Funny (political, religious) pictures

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Pretty much. I lived in cities that did everything they could to drive homeless people to the next city over, either by cutting services or banning the usage of things they may use, like closing off public restrooms or making laying on benches a finable offense. Not seen that as much here in the Austin area., but it's really big in "tourist" towns like Santa Barbara.
 
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As you can guess, they're all over here in the Valley. And there's plenty of places for them to squat. I think about half of the calls or issues the police deal with are over homeless people.
 
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Here in Columbus, we've just taken to putting spikes or rails on anything remotely layable. On the other hand, I've seen knife fights between homeless folks at the biggest intersection in the city before so... *sigh*
 

GasBandit

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Is A&M really furious about that or do they just have tighter admissions control and caught all the people trying to cheat their way in?
I mean, really, all the CONSTANT new construction down there, new building after new building after new building... tells me they're getting their bribes just fine.
 
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No, and it's all stuff we all already know, but sort of try to forget.
Sometimes it's very blatant - I remember being at uni, knowing the two sons of a big political guy, and thinking "both of these are going to be successful and rich, and neither deserves it at all on their own merits". One of them is now a returning senator (has already served 12 years), the other is mayor in a mid-sized city and CEO of one of our nation's biggest firms.
Seriously, I've done frat with them...neither could lead, manage, delegate, structure, or communicate.
 

fade

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That's really what the scandal is about. The schools are just pissed that somebody OTHER than them was getting the money.

What I really don't understand is why so many people seem surprised at all these stories coming out lately. They're about as much a revelation as someone telling me the sky is blue.
 
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What I really don't understand is why so many people seem surprised at all these stories coming out lately. They're about as much a revelation as someone telling me the sky is blue.
Some of us have actually seen it in action, and so it's not a surprise. But some people want to believe in the American Dream so hard that when they hear about how rigged it is, they automatically assume sure it's rigged, but it can't be rigged THAT much, right?

--Patrick
 

figmentPez

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What I really don't understand is why so many people seem surprised at all these stories coming out lately. They're about as much a revelation as someone telling me the sky is blue.
Because a lot of people have bought into the idea that America is a meritocracy where hard work is rewarded. They believe that best selling novels are from the best writers. They think that people who get paid more are the ones who did the most important work. They believe that poor people don't have money because they made bad decisions. They believe that employers care about their employees, and... so much other bullshit.

I was talking with my mom in the car today. She thinks teachers are underpaid, but that giving them an across the board raise would be a bad thing. She thinks only teachers who have earned the raise should be given it, because there are a lot of bad teachers out there who don't deserve raises. I asked her how she expected to hire new, good teachers if the starting pay isn't enough to live on. She said we just had to hope that dedicated teachers would struggle through hardship long enough to earn raises (that might not happen, because she thinks teacher's unions are bad because they demand across the board raises.)

Why do we want to believe that colleges are fair and aren't taking bribes? Because it makes it easier to believe that our school systems as a whole aren't horribly broken.
 
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I was talking with my mom in the car today. She thinks teachers are underpaid, but that giving them an across the board raise would be a bad thing. She thinks only teachers who have earned the raise should be given it, because there are a lot of bad teachers out there who don't deserve raises. I asked her how she expected to hire new, good teachers if the starting pay isn't enough to live on. She said we just had to hope that dedicated teachers would struggle through hardship long enough to earn raises (that might not happen, because she thinks teacher's unions are bad because they demand across the board raises.)
This, in a nutshell, is what's wrong with America. People think things should be done, but also hold a convoluted belief why the things that should be done can't be paid for.

Like the old joke goes, "all of the power, none of the responsibility."
 
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What I really don't understand is why so many people seem surprised at all these stories coming out lately. They're about as much a revelation as someone telling me the sky is blue.
Tell me about it. I've worked my ass off to come from a poor family in a blue collar town. I'm pretty happy with where I've ended up. But I have no illusions. There's a glass ceiling above me that I'll never break through..I'm pretty much at the peak of where I'll ever be.
 
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There was a girl at my high school who worked her ass off. Got straight A's and all that, just for the explicitly stated goal of getting into an Ivy League school and marrying a guy from a super rich family.

The saddest thing about that is that that's exactly how her life has shaken out.
 

fade

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Tell me about it. I've worked my ass off to come from a poor family in a blue collar town. I'm pretty happy with where I've ended up. But I have no illusions. There's a glass ceiling above me that I'll never break through..I'm pretty much at the peak of where I'll ever be.
I did the application interview for Harvard and Yale in 1993. The Yale guy was nice, but the Harvard guy looked me straight in the eye, and told me that I wasn't getting in because my family didn't have enough money. Even if I got in as one of the "charity cases", I wouldn't be able to afford it, so maybe I should just look elsewhere. With all due humility, I had a 4.0 GPA, high SAT, community service, 1 mile run record, violin accomplishments, a play that got a local paper write-up, etc.--all of which I worked my ass off for. And this lawyer sits across the desk from me, barely makes eye contact, and punches me in the proverbial gut. I didn't get in either. Never even heard a word.
 
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A) it's dangerously close to political waters, but yeah. The big American Dream thing has really evolved into something that keeps the average American subdued and content with their lot. Fact is, a LOT of those "unnecessary", "coddling", "socialist", etc things European governments do are meant to mitigate exactly those differences. The liberal parties want equal access, the socialist (or social-democratic) parties want equal opportunities. Of course, the system itself is still rigged, and oftentimes the bureaucratic systems built to combat nepotism tend to evolve to just another nepotism level, but still - they're trying. In America, people have been convinced that you can all make it on your own, that rich people and billionaires all got there on talent, and that they should be handled crefully because you might just become one of them if you knuckle down and work hard and don't complain.
It's patently false, but exceptions just prove the rule - for every Eric Trump, there's a hundred Self Made Millionaires Who Worked Hard. Absolute nonsense, of course.

There's no perfect solution. In theory, I'm all in favor of an American system where "everyone" can rise to the top based on quality and without interference. In practice, such a system quickly grows a (new) elite. A system where your parents' accomplishments mean nothing, and all children get exactly equal opportunities, is impossible - whether it's healthier environments, parents who can help with homework, better schools, more gym availabilities, language barriers or access to cultural activities, everyone has different upbringings and is shaped differently. A supercommunist system with everyone forcibly taken away from their parents to be raised by robots might be more equal but is not exactly the desired outcome.

And @bhamv3 : mansplaining is more or less exactly that: condescendingly explaining something either obvious or in ridiculous detail to a woman, simply because she is a woman. Assuming she's not as smart/educated/experienced enough. A friend of mine's an architect; builders constantly feel the need to "explain" basic construction concepts to her about plans she drew up. A male architect would be assumed to be knowledgeable, a female's supposed to be less able. Doubly so if she's cute.
 
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