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  #721  
Old 11-02-2017, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by GonzoTheGreat View Post
Can Trump sell all those areas to Putin?
A bit earlier, a previous US president bought Alaska from a Russian ruler, so there is clear precedent for such deals.
Alaska was bought from the Tsar at the time. The US got a long relatively well with the Tsars, even sent some troops to try and help evacuate the loyalists and support the royal family. But it came too late. I don't think relations have been nearly as amicable ever since.
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  #722  
Old 11-02-2017, 11:59 AM
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Ah, but Trump is better at making deals than anyone else ever was. That has to be shown sometime, hasn't it?
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  #723  
Old 11-02-2017, 04:18 PM
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The particulars (at least the introductory particulars, some of these will likely require massive revision, if not outright excision) of the republican tax reform plan are starting to be revealed...

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-41849094

Quote:
The proposal would lower the corporate tax rate from 35% to 20%, while retaining the top individual rate for the wealthiest at 39.5%.
Lowering that corporate rate will anger dems, but this (at least prior to any other deductions/shenanigans) is not dissimilar from the rate in Britain and across the EU. The top individual rate is still too low in my opinion. We should bring back the old top range of 50%, at least for those earning over a million, preferably returning completely (albeit tied to inflation) to the range as it applied prior to Reagan's plutocratic reform in '86. Reagan also at least sort of pretended that his cuts would have been offset by closing loopholes, and, more importantly, eliminating the investment tax credit used by corporations. Trump doesn't seem to be offering any corporate offset, as he is not just lowering the corporate rate, but is also...

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Estate tax exemption nearly doubles to $11.2m, up from $5.49m, and will be eliminated by 2024
This is stupid. It is both a pointless handout to the rich, and will cost the govt billions, if not trillions all by itself. And, in addition...

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Alternative Minimum Tax - which ensures the wealthy cannot entirely avoid taxes by taking advantage of deductions - will be repealed
and...

Quote:
Corporate profits from overseas will no longer be taxed, but a minimum 10% tax will be placed on US foreign subsidiaries
Seemingly his only major offset is this:

Quote:
It eliminates a popular mortgage interest deduction for new home loans of $500,000 (£380,000) or more.
This is going to piss off a lot of people, though perhaps the thinking was simply that this will be most unpopular in states that will go blue anyway.

Quote:
Republicans said the bill, which is estimated to cost about $1.51tn over a decade, is transformational.
That number can probably be conservatively tripled.
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  #724  
Old 11-03-2017, 10:00 AM
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The proposals in the tax bill would help me out personally...but I still think its a terrible decision and it'll hurt far more people in the long run and damage the economy too (which will hurt my retirement and investments most likely).

There's also the issue that upset poor people with nothing to lose who also see a wealthy upper class that isn't paying their fair share tend to resort to violence to adjust the balance back. Not that there is eons of human history that illustrate that very fact.

Its almost like people forget the real reasons FDR pushed his social safety nets so hard. He understood enough of history that he didn't want to be led down the street to the guillotine or pushed up against a wall and shot during the cleansing.

Same with LBJ to a certain extent. Though I actually tend to think that LBJ actually really did give a damn about the poor and lower classes despite all his other faults, he really did have that level of empathy. If not for Vietnam, he'd probably be on Rushmore. Its probably because he grew up dirt poor and worked for everything he had. Very similar to Truman in that respect. And both of those men were the polar opposite in upbringing compared to the other two Dem presidents of that era in FDR & JFK (ultra wealthy blue blood Dutch NYer and a lace curtain upper crust Irish Bostoner)
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  #725  
Old 11-03-2017, 10:35 AM
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To alot of people History is that boring course you take to catch up in some sleep and pay someone to write a few papers for you so you get a passing grade. Nothing actually worth learning.

If in were a more callus person I'd enjoy seeing the riots and the revolution...but being a student of history I know it's mostly just pain, death and suffering. Humanity will sort itself out eventually.
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  #726  
Old 11-03-2017, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
The proposals in the tax bill would help me out personally...but I still think its a terrible decision and it'll hurt far more people in the long run and damage the economy too (which will hurt my retirement and investments most likely).

There's also the issue that upset poor people with nothing to lose who also see a wealthy upper class that isn't paying their fair share tend to resort to violence to adjust the balance back. Not that there is eons of human history that illustrate that very fact.

Its almost like people forget the real reasons FDR pushed his social safety nets so hard. He understood enough of history that he didn't want to be led down the street to the guillotine or pushed up against a wall and shot during the cleansing.

Same with LBJ to a certain extent. Though I actually tend to think that LBJ actually really did give a damn about the poor and lower classes despite all his other faults, he really did have that level of empathy. If not for Vietnam, he'd probably be on Rushmore. Its probably because he grew up dirt poor and worked for everything he had. Very similar to Truman in that respect. And both of those men were the polar opposite in upbringing compared to the other two Dem presidents of that era in FDR & JFK (ultra wealthy blue blood Dutch NYer and a lace curtain upper crust Irish Bostoner)
The mortgage deduction change seems the most likely to hurt the middle to bottom tier of the upper class (i.e. the bourgeosie). None of these changes are really all that big of a deal per se, except in that they will balloon the deficit and the debt, which means the republicans will be looking to loot social security and medicare down the road to offset. If republicans were willing to massively cut defense spending to do this Iíd be fine with these changes, though obviously it would still make far more sense to make those massive defense spending cuts to pay for single payer health care and infrastructure spending...
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  #727  
Old 11-06-2017, 10:30 AM
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Ho hum, another mass shooting and more thoughts and prayers and nothing will change.


In other news, more financial connections made between Kushner and Russia as well as Wilbur Ross and Russia and Ross "forgot" to mention those during his sworn testimony to Congress. And apparently Mueller already has enough to nail Flynn dead to rights.

So...happy monday.
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  #728  
Old 11-06-2017, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
Ho hum, another mass shooting and more thoughts and prayers and nothing will change.


In other news, more financial connections made between Kushner and Russia as well as Wilbur Ross and Russia and Ross "forgot" to mention those during his sworn testimony to Congress. And apparently Mueller already has enough to nail Flynn dead to rights.

So...happy monday.
https://www.yahoo.com/gma/texas-shoo...opstories.html

Again, apply the laws that we have and this will be different. We shouldn't confiscate guns, or apply more restrictions, when we don't follow the laws that are in place.
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  #729  
Old 11-06-2017, 12:22 PM
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And why don't police and prosecutors follow the laws that are already in place?
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  #730  
Old 11-06-2017, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Southpaw2012 View Post
https://www.yahoo.com/gma/texas-shoo...opstories.html

Again, apply the laws that we have and this will be different. We shouldn't confiscate guns, or apply more restrictions, when we don't follow the laws that are in place.
The gun store who sold this guy this assault rifle unfortunately seemed to follow typical procedure on his background check, which is why he passed it. Which should point out part of the problem. He simply self-checked a box claiming that he had no disqualifying criminal history. We donít allow for real background checks. We arenít serious about keeping guns away from people who shouldnít have them. We donít track how many guns, or what types of guns individuals purchase and hoard. We should, but we donít. Nor do we stop people from buying military assault rifles, like the AR-556 assault rifle that he used. Again, we should, and back in the Ď90s, before the republicans let the assault weapon ban lapse, we did stop the legal purchase of that sort of weapon.

This isnít a problem of bad, nor even really lax enforcement. This is a problem of lax legislation.
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  #731  
Old 11-06-2017, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Southpaw2012 View Post
https://www.yahoo.com/gma/texas-shoo...opstories.html

Again, apply the laws that we have and this will be different. We shouldn't confiscate guns, or apply more restrictions, when we don't follow the laws that are in place.
Nothing could possibly be done to prevent this...says the only country in the world that has this issue.

I would BET that his conviction under the UCMJ did not carry over to the NICS database...since they almost never do. NCIC doesn't pull in military records at all, its a completely different system and they don't even talk to each other. I'm basing that on the literal thousands of people I've run or reviewed background checks on. Thus, he'd easily pass the required check at the gun store.

The issue here has a couple parts:

1. This sort of weaponry shouldn't be allowed anyway...and it wasn't for years.
2. No gaps in the background system period.
3. Mental health...he should have been flagged for that issue and prevented from buying one as well.

None of this happened. None of it will ever happen and we will continue to be the only nation on the planet outside of actual war zones to have this sort of gun violence. But hey, at least that 2nd Amendment is safe, right?
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"We caught them in an alley on skid row in downtown Philly and brought them down with Uzi's and dogs. I beat the shit out of one of the guys for resisting arrest. After that, I went home, fried up some tofu with strawberry preserves and melon sticky rice, laid down on the couch with my snuggie and ate rose petals in sweet daisy wine sauce and watched Mamma Mia on DVD and then cried myself to sleep."

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Last edited by Davian93; 11-06-2017 at 12:31 PM.
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  #732  
Old 11-06-2017, 01:11 PM
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BBC has a quick video (made after the Vegas shooting), highlighting how much worse the situation has become since the ‘80s, indeed since Columbine.

http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us-...-getting-worse

At minimum, a return of the assault weapons ban should be deemed necessary. As should a full gun registry. And restrictions on numbers of weapons, and on amount of bullets that one can leggally possess. None of that would violate the 2nd Amendment.

The NRA unfortunately sees these tragedies as an opportunity to sell more guns, and elected republicans use these tragedies to pass news laws that loosen rather than tighten restrictions.

Last edited by Kimon; 11-06-2017 at 01:15 PM.
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  #733  
Old 11-06-2017, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Kimon View Post
At minimum, a return of the assault weapons ban should be deemed necessary.
Bullshit!

The Assault weapons ban focused on "scary" cosmetic features that did absolutely nothing to make anyone safer.

Making UCMJ convictions and bad conduct discharges part of the national database would make sense.

Reinstating the rules for adding 75,000 mental health patients to the database would help.

Banning scary, removable, features of scary-looking "black guns" does F%$#K-all to make anyone safer.
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  #734  
Old 11-06-2017, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Weird Harold View Post
Bullshit!

The Assault weapons ban focused on "scary" cosmetic features that did absolutely nothing to make anyone safer.

Making UCMJ convictions and bad conduct discharges part of the national database would make sense.

Reinstating the rules for adding 75,000 mental health patients to the database would help.

Banning scary, removable, features of scary-looking "black guns" does F%$#K-all to make anyone safer.
The gun used by the shooter, the AR 556 (basically the same as the AR 15 used by the military), was banned under the Assault Weapons Ban until it was allowed to lapse in Ď04. I see no logical reason why civilians would need such a weapon. If you are instead merely arguing that the aforementioned Ban of Ď94 was far too lax, I would agree, but it also only bearly made it through the Senate by a vote of 52-48. Obviously a full ban on all guns would be more prudent, but then Iím willing to compromise. Donít see why the other side is so unwilling.
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  #735  
Old 11-06-2017, 03:37 PM
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I would say that any semi-automatic rifle (whether its a Garand or an AR-556) should be banned unless you are a member of an organized, legal and regulated militia (i.e. Nat Guard, State Guard, etc)...given that was the rational and logical interpretation of the 2nd Amendment for the first 200 years it was in existence until Scalia went nuts.

If you want to hunt you can use a bolt action or other similarly limited weapon when it comes to rounds per minute, capacity, etc.
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  #736  
Old 11-06-2017, 03:39 PM
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***Comments***

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Originally Posted by Weird Harold View Post
Bullshit!

The Assault weapons ban focused on "scary" cosmetic features that did absolutely nothing to make anyone safer.

****Agreed to a point but as my comments above note, the idea of limitations isn't wrong, just the way they went about implementing by targeting the "scary looking" ones***

Making UCMJ convictions and bad conduct discharges part of the national database would make sense.

***100% agree...its ridiculous that it isn't and that all a guy like this has to say is "nope, never had any issues" to get a gun legally***

Reinstating the rules for adding 75,000 mental health patients to the database would help.

***Yup, 100% agreed***

Banning scary, removable, features of scary-looking "black guns" does F%$#K-all to make anyone safer.
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Bonded to Brita

"We caught them in an alley on skid row in downtown Philly and brought them down with Uzi's and dogs. I beat the shit out of one of the guys for resisting arrest. After that, I went home, fried up some tofu with strawberry preserves and melon sticky rice, laid down on the couch with my snuggie and ate rose petals in sweet daisy wine sauce and watched Mamma Mia on DVD and then cried myself to sleep."

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  #737  
Old 11-06-2017, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Kimon View Post
The gun used by the shooter, the AR 556 (basically the same as the AR 15 used by the military), was banned under the Assault Weapons Ban until it was allowed to lapse in Ď04. I see no logical reason why civilians would need such a weapon. If you are instead merely arguing that the aforementioned Ban of Ď94 was far too lax, I would agree, but it also only bearly made it through the Senate by a vote of 52-48. Obviously a full ban on all guns would be more prudent, but then Iím willing to compromise. Donít see why the other side is so unwilling.
The exact same action without the "scary" accessories would have worked just fine and was NOT banned under the AWB.

If you want to ban weapons, word your ban so that it actually bans the way weapons function and not just the way they look. And, oh by the way, worded in a way that doesn't conflict with the Second Amendment.

I doubt that a ban on "all semi-automatic rifles" would pass muster because of the existence of .22LR rifles used for marksmanship training. I suspect an outright ban on any firearm is going to pass muster; an expensive tax stamp and background check such as prescribed for fully automatic weapons and "destructive devices" would be the way to go.
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  #738  
Old 11-06-2017, 05:13 PM
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And, oh by the way, worded in a way that doesn't conflict with the Second Amendment.
The 2nd Amendment is so poorly phrased that any decisive interpretation of just what it should actually, and definitively, mean is impossible.
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Old 11-07-2017, 03:52 AM
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And, oh by the way, worded in a way that doesn't conflict with the Second Amendment.
And what does the Second say?
"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

So, unless an American is actually a member of a well regulated militia, then he or she has no explicit right on having any kind of weapon at all.
What Congress should do is twofold:
1. Write a law to properly regulate militias.
2. Impeach and every judge who fails to adhere to the letter of that clause in the Second Amendment.

What will actually happen, of course, is nothing.
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  #740  
Old 11-07-2017, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GonzoTheGreat View Post
So, unless an American is actually a member of a well regulated militia, then he or she has no explicit right on having any kind of weapon at all.
Every federal judge that has ever considered the question disagrees with you.

The word "regulated" in the late 1700 meant "equipped" in modern parlance. The word "Militia" meant the male population eligible to be called up for military service -- closer to a modern Neighborhood Watch than a national guard or state militia today.

Also at the time the second amendment was written, every citizen called up for a militia response provided his own weapon.

If the intent of the militia clause and drift in language is considered, every male citizen should be permitted anything issued as a general issue personal weapon to the US Army. Since the Second says nothing about hunting or target shooting sports (like Biathalon,) weapons suitable for those activities are what can be banned without conflict with the second amendment.



The above is a Russian Biathalon rifle based on their Mosin Nagant bolt action Battle Rifle. It is far "scarier looking" to me than any AK or AR variant. It obviously should be banned!
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