Congressman And Former Trump Advisor Calls For Hearings On Media Bias, Threatens To Start Pulling FCC Licenses

from the trash-talking dept

It's always the people neck deep in partisanship that make the most noise about unfairness. In a move that bodes well for free speech, Rep. Kevin Cramer is calling for hearings to sort out this "problem" with "biased" media. Cramer also spent some time as Donald Trump's energy advisor, so it's a good guess he feels his candidate hasn't been treated fairly by The Liberal Media™ -- an entity that's always useful for easy scapegoating when things go south for candidates, legislation, etc. on the Republican side. (The liberals/left do the same when stuff goes wrong for them. Everyone does it. The only difference is the scapegoat.)

Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) sent a letter to the heads of the four "major" TV networks—CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox—threatening to hold a hearing "to explore network media bias in coverage of the 2016 presidential campaign." To justify this grandstanding and overreaching display of concerned government, Cramer cites a recent Gallup poll which put Americans trust in "media" at around 32 percent and also asserted only 37 percent of Americans think the media's coverage of the 2016 campaign has been "balanced."

Cramer's biases are clear, but he seems blissfully unaware of them. Presumably Fox is being added to this hearing's lineup for the same reason criminal informants get swept up during law enforcement raids -- to prevent any suspicion arising from its exclusion. While Cramer cited the Gallup poll, he also added in more feelings of his own, stating the media (both sides, I guess) is engaged in "surreptitious propaganda" which somehow violates its "moral" duty to inform the public without taking sides.

Rather than allow adults to address the open question of "moral" obligations, Cramer has issued threats with the weight of the federal government behind them. He brought up the Fairness Doctrine, only to drop it moments later, stating that a "free system" is only possible with unbiased media.

Media bias is something universally hated, but it's never not a partisan issue. Everyone agrees bias -- at least too much of it -- is bad. Those wanting to see it gone usually just want the other side to change, not the ones that confirm their world view. Rep. Cramer is no different, and seeing as he has somewhat of a vested interest in Trump's success, his official offendedness is incredibly suspect.

Hearings aren't the only thing Cramer threatened. He also hinted he would start pulling FCC licenses if things didn't change while implying that the First Amendment is mostly for protecting speech he likes.

So instead of wielding the Fairness Doctrine as a means of forcing the networks to rid themselves of all political bias (which would be impossible to quantify, not least because bias is in the eye of the beholder), Cramer threatens their "the use of federally-allocated spectrum" afforded by their FCC licenses, writing "Your FCC license and the liberty that comes with your First Amendment rights are not a license to broadcast anything you want or in any way you choose."

That's an odd interpretation of the First Amendment. There are very few modes of expression that aren't protected by it and "always running down my guy" isn't one of those exceptions. Not that it matters. As Reason's Anthony Fisher points out, Cramer's more angry than informed.

Cramer appears to have not read the FCC's website, which explicitly states (emphasis theirs), "We license only individual broadcast stations. We do not license TV or radio networks (such as CBS, NBC, ABC or Fox) or other organizations with which stations have relationships (such as PBS or NPR), except to the extent that those entities may also be station licensees."

[...]

Though Cramer might want to use the FCC as his own task force, the FCC's website also states the commission "cannot prevent the broadcast of any particular point of view. In this regard, the Commission has observed that 'the public interest is best served by permitting free expression of views."

So, the FCC won't be doing any of the things Cramer imagines he can make it do, and any attempt to force the issue would look exactly like what it is: an attack on free speech disguised as a call for "fairness."

Bias will always exist in the media. That's because humans are biased creatures and some of it bleeds over into the profession, no matter how much they might aspire to loftier ideals. And, of course, there are always those who don't even aspire to these ideals and wallow in fully-biased reporting.

But it's not as if dragging down the Big Four to Cramer's level would have much of an impact immediately, much less a lasting one. Only a small minority of Americans get their news exclusively from these outlets. Many more get them from a variety of other sources, all with their own preferences and biases. And humans, being humans, tend to be drawn to viewpoints that agree with their own. Hollering about FCC license and moral obligations won't do anything to make the news more fair -- not when there's a market on both sides of the political aisle hungering for a slant that agrees with their own.


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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 6:46am

    Speaking of ratings and trust...

    Cramer cites a recent Gallup poll which put Americans trust in "media" at around 32 percent and also asserted only 37 percent of Americans think the media's coverage of the 2016 campaign has been "balanced."

    The same group that he's getting his 32% number from also puts public approval of congress at a whopping 18%, suggesting that even if the public was on board with censoring unpopular news groups they likely wouldn't want or trust congress to be the ones deciding who gets silenced.

    Maybe he's just annoyed that more people trust the news than trust him, and are more than twice as likely to say that the media is doing a good job as say that congress is?

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    • identicon
      Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:02am

      Re: Speaking of ratings and trust...

      Ultimately, both "the media" and "Congress" are amorphous groups, and polling of whether people trust or approve of them is not very informative.

      Generally, people hate Congress but like their Congressman, hate the news media but like the news source they watch or read every day.

      The important question isn't whether people disapprove of a given institution, it's why.

      "Because they're biased" is an answer, but still not a specific one. Cramer, presumably, believes the media are biased toward liberal causes and politicians. I believe they're biased toward headlines that grab ratings and stories that please advertisers. We both believe there's a bias, but we have a very different interpretation of what that bias is.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:06pm

      Re: Speaking of ratings and trust...

      I think 18% is being a bit generous.
      Not that long ago a poll put it in the single digits.

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  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 7:40am

    Trust of the media

    Is the issue of trusting the media about which candidate they appear to support, or the failure of the media to investigate and ask hard questions about the government? There are numerous incidents, where is the media in questioning the governments decisions about Wall Street/banking failures that lead to a serious downturn in the world wide economy? Where is the media in their investigation into secret courts and secret laws and secret interpretations of laws? These are just two: government spying on citizens, civil asset forfeitures without a criminal convictions, whistle-blowers doing the populace proud while hurting over zealous bureaucrats, etc., etc., etc..

    I don't think Americans 'trust' of the media has to do with how they handle political discourse, I think it has to do with their failure to challenge the many things government does that fail our Bill of Rights intended purpose and the wishy-washy way they are compliant in dealing with government in order to maintain 'access'.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Media Bias Expert, 8 Nov 2016 @ 8:35am

    There is media bias

    Yea, there's media bias. IMHO it was brought on by letting the big 4 buy every small station they could find, and running the others out of business. The only way to get rid of the bias, is to chop up the big boys and push the journalists back to the small local papers, stations, etc.

    Even then, there will be some bias, but not on the scale we're seeing today.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 8:49am

    That's because humans are biased creatures

    And none more so than politicians.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 8:49am

    poll which put Americans trust in "media" at around 32 percent

    did i miss where he referenced polls which reflect america's trust in congressmen?

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    • icon
      Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:00am

      Re:

      No, no, no. This man has integrity. Since he IS a congressman, referring to polls about Americas trust in congress would display...bias.

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  • identicon
    Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 8:58am

    Presumably Fox is being added to this hearing's lineup for the same reason criminal informants get swept up during law enforcement raids -- to prevent any suspicion arising from its exclusion.

    Weeeell, Fox the broadcast station isn't the same thing as Fox News, but yeah, it'd be hard to accuse them of liberal bias with a straight face.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:07am

      Re:

      please, the left leaning news looks right to the hard core left and fox looks left leaning to the hard core right.

      It's all perspective! Only a nub wastes time bitching about the obvious bias that exists. Use it instead to temper your belief of the garbage they spew.

      Fox is no more or less biased than the rest of them. Their biased arrow just points a different direction, which is the only sin for some. You can be corrupt as fuck, well as long as it serves your purpose.

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      • icon
        Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:15am

        Re: Re:

        Another day, another false equivalence.

        Most of what the right calls the "left leaning news" isn't left leaning at all. It's simply insufficiently right-leaning for them.

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        • identicon
          Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:26am

          Re: Re: Re:

          And even the news network that's most openly left-leaning gives Joe Scarborough a three-hour-a-day show.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:26am

          Re: Re: Re:

          huh? You just called something a false equivalent and then just said the very same thing, just in a different way.

          The point is that the people viewing, judge the direction of lean based entirely upon their own views. This fact is implied by both your comment and the person you responded too.

          Be honest, your mom dropped you on your head, didn't she? We won't judge here, we just call you stupid!

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          • identicon
            Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:50am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            The point is that the people viewing, judge the direction of lean based entirely upon their own views. This fact is implied by both your comment and the person you responded too.

            Yes, but some people view factual statements as biased. I've already used the climate change example. There are people who see factual statements about climate change and say they have liberal bias. Those people are objectively wrong.

            Similarly, Trump calls it bias when polls show him losing. (He is not talking about statistical bias; he is saying that the polls are intentionally skewed to look bad for him.) The polls may turn out to be wrong, but it's absurd to say that Fox News has intentionally skewed its numbers to favor Hillary Clinton.

            Reporting on facts is not bias. Not liberal bias, not conservative bias. Interpreting facts may be biased, but that's not the same thing.

            And yes, there are liberals who claim conservative bias from factual reporting (say, poll numbers about Clinton's perceived trustworthiness -- coverage of those may be self-fulfilling, perhaps, but most people really do see Clinton as untrustworthy; trustworthiness is an opinion, but the polling data on people who hold that opinion is a fact). More often, I'd say liberals claim conservative bias from media outlets whose real bias is toward profit, not any particular political ideology.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:44am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Trump is a cry baby politician, of course he is going to cry and whine, no different than Hillary calling the pro trump clown a basket of deplorables. Sure they cry and whine in different ways, but that is what they are doing.

              And, yes! Factual statements are biased, that is kinda the nature of it and for good reason too. Bias is not inherently a negative word even though people just assume that is due to years of spewing from certain folks. Bias can be positive, neutral, or negative.

              Someone having a bias towards helping someone is a positive bias in general.
              Someone having a bias toward mustard over mayo is a neutral one.
              Someone having a bias against someone based on political ideology is a negative one.

              Trustworthiness is both opinion and factual. You can mathematically calculate the number of times a person lives up to their word or just lies and produce an actual number. Additionally, since the grading process is often produced by opinion that makes it very subjective, however it can be said that people can be technically evaluated on trustworthiness.

              I have no problem with media being biased, I can read between the lines. It would be hard for them to pull the wool over my eyes.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:11pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Are you a steadfast member of the Society of Intelligent Falling? There is bias in the theory of gravity, as it is only a theory.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:03am

    Media Bias is necessary

    Looks, I already KNOW that the media is biased. That does not concern me. What DOES concern me is the thronging sea that is the electorate that lets this fucking stupidity take them.

    I want bias in the media, and I want it on both sides. No one is more committed to revealing the corruption of people than those that hate them.

    An no, I will never agree to any form of government oversight 'controlling' who gets to say their piece and how much of that piece has to be balanced by 'opposing views'.

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    • identicon
      Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:31am

      Re: Media Bias is necessary

      I want bias in the media, and I want it on both sides.

      On some issues, sure. It's perfectly reasonable to weigh, for example, the value of government programs against their economic cost. (If we did it honestly, and factored in who was paying the cost and who was receiving the value.)

      But on some issues, it's simply a matter of who's factually right and who's factually wrong. We can have a debate about how best to deal with climate change, but any debate about whether climate change is real is a false one.

      And of course the right-versus-left divide is largely an artificial one, and not a particularly helpful one except in reinforcing the status quo. There are disagreements which cross party lines; censorship, copyright, and spying are three that we read about routinely on Techdirt, and they all have their supporters and their detractors across both major parties and beyond.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:39am

        Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

        " but any debate about whether climate change is real is a false one"

        What about debating the effect of humans on climate change?

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        • identicon
          Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:52am

          Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

          Also a bullshit debate. There's scientific consensus on human-caused climate change. The "debate" is a manufactured one, a distraction, and a waste of time.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:05am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

            There used to be a scientific consensus that fat was bad.
            There used to be a scientific consensus that traveling faster than Sound was impossible.
            Ford was laughed at.
            Copernicus got little respect.
            And Einstein once said... "Two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity. And I am not sure about the universe"

            Guess which part of that quote you likely belong to?

            You saying there is a scientific consensus does not make it true. There is so much political action on climate change that getting a clear answer will be impossible now. We need to call it the "Church of Climatology" instead, and many there are that worship at its altar.

            By this time this year we should have already seen catastrophic trouble per your God "Al Gore"!

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:11am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              Add to it that there was consensus on abiogenesis until Louis Pastuer disproved it.

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              • identicon
                Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:44am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                Sure.

                There's also consensus that the Earth is round, gravity exists, and organisms evolve into more complex organisms (another example of scientific fact that conservatives claim is liberal bias).

                There's scientific consensus on the subject of man-made global climate change. That will remain so until and unless it's proven otherwise.

                You seem to think that pointing that out is some kind of rhetorical victory. It isn't. "Sometimes scientific consensus turns out to be wrong" is not an argument, any more that "sometimes it doesn't" is. Generalizations about other historical theories aren't relevant to the question of whether or not man-made climate change is real. The specific scientific -- scientific, not political -- arguments in favor of anthropogenic climate change are relevant, and they're the only thing that's relevant.

                (And lest it appear that I'm not backing up my claims with evidence: I put a link to a NASA article in my last post but it's waiting on moderation.)

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            • icon
              Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:36am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              There used to be a scientific consensus that fat was bad.

              Some fat. And very little has changed.

              There used to be a scientific consensus that traveling faster than Sound was impossible.

              No, there wasn't. Bullets did it. Rockets did it. Bullwhips did it. The scientific consensus was that it was possible, just not easy.

              Ford was laughed at.

              Most everyone trying something new has someone laughing at them. That has nothing to do with scientific consensus.

              Copernicus got little respect.

              ...from the church. What's your point?

              There's broad scientific consensus on human-caused climate change. Get over it.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:58am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                The elevator does not go all the way up for you does it?

                I see a group of what I can equate to "Religious Zealots" saying there is a consensus. I hear them all of the time, yet somehow, despite my absolute respect for science I have yet to be convinced.

                Here is a most excellent quotes by Freeman Dyson.

                "Troubles arise when either science or religion claims universal jurisdiction, when either religious dogma or scientific dogma claims to be infallible. Religious creationists and scientific materialists are equally dogmatic and insensitive. By their arrogance, they bring both science and religion into disrepute. The media exaggerate their numbers and importance. Media people should tell the public that the great majority of religious people belong to moderate denominations that treat science with respect, and the great majority of scientists treat religion with respect, so long as religion does not claim jurisdiction over scientific questions."

                Right now the global warming zealots are nothing but a bunch of religious nutters claiming jurisdiction over a scientific theory. Correlation does not equal causation, a principle you nutters have yet to understand. But hey, anything you can use to advance the agenda is fine, lie or truth amiright?

                Regarding the fat, there is way too much to go through here, but there are more than enough recent clinic trials, experiments, findings and what have you that have more than debunked the "politician" lead war on fat from so long ago. But that still did not stop the entire nation from demonizing fat and manufacturers started putting sugar into everything driving the nations diabetes problem forward and up! But hey, watching idiots like you that think that PseudoScience is settled and that's that just drives me insane.

                You don't give a fucking shit about the science, if your Gods told you that we will be ejected from orbit next year if we don't get those carbons down you would be in this forum spewing that one too!

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                • icon
                  ottermaton (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:16pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                  I see a group of what I can equate to "Religious Zealots" saying there is a consensus. I hear them all of the time, yet somehow, despite my absolute respect for science I have yet to be convinced.

                  It's pretty clear you have little or no respect for science, otherwise you would already be convinced just like the vast majority of actual scientists who specifically study the climate.

                  Question: despite the mountain of evidence already right in front of your face, what would it take to convince you?

                  (Not that anyone actually will give a fuck about the "demands" of somehow who is unable to form an argument without resorting to ad homs. But it will be fun to watch!)

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:55pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                    Not all people come to the same conclusion while reviewing the same evidence. People with more knowledge are harder to convince.

                    Are you a climate scientist? If not then then same applies to you. You need to shut the fuck up since you have no way to prove they are not lying or just mistaken.

                    You look at the evidence and see one result, I look at the same evidence and have come to a different conclusion. That is just how it works. Calling evidence proof when you actually cannot prove it turns you into a Pseudo-scientist!

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                    • icon
                      ottermaton (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 7:33pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                      Not all people come to the same conclusion while reviewing the same evidence.

                      Yet somehow the people who look at the evidence overwhelmingly come to the same conclusion. Weird, huh?

                      People with more knowledge are harder to convince.

                      You're right. People like actual scientists who specialize in climatology. As a group they would be pretty hard to convince. Yet somehow they have been.

                      Are you a climate scientist?

                      Nope. Are you? I'm not an air conditioning repairman either. But when 99 of 100 people who have been trained, experienced and specialize in repairing air conditioners tell me the same thing, I kinda think they're probably right. Then again, I'm not full of hubris.

                      I look at the same evidence and have come to a different conclusion.

                      By all means, please elaborate on how the mountains of evidence has led you to a different conclusion. I'll get the popcorn! This will be fun.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 9 Nov 2016 @ 7:56am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                        " Not all people come to the same conclusion while reviewing the same evidence.

                        Yet somehow the people who look at the evidence overwhelmingly come to the same conclusion. Weird, huh?"

                        Most people believe and have evidence in a God or Gods. Does this amount to proof in your book too?

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                        • icon
                          ottermaton (profile), 29 Nov 2016 @ 9:28am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                          Most people believe and have evidence in a God or Gods.

                          Bzzzt. That's called *faith*, not evidence.

                          Try harder.

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            • identicon
              Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:39am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              There used to be a scientific consensus that fat was bad.

              ...er, it is? Are you denying that high-fat diets can lead to heart disease?

              There used to be a scientific consensus that traveling faster than Sound was impossible.

              And it was disproven. That's the thing about scientific theories: they're testable. If new, repeatable testing proves them to be invalid, then they're invalid. But if all the available evidence points in one direction, that's the one you accept until proven otherwise.

              Copernicus got little respect.

              Yes, because religious conservatives refused to accept science that didn't support their political views.

              And Einstein once said... "Two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity. And I am not sure about the universe"

              Well, he may or may not have actually said that ( http://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/18140/did-einstein-say-two-things-are-infinite-the-unive rse-and-human-stupidity-and ), but my recollection is that Einstein was pretty big on believing in scientific evidence for things.

              You saying there is a scientific consensus does not make it true.

              And you saying "people who didn't listened to scientists turned out to be wrong" doesn't make the point you think it does.

              There is so much political action on climate change that getting a clear answer will be impossible now.

              Well, bullshit. Temperature measurements are objective data. If you choose to disbelieve because they contradict your personal political views, then you're proving my point.

              http://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/climate-trends-continue-to-break-records

              By this time this year we should have already seen catastrophic trouble per your God "Al Gore"!

              For the record, I voted Nader, but are you suggesting there haven't been any catastrophic climate events over the course of the past fifteen years?

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 2:50pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

            For every Borg hivemind of groupthink, there's a cohort of welcome skeptics:

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_the_mainstream_scientific_assessm ent_of_global_warming

            Not "Christian Scientists." We're talking physicists, meteorologists, climatologists and geologists, among numerous other distinguished individuals in their respective fields. Including a number of Nobel Laureates.

            Just because it's "mainstream" doesn't mean it's true. A lot of mainstream consensus that we were justified in going into Iraq because Saddam had WMDs and was allegedly involved with 9/11. A lot of mainstream consensus that America was totally going to win in Vietnam. A lot of mainstream consensus that if you like you doctor, you could keep your doctor, and you premiums would never go up.

            And a lot of mainstream consensus that a career criminal who was fired for being too corrupt for WATERGATE of all things is somehow better for the nation's leadership than an eccentric billionaire who doesn't have a PC filter.

            At what point do we start standing up and saying that the mainstream consensus about the mainstream consensus is a jet stream of free-flowing bullshit?

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:44am

        Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

        "The People" are responsible for that divide, NOT the agencies we often accuse.

        If you allow people to bend your mind to the point were you willing participate in the destruction of your own country then you get what you deserve.

        We all reap what we sow! No exception!

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        • identicon
          Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:56am

          Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

          We all reap what we sow! No exception!

          What about the people who aren't allowed to vote because the legislature passed restrictive voting laws that disenfranchise minorities? I think it's pretty hard to blame them for the outcome of an election.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:01am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

            You sir, are a racist. You have low expectations of people because of the color of their skin. You assume because someone is a minority they are too dumb to hold a driver's license or Id. That they don't know how to use the internet or even have access to it. You should watch this video and really consider your view on minorities.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=odB1wWPqSlE

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:07am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              Go easy on these folks, they lack the mental faculties necessary to understand what you are saying.

              But, then again, I have no room to talk. I have been running my mouth a whole lot without success either. We must keep trying!

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            • identicon
              Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:51am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              Nice try.

              A judge ruled that North Carolina's new voter restrictions were specifically targeted to stop methods of voting that were commonly used by African-American voters. That's not my opinion, it's the judge's.

              The same thing's going on right now in Arizona, with Latino voters. And hey, for some up-to-the-minute news on voter disenfranchisement efforts going on right now, here's NBC: http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/2016-election-day/election-2016-tracking-reports-voting-problems-ac ross-united-states-n673236

              You're the racist here: you're saying that if people aren't permitted to vote, it must not be because politicians discriminated against them based on their race, it can only be because they're stupid. To hell with that and to hell with you.

              The "people who protest against racism are the real racists" line is cute, and I look forward to your series of examples of all the horrible things Democrats did prior to 1970. But nobody buys that dumbass argument except the choir you're preaching to.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:57am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                Such anger. But learning that you are a racist would be unsettling.

                Nowhere do I make the argument that not letting them vote is because they are stupid. Again, you are projecting your feelings on others. If they want to vote, they can get an id. I give them plenty of credit to assume they know how to get an id if they want one.

                You put great stock in how judges rule. I wonder how much stock you put in the judges that ruled slavery was ok?

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                • icon
                  ottermaton (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:36pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                  So, it's been determined that NC's voter restrictions were not just racist but were designed to be racist.

                  Thad disapproves of these racist restrictions.

                  You approve of these racist restrictions.

                  Yet you're claiming that he is the racist?!?!?

                  What the actual fuck?

                  You can delude yourself, but it's not gonna work on the rest of us.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:40pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                    Way to misinterpret what I wrote. My only point is just because a judge says something is so doesn't make it so. I did not look into the NC law or the court's ruling so I have no opinion on that specific matter.

                    But tell me, what do you make of a judge that says slavery is ok? Or do you just accept what a judge says as gospel too?

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:52pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                      Also, I was addressing his, and most on the left's, assumption that voter id law is to disenfranchise minorities. It is a form of racism to believe that minorities don't have the intelligence to get an id or have one already. It is a fundamental difference between the left and the right. The left assume minorities are smart enough to vote, to get id's, to have jobs and take care of themselves. The right firmly believes that everyone has the right and wherewithal to pursue happiness. We don't look down on minorities. Quite the opposite, we want them to have the opportunity to better themselves. The same opportunity afforded to all. It is the left that spent 100 years after the civil war oppressing African Americans. Now they do it with economic policy. Their view of minorities being too ignorant to get an id is proof of their inherent bias.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:53pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                        That should have read "The left assume minorities aren't smart enough..."

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                      • icon
                        nasch (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 3:22pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                        Also, I was addressing his, and most on the left's, assumption that voter id law is to disenfranchise minorities.

                        It's not an assumption. The NC legislature requested information on what kinds of IDs various racial groups held the most, and then passed a law making the types of IDs held more by blacks invalid as voter ID and requiring the types of ID held more by whites. The law is explicitly designed to make it harder for black people to vote.

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                    • icon
                      ottermaton (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:54pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                      But tell me, what do you make of a judge that says slavery is ok?

                      Don't be mad that judges aren't ruling the way you want them to anymore. At least they have finally opened their eyes. Maybe someday you will too.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:00pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                        keep in mind, what you consider to be open eyes another considers to be closed eyes.

                        You are not actually engaging him on the subject, instead you are deflecting and misrepresenting things.

                        All this behavior does is make you look like an idiot!

                        he directly made the case that you are treating minorities like a bunch of invalids. Address that on it merit and stop being deflectional or obtuse.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:45pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                          he directly made the case that you are treating minorities like a bunch of invalids. Address that on it merit and stop being deflectional or obtuse.

                          You're so right...it's common knowledge that voter ID laws are meant to address white voter fraud. Exactly the folks who can't afford or necessarily have transportation to get ID (during the one day a week the places are open).

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 3:26pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                          Yea, it is unfortunate that people cannot address the point being made. Instead the purposely deflect or change the subject. The guy plainly stated he had not information or opinion on the NC law. Yet ottermaton continues to act like he did. When I see this happen I assume the people can't address the issue either through their own ignorance or they can't argue against the truth.

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                          • icon
                            ottermaton (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 7:51pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

                            Sorry I started a fight in the middle of your white power partaay.

                            [taking liberties with a Forrest Gump quote]

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:17pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

              You sir are an ass. You know perfectly well what was being addressed and decided deflection would be the correct tool to use in evading the issue. Voter disenfranchisement is real, occurs on a regular basis, long lines, malfunctioning equipment, are the standard fare in minority communities while non minority communities the voting is intentionally made easy and quick. Grow up.

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      • icon
        frank87 (profile), 9 Nov 2016 @ 4:59am

        Re: Re: Media Bias is necessary

        The fact you are discussing climate change, is biased too.

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    • icon
      Snackles (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 5:36pm

      Re: Media Bias is necessary

      Jeeze way too many lobbied interests involved in controlling and shaping what people think. Bipartisanship is destroying this country. It really feels like the beginning days of Fallout Shelter years away from nuclear disaster.

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  • identicon
    Song of the 15th Brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:07am

    "To the Congress:

    Unhappy events abroad have retaught us two simple truths about the liberty of a democratic people.

    The first truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is Fascism—ownership of Government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power."

    -FDR April 29th 1938

    He maybe an asshole but he's not wrong, break up the Trusts!

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:12am

      Re:

      The toolery never ends!

      "two simple truths about the liberty of a democratic people."

      We are a republic you tool.

      And you should read up what the founding fathers said about "Democracy"! It was not pretty.

      No nation survives a democracy, because once people learn that they can vote themselves largess... well, lets just say, "The People" have learned, but wisdom was not!

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      • identicon
        Song of the 15th Brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:20am

        Re: Re:

        [citationneeded]

        Please tell me what the founding fathers thought.

        and as for "the people" voting themselves largess who should they be voting it for? small numbers of oligarchs? or as is becoming more common aristocrats?

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:46am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Wait? You need a Citation for this? I mean if the founding fathers were PRO democracy then we would have one.

          Do you have trouble connecting dots or something? I am not trying to be condescending I am flat out telling you to get a fucking clue and read some history!

          But here are a good couple to mention.

          http://www.bartleby.com/73/1593.html
          "“A Republic, if you can keep it.”"
          My man ~Ben Franklin!

          And here is some J. Quincy Adams action too.
          https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/49810-i-do-not-say-that-democracy-has-been-more-pernicious
          "“I do not say that democracy has been more pernicious on the whole, and in the long run, than monarchy or aristocracy. Democracy has never been and never can be so durable as aristocracy or monarchy; but while it lasts, it is more bloody than either. … Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. It is in vain to say that democracy is less vain, less proud, less selfish, less ambitious, or less avaricious than aristocracy or monarchy. It is not true, in fact, and nowhere appears in history. Those passions are the same in all men, under all forms of simple government, and when unchecked, produce the same effects of fraud, violence, and cruelty. When clear prospects are opened before vanity, pride, avarice, or ambition, for their easy gratification, it is hard for the most considerate philosophers and the most conscientious moralists to resist the temptation. Individuals have conquered themselves. Nations and large bodies of men, never.” "

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:51am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            derp "John Adams" not Quincy Adams.

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          • icon
            Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:25am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I mean if the founding fathers were PRO democracy then we would have one.

            America is in fact a democracy. Yes, it's ALSO a republic. The two are not mutually exclusive. "Republic" simply means that it doesn't have a monarch.

            While you're trashing democracies, have a look at some republics. The USSR. East Germany. Iran. North Korea. Etc..

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              You are a special kind of stupid aren't you?

              There in my post is a link to a person that said this was a Republic and NOT a democracy.

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_states
              Check out Wiki too! They actually have a section for what form of government America is.

              A "Constitutional Republic".

              Your bar for "Democracy" is too fucking low! Just being able to vote is not the proper benchmark. Sure there are some similarities, but a lot of fucking things have similarities, yet this is why we have names for being able to identify those differences.

              Hey, you know what else we have? Something called a dictionary. Consider picking one up?

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              • icon
                Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:20am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Even your link - "They actually have a section for what form of government America is" - backs what I'm saying. That section clearly states that America is a democracy AND a republic.

                The bit about "majority rule tempered by minority rights protected by law" (via a constitution, bill or rights etc.) aren't specific to republics. Non-republic democracies have those too.

                You might want to take your own advice and read your own citations some time.

                And grow up.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:34am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  You don't get it and never will.

                  My people perish for lack of knowledge. My country falls because it is packed with the ignorant and lost people that think because they can find a similarity between the definitions of something then it must be that.

                  Occam's Razor applies here. Constitutional Republic is the easiest and MOST ACCURATE DESCRIPTION. Calling it a Democracy is general and meaningless term. It is important to refer to the country in the format as described by its founders. The reason is so that the masses are less confused.

                  The entire constitution is a prime example of this. The founders are on record for what they meant for each amendment. So how to you get people to misunderstand? Over time you get them to use words in ways they should not be used until they become officially a part of the definition now.

                  Look up the etymology of words, they really do mean something.

                  The real definition of an actual Democracy is one where the People DIRECTLY VOTE IN THE LAWS! We do not do that here. We vote in representatives, therefore we are a republican people not a fucking democratic one!

                  But hey, who am I to try to correct the vast sea of ignorant people that do not care to learn much less try to understand!

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                  • icon
                    Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:50am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    Constitutional Republic is the easiest and MOST ACCURATE DESCRIPTION.

                    It's one description. Constitutional Democracy is another. Both are accurate. They are not mutually exclusive. "Republic" means that you don't have a monarch.

                    Your claim is akin to saying that a Ford F-150 isn't a "motor vehicle" because it's a "truck."

                    The entire constitution is a prime example of this. The founders are on record for what they meant for each amendment.

                    Non-republic democracies also have constitutions. Canada for example, generally described as a "Parliamentary Democracy."

                    The real definition of an actual Democracy is one where the People DIRECTLY VOTE IN THE LAWS! We do not do that here. We vote in representatives,

                    Canadians don't directly vote in the laws. They vote in representatives - MLAs at the provincial level and MPs at the federal level. Canada is a democracy, but NOT a republic.

                    Again, your link - "They actually have a section for what form of government America is" - backs what I'm saying.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:24pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      You are going in the wrong direction.

                      Use the car analogy correctly like so.

                      You are calling a Ford-F150 a conveyance. Sure that is true, but it hardly describes what it actually is. Know what else qualifies as a conveyance? A canoe, helicopter, jet, train, truck, and bicycle. So calling it a democracy is descriptive meaninglessness... a fucking corporate BUZZWORD!

                      Democracy does not exist any fucking place on the planet. There is no such beast, it is pure fantasy created by people corruption the definition of it.

                      Did you mean "Representative Democracy?"
                      Words have a fucking meaning, and the word Democracy means fucking nothing, it has been so watered down by you clowns that it now means every government where someone votes.

                      Hint Hint, most people in these "Democracies" do not like the internal spying that is going on in their nations. See their "Democracies" actually doing anything Democratic with that? Gasp! Did you just realize that they actually are NOT democracies now? Hell no, you can't be reasoned with.

                      Now if you want to call them "Pseudo Democracies"... now I can agree with that!

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                      • icon
                        Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:34pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Even in your twist, a Ford-F150 is still, regardless, a conveyance. And a truck. And a motor vehicle. The terms are not mutually exclusive.

                        Did you mean "Representative Democracy?"

                        America is a Representative Democracy, just like Canada is. The difference that makes Canada a non-republic is that Canada has a monarch.

                        Hint Hint, most people in these "Democracies" do not like the internal spying that is going on in their nations.

                        The USSR, East Germany, Iran, China and North Korea are/were all republics. Being a republic doesn't stop the internal spying. Being a democracy doesn't fully stop it, but giving the people a democratic vote - a vote with real power - even indirectly via representatives - has the best track record.

                        There's nothing pseudo-democracy about America. It's a democracy. And a republic. The two terms are not mutually exclusive.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:53pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          It's pretty clear you are using a dictionary that does not exist. When you find it let me know. We are talking about the American form of government, the mention of the others have nothing to do with this.


                          Here, tell me what the CIA says the US form of Government is. Here is link. Did you catch any of these words in there? Democracy, Democratic, democratic like? yea I missed it too!
                          https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2128.html


                          It amazes that you tools are fighting against verified proof! You can call us a Democracy or "Scooby Snacks" if you want... will not make any of it factually true.

                          There is nothing democratic about our Republic. We elect people, they do whatever the fuck they want and that is all! Now you could say that some of our states might be Democratic, but not the US Gov itself. Have you been confusing the two?

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                          • icon
                            nasch (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 3:27pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            So when your first source fails to back you up, you'll just switch to another? What dictionary are you using, and how does it define "democracy"? Provide a link.

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                          • icon
                            Roger Strong (profile), 10 Nov 2016 @ 12:00pm

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            So you've switched from a link that outright contradicts you to one that neither backs you nor contradicts you.

                            Your new link merely states that America is a republic. I've agreed with this all along. It says nothing to dispute that America is a democracy. The two are not mutually exclusive. America is both.

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          • identicon
            Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:33am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            So you've produced exactly one quote by a Founding Father on the subject of democracy. Cool.

            It's true that the United States is a constitutional republic, not a pure democracy. But we choose our representatives (and some of our laws) through democratic elections. The next time I see someone say "it's a republic, not a democracy" and actually have a point to make instead of just derailing a conversation, it'll be the first.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:40am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              No problem just as soon as you add any meaningful substance to the argument as well!

              Two can play this "I refuse your reality and substitute my own" bullshit!

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              • identicon
                Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:54am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                No problem just as soon as you add any meaningful substance to the argument as well!

                An argument is a series of connected statements intended to establish a proposition. It isn't just contradiction.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:12am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  You must be Thad from Blue Mountain State.

                  Your attempt to dazzle me with a bit of linguistic legerdemain was unsuccessful. I think it went over your head there fella. What I consider "meaningful substance" has nothing to do with your incomplete definition of "argument".

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                  • identicon
                    Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:57am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    You must be Thad from Blue Mountain State.

                    Never heard of it. Thaddeus R R Boyd, of Tempe, Arizona. It's not exactly a secret; this is my real name, and the reason it appears in blue is that you can click on it and go to my real blog.

                    Your attempt to dazzle me with a bit of linguistic legerdemain was unsuccessful. I think it went over your head there fella. What I consider "meaningful substance" has nothing to do with your incomplete definition of "argument".

                    You're the only one busting out ten-dollar words to try and impress people here, champ.

                    I wasn't trying to "dazzle" anybody. You're right that something went over somebody's head, but you don't seem to understand what it was.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:42pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      Blue Mountain State is a TV series that is currently available on NetFlix, if I am not mistaken. It has been a while since I watched.

                      I did enjoy the show, and Thad was the QB for the team but was a typical mindless jock. I was drawing a parallel between him and you because of your name as a childish insult. I thought the series was pretty decent in the humor department you might check it out if you have some spare time.

                      Trust me, I have no illusion that I am impressing anyone at any time. Like you I work in IT, I have been successfully beaten into submission by that terrible environment. I am working on making my own way in life and plan to leave IT entirely in the next 5 years. The dunning-Kruger effect is rife in I.T.

                      Trust me, you missed my intent my a wide margin, I don't know if you are trying to drag the conversation a particular direction or what, but you are not on the same track as myself.

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                      • identicon
                        Patrik, 8 Nov 2016 @ 3:12pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        Like you I work in IT... The dunning-Kruger effect is rife in I.T.

                        [irony intensifies]

                        And here we have an IT guy claiming that the US is not a constitutionally-limited democratic republic based on their vast knowledge of and experience in... IT work?

                        Surely even you must recognize the irony here?

                        Look, you seem hung up on the fact that the US is a representative democracy rather than a wholly direct democracy, but both are still democracies (the clue is the word democracy in there).

                        And even then, plenty of laws are passed through direct democracy in the US. Are you familiar with ballot initiatives?

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          • identicon
            song of the 15th brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:11am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I not clear what your arguing here?

            perhaps you should read what I posted again since you didn't understand it the first time.

            "To the Congress:

            Unhappy events abroad have retaught us two simple truths about the liberty of a democratic people.

            The first truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is Fascism—ownership of Government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power."

            -FDR April 29th 1938


            as for franklin maybe give the full quote

            "The deliberations of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 were held in strict secrecy. Consequently, anxious citizens gathered outside Independence Hall when the proceedings ended in order to learn what had been produced behind closed doors. The answer was provided immediately. A Mrs. Powel of Philadelphia asked Benjamin Franklin, “Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” With no hesitation whatsoever, Franklin responded, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

            http://www.ourrepubliconline.com/Author/21

            This is not an argument against democracy it's a waning that it will be difficult.

            this is fiction but if an actual president gave this speech their approval would be well above 50%

            " For the last couple of months, Senator Rumson has suggested that being President of this country was, to a certain extent, about character. And although I've not been willing to engage in his attacks on me, I have been here three years and three days, and I can tell you without hesitation: Being President of this country is entirely about character.

            For the record, yes, I am a card-carrying member of the ACLU, but the more important question is "Why aren't you, Bob?" Now this is an organization whose sole purpose is to defend the Bill of Rights, so it naturally begs the question, why would a senator, his party's most powerful spokesman and a candidate for President, choose to reject upholding the constitution? Now if you can answer that question, folks, then you're smarter than I am, because I didn't understand it until a few hours ago.

            America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You've gotta want it bad, 'cause it's gonna put up a fight. It's gonna say, "You want free speech? Let's see you acknowledge a man whose words make your blood boil, who's standing center stage and advocating at the top of his lungs that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours." You want to claim this land as the land of the free? Then the symbol of your country cannot just be a flag. The symbol also has to be one of its citizens exercising his right to burn that flag in protest. Now show me that, defend that, celebrate that in your classrooms.

            Then you can stand up and sing about the land of the free."

            I once asked a Trotskyist why he was, he told be it was because he wanted the state to take care of him with no effort or commitment on his part, I found this amazing since Trotsky was a committed Communist and believed in autonomy from the state and self determination of all people and communities. Working with reason and good will towards a collective future that is better than now.

            Franklin and Adams never met John D. Rockefeller but if they had they would have lined up with Trotsky and Marx against him.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:22am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              I don't disagree with everything you said, I just said you are using the wrong damn words. They have meaning, use them appropriately.

              We are not a democracy because people do not directly elect laws into power. That is a democracy. We elect people that are supposed to "Guards of our future Security" as per the Declaration of independence.

              Instead what has occurred is that "The People" have gone completely coward and now ask the government to guard us like cattle instead of guarding our future. They burn and waste the future instead while the poor clamor for handouts given by candidates that shake crumbs from the table for the sycophantic voting dogs below!

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              • identicon
                song of the 15th brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:44am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Oh please this is an old and tied argument it's not just semantics and is profoundly dumb, it's an out growth of plato and the idea of Philosopher Kings, that was an ideal(in the platonic sense) he thought that democracy was doomed to a cycle of democracy->tyrany->revolution and I suspect many of the classically educated founding fathers believed that as well, the point of things being based on laws is to check the power of private interest,it's what the romans tried and failed to do to buttress against institutional power(being founded mostly by criminals and outcasts) at best your making an argument for a revolution but not against democracy words do have meaning and it's clear you don't know what those meanings are.

                "...A republic (from Latin: res publica) is a sovereign state or country[1] which is organized with a form of government in which power resides in elected individuals REPRESENTING THE CITIZEN BODY[2][3] and government leaders exercise power according to the rule of law.

                No it is not a direct Democracy but it is a democracy and Representative are expected to represent.

                They may not represent the people but wasting time on semantics instead of organizing is a deflection of responsibility and changing from people should not act in their own interest to but should instead give up on democracy and give over power to an elite few to complaining about the unfairness and oppression of the poor is a pretty big flip

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              • identicon
                Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:58am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                I just said you are using the wrong damn words.

                Well no, he's using the right words, because it's a direct quote. If he used different words, it wouldn't be a direct quote.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:07pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  American are not Democratic people. Not true. Show me where I am wrong! You cannot!

                  We are a constitutional republic which makes American citizens republican and not democratic.
                  The people are not directly or indirectly for that matter involved with the creation of laws. We just vote in people to represent us, instead they create and vote on laws.

                  Everyone is watering down the meaning of democracy to the point it means nothing. Under your obtuse definition my going to work is a democracy because I vote every morning to go and they vote every morning to let me! YAY DEMOCRACY!

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ed (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:21am

    How about an investigation of why the "librul media" effectively ignored a certain candidate's ongoing issues such as possible criminal charges for SEC violations, tax avoidance, perjury, assault and molestation, the enumerable lies the media never called him on, the "Russian" connections including treasonous promises made by a "trusted adviser" -- but day-after-day-after-day continuous coverage of the other candidate's emails. Yeah, where are THOSE investigations?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Song of the 15th Brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:26am

      Re:

      How about some introspection on how it has come to a point where virtually every politician in the western world is not qualified to lead a straw poll into which movie we should go see this weekend much less make any sort of important decision.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:35am

      Re:

      How about an investigation of why the "librul media" effectively ignored a certain candidate's ongoing issues such as possible criminal charges for SEC violations, tax avoidance, perjury, assault and molestation, the enumerable lies the media never called him on, the "Russian" connections including treasonous promises made by a "trusted adviser"

      I'm gonna say it's because there are only 24 hours in a day.

      It's hard to focus on any one scandal when there's always a new one right around the corner.

      While I'd have preferred to see a deeper dive into any number of Trump scandals, I don't really buy the argument that the media didn't cover his scandals.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Roger Strong (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:40am

        Re: Re:

        I think John Oliver summed it up best with his "bed of nails" analogy. One nail, one scandal, hurts. But if you rest on enough of them, it doesn't.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jimb, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:37am

    I actually agree

    I've seen some horrendous bias by the media, and even though I greatly respect techdirt.com and Mike, I have to say there's been a great deal here too.

    All I could say to my family and friends is to listen to the candidates rather than to the media.

    What the media did fail the American people this election and there should be consequences. What a mockery this constitutionally protected profession has made of the media.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Doug (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:41am

    Ignorance of the law is no excuse to be in congress

    Cramer: "Your FCC license and the liberty that comes with your First Amendment rights are not a license to broadcast anything you want or in any way you choose."

    Actually, that's exactly the point of the first amendment.

    There are limitations (porn, obscenity, etc.) which might make his statement true in some technical sense, but the thing he wants to eliminate, bias, or more benignly "opinion", is exactly what the first amendment protects, in particular when it comes to politicians and the government.

    Perhaps what we need is an agency that reviews what our representatives say to evaluate their understanding of our laws and constitution. Whey they demonstrate ignorance, they are required to attend remedial classes.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:39am

      Re: Ignorance of the law is no excuse to be in congress

      Perhaps what we need is an agency that reviews what our representatives say to evaluate their understanding of our laws and constitution. Whey they demonstrate ignorance, they are required to attend remedial classes.

      Well, no, because then you're doing the exact same thing: enforcing some individual's personal interpretation of the law, at the expense of somebody else's First Amendment rights to say whatever dumb-ass thing he feels like.

      By all means the media should hold politicians accountable for saying things that are clearly wrong. But you lost me at "required to attend remedial classes".

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Doug (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:59am

        Re: Re: Ignorance of the law is no excuse to be in congress

        That last part was an attempt at humor! ;) (The first three paragraphs were serious.)

        You do make a good point though. We have arrived where we are today because the people don't demand a certain standard of competence out of our elected officials. If we did that, the media would more or less respond as needed. Too many people are willing to overlook various transgressions as long as the transgressor is espousing policies we like. The media, but more especially the people should seriously make a much bigger deal out of holding our representatives to higher standards -- across the board!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:58am

          Re: Re: Re: Ignorance of the law is no excuse to be in congress

          That last part was an attempt at humor! ;)

          Fair enough. Sometimes it's hard to tell.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 9:45am

    We were lost when 1/2 dozen associates of a presidential candidate can invoke the 5th and nobody cares why they are doing it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:08am

    Bias?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:19am

    I don't see why not?

    If congress can find ways to get around the "shall make no law" part when it comes to the 2nd amendment, I don't see why they can't find ways around it for the 1st. Or 3rd, 4th, 5th and so on. This is why you either believe in the constitution or you don't. To pick and choose which amendments you get to infringe upon is a slippery slope and will slowly erode all of our freedom.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:42am

      Re: I don't see why not?

      If congress can find ways to get around the "shall make no law" part when it comes to the 2nd amendment

      Protip: the way around the "shall make no law" part when it comes to the Second Amendment is that the phrase "shall make no law" appears in the First Amendment, not the Second.

      The Second Amendment is the one that starts with "A well-regulated militia".

      This is why you either believe in the constitution or you don't.

      Some people believe in it, some don't, and some people misquote it while talking about how important it is to believe in it.

      http://www.theonion.com/article/area-man-passionate-defender-of-what-he-imagines-c-2849

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:46am

        Re: Re: I don't see why not?

        "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed"

        So I mis-quoted slightly, but you conveniently left off the "shall not" part entirely. Some people like to believe very much in the parts they like and ignore the parts they don't. We either are, or are not a country under the rule of law. So we obey all of the law or none of it. To have each person cherry picking the laws they obey is anarchy.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:48am

        Re: Re: I don't see why not?

        Add the rest,

        "shall not be infringed" which is equivalent to "shall make no law" so they were not completely off base here. Just syntactically incorrect.

        Which means so much as asking a person to wait 1 second or running a background check before they can get a firearm is unconstitutional.

        You are technically correct however and it is damn sad to see another ignorant citizens flapping their worthless yap about a Constitution they didn't even both to read.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:04am

          Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

          Which means so much as asking a person to wait 1 second or running a background check before they can get a firearm is unconstitutional.

          Well, no.

          There's significant debate as to what the Second Amendment actually means; there's a school of thought that says that the "well-regulated militia" clause is there for a reason and that the law is only intended to apply to people who serve in militias (which no longer really exist in the way they did when the Constitution was written).

          Which is a moot point. Because your opinion and my opinion don't determine what the Bill of Rights means; the Supreme Court is the final arbiter, and the Supreme Court has ruled that the Second Amendment grants a right to private gun ownership.

          But the Supreme Court has also upheld some restrictions on gun sales.

          So you can say that any restriction whatsoever on gun sales is unconstitutional, and you're entitled to that opinion. But it's not true in any objective or meaningful sense.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 11:08am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

            "George Mason argued the importance of the militia and right to bear arms by reminding his compatriots of England's efforts "to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them ... by totally disusing and neglecting the militia." He also clarified that under prevailing practice the militia included all people, rich and poor. "Who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers." Because all were members of the militia, all enjoyed the right to individually bear arms to serve therein.[104][106]

            Writing after the ratification of the Constitution, but before the election of the first Congress, James Monroe included "the right to keep and bear arms" in a list of basic "human rights", which he proposed to be added to the Constitution.[107]

            Patrick Henry argued in the Virginia ratification convention on June 5, 1788, for the dual rights to arms and resistance to oppression:

            Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.[108]
            While both Monroe and John Adams supported the Constitution being ratified, its most influential framer was James Madison. In Federalist No. 46, he confidently contrasted the federal government of the United States to the European kingdoms, which he contemptuously described as "afraid to trust the people with arms." He assured his fellow citizens that they need never fear their government because of "the advantage of being armed .."

            From here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Amendment_to_the_United_States_Constitution

            Also, I don't have time to run it down now, but I believe the SCOTUS has affirmed the right to bear arms as an individual right. There are many, many writings and quotes by the founding fathers as to what was meant so the meaning is very clear.

            Any debate on that is not true and provably false.

            Did I say that right? Does that shut down the discussion now?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              song of the 15th brigade, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:00pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

              Second amendment arguments are stupid and a distraction, people do not require the permission of the state to arm themselves and have a revolution, and saying you need it for self defense is the same as saying that the state CANNOT protect you, the only other argument is against foreign invasion and unless you think the Russians are coming in hovercraft across the north pole that's pretty much a nothing.

              If you need to defend yourself against the state it is already time for a revolution and asking permission is dumb.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Thad, 8 Nov 2016 @ 12:00pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

              You...seem to have stopped reading my post after the second sentence there, buddy.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:23pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

                Actually, no the Supreme Court is not the final arbiter.

                "The People" are always the final arbiter, read the fucking Declaration of Independence. The thing about the US Government is that there is no such thing as a final arbitration over the law or have you failed history? Which I am thinking you did. SCOTUS can be handed its ass by congress or the president, and if both team up against SCOTUS together, then they can really clean some clocks. The President could nominate new Justices, there is no limit set in the Constitution, and congress can confirm them. Put in enough to cause SCOTUS to take the case back and render a different vote on the subject. That does not even take into account all of the cases were SCOTUS has over turned 'stare decisis' either.

                Here is how to understand the 2nd Amendment in the current American way to talking, it was very different back then!

                "We the People reserve the right to keep and bear arms at all times, without infringement, so that we can form a militia at any time we require to fight all enemies foreign and domestic."

                That is a 100% syntactically accurate rewording of the 2nd Amendment. The reason the 2nd is brought up, is because it serves a perfect test to find out who among us is running around with the wrong dictionary, poor comprehension, or political agendas!

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            The Wanderer (profile), 11 Nov 2016 @ 10:02am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

            The "well-regulated militia" clause is there for a reason, but in my assessment, that reason is not about limiting the right to bear arms to people who are members of such a militia.

            My parsing of the Second Amendment into more modern language comes out as something like "because we need people to be experienced in using weapons so that they can be ready when they need to assemble into a militia for defense of the free state, and because we need to have weapons available for the militia to use and it's not practical to keep a stockpile ready all the time, the government may not restrict people from owning and using weapons".

            If you look at it from a perspective that assumes that there is not and will not be any such thing as a standing army, and that therefore any military force will necessarily arise out of the civilian populace on demand, the whole thing makes a lot more sense IMO.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          nasch (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 3:33pm

          Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

          "shall not be infringed" which is equivalent to "shall make no law" so they were not completely off base here. Just syntactically incorrect.

          Kind of like saying "democracy" instead of "republic".

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Bye Felicia! (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 5:26pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: I don't see why not?

            interesting, will this same moron cry about gun control next time some muslim crazy goes on a shooting spree?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:46am

    Biased media equals super Pac

    A biased media corporation is a super PAC. If you want to get rid of super PACs, you will also need to police the media, otherwise you are saying that only people that can afford to buy a media company are afforded speech. If a person or non media corporation is banned from making political speech why is a media corporation allowed to make the same speech.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 2:56pm

      Re: Biased media equals super Pac

      Funny how the Democrats were so gung-ho to overturn Citizens United until they figured out it worked wonders for their preferred corporate whøre.

      As usual, the world is a business, Mr. Beale.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    afn29129 (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 10:50am

    Bias be damned, laziness and quality is the issue.

    Bias be damned, laziness and quality is the issue. The quality of the media stinks. Incomplete stories, stories with errors. The rush to be first. Writing style; fluffing out a story in an attempt to hide the dearth of facts. Regurgitating what someone else has said, without really understanding the details. Double, Triple, and 4th hand hearsay.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:20pm

    Maybe he is pushing for Pai's seat.

    "Only a small minority of Americans get their news exclusively from these outlets."

    I don't get *any* of my news from the four listed. It has been well over a decade since I even watched a network news show, much less from these four.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mark Wing, 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:28pm

    A free system is only possible with free speech.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Padpaw (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 1:57pm

    Just do what we Canadians do and make it illegal to lie about the news on tv. From what I understand that's why fox news isn't allowed in Canada.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Bye Felicia! (profile), 8 Nov 2016 @ 2:35pm

    No! No! No! No! That's Not Enough!

    What these people did was criminal. People like Anderson Cooper, Matt Lauer, etc etc... these people need to be taken out.

    Hastings was removed because he was identified as a threat to the state, and when Trump becomes president, we've got to root out these people immediately.

    They need to be prosecuted and jailed when possible, and car crashed and suicided when not.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Niall (profile), 9 Nov 2016 @ 3:59am

    Nice adherence to the rule of law...not!

    So Putin-esque dictatorship now your homeboy has won? Or are we going more Kim Jong-un?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    frank87 (profile), 9 Nov 2016 @ 5:46am

    unbiased

    Don't buy a car from someone calling himself honest Jim, don't believe any story from someone calling himself unbiased...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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