Friday assorted links

by on February 12, 2016 at 11:45 am in Uncategorized | Permalink

1 Jeff R. February 12, 2016 at 12:15 pm

There is no person in America who has been subject to such constant, withering public dissection. Tens of thousands of words have been devoted to sneering at her hairstyles. She’s been jeered at for her laugh, her wrinkles, her ankles, her clothes. The entire planet knows that her husband cheated on her. The media proclaims, over and over again, that people simply don’t like her (though she was recently voted the most admired woman in the world for a record 20th time). Of course she has trouble letting down her guard!

I still don’t know what, if any, distinction there is between mood affiliation and good ol’ fashioned motivated reasoning, but either way, that was sad. This is why women should abstain from politics.

2 anon February 12, 2016 at 12:23 pm

I think the key sentence is the one with “dour pragmatism” in it, and that the real mood affiliation has to do with avoiding that theme.

3 dearieme February 12, 2016 at 12:30 pm

I wouldn’t myself be in rush to vote for a crook and a traitor, irrespective of her lack of a sunny disposition.

4 anon February 12, 2016 at 12:45 pm

Some people voted for Nixon because they took a smart crook over a dumb optimist(*). I suppose someone could have written just the same sort of article then, without the distracting feminism.

* – I was give this justification by a Nixon voter

5 JWatts February 12, 2016 at 6:54 pm

“Some people voted for Nixon because they took a smart crook over a dumb optimist…”

Well that bodes well for Hillary.

6 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:21 pm

Did he say he would have voted for Nixon again after Watergate?

7 Lord Action February 12, 2016 at 3:22 pm

He was talking about Hillary Clinton.

8 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 3:56 pm

I know. I understand that some people would like to paint her as a run of the mill uncorrigible career criminal over her choice of email server or getting paid for speaking gigs … but traitor? Really? Traitor?

Deariemie is not stupid. I’m curious to understand from a non-Foxite how she can be seen as a traitor. I mean, the ideological consistency is quite pure, but I don’t recall deariemie saying outright stupid or factually incorrect things.

9 Lord Action February 12, 2016 at 4:03 pm

FWIW, I was joking. I don’t believe she is a traitor either.

10 derek February 12, 2016 at 4:22 pm

Remember the up and coming cabinet minister in early Harper government who left his foreign affairs briefing papers in a briefcase somewhere and it ruined his political career. Rightly so.

Canadians like you make me ashamed. We have a rigorous standard of ethical behavior for politicians. Please don’t besmirch our global reputation.

11 msgkings February 12, 2016 at 4:38 pm

@derek: That’s swell about Canada, but how does that make H. Clinton a traitor? She is pretty shady, that’s not at all the same thing. The left used to call W. a traitor too, and it was just as stupid when they did it.

12 Lord Action February 12, 2016 at 5:24 pm

I suppose I view the insecure server for classified information as akin to a senior manager rejecting two-factor authorization because it’s inconvenient. It’s stupid and selfish and short-sighted, but it’s not treason. She thought security wasn’t that important for her. She didn’t deliberately hand files to the Chinese.

It’s also not too far from the John Deutch story, and Clinton (the other one) pardoned him: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_M._Deutch

13 JB February 12, 2016 at 2:34 pm

I’d put that statement as “obviously true and ought to be inconsequential to the voting decision” rather than “motivated reasoning.”

Of course Hillary is the most overanalyzed and pettily criticized public figure in American politics today, and of course that has had an impact on her self-presentation. Also, of course that shouldn’t affect your decision to vote for or against her one whit, especially given her actual substantive behavior and clear policy positions.

14 A Definite Beta Guy February 12, 2016 at 3:15 pm

It’s not like there are ONLY people tearing your down. There’s a huge portion of the nation that adores Hillary Clinton FAR more than she deserves.

Sure, politics is sport, but unless you are the LA Clippers, SOMEONE likes you.

15 Billy Crystal February 12, 2016 at 3:25 pm

The hell you say!

16 Jeff R. February 12, 2016 at 5:44 pm

The first part is obviously true; what makes it motivated reasoning is that she uses this as an explanation for why HRC isn’t a more talented politician. Strip it down a bit and it’s an obvious non-sequitur: “people say lots of mean and critical things about her; that’s why she can’t give very good stump speeches.”

17 Noumenon72 February 12, 2016 at 8:03 pm

I think the premise they supply fits right in the middle there: “people say lots of mean and critical things about her; that keeps her from letting down her guard; that’s why she can’t give very good stump speeches.”

18 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:22 pm

You have to let down your guard to give stump speeches? Really?

19 Chase February 13, 2016 at 12:55 am

Poor ole Hil. What could she have done to avoid all the scorn? It’s not like her relentless ambition has led her to put herself as square as she was able in the public spotlight for, oh, her whole life.

Seriously, that sentiment is such garbage. Spare me.

20 Floccina February 13, 2016 at 11:10 pm

clear policy positions.

Really?

21 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:20 pm

How does someone who actually acknowledges the Democrats have moved to the left remain this nuts?

22 Kevin Erdmann February 12, 2016 at 12:19 pm

#2: Isn’t there an old saw about things coming in groups of 3? I hear there is a big long book coming out soon about how urban housing constraints explain both Picketty’s income inequality problem and Gordon’s growth problem.

I guess I need to get typing. 🙂

23 Edward Burke February 12, 2016 at 12:43 pm

#6. Requisite specificity, per favore: Chinese-American students are turning to Christianity, or Chinese-American students are turning to Protestantism?

24 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 3:12 pm

What leads you to classify these as two separate groups? Are protestants not a subset of Christians?

25 Edward Burke February 12, 2016 at 4:01 pm

I can only construe Protestantism as a decadent Christianism. Since Protestants don’t subscribe to sacramental realism, they have no access to Eucharistic communion: with the deficient ecclesiology, Mariology, pneumatology, Christology, and theology proper that result from that modest oversight, they’re left with comparatively useless sentimental moralism and vapid God-talk.

26 msgkings February 12, 2016 at 4:40 pm

The nonreligious would, of course, call all forms of Christianity and every other religion as “useless sentimental moralism and vapid God-talk”

27 JWatts February 12, 2016 at 6:55 pm

“they’re left with comparatively useless sentimental moralism and vapid God-talk.”

Yep, that’s what I was going for.

28 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:33 pm

hahahha

29 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 12:22 am

Ah, one of the “we’re the real Christians/Muslims/etc. and the rest are fakes” sort of situations.

Enjoy the prospect of heaven.

30 Edward Burke February 13, 2016 at 9:10 am

I cite the formal, historical deviations of Protestantism from Catholic Christianism. Just as I said, Protestantism has in fact self-marginalized from Catholic Christianism (that is: the Catholic Church, the only Church around when the faith was being born), and without an episcopacy and a priesthood to confect and administer Eucharistic participation, Protestants leave themselves out of communion with the Church, and formal deformations of the faith (including whatever Christology they laud) are inevitable. That America became the dumping ground for sectarian European Protestantism was no complete accident, surely.

(My Catholicism is of the lapsed variety, btw.)

31 prognostication February 13, 2016 at 10:21 am

The idea that the Catholic Church is “the only Church around when the faith was being born,” although I know it is what the Catholic Church claims, is hard to accept if you don’t have a dog in the fight. The primacy of Rome wasn’t even formally established until the fourth century at the Council of Nicaea. In what way was a Christianity where the Bishop of Rome (aka the Pope) wasn’t the primary authority Catholicism? And yes, I know Catholics have a doctrinal answer for this, but try to put yourself in the shoes of someone who isn’t Catholic and see if you still find it satisfactory.

32 Kevin P February 13, 2016 at 2:00 am

Neither, in fact. The article is not about Chinese Americans, but about Chinese Chinese students studying in the US.

33 Thor February 12, 2016 at 12:50 pm

Dang, I’d love to read the Ip, but it is gated…

34 anon February 12, 2016 at 12:55 pm

The WSJ gives us the Google work around. They know it is there. Their own columnists refer to it on Twitter. They test-closed it last week. It is open again. So, go ahead, it is with their implied permission.

35 Matt February 12, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Alas, the google work around does not seem to work today.

36 BC February 12, 2016 at 8:39 pm

I have had intermittent trouble with the google work-around as well. On chrome, some combination of deleting cookies, using incognito mode for the google search, and/or opening the WSJ page in incognito mode seems to work, but I can’t figure out the sequence of steps that works consistently. The WSJ should stop interfering with our natural right to get around their paywall. 🙂

37 rayward February 12, 2016 at 1:04 pm

1. The big rise in social welfare spending occurred when GWB was president and has been flat since GWB went back to Texas to paint cats. It rose not because GWB wanted to be generous to the poor but because the poor did so poorly while he was president. Last year the authors of a research paper concluded that the termination of unemployment benefits at the end of 2013 caused the surge in employment in 2014. That the authors failed to take note of the spike in job openings in 2014 didn’t seem to bother economists and journalists who cited the paper with approval, confirming what everyone knows: that recipients of social welfare are moochers and if you take away the social welfare the moochers will get a job. Mood affiliation.

38 Brian Donohue February 12, 2016 at 3:47 pm

As with most left-wing policy, it appeals strongly to people’s nuanced picture that would be provided by asking questions like “what does this mean for different groups of people?” but it is rarely interested in common sense.

39 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 4:04 pm

It would be good to bring those groups to the same table.

Instead of excluding groups from the table, ensure that diverse groups are represented, then try to talk common sense while recognizing that there are different group interests.

Could it lead to class warfare-like stuff?

Perhaps. But hardly any sort of class warfare that’s any worse than entirely excluding certain groups from the decision process.

(By excluded groups, I mean people like the homeless, unemployed, new immigrants, disabled, and anyone else who is not in a very good position to organize under group interests or otherwise pull any sort of strings in society.)

40 TMC February 12, 2016 at 6:46 pm

You can sure wrap a lot of BS in one run-on paragraph. Cudos.

41 JWatts February 12, 2016 at 6:59 pm

“1. The big rise in social welfare spending occurred when GWB was president and has been flat since GWB went back to Texas to paint cats. ”

You would know that was wrong (or at least highly questionable) if you had just looked at the graph in the linked article. There was a steep rise for 20 years before GWB took office in 2001.

42 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:37 pm

Rayward is just mulp minus paragraph breaks and plus, maybe, 30 IQ points

43 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:26 pm

Must. Disparage. Leftists. (Or anyone who demonstrates lack of doctrinal rigidity with regard to right wing truths.)

44 HL February 12, 2016 at 8:53 pm

Everyone I know who has been on unemployment has milked it for all it’s worth. So would I if given the opportunity.

45 RM February 12, 2016 at 1:08 pm

#6. My anecdotal observations, yes. But it has always struck me as economic rationally rather than a reasoned decision based on studying different religions. The easiest way for a visible minority to fit into America is to become Christian.

46 anon February 12, 2016 at 1:44 pm

I go to homes with Christmas trees and Buddhist shrines. Nothing wrong with an accommodating approach, from this agnostic’s perspective.

47 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 3:22 pm

There is nothing central to Buddhism which runs contrary to Christianity, although there are some contradictions in the other direction due to explicitly theological questions.

I sometimes edit interfaith stuff for a Buddhist monastery, and a common line of thinking is that there is great room for compatibility between Buddhist and Christian spiritual and value systems – so long as you’re not focused on questions like “do you believe that Jesus is literally [whatever that means in the context] the Son of God?” there really is not a lot of tension. Be compassionate, don’t overindulge, stuff like that.

48 So Much For Subtlety February 12, 2016 at 7:21 pm

Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 3:22 pm

There is nothing central to Buddhism which runs contrary to Christianity, although there are some contradictions in the other direction due to explicitly theological questions.

You mean apart from a denial of Jesus, a belief in reincarnation and karma, little things like that? Either you believe you will be punished in your next life for eating beef or you are a Christian. Hard to be both.

I sometimes edit interfaith stuff for a Buddhist monastery, and a common line of thinking is that there is great room for compatibility between Buddhist and Christian spiritual and value systems – so long as you’re not focused on questions like “do you believe that Jesus is literally [whatever that means in the context] the Son of God?” there really is not a lot of tension. Be compassionate, don’t overindulge, stuff like that.

Sure, if only those pesky Christians would stop being Christians, then we could all get along. This is typical of a syncretic religious system. They often claim there are no *real* differences between Faith A and Faith B. We can all be friends. After all, you have to get behind someone to stab them in the back. They do not, of course, mean it. At least they do not mean it in the way you mean it.

But of all the religions in the Jewish-Christian-Muslim tradition, Buddhism probably has the least problems with Christianity.

49 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 8:44 pm

Forget about theology for a moment.

Think about practical prescriptions and guesses on how people are likely to act, according to Christian or Buddhist teachings. They are virtually identical for any matter that does not involve theological consideration. And I think that compassion and non-over-indulgence are a pretty good shot at covering the ways in which they basically inhabit the same ground.

Again,. I’m not talking about theology here. And yes, I understand that it sounds odd to talk about religion without talking about theology. But that’s precisely what I’m doing, and there’s no law of religious discussion that says I’m not allowed to say “let’s ignore theological questions for the next hour and look at what’s in common in terms of practice in prescriptions for interactions with people, daily life, etc.”.

“if only those pesky Christians would stop being Christians, then we could all get along”

You completely misunderstand the point. The point is not that faith in Jesus is irrelevant to a Christian, the point is that a Christian can learn from and follow all manner of Buddhist practice without ever running into anything that contradicts the teachings of the Bible. Nothing about Buddhism requires them to renounce Jesus as the Son of God. Nothing about Buddhism requires them to renounce any verse whatsoever of the Old or New Testament.

In that sense, a Christian (believes Jesus is Son of God and belief in him – plus owning up to sins – is the ticket to heaven) can practice Buddhism without losing their essentially Christian character.

Also, I think you have a very strong misunderstanding of Buddhism, not about the theology, but about the practice and communications. Doctrinal rigidity is not required. I repeat, no doctrinal rigidity is required. No Buddhist monk will ever come and tell you “that’s now a Buddhist practice/belief” for the fact that on some other dogmatic matter you do not happen to follow some other common Buddhist perspective.

Turn the tables, however, with a Buddhism practicing Christianity, and this clearly requires a transformation in belief. One can be fundamentally a Christian who practices lots of Buddhist stuff, and still be fundamentally a Christian. How? Because … back to theology.

(Oh, and obviously these are all vast generalizations which can be easily poked at by some instances of counterexample. Both Buddhism and Christianity have enormous doctrinal variation and are comprised of many different kinds of groups across many countries and cultures.)

50 So Much For Subtlety February 12, 2016 at 9:48 pm

Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 8:44 pm

Forget about theology for a moment.

Sure, if you ignore what makes Christians Christians and what makes Buddhists Buddhists, all you have left is some meaningless pap that you can, at some superficial level, call roughly equal. Be a good chap. That is about it.

Think about practical prescriptions and guesses on how people are likely to act, according to Christian or Buddhist teachings. They are virtually identical for any matter that does not involve theological consideration.

Eating beef? Marrying six wives? Marrying at all? Obeying your parents? By all means, tell us how these are virtually identical.

And I think that compassion and non-over-indulgence are a pretty good shot at covering the ways in which they basically inhabit the same ground.

You have reduced Buddhism to pap and you think that is not insulting? Buddhists are supposed to be compassionate. But what does that mean? Mongols would not kill a camel that had broken its leg because that was “not compassionate”. They would leave it to die on the steppe. Buddhists may as well over-indulge because they are not supposed to indulge at all. If you are not supposed to have sex or eat meat, it doesn’t matter how much more you do beyond none.

You completely misunderstand the point. The point is not that faith in Jesus is irrelevant to a Christian, the point is that a Christian can learn from and follow all manner of Buddhist practice without ever running into anything that contradicts the teachings of the Bible.

No I don’t. You don’t believe, but like Obama you belong to the Church of Multicultural Relativism that says we are all basically the same once we ignore specifics. This is nonsense. You cannot be a Buddhist and a Christian. The faith in Jesus – and the Resurrection – is a daily necessity for Christians. It is not some minor little detail. As re-incarnation is for Buddhists. Those two are not compatible.

Nothing about Buddhism requires them to renounce Jesus as the Son of God. Nothing about Buddhism requires them to renounce any verse whatsoever of the Old or New Testament.

A statement like that deserves nothing but mockery.

Also, I think you have a very strong misunderstanding of Buddhism, not about the theology, but about the practice and communications. Doctrinal rigidity is not required. I repeat, no doctrinal rigidity is required.

According to your multicultural relativist pap version of Buddhism. Actual real Buddhists have very different views. But hey, you mean well so you are entitled to speak for them, right?

One can be fundamentally a Christian who practices lots of Buddhist stuff, and still be fundamentally a Christian. How? Because … back to theology.

You can pretend to be one or the other or both. But you cannot be both.

51 anon February 12, 2016 at 10:40 pm

The beef thing surprised me, because I don’t know those Buddhists.

So I looked it up:

https://www.quora.com/Why-do-some-Buddhist-not-eat-beef

52 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 12:56 am

“Forget about theology for a moment.”

But you immediately prove that you are (at that moment anyways) unable to do so. Dude, you’re mind isn’t made of bricks. It is indeed possible to set aside centrally relevant things in the act of exploring stuff.

What’s the point in talking to people about something if you are disallowed from playing temporary games with Venn diagrams to explore ideas.

YES YES YES there are theological differences. This does not imply that existing similarities do not exist. They exist. The premise of your argument seems to be that the fact of some differences itself implies that similarities are necessarily non existant. Sorry, but that’s really really stupid, and suggests that you have an obvious non-intelleectual distaste for what I’m saying that is leading you to grasp for some truly weak straws.

“Eating beef? Marrying six wives? Marrying at all? Obeying your parents? By all means, tell us how these are virtually identical.”

There is no Leviticus in Buddhist scripture. No tiresome lists of extensive rules on all sorts of things. But sometimes you will find pretty detailed descriptions of some habits that certain thinkers found very beneficial for their life.

I’m talking in very vague and broad terms. I repeat. Compassion and non-over-indulgence. Oh, you say, but they are not identical about dietary and bedroom recommendations, so let’s highlight that.

Anyways, for the specific examples you mention: beef (Christianity – nothing against it; Buddism – there are reasons not to, but no one’s going to stop you), six wives (Buddhist scripture doesn’t spend a lot of time telling you what you can and cannot do in your bedroom – hence, since anything goes, presumably Christian rules are A OK too), obeying parents (both the Bible and various Buddhist stories are full of all sorts of people who disobeyed their parents – typically in the pursuit of religious knowledge).

Personal question: why is it so important to you to discredit the idea that Buddhism and Christianity have many things in common and are not philosophically threatening to each other?

” You cannot be a Buddhist and a Christian. The faith in Jesus – and the Resurrection – is a daily necessity for Christians. It is not some minor little detail. As re-incarnation is for Buddhists.”

No scripture or interpretation on the planet says “you are not Buddhist if you do not accept re-incarnation as truth”. Only the Abrahamic faiths do stuff like that.

you point on mockery

This is what you do when you know nothing, but really don’t like what someone says. There is no hell for Buddhists who explore other ideas, or even believe other ideas. Just recommendations on how you might be happier if you do things in certain ways.

” Actual real Buddhists have very different views”

I estimate virtually 0% probability that you have ever in your life discussed Buddhism with someone who self identifies as a Buddhist.

“You can pretend to be one or the other or both. But you cannot be both.”

RING RING RING RING RING!!!! And here we have it. When you succeed in demonstrating how this statement is true, you have won the argument. But no Buddhist is required to believe anything. I win.

In summary, I think your basic flaw is this. You do not understand that Buddhism does not require doctrinal rigidity. This is what leads many people to call it a philosophy and not a religion.

(Cue some nitpicking about highly non-central points and another insult or two.)

In other news, the Blackhawks and Leafs are doing fundamentally difference things. After all, i can point out some differences. They even have a different figurehead.

53 So Much For Subtlety February 13, 2016 at 4:02 am

Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 12:56 am

But you immediately prove that you are (at that moment anyways) unable to do so.

Because actually what makes Buddhists Buddhists is kind of important. As I said, you can only make your claim if you render both religions devoid of any content except a residue of multicultural relativist pap. What I particularly like is that you cannot see how utterly offensive this is to believers. To have some fresh minted Western graduate explain to Buddhists and Christians what they “really” believe is unbelievably offensive, but because you are so sure of your moral rectitude you cannot see it.

This does not imply that existing similarities do not exist. They exist.

I do not deny they do. I just point out that they are trite and superficial. Buddhists are not basically Christian nor vice versa. You need to do incredible violence to what they both actually believe to make that claim.

There is no Leviticus in Buddhist scripture. No tiresome lists of extensive rules on all sorts of things. But sometimes you will find pretty detailed descriptions of some habits that certain thinkers found very beneficial for their life.

Actually there are pretty clear rules. Some of them odd. Like the fact monks should not be subordinate to the secular government. Or that women should not lead. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a clear debate among Buddhists about what is or is not Buddhism. The Thais are fighting at the moment over the Buddhist equivalent of the Prosperity Gospel. There is a growing anti-Muslim influence from Burma. The Tibetans-in-exile have been suppressing some sects.

But hey, what would you care? Multicultural relativist pap needs no facts.

Buddism – there are reasons not to, but no one’s going to stop you),

No but they may declare your entire family untouchable.

Buddhist scripture doesn’t spend a lot of time telling you what you can and cannot do in your bedroom

Apart from telling you to do nothing at all.

Personal question: why is it so important to you to discredit the idea that Buddhism and Christianity have many things in common and are not philosophically threatening to each other?

It isn’t. I find your Disney version of other people’s religions just incredibly insulting and offensive. To have some White middle class atheist mansplaining what most of the people on the planet “really” believe is incredibly offensive. You are so sure because you think you know. You do not.

No scripture or interpretation on the planet says “you are not Buddhist if you do not accept re-incarnation as truth”. Only the Abrahamic faiths do stuff like that.

Talk to a Buddhist. Besides, without reincarnation Buddhism is a waste of time. Like Christianity without the promise of Life Eternal.

There is no hell for Buddhists who explore other ideas, or even believe other ideas.

Buddhists disagree.

I estimate virtually 0% probability that you have ever in your life discussed Buddhism with someone who self identifies as a Buddhist.

Given your track record for being wrong I do not much care what you think. At least I take them seriously. At least I do not make a mockery of their beliefs.

But no Buddhist is required to believe anything. I win.

Again Buddhists disagree. You should not speak for other beliefs and other cultures White man. It is so colonial. So last millenia.

This is what leads many people to call it a philosophy and not a religion.

This is what leads White middle class Westerners to call it a philosophy not a religion. Actual real Buddhists have other opinions.

54 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 10:54 am

“you can only make your claim if you render both religions devoid of any content”

NO!!! NOT! THAT! Not even a little bit. Just setting aside the theological questions for a minute while discussing similarities. If you want to discuss all the content in the world, please drop 20cm, go to the next thread, and discuss it there. It is possible to discuss two groups, and more specifically their similarities, without allowing the whisper “they are actually different” to stop you from even thinking about whatever might be similar.

Seriously, I feel like I’m arguing with a five year old who doesn’t want to go to bed here. Yes, they are different. In this space here, let’s discuss similarities. In that space there, let’s discuss differences. It is possible to do both of these things. Please prove that you have IQ >55 and see that this is a possible thing to do.

Mind game – I’ve got a cheeseburger made of beef and a chicken burger with no cheese. They are clearly different. Is it possible to discuss similarities, such as the shared bun, lettuce and tomato? Does the fact of the difference between chicken/beef or cheese/no cheese, but virtue of these differences, make their commonalities disappear, to the point that shared buns are not shared buns, both having tomatoes in not both having tomatoes, and both having lettuce is not having lettuce?

Wow man. You refuse to say anything that would identify what your actual religious beliefs are, but becoming unbelieeeevably irrational when the subject turns to Christianity. Pray do tell. Are you willing to say a word on what you actually believe? It would go miles in understanding your actual positions when these subjects come up. And unlike you, i wouldn’t use it to say something like “yeah yeah yeah, members of group X will always say dumb stuff like that”.

” I just point out that they are trite and superficial.”

Please dream up a real world, daily life sort of situation where the practical prescriptions of Buddhism and Christiianty are different.

Maybe you’ll think of one. Try two. It will be hard. Meanwhile, in discussing other religions, it is very easy to think of situations where the prescription is different. E.g., you see a women showing some leg, what do you do? (Muslims are very different about women).

“Actually there are pretty clear rules”

Where? Sure, you can find some sect with a rulebook. But if you’re reading it as a rulebook, well, that’s not the Buddhist way, and if you had read many of these rulebooks this would be exceedingly obvious to you. The rulebooks are not to tell you what to do upon pain of eternal damnation as punishment for lack of faith or any sort of thing. It’s more like guidebooks on stuff that earlier monks found to be pretty useful. It’s like “hey, I tried think and I’m pretty sure I was more enlightened after. Why don’t you try it?” – and most emphatically not “If you don’t do ABCDEFG you’re not one of us” (although surely many individual monasteries have operated in such manners over the ages)

“Multicultural relativist pap needs no facts.”

You’ve used this basically same line a few times recently. Either you don’t understand the words you are using, you don’t understand me, or you are just stirring up some words looking for a half decent sounding insult. Either way, based on my best guess of whatever yo might mean by this … if you cannot accept that people are best understood when considering their actual cultural context (cultural reletavism), then there is little hope that you will ever understand anyone beyond yourself, if that. You too are a product of your cultural context.

“they may declare your entire family untouchable”

100% fact fail. Untouchables are related to Hinduism, not Buddhism. Or, is there some obscure sect that I don’t know about? Many Hindus untouchables convert to Buddhism for the fact that Buddhism doesn’t consider them as untouchables.

“Apart from telling you to do nothing at all.” (he claims Buddhism tells you not to do anything in the bedroom)

Most Buddhist materials are directed to monks, not the lay population. Most of these “scriptures” are basically guides for the behaviour of monks, not lay people. If this is new information to you, please stop and think for a few seconds at least, because this is critical to understanding the relevance of any Buddhist text whatsoever.

Also, I have never heard of monks advising lay people to abstain form sex, although I recall some proscriptions against being overly indulgent.

“To have some White middle class atheist mansplaining what most of the people on the planet “really” believe is incredibly offensive.”

Dude. You know that I grew up in the church as son of a minister regularly involved in all manner of activities and theological discussions, and presently edit interfaith communications for a Buddhist monastery. The share of the population with a similar level of knowledge accumulating across these two areas is easily less than one in a thousand (I promise you are not included in this group) and quite plausible something absurdly smaller than that.

I have never ever ONCE said “This is what people believe”. But, whenever I make a generally true generalization that does not confirm the way that you wish things were, you tell me that I’m claiming the voice to say what people “really believe”. Where have I done this? Ever?

Accuse me of generalizing things, not of speaking for others. And anyways, you hypocrite, this is precisely what YOU are doing and any Muslim or Buddhist on the planet, having read just one or two of your comments on either relgiion, would be 100% positive that you don’t actually know anything about the practice of either religion. I’m not speaking for them as “this is what people believe”. But I’ve had enough open ended conversation with practitioners of both faiths to know that you have unabounding ignorance of the actual practice of both of these religions/philosophies, despite an above average knowledge of some basic details.

“Talk to a Buddhist. Besides, without reincarnation Buddhism is a waste of time”

No. Simply no. This is not central to Buddhism, it is merely well known. A failure to believe in reincarcation does not make one non-Buddhist. There is no scripture that says one must believe in reincarnation to be Buddhist. It is merely a widely shared belief, with a ridiculous amount of disagreement as to what such a concept even means. And reincarnation is not particularly important for the moral logical consistency of the religious practitioner – if one is good one might be reincarnated to a higher level, but the pursuit of enlightenmnet itself requires disdaining desire, and the want for enlightenment itself, in which case it is an inherent contradiction that this belief (getting a better reincarnation position next time around) must be held as dearly relevant to why you should be “good”.

You see, Buddhists are generally wary of excessively strong attachments. I think this generally extends into the realm of ideas, which might also explain why there are not judgmental assholes, like a lot of Christians or Muslims, but are instead content to just practice the examples which they see as optimal. Buddhists practice what they preach. But, funny, thing, they aren’t preaching (obvious exception being the master monk in a monastary), they are just practicing.

You see, Buddhists want to show you that they’re ways will make life good for you (but don’t be too attached to that). There is nothing like threats like “and we will excommunicate you if you debate a non-doctrinal position”. In my experience, Buddhism is very open to skecticism in matters of spirituality. They almost seem to relish the thought of the mental exercise of seriously doubting a long held belief, and are willing to lend just about any criticism an ear.

“Buddhists disagree.” (that there is no hell)

OK. You’ll find some translation (translation is actually my primary field) where a translator has come across a Buddhist concept in some particular writing, and determined that the best English word for the concept is “hell”.

Think a little here. Any sort of “hell” referred to in any translation of Buddhist texts bears ZERO relation to any Judaeo-Christian interpretations of the word.

You’re not stupid, and I’m pretty sure that I don’t need to overdo this one because I don’t think you would find it controversial that any such Buddhist concept of “hell” would be different from the Christian one.

Refine your thinking here. Some Buddhist translations appear with the word “hell” between the front and back cover, but this does not mean that ever even discussed, let alone dreamed, of such a thing as the Judaeo-Christian hell.

“You should not speak for other beliefs and other cultures White man.”

What a fucking hypocrite. You do this every single day and are ten times more ignorant than I am on almost every matter related to beliefs and cultures, with the possible exception of the culture and beliefs of white suburban American Christian men who don’t go to church.

Go talk to Buddhists.

I repeat. Your fundamental misunderstanding of Buddhism is that there is not punishment for failure to follow doctrinal rigidity. You might leave one master and go to another, but this by no means implies leaving Buddhism. This is so true, that in fact on of the biggest concerns of the monastary I edit for is that, due to the fact of no doctrinal rigidity, what structure can be provided for laypeople to see this as a logical philosophy which might benefit their life? After all, the monks basically say, if any old quack under the sun can preach on about anything and call himself Buddhist, then how is the aspring layperson, or even monk practitioner, to see through all the BS and find a way that is consistent with Boddisatva.

If there is something that brings Buddhists together, it is high regard for Buddha, and a general belief that life would (recall, this is all directed at mo nk practitioners here) be quite good if we lived according to the way of the Buddha.

If only Christians had taken a similar route, and focused on emulating their role model. Some do, but most are outrageous hypocrites.

“This is what leads White middle class Westerners to call it a philosophy not a religion.”

Sigh. You’ve decided that my whiteness and western-ness precludes me from knowing things. And then maybe even stronger and even more unsubstantiated statement despite never even having a real live conversation with a real live Buddhist in your entire life.

You epitomize hypocrisy when you pull this stuff. “You’re too white to know about foreign stuff, but me, another white guy, knows everything”. What does skin colour have to do with knowledge for non-Christian religons? Does white skin come with anti-Buddhist or anti-Islamic features? Meanwhile, I’m the one using limited statements to not overstate my case, and practically everything you say has the certainty of black and white truth.

____________________________________________________

If you live in a remotely decent size city, you should be able to find a Buddhist centre of some sort and a mosque.

I suggest visiting both and asking “hey, what are you guys all about”.

I guarantee, you will learn a lot. What they will tell you will bear no relation to what you tell me about them.

____________________________________________________

Did you learn something about Buddhism today? Or just brushing up on strategies to discredit people who present ideas that do not cohere with your world view?

I don’t mean this as an insult, and this is usually used as an insult, but man, your level of ignorance on this subject is mind boggling, particularly given the certainty with which you make your pronouncements. Get off the internet. Go meet a real live Buddhist. Talk to them. Listen. Just listen.

55 Careless February 12, 2016 at 8:44 pm

There is nothing central to Buddhism which runs contrary to Christianity,

Is this the “liberal dumbass makes a fool of himself” thread?

56 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:28 pm

I would put a lot of money down that the list of things you know about Buddhism can be summed up as “it has something to do with Buddha and they like to cross their legs and meditate and stuff”.

Do you come here for any purpose other than to insult people?

57 Thomas February 12, 2016 at 10:38 pm

No one knows more about Christian beliefs and what they mean to the people who hold them than an atheist liberal who hates and mocks Christianity regularly.

58 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 1:16 am

Thomas – I never demonstrated hate or mockery of Christians. I said that some of them are bloody hypocrites;. And they are.

What kind of hypocrites? The kind who will speak against abortion because life is sacred but support carpet bombing the Middle East. The sort who preach the salvation of Jesus, yet would sooner yell at homeless people “GET A JOB!” than to go help them get a job. The list goes on and on and on and it would really seem like I have a hate on for Christianity were I to take the time to write that list exhaustively. But man, it’s a really long list.

The point is not about Christianity. It’s about the damn hypocrites who call themselves Christians. The people who call themselves Christians, but are ready to promote violence against those who are different from them, or speak with venom about those who deign to think or act differently in ways which create no victims at all.

But the non-hypocrites never seem to speak for themselves in these conversations, and seem content to let hateful, angry hypocrites speak on behalf of Christianity.

I assume you use “atheist liberal” as an insult? Oh, how Christian. Can I have some hellfire and brimstone while we’re at it? Would a list of my daily transgressions help? I think I used God’s name in vein several times, had sexual thoughts about another man’s wife, and will probably do these and other things until at least the end of my days. Remind me what scum I am for speaking in a certain way or having sexual impulses. make the list of transgressions long enough to make it clear that we are all scum and doomed to hell.

Or … can we just try to be generally civil and decent people?

You see, if my criticisms were bullshit, you would just call me a liar. But you know that what I say is true. If it bothers you, don’t get angry with me, go speak with your fellow Christians about what a bunch of hypocrites they are. I know I know. Lots of people are already doing this. It can hardly be said enough.

But, for the fact that I’m atheist you think it is hateful that i say so. Your minister probably says practically exactly the same shit every week, and do you every call HIM a Christian hater?

Hypocrite.

59 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 1:18 am

Thomas – if your minister said the precise critiques I say, and he/she probably does so in some form or another on a pretty regular basis, you would probably pray for forgiveness.

But since you know I’m atheist, you label me a “Christian hater”.

To the best of my knowledge, prejudice is not a Christian value. But it most certainly IS quite often a human failing.

60 Careless February 14, 2016 at 2:59 pm

Aside from taking college courses on it and being married to a Buddhist for 10 years, yeah, nothing at all. Keep writing the stupid, Nathan,

61 Careless February 14, 2016 at 3:45 pm

I mean, my ex-wife’s middle name is “Lara” which is part of the phrase “lara dukkha”

I married a woman whose nickname was basically suffering

62 Jack PQ February 12, 2016 at 1:09 pm

4.) I wonder if the existence of artificial pinkies has increased the equilibrium quantity of cut-off pinkies in the yakuza world. In the old days, the consequence was more severe than it is today, and moreover there was visible stigma. Is stigma part of the punishment? If so, maybe Q* will fall because Bosses will switch to other means of punishment. OTOH, since the consequence is less severe, it might be more readily applied as a punishment, and Q* increases.

63 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 3:28 pm

5) The 3.5 number is definitely a lower bound, and I’m not sure how this information is remotely useful, even for mind games. The classical consideration of degrees of separation is much more interesting and relevant. Probably only spammers will have much interest in this, in estimating the potential audience size if their spam goes viral.

6) I think most Chinese who go to church are initially interested in networking and meeting people. I’ve met a few Chinese people with an interest in going to church, and they were very much avid networkers who look for clubs and associations to join for networking since they were new to the country. Perhaps if they take their kids to church you will get some real believers though. The general message in most churches (hellfire and brimstone excepted) is generally a good one, so maybe it appeals to them for that reason to.

Also, many churches have good support networks and are welcoming to newcomers. I imagine the first day at church is probably among the most welcoming moments that a newcomer immigrant will experience. Of course people are nice partly because the see a new potential convert or member, but I don’t think many Chinese people are naive in the sense that this would bother them anyways.

Joining a church as a newcomer to a community is one of the most practical things you can do, even if you don’t believe. Honestly, a lot of these folks would be better suited for membership at the local chamber of commerce. But the welcome isn’t half so genuine there.

64 Ray Lopez February 12, 2016 at 9:38 pm

@#5 – I wonder if “online friends” count in ‘degrees’? If I know TC, since we’ve traded emails, then I “know” all of TC’s numerous professional acquaintances too? Sounds absurd but I think the answer is yes.

65 Ray Lopez February 12, 2016 at 9:39 pm

Having said that, I do happen to know that some of the people TC has mentioned I’ve met, via their friends, in my real life world, so there is indeed a “Six Degrees of Garry Kasparov” effect going on.

66 Alex Armlovich February 12, 2016 at 3:46 pm

1. Looking just at the fiscal side ignores the incentive effects; labor force participation among recipients and former recipients went up substantially. We’re spending just as much in total but compositionally shifted to work supports and other services, instead of just straight cash assistance: https://www.cbo.gov/publication/49887

Always check with CBO! The point stands true in dollar terms, but policy is more than dollars.

67 derek February 12, 2016 at 4:22 pm

#1 I consider myself pretty liberal (although I find Bernie to have a lot of financially boggling or poorly conceived ideas), and I think that the Clinton welfare reform was fine and good. Ol Dirty Bastard of the Wu Tang Clan filmed a segment for MTV in which he went to pick up his welfare check. Something was wrong with the system in the 1990s and needed fixing. I’munder the impression that most people, even poor ones, think that the welfare reform of the 1990s was basically okay.

68 Jeff R. February 12, 2016 at 5:46 pm

“which leads me to believe that they probably don’t have much relevant to say about her from a policy perspective, which means she’s probably a good candidate if all they’ve got is complaints about wrinkles, choices of email servers…”

Wonders never cease; more mood affiliation.

69 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 6:02 pm

If the worst you can say about someone who has been a central figure in the public eye for 25 years is … wait … she used her own email server and takes paid speaking gigs. Well, she couldn’t be that bad could she? After all, if her politics were truly bad, it would be easy to rip her up for her politics, which basically no one ever does.

I’m not a Clinton fan, mostly because I think it’s unethical to take massively overpaid speaking gigs, paid for by people who will obviously expect favours. I don’t get why the Clinton haters don’t go on more about that stuff. But then they would have to confront that this is a problem in their own camps as well, and presumably elites,both in politics, business and overseas, are perfectly OK with such forms of legal corruption.

70 TMC February 12, 2016 at 6:58 pm

“If the worst you can say about someone who has been a central figure in the public eye for 25 years is … wait … she used her own email server and takes paid speaking gigs. Well, she couldn’t be that bad could she? After all, if her politics were truly bad, it would be easy to rip her up for her politics, which basically no one ever does. ”

I assume sarcasm right? Just need to check.

The Clintons get a lot of flack just because he/she’s taken an order of magnitude more than any other politician ever.

71 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 8:51 pm

I can’t even remember the last time I heard/read Clinton criticized on a matter of policy positions.

Years.

I mean, lots of articles recently because the nomination is up, but I have never once seen a discussion that dealt with policy, and instead was always about some personality flaw or the email/Benghazi bullshit scandals.

I think the speaking gigs stuff is a real scandal, especially when she’s getting paid into her PERSONAL funds large sums to speak at the same time as being expected to hold major decisions in the near future. But there’s no law against it, and apparently most politicians seem to think it is their right to do so.

I would like to see a Republican take on Clinton’s speaking gigs, and commit to some sort of reform to reduce the potential scope for such activities. But they will never do it because they want to do precisely the same thing when they’re gig is up.

72 Cliff February 13, 2016 at 1:14 am

I guess a Canadian socialist may disagree with Americans about which scandals are real and which are fake.

73 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 1:30 am

Hahaha. Canadian socialist.

Oxford or Wikipedia might be good starting points for the definition of the word “socialism”. You clearly do not understand it very well.

Observe that, instead of explaining why the email scandal or Benghazi are in fact reasons to send Clinton straight to prison, regardless of whether dozens or hundreds of Republicans might have done very similar things … you attack me as a socialist. (I’m pretty sure that “socialist” is an insult in your lexicon despite obviously not having a clue what the word means).

74 JWatts February 12, 2016 at 7:04 pm

“…she used her own email server…”

She violated a myriad of security rules and regulation because she wanted to protect herself from FOIA requests and she thought she was too big to ever be held accountable. The thought of that kind of person reaching The White House is troubling.

75 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:00 pm

Maybe. But doesn’t it seem a weak line of argumentation to point to tens of thousands of emails, to the secretary of state I might add, which have been thoroughly scoured for the remotest hint of anything that could be deemed classified. And then turn around and say she thought they could never look at it?

Honestly, I truly believe that it was just more convenient. And … maybe she didn’t trust the government itself and preferred to have her own server. Which, to be honest, I have wonder if she should have the right to do in that position.

The only ways it’s incriminating is if it’s against the law for someone to send you classified information, which the sender failed to mark as classified information, and which the sender

And anyways, what the hell is anyone doing sending ANY classified information WHATSOEVER by email? Email is never secure. Never will be.

At worst, it’s time to discuss whether a new policy needs to be put in place. Calls for prison time, etc., for such a piddling little thing, prison for the former secretary of state of the most powerful country on the planet over email protocol, just reeks of partisan desperation.

In other countries, at that level (secretary of state) you practically have to commit genocide against someone to get prison time. But people think something about email protocol should result in hard time in the USA? Come ON. She’s not clean, but if you honestly think she should go to prison over that, i will never take anything seriously you say again if it is remotely related to anything that can have partisan connections.

I don’t really care about Clinton that much one way or another. But in my opinion, the lapse in judgment in on the person who sends classified information by email, not the person who receives the message.

Unbelievable. It still gets almost daily coverage at Fox. It’s the biggest dirt they’ve got after 25 years in the public eye. They need a nail in the coffin and they’re trying desperately to make it fit. Emphasis on desperately.

76 JWatts February 12, 2016 at 9:35 pm

“And … maybe she didn’t trust the government itself and preferred to have her own server.”

Doesn’t that kind of indicate she shouldn’t be President? Or do you think it’s perfectly ok for the President to just ignore the rules, regulation and laws that might inconvenience her.

“At worst, it’s time to discuss whether a new policy needs to be put in place. Calls for prison time, etc., for such a piddling little thing, prison for the former secretary of state of the most powerful country on the planet over email protocol, just reeks of partisan desperation.”

Well they certainly prosecuted General David Petraeus.

“David H. Petraeus, a retired general considered one of the greatest military minds of his generation, pleaded guilty Thursday to a misdemeanor charge of mishandling classified materials, ending a long-running legal saga that had threatened to send him to prison.

Petraeus, who admitted he provided the materials to his former mistress and biographer, will instead face a two-year probationary period. U.S. Magistrate Judge David Keesler also imposed a $100,000 fine — more than double the amount recommended by prosecutors — to reflect the “seriousness of the offense.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/petraeus-set-to-plead-guilty-to-mishandling-classified-materials/2015/04/22/3e6dbf20-e8f5-11e4-aae1-d642717d8afa_story.html

So, your argument amounts to Hillary Clinton is too big to fall.

Your post is the perfect example of Principals over Principles.

77 So Much For Subtlety February 12, 2016 at 10:08 pm

Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:00 pm

But doesn’t it seem a weak line of argumentation to point to tens of thousands of emails, to the secretary of state I might add, which have been thoroughly scoured for the remotest hint of anything that could be deemed classified. And then turn around and say she thought they could never look at it?

It is amazing you can repeat what you must know are lies. Clinton illegal went through her e-mails a deleted a third. Then trashed the hard drive so they would not be recovered. She then printed out the rest – precisely so they could not be thoroughly scoured. The authorities have had to painfully go through each one looking for classified information. And they found it. Worse they have found information that was only on the internal secured system. Which means someone deliberately and carefully took information from a secure system and placed in a non-secure email to send to Clinton’s even less secure server. This is a criminal offense.

Honestly, I truly believe that it was just more convenient. And … maybe she didn’t trust the government itself and preferred to have her own server. Which, to be honest, I have wonder if she should have the right to do in that position.

It is illegal. It is not secure. She can want what she likes. The law says she may not do it. Either you think that the laws apply to everyone or you don’t. You seem to be opting for they don’t. Fine. Don’t pretend this is about any sort of principle. It is not her place to decide whether the government system is trustworthy. Nor is it up to her to decide what is convenient. We have laws on the treatment of classified information. She may not, for instance, give the names of serving undercover officers to every hacker on the planet, as she did, because she feels like it. This is criminal.

The only ways it’s incriminating is if it’s against the law for someone to send you classified information, which the sender failed to mark as classified information, and which the sender

She deliberately used a private e-mail server to send and receive classified information. She destroyed work product. This is illegal. It is illegal for someone to send you the wrong information by the way.

And anyways, what the hell is anyone doing sending ANY classified information WHATSOEVER by email? Email is never secure. Never will be.

Another grey wash. Some e-mail is more secure than others. For instance, those over the closed, protected, mostly secure internal State Department system is pretty secure. She chose to circumvent that system.

At worst, it’s time to discuss whether a new policy needs to be put in place.

There is a perfectly good law. Why do we need another one? When people not called Clinton break the law, they go to prison. We don’t rewrite the laws. What new law do you think would work?

Calls for prison time, etc., for such a piddling little thing, prison for the former secretary of state of the most powerful country on the planet over email protocol, just reeks of partisan desperation.

It is not a piddling little thing if you leak the names of serving officers all over the world. As she did. The Left pretended to care when the Democrats did this to Valerie Plame. Why is it suddenly not a big deal?

But in my opinion, the lapse in judgment in on the person who sends classified information by email, not the person who receives the message.

How about the person who illegal sets up an unsecure system to receive and send classified information? Who specifically orders subordinates to remove security classifications from e-mails and send them to her over her unsecure system? None of this is a problem for you?

78 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:09 am

JWatts

“Or do you think it’s perfectly ok for the President to just ignore the rules”

Was it in fact that clear what the Secretary of State was obliged to do? Are the sort of rules she was breaking the sort of rules where the appropriate reaction is to try to destroy someone’s entire career, or the time of rule breaking where someone should call you up and say “hey, you obviously forgot about section C 3.xyz, you can’t do that.”

I don’t mind if the president has their own server. Why should the secret service or other officials have access to all communications of the president? Isn’t that itself a pretty big security risk?

That should be strictly out of the hands of ANYONE except maybe for the historical record. Or what, you trust spooks and spies, unelected and unaccountable official with no judicial oversight, more than the elected president of the USA?

And again. What the hell what ANYONE doing sending classified material by email?

You see, I’m one of those people that looks at the big picture. If the president breaks email protocol, I shrug. When the president starts a war on a false premise that kills millions of people and destabilizes an entire region for potentially decades, I think this is a big deal.

Petraeus – not sure of the relevance. One person (Clinton) broke email protocol and some stupid asses sent classified information by email. Another person (Petraeus) knowingly shared classified information with someone who could not POSSIBLY have had any sort of clearance whatsoever. These cases are related … how?

79 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:21 am

SMFS – “what you must know are lies”

“deleted a third” – No one ever disputed her claim that the deleted emails were the personal ones that had nothing to do with business. When a claim goes undisputed during a witch hunt, I think it’s pretty safe to say that it’s not related to anything incriminating (but don’t let that stop Fox with the innuendo that the fact of deleting personal emails was the same as trying to destroy classified information).

“trashed the hard drive ” – What, you want the former Secretary of State to dispose of her hard drive without using common sense personal security measures to clean the drive? If anything, the number one complaint should be that the disposed hard drives stlil contained any evidence whatsoever, and that an undisposed backup had not been saved for FOI purposes.

“She then printed out the rest … precisely so they could not be thoroughly scoured”

On lies … this has never quite been clear to be. While I don’t expect many politicians to be perfectly forthright on all things at all times, it’s really not clear to me what she is supposed to have lied about. What did she lie about?

Perhaps she was giving the middle finger to the witch hunters? It’s pretty inconsistent to argue that she was hiding things when she in fact provided things. It is not her job to make the job of witch hunters easy.

“The authorities have had to painfully go through each one looking for classified information.”

RING RING RING! But you don’t think it was a witchhunt. The messages were classified after the fact, proving only that some retard sent her classified material by email.

” to send to Clinton’s even less secure server”

Given that the State Department got hacked, and how badly it got hacked, her server was probably much safer than the other one. But it’s not a good long term plan. She might even have just gotten lucky.

“This is a criminal offense”

Sorry. Which crime, committed which day? People are never very specific about this part at all. Just this general idea of imprisoning political opponents for trivial things (which, incidentally, makes me find them really scary and want to keep them really far from power).

“She can want what she likes. The law says she may not do it.”

Here we have some actual facts. Seriously man? Number two in the most powerful country in the planet. And this is what you think is worht bringing them down for? Holy SMOKES! Yeah, HC, DON’t DO THAT. But really? Not that big of a deal, and the more Fox beats this dead horse, the less relevant it becomes to anyone except those looking for any excuse to demonize anything blue. I really think that equal application of the law to powerful people is supremely important in society. So let’s bring down politicians who rape people, cheat on their taxes, or worse. But this? Man, not news for more than a day unless there is partisan desperation. Six months later, it’s still daily news. What tripe! Rewrite a few lines in the “introducing the Secretary of State to their first day on the job” documentation and move on to something RELEVANT. It’s a real problem – one requiring five minutes of attention, not daily attention for five months.

“She may not, for instance, give the names of serving undercover officers to every hacker on the planet, as she did, because she feels like it. This is criminal.”

Indeed, that would be troubling if it had ever happened. But the actual story is that State got hacked, she didn’t, and everyone’s trying to do better security know. However, Secretary of State would never ever ever have the names of undercover operators, so this is absurd even as a thought game. I understand that the actual contents of the most questionable emails was something related to some missile movements somewhere – nothing that any other player with satellite wouldn’t have known already were they to ever hypothetically hack the server.

“She deliberately used a private e-mail server to send and receive classified information.”

Bullshit bullshit bullshit. Stupid people sent her classified information by email. But maybe not even that stupid. Consider that it took them quite a long time to figure out which things could be defined as classified. And no doubt, after all that effort, they were not planning to give up easy.

“Some e-mail is more secure than others. ”

True. But if it’s important enough information that you’re calling for her head, then it should never have been sent by email and the stupid party is the sender not the receiver. And if it wasn’t that important, then … oh, obviously it’s a witch hunt.

“It is not a piddling little thing if you leak the names of serving officers all over the world.”

Again, that would be a pretty bad thing if it had actually happened, but it didn’t (and couldn’t possible happen, since this is not information that the Secretary of State would ever be dealing with), and the facts of the story is that the servers she was supposed to use got hacked and hers didn’t.

“The Left pretended to care when the Democrats did this to Valerie Plame…”

You can’t see the difference between a hypothetical flaw in digital security (Clinton), a basically new area of concern that honestly quite a lot of people including high politicians are stupid and ignorant about … and intentionally publishing classified material in the media? You know, sometimes you say smart stuff. But the moment there is partisan relevance to something, it’s like you stop thinking and start beating the drums.

“Who specifically orders subordinates to remove security classifications from e-mails”

Are you sure this is not a complete bullshit fabrication? Especially the “remove security classifications” part? If that is accurate, then I am very willing to adopt a different stance and be very damning of Hillary. On this single fact. References please? Anyways, I thought the basic deal wasn’t about transfers from secure servers (which got hacked) to insecure severs (which didn’t get hacked), but was that she basically just wanted to use the same email address, and not use the email address provided by the state department. If she wasn’t using the state department email address or server in the first place, then this just doesn’t add up.

80 So Much For Subtlety February 13, 2016 at 4:26 am

Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:09 am

Was it in fact that clear what the Secretary of State was obliged to do?

I am impressed with both with the lack of even the most basic facts in your posts and yet the incredible confidence with which you support Clinton. Yes it is clear what she was supposed to do. She went to huge trouble to avoid doing what the law specifically and clearly says she has to do.

Are the sort of rules she was breaking the sort of rules where the appropriate reaction is to try to destroy someone’s entire career,

Petraeus had his career destroyed for less. People have gone to jail for less.

I don’t mind if the president has their own server.

Congress does. That is why there is a law.

You see, I’m one of those people that looks at the big picture.

Yes of course you do. The big picture being Hillary is on your side and so you will defend her to the hilt.

Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:21 am

No one ever disputed her claim that the deleted emails were the personal ones that had nothing to do with business.

How can anyone know? She deleted them. We only have her word. Which a lot of people have doubted. But you miss the point – it is not her job to decide what is or is not personal. She is using an official e-mail. Everything is work product and deleting even a single e-mail is a Federal offense. It is up to the government to decide what is or is not personal, not her.

What, you want the former Secretary of State to dispose of her hard drive without using common sense personal security measures to clean the drive?

Well yes. Destroying evidence is a Federal offense. Which the Obama administration has been very quick to do. She should have handed government property over to the government. As Nixon did. He did not destroy the tapes than brought him down. It is absurd to say it would have been fine for him to declare they were all personal and to have burnt them.

What did she lie about?

She has changed her story many times. She said nothing secret went through that e-mail. She said she did it because she could not handle two Blackberries. Every time she is proved wrong, she has fallen back to a new position.

It’s pretty inconsistent to argue that she was hiding things when she in fact provided things. It is not her job to make the job of witch hunters easy.

She provided some things. Under Court order. She destroyed the rest. Illegally. And yes, it is her job to provide all her work product to the government for storage. That is well known.

The messages were classified after the fact, proving only that some retard sent her classified material by email.

That retard being Hulma by the looks of it. Some information is born secret. Hilary must know this. Of course if she did not send the e-mail officially, it could not be officially classified. Although she did give specific orders for the Secret header to be removed and the rest of the message sent over her private e-mail system.

Given that the State Department got hacked, and how badly it got hacked, her server was probably much safer than the other one.

Nonsense. You are grasping at straws. Presumably whatever was sent to her personal e-mail was read by the world.

Sorry. Which crime, committed which day? People are never very specific about this part at all.

Again I am impressed by how confident you are given how little you know. “Section 1924 of Title 18 of the United States Code addresses the deletion and retention of classified documents, under which “knowingly” removing or housing classified information at an “unauthorized location” is subject to a fine, or an up to year in prison.”

Number two in the most powerful country in the planet. And this is what you think is worht bringing them down for? Holy SMOKES!

Watergate was just a break in. Either you think the law applies to the powerful or you don’t. So you don’t. Fine.

I really think that equal application of the law to powerful people is supremely important in society.

Unless it is the Clintons. Then it is just peachy.

Indeed, that would be troubling if it had ever happened. But the actual story is that State got hacked, she didn’t, and everyone’s trying to do better security know.

Actually it does seem to have happened. Sources were named. Yet again you have made up your mind even though you have not been following the scandal. Partisan bias at its best.

Bullshit bullshit bullshit. Stupid people sent her classified information by email. But maybe not even that stupid. Consider that it took them quite a long time to figure out which things could be defined as classified. And no doubt, after all that effort, they were not planning to give up easy.

So you are blaming her minions? Sterling effort there. Did she tell them to stop? How did they know her private e-mail if she did not tell them to send her stuff there? And as I said, one e-mail has her specifically telling a minion to remove the classification banner and send it to her. She knew.

Again, that would be a pretty bad thing if it had actually happened, but it didn’t (and couldn’t possible happen, since this is not information that the Secretary of State would ever be dealing with),

You are making up a defence for her on the fly. It is interesting but not impressive. It seems it did happen and of course it is the sort of information that she would be told.

Are you sure this is not a complete bullshit fabrication? Especially the “remove security classifications” part? If that is accurate, then I am very willing to adopt a different stance and be very damning of Hillary.

I doubt it. You are so sure she is innocent and so determined not to learn anything that might suggest otherwise. Google it. You should at least try to be informed.

If she wasn’t using the state department email address or server in the first place, then this just doesn’t add up.

Her minions used State Department e-mails. Some information can only be sent over the intranet within the SD. She specifically told someone to take off the headers indicating it was secret and send it to her home brew server that was, presumably, being read by the entire world.

81 JWatts February 13, 2016 at 10:38 am

“Petraeus – not sure of the relevance. One person (Clinton) broke email protocol and some stupid asses sent classified information by email. Another person (Petraeus) knowingly shared classified information with someone who could not POSSIBLY have had any sort of clearance whatsoever. These cases are related … how?”

Your ignorance on this subject is overwhelming, but you keep posting as if you actually know something.

” with someone who could not POSSIBLY have had any sort of clearance whatsoever. ”

Petraeus shared the information with his biographer/girl friend who had the proper security clearance. He got in trouble because he had the information at home in a non-secured site and gave it to another person without authorization and who didn’t have a need to know.

Hillary Clinton also had classified information at home at a non-secured site.

82 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 11:49 am

“I am impressed with both with the lack of even the most basic facts in your posts and yet the incredible confidence with which you support Clinton.”

Which facts? And, I have expressed many times why I don’t support her. I just think the witch hunt is BS.

” She went to huge trouble to avoid doing what the law specifically and clearly says she has to do.”

Which law says she has to do what?

“Petraeus had his career destroyed for less.”

He cheated on his wife (foregiveable) and intentionally gave classified information away. To let a four star general get away with that would be more damaging then 10,000 Clinton email scandals.

“People have gone to jail for less.”

Fact of life. World leaders don’t go to jail for petty shit. What’s important is that we can jail them for the big stuff. And in many countries, the head of state could not be jailed for things are large as genocide against their own population.

This does not bother me. I don’t care if world leaders don’t go to jail for petty shit. I care if they go to jail for murder, rape, embezzlement of public monies, taking bribes, stuff like that.

” The big picture being …”

And then you say things which completely contradict almost everything I say about Clinton when the subject is not the witch hunts. I do not support people as trustworthy politicians who take large cash payments to speak at events attended by people who can only expect favours in return.

“How can anyone know? ” (how many emails she deleted, whether they got them all)

They recovered everything. Well, you can doubt all you want.

“deleting even a single e-mail [in the context] is a Federal offense”

This is how you want to bring down the formerly second most powerful person in the world?

Come ON man. GWB invaded Iraq on complete bullshit. Were America’s first criminal proceedings against

Seriously. Not even Nixon went to jail. And you think jail is the appropriate response?

And anyways, there’s a little detail. She continued to use her personal email for business, as opposed to using the official address for personal stuff. Therefore the incorrect behaviour was receiving work email at the personal server, not deleting personal emails.

“Destroying evidence”

You’re putting her in a catch 22. If she destroyed it, she destroyed evidence. If she didn’t destroy it, she’s potentially sharing information that was remarked as classified a few years later.

Guilty no matter what she does? That’s not justice. Surely there error lies elsewhere.

“Nixon … did not destroy the tapes ”

Isn’t there a pretty big difference between using public resources to spy on political opponents (like, dude should have actually gone to jail) and suboptimal choices about email server setups?

“lies”
– “She said nothing secret went through that e-mail.” – well, two years later they reclassified TWO of 30,000 emails as classified. That’s not a lie. That’s a changing landscape.
– “She has changed her story many times” – why is everyone always so vague on this?
– “She said she did it because she could not handle two Blackberries” – How is that a lie? If I were in her position, i would quite rather being able to do everything through one phone. Based on this obviously superior for the time management and productivity of this very important and high productivity situation, I easily sympathize with this.
– “Every time she is proved wrong, she has fallen back to a new position” – meanwhile, I asked for specifics, which you did not actually provide. What was she proved wrong about?

“She provided some things. Under Court order. ”

Most people are not very cooperative with witch hunters.

“She destroyed the rest, Illegally”

What did she destroy? I suppose you could probably find some line somewhere where desytroying her server was illegal. But … isn’t it pretty common to upgrade hardware every year or two? This is several years ago. Should she have stored that drive in perpetuity?

And again, you’re faced with the absurd catch 22: she destroyed it is illegal, but she also didn’t destroy it, in which she irresponsibly made it possible for some hacker to get everything from the drive (and by EVERYTHING, we me precisely two classified emails, and come on, no one sends actually important stuff by email). People are simltaneous arguing that she’s guilty of not destroying is and also guilty of destroying it at the same time.

THIS IS THE MEANS BY WHICH REPUBLICANS AIM TO DESTROY THE FORMER SECOND MOST POWERFUL PERSON ON THE PLANET, and one of the most incriminating aspects is a catch 22!

“Presumably whatever was sent to her personal e-mail was read by the world.”

Safe assumption if you’re in charge of maximizing security, but not if you’re interested in what actually happened. 1% maybe it happened and she never found out? 2%?

And oooohh, the Russians found out months after the fact that someone moved a missile somewhere. Big fucking deal. They probably didn’t mark it classified because it doesn’t matter, because anyone with satellites could see that it already happened.

““Section 1924 of Title 18 ”

Holy smokes. I’ve been trying to figure that one out for a long time. Thank you. There is an actual law related to the claims.

So … how does anyone intend to prove that Clinton knew the TWO emails which were evaluated as classified two years after the fact, were in fact classified.

It is pretty easy to believe that Clinton honestly did not believe that her server housed classified information.

“Watergate was just a break in”

Haha. And 9-11 was just a test flight. Intentions don’t matter, do they?

“Actually it does seem to have happened. Sources were named.”

Then why aren’t you pre-naming sources? You already know don’t believe it. What I have made my mind up about is not Clinton’s innocence or guilt, since there are so many rules on the bloody books you can pin just about anyone for SOMETHING. What my mind is made up about is that this is a witch hunt, always was and still is.

“Partisan bias at its best.”

How many times do I have to explain why I don’t think Clinton is a fit candidate before you can understand that this isn’t partisan for me. I’m not even American. All I care about is that the next president isn’t some insane nutjob who will lead us into WWIII.

“So you are blaming her minions? … Did she tell them to stop?”

30,000 emails, several years, TWO emails were determined to contain classified materials years after the fact.

Is 2/30,000 the sort of pattern that leads you to say “stop”, when you didn’t even notice something was happening in the first place?

” one e-mail has her specifically telling a minion to remove the classification banner and send it to her”

Pray tell, did anyone let us know what the contents of the “secure” information was?

A scan of the damning message is here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3391031/Game-set-match-classified-emails-Bombshell-email-shows-Hillary-Clinton-telling-aide-secure-information-send-nonsecure.html

This looks pretty damning indeed. But unless there’s actually a classified message at the other end of the communication, which precisely no one has formally alleged let alone proven, then this is meaningless.

They dreged 30,000 emails and you are surprised if one or two having something that can be construed as questionable? Just a couple out of 30,000 emails which can rmotely be construed as troublesome sounds pretty on par with innocent to me. The way you presented, it was like you had a smoking gun. I’m looking at the original scan, and I don’t see a smoking gun.

“It seems it did happen” (identities of many undercovers released)

Besides the fact that you again fail to substantiate yourself, I would add that if it did happen, the scandal sure as heck ain’t Clinton. What are that many undercover names all doing in the same place?

Anyways, it didn’t. “The emails did not reveal the identities of the officers, three officials told NBC News, contrary to previous reports such as the one in the Observer, which NBC specifically cited: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3432008/Emails-Hillary-s-private-server-references-undercover-CIA-officers-officials-confirm.html

And, anyways, this relates only to the question “is this potentially a big deal?” and has no bearing on the actual legal situation or any accusations against Clinton.

“You are so sure she is innocent ”

No. Not even a bit sure. But this is obviously a witch hunt, and they will not stop until they can pin SOMETHING on here. But if it’s too lame it will be too obvious that it was a witch hunt, so probably she will never face charges on anything.

Sanders has a chance to beat Clinton now though. I bet Fox sees the daily horse beating as paying off now.

Just out of deep hate for witch hunts, I almost hope that Sanders wins for the fact that the witch hunters will surely hate him far more deeply than any level of hate they could possibly hold for Clinton.

83 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 11:54 am

JWatts – “Your ignorance on this subject is overwhelming”

Then relieve me. Observe my patience with SMFS on the Christian-Buddhist stuff, offer me half the patience, and I think you’re be able to clear the matter pretty quick.

Of course, all you did was call me ignorant and not mention any facts, so I’m not exactly persuaded.

“He got in trouble because he had the information at home in a non-secured site and gave it to another person without authorization and who didn’t have a need to know.”

Thank you. The fact of home email servers is in common with the Clinton case, but the fact of knowlingly diffusing classified information to unclear people is not.

I’m not saying Clinton did nothing. But the difference is not trivial. If you cannot see the previous sentence as an understatement, then probably you have some irrational hate of Clinton.

84 JWatts February 13, 2016 at 1:53 pm

“Thank you. The fact of home email servers is in common with the Clinton case, but the fact of knowlingly diffusing classified information to unclear people is not. ”

I’ve already said this, but I’ll repeat it. The person Petraeus gave the information to, Paula Broadwell, (his girlfriend/biographer) had a security clearance.

The charges against Petraeus that he plead guilty to were: “a charge of unauthorized removal and retention of classified information.”. It’s a crime to retain classified information, outside of an approved, secure location.

He was not charged with “knowlingly diffusing classified information to unclear people”.

85 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 7:57 pm

“Paula Broadwell … security clearance.”

Yes, thank you. Man, there is so much misinformation it’s hard to tell.

And thank you for the other clarifications as well.

86 JWatts February 13, 2016 at 1:54 pm
87 So Much For Subtlety February 12, 2016 at 7:41 pm

She has been shamelessly greedy in taking billions from Third World dictatorships – and supported their political agendas. While preaching about socialism for the rest of us. At best that suggests the US will have a Latin American style patronage system if she ever gets elected. Friends of Evita get what they like. Others get nothing.

She knowingly and willfully by-passed the security systems in order to avoid scrutiny of her decisions. That put people’s lives in danger – look at the fuss when a Democrat outed Valery Palme. Clinton has done much worse. She seems to think that the laws only apply to little people – and the Democrats seem determined to prove her right.

She screwed up Benghazi. She could have sent help. She didn’t. She then lied about it in public. She knowingly lied about it. She sent some harmless immigrant to prison in order to back up her lie.

Clinton’s entire career has been the shameless accumulation of wealth through political connections in direct defiance of the laws and norms of polite society. A record that would do a socipath proud. What is amazing about this is that the Left is perfectly willing to defend their Caudilla – more so in fact. They refuse to even consider that there is something wrong with this vile woman’s 100% compromised political career.

88 Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:15 pm

Billions is an exaggeration, but her speaking fees are quite prolific, and the lists of payers I’ve seen online are not very reputable.

Is she able to take a paycheque and not follow through with a favour?

Evidence. We need evidence.

_____________________

Benghazi. It happened. Wanna talk Nairobi? What’s special about Benghazi?

Imagine in the military, if each and every single time some guys died, you tried to hold accountable any superior officer who COULD have sent reinforcements.

Sure, post-op, talk it through in every way and see what should have been done better. But you try to destroy each and every single person who failed to evade casualities in their command, you would rapidly decimate the entire officer corps of anyone with any actual combat-related experience.

People die in war. Benghazi happened. Clinton didn’t stop it. These are facts.

Now shall we end the career of any person who didn’t sent reinforcements in cases which proceeded to casualty?

When you think about this at the level of a) what’s practical to expect with regard to casualities when there are multiple wars on and b) considering career trajectories of officers and that quite deocrated officers will almost necessarily have made mistakes in their careers … I think it reeks of partisan despration that we are supposed to consider this as a particularly big deal.

Probably after her political career is over, Clinton will tell us “I wish we had sent reinforcements, but we didn’t.” Was it a brain fart kind of mistake? Did she not think it was necessary? Ummm…. was it actually someone else’s job to take action or TELL HER that it was a really big deal RIGHT NOW? Since when is it the job of the Secretary of State to send reinforcements on 6 hours notice?

It is good to expect high standards of leaders. But, I daresay we have been fooled into focusing on the wrong stuff. Benghazi is part of war, the email protocol stuff will lead to new internal policy. But the corruption across the entire system, which is 100% legal and which Clinton is 100% complicit in. THAT is what we should be worried about.

But they will never attack Clinton for the stuff that really matters, because they either do the same thing or want to do the same thing.

89 So Much For Subtlety February 12, 2016 at 9:57 pm

Nathan W February 12, 2016 at 9:15 pm

Billions is an exaggeration

Her foundation is pulling in about a quarter of a billion dollars a year. Billions is not an exaggeration.

Benghazi. It happened. Wanna talk Nairobi? What’s special about Benghazi?

Let’s talk about Nairobi then. Did anyone lie about it? Shamelessly and in public before the bodies were cold? Did anyone lie directly to the faces of the victims? Repeatedly? Did they beg for more security? Did the then SoS deny it to them? Did the then Sec of State have military support within range, and refused to send it while the battle was going on? Oh wait, there was no fire fight in Nairobi.

Anyone can miss a terrorist attack. But when an embassy is under fire, it is reasonable to ask that our leaders do what they can. Or at least they do not lie about it.

Imagine in the military, if each and every single time some guys died, you tried to hold accountable any superior officer who COULD have sent reinforcements.

Well yes, we do actually do this. It is called professionalism.

But you try to destroy each and every single person who failed to evade casualities in their command, you would rapidly decimate the entire officer corps of anyone with any actual combat-related experience.

That is not what she is under attack for. You keep changing the subject because to deal with the facts would destroy your case.

Probably after her political career is over, Clinton will tell us “I wish we had sent reinforcements, but we didn’t.” Was it a brain fart kind of mistake? Did she not think it was necessary? Ummm…. was it actually someone else’s job to take action or TELL HER that it was a really big deal RIGHT NOW? Since when is it the job of the Secretary of State to send reinforcements on 6 hours notice?

There were airplanes within range. But suppose she made a mistake. She is not young after all. She still lied about it. She is still lying about it. Throwing some immigrant into prison is not an honest response. Nor is standing up and saying “What difference does it make now?”. She owes the public honesty and accountability. She was the person in charge when the phone rang at 3 am. She failed. People died.

the email protocol stuff will lead to new internal policy.

What policy would that be? There is a policy – she had to use the official secure system and preserve her e-mails. She decided she was going to ignore the law. What new policy can there be? You have to use a secure system unless your name is Clinton?

But the corruption across the entire system, which is 100% legal and which Clinton is 100% complicit in. THAT is what we should be worried about.

That is just a grey wash – blaming everyone so you don’t need to blame anyone. Clinton’s greedy is beyond anyone else’s in recent history except perhaps Tony Blair.

90 Thomas February 12, 2016 at 10:49 pm

Nathan displays his complete lack of knowledge for all matters military, secret and top secret message traffic, the Clinton Foundation, and the arguments about Benghazi. His word/content is as unbelievable as his lack of knowledge on the subjects he writes about. What ate you, Nate, a humanities PhD candidate?

91 Cliff February 13, 2016 at 1:19 am

A Canadian

92 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:55 am

SMFS –

Billions – She’s doesn’t get to keep a penny that goes to her foundation. What’s relevant is the speaking fees, millions of cash money yearly that she gets to keep. Getting paid lots of money to speak for people who don’t give anything to anyone unless they expect favours. If you want to be taken credibly, please do not refrain to portraying any and all things in the most exaggerated possible position to make your point. This generally backfires for people who are neither stupid nor poorly informed.

“Let’s talk about Nairobi then. Did anyone lie about it?”

First, it goes without saying that you are correct to point out the difference between a surprise attack and an attack in progress.

The similarities though … People died in both cases. Both cases involve embassies. One had lots of dead people (Nairobi) and one had few (Benghazi). Congress has spent more time investigating this than the entire time spend on the 9-11 hearings, and turned up NOTHING. Give up the witch hunt already. Or … what are these lies you speak of?

If you want lies, let’s talk WMD. Now THOSE were lies. Massive lies told again and again and again, paraded around for months on end, until used to legitimize a bullshit war that killed millions of people.

Oh, but let’s talk about how the Secretary of State said something kind of comforting bullshit to families, while trying to figure out what of the event would be released publicly. After all, in matters of military deaths, no one really expects that all details should be made public.

Compare it. Lies which justify a war that kills MILLIONS. Lies which comfort families while trying to figure out what to release to the public about FOUR deaths.

But Clinton is the one who belongs in prison.

Millions. Four.

But this is not a witch hunt.

Anyways, which reinforcements was she supposed to send? The ambassador knew it was dangerous, knew there wasn’t sufficient security, then got caught in precisely the bind he feared. He knew the risks of staying and heroically decided that this closer-to-the-people engagement was critical, and worth the risk of his own life. We should celebrate his courage, not damn the person who failed to cover his butt for taking risks that he knew were real.

“professionalism”

I repeat, if you were to end the career of any officer who failed to prevent casualities you will have no experienced officer corps left. Professionalism doesn’t mean firing anyone who makes a mistake or fails to achieve operational perfection.

“That is not what she is under attack for”

Then what is she under attack for? I hear “lies lies lies lies” and “crimes crimes crimes”. But no one ever says which lies and no one ever says which crimes.

The facts are that she had a home email server and this wasn’t really allowed (I mean, I think it’s not strictly legal, but it’s it’s not like letting the president get away with literally murdering people or stealing billions of dollars from the public coffers, so I’m not sure it’s quite the right time to prioritize justice at all levels of society) … and there was an attack on the Benghazi embassy and she didn’t send reinforcements. I’m open to discussing these as suboptimal judgement, which is obviously true in at least the case of the email server, although probably she just didn’t know better about internet security stuff. But in the big picture, second most powerful person on the planet, makes big decisions every day … wow man, these are just not very important stories. I wish Republican media outlets would do more to promote some sort of sensible thinking in Republican quarters than to beat the dead drums of these witch hunts.

“There were airplanes within range”

Yes. But dropping bombs does not secure an embassy, not in any sort of scenario that even my wild imagination could dream up. Next best option? Days away. Too late.

” She still lied about it.”

You keep on saying this, but you never say what she lied about.

” Throwing some immigrant into prison is not an honest response”

Pray do tell. what is this turn in the story?

“What policy would that be?”

The policy where part of the job description of someone in the department is to harass the secretary of state daily until all their digital security is in order. Yes, babysit him/her on this stuff. They have bigger things to worry about, like world peace and stuff. Like, really really simple stuff that betrays how retarded it is that this has been a practically daily scandal at Fox for many months running.

“blaming everyone so you don’t need to blame anyone”

You obviously haven’t paid attention at the number of times that I complain about this (campaign finance). I blame everyone because I blame everyone, and have every intention of blaming everyone who doesn’t speak up about the issue. Sanders is the only one speaking about it (campaign finance stuff), on which count alone he is the only person on either side that I don’t think is completely full of shit. I would never trust a person who can be bought. But people who want to make it harder to buy political favours/access? Very easy to trust.

93 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 3:12 am

Thomas proclaims my ignorance about many things but contributes no facts. I conclude that he disagrees with me despite not knowing any facts. But maybe he will prove me wrong. Maybe he does know facts. Maybe he will share them? Until them, it’s pretty safe to say that he just doesn’t like what I’m saying.

Hey, it would be pretty insane to think that a civilian would know lots of stuff about how top secret messages are passed around. I openly admit it. I don’t know those facts. I don’t know facts about things that I couldn’t possibly know about. I mean, do you think they’re going to publish this sort of information to the public? But what’s obvious is that the Clinton stuff is a witch hunt.

Cliff – yes, you have pointed that out already, as though being Canadian is a factor which discredits me in some way. Hey, all I want out of the election is someone who won’t start WWIII.

94 So Much For Subtlety February 13, 2016 at 4:43 am

Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 2:55 am

She’s doesn’t get to keep a penny that goes to her foundation.

Actually she does. The CF has spent virtually nothing on charity. It does, however, provide a whole raft of benefits to its officers from housing to air fairs to expense accounts. Its officers being, of course, Bill, Hillary and Chelsea. It is a slush fund for the Clintons.

First, it goes without saying that you are correct to point out the difference between a surprise attack and an attack in progress.

So your raising it was merely a pathetic attempt at distraction?

If you want lies, let’s talk WMD.

So you are going to change the subject once more? Even if the WMD claims were lies, that would not justify Clinton’s lies. She went out and denied it was a terrorist attack. She already knew it was. That is a lie. What’s more, there is no reason to think that anyone lied about WMDs. They were wrong but that is not a lie. But still, maybe saying “But Bush did it too” will work for you. I doubt it.

Oh, but let’s talk about how the Secretary of State said something kind of comforting bullshit to families, while trying to figure out what of the event would be released publicly.

She lied to them while spinning it to her electoral advantage and you are claiming this is a positive? How fascinating. The families deserved the truth. She reserved that for the government of Egypt.

After all, in matters of military deaths, no one really expects that all details should be made public.

A brilliant piece of misdirection. That is not what is being claimed. If someone is killed in the D-Day invasion we do not expect the Secretary of State to tell the families that they died in a traffic accident in Peoria.

Compare it. Lies which justify a war that kills MILLIONS. Lies which comfort families while trying to figure out what to release to the public about FOUR deaths.

Name a single lie told by anyone about the Iraq War. Distraction, distraction, distraction. Anything to avoid the issue. But it is nice to see you admit to your partisan bias – you are outraged by those “lies” but not by Hilary’s actual lies.

Anyways, which reinforcements was she supposed to send? The ambassador knew it was dangerous, knew there wasn’t sufficient security, then got caught in precisely the bind he feared.

She could have sent more guards, she could have built higher walls, she could have withdrawn the ambassador, she could have had a better bug out plan, she could have sent a gun ship which was ready. She did none of these things.

I repeat, if you were to end the career of any officer who failed to prevent casualities you will have no experienced officer corps left.

Again you misrepresent. We do not punish officers merely for loss of life. We do punish them for a willful indifference to a loss of life – any officer who lost soldiers and told Congress that it did not matter now would be in jail. We do punish them for incompetence. We punish them for lying about it. Professionals are expected to be honest. When people die, officers are expected to reflect and learn. Not stone wall.

Professionalism doesn’t mean firing anyone who makes a mistake or fails to achieve operational perfection.

Strawman. No claims it does.

But no one ever says which lies and no one ever says which crimes.

You refuse to listen. Not that people haven’t told you. You just will not hear the truth.

although probably she just didn’t know better about internet security stuff.

You’re going with the stupid not criminal defense? Good one/

But dropping bombs does not secure an embassy, not in any sort of scenario that even my wild imagination could dream up. Next best option? Days away. Too late.

A gunship would deter attackers. Quite convincingly. But what does it matter now?

You keep on saying this, but you never say what she lied about.

She knew it was a terrorist attack and she lied by saying it wasn’t.

Pray do tell. what is this turn in the story?

So you do not even know the basics of the story but you are sure your side is untouchable?

I blame everyone because I blame everyone, and have every intention of blaming everyone who doesn’t speak up about the issue.

But not this time. Even the government thinks she did wrong in taking money from Algeria. She had to return some. That is not true of Cruz – or Sanders. Again you blame everyone to avoid blaming anyone – especially not Hilary. Partisanship.

95 JWatts February 13, 2016 at 10:44 am

Nathan W is attempting a debate tactic called the Gish Gallop.

“The Gish Gallop is the debating technique of drowning an opponent in such a torrent of small arguments that the opponent cannot possibly answer or address each one in real time. More often than not, these myriad arguments are full of half-truths, lies, and straw-man arguments — the only condition is that there be many of them, not that they be particularly compelling on their own. ”

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Gish_Gallop

96 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 12:40 pm

” It is a slush fund for the Clintons.”

Perhaps. Then again, I’m unaware of any way in which the Clinton’s have ever been able to enjoy their money. Let me emphasize that I don’t like one bit about the speaking fees, dodgey stuff about who contributes to the foundation, and all that. But it is strictly legal.

If it is a problem, the laws need to be changed.

“So your raising it was merely a pathetic attempt at distraction?”

Fuck you man. I said you were right. I will never do that again.

“Even if the WMD claims were lies, that would not justify Clinton’s lies”

Agreed. But one of them is the kind of lie that leads to a war that kills millions of people, and the other is the kind of lie that makes you write into the job description of her assistant to please double check about a couple things.

That you use this to paint me as the type who GENERALLY changes subjects as a strategy of obfuscation is complete bullshit.

Why did I change the subject?

Because some years back, there was a ridiculously ginormous lie with ridiculously ginormous consequences under the Republicans (there were no WMDs), but no one ever even tried to find out who was responsible for that.

The relevance is that comparing the two situation makes it plain as day that this is and always was a witch hunt, and the fact that it is a witch hunt will remain obvious even if the witch hunt does manage to dregdge something up.

“She went out and denied it was a terrorist attack.”

Quibbling about word choice? It was an attack. It’s not a lie to NOT call it terrorist, and then later on with better information, refer to it as terrorist.

If you see this as a lie, then you are sure grasping at straws.

“maybe saying “But Bush did it too” will work for you”

No, that’s not at all what’s happening. I’m saying that Bush’s lies led to a masive war that killed millions of people and is a ridiuclously big deal, but no Republican cared about getting to the bottom of those lies.

Clinton, at worst, might have obfuscated against the witch hunters and changed word choice on a few occasions.

“She lied to them while spinning it to her electoral advantage and you are claiming this is a positive.”

a) Which lie again?
b) How would this work to her electoral advantage?
c) Why do you think I claim this as a “positive”. It’s how the fucking world works. When military or diplomatic personnel get dead, the government and military spend a very long thinking before the official story is released. I don’t like this practice, but this should be seen as a problem with the status quo, not Clinton. At worst, Clinton failed to change the status quo where the government often says little or nothing about dead personnel.

“The families deserved the truth.”

Sorry. Soldiers and diplomatic personnel to not always enjoy this. I don’t like it, but it’s a fact of the world. Moreover, at the end of the story, probably more information was released, and more commentary spilt, on these four deaths alone than any other four military or diplomatic deaths in the history of the USA.

Because … witch hunt.

Why should the family have had to share all of that with the public?

“A brilliant piece of misdirection.”

Have you been taking lessons from Zionists recently? I was absolutely on topic and discussing relevant things.

What’s this deal about Peoria?

“Name a single lie told by anyone about the Iraq War”

I’m working with number one Google hits, so obviously there are better sources. But here’s one.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2003/mar/18/usa.iraq

“It is not too late for the Iraqi military to act with honor and protect your country by permitting the peaceful entry of coalition forces to eliminate weapons of mass destruction.”

I’m pretty sure that I could find quite a lot of quotes which portray it much worse, here we can a speech where GWB presupposes WMDs in Iraq and explains it as the basis of the invasion.

They explored the entire country and found nothing other than the same bloody crap the Americans sold to them to use against Iran.

And anyways, wtf is “weapons of mass destruction”? Everyone though GWB meant Saddam was on the verge of getting nukes, but all they could drum up was some biological weapons sold to them by the Americans.

I mean, try to obfuscate by calling it “incorrect intelligence” as opposed to an outright fabrication and lies. But last i checked, standard practice is to double check singular outrageous intelligence claims before invading and destroying countries, a fact which makes it obvious to anyone who doesn’t suffer from excessive partisanship that it was a clear fabrication, and they would just use as evidence whatever the worst stuff was that they could drum up.

Honestly man. I remember watching the news and seeing satellite evidence of WMDs. It was trucks driving around, and someone theorized that biological weapons laboratories could have been housed in the trucks.

The evidence of WMDs is trucks driving on highways?

AND PEOPLE BOUGHT IT!!!!! And people wonder why much of the world truly believes that most Americans are really really stupid, with the magical exception of some number of genius stars.

“She could have sent more guards”

days too late

“she could have built higher walls,”

Hindsight is 20/20.

“she could have withdrawn the ambassador,”

The ambassador insisted on staying.

“she could have had a better bug out plan”

That’s for underlings. If that’s you’re line, then someone should have told her they needed a better bug out line, and proposed a way to do so.

“she could have sent a gun ship which was ready”

Sorry man, but cavalry doesn’t mean squat unless there are boots on the grounds. Otherwise all you do is kill lots of innocent people.

“When people die, officers are expected to reflect and learn. Not stone wall.”

I don’t doubt she has done a lot of this in private. But if she so much as blinks the wrong way on this subject, the likes of you will claim is as the nail in the coffin that will send her to jail.

“You’re going with the stupid not criminal defense”

I know it’s not a criminal defense. But set aside your desire to destroy Clinton for a second.

Another second.

Another.

I know you really want her career dead and over.

But a lot of old people just aren’t that good with internet security. Clinton is top dog and therefore responsible by tradition, and by tradition she wlil abd should take all related heat. But couldn’t someone a little more tech savvy somewhere in the department have mentioned something to her?

“She knew it was a terrorist attack and she lied by saying it wasn’t.”

That’s bullshit man. You don’t declare something a terrorist attack the moment you learn the attackers are brown. Defining it as terrorism requires knowledge of motives as well.

I want to describe the event as follows: Benghazi was an “attack” not a “terrorist attack”.

In insisting that it be called a “terrorist attack”, however, and not just an “attack”, you would have to provide some supplementary pieces of information which WOW, probably aren’t verifiable in the immediate aftermath of the attack.

Shit man, are we sending people to jail over the failure to use the correct adjectives at the correct times now?

But it’s not a witch hunt. And this is what you highlight as her “lie”. She failed to use the correct adjective when describing the attack, but later used the adjective that you prefer she should have used the whole time.

97 Nathan W February 13, 2016 at 12:44 pm

JWatts – I bloody hate it when people do that, try to drive you out of the argument with excessive nitpicky BS and all of the rest of that crap.

But in this case, a) SMFS almost always starts the real nitpicky stuff and b) he will not be deterred, so I cannot fear that he will drown by sheer number of argumentation. He is extraordinarily dedicated to nitpicking any possible point that I make which does not come with 100% consistency, and rarely fails to make maximal effort to paint anything I say in negative light, in particular if the subject is in any way related to American Ds/Rs stuff or religion.

And moreover, I challenge you to identify any of the following which you accuse me of
– half truths
– lies
– straw-man arguments – SMFS called straw man once, but for the sake of brevity and that it was only about 90% ridiculous, I didn’t bother to respond.

Where do I do any of these things?

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