Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Moore: Dems will lose again with a centrist

He notes that 90,000 people in Michigan voted a straight Dem ticket but left blank the Presidential candidate. Moore thinks it's because they were sending the Party a message that the are fed up with centrist candidates and they want a true progressive in that slot. Moore thinks if we make that mistake again the result will be the same.

Yang backtracks on Medicare For All

He used to be for it but has come out with his own plan that is nothing like MFA, even though he tries to claim that it is.

Mulvaney and staff involved in withholding Ukraine aid

According to this story. No wonder Dump and McConnell won't let them testify. It's ok. As time passes, more and more will come out about all these guilty crooks and we the people will just vote their asses out of office for at least a generation.
"The New York Times reported Sunday that Mulvaney was flying with President Donald Trump on Air Force One in June when he emailed his senior adviser to ask, 'Did we ever find out about the money for Ukraine and whether we can hold it back?'
"The adviser, Robert Blair, emailed back that it could be done, but he warned that they should '[e]xpect Congress to become unhinged,' the report said, citing a previously undisclosed email. Assisting Mulvaney execute the hold were Blair and three officials in the White House Office of Management and Budget, Russell Vought, the office's acting head, Michael Duffey, who oversees funding, and lawyer Mark Paoletta, the report said.
"The Times' report also showed there was high-level pushback from top Trump officials, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and now-former national security adviser John Bolton."

Monday, December 30, 2019

Reich: The decade of greed and corruption

Starting with Citizen's United, which opened the floodgate of Big Money buying our entire political system. The new House in 2018 passed the "For the People Act," which expanded voting rights, stops partisan gerrymandering and introduces public financing of elections. Of course in never saw the light of day from the corrupt Repugs in the Senate. But if we elect representatives, senators and a President in 2020 who actually represent us we can have the beginning of a decade that returns to democracy. Want democracy? Then you know what to do.

Next time you have the urge to consume

Consider where the urge comes from and choose wisely. Your everyday choices have huge consequences.

The pressitutes lie about a strong economy

Excellent piece on the corporate media's lie about a strong economy. As a fact check, what's in your wallet?

"Record inequality and corporate profits are what media presstitutes call a 'Strong Economy'. Corporate propaganda outlets have an inherent interest in cloaking class warfare by equating a strong economy with the prosperity of the investor class, even as it comes at the expense of everyone else."

"Despite what media say, most Americans believe that the economic system is rigged to benefit the wealthy elite at the expense of the working class (CNN; Pew Research; Common Dreams). Do the standard economic metrics deployed by corporate journalists accurately capture and explain the feelings and economic situation of most American workers?"

"Corporate media tells nothing but self serving lies! The so-called 'strong economy' is strong for no one but the top 1% parasites. Check your wallet — it's likely empty! That's the evidence you should believe."

This hat captures him much better

Had to share this one. It's why he's deathly afraid of strong women and democracy.

US needs to be more like Sweden

Sweden is one of the happiest and most democratic countries in the world. Let's be more like them.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

How cooperatives are driving the new economy

See this Evonomics article on the topic based on Tomasello's research in this article. You can also see his latest research in his 2019 book Becoming Human: A Theory of Ontogeny. You can find a free copy here. It supports that cooperatives are much more in line with our evolutionary heritage than the corporate structure, thus highlighting the different focuses in evolutionary theory itself.

"New peer-reviewed research by Michael Tomasello, an American psychologist and co-director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, has synthesized three decades of research to develop a comprehensive evolutionary theory of human cooperation. What can we learn about sharing as a result?

"Tomasello holds that there were two key steps that led to humans’ unique form of interdependence. The first was all about who was coming to dinner. Approximately two million years ago, a fledgling species known as Homo habilis emerged on the great plains of Africa. At the same time that these four-foot-tall, bipedal apes appeared, a period of global cooling produced vast, open environments. This climate change event ultimately forced our hominid ancestors to adapt to a new way of life or perish entirely. Since they lacked the ability to take down large game, like the ferocious carnivores of the early Pleistocene, the solution they hit upon was scavenging the carcasses of recently killed large mammals. The analysis of fossil bones from this period has revealed evidence of stone-tool cut marks overlaid on top of carnivore teeth marks. The precursors of modern humans had a habit of arriving late to the feast.

The dire, frightening truth

Reich accurately accesses the Presidunce. We really are on the verge of annihilation and should acknowledge it and get active in whatever way we can to get that madman out of power. Reich:

"Alert: Trump’s tweeting in the past several days has been so bizarre—including at least four accounts devoted to the Pizzagate conspiracy theory QAnon, as well as one that describes former President Obama as 'Satan’s Muslim scum'—as to raise new doubts about his state of mind.

"It is no longer a case of excessive narcissism or grandiosity. We’re not simply dealing with an unusually large ego, or an extremely petty and vindictive personality. Friends, the president of the United States is seriously, frighteningly, dangerously unstable. And he’s growing more unhinged by the day.

"What to do? Senate Republican lapdogs won’t convict him of his impeachable offenses. The 25th amendment is almost an impossibility because he'd immediately fire any of his cabinet that invoke it. So we are left with only one possibility: Do everything in our power to vote this man out of office. In the meantime, pray that we make it through the next 14 months."

Yes, this happened in America in 2019

And still Dump and cruel Repugs defend this atrocious, Nazi policy. What have we become?

The Age of Entanglement

It is superseding the Age of Enlightenment as the dominant paradigm. It also applies to our models, many of which still retain the apparent logical necessities of Enlightenment hierarchical categorization. Entanglement is much more hier(an)archically synplex. Yes, we are still in transition, retaining elements from the Enlightenment. And when we do see evidence of entanglement we try to fit that round peg into the old square hole. But it's time begin to frame our evidence within that new paradigm where it makes the most sense.

From this  2016 piece that began framing it that way way back when. In the New Year and New Decade it's time to play catch up.

"Unlike the Enlightenment, where progress was analytic and came from taking things apart, progress in the Age of Entanglement is synthetic and comes from putting things together. Instead of classifying organisms, we construct them. Instead of discovering new worlds, we create them. And our process of creation is very different. Think of the canonical image of collaboration during the Enlightenment: fifty-five white men in powdered wigs sitting in a Philadelphia room, writing the rules of the American Constitution. Contrast that with an image of the global collaboration that constructed the Wikipedia, an interconnected document that is too large and too rapidly changing for any single contributor to even read."

"As we are becoming more entangled with our technologies, we are also becoming more entangled with each other. The power (physical, political, and social) has shifted from comprehensible hierarchies to less-intelligible networks. We can no longer understand how the world works by breaking it down into loosely-connected parts that reflect the hierarchy of physical space or deliberate design. Instead, we must watch the flows of information, ideas, energy and matter that connect us, and the networks of communication, trust, and distribution that enable these flows."

Saturday, December 28, 2019

SEAL Team 7 on Dump's murderous hero

The patriots of SEAL Team 7 who served with Gallagher said he takes joy in killing anyone that he can. Yeah, I know, war is hell but the US military has rules of engagement. It's what separates us from rank barbarism. But not so Gallagher. He ignores the rules and takes joy in indiscriminate killing. No wonder he is a hero in Dump's eyes and why he is a madman to even his own team of the most elite fighting force in the world.

Bernie on the kind of society we want

He said it best in his FB post. The choice is ours.

"When it comes to billionaires benefiting from the generosity of the American taxpayer, the holiday spirit is alive year-round. Nearly 100 of the top Fortune 500 companies now pay nothing in taxes.

"Meanwhile, the Trump administration is kicking 700,000 hungry people of their nutrition benefits.
Republicans defend these cuts to food assistance by saying that keeping people hungry will make them work harder. But we know this is just about cruelty.

"This is what oligarchy looks like: Trump’s appetite to shower the ultra-wealthy with corporate welfare is endless – and so is his administration’s willingness to assault our nation’s most vulnerable and hungriest families.

"Ultimately, we must make a choice as a society: will we tolerate the insatiable greed and cruelty of the billionaire class, whose control over our political system lets them take food out of the mouths of hungry school kids? Or do we build a humane, equitable society that ends poverty, hunger, and homelessness – and allows everyone to live with dignity?"

Centrists don't want unity, they want neoliberalism

They just want to maintain the status quo privilege of big money, that's it. Don't fall for their BS propaganda about nice-sounding unity; it's a lie.

"In truth, the divisive attacks on Sanders and Warren have nothing to do with assuring Democratic unity, or victory. Rather, they serve to defend deeply embedded financial interests and the wealthy donor class on which the mainstream Democratic Party has come to rely. Such wealthy interests are adamantly opposed to the types of policies being advocated by Sanders and Warren—such as Medicare for All and a Green New Deal—that would threaten their concentrated financial and political power."

What's the Buzz?

This one popped into my head this morning.

Political spectrum

To the far right fascists that currently hold power in the Executive branch and the Senate those like Sanders seem extreme left when they are merely barely left of center. That is, they represent we the people, and fascists just can't have that.

Friday, December 27, 2019

Buttigieg's transparent ploy to lower average donation

Butt is responding to legitimate criticism of being a lapdog of billionaires. So to lower his average donation numbers he's now employed a gimmick: The most unique, lowest donation contest. Are these the tactics of a genuine progressive or more like those of a corporate lackey trying to hide that fact?

"South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg's 2020 campaign this week launched a "contest" to see which supporter can give the candidate the smallest unique donation—a competition that's conveniently timed just ahead of the fourth-quarter filing deadline. The campaign described the contest as an innocuous 'end of year guessing game,' but critics condemned it as a gimmick that appears designed to lower the mayor's average donation for the final quarter of the year and create the impression of a genuine surge in grassroots enthusiasm."

TYT also discusses:

Dump removed fed database tracking pollution

WTF is with these evil destroyers of the earth and humanity? Evil is the most accurate word to use. From this piece:

"TOXMAP, an interactive online map that used various sources to track toxic pollution across the U.S., disappeared from the internet earlier this month, alarming environmental advocates, according to The Hill. The 15-year-old interactive map was beneficial to researchers and environmentalists. The National Library of Medicine (NLM), part of the National Institute of Health, hosted it. Some of the information has moved to other sources, while some has just disappeared completely, as Newsweek reported."

Trance out

Watch this for a few minutes and enter the void of in/difference.

Complicity by both Parties

And still establishment Dems in progressive forums refuse to see their own Party's complicity in this. Paul Street interviews Chris Hedges.

"The Democratic Party at the end of the day is not so much feckless or stupid; it is corrupt."

The 1% loves socialism

When it's for them, but not for us. TFB, we want some of the pie and we're going to take it from you. Vote them out!

Dump adviser admits voter suppression on tape

It's the only way they can win and they know it. Dump's crooks fill his swamp. Justin Clark said.

“Traditionally it’s always been Republicans suppressing votes in places. Let’s start protecting our voters. We know where they are. … Let’s start playing offense a little bit. That’s what you’re going to see in 2020. It’s going to be a much bigger program, a much more aggressive program, a much better-funded program.”

Clark later tried to spin what he said to mean the opposite, a typical Dump fake tactic we know well by now.

Dem insiders: Bernie could win nomination

According to this Politico piece. This is a definite upgrade from them previously thinking it was impossible. And also a sign that they need to get serious about stopping him. The good news is that Bernie and Warren have the votes needed to win the primary, so if Liz gives him her delegates there is no way Bernie can be stopped in the first delegate vote. But those establishment Dems are devious, so we'll see how they try to thwart that one.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

A different measuring stick

Goes with this essay.

Brooks on the UN Human Development Report

Does all of the unrest internationally indicate that neo-liberalism has reached its breaking point? Wholesale inequality is a feature and not a bug in that worldview, so how do we change that? It's an ongoing debate between the left and the center. The former acknowledges that a complete transformation is necessary, the center just wants to go back to a status quo.

Great speeches in Presidential history

That we've come to such a moronic comparison speaks volumes to how deeply we've sunk into the slimy, stinking swamp.

Free corporate welfare and paid public services

The only free stuff is what the rich and corporations get in tax scams. Medicare For All and other social programs are valuable public services that we pay for in taxes. Know the difference and frame accordingly.

Comparision of middle class in different countries

Now why do you suppose that is?

Economics for the Future: Beyond the Superorganism

The above is the title of a paper in Ecological Economics by N.J. Hagans, March 2020, 106520. The abstract:

"Our environment and economy are at a crossroads. This paper attempts a cohesive narrative on how human evolved behavior, money, energy, economy and the environment fit together. Humans strive for the same emotional state of our successful ancestors. In a resource rich environment, we coordinate in groups, corporations and nations, to maximize financial surplus, tethered to energy, tethered to carbon. At global scales, the emergent result of this combination is a mindless, energy hungry, CO2 emitting Superorganism. Under this dynamic we are now behaviorally ‘growth constrained’ and will use any means possible to avoid facing this reality. The farther we kick the can, the larger the disconnect between our financial and physical reality becomes. The moment of this recalibration will be a watershed time for our culture, but could also be the birth of a new ‘systems economics’. and resultant different ways of living. The next 30 years are the time to apply all we’ve learned during the past 30 years. We’ve arrived at a species level conversation."

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Jim Rutt interviews Nora Bateson

You can listen to it here, where there is also a link to a transcript.

The notion of transcontextuality doesn't mean something is without context, but rather how contexts are interdependent and as many as possible need to be considered. In fact, that is one of her criticisms, that when we take something out of context like isolating it in a scientific setting then it loses its transcontextual meaning.

This also relates to it being a non-linear process, one that doesn't move through a strictly abstract process of rules like some computer algorithm or classical logical steps leading from premises to a conclusion. That "if you go into it with a goal in mind, you’ve already truncated your complexity." It's not "a map on the wall or a structure or new jargon." It's a mutual learning in "symmathesy."

Going along with the warm data process, each group exploration, while perhaps following a general outline of naming and exploring the different contexts, ends with a new and different symmathesy, even if the same topic is chosen on different occasions. I'm reminded of what Zak Stein said in his essay on the mind as ecology metaphor:

"Ecosystems are composed of a wide variety of independent and yet co-evolving species, so there is not one central 'unit' that can serve as an overall measure of the ecosystem. Rather, to understand an ecosystem you must take multiple measurements in a variety of places across a variety of time scales. [...] No two ecosystems are the same. Every ecosystem is unique. Give two ecosystems the same input and you should not expect the same output."

I also appreciate the improvisational jazz metaphor. As a long-time partner dancer I have that experience frequently. Even with the same partner and the same song, each performance is never exactly the same given all the different interactive elements in that particular moment. Ironically it takes a LOT of training over a length of time to have the tools and techniques of musical and dance structure to play within them yet get creative with them.

However in the warm data process no special training is necessary. It's just people engaging the process and something new comes out of it. In that sense perhaps the training necessary might be already inherent to basic language and communication skills that we take for granted as the shared cultural backdrop, like Habermas' lifeworld? But beyond that maybe nothing more is needed to engage the process? Just riffing here. Someone else take the lead now.

Krugman: The cruelty of a Dump Christmas

Continuing today's theme, Krugman's subtitle to the above article is "Republicans aren't scrooges: they're much worse." Some excerpts:

“It’s common, especially around this time of year, to describe conservative politicians who cut off aid to the poor as Scrooges; I’ve done it myself. But if you think about it, this is deeply unfair to Scrooge.”

“While Dickens portrays Scrooge as a miser, he’s notably lacking in malice. True, he’s heartless until he’s visited by various ghosts. But his heartlessness consists merely of unwillingness to help those in need. He’s never shown taking pleasure in others’ suffering, or spending money to make the lives of the poor worse.”

“Many conservative politicians only pretend to be Scrooges, when they’re actually much worse — not mere misers, but actively cruel. This was true long before Donald Trump moved into the White House. What’s new about the Trump era is that the cruelty is more open — not just on Trump’s part, but throughout his party.”

And then there's Dump for the holidays

Speaking of public policy that thwarts the spirit of the season, Dump will steal from the poor and give to the rich. The tax scam he and the Repugs enacted is giving more money to the rich and taking it from the rest of us. As but one example, Dump will kick 3.7 million people off of food stamps. Now that's the spirit!

Something to consider for the holidays

The holidays being a time to reflect of how we treat and share with each other. Which comes down to how our representatives create laws to either enact those values or thwart them. Vote for representatives that support those values as expressed though public policy.

The pagan roots of Christmas

Another take on the holiday. Don't worry, I don't take it literally but rather metaphorically.

The white nationalist Evangelical take on this day

The Sun Returns!

The sun has finally returned to its northward trek in the sky after it's 'death' stall in the south since the solstice. Rejoice! Use whatever mythology you prefer for this Return.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Dump's pathocracy

Continuing this post, then there's this piece. In other words, seriously sick shit.

"The Trump presidency is giving us an insight into the ongoing development of pathocracy in America. Polish psychologist Andrew Lobaczewski described pathocracy as a process whereby society comes to be dominated by pathological individuals and groups. During this process, society becomes segregated into a pathological minority that gradually gains control, and a psychologically healthy majority who find themselves subjugated to this violent minority. Initially the pathology is most visible at the level of a president and the party that brings him to power, but it eventually diffuses through every part of society. [...] In the U.S. this process is well underway. To my mind, one of the outcomes of the impeachment hearings has been to show just how far the Republican Party has come under the control of those who mirror Trump’s pathological mindset."

Dump covers Bohemian Rhapsody

Putin accompanies on piano with special guest choruses.

Why Evangelicals fear atheists and Democrats

The bottom line of this Mother Jones piece: Projection. "Their fear comes from an inverted golden rule: Expect from others what you would do unto them." 

Potter on Buttigieg

Continuing this post, Crystal Ball interviews Wendell Potter on Butt using the McKinsey playbook. Potter was the insurance insider and whistle blower that uncovered their insidious methods, and he sees Butt playing the same fiddle.

"He's absolutely using the talking points that I use to create in my old job in the industry"

You can see much more prior to the bookmark.

Reich: Tech and the future of work

Tech makes production faster and more efficient. It will increasingly take up a greater share of labor previously done by humans. Reich offers some solutions needed to protect workers in this time of transition.

1. Workers need a voice from the shop floor to the boardroom in the design, development and deployment of tech.
2. Wall Street must be reformed to invest in workers instead of stock buybacks.
3. Rebuild collaborations between government and business in Research and Development, with government oversight for its equitable distribution.
4. Direct innovative tech toward climate catastrophe, poverty, infrastructure, education and healthcare.
5. Limit worker surveillance via tech and give workers some control over its use.

OMB staff worried the order to withhold aid illegal

Continuing this post, Sandy's Congressional testimony was that the OMB order to withhold Ukrainian aid was possibly a violation of a law, as only Congress can take such action to repeal that aid. He suggested getting advice from the Office of Legal Counsel before proceeding. Duffy went over Sandy's head to do it anyway. Two OMB staffers quit over the issue. Duffy's email also asked to keep that order secret, apparently knowing it was illegal. And still the Repugs refuse to have him testify in the Senate trial.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Rule of Law Republicans impeachment ad

They take aim directly at the current Repugs, showing in their ad how those in their Party fought against Nixon ignoring subpoenas. They demand Repugs do the same now. We know they won't, but it shows there are still some in the Party that still respect the rule of law. And it shows that current Repugs sold their values down the swamp to defend Dump.

Happy Holidays!

Those who say it is a war on Christmas to wish people Happy Holidays instead of saying Merry Christmas means they think America is a "Christian nation" and therefore Christmas is the only legitimate holiday this time of year. They deny other religions their legitimacy under the Constitution of the US, aka religious freedom in the First Amendment. What saying Happy Holidays really means is that you respect others' freedom of religion, and it expresses well wishes to them in celebrating their choice. You know, being kind, compassionate, humane: The sort of emotions the holiday should elicit from all of us instead of demanding that everyone celebrate Christmas. So in the spirit of the holiday season I'll say it again: Happy Holidays to your choice of holidays. May you have peace and hominy. (Note: hominy is the coarsely ground corn in posole, a regional southwest US soup).

Ukraine aid frozen 91 minutes after "the call"

More and more of this evidence will continue to surface. This evidence shows the direct link of illegally holding up the Ukraine aid until Dump got his favor. That aid was only subsequently released when the scam was uncovered.

"Newly released documents show the White House ordered a freeze on aid to Ukraine less than two hours after President Donald Trump’s now-infamous July 25 phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky. The documents were obtained by the Center for Public Integrity, a non-profit news organization, through a Freedom of Information Act request. Among the heavily redacted documents that the Center for Public Integrity received after a legal battle there is a memo that sheds new light into the timeline of the actions that are at the heart of impeachment proceedings."

We eagerly await this day

Sunday, December 22, 2019

The cult of Dump

See this piece. I've heard from some well-meaning liberals that think we just need to be nice to them, communicate with them on their own level, and we'll all get along famously. No, that does not work with cultists and the mental illness associated with it. What they really need is psychiatric intervention and reprogramming. Since that's impossible on a mass scale it's best to just defeat them in elections and keep them contained.

"We are witnessing the development of a dangerous and massive cult. And Trump, the cult leader, knows exactly how to wield his power over his supporters in order to retain his position. [...] The Cult Education Institute lists the warning signs of a 'potentially unsafe group/leader,' and almost all of them are uncanny descriptions of President Trump.[...] Do Trump’s supporters realize they are part of the nation’s biggest cult?[...] A psychological study of Trump’s supporters uncovered key traits that are remarkably consistent with the warning signs of being in a cult."

We need massive turnout

And we really must honestly access who among the Dems can do that.

Who is the frontrunner?

I'm more and more inclined to think that the polling is rigged and just doesn't represent the reality.

Jacobin: Bernie is the one who can beat Dump

Completely accurate analysis here.

"Trump can be beaten, and the way to do it involves winning three key groups of voters in these Rust Belt battlegrounds: first, the Democrats and independents who backed Obama twice before turning to Trump; second, Obama voters who declined to vote in 2016; and third, the even larger group of Americans who do not typically vote at all."

Bernie is the most popular Dem candidate. Populism rules the day and won for Dump. It can and will win for Bernie because he is the genuine article and people now know Dump is a fake and a liar.  Bernie appealed to those rust belt workers in the '16 primary who barely went for Dump when Clinton was the nominee. He also inspires the youth vote to participate unlike any other Dem. He has raised the most money on his side and will continue to do so, and all from we the people, not big money. He is also the one most likely to bring out at least some of that half of the country that didn't vote.

Ethiopeans paid $26 month to make Calvin Klein clothing

Just like big business likes it. And they know Americans will buy CK and not give one thought to those workers. From this piece:

"Ethiopia is trying to become the new Bangladesh of garment factory labour by promising the lowest wages in the world, but the workers themselves report they're struggling to survive on US$26 a month while stitching clothes for Calvin Klein, H&M and other brands."

Why corporate media hates Sanders

Despite his popularity with the people. They know why they hate him: He is against corporate domination in politics and they are for it. They could give a shit about we the people other than trying to manipulate us to vote for their candidates and to boost their ratings. That democracy is destroyed in the process? BFD.

SNL: The Democratic Debate

As usual, a fun cast of characters.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

AOC at Bernie rally in Venice

I bookmarked the video below starting with her. There's a lot more before and after her speech if you're inclined to explore. For me she is always the highlight. Sanders comes on around 2:47:00.

"Justice is what love looks like in public. [...] What this larger movement is about is establishing a loving society in the US of A. [...] What a loving society is is an advanced society."

"And by the way, for anyone who accuses us of instituting purity tests, it's called having values. It's called giving a damn. It's called having standards for your conduct, to not be funded by billionaires but to be funded by the people."

Luntz's focus group on the Dem debate

You can see the video Bernie put together on FB here. Obviously these clips, coming from Bernie, highlight him. You can see the entire focus group responses below.

Dump losing ground with 2 key voting blocs

See this article. This might just be enough to defeat Dump.

"Of course, it’s not just folks in the religious community who are waking up to the fraud of Donald Trump. Members of the military – another historically Republican stronghold – are starting to walk away from the president, too. [...] There is no question that many folks in these two voting blocs still support Donald Trump and will vote for him again in 2020, but even a small shift away from the president could be disastrous for his hopes of winning a second term."

Biden's campaign


Repugnantans' new logo

Courtesy of Stephen Colbert.

Where's the swamp?

Dump was right about the swamp, and he should know about swamps.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Uygur on #winecavepete

Crystal Ball interviews him. They explore how Dems taking bundled big money is seen as no problem business as usual, which is exactly the problem. We the people see it accurately as the wealthy buying politicians for their own benefit. We want representatives who refuse that kind of money because it's a clear sign they will represent all of us, not just those with money.

Interview with editor of Christianity Today

Continuing this post, Mark Galli defends his editorial calling for the removal of Dump, arguing that the facts in the impeachment hearing rise above partisanship.

On the Constitutionality of Pelosi's delay

Opinion from Professor Cass Sunstein, who likes and otherwise respects McConnell. There is nothing in the Constitution that prevents Pelosi from delaying sending Articles of Impeachment to the Senate. It is appropriate for her to require that the Senate process is fair. There are though Constitutional provisions and Senate Rules for how the impeachment should be handled and McConnell is violating those. Hence he is rigging the process. Sunstein provides measures McConnell could take to at least give the appearance of a fair trial, but Jefferson Smith brings up the valid point that we know we cannot trust that it would be genuine. Should Pelosi then suspend the process indefinitely?

Real Christians want Dump gone

From Christianity Today:

"Trump should be removed from office."

Bernie v. Biden on healthcare

It's another example of corporatism v. humanism. If you want to maintain the status quo of for-profit insurance companies, you know who to vote for. If you want to provide healthcare for everyone, you know who to vote for.

Warren goes after Butt in debate

Particularly Butt's closed door fund raiser with the rich in a wine cave. Want to maintain the status quo? You know who to vote for. What to restore democracy? You know who to vote for.

Bernie's best line at debate

Bernie goes after Biden and Butt for taking billionaire money. He hammers home that money in politics is a major problem and we must get it out if we ever hope to restore democracy. Want to maintain the status quo? You know who to vote for. What to restore democracy? You know who to vote for.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

AOC: Everyday people like when we fight for them

AOC celebrates a new poll showing that 81% of people overall support the Green New Deal. She said: "Turns out everyday people like it when we fight for everyday people!" Of note though is that the poll did not identify AOC or which Party supported the GND. And that knowing such information could likely reduce that support due to partisan bias and spin. Hence we must be prepared with our own spin to keep the majority support, continually framing that progressive policies are the people's policies.

Former Republican votes for impeachment

TYT provides a clip of Justin Amash, former Republican turned independent, on why he's voting for impeachment. Amash left the Party after the Mueller Report because he could no long stand a criminal and despot in the Blight House while his colleagues defended him. And Amash is no liberal; to the contrary he is on the far right of the political spectrum. But he is apparently the only conservative in Congress who holds firm to the principle of law and order, and that no one is above the law. That former Republican principle has been thrown into the swamp along with every other principle that their Party used to lay claim to.

Ball: Corporate media finally noticing Bernie

That's the good news, that they can no longer ignore that Bernie is leading Biden in key States. And that in some recent polling he is a virtual tie with Biden nationally. The bad news is that the Dem establishment and their corporate media cronies are about to unleash holy hell on Bernie going forward, as they cannot tolerate his real chances of winning the nomination.

Yeah, the establishment pretends to want unity, but that only applies to progressives who file legitimate complaints against them. That most certainly does not apply to the other way around. Their media war is about to gear up to full blown nuclear attack. We progressives must do our part to fight not just Dump and the Repugs, but the rigged establishment in our own Party who are out to destroy Bernie and those he represents, we the people.

Reich on the tax scam

Corporations and the rich are paying less, nothing, or getting refunds while we workers are getting screwed. Meanwhile, our debt continues to escalate because those at the top don't have to pay their fair share. Wake the f___ up America. Dump and Repugs are your enemies and your paychecks and taxes are the most obvious evidence. Vote them out and vote in those who will have your back.

Colbert interviews Giuliani back from his Ukraine trip

John Lithgow is funny playing Giuliani with his insane, paranoid Ukraine conspiracy. I appreciate that Colbert is helping us get comic relief at such dire circumstances that otherwise could elicit depression and withdrawal. Instead that relief helps me to keep up the good fight against fascism.

Pelosi delays sending impeachment to Senate

Pelosi said that she's holding up sending it to the Senate until she sees how they'll process it.  She wants to insure that it will get a fair hearing. Knowing the Senate they'll take action without her input, even if it's Constitutionally necessary. (Not sure that it is?) They've long shown that that founding document means nothing to them.

Merry Impeachment

And have a 2020 progressive landslide.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

It really is a simple sentence

It's amazing that Repugs cannot understand a simple sentence. They must've attended one of DeVos' charter schools.

Steppenwolf - Born To Be Wild

Throwback Wednesday.

Lincoln Project: Republicans who want Dump gone

While the Repugs in Congress continue to sell their soul to Dump, there are still some who identify with the Party, want to defeat Dump and restore the Party to its core values. They said in a NYT op-ed:

"This effort asks all Americans of all places, creeds and ways of life to join in the seminal task of our generation: Restoring this nation's leadership and governance that respects the rule of law, recognizes the dignity of all people, and defends the Constitution and American values at home and abroad."

Fact checking the Liar in Chief

Dump averaged 20 lies per day in 2019 and wins the Biggest Liar in History award. His total count since entering office is now 15,413, with two weeks left in the year. Repugs are of course repeating those lies, because they know the truth hurts them too.

Politifact: Dump gets Lie of the Year

As the Liar in Chief he rightly should.

Is this the Dem plan to defeat Bernie?

If what the graphic shows happens, will you still support Biden after the DNC rigs his win? Is cheating acceptable in the Dem Party? Look at the actual rules of the DNC, which indeed requires 1919 delegates on the first vote, and allows super delegates on the 2nd vote. Now why would they create that provision for a 2nd vote? It hardly takes speculation given the evidence of what they already did in 2016.

Fake Christians would crucify Jesus again

You just know it's true. And yeah, Jesus was a brown-skinned, Palestinian Jew, not white.

If impeached Dump cannot be pardoned

Robert Reich quotes Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution noting that once impeached by the House a President cannot be pardoned in the future by any President. That is key to prosecuting Dump after he leaves office. Here's hoping there are several jurisdictions that go after the Criminal in Chief.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Potter on the healthcare choice issue

Basically it's an insurance industry talking point based on pure spin. He understands Repugs using this BS but not Democrats. You can view the entire thread here and copied below.

Lately I’ve noticed some Democratic politicians defending the current healthcare system by saying it preserves “choice” for Americans. As a former health insurance exec who helped draft this talking point, I need to come clean on its back story, and why it's wrong and a trap 1/11 

When I worked in the insurance industry, we were instructed to talk about “choice,” based on focus groups and people like Frank Luntz (who wrote the book on how the GOP should communicate with Americans). I used it all the time as an industry flack. But there was a problem. 2/11 

As a health insurance PR guy, we knew one of the huge *vulnerabilities* of the current system was LACK of choice. In the current system, you can’t pick your own doc, specialist, or hospital without huge “out of network” bills. So we set out to muddy the issue of "choice." 3/11 

As industry insiders, we also knew most Americans have very little choice of their plan. Your company chooses an insurance provider and you get to pick from a few different plans offered by that one insurer, usually either a high deductible plan or a higher deductible plan 4/11 

Another problem insurers like mine had on the “choice” issue: people with employer-based plans have very little choice to keep it. You can lose it if your company changes it, or you change jobs, or turn 26 or many other ways. This is a problem for defenders of the status quo 5/11

Reich on the wealth tax

First he provides indisputable stats on wealth inequality. Then he discusses both Warren's and Sanders' wealth taxes. They are the only two proposing this in the Dem Presidential field. Just curious: If you're a Dem, do you agree or disagree with the wealth tax? Do you think it should be a central plank of a Dem Presidential agenda?

Bonhoeffer on the stupid

See Bonheoffer's bio. I agree that it's a waste of time to convince the stupid. Yeah, it's not PC to admit that some people are stupid, that we should care about them as people anyway. Those two things are not a contradiction. We can admit their stupidity and still fight for their rights and benefits, which is what the progressive agenda does. But that acknowledgement also frees us up to focus on those with some intelligence who can be swayed to enact policies that help everyone, including and especially the stupid. Those policies like better education, fair wages and benefits will help them rise out of their condition to one day be well-informed citizens.

Guiliani continues conspiracy theories

NBC reported that Guiliani (G), upon return from his recent Ukraine trip, is still floating debunked conspiracy theories. G admitted that he wanted Yovanovich (Y) out of the way because she was interfering with G trying to dig up dirt on the Biden. Now G is claiming that Y was the corrupt one because the fired and corrupt former Ukrainian prosecutor Shokin said so. G also met with Shokin's replacement, Lutsenko, fired by the new President of Ukraine. G also claimed Y was corrupt because she turned down a VISA for Shokin, when in fact "Shokin was denied the visa by the State Department because he was seen as having wasted U.S. aid meant to battle corruption, according to testimony in the impeachment probe." The witness testimony from the impeachment inquiry all back Y's testimony and debunk the conspiracy theories.

The "Bernie is not a Democrat" whiners

In this FB post Kathleen makes a great point. The underlying dynamic, at least for the establishment in the Dem Party, is that Bernie wants to make it once again a Party of the working class and quit taking the blood money of the oligarchs. He apparently doesn't join the Party because they refuse that simple, honest, transparent agenda.

That progressives in the Party continue to win, and that their caucus now has 97 House members and growing steadily indicates that we the people want that change in the Party too. I'm guessing when we achieve a majority Sanders might change his tune.

In the meantime, there is obviously no rule that he must be a member to run as a Democrat. And that he has to is testament to 2-Party rigging as amply noted by Kathleen. To accept that rigging outright really does say something about the complainers hawking the rigged narrative.

Dump is poisoning our pork

Not, it's not hyperbole. This is exactly what you get with deregulation of public safety, a hallmark of Dump's Swamp for profit. According to this real news NBC story:

"America's food inspectors are warning that 'unsafe' pork is likely making it to consumers under a change in rules for meat inspection. That change is now set to roll out nationwide to plants that process more than 90 percent of the pork Americans eat. 'The consumer's being duped,' Food Safety and Inspection Service inspector Jill Mauer told NBC News. 'They believe that it actually is getting federally inspected when there's no one there to even watch or do anything about anything.'"

Monday, December 16, 2019

Progressive Caucus learns to play hardball

As well they should with the corporate wing of their Party. Democratic leadership planned to water down the Prescription Drug Bill to accommodate Big Pharma but the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) pledged to block it from getting to the floor unless their changes were made. Pelosi relented and the Bill passed muster. Now that the CPC has 98 members they have the power to force the establishment hand and they must continue to exercise that power, for it represents we the people's wishes.

The traitors among us

Insightful Rolling Stone piece by Rick Wilson. See it for much more.

"As the impeachment hearings have worn on and as evidence of the complete moral collapse of the Republican Party has become more and more evident, it has become quite obvious there really are traitors among us. There are elected officials who have made the decision to protect a corrupt president by embracing conspiracy theories, refusing to acknowledge sworn testimony of career foreign-service officials, and piling on to Trump’s attack of democratic institutions."

The real moral crisis

Let's get our moral priorities straight.

Judiciary Committee impeachment report

Contained in the first Article of Impeachment it asserts that Dump also committed bribery and wire fraud. That article includes a pattern of behavior that goes back to welcoming Russian interference in our election, as well as obstructing the Mueller investigation. Therefore it is the House's Constitutional duty to check what Dump considers his unlimited Executive power.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Betty Bowers on fake Christian Evangelicals

From America's best Christian.

Wallace: Dump's assault on freedom of the press

On the other hand, Wallace is spot on in this criticism. He said: "I believe President Trump is engaged in the most direct, sustained assault on freedom of the press in our history. [...] He has done everything he can to undercut the media to try to de-legitimize us. And I think his purpose is clear: To raise doubts when we report critically about him and his Administration that we can be trusted."

Schiff defends impeachment on Pox

Next Wallace tries to throw his pathetic Pox monkey wrench in the impeachment process. But he's no match for Schiff, who gets to present the factual basis for impeachment much to Wallace's chagrin.

Comey on Pox Views Nunday

He defends himself well noting that the IG report refutes Dump's paranoid assertions that the FBI committed treason and spying, and confirming that the '16 election investigation was non-partisan and legitimate. Comey also admits that the FBI problems uncovered by the IG are concerning and need to be addressed. He also handles well Wallace continuing the spin that the Steele dossier was the major piece that led to Page's FISA warrant. Comey admits it was the tipping point, but that there was substantial previous evidence before the dossier that provided the basis for the warrant. Finally, no matter how much Wallace keeps coming back to Pox talking points, Comey reiterates time and again that the lying propaganda from Dump and Pox was proven wrong by the IG.

Smore Brooks

Continuing this post, around 1:02:30 he's talking about Peterson, whose psychoanalytic work might be relevant to a small audience. But he shouldn't be talking about politics because it's "like giving a child a bazooka." Which of course reminds me of my seminal essay "giving guns to children."

Around 1:04:00 the interviewer brings up American politics, particularly Sanders as a State socialist. Michael quickly disabuses him of the notion in that Sanders has always been about the decentralization of worker democracy, where workers at the very least have a say in their work all the way to worker-owned and operated businesses.

Yes, Sanders wants to centralize a single payer government healthcare system, a necessity to overcome the inequities of private insurance. However it decentralizes the actual healthcare in that people can still choose their doctors in their local communities, i.e, none of that is determined by a central State owning and governing healthcare.

They go on from there to note that markets are fine, capitalism is the problem. And that Marxist materialism is a much more equitable means to achieving parity and fairness.

SNL: American households

Funny cold open about how households in different locations see Dump.

Saturday, December 14, 2019

The billionaires backing Biden

TYT takes a specific look at those billionaires, their names and in what industries they are. Note that Biden has the most billionaire donors among the Democratic candidates. This should be a giant clue of the policies that Biden supports. If you like the status quo of the rich buying politicians then Biden is your candidate. If not then perhaps you should take Joe's advice and vote for someone else

The new face of fascism

Remember we've been here before. If you don't want to go back then get involved before it's too late.

Colbert interviews Schiff

His last and best point is that history will remember those who fought to uphold the Constitution, and those who wiped their ass with it. Let's hope our memory extends at least to the next election.

Colbert on Greta Thunberg

On her Time Person of the Year honor, Dump's infantile meltdown, and Greta's snap back.

Reich on the reality of our economy

From his FB post on what the unemployment rate doesn't tell you. If you're in this position Americans then vote out the con people that put you there and vote in those that will do something about it.

"A new study reveals the extent of America’s good jobs crisis: nearly half of U.S. workers are employed in low-wage jobs that pay median annual wages of just $18,000. Most of those low-wage workers are between 25 to 54 years of age — not teenagers working their first job as is commonly believed. Workers are understandably frustrated with these poor wages, with a majority rating their jobs as mediocre to downright bad.

"Unemployment may be at a five-decade low, but worker pay is going nowhere. Wages are still lower as a share of profits than they were before the 2008 financial crisis. It is unconscionable that with the lowest unemployment rate in decades, nearly half of workers are only earning $18,000 a year. This stagnant wage growth is not sustainable; we must address America’s good jobs crisis before it’s too late."

Sachs on the EU Green Deal

As usual, the EU beats the US to the necessary socioeconomic punch. Time for the US to catch up in 2020.

"Europe has done it. The European Green Deal announced by the European Commission is the first comprehensive plan to achieve sustainable development in any major world region. As such, it becomes a global benchmark – a 'how-to' guide for planning the transformation to a prosperous, socially inclusive, and environmentally sustainable economy."

"The goals of sustainable development are spelled out clearly; targets are based on the time-bound goals; and processes and procedures are established in line with the targets. The overarching objectives are to reach 'climate neutrality' (net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions) by 2050; a circular economy that ends the destructive pollution caused by plastics and other petrochemicals, pesticides, and other waste and toxic substances; and a “farm-to-fork” food system that neither kills people with an overly processed diet nor kills the land with unsustainable agricultural practices."

Friday, December 13, 2019

AOC nails it again

As usual, she boils it down to the core issue. There is no choice with the current corrupt system. You either take it or you suffer and likely die a slow, horrible death after spending your life savings. Some choice.

If you are a CA NPP

Be aware of California's rules for voting in a primary. I'm presuming that a decline-to-state now means no party preference, but it you are NPP you should check both the the CA Sec. of State and the CA Dem Party long before you vote.

From the CA Sec. of State:

"For presidential primary elections: NPP voters will receive a “non-partisan” ballot that does not include presidential candidates. A nonpartisan ballot contains only the names of candidates for voter-nominated offices and local nonpartisan offices and measures. However, NPP voters may vote in a political party's partisan election if the political party, by party rule duly noticed to the Secretary of State, authorizes NPP voters to vote in the next presidential primary election. An NPP voter may request the ballot of one of the political parties, if any, that authorizes NPP voters to vote in the presidential primary election."

From the CA Dem Party:

"No person shall be entitled to vote for a Democratic candidate at a partisan primary election unless they are:1) a registered Democrat,or 2) registered as a Decline-to-State who requests a Democratic ballot,and is recorded as having done so" (62).


Those damned liberals