affordable Care Act say expansion is an unfunded mandate from the federal government. For weeks Haslam has said it will be challenging to find a plan that both federal health officials and state lawmakers both support. As recently as Thursday, Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey said he thinks Haslam could "sell" the General Assembly on expansion, but he doubted whether the "Obama administration" would approve any plan that could make it through the legislature.

So it'll be Obama's fault if the plan doesn't pass muster, and Tennessee can say "Well, we tried to expand Medicaid, but mean ol' Obama wouldn't let us."

Very clever, and it's why I think this plan is going nowhere fast.


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