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Freedom From Religion

By The Reverend Published: May 31, 2012

We heard it when "conscientious pharmacists" boldly declared it was against their religious beliefs to dispense specific prescriptions as the job of being a pharmacist required. Pharmacists,...devout, exceedingly religious pharmacists,...told their employers, and their political representatives, that religious liberty, religious freedom, for a pharmacist, meant that they didn't have to do the job of being a pharmacist. If this or that prescription handed to "conscientious" pharmacists violated there personal religious superstitions, then, that "conscientious" pharmacist must be excused from filling those prescriptions on the grounds of individual religious freedom, liberty.

Naturally, if "conscientious" pharmacists can't do the job of being a pharmacist, then, they shouldn't be pharmacists at all...or at best....they should work for a purely religious employer where the public isn't faced with being turned away when they bring in a prescription, say, for birth control pills from their doctor. The public has the right, when they are seeking goods or services in the public square, to purchase those goods and services in the public square....and not be turned away on the basis of private and peculiar religious beliefs. Those peculiar religious beliefs can still be believed in by conscientious pharmacists, and he or she does not have to consume or ingest any pharmaceuticals they find offends their consciences.....but they do not have the right to determine which prescriptions will be filled for others. That thinking equates religious freedom with the public being forced to live or behave like the religion in question dictates. And that is the establishment of religion in the public square...which is clearly prohibited by the first amendment.

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Integrity, Or The Lack Thereof

By The Reverend Published: May 30, 2012

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney raised a couple million dollars in Las Vegas last night at a fundraiser hosted by Donald Trump. Trump has been actively pushing the buttons of race-challenged and zombified conservative voters for over a year now using Birtherism as his main attention-getting device. Trump, as many already know, once led GOP presidential candidate polls. Donald Trump....no joke....was seen by potential conservative voters as the leading candidate to replace Barack Obama.

Trump loudmouthed his way in front of media stenographers last spring just long enough to see his teevee show renewed for another season. Conservative voter desperadoes at the time loved the twice, or thrice, bankrupted Trump, touting him as an Experienced and Serious Business Person who could "fix'" our economy.

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Born-Again Bainers

By The Reverend Published: May 29, 2012

December, 2011....Newton Leroy Gingrich....

“I would just say that if Gov. Romney would like to give back all the money he’s earned from bankrupting companies and laying off employees over his years at Bain that I would be glad to then listen to him. I’ll bet you $10, not $10,000” – he said, referring to Romney’s $10,000 bet in Saturday night’s debate – “that he won’t take the offer.”

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Lower Tax Rates Do Not Mean More Jobs

By The Reverend Published: May 25, 2012

Lately, I've been hammering Mitt Romney over his Bain Capital experience, the experience Mitt tells us qualifies him to "run the national economy" as president. Almost before Mitt announced his run for the presidency, defenders of the rich paying ever lower tax rates told us that Mitt was a mighty man of the economy.....a real CEO in the Oval Office, he would be. Knows the economy, by god.....knows how it works, he does.

What Romney knows.....and is experienced in...as I have been pointing out, is how to enrich already-rich investors. Nothing wrong with that kind of seasoned experience. Investor/customers of Bain during Mitt's tenure benefited greatly from Romney's ability to make them even richer than they were. Yes, the customers of Bain represent the tiniest slice of the U.S. population....maybe the top 1 1/2%.....but hey, obscenely-rich Americans are Americans too.

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Village Democrats Have A Sad

By The Reverend Published: May 24, 2012

It's been plaguing the Democratic Party for decades now. The party decided awhile back to get into bed with corporate sponsors, just like their opposition party had always done. That decision to eat alongside the GOP political hogs at the corporate trough has all but neutered the Democratic Party. If the nation has moved towards the center...it is only because the Democratic Party has moved towards corporate sponsorship.

A prime example of the rot inside the Democratic Party is seen in the response to Obama's criticism of Bain Capital. According to Willard Mitt Romney, his qualifications to steer the U.S.S. America were developed at the private equity group, Bain Capital. Romney's stint as Massachusetts governor is blemished (for conservatives) by his mandated "Romneycare".....mirrored in the federal version, ObamaCare. On job creation while governor of Massachusetts, Romney was 47th out of 50 states in number of private sector jobs created. Mitt won't be flashing those credentials around too often.

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What Increase In Federal Spending?

By The Reverend Published: May 23, 2012

When you type into the Google search bar the words "Obama massive spending", 23,800,000 entries come up. Republican and conservative deception artists and spin merchants have worked hard the last three years framing the Obama presidency as a big government spender.

The reason for the deception is simple....conservatives and Republicans realized that after the banks and AIG crashed the economy and sent us into the worst economic downturn since the 30's, further tax cuts and deregulations for the top 1% of income earners would be off the table. The depth of the recession would preclude the loss of any further government revenue through more tax giveaways to the already-obscenely wealthy.....and the deregulation of banks, starting in 2000, led directly to our downward economic spiral beginning in 2007. Putting further deregulatory talk in a poor light, as it were.

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Misleading Your Own

By The Reverend Published: May 21, 2012

The House passed a $642 billion defense authorization bill late Friday afternoon. That's a lot of money. We always have plenty of money to fuel the Empire's killing machinery. It's only when citizens lose their jobs, homes, and health care that we struggle with whether any government spending can be done to help out. Always the same. Never changes.

What's of interest in the defense authorization bill is what was added to the bill's massive spending.

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Yes...There's A Budget

By The Reverend Published: May 18, 2012

One of the most often repeated deceptions spun by Republican representatives and their media sidekicks is the accusation that Democrats haven't passed a budget in 3 years. Over and over again I hear each and every conservative squawker repeat the same nonsense.....Democrats haven't passed a budget in three years, that's how irresponsible the Democrats are. It is said that Democrats are so, so fearful of how a Democratic budget would be received by the American people that they just won't pass one for political damage control purposes.

I know you've heard this criticism. It has been everywhere. To me, it's one of the stranger criticisms in a sea of wingtopian criticisms of Obama and the Democrats. I suppose the "reasoning" of conservative critics here is to imply through repetition that Democrats are not good stewards of the nation's economy. Which is pretty rich coming from a political party which came within an ace of spades of destroying the U.S. economy once and for all in 2008.

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Romney...."Economic Heavyweight"?

By The Reverend Published: May 17, 2012

Mitt Romney, March 16, 2012, in Rosemont, Illinois...

“I understand how the economy works, not because I debated it in congress but because I worked in the real economy. I want to use that skill,” said Romney. “We’re not going to be successful in replacing an economic lightweight if we nominate an economic lightweight, and I’m an economic heavyweight. I know how this economy works. I’m going to get it working for the American people because I care about the American people.”

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"Callousness Deserves Emphasis"

By The Reverend Published: May 16, 2012

I wrote about this a week ago, but the Beacon editors typed up a fine editorial this morning entitled "Unbalanced Budget" which addresses the same issue. Paul Ryan and his Beat-up on the Poor Budget. The editorial points out Ryan's hope to spare any cuts to the Defense Dept. in any new budgeting agreement that avoids honoring the original "trigger" agreement. The Defense Dept's budget has doubled since the Codpiece was inaugurated in 2001. Doubled. Ryan and his Rote Republicans point, screeching, like the pod people in Invasion of the Body Snatchers, at defense secretary Leon Panetta's words for the cover needed to feel good about, then, bashing the poor and the needy like prick "hunters" clubbing seals.

Panetta warned that the coming military cuts because of "sequestration" would be "devastating." To greedy defense contractor oligarchs, sure.....but in reality, Panetta's, and Obama's, expansion of the bogusly-named "war on terror" into 6 or 7 foreign countries has actually been the catalyst for more Islamic radicals being willing to hurt, or kill, Americans,. not less. So, no.....cutting Defense according to "sequestration" rules won't be devastating to national defense. The less we expand our Drone World War, the safer Americans will be. Panetta...and not surprisingly...has it backwards.

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The New American Hero

By The Reverend Published: May 15, 2012

The poor shall inherit the earth....my ass.

You may have heard about the co-founder of Facebook, Eduardo Saverin, renouncing his U.S. citizenship last week. Facebook is about to launch it's IPO and Saverin owns 4% of the company's stock which is valued at somewhere between $77 billion and $96 billion. That's billions, not millions. Saverin has decided to settle in Singapore.....that is, he and all that money.

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xyz

By The Reverend Published: May 14, 2012

Mitt Romney is of my generation. He is 65 years old, I am 62. Last week Romney nervously responded to questions about his high school days and bullying, specifically, Mitt was asked about an alleged "prank" when Mitt and his buddies chased, pinned and held down, and then cut another male classmate's long, bleach-blonde hair.

High school Mitt was alleged to have said that the victim of the hair-cutting "can't look like that", "that's wrong", "just look at him." The victim of Mitt and his buddies "wilding"

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"Where Are The Jobs?"

By The Reverend Published: May 11, 2012

Sometimes, Speaker John Boehner is a funny guy. Not that he means to be, mind you,....but it just seems like the goofy Ohio man can't help himself sometimes. Whenever the man some folks refer to as Orange Julius wants to change the subject or emphasize his irritation over a question being asked him.....Boehner often throws out this smartassery...

"Where are the jobs?"

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Self-Evident

By The Reverend Published: May 10, 2012

Responding to President Obama's statement yesterday in favor of gay marriage, Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage said this.....

“God is the author of marriage, and we will not let an activist politician like Barack Obama who is beholden to gay marriage activists for campaign financing to turn marriage into something political that can be redefined according to presidential whim,” Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, said in a statement.

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Rino Hunt

By The Reverend Published: May 9, 2012

The Freedom Works-Tea Party GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate in Indiana, Richard Mourdock, handily defeated incumbent GOP Senator Dick Lugar last night in the state's primary election. The vote was not close. Lugar lost by 20%.

In his concession speech last night, Dick Lugar wished Mourdock the best and hoped for a GOP takeover of the Senate as well as the presidency this November. Lugar had a few other things to say about Mourdock and the Tea-base which helped put Mourdock in the general election against Democrat, Joe Connelly....

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Irreconcilable Differences

By The Reverend Published: May 8, 2012

Contrary to the line Barack Obama used in his 2004 Democratic Convention keynote speech...."we are not red states and blue states..we are the United States"......we are, actually, a deeply divided country. And the divisions are so deep that true reconciliation, I think, is impossible.

I realize that conservative Americans detest liberal and progressive policies. American progressives and liberals, on the other hand, reject what they consider to be faith-based, and proven to have failed, conservative ideas. Because policies and ideas are difficult to strip away from the personalities who support them.....Paul Ryan becomes, then, a "granny starver".....and Barack Obama a "Kenyan socialist", and on and on. Never the twain shall meet.

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Hating On The Poor & Vulnerable

By The Reverend Published: May 7, 2012

I must admit.....the results of the 2010 midterm election came as a surprise to this blogger. I suppose primarily because just 2 years prior, voters overwhelmingly installed Democrats in Congress as well as in the White House. Progressive voters stayed home in 2010 but Tea-fueled conservatives rallied around "pulling the plug on grandma", "hoping Obama will fail", and "take our country back" slogans of bitterness. They worked hard and it paid off. After running the nation into ditches everywhere you looked in the 00's, Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives January 2011.

The new Tea-flavored GOP House had promised jobs, jobs, jobs while campaigning before November, 2010. But after taking the oath of office, that same TeaHouse offered nothing but limits on abortion, defunding of Planned Parenthood and three hostage taking events which threatened to shut down all of government. The one thing that Tea-flavored House Republicans did not focus on was......jobs, jobs, jobs.

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Transparency

By The Reverend Published: May 4, 2012

I remember it well. There was Codpiece proclaiming that "America does not torture" in response to a question from the press. That was a lie, of course...and The Decider knew it was a lie when he claimed that the U.S. doesn't torture.

Then there was Jose Rodriguez. He was there when Khalid Sheik Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah were waterboarded.....and he's the guy who destroyed the CIA videotapes of detainees being tortured after specifically being warned by the Justice Department not to destroy any evidence.

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Protecting The Caucasian Race

By The Reverend Published: May 3, 2012

In 2004, Ohio conservatives were lured to the polls by a Republican initiative to bash unmarried "domestic partners." It was called State Issue 1. Karl Rove had concluded that Junior's re-election chances were iffy and that gay-bashing initiatives in 17 states would encourage the evangelical/faith-based to come out to the polls. Ohio was one of those 17 states.

Ohio voters voted 2-1 in favor of singling out one specific group of citizens for discrimination. Issue 1 prohibited the recognition, and the performance of, same-sex marriages or civil unions in the state. Ohio, along with many other states, concluded that being free meant that laws that discriminate against gays must be made part of the Ohio Constitution.

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Pro-Growth Unicorns

By The Reverend Published: May 2, 2012

Wish in one hand and.....well, you know, *^&# in the other....and see which hand fills up first. It's a well worn and crude way for the unwashed to express their contempt for those who tend to be faith-based in their thinking.

House Republicans, supply-side voodoo economic hats screwed down tight, are once again playing make-believe wishing games with the economic future of Americans. Still wishing for those unicorn ponies to show up so's they can show those mean socialists in the DemoCRAT Party a thing or two, by gum.

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Bipartisan Killers

By The Reverend Published: May 1, 2012

Bipartisanship involves agreement, consensus. As we've seen, there's been very little room for agreement between Democrats and Republicans in the last few years. For quite awhile now, Americans have given Congress historically low marks for not working together to solve our nation's problems...for not working in a bipartisan fashion. But examples of bipartisanship have still been difficult to find.

Except for when it comes to America's killing machine.

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