Category Archives: liberté égalité fraternité

More Class Warfare Please

Oregon voters pass tax increasing measures by big margin

Oregon voters bucked decades of anti-tax and anti-Salem sentiment Tuesday, raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy to prevent further erosion of public schools and other state services.

The tax measures passed easily, with late returns showing a 54 percent to 46 percent ratio. Measure 66 raises taxes on households with taxable income above $250,000, and Measure 67 sets higher minimum taxes on corporations and increases the tax rate on upper-level profits.

This kind of thing needs more attention.  It’s true, after all, that some people are a drain on society.  And those people are called “fat cats”, draining the average citizen of their hard-earned dollars.  We’re long past due as a society to level the playing field.  It’s shocking how much more responsible Oregon is compared to their dysfunctional neighbors, California, where they require 2/3 majority in the state legislature to approve tax increases (making the senate filibuster rules seem sane by comparison).  Guess who bears the brunt there?

Then of course there is South Carolina, where the Lt. Governor recently said this:

My grandmother was not a highly educated woman, but she told me as a small child to quit feeding stray animals. You know why? Because they breed. You’re facilitating the problem if you give an animal or a person ample food supply. They will reproduce, especially ones that don’t think too much further than that. And so what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to curtail that type of behavior. They don’t know any better

You stay classy, South Carolina!

You pick and choose!

I’m giving my Bush Derangement Syndrome a night off to share some delightful musical theatre…

couple months late, eh?

On a somewhat related note, I was reading about the schism taking place within the Episcopalian Church here over the acceptance of gay priests and bishops (with thems-that-don’t-like trying to pack up their things and go) when I was surprised by this paragraph:

Conservative leaders in North America say they expect to win approval for their new province from at least seven like-minded primates, who lead provinces primarily in Africa, Australia, Latin America and Asia.

With all due respect to our Anglican friends, you must admit that’s funny, having a church comprised of like-minded primates.  If nothing else, it’s the most honest description of organized religion you’ll ever see. I presume they have liberal views about evolution…

Bishop Minns, a priest who led his large, historic church in Fairfax, Va., out of the Episcopal Church two years ago and was subsequently ordained a bishop by the Anglican Archbishop of Nigeria, said in an interview: “One of the questions a number of the primates are asking is why do we still need to be operating under the rules of an English charity, which is what the Anglican Consultative Council does. Why is England still considered the center of the universe?”

Why, indeed?

Like-minded primate

Lincoln on Hypocrisy

Here’s a well-reasoned post by Steve Goldman who lays out the legal absurdity of denying gay marriage.  Toward the end he drops a juicy quote by Abe Lincoln, written in a private letter to a friend in 1855:

“I am not a Know-Nothing. That is certain. How could I be? How can any one who abhors the oppression of negroes, be in favor of degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we begin by declaring that ‘all men are created equal.’ We now practically read it ‘all men are created equal, except negroes.’ When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read ‘all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and catholics.’ When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty – to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocrisy.”

Good stuff, and as relevant now as it was then.

Incidentally, I did a Google search to get the parts of the quote that Goldman left out.  Sure enough, Lincoln’s words have been widely appropriated by right-wingers, for whom the term “degeneracy” creates a warm sensation in the pants.  It goes without saying, they completely disregard the essence of the quote, instead preferring to believe that it suitably condemns their scapegoat-of-the-day.

Those who assault our shared humanity are the true degenerates.  I believe Abe would feel quite lost in the modern Republican party.