Morally Impoverished Economics?

One must wonder whether physicians, nurses and other workers toiling day and night in health care — let alone the medics and helicopter pilots who risk their lives to help the wounded — see their work and its product quite as Mr. Limbaugh casts it.

One further wonders whether families with a cancer-stricken member are likely to view going without health care as the moral equivalent of going without a beach house.

via Is Health Care Special? – Economix Blog –

Great article.  There are moral dimensions to healthcare and it shows how economics can handle something as thorny as morality. But, as for Limbaugh, I can see why Jon Stewart calls him a douche.  Wow.

Shirley Sherrod’s Contextual Nightmare |

Fox News and Andrew Breitbart should lose a good amount of credibility. This was malice aforethought.

Shirley Sherrod’s Contextual Nightmare |

“We’ve posted no shortage of pieces on political attacks that leave context on the cutting room floor to give the public a misleading impression. An opponent’s statements, cherry-picked and shorn of any language that could provide the intended meaning, can be shaped into a slashing ad. 
Or they can lose a woman her job. The latest victim of the missing context trick is U.S. Department of Agriculture employee Shirley Sherrod. Her story shows the harm that can result from taking something out of context — or acting before all the facts are in.”


Fox News and Andrew Breitbart (no I won’t link to them) should lose a good amount of credibility. This was malice aforethought.

On Lacking All Conviction – National – The Atlantic

The Obama administration takes a bad position on the Sherrod debacle.

On Lacking All Conviction – National – The Atlantic:

“It’s important to note the shift in argument from ‘elements of racism’ to ‘a racist group.’ Perhaps Biden just answering a question. In any case, he was not at pains to take up the NAACP’s more nuanced point. Nor was he much interested in the question–the notion that Tea Party racism is reducible to people ‘on the periphery’ who have ‘expressed really unfortunate comments’ is a woeful understatement directly at odds with the facts. But that is the administration’s position.”

(Via The Atlantic.)

I missed this.  Coates is right on point.  Shame on Obama for that.

Obama Kills like Colbert

By the Time I Get to Arizona

Perhaps the most chilling aspect of the immigration legislation is the requirement that citizens report anyone suspected of illegal status. Such a requirement is eerily reminiscent of Nazi Germany, Cold War Russia, and Fascist Italy, when snitching mandates were central to sustaining a regime of fear and central control. Sadly, these demands are not exclusive to the immigration bill, as everything from drug enforcement policy to the Obama Administration’s counter-terrorism strategies are undergirded by the expectation that everyday people will be forced to report the alleged misdeeds of others. Like many dimensions of fascist politics, the notion of the citizen-informant seems relatively harmless. Unfortunately, evidence shows that such a practice is unreliable and ineffective, not to mention devastating for the moral and cultural fabric of a community.

Although it would be hyperbolic to say that America is destined to become a truly fascist nation, the Arizona immigration bill reflects the nation’s continued shift away from its expressed principles. Unless we quickly begin to organize and challenge what currently counts as “common sense,” we may lose the opportunity to save what’s left of our democracy.

via A new breed of racial profiling invades Arizona |

For once, I’m in complete agreement with Dr. Hill.

We’ll Tell You If You’re Black Or Not – National – The Atlantic

His response is a caricature of the worst stereotypes of white liberalism. Note the invocation of a “Marxist View Of Race.” Note the sense that blackness is strictly the work of “Southern Whites.” Note the arrogance of assuming that “blackness” is defined by 17th century racists, and that the people being defined have no agency. In one fell column, Judis anoints himself High Arbiter of Blackness, and then dismisses Obama’s complicated and arduous process as the president simply doing “what was expected of him.”

The only appropriate response to this sentiment is to regrettably resort to the language of my folks and ask the following–Who the fuck is John Judis?

via We’ll Tell You If You’re Black Or Not – National – The Atlantic.

But seriously, who the f— is he?

BBC News – Pope accused of failing to act on sex abuse case

A canonical trial authorised by Cardinal Ratzinger’s deputy was halted after Fr. Murphy wrote to the future pope asking that proceedings be stopped, despite objections from a second archbishop.

The accused priest said in the letter that he was ill and wanted to live out the remainder of his time in the “dignity of my priesthood”.

Victims say Fr Murphy – who died in 1998 – assaulted boys while hearing their confessions, in his office, his car, at his mother’s house and in their dormitory beds.

He was quietly moved to the Diocese of Superior in northern Wisconsin in 1974, where he spent his last 24 years working freely with children in parishes and schools, according to one lawsuit.

via BBC News – Pope accused of failing to act on sex abuse case.

What bothers me is the Vatican’s response to this.  Instead of quiet dignity, we find defiance: it’s about the pope and not about the children who were abused under his watch.  Directly or not, you are responsible Pope Benedict.  Take responsibility.  Accusing the media and critics of “petty gossip” about really serious matters only serves to paint you as petty and seeking to deflect attention from those sins you may have committed.  Focus on what matters.  Further, you are the Vicar of Christ; so much for blessing those who curse you.

More Reasons Why I’m not Conservative

In the 20th century, it was conservative intellectual William Buckley who defended white supremacy in the South. I hear people talking about how National Review–a magazine that speculated that the Birmingham bombing was the work of a “crazed Negro”– has, of late, betrayed its holy intellectual roots and I wonder what planet they’ve been living on. People mournfully claim that conservatism has “died,” and I wonder if they’ve forgotten what “conservatism” had to say to black people in apartheid South Africa. Meanwhile, conservative intellectuals are attacking gay marriages because it might reinforce “black social failure.” These are the intellectuals.

There is a fundamental problem here, one that can’t be elided by pointing out the differences between “true” conservatism and Republicans. A bias toward time-tested, societal institutions almost necessarily means a bias toward institutional evil. Likewise, a skepticism of change almost necessarily means a skepticism of those who seek to expand democracy beyond property-owning white men. Taken in sum you have an ideology, whatever its laudable merits, that will almost always, necessarily, look charitably upon those with power, or those who control the institutions, and skeptically upon those without power, or those who seek to change those institutions.

As a black person, I find that really hard to take.

via Conservatism And Power – National – The Atlantic.

Exactly.  Even though conservative has it’s purposes in democracy, I prefer loving justice than institutions, than what is.

Villaraigosa shocked at celebration of O.J. Simpson, RuPaul, Dennis Rodman at L.A. Black History Month event | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Unified School District spokeswoman Gayle Pollard-Terry said Supt. Ramon C. Cortines learned about the incident Tuesday and had the teachers, who are white, pulled from their classrooms for the duration of an investigation. The suspension is without pay for the first three days.

via Villaraigosa shocked at celebration of O.J. Simpson, RuPaul, Dennis Rodman at L.A. Black History Month event | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times.

We’re not post-racial yet.

American Takfiris – Ta-Nehisi Coates

The American conscience, when it decides to act, is mighty–but it is also sluggish and vain. Americans are crushed by the weight of not fulfilling their own high expectations–so the shameful acts of one generation are often rectified by a subsequent generation unencumbered by their own complicity in such acts…The American conscience is often slow to action, but not because it cannot recognize evil–but because our view of ourselves as a people guided by justice is so important to who we are that when confronted with proof of our own shortcomings, we recoil in shame and precious vanity. Eventually, with the big stuff, we usually find our way–we see this with our slow, staggering, but inevitable march towards full personhood for gays and lesbians.  And while those who stained America’s honor with war crimes have escaped accountability for now, these American takfiris will eventually be judged by history with a clarity we cannot muster today.

via American Takfiris – Ta-Nehisi Coates.

Great post by guest Adam Sewer.  Definitely worth the read.

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