Jan 142017
 

I ended up feeling rather stupid yesterday, when I called Safeway.com to ask why my food was late and they told me I had scheduled the delivery for today.  Then I ended up feeling frustrated today, when they called me to tell me my delivery was cancelled due to hazardous driving conditions.  I’m hoping I can reach Wendy in time to ask her to pick up a few staples for me before she goes to work and bring them in the morning.  Today and tomorrow are holy days in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb.  If your team is still meditating, may the Orb bless them with it’s divine light.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:34 (average 5:28).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Common Dreams: The rise of political populists threatens democracy worldwide, a new report from Human Rights Watch (HRW) released Thursday says.

In its World Report 2017, the human rights organization highlights President-elect Donald Trump‘s victory in the U.S., the power grabs of "strongman" leaders in Russia, China, Turkey, and the Philippines, and the rise of right-wing demagogues in Europe, as trends that "denigrate legal standards and disdain factual analysis, directly challenge the laws and institutions that promote dignity, tolerance, and equality."

Trump and other populist leaders work from a similar propaganda playbook that supports bigotry and discrimination; scapegoats immigrants and refugees for economic problems; encourages people to give up their rights in favor of authoritarian rule as a defense against outside threats; and foments division between demographics, the report states.

We aren’t the only ones. We just have the worst Fuhrer.  RESIST!!

From Daily Kos: The Democratic National Committee is holding the first of four regional “Future Forums” today in Phoenix, Arizona. The forum begins at 9 AM Mountain Time.  You can view a livestream at democrats.org

…Candidates for Chair:
• Sally Boynton Brown, Idaho Democratic Party Executive Director, President of Association of State Democratic Executive Directors
• Ray Buckley, New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair, Association of State Democratic Parties Chair
• Pete Buttigieg, Mayor of South Bend, IN
• Keith Ellison, U.S. Representative (MN-5)
• Jehmu Greene, Fox News Political Analyst
• Jaime Harrison, South Carolina Democratic Party Chair
• Tom Perez, secretary of Labor.

I still like Ellison because of his progressive resume. If you disagree, who do you support and why?

From Think Progress: Early Saturday morning, President-elect Donald Trump attacked the Georgia congressman and famed civil rights hero John Lewis for being “all talk, no action” and presiding over a “crime infested” district that’s “falling apart.”

The thinly veiled racial smear — essentially suggesting Lewis is a slumlord — came on the weekend of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as the nation prepares to honor the civil rights leader with whom Lewis worked closely in the 1960s to advocate for racial and economic justice.

What else would a Republican Racist say?  RESIST!!

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Dec 202016
 

Pressure grows on McConnell for special Russia hacking probe
Sen. Cory Gardner plans to introduce legislation to create a select committee to investigate an array of cybersecurity threats.

Those are the headline and the sub-head of an article in Politico today, Dec. 20, 2016.  The first two paragraphs are:

John McCain and Lindsey Graham's bipartisan push to create a special committee to investigate Russia's election season hacking and other cybersecurity threats received a potential boost Monday as a third GOP senator announced legislation to make their idea a reality.

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) told POLITICO he would introduce a bill that, iff passed, would mandate a new select Senate committee on cybersecurity.  The move could intensify pressure on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who so far has resisted appointing a select committee on cybersecurity.  He insists the chamber's traditional committees, led by the intelligence panel, should handle the issue.

When Progressive Democrat Mark Udall lost his bid for re-election to Republican Cory Gardner (sob), Not in my wildest dreams, not in a million years, did I ever think that I might have to be grateful to him, or that he had the least smidgen of integrity or the tiniest suggestion of a spine.

I shared the article with the other administrators and editors, and I'm sure that no one is surprised that Lona, who is sharp as the proverbial tack, pointed out that A) he's still a Republican, B) the committee he's proposing is the same one McCain and Graham already proposed, bipartisanly with Democrats Schumer (NY) and Reed (RI) so it's not an original idea, and C) that the events he speaks about having the committee investigate cover such a broad spectrum that they might never get around to Russia.  And, of course, she is absolutely right.  The bill is kind of a nothingburger, it may never go anywhere, and even if it's passed, the Committee may never go anywhere. 

But why I brought up the suggestion of a spine is that McConnell is against it.  Outspokenly against it.  Even going on record with the appearance of challenging McConnell is noteworthy.  McCain and Graham have done so before and didn't surprise anyone, but Gardner is supposed to be "close with McConnell."  The casting of his proposal as far broader than Russian hacking was almost certainly addressed to McConnell, but he is still proposing, and writing a bill to propose, something McConnell has emphatically said he does not want.

There are a number of Senators kicking this football around – such as Chuck Grassley (whose attempt to suggest a select committee might be inefficient might be more convincing had it not been for the Benghazi circus), Susan Collins, Angus King, Bob Casey, Debbie Stabenow, and, in fact, the DNC.  James Lankford and Bob McCorker (Foreign Relations Committee head) have had their names mentioned, as has Richard Burr, who, as the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, is on the spot. Jeff Flake and Marco Rubio have been quoted.

But for Gardner's name to show up here, and what's more, associated with something McConnell doesn't like – I just have to say that things are getting weirder.

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Dec 122016
 

Last night I slept very poorly.  City street cleaning equipment was scraping the asphalt6 and making such a terrible racket that it awakened me shortly after midnight, and I could not get back to sleep.  OGIM!!!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:44 (average 7:51).  To do it, click here. How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: The AP has a story about a Trump voter that lost her property due to foreclosure by Mnuchin.  As I predicted yesterday.  Those foreclosures screwed a lot of people including many Trump voters.  Perhaps they will learn not to vote against their own interests.  Will this be the first of many such stories?  I can hope.  How might one get a list of people foreclosed by OneWest, reportedly thousands, to find more examples of this buyers remorse?

When Donald Trump named his Treasury secretary, Teena Colebrook felt her heart sink.

She had voted for the president-elect on the belief that he would knock the moneyed elites from their perch in Washington, D.C. And she knew Trump’s pick for Treasury—Steven Mnuchin—all too well.

OneWest, a bank formerly owned by a group of investors headed by Mnuchin, had foreclosed on her Los Angeles-area home in the aftermath of the Great Recession, stripping her of the two units she rented as a primary source of income.

The buyers’ remorse is just starting, but don’t feel sorry for Colebrook. Feel sorry for the millions her stupidity is helping to destroy.

From NY Times: President-elect Donald Trump refused to release his tax returns during the campaign and there is no sign that he will, ever. He broke longstanding tradition and set a terrible precedent for future presidential candidates.

Good government groups have been wringing their hands about what to do. Now comes an excellent idea from a New York State senator, Brad Hoylman, a Democrat from Manhattan, that would could force candidates to disclose their tax returns by making it a requirement for getting on the ballot.

Mr. Hoylman says that he plans to introduce a bill that would require presidential and vice-presidential candidates to disclose up to five years of their tax returns 50 days before the general election. The state’s Board of Elections would publish the returns on its website.

Candidates who fail to provide the documents would not appear on the state ballot and the state’s Electoral College electors could not vote for them. This is a smart proposal not just for New York but for other states as well. Even if a handful of states imposed the requirement, all major party nominees would have to disclose their tax returns.

This is an excellent idea and I fully support it. I could certainly prove useful, if the US has elections in the future.

From Washington Post: Donald Trump is talking about Taiwan again — and so is China in angry and mocking comments Monday that questioned whether the president-elect grasps a core element of relations between the world’s top economic powers.

In an interview broadcast Sunday, Trump said the United States would not necessarily be bound by the One China policy — the diplomatic understanding that underpins ties between Washington and Beijing, and leaves China’s rival Taiwan on the diplomatic sidelines with the United States.

Trump suggested the policy could be revisited unless America could “make a deal,” potentially on trade between the two countries.

The remark elicited an sharp response from Beijing, with the Foreign Ministry expressing “serious concern” and a party-controlled newspaper calling the president-elect “as ignorant as a child.” By appearing to treat Taiwan as just a bargaining chip for trade deals, he may also have irked Taipei, experts said.

If I start selling NBC suits, I could make a fortune from this Republican deplorable diplomacy.

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Now we know what Teabag Thomas and co-Fuhrer Putin have in common.

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Recounted Out

 Posted by at 12:09 pm  Politics
Dec 042016
 

I’m afraid there’s some terrible news.  Many of us were clinging to the all too slim hope that the recount effort, undertaken by Jill Stein might flip all three states and spare America the horrors of a Republican Reich, under Resident (NOT President) Drumpfenfarten and Vice-Puke Pence.  Kiss that hope goodbye.

1204recountGreen Party candidate Jill Stein is withdrawing her request for a recount in Pennsylvania.

The Green Party is dropping its court case seeking a statewide recount of Pennsylvania’s Nov. 8 presidential election. It had wanted to explore whether voting machines and systems had been hacked and the election result manipulated.

The decision came Saturday, two days before a court hearing in the case. Lawyers for the Green Party-backed voters who filed the case say they can’t afford the $1 million bond ordered by the court by Monday at 5 p.m. However, Green Party-backed efforts to analyze election software in scattered precincts are continuing.

The idea that the Green Party can’t put up the bond seems astounding, considering that Stein’s recount fundraising brought in far more than initially requested. However, what the Green Party claimed was needed went steadily up as money came in… [emphasis added]

From <Daily Kos>

Since the Green Party has cancelled the recount, I hope that they reimburse funds that so many donated for that specific purpose.  If Stein just puts the money in her war chest, her motives will surely be questioned, and rightly so.  I think she did this to be remembered as the person who tried to save America from Trump, because she now knows that if the people, who wasted their votes on giving her < 1%,  had voted to protect America from Trump, Clinton would have won.

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Chomsky on Trump’s Election

 Posted by at 9:01 am  Politics
Nov 262016
 

1126chomsky_trump

Not many people get to my left without sailing off in to the land where they need rooms with nice soft walls.  Noam Chomsky is one of them.  For example, he favors open primaries, which I oppose, because I've seen the primary damage Republicans do in Open Democratic Primaries, when their own candidates have no primary opposition.  Noam has a message for those voters who failed America, by refusing to help prevent Trump from winning.

Noam Chomsky Drops Truth Bomb on Trump's Election

Noam Chomsky has message for Trump apologists and normalizers post-election. "They're making a bad mistake," Chomsky said in an interview with Al Jazeera's Mehdi Hasan. While Chomsky initially backed Bernie Sanders in the primaries, he encouraged his supporters to back Clinton once she received the nomination. "There are two issues. One is kind of a moral…

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Nov 262016
 

My shoulder pain is still quite severe, so please pardon my brevity.  Tomorrow is both a Wendy day, and a holy day in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb.  My Broncos have the evening meditation with the Chiefs.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:11 (average 5:30).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube {TYT Channel): Should There Be a Recount?

 

Cenk described my feelings exactly. All three states would have to flip to change the results, and I don’t think that will happen, but any chance is better than none.

From NY Times: There are not many issues on which Europe, Russia and China all agree, but there is one: ensuring that President-elect Donald J. Trump does not undermine the Iran nuclear deal.

There are legitimate grounds for concern that the incoming administration or Congress will sabotage the deal, which Mr. Trump has referred to as a “disaster” and vowed to “dismantle.” The president-elect has also surrounded himself with people like Rudolph W. Giuliani and John R. Bolton, both mentioned as potential secretary of state picks, who have said they want an immediate end to the deal and called for regime change in Iran. Mr. Trump’s pick to lead the C.I.A., Mike Pompeo, recently wrote on Twitter, “I look forward to rolling back this disastrous deal with the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism.”

In the process the Fuhrer and Republican Reich will guarantee that we face a nuclear armed Iran that is even more hostile to the US five to ten years in the future, unless the Fuhrer plays ping pong with the nuclear football.

From The Nation: Fidel Castro is dead at 90. He took power in 1959, at the head of the joyful, raucous, and brash Cuban Revolution, which was immediately placed under siege by Washington. Castro almost outlasted 11 US presidents—Eisenhower, Kennedy, LBJ, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, Bush II, and passing in the waning days of Obama’s last term. Perhaps he just couldn’t bear the thought of President Donald Trump. Having been sanctimoniously lectured by all 11 US presidents on what constitutes proper democratic procedure, he might have thought Trump, about to take office with a minority  of the vote and with significant voter suppression, a vindication.

Fidel was a President.  Fuhrer Drumpfenfarten is just a resident.

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