Wednesday, April 24, 2013

20 Questions

From, a challenge: 20 questions that liberals can't answer. What they actually mean is "20 questions liberals can answer but I'm going to plug my ears and not listen, or pick at little things and use that as a red herring to avoid the discussion," thus rendering any "debate" with these people little more productive than masturbation (but nowhere near as enjoyable). Since I have a bit of a masochistic streak and I enjoy beating on the strawmen army they pony up, I figured I would take a little swing at this garbage and see if maybe I can't clear the stink.

So, let's take a look at these 20 questions I'm not supposed to be able to answer.

1) A few days ago, we were hearing that the Boston Marathon bombers COULD BE conservative, which proved that the Right is evil. Now, when we know that the terrorists are Muslims, how can the same liberals be saying that it means nothing?
First thought: if you were doing any speculation or assuming anything about the Boston Bombers before there was any available information, or you were picking up scraps and running with them, you need to apologize. That's not something anyone, right or left, needs to be doing. Ergo, it doens't matter where you are on the spectrum, if you did that, you're in the wrong.

Second thought: Almost every instance of terrorism in this country, from Oklahoma City to the Atlanta Olympics and beyond, have been carried out by someone on the political Right. Whether they're an anti-choice fanatic who guns down a gynecologist in church on Sunday, a bomber for the terrorist organization Operation: Rescue, or just a mundane Liar for Jesus who ignores the fact that the greatest threat to a democracy lies from within, not within, and that threat is the political Right and the extremism that is breeding in that ideological cesspool, it was a logical assumption that the bomber would be on the right. I'm not justifying making any of these assumptions at all, since it wasn't something anyone should've been doing (in addition to being a spectacular example of just how critically every form of media utterly blew it), but when you look at this list and see that almost every terrorist attack since Oklahoma City and earlier has been orchestrated by a right-wing fanatic, it's a fair assumption, but not one that needs to be made since it just kickstarts the rumor mill, which doesn't need any help after a tragic disaster like that.

Hey, here's a question for you: In West, Texas dozens of people were killed and hundreds injured in a fertilizer plant that blew up due to poor regulatory practices and and corporate greed, in addition to the mindnumbingly stupid fact that Texas doesn't have zoning laws. More people died in this than in the Boston bombing - does this mean that the right wing is going to go after the people behind this: the wealthy industrialists and capitalists? Are you going to scream for more regulations, more government control, and zoning laws in Texas, to prevent future tragedies like this? Why is it that a bomb that kills 3 people and injures 180 people, done on purpose, deserves more attention and more scrutiny than a bomb that kills dozens, injures hundreds, and wipes out an entire town? Aren't they both just as bad?

So yes, I answered it, and I hit you with a rejoinder. I won't hold my breath.
2) If you believe we have a "right" to things like health care, food, shelter and a good education, then doesn't that also mean you believe we also have a right to force other people to unwillingly provide those things at gunpoint?
What the hell does this even mean? Are you talking about taxes - the things that gave you the opportunity to do what you do today? The things that pay for the infrastructure that put you at work, the things that pay for the education that got you that job, and the things that pay for the society that keeps you alive, so you're not ripped apart and killed by hordes of murderous people, because you've got scraps of food nobody else has? Are you seriously advocating that making you pay for everything you use, daily is theft? Really? How immature. Seriously, how immature are you? I grew up, I learned that taxes were a fact of life early on. I don't like having to pay for the wars and shit that Neo-cons keep getting us into, but I do anyway. I don't like having to pay for all the tax breaks the Christian churches get (and really, this needs to stop; tax them, and then go after those fuckers for back taxes, too). But I do. And I look at you, stomping your feet and holding your breath until you turn blue in the fucking face, like I see a toddler in the store, angry because they didn't the candy bar they wanted.

Without taxes, our society would go to hell. Literally, there would be nobody there to protect you from any people, since you probably wouldn't be able to afford the police, or even worse, there wouldn't be any police since nobody could get educated enough to be one, since there was no open education system for everyone. Without taxes, society becomes ruled by who ever is the strongest - and I guarantee your flabby white ass isn't nearly as strong as you think you are. Society would crumble to post-apocalyptic levels without taxes to support it - how do I know? I live in a city, deep in Third World America, where the tax base has almost completely vanished. While we pay taxes, we don't get what we pay for because there aren't enough of us to cover it - which is what you want, right? A volunteer system, so everyone else can pay them but you and you can still reap the benefits? There is almost no police presence; at last counting, we had 100,000 citizens and 8 police officers. The city could burn down (and has! Some parts are nothing but charred timber), and we'd have nobody there help since our fire department is even more dire straits than our police department There are parts of the city you don't want to be in during the daytime, much less of a night, and the roads - well, you spend more time driving in the median, since there are pot holes that will rip the front end of your car out if you hit them, which makes getting to work really fun and shipping goods by road really practical, right? Stores and shops are closing because they can't get the protection they need or they don't have the customer base, laying people off, who can't get on unemployment and can't find jobs, which leads to fewer shoppers, which leads to more stores closing, which creates a vicious positive feedback cycle. This impacts education; we cram more and more kids into a classroom, resulting in those students receiving a worse education, chasing away potential high tech jobs and resulting in the next generation of unemployed, disenfranchised youth who commit crimes, get tangled in gang warfare, or just die young because poverty breeds stress. This drives down the average life expectancy, which drives up independent health care costs, to the point where people can't afford them anymore, so more people wind up in emergency, taxing the system and forcing you to pay anyway, every time you'd use their services (since we're assuming that the hospitals don't just shove it off on the city). Is this where you want to live? Is this the kind of country you want? Explain to me where I'm wrong. Go ahead, and I'll wait.

Why don't you just put down Rand's little fantasy book and join us here in reality, huh? Most people grow out of that shit by the time they're goddamn teenagers, and here you are, an adult...
3) How can you simultaneously want a big government that will make decisions that have an enormous impact on the lives of every American while also saying that the character and morals of our politicians don't matter?
Excellent question directed to the Strawliberal over here, but I'll thank you to note that I'm sitting a little further to the left, in a region known as "reality." You should try living here once in a while, it can be really nice, even when people like you are trying to fuck it up.

Who ever said that morality and character don't matter? Who has ever said that, huh? I don't doubt that someone, somewhere said that, but seriously, I don't think you'll find a large population of liberals who believe that. Most of us do care about character and morals - which is why we voted against Romney-Ryan, McCain-Palin, and Bush-Cheney.
4) What exactly is the "fair share" of someone's income that he’s earned that he should be able to keep?
Well, seeing as how I paid something like 1,000 dollars out in taxes of my gross income - ~17,000 dollars for a whole year, whoopie! - and Wal-Mart paid none, anything would be close. Oh, and you don't get to whine about the tax code when your side does everything they can to make it not work.
5) Why is it that time and time again, revenue paid to the treasury has GONE UP after we've cut taxes?
Got any facts to back that up? Like, numbers, or something to that effect? Because just about everything I've found says otherwise.

6) Are you pro-choice or pro-abortion? If it's pro-choice, do you feel people should be able to choose to have an assault weapon, what kind of light bulb they use in their house or whether they'd like to put their Social Security funds into a private retirement account?

Aww shit, here we go again.

I am pro-choice; pro-choice in allowing the woman to choose whether or not she wants an abortion right up until the child is born. Why? Because actuality precedes potentiality. We can agree that the mother is an actual human being, ergo, her wants, needs, and desires must be taken into account over those of the fetus, who is not an actual human.

The other two points have nothing to do with this question. Like, nothing at all. Choice is not something to considered; no, you don't have the choice to own an assault rifle anymore than you have the choice to own a nuclear warhead or an attack helicopter. And if you believe an armed society is a polite one, why is your side fighting so hard to keep Iran from being a nuclear state? I thought an armed society was a polite one. Clearly, giving everyone on the planet nuclear warheads will make our planet a more stable one, right? If that's not true, then why do you think that allowing everyone the possibility to own an assault rifle is smarter?

Because that's my environment you're fucking up, jack. That's why; with that one little light bulb, you're draining more electricity, and pumping more coal smoke into the atmosphere, ruining it for our future generations.

Nobody's saying that you can't have your own private retirement fund. I have my own private retirement fund - even though I don't think I'll ever get to retire in my life, since your side is working so damn hard to make that an unreachable goal. But everyone pays into social security, since it's cheaper if there are more people paying into it than if there are less.

Are you pro-life or are you pro-forced birth? Do you feel like a woman's life should be as a slave to a child she never wanted because she was never informed of the consequences, since your side refuses to allow half-way decent sex education in this country? If abortions were carried out with an assault rifle, would you agree with them then? Why do you want to ruin the environment, or why do you think it's your right to ruin the environment when all of us have to share it? You don't get your own little spot of the atmosphere you can foul up, no matter how much the rest of us might wish.
7) If corporations are so awful, greedy and bad for the country, then shouldn't we be celebrating when they decide to close their plants here and move overseas?
Because they're awful and greedy because they pack up and move oversees, and it just serves to prove our point?

Because they're awful and greedy when they're given pens by our legislator and allowed to write the regulations that they often don't even follow? (see: West, Texas).

Because they're awful and they're greedy when they refuse to take care of their workers, constantly focus on the bottom line, and at the end of the day, destroy themselves and put thousands out of work. Or when the abuse the environment that the rest of us have to share. Or when they cut corners on their products because there wasn't enough regulations and they put the rest of us at risk. Or when they buy politicians and create SuperPACs, which exist for the sole purpose giving everyone the finger while using all of the existing infrastructure in society that they no longer pay for.

But because you're busy worshiping the Capitalist Golden Calf, I don't think you'd see that.
8) How can liberal economists like Paul Krugman be right when they claim that our economy isn't doing well because we aren't spending enough money when we're already running massive, unsustainable deficits and spending is going up every year?
Part of a growing society is spending more to help support that society. When you try to cut back on that, then the economy slumps - especially a consumer-based economy, which tends to require these things called consumers, which, as you may or may not know, are people who have money. If they don't have money and they're not employed, either in government work or elsewhere, they don't spend their money. And the rich don't count, since they don't spend money - they shove it away in tax havens overseas, costing us billions of dollars each year.

And our deficit is one of the safest in the world to invest in; before the TEA Party started playing games, we had a AAA credit rating. Now, because of their shit and political theater, we're down to a AA, but we're still one of the strongest debts in the world. You deficit hawks worry too much, but, like everything else with you hyperpartisans, it's only when the guy on the opposite side of the aisle is in power.
9) If Republicans don’t care about the poor, why do studies consistently show that they give more to charity than Democrats do?
There's a lot of crap in the link that they gave, which is why I didn't keep it. They linked to a conservative who linked to an older conservative. As the political garbage chute, which also fisked this thing said,
There are all kinds of reasons that studies like this are idiotic, but first and foremost, it doesn’t take into account those who give anonymously. Secondly, the scope with which that study was conducted was quite large in terms of what “charitable donations” consists of. Donating to a church doesn’t exactly equate to donating to AIDS research, when much of what gets donated to churches goes towards operating the church. It’s bullshit, in other words, to claim that either side gives more to charity because thankfully most people aren’t pretentious and self-involved so much that they wear t-shirts depicting how much money they gave to charity in the previous tax year.
I'd also like to add the liberals do something similar; we pay our taxes without kvetching, which has a larger net impact on society than giving money to some goofy church in BFE where the pastor pockets half of it and then spends the rest of it on who knows what. Frankly a donation to a church is wasted money; I'd rather take that money and pay taxes and things like roads, education, police, fire, and other social services for it.
10) Give us a ballpark estimate: If something doesn't change dramatically, how long do you think it will be until we have an economic crash in this country similar to the one we're seeing in Greece or Cyprus?
Well, you seem to misunderstand what's happening in both countries. First of all, there was no effort to level the playing field between the countries that joined the EU and attempted to match currencies; Germany had a stronger economy than either country, and Greece was rife with banking scams, similar to what happened here, that's nearly destroying that country. Germany doesn't want to ease up and devalue their currency, forcing Greece and other poorer countries to suffer austerity cuts in order to keep up with Germany (this is a highly parsed explanation; I may have European readers who can explain this better than I can or correct anything I get wrong; feel free to).

But back to the question - we're not far off unless we start cutting defense spending and jumping taxes on the upper class, who are damn determined not to pay their share for the society they abuse on a regular basis.
11) Since we "all agree" with the idea that our level of deficit spending is "unsustainable," what would be wrong with permanently freezing federal spending at the current level until we balance the budget by increasing revenue, cutting spending or some combination thereof?
What? Are you proposing a total pay freeze for everyone that works in the military? They're part of the government, too, and they're part of federal spending. A freeze on federal spending denies them their pay, it cuts off their benefits, and it undermines any attempts to help them once they leave the army. I thought you supported the military?

Because if you cut spending, you cut people's medicare and medicate, which means that real people are going to be really dead (not that you care)? Because if you cut spending, you'll reduce the money that goes to research? Because you'll be freezing education spending, causing schools to fall apart even faster than they are now? Because you'll be triggering a massive freeze on the federal police, resulting in huge gaps that will leave us open for any outside threat? Because it's a really stupid idea - the kind of stupid that could only be proposed by someone who swallowed Atlas Shrugged as the Third Testament of the Bible and thinks that asshole sociopaths like John Galt are heroes?
12) If we change God's definition of marriage to make gay marriage legal, then what's the logical argument against polygamy or even adult siblings supposed to be?
Fuck your god's definition; he doesn't exist.

And there are none. As long as there's consent and it makes someone happy, why should it be the responsibility for the Conservative Nanny State to stop them?
13) In a world where people can easily change states and can, with a bit more difficulty, permanently move to other roughly comparable parts of the globe, do you really think it's feasible over the long haul to have a tax system where 86% of the income taxes are paid by the top 25% of the income earners?
Because what we really need to do is aim for the bottom and compete with developing world.

That's why it becomes the job of the government to create new jobs, while reaching out and helping to create unions and supporting worker's rights in other countries, and the supporting the governments that support them, and strengthening the international courts, so they can bring these corporations to justice when they violate the laws.
14) If you win a lawsuit that's filed against you, why should you have to pay huge legal bills when you did nothing wrong while the person who filed the suit pays no penalty for wrongly accusing you?
To quote PGC: Because not every lawsuit is brought maliciously or without warrant, that’s why.
15) How can you oppose putting murderers to death and be fine with killing innocent children via abortion?
Actuality outweighs potentiality. The actual human here is the mother; her wants and needs must be taken into consideration before the potential human. And they're not children, they're fetuses, or embryos, or zygotes - you whine and bitch about how liberals don't understand the difference between an "assault weapon" and whatever else, ergo we can't talk about gun control (Ima wavin' my herrin'), so here's a new rule, more salient to the discussion than your smokescreen argument: you can't talk about abortion unless you understand the difference between a fetus, embryo, and zygote, and you can tell the difference between them and a child.

When you can prove to me 100% beyond any shadow of a doubt that the murderer is guilty, then we'll talk about the death penalty. Not in the court of popular opinion, not on Twitter, not on Reddit, but in a court of law, prove, 100% they are guilt. You can't do that. Even if you could mind read, you couldn't prove 100% because of how human memories are encoded, stored, and then revised at a later date by the brain. There is no way to prove 100% that they are guilt. Ergo, they may be innocent. I don't want to be responsible for killing an innocent person, do you?

What's more, how can you call yourself "pro-life" when poverty and a lack of healthcare kill thousands each year, including children, and shorten the lifespan of many more people? I thought life was sacrosanct? How can you call yourself "pro-life" when you support empire-building wars that kill people overseas, removing government regulations that put thousands in the line of danger (i.e., West, Texas - yes, I'm hammering this home until you get it), and supporting rhetoric that causes individuals like Scott Roeder to go out and shoot doctors like George Tiller, murdering them? How can you pro-life when you want to destroy the environment through oil drilling, when you want to waste the air through coal plants, and when you'd rather destroy the future by smashing social safety nets and freeze Medicare and Medicate, killing thousands, if not more? You don't look very pro-life from here, bub. In fact, I think "forced birth" is more accurate.
16) A minimum wage raises salaries for some workers at the cost of putting other workers out of jobs entirely. What's the acceptable ratio for that? For every 10 people who get a higher salary, how many are you willing to see lose their jobs?
First off, where's your proof that raising minimum wage puts people out of work? Last time I checked, California had the highest minimum wage in the nation and, as a result, one of the lowest unemployment rates. Why is this so hard to understand  - I'll go slow and use small words:

To have a consumer (those are people - that is, human beings - that spend money to buy things) based economy (that is, a system by which the government, or the people of the nation through their elected officials, monitors - okay, I'm going to throw a few big words your way, so hold on - fiscal and monetary policies), you must have consumers to spend money. The more money you give consumers, the more money they have to spend. The wealthy are not consumers. They store their money away, acting as drains on the economy.

Not all companies understand this. They want to follow the Law of Iron Wages, which hurts everyone. Thus, someone needs to step in, slap some sense into these stupid bastards, and force them to do the sensible thing. That's the American People, through the will of our elected officials (since, as a democracy, we are the government.) This is called a "minimum wage", and it exists to keep people out of poverty and keep people spending money.
17) The earth has been warming and cooling for thousands of years with temperature drops and increases that are much larger than the ones we've seen over the last century. Since we can't adequately explain or model those changes, what makes us think we can say with any sort of confidence that global warming is being caused by man?
You're a fucking liar.
18) We live in a world where people have more choices than ever before in music, entertainment, careers, news sources and what to do with their time. Shouldn't government mirror that trend by moving towards federalism and states’ rights instead of centralizing more and more power in Washington, DC?
What does music have to do with state's rights? That's a hell of a non sequitor. State's rights is little more than a euphemism for slavery, so I'd be careful throwing that around. Besides, last time we gave the states rights to enforce federal laws, like voting laws, we wound up with members of the KKK getting elected to government positions and states barring African Americans from voting. This recent attack on voting rights is only further proof that the states are not equipped to handle any more power granted to them by the feds.
19) If people in the middle class aren't willing to pay enough in taxes to cover the government services that they use because they don't think it's worth the money, shouldn't we prune back government to a level people do feel comfortable paying for in taxes?
Uh, no? Go up to my point above about how I don't like covering warfare with my taxes but I do anyway. It's part of living in a society. Grow up.
20) If firms can get by with paying women 72 cents on the dollar for the same quality of work as men, then why don't we see any firms with all female labor forces using those lower costs to dominate the marketplace?
I... what? So you're saying that the 72 cents on the dollar that women are getting cheated regularly doesn't exist because female firms aren't using these lower costs to dominate the marketplace? What kind of stupid shit is this? Here, GAO says you're full of shit. The point is that there are human begins who are being robbed, basically. They're being robbed, and while the corporations and their bosses rob them for their hard work, you're going to sit there and whine and bitch about how paying taxes on your full income, because you're  man is "thievery"? That's some tremendous chutzpah. Seriously, that's some huge chutzpah.

So there we have it. All 20 answered, where applicable.

Was it any surprise that they were all incredibly stupid and based on lies and straw-men?

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