Solidarity with our capybara brothers and sisters! 🌹

“Wealthy real-estate developers with government backing have to destroy nature in order to sell clients the dream of living in the wild – because the people who buy those homes want nature, but without the mosquitoes, snakes or carpinchos,” he said.


So much to learn... :)

Taxes Aren't The Reason

Blueprint Nebraska's latest proposal again misses the point as to why people aren't coming to Nebraska and our young people leaving.

Hint: it ain't the taxes.

It's the backwardness.
It's the science denialism.
It's the racism.
It's the homophobia.
It's the ignorance.

I've lived in this state most of my 50 years and am ready to leave.

And it has nothing to do with $$$.

(Besides missing the point altogether, the proposal also -- of course -- shifts the tax burden downward on the income scale. Because fuck the poor, amiright?)

Nation Continues To Sacrifice Children To Our Fear of Sex

Per the BBC, routine HPV vaccinations is dramatically decreasing the number of cervical cancers later in life:

Researchers said the vaccine has nearly wiped out cases of cervical pre-cancer in young women since an immunisation programme was introduced 10 years ago.

We continue to pooh pooh that fact in the Greatest Nation in the World where (via Science Daily):

Only about 16 percent of U.S. adolescents have been fully vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV) by the time they turn 13, despite national recommendations that call for vaccination at 11 to 12 years of age.

irregardles of the fact that:

Nearly 80 million people in the U.S. are currently infected with some type of HPV, a common virus transmitted through sexual contact. Every year, HPV causes approximately 34,000 cancers, including cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancer in women; penile cancer in men; and mouth, throat, and anal cancer in women and men. The most recent version of the vaccine protects against seven of the most common types of HPV that cause cancer.

All preventable with a couple easily-timed vaccines.

Why is my country like this?

I'll hazard a guess: Because of a harebrained notion that getting a child vaccinated against a sexually-transmitted illness will make it more likely said child will have sex earlier, a patently ridiculous idea.

Plus those type of illnesses are the rightful cost of sinning anyway, ain't they? 🙄

Reason I’m Not a Catholic, #69

I'm quite happily married to a Catholic cutie. We married in a Catholic church. My son attended a Catholic School through 6th grade. Hell, I attend a Catholic church almost every Sunday with my family. I've been asked a number of times by a number of people -- include our priest, who I like and respect a great deal -- why I don't just convert.

There are copious reasons (that I'm not particularly interested in getting into here today), but I just added one more today thanks to this tidbit on Catholic Theology and Oral Pleasure explaining how the Church does not allow oral sex, even as part of foreplay:

The first and practical reason, admitted by all the traditional authors, is that there is a concrete danger of completing the act before natural intercourse can begin. The similarity of the stimulation caused by oral relations to natural intercourse makes it likely that from time to time, at least, if a couple uses this means of stimulation, the man will ejaculate before natural intercourse. This would make the relations non-procreative, and thus wrong.

Shall we cue up a little Monty Python? Yes, why don't we…

The second and moral reason is that, unfortunately, a couple may develop a concrete preference for oral stimulation over natural sexual intercourse—what St. Alphonsus calls an affectus sodomiticus, an attraction to sodomitical sex. So they get into the situation emotionally of preferring an unnatural act and having the natural one only because they are morally bound to. This is all the more common in our time where many young people engage in oral sex exclusively so as to avoid conception, and once they are married, they end up preferring it.

A preference for unnatural sex? For shame… [g]od forbid we -- consensually, of course, always -- pleasure our spouse or accept pleasure from them in a manner that might not at least potentially conceive a child.

This being said, even the relatively (but not completely) austere St. Alphonsus allows oral contact with the spouse's genitals obiter, that is, "in passing," as a brief expression of reverence or affection without oral penetration. That ought to be romantic enough for anyone and would avoid developing an affection for an unnatural act.

Oh, good, I can at least get a little head/give a quick lick, so long as it occurs 'in passing', whatever the hell that means. Oh, wait, reading that again, maybe not even that. 'Oral penetration'? What are we even talking about here?

And then having some celibate-but-sex-obsessed way-too-self-important man telling me that anything 'ought to be romantic enough for anyone? Puh-lease.

Of course, the man may help his spouse manually to reach completion, as long as he does before or after her and in the natural manner.

Of course, before or after, in the natural manner 🙄

So, today's reason in a nutshell: Any god that is looking down from their lofty perch and condemns me because I'm showing my love for my spouse incorrectly is simply not my god.

Cue up the boys again…

Happy Valentine's Day! Celebrate in whatever manner you both see fit!


A Thousand Million

This notion that a high marginal tax rate is a dangerous idea is ridiculous, especially as you head further and further up the pay scale. At a certain point, enough is enough for any lifestyle you could imagine.

There is a widespread moral and conceptual error, in a society saturated in the ideology of competition and monetary success, that the property a person has gotten does not simply belong to that person but is, somehow, itself an embodiment of their personhood—that to separate a person from property is to attack their human existence.

This is true to an extent—to the extent that property secures a person food, and shelter, and physical security, and health and futurity. Even, despite the inequities and injustices that have emerged by this level, a person’s opportunities to have leisure, to make art, etc.

None of this comes anywhere near adding up to a billion dollars. -- from No Billionaires by Tom Scocca

  • Is $1,000,000 a year, $2,750 every single day, enough?
  • $10,000,000 or $27,500 every single day?
  • $100,000,000 or $275,000 every single day?
  • $1,000,000,000 or $2,750,000 every single day?

And yes, depending on the state one lived in and how ones income is classified (ie. wages are more aggressively taxed than, say, capital gains), after state and federal and social security and medicare and what have you, half or even more of that may go to some sort of tax. For instance, in a high tax state such as California:

  • $1,000,000 in wages? Only $521,000 left or about $1,425 every single day.
  • $10,000,000 in wages? Only $4.66 million left or $12,750 every single day.
  • $100,000,000 in wages? Only $46.1 million left or $126,000 every single day.
  • $1,000,000,000 in wages? Only $460.25 million left or $1,260,000 every single day.

Call my simple-minded if you must, but the notion that any individual's activities, regardless of their specialized skills or knowledge, could be worth $1,260,000 a day is preposterous.

There are no good billionaires. There may be some relatively good people who are attached to a pile of money that stacks one billion dollars high, but the money does not improve them. It makes them worse. Their good points would be no less good if they held only, say, 500 million dollars. And their bad points would be that much less of a problem for anyone else. -- again, from No Billionaires by Tom Scocca