Another Week Off

 Posted by at 6:39 am  Politics
Jan 202018
 

Experts in autocracies have pointed out that it is, unfortunately, easy to slip into normalizing the tyrant, hence it is important to hang on to outrage. These incidents which seem to call for the efforts of the Greek Furies (Erinyes) to come and deal with them will, I hope, help with that. Even though there are many more which I can’t include. As a reminder, though no one really knows how many there were supposed to be, the three names we have are Alecto, Megaera, and Tisiphone. These roughly translate as “unceasing,” “grudging,” and “vengeful destruction.”

But I’ll have to give them another week off. I have been having such problems with browsers this week I have run out of time just trying to keep up routine. I think I have one now that will work, but it will require more setup time than I have to give today.

I don’t want to leave my friends here high and dry altogether though. I want to address the imminent State of the Union word salad.

Many Congressional Dems are already planning to boycott this non-event. Here are short statement from just two, made available by CREDO.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CREDO is suggesting that all Democrats in Congress should boycott the SotU, and I won’t fight with anyone who agrees and chooses to encourage their own representation to boycott. But there is one Congresswoman who, it seems to me, has come up with the perfect alternative to a boycott.

Rep. Dingell invites wife of deported Michigan dad as her State of the Union guest

When Donald Trump looks out over the audience of his State of the Union address at the end of this month, he’ll see the face of Cindy Garcia, an American whose life and family has been torn apart due to his cruel mass deportation policies:

Rep. Debbie Dingell has invited the wife of Jorge Garcia, 39-year-old father deported to Mexico after living in US for 30 years, as her guest for State of the Union.

 

If you’re going to go, that’s how you should do it, all right.

That’s almost all I have, but as probably everyone knows, Colorado will elect a new Governor this year, and I am trying to learn about all the Democratic candidates, one of whom is Jared Polis. He copied his whole mailing list on an open letter to his daughter, which I will quote without comment on this day of the Second National Women’s March, since it’s self-explanatory:

Cora,

It’s already been one year — and almost a third of your life so far! — since we participated in the big Women’s March in Washington D.C. I’m excited to have the opportunity to march with you again this year in Denver!

I know at the age of three, you’re only just beginning to sense the importance of the fellowship we shared with millions of civic activists around the country last year, and that we will share again tomorrow. And while I’m sad that the first President you will know is not only an unacceptable role model but in many ways a representative of the past that we thought we’d left behind, I am heartened by how our community is responding and resisting.

I hope that as you grow up, you look back on these marches the same way I look back on the equal rights and anti-war rallies I attended with your grandparents when I was a kid. I hope tomorrow’s march helps open the door for you to a lifetime of joining with others to fight for a better, kinder, more equal world.

For all the great things about the world you were born into, there is still a lot of work to do. We still live in a state where a woman earns 81 cents to a man’s dollar. We still live in a nation where a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions is under attack. We still live in a place where sexual harassment and assault happen, and people blame the victim.
I entered public office because I believe in the power of public policy, changing the laws to reflect our values and create a better future. But policy is not the only thing that matters. Many of the problems we face today will not be solved through legislation or by politicians. They’ll be solved by people from all walks of life coming together to break stereotypes, break cultural barriers, and break glass ceilings.

That’s why we marched last year. That’s why we’re planning on marching tomorrow.

Despite the challenges and uncertainty of this moment in our history, there are reasons for hope all around you. From Susan B. Anthony to Rosa Parks to Dolores Huerta, to Colorado’s own Florence Sabin, we’re inspired by the strong women before you that have paved the path toward equality and justice. I’m proud you can look to your own family including your “Gramma” Susan Polis Schutz, who shattered the societal norms of her time to become a successful business woman and bestselling poet, even if she does feed you ice cream when she’s not supposed to.

This is just the start for you. I look forward to you living your life and building the future you desire. Hopefully the glass ceilings will be shattered by the time you get there. But if not bring a hammer.

Love,

Dad

The Furies and I will be back.

Cross posted to Care2 HERE

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Feinstein Spills the Beans

 Posted by at 12:40 pm  Politics
Jan 102018
 

Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) is not my favorite Democrat, as I have had trouble telling the difference between her and a Republican on more than one occasion.  However, when she gave Chuck "Snake in the" Grassley (R-IA) a Saguaro suppository by releasing the transcript of the Fusion GPS testimony, before the Senate Judiciary Committee she could not have been more patriotic.

1010DiFi

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, defied her Republican colleagues on Tuesday to unilaterally make public a much-discussed transcript of the committee’s interview with one of the founders of the firm that produced a salacious and unsubstantiated dossier outlining a Russian effort to aid the Trump campaign.

The interview, with Glenn R. Simpson of Fusion GPS, provided few revelatory details about the firm’s findings on the Russian election effort or on President Trump and his campaign. But both the circumstances of its release and the vivid picture it paints of Mr. Simpson’s operation and his chief Russia investigator, Christopher Steele, provided fresh ammunition to both sides of a growing fight over the dossier.

In his testimony, Mr. Simpson sought to portray himself as an astute researcher well versed in the Russian government and that country’s organized crime. And he said Mr. Steele, the former British spy he hired to investigate the campaign’s ties to Russia, had “a Sterling reputation as a person who doesn’t exaggerate, doesn’t make things up, doesn’t sell baloney.”

Mr. Steele believed that his investigation had unearthed “a security issue about whether a presidential candidate was being blackmailed,” Mr. Simpson told the committee…

Inserted from <NY Times>

The transcript verified Democratic claims that "Snake in the" Grassley had been lying about the character and quality of Simpson’s testimony.  It also counters Republican attempts to paint Steele as an purveyor of fake news.

Rachel Maddow covered the story.

 

Republicans are desperate to discredit the Mueller investigation, because Putin’s Pee-Pee Puppet is skating on such thin ice.

RESIST THE REPUBLICAN REICH!!

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Jan 032018
 

I’m waiting for Store to Door to arrive with my groceries.  They are already late.  After I put them away, I’ll gave lunch and go back to bed.  This is my only one for today, and I won’t be sending links messages on Care2.  I was up coughing most of the night.  Wendy is coming this evening.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:03 (average 4:36).  To do it, click here. How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (Late Show Channel): New Footage From Disney World’s Hall Of Presidents

 

The Trump robot stopped working. A Hooker-bot peed on it and shorted it out. RESIST!!

From The New Yorker: Starting 2018 with a political bombshell, House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Tuesday that he will retire once he is satisfied that he has completely wrecked the country.

“I came to Washington with the goal of destroying life in the United States as we know it,” Ryan said in an emotional press conference. “Once I look around me and see nothing but smoldering ruins, I’ll call it a day.”

Asked by a reporter whether, by passing the Republican tax bill, he had not in fact already wrecked the country, the House Speaker responded, “That was an important step in the right direction, but, make no mistake, there is much havoc left to wreak.”

Dang Andy!! That could be the most honest thing he says all year. RESIST!!

From NY Times: The Senate returns on Wednesday with its Republican majority down to one seat and buoyed Democrats issuing a full list of demands — such as funding children’s health care and protecting young undocumented immigrants — just weeks before another possible government shutdown.

Republican and Democratic leaders of the House and Senate will meet on Wednesday with White House officials to try to come to terms on a deal to raise strict limits on military and domestic spending before Jan. 19, when the current stopgap spending bill expires.

If negotiations break down, the government could run out of money — just as President Trump marks his first year in office.

Stand firm! RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0103Cartoon

Will the Reich bring back Palin?

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Dec 262017
 

It’s a dead news day, so this is my only article, and I won’t be sending links messages on Care2.  I have a busy night, because I’ll be doing my grocery shopping at Amazon Prime Now.  I hope your Christmas, or _______, was whatever you hoped it would be.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:33 (average 5:53).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Fantasy Football Update:

Here’s the latest from our own fantasy football league, Lefty Blog Friends.

Playoffs:

16Playoffs

Congrats to Patty Monster and Seth for beating Vivian and I in the semis.  Next weekend, they play in the finals, Vivian plays me in the third place game, and Wendy plays the Squatch in the fifth place game.  Good luck to all!

Short Takes:

From Newsweek: The U.S. will cut its 2018 contribution to the United Nations by $285 million—nearly 25 percent—an announcement that comes days after more than 120 nations criticized the United States for its decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Ambassador Nikki Haley made the announcement Sunday, but specifically blamed the world body for its budgetary excesses without making a specific reference to last week’s vote on President Donald Trump’s controversial Jerusalem decision.

This is the act of a deplorable bully! RESIST!!

From Salon.com: In a scathing editorial, The Salt Lake Tribune is calling on on Orrin Hatch — the longest serving Republican senator in history, to retire upon the completion of his seventh term, and also sharply criticized his staunch support for President Donald Trump’s agenda.

Hatch was named The Salt Lake Tribune’s 2017 Utahn of the Year, and while "the criteria are not set in stone," the award is bestowed upon a Utahn who has "made the most news" or has "had the biggest impact" either "for good or for ill."

Hatch’s can proudly wear his new title for his "part in the dramatic dismantling of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments," the editorial board wrote. Other reasons included the role Hatch played "as chairman of the Senate Finance Committee in passing a major overhaul of the nation’s tax code," and "his utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power."  [emphasis added]

The SLT is spot-on in their description of Hatch, but the last statement applies equally to every Republican in office. RESIST!!

From Washington Post: Grit your teeth. Persevere. Just a few more days and this awful, rotten, no-good, ridiculous, rancorous, sordid, disgraceful year in the civic life of our nation will be over. Here’s hoping that we all — particularly special counsel Robert S. Mueller III — have a better 2018.

Many of us began 2017 with the consoling thought that the Donald Trump presidency couldn’t possibly be as bad as we feared. It turned out to be worse.

Did you ever think you would hear a president use the words “very fine people” to describe participants in a torch-lit rally organized by white supremacists, neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan? Did you ever think you would hear a U.S. ambassador to the United Nations thuggishly threaten that she would be “taking names” of countries that did not vote on a General Assembly resolution the way she wanted? Did you ever think the government of the world’s biggest military and economic power would reject not just science but also empiricism itself, preferring to use made-up “alternative facts” as the basis for major decisions?

We knew that Trump was narcissistic and shallow, but on Inauguration Day it was possible to at least hope he was self-aware enough to understand the weight that now rested on his shoulders, and perhaps grow into the job. He did not. If anything, he has gotten worse.

And he has not hit bottom yet! RESIST!!

Cartoon:

1226Cartoon

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Dec 162017
 

I’ve had another busy day figuring out this week’s grocery list.  All the extra hassle is keeping me tuckered out.  Happy CATurday!!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:00 (average 5:05).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (Real Time Channel): Real Time with Bill Maher (2018) | Season 16 Trailer

 

I’m looking forward to his return in January. RESIST!!

From Washington Post: Congressional Republicans secured enough support Friday to pass their massive tax plan, a measure that would deliver a major legislative victory to President Trump and his GOP allies and make tax changes affecting nearly every American family and business.

Passage appeared certain after two critical holdouts, Sens. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), said they would vote for the bill next week.

They know what they are doing to America. They know they are bankrupting people. They know they are murdering people. They know they are making children go hungry. They don’t care. We must hang this around their necks, until me drive them the way of the Whigs. The survival of The Republican Party and that of the USA are mutually exclusive.  RESIST!!

From NY Times: The House Intelligence Committee is racing to complete its investigation of Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election, scheduling a host of witness interviews here and in New York for next week as Congress heads for its break, and, Democrats said, leaving other leads unfollowed.

Some of the most important witnesses are to be interviewed in New York by committee staff early next week, possibly leaving Democrats to choose between attending those depositions or voting on the massive tax bill coming before the House.

And in an indication that Republicans hope to wrap up their probe, the House committee has yet to schedule a single interview after the holidays, according to two committee officials familiar with the schedule. That has left Democrats fearful that the majority is trying to finish the investigative portion of its work by the end of next week, before the committee can connect the dots on one of the most serious efforts by a hostile foreign actor to hijack American democracy.

“I feel no need to apologize for concluding an investigation,” said Representative Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, one of the Republicans leading the investigation.

This is what they’re up to. When they are "done", Gowdy can declare Putin’s Piddle Puppet innocent, opening up more attacks on and possible action against Mueller. RESIST!!

Cartoon:

1216Cartoon

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Everyday Erinyes #104

 Posted by at 6:21 pm  Politics
Dec 082017
 

Experts in autocracies have pointed out that it is, unfortunately, easy to slip into normalizing the tyrant, hence it is important to hang on to outrage.  These incidents which seem to call for the efforts of the Greek Furies (Erinyes) to come and deal with them will, I hope, help with that.  Even though there are many more which I can’t include.  As a reminder, though no one really knows how many there were supposed to be, the three names we have are Alecto, Megaera, and Tisiphone. These roughly translate as “unceasing,” “grudging,” and “vengeful destruction.”

So, we’ve talked before here about deported veterans (“deported veterans” – doesn’t that just physically hurt to read or say?)  But we haven’t talked about, because I didn’t realize it could happen until I received an email this week, deporting people who are essentially active duty military.

Among those who watched the smoke rise from the World Trade Center into a perfect blue sky on 9/11[/2001] were an Army Reserve officer on the cliffs at West Point and a 7-year-old undocumented immigrant on the street in Queens.

The officer, Major Margaret Stock, wondered if the attacks might have been prevented if only the military had enough personnel fluent in foreign lamguages, such as those spoken by the plotters.  So she started designing and creating the Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest program (MAVNI).  It would offer expedited citizenship to immigrants speaking certain critical languages.  It would also make the same offer to physicians, nurses, and dentists (of which the military has been pitifully short for a long, long time.)  The point was to make sure, in Major Stock’s words, “we have enough people to protect the country.”

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which began in June 2012, opened the pool for MAVNI to these immigrants, better known as “DREAMers.”  When his mother heard about the program on TV, it was 2016, and the seven-year-old boy from Queens was now 21.  He was immediately interested.  His native language (Punjabi) qualified him, and he passed the language test fluently.  He signed the contract, and he took the oath.

“I, Harminder Saini, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”

Saini was now a soldier.  The only thing missing was his background check.

But the Army had tripled the number of background checks for MAVNI without hiring enough checkers to actually do them.

Saini is now 23 – still prepared to ship out at a moment’s notice.  He’s been reading from a list that James Mattis gave to a TV interviewer, and going to the gym a lot to stay fit.

But in September, Saini and hundreds of other waiting MAVNI DREAMers learned

…that the president to whom they were all sworn to obey had revoked DACA. The termination was to take effect in six months, at which time the MAVNI DREAMers who were not yet in basic training and on the way to naturalization would be in jeopardy of being deported from the country they had sworn to protect.

Back in September, there was some talk about a bipartisan effort led by Lindsay Graham and Dick Durbin to retore the DREAM program by act of Congress.  But so many things seem to have gotten in the way since them … has anyone heard anything lately?

Certainly there’s at least one Congressman, I am thinking particularly of a certain dentist from Arizona (who incidentally never served himself) who will gladly torpedo any such effort if he can.

Congress also has characters such Rep. Paul Gosar, a former “Arizona Dentist of the Year” who has proposed legislation barring what he calls “DACA aliens” from serving in the military. Gosar himself has never served, though the armed services have long suffered a shortage of dentists, as MANVI seeks to address.

“I agree with @POTUS that it’s time to get rid of #DACA!” Gosar tweeted on September 5, making sure to append a DDS to his name.

Tell you what, Dear Furies, how about you, Alecto, go after Durbin and Graham and – well, the old saying it put a flea in their ears, but I am thinking more in terms of putting a bee where the sun doesn’t shine, to really get them moving on this.  Megaera and Tisiphone, you get hold of Gosar, and find out who the rest are, both in the House and in the Senate, who feel this way (we all know these people are big on feeling, since they don’t think at all), and – apply some compulsory re-education.

The Furies and I will be back.

Cross posted to Care2 HERE.

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