Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Last Call For Yoga Inferno

So one Montana lawmaker wants to ban yoga pants in public because…I have no clue.

The Republican from Missoula said tight-fitting beige clothing could be considered indecent exposure under his proposal. 
“Yoga pants should be illegal in public anyway,” Moore said after the hearing.
Moore said he wouldn’t have a problem with people being arrested for wearing provocative clothing but that he’d trust law enforcement officials to use their discretion. 
He couldn’t be sure whether police would act on that provision or if Montana residents would challenge it. 
“I don’t have a crystal ball,” Moore said.

Can we ban stupid Republicans from making laws?

Seriously, "Well the cops might abuse this law but I don't have a crystal ball" is about the worst goddamn excuse I know of for making a law.  Doesn't this suggest your law is at best highly questionable and at worst patently unconstitutional?

Good job, Montana.

To Protect And Sever

Kansas Republican Gov. Sam Brownback continues to be the worst state chief executive in the nation, this week reversing by executive order civil rights protections for LGBTQ Kansans because...well he doesn't really have a good reason, does he?

In a move that shocked progressive advocates in Kansas, the state's Republican governor on Tuesday issued an executive order to remove discrimination protections for gay, lesbian and transgender state employees. 
State employees in Kansas can now legally be fired, harassed or denied a job for being gay or transgender, critics said. 
Gov. Sam Brownback said an 2007 executive order by Kathleen Sebelius, then the state's Democratic governor, went too far by not getting legislative approval to bar job discrimination for sexual orientation and gender identity.
Discrimination for state jobs in Kansas is forbidden for race, color, gender, religion, national origin, ancestry or age. Brownback said any expansion of such laws for LGBT employees should be done by the Legislature "and not through unilateral action." 
"This executive order ensures that state employees enjoy the same civil rights as all Kansans without creating additional ‘protected classes’ as the previous order did," Brownback said in a statement announcing the replacement of Sebelius' executive order with his own.

So no, Republicans are 100% okay with codifying bigotry and discrimination back into law whenever they can.  Speaking of that, why did Brownback not do this on his first day as Kansas governor in 2011?  He waited until his second term in order to reverse Kathleen Sebelius's order.  So for four years, Brownback didn't have a problem with it.

Only now he does.  Only now he feels like Kansas is better served by being able to fire state employees for being gay or trandgender,  Was he just completely unaware of the executive order?  I doubt it.  Sebelius signed the order in 2007, so for 8 years this was fine, including Brownback's entire first term.

Oh wait, maybe Brownback needs a Two-Minute Hate subject in order to distract Kansas Republicans from his incoming new taxes and massive cuts to schools and infrastructure to pay for his continuing scheme to cut taxes for the rich and for corporations.

Funny how that works out, huh.

Like I said, worst governor in the country.

Greek Fire: The Endgame, Con't.

Zee Germans are apparently quite through messing around with the Greek dancing around the issue, and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has all but dropped the hammer on Athens.

Speaking to reporters in Istanbul after a two-day meeting of finance chiefs from the Group of 20, Schaeuble said “it’s over” if Greece doesn’t want the final tranche of the current aid program. Greece’s creditors also “can’t negotiate about something new,” Schaeuble said. 
Greek government bonds had risen today for the first time in five days on optimism there might be room to move toward an agreement that will help ensure the nation isn’t left short of funds. That had come after Greece had offered compromises in a bid to push for a bridge plan to stave off a funding crunch and to buy time for negotiations to ease austerity demands.

Any accord, however, would require an easing of Germany’s stance in the standoff between Greece and its creditors over conditions attached to its 240 billion-euro ($272 billion) lifeline. An impasse risks leaving Greece without funding as of the end of this month, when its current bailout expires, and may put Europe’s most-indebted state’s euro membership in danger. 
Schaeuble damped expectations, saying euro region finance ministers meeting in Brussels tomorrow won’t negotiate a new program for the cash-strapped country as a program is already in place and was arrived at after “arduous” negotiations.
He also said media reports that the European Commission will give Greece six more months to reach an aid deal “has to be wrong” because he’s not aware of such a plan and the commission isn’t in charge of making such decisions. Schaeuble said he had discussed the rules of the aid programs at a meeting with his Greek counterpart Yanis Varoufakis in Berlin last week.


Take it or leave it, new Greek PM Alexey Tsipras.  Ball's in your court now, and Zee Germans have called Athens out to put their cards on the table and take the deal.  How will the Greeks respond?  Is there really a six-month reprieve in the works, or is it time for the Greeks to make a decision?

Austerity or Freedom, boys?



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