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  • Ragnar
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    So awhile back I committed some Red Herrings in abortion debate. I'm curious if anyone on the other side would like to defend what I take to be hypocrisy. I do not assume any one pro-life person to believe in each of the following; it's rather a starting point for potential discussion.

    1. I'm curious how beliefs in stripping women of their rights for the benefit of strangers (AKA "the unborn"), line up with investing in a border wall and a general anti-immigrant stance? After-all people who die trying to cross the border could live if given residence in the homes of citizens at the expense and against the wishes of said citizens.
    2. Stances against universal health care, which would raise the quality of life for any children forced to be born against the wishes of the mother, and likely make less women want abortions when there's not the up front cost of around $12,000 to give birth in a hospital.
    3. Gun access at the expense of life. Just universal background checks is estimated to be able to prevent over 1000 murders per year.
  • bmdrocks21
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    --> @Ragnar
    1. We don’t want illegal immigrants committing crime. They are responsible for homicides, rapes, etc. and they shouldn’t even be here. I have also never seen, personally, a private citizen offer to house illegal immigrants. It is almost always the case that they want the general tax payer footing this bill. They take far more than they give according to FAIRUS estimates of welfare expenditures vs tax collection. This limits the resources available to remedy needs of people already here and who are suffering. Finally, people provide for their children by working. By letting in illegal immigrants that decrease industry wages and working conditions, you are making life more dangerous for American workers and making it harder to provide for their children’s needs.

    2. Everyone except lobbyists have issues with our current healthcare system. Everyone wants more people covered in terms of health insurance. Believing that improving the system through free market reforms would be better than the government providing health insurance doesn’t make us anti-life.

    3. I would question the legitimacy of that estimate, but most people are in favor of universal background checks. The reason why people stonewall it is because it is because then you know exactly who has guns(the first step before any gun confiscation). Being pro-gun is pro-self-preservation, so I find it consistent
  • ethang5
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    --> @Ragnar
    Each of your arguments has a built-in false assumption that impedes discussion until it has been dealt with.

    1. Slapping labels like "strangers" on babies is a semantics ploy. And no one is equally obligated to help everyone. The assumption that I am equally obligated to help a person trying to break the law and illegally enter the country, as I am to a defenseless, innocent baby who did not ask to be conceived is ludicrous.

    2. Universal health care is a good concept, but is not necessarily good in practise. There are some formulations of UHC that would not be beneficial to the country overall even given the health benefits. Conservatives are against the liberal's methods of implementation of UHC, not the concept itself.

    But your position makes it seem like all pregnant women got that way by rape or some other coercive way. That insults the intelligence of conservatives. Most women who become pregnant get pregnant through voluntary sex that they were aware could result in pregnancy. To later call the embryo a "stranger" and then expect others to pay for her healthcare is completely unfair.

    If you are healthy and don't want lung cancer, don't smoke.
    If you are drunk and don't want an accident, don't drive.
    If you are fertile and don't want a baby, don't have sex.

    No one owes you anything if you smoke and get cancer, drive drunk and injure someone, or have sex and get pregnant. That kind of thinking is highly illogical.

    3. Every argument has at least 2 sides. Conservatives want to be sure that gun legislation doesn't go too far. On the whole, conservatives are not against background checks, but we know that the ultimate aim of liberals is to take away ALL access to ALL guns for ALL people. We don't think that would be a safer situation than the status quo. Roughly the same number of people would die, only in your scenario, it will be only the innocent dying as only criminals will have guns.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @Ragnar
  • I'm curious how beliefs in stripping women of their rights for the benefit of strangers (AKA "the unborn"), line up with investing in a border wall and a general anti-immigrant stance? After-all people who die trying to cross the border could live if given residence in the homes of citizens at the expense and against the wishes of said citizens.
  • Stances against universal health care, which would raise the quality of life for any children forced to be born against the wishes of the mother, and likely make less women want abortions when there's not the up front cost of around $12,000 to give birth in a hospital.
  • Gun access at the expense of life. Just universal background checks is estimated to be able to prevent over 1000 murders per year.
  • 1. I disagree that "privacy," as implied by Roe v. Wade, using the arguments of the 1A, 3A, 4A, 9A, and 14A, as claimed by Roe, is a valid claim since "privacy" is not ever mentioned as a right in any of the referenced amendments. It is, therefore, using the Constitution as a cafeteria, replacing with "privacy" what each amendment actually says, like assuming a cafeteria choice of roast beef, chicken, or fish when the choices are not offered in the restaurant you're in, and where the choice is lamb, pork, or scallops. That is misinterpretation of the Constitution. The clearest of the amendment list are the 4A and 14A, which stipulate "secure in their persons," which is not the same as "privacy." Nor do I accept that a pregnant woman can extend her body to include the fetus as part of her privacy because, whether or not the law accepts a fetus as a living human life, deserving of its own body rights - and the law is currently contrary on that point - the fact remains that, when the nature of pregnancy concludes its process, the fetus is expelled, to become an obvious separate entity. And, while in the womb, it shares not one drop of blood or DNA with the mother. It is not part of her body, pure and simple. I use this argument: If the fetus is part of her body, why does her tongue remain when she opens her mouth?

    2. One must define what they mean by "health care." Is it merely access to health care, or is it expecting a universal outcome of health care? We have access, now. Who is turned away when one comes to emergency? That's access. However, are all [the scope of a universal right, yeah?] guaranteed a desired outcome? No. Just consider organ transplant patients. Are they guaranteed an organ from some warehouse on demand, even if in a terminal condition? Nope. No universal outcome there, is it?

    3. We have background checks on gun purchases now. What is our guarantee that having still more checks will curtail crime? We can prevent 1,000 murders? That argument is the same conundrum as expecting we can count all ships that are spared disaster on the rocks where there's a lighthouse warning of dangerous conditions. How do we know? We guess. But, that's it. I know statistics. I'm a certified Six Sigma Black Belt. Stats can be manipulated to agree with an agenda, but that's not a proper use of stats. We can legislate until cows are homebound, but that will never 100% prevent a criminal from obtaining a gun with no background check to commit murder with it. We simply cannot expect 100% compliance merely be attempting to legislate behavior. Never have; never will. It's a feel-good argument without concrete results. And simply banning guns will not accomplish what you want, either. Ban guns, they'll murder with spoons. Ban spoons, they'll murder with thumbs. Are you going to ban thumbs? A gun is a tool that can do nothing without it being handled, and you're back to the behavior argument. Such is true of virtually all other tools that could be used to murder. Like a handkerchief. How far do you go to ban the possible tools that can also murder in addition to the tasks they were designed to perform?

    I do not see a rational conflict with these three pro-life values. Each value of life is the construct of common sense. All three demand a respect for human life and expect civilization to to act responsibly in their conduct. That human behavior fails to meet our expectations is just a fact of life that must be acknowledged, and we try the best we can to curtail aberrant behavior, but 100% compliance will only happen when we each have reached perfection. The typical argument eventually turns into "Why does God allow suffering? Since He does, He must not exist, because no God would allow it." Nonsense. God allows suffering because He has granted us free agency, knowing that we will abuse it it. We are expected to overcome our base instincts. Life is a challenge for everybody, and it is a series of choices in an unfair circumstance. But even death as a result of poor use of agency is no barrier. So we die. Everybody does, sooner or later for all kinds of reasons. But innocent death is no barrier to prevent the advance of eternal life. 
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Ragnar
    I'm curious how beliefs in stripping women of their rights for the benefit of strangers (AKA "the unborn")
    that maybe your belief but it's not for pro life people, maybe that's why you are confused.

    let's examine what the sugar coated word "abortion" actually is, well let's not because you should know, there's plenty of graphic video and descriptions.

    Are immigrants torn apart willfully and in the same manner?  Let's compare apples to apples here right?

    Stances against universal health care
    I'm opposed to having more of my money, that I earn, that I need, stolen and given to someone else for their personal benefit.  Why couldn't restrictions be lessened and systems put in place to encourage and support charities like the Bradley free clinics, St. Jude's children's hospitals as well as other cancer charities etc?  It would be too frightening for the government to give up that kind of control.

    Gun access at the expense of life. Just universal background checks is estimated to be able to prevent over 1000 murders per year.
    I don't believe that to be true since most guns used in crimes were obtained illegally and often used by people prohibited from having them in the first place.

    what I find conflicting is pro baby murder then all this nonsense about caring for the issues you listed.


  • Dr.Franklin
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    --> @Ragnar
    Just flip the script and you get conflicting pro-choice values
  • Greyparrot
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    This OP should clearly have been edited to read "conflicting equivalencies"

    Looking only at social outcomes:

    Flooding orphanages with unwanted babies =/= flooding the slave labor industry with culturally incompatible illegal invaders.
  • Ragnar
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    Thanks for your detailed reply.


    1. ...They take far more than they give according to FAIRUS estimates of welfare expenditures vs tax collection. This limits the resources available to remedy needs of people already here and who are suffering. Finally, people provide for their children by working. By letting in illegal immigrants that decrease industry wages and working conditions, you are making life more dangerous for American workers and making it harder to provide for their children’s needs.
    Well said.


    2. Everyone except lobbyists have issues with our current healthcare system. Everyone wants more people covered in terms of health insurance. Believing that improving the system through free market reforms would be better than the government providing health insurance doesn’t make us anti-life.
    Obviously if you want reform and women to not risk crippling debt for giving birth, you're not in the camp to which that one would apply.


    3. I would question the legitimacy of that estimate, but most people are in favor of universal background checks. The reason why people stonewall it is because it is because then you know exactly who has guns(the first step before any gun confiscation). Being pro-gun is pro-self-preservation, so I find it consistent
    Ok.
  • Ragnar
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    --> @ethang5
    1. Slapping labels like "strangers" on babies is a semantics ploy. And no one is equally obligated to help everyone. The assumption that I am equally obligated to help a person trying to break the law and illegally enter the country, as I am to a defenseless, innocent baby who did not ask to be conceived is ludicrous.
    For the adults your argument holds up, but for the "defenseless, innocent" children it does not. They "could live if given residence in the homes of citizens at the expense and against the wishes of said citizens." Granted I am not talking about mandated abortions, I am only talking about unwanted pregnancies. In any case, you currently have zero obligations to any of the groups.


    2. Conservatives are against the liberal's methods of implementation of UHC, not the concept itself.
    Fair enough.


    But your position makes it seem like all pregnant women got that way by rape or some other coercive way...
    Nope. Not a clue how you read that in to my stances on consideration to one of the first major costs. I even pointed out what I thought any pro-lifer would take to be a major benefit: "and likely make less women want abortions"


    ...then expect others to pay for her healthcare is completely unfair.
    I don't think it would be completely fair but IMO it would be more fair than forcing her to go through with a pregnancy she doesn't want, only to slap her with crippling debt at the conclusion. I'm talking about making birth less unaffordable, thus disincentivizing abortion.
  • Ragnar
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    --> @fauxlaw
    1. I disagree that "privacy," as implied by Roe v. Wade...
    The basic thing I'm questioning here is if forcing people to become slaves (as proven inside the debate I linked) for the well-being of others in the name of preserving human life, why not force others to do likewise in somewhat comparable ways?


    2. One must define what they mean by "health care." ...
    As said: "...and likely make less women want abortions when there's not the up front cost of around $12,000 to give birth in a hospital."


    3. ... We can prevent 1,000 murders? ... simply banning guns ...
    I did not reference the wholesale banning of guns, merely a common sense measure of requiring background checks before selling them.

    Here's a snippet from the article used as evidence:
    Currently, laws only require background checks from licensed firearms dealers.

    Research shows states that require background checks on all gun sales had 35% fewer gun deaths per capita between 2009 and 2012 and research from the nonpartisan Rand Corporation estimates universal background checks could prevent 1,100 homicides per year.

  • Ragnar
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    I'm curious how beliefs in stripping women of their rights for the benefit of strangers (AKA "the unborn")
    that maybe your belief but it's not for pro life people
    In your opinion pro-life people no longer want abortion to be illegal. Noted.



    ...what I find conflicting is pro baby murder then all this nonsense about caring for the issues you listed.
    I'm against murder and slavery, and mostly indifferent to the rest of the issues discussed.
  • Ragnar
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    --> @Dr.Franklin
    Just flip the script and you get conflicting pro-choice values
    You're welcome to list them.
  • Ragnar
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    --> @Greyparrot
    This OP should clearly have been edited to read "conflicting equivalencies"

    Looking only at social outcomes:

    Flooding orphanages with unwanted babies =/= flooding the slave labor industry with culturally incompatible illegal invaders.
    Thanks for the feedback. And good point.
  • Greyparrot
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    --> @Ragnar
    I think there should also be a pro-choice for men as well, forcing the pro-life woman to offer a child for adoption rather than have his wages garnished for 18 years.
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Ragnar
    In your opinion pro-life people no longer want abortion to be illegal. Noted.
    it's your opinion that it's stripping a woman of her rights, pro life people don't see it that way, see I addressed what you actually said, you distorted and put words in my mouth with what I said, if you don't want to keep this honest I can oblige. 

    like this, your opinion is that someone has the right to kill another if they are unwanted or inconvenient, that how you want to play it?


  • oromagi
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    They take far more than they give according to FAIRUS estimates of welfare expenditures vs tax collection.
    FAIRUS is not a credible source for information.

    • MediaBiasFactCheck.com finds that:
      • "Overall, we rate FAIR Questionable based on Extreme Right Wing Bias as it relates to immigration, promotion of propaganda and conspiracies, as well as having connections to documented Hate Groups."
    • The Southern Poverty Law Center designates FAIR as a hate group.
      • "FAIR leaders have ties to white supremacist groups and eugenicists and have made many racist statements. Its advertisements have been rejected because of racist content. FAIR’s founder, John Tanton, has expressed his wish that America remain a majority-white population: a goal to be achieved, presumably, by limiting the number of nonwhites who enter the country. One of the group’s main goals is upending the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which ended a decades-long, racist quota system that limited immigration mostly to northern Europeans. FAIR President Dan Stein has called the Act a “mistake.
    • Wikipedia:
      • "FAIR was founded in 1979 by the pro-eugenics ophthalmologist John Tanton, former historian of labor movements and director of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions Otis L. Graham Jr. and Sidney Swensrud, a former chairman of Gulf Oil and former governing board member of Planned Parenthood.  Tanton became leader of several anti-immigration groups and held white supremacist beliefs while he led the organization."
        • Walter Cronkite and Linda Chavez resigned from the board of FAIR in protest over the organization's white supremacist agenda.
    FAIR's 2017 report was widely condemned as corrupt in methodology and intent

    • The conservative Koch Brothers' Cato Institute objected:
      • "FAIR’s report reaches that conclusion by vastly overstating the costs of illegal immigration, undercounting the tax revenue they generate, inflating the number of illegal immigrants, counting millions of U.S. citizens as illegal immigrants, and by concocting a method of estimating the fiscal costs that is rejected by all economists who work on this subject. "
    Well documented assertions regarding the fiscal impact of illegal immigration are hard to come by.  I generally trust the findings of the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office: "over the past two decades, most efforts to estimate the fiscal impact of immigration in the United States have concluded that, in aggregate and over the long term, tax revenues of all types generated by immigrants—both legal and unauthorized—exceed the cost of the services they use." While the overall fiscal impact on the US is beneficial, unauthorized immigrants have an adverse impact on the budgets of state and local governments."


  • skittlez09
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    private citizen offer to house illegal immigrants.
    <br>
    Varies state by state
  • Greyparrot
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    Fun fact: SPLC is actually a hate group that has used its political hate list to condone and justify violence against its enemies while bilking people out of hundreds of millions of dollars deposited into private offshore accounts. A truly disgusting cancer on the planet and a wart on society.



    After years of smearing good people with false charges of bigotry, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has finally been held to account. A former Islamic radical named Maajid Nawaz sued the center for including him in its bogus “Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists,” and this week the SPLC agreed to pay him a $3.375 million settlement and issued a public apology.

    The SPLC is a once-storied organization that did important work filing civil rights lawsuits against the Ku Klux Klan in the 1970s. But it has become a caricature of itself, labeling virtually anyone who does not fall in line with its left-wing ideology an “extremist” or “hate group.”

    Nawaz is a case in point. Since abandoning Islamic radicalism, he has advised three British prime ministers and created the Quilliam Foundation, to fight extremism. He is not anti-Muslim. He is a Muslim and has argued that “Islam is a religion of peace.”

    So how did he end up in the SPLC’s pseudo-guide to anti-Muslim bigots? His crime, apparently, is that he has become a leading critic of the radical Islamist ideology he once embraced. Thanks to his courage, the SPLC has been forced to pay a multimillion-dollar penalty and acknowledge in a statement that it was “wrong” and that Nawaz has “made valuable and important contributions to public discourse, including by promoting pluralism and condemning both anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamist extremism.”

    Let’s hope this settlement is the first of many, because this is not the first time the SPLC has done this. In 2010, it placed the Family Research Council (FRC) — a conservative Christian advocacy group that opposes abortion and same-sex marriage — on its “hate map.” Two years later, a gunman walked into the FRC headquarters with the intention to “kill as many as possible and smear the Chick-fil-A sandwiches in victims’ faces.” He told the FBI that he had used the SPLC website to pick his target.

    Unfortunately, many in the media still take the SPLC seriously. Last year, ABC News ran a story headlined: “Jeff Sessions addresses ‘anti-LGBT hate group,’ ” in which it reported that “Sessions addressed members of the Alliance Defending Freedom, which was designated an ‘anti-LGBT hate group’ by the Southern Poverty Law Center in 2016.” The Alliance Defending Freedom is a respected organization of conservative lawyers dedicated to defending religious liberty, and it just argued a case before the Supreme Court, Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. It won, 7 to 2. It is not a “hate group.” If anything, it is fighting anti-Christian hate.

    In 2014, the SPLC placed Ben Carson — later a Republican presidential candidate and now the current secretary of housing and urban development — on its “extremist watch list,” alongside neo-Nazis and white supremacists. After an uproar, the group removed him and apologized.

    The SPLC also lists Charles Murray, a colleague of mine at the American Enterprise Institute and one of the most respected conservative intellectuals in the United States, on its website as a “White Nationalist.” Last year, an angry mob of students, many citing the SPLC’s designation, physically attacked Murray during a speech at Middlebury College. He escaped unharmed, but the liberal professor who invited him ended up in the hospital.

    Little wonder that Nawaz was not just angry but also afraid about being designated an extremist by the SPLC. He told the Atlantic in 2016, “They put a target on my head. The kind of work that I do, if you tell the wrong kind of Muslims that I’m an extremist, then that means I’m a target.”

    Unfortunately, the settlement that the SPLC reached with Nawaz is not likely to deter it from smearing others — $3.4 million is a drop in the bucket for the center, which raised $132 million between November 2016 and October 2017 and has a $477 million endowment, including a reported $92 million in offshore accounts. Sliming conservatives is big business.

    The only way to stop the SPLC is if people stop giving it money and the media stop quoting it or taking it seriously. The SPLC once did important work fighting the Ku Klux Klan. But when it declares Maajid Nawaz, the Family Research Council, Ben Carson and Charles Murray as moral equivalents of the Klan, it loses all integrity and credibility.



  • fauxlaw
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    --> @Ragnar
    forcing people to become slaves (as proven inside the debate...
    Affecting only #1:
    The slavery issue may be compelling by your argument, but it can be argued that on the side of the fetus, it, too, may be subject to the force of will of the pregnant woman, and a violation of its rights. According to FindLaw.com[1]“Children are also entitled to due process…” Granted, this stipulates fully born entities, and the argument that children [minors] do not enjoy the fullness of rights afforded to adults, nevertheless, children have access to due process. That is good enough for this argument: The 14A, clause 1 states, “nor shall any State deprive any personof life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws” [italics added for emphasis], then even a child has the right to life. Okay, how old? 
     
    Granted, a fully-born minor child is not the same, by apparent legal definition, as a fetus, viz: 
     
    1 U.S.C. §8 [a] “In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the words “person”“human being”“child”, and “individual”, shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development.”[italics added for emphasis] 
     
    [b] “As used in this section, the term “born alive” with respect to a member of the species Homo sapiens,means the complete expulsion or extraction from his or her mother of that member, at any stage of development, who after such expulsion or extraction breathes or has a beating heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles, regardless of whether the umbilical cord has been cut, and regardless of whether the expulsion or extraction occurs as a result of natural or induced labor, cesarean section, or induced abortion.” [italics added for emphasis]
     
    [c] "Nothing in this section shall be construed to affirm, deny, expand, or contract any legal status or legal right applicable to any member of the species homo sapiens at any point prior to being “born alive” as defined in this section."
     
    I quote the third clause only because it contains a conundrum relative to The Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004 in which the murder of a pregnant woman that also causes the death of the fetus is a double-charge of murder, thus affording the extension, in contradiction to 1 U.S.C. §8 [c], of a “person” to the unborn fetus. Should a fetus be limited to its right of due process only because it is the victim of a violate act? Or, even, as highlighted in 1 U.S.C. §8 [b], “an induced abortion” which may, or may not result in the death by the artificial extraction of the fetus?
     
    Relative to the legal commentary of 1 U.S.C. §8,Homo sapiensis “…every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development.” The success “born alive” is occurring at earlier and earlier points in development due to advances in medical technology. The record is currently at 22 weeks[2]with a 15% survival rate to at least one year. If the gestation period is reducing, should “born alive” remain the standard as if it only means full gestation?
     

  • Dr.Franklin
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    --> @Ragnar
    1.banning abortion wont stop abortions

    What about gun control

    2.liberals always on a gun control crusade after a school shooting

    but defend killing kids in abortion?
  • Swagnarok
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    --> @Ragnar
    1. In terms of the inherent obligations one has for another, one's son or daughter cannot be compared to a random stranger, or even to somebody you consider yourself friends with. Its most fundamental basis is neither affection nor emotion and exists in the absence of either.

    For example, who would you sooner die for (if you had to choose)? Your three month old, or your best friend of 15 years?
  • ILikePie5
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    --> @Greyparrot
    Uses liberal sources to contradict a “right wing source.” #Logic
  • Greyparrot
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    --> @ILikePie5
    No, the funny thing is how he uses debunked sources to debunk things.
  • Greyparrot
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    --> @ILikePie5
    Also, another thing I missed, he used the Koch Brothers as an authoritative source, not mentioning that Koch earns profits on how much illegal slave labor they can import into the country, and therefore has a financial motive to misrepresent groups that could hurt their profits.

    Debunking ideas with debunked sources.

  • Greyparrot
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    --> @ILikePie5
     Charles and David Koch are two of the richest men in the world. Each is worth tens of billions of dollars. Some of their money is inherited. Much they made themselves. But the Kochs have never been content merely to get richer. They’re engaged intellectuals, with a sincere desire to change the world. For years, the brothers have been the single most important funders of Republican politics in Washington.
     
    The Koch network of donors spends hundreds of millions of dollars every election cycle. Virtually every major conservative non-profit in DC takes Koch money. Koch organizations train political organizers and candidates. Many Republican lawmakers owe their careers to the Kochs. For people whose main business is making fertilizer and paper towels, the Kochs have been remarkably effective in politics. Not surprisingly, the left hates them for it. Both the Koch brothers and their families, who by the way are very nice people, have been repeatedly and grotesquely maligned by the media. This, in turn, has convinced many conservatives that the Kochs much be on their side. Anyone who’s been slandered by the New York Times has got to be doing something right. That’s the idea. It’s not a bad standard.
     
    But in the case of the Kochs, conservatives might want to pause and rethink the relationship. As it turns out, the Kochs don’t have much in common with conservatives. They are totally opposed to most conservative policy goals. The Kochs are libertarian ideologues, passionate and inflexible. America first? The Kochs find the very notion absurd, if not fascist. An economic policy that seeks to strengthen families? The Kochs denounce that as “crony capitalism,” or “picking winners and losers.” They think it’s immoral. Controlling our borders? The Kochs consider that racist. A few years ago, Bernie Sanders noted that the Koch brothers are far to the left of him on immigration. Open borders? Quote: “That’s a Koch brothers proposal,” he said.
     
    Bernie wasn’t wrong. But it’s more than a proposal. It’s in effect what we have now, thanks in part to the Kochs. The overwhelming majority of Republicans want a secure border and less immigration. That’s why they voted for Donald Trump. Two and a half years later, the border is more porous than ever. A tide of humanity is flooding in illegally. Republicans in Congress have done almost nothing to help. Why? You can thank the Kochs for that. In 2018, Koch-backed organizations, Freedom Network and Americans for Prosperity, pressured Republicans in Congress to use their post-election lame-duck session to pass an amnesty for the so-called Dreamers. Going into the 2020 race, amnesty remains the Kochs' top legislative priority.
     
    If you’re wondering why the Republican Party often seems so out of synch with its own voters, this is why.  And not just on immigration. The Koch network has also successfully pushed Republicans to join the left in going soft on crime. The Kochs aggressively backed the First Step Act,  which is currently allowing drug traffickers to leave prison early. They support the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act, which would cut required penalties for heroin and cocaine traffickers in half. They’re doing all this, remember, in the middle of the deadliest drug epidemic in American history. The Kochs don’t even argue that these so-called reforms will help law-abiding Americans in any way. They just believe it’s the libertarian thing to do.
     
    On economics, meanwhile, you won’t be surprised to learn that the Kochs hold views that bear no resemblance to those of most Republican voters. The Kochs have pushed for cuts to social security and Medicare. A vast majority of Americans are opposed to that. Like everyone else, most Republicans want lower drug prices. Yet the Kochs are working to kill a bill introduced by Senators Josh Hawley and Rick Scott that would prevent drug companies from charging Americans more than they charge the people of Canada or France. Then the Kochs helped craft the 2017 tax cut, which was far better for corporate America than it was for the middle class. A majority of Republicans support capping interest rates on credit cards and payday loans. The Kochs think that’s ridiculous. Some years ago, when David Koch ran for vice president as a libertarian, abolishing all usury laws was part of his platform.
     
    There’s nothing surprising about any of this, or illegitimate. It’s what many rich liberals believe. It’s just not what most Republicans think. And that’s a problem, given that the Kochs are the single most powerful figures in the Republican Party. The Kochs don’t seem interested in hearing you complain about that — or anything else.
     
    Remarkably, they’ve now joined the leftwing campaign against free speech. Next month, the Charles Koch Institute will be holding a summit with the Anti-Defamation League and executives from major tech companies, including Pinterest, AirBNB, Patreon, and Mozilla. The stated purpose of the meeting is to formulate, quote: "best practices on the fight against hate and extremism online." You know exactly what that really means: censorship of your views. For the left, fighting "extremism" always entails crushing normal conservatives. That's why Pinterest has censored Live Action. It's why Patreon banned Milo Yiannopoulos. It's why Mozilla drove out Brendan Eich for donating to the wrong political campaign. Big tech has become a far bigger threat to your freedom than the government is. The Kochs don’t care.  Nothing Google does violates libertarian orthodoxy.
     
    More to the point, the Kochs don’t care about Republican voters or what happens to them. Ok. But then why are they running the Republican Party? That’s a question Republicans should start asking themselves.