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A Parable
Author: TriSec    Date: 10/15/2011 11:25:00

Good Morning.

Most of you know about my wanderings among the major Abrahamic religions over the past few years. (No secrets around here, eh?) Over the past couple of months, I've started listening to a New Testament podcast. It's a hoot, actually...they are apparently using the King James version, full of "Thees" and "Thoughs" and many instances of when Jesus "Spake". (And one outright , concerning the virgin birth: 'But how am I to bear a child, for I have not known a man?' "The Holy Spirit will come upon thee." But I digress.)
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13 comments (Latest Comment: 10/16/2011 00:49:16 by trojanrabbit)

Mr. Mojo Rising
Author: BobR    Date: 10/14/2011 12:54:17

It's been a roller-coaster year for the president. From the Debt talks to Osama bin Laden to poor jobs numbers to battles with Congress to DADT, he has ridden a wave up and down in popularity and effectiveness. Depending on your point of view, either he keeps bouncing back, or he keeps getting knocked back (sometimes by the very people that should be supporting him). His current trend is moving in a more postive direction.
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52 comments (Latest Comment: 10/14/2011 22:12:52 by Raine)

It's Not the Economy, Stupid.
Author: Raine    Date: 10/13/2011 13:26:12

This may be the understatement of the year: The GOP talks a lot about the deficit and jobs. They do it ALL day long; they do it on TV, on the radio, on the web and in the papers. They are saying it on campaign trails and in town halls. They send that message via the United States Postal Service. They keep asking the President: 'Where are the jobs?" It's not just the candidates, it is also the leaders and the rank and file Republicans members of the House and Senate. Who can forget what Mitch McConnell said? The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.

They talk jobs. They talk economy. And what do they do? They attempt to pass laws curbing women's rights. From Politico:
The bill would ban federal funding of abortions. It would also ensure that providers have protections if they believe abortions violate their consciences and prohibit the tax subsidies in the health reform law from going toward a health plan that includes coverage of abortions except in cases of rape or incest or for the safety of the mother.

Planned Parenthood warns that the bill could allow hospitals to refuse to treat a patient whose life depends on having an abortion. The group argues that a hospital would be able to use the bill’s conscience clause to escape the federal law — the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act — that requires hospitals to treat all patients.
Eric Cantor says it's all part of the Economic reform and cost-cutting the GOP promised to Americans. No, really:
“That was a part of our Pledge to America that we had always said that we were going to move to eliminate government funding of organizations that perform abortions,” Cantor said on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. “That’s something that we said we were going to do, and we’re upholding that pledge.”
The bill likely won't see any movement in the Senate, and the White House has has said it would see a veto pen. The question remains: how serious is the GOP about the economy? For me, the answer is: They are not serious at all. They would rather limit a woman's right to choose - even in the case of death - and privatize health care for the elderly. They want to ban marriage equality. They are fighting to keep DOMA in place.
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48 comments (Latest Comment: 10/13/2011 23:05:46 by Raine)

The Gulf Between Perception and Reality
Author: BobR    Date: 10/12/2011 12:59:45

Yesterday illustrated the large disconnect between what is important to the majority of Americans, and what Republicans think they must do and say to get elected (or re-elected). The Republican debates focused on cutting taxes with no real definitive solutions to our economic problem that could be backed up with studies from experts. The Senate Republicans also voted down the President's Jobs Bill.

Meanwhile, what do Americans think is important? For the vast majority of Americans, it is the economy. During the 2010 elections, it was Jobs specifically, which is a component - or possibly a symptom - of the economy. Unemployment continues to be the major concern, and it seems common knowledge that improving the jobs situation will improve the economy. There is a certain chicken/egg disagreement though. Will jobs improve when the economy improves, or will increasing jobs improve the economy? Democrats believe the latter; Republicans believe the former.
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71 comments (Latest Comment: 10/13/2011 14:53:39 by forrest)

Ask a Vet
Author: TriSec    Date: 10/11/2011 10:36:27

Good Morning.

I touched upon it briefly last Friday on the actual anniversary....but we'll let the dates speak for themself further below.

We'll start this morning as we always do; with the latest casualty figures from our ongoing wars, courtesy of Antiwar.com:

American Deaths
Since war began (3/19/03): 4477
Since "Mission Accomplished" (5/1/03): 4338
Since Handover (6/29/04): 3618
Since Obama Inauguration (1/20/09): 249
Since Operation New Dawn: 49

Other Coalition Troops - Iraq: 318
US Military Deaths - Afghanistan: 1,802
Other Military Deaths - Afghanistan: 954
Contractor Employee Deaths - Iraq: 1,487
Journalists - Iraq : 348
Academics Killed - Iraq: 448


We find this morning's cost of war passing through:

$ 1, 261, 854, 850, 000 .00



This past Friday marked 10 years that we've been at war. A decade is an awfully long time, in American terms. Think of something you've done for ten consecutive years. Have you been married that long? Stayed at one job that long? Lived in the same house for ten years?
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65 comments (Latest Comment: 10/11/2011 22:48:15 by Raine)

Occupy? Yes. Occupy the Streets, Legislatures, Congress AND the Vote.
Author: Raine    Date: 10/10/2011 13:30:20

I am watching the events of the Occupy movement -- by now, you know that I am watching with a certain amount of skepticism, and hope for its success. It's important. It has great potential. I hope to attend a General Assembly here in DC to further understand the inner workings on a personal level. A friend of mine (Shoq) wrote of them here. It includes a video of how they work, but more importantly, he wrote this:
Those familiar with democracy will recognize the problems of holding such assemblies on a city, state, or national level. You'd need "representatives" to attend them. And dang it all, those are so hard to appoint by consensus in some accountable way. It's been tried. Many times.

Thus, GAs, as they are known, useful on small scales for some kinds of actions or ordinances (like that one above), are lovely exercises in what we might call, a pre-representative democracy.

In practical usage, those often lead to the need for some form of representative democracy, often called a republic. You remember those, right? They're kinda like the United States of America before someone broke it.

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55 comments (Latest Comment: 10/11/2011 02:21:38 by clintster)

......BREAKING NEWS.......
Author: velveeta jones    Date: 10/09/2011 15:21:07

Dateline: Eternia.
Recently learning the SHOCKING news that Chris Christie will NOT be running for President, made in an hour long speech with all media outlets foaming at the mouth waiting for this announcement, Skeletor, Evil Lord of Destruction, has decided to call a press conference to announce that he will also not run for President at this time. Certainly, leaving us to wonder if he'll possibly run in 2016.

Following the devastating announcement by Gov. Christie, and not to be outdone, Sarah Palin took to the podium and airwaves to announce her own non-candidacy! (This seems to be a trend, perhaps I should make public my intentions not to run)? ABC News broke the story with this bold headline: Sarah Palin Says She Will Not Run For President.

To be clear: Velveeta will Not Run For President Either. I hope the masses will understand.
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7 comments (Latest Comment: 10/10/2011 17:02:02 by AuntAzalea)

That time of year...
Author: TriSec    Date: 10/08/2011 11:15:26

Good Morning!

An early-ish blog for a Saturday, but I'm not headed for any bloodwork today. Nay, it's my last weekend on the pond with Mr. Bean, as we wrap up our summer kayaking season.

Fortunately, it's supposed to be above 70 today in these parts....and we may be breaking a temperature record tomorrow with temps expected in the mid-80s.

With a bit of Indian Summer in the offing, I'll pause a moment and ponder my favorite season. I know there are folks that live for summer, and spring and winter have their fans, too....but it's fall for me.

It's opposite to what nature is doing, but fall has that feeling of renewal and optimism. With school starting, and sports, and my youth group getting going, September and October usually represent the busiest time of year for me. For those of us with children, the start of the school calendar is a more powerful reminder of the passage of time than even the holidays or the turning of the calendar page.

October and November are also the two best months to be outdoors...the nights are cool and refreshing (and great for outdoor sleeping), the days are often just as warm as the summertime, and most wondrous of all, ALL THE BUGS ARE DEAD!
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3 comments (Latest Comment: 10/09/2011 01:38:50 by Raine)

Herman Cain: Hell No, You Will Not Get The African American Vote
Author: Kimberly    Date: 2011-10-07 07:00:00

Hello everyone,

I'm Kimberly, Bob and Raine have requested that I leave you a few of my thoughts and opinions in their absence. First, I'd like to thank Bob and Raine and the FourFreedomsBlog community for allowing me to join in with you to share my thoughts on some the political and social issues that impact our country and our lives. I've heard great things about the people that make up this forum and knowing what great people you are makes this opportunity much easier. I hope you'll find something within my post that strikes you as interesting and enlightening.
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80 comments (Latest Comment: 10/08/2011 03:33:45 by Raine)

Cleaning the cobwebs from my head
Author: livingonli    Date: 10/06/2011 09:49:20

Do you know what it’s like to be trying to come up with an idea on some nights and nothing strikes the brain?

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19 comments (Latest Comment: 10/07/2011 00:19:19 by Raine)

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