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Author Topic:   Who's the bigger offender: Conservatives or Liberals?
Posts: 5987
Joined: 05-02-2006
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Message 36 of 773 (886193)
05-09-2021 8:55 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by PaulK
05-09-2021 4:44 PM

Creationists did try to inject their religious beliefs into science classes.
They're still at it. Arkansas House bill, HOUSE BILL 1701:
1 State of Arkansas
2 93rd General Assembly A Bill
3 Regular Session, 2021 HOUSE BILL 1701
5 By: Representative Bentley
6 By: Senator G. Stubblefield
8 For An Act To Be Entitled
16 Subtitle
26 SECTION 1. Arkansas Code Title 6, Chapter 16, Subchapter 1, is amended
27 to add an additional section to read as follows:
28 6-16-152. Creationism.
29 (a) A teacher of a kindergarten through grade twelve (K-12) science
30 class at a public school or open-enrollment public charter school may teach
31 creationism as a theory of how the earth came to exist.
32 (b) This section is permissive and does not require a teacher to teach
33 creationism as a theory of the earth came to exist.
03/10/2021 4:10:31 PM JNL069

It passed in the state house, but was voted down in a state senate committee.
Everybody tries to claim that they've gone away, but they're still there and still trying.
Hinduism teaches that the Earth is even older. Does that make Hindus atheists? It’s absurd.
Frankly, I wouldn't put if past marc to call Hindus "atheists". I've come across others in the past whose definition of "atheism" was only about rejecting their god, such that most theists would indeed be deemed to be "atheists".
He has also just demonstrated that he does not understand the extremely simple concept of something being non-theistic, but instead considers such to be "atheistic."

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 Message 28 by PaulK, posted 05-09-2021 4:44 PM PaulK has not replied

Posts: 5987
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Message 38 of 773 (886198)
05-09-2021 10:11 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by marc9000
05-09-2021 4:07 PM

Re: free speech
PaulK writes:
It turned out that Mueller didn’t find that things had gone far enough for charges, but there was enough to justify investigation.
Didn't go far enough for charges, but it was still the truth?
Actually, Mueller couldn't find enough evidence to prove conspiracy. The reason was that Trump kept obstructing his investigation, ordering Mueller's witnesses to ignore the subpoenas, etc.
Mueller details that in Volume II of his report in which he lists and describes in detail ten (10) instances of obstruction of justice committed by Trump.
So why didn't Mueller indict Trump? Because of that OLC memo from the Nixon era that a sitting president cannot be indicted. Instead, Mueller kicked those cases of obstruction of justice up to Congress for them to impeach Trump (not stated explicitly). Instead, Congress impeached Trump the first time for the crimes he committed in his phone call with President Zalensky.
Nothing could be done because of Bill Barr, but now there's a new AG in town, an honest one this time. As Mueller testified, once Trump left office he could be indicted and prosecuted for those acts of obstruction of justice.
That's the main reason why Trump was so desperate to be re-elected and why he tried to get the election overturned and continues to do so: his very survival depends on that OLC memo protecting him from prosecution. His secondary reason was to continue to funnel government money into his own businesses (and hence into his own pocket), though he's back to fleecing his followers (the real "sheeple") through his new grift, his "Save America" "leadership PAC" ostensibly to cover legal costs but which instead is for Trump to use however he wants (after a suspiciously hefty "cost of funding" which accounts for 61% of donations gets skimmed off the top first). And the tertiary reason he craves re-election is to get his pathetic ego fluffed, though that gets stroked a bit every time he complains to a crowd.
Despite Barr's lies, the Mueller Report is filled with collusion between the Trump Campaign and Russia and it does not in any manner exonerate Trump.

Fun Fact --
Nixon's running mate for both elections he won was Spiro T. Agnew, former Governor of Maryland (he resigned from that office in order to take the office of VP). While Governor he received a steady stream of bribes and he continued that corrupt practice while serving as Vice President. Finally the corruption investigation was closing in on him. Agnew tried to take the position that a sitting Vice President could not be indicted, but that didn't hold any water. Finally he resigned his office to save it from the disgrace of his arrest while in it. That is how we wound up with Gerald Ford who went on to replace Nixon when he finally resigned.
Part of all that was that Nixon sent two questions to the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC). The first was regarding whether a sitting President would be immune from indictment. As we all know all too well, the OLC's response was that now infamous memo to the effect that a sitting President could not be indicted.
Most people don't know about the second question, which asked whether the President could pardon himself -- do you remember that that was one of the first questions Trump asked upon entering office, along with "what's the use of having nukes if you don't use them?"? The OLC's answer to Nixon's second question was basically, "No, because in granting a pardon you are acting as a judge and you cannot be the judge in your own case." So then, no, Nixon could not pardon himself. And neither could Trump.
Edited by dwise1, : ABE: fun fact

This message is a reply to:
 Message 25 by marc9000, posted 05-09-2021 4:07 PM marc9000 has not replied

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Message 39 of 773 (886199)
05-09-2021 10:15 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by marc9000
05-06-2021 7:33 PM

... by today's atheist science classes.
What the hell are you talking about?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by marc9000, posted 05-06-2021 7:33 PM marc9000 has not replied

Replies to this message:
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Posts: 5987
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Message 44 of 773 (886212)
05-10-2021 4:02 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by marc9000
05-06-2021 7:11 PM

Re: free speech
Trump was demonized for what he said on January 6th, largely because most of the mainstream media cut out his words "peacefully and patriotically".
These attempts to exonerate Trump by carefully and selectively parsing that one speech are extremely dishonest. They completely ignore the entire pattern of conduct by Trump and his operatives over the preceding 60 days -- that is not including the months of Trump repeated claims that if he lost then it would be because the election was rigged, the same claim he was making during the 2016 election campaign.
In those 60 days between the resolution of the election on 06 Nov 2020 and the Insurrection, Trump held several rallies in which he spread his lie of a "stolen election" and generated anger and rage against the election process and the duly elected government. He repeatedly issued what amounted to a "call to arms" for "his people" to rise up in rebellion and to restore him to the throne ... er, the Oval Office, but then Trump never knew the difference anyway.
His followers assembled for that 06 Jan speech were already fully indoctrinated in what they were there to do, were primed and ready to do it, and had organized and prepared themselves for the actions that the preceding two months had called upon them to do. The actual words in Trump's speech would have made no difference at all, except for his final command to start their advance on the Capitol (preceded by advance rebel units according to plan). Trump could just as well just given the old jazz count-off ("A one, a two, you know what to do.") and the outcome would have been the same. Trump had spent the previous two months priming and arming them as a weapon against democracy; all that was left for him to do was to give them a direction and turn them loose.
As the investigation proceeds, we find that the attack on the Capitol was preceded by communication between the principal groups (eg, Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, other white supremacist, white nationalist, neo-Nazi, militia groups) in which they planned and organized the attack -- sounds like charges of conspiracy should result. The date and place for the demonstrations was changed to 06 Jan for the purpose of disrupting and stopping the certification of the election -- as I recall, that change was made at the direction of the White House. There was a large mobilization plan which required a lot of organization to provide those groups with transportation and lodging for that "demonstration" -- that reportedly included money from Trump's "legal PAC", about $50 million as I recall.
In addition there's the curious case of Sec Defense Mark Esper and his abrupt replacement with Christopher Miller at the same time that two other top DoD positions were filled by unqualified Trump loyalists. That happened on 09 Nov, a few days after the election had finally been decided (though Esper's resignation letter predates that). Part of that reason seems to be Esper's efforts to keep Trump from violating the law on 01 June 2020 when Trump repeatedly ordered the deployment of active duty troops against the protesters and Esper had to order them back. That was when Trump used his goon squad to clear Lafayette Park so that he could walk across for a Satanic photo-op in front of a church (displaying Christian religious symbols upside-down is a Satanic practice and Trump did in fact hold that Christian religious symbol, the Bible, upside-down -- the Beast is as the Beast does).
At the time, nobody could understand the sudden shake-up in the leadership of the Department of Defense after Trump had already lost the election. What purpose could that possibly serve? Well, we found that out on 06 Jan.
Leading up to 06 Jan, Miller placed strong restrictions on the DC National Guard that basically disarmed them against the insurrection and severely reduced their effectiveness in defending the Capitol and in assisting the Capitol Police. He banned them from touching, arresting, or searching rioters, and bringing weapons, helmets and body armor to work on 06 Jan. Then on 06 Jan he hesitated approving National Guard support from neighboring states for three hours after that support was requested because the Capitol's defenses had been overrun (his approval was explicitly required).
Now we know why Trump had placed Miller in that position.
They say that the fish rots starting at the head. And when a conspiracy (or crime mob) is investigated that you start at the ends and work your way up to the head.
The investigation is ongoing. Let's see what it leads to.
Edited by dwise1, : minor grammatical correction to last sentence

This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by marc9000, posted 05-06-2021 7:11 PM marc9000 has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 45 by Phat, posted 05-10-2021 11:41 PM dwise1 has replied

Posts: 5987
Joined: 05-02-2006
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Message 49 of 773 (886230)
05-11-2021 12:56 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Phat
05-10-2021 11:41 PM

Re: free speech
I was wondering when Trump was officially going to get served for his misdeeds documented by Mueller coupled with his misdeeds in early 2021. I just hope that justice is thorough and complete.
Take a number and queue up in the long line. Trump is a crook and has always been a crook, and that was common knowledge when he was elected in 2016 (so what's wrong with the people who voted for him? Note that he lost in New York where they knew him best). For decades he had presented a hard target, but now every agency has him in their sights; running for President was the worst and single most stupid mistake Trump had ever made.
What had kept Trump out of jail in the past was that he presented too hard a target. Prosecutors need to get results (indictments and convictions), but they have limited resources. As a result, they tend to go after the soft targets without the armies of lawyers intent to delaying you at every turn (as we saw Trump's lawyers do in the long drawn-out battle to subpoena his tax records). They just could not squander all their limited resources for such an extended time on a small potatoes crook when there are more dangerous criminals out there.
But now Trump has become the most dangerous criminal in the country. Now he's the big target, still harder than most, but worth the effort. Plus they've finally been able to get his records. Now SDNY can finally get him on tax fraud, bank fraud, and insurance fraud -- personally, I think that they will be able to add money laundering, especially of Russian money, once they can get Deutsche Bank's records on Trump. Then there are felony election law violations in GA and potentially other states. And campaign finance violations (eg, as INDIVIDUAL1). And multiple corruption charges. And several accounts of sexual assault (including a rape accusation for which he will finally need to submit a DNA sample). Etc.
So in the matter of prosecuting Trump, we suffer from an overwhelming embarrassment of riches.
BTW, IRS auditing works the same way. Auditors need to show results, but they are working with limited resources including the amount of time they are allowed to spend catching a tax cheat. So basically an auditor's performance evaluation (and ability to advance or just plain keep their job) depends on how much tax revenue they can recover from tax cheats at the lowest cost.
Taking down the biggest tax cheats would bring in the most missing revenue, so an auditor should want to target them. But the problem is that the biggest tax cheats are also the hardest targets. They are lawyered up to such an extent that it becomes too expensive to pursue them, plus their other lawyers have constructed their tax cheating mechanisms to be harder to crack. They become too difficult for auditors to take on.
In contrast, smaller tax cheats don't have armies of lawyers at their disposal nor are their cheats very sophisticated, if at all. For that matter, because they usually lack any legal counsel many probably don't even know they've done anything wrong. That makes them so much easier to take down and collect lost revenue from. Plus there are so many of them that an auditor can easily bring in a lot of lost revenue at a low cost, even though that's peanuts compared to what they could rake in from a big tax cheat.
Now consider what Trump did to the IRS. For one thing, he slashed their budget which had the effect of greatly reducing how many audits they could conduct, plus shifting their attention away from bigger tax cheats and to the smallest.
For another thing, he made sure to fill the top three positions in the IRS with his people and made sure that they were confirmed so as to be fully empowered. Compare that amount of attention to how the overall pattern of appointments wherein he would fill many positions with acting officials (basically by firing the confirmed official and replacing him with a "temp") while leaving a large number of positions empty. And yet he acted immediately to fill those top three IRS positions with his stooges. As if he anticipated needing them to keep his taxes secret.
On another note, part of how Biden plans to finance his infrastructure plan includes having the IRS collect from the biggest tax cheats. That would bring them up against hard targets, whom the IRS could try to take on given a clear mandate to do so and sufficient funding and support to pull it off. We'll have to wait and see.
Based on the information given, I think he is guilty of at least two violations of presidential authority and responsibility.
There are also many monetary crimes, including flagrant corruption.
The most flagrant case was Trump's frequent golf trips to his own properties. His entire entourage had to accompany him and had to pay lodging and meals and sundry (eg, golf cart rentals, green fees, etc) to Trump's own business. A figure I read was that $44,000 of taxpayer money was paid to Trump's own business for each trip (though I'm not sure whether that was per day or per weekend). Into his third year, the figure I heard was that his golf resorts had been paid about $9 million of taxpayer money. Note also that while he criticized Obama's golfing and claimed that he would be so busy that he would have no time to golf, yet within 3 years he had already exceeded the total amount of golfing that Obama had done in eight years.
And that's just the most flagrant and out in the open example. He also had the military divert flights so that the crew would have to overnight at a Trump resort. And for an official visit to Ireland, even though the meetings were in Dublin Pence had to stay at a Trump resort all the way on the other side of the country.
And then there was that press event between Trump and the Irish President in an airport lounge next to the vending machines. Trump wanted them to hold it at his nearby resort and he wanted them to travel there in three limousines that they would rent from Trump's resort (and hence from Trump) for a million dollars. The Irish President wanted them to use an Irish government building which was closer -- I didn't hear that part, but I'm sure that Trump would have charged for the use of his resort whereas the Irish wouldn't charge anything for the use of their gov't building. In response, Trump just had it held in the airport lounge.
In addition, there are just too many stories of large amounts of government money that have gone missing with no explanation -- eg, from Trump's COVID relief bill early on in the pandemic. The business that Trump paid about a billion dollars to to produce syringes for the vaccine and other items and they have to deliver anything. Or the millions of vaccine doses that Trump held in reserve to guarantee the second shot, but when Biden decided to tap into it to increase the number of first shots that reserve proved to be empty. No vaccine to be found in that reserve. Where did it go? Into a black market? For that matter, was it ever there? Was somebody paid for millions of doses of vaccine that were never even delivered? Enquiring minds want to know.
To Trump's own personal corruption, add the corruption of his Cabinet members and other Trump officials. All of which will need to be investigated and prosecuted where needed. Already, Bill Barr's days seem to be numbered.
And there's not even mentioning possible charges stemming from Trump's Russian connections. From the very start, anybody with any amount of training in counterintelligence would see the red flags going up all around Trump -- BTW, every single military member receives such training as part of annual security training (eg, security, classification, counterintelligence, anti-terrorism/force protection). The signs all pointed to Trump being a Russian asset, whether willingly or as a "useful idiot" (or both). Saying that there's nothing there would be like saying that the Mueller Report proved that "there was no collusion" between Russia and the Trump Campaign.
There were two separate investigations: the Mueller investigation into the Trump Campaign and Russia, and a classified counterintelligence FBI investigation into Trump's financial connections with Russia. As Mueller encountered information and evidence about Trump's finances, he passed it on to that parallel FBI investigation. When Mueller released his report, we "knew" that the FBI investigation was still ongoing and we waited for its report.
Well, we learned in August 2020 that Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein, who had started the two investigations and had oversight over them at first, had stopped that FBI investigation shortly after it had started (which would place that in mid- to late-2017).
So the counterintelligence investigation of Trump's financial ties with Russia has not been conducted and still needs to be conducted. Hopefully that has been started up again.
As we wait for the other shoe to drop.
I just want our system to work honestly the way it was intended.
So do I, whole-heartedly. Which is why I am so thoroughly disgusted with the GOP's concerted efforts to pervert democracy and even to just discard democracy altogether if that serves their purposes.
The Democrats are no Saints either, but lets wait 4 years before judging them.
We're not looking for "Saints" (ie, perfect people), but rather for a party which will at least try to govern and try to represent and work for the American people through our system of government by working it honestly the way it was intended.
The Republicans don't even try to govern, but only to obstruct. They don't represent the people nor do they even try to work for them -- rather, just about everything the Republicans do is to the detriment of the American people (eg, placing the tax burden on the middle class and below, poisoning us through deregulation, stripping us of medical insurance, starving us, etc). In addition, they are now frantically stripping American citizens of the right to vote, even to the point of trying to enact laws that empower state legislatures to silence the voice of the people by arbitrarily overturning elections if the outcome is not what the Republicans want.
The Democrats are not perfect nor ever will be, but at least they're trying to govern for the American people. The Republicans couldn't care less about the people.
There is no equivalency! So if you decide after 4 years that the Democrats are not perfect, then what? Are you going to hand it over to the Republicans for them to destroy? What sense could that make?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by Phat, posted 05-10-2021 11:41 PM Phat has seen this message but not replied

Posts: 5987
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 2.7

Message 61 of 773 (886287)
05-13-2021 1:23 PM
Reply to: Message 58 by AZPaul3
05-13-2021 3:48 AM

Re: The New Boss?
"…there are an awful lot of people out there with a seriously mangled version of scientific concepts. Worse, they use their misunderstanding of basic terms to argue that they have a scientific foundation for their bad ideas."
(PZ Myers)
Gee, where did I hear that before? Maybe Message 73, Message 80, et al. in There are easy creationist answers to problems evolutionists pose? Where I point out how creationists have created a strawman boogeyman out of their misunderstanding of science and evolution which they call "evolution" and which is what they attack instead of actual science and evolution. While the rank and file don't know any better because of their scientific illiteracy, the professional creationists should know better both because several of them do have scientific training but mainly because they have been corrected repeatedly for many years.
Case in point and funny story. In the preface of his excellent and informative book, The Age of the Earth, G. Brent Dalrymple (PhD Geology) describes the 1975 visit to US Geological Survey at Menlo Park by leading creationists Dr. Henry Morris (PhD Hydraulic Engineering) and Dr. Duane Gish (PhD Biochemistry). In an evening seminar, Gish & Morris presented their "scientific" case for creationism to several hundreds of USGS scientists. That led to lively discussion, most of which was attempts to correct the Gish & Morris' mistakes and misunderstanding of several things, including the Second Law of Thermodynamics. That's what happens when creationists speak to scientists. And Gish & Morris did learn from that experience. They learned to avoid talking with scientists.
I need to post a summary of Dr. Eugenie Scott's presentation, What people get wrong – and sometimes right – about evolution (Message 87).

This message is a reply to:
 Message 58 by AZPaul3, posted 05-13-2021 3:48 AM AZPaul3 has seen this message but not replied

Posts: 5987
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Member Rating: 2.7

Message 63 of 773 (886297)
05-14-2021 2:13 PM
Reply to: Message 62 by Percy
05-14-2021 9:35 AM

Well done on your detailed calling of BS on marc's mass quantities of BS. A few remarks, though.
What I think you can legitimately point to over the past few years is increasing hostility toward the views of Trump. For instance, there's a great deal of hostility right now toward his claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen. That view is Trumpism, not conservatism.
Not only is Trumpism not conservativism, but the GOP (AKA "GQP") has purged itself of conservatism. Conservatism has principles and policies, whereas the GOP now has none outside of getting Trump back into the Oval Office so that he can use the office to avoid prosecution and prison.
But rather than lay all the blame at Trump's feet, the GOP ("Greedy Old Pricks") has been devolving into their current form ever since Reagan. Most of what Trump did was to speed it up and to "legitimize" all their worst impulses, making them feel safe to slither out from under their rocks.
Do you not know what vaccine reluctance is? It has nothing to do with vaccine development. Limbaugh shares responsibility for the surprising degree to which Americans are reluctant to get vaccinated and that might well prevent the country from achieving herd immunity.
In the middle of the night (it was one of those) I caught a headline that it's only about 15 people on social media who are generating all this vaccine reluctance blarney.
The not-quite-officially-stated Trump strategy as confirmed by memos was to follow Dr. Atlas' "herd immunity" strategy (you remember that former radiologist whom Trump elevated to being his leading expert on COVID). The strategy was to get as many people as possible infected with COVID in order to eventually get 80% of the population immune through natural means (ie, by have had the disease). It didn't matter how many people had to die to accomplish that, nor how many people would survive with disabilities from the disease.
But the worst effect from Dr. Atlas' approach would be what we are seeing in the Third World: the evolution of COVID variants which are more contagious and more lethal. Add to that the high likelihood of those our vaccines being less effective or even completely ineffective against these variants.
In contrast, achieving herd immunity through vaccination inhibits the evolution of those variants. And until we had the vaccine, we needed to mitigate the spread of the virus through well-known public health measures, including masking and social distancing and testing and tracing -- indeed, several countries that used those well-known public health measures (eg, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand) got the virus under control with very few casualties.
In contrast, the Trump Administration did practically everything wrong. They did that with complete knowledge of how deadly the virus was and how it spread (as per Trump telling Bob Woodward about it right before the pandemic hit us). Instead of being mere gross incompetence, it seems to have been deliberate almost as if they intended to allow it to do the most damage possible.
marc9000 writes:
So Trump slowed the vaccine development because of what Limbaugh said? I think not.
Trump had virtually nothing to do with vaccine development. Research in COVID vaccines had been worked on for decades, so most of the "warp speed" efforts were in applying that research to this particular virus. All Trump did was to make an announcement, allow some funding for that effort, and then try to take all the credit (including for Pfizer which was not part of "warp speed"). For that matter, if Trump had been aware of that COVID research before the pandemic he would have been most likely killed it like he killed our pandemic preparedness back around 2018.
That Sicknick succumbed to injuries sustained during the insurrection came from a statement by the Capitol Police. Reports that the injuries were caused by a fire extinguisher came from anonymous law enforcement sources and were later retracted.
We all saw the videos of the insurrectionist rioters viciously attacking the Capitol policemen, including heavy objects such as fire extinguishers being thrown at their heads -- well, FOX viewers may not have seen that since FOX wouldn't want to expose them to the truth. That Sicknick had not been injured by being struck with a fire extinguisher does not change the fact that other officers had been attacked and injured in that manner.
Now Republicans congressmen are claiming that those vicious rioters were just behaving the same as any group of tourists visiting the Capitol. The sheer gall of those liars!
If you want to correctly use the term "close" then apply it to the 2000 presidential election won by George W. Bush over Al Gore 271 to 266 in the electoral college but lost in the popular vote by 543,895 votes. That was close.
The 2000 election was even closer than that. Even though the US Supreme Court's decision stopped the Florida count, thus effectively handing the election to Bush, the count did continue. The final results was published after the dust had settled, buried on page six of the local newspaper: Al Gore had won the vote, which means that he had actually won Florida and hence the election. But since he had already conceded and the election had already been certified for Bush, Bush is what we ended up getting.
What Hunter Biden corruption? Hunter Biden served on the board of a Ukrainian energy company for which he was unqualified and the optics terrible, but that's not corruption, and no corruption has been found.
Yes, the optics were not good, but "unqualified"?
A corporation board brings together members with specialty skills, such that while no individual member is expert in everything, but collectively they enable the board to have expertise in everything that the corporation needs expertise in. For example, if your expertise as a board member is in international law, then why would not having had work experience in drilling gas and petroleum wells, refining gas and petroleum into marketable products, constructing and operating pipelines, etc make you "unqualified" to do your job on the board in international law? Insisting on placing all those extraneous other qualifications on each and every single board member, as marc and his tribe keep doing, is just sheer idiocy and displays either complete ignorance of how things work or denial of reality.
Hunter Biden is a lawyer who has worked as a lobbyist, banker, public administration official, and registered lobbyist-firm attorney. Burisma had been found guilty of and fined for corrupt practices including money laundering and needed to reform its practices to remove corruption and to prevent corruption in the future. They hired consultants for that purpose, including Hunter Biden. Going forward, they needed a board member with expertise in corporate best practices. They hired Hunter Biden for that purpose (and perhaps also for some ulterior motives, but that's not germane to this point).
Whether Hunter Biden was qualified to sit on the board of Burisma has nothing whatsoever to do with oil/gas company experience, but rather with whether he was qualified in his own field of expertise, corporate best practices. If he was qualified in his own field of expertise which the board needed expertise in, then he was qualified to sit on that board.
So far, I have seen none of his critics even begin to address his actual qualifications.
Hunter Biden was probably offered a position on the board because they thought it would provide them an in with then VP Joe Biden. It didn't.
It is reasonable to suspect that was the board's motivation in hiring Hunter Biden. Perhaps also for hiring him as a consultant in the first place. So how are their decisions and motivations supposed to be an indictment of Hunter Biden or of then-VP Biden in the marc's eyes?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 62 by Percy, posted 05-14-2021 9:35 AM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 67 by Percy, posted 05-14-2021 6:36 PM dwise1 has replied

Posts: 5987
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 2.7

Message 68 of 773 (886302)
05-14-2021 9:33 PM
Reply to: Message 67 by Percy
05-14-2021 6:36 PM

I can't buy your arguments in favor of Hunter Biden's qualifications for the Burisma board, plus they read like they were lifted in part out of Wikipedia.
The only part I got from Wikipedia was Hunter Biden's job history. The rest was simple examination of reality.
Also, my argument is not for or against his actual qualifications for the Burisma board. Rather it is against his critics' insistence that he cannot have been qualified solely because he did not have work experience drilling for natural gas.
So I'm not arguing for Hunter Biden's being qualified, but rather against an obviously false reason for his being not qualified. An obviously false reason that ignores how corporate boards are staffed in the real world.
Consider an engineering company that designs, manufactures, sells, and installs computerized greenhouse control systems. Do all the employees need to have an extensive background in horticulture in general and in greenhouse operations in particular? Why?
They need a secretary/receptionist for the front office, so do all candidates need to have worked in or run a greenhouse? Of course not!
They need someone to run human resources (HR -- ie, manages the medical and financial benefits for all the other employees and ensures that the company complies with all employment laws, etc). Must the company only consider candidates who had worked in a greenhouse? Why should they?
Assuming an in-house medical staff (likely for a large company, though not for the small company where I worked), is it far more important that that medical staff had extensive experience working in a greenhouse as a grower? Or that they have the necessary medical training and experience? Even if they have experience providing medical services to greenhouse workers, the company is not running a greenhouse of its own, so their greenhouse experience would just go to waste.
They need a manufacturing staff that knows how to build the hardware. Do they need to have extensive greenhouse experience? Why would they? All they need to know is how to construct the hardware including electronics manufacturing, metalwork, etc. They would need to be able to implement the designs that the engineers give them. Would they need to have extensive knowledge of greenhouses from having been greenhouse growers? Why should they?
The supply officer (not sure what a SUPPO is called in the civilian world) needs to know how to work with the vendors in order to get the best prices for the parts that manufacturing needs. Would she (it was a she who was then later replaced by a he) have to have worked in a greenhouse? Why should she? The closest that greenhouse experience might come into play would be in knowing what kind of special properties the parts would need because of the greenhouse environment they'd be used in (eg, metal parts needing to be anodized against corrosion), but then she would be told that by the part specifications given her by engineering.
And would the installation crew need to have had extensive growing experience in greenhouses? Here that would start to be a plus, since it could help to know your way around a greenhouse. But here again, your installation foreman (team chief) would have that knowledge and be directing you. But in that process, you would be learning your way around greenhouses through OJT (on-the-job training). Which is undoubtedly how your installation team chief had gained his knowledge.
Would the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) need to have been recruited from the ranks of greenhouse workers? Why? Money is money, accounting practices are accounting practices, short-term loans are short-term loans, all regardless of the specifics of the company's specialized business.
So much support and specifications come from engineering, so should you only hire engineering staff from the ranks of greenhouse growers? Why? There are several different kinds of engineers. In typical engineering environments, engineers design in accordance with a specification, a document that specifies exactly what the design shall do (my first lesson as a working engineer was in the difference between "shall" and "will" in a specification), what its interface shall be (including a display screen, but also a communications port, etc), etc. An engineer doesn't need to know anything about how greenhouses work, but rather how to follow a specification. Knowledge about greenhouses might help slightly, but is not necessary.
One kind of engineer is the systems engineer who is the one who writes those specifications.. The more a systems engineer knows about greenhouses, the better it can be, but that knowledge is still not absolutely necessary at the lower levels where a higher level systems engineer or the equivalent would be advising the systems engineer in all matters greenhouse.
I was hired as Chief and Sole Software Engineer and Diskette Formatter. No background in greenhouses or horticulture outside of having to mow my lawn. The hardware engineer (EE with mostly analog experience, so I had to advise him on how to read digital electronics data sheets) served as the Chief and Sole Systems Engineer.
In that company, all the knowledge of how greenhouses work came from the company president and chief salesman. Everybody else learned from him.
Similarly, a corporate board would consist of members who are experts in their own fields, like the employees in that semi-hypothetical greenhouse controls company. Each member is hired/appointed on the basis of their particular area of expertise and independent of any direct experience with what the company does (eg, drill for natural gas). Of course, they will need to know how their particular expertise applies to the needs of the business of the company, knowledge that they can and should receive from other board and company members. Ideally, knowledge of the business of the company can only be a contributing factor in hiring you, but not in whether you are qualified to do your job.
Burisma needed someone to help guide them away from their historical corrupt practices and money laundering and towards better corporate practices. A lawyer who had consulted them in those matters should logically be a candidate for that position.
So was Hunter Biden qualified for that position? We would need to look into his actual work to determine that.
However, to immediately declare him to be unqualified simply because he did not have direct experience in drilling for natural gas is not only not valid, but it's complete bollocks!
That is what I am arguing.

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 Message 67 by Percy, posted 05-14-2021 6:36 PM Percy has seen this message but not replied

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Message 69 of 773 (886303)
05-14-2021 9:59 PM
Reply to: Message 65 by Percy
05-14-2021 5:35 PM

Giuliani would tell whoever would listen that there was plenty of evidence of election fraud and then in court admit he had no evidence. After being sued by Dominion Voting Systems Sidney Powell defended herself in a court filing by claiming that no reasonable person would have believed her assertions of election fraud. That's why Trump lost 59 of 60 court cases - his claims of a rigged election were false.
It is far more damning than that!
From what I've been hearing from lawyers on MSNBC and progressive radio (Sirius XM Progressive channel), all barred lawyers (meaning licensed by the Bar to practice lawyering) are officers of the court. Part of that means that they must uphold the law and never lie to the court -- weasel-wording not applying since that's part of the game that the court is party to. You can weasel-word all you want to, but you cannot deliberately lie to the court. If you were to lie to the court, then you would be disbarred and unable to practice as a lawyer. You would have been stripped of your profession and your livelihood.
That should describe the dire consequences for a lawyer of deliberately lying to the court and why any conscious lawyer would avoid doing so at all costs.
Please note that that has nothing to do with how much lawyers are free to lie to the public. Just that they cannot and must not lie to the court.
So here we have 60 court cases which the public had been told were about election fraud, but when they actually went to court made no claim of election fraud. Even when questioned directly by the judges whether they were claiming election fraud, the lawyers denied that. Because to do so would be deliberately lying to the court, which would spell the end of their careers as lawyers.
That means that Trump's lawyers themselves knew that Trump's Big Lie is nothing but a lie. Completely unsupported. Sidney Powell's defense of "only an idiot would have ever believed me about election fraud" is just icing on the cake. IOW, even she knew full well that she was deliberately lying and would have lost her law career by doing so in court.

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Message 73 of 773 (886307)
05-14-2021 11:57 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by xongsmith
05-14-2021 10:46 PM

A bit of unintentional semantic slipperage there, mainly caused by Percy not having edited his quoting of me (which should not be expected of him unless he wanted to go out of his way to make himself perfectly clear).
In Percy's quote blocks, first he quoted himself talking about Trump, then he quotes me talking about Al Gore. Think of when we were graphing sentences in school, pronouns had to have an "antecedent", some reference to whom "he" refers.
And obviously, Percy's "And 20 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan." was in response to Bush having won instead of Gore.
That intrusive qs block is not an interjection, but rather the start of a completely new line of discussion. Percy did not just interrupt his thought, but he started a new one.
Edited by dwise1, : "unless", not "until". Sorry, Party of One.

Edited by dwise1, : "Think of when ... "

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Message 74 of 773 (886308)
05-15-2021 12:19 AM
Reply to: Message 71 by Phat
05-14-2021 11:43 PM

Re: The New Boss?
I am no expert and neither is Shapiro. His world view is defensible and his Judaism is in league with traditional, rather than progressive Christianity. For the record, I lean towards traditional Christianity and away from Progressive or Emergent Christianity.
Uh, but when it's a matter of real world scientific discussion, what does any of all that have to do with anything?
Actual biology. Actual physiology. Actual psychology. And also, lagging far behind, actual sociology.
Like most of us (myself included), you like to live in a comfortable binary world where everything is either this or that and there's no in-between. But there is a lot of grey inside any black-and-white world.
There must be many factors that go into forming a gender identity. Including hormone levels (just to keep it simplistic). And there are documented instances of genetic males or females having developed opposite-sex secondary traits.
There's more to it than you or your Ben Shapiro would think.

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Replies to this message:
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Message 89 of 773 (886351)
05-16-2021 2:32 PM
Reply to: Message 86 by Phat
05-16-2021 4:42 AM

Re: Reexamining the question
I fixed your spelling of the word Naive.
Where? How? Why don't we see it correctly spelled in either AZPaul3's Message 85 nor in your own Message 86? Oh yeah, you "corrected AZPaul3's spelling. Exactly how had he spelled it, BTW?
The correct spelling of "naïve" is "naïve". Without the requisite diaeresis diacritical mark it would sound like "knave", not like "naïve".
A feature of a number of languages, English included, is diphthongs, the combining of multiple adjacent vowels inside a single syllable (usually 2, but French also goes for 3; eg, "eau"). Some are logical (ie, combining the constituent vowels' own sounds; eg, Spanish "ai" and "au" and "eu", German "au") and some are just arbitrary (eg, German "ei" and "ie" and "eu", French "ou" and "eu, just about every single one in English -- let's face it, English written vowels are just plain weird and completely screwed up ... and the spoken vowels are not much better).
However, there are times when you do not want to use a vowel combination as a diphthong but rather as separate vowel sounds in two syllables. When the combination does not look like a diphthong and hence there'd be no ambiguity then you use a hiatus (see the diaeresis link; an example is the very word, "hiatus"). But when the combination looks like a diphthong, then it requires a diacritical mark to signal that those vowels are separate, hence the diaeresis.
Two examples of using the diaeresis are the words "naïve" and "Noël". The use has been slipping in some words. If you look in an older dictionary (eg, 1940's or earlier) you will also see words such "coöperate" and "coördinate" which no longer require the diaeresis -- now lacking that diaeresis it would look to an English learner that the first one starts with "coop" as in a chicken coop and the second with "coor" like the singular of a popular and bad-tasting American "beer" which is even worse than the Monty Python joke of American beer being like making love in a canoe, "f**king close to water".
Spanish makes extra use of the diaeresis for the purpose of marking an otherwise silent vowel as needing to be pronounced. Similar to French, Italian, and English (though English is inconsistent about it), the "c" and the "g" each have two different sounds depending on whether they're followed by a front vowel (eg, "i", "e") or a back vowel (eg, "a", "o", "u").
When you want to give those consonants the other value with the "wrong" vowels, then there are ways to indicate that in writing. Italian will use the "h" to make a hard "c" or "g" or an "i" to make them soft: eg, Ghirardelli chocolate, "Giuseppe", "machina" ("makina"), "ciao". French will use the "u" go make the "g" hard before a front vowel but without pronouncing the "u": eg, "guise", "guide". To make a "c" hard in French, you substitute "qu" as in "quelque", "quinze", "quitter". In English, who knows? It's just plain weird and irregular and inconsistent.
In Spanish the rules are very regular, even though the spelling changes cause teachers to classify verbs needing them as "irregular" even though they're regular in all other ways. For example, in order to keep the "s" sound of "c" you write it as "z"; eg, in "hacer", in the preterit you have "yo hice" and "él hizo". To give it a "k" sound before a front vowel, you write it as "qu" as in "queso". To give a "g" its soft sound (same as the "j"), you write it as "j" as in "justo" or "Juan" or "José". To give it its hard sound, follow it with a "u" which is not pronounced: eg, "guitarra" from which we get our "weird" spelling of "guitar".
But what if you're using the "u" to make the "g" hard and you also want it to be pronounced? In that case, you put a diaeresis over the "u". For example, "vergüenza".
Even though the diaeresis looks like an umlaut, they are totally different. The Umlaut represents the shifting forward of back vowels (ie, "a", "o", "u"). Using German vowels (not English!), "ä" becomes like an open "e" (common pronunciation drill to distinguish them: "Bären fressen Beeren."), the "ö" sounds like the French "eu" as in "peuple" and "peu", and the "ü" sounds like the French "u" (make the long "i" sound and round your lips -- again, German/French/normal vowels, not English!).
Historically, the Umlaut was indicated by an "e" following the affected vowel. That is still a writing convention in older names (eg, "Goethe") and when your typewriter/font don't provide umlauted vowels. In writing, that developed into writing a small "e" over the affected vowel. Since in Fraktur handwriting (eg, Sütterlin) the "e" looks like two marks, that "e" then evolved into the two dots we see now.

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Message 91 of 773 (886353)
05-16-2021 3:26 PM
Reply to: Message 78 by Phat
05-15-2021 8:30 PM

Re: The New Boss?
My only point where I agree with his side is in the matter of being forced to recognize certain realities (or observations) due to science. I''llnot let science be my thought police.
It's not a matter of science becoming any kind of "thought police" (that's the role of fundamentalists' goal of taking control of American society).
Rather, it's a matter of learning the facts and reality. Willfully ignoring the facts and reality (and making the conscious and deliberate decision to do so) in favor of a fantasy is living in denial. Your "Ben Shapiro" wants homosexuality to be classified as mental illness, which tells us much of what we need to know about him. However, such deliberate denial as you insist on qualifies much more as a sign of mental illness.
I'm reminded of Gary, a friend from church (UU). You remember his story. He was very deeply into being a fundamentalist Christian, living ex-Fundamentalist minister Dan Barker's definition of fundamentalism being "when your theology becomes your psychology." His fantasy world was at odds with contrary evidence and facts that he could not help but encounter every day, so he just blocked them out of his mind and kept his eye blind to reality. But that took a very heavy toll on him, such that finally one day he could no longer deny reality. That led him to apply the Matthew 7:20 Test to his religion which led him to leave that unhealthy religion. Now he feels much more spiritually fulfilled as a "total atheist and complete humanist" than he ever had as a fundamentalist Christian.
Your fantasy that there are only males and females and nothing else is in direct conflict with reality. You want to descend into mental illness by living in denial of reality? That's your own individual choice, but you have absolutely no right to impose your mental illness on others!
One specific case that I recall from a science show about a decade ago was an individual who had been born with female genitalia and so was classified as female and was raised as female. But then with puberty things started going wrong ... or rather failed to go right. I don't quite remember the physical details, but I seem to recall that "she" had no uterus. Genetic examination revealed that "she" had the XY sex chromosomes. So "she" was a "he" who had failed to develop physically.
How would you classify that individual? Male or female? You can't, and yet there "she" still is! How are you going to deny "her" existence or try to explain it away?
The old term is "hermaphrodite", though that's considered stigmatizing and has been replaced by the term intersex:
Intersex people are individuals born with any of several variations in sex characteristics including chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones or genitals that, according to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, "do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies". Though the range of atypical sex characteristics may be obvious from birth through the presence of physically ambiguous genitalia, in other instances, these atypical characteristics may go unnoticed, presenting as ambiguous internal reproductive organs or atypical chromosomes that may remain unknown to an individual all of their life.
Sex assignment at birth usually aligns with a child's anatomical sex and phenotype. The number of births where the baby is intersex has been reported to be as low as 0.018% or as high as roughly 1.7%, depending on which conditions are counted as intersex. The number of births with ambiguous genitals is in the range of 0.02% to 0.05%. Other intersex conditions involve atypical chromosomes, gonads, or hormones. Some intersex persons may be assigned and raised as a girl or boy but then identify with another gender later in life, while most continue to identify with their assigned sex.
The article doesn't mention it, but a number of pollutants that permeate our environment mimic estrogen, which cannot help but have an effect. For example, in Canada they have found male beavers with a "male uterus", a condition brought on by those estrogen-like pollutants. Based on that, I would suspect that the number of intersex cases should be increasing especially in genetic males.
Whatever worldview one takes on, it should be based on reality and on the facts of that reality and it should be in agreement with reality.
Living in denial of reality is just plain unhealthy.

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Message 92 of 773 (886355)
05-16-2021 4:14 PM
Reply to: Message 83 by marc9000
05-15-2021 10:41 PM

You say below that you watch Ron Johnson and Tim Scott sometimes on Sunday morning programs. Do you find me to be a lot different than them, and others like them?
Ron Johnson persistently repeats dezinformatsiya (дезинформация), Russian disinformation. What the Kremlin puts out, he repeats. Disinformation was defined in Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1952) as "false information with the intention to deceive public opinion". It is currently being used against the US to destabilize our society with lies about "election irregularities" and to keep us sick and make us even sicker through the sabotaging of our efforts to fight the pandemic by spreading lies about the disease and the vaccines and promoting vaccine reluctance.
Johnson has been identified as the GOP's foremost advancer of conspiracy theories and disinformation. His disinformation claims are so in line with the Kremlin's that an MSNBC commentator always adds before showing a video of Johnson repeating that disinformation "We had to pay extra to translate it from the original Russian."
So here you're comparing yourself to Ron Johnson and claiming that you're little different from him.
Is that an admission that you are doing nothing but to repeat phony conspiracy theories and disinformation?
If so, then that is the first truthful statement I have ever seen you make here.

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 Message 83 by marc9000, posted 05-15-2021 10:41 PM marc9000 has replied

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Message 98 of 773 (886369)
05-17-2021 11:46 AM
Reply to: Message 86 by Phat
05-16-2021 4:42 AM

Re: Reexamining the question
I fixed your spelling of the word Naive.
In Message 89 I provided the correct spelling of naïve" and explained what a diaeresis is, what its function is and how it works, and how it differs from a hiatus and an Umlaut (both explained in that same link).
However, I neglected to tell you how to write a word with a diaeresis (or with an Umlaut).
For writing normal text, I use the US-International keyboard. You could install any national keyboard you would want (eg, German, French, Spanish), but then you'd have to also deal with the reassignment of some keys. For me, the US International keyboard avoids all those reassignments while adding special characters and the ability to add diacriticals (eg, accent marks, umlauts, tildes).
The various keyboard layouts are presented in Wikipedia's articles QWERTY and AZERTY. Keyboard layout general theory and non-Latin keyboards are discussed in Keyboard layout.
For example, German is QWERTZ in that it switches the "z" and "y" keys (in English's QWERTY "y" is far more common than "z", whereas in German "z" is far more common than "y"). French is AZERTY, reassigning many of the letter keys especially on the left side. And on top of all that, every foreign keyboard reassigns the keys for punctuation marks. In addition, the Spanish and French keyboards have a narrow left shift key and hence has an extra key to the left of the bottom left-most letter ("z" to us, "w" to them) which is how they type the "<" and ">" which are used as "angle brackets" for HTML tags. Since our physical keyboards do not have that physical key there, you cannot use a French or Spanish keyboard to edit HTML (I know, I've tried).
The key to using the US-International keyboard are the dead keys which are also found on other keyboards. Using a dead key, you press the key for the accent mark (eg, " ' ` ~ ^ ) and "nothing happens" until you press the next key. If the next key is something that can take that accent (eg, ñ, é, è, ê, ö) then the accented letter will appear. If the next key would not take that diacritical mark, then the two keys appear as they normally would. The disadvantage of this is that you have to be careful when using quotation marks (eg, "A could easily become Ä by mistake). Also, I believe (but haven't tested) that the list of letters which may be modified by a dead key would depend on the keyboard's language -- eg, a "ë" would not be allowed in German, but may appear in other languages.
Which brings us to another method which is far more flexible and provides you with access to all kinds of symbols: using HTML entity codes. The format is &entity_name;. Another advantage of using entities is being able to write something like that without the forum software trying to interpret it; Instead of & I wrote &amp; and instead of ; I wrote &semi;. The same trick can be used on in HTML to write an HTML tag (> with &gt; and < with &lt;) as well as to post a source code listing that contains less-than or greater-than expressions or pointers (been there!).
That link for entity codes contains a list of entity names. You can also Google on HTML entity codes to find a more readable list. I usually use Character Entity Reference Chart at You not only get special punctuation marks and math symbols, but also non-Latin letters -- that's how I wrote Greek words in previous posts. And I frequently use non-blanking space (&nbsp;) to insert an extra line as immediately below.
Back to how to write "naïve", the "umlaut" entities are patterned as &Xuml; in which the "X" is replaced with the letter to be "umlauted". Therefore, "naïve" would be written as "na&iuml;ve". Simple.
Similarly, acute accents have names like &Xacute; like &eacute; (é), &oacute; (ó). Grave accents have names ike &Xgrave; like &egrave; (è). Hence you can write "élève". And to round out for French, there's &ecirc; (ê) and &ccedil; (ç) -- fête, façade.
You need to keep in mind that entity names are case-sensitive, so &Sigma; (&Sigma is different from &sigma; (σ) and &Aring; (Å is different from &aring; (å -- ångström, skål)
In addition there are sets of more specialized entities that you would need to look up separately. I just found that most of them don't have names, but rather a code number in hexadecimal; eg: ♩ ♬ ♋ ♏ ♕ ♣ ㎨ ॐ ☯ ✡
Go exploring and see what you can find.
Share and enjoy!
Edited by dwise1, : additional entity info

Edited by dwise1, : word choice: "special character" vis-à-vis "punctuation mark"

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