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Karen Sandness

Minneapolis, MN
Commenter for
6 years 10 weeks

Recent Comments

poor people not paying taxes and receiving benefits.

I'm sure they'd be happy to trade places with you and pay your "burdensome" taxes if they could earn enough money NOT to qualify for food stamps.

Posted on 04/18/14 at 11:33 pm in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

Anyone who thinks otherwise probably hasn't been there recently. Even Iceland has immigrants, as I found out when I visited.

Anyway, the idea that lack of immigrants makes it easier to have social democracy is just a bit racist. It implies that immigrants are not as intelligent, honest, or hard-working or otherwise worthy as native-born citizens.

Norway does have oil at present, but I've seen articles in business magazines praising Norway's stewardship of its oil revenue. It's...

Posted on 04/19/14 at 10:58 am in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

etc. is commonly attributed to Benjamin Franklin in right-wing sources.

However, a bit of Googling reveals that there are no citations of this aphorism from before 1988, which suggests that it is another product of the right-wing's Spurious Quotes from the Founding Fathers Co., Inc.

Similar sentiments, which just happen to coincide with extreme Republican ideology, have been falsely attributed to Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and George Washington. All are twentieth...

Posted on 04/19/14 at 11:54 am in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

While I grant the possibility of mismanagement on the part of the Venezuelan government (although the private sector is certainly capable of mismanagement, especially when short-term profit-oriented thinking overrides their common sense), the lack of investment sounds like a "capital strike."

It's not that investors couldn't make money off Venezuela's oil. It's that they no longer own the government as they did in the pre-Chavez days, so in a fit of pique, they refuse to invest.

Posted on 04/23/14 at 01:28 pm in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

that having a large population of immigrants from poor countries is in itself a reason not to have social programs.

Are you assuming that immigrants from poor countries are too stupid to benefit from good schools?

Are you assuming that immigrants from poor countries are so lazy that they will glom onto the welfare system and never let go?

Are you assuming that they are more prone to crime than people born in the U.S.?

Or do immigrants from everywhere go through a...

Posted on 04/23/14 at 01:31 pm in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

if someone would hire them and not tell them that they were "over qualified" for Target or McDonald's but too old (phrased at "out-of-date," "not a fit with our corporate culture") for the professional and business jobs that they used to do.

Posted on 04/23/14 at 01:58 pm in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

reasons. Right-wingers like to say "Spain and Greece" as if their situations are the same, but in fact, the causes of their troubles are quite different.

Spain actually had low deficits until recently, but it crashed due to a housing market collapse that rippled over from Britain. (Spain functions as a kind of Florida for British winter vacationers and retirees. And I may add that neither Britain nor Spain had a Fannie Mae or Freddy Mac or Chris Dodd or Barney Frank.)

Greece...

Posted on 04/24/14 at 03:09 pm in response to Lane Kenworthy on why we’re headed toward social democracy

But they have to find another country willing to take them. Spain has a visa program for any Cuban who can claim full or partial Spanish ancestry, and anyone who can get a Spanish visa is allowed to leave. (I visited Cuba with a church group, and we saw the lines outside the Spanish embassy.)

The U.S. and Cuba have a treaty by which a certain number of Cubans can leave legally for the United States every year. Those who fall outside the quota are the ones who are "boat people." The...

Posted on 04/09/14 at 10:21 am in response to Amid cries of 'fascism,' bullying bill passes

economics in their private schools if they think that $7.50 an hour at 40 hours a week ($300, or an average of $1200 a month) is a living wage. I would like to challenge them to try living on that for six months and then report back on their experiential education in economics.

Posted on 04/09/14 at 10:29 am in response to There is no renaissance in U.S. public-transit use

They have built their entire careers upon traveling around the country trying to derail (pun intended) any new transit projects. (I'm surprised that Ms. Kersten didn't quote John Charles, the other member of the unholy trinity of transit bashers.)

They have been known to lie about transit projects and systems that I have extensive personal experience with, so I don't trust anything they say.

Since I read the Portland Oregonian online regularly, I know, for example, that the...