Friday, February 17, 2012

Rights

In the spirit of NJ Governor Chris Christie playing election-year politics with people's lives vetoing the legalization of gay-marriage passed by the elected representatives of the NJ State Senate because, to quote the Governor, "an issue of this magnitude and importance, which requires a constitutional amendment, should be left to the people of New Jersey to decide;” here is a quote from someone present-day Conservatives pretend to have read books by respect on the subject of putting civil-rights issues up for popular vote:

"Individual rights are not subject to a public vote; a majority has no right to vote away the rights of a minority; the political function of rights is precisely to protect minorities from oppression by majorities (and the smallest minority on earth is the individual)" -- Ayn Rand.

74 comments:

Lido said...

On the plus side I heard that the Maryland Legislative body just passed the resolution to allow gay marriage there, just something to make us feel better but yeah as someone who lives in New Jersey I am shocked and outraged, and if I had voted for in the election for this person I'd be even more incensed

Anonymous said...

Wait hypocrisy in the Republican party? Republicans choosing posturing rather than actually helping people?

Smashmatt202 said...

You know what this reminds me of? George Carlin:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaa9iw85tW8

So these aren't really rights, they're privileges that our government allows... That sucks. :(

Anonymous said...

Oh fuck off, Ayn Rand wrote jailhouse love letters to a man that dismembered a little girl, talking about how he stood against society and they had no right to judge him and all that fucking bullshit.

Fuck Ayn Rand in her grave.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

Yea, that was a pretty dickish thing for him to do. I mean, I'm always one to gripe when the judiciary or executive branch try over reaching into outright legislation, regardless of what cause it may be for (ends do not justify the means when it comes to setting legal president). So for a governor to veto legislation because it's "to important" to be passed by the legislator... Ya know what? That's bullshit. The legislator exists for exactly this sort of thing. You only go to a popular vote when it requires some sort of constitutional amendment which this clearly does not. Christie was clearly abusing his veto power here.

And, Bob, I noticed you never mentioned the whole Affordable Care Act controversy. You'll get outraged when the right is trying to take away civil rights, but mum when the left does it?

antecedentless said...

@Bob, We ignorant anti-progress teabaggers have put Christie in the "Bob Dole"/Rockefeller class a long time ago.

@Narf, I think he called the the act a toothless nothing.

On the health insurance issue: The big stinging point is the attempt to deal with moral hazzard, that is the individual mandate, on our side. At first I supported the individual mandate, but I understand the constitutional issues behind. Nevertheless, not having health insurance is irresponsible. There is no "right to not have health coverage" in the U.S of A. If someone ends up in the E.R. and they can't (or won't) pay, the hospital and taxpayer foot the bill. We do not let them die.

On that note: the idea that insurance should pay for women's birth control is beyond silly. Even if it where for reducing health risks, in most cases it will not be for STD preventing female condoms. It will be for the pill, which only help prevent babies. Also, the recent Catholic Church political theater is a sick game, nothing more. They successfully brought up the Catholics Are So Backward/"every sperm is sacred"/Christians hate sex for pleasure myth. Even the catholic church supports "when it's dry the swimmers die" means of 'natural' birth control. Nobody is forcing anyone to have a baby before they are ready financially.

As for the not having a right to marry (lies, nothing is stopping anyone from getting married to the opposite gender)/gay issue in general... I leave that alone, for now ;)

Wendy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wendy said...

Hey, Bob, I like how you don't at ALL mention that President Obama opposes gay marriage as well, but lay the ENTIRE anti-gay marriage platform at republican feet. It's almost as if your not objective at all and totally biased...oh wait.

biomechanical923 said...

@SmashMatt202

RIP Carlin

-"Its called the American Dream,because you have to be asleep to believe it."

Anonymous said...

Hey, it could be worse. You could be a woman in Virgina.

Warning, extremely graphic content: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/02/15/1064997/-Virginia-House-getting-all-up-in-your-vagina

Never thought pro-rape would be a party platform but what do I know?

A. Ivan said...

It speaks volumes that the only defense right wing commentators can ever muster is "well, the left is no better, because [insert example that upon close inspection is obviously better/largely unrelated]". That, or accusations of bias and hypocrisy, which quite apart from being bullshit do nothing to make the actual issue look better.

antecedentless said...

>Getting all up in your vagina
>pro-rape

How sad. You honestly believe that, don't you. "The law doesn’t specify what kind of ultrasound must be used" and even if it did, it is completly optional, and a whole lot less invasive to the vagina than, say... oh... ABORTION. The left-wing memes are getting so absurd.

Hammbone said...

@antecedentless

you must be a man... birth control pills have some major effects on the famale body's chemestry and cause alot of other effect besides "stops babies" please dont spout ignorance.

@wendy, STFU troll, and you ARE a troll even a moron could at least produce some arguement.

antecedentless said...

I've made some major typos and spelling goofs here before, but wow. It's spelled female, and chemistry. There is only one e in argument. What are you, 12? That aside, my point still stands. The only thing the pill helps prevent during a sex act is babies, not STDs.

All that aside, I said in the comments before: car insurance does not pay for saftey checks. Home insurance does not pay for clearing gutters. Health insurance should not pay for contraceptives.

Megabyte said...

Forget that... what about how we got universal healthcare? The people actually spoke on it! There is currently a man in the senate who was voted in SPECIFICALLY because he would be the last vote needed to cancel it. So what do the Democrats do? Why they just "pretend it passed" so they can vote it in only in the house it will get by in and have it get through anyway. They outright ignored the people... not just didn't give them a say... they DECIDED THEIR SAY MEANT NOTHING when it did not agree with them and bent the rules to the point of snapping to get around the very people they claim to represent.

Now in this case, I dont think this governor did the right thing, but think about it. I'd rather have someone who cares what the people they supposedly represent think enough to give them a say then someone who will tell them to STFU when they don't agree...

Even if they might take it too far (which is what happened... the message he was sending was to tell the people they will have to vote on it if they want it). And that is the dynamic I am seeing here.

Anonymous said...

antecedentless: Ah, the classic losers argument... Your spelling sucks therefore I must be right. Oh and Jacka** you may have fooled some other morons somewhere else with that trick but you did not actually address her points.

Also, I think it is HILARIOUS that the people talking about how precious and important life is, are also the people right here talking about contraception JUST preventing pregnancy. Oh, no big deal. The gov shouldn't pay for that. Guess what? In the next 15 years or so there will be 9 billion people on this earth. Our planet CANNOT sustain more than 12 billion. It is just not feasible and the day we reach that magic number is getting closer and closer. I am not suggesting we go so far as to implement the abortion encouraging one child policies of china (though, barbarism and more men then women aside, they did work). What I am saying is we as a race have long passed the date where if there is a way to prevent essentially ALL unwanted pregnancies before abortion even need be discussed (there is its called the pill, its called condoms, its called contraceptives) we do not have the luxury of denying ANYONE the ability to use them.

So instead of taking the easy way out and insulting the grammar of other people and stating your argument in broad comparisons that make no sense and are completely meaningless. Why don't you have the balls to actually make your argument. My priest told me/ the bible told me is not a valid argument for why those that do not share your beliefs must suffer for them.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ antecedentless

I really have no issue with insurance paying for contraceptives. I'm not comfortable with calling them "preventative care", but I get the idea... having insurance pay for things that would prevent larger issues down the road is better in the long run. And perhaps home and auto insurance should be doing the same thing.

The real issue is that this law would force religious organizations that find contraceptives morally objectionable (like, say, a Catholic church) to pay for them themselves. It's a blatant disregard for freedom of religion.


@ Anonymous

If it were the government paying for the contraceptives, there wouldn't be an issue.

Anonymous said...

@the almighty narf: Fair enough. I understand what you are saying. I guess for me I just have trouble seeing how organizations that want so much to prevent abortions from occurring refuse to provide a means from preventing the condition that causes people to seek one in the first place (unplanned pregnancy). But you are right this is a place for the government. It does disregard freedom of religion to do so no matter how much it makes sense.

Though I would argue many of the people against this would be equally against the government paying for it.

Anonymous said...

Oh and also Catholic Hospitals are heavily subsidized by the government. I submit that this makes the problem far more grey. Yes they have the right to religious freedom, but if they are receiving free money from the federal government do they not have some responsibility to those that do not agree with their faith? Just some food for thought.

Anonymous said...

I love how people are jumping around the main issue here by bringing up women's rights and abortion and rape and whatnot. Those are fine debates, but are WAY off-topic. Bob's post was simple: NJ vetoing gay marriage is hypocritcal, bigoted, and idiotic.

I just love it when people bring up totally unrelated stuff when they get mad at Bob.
"Oh shit, Bob made a good point that makes Republicans look bad! What do I do...oh, I know! I'll bring up something totally unrelated so we can sidestep the real issue!"

Yes, I get it. Not every Republican is a Bible-thumping gay-bashing douchebag. But don't even TRY to deny that Bible-thumping gay-bashing douchebags make up a scarily large percentage of the party. Are there douchebags on the Democratic side too? Of course. Douchebaggery is not a Republican-exclusive thing. That said, stupid/douchey acts done on one side of the political spectrum do not make stupid/douchey acts on the other side "okay."

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ Anonymous

I'm certainly not going to argue that the beliefs of the Catholic church on contraceptives makes any sort of seance, just that it's their beliefs to have.

And I don't think government subsidization should have any sort of effect at all since I imagine many Catholic leaders would just as soon forgo government money before acting against their beliefs (which is what typically happens when the government tries to interfere with the practices of religious based charities in general), which would ultimately cause far more problems than this bill is trying to solve.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ the other Anonymous

What do you want? Pretty much everyone acknowledges what Christie did what bullshit. There's no discussion to have there.

Megabyte said...

I think the anonymous one missed the point I was making. If you take the guy at face value, he decided it wasn't his choice to make. It was the people's. You can agree or disagree in how he handled that, but you can't argue that it's a better mind set then... say... flipping off the people because they disagree with you.

Course then again, I also am convinced in this particular issue, we are dealing with pretty much retards on both ends. Which means if we want to actually do it right, you have to plan for them. No one is doing that.

antecedentless said...

Sorry for driving the whole issue off topic by trying to address narf at length.

But a couple things first
>Your spelling sucks therefore I must be right.

I did not say that at all. I was poking holes in the "spout ignorance" argument by exposing how ignorant Hammbone made himself/herself look. Namecalling is a big no-no here. How did I not address his/her points? Do these side effects somehow improve women's health? Do they prevent disease? No.

Back on topic:
Unless Chris Christie scheduled a vote on gay marraige in November (or even has the power to schedule such a vote), the whole "driving bigots out to vote on the same day as the presidential election" conspiracy is moot.

Blue Highwind said...

Hey Chris Christie, you dumb shit: The people of New Jersey did decide to legalize gay marriage when we elected these pro-rights legislates in the first place.

And we'll decide it again once we vote your ass back into unemployment in November.

Megabyte said...

@Blue

Excluding your vitriol, this is EXACTLY the kind of response someone should have. Like what he did? Vote him back in? Don't like it? Kick his ass out. Done and done.

James said...

It's sad that the ONLY candidate running for high office that supports gay marriage rights, Gary Johnson, is completely ignored while the anti-gay idiots get all the publicity and keep getting to enforce their bigotry.

biomechanical923 said...

@Anonymous
"Warning, extremely graphic content: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/02/15/1064997/-Virginia-House-getting-all-up-in-your-vagina
This is fucking absurd. I think it only proves that a lot of proponents of anti-abortion are entirely dependent on appeal-to-emotion and "yuck factor" to state their case. This is a last ditch effort for sickos to basically shove a telescope up a woman's vagina and say Look at it!!! Look!!! It has a face!!! How can you kill something that has a face!!!. Despicable.

@TheAlmightyNarf
"The real issue is that this law would force religious organizations that find contraceptives morally objectionable (like, say, a Catholic church) to pay for them themselves. It's a blatant disregard for freedom of religion.

But the religious beliefs of the business you work for shouldn't be able to dictate what kind of healthcare their insurance company provides.

Certain religions (like Jehova's Witnesses) have moral objections to giving blood (even for testing), receiving blood, and even vaccinations.

Do you really think that due to some "moral code", employers can instruct that their insurance companies refuse paying for blood tests, transfusions, DNA testing, vaccination, organ transplants, etc? Even if their life depended on it?

If they did have that right (which they don't), then why don't we see religious organizations up in arms about not wanting their tax dollars to pay for blood transfusions?

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ biomechanical923

Ok, right now I work for a caterer that specializes in Kosher food, as such the vast majority of their business practices are dictated by traditional Kashrut law. I, of course, am not Jewish and neither are most of the cooks who work there. None the less we all try to respect their customs while at work as best we can. If I had to take any serious issue with the way they run their business, I would simply leave instead of try to force my morals onto them. It wouldn't do either of us any good.

If someone works for an expressly Catholic organization, they're probably pretty well aware of what their moral code is. So, if something like this is an issue for them... why the fuck are they working for a Catholic organization? I'm not saying that they necessarily have to follow Catholic beliefs... just to respect them as much as they would want their employer to respect theirs.

So... yea, I have no issue with a the religious convictions of a business or non-profit organization dictating what insurance they provide. If an employer's moral standings aren't acceptable for you, just don't work for them.

And there's a world of difference between what one pays for themselves and what their tax dollars get used for. I don't think there's anyone who isn't a bit outraged by something the government spends money on.

Dr. Pibb said...

Your argument, narf, of "if you don't like their policies, just quit", simply doesn't work out in real life. Very often people would quit but there are simply no alternatives that pay as well, if they exist at all. Because in that situation, people are forced to work a certain job to maintain a reasonable quality of life, the government should be able to give them the option of acquiring birth control.

To reply to antecedentness's much earlier argument that female birth control doesn't help prevent a disease, only pregnancy, I need to point out that employer's health insurance also covers medications that would prevent conditions that would ruin a person's life (as unintended pregnancy would) even though they would not affect their physical health, such as antidepressants.

antecedentless said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

:MEANWHILE, AT THE LEGION OF DO- I MEAN, BOB'S HOUSE!:

Yes! Dance, my puppets! DANCE FOR ME! MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!

Ryan said...

Just for the fun of it, here's a different perspective:

1) This whole thing with vetoing Gay Marriage is a trick to make me agree with Ayn Rand about something. Gross, but ok, I do, opposing gay marriage makes you a douchebag, and so does the idea that people should vote on rights.

2) The Virginia law where women have to be penetrated with an ultrasound probe before they can get an abortion is nothing but proof that social conservatives are no better than the Taliban.

3) The idea that religious liberty is being violated by allowing the insurance companies who provide insurance for employees of Catholic institutions to pay for the birth control of those employees (which they *want* to do because it ultimately saves them money) is such total bullshit that I don't even know where to start. First, the idea that Catholics should get the special right to ram their religious beliefs down the gullets of every janitor they hire is bullshit. Second, the idea that contraception is immoral is bullshit. Third, any insurance plan that covers Viagra and not orthotricycline is patriarchal bullshit and anyone who says it isn't AND is not either an old man or a cancer survivor trying to produce a child is a hypocritical douche. Fourth, Mitt Romney signed the exact same rule in Massachusetts and nobody said jack shit about it, because nobody cared before Republicans started whining like the woman-hating babies they are. Fifth, Daryl Issa is such an unbelievable turd stick with his panel full of male ideologues and his self-comparisons to Martin Luther King that the only appropriate punishment I can think of would be for him to be forced to carry a child to fucking term in a surgically implanted womb.

4) Abortion is a civil right. There is no other civil right that requires you to get penetrated in order to exercise it.

5) We got universal health care, Megabyte, because Congress voted for it. That's how democracy works. If we had a sane electorate, we'd have a single payer system like they have in civilized countries, but we're still better off than we were before.

6) Honestly, this whole conversation makes me wish somebody *would* start a war on religion.

Megabyte said...

Wrong, Ryan. We got it because they found a way to go around the Senate actually voting on it.

Yes, CONGRESS passed it, but both houses are supposed to before a bill becomes a law. That did not happen.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ Dr. Pibb

But, is "it can be hard to find another job" really enough reason to throw out the 1st amendment? Does separation of church and state really mean so little?

biomechanical923 said...

@TheAlmightyNarf
I think you're misinterpreting the first amendment. The right to have a religion doesn't entitle you to the right to enforce your religion. Your rights end where mine begin and all that good stuff...

The consequence of failing to understand this basic idea is pretty evident if you look at England. Muslims are up in arms that their religion is being "oppressed" because other people are refusing to obey Shar'ia law, and the government is confused as fuck about what to do.

James said...

In other news, Barack Obama is also opposed to gay marriage rights.

Mister Linton said...

@biomechanical- Therefore the government SHOULD enforce it's irreligion on religious organizations? You need to think through your argument a little further.

Ryan said...

When the government says "you have to provide health insurance, but you don't have to pay for birth control, BUT the insurance companies can, without your consent, still offer free birth control to the people you cover", that isn't forcing irreligion on anyone. But when I try to get a job, as a non-Catholic, at an institution run by Catholics, and that organization refuses to give me certain benefits based on their religion, that *is* forcing religion on me. QED.

And Mega...http://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=111&session=1&vote=00396

Okay? Knock it off.

Ryan said...

And James, you're right that Obama hasn't had the guts to openly state his support for gay marriage, but since he won't defend DOMA in court and he's the guy who helped get DATT repealed, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ biomechanical923

"The right to have a religion doesn't entitle you to the right to enforce your religion. Your rights end where mine begin and all that good stuff."

Wait, wait, wait.... The Catholic church doesn't have the right to force their morals on others, which is why we should force our morals on them and force them to pay for things they find morally objectionable?

...the fuck?

We're not talking about the Catholic church actually preventing accesses to contraceptives in anyway. We're talking about the church not being forced to provide access themselves. That isn't even close to being the same thing.


@ Ryan

"When the government says "you have to provide health insurance, but you don't have to pay for birth control, BUT the insurance companies can, without your consent, still offer free birth control to the people you cover", that isn't forcing irreligion on anyone"

I would love to see a source specifying the the church itself wouldn't have to put any money toward it.

Megabyte said...

Hi Ryan... Shinanigans on the vote recorded... because the man who was added to the roster basically on his pledge to vote against isn't in that list.... you know, Scott Brown? (The only Brown is from OH in that list.)

As I said, circumvented... so why don't you knock it off... okay?

Megabyte said...

@Ryan:

Btw, evidence? The election he won on happened in 2010... this vote "occured" in 2009. So... how could he win on this? UNLESS they decided to pass a vote retro-actively so the CURRENT senate didnt vote? As I said, circumvented.

Sylocat said...

It's amazing how many of these problems could be sidestepped by instituting UHC... you know, like most other civilized countries have.

But no, that won't happen, because right-wing nutcases keep shrieking, "I Don't Want My Taxes Paying For Other People's Healthcare," even though, thanks to ERs not being able to turn people away, they already ARE paying for those who can't pay, and it costs the taxpayers more than UHC would cost them.

Dave from canada said...

@ Narf

That analogy is incredibly fallacious and you know it.



Your religion does not make you exempt form the law. And let's be honest, if it were a muslim organization complaining, this "controversy" wouldn't even exist.

All the government is doing is reminding catholic run institutions that the government, NOT the vatican, determines what they can and cannot do on american soil. If there is a conflict between their religion and the law, they can leave.

And people already DO pay for things they find objectionable. The catholic church is a tax exempt organization in the US, which means that everyone else is paying what the catholic church would be.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ Dave from canada

"That analogy is incredibly fallacious and you know it."

I made a few analogies, so you're going to be a bit more specific if you want a rebuttal.

"And let's be honest, if it were a muslim organization complaining, this "controversy" wouldn't even exist."

Of course it would. It would just be Democrats and the ACLU picking the fight instead of Republicans. However, I would like to think I'd be just as upset if it were Islam or any other religion under attack because I know that any legal precedent used to take away their religious freedom will eventually be used against me.

"All the government is doing is reminding catholic run institutions that the government, NOT the vatican, determines what they can and cannot do on american soil."

See, that's the problem... the state can't dictate church policy. That's what "separation of church and state" means. They're separate. They can't interfere with each other. It's completely unconstitutional for the government to even try to determine what "they can and cannot do on american soil".

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"

Freedom of religion is supposed to protect the church from the state just as much as it's supposed to protect the state from the church.

And this isn't even an issue of what the church "can or cannot do"... this is an issue of the church being forced to do something against their will.

Laserkid said...

Okay before I dive more deeply into this cesspool I need to address something...

@Dr. Pibb

"To reply to antecedentness's much earlier argument that female birth control doesn't help prevent a disease, only pregnancy, I need to point out that employer's health insurance also covers medications that would prevent conditions that would ruin a person's life (as unintended pregnancy would) even though they would not affect their physical health, such as antidepressants. "

I just can't let this one stand - depression IS a disease, its a mental disease that you can't "catch" like the cold, but it IS genetic, like cancer, and as someone who has suffered from depression his entire adult life I am rather offended that you reffered to it in this manner.

Anti depressants don't prevent you from being depressed, they treat the chemical inbalance in the brain to fix those already suffering from it. It's not a prevantive contraceptive of sort, its an active agent that fixces a problem already there.

*breaths in*

With that off my chest I need to weigh in on a lot of things it seems.

First off...


While I personally am not of the opinion that gay marriage should be legal, if it was passed through a legitimate vote of cognress (and nto some dictatorial mandate of some random ass court) - then it should be passed. Unless the bill itself was written in such a way to trample on others's liberties (for example forcing churchs to marry gay couples against their religious beliefs), then this veto is retarded. If the people don't like what their congress enacted, then they kicjk them out, replace them with a mandate to reverse it. You know, like what happened in 2010 after the healthcare mandate bullshit.

On the actual topic of marriage - I'm of the opnion marriage shouldn't BE a legal thing. It took me a lot of thought and consideration to get to that position but here's my deal. If the government wanted to sponser unions and didn't reffer to them as marriage, then 98% of the issues with gay marriage would disappear. Originally, I was for the idea of civil unions for gay couples and marriages for straight couples, because the whole entire problem with gay marriage is its a misnomer. Marriage by definition is between a man and a woman and nothing stops a gay person from marrying another gay person of a different gender - but thats not what they want (nor should they). What they, legitimatly, want is to be recognized by the government just as straight couples are, and thats completely valid.

The problem is the government, in its judeo christian foundings, reffered to their union by the same name that religions do - Marriage. The problem arises of a seperation between church and state issue - marriage is a fundamentally speaking religious thing that the government adopted, this si why theres such an outcry.

As such, an actual system of civil unions between twop people on a government level and a SEPERATE religious recognition for marriage as a religiout non governmental rite (as opposed to right) would make both parties happy by and large. Excepting those on the religious side who through some misguided righteousness want to "cure" homosexuals, and on the other side those who, through legitimate anger and misdirected disdain, want to "educate" the religious, for whom no solution other then the trampling of eachothers rights would be accepted.

Laserkid said...

to continue from above (because per usual I'm being too wordy)

As a raised catholic, I don't understand the church's disdain for cotnraceptives - they prevent abortions and as far as I can tell are waaaay better psychologically for most people than actual abortions which can be (but not for everyone) a traumatic experience. That said, if said organization does not want to cover contraceptives to those for whom they employ, that is their right to do so - this would be different if they say fired someone who used them - that is NOT their right.

That all said, it is also the individuals right to not work for them if they take issue with this. To the argument that thats better said than done - as finding better or equal paying jobs in the real world, thats quite true - but staying to work for them because of this is the choice you have made - for the sake of a better employment you trade off against the lack of coverage for contraceptives.

Much as in my own employment I get to weigh in wether or not I work for a better paying company that only gives a half hour lunch, or the company I am at thats tw dollars an hour less profitable, but affords me a one hour lunch. As a worker, you have to make the decision of the employment that works BEST for you. No employer is required to give you everything you want, and if you choose to work for the better paying job that doesnt give you all the perks you want, because it pays more that doesn't mean they have to give you all the perks you want because otherwise you'd take a paycut. It means you made the choice to trade off perks for dollars.

Thats how freedom works, you get imperfect choices, as opposed to imperfect mandates.

Dave from canada said...

@ Narf

IN case you are wondering, it's is arguments like that that make people think republicans are stupid. Because you to make that argument you are either an idiot who doens't know what a church is, or dishonest and trying to justify something you know to be wrong becuase it benefits you (and given how fast you went to the Democrats and ACLU are secret muslims well, I'm guessing its the latter)

The government is not dictating church policy. They aren't telling catholics what to belive. They are telling them what the universal standards are that they have set up for everybody. The catholics (or rather a group of conservative catholics and protestants desperate to drum up some election year controvercy in a time where their most electable bid is an elitist mormon who can't go 5 minutes without alienating some part of his base) are the ones intruding by attempting to have their particular religious hangups given preferential treatment.

Your religion does not allow you to decide which laws you obey. End of story.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ Dave from canada

"(and given how fast you went to the Democrats and ACLU are secret muslims well, I'm guessing its the latter)"

...wait, what? I said that Democrats and the ACLU would stick up for the religious liberties of Muslims, as they have been quick to do over the last 10 years when oppression has come against them. And, again, so have I. Standing up for religious freedom is a good thing, regardless of what religion it might be for.

I realize that you'd love to paint me as being racist toward Muslims, but unfortunately I simply am not.

"Your religion does not allow you to decide which laws you obey."

I shouldn't have to because any law that would make that an issue in inherently unconstitutional. The government simply can not make laws that would prohibit in any way the free practice of religion. The 1st amendment makes that crystal clear.

v_opposition said...

Lots of issues here.

@ Narf

Yes the government can tell you that you can't practice certain things and argue faith. If your faith requires human sacrifice can you still kill virgins? No, The Supreme Court ruled in Reynolds v. U.S. "the legislative powers of the government reach actions only, and not opinions." and (referring to the above mentioned human sacrifice argument: "to permit this would be to make the professed doctrines of religious belief superior to the law of the land, and in effect to permit every citizen to become a law unto himself."

biomechanical923 said...

@TheAlmightyNarf
"Standing up for religious freedom is a good thing, regardless of what religion it might be for."
Employers are required by law to provide their employees with health insurance.
If I needed to get a transfusion / transplant to stay alive, and my employer said "Sorry but the CEO is a Jehova's Witness, so we don't pay for transfusions anymore because it's against his religion" then those religious beliefs actively put lives at risk, because somebody else's religion says "if you need a transfusion, then maybe you should die".

You're advocating for the right for employers to hold people's lives in their hands. Or, maybe more specifically, you're arguing that employers should have the right to place other people's lives into the hands of gods that they don't believe in.

Employers do not have the right to refuse to provide health insurance regardless of whether or not they dislike the fact that people are getting healthcare that they think somebody doesn't deserve.

If I'm opposed to war, does that mean I can refuse to pay taxes until the war is over?

v_opposition said...

@megabyte

It did pass the Senate and the House too. http://healthcarereform.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=003712

In Congress bills can originate in either house. When legislation passes both houses it is often not exactly the same in both passed bills. When it is passed in both houses they send the bill to the conference committee which then works out a compromise bill which is then returned to each house and passed.

When the Senate bill was passed in December of 2009 the Democrats had a 60 vote filibuster proof lock on the passage and the bill was passed. The house passed their bill but it wasn't the same bill and it would need to go to conference committee to be aligned.

In the meantime Paul Kirk who was appointed to serve in the now passed Ted Kennedy's seat was replaced himself in the special election that Scott Brown won. The Democrats now only had 59 members in the Senate, which meant they couldn't override the Republicans filibuster.

However since the bill had already passed the Senate it would just need to pass the House. (see the 1975 seminal work I'm Just A Bill). Remember when the Republicans were screaming "They shoved the bill down our throats"? Well this is when it happened. The House which only needs a simple majority vote, pushed the bill through and the President signed and the Vice-President commented "This is a big fu%king deal."

I hope this helps
http://healthcarereform.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=003712

Ryan said...

Thank you, Mr. Opposition,for your fact-finding and general consistency. So what we have here is:

#1: It turns out that the election of Scott Brown is not how a bill does or does not become a law.

#2: It turns out that we don't actually have to give legal respect to any religious opinion that exists.

#3: It turns out that standing up for religious liberty no matter what religion it is is not only not a good thing, it's a dangerous thing (I'm not standing up for polygamy, genital mutilation, virgin sacrifices, honor killings, or denial of access to contraception, and neither should anyone else). Legally, that's because we don't have to, but MORALLY, that's because (and here's my problem with arguing about this) religion is generally bad news and we'd all be better off without it.

Dave from canada said...

@ Narf

No, you didn't. Because this is nto about religious liberties. This ais about peopel trying to get special rights from the government due to their religion.

"I shouldn't have to because any law that would make that an issue in inherently unconstitutional. The government simply can not make laws that would prohibit in any way the free practice of religion. The 1st amendment makes that crystal clear."

Dear god this is getting stupid. NO it doesn't. The 1st amendment does not let you do whatever you want as long as you call it religion, You aren't allowed to sacrifice babies, or keep slaves, or not pay taxes or stone unruly children or go through traffic lights just because your religion says so.


And this law IN NO WAY affects people's ability to practice their religion. For fuck's sake it is explicitly spelled out time and time again.

You aren't defending religious rights because you don't have a right to be exempt from the law. You are demanding special treatment. You are demanding that the federal government give preferential treatment to one religion over another or religion over irrelegion and THAT violates the first amendment.

Mister Linton said...

Everyone in this argument has provided ample evidence for rational people to conclude that it is completely STUPID to tie people's health insurance to their employers (something anyone who has ever changed jobs already knows). Thank you everyone for getting to the root of this idiocy. Hopefully now this ridiculous health care law can be repealed and we can move forward with honest reform that actually makes sense (like moving the tax write off away from business and to the individual).

Megabyte said...

No Ryan,

#1 a bill becomes a law by being voted in in BOTH houses. What we learned is that we have witnessed the party in question decide since they can't get this, they are willing to retractively decide a previous senate "would have voted for it" and offically declare it is all good that way. They have set a very dangerous standard here and the next time congress/senate/the president does it, regardless of who it is, you can thank Pelosi and her ilk for thinking of it and showing it works.

2) Actually we do. 1st Amendment demands it. What he have learned is that we have a debate with actually legitimate points... who's religion overrides, the employer or the employee?

3) We learned you hate religion... in all forms... in short, you are a dick atheist.

Done.

Megabyte said...

Incidently, a dick atheist, is the kind who can't stand other people believe in something. If you are an atheist, and just let it go at that, you are not a dick atheist, you are just an atheist.

Anonymous said...

Megabyte: and incidentally a dick christian is one who rams his views down everyone else's throat rather than just letting it go at that... hmm I wonder whether that describes you?

Also, Dude it did pass the senate. The house just decided instead of making the senate pass it again they would just pass the original senate version. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Also 59 votes to 41 is a very large majority. Filibusters were NEVER meant to force every single bill to have such a large majority. They were simply meant to force longer discussions on important bills. That happened job done. Maybe instead of blaming the democrats for some injustice you created in your mind you should blame the republicans for a gross misuse of the filibuster rule.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous
What we're seeing here is the same thing we saw with the birther movement. Anytime the Republicans don't get what they want the just try to find some reason to invalidate it. Sometimes things go your way and sometimes the majority of the country disagrees with you. Accept it.

Megabyte said...

Well, Anon... I dont think it makes me anything... you know since Im not arguing for any specific religion. If anything, Im looking at a potential window for a debate. If the Employee's religious rights and the Employer's religious rights conflict, who wins? Im not sure we've had to ask this before... at least not in any kind of time I have talked about it.

Also, I never said it wasn't legal. But considering even you are admitting the bill as it was at the time of the vote was NOT what was passed, this should strike you as a rather alarming action. Im rather struck that Im seeing an 09 on the vote that went while Im seeing articles dated by the machines they are stored on at 2010 saying how Brown would be the one to beat Obamacare.

BEFORE you even think these must be "conservative idiots" or something else, realize what I am saying and get the idealog out of your logic processes.

We are looking at things saying to beat it AFTER that senate link says it was voted in... and dated by a computer, NOT by hand. Does this sound to you like this wasn't shady in some way? Really? Then add to that what you just said where they didn't even vote on the current version, and legal or not, it was CLEARLY meant to ignore what the people wanted... you know the people who put someone in specifically to be the last vote needed to cancel it.

At the very least, this is an accusation to level directly at Pelosi. (Not my only one mind you... I have real issue with anyone who is willing to use the death of a co-worker for their benefit before the body is even cold.... she is a monster for how she treated the late Ted Kennedy. but that is another issue for another day) She has set a standard that will happen again, mark my words... and next time you may not be happy with the results. I dont want to hear you bitch when you defend them now.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

Ok, a few interesting points up there and I'll try to get to most of them. But, first I'd like to give this analogy.

Let's say that some government official got it into their head the FDA knows what they're talking about and that restaurants should be forced to stick to stricter dietary guidelines like, say, the food pyramid. This law, of course, being mostly directed at fast food places that wouldn't know a vegetable even if someone chucked it at them. But then, lets say that this same law was being used to tell vegan/vegetarian restaurants that they had to start serving meat to adhere to the dietary guidelines and they could be fined or even shut down if they didn't, and there wouldn't be any exception given to them simply because they had moral issues with it. Would that be ok?

@ v_opposition

"If your faith requires human sacrifice can you still kill virgins?"

Ya know, I had to sit and think about that a bit, but considering that we live in a culture where suicide and assisted suicide are becoming more and more socially acceptable... assuming, it were a consensual act, that would be an entirely private matter that I don't think the government would have any business getting involved in.

That said, that court decision was clearly a case of one religion trying to force it's morals on another and would never hold up if it were made today.

I can understand the idea that the government should be able to prohibit an action regardless of religious belief (I don't agree, but I'll leave that for now). But, that's not what this case is about. In this case the government is compelling an organization to commit an action against their religious beliefs.

@ biomechanical923

"If I needed to get a transfusion / transplant to stay alive, and my employer said "Sorry but the CEO is a Jehova's Witness, so we don't pay for transfusions anymore because it's against his religion" then those religious beliefs actively put lives at risk, because somebody else's religion says "if you need a transfusion, then maybe you should die"."

They would be putting your life at risk if they didn't bother telling you until you're on the operating table, sure. That should totally be illegal. However, if they made you aware of their policy upon employment, then it would be your own decision to make.

"You're advocating for the right for employers to hold people's lives in their hands."

I'm advocating that employers shouldn't be compelled against their will to do something they find morally objectionable, and that the employee's life is and always will be in their own hands.

"Employers do not have the right to refuse to provide health insurance..."

Yea, well, we'll see how long that holds up in court.

"...regardless of whether or not they dislike the fact that people are getting healthcare that they think somebody doesn't deserve."

"Deserve?" This has absolutely nothing to do what what anyone may or may not "deserve". The Catholic church is opposed to contraception outright. They see the use of contraception as a sin, and that enabling someone else to sin is just as bad as doing it themselves.

"If I'm opposed to war, does that mean I can refuse to pay taxes until the war is over?"

I would completely support your civil disobedience in that case.

Echoed Wails said...

First time I've seen anything by Ayn Rand that I agree with, though with all honesty all I know about her is gleaned from playing Bioshock and looking her up the "Useful Notes" section on TV Tropes so I'm not well versed with her works and objectivism in general. If the people have spoken and voted for the legalization, then the governor should accept it. I hope this shoots her in the foot. The people can elect their governors or has she vetoed that away too?

Jake said...

@Echoed Wails
The Governor is a man.

biomechanical923 said...

@Echoed Wails

Objectivism as a scientific philosophy insists that there's an objective truth that exists, but we don't know what it is yet, and that we should not inhibit science, art, or philosophy, because they help us on the path to discovering absolute truth.

Objectivism and Ayn Rand as the Fox News pundits like to throw it around, however, is pretty much just Economic Libertarianism. It's like anarchy but for rich people.

Anonymous said...

@megabyte: classic, ignore my larger point and focus specifically on only the smallest part. You completely ignored the larger point, that the republicans have abused the Filibuster to the point that for any vote to pass the senate it needs 60 votes these days. That was never how it was intended to work. The democrats would not have needed to use a previous version if they could have brought the bill to a vote. 59 votes is more than enough for a majority. The filibuster is not meant to stop things from passing. They were intended to slow down important bills that are moving too fast and the minority wishes to force more discussion. That is it. Yes the democrats did game the system a bit I suppose. But they should not have had to. They had the votes, easily, with or without Kennedy.

TheAlmightyNarf said...

@ biomechanical923

I've always taken the stance the Ayn Rand was a sociopath who confused her disorder for a political philosophy.

Megabyte said...

You're getting closer, Anon, but you are not there yet. You never mentioned a filibuster till now as a way to excuse the Democrats once you have been forced to admit wrong doing on their part, so don't tell me that was your point. It wasnt. Your point was to defend your party when at the very least the leads of it are indefensable.

And btw, there is nothing that needs to move slower then a 1000 page bill that most of the house hadn't even read and is going to change how things work for every citizen in the country. I would call that pretty justified, especially when there were at least 3 versions of it floating around and no one could explain which one they were talking about.

Anonymous said...

Megabyte: I would look again I DID mention the filibuster in my original post to you. I have mentioned it twice now you just ignored it the first time. The filibuster DID slow the bill and however sad this is most of congress doesn't read ANY of the bills they pass. By your logic we shouldn't pass anything (though I must admit at this point we may be better off if that happened). But I digress, my point is that there are a thousand excuses to continue a filibuster, but when it all comes down to it there is only one honest explanation. The republicans didn't agree so they filibustered. It had nothing to do with the fact that no one had read the bill, the republicans hadnt either. It had everything to do with a knee jerk reaction against more complete healthcare coverage, however flawed the bill was. That is my problem with the republicans, and that is why I have trouble putting much blame on the dems for what they did. It wasn't exactly right, but what the republicans have done ever since Obama was elected has been worse.

Megabyte said...

A quick question... which one was your original? You dont have a name, so that should be a legitimate question. And it makes it entirely possible to be missed, especially in a thread this long.

Still, let's move on with this one entry right here.

"The filibuster DID slow the bill and however sad this is most of congress doesn't read ANY of the bills they pass. By your logic we shouldn't pass anything (though I must admit at this point we may be better off if that happened)."

Well if they are not doing their jobs and seriously considering what they are passing (which requires at least READING it), then you are correct. They shouldn't pass anything... at all. And frankly, any one of them who isn't doing at least that should be tossed out of office as failures.

"But I digress, my point is that there are a thousand excuses to continue a filibuster, but when it all comes down to it there is only one honest explanation. The republicans didn't agree so they filibustered. It had nothing to do with the fact that no one had read the bill, the republicans hadnt either. It had everything to do with a knee jerk reaction against more complete healthcare coverage, however flawed the bill was."

A flawed bill that no one read of this extreme reach is unacceptable. Sorry. It should have been scrapped and started again at best... especially when we didn't even know which version was which.

"That is my problem with the republicans, and that is why I have trouble putting much blame on the dems for what they did. It wasn't exactly right, but what the republicans have done ever since Obama was elected has been worse."

It was far from right... it was a complete disregard of what the people wanted (again, they worked around an election won on being the vote to cancel this in one of the most liberal/Democratic states in the nation), gaming the system in new ways you can expect to come up again later, and if the results are not in your favor, you have NO RIGHT to bitch since you try to brush it off now...

Anonymous said...

"if the results are not in your favor, you have NO RIGHT to bitch since you try to brush it off now..." sounds like what you are doing... just saying. Also I don't. If the republicans did the same thing with a bill I disagreed with I would not be mad that they passed an earlier version (if the bill passed, it passed. I don't care if it was 2 versions ago) I would be mad that they passed it at all. The health care bill was flawed, but not in the way you assumed I suggest. It was flawed because it did not do enough, not because it wasn't proofread enough (obviously just imho). If the dems ever managed to get enough group cohesion (never going to happen) to filibuster something you support to death, despite you having an overwhelming majority of support, I wager you would again be shrieking about how wrong it is. Just remember what you just told me when that happens.

And you keep complaining that I am shrugging off what the dems did. Guess what, you STILL have not said anything about what the republicans did. You are shrugging that off too. Every accusation you have made of others on this board you are equally guilty of. Do not be high and mighty about things you do yourself. Though that does seem to be the conservative way these days.

Anonymous said...

"if the results are not in your favor, you have NO RIGHT to bitch since you try to brush it off now..." sounds like what you are doing... just saying. Also I don't. If the republicans did the same thing with a bill I disagreed with I would not be mad that they passed an earlier version (if the bill passed, it passed. I don't care if it was 2 versions ago) I would be mad that they passed it at all. The health care bill was flawed, but not in the way you assumed I suggest. It was flawed because it did not do enough, not because it wasn't proofread enough (obviously just imho). If the dems ever managed to get enough group cohesion (never going to happen) to filibuster something you support to death, despite you having an overwhelming majority of support, I wager you would again be shrieking about how wrong it is. Just remember what you just told me when that happens.

And you keep complaining that I am shrugging off what the dems did. Guess what, you STILL have not said anything about what the republicans did. You are shrugging that off too. Every accusation you have made of others on this board you are equally guilty of. Do not be high and mighty about things you do yourself. Though that does seem to be the conservative way these days.

Megabyte said...

You're damn right I'm bitching about it. And I will again when it happens again, even if it brings about something I'm in favor of. You know why? It's a horribly dishonest tactic.

I also approve the filibuster because no one read the damn thing. If NO ONE read it, then NO ONE should have voted on it.

Of course if they didn't read it, they didn't do their job, and I want everyone who is guilty of that out of a their job. (Hey, if I decided not to do my job, I'd be out of one... fair is fair.)

In short NOTHING about it was right... not the bill (for now, you will have to agree to disagree with this, but stick with me), not the way it was passed, not how sides were picked on it, and not even how it was debated... no more right then them "having to vote on it to tell us what's in it."

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