Sunday, April 13, 2014 Tuesday, April 8, 2014
tastefullyoffensive:

Maslow’s Modern Hierarchy of Needs [x]

tastefullyoffensive:

Maslow’s Modern Hierarchy of Needs [x]

Monday, April 7, 2014

50 years ago, America’s biggest employer was General Motors, where workers made the modern equivalent of $50 dollars an hour. Today, America’s biggest employer is Walmart, where the average wage is eight dollars an hour.

… And Walmart released their annual report this month, and in it was the fact that most of what Walmart sells is food. And most of their customers need food stamps to pay for it. Meanwhile, Walmart’s owners are so absurdly rich that one of them, Alice Walton, spent over a billion dollars building an art museum in Bentonville, Arkansas… And she said about it, “For years I’ve been thinking about what we can do as a family that can really make a difference.” How about giving your employees a raise, you deluded nitwit?

BILL MAHER, Real Time

(via DailyKos)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014 Sunday, March 30, 2014

Religion and business shouldn’t mix

"People can hate anybody they like — blacks. Jews, gays, and Muslims are among the currently popular choices among ignorami whose lives are so pathetic that they need someone to feel superior to.

But if you’re going to run a business— an enterprise which is created, supervised, controlled, and taxed by the government —  you must get licenses under laws which require you to serve everyone regardless of race, color, gender, religion, and so forth. You must also meet the requirements of the public health laws, safety codes, sanitation codes, building codes, food and drug laws, employment discrimination laws, requirements of the disabilities act — and comply with the terms of your license, which may include hours of operation, signage, noise levels, occupancy limits, parking regulations, and so forth.

In other words, you are not allowed to do what you damned well please and thereby become an irritant to society. You cannot stuff 100 people in a room that the fire chief limits to 50 people. You cannot blast loud music out your front door to attract attention. You cannot serve spoiled food to customers. You cannot chop the fingers off shoplifters, or refuse to serve a blind person because she has a guide dog.

If you hate a class of people, and refuse to serve them, you cannot have a license, and you cannot run a business. It’s that simple. Nobody cares what your private religious briefs may be, or whether you attend church every week, or whether you’re nice to your grandmother. And nobody cares whether, deep down in your heart, you hate and despise the people you are serving.

If you want the benefits of owning/operating a business —making money by serving the public in some fashion — then you must, in fact, serve the public.”

Reblogged from MorningNewsBeat.com 12/12/13

I think this is something the Supreme Court as well as any so-called Christian business ought to consider.  Are they in the business of making money and serving the public, or do they get the pick and choose what they want to do in the guise of religious conviction?  How would they feel if a Muslim conservative refused to cater their function for being infidels?  As Scalia pointed out (and he’ll likely vote against in this case), religion becomes a slippery slope to hide behind.

Christians, You are not victims
"From what I read and hear, conservative evangelical Christians are feeling victimized by developments in American culture and in the ways they are being treated under new anti-discrimination laws. In ever greater numbers, they are appealing to the courts to grant them “relief” from regulations that they feel violates their freedom of religion.  “Religious liberty” has become the rallying cry for a legal “remedy” to the violation of what they see as their freedom to practice their religion.


It is understandable that religious conservatives would feel uncomfortable and unsettled by recent developments in the church and in the culture. But are they victims? Is there, as many would claim, a “war on religion?”


This is especially obvious in the changing understanding about homosexuality. In ever-greater numbers, and across every religious and cultural demographic, acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people is increasing. In American religious communities, across every denominational demographic, support for equal rights for LGBT people, and particularly support for marriage equality for gay couples, is on the rise. In most denominations, that rise has resulted in majority support even when the denominational hierarchy disagrees.
Why have we seen such a sea change? Twenty years ago, most Americans would have told you they didn’t know anyone who was gay. They may have been suspicious about certain family members or co-workers, but it was not something openly talked about or acknowledged. Now, is there anyone left in America who does not know some family member, former classmate, neighbor, or co-worker to be gay?
And the result of knowing someone gay is that most people are now unwilling to believe or accept all the negative things said about us. The sky has not fallen, nor have church roofs caved in, just because gay marriage is legal in 17 states, plus the District of Columbia. Life goes on pretty much as normal, and in fact, people are seeing that marriage equality strengthens the institution of marriage, rather than undermining it.
For those religious conservatives who see something sinister and immoral in gay and lesbian couples having the right to marry, it must feel as if the moral universe has gone awry. The reaction to this development has engendered a fear that cultural morality is veering out of control. Nothing is as it should be. And it must feel to them that if such a proposition as marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples is accepted, nothing will now stop the world from careening out of moral control. That would be a pretty scary place for a religious person to live.
Then, as if to confirm their worst fears, photographers are being compelled to offer their services for gay couples’ weddings (New Mexico), bakers are being made to provide wedding cakes for gay wedding receptions (Colorado), and florists must provide flower arrangements to beautify gay wedding celebrations (Washington). It is important to point out that this is only true for weddings in states where a non-discrimination law is in effect to protect against discrimination based on sexual orientation—which, by the way, is only in 21 of the 50 states.
Appeals to the courts are being made for “relief” for this violation of the service providers’ “freedom of religion” and “religious liberty,” claiming that forced compliance with such anti-discrimination laws is a violation of the providers’ free practice of their religion. Indeed, the language used in defiance of these anti-discrimination laws takes on the language of victimization. These providers feel as though they are victims of discrimination themselves based on their religious beliefs.
But I have to ask: are religious conservatives confusing the pain of finding oneself “suddenly” in the minority with actually being a victim? Both feel uncomfortable, even painful, and are fraught with anxiety. But they’re very different.
Here’s what victimization looks like: every day, especially in some places, LGBT people face the real possibility of violence because of their orientation or gender identity. Young people jump off bridges or hang themselves on playground swing sets because of the bullying and discrimination they face. In 29 states, one can be fired from one’s job simply for being gay, with no recourse to the courts. In most places, we cannot legally marry the one we love. Some of us have been kicked out of the house when we come out to our parents, and many young LGBT people find themselves homeless and on the streets because of the attitudes of their religious parents toward their LGBT children. And did I mention the everyday threat of violence?
Compare that to the very painful realization that one’s view of something like homosexuality is in the minority after countless centuries of being in the majority. It may feel like victimization to hang a shingle out to sell something or provide some service to the public, only to find that the “public” includes people one disagrees with or finds immoral in some way. It may feel like it has happened practically overnight, when it has actually been changing over a period of decades. Being pressed to conform to such a change in majority opinion must feel like victimization. But as a society, we would do well to distinguish between real victimization and the also-very-real discouragement felt by those who now find themselves in the minority.
I do not mean to brush aside as inconsequential the feelings of those who find themselves in the minority, whether it be around the topic of gender, race, or sexual orientation. But I do mean to question characterizing such feelings as discrimination, violation of religious freedom, and victimization. It’s time we called out our religious brothers and sisters for misunderstanding their recently-acquired status as members of a shrinking minority as victims.”
Reblogged from Yahoo/Daily Beast.  Written by The Right Reverend V. Gene Robinson is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and the IX Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire.  Follow him on Twitter @BishopGRobinson.

Christians, You are not victims

"From what I read and hear, conservative evangelical Christians are feeling victimized by developments in American culture and in the ways they are being treated under new anti-discrimination laws. In ever greater numbers, they are appealing to the courts to grant them “relief” from regulations that they feel violates their freedom of religion.  “Religious liberty” has become the rallying cry for a legal “remedy” to the violation of what they see as their freedom to practice their religion.

It is understandable that religious conservatives would feel uncomfortable and unsettled by recent developments in the church and in the culture. But are they victims? Is there, as many would claim, a “war on religion?”

This is especially obvious in the changing understanding about homosexuality. In ever-greater numbers, and across every religious and cultural demographic, acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people is increasing. In American religious communities, across every denominational demographic, support for equal rights for LGBT people, and particularly support for marriage equality for gay couples, is on the rise. In most denominations, that rise has resulted in majority support even when the denominational hierarchy disagrees.

Why have we seen such a sea change? Twenty years ago, most Americans would have told you they didn’t know anyone who was gay. They may have been suspicious about certain family members or co-workers, but it was not something openly talked about or acknowledged. Now, is there anyone left in America who does not know some family member, former classmate, neighbor, or co-worker to be gay?

And the result of knowing someone gay is that most people are now unwilling to believe or accept all the negative things said about us. The sky has not fallen, nor have church roofs caved in, just because gay marriage is legal in 17 states, plus the District of Columbia. Life goes on pretty much as normal, and in fact, people are seeing that marriage equality strengthens the institution of marriage, rather than undermining it.

For those religious conservatives who see something sinister and immoral in gay and lesbian couples having the right to marry, it must feel as if the moral universe has gone awry. The reaction to this development has engendered a fear that cultural morality is veering out of control. Nothing is as it should be. And it must feel to them that if such a proposition as marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples is accepted, nothing will now stop the world from careening out of moral control. That would be a pretty scary place for a religious person to live.

Then, as if to confirm their worst fears, photographers are being compelled to offer their services for gay couples’ weddings (New Mexico), bakers are being made to provide wedding cakes for gay wedding receptions (Colorado), and florists must provide flower arrangements to beautify gay wedding celebrations (Washington). It is important to point out that this is only true for weddings in states where a non-discrimination law is in effect to protect against discrimination based on sexual orientation—which, by the way, is only in 21 of the 50 states.

Appeals to the courts are being made for “relief” for this violation of the service providers’ “freedom of religion” and “religious liberty,” claiming that forced compliance with such anti-discrimination laws is a violation of the providers’ free practice of their religion. Indeed, the language used in defiance of these anti-discrimination laws takes on the language of victimization. These providers feel as though they are victims of discrimination themselves based on their religious beliefs.

But I have to ask: are religious conservatives confusing the pain of finding oneself “suddenly” in the minority with actually being a victim? Both feel uncomfortable, even painful, and are fraught with anxiety. But they’re very different.

Here’s what victimization looks like: every day, especially in some places, LGBT people face the real possibility of violence because of their orientation or gender identity. Young people jump off bridges or hang themselves on playground swing sets because of the bullying and discrimination they face. In 29 states, one can be fired from one’s job simply for being gay, with no recourse to the courts. In most places, we cannot legally marry the one we love. Some of us have been kicked out of the house when we come out to our parents, and many young LGBT people find themselves homeless and on the streets because of the attitudes of their religious parents toward their LGBT children. And did I mention the everyday threat of violence?

Compare that to the very painful realization that one’s view of something like homosexuality is in the minority after countless centuries of being in the majority. It may feel like victimization to hang a shingle out to sell something or provide some service to the public, only to find that the “public” includes people one disagrees with or finds immoral in some way. It may feel like it has happened practically overnight, when it has actually been changing over a period of decades. Being pressed to conform to such a change in majority opinion must feel like victimization. But as a society, we would do well to distinguish between real victimization and the also-very-real discouragement felt by those who now find themselves in the minority.

I do not mean to brush aside as inconsequential the feelings of those who find themselves in the minority, whether it be around the topic of gender, race, or sexual orientation. But I do mean to question characterizing such feelings as discrimination, violation of religious freedom, and victimization. It’s time we called out our religious brothers and sisters for misunderstanding their recently-acquired status as members of a shrinking minority as victims.”

Reblogged from Yahoo/Daily Beast.  Written by The Right Reverend V. Gene Robinson is a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress and the IX Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire.  Follow him on Twitter @BishopGRobinson.

Saturday, March 29, 2014
Sunday, March 16, 2014
elledark:

If Jesus Came Back in the USA ..Can you imagine the absolute shit-storm that would blow up if Jesus staged his second coming in the USA today, preaching the same old stuff he did before ?Can you hear the howls of outrage from the conservative christian-right, from the grassroots of the GOP, that the guy’s a commie or at least a bleeding-heart liberal who hangs out with low-life scum and whores. And all this healing sick folks free stuff sure sounds like creeping socialism. And how the heck are you supposed to have wars if you can’t even kill people ? Crazy ! And the guy don’t own a gun ! That’s gotta be anti-American or anti-christian or somethin’ pretty damn weird ! There is no way America’s right-wing ‘Christians’ would tolerate Jesus because they oppose pretty much everything he believed in. Which makes sense because they’re not really Christians anyway. As G K Chesterton shrewdly observed .. “Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car” .And if the resurrected Jesus caused enough of a commotion, if there was any serious chance he might change the status quo, he’d surface on the US governments radar and that could be fatal. Swarthy middle-eastern guy with a beard butting heads with the establishment ? Chances are the CIA would pin him as a terrorist and take him out with a drone or whip him off to Guantanamo for indefinite detention without trial and a spot of ‘enhanced interrogation’.No .. you can see why Jesus would steer well clear of the USA today.Ellie

elledark:

If Jesus Came Back in the USA ..

Can you imagine the absolute shit-storm that would blow up if Jesus staged his second coming in the USA today, preaching the same old stuff he did before ?

Can you hear the howls of outrage from the conservative christian-right, from the grassroots of the GOP, that the guy’s a commie or at least a bleeding-heart liberal who hangs out with low-life scum and whores. And all this healing sick folks free stuff sure sounds like creeping socialism. And how the heck are you supposed to have wars if you can’t even kill people ? Crazy ! And the guy don’t own a gun ! That’s gotta be anti-American or anti-christian or somethin’ pretty damn weird !

There is no way America’s right-wing ‘Christians’ would tolerate Jesus because they oppose pretty much everything he believed in. Which makes sense because they’re not really Christians anyway. As G K Chesterton shrewdly observed .. “Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car” .

And if the resurrected Jesus caused enough of a commotion, if there was any serious chance he might change the status quo, he’d surface on the US governments radar and that could be fatal. Swarthy middle-eastern guy with a beard butting heads with the establishment ? Chances are the CIA would pin him as a terrorist and take him out with a drone or whip him off to Guantanamo for indefinite detention without trial and a spot of ‘enhanced interrogation’.

No .. you can see why Jesus would steer well clear of the USA today.

Ellie

(Source: e-writing)

Friday, March 7, 2014
It started with Benghazi. When you kill Americans and nobody pays a price, you invite this type of aggression.

Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC).

Umm…

1. How exactly is the Ukraine crisis linked to the killing of Americans? I mean, as rough as the situation in the Crimea is, it’s not even clear the Russians have killed any Ukrainians, much less Americans. (Ukrainians have clearly killed Ukrainians, as happens, tragically, in revolutions/coups/civil unrest and instability.

2. How in the left corner of hell is this guy on the US Senate? I know he’s worried about his forthcoming primary, but seriously: I know a lot of smart people who live in South Carolina. I’m even related to a few. Sometimes truth needs to win.

(via politicalprof)
Friday, January 31, 2014

liberalsarecool:

skepticalavenger:

And the Republicans are talking about impeaching Obama over this.  What disappoints me is that he hasn’t been issuing Executive Orders MORE.

Obama-era Republicans are pathetic.

Thursday, January 30, 2014 Saturday, January 25, 2014

inothernews:

Icicles formed on gargoyles at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.  Extreme cold temperatures are expected to continue through this weekend.  (Photos via the Washington National Cathedral)

Wonder if they’re facing toward the Capitol?

Monday, January 20, 2014
iamjennifergrey:

i am a unicorn…

iamjennifergrey:

i am a unicorn…

Wednesday, January 15, 2014
occupy-my-blog:

"Teddy had it right."

occupy-my-blog:

"Teddy had it right."

Friday, January 3, 2014