Monday, August 31, 2009

The Politics of Torture

Libertarian-leaning Ryan Sager has some advice to those who oppose torture. Focus on our self image, find instances where cooperation was given without torture, and focus on the innocent who might be tortured.

I particularly like his focus on the third since we really don't know who is innocent and who is guilty and we can't distinguish between those two groups because the Bush administration (and now the Obama administration) has failed to put most of them on trial.

Those who support the prior administration's torture program would have us believe they captured evil people who were going to (do partake in evil acts) but none of this was proven beyond any (let alone "reasonable") doubt within a court of law.

We may very well be torturing (and indefinitely holding) the innocent along with the guilty. If they have the evidence to convict these guys in a court of law, the Obama administration should try these bastards and let them plead themselves out of any death sentence the jury imposes upon them. If they are innocent they should be released immediately and compensated for the loss of their freedom.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Education

The comically depressing story explaining why, in part, our educational system sucks and why Bill Maher was on to something when he said we are a stupid, and ignorant people. Teacher tenure.

"Rev." Steven Anderson

Box Turtle Bulletin posted some new material on the minister who urged his congregants to pray for our president's death and trip to hell. Seriously, before I saw this entry I thought this guy should be taken seriously since he was talking about weighty matters (our president and the punishment he would have this country use on convicted gay people - capital punishment) but now I'm not so sure. I guess he could speak out against any health care bill which creates pee panels.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

RIP Kennedy

I never met Senator Edward Kennedy and I can't say much about his personal life, but I can say, with some degree of confidence that he spent his 47 years as a senator fighting for the "more perfect Union" and "promote the general Welfare." that our nation's Founders aspired to, through his active and fierce support for the Voting Rights Act, the Americans With Disabilities Act, the State Children's Health Insurance Program, minimum wage increases, the No Child Left Behind Act, and major gay rights legislation including the Employment Nondiscrimination Act and the Matthew Shepard's Act.

By campaigning and negotiating fiercely for each of these causes, Mr. Kennedy demonstrated his commitment to help all Americans live the American dream. No American, he believed, should go bankrupt saving their lives. No American, he believed, should be fired and deprived of an opportunity to make and provide for themselves based on some immutable characteristic. and No child should be deprived of basic health care because he or she was, through no fault of his or her own, born into a family that could not provide for him.

Conservatives no doubt won't forgive Senator Kennedy for his staunch opposition to Robert Bork's nomination to the Supreme Court. Mr. Kennedy said "Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, and schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of government, and the doors of the federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of Americans.”

Mr. Bork's own jurisprudence, had it been upheld by the Supreme Court, would have led to situations just like those cited in Kennedy's speech. For those of us who believe in a more perfect union where equal rights are guaranteed to all, his opposition to Bork bolsters, and does not stain, his claim as a civil rights activist.

Those who knew him will no doubt miss him. We can only hope that his legacy will live on.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lockerbie Incident

Compassion should have been directed elsewhere. This guy killed 270 people.

Gay Marriage Column

"The bill’s sweeping prohibitions also deny to same-sex couples who work for the federal government shared insurance and other work-related benefits, all so that Congress could pose as the moral defender of traditional marriage. It was a strange pose, given that some of DOMA’s staunchest supporters were divorcees and adulterers.

The act was authored by then-Republican Congressman Bob Barr, who was doing a star turn representing the fringe. He was already on his third marriage. It was supported by such dutiful husbands as then- U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, now governor of South Carolina, whose marriage is in tatters because his “soulmate” is not his wife.

Democrats jumped on board the hypocrisy train, too, for fear they might encounter a backlash from conservative Christians. The womanizing Bill Clinton signed the legislation, telling The Advocate, a gay-interest newspaper, that “I remain opposed to same-sex marriage. I believe marriage is an institution for the union of a man and a woman.”
Cynthia Tucker of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Nice to see one of our straight allies make the case for repealing the misnamed Defense of Marriage Act at this time when all of the attention is focused on health care.

Health Care Debate Point Worth Repeating

Health care was rationed in the past. Health care is rationed today and health care will be rationed in the future.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Peter Suderman On Health Care Rationing

"As I've written before, I think warnings about rationing are a red herring. The word is typically off-limits in reasonable health-care conversations -- politicians don't like admitting that not everyone will get everything they want -- and thus when it is used, it tends to be to scare people. But the fact is, health-care resources are limited; we already ration them through the current mesh of employers, insurers, and government agencies and regulations; and the question is not whether to ration, but who gets to make decisions about care and how.

Leave decisions to central authorities, and individuals and providers tend to have fewer choices, and innovation tends to proceed somewhat more slowly. Leave decisions in the hands of private entities, and care tends to be spread less evenly. Beyond the hyperbole on both sides, the fact remains that no matter how one structures the rationing process -- whether
it emphasizes government or the private sector -- there are always trade-offs." - Peter Suderman, filling in for Andrew Sullivan at The Daily Dish

Obama's Health Care Pitch - The Right World War II Analogy

The most vicious and, perhaps most uninformed of those opposing the House's health care reform package have compared our president to Adolf Hitler, who ran Germany with an iron fist from 1933 to 1945. Jews, Slavs, Gypsies and gays were rounded up, shoved into dilapidated slave labor camps, and then killed.

One can, however, compare his negotiating tactics to the now mocked Neville Chamberlain, the United Kingdom's prime minister who was forced to resign in disgrace after his strategy to buy Hitler's peace through appeasement failed. Mr. Chamberlain gave Hitler the go-ahead to annex Austria and the then German-populated Sudetenland section of Czechoslovakia and re-militarize the Rhineland. Hitler said he merely wanted to reunite the German peoples under one nation. His ambitions didn't stop there, however. He took the rest of Czechoslovakia by force, invaded Poland, Norway, Denmark, the Low Countries, France, Yugoslavia, Greece, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

Mr. Obama promised health care reform but wanted to usher in a new era of bipartisanship as he did so. He compromised on the economic stimulus package but got not one House Republican to vote for it. He fared a little better in the Senate - three Republicans jumped on board.

The president ceded the health care reform process to a gang of six Senators (three Democrats and three Republicans) who sit on the Finance Committee at the get-go even though he had a fifty-seven seat majority (59 - 2 absent Democrats)) in the Senate.

Though he expressed his support for a "public option", the president said he could drop it from the plan to win over Republican votes even after Senator Al Franken (D-Minnesota) took his seat. He congratulated three Republican Senators - Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Mike Enzi (R-Wyoming), and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) for negotiating with him even before he obtained their commitment to back his reform package. No Republican member of the Gang of Six has committed him or herself to support Obama's health care reform package. He ceded the government's right to negotiate for lower, imported brand x prescription drugs in return for their decision to remain neutral (as opposed to support) in the health care reform debate.

Last week Senator Grassley upped his demands for a compromise. The senator at first insisted upon the removal of the public option. The president, in suggesting that the "public option" is not vital, has basically granted him that wish. Then, at a town hall meeting the senator ran from the president and his agenda and gave up on the pretense that he was negotiating in good faith by (a) reinforcing the mistaken notion that there are "death panels" in the health insurance bills making their way through Congress and (b) by suggesting that he was trying to slow the process down to allow them to protest and kill the bill.

Obama praised the Republican senator even though he said he could not support a bill that did not win four + Republican senators. Ne suggests he cannot support a bill that fails to win 75 - 80 senators (15-20 Republican senators) and yet the president still praises him in his own town hall meetings.

The president, like Chamberlain, behaves as if he is negotiating from a point of weakness even though he is the one in power (Hitler's Germany wasn't ready for World War II when its leader first pushed for Austria). And he continues to behave as if the senator from Iowa is negotiating in good faith when in fact it is clear to many of us that he is trying to kill health care reform.

The president is being criticized on the right for being too forceful when in fact the opposite is true. He's behaving like a wimp. Was New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd on to something when she pejoratively referred to him as "Obambi?" I'm beginning to think so.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Barney Frank and the Idiot

U.S. Representative Barney Frank (D-Massachusetts) has no problem putting idiots in their place, even if he might get some bad press for repudiating a position taken by someone who might potentially (key word being "potentially") a constituent of his. The lady in question asked the congressman why he is supporting a "Nazi policy" on health care and he responded by asking her "what planet" she "spends most of her time." "Trying to argue with" her, he went on, would be like "trying to have an argument with a dining room table."

I couldn't agree with the U.S. Representative from the 4th district in Massachusetts. These people can't be reasoned with. If they cannot distinguish between a policy designed to provide its citizens with a means to purchase affordable health insurance so that they can take their children to the dentist or undergo major heart surgery without going broke to the systematic attempt by a government to wipe the Jewish people off the face of the planet by gassing, shooting or incinerating them to death, they have a few screws loose in the head. Anyone who buys into this analogy must be real dumb.

That said, it would have been far more effective I think if the Congressman did what I just did and explain, in that same incredulous manner why there is no comparison between the push for health care reform and "The Final Solution." Sometimes the best way to expose the stupidity is to spell it out.

Guns at the President's Forums

Oh my god, John Velleco actually said American citizens should be allowed to carry their guns into a town hall where the president is speaking. Not just outside to make a political statement. Inside, where the president is speaking. Banning these weapons from such forums should be obvious. Why would we we make it easier for potential assassins (whack-jobs and professional hit men/women to kill our presidents?

If was running the Secret Service (which I'm not), I'd push the gun owners back so that they cannot see the president.

Obama's New DOMA Brief

I can't say that I am pleased since this is, for all intents and purposes a do-over (even though the administration did not retract its prior, gratuitously insulting brief supporting the misnamed "Defense of Marriage Act." The president in this brief, at least acknowledges the harm which the law inflicted (and still inflicts on) gay Americans and it does not compare gay marriage to incest, polygamy, and pedophilia.

Perhaps the Justice Department's new liaison (why did it take this long?) can spare the department and the administration from any future embarrassment.

New Voting Block on Supreme Court Is Known?

A single vote to hear a death penalty case is a clue of how Sonia Sotomayor will vote? Puhlease!!!

"But the alignment of the justices in the Getsy case gave a preliminary indication that, as expected, the ideological fault line at the court was not changed by Justice Sotomayor’s succeeding Justice David H. Souter, who often voted with Justices Stevens, Ginsburg and Breyer."

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Obama's Deficit Gap: Hope in the Best but Not Prepare for the Worst

I don't know if the president is deliberately killing the public option or whether he doesn't know how to negotiate but by suggesting (at this point in time) that we could have a reform package that does not include the public option he looks very weak. President Barack Obama is getting hammered. His poll numbers are dropping and too many Americans believe that the worst false rumors are true so now health care reform opponents will of course rile the crowd to go after the swing voting Democrats to kill the employer mandate (forcing them to purchase health insurance) as well as the undefined co-op.

The president's concession (or perhaps more fairly, hint of a concession) is coming at the wrong time. Since it was delivered at a time when his job approval ratings have been slipping it will be perceived as tactical retreat that will only further encourage the health insurers to continue their onslaught against reform.

At some point the president will have nothing to negotiate over since he would have conceded everything. and for what reason? He won't get the Republicans on board. Maybe Senators Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) but that's it if at all. And he should have known this too. One need only look at the vote over his economic stimulus package. Not one Republican Congressman or woman voted for the bill. He fared better in the Senate, where he won the support of three, repeat that, THREE Republicans after watering the stimulus bill down a little. One Republican switched parties after facing the ire from his conservative constituents who threatened to vote for his primary opponent. Now he faces a challenge from the left in his new party.

Rush Limbaugh explicitly stated that he wanted the president to fail. Senator Jim DeMint (R-South Carlina) said health care reform could be the president's Waterloo. Several conservatives have accused the president of being a racist who hates white men. Others have refused to distance themselves from those comments (David Frum, Kathleen Parker, Peggy Noonan, Joe Scarborough, and David Brooks being the notable exceptions). We knew this would happen and the presiden's team was still, even with these tell-tale signs, caught unprepared.

I am very troubled by the president's strategy. He understandably tried to get Congress to write a bill so that it would survive the onslaught the Clinton plan faced in 1994 but he set no parameters and then he enters the debate at a point when the cause is almost lost. We saw this same problem with the economic stimulus package and we saw this earlier when he was on the campaign trail. When the president thinks he is ahead in the polls he behaves as if Congress would just do his bidding. No argument is needed. Congress will pass the bill and then his administration will move on to the next issue. Presidential leadership wasn't exerted until it looked as if the economic stimulus package wouldn't make it through the senate and it hasn't been exerted with respect to the health care debate until the president went to a few town halls last week.

The opposition knows what the stakes are and have conducted themselves accordingly. Their scare tactics succeeded. Opponents (both thoughtful and not so thoughtful) were bused to congressional town hall meetings to disrupt our legislators while they tried to defend the health care bill. Passing complex legislation like health care reform takes work and it takes leadership. If he was serious about reform he woul cut his vacation to Martha's Vacation short, go to a few more town hall meetings and maybe even a second press conference on health care reform, speak to the nation from the oval office and meet with the Democrats who are still on the fence.

Addendum: I largely agree with this statement made by Eugene Robinson at The Washington Post:

"Giving up on the public option might be expedient. But we didn't elect Obama to be an expedient president. We elected him to be a great one."

Weiner v Scarborough

U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner (D-New York) offered us a spirited debate for the single payer system on "Morning Joe." No single payer bill would pass in the Senate but I have to hand it to him. Joe Scarborough was at a loss of words when the U.S. Representative asked him what the health insurance companies bring to the table of value and what was the response that would come from the conservative host is that Weiner is pushing for the "government take over" of our health insurance industry. The president of course supports to a questionable degree a health insurance reform package that includes a public option.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dr. Snyderman on the Public Option

I can't help but associate with Dr. Nancy Synderman's comments on "Morning Joe" this morning - in terms of how the debate has taken place and in terms of our need for a public option.

She also hints at what I've said in one of my latest posts - that what Obama's good plan (and not the watered down public-option lacking alternative he is now hinting at) leads to a two-tiered (or maybe three-tiered) health care system which would allow everyone to get the bare bones version to provide what is needed but those who can afford to would buy a supplemental or premium version.

I really believe we need a public option in the bill and the president has given up on this option too soon. The bill that will make its way through the Finance Committee won't include a public option and worse, it won't include a provision allowing us to purchase cheaper prescription drugs from other countries (this we can, according to the article, blame on the Democrats) know that the Republicans haven't been negotiating with the president in good faith. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) claims he was merely negotiating with the White House in order to slow the process down and allow its opponents to kill the plan. The president and the liberals who voted for him should be able to pressure the Democratic "centrists" to at least vote against a filibuster even if they cannot vote for a plan that includes the public option itself. That bill could pass, albeit by a slim minority.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Grassley's Poor Faith in Negotiating

President Barack Obama praised Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) for being one of the three Republican senators who apparently decided to work with their Democratic colleagues and the president on health care reform. The president thanked the senator last week and then again on Tuesday during a health care reform town hall held in New Hampshire.

The progressive wing of the Democratic Party, during this time, criticized ceding too much to the opposition's negotiators for two reasons. First, many consider the public option and mandatory insurance coverage without preconditions vital for any health insurance reform to be vital. The public option, they said, was needed to keep the insurance companies honest.

Just as important, in their estimation, however, were the prospects for a bipartisan bill when the opposition doesn't negotiate in good faith. Some noted that the president received no such cooperation from the opposition when the House and Senate voted on his economic stimulus package. No House Republicans voted for that bill. In the senate, he enlisted the support of Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine), Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Senator Arlen Specter (then a Republican from Pennsylvania).

Senator Grassley, unfortunately, proved the progressives who argued against the negotiations with the opposition right when he said we should fear the end of life counseling provided for in the House bill at a time when some within the party accused the administration and the House Democrats who voted for the bill of supporting "death panels" to decide who lives and who dies.

""There is some fear because in the House bill, there is counseling for end-of-life," the Republican senator from Iowa said. "And from that standpoint, you have every right to fear. You shouldn't have counseling at the end of life. You ought to have counseling 20 years before you're going to die. You ought to plan these things out. And I don't have any problem with things like living wills. But they ought to be done within the family. We should not have a government program that determines if you're going to pull the plug on grandma."

Nothing in the house bill removes the power of writing living wills from the patient and his or her doctor. The provision merely provides for a paid consultation between the patient and his or her doctor when and if the patient asks for such an end-of-life consultation.

Mr. Grassley has every right to call off the negotiations if and when he believes there is no reason to believe he, his Democratic colleagues, and the president cannot resolve their political and philosophical differences and he can, when that moment comes, say there were irreconcilable differences that lead him to oppose the bill making its way through the senate.

The senator may not have officially called off the negotiations or announce his opposition to a senate bill, but he definitely stabbed the president in the back by suggesting that there is some merit behind the outrageous and patently false claim that Obama is pushing for a "death panel."

Three Points to Health Care Points from a Brit

Point One: All health care involves rationing of some sort.


"Lord knows, the NHS has its problems and, yes, there's a degree of rationing. But there's rationing in just about every system. It just depends on how that rationing is organised and, to some extent, whether its existence is admitted."
Alex Massie

Those who fear a government-run system because it would ration their care are sadly mistaken if they believe it isn't rationed already. What the government would ration in any government program is currently rationed (albeit differently) by the health insurance companies and by our selves (by purchasing what we can afford).

The president and the Democrats on the hill, it should be noted are not offering a single-payer system. If the new plan includes a public option (and by that I mean a government-financed program) Americans will have but one more way to have their health care rationed - one that makes the purchase of health insurance coverage more affordable for those who do not have it now and one that, it is hoped anyway, would bring down the costs of health insurance overall as insurance companies search for a cost-effective means to provide their clients health insurance without sacrifices needed care.

The health insurance companies will survive if they can offer their potential clients more services at a higher (higher than the public option's) but still affordable (for most Americans, that is) premium. Hence, the Obama's emphasis on preventive care. Hence his declared support for a shift towards results-based reimbursements. And hence the need to reform and limit medical malpractice lawsuits (yes,Democrats, the Republicans have a point here).

The administration may be offering us what is, at least in effect, a two-tiered or three-tiered health care system whereby the working poor who currently do not health insurance can purchase a plan that offers a mutually-agreed upon baseline in minimal care, the filthy rich can purchase 24-hour doctor coverage (the Michael Jackson treatment, let's say), and the lower-to-upper-middle class workers can keep their employer-based coverage.

Point Two: The American system tends to provides more health care for those who can afford it if and when they are covered by their provider while the British system provides less though it is guaranteed.

"Fundamentally, however, the difference between the systems is psychological. In Britain you worry what will happen when you fall ill; many Americans worry about what will happen if you fall ill."

Ezra Klein
, who linked to Massie in his blogpost on The Washington Post's web site, expands upon a third point which Massie raised: that the other developed countries didn't see fit to copy either the British or the American health insurance model:

"The NHS and the American system are both outliers. The American system biases doctors toward overtreatment by paying them for everything intervention they try. The British system does the opposite by paying them a lump sum for each patient, and every treatment comes out of that total. The effects are predictable: The American system is extremely expensive. But the British system is extremely cheap. Uncommonly cheap. Weirdly cheap. About 41 cents for every dollar we spend per capita cheap."

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Clinton's Not-So Diplomatic Answer

Yesterday a university student from Zaire asked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton what, as she heard it, Bill Clinton thought of the Chinese loan offer to the Congo. Her response was, shall we say, undiplomatic at best.

"You want me to tell you what my husband thinks?" she asked. ""I am not going to be channeling my husband."

She obviously felt slighted because the student's question suggested expressed interest in what her husband and not what she as the secretary of state or Barack Obama, as president, thought of the loan program. We don't know whether the university student misspoke or whether his question was mistranslated. For all we know, he was asking about Bill Clinton's opinion because he either (a) mistakenly believes he is still the president of the United States or (b) respects Mr. Clinton's economic views.

Whatever the case may be, Mrs. Clinton handled the question incorrectly. As our secretary of state, Senator Clinton is expected to answer (or not answer) the questions posed to her politely while ignoring the occasional real or perceived sleight.

She could have "misheard" the question and offer her own opinion (Mr. and Mrs. could get lost in translation) or she could have offered an "I don't know" and/or "I didn't ask him" answer. The less said, the better.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Cantor, Settlements, Iran and the Middle East Peace Process

In his latest visit to Israel, U.S. Representative Eric Cantor (R-Virginia) distanced himself from the president's focus on the Israeli settlements when they should, in his opinion direct their attention to Iran's purported attempt to manufacture nuclear weapons.

The Obama administration, however, criticized the Israeli government after it expelled several Palestinians were evicted from their homes in East Jerusalem, a city which both the Israelis and the Palestinians claim as their own. The administration apparently will try to get the now defunct Middle East peace process back on track by proposing a series of confidence building measures that would be endorsed by Israel's Arabic neighbors.

It believes several trust-building measures will be needed before either side could negotiate over the Palestinian territories' future. The Palestinians would be expected to reform their security forces and weed out those who incite violence. For their part, the Israelis would be required to freeze settlement construction projects.

King Abduallah II of Jordan reportedly has agreed to sign onto the administration's strategy but Saud al-Faisal, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister, said his country does not support the approach.

The administration's concern with the Israelis' settlement program is warranted. Those settlements have been and are continuing to be constructed on the land which the Palestinians expect to gain in exchange for peace. Israel would cede the West Bank and Gaza to a newly created Palestinian state and in return the Palestinians would recognize a Jewish Israeli state's right to exist and the permanent cessation of hostilities. Terrorism would be thwarted.

Iran's nuclear program can no doubt destabilize the region further as its Sunni neighbors on the Arabian peninsula seek to offset its gains by seeking nuclear weapons for themselves but the Iranians would not dare to bomb the Israelis knowing full well there will be a reprisal. Nor should our concerns about Iran's nuclear program deprive us from our goal to eliminate an obstacle for achieving peace in the Middle East. Administrative officials can initiate negotiation talks on both tracks - one to restart the peace process between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and one with the Iranians to re-establish diplomatic ties and eliminate Iran's nuclear weapons program.

U.S. Representative Cantor and his Republican entourage offered the Israelis false hope. They are deluding themselves and the Israelis if they believe that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be sidestepped and they are, it should be noted, engaging in an activity their conservative backers condemned when Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi visited Syria in 2007.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The Problem With the Mob Mentality

Some Congressmen and women have been confronted by a mob of angry American voters who oppose the Democratic officials' various plans to reform our health care system. The opposition no doubt should have the right to challenge the ruling party's plan and voters who have some deep reservations about the current plans now under consideration no doubt should have the right to ask their local congress man or woman to justify his or her support for such a plan.

Some opponents, however, have decided to end the conversation by shouting down their local representative at these town hall meetings and this is unfair - Unfair to the representative who is there to make his or her case for or against a health care reform package and it is unfair to that representative's constituents who may have taken some time off from their job (or otherwise out of their daily routine) to meet and talk to his or her legal representative about this issue when given the chance to do so. They too may have some questions for the representative and they are entitled to an answer.

Shouting down the local representative doesn't merely deny him or her an opportunity to make the case for or against legislation; it denies the constituents the chance to make an informed decision after hearing the local representative make his or her case.

Those who oppose the Democratic Party's plan to reform our health care reform package should let the representatives speak and then voice their concerns in any question and answer session that follows.

In the alternative, if they vehemently object to the legislation they should apply for a permit so that they can protest against the meetings on the same day that the local representative is holding his or her town hall meeting.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

The Slippery Slope Argument, Gay Marriage, and Horses

We know that one of the arguments some (the lunatic fringe of the lunatic fringe) conservatives say we must oppose gay marriage because all hell would break loose. One we let two men kiss and get married or two women kiss and get married men and women in general would think they could do anything. The social constraints chains which bar men from sodomizing another person's horse, ferret, cat, dog, or even box turtle would be lifted.

This, we are told, is why South Carolina voters passed an amendment to their constitution explicitly barring the state, its agencies, and its political subdivisions from recognizing any marriage, civil union, or domestic partnership created by the union of two or more parties of the same-sex.

Governors might have to run to foreign countries like Argentina if they wanted to cheat on their wives or husbands and then return so they could at least make the attempt to fall back in love with their spouses but South Carolina's moral fabric would be preserved and its reputation wouldn't be soiled by some perverted freak f------ another person's horse twice.

Now could you imagine the horror that would have been unleashed if South Carolina's voters rejected the marriage amendment? The horror! The horror! Perverted freaks might dump their horse for another or who knows, maybe conduct an affair with one behind the others' back. or what if they get bored getting freaky with one box turtle and have to buy another.

Thank God South Carlina's voters prudently denied themselves the right to marry a human being of the same sex. If that was allowed all hell would break loose.