California may legalize Communist Party membership for state employees

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82 Responses to “California may legalize Communist Party membership for state employees”

  1. Enochrewt says:

    #7 Santa’s Knee – RE #5: I wouldn’t normally reserve this for a video game message board, but…. OMG OWNED.

    #8 Arnie an Maria have been very forthcoming about their political differences over the years. I can assure you that He does NOT endorse Obama.

    People equate Democrats with socialism for the same reason they equate Conservatives with Bush, a few bad apples ruin the whole bunch. The traditional ideals that the modern Democratic and Republican parties are founded on are actually fairly different from what’s being presented to the public today. I know many people registered to both groups that wonder what happened to their party.

  2. Avram says:

    What’s especially funny is that Vonmises named himself after a philosopher and economist who objected to the split between “left” and “right” in political rhetoric as foolish, and objected to state power in general. The original von Mises would have hated modern Republicans just as much as the modern Democrats. The Von Mises Institute often criticizes the Bush administration.

  3. zuzu says:

    property rights as the only real and sacred right? Have you not once in your life helped another person?

    I don’t think “property rights” means what you think it means. Using your property to help people is only possible because of mutual recognition of property rights.

    Unless you consider being robbed “charity”?

    That said, why is the State involved in marriage to begin with? How did we come to require government permission to sanction who can marry and who cannot?

  4. zuzu says:

    That said, why is the State involved in marriage to begin with? how did we come to require government permission to sanction who can marry and who cannot?

    Whoops, that was for the other recent California law thread.

  5. Xopher says:

    FPB 17: You are either trolling, or ignorant of communist and socialist policies, or you don’t happen to have noticed that explicitly homophobic policies are part of the official platform of the Republican Party.

    There are no explicitly socialist policies in play in the Democratic Party. Single-payer health care is not even there, and it’s as close as you get. And make a case for communist policies, I dare you.

    I suppose you could be saying “it’s all just name-calling.” But while certain members of it may not be, the GOP as an organization is undeniably homophobic, and that isn’t namecalling, but simple fact. In fact I have found that its members tend to be racist as well, though that’s not universal.

  6. flamingphonebook says:

    Takuan: what about the concept of being responsible to one’s self? I agree my thoughts are free, I also accept the “bad” ones as my own but I also make judgment on which to encourage and which to let wither.

    You can make that judgment. I however can make the same judgment for my thoughts. If they conflict, we can reason with each other until we agree, or either party can terminate all contact, or either party can physically restrict the other. Each choice should be met in kind. Reason with reason, separation with separation, force with force.

    Xopher:FPB 69: By “scorched-Earth” Libertarian, I mean that you think that everything, no matter how important, that doesn’t conform to your ideal of total freedom must be destroyed.

    What is more important than freedom? Whatever it is, without freedom, it can be taken away.

    Unfortunately it’s impossible to have society if total freedom is expanded that far. Thus the scorched Earth.

    I respectfully disagree. The only restrictions I’m disallowing are the ones unilaterally established by force of law. You want to discourage bigotry? Ostracize the bigots. You want to discourage greed? Patronize civic-minded companies. You want to end poverty? Engage in private charity. The fact that you can’t reason with the people you disagree with, but need to apply laws to them, tells me that you’re probably wrong, but that even if you’re right, that your ends justify any means.

    And if you are right, and a free society of the current populus would collapse, the right thing to do is let it collapse so that the resulting populus acts the way you believe is right without the prodding of law.

  7. Takuan says:

    the most significant help I have ever given another has never entailed any property but my time.

  8. Takuan says:

    I cite Andrew Brash and Lincoln Hall.

  9. Antinous says:

    I agree that society can only change to the extent that its individuals change, but I’m unwilling to let human beings or the natural world become collateral damage while that happens.

  10. Antinous says:

    Private businesses and organizations should have every right to discriminate.

    I assume that you include people of color, ethnic minorities, other religions, disabled people and women in this statement.

    It took this country 80 years and a bloody war to overturn slavery, but homosexuals can’t wait another day to get a break on their 1040s.

    You’re a rather hateful person.

  11. Takuan says:

    what about the concept of being responsible to one’s self? I agree my thoughts are free, I also accept the “bad” ones as my own but I also make judgment on which to encourage and which to let wither.

  12. Kibble says:

    You can be a Communist, sure, but don’t even think about taking the lens cap off of that camera.

  13. bzishi says:

    I’m surprised that this law hasn’t already been overturned on 1st Amendment grounds (freedom of assembly). I guess it hasn’t been used so perhaps there have been no cases that had a chance to try to argue this point.

  14. flamingphonebook says:

    Your time is your property. It can be exchanged for other people’s property or for money. Or it can be given away for free.

  15. flamingphonebook says:

    I assume that you include people of color, ethnic minorities, other religions, disabled people and women in this statement.

    I do. A private organization is the property of its owner(s). He/she/they can design that organization to whatever purpose suits their values. The only thing they may not do (morally) is force others to transact with them.

    You’re a rather hateful person.

    No, I just give equal love to everyone, including the powerful, the hateful, and the avaricious.

  16. Xopher says:

    FlamingPhoneBook is a scorched-Earth libertarian.

    I find scorched-Earth libertarians boring.

  17. buddy66 says:

    #61, Do you differentiate between private property and personal property?

  18. Antinous says:

    Why do conservatives like equating Democrats with communists and socialists?

    Name calling is a time-honored substitute for a cogent argument when one does not exist. Politics is mostly just a bunch of versions of “I know you are, but what am I!”

  19. flamingphonebook says:

    Xopher:

    FPB…if you think homophobia literally means “fear of homosexuality” then I’m going to shoo you away to read before you post any further on the topic. I have no enforcement powers here, but I’m certainly not going to argue with someone that ignorant.

    You can define a term however you like, but I, entering an argument, must assume it means what is in the dictionary. If you want to rigorously define what you mean by homophobia, then I’ll tell you whether or not it can be found explicitly in the Republican Party.

    And according to your definitions, basically ANY halfway sane government policy counts as socialism. And what you know about communism you can write on a 3X5 card with a Sharpieâ„¢.

    I guess I know which of my three possibilities I think was the truth.

    Again, dictionary definition. Removal of wealth from the wealthy to the unwealthy is socialism. In what other way can you mean the word?

  20. flamingphonebook says:

    63: No difference at all.

  21. EdT. says:

    @#22 Stefan Jones: LOL!!

    I don’t quite understand why this is an issue. If you’re taking a job with state government, you’re pledging an oath of allegiance to said government. You’re being paid by the public to serve the public’s interests in their elected government. Why is it wrong to take precautions to ensure that your allegiances to possibly conflicting ideological groups don’t pose a threat to your ability to perform your duties?

    Shouldn’t a membership in NAMBLA prevent you from running a daycare center?

  22. Avram says:

    Antinous #59, I’d say calling someone “a rather hateful person” is an ad hominem.

    FlamingPhoneBook #53, there’s more to this than 1040s. In many states, same-sex couples can’t adopt kids. There are cases where one half of a same-sex couple has kids from some earlier relationship, has died, and the kids get grabbed away by some relative because the other half of the couple has no legal standing as a parent.

    Claiming this is all about taxes is insulting to people whose lives and loves are snarled in red tape because they aren’t recognized as married to the people they’re sharing their lives with.

  23. GregLondon says:

    FPB@50: I would say that there is no obligation, among men, to be rational. Nature will deal with the irrational in its own time and way. It’s no less wrong to discriminate against the irrational than against a race or a sexual orientation

    When “irrational” ends up having an innocent man at the end of a noose, I say it’s naive and complicit to sit back and let that sort of irrationality run amuck until it can coalesce and find like-minded irrationality and turn into a mob mentality.

    Irrationality doesn’t simply happen in a vacuum. Sometimes it gets innocent people killed for no rational reason.

  24. GregLondon says:

    FPB@76: The fact that you can’t reason with the people you disagree with, but need to apply laws to them, tells me that you’re probably wrong

    I disagree with bank robbers. But they won’t agree with me to stop robbing banks. So I apply laws to them. That tells you I’m probably wrong?

    but that even if you’re right, that your ends justify any means.

    Here’s the funny thing about “state”. It doesn’t mean everyone must agree. Because if everyone had to agree that robbing banks was wrong for bank-robbing to be outlawed, then the bank-robbers would simply say, “no, if you can’t reason with bank robbers to stop robbing banks, then you’re probably wrong, and you’re using the ends to justify the means.”

    Sorry. Doesn’t fly. The thing about “State” is that you’re not going to agree with everything it does. This is one of them. That doesn’t make them wrong.

  25. Takuan says:

    “#17 posted by flamingphonebook , May 16, 2008 11:32 AM

    Why do conservatives like equating Democrats with communists and socialists?

    For the same reason liberals like equating Republicans with bigots, racists, and homophobes.”

    seems to all stem from here

  26. mullingitover says:

    This is great and all, but until we get rid of winner-take-all voting and switch to instant runoff, it’ll always be throwing your vote away to vote anything but (R) or (D). It’s just the nature of the beast.

  27. Antinous says:

    Why is it wrong to take precautions to ensure that your allegiances to possibly conflicting ideological groups don’t pose a threat to your ability to perform your duties?

    Because the government must acknowledge the validity of all political parties. Anything else is a flavor of totalitarianism. The State of California has no intrinsic political doctrine or allegiance. It’s an administrative body.

  28. Pearl says:

    Homophobia:
    Fear or hatred of homosexuals and homosexuality (Oxford English Dictionary)
    Irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals (Merriam-Webster)

    C’mon guys, let’s not reduce a sensible debate to a dictionary definition fight. FGS, if you take that route, you can also claim homophobia ‘means’ hatred of mankind (OED, n1).
    We all know what people generally mean when they say homophobia.

  29. Kennric says:

    #13:

    Politics itself consists entirely of time-honored substitutes for cogent argument.

    My guess is that anything in politics with a name, has that name as a means of denigration. You couldn’t easily make fun of someone for wanting to find a way to make sure everyone has good healthcare – but call them a communist (hell, Liberal will do), and voila, they’re an enemy to reason, God, and America.

  30. Stefan Jones says:

    #27: By the same logic, shouldn’t members of the Libertarian party be prevented from being office holders?

  31. coaxial says:

    @2:

    So it’s legal to duel in Iowa now? Sweet! I’m calling you out Zell Miller!

    On topic:

    Why does this law need to be repealed? How is this law even constitutional? It seems pretty clear to me that it blatantly violates the free association clause.

    Granted, you can have a political test for political appointee jobs, but it’s not the law. It’s just picking the appointees. It sounds like this law would effect just simple career civil servants. (e.g. “You want to work at Child and Family Services? We don’t need you commie!”)

  32. Antinous says:

    I’d say calling someone “a rather hateful person” is an ad hominem.

    Yep.

  33. Kennric says:

    Oh yeah, and didn’t California overturn the anti-gay-marriage act (notice how gay marriage has become a Name?) just the other day? Bursting out with civil liberties all over, they are.

  34. Takuan says:

    There’s a distinction worth making. “Ad hominem” applies when rules of logical argument are violated.
    Calling someone something unpleasant in same spirit as snap kicking them in the genitals is not in fact “ad hominem”. Sometimes you have to do what you have to do, consequences be-damned. Sometimes it’s just stating the impolitic truth.

  35. flamingphonebook says:

    Why do conservatives like equating Democrats with communists and socialists?

    For the same reason liberals like equating Republicans with bigots, racists, and homophobes.

  36. Tenn says:

    If I remember correctly, it isn’t the Democratic Party that has been chiseling away at the rights of American citizens the past 6 years, or pushing more power into the hands of a single individual, the President.

    Thank you. I was born into a Conservative family and have receded into Independent status because of the beliefs the conservative party is holding. On top of the Patriot Act (which was blanket supported, yes, but now at least somebody is trying to change it), there’s the Net Neutrality fiasco, and all the camera enforcement etc. McCain is abandoning his beliefs as well, which means I’m supporting Obama, despite my distrust for certain Democratic values (gun control.)

  37. flamingphonebook says:

    I’m no anarchist. When a person starts hanging people and robbing banks, then it’s time to respond with state-based force. To fail to do so is as wrong as to extend the state’s power beyond this job. That’s what I meant by meeting like with like. There’s a thick line between the side of hanging and robbery and the side of discrimination and bigotry.

  38. flamingphonebook says:

    FlamingPhoneBook #53, there’s more to this than 1040s. In many states, same-sex couples can’t adopt kids. There are cases where one half of a same-sex couple has kids from some earlier relationship, has died, and the kids get grabbed away by some relative because the other half of the couple has no legal standing as a parent.

    Oh, of course. I don’t mean to make light of their situation. My point is that issues like this need to go through a long, detailed political process before they can be settled. My problem is with people who expect to present a few cases like that and then assume that the debate is over. If we want more radical change, then we need more authority given to smaller jurisdictions.

    I’d say calling someone “a rather hateful person” is an ad hominem.

    I didn’t think it was ad hominem; I just thought it was inaccurate. Remember, I don’t assume being hateful is itself wrong.

    Moreover, I’d like Xopher to expand on the term “scorched-earth libertarian.” I am, I would say, a “by-the-book” libertarian, but I don’t understand the scorching of the earth.

  39. EdT. says:

    #28 Antinous: I understand that the govt. can’t selectively suppress differing opinions and I understand that we (non govt. employees) have the right to have a communist party. I was posting under the misconception that membership in the communist party would preclude you from carrying out your duties as a state employee. But as Stefan pointed out, my anti-commie filtered glasses were leading me to erroneous conclusions.

    #29 Stefan: Yes, I see your point. Thanks.

    Now I wonder if there truly is a party that should be blocked? The anarchists? I mean, it’s unlikely they’d be able to assemble a cohesive objection, no? :-)

  40. Takuan says:

    “I don’t assume being hateful is itself wrong.”

    please expand. I agree we “hate” many things, but I do not follow.

  41. Avram says:

    My point is that issues like this need to go through a long, detailed political process before they can be settled.

    But the recent California court ruling is part of that process, no?

  42. Xopher says:

    Thanks Pearl. In fact, if you take the Greek on its face, it means “fear of the same” – in other words, fear of people like oneself. (Which actually does sound like certain aspects of homophobia, but is far from the whole bag.)

  43. flamingphonebook says:

    Which still leaves open the question of what does it mean? You apparantly don’t want to have an exact definition, because that would mean that I might be able to prove that the Republicans policies don’t apply to it. Can I turn it around and say that everyone knows that the Democrats are homophiliac?

  44. seyo says:

    “repealing the no-longer necessary statute from the books”

    This statement seems to imply that it was at some point necessary, which is of course patently false. That is of course if you buy into this whole “freedom” myth we’re all encouraged to believe in.

  45. Prufrock451 says:

    Speaking of “better late than never,” my home state of Iowa finally took an anti-dueling provision out of its state constitution in 1992!

    http://books.google.com/books?id=H2ijf4vJrOsC&pg=PA4&lpg=PA4&dq=%22iowa+constitution%22+1992+duel&source=web&ots=drSpAfvlAe&sig=9okIklBlKQ76L-JBetwZ702IHuY&hl=en

  46. Xopher says:

    FPB, I’m fine with “Irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals.” I don’t see how you can claim that the GOP didn’t make a show of pushing a “definition of marriage” amendment through Congress in 2004, so that they could play on the homophobia of the general populace to get reelected, but go ahead and try.

    Of course, they may not have that on right now. It’s been HOURS since I looked at Republican positions. And they’re kind of wishy-washy: McCain has cut back to 1/25 his original idea of when we should get out of Iraq; just heard that on the radio this morning. Most likely because it’s so easy to paint him as a total loony-toon because of his earlier position.

    Key principle: Any policy designed to play to voters’ homophobia is itself a homophobic policy. And by the way I think Hillary and Barack are both homophobic because they both oppose same-sex marriage. They’re just LESS homophobic than McCain and his gang of fools.

    See, as Charlie Stross has pointed out, the US doesn’t have a liberal party. It has a pro-business conservative party, and a pro-business right-wing wacko party.

  47. racer x says:

    For the same reason liberals like equating Republicans with bigots, racists, and homophobes.

    ROFL!! I know many republicans who would kick your ass for saying they weren’t! They’re real dicks.

  48. DKH says:

    Now if Calif. can do something about those damned gay marriage terrists. THINK ABOUT THE CHILDREN!

  49. catbeller says:

    @DKH:

    ACK! Pedophiles! Don’t think about the children!

  50. ladouceur78 says:

    Jessica Mitford fought this back in the early seventies when she taught at San Jose State. They refused to pay her unless she signed it, and she let them know they’d be hearing from the ACLU. It’s been years since I read her essay about the experience, but as I recall, she won her court case over it, and at that point the law remained on the books but un-enforced.

  51. vonmises says:

    Find a CA state employee who isn’t a communist (or Democrat, but I repeat myself).

  52. Antinous says:

    I was posting under the misconception that membership in the communist party would preclude you from carrying out your duties as a state employee.

    Your error might be in assuming that state employees actually do anything.

  53. catbeller says:

    @FLAMINGPHONEBOOK:

    But bigots, racists, and homophobes exist in the Republican party (hell, they’re a core constituency snached up from the Democrats during the Sixties), while Communists don’t exist, except in Republican imaginations.

  54. GregLondon says:

    FPB: There’s a thick line between the side of hanging and robbery and the side of discrimination and bigotry.

    And an even thicker line between principles such as “All men are created equal” and bigotry, racicm, homophobia, etc.

    Bigotry, racism, and homophobia is not something that can be reasoned with if you believe that “all men are created equal” is a founding principle of reason, of rational discourse of State. They are diametrically opposed.

    And since these are not rational views, they cannot be reasoned with. And since they cannot be reasoned with, your statement at 76 doesn’t hold as a valid inference, because your premise that bigotry can probably be reasoned with is wrong.

    The fact that you can’t reason with the people you disagree with, but need to apply laws to them, tells me that you’re probably wrong

  55. d2kd3k says:

    American immigration application forms STILL ask “if you are, or ever have been, a member of a community party.”

    Which means that legal immigrants in California working as employees of the state who chose to exercise this newfound right to join a communist party may have that action held against them in future immigration procedures.

    No joke

  56. buddy66 says:

    To think of all the struggles we went through back then to invite communist speakers and other political riff raff on California college campuses. It amazed me how frightened the patriots were of free speech. But what if it were today and the speakers were … militant Moslems?

  57. Santa's Knee says:

    @#5:

    Ok – Arnold Schwarzenegger.

  58. flamingphonebook says:

    Key principle: Any policy designed to play to voters’ homophobia is itself a homophobic policy. And by the way I think Hillary and Barack are both homophobic because they both oppose same-sex marriage. They’re just LESS homophobic than McCain and his gang of fools.

    And the light dawns! I wouldn’t call that homophobic in the fear sense, but it is homophobic in the discriminatory sense, and I agree it should not be done. However, as I said before, while it should be made clear that the government will not aid them in their homophobia, it should also not hinder them. Private homophobia is still a right.

  59. flamingphonebook says:

    @Xopher #26:

    FPB 17: You are either trolling, or ignorant of communist and socialist policies, or you don’t happen to have noticed that explicitly homophobic policies are part of the official platform of the Republican Party.

    Let’s take the second one first. The essential policy of communism is joint ownership of property, usually though not exclusively by the state. The essential policy of socialism is to have the effect of a communistic policy, without the top-down control. Do you have differing claims of the policies involved?

    Now the third. Simply because a policy argues against the desires or benefits of a certain group does not mean the policy is against the rights of that group, and it certainly does not equate to a phobia. While I concede that the party does have policies that tend against the desires and benefits of homosexuals, I challenge you to provide evidence of an official Republican policy that is admittedly or explicitly based on fear of homosexuality.

    There are no explicitly socialist policies in play in the Democratic Party. Single-payer health care is not even there, and it’s as close as you get. And make a case for communist policies, I dare you.

    The first four words on the Democrat party web page concerning their economic agenda are “We will create jobs.” The idea that the government is materially responsible when one person hires another implies that that government has power over economic transactions, which is inherently socialistic by my definition above.

    The flip side is their tax policy. In legislation and in speeches, the Democrats have consistently advocated for higher taxes on the wealthy. The removal of property from those who have the most of it for distribution to those who have less of it is the essence of communism.

  60. Takuan says:

    is “right” the right word? Freedom of thoughts is a Right, is the ignorance-bred fear that makes hatred a “right”?

    I really don’t know anyone who can rationally justify their wanting to kill homosexual people.

  61. liberpolly says:

    no, next up is not legalizing the practice of lady teachers wearing dresses that expose their ankles. next up is legalizing Fascist Party membership for state employees. the difference is almost indistinguishable.

  62. Xopher says:

    FPB: While I think most Republicans are homophobic in the “fear and hatred” sense, the party as a whole is homophobic in the discriminatory sense. Parties don’t have emotions like fear and hatred, and policies don’t generally establish emotional standards; what they do is pander to, or exploit, the emotions the voters have. The GOP thinks it can win votes by exploiting the fear and hatred of homosexuals among the electorate, and in 2004 it worked.

    I wish them nothing but failure and defeat in November. Of course.

  63. FPF422 says:

    my first thought was… the Chinese are starting their move on the US… LOL… but as the US are owing quite a bunch to China, is that so far-fetched?

  64. flamingphonebook says:

    #48:

    I would say that there is no obligation, among men, to be rational. Nature will deal with the irrational in its own time and way. It’s no less wrong to discriminate against the irrational than against a race or a sexual orientation.

    #49. I think many, but not most, Republicans disdain homosexuality, and hold their nose and tolerate homosexuals themselves. As for November, I would wish them defeat if there were anyone good to defeat them. In my opinion the Democrats’ ills are far worse. I cannot think of a single governmental office that I am comfortable with a Democrat holding.

  65. Takuan says:

    “there is no obligation, among men, to be rational. Nature will deal with the irrational in its own time and way. ”

    There is indeed an obligation for men to be rational in society. I haven’t opened my Hobbes in centuries, but the alternatives to making social groups work still seem pretty brutish. We have a duty to think, a social obligation. Civilization, civility itself, is rooted in thinking of the other.

    When you say nature will deal with the irrational, you implicitly accept the condemnation of the species. All of us. Don’t get me wrong, I firmly believe that by any objective standard, humanity richly deserves oblivion. All this gifts and powers granted – and look around us.

    That is why I elect to be subjective.

    I do not agree it is wrong to discriminate against the willfully irrational. If a man loves another man, that drills no holes in our collective lifeboat. If a man chooses to refuse to learn and as a consequence condemns his brothers to death thereby diminishing us all – well then, teaching or containing that person becomes a matter of self defense.

  66. sonny p fontaine says:

    ronald reagan begins his grave spin.

  67. Xopher says:

    I think the last 7+ years make it absolutely clear that the Republicans are not competent to run a country. It may be that the Dems aren’t either, but it’s their turn to try (in the absence of anyone else with a shot, short of bloody revolution, which I oppose because it’s bloody).

    People can be as homophobic as they want in “fear and hatred” terms. No one should be allowed to discriminate (in any public accommodation etc.).

    And I think you’re optimistic about the GOP. But then I think about 40% of Republicans (and I mean registered Republicans, not the politicians) would fundamentally be OK with seeing all gay, lesbian, and transgendered people put in a camp and gassed to death.

    I don’t think they’d all admit it, but I do think that’s how they feel.

  68. Xopher says:

    FPB 69: By “scorched-Earth” Libertarian, I mean that you think that everything, no matter how important, that doesn’t conform to your ideal of total freedom must be destroyed.

    Unfortunately it’s impossible to have society if total freedom is expanded that far. Thus the scorched Earth.

  69. Stefan Jones says:

    #21: If we could wrap his corpse in wires and fit his head and feet into gimbals the Gipper’s gravatory gyrations could generate enough electricity to power a small city.

  70. JSG says:

    #7 – He does support Obama, or at least Maria does.

  71. Xopher says:

    FPB…if you think homophobia literally means “fear of homosexuality” then I’m going to shoo you away to read before you post any further on the topic. I have no enforcement powers here, but I’m certainly not going to argue with someone that ignorant.

  72. Alan says:

    @#5: Why do conservatives like equating Democrats with communists and socialists?

    Warren Buffett, for instance, is a staunch capitalist and Democrat. And I know plenty of small businessmen who complain Republican policies are making their lives hard and therefor consistently vote Democratic. So I doubt it has anything to do with suppressing free enterprise.

    There are some in the party who want a national health care system, true, but not one too different from the UK’s or Canada’s, hardly bastions of communism.

    Yeah, Democrats have a reputation for taxing things, but then again, somebody’s gotta pay for all that military hardware.

    If I remember correctly, it isn’t the Democratic Party that has been chiseling away at the rights of American citizens the past 6 years, or pushing more power into the hands of a single individual, the President.

    Oh, and by the way, Pres. Clinton, with Al Gore’s help, privatized more of the US government than Ronald Reagan did. Hardly could call that communist, either.

  73. error404 says:

    @#5: Why do conservatives like equating Democrats with communists and socialists?

    There is no way I would want to be confused with the Democratic Party USA

    Yeah, I’m a socialist, like tens of millions of other europeans.

    In my heart I am a communist, but I recognise that there is no way communism could ever happen.

    It depends upon people actually being good and caring , not greedy, rapascious ego meat.

    Communism is a lot like Christianity in it’s morality, but both are fatally flawed by their reliance on people.

  74. Xopher says:

    And according to your definitions, basically ANY halfway sane government policy counts as socialism. And what you know about communism you can write on a 3X5 card with a Sharpie™.

    I guess I know which of my three possibilities I think was the truth.

  75. Antinous says:

    next up is legalizing Fascist Party membership for state employees. the difference is almost indistinguishable.

    I think the point is that party membership is not a legitimate basis for denying state employment. Why you would conflate Communism with Fascism is another point. You might care to review the history of World War II, paying particular attention to the siege of Leningrad.

  76. Tenn says:

    next up is legalizing Fascist Party membership for state employees

    Why the hell not? I thought this was a free of speech and opinion country.

  77. flamingphonebook says:

    please expand. I agree we “hate” many things, but I do not follow.

    Simply this: everything that occurs in the mind of a human being, every thought, every emotion, every opinion, is 100% amoral. Within the skull, you have infinite power and zero responsibility. When people voluntarily exchange ideas, that too is amoral. It’s just words. Only when ideas are put into practice is judgment warranted. Sitting down and thinking or talking about how much you hate a party or group should not be prevented, only argued against by other ideas. If someone says, “I’m going to hate this group and nothing you say will convince me otherwise,” you should let him be.

    But the recent California court ruling is part of that process, no?

    Yes. And I’m in favor of that ruling. My worry is that it’s going to be taken too far. That rather than enforce justice, legislative shortcuts will be taken to ensure “fairness.” Does affirmative action apply? Do Equal Employment rules apply? These are the shortcuts I’m concerned about.

  78. Zombie says:

    Not many people know that California led the witch-hunts for “Reds” way before McCarthy got that stick shoved up his rear. This isn’t surprising it’s taken this long, my state has long been led and ruled by very conservative people. And when those people get frightened about something it ends with stupid laws that never get repelled.

  79. Antinous says:

    Republicans in California are to the left of Democrats in Mississippi. The parties are not politically homogeneous. I’m registered Green and am strongly socialist, but I find Arnold pretty unobjectionable as politicians go. The Communist Party is about as relevant as the Shriners. They’re not very communist and it sure ain’t my idea of a party.

  80. sonny p fontaine says:

    #22 that would really piss off alot of the private energy concerns in cali. great idea, but haven’t you seen chinatown? great adam west delivery, btw.

  81. flamingphonebook says:

    Takuan: There is indeed an obligation for men to be rational in society. I haven’t opened my Hobbes in centuries, but the alternatives to making social groups work still seem pretty brutish.

    For the least qualified. If you’re socially darwinistic, and confident that you’re in the select, the alternatives don’t look too bad.

    When you say nature will deal with the irrational, you implicitly accept the condemnation of the species. All of us. Don’t get me wrong, I firmly believe that by any objective standard, humanity richly deserves oblivion. All this gifts and powers granted – and look around us.

    That is why I elect to be subjective.

    The species may be condemned, but I will neither accept nor deny it. My only caveat is that if it is condemned, I’d much rather like to see it replaced with the ubermenschen than with the termites. That is, the individualistic advance over the collective.

    If a man chooses to refuse to learn and as a consequence condemns his brothers to death thereby diminishing us all – well then, teaching or containing that person becomes a matter of self defense.

    Precisely. Teaching or containing. Preferably the latter. Send him to Coventry, and if he manages to survive there, it’s no skin off our asses. If necessary the former, but not in a situation where if he does not accept the teaching, he’s punished. The only kind of irrationality we have the right to defend ourselves against is the kind that presumes the right to take our property by force or by fraud.

    Xopher:

    I think the last 7+ years make it absolutely clear that the Republicans are not competent to run a country.

    I agree with the literal meaning of your words. I do not think that the last seven-plus years show that the Republicans are incompetent to hold the legislative majority and executive office of a limited democracy such as the US.

    People can be as homophobic as they want in “fear and hatred” terms. No one should be allowed to discriminate (in any public accommodation etc.).

    Only if that public accomodation is a government institution. Private businesses and organizations should have every right to discriminate.

    And I think you’re optimistic about the GOP. But then I think about 40% of Republicans (and I mean registered Republicans, not the politicians) would fundamentally be OK with seeing all gay, lesbian, and transgendered people put in a camp and gassed to death.

    I don’t think they’d all admit it, but I do think that’s how they feel.

    I’d like to know how you come to that conclusion. I know many Republicans from many walks of life and I know of none who have given any indication of a willingness to use violence against homosexuals.

    What I have seen is an unthinking prejudice against the practice. It’s “just not right” in their eyes. No reason, unless you press them until they mutter something about god’s will. But that does not translate to wanting orientational genocide.

    But give it time. Many of the people who think that are older folks who had their values canalized in a time when homosexuality was considered immoral. If they don’t have to deal with it personally, they’ve no reason to consider their position rationally. Let them die off naturally, and in a generation or two, the population en masse will be ready for full equality of sexuality. Just because an idea is progressive, doesn’t mean the progress happens automatically. It took this country 80 years and a bloody war to overturn slavery, but homosexuals can’t wait another day to get a break on their 1040s.

    Sometimes I suspect that it’s actually about flinging homosexuality in the faces of the homophobic for shock value and schadenfreude than it is about actually obtaining the benefits for the homosexuals. But I have no direct evidence of this.

  82. Takuan says:

    property rights as the only real and sacred right?

    Have you not once in your life helped another person?

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