Eric J. Bowman

Eric J. Bowman 6 days, 12 hours ago on Utility work in Oak Creek means summer-long detour of Main Street

Burying empty fiber-optic conduit is the saddest fact of life in rural America today, and not just in Oak Creek.

That's right, $200 BILLION (using figures from 10 years ago) of taxpayer money earmarked for rural broadband, went to telco-executive bonuses and junkets and such.

Where there's no accountability, there's no incentive. Our lawmakers failed us on this one, in exchange for campaign-finance contributions, funded from that $200B. The media failed to give this issue much play, in exchange for advertising dollars, funded from that $200B. I guess that's better than no kickbacks. ;)

A fifth of a trillion dollars would've gone a long way, to not burying empty conduit on Hwy 131 through Oak Creek in 2017, creating a more diverse economy of innovative local businesses... yeah, I'm a broken record on that one too, sorry!


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Records suggest Steamboat's sporting good stores not absorbing some business lost with Sports Authority

Wait, what, Scott? Don't conflate overall retail performance with bricks-and-mortar retail performance:

"During the first three months of 2017, nine major retailers filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, CNBC reported, which 'puts the industry on pace for the highest number of such filings since 2009, when 18 retailers resorted to that action.'

Moody’s, last month, listed 19 retailers as financially distressed, including Sears, J. Crew and Gymboree. Macy’s, J.C. Penney, RadioShack, The Limited are just a few of the companies that have announced closures this year.

'It’s been a downward spiral for traditional retailers,' Christian Magoon, CEO of Amplify ETFs, told CNN Money."

Or from last week:

"This week, Credit Suisse downgraded the retail sector, saying the outlook had become bleaker than it had anticipated in large part because of events in Washington and through discussion of 'whether we think the risks of the border adjustment provision in the House corporate tax reform proposal are fully reflected in apparel and retailing stocks'. Other analysts have shown similar pessimism."

The retail landscape is littered with empty big-box space, and the smart money isn't betting on bricks-and-mortar retailing right now. Of course Gart Brothers is sitting there empty, in an era of big-box-store decline... perhaps Steamboat's overbuilt? Is there any slack left for small local businesses to "pick up?"


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Bob and Sarah Woodmansee: Climate change and the economy

Not just the soil! Kelp forests are disappearing from the oceans. Off the West Coast of America, due to warming & acidification of the water. Off the West Coast of Australia, they're being eaten up by fish which didn't used to live there. The widespread bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef gets more press (but still hardly any), while kelp forests are even bigger carbon sinks. Losing them adds that much more C to the atmosphere, while sinking that much less. TRAGIC!


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"And if you can't figure out that single payer is a takeover of healthcare and the insurance market for it, I can't help you. And yes I did support my statement by rightly pointing out that if they can do that they can take over all industry which is the central component of Fascism."

I can't help you, if you can't see that it isn't. What country with government-run health insurance, or even healthcare, doesn't also have private health-insurance and healthcare markets? Once basic needs are covered, it's hardly forbidden for insurers to offer, and consumers to purchase, coverage that even includes elective plastic surgery, or Viagra. Or Doctors' Offices to specialize in those areas. The difference is, the ability to profit over life-and-death basic-care decisions is forbidden to them.

But, for the record, I've never stated my approval of government-run healthcare only government-run health insurance. If that's taking over a market (which I don't believe it to be), then it's a market which shouldn't exist. I believe life-and-death decisions should be made between Dr. and Patient without government insurance, let alone insurance companies, interfering. Because death is always more profitable to an insurer -- why they favored a government insurance-coverage mandate which included healthy young people, so much more profitable.

But you conservatives need to get your arguments straight, in this thread we have one of you stating gummint healthcare is the cornerstone of Communism, and another of you stating gummint healthcare is the cornerstone of Fascism. Which is it, guys? And, seeing as how America is neither Fascist nor Communist (yet, in both cases), why couldn't our single-payer system rise above that and serve all citizens of a diverse nation regardless of their income or political beliefs?

Because the current system, and what came before it, is BROKEN. I'm tired of Republicans just telling the rest of us what we can't have, i.e. health insurance. Unless you think I'm undeserving, which I suspect but just want y'all to come out and SAY, then what's your solution?


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"Asset forfiture without due process, illegal search and seziers without a warrant based on probable cause when the constitution says upon probable cause you can get a warrant and a tax code that clearly does not square with the 14th. Where in the constitution does it say judges can reinterpret it?"

The CSA legislation itself, and the listing of MJ on "schedule I," came about in strict accordance with the Constitution, and even though theoretically it could have, it did not overturn the 4th or 5th amendment, that much we can agree on. Unconstitutionally abused though it may be, the fact remains that there was nothing unconstitutional (only incredibly stupid and shortsighted) about the Controlled Substances Act itself or how it was passed -- only how it's come to be enforced over time.


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"The larger point of citizen united was Roberts correct analysis that government has no business regulating political speech no matter where it's coming from."

No, the larger point is that only is possible if corporations are people, too. I will never abide by that concept, even if I may favor some of the resulting decisions, it's just wrong for the Government to grant God-given rights to its own on-paper creation.

You scare me, because if you believe corporations have rights of speech & religion, then by extension you also think they deserve the right to vote. How many votes do you think a corporation should have, btw?

What about robots? Do you think other artificially-created-by-Man entities should have the same rights as human beings? Should robots be declared to have the religious convictions of their owners, freedom of speech, and the right to vote? What about self-driving cars? Should they be allowed to unionize?

Wouldn't it just be simpler, aside from making one helluva lot more common sense, to reject this notion that anybody but human beings has God-given rights? Seems so obvious to me as a point every citizen should agree on, but no, partisan politics gets in the way of common sense, time and time again...


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"It was Obamacare that interfered with the religious beliefs of a closely held corporation's owners beliefs not the other way around."

Yes, it IS the other way around!!! What of Hobby Lobby's employees whose religious convictions aren't opposed to contraceptive coverage in their insurance policies? Why should an artificial legal construct have religious rights which supersede those of its employees? Corporations dictating their religious beliefs to employees, is what I find "absurd."

I don't care if a corporation is "closely held" or not, and there's nothing in that decision which explains why it should make a difference (which is to be expected when political ideology trumps legal precedent). When you incorporate a business, you give up certain rights in exchange for some very tangible benefits, i.e. the "corporate shield" and its associated limitation of your personal liability.

Hobby Lobby wasn't forced to do anything because of ACA. The owners of the corporation ALWAYS have the option to operate without those protections, by NOT incorporating (or un-incorporating). The downside would be higher taxes, plus personal liability if sued by employees on religious-discrimination grounds for trying to impose "corporate religious beliefs" (or even those of its owners) on employees. If you're not willing to face the consequences, then follow the law.

Which is why the Hobby Lobby ruling is so onerous:

If "corporations are people too" and deserve religious freedom, then the courts carve out an exception to prior laws like CRA. Provided a corporation's religious beliefs allow discrimination, it's OK to deny service to minorities? "No Shirt, No Shoes, No White Skin, No Service!" is exactly the reason "corporate personhood" has become so pernicious -- if you want to incorporate, thereby socializing your business risks to every member of society, then I'm sorry but you'll just have to serve every member of society. I wouldn't want to live in a country that's run any other way, any more than I approved of Apartheid in South Africa despite being white at the time.

Nothing more extreme & radical going on in America today, than this notion of allowing corporate discrimination on religious grounds in a country founded, for the most part, on RELIGIOUS FREEDOM for PEOPLE not CORPORATIONS. The biggest assault on personal liberty in this day & age, comes from assigning our rights to artificial legal constructs as if they too possess a soul and a conscience, or a God. Abhorrent, and valid enough reason to filibuster Gorsuch on principle (which anyone with the slightest libertarian impulse should understand if they can get past their political partisanship) even if it does trigger the whiny, childish GOP to invoke the nuclear option.


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"BTW, it's not just Colorado's flawed attempt. California and Oregon voted it down too by wide margins and Vermont couldn't figure out how to pay for it and thus scrapped it. This is the proper arena for such referendums and experiments. I don't see too many states clamoring for it so why should the feds be?"

The attraction Americans have for Federal single-payer, and the reason it's unworkable at the State level, is the difference between having one market, and fifty. Why I call State-level single-payer, "fifty-payer."

Can I ask you why you feel I'm undeserving of health insurance coverage until I'm 65, if even then as you also think Medicare's unconstitutional? Or do you have some other solution whereby I don't have to bankrupt myself, my family, or commit suicide if I'm diagnosed with cancer or something? Hardly a farfetched notion, happens every day in America.

I obviously disagree with you that single-payer is a threat to my Freedom, and would think so even if I wasn't more worried about my and my family's LIVES if, say, I was able to acquire health insurance without literally mortgaging the farm.


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

BTW, in case nobody noticed this:

"Despite divided views towards the 2010 health law, three-fourths of the public think President Trump and his administration should do what they can to make the current health care law work..."

Which begs the question, is Donald Trump prepared to be the President of the United States of America, or just his supporters?


Eric J. Bowman 2 weeks, 6 days ago on Christine Manzanares: We want government-run health care

"Your Marijuana analysis is absurd. If they could have just used legislation then why didn't they do that for alcohol?"

Huh? Do you not get the difference, that no treaty was involved with alcohol prohibition? That's the reason. MJ prohibition was enacted due to a treaty being signed agreeing to do so, and to quote the Constitution at ya:

"This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding."

There's not even a requirement for a treaty to be constitutional, i.e. it's the other mechanism besides direct amendment for changing the Constitution. This is scary because most Americans are ignorant of this, and pay little attention to treaties, which is how we came so close to adopting ISDS (Investor/State Dispute Settlement) under TPP, abrogating our national sovereignty to international panels of corporate-appointed attorneys who don't give a hoot about our rights as Americans.

So I'm not sure how my comment you quoted is "absurd" given the direct text of the Constitution, and the factual differences between how alcohol and mj prohibition came about?