Civil Discourse Now

Where the far left and far right overlap for fun and enlightenment

All Blog Posts (1,167)

Corporations actually control our gov'ts

Corporations are not evil. “A corporation is an artificial being, invisible, intangible, and existing only in contemplation of law ... [I]t possesses only those properties which the charter of its creation confers upon it.” Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward, 17 U.S. 518, 536 (1819).

Problem 1: that second “only” can be dropped. Problem 2: shares of corporations can be owned by any person or corporation. Problem 3: after Citizens United Money can spend on elections without much…

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Added by Mark Small on March 15, 2021 at 8:35pm — 1 Comment

We need to cut our military spending in half.

A new administration can change priorities and policies. Our military budget makes up 37% of the World’s military budget and needs to be cut because 1) It makes us less secure; 2) Its use is based on lies; 3) It robs our economy; and 4) trump sold our secrets.

1) People of other countries hate us because we bomb them and others without concern. The 911 attacks largely were carried out by Saudi nationals as a response to our incursion in the Middle East for Gulf War I - an action we…

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Added by Mark Small on March 14, 2021 at 8:12am — 1 Comment

There's no monopoly on capacity for morality, especially by them.

“You can’t be moral if you’re not Christian.” These words express an arrogant belief about the certainty of existence and is a kind of belief, held by a few who are adherents of “dominionism”, that would exclude any but its adherents from political power.

There are a lot of problems with this specific interpretation of a system of beliefs. If a poll were taken, I believe a majority of people who identify as Christian, would say this view appals them, but the Falwells and trumps of the…

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Added by Mark Small on March 11, 2021 at 7:39pm — No Comments

Guns don't fight tyranny. Guns are tyranny

“Guns” and “fight tyranny” might not show up in proximity to one another with great frequency in a Google search, but their joinder has been a constant theme from those who advocate a right to own firearms by individuals.

The idea has been that the ultimate way to fight tyranny is for individuals to own guns. This is nothing more than 3-card monte, a sleight-of-hand where distraction wins the real thing. Now we know “guns” and “fight tyranny” really belong together, but not as…

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Added by Mark Small on March 10, 2021 at 8:35pm — No Comments

GOP County chair: elected by "mummy dummies"?

Our country is supposed to function on the basic principles of majority rule in open and fair elections. A fringe of the latest iteration of the GOP has made much of the (patently false) claim that voter fraud has cost GOP candidates offices.

On Saturday, March 6, we witnessed the rather primitive play of power in the Marion County GOP’s election of Joe Elsener as County chair. Mr Elsener was a last-minute candidate chosen for the party by a hierarchy immune from popular checks. (Look…

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Added by Mark Small on March 7, 2021 at 9:44pm — No Comments

Marion County GOP Chair: State intervenes to enhance the votes of old, white males

Saturday, March 6: Marion County GOP Precinct Committee people (PCs) caucused to elect a County chair. In a February 26 letter to Marion County PCs, State GOP chair Kyle Hupfer wrote “this is something I usually don’t do.” He said he’d kept mum for 4 years.

He said “I trust our grassroots leaders to make the right decisions for their own community.” And then he says he wants his “letter to be one point of reference as you decide how to vote.” He then says the state party has an…

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Added by Mark Small on March 6, 2021 at 8:30pm — No Comments

Challenge to the candidates for Marion County GOP chair

This morning the Marion County GOP chooses its chair person. This offers an opportunity for a major political party, as defined by Indiana statute, to make inroads, even if only symbolic, on the systemic corruption of our political system. I challenge the 3 candidates to promise:

1) To seek an end to slating fees for candidates who seek nomination for local office. Slating fees are a form of tribute people pay to be considered as a candidate for local office. Few see any return on…

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Added by Mark Small on March 6, 2021 at 8:36am — No Comments

Marion County GOP: don't let the hacks win

Indiana GOP oligarchs couldn’t get the Indiana General Assembly to change a statute so their first pick for Marion County GOP chair could hold that job AND a gov’t daytime job. Their next first pick, Joe Elsener, will be absent for the March 6 caucus to attend a wedding in Nebraska. So Marion County GOP: (1) wants to recruit candidates & get new people in the County GOP; but (2) shoves aside people who challenged their first party hack in favor of a second choice hack.

Marion…

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Added by Mark Small on March 5, 2021 at 3:40pm — No Comments

GOP County chair election: what about the Convention Center?

On Saturday the Marion County (Indianapolis) GOP will elect a new chair person. The County has grown more diverse. As a result its people have adopted views that are more progressive and have tended to cast votes more “blue.”

In 2020 Biden/Harris won Marion County with 63%. Joe Elsener is the candidate preferred by State GOP leaders. To reclaim Marion County elective offices, Mr Elsener said the County GOP has to recruit candidates for office and raise money.

In a letter Mr…

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Added by Mark Small on March 4, 2021 at 8:09pm — No Comments

John Schmitz eked one out

To his credit, John Schmitz (1) said the GOP needs to look more like people in the rest of Marion County (i.e., not all white) and (2) argued it is unfair that the State GOP has given its support to one candidate (not John or Alex Henby).

Alex scored a metaphorical knock-down in the 4th round by saying the slating system should be scrapped. Joe Elsener played it safe, although he talked about “grass roots” so much one would think he’s in lawn care.

Disconcerting was Mr…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 10:08pm — No Comments

Challenge for GOP candidates tonight

Tonight the three candidates for Marion County GOP Chair participate in a forum as a lead-up to Saturday’s election. The party’s focus has been on who can raise the most money so the GOP here can once more be relevant.

Times - and demographics - change, as should the Marion County GOP. One local matter to address is corruption. The Marion County GOP can gain traction against corruption if it requires any candidate for office in Marion County or Indianapolis to agree she or he will…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 5:57pm — No Comments

GOP chair candidates' debate tonight: the secret of how to win elections

The Republican Party (GOP) of Marion County (Indianapolis) elects a chairperson March 6, this Saturday. Tonight the three candidates will discuss various topics that seem to circle around a single theme: how to “win.” Here’s the formula to achieve those wins.

1) GET PEOPLE REGISTERED TO VOTE. I did not write “get our people registered to vote.” Everybody, in both major parties, all “third” parties, independents, should have a goal of 100% of eligible voters registered. Why?

In…

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Added by Mark Small on March 3, 2021 at 7:13am — No Comments

Marion County GOP: change it or lose it

Into the 1990s the GOP controlled Indianapolis and Marion County. As Indy’s people became more diverse, political beliefs became more progressive. As a lead-up to Saturday’s caucus to elect a GOP County Chair, a candidates’ forum will take place Wednesday at 7.

The candidates - John Schmitz, Alex Henby and Joe Elsener - will answer questions from topic areas of which they have received advance notice. The topic areas indicate the mindset of party leaders:

“Fundraising,…

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Added by Mark Small on March 2, 2021 at 5:42pm — No Comments

It's exercise of free market, not "cancel culture"

I’m surprised the Republican Party has begun to turn communistic. Quite clever, these red agitators. They have framed the most basic and cherished of liberties - one’s choices in the marketplace - as a limit on “free speech.”

Where and how a person spends money is basic to liberty. Supposed Republicans say that we have to spend money with their pals. They frame anything else as “cancel culture.” Example: if you find the guy with the pillow company offensive, they say you still have to…

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Added by Mark Small on March 2, 2021 at 11:56am — No Comments

GOP County Chair election Saturday: don't let the green party win

One party has run Marion County, Indiana, for decades. On Saturday, March 6, the local GOP will elect a County Chair. Three candidates have announced: John Schmitz, Alex Henby and Joe Elsener. (Michael-Paul Hart dropped out.)

The focus is on who can raise the most money so the Marion County GOP can be in the best position to sell its message. Mr Hart’s numbers indicate that a majority of an annual budget of almost $84K paid “a full-time Executive Director.”

The Marion County…

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Added by Mark Small on March 1, 2021 at 7:24pm — No Comments

CPAC & guns: don't confuse those people with facts

CPAC, the annual gathering of the right wing, is taking place this weekend. In a place full of advocates of the right - damn it, the right - to keep and bear arms, one would expect to see attendees strapped, i.e., carrying firearms.

After all, as I have heard more than a few gun advocates explain to me, gun violence is greater in “gun-free” - as in there are no guns - zones. CPAC, however, once again, has prohibited guns at its annual gathering. Perhaps it’s not their fault. It’s the…

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Added by Mark Small on February 27, 2021 at 5:10pm — No Comments

Prosecutors can't issue subpoenas for people to just come in and "talk."

People get scared if they are “served process” - usually by a civil sheriff’s deputy. And usually the document served is a subpoena: a “court order commanding the appearance of a witness, subject to penalty for noncompliance.” Black’s Law Dict., pocket ed., 1996, p. 601.

This is the Land of the Free where police cannot simply stop a person to question that person. Of course sometimes the police go a few steps further and beat or kill a person, but for an officer of the State even to…

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Added by Mark Small on February 26, 2021 at 3:52pm — No Comments

GOP Marion County chair candidate uses "socialism" as a buzz term

On Saturday March 6, Precinct Committee people (PCs) of the Marion County GOP will caucus to elect a party chair. One candidate, Michael-Paul Hart, called me (I’m a PC) this week. He sent me his “Marion County GOP Plan of Action” (Plan) with a cover letter (letter).

The Plan focuses on organization and money, i.e. branding and sales. Issues at best are implied, e.g.: “democrats are tearing our City apart by shutting down businesses, letting rioters tear down our City, and aiding…

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Added by Mark Small on February 21, 2021 at 10:30am — No Comments

GOP buzz phrases mean people don't have to think

Strategy of this iteration of the GOP relies, in large measure, on buzz words. If voters are conditioned to shut their minds when they hear one or two words, then the GOP does not have to argue claims that lack merit. One such issue is ...

People who would limit our rights to what the Framers of the Constitution intended, in 1787, do not know how abortion was treated at the time the Constitution was written. Justice Blackmun noted that restrictions on abortion are relatively…

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Added by Mark Small on February 19, 2021 at 4:36pm — 1 Comment

States threaten our lives and freedom

Individual States did not coordinate efforts of their respective militias or National guards in December, 1941, to fight in what became called World War II. A year ago the U.S. faced a World conflict with an “enemy” more implacable than in 1941.

If the (now nearly-500,000) deaths from COVID did little to change anyone’s mind about the efficacy of States’ experiments in how we address problems we face, the operation of free market forces in provision of energy in Texas probably won’t…

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Added by Mark Small on February 18, 2021 at 7:29pm — 1 Comment

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