Lunch Links

Friday, September 26th, 2008
  • If it isn’t Hershey’s it must be drugs! How is it that these field drug testing units can continue to return positive results for substances like soap, pool chalk, and now, chocolate?
  • Swedish man goes fishing, lands giant elk.
  • Two-hundred academic economists sign a letter in opposition to the bailout.
  • Louisiana lawmaker wants to sterilize poor women. He’s right in dismissing critics who say he’s racist. He’s not racist. He’s just a cretinous, immoral buffoon.
  • Bob Barr loses his bid to keep Obama and McCain off the Texas ballot. This isn’t surprising. What would be surprising is if the Texas Supreme Court had given the same benefit of the doubt to a third-party candidate.
  • I’m pretty sure the person who wrote this Washington Post article is mocking the folks at the Cato Institute. I’m obviously not your typical Post reader, but I think Cato comes off looking pretty good.
  • Porn that’s safe for work. Well, not really. In fact, you probably shouldn’t watch if you’re easily offended, or at work. But I found it pretty clever.
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  • 32 Responses to “Lunch Links”

    1. #1 |  Mike T | 

      Louisiana lawmaker wants to sterilize poor women. He’s right in dismissing critics who say he’s racist. He’s not racist. He’s just a cretinous, immoral buffoon.

      There’s nothing immoral about this, unless you’re objecting to the idea that the government should pay for it. This is probably the most sensible subsidy for healthcare this country has seen in a long, long time, if for no other reason than it’ll provide some poor women with a chance to make sure that they cannot have any more children than they’re prepared to support.

      Besides, $1000 is a lot cheaper than subsidizing the reproduction of people who are too poor to support their kids on their own income. You want immoral, then look to the laws which actually reward women with more money, not less money, by having kids that they know they cannot support.

    2. #2 |  Mike T | 

      It should also be pointed out that this is purely voluntary. No one is coercing poor women into sterilization here.

    3. #3 |  j.d. | 

      I’m not sure what’s immoral about offering a grand to ANYONE to have themselves sterilized; perhaps it’s immoral because they’re only offering it to poor people (article I believe says men’s vasectomies are included).

      Hell, why stop at 1k? Why not offer tickets to the Dayton 500 and a free meet-n-drink with Dale Jr? Or a weekend of hunting with the ‘Nuge?

      Hell, I’d do it to get Turnbull to come forward with all his information against the police in Fredrick’s case.

    4. #4 |  Chris Berez | 

      The porn that’s safe for work video was made by Diesel because they really enjoyed a series of threads from the Something Awful forums about making porn work safe.

      Just want to credit where the idea came from originally. :)

    5. #5 |  Nick T | 

      I agree.

      Radley, I don’t see why you find the sterilization proposal so immoral. As long as it’s a voluntary choice, it’s hard to disagree with it on principle. I guess there’s an element of offensiveness to it, in that it seems to belittle the value of existing children in the care of “welfare moms” by saying they are just basically a drain on tax dollars that we’d rather be without.

      But it seems like a reasonable plan that is not particular wrong, or anti-liberty.

    6. #6 |  Honeyko | 

      > I’m not sure what’s immoral about offering a grand to ANYONE to have themselves sterilized…..

      Is it his money?

    7. #7 |  Andrew | 

      It’s immoral because it comes from the government and there’s no such thing as a “voluntary” policy when it comes to them, since “voluntary” usually means “sure, it’s voluntary, but unless you do exactly what we say, we’re gonna ruin you”.

    8. #8 |  j.d. | 

      Honeyko, to the extant that it is taxpayers money, one must factor in taxes already paid by the person recieving the surgery, and, the reduction of cost assocated with having one less person on the planet. In principle I agree with you, I do. I think this would be better fit for charities to sort out. I’d send a check.

      Yet, of all the things to be concerned with on how the government is using our taxpayers dollars, you know…like….i don’t know…, this is so acutely minimal in comparison.

    9. #9 |  Ryan | 

      I find it repugnant that there are those on this board who believe any idea of eugenics is an ok thing. There is no mistake about it this is exactly what is being suggested here to remove those who may pose a burden on society. Should we sterilize those with mental retardation, how about those with predispositions to disease. I’m calling each of you that’s a libertarian out who is ok with idea how does this fit in with freedoms of personal choice and liberty to breed accordingly (this has little to do with transfer payments).

    10. #10 |  claude | 

      “It should also be pointed out that this is purely voluntary. No one is coercing poor women into sterilization here.”

      For now.

    11. #11 |  bcg | 

      It’s immoral because it’s using the government to create incentives for poor, uneducated people to commit genetic suicide, rather than using the government to create incentives for a stable family unit.

      The government has a responsibility to keep the citizenry safe to live their lives as they see fit. Usually, this has included raising a family. To take the poorest, the least educated, those who our efforts to create a prosperous society have not benefited, and target them for genetic death is about the grandest perversion of this responsibility I can conjure.

      I am all for the encouraging of proper child rearing, with two stable parents in a stable home in a stable neighborhood. I even think that government money could be used for this.

      But why sterilization? Why not give all women aged 16-24 some allowance for taking the birth-control shot in the arm every 12 weeks? This waits out the danger period without destroying the idea of family for an entire class of people.

    12. #12 |  Cappy | 

      Hell, I got sterilized for free. Woulda done it for a grand no probs.

      Wanna solve the welfare state? Remove the welfare.

    13. #13 |  j.d. | 

      Let’s see, voluntary means freedom of make a personal choice. There is no force involved. This isn’t a deprivation of liberty. In fact, I would argue it increases one’s liberty. Rarely does the government offer money, an incentive though minimal here, to someone who, after making a personal decision, accepts the means with which to obtain such a payment.

      For the amount of money any individual, rich/poor/otherwise, pays for contraception/birth control/otherwise over a lifetime, having this procedure paid for and additional cash given, is, incident to whatever presumed rationale one may have to take on this operation, a financially sound decision. 1 Grand plus the savings attributable to this is a significant benefit. Plus, the sexual freedom one has is further increased.

      Or, are you suggesting that this should be a free operation? With which I inquire, why are they in fact offering taxpayers money to do this? This seems to be the only libertarian argument involved here.

      I also don’t see how this amounts to eugenics. this doesn’t make people sterile. This isn’t chemical castration. This isn’t forced. The procedures are also quite reversible it appears. I bet that 15% of the male population of this country would do this. Perhaps more.

    14. #14 |  freedomfan | 

      I don’t know that I favor taxpayer-funded medical procedures, like sterilization. And, if it goes from voluntary to mandatory, I am dead set against it. As soon as someone has to do anything more than turn down taxpayer money to avoid it, then it’s an outrage.

      But, it’s not really eugenics, unless the contention is that poor people are poor because of genetics, which would be an odd argument for an anti-eugenics person to make.

    15. #15 |  claude | 

      ” And, if it goes from voluntary to mandatory, I am dead set against it.”

      Yup. Thats the deal. Knowing government as well as i do, it wont be long b4 someone gets the idea to try to make something like this mandatory. They usually start with a small portion of a group that they feel no one will stick up for. Once that is done, the idea of it is engrained in peoples heads and they start to make all sorts or rationalizations of why this same thing should then be mandatory for other groups of people, particularly the group that the current speaker dislikes the most.

    16. #16 |  claude | 

      Remember people… wearing a seatbelt used to be something that was just highly encouraged. When that didnt work to someones satisfaction, we ended up with laws mandating it. Also remember, we used to just have sex offender registries. Now some places have meth offender registries and r considering others. We have an antagonistic government here in the USA. An antagonistic government is one that never stops pushing against the rights of the people. For the above reasons, things like this louisiana proposal should always be opposed.

    17. #17 |  jet | 

      As a woman who was unable to take typical birth control medications because of a family history of stroke and someone who has certainly gone through points in time where I could be considered poor, had such a program been available I’d have taken it! Many group health insurances (if you’re luck enough to have such) won’t cover elective sterilization procedures. So you can’t afford more kids and can’t afford to get fixed to keep from having kids and. Even if you can afford assorted birth control methods and still manage to have a sex life, accidents DO happen.
      As it was, it took a cancer diagnosis for my insurance company to agree to pay for a sterilization. Sad, but true…

    18. #18 |  jet | 

      Oh, and the SFW XXX was a riot. Thanks, Radley!

    19. #19 |  Mike T | 

      I find it repugnant that there are those on this board who believe any idea of eugenics is an ok thing. There is no mistake about it this is exactly what is being suggested here to remove those who may pose a burden on society. Should we sterilize those with mental retardation, how about those with predispositions to disease. I’m calling each of you that’s a libertarian out who is ok with idea how does this fit in with freedoms of personal choice and liberty to breed accordingly (this has little to do with transfer payments).

      By your logic, if I convince someone who is so poor that they can barely feed themselves to not have a child, that’s eugenics in action. That’s how low you set the threshold for what constitutes eugenics here.

      Furthermore, the calculations being made here are based on economics, not genetics. There are plenty of healthy people who are pretty intelligent who could qualify for this too.

    20. #20 |  claude | 

      “By your logic, if I convince someone who is so poor that they can barely feed themselves to not have a child, that’s eugenics in action. That’s how low you set the threshold for what constitutes eugenics here.”

      There is a difference between what a citizen might take it upon him or herself to do and a government sanctioned policy.

    21. #21 |  Jim Collins | 

      claude,

      What we have here is a country where a sizable percentage of the population can’t be bothered to pay attention to what our politicians are doing and hold them accountable for it on Election Day.

      As a result, if you get a group of enough people together you can get all kinds of BS laws passed, because the politicians know that activist groups tend to vote. So you end up with what is a minority having their views inflicted upon all of us, with the force of law.

      I have lost track of the number of people who have said that they don’t vote, for some dumb reason or another. Then you have those who just walk in and without thinking just vote the party line, who are almost as bad. Last but not least you have the people who just can’t be bothered with taking the time.

    22. #22 |  claude | 

      “I have lost track of the number of people who have said that they don’t vote, for some dumb reason or another. Then you have those who just walk in and without thinking just vote the party line, who are almost as bad. Last but not least you have the people who just can’t be bothered with taking the time.”

      Don’t forget that other wonderful group… the ONE ISSUE voter. :(

    23. #23 |  Ryan | 

      Anytime Welfare is part of the discussion out of the woodwork inevitability comes the “Welfare Queen” stereotype and with it the underlying hint of racism. The issue with an elected official suggesting how when or with whom to procreate is indeed eugenics even if it is not mandated rather suggested. Yes there is statistical correlation that children born into poverty will have a greater multitude of x y and z but that does not give anyone the right to suggest that hey I have a great strategy why don’t we offer through government sources a means to sterilize the poor. (who else should we suggest should be sterilized). People in my family have ALS should it be suggested that people with ALS voluntarily be sterilized to reduce the burden on the Health care industry?

      This is akin to any other socioeconomic condition and the government stepping in and regulating it on this basis alone.

      And seriously to support this position is just plain immoral.

      If you were seriously concerned about welfare I would be more upset about corporate welfare due to sheer volume over the potential for abuse for incomparable inconsequential sums.

    24. #24 |  claude | 

      “who else should we suggest should be sterilized”

      Oh gosh now that the door is open, we could mebbe sterilize criminals. We dont need to force it so we could just offer it as a plea bargain in court. Reduced sentence if u get sterilized. I mean its not force or coercion, unless no one really volunteers for it and because of that we make it part of a criminal sentence. Yeah, thats the ticket. Come to think of it, there r a few more groups i can think of.

      (this is how this sort of thing happens and then spirals out of control)

    25. #25 |  claude | 

      We could also make it a rule that in order to receive any social services whatsoever, the person must agree to be sterilized. I mean thats not force either. Sure there will be those people who think that in order to receive any help, a person should not have to consent to government mandated medical procedures being performed on you, but i think we all know those kinda people r really terrorists trying to bring our nation to the ground.

      (still spiraling)

    26. #26 |  Ryan | 

      “By your logic, if I convince someone who is so poor that they can barely feed themselves to not have a child, that’s eugenics in action. That’s how low you set the threshold for what constitutes eugenics here.

      Furthermore, the calculations being made here are based on economics, not genetics. There are plenty of healthy people who are pretty intelligent who could qualify for this too.”

      Mike T obviously your memory of what eugenics is (and its history in the US especially the South) is a little rusty because it is not like this debate has not occurred before, and some D-bag from Metarie thinks that he has the most novel idea on how to free us from the dregs of society.

      Eugenics was yes about genetics but economics is also a part of this. Your argument is essentially I wouldn’t impose mandatory sterilization of poor people but if by some means other than their personal choice are given an incentive I’ll just look the other way.

      By your indifference (or perhaps support) you are effectively engaging in decimation of a class of persons suggesting that only the middle class and the wealthy should procreate as they lead to the best citizens.

      That’s Eugenics

      That’s wrong!

    27. #27 |  David | 

      We could also make it a rule that in order to receive any social services whatsoever, the person must agree to be sterilized.

      I recognize your sarcasm, Claude, and think it’s only a short step to that. People get so caught up in the “welfare queen” (and there are indeed some real scumbags out there freeloading off the system” that the miss that many productive people are really not that far from needing government assistance. All it takes is a long layoff, or an injury or whatever for someone to find herself in the position where they’re in need of help. Do we really want to make lifelong sterilization an additional penalty for losing one’s job?

    28. #28 |  PSYOP | 

      I’m with Radley on the voluntary sterilization issue – it sucks, and sucks horribly. Say Louisiana implements this. When does it eventually shift from voluntary to mandatory? When does genetic testing for everyone become mandatory? It reeks of “aryan” eugenics, and it’s one huge step down a slippery slope! Give the government powers to elicit volunteers and soon enough, their won’t be “enough” volunteers or volunteers of the “right” type. That’s when it becomes mandatory.

      Think of all the government money spent on people with genetic disorders. It costs a lot more to educate people with Down’s Syndrome, right? So what’s next, you fail the genetic test and we force you to abort your suspect fetus? Or, if you have the “lesser” baby, we take it for a ride in the CO recirculating van?

      It’s no coincidence that Abruzzo’s district produced David Duke…

    29. #29 |  Chris in PA | 

      The WaPo article got my blood boiling. How about this?

      “According to the Cato narrative, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were big-government creatures to begin with.”

      What’s the other narrative? The whole “Federal” in the name tipped me off. Anyway, it’s good to see he didn’t miss the day they taught snarky passive aggressiveness in J-school.

    30. #30 |  Lee In China | 

      Can anyone explain the substantive difference between a poor woman choosing to be sterilized for $1,000 and a poor woman selling a kidney for $1,000?

    31. #31 |  xyz123 | 

      sure thing, lee. in both hypothetical instances – po’ gal sellin’ a kidney; po’ gal gettin’ sterilized for money – in both cases, kind,caring leftists are outraged by her actions. never mind that’s she’s an adult responsible for her own decisions; never mind the contradictions of “it’s ok for her to get an abortion because no one can tell her what to do with her own body” and “selling a kidney is wrong because she can’t be allowed to do what she wants with her own body”; just never mind all that.

      it’s all about control. the left cannot allow her to make her own decisions: she might decide she doesn’t need their “help”. worse, she might SUCCEED without their help, and then – god forbid – and then tell other people.

      mix that in with the likelihood that the poor woman is likely to be black or hispanic, and you’ll also notice the poorly-disguised patronizing racism of the left. she’s really not *smart enough* to make decisions like that. (rather like they tell us sarah palin is.) it’s not because she’s black! heck no! it’s just that her poverty has … uh ….has unbalanced her, see, and therefore any life-altering decisions need to be made for her. by her betters in government. see? naturally, they won’t *admit* that. you’ll notice the breathless charges of “eugenics!!” in the comments.

      so no, there is no substantive difference. in the cases of ‘sterilization for money’ and ‘kidney donations for money’, the poor find their choices blocked and made illegal by the left, for the sole benefit of the left.

    32. #32 |  The Agitator » Blog Archive » Sorry, But You’re Not One of the Important Parties | 

      […] the two major parties a pass for missing the filing deadline to appear on the presidential ballot, I doubted whether a third party candidate would have been given the same deference. In fact, the Texas Supreme Court […]

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