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Judge okays lawsuit against President concerning violence at campaign rallies. Fne by me! I thought at the time that Trump was putting himself very explicitly on the side of the people who were being violent towards protesters at his speeches.
Good to see the media recognizing that the ACA/Obamacare is not in any sort of trouble from "death spirals," etc.
So what has Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) been up to lately as head of the House Oversight Committee? Eh, basically sitting back and relaxing and snoring and just being about as useful as the "g" in lasagna.
Okay, so House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep.
Devin Nunes (R-CA) tells us that the FBI "incidentally collected
information" on members of the Trump transition team. That means they
were surveiling someone suspected to be a foreign agent and a member of
Trump's team spoke to that person and the FBI caught that conversation
on their surveillance.
The ranking Democratic member of the House Intelligence Committee was less than pleased with the Chairman's actions.
The House is due to vote on the AHCA/Trumpcare tomorrow, well before the CBO has had a chance to score it. Why are Representatives in such a rush? That's easy, support for the bill is sinking like a rock. Speaker Ryan is trying to jam this through before even Republican voters learn too much about the bill.
This is a state-level win, not a national win. The
Speaker said: "No one should be forced to join a union or pay union
dues as a condition of employment."
Is it "part of being President" to go scampering off to play golf every frikkin' weekend?!?!?! The hypocrisy here is absolutely staggering. This is a president who railed and complained and carried on about Obama's much more modest and restrained schedule and who is viciously and without restraint slicing away at government programs that serve the needs of regular citizens. The ACA/Obamacare being tossed out in favor of the AHCA/Trumpcare, a very inferior substitute, is just the latest and most egregious example.
Very interesting that neither Speaker Ryan, nor Majority Leader McConnell, nor President Trump are defending the AHCA on its alleged merits. They're all defending it on purely electoral/strategic grounds.
Gotta say, Senator Franken (D-WI) makes a pretty darned devastating case here that Supreme Court Justice nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch is a deeply flawed candidate of the Judge Bork type. A man obsessed with philosphical details to the point where it clouds his vision of basic humanity.
Texas wats to pass a bill that, essentialy, would permit doctores to lie to their patients if lying to them would prevent them from having an abortion. This is a "fruit of a poisoned tree" policy. By definition, no policy based on lying and dishonesty can ever produce good results!
Republicans in Congress prove beyond the slightest shadow of a doubt that they are utterly incapable of conducting an impartial inquiry into Russian interference in the 2016 election. We need an independent prosecutor!
Another good reason to have an independent prosecutor. Representative. Devin Nunes (R-CA), the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee, does not appear to be familiar with major players in the Russian collusion scandal.
So, the very good news is that carbon emissions have been flat the last three years. The even better news is that economic growth is up by 3.1%. What does that means? It means no, we don't have to sacrifice economic growth in order to prevent climate change from choking us all.
From TPM "Trump Now Says U.S. Military 'Should Never Ever Have Left' Iraq"
Which is kind of an interesting statement, considering that neither Iraqi nor American citizens wanted the US to stay in Iraq by the time Obama came into office. The right-wing Cato Institute wrote this piece in 2007. Granted, this was prior to The Surge, but it makes a lot of good points. The Surge has grown mightier in post-war mythology, but as the right-wing Washington Times points out here, The Surge was irrelevant to really getting a real and lasting victory in either Iraq or Afghanistan.
Trump appoints a group of people to offices. In terms of their functions, they sound precisely like Soviet "political officers" or "commissars." Their job is not to do the job, their job is to keep an eye on those who are doing the job and to make sure they stay within ideological boundaries.
Success for the new immigration policy [/snark]!!! Almost 100 Africans who had all paid $500 to attend a conference in the US on African trade policy and had arranged travel several months in advance were ALL denied visas!
So the President is now at a 37% approval rating after not having gotten any better than 45% so far in his term. There are presidents who have dipped below 40% for short periods, but only four from Truman to the younger George Bush that were substantially below 40% for significant periods of time (Truman, Nixon, Carter and G.W. Bush).
How does Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price reconscile the two positions, that President Trump will provduce a plan that provides "insurance for everybody" with the fact that the CBO estimates the current "Trumpcare" bill will deny coverage to 24 million people? Price tells us that the plan consists of three "buckets" and that the really good plan will be here in the third bucket. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) "scoffed at that plan...'That ain't gonna happen.'"
Very interesting bit of good news. The private gun industry is doing very poorly under Trump. Paranoia was a big reason for people to stock up on guns under the Obama Administration.
A Fox News analyst made a baseless claim that British
agency GCHQ spied on Trump for former President Barack Obama. The
President said it wasn't his fault that he and his people
repeated the claim.
"I realize this may be an unfashionable belief
in a time of growing tolerance of drug use. But too many lives are at
stake to worry about being fashionable."
Art Laffer has never, to my knowledge, been part of the "Reality-Based Community" and he demonstrates that he's still not in that camp. He thinks the collapse of Kansas' budget was not because of ruinous tax cuts, but because the cuts weren't big enough. In reality, the failure of Kansas was that tax cuts are a non-solution.
Right-wing local columnist, with whom I'm rarely on the same page, gets it right. Muslim ban 2.0 was about the same subject the first ban was, religion and not security. It was about sweeping generalizations, not specific facts.
Okay, seen a couple of pieces over the last few months where people try to delineate the US media universe and where all of the media outlets fit into it. This is a much better study than any of them and matches my view of what our media universe is like.
Amazing that any human being can demonstrate such
Someone (likely Trump himself) got Trump's 2005 tax return to Rachel Maddow. Maddow goes over the reasons that 2005 may have been a highly unusual year for Trump's taxes.
President Trump proposes
ending "Meals on Wheels" for seniors.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was asked about cooperating with Republicans on AHCA. She has a carefully nuanced response that's well worth reading in full.
Interesting. Israel is accused of the "crime of apartheid." Had no idea there was such a thing.
Travel ban 2.0 blocked by court right in the nick of time. Ban has same legal problems as version 1.0 did. It discriminates against arrivals based not on actions, but on country of origin.
A really aggressive crackdown on unauthorized immigrants has the entirely predictable result of discouraging women from going to hospitals to give birth.
Tweet from Fox News. Very, very interesting! T-shirts with slogans like “Journalism Matters,” “Speaking truth to power since 1847” and “Democracy dies in darkness” are “anti-Trump rhetoric” and “media bias on display.” ZOMG!
Baker with strong Christian beliefs refuses to bake cake for gay couple. Pays $135K. Do I have any sympathy for them? Nah. Proper customer service means you don't go getting all fussy and particular about the moral qualifications of you customers. The shop owners should have simply made the cake, said a series of "Hail Marys" or whatever form of religious penance was needed and then, to avoid further trouble, should have folded up shop.
Can we please
now toss out the notion that Speaker Paul Ryan is some
sort of policy wonk?
Back during the early 1800s, "states rights" was used as a proxy for being pro-slavery. Representative Joe Barton has updated it only in the sense that "states rights" are now being used against women.
White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney wildly misstates the process used to pass the ACA/Obamacare. His claim that no one was able to read the bill is false. A few months before It was passed, I read a conservative blog post where a conservative went through all of the things he objected to in the ACA bill, citing each page that contained what he objected to. This put the lie to all of the Republicans who were running around with great piles of paper, "dramatizing" how huge and unreadable the bill was. Of course people could read it and many did.
Title of piece is NSFW, but seriously, the former NC Governor who championed the "bathroom bill" is upset because people now think he's a bigot!
Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price doesn't appear to be describing any proposal that actually exists in reality when he describes the proposed replacement for the ACA/Obamacare. Price describes a system that sounds really good, but that doesn't appear to resemble the AHCA that the Congress has proposed
First question: Does the president have the right to
or all of the State Attorney Generals (SAGs) upon entering office?
For US troops to help in fighting Daesh/ISIS in Iraq has never been a big problem to me. For them to fight in Syria has always been more of a concern as Russia has a very serious investment in keeping Bashar Assad in power. I support the Kurds and the US military is putting its weight behind them, so that's good. But Turkey doesn't like the Kurds, so the US may end up dumping them and betraying them anyway.Yeah, I'd say if Assad is now calling for US troops to stay out of Syria, we'd be better off reducing our involvement.
Very interesting that Representative King thinks six months is a reasonable time to examine a bill before passing it, a position that's in no way consistent with what the Congress is trying to do now. Couple of other interesting statements reveal that King neither knows or cares much about the impact repeal of the ACA will have on his constituents.
Before President Trump was inaugurated, the job numbers were fake. even thogh they're now very similar (Feb16 - 242k jobs, Feb 17 - 235k jobs) and now theyve become real. This is a perfect example of what's called "gaslighting." We're supposed to believe that nothing is true unless we're told it's true. The evidence of our own eyes and ears means nothing. We should be completely dependent on what we're told.
I like Professor Krugman's idea here! Instead of
referring to the
Republican health care replacement bill as Obamacare 2.0, it's a lot
more accurate to refer to it as Obamacare 0.5.
Heh! In February 2016, we added 242,000 jobs. House
Ways and Means
Committee Chairman Kevin Brady said it was "disappointing to see
so little growth."
400 more troops go to Syria. Erm, extremely important question: What exatly is their mission?
CBO has not weighed in yet on TrumpCare (Yep, President is now all-in on backing it), but Brookings Institute has and they figure that only a quarter of the people who got insurance under Obama would keep it and premiums would rise by 20%.
So is there an upside to the report on CIA hacking?
citizens can protect their communications and the
report tells us how.
GOPCare is massively unpopular. Why is that? Well,
Very encouraging to see that, while Speaker Ryan is in a great, tearing hurry to ram the Republican ACA replacement bill through as quickly as possible, some Senators who actually, y'know, listen to their constituents, are saying to slow down and hold off.
So the other part of the Russian hacking equation is: "Does Putin have a grudge against Hillary Clinton?" Turns out, and the Russian dossier that surfaced a few months ago confirms this, yes he does!
The essential problem with the official Trump Administration response to violence committed by white nationalists, the KKK and Neo-Nazis, is that there appear to be broad areas of agreement between the administration and these groups.
Kellyanne Conway doesn't seem to be really clear on whether she wants the Republican health care plan to be called "TrumpCare." I kind of agree with her on that. According to everything I've been reading, the plan is a complete cluster**** and nobody wants their name associated with it. I think the President would be smart to disavow the plan completely. Second, the GOP has been working on this since 2010, so it's easy to say "Hey, I came in late, they screwed it up without me."
Another reason to throw
the House bill under the bus is that the
...doesn’t cover “everybody,” doesn’t lower deductibles, doesn’t ensure that all Americans are “beautifully covered,” and doesn’t guarantee that “everybody” is “taken care of.
It would be a very good idea for Trump to distance himself from this bill.
It's pretty amazing that the Republican ACA repeal bill
to alienate all sides of the debate.
Someone argues against "white
guilt" because only 1.6% of Southerners owned slaves when
slavery was at its peak.
Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) concedes that the
Republican health care
plan may be completely inadequate and might leave millions of
out in the cold, but hey, poor people spend money on iPhones, so they
could get better coverage if they just had better priorities!
The ACLU does a thorough debunking of the idea that the Trump Administration parental leave plan is even mildly adequate.
Protest against desecration of Jewish cemetaries - 41st day of the Trump Presidency.
"House Republicans have
unveiled their long-awaited ObamaCare
And now for some comic relief, we have HUD Secretary
Carson! Y'see, some slaves, according
to Carson, had dreams and
ambitions and bright visions of the future! This was while, of course,
they were being taken without ther consent, to America.
Very interesting! President Trump appears to be comparing his first 100 days with Obama's and finds his own coming up short.
I blame Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's strategy of the last eight years for that. His heels-dug-in, scorched-earth strategy was very effective for getting the GOP into positions of power, but is a very poor strategy for actually governing anything. They're having a hard time switching over.
The blog Crooks & Liars complained before about being lumped in with unreliable, irresponsible websites that were just looking for clicks and bucks. They call attention today to "identity theft," sites that name themselves deceptively close to what legitimate sites call themselves.
So the idea is that Ivanka Trump is actually a closet liberal, who secretly influences her father behind the scenes.
..rumors began circulating that the White House was preparing an executive order that would overturn Obama-era protections of LGBTQ workers...
Pretty cool, right? Ivanka is acting behind the scenes
LGBTQ workers. But...
...almost a month after pledging to protect the rights of the LGBTQ community, the White House rolled back federal protections for transgender students. This time, there was no word from Ivanka — not even through anonymous sources.
So yeah, Ivanka's on the side of people who need protection, until of course, they actually need protection! Then she goes silent.
Disney puts out a cartoon story (Star
vs The Forces of Evil) where, after a part of the singing
takes place, we
pan over a group of couples kissing each other in relief. One
of those couples is, horros!, two men!
Most of the President's Cabinet is in place by now, but yes, the whole idea of liberals and Democrats is to gum up the works and to slow down the President's agenda. Why is that? Because the results of conservative policies that the US has been conducting since Reagan was in office (1981) have been crystal clear for quite some time. Helping the wealthy by taxing them at lower rates makes wealthy people happy, but that's all that it ever accomplishes. It never leads to anything worthwhile. "Trickle-down economics" never accomplishes anything for the non-wealthy.
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has called it a “good and growing example of what can happen when you have a robust array of [school] choices.” Okay, so let's look at her idea of what constitutes a good educational choice.
The voucher program offers different voucher amounts depending on what a student’s disability is; a child is assigned a funding level, known as a “matrix of services.” This website tells parents to go to a link to find their “child’s matrix number” for a 504 funding plan. This abstruse website is a good example of why some education experts say that vouchers work better for parents who have the time and resources to investigate how these programs work, and who can ferret out which school best serves their child’s needs.
Thinkpiece: what exactly constitutes a "good" political speech?
Just in case anyone wants a handy-dandy reference sheet, the LA Times is keeping a detailed, day-by-day run-down of everything that's happening for President Trump's first 100 days.
More immigration horror stories.
Companies relieved of the requirement to report methane pollution. There are other greenhouse gases, but carbon and methane are the two big ones.
There were no big policy changes and plenty of falsehoods and exaggerations in the President's speech to Congress, but some pundits were very taken by the fact that he "used his indoor voice" and stayed on-message.
There are two types of online education, public and private. Public online education is cheap, so all the student loses is time during which they could have been learning something useful. But private online education is expensive and neither the sudent nor the taxpayers makes the investment back. In neither case does the online education student really profit from the experience and employers are equally dissatisfied.
A mere 2.5 hours away from Standing Rock, where Native American Water Protectors were blocking the Dakota Access pipeline, a pipeline leaked 176,000 gallons of crude oil into a creek.
After the new AG Jeff Sessions admited that he met twice with the Russians during the 2016 campaign, a blogger put out this on Twitter: "PRO TIP: Next time Coretta Scott King tells you not to trust someone, believe her."
Also: here's a clip of Sessions yelling at President Bill Clinton for perjury back in 1999.
Verbalizing our outrage matters. Citizens of Arizona were infuriated that their state wanted to make protest illegal and said so, loudly! And the Arizona legislature backed down!
Yes, Chris Cillizza is correct in that tone and delivery should be noted when politicians give speeches, but the whole point of having highly paid and educated reporters is to go below the surface and to tell citizens whether what the speaker says is true or whether the speech leaves out important details. Anybody can be a theater critic of political speeches.
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