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News Roundup – Comcast, Paul Ryan, Russia

For the next couple of days, I going to post my comcast internet speeds. Yep, I know …boring, but I’m paying for “speeds up to 50 mbps.” That’s not what I’m getting. It isn’t even close. 🙁

Paul Ryan

Without spending too much time in the weeds, I will circle back around to Paul Ryan, Charles Murray and Paul Ryan’s comments on Bill Bennett’s show last week. First, let’s go over what Paul Ryan actually said. He said, “We’ve got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning the value and the culture of work, and so there’s a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with.” Later in the conversation, Paul Ryan mentions Charles Murray by name. So what? Well, I think this says something about Paul Ryan, conservatives, their view on social programs and their view of race. Charles Murray has published a number of works in which he continually points out that blacks and other minorities are simply inferior to their white counterparts. For simplicity’s sake, let’s just say that it’s clear that Charles Murray’s background is mired in racism. In his relatively famous book, The Bell Curve, he argues “that blacks and Latinos have lower IQs than Asians and whites” (whites are inferior to Asians, by the way); that IQ is largely (though not exclusively) hereditary; that lower IQ means these groups are more likely to commit crime and drop out of school and have illegitimate (and lower IQ) babies and live in poverty, and that there’s not much to do to help those groups rise. In fact, Murray and Herrnstein argued, American welfare policies that provide aid to women with children “inadvertently social-engineer who has babies, and it is encouraging the wrong women. When you’ve spent an entire book arguing that blacks and Latinos have lower IQs, more out-of-wedlock babies and higher reliance on welfare, it’s clear who “the wrong women” are. Oh, and the book also argued for limiting immigration, because unlike earlier waves of immigrants, today’s are coming from countries with a lower national IQ. In what world are those arguments not racist? To me, it is clear that Paul Ryan knew what he was doing. He went on the Bill Bennett Show. Remember that Bill Bennett is the guy who said – “I do know that it’s true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could — if that were your sole purpose — you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down. That would be an impossible, ridiculous and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down.” So, what do I think? I think that Paul Ryan went to the familiar confines of the Bill Bennett Show. I think that he intentionally quoted Charles Murray because it is acceptable in conservative ranks to talk about race in code. Not for a second do I believe that Paul Ryan wasn’t pushing the standard conservative agenda, which says that all we need to do is kick these “lazy inner-city people” (also known as takers in conservative vernacular) off of welfare and force them into some extremely low-paying jobs and that would somehow fix our economy, our problems with inner-city youth and we would reach nirvana. This is the same philosophy that has been pushed by conservatives since Ronald Reagan. No, I do not believe that Paul Ryan’s comments were “inarticulate.” I think he said exactly what he meant. (more reading here, here, here, here, here and here) (more…)

By |2014-03-21T20:34:02-04:00March 20th, 2014|Foreign Affairs, Party Politics, Race|3 Comments

Medal of Honor

This is why I love America. Nope, we got it wrong the first time, but we did finally get it right.

From NYT:

Mitch Libman was surprised when his childhood friend, Pfc. Leonard Kravitz, was not selected for the Medal of Honor — the military’s top honor — after his service in the Korean War. Mr. Libman, back in Denver, had received regular updates from Private Kravitz about the fighting. But then Private Kravitz died a hero, with his actions saving his entire platoon in Yangpyong on March 6-7, 1951.

Private Kravitz was Jewish, and “it was obvious for me, from reading everything, that it had something to do with his religion,” Mr. Libman said in a video interview with the newspaper Stars and Stripes. “And I couldn’t believe that here’s a guy who saved so many lives, and people are upset that a Jewish guy is getting a Medal of Honor,” Mr. Libman said. “And there were so many groups that were caught up in that type of thing.”

Mr. Libman was angry enough to petition members of Congress to reconsider Private Kravitz for the Medal of Honor — he had already been awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the second-highest military award. The efforts led Congress to require the Army, Air Force and Navy to review the records of Jewish and Hispanic service members who had received the Distinguished Service Cross for their heroics in World War II and the Korean and Vietnam Wars to determine whether they had been passed over for the Medal of Honor because of their race, religion or ethnicity.

Investigators concluded that 24 service members — most of them Hispanic and all of them from the Army — had been unfairly denied the Medal of Honor, and on Tuesday they were honored at a White House ceremony. Only three of them were still alive to be awarded the medal in person. Family members accepted on the others’ behalf.

“No nation is perfect,” President Obama said at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House. “But here in America, we confront our imperfections and face a sometimes painful past, including the truth that some of these soldiers fought and died for a country that did not always see them as equal.

“So we’ve, each generation, we kept on striving to live up to our ideals of freedom and equality and to recognize the dignity and patriotism of every person,” he added, “no matter who they are, what they look like or how they pray.” (more…)

By |2014-03-20T01:04:50-04:00March 19th, 2014|Military, Race|Comments Off on Medal of Honor

News Roundup – Budget Deal, Broncos, James Winston, Santa

I have no idea how a budget deal got done in Washington. Could it be that that the right wing of the Republican party is losing its luster? Oh, these knuckleheads stuck it to the poor once again. They are going to let unemployment insurance expire for millions of Americans right before Christmas. They should be ashamed.

I’m not sure how the Denver Broncos lost to the San Diego Chargers. The Denver Broncos were the favorite to win the Super Bowl this year and for most of the year they have looked great. Although they beat the lowly Dallas Cowboys, Tony Romo torched their defense for 48 points and over 500 yards of offense. Their next big test was against the Kansas Chiefs and they looked pretty good against the Chiefs. The Patriots made them look bad. Peyton Manning didn’t look great. The Denver defense again looked mediocre at best. Phillip Rivers has been carrying the Chargers all year. Rivers played “keep away” from the Denver offense and it worked. Denver and Peyton Manning have some serious work to do if they are going to win a Super Bowl. (more…)

By |2013-12-15T14:44:33-04:00December 15th, 2013|Congress, NFL, Party Politics, Race, Religion, Sports|Comments Off on News Roundup – Budget Deal, Broncos, James Winston, Santa
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