Wednesday, March 06, 2019

A Civil War Would Be Complicated

The Washington Post had an article noting that a few Americans are talking about having a civil war.
At a moment when the country has never seemed angrier, two political commentators from opposite sides of the divide concurred last week on one point, nearly unthinkable until recently: The country is on the verge of “civil war.”

First came former U.S. attorney Joseph diGenova, a Fox News regular and ally of President Trump. “We are in a civil war,” he said. “The suggestion that there’s ever going to be civil discourse in this country for the foreseeable future is over. . . . It’s going to be total war.”

The next day, Nicolle Wallace, a former Republican operative turned MSNBC commentator and Trump critic, played a clip of diGenova’s commentary on her show and agreed with him — although she placed the blame squarely on the president.

Trump, she said, “greenlit a war in this country around race. And if you think about the most dangerous thing he’s done, that might be it.” In America, talk turns to something unspoken for 150 years: Civil war
The article goes on to quote other commentators who seem to be trying to stir up the violence of a civil war. Well, it does seem like the country is pretty divided.

But I have a couple of questions about how this would work. Like, the first Civil War had some geographical boundaries, for instance the Mason-Dixon line, and those above the line were fighting against those below the line. Union states, Confederate states, with borders between them. So what are you gonna do now, say, "Bill next door and I, and the guy in the house on the other side of him, and also the people across the street, are on one side, and the other people next door, the guy in the green house over there, and the family on the corner are on the other side..." I don't see that working somehow. It's not going to be red states against blue states, because the percentages are 60/40-ish in a lot of places. Never mind the Trump guy down the block with the liberal wife. What you gonna do, fight your own kids?

My other question is: what do they want? This is a serious question. I understand being against stuff, against taxes and bureaucracy and political correctness, but it does not appear that conservatives have proposed any alternative. For example, you hate Obamacare, okay, so what do you have that's better? Just "getting rid of it" sounds good on paper, the peasants with their pitchforks love the idea, but what happens when your own family member needs medical attention? Are there parts of the country where people really want the government to be one branch of a New York crime syndicate, laundering money and cheating people and lying? What is it they want?

Whatever they want, they do not seem to be able to say it out loud. Maybe it's just because of political correctness and the liberal media, but they obviously want racism back -- so why don't they say so? Why don't they just say, we want a Second Amendment for white people but not black people? We want women to be required to live as sex objects or unpaid domestic servants -- if that's what they want then they should just say so. Why not just say out loud, we want more black people in prison and more white people -- especially white collar criminals -- let out? Can they say, we want Mexicans to work in our yards and hotels and harvest our vegetables but we don't want them to have any of the benefits of citizenship (and we don't want to have to mix with them socially)? Why don't they just say, we want to be ruled by the rich, who should not be bound by the laws that apply to the rest of us? Then we would know what the alternative is that they are going to fight this civil war over.

They are willing to push the country to the point where a civil war seems possible, yet they are afraid to say out loud what they really stand for. If there is a civil war and the conservatives win, "owning the libs" does not provide guidance for running a country.

Here's where I think this civil-war idea is going to break down. I think that as we get closer and closer, conservatives will realize that they would not want to live in a country that conforms to their beliefs. The stable state for America is a somewhat liberal government that disaffected and resentful white conservatives can complain about.

Trump did not expect to win the the election, and conservatives do not really know what to do with the power they have now. Even with both houses of Congress and the Presidency they could not pass any of their favorite bills -- they did not make anything better, even by their own standards. They just want to complain. They can rebel against the government if they want, and we can have a civil war, but they will be sorry, whether they win or lose.


Anonymous Libby Anne said...

Creationists: Adam Named 3,500 Animal Kinds

I recently came upon an Answers in Genesis article titled How Should Christians View Biological Classification. I paused, initially confused—and then I remembered. Biological classification groups all living things according to their features, creating an evolutionary tree. Growing up in a young earth creationist home, I remember being told that the man who created this classification system was a Christian and a creationist. I also remember learning later that his classification system’s preexistence to the theory of evolution is viewed as as an evidence for evolution.

Namely: the similarities between living creatures were so evident that even before people even thought of the idea of evolution, they were already creating classification systems that grouped them by their features.

The Answers in Genesis article, written by Harry F. Sanders, starts as follows:

"While God built certain classifications into the creation, man has named animals since the Garden of Eden. One of Adam’s first jobs was to classify the animals. “Now out of the ground the Lord God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name...While this was a much easier job then than it would be today since no variation had occurred yet, it still would have taken him perhaps a few hours to name the kinds."

That last link above? It says...

March 06, 2019 12:39 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

The first man must have had a supernatural imagination.

March 06, 2019 12:40 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

In the previous thread I don't think I made my main point prominent enough:

The foundational Christian belief in heaven and hell puts faith and loyalty to grotesque injustice - infinite punishment for finite and often incredibly trivial crimes.

Ditto for Islam.

March 06, 2019 12:45 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Now you can rightfully say the Jewish bible is anti-gay, but there's nothing in there describing a god of shocking immorality like infinite punishment for finite crimes as we find in Christianity and Islam.

March 06, 2019 12:53 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Good Anonymous:

I want to again and again pose the rhetorical questions to Wyatt/Regina:

What is your highest priority goal for society?


How would the lives of transwomen like me (or "gender confused people" as you say) be better if we ended our loving relationships with our husbands?

Good anonymous, the point is to regularly emphasize that they have no answer for these questions as their moral code is counter-productive to the flourishing of humanity.

March 06, 2019 1:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I mean, isn't it really obvious that the author(s) of the new testament created hell because leaders knew they could control people in their presence but not when they were beyond the leader's reach?

The "true" story of hell was invented to exert control over others when they were out of your reach. They figured the only tool they had was psychological manipulation, so they conjured up the worst imaginable punishment for disobeying the leader when he couldn't see you. But, cleverly, the punishment wasn't dealt out until after you die and then it is the worst, most torturous punishment conceivable. That way the leader never had to prove they were telling the truth about going to hell for disobeying him/god.

March 06, 2019 1:15 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

'cause you know God always wants what the leader(s) want, lol :)

March 06, 2019 1:18 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

#umbrella values

March 06, 2019 1:23 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

If Wyatt/Regina ever do answer those two questions above, it will be an improvement for humanity.

March 06, 2019 1:30 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

When Wyatt/Regina show up in this thread, remember folks, one of the standard tactics to prevent rational debate for Right Wing Authoritarians like them (and my brother) is to massively mischaracterize their opponents' positions and statements as well as their own.

The lies, contradictions and distortions will be flowing like a river when Wyatt/Regina start commenting.

March 06, 2019 1:49 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

The core foundational beliefs of Christianity have far more in common with Islam than they do with Judaism.

March 06, 2019 1:54 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Every time Wyatt/Regina dodges one of my questions, they're announcing to the world "We have destructive moral beliefs, we have no integrity.".

I believe its beneficial for society to help them keep making that statement about who they are.

March 06, 2019 2:17 PM  
Anonymous peas and rice are awfully nice but not as nice as our current Supreme Court said...

"I also remember learning later that his classification system’s preexistence to the theory of evolution is viewed as as an evidence for evolution.

Namely: the similarities between living creatures were so evident that even before people even thought of the idea of evolution, they were already creating classification systems that grouped them by their features."

Libby, I don't that's necessarily a proof of evolution

it could also be due to the fact that they all have a common creator

"The Answers in Genesis article, written by Harry F. Sanders, starts as follows:

"While God built certain classifications into the creation, man has named animals since the Garden of Eden."

not sure Mr Sanders has his scripture straight

Adam did name the animals in the biblical account but I don't think he classified them

is there a larger point you're trying to make?

March 06, 2019 2:26 PM  
Anonymous beware the new Bolsheviks said...

the danger of civil war is solely because the let has concluded there is no other way to win

the new Bolsheviks have spread across the country:

"The past two weeks have been surreal. On Feb. 19, while recruiting conservative students on campus at the University of California-Berkeley, I was assaulted by a violent leftist. A little more than a week later, I got to shake hands with the president of the United States and address an audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference about why it's more important than ever to protect free speech on our college campuses.

As a field representative for the Leadership Institute, I travel to campuses throughout California helping conservative clubs recruit and train new members. I've seen the intolerance and hate toward conservatives on our campuses with my own eyes, and the only difference between what happened to me on Feb. 19 and every other day is that the event was caught on video.

Conservative students across the country have suffered verbal and physical assault, social ostracism and even academic persecution for voicing their opinions on political topics. This is because young liberals believe that they are on the morally righteous side in a culture war and, in order to win, they must silence any form of dissent. Leftists and the progressives aspire to nothing less than to make it de facto impossible to be conservative in public.

The United States is well on its way to achieving this goal, based on the Covington Catholic High School incident. Wearing a red hat near the Lincoln Memorial was apparently enough for the news and social media personalities to label the act provocation, and commentators worked aggressively to doxx the students. In their frenzy, students were even misidentified, and at least one boy and his family were allegedly harassed. By contrast, there was not a similar rush to expose the identity of the man who was caught on video assaulting me.

Increasingly, leftists believe they are justified to respond to ideas disagreeable to them with open hostility and even force. Students are commonly told now that words are literally violent and can be responded to with physical force. I don't mean verbal threats of violence or efforts to intimidate, I mean words that express ideas that the listener finds offensive or disagrees with.

The message that provoked my attacker was our sign that read "Hate Crime Hoaxes Hurt Real Victims," a reference to the recent case of Jussie Smollett, who was charged by Chicago police with filing a false police report about an apparently fictitious attack. My attacker said we were promoting violence, which, in his view, gives him permission to use any means necessary to shut us down. The irony is that the sign was intended to warn of the danger of disregarding facts and jumping to judgment in an effort to confirm a narrative our feelings tell us is true.

The message applies to more than the Smollett story, and the search for truth is certainly relevant on campuses of higher education, where students are supposed to grow personally and intellectually — not only through textbook and classroom learning but also by exchanging ideas, debating tough topics, and being challenged to defend their views. This growth cannot happen when speech is restricted — that's not only a disservice to students but a threat to our republic as well."

March 06, 2019 3:02 PM  
Anonymous beware the new Bolsheviks said...

"The Berkeley administration in particular has allowed a culture of intolerance and violence toward conservatives to grow. The College Republicans club has had its property vandalized, and critics have called for the members to be lynched. When there was a pro-Trump rally in April 2017, a former community college professor was arrested for allegedly assaulting multiple supporters with a bike lock. He later accepted a plea deal.

When Milo Yiannopoulos visited in February 2017, the campus became the site of violent riots. Some people even threw Molotov cocktails and fireworks, injuring students and causing $100,000 worth of damage to the school. Berkeley police canceled the speech after "an apparently organized violent attack and destruction of property" forced them to evacuate Yiannopoulos for his own protection.

After I was assaulted, a university employee tweeted, "The MAGA people on UC Berkeley campus yesterday got punched in the face by someone this makes me feel emotionally so much better."

Since the arrest last week of the person who assaulted me, we have learned that he was once a student and employee of UC Berkeley.

Progress depends on the freedom of the human person to develop ideas and voice them. And we’re all better when this intellectual growth happens. The battle to protect free speech is one of the most important culture battles facing our nation today.

There are so many students across the country fighting for their right to free speech. They don’t do it for recognition; they do it because they understand how imperative this human right is and are willing to defend it.

President Donald Trump's forthcoming executive order requiring colleges and universities to protect free speech in order to receive federal funds shows that he agrees. I'm proud of our president and, as I get ready to head back out in the field, I draw strength in knowing that we have his support and the support of conservative students who continue to stand up for their political beliefs."

March 06, 2019 3:03 PM  
Anonymous more on the civil war the gay agenda is trying to provoke said...

In the fall of 2018, Rider University in New Jersey surveyed students to find out which restaurant they would like to have on campus. Students preferred Chick-fil-A, but that choice was rejected by university leadership, which felt the company’s corporate values were insufficiently inclusive.

Chick-fil-A is a Christian owned company, which has often made it a a target of anger on the far left. At the heart of this issue, is the company’s embrace of traditional values as it relates to gay marriage.

Cynthia Newman, dean of Rider’s College of Business, is a Christian and resigned her position as a matter of conscience.

March 06, 2019 3:38 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Jim said "Are there parts of the country where people really want the government to be one branch of a New York crime syndicate, laundering money and cheating people and lying?"

Unfortunately, yes, yes there are a lot of <a href=">those people</a>.

Jim said "They are willing to push the country to the point where a civil war seems possible, yet they are afraid to say out loud what they really stand for. If there is a civil war and the conservatives win, "owning the libs" does not provide guidance for running a country."

They really don't have a philosophy beyond "enrich ourselves" and "oppose change".

Back in cave man days, it was useful for 25-40% of the population to blindly resist change. In a small group of a couple hundred hunter gatherers its very important to always do things the same way, follow tradition - any newfangled change that wasn't perfectly thought out could result in the death of the entire tribe.

But in our modern technological world that is changing so rapidly, blindly resisting change is a death sentence for the planet - humanity needs to quickly adapt to prevent the destruction of our planet and conservatives stand blindly in the way of that.

Jim said "But I have a couple of questions about how this would work. Like, the first Civil War had some geographical boundaries, for instance the Mason-Dixon line, and those above the line were fighting against those below the line. Union states, Confederate states, with borders between them. So what are you gonna do now..."

Conservatives are primarily fighting their war on liberals and change by attacking nature, the global ecosystem that makes our lives possible. Any attempts to protect nature, are to them, an assault on their traditions and they won't stand for it.

March 06, 2019 4:30 PM  
Anonymous Steve Almond said...

Back in fall of 2016, when it seemed almost certain that Hillary Clinton would be elected president, an extremist militia called the Georgia Security Force began holding weekend training sessions to prepare for a Clinton presidency.

They were one of dozens of extremist militias who believed that the government was going to take their guns away, and members staged para-military training sessions, so that they would be able to fight back against the government.

As you’ll recall, Clinton received three million more votes than her opponent, but she lost the Electoral College.

In the two years since Donald Trump came into office, right-wing hate groups have flourished. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks such groups, identifies nearly a thousand scattered across the country.

Not only do they endorse the president’s enraged brand of nationalism, they love the fact that he has “cracked down” on immigrants and Muslims and people of color, whom they see as the natural opponents of white supremacy. They also love the fact that they are never held accountable for their vile ideology or thuggish tactics.

Over the weekend, for instance, a group called the Proud Boys — whose members like to wear t-shirts with slogans such as Pinochet Did Nothing Wrong, a reference to the murderous Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet — gathered in New York City for an event.

Afterward, members beat up two or three apparent protestors. Police who arrived on the scene did not arrest any members of the group, nor have they, despite video footage documenting the violent assaults.

This is life in Trump’s America. Violent right-wing groups are now routinely showing up in public, advocating white supremacy, and hoping to provoke, and partake in, violence. The president has refused to condemn these groups, even in the wake of a protest in Charlottesville that left an innocent woman dead.

As the mid-term elections approach, Trump has reverted to his most reliable weapon: projection. “You don’t give power to an angry left-wing mob,” he recently declared. “Democrats have become too extreme and too dangerous to govern. Republicans believe in the rule of law, not the rule of the mob.”

Just as a reminder: the central feature of the GOP national convention was an angry mob chanting “Lock Her Up” in reference to Hillary Clinton, who had committed no crime.

This is how Trump operates. Every accusation he lobs is a barely-veiled confession. Every day, he works to destroy the last vestiges of civility in American politics. He wants the partisan divide to grow more extreme and more violent.

And most right-wing pundits appear to harbor the same fantasies. You can hear it in the way they talk, over and over again, about civil war.

There is no equivalent desire on the left. There are no pundits fantasizing about what it will be like when America is at war.

Nor are their left-wing paramilitary groups stockpiling weapons, or spewing rhetoric online about initiating a genocide against people with white skin, or fantasizing about government raids, or planning protests in American cities designed to provoke violent confrontations with their right-wing opponents.

Such rhetoric and activism is happening in America — entirely on the right. It’s part of a larger violent, paranoid style of thought that has always existed in our country, and has become turbo-charged in the age of Trump.

Consider a group such as the Oath Keepers, which holds training sessions to help right-wing extremists prepare for “lethal force” at events organized by fellow extremists with the explicit hope of spurring counter-protests.

March 06, 2019 4:31 PM  
Anonymous Another Conservative being "silenced" by liberals said...

Alex Jones, a conspiracy theorist who falsely claimed the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax, has replaced two of his lawyers in multiple lawsuits brought against him by parents of children killed in the 2012 school shooting.

The host of the right-wing conspiracy outlet Infowars is being sued by nearly a dozen Sandy Hook parents in four separate defamation cases for his repeated claims that the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, that left 20 children and six adults dead was staged. He has previously tried and failed to shut down the lawsuits and avoid being deposed.

Jones’ latest legal maneuvers appear to be a Hail Mary as he prepares to be deposed later this year by lawyers representing families who filed lawsuits in Texas and Connecticut. Jones has hired two new lawyers to represent him in separate Sandy Hook cases. Both lawyers, like Jones himself, have a history of conspiracy-mongering and social media posts that appear to show a tenuous grasp of basic decency.

Jones said he would “shortly name Robert Barnes as lead counsel in this case” against Sandy Hook parent Scarlett Lewis, who is suing Jones for more than $1 million for the “intentional infliction of emotional distress.”

Barnes is replacing Marc Randazza, who was previously hired in July of last year to represent Jones. Randazza, who is representing the co-founder of the neo-Nazi website Daily Stormer, also violated legal ethics by soliciting bribes from legal opponents, among other indiscretions.

March 06, 2019 4:40 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I think when Republicans talk about the civil war they want, they're thinking of the rich attacking the poor, whites attacking people of colour. In a way it could be a boundary civil war in many areas, rich white neighbourhoods against poor black or hispanic neignbourhoods.

March 06, 2019 5:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"First came former U.S. attorney Joseph diGenova, a Fox News regular and ally of President Trump. “We are in a civil war,” he said. “The suggestion that there’s ever going to be civil discourse in this country for the foreseeable future is over. . . . It’s going to be total war.”

When conservatives like this say there is/will be civil war, the subtext is:

"We are not open to negotiation, discussion, evidence or facts. We unconditionally oppose any change to our traditions. We are losing at the ballot box and its making us feel we need to respond with violence to get our way - we are warning/threatening you."

March 06, 2019 5:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...and if we can't get our way, we are happy to destroy ourselves in the attempt to destroy you.

Preventing remedial action on greenhouse gas emissions is how they will succeed in this.

March 06, 2019 5:25 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Trump and his supporters are more dangerous than most people realize. Look at how Wyatt/Regina have advocated at different times for lgbt people to be assaulted, imprisoned, or executed.

They feel very threatened at the prospect of losing their superiority in society, at the prospect of equality and fairness.

March 06, 2019 5:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In this thread starting at February 18, 2019 8:26 PM an anonymous poster does the most amazing takedown on a string of standard Republican anti-gun control tropes. The "Good Anonymous" poster, as I refer to him/her blew me away with the depth and breadth of their knowledge on this topic and ability to clearly and with basis absolutely shred one conservative hypocrisy, contradiction, faulty assumption and lie after another. This is truly the most amazing one-sided debate I've ever read :)

I've never seen a more dramatic display of the lack of integrity anti-change conservatives spew as done by your typical anti-lgbt evangelical christians Wyatt and Regina Hardiman.

Please spread this link to everyone you know with an interest in fairness and the betterment of society:

March 06, 2019 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Traditional marriage" is a euphemism for bigotry - the lgbt community is fully in favour of men marrying women.

March 06, 2019 6:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Monmouth University reports: The poll finds that 42% of Americans feel that Trump should be impeached and compelled to leave the presidency while 54% disagree. Support for impeachment of Trump has risen since November, when 36% favored impeachment and 59% did not.

March 06, 2019 7:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RUSSIA: New Law Will Jail People For 15 Days Over Online Posts That “Disrespect” Putin Or State Officials

Trump will be shortly quoted as saying "I like that idea, we should do that here."

March 06, 2019 7:52 PM  
Anonymous those disgustingly corrupt Canucks said...

"Traditional marriage" is a euphemism for..... marriage. Two gays are never a marriage. Gay "marriage" is a political strategy devised by homosexual writer Andrew Sullivan in the 90s.

Meanwhile, the corruption of Canada is simply sickening. Makes you appreciate our straightforward, look-you-in-the-eye President:

Some think of Canada as quaint and cute, an underdog always striving in vain to catch up with the US. But there’s a darker side to Canada’s smallness. It's tiny network of political, business and intellectual elite is insular and concentrated.

The scandal now enveloping Prime Minister Justin Trudeau — a bilingual, feminist, pro-multicultural liberal — should put an end to this.

At its heart, the SNC-Lavalin scandal that threatens Mr. Trudeau’s leadership is about political interference in the judicial system. The Globe and Mail first reported in early February that last fall, the prime minister and his office pressured Jody Wilson-Raybould, then the justice minister and attorney general, to seek a Deferred Prosecution Agreement, which is equivalent to a plea bargain, for SNC-Lavalin, a politically well-connected civil engineering firm based in Montreal.

SNC-Lavalin has been at the center of corruption scandals for decades. (In 2013, the World Bank debarred the company and more than 100 of its affiliates for 10 years, single-handedly putting Canada at the top of the bank’s corruption list.) In this latest scandal, the company faces criminal charges for bribing Libyan officials, including Muammar el-Qaddafi’s son, with millions of dollars to secure contracts in Libya.

The Deferred Prosecution Agreement would permit SNC-Lavalin to avoid criminal prosecution, allowing it to continue to bid for domestic government contracts. Without this, the company might face existential peril.

The only person in Mr. Trudeau’s cabinet who seemed to push back was Ms. Wilson-Raybould. In January, she was put in charge of the veterans affairs ministry, effectively a demotion.

Last week, she went public, speaking before a House of Commons committee about the pressure she’d been under to cut a deal with SNC-Lavalin. For hours, she delivered extensive testimony, citing notes and texts, detailing inappropriate levels of political interference in a criminal proceeding.

Her account was impossible to reconcile with Mr. Trudeau’s previous flat denials. The prime minister and his defenders have come across as weak and dishonest, more interested in protecting a Quebec-based corporation than in the independence of the judiciary. His government is now in chaos. On Monday, one of his key cabinet ministers, Jane Philpott, resigned, saying she had “lost confidence in how the government has dealt with this matter and in how it has responded to the issues raised.”

March 06, 2019 7:59 PM  
Anonymous those disgustingly corrupt Canucks said...

Mr. Trudeau came to power in 2015 on the promise of a new, revitalized Liberal Party, removed from the stale old boys’ club of yore. The party, though it imagines itself as representing the quintessential ideals of Canadiana, has a long track record of corruption and chicanery, particularly in Quebec.

With an electoral base in the country’s most heavily populated regions, like Quebec, the Liberals have enjoyed many decades in power. It is not without merit that they are referred to, derisively, as Canada’s Natural Governing Party.

Power brings with it certain habits. This is true everywhere, but in a democratic country with a population the size of California spread across a gigantic landmass, influence runs in a geographic network that we describe in shorthand as the Laurentian Elite, after the St. Lawrence River that runs through eastern Canada. Mr. Trudeau, the son of former Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau, is very much a creature of this elite.

And so is SNC-Lavalin. Not just any company gets its calls taken by the prime minister’s office. Founded in 1911, SNC-Lavalin is a crown jewel in the Quebec corporate firmament. The company’s lobbyists have long ties in both Conservative and Liberal governments. Its lawyers include a former Supreme Court justice. A retired senior federal official is on its board. One of its corporate directors also sits on the board of the Trudeau Foundation. Quebec’s public pension funds own about 20 percent of SNC-Lavalin’s shares.

The decision about SNC-Lavalin’s case was being made in the lead-up to Quebec’s Oct. 1 provincial election — and that was apparently on the prime minister’s mind. According to Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s testimony, senior staff members from Mr. Trudeau’s office said the company was threatening to relocate to London if it did not get the plea deal. One such staffer, she said, told her “if they don’t get a D.P.A., they will leave Montreal, and it’s the Quebec election right now, so we can’t have that happen.”

Ms. Wilson-Raybould recounted a conversation with Mr. Trudeau: “At that point the prime minister jumped in, stressing that there is an election in Quebec and that ‘I am an M.P. in Quebec — the member for Papineau,’” she said. When she asked if he was trying to override her independence as attorney general, she said, the prime minister replied, “‘No, no, no, we just need to find a solution.’ ”

Ms. Wilson-Raybould was the first First Nations person to be appointed justice minister. She is a member of Parliament from Vancouver, British Columbia, to boot. By virtue of this background, she is not someone who has been historically well represented in the cozy corridors of Canadian power. Why should she care about SNC-Lavalin? Why would she stake her independence and her reputation on the company’s survival?

It’s no coincidence that she was replaced at the justice ministry by David Lametti, a member of Parliament from Montreal who even now has not ruled out saving SNC-Lavalin with a Deferred Prosecution Agreement. The rule of law is a very grand Canadian virtue until, it seems, it proves to be a barrier to Liberal electoral prospects in Quebec. It is a small country, after all.

March 06, 2019 8:00 PM  
Anonymous Wyatt/Regina said...


March 06, 2019 8:02 PM  
Anonymous Justin...LOL!!! said...

"The poll finds that 42% of Americans feel that Trump should be impeached"

unfortunately for Dems, without California, which is waging war on the rest of America, that number would be much lower

primaries are in less than a year, if you don't like him, vote him out

that's how democracy works in the US of A

March 06, 2019 8:04 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Hey Patrick Green, do you think Wyatt/Regina posting about "disgusting Canucks" is a passive aggressive swipe at me, or is my malignant narcissism getting out of control again?

I was skeptical at first when you said I was mentally ill and urgently needed to get help, but when I read your statment that I'm a disgusting fat pig I realized my skepticism was misplaced as you clearly have mine and society's best interests at hear. :)

Hee Hee Hee!

March 06, 2019 8:05 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

the above should be "best interests at heart".

March 06, 2019 8:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

U.S. registers the largest trade deficit in goods in its history, growing by 10% in 2018.

I'm so sick of winning!

March 06, 2019 8:10 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

"disgusting Canadians..."

...and Wyatt/Regina were ranting about how supposedly their arguments were torturing me and driving me insane and I was desperately posting to get a rise out of them...


March 06, 2019 8:21 PM  
Anonymous No hetero, no marriage - it's just common sense said...

That's funny, because we're having a trade war and China is negotiating it's terms of surrender

March 06, 2019 8:22 PM  
Anonymous Cynthia Jeub said...

In 2007, when I was 14, I appeared on “Kids by the Dozen,” a reality show that aired on The Learning Channel and featured my family and other large families like mine. Our part of the series was shot over nine days that year, just long ― and short ― enough for us to keep up appearances as one big happy family. My father, Chris Jeub, controlled both my education and my occupation. A Gen X middle-class man, he first carved a place in my small world by controlling the uterus of my mother, Wendy, who gave birth to me and my 15 siblings.

I am the third child born in our family ― my mother had my two older sisters as a teenager, and my dad adopted them when my parents married. My two older sisters had already endured the consequences of questioning my family’s beliefs. Alicia, who is nine years older than me, committed the unforgivable sin of wanting to date boys. Alissa, who is six years my senior, converted to Islam when she was in her 20s, making her dead to our family. She would later reconcile with my parents after capitulating to my parents’ demands and undergoing “Christian counseling.”

“Kids by the Dozen” led to a staged “reconciliation” between my parents and Alicia. In the eyes of our tight-knit Christian community, a rebellious child is a great shame and failure on the part of the parent. To address and compensate for the show’s strict depiction of their parenting, my parents self-published a book called Love in the House: Filling Your Home With the Greatest Commandment. In it, they highlighted Matthew 22:36-40, in which Jesus says that the “greatest commandment” is to love God and others. For us kids, this meant we had to give unconditional love to our parents without questioning their beliefs or authority. For our parents, it meant that God wanted them to have more children. I know, that’s not what love is at all, but, sadly, I didn’t know that for the first 23 years of my life.

The cult-like beliefs that shaped my upbringing belong to what is known as the “Quiverfull” Movement. It is based on Psalm 127, which reads, “Children are a heritage of the Lord, and fruit of the womb is his reward; happy is the man who has his quiver full of them.” The metaphor of a quiver full of arrows defines children as weapons to be used to win the world for Christian conservative values.

My parents believed that God created the universe in six days about 6,000 years ago, and they refused to have my mother give birth in a hospital or to vaccinate me or my siblings. I was home-schooled from pre-kindergarten through high school, and my curriculum touched briefly on science as a subject that merely magnifies the handiwork of God, while for history I was taught that divine providence had bestowed America to Christ’s faithful.

March 06, 2019 8:34 PM  
Anonymous heterosexuality is how life is perpetuated and it has a privileged status said...

"what do they want? This is a serious question. I understand being against stuff, against taxes and bureaucracy and political correctness, but it does not appear that conservatives have proposed any alternative"

your question presupposes that the government is there to solve all our problems

as Ronald Reagan said "government is the problem"

so the answer is that what they want a government that promotes the general peace

the government is not there to take our money and redistribute it

March 06, 2019 8:36 PM  
Anonymous Cynthia Jeub said...

I wore a purity ring, which I received from my parents when I was 16 years old and signified I had promised to remain a virgin until marriage so my dad could hand a “pure” daughter over to my future husband.

Democrats, I was told, just wanted to kill innocent babies waiting to be born in their mothers’ wombs. Once born, children were welcomed as blessings but brought up, above all, to be useful and to honor every whim of their parents. Our home was often filled with chaos ― children scattered everywhere; piles of laundry and toys and dishes deep enough to wade through; one child or another practicing piano or riding through the house on a Big Wheel; my mother yelling and sometimes wielding a heavy cutting board or pizza paddle to dole out spankings. I was put to work early and quickly learned to do everything from bathing five children at a time to waking up in the night to tend to fussy toddlers while I prayed for the strength to handle my Sisyphean workload. My parents convinced me that my work was a duty to God, so it was impossible to view it for what it was: exploitation.

My dad loved to use the word “assets” to describe my siblings and me. At home, it meant breaks from work were a reward for good behavior. But when he quit his job as a web designer for Focus on the Family, the right-wing religious organization he worked for, and made his personal ministry into our main source of income, we each became employees ― though we were not always paid, much less paid fairly. I handled editing the speech and debate curriculum we published, provided customer service, oversaw different accounts related to the ministry, and helped manage our camps and conferences ― all for minimum wage ― starting at age 13. He often directly transferred money from my siblings’ and my bank accounts without notice, or, when my bank account looked a bit too full, he would talk me into spending my earnings on an upgraded phone or laptop for the ministry.

It’s been 12 years since I was on TV, in my denim dress and exhausted eyes, happily describing for the cameras how I planned to live the rest of my life like this: diapers, baths, dishes, laundry, supervising children. But it’s only been four years since I started to see that something was wrong with us. What happened?

After being home-schooled all my life, I started attending local college classes at age 19. At first, I believed that my university was something of a “mission field,” or place to preach about my beliefs. In those first years, I developed a following of Christian young people who admired me for my dedication and passion for my faith. But I also made friends with people who had never existed in my world before: atheists and people who are LGBTQIA+.

March 06, 2019 8:36 PM  
Anonymous Cynthia Jeub said...

It wasn’t until I started college that I began to be honest with myself, and new friends from worlds far beyond the borders of mine, about how performative my life was. I was depressed, and had been for a long time, but had learned to stifle my feelings for the sake of my family. I was having conversations about astronomy and the validity of the Bible and how religion had hurt so many people. However, I still lived with my parents, and the questions I brought home with me each night were creating a power struggle with my parents over how the younger children might be influenced by what I was learning.

Then one day in 2013, my parents kicked me and my little sister, Lydia, out of their house. I was 22 and she was 19 ― plenty old enough to leave the nest, but we had no cars, no savings and nowhere to go. Like our older sisters, we were never told exactly why we were kicked out. Dad went on and on about how expensive we were, and how we’d have nothing without him. I had loved Jesus with all of my heart, dedicated my life to serving him ― and my parents ― and did whatever I could to stay pure of heart for them and my future husband. I knew my protests would be futile as my dad logged into his bank, which was linked directly to our personal bank accounts, and transferred hundreds of dollars into his own account for imaginary debts he claimed we owed him. Then he said he would start charging us for rent, effective immediately ― $500 each for the small bedroom we shared in a house full of 16 people.

We left. I don’t think my father expected us to find somewhere to go, but some kind friends took us in. That day was a breakthrough because it triggered memories of what I’d been forced to minimize and see as isolated incidents over the years. I dropped out of college a few months later ― my poor home-schooling had made academic success virtually impossible, and I couldn’t afford it. I sank into a horrible depression and began seeing a professional therapist, who was alarmed at my poor sense of boundaries and all of the traumatic memories that poured out of me.

Getting kicked out gave me the freedom to question. Maybe being gay wasn’t a sin. Maybe birth control and abortion weren’t the same thing. Maybe I didn’t have to give birth over and over and over again in order to be worthy. Maybe there wasn’t an invisible being that knew my every thought that would burn my soul if I didn’t do all the “right” things.

Realizing that my parents and the religion I had been raised in couldn’t be questioned without severe consequences was like waking up from a dream. I wanted ― needed ― to get my siblings out. But legally, siblings have no real recourse to protect each other, even if a sibling ― and not the parents ― is actually the one who is doing the majority of the caretaking.

March 06, 2019 8:38 PM  
Anonymous Cynthia Jeub said...

I still visited the family often, desperate to get through to my siblings. I stood up for them and called my parents out on being unfair, for the first time in my life. For most of my childhood, I didn’t advocate for my siblings, because I had nothing to compare our experience to, no way of knowing it was not normal or fair.

The tension escalated as I continued asking questions, and began reminding my siblings of the times we were all taught to forgive and forget about ― how we always had impossible expectations and responsibilities. But I wasn’t living there anymore, and my mother could always come along and tidy up the thought process of a doubting child. She’d done the same for me for the first 19 years of my life.

Soon, my parents banned me from talking to any sibling without their supervision. Then I received the dreaded phone call from my dad: an ultimatum that I could either submit to Christian counseling with them ― and endure more controlling, emotionally devastating attempts to bring me into submission ― or I would lose complete access to my family.

I had to let go of my brothers and sisters, which is by far the most difficult decision I have ever made in my life. As soon as I got the phone call about losing access to my siblings, I began writing on my blog about my parents’ abuse. The best evidence I have to back up the abuse claims I detailed in those blog posts came from my dad’s attempt to save face. The day after the first post, he released a podcast in which he blamed my delusions on mental illness and left the microphone open for my siblings to respond to what I had written. My dad deleted the podcast within hours. I reported my parents to local authorities for child abuse, as did my therapist. I don’t know whether an investigation was conducted, but the following year, six of my siblings were enrolled at the local charter school, and today the eight youngest are in school.

In 2015, I moved from Colorado to Seattle in search of a new life. Within a year, I was homeless. With no college degree and limited schooling, I only qualified for jobs doing physical labor. I worked at a grocery store deli while sleeping in a car. I showered at a gym and changed into my uniform in the bathrooms of other grocery stores. While I was living in a car, I lost my entire blog and the hundreds of posts I had published, because I couldn’t afford to pay the web hosting renewal fee.

March 06, 2019 8:40 PM  
Anonymous Cynthia Jeub said...

This past year, my partner, whom I met through mutual friends in 2016, and I found a community in Olympia, Washington. Here, we are among others who were cast out by extreme religion, most of us LGBTQIA+ and facing poverty and chronic homelessness. We exist to fight the patriarchy and colonizer-capitalism ― and to embrace our lives and love without the guilt our families and the church foisted on us for so many years. Thanks to the help of many friends and strangers from around the world, my blog archives have been restored, and I have some financial support from online patrons of my work.

I suffer from chronic pain and complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD). I do not own a car. I can no longer work on my feet because my body is so damaged from being overworked as a child, so I write. Between therapy and the relentless inconvenience of poverty, I write. I write about trauma and recovery, about poverty and injustice, about what I know now.

Twelve years ago, my family’s lifestyle was made into a spectacle for entertainment, alongside a host of controversial shows on The Learning Channel. I wasn’t allowed to watch TV as a kid, so while my peers were getting to know fourth-wall-breaking humor through comedies satirizing the genre like “The Office,” my siblings and I were uncertain in front of the camera crew. We were being under-educated, overlooked due to the sheer number of us, and the older kids were raising the younger ones, while also catering to our parents’ every whim.

I have not spoken to my parents in three years. I’ve been told their “door is open” and that they are willing to welcome me back if I can set aside everything that makes me who I am today. I’ve never had a chance to come out to them as bisexual. As for my adult siblings, most people guess that our shared experience would bring us closer, but this has not been the case. Deeper still than the religious element of our upbringing was an emphasis on work ethic, being a “good asset” ― and it was this that came between my sisters and me in recent years. When I was homeless, my two older sisters blamed me for my own poverty. My parents’ snare has always been our siblings, and Lydia couldn’t bear to lose them. In our last exchange, she told me she was back to taking advice from our parents ― financial advice from my father and advice on essential oils from my mother for her own unvaccinated children.

Four of my adult siblings are still part of the Quiverfull movement. My parents’ primary message is that people should have more children, and my siblings are on their way to having large broods, too. Sometimes I receive a phone call from one of my brothers, but the chasm between what I believe now and what they believe makes communication nearly impossible. I miss them, and I hope someday I can build a relationship with them that isn’t based on adhering to my parents’ beliefs. Though deluded people with nefarious intentions still run the world outside of the one I eventually escaped, my pyrrhic victory is I don’t have to delude myself anymore.

Cynthia Jeub is a freelance writer based in Olympia, Washington. She blogs about justice and recovery at

March 06, 2019 8:41 PM  
Anonymous Heterosexuals need to use more condoms said...

"as Ronald Reagan said "government is the problem"

Indeed. And for the past 38 years, Republicans have done everything they can to make that a self-fulfilling prophecy. Their unlimited spending habits when a Republican is in the White House alone is enough to destroy America. But they've also embraced xenophobia, white nationalism, and an Orange dictator wanna-be with delusions of grandeur.

If you really think government is the problem, stay out of politics, because you obviously don't care enough about the country to make any of it better.

March 06, 2019 8:59 PM  
Anonymous State of Colorado....LOL!!!!!! said...

Cynthia's story is not common

evangelical churches are filled with families whose kids decided not to pursue faith

parents obviously hope they will change their minds but the kids aren't shunned or disowned

and it's become pretty common for some kids to have gay partners

again, it goes against biblical teaching but no families are breaking up over it

most parents are patient and believe their kids will eventually come around

the picture Cynthia's paints is just not representative of life in the 21st century church

March 06, 2019 9:02 PM  
Anonymous Eight million twenty-somethings disagree said...

Eight million twenty-somethings have left the church, and it seems like everyone is trying to figure out why.

Last week, Christian Piatt offered seven reasons here:

and four more reasons here:

David Kinnaman recently authored a book entitled, "You Lost Me," which details the findings of Barna researchers who interviewed hundreds of 18-29 year-olds about why they left the church.

I left the church when I was twenty-seven. I am now thirty, and after trying unsuccessfully to start a house church, my husband and I are struggling to find a faith community in which we feel we belong. I’ve been reluctant to write about this search in the past, but it seems like such a common experience, I think it’s time to open up, especially now that I’ve had some time to process. But let’s begin with fifteen reasons why I left:

1. I left the church because I’m better at planning Bible studies than baby showers...but they only wanted me to plan baby showers.

2. I left the church because when we talked about sin, we mostly talked about sex.

3. I left the church because my questions were seen as liabilities.

4. I left the church because sometimes it felt like a cult, or a country club, and I wasn’t sure which was worse.

5. I left the church because I believe the earth is 4.5 billion years old and that humans share a common ancestor with apes, which I was told was incompatible with my faith.

6. I left the church because sometimes I doubt, and church can be the worst place to doubt.

7. I left the church because I didn’t want to be anyone’s “project.”

8. I left the church because it was often assumed that everyone in the congregation voted for Republicans.

9. I left the church because I felt like I was the only one troubled by stories of violence and misogyny and genocide found in the Bible, and I was tired of people telling me not to worry about it because “God’s ways are higher than our ways.”

10. I left the church because of my own selfishness and pride.

11. I left the church because I knew I would never see a woman behind the pulpit, at least not in the congregation in which I grew up.

12. I left the church because I wanted to help people in my community without feeling pressure to convert them to Christianity.

13. I left the church because I had learned more from Oprah about addressing poverty and injustice than I had learned from 25 years of Sunday school.

14. I left the church because there are days when I’m not sure I believe in God, and no one told me that “dark nights of the soul” can be part of the faith experience.

15. I left the church because one day, they put signs out in the church lawn that said “Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman: Vote Yes on Prop 1,” and I knew the moment I saw them that I never wanted to come back.

“I am convinced that what drives most people away from Christianity is not the cost of discipleship but rather the cost of false fundamentals.” – Evolving in Monkey Town, p. 207

“We aren’t looking for a faith that provides all the answers; we’re looking for one in which we are free to ask the questions.” – Evolving in Monkey Town, p. 204

March 06, 2019 9:21 PM  
Anonymous Adam Lee said...

I haven’t written much about gay and lesbian rights in the U.S. lately, because it seems like it should be a settled issue. After all, we’re coming up on four years of marriage equality, and conservatives have largely moved on to other bigotries. Even Republican politicians seem uninterested in relitigating the battle.

But, as always, religion remains the greatest force resisting moral progress in the world. Christian churches across the denominational spectrum haven’t made their peace with LGBTQ equality, and they’re fighting a furious rearguard battle against it. They’re lashing out at a world that’s leaving them in the dust.

Although the church can’t burn people at the stake anymore, it’s doing its utmost to impose whatever worldly consequences are in its power. In this case, as in others, people who work in church-run schools have been fired, stripping them of their livelihood for no reason. When students in Shelly Fitzgerald’s school rallied to support her, they were threatened with expulsion. At this rate, it won’t be long before Catholic hospitals start refusing to treat people if they’re outspoken supporters of gay rights.

March 06, 2019 9:40 PM  
Anonymous Tareos said...

The RCC is cracking down on LGBT folks because their parishioners are buying that the molestation scandal is due to gays in the church. They are choosing to get rid of school teachers and the like because they are shorthanded on priests and nuns and can't afford to lose any of the ones they have, so people in lay positions must take the hit.

March 06, 2019 9:42 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Thanks for sharing your all too common story, Cynthia.

March 06, 2019 11:43 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

March 3, 2019 Canada tops the list of healthiest countries in global ranking

A new analysis, the Global Wellness Index published by investment firm
LetterOne, ranks Canada as the best country out of the 151 nations
evaluated. The U.S. trails far behind, coming in at 37.

Based on a basket of metrics ranging from government healthcare spending
to rates of depression, alcohol use, smoking, happiness and exercise,
the new index is the latest attempt by economists to evaluate the world
beyond economic growth.

March 07, 2019 1:21 AM  
Anonymous Welcome to Full Fascist Amerikkka said...

NBC: Customs and Border Protection compiled a list of 59 mostly American reporters, attorneys and activists for border agents to stop for questioning when crossing the border at San Diego-are checkpoints. Agents questioned or arrested at least 21 of them.

March 07, 2019 1:30 AM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

"Eight million twenty-somethings have left the church,"

such stats are always suspect because the church, however they define it, cannot be easily analyzed

no one is turned away, everyone is tolerated, so churches are filled with millions of people with millions of diverse stories

it's really inappropriate to generalize

for example, most churches have many families who begin to go there when they have kids and leave when the kids go to college

for them, it's simply a safe place to raise kids and gives them a solid moral foundation even if those parents have no real long-term commitment

but again, that's just one example

every person has a different story

"I haven’t written much about gay and lesbian rights in the U.S. lately,"

really? I don't think anyone noticed

maybe no one reads your crap

"because it seems like it should be a settled issue. After all, we’re coming up on four years of marriage equality, and conservatives have largely moved on to other bigotries. Even Republican politicians seem uninterested in relitigating the battle."

you did notice the mainstream, liberal Methodist church recently refused to recognize gay "marriage"?

the whole concept was repeatedly rejected by voters and was imposed on America by Anthony Kennedy and the liberal gang

well, the Supreme Court has been upgraded since so, eventually, a case will come up and the obvious will be ruled

gay "marriage" is not a Constitutional right and the issue belongs in state legislatures

"But, as always, religion remains the greatest force resisting moral progress in the world. Christian churches across the denominational spectrum haven’t made their peace with LGBTQ 'equality, and they’re fighting a furious rearguard battle against it. They’re lashing out at a world that’s leaving them in the dust."

if you define the normalization of homosexuality as "moral progress" you are simply taking us back to the pre-Constantine Roman days of Nero and Caligula

"Although the church can’t burn people at the stake anymore,"

do tell us when the church could do that, and how many times it did

Arthur Miller wasn't a historian

"it’s doing its utmost to impose whatever worldly consequences are in its power. In this case, as in others, people who work in church-run schools have been fired, stripping them of their livelihood for no reason. When students in Shelly Fitzgerald’s school rallied to support her, they were threatened with expulsion."

hiring people to teach in Christian schools who aren't Christians is ridiculous

no one is trying to bring any "consequences"

people should be in jobs they are fit for

it's just common sense

maybe you should try an develop some

"At this rate, it won’t be long before Catholic hospitals start refusing to treat people if they’re outspoken supporters of gay rights."

this is damnable lie

not a Catholic myself, but they have always treated people regardless of the spiritual condition, following the example of Jesus

they always will

"The RCC is cracking down on LGBT folks because their parishioners are buying that the molestation scandal is due to gays in the church."

that's not unreasonable, considering that the vast majority of these priests who abuse kids are homosexuals

Catholic theology is opposed to homosexuality so why would homosexuals want to be clergy and teachers in the Catholic church?

if the RCC is trying to weed out those there for the wrong reason, that's a step in the right direction and to their credit

the RCC was tolerating homosexuality in its ranks long before society at large and they're paying the price for this misguided policy

March 07, 2019 6:09 AM  
Anonymous just the facts, ma'am said...

"the RCC was tolerating homosexuality in its ranks long before society at large and they're paying the price for this misguided policy"

you wonder what price society at large will pay for its embrace of homosexuality this time

the last time homosexuality was broadly embraced by the nation, the late 70s, the consequence was the AIDS epidemic

March 07, 2019 8:49 AM  
Anonymous Waah Waah Waah -- 'Not my fault’: Trump struggles to defend his record amid setbacks on immigration, trade, North Korea said...

President Trump proclaimed in a freewheeling speech to a conference of conservatives last weekend that “America is winning again.” But his administration has been on a pronounced losing streak over the past week.

Trump is losing ground on top priorities to curb illegal immigration, cut the trade deficit and blunt North Korea’s nuclear threat — setbacks that complicate his planned reelection message as a can-do president who is making historic progress.

Late last week, Trump flew home empty-handed from a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Hanoi — and, within days, new satellite images appeared to show that the North was secretly rebuilding a rocket-launching site.

On Tuesday, the Department of Homeland Security announced that unauthorized border crossings have spiked to the highest pace in 12 years — despite Trump’s hard-line rhetoric and new policies aimed at deterring migrants.

And on Wednesday, the Commerce Department said that the nation’s trade deficit is at a record high — in part due to punitive tariffs Trump imposed on allies and adversaries. Trump vowed throughout his 2016 campaign and during his presidency to shrink the trade deficit, which he views as a measure of other nations taking advantage of the United States.

“The president hasn’t shown much of an ability to cut good deals with Congress or anyone else,” said Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Tex.), who is mulling a Senate run in 2020. “Almost the only time he has been successful at one of his goals is when he can set the terms unilaterally. That’s why he’s done a lot of executive orders, executive actions, like the travel ban, deregulations, emergency declaration. Those are things that don’t require any negotiation at all.”

Trump took office on a pledge to buck conventional wisdom, sideline Washington’s political class and tackle long-standing problems with a mix of outside-the-box improvisation and dealmaking skills honed during his real estate career. “I alone can fix it,” he declared at the Republican National Convention in 2016.

Yet as he has struggled to fulfill some of his signature campaign promises, Trump has consistently blamed others for his woes....

Cue the tЯoll blaming homos -- "you wonder what price society at large will pay for its embrace of homosexuality this time"

March 07, 2019 8:58 AM  
Anonymous Quinnipiac UniversityPoll -- Trump approval 38% said...

President Donald Trump committed crimes before he became president, American voters say 64 - 24 percent in a Quinnipiac University National Poll released today.

Republicans say 48 - 33 percent that President Trump did not commit crimes before he was president, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University National Poll finds. Every other listed party, gender, education, age and racial group says by wide margins that Trump committed crimes.

But U.S. voters are divided 45 - 43 percent on whether Trump committed any crimes while he has been president. A presidential candidate paying money to hide a negative story during a campaign, and not disclosing that payment, is unethical and a crime, 40 percent of voters say. Another 21 percent say it is unethical, but not a crime, and 20 percent say it is not unethical.

Congress should not begin impeachment proceedings against Trump, American voters say 59 - 35 percent. But Congress should do more to investigate "Michael Cohen's claims about President Trump's unethical and illegal behavior," voters say 58 - 35 percent.

American voters believe Cohen more than Trump 50 - 35 percent. Cohen told the truth, 44 percent of voters say, while 36 percent say he did not tell the truth.

Voters approve 41 - 36 percent of the way Democrats in Congress handled Cohen's testimony before the U.S. House Oversight Committee. Voters disapprove 51 - 25 percent of the way Republicans handled the Cohen hearing.

"Cloudy and 38. The future of Donald Trump's presidency and the percentage of people who support him mirror the March weather in D.C.," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"The answers to two survey questions deliver a double-barreled gut punch to the honesty question."

"When two-thirds of voters think you have committed a crime in your past life, and almost half of voters say it's a tossup over whether you committed a crime while in the Oval Office, confidence in your overall integrity is very shaky," Malloy added.

"Add to that, Michael Cohen, a known liar headed to the big house, has more credibility than the leader of the free world."

American voters give Trump a negative 38 - 55 percent job approval rating, compared to a negative 38 - 57 percent in a January 29 Quinnipiac University National Poll...

March 07, 2019 9:13 AM  
Anonymous be nice to me said...

good news for the GOP: a key issue in 2020 will be whether Pence can be a "decent" man if it doesn't think homosexuality is wonderful

WASHINGTON – Throughout most of his three decades in the public eye, Vice President Mike Pence has been the “cordial conservative.”

As a radio talk show host, he regularly brought on Democratic guests who knew they would get a respectful hearing.

As a conservative firebrand in the House, Pence had friendships across the aisle.

When, running for governor of Indiana in 2012, Pence treated his Democratic opponent as “if we were in a joint parade.”

But now, one of Pence’s defining characteristics – of being nice – is under attack.

Vice President Joe Biden quickly backtracked after being lambasted by progressives and LGBTQ activists for calling Pence a decent guy last week.

That issue may become a litmus test for Democratic 2020 presidential hopefuls with Sen. Elizabeth Warren being asked by a reporter in Iowa two days later if she agreed with Biden, according to the Des Moines Register.

"You don’t think the vice president is a decent man?" the reporter asked.

"No," Warren said.

The current debate on the Democratic side stems from his record on LGBTQ matters – as governor, he signed into law a “religious freedom” bill that critics said was a license to discriminate against gay people.

Biden was criticizing President Donald Trump’s record on foreign policy when, in a speech in Omaha, he characterized Pence as a decent guy.

Cynthia Nixon, an actor and advocate for progressive issues, chastised Biden on Twitter for calling “America’s most anti-LGBT elected leader” decent.

She followed up with a scathing opinion piece in the Washington Post headlined "Mike Pence isn’t 'decent.' He’s insidious."

"The fact that Pence does vile, hateful things while well-coiffed and calm doesn’t make him decent; it makes him insidious and dangerous," she wrote. "Respecting each other’s rights and humanity is what makes us civilized – not keeping a civil tone while doing the opposite."

Some publications noted that Pete Buttigieg, the openly gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana, who is exploring a 2020 presidential bid, has also called Pence nice.

"Pete Buttigieg called Mike Pence a 'super-nice' guy. Where’s the outrage?" asked the online news magazine LGBTQ Nation.

Buttigieg, who devotes a chapter to Pence in his recently released memoir “Shortest Way Home,” distinguishes between Pence’s persona and his policies.

When Buttigieg, a member of the Naval Reserve, was deployed to Afghanistan in 2014 for example, a noticeably moved Pence called Buttigieg the day he was driving to the base.

“He’s nice. If he were here, you would think he’s a nice guy to your face,” Buttigieg said on “The Late Show” recently when Stephen Colbert asked him if Pence is a “good guy.”

In addition to his support for the “religious freedom” law that prompted a business backlash in the state, Pence’s record also includes advocating for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, opposing measures to protect gay men and lesbians from discrimination in the workplace, and opposing expanding the definition of hate crimes to cover offenses based on a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

Recently, Pence has defended his wife against criticism for teaching at a Christian school that bans gay students and employees.

"We will always defend the freedom of religion of every American of every faith, so help us God," Pence said at the Conservative Political Action Conference last week.

Pence is not known to be personally unkind to LGBTQ individuals. And after the 2016 mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Pence called one of the leaders of Indiana's gay community to express his condolences and offer assistance.

But advocates say what matters most is Pence’s policies, which they say dispute the right of LGBTQ people to exist.

What a bunch of nuts!

March 07, 2019 9:31 AM  
Anonymous if only TTF could be as decent as Mike Pence, perhaps we could call off the civil war said...

When Biden backtracked, he tried to put the emphasis on Pence’s policies.

“There is nothing decent about being anti-LGBTQ rights, and that includes the Vice President,” he tweeted.

Pence hasn’t publicly commented, but his spokeswoman tweeted Tuesday a piece by conservative commentator Ben Shapiro saying Biden’s response showed moral cowardice.

“By casting all disagreement as hate-based – and by destroying those with whom we disagree on a character level – we worsen both hate and politics,” Shapiro wrote. “It’s just fine for Joe Biden to think Mike Pence is a decent guy. And it’s pretty indecent to disagree.”

One of Pence’s defining experiences was his unsuccessful run for Congress in 1990, a race considered among the most divisive and negative campaigns in Indiana history.

“Mike told me it was his seminal political moment,” Curt Smith, president of the Indiana Family Institute, told biographer Andrea Neal about the race and its aftermath. “He said, 'You call people and they don’t call you back, not because you lost but because they don’t think you’re a good guy.' He knew he had somehow crossed the line in political ambition.”

When Pence turned to communicating his conservative view points as a radio talk show host, he vowed to make a “distinction between differences in public policy and personal differences.”

He regularly featured people with different opinions. One station even dropped Pence’s show when he refused to stop talking to the editor of the alternative Indianapolis paper.

“My obligation first as a Christian is to try to respect that person,” Pence said of why he tried to understand the perspective of callers and guests. “If you can’t disagree and maintain some civility, then forget democracy.”

When, after he revived his dream of serving in Congress, Pence was unanimously elected in 2008 to be in charge of party messaging as chairman of the GOP conference, moderate Republicans were willing to back him because of his style, remembers former Rep. Mark Souder.

"They said, 'Pence advocates views that are aligned with where the GOP is going, but he’s not mean about it,'" Souder said.

Friends and foes alike say Pence’s major character trait is “extreme niceness,” authors Michael D'Antonio and Peter Eisner wrote in a critical biography of Pence published last year.

But that niceness, they argue in “The Shadow President,” isn’t passive. It's “weaponized as a tool of persuasion and deflection.”

Now, whether Pence can even be called nice at all is being debated as his record on LGBTQ issues continues to draw headlines. When comedian John Oliver criticized that record last year by creating a parody version of a children’s book that Pence’s wife and daughter published about the family rabbit, Charlotte Pence bought a copy of Oliver’s book.

“My dad has always taught me to handle situations with grace,” she told USA TODAY last year, “just to be kind whenever you can.”

March 07, 2019 9:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pence calls his wife "mother" and doesn't trust himself enough to be alone with another woman.

"Nice" is not a term I use to describe such a male.

Talk about someone being in need of psychotherapy!

March 07, 2019 9:59 AM  
Anonymous over the falls in a barrel said...

"Pence calls his wife "mother""

Ronald Reagan used to do that with Nancy too

it's kind of inside joke

certainly nothing for the strange lunatic fringe gay advocacy groups to get all twisted about

"and doesn't trust himself enough to be alone with another woman."

f'ed up spin by a strange lunatic fringe gay advocate

he's simply avoiding a situation where gossips could make something out of nothing

in light of the metoo movement, sounds like he was ahead of his time

""Nice" is not a term I use to describe such a male."

well, sounds like you have high standards

you probably have a hard time looking in the mirror

"Talk about someone being in need of psychotherapy!"

you talking about yourself?

Pence seems to function in society quite well

March 07, 2019 10:37 AM  
Anonymous Peter Wehner said...

There are times in life when the institutional ground underneath you begins to crumble — and with it, longstanding attachments. Such is the case for me when it comes to the Republican Party and evangelicalism.

I’ve been a part of both for my entire adult life. These days, though, in many important ways they are having harmful effects on our society.

The latest example is in Alabama, where Roy Moore, the Republican Senate candidate, stands accused of varying degrees of sexual misconduct by nine women, including one who was 14 years old at the time. Mr. Moore leads in most polls, and solidly among most evangelicals, heading into Tuesday’s election.

A bit of personal history may be in order here. As a young man I embraced conservatism as a political philosophy and the Republican Party as its political home. The first vote I cast was in 1980 for Ronald Reagan. I had spirited debates with classmates at the University of Washington in Seattle, which was hardly a hotbed of conservatism. They couldn’t begin to understand what I was doing. Yet I was proud to make the case for Reagan and consider myself fortunate to have worked in his administration in its second term.

At roughly the same time, I was in the midst of a pilgrimage of faith that started as vague deism but eventually led me to evangelicalism. Both the Republican Party, which was created to end slavery and preserve the Union, and evangelicalism, a transdenominational effort to faithfully represent Christ in word and deed, shaped my life and outlook, helping me to interpret the world.

Politics and faith are hardly synonymous. They occupy different realms, and my faith has a far more important and cherished place in my life than politics. Yet both are significant to me, and the two spheres are not entirely distinct.

Some of the most impressive moral movements in American politics — the efforts to abolish slavery and to end segregation and the struggle to protect unborn life — have been informed by Christianity. Two of the monumental figures in the latter half of the 20th century, Reagan and Pope John Paul II, together helped to bring down one of the most malevolent political movements in history: Soviet-led Communism.

More recently, the global AIDS and malaria initiative is one of President George W. Bush’s greatest legacies; more than 13 million people are on lifesaving antiretroviral treatment as a consequence. This, too, was a policy that came about in response to human sympathies that were shaped in large part by the faith of Mr. Bush and some of his key advisers.

I don’t mean to imply that politics and religion are a perfect fit. Often they’re not, and over the years Christians, myself included, have not gotten the balance right. But overall I felt that the Republican Party and the evangelical movement were imperfect forces for good, and I spent a large part of my life defending them.

March 07, 2019 11:14 AM  
Anonymous Peter Wehner said...

Yet the support being given by many Republicans and white evangelicals to President Trump and now to Mr. Moore have caused me to rethink my identification with both groups. Not because my attachment to conservatism and Christianity has weakened, but rather the opposite. I consider Mr. Trump’s Republican Party to be a threat to conservatism, and I have concluded that the term evangelical — despite its rich history of proclaiming the “good news” of Christ to a broken world — has been so distorted that it is now undermining the Christian witness.

Just the other day I received a note from a friend of mine, a pastor, who told me he no longer uses the label “evangelical” to describe himself, even though he meets every element of its historical definition, “because the term is now so stained as to ruin my ability to be what evangelicalism was supposed to be.”

Another pastor who is a lifelong friend told me, “Evangelical is no longer a word we can use.” The reason, he explained, is that it’s become not a religious identification so much as a political one. A third person, who heads a Christian organization, told me the term evangelical “is now a tribal rather than a creedal description.” In October, the Princeton Evangelical Fellowship, a campus ministry for more than 80 years, changed its name to the Princeton Christian Fellowship. “We’re interested in being people who are defined by our faith and by our faith commitments and not by any sort of political agenda,” according to Bill Boyce, who has led the campus group for decades.

There are of course a great many honorable individuals in the Republican Party and the evangelical movement. Those who hold different views than I do lead exemplary lives. Yet I cannot help believing that the events of the past few years — and the past few weeks — have shown us that the Republican Party and the evangelical movement (or large parts of them, at least), have become what I once would have thought of as liberal caricatures.

Assume you were a person of the left and an atheist, and you decided to create a couple of people in a laboratory to discredit the Republican Party and white evangelical Christianity. You could hardly choose two more perfect men than Donald Trump and Roy Moore.

Both have been credibly accused of being sexual predators, sometimes admitting to bizarre behavior in their own words. Both have spun wild conspiracy theories, including the lie that Barack Obama was not born in America. Both have slandered the United States and lavished praise on Vladimir Putin, with Mr. Moore declaring that America today could be considered “the focus of evil in the modern world” and stating, in response to Mr. Putin’s anti-gay measures in Russia: “Well, maybe Putin is right. Maybe he’s more akin to me than I know.” Both have been involved with shady business dealings. Both have intentionally divided America along racial and religious lines. Both relish appealing to people’s worst instincts. Both create bitterness and acrimony in a nation desperately in need of grace and a healing touch.

I hoped the Trump era would be seen as an aberration and made less ugly by those who might have influence over the president. That hasn’t happened. Rather than Republicans and people of faith checking his most unappealing sides, the president is dragging down virtually everyone within his orbit.

March 07, 2019 11:17 AM  
Anonymous Peter Wehner said...

In the latest example of this, a rising number of Republicans are attempting to delegitimize the special counsel’s investigation into whether there were links between Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign and Mr. Putin’s Russia because they quake at what he may find. Prominent evangelical leaders, rather than challenging the president to become a man of integrity, have become courtiers. What’s happening with Mr. Moore in Alabama — with the president, the Republican National Committee, the state party and many white evangelicals rallying around him — is a bridge too far for many of us. Where exactly is the bottom? And at what point do you pull back from associating yourself with a political party and a religious term you once took pride in but that are now doing harm to the things you treasure?

Institutional renewal and regeneration are possible, and I’m going to continue to push for them. But for now a solid majority of Republicans and self-described evangelicals are firmly aboard the Trump train, which is doing its utmost to give a seat of privilege to Mr. Moore. So for those of us who still think of ourselves as conservative and Christian, it’s enough already.

March 07, 2019 11:19 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

I don’t sleep through the night anymore. I suffer from near daily panic attacks and almost constant anxiety. The source of my joy, my security and my identity has vanished, leaving me with an angry grief that almost no one in my immediate circle understands. I have relationships that were once life-giving but have turned toxic. I feel manipulated, deceived and abused. And why?

The church that raised me is gaslighting me.

I am a 39-year-old, white, straight, suburban mom. And I am a Christian ― at least I think I still am. I grew up in a privileged bubble, in deep red Republican country, where identifying as a Christian didn’t set me apart from the majority of my peers. Being a Christian certainly wasn’t any risk to my life or reputation. I spent my childhood in Sunday school, church camp and youth group, learning Bible stories about heroes who battled a giant with a slingshot, survived a lions’ den due to unshakable faith, and led an entire group of people out of slavery and into a promised land.

The church also taught me the story of Jesus, the son of God, whom God sent to earth as a defenseless human infant. Jesus spent 33 completely sinless years on this planet, only to be brutally murdered as a sacrifice for me, because of me. I was born with my sinful nature and no matter how good I try to be, how many prayers I pray or Bible study gatherings I attend, I am ultimately a sinner ― and the wages of sin is death. According to the church, I deserve death, simply for existing.

But the church also claims there’s good news! Even though I deserve death, Jesus’ bloody crucifixion and subsequent bodily resurrection saves me from a fiery eternal hell ― all because I believe this supernatural story and earnestly accept the gift of his grace. And because of this sacrifice, I owe him a lifetime of gratitude, worship and a commitment to follow his commandments (even though, because of my human flesh, I will always ultimately fail him).

March 07, 2019 11:39 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Thanks for sharing your story, Paul. The one place I would disagree with you is where you said "Rather than Republicans and people of faith checking his most unappealing sides, the president is dragging down virtually everyone within his orbit."

Trump isn't dragging down Republicans and evangelicals, they eagerly jumped into his corruption. Nor did Trump start this corruption in the Republican party. It started with Newt Gingrich when he revealed the new plan for the Republican party was to be unconditionally obstructionist when Democrats are in power. The "party over improvement" people have only gotten more and more corrupt and obstructionist over the years, even obstructing Democrats trying to implement long loved Republican policy goals

Trump didn't start the corruption in the Republican party, he just made conservatives feel okay about doing it out in the open. This will be their undoing, Trump and the Republicans so brazenly broke the law so frequently that there are now dozens of investigations into myriad crimes inseparably intertwining Republicans and the Trump family.

Republicans were ecstatic that they barely squeaked out a 2016 electoral college win despite massively losing the popular vote. Crooked tactics and Comey against FBI policy making a big splashy deal out of the Hillary email nothingburger and keeping secret the dangerous collusion between Russin and the Trump campaign were amongst many factors Republicans needed to break 100% their way to make an incredibly improbable win of the presidency on a technicality.

They were so thrilled with the success of their corruption they inexplicably thought they were invincible and the rule of law repealed. They will pay dearly for this arrogance,this will deeply damage the already unpopular republican party for a generation.

March 07, 2019 11:41 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

For decades, I bought this story and internalized and tried to live out the message. I followed the rules. I studied the Bible. I signed a “True Love Waits” purity pledge and walked down the aisle a “pure” virgin. I guarded my heart against the evils of the world: false religions, homosexuality, abortion, immodest clothing, foul language and excessive drinking. I believed that God created and loves everyone, but not everyone will go to heaven.

I didn’t think much about politics or social issues in my 20s and the first half of my 30s because my racial and socioeconomic privilege afforded me the luxury of not paying attention. The extent of my political ideology was that the Republican Party was the party of God and identifying as a Democrat was incompatible with calling oneself a Christian. So I voted Republican.

I lived in a conservative Christian bubble, a tightly knit, homogenous community where conformity was expected and rewarded. The church praised me for my good behavior and moral living, and the church took care of me. The sense of belonging is a hell of a drug, and I was loved, accepted and given community, which made me complacent and blind to systemic discrimination against people of color, LGBTQ people and people practicing religions other than Christianity, among other groups. I am ashamed to say I had no concept that large portions of the population were outright rejected by the institution loving me so well.

Prior to a few years ago, I listened to no one in the margins because my circle didn’t include anyone in the margins. We fed and donated Christmas gifts to the poor in our community, but made no effort to establish real relationships with them outside of a “mission” context. “Love the sinner, hate the sin” was easy to accept as a legitimate response to homosexuality because I had no gay people in my life whom I actually had to love. Their so-called “lifestyle sin” was framed as much worse than my own greed, gluttony and pride. I didn’t consider that perhaps my greatest sin was the self-centeredness blinding me from the pain of other human beings who were made in the image of God. Their value and contributions to the body of Christ were discarded by the church based on its narrow-minded interpretation of Scripture.

March 07, 2019 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

Starting in about 2014, social media, specifically Twitter, began to open my eyes and widen my world. I listened to and learned from people with different voices and experiences, and for the first time, I heard terms like “white privilege,” “systemic racism” and “progressive Christianity.” I had no idea that someone could be gay and also be a deeply committed Christian who has a high regard for Scripture. The people I followed online challenged my conservative Christian worldview and I learned that following Jesus isn’t nearly as narrow a path as I grew up believing. I started to doubt and question the integrity of the insulated Christian bubble still benefiting me. My faith was shifting, but slowly and privately.

And then came 2016. Donald Trump, a man whom until then I most closely associated with “The Apprentice,” was now the Republican nominee for president of the United States. Trump’s campaign and election was a breaking point for me and many other American evangelicals. This was when we realized that everything we had been told was non-negotiable didn’t matter when there was power on the line. The election was like a floodlight on the underbelly of the evangelical church, and this is when the church started gaslighting me.

Gaslighting is psychological manipulation that leads one to question one’s own feelings and perceptions of reality. For more than two years now, I have watched, shocked, as 81 percent of the religious leaders and peers of my youth and early adulthood have embraced a man and a political ideology contrary to the teachings of Jesus. They have thrown out the foundational values of Christianity in exchange for tax cuts, Supreme Court nominees and political power. Today, those Christians are calling me a heretic and a godless woman because now I reject their Republican rhetoric and because my personal Christian values (that they drilled into me for decades) more closely align with the Democratic Party’s platform.

The boldness of the church’s hypocrisy is causing me to question the very foundation of my spiritual beliefs. It’s disorienting. Every biblical principle I hold sacred has been disregarded by many other Christians, and I often feel like I’m losing my sanity while the entire house of cards that is my evangelical upbringing collapses around me.

March 07, 2019 11:44 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

The church’s obsession with sexual purity defined my adolescence. The ethics of sexual behavior limited physical intimacy to the marriage of man and woman. And at the time, the political values of Christians lined up with this teaching. Bill Clinton’s infidelity was unforgivable as well as evidence of a political party embraced by Satan.

But when the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape leaked to a shocked nation in 2016, Christian Republicans doubled down on their support of a man who openly bragged about sexual assault.

“I don’t even wait,” Trump told the show’s co-host Billy Bush. “And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

I cannot read those words without having a visceral physical reaction. I am sickened by Trump’s words themselves, but more so by the memory that just weeks after the release of this tape, 81 percent of white, evangelical Christians (my people) still voted him into the highest office in the land.

God can use anyone, I was told by the church. Even Donald Trump. Oh, but God would never support the election of someone as evil as Hillary Clinton. How could you, a Christian, vote for her?

I voted for Clinton because she was the most qualified presidential candidate. She wasn’t a perfect candidate, but had she been elected, she would have upheld the Constitution and protected the rights of the marginalized and voiceless. I voted for her not in spite of my Christian faith but because of it.

The evangelical church claims to value life with a capital L and considers abortion the gravest of all assaults on life. In reality, this value is largely theoretical and convenient, as the unborn have no political persuasions, questionable ethical lifestyles or expensive medical bills. Fetuses are pure and sinless, and therefore make an airtight worthy cause. But if the life of an uncomplicated fetus is worth protecting, what about the life of a medically fragile child?

In the summer of 2017, when the Republican Party began trying in earnest to repeal the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicaid funding, I cried out in protest. I have a medically fragile child, and insurance that covers his multiple pre-existing conditions as required by the ACA, as well as Medicaid, is one reason he is still alive today. But, for the most part, the Christians I pleaded with ignored me or made flimsy excuses for supporting the Republicans’ efforts to destroy the ACA.

The Democrats’ health care plan cannot be the will of God, the church told me. Because abortion.

I cannot have a productive conversation with an evangelical Christian Republican about values or policy because they always see abortion as the trump card. For them, all the Democratic policies that align with the Gospel ― health care for all, criminal justice reform, racial and gender equality ― don’t matter or count because Democrats support a woman’s right to bodily autonomy. Because I vote for pro-choice candidates (who stand for policies protecting the lives of all people, not just the unborn), the church makes me feel as if none of my other stances are valid.

March 07, 2019 11:47 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

The church taught me that God loves everyone and calls Christians to spread the Gospel to all nations. Mission trips to poor countries south of the U.S. border are celebrated. Christians take the “Good News” to the poor and assume they are also improving their lives with paintbrushes to freshen the walls of dilapidated churches and shoeboxes of toys to give the children at Christmas.

But these “white saviors” balk in protest when some of the very people they serve on mission trips need asylum in our country. Suddenly, helping the poor (whom they now refer to as illegal aliens) doesn’t have the same appeal as it did when it was confined to a weeklong trip with matching group T-shirts and Instagram photo opportunities.

Since his election, Trump and the Republican Party have issued travel bans on individuals from Muslim nations, separated Central American families seeking asylum and locked their children in cages, and stoked fear in the hearts of Americans about migrant caravans from Honduras. Many of those in the caravans are fleeing extreme violence in search of safety and a better life for their families, not unlike Jesus’ family, who fled persecution from a king who wanted Jesus dead.

The Bible says, “Do not fear,” the church always told me. But these people are terrorists. They are rapists. They are gang members bringing their violence to America. So in this case, we should fear. We should fear a lot.

The church told me that God is a God of justice. He says the poor and the persecuted are blessed and will have a great reward in heaven. However, the term “social justice warrior” is a reviled label in conservative Christian circles.

When I speak out against racism, police brutality, gun violence and discrimination against the LGBTQ community, many Christians sneer at the concept of justice and accuse me of being “divisive” and “too political.” Instead, they embrace nationalism, the rule of law without mercy and “Make America Great Again” as their values, even at the expense of human life.

March 07, 2019 11:49 AM  
Anonymous Elizabeth Baker said...

It simply does not matter to the evangelical church that Trump is racist and that his dehumanizing rhetoric is emboldening radicals and costing Americans their lives. Americans are dying in mass shootings at the hands of white supremacists, while the church is celebrating the nation’s return to traditional values. For Christians who reject the MAGA mindset, this is absolute crazy making.

No wonder I live with crippling anxiety and spiritual trauma. The church that warned me against moral relativism now calls me a heretic when I apply the very principles they taught me to real situations, with real stakes for real people. I don’t know where to turn or whom to trust. Is any of it true? Have I wasted my life on a religion that hurts more than it helps?

I stopped attending church regularly almost two years ago, but I am more invested in my spiritual life than ever before. Although I’ve lost the majority of my local Christian community, save for a few precious friends, I still cling to the true teachings and example of Jesus to inform my politics and moral code. I now understand that Scripture pays more attention to serving the needs of the oppressed than to regulating their lifestyle. Sin is not as much about my behavior as it is about my inability to love people well.

Meanwhile, I’ve diversified my bookshelf, podcast subscriptions and Twitter feed to include voices speaking truth to power from the perspective of marginalized people ― the same voices that the Trump administration continually tries to silence. I’ve joined online communities of people also working through spiritual trauma and gaslighting by the evangelical church. This fall, I attended the Evolving Faith conference, a gathering of more than 1,500 people in different stages of the deconstructing of their faith. As I’ve worked through my grief and anger, I’ve discovered I am not as isolated as I once believed. My hope is to someday find a local church again, one that is progressive, open and affirming, but I am not actively searching.

I wish the evangelical church would wake up and realize how many of us there are out there feeling manipulated and abused. This community of wanderers is dealing with grief both privately and collectively. Together we weep, we rage and we try to rebuild what’s left of our shattered spiritual lives. Healing is slow and it’s painful. I’m working hard to separate the true, worthy parts of Christianity from the bullshit. I do hope to return to church someday, but I will never again be gaslighted by an institution that sells out Jesus for political power.

March 07, 2019 11:50 AM  
Anonymous what the heck? said...

what the heck?

some thoughtful, if a little winded, comments on TTF

little busy today but will make some effort to read it all and comment tonight, if possible

March 07, 2019 12:08 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Elizabeth Baker said "When I speak out against racism, police brutality, gun violence and discrimination against the LGBTQ community, many Christians sneer at the concept of justice and accuse me of being “divisive” and “too political.” Instead, they embrace nationalism, the rule of law without mercy..."

Correction - they embrace the rule of law without mercy for people they don't like. For themselves and their corrupt leaders they have a deeply troubling double standard, believing it is moral for them and their leaders to break the law with impunity while others breaking the same law are to be severely punished.

The vast majority of evangelical christians are Right Wing Authoritarians who don't believe in fairness, but do strongly believe in enriching themselves and punishing people who they consider outside their special privilege group. They believe it is much more important to put on the appearance of being a good person than to actually treat each others well. So they regularly spout all the proper veiled but harsh christian bumper sticker slogans like "Love the sinner, hate the sin", "I don't think I'm morally superior to anyone (nudge, nudge, wink, wink), and "lgbt is a sin, but don't worry I'm a sinner too.", "Jesus is unto others..." and so on.

The small minority of evangelical christians who do not score high on the Right Wing Authoritarian scale, like Elizabeth Baker, are shocked and devastated by the hypocricy and pyschological torture employed by the marjority RWA evangelicals to manipulate them into obedience and the highjacking of government to enrich themselves and punish the people they have no reason to hate.

Elizabeth Baker said "I now understand that Scripture pays more attention to serving the needs of the oppressed than to regulating their lifestyle. ".

Hear Hear! You go girl!

March 07, 2019 1:28 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Wyatt/Regina said "some thoughtful, if a little winded, comments on TTF little busy today but will make some effort to read it all and comment tonight, if possible"

The subtext of Wyatt/Regina's comment is "We're going to carefullly read the stories of these christians wounded by their church into realizing it is anti-fairness and try to exploit their mental anguish and use our warped religious beliefs to spirtually and psychologically manipulate them into re-embracing the anti-gay, anti-fairness christianity we love."

Wyatt/Regina, when the most important belief in your religion is "Heaven or Hell, your choice - But you can't choose neither!" your religion is going to have a tendency to be abusive and unjust. How can it be any other way when it is based on faith and loyalty to the most grotesque injustice possible - infinite punishment for finite and often incredibly trivial "crimes"?

March 07, 2019 1:29 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Ever since Newt Gingrich the Republican plan for party over country has been - "Whenever the Democrats are in power, we prevent them from accomplishing anything positive, even if its our own policy objective".

So, when Democrats are in power, the Federal Budget deficit is the most important issue of all time! We cannot saddle our children with this country destroying debt!

Then when Republicans get back in power, they implement fiscally irresponsible massive tax cuts (for the rich), the promised 5-10% GDP economic growth that will make the "tax cuts pay for themselves" never comes, and the deficit and national debt explodes.

The Republican thinking is, "when we get kicked out of power it will be politically unpopular to revoke the tax cuts on the rich, and then we'll prevent Democrats from making any improvements to the country by demanding the budget be balanced which will require massive cuts to government spending programs like Medicare, Old age Security that the public loves, but Republicans hate.

Its all just a deeply cynical decades-long sleazy strategy to continue to exert control over a populace that increasingly rejects Republican greed, hate, and corruption at the ballot box.

March 07, 2019 1:48 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Its no surprise that in our technological age where convincing arguments can be quickly and widely made available to the entire populace, liberalism becomes increasingly popular.

That's why you see dictatorial countries severely restricting access to the internet and the free exchange of information and ideas. That's why you see dictators like Trump, Putin,and Hitler attacking the press and ironically calling the press the "enemy of the people".

Its obvious from just these last several threads on TTF that the old cave-man conservative attitudes of "unconditionally oppose change and enrich ourselves" can't compete in the minds of a populace allowed to think and discuss freely.

March 07, 2019 1:55 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Calling gayness a sin/wrongdoing means the same thing - thinking it is an immoral behavior, regardless of where you think you get your morals from. And that causes people to dehumanize, attack, abuse, and murder harmless LGBT people. It causes people to think LGBT people deserve to be punished and the degree of harshness is the only thing up for debate.

Wrongfully calling gayness a sin, as we constantly see evangelical christians doing, is the immorality, not consenting adults who are harming no one.

In this thread Good anonymous said "Such [gay conversion] practices have been rejected by every mainstream medical and mental health organization for decades,"

Wyatt/Regina/bad anonymous said "they were pressured to do so by political advocacy groups years ago".

Yeah, like 73 (?) or so. So, given that American Psychiatry Association had, as you have regularly asserted over the decades, no valid scientific reason to take gayness out of the DSM, in the 50+ years since, why hasn't the anti-fairness side been able to compile any evidence or make any sort of significant case for putting gayness back in the DSM?

Should be easy if it was only taken out of there due to anti-science pressure from a tiny destructive, mentally ill minority of the population. If what you say is true, you should have had an iron-clad scientific case every rational person would agree with for putting gayness as a mental disease back in the Diagnostic and Statistic Manual. . You've had decades to show how scientifically wrong it was to remove gayness from the DSM. That the massive richly funded anti-gay industry has not been able to make a shred of a case treating gayness as a mental illness in the intervening 50+ years cleary shows you haven't any case whatsoever.

In fact, the evidence initially compiled in the 50's that gays are not mentally ill has grown into a mountain over the decades since. There is now no real research going on into whether or not gayness is a mental illness, science has resoundingly affirmed gayness is a normal, natural, and health variant of human sexuality.

Wyatt/Regina said "you wonder what price society at large will pay for its embrace of homosexuality this time"

Well, there couldn't be a more emphatic embrace of homosexuality than the Supreme Court following the constitution for a change in 2015 and striking down all gay marriage bans.

So, its been four years, plenty of time for peer reviewed studies on the effects of marriage equality. Given that bigots like Wyatt/Regina assert its an obvious fact that gays destroy everything they touch, it should be obvious American society is paying a huge price for its loving embrace of homosexuality. Yet the anti-fairness side has nothing but empty rhetoric to "prove" "the embrace of homosexuality harms society".

Society is comprised solely of individuals. The more individual lives society improves, the better off society is. Loving monogamous gay marriages harm no one. By society announcing to the world its is accepting gays as as good as everyone else, society is making the lives of millions of individuals better, which is by definition, making society better :)

March 07, 2019 2:07 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Oh, and by the way, the In this thread I referred to in my previous comment, you can also see me clearly state that what caused the extremely high stress levels I was experiencing shortly after chrismas that put me on the edge of a psychotic break was the overwhelming implications of sending links to my soul baring admission to multiple crimes and devastating debunking of religion to 1000 global opinion leaders.

As I have gotten better and better at destroying all Wyatt/Regina's anti-society arguments and crowned that with their hilarious humilation in this thread where they try to defend their destructive religious beliefs, they've felt a desperate need to re-write recent history to save face and have been lying that I said it was their "arguments" that tortured me and drove me to near insanity recently, and so now, conveniently, they are "sympathetically" ignoring my posts so as "not to cause me mental distress". Lol, obviously they're ignoring my posts not to cause themselves serious mental stress.

Baaaaaawwk, Bock Bock bock bock <------ chicken noises

March 07, 2019 2:09 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I would like to acknowledge the many good Christians out there for whom their faith is fairness.

Thankyou so much for your support :)

I don't say it nearly often enough.

March 07, 2019 2:17 PM  
Anonymous Wow! said...

When a member of Congress makes bigoted comments, political leaders have a moral duty to condemn them. A special obligation falls on those who lead the member’s party. They should speak out in blunt, clear language and say why the comments are unacceptable. They need to “name and shame,” and demand a forthright apology. No mealy-mouth press release saying “if anyone is offended ...” If the violation is egregious or repeated, the punishment should be commensurate.

House Democrats now face that test after Rep. Ilhan Omar’s repeated slurs against Jews. So far, they have failed.

Omar represents a Minnesota district heavily populated by fellow Somali immigrants. It has been characterized by illiberal politics and political representatives who defend it. Omar’s predecessor in Congress was Keith Ellison, whose close ties to Louis Farrakhan raised similar questions of anti-Semitism. He, too, escaped condemnation from his party, probably because he made few statements as raw and offensive as Omar’s, and partly because he claimed to have severed ties to Farrakhan.

The Nation of Islam leader, who has repeatedly called Jews “Satanic” and worse, was delighted by Omar’s offensive language and embraced her immediately. As she faced mounting calls to apologize, Farrakhan told her, “Sweetheart, don’t do that. ... You have nothing to apologize for.” We expect that from Farrakhan. From the national Democratic Party, we expect better.

Omar’s basic claims are that:

--American Jews are not fully loyal to their country because, as she said, they “have allegiance to a foreign country,” and

--The real reason America supports Israel is Jewish money: “It is all about the Benjamins baby,” as Omar tweeted.

In fact, polls show Americans have very positive views toward Israel, ranking it among the 10 countries they most favor, above many longtime allies.

Omar’s slurs echo centuries of anti-Semitic hatred—hatreds that drove so many to flee Europe for the bright promise of America. Why, then, does today’s Democratic Party have such trouble recognizing these ancient tropes and condemning such noxious language?

Part of the answer lies in Omar’s vocal support from newly elected Democrats on the far left. They represent the party’s energy and much of its base. Among them, support for Israel has slipped markedly; outright antagonism has risen.

The left’s antipathy to Israel has long been obvious on college campuses. Now, it is being voiced in Congress, and not just by Rep. Omar. She is strongly supported by Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and now by the House Democratic whip, James Clyburn of South Carolina. Clyburn, the chamber's highest-ranking African-American, says Omar's experience is "more personal" than Jews whose parents survived the Holocaust. He will not permit any resolution to single her out. Many of their Democratic colleagues have remained silent, refusing to condemn Omar directly.

When Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other senior leaders spoke to their caucus about this, some members pushed back -- hard. They refused to support any resolution that condemned Omar by name, so that idea was dropped. Wednesday’s caucus meeting reportedly became so hostile that Pelosi walked out. She must be worried now that her grip on the speaker’s gavel could be endangered. All this over what should be a straightforward issue: condemning a representative’s hate speech against Jews

March 07, 2019 4:38 PM  
Anonymous Ilhan Omar said...

Drawing attention to the apartheid Israeli regime is far from hating Jews. You are a hateful sad man, I pray to Allah you get the help you need and find happiness.

March 07, 2019 6:26 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I haven't heard Omar's remarks, but what I do know is that Republicans like Wyatt/Regina spin any criticism whatsoever, regardless of how valid, as anti-semetism. This has been going on for decades.

The Jewish settlements in occupied territory are a grotesque injustice. I'm sure the Palistinians have done wrong, although I'm not exactly sure what, but Israel has gotten away with too much for too long. There will never be peace in the middle east when the United States keeps enabling Israel to commit human rights abuses.

The United States is alone or almost alone in the world in being unwilling to sign on to any committement to human rights. The United States has unethically prevented the U.N. from investigating allegations of human rights abuses against the Palistinians.

Conservative Americans like to talk about "American exceptionalism". That's nothing but bullshit as long as the United States is unwilling to take an ethical stance but rather sides with whoever they favour at the time, dictator or democracy.

The United States has no claim to ethical superiority over the world, the United States hasn't made a committement to ethical behaviour since after the Korean war.

March 07, 2019 6:30 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Every country in the world agreed to ban land mines and chemical weapons, except the United States. The U.S. has no moral authority around the world due to this kind of hypocrisy.

March 07, 2019 6:40 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

US Cancels Awards For Journalist Over Trump Criticism

Foreign Policy reports:

Jessikka Aro, a Finnish investigative journalist, has faced down death threats and harassment over her work exposing Russia’s propaganda machine long before the 2016 U.S. presidential elections. In January, the U.S. State Department took notice, telling Aro she would be honored with the prestigious International Women of Courage Award, to be presented in Washington by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Weeks later, the State Department rescinded the award offer. A State Department spokesperson said it was due to a “regrettable error,” but Aro and U.S. officials familiar with the internal deliberations tell a different story. They say the department revoked her award after U.S. officials went through Aro’s social media posts and found she had also frequently criticized President Donald Trump.

A State Department spokesman says Aro was “incorrectly notified” but as you’ll see at the link, that’s a lie.

March 07, 2019 6:50 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

<a href="< /a>Trump to take $1 billion from military pay to throw at his ecosystem destroying vanity wall</a>

Imagine if the Democrats did this how loud the outrage from Republicans would be. There could be no greater double standard than the one Republicans apply to themselves and liberals.

March 07, 2019 6:58 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Trump to take $1 billion from military pay to throw at his ecosystem destroying vanity wall

Imagine if the Democrats did this how loud the outrage from Republicans would be. There could be no greater double standard than the one Republicans apply to themselves and liberals.

March 07, 2019 6:59 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Juanita Peralta:

15 years in prison for drug possession. She is a mother of 6. Her 18 year old is now head of household.

The incredible cruelty of the American Justice system shocks my soul.

March 07, 2019 10:09 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

"outh Carolina megachurch "NewSpring" (14 campuses across the state, $41M in annual revenue, 20,000 attendees weekly) has a 4th alleged child sex predator accused of assaulting 14 kids in nine months. Caught on video but nobody did anything. Church says they vetted their staff and they blame it on "evil.""

No, no, it wasn't "evil", it was "society's embrace of homosexuality" that is responsible for this!

That's some real Joeseph Goebbels stuff.

March 07, 2019 10:26 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Remember when the Panama Papers came out and revealed that all the rich people in the world are part of an enourmous criminal conspiracy to dodge taxes and hoard stolen wealth in offshor accounts and literally nothing happened.

March 07, 2019 10:38 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

More winning.

American household net worth fell by nearly $4 trillion in fourth quarter

March 07, 2019 11:00 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

As Manafort is sentenced to just 4 years in prison, a reminder that a black man in Mississippi was sentenced to 8 years in prison for possession of marijuana purchased legally in another state

I am distressed every time I see Bill Maher smoking joints on his RealTime with Bill Maher Show. It is a terrible disservice to the American people for liberals to convey the image to the public that marijuana is a joke, and a lark and nothing to take seriously.

Many states have severe penalties for possession of even small amounts of marijuana and second offences can result in lengthy jail sentences. It is an unholy alliance between state governments and the private prison industry.

The state attempts to "save money" by paying private prison companies to run prisons because we all know private enterprise is always more efficient than government (nudge, nudge, wink, wink ;)

In turn the prisons lobby the states to pass laws increasing penalties for all crimes, but particularly marijuana. Sentences are much longer, more people years in prison, more profits for the pals of the Republican party. The state never saves any money, in fact the privatization of prisons costs the state more because although the cost per inmate year is lower, the total number of inmate years is double or tripled by the profit incentive in running private prisons.

Private prisons also have much worse conditions for prisoners but that's a bonus for Republicans. Most inmates in U.S. prisons are in for non-violent drug offences.

The absolute beginning and bedrock foundation of morality is that the individual owns their own body. It is an assault on freedom and morality for the government to attempt to tell any person what they may do with, or ingest into their body as long as they are hurting no one else.

For me, banning the recreational use of drugs is spitting in the face of the entire concept of fairness.

March 08, 2019 12:35 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Greg Sargent (Washington Post): “Fox News is fundamentally in the business of spreading disinformation, as opposed to conservative reportage. And that disinformation is plainly about deceiving millions into believing that core functionings of our government — whether law enforcement or congressional oversight — no longer have any legitimacy.”

March 08, 2019 12:40 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Schroedinger's Leftist:

A thought experiment invented by conservatives in which people on the political left are simultaneously a group of cowardly, weak snowflakes AND terrifying, violent thugs.

March 08, 2019 12:49 AM  
Anonymous Angela Peang & Michael Lee: Utah Cousins Petition to Get Legally Married said...

Angela Peang and Michael Lee are first cousins who created an online petition calling on the state of Utah to allow them to get legally married.

Peang started a petition in hopes of getting 1,000 signatures. By Wednesday afternoon, the petition had 125 supporters.

“My first cousin and I have been in love with each other our whole lives but we are prohibited from marrying in the state of Utah where we live,” Peang wrote. “We believe that the law is outdated and it needs to be changed so that we can socially legitimize our love.”

Peang told CBS News that she has been in love with Lee since second grade. Peang’s father is the brother of Lee’s mother.

Though they aren’t allowed to legally marry in Utah, the cousins wed in Colorado, where their relationship is legal, on Monday.

“I am officially a married man with a bright future,” Lee wrote on Facebook. “I am completely ecstatic about finally being married to my Angie.”

Peang Says ‘Kissing’ Cousin Felt ‘Really Natural’

Peang told CBS News that she and her cousin “played a lot” as kids.

“We went into a closet and we were kissing and dancing together. It just felt really natural,” she told the outlet.

“He told my mom he was going to marry me,” she added.

Her mother told Michael that he could not marry her daughter but the two continued to sneak off together. At one point they were caught kissing by family members.

“We got in trouble,” she said. “After that we were kind of kept apart.”

Peang & Lee Were Both Previously Married to Other People

Peang and Lee were both married to other people but have since gotten divorced. Peang has three children.

Peang told CBS she did not see Lee for about 10 years before they reconnected at their grandmother’s home last Christmas.

“We felt a lot of love and missed each other over the years,” Peang said. “We decided that we were just going to be open with our love. It was really scary to think about how our family would react because they are conservative Mormons… we thought we might be excluded.”

Peang told CBS that her two oldest daughters thought her relationship with Lee was “wrong” and “weird” at first.

“They started to come around eventually and when we told them we were getting married they were like, ‘OK, we’re cool [with it],'” Peang said.

March 08, 2019 7:41 AM  
Anonymous I got 2020 vision ! said...

more highlights for Trump's re-election resume':

-average hourly earnings rose a better-than- projected 3.4 percent from a year earlier

-the jobless rate declined to 3.8 percent, near a five-decade low

-the labor-force participation rate was at a five-year high of 63.2 percent

while Trump focuses on helping the American worker, the Dems propose a Green New Deal to save the environment by outlawing beef

wonder who the mid-west blue collar worker will go with...

CNN went to a comedy format last night as Anderson Cooper looked more mortified than he has since November 2016 he reported on the judge who rebuked Mueller's suggested sentence for Paul Manafort

I don't usually like Chris Cuomo, who comes on at 10, but I have to give him credit last night for calling out the Dems' hypocrisy for failing to denounce the new Muslim Congressperson who said "Jewish money" is controlling the government

the Nazis said the exact same thing to gain power in Germany after WWI

March 08, 2019 9:20 AM  
Anonymous Nice sales pitch but sorry charlie, reality bites said...

The United States added just 20,000 jobs in February, way below expectations of a 180,000 gain, and a sign that the job market might be beginning to cool.

The unemployment rate fell slightly to 3.8 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday.

Economists did not immediately panic as hiring has been strong in recent months and they do not see one weak number as a signal of an imminent recession. But the disappointing February figure comes as growth is slowing. Economic growth abroad has weakened, and the partial government shutdown and ongoing trade tensions appear to be weighing on consumer spending.

Hiring was slow in every industry except health care and white-collar businesses. Construction lost 31,000 jobs and leisure and hospitality, which is normally a driver of growth, was unchanged.

March 08, 2019 9:28 AM  
Anonymous Paranoia runs deep said...

"the Nazis said the exact same thing to gain power in Germany after WWI"

Yeah, no doubt Somali-Americans will be taking over the nation any day now!

< eye roll >

March 08, 2019 9:33 AM  
Anonymous Welcome to tЯumplandia said...

Nazis were among the "good people" who marched carrying Tiki torches, bullied peaceful protestors, beat African American DaAndre Harris in a garage, and murdered American citizen Heather Heyer on a street in Charlottsville.

March 08, 2019 9:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloomberg reports:
The Trump administration is again seeking severe cuts to the U.S. Energy Department division charged with renewable energy and energy efficiency research, according to a department official familiar with the plan.

The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy would see its $2.3 billion budget slashed by about 70 percent, to $700 million, under President Donald Trump’s fiscal 2020 budget request, which is set to be released on Monday.

The request is unlikely to be granted by Congress, especially with Democrats in charge of the House, but the figure represents an opening bargaining position for negotiations by the White House.

The Energy Department declined to comment and the White House Office of Management and Budget didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

“It’s a shutdown budget,” said Mike Carr, who served as the No. 2 official within the division under President Barack Obama. “That’s apparently what they want to signal to their base -- they still want to shut these programs down.”

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, which provides hundreds of millions of dollars a year in grants and other financial assistance for clean energy, has financed research into technologies ranging from electric vehicles to energy projects powered by ocean waves. It has been credited with financing research to help make the cost of wind power competitive with coal, and cutting the costs of LED lighting.
In the past, Trump administration officials have defended the cuts, arguing they are justified by the falling costs of renewables and other emerging energy technologies.

In testimony before a House panel Thursday, Daniel Simmons, the Energy Department assistant secretary who heads the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, said he couldn’t talk about the budget proposal. But he noted the division had recently completed funding announcements for research into hydrogen and batteries for heavy-duty trucks among other technologies.

Michigan Republican Representative Fred Upton told him at the hearing that lawmakers expects the office “to carry out the law as Congress intended and utilize the resources Congress provides.”

Meanwhile, conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation have called for the office to be eliminated entirely, saying energy innovation is best left up to the private sector.

The budget for energy efficiency and renewable energy “is completely out control and even with the reduction it would still be one of the largest budgets in the Energy line,” said Tom Pyle, who led Trump’s Energy Department transition team and serves as president of the American Energy Alliance, a free-market advocacy group.

Oh look:

The American Energy Alliance (AEA) describes itself as "the independent grassroots affiliate of the Institute for Energy Research (IER). AEA’s mission is to enlist and empower energy consumers to encourage policymakers to support free market policies. It was founded in 2008 by Thomas Pyle, who previously lobbied on behalf of the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association and Koch Industries and who previously worked for Congressman Tom Delay (R-TX), when Delay served as Whip and before Delay, as House Majority Leader, stepped down from the U.S. House of Representatives under an ethical cloud.

March 08, 2019 9:49 AM  
Anonymous Twenty-three House GOPers said...

Twenty-three Republicans voted against a resolution to condemn a wide range of hate speech and bigotry.

And GOP Rep. Steve King of Iowa, who’s had a far lengthier history of problematic statements, was the lone present vote.

Final vote 407-23.

Only GOPers voted against condemning hate speech and bigotry.

March 08, 2019 12:11 PM  
Anonymous Trump cheered Patriots to Super Bowl victory with founder of spa where Kraft was busted Read more here: said...

Seated at a round table littered with party favors and the paper-cutout footballs that have become tradition at his annual Super Bowl Watch Party, President Donald Trump cheered the New England Patriots and his longtime friend, team owner Robert Kraft, to victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Feb. 3.

Sometime during the party at Trump’s West Palm Beach country club, the president turned in his chair to look over his right shoulder, smiling for a photo with two women at a table behind him.

The woman who snapped the blurry Super Bowl selfie with the president was Li Yang, 45, a self-made entrepreneur from China who started a chain of Asian day spas in South Florida. Over the years, these establishments — many of which operate under the name Tokyo Day Spas — have gained a reputation for offering sexual services.

Nineteen days after Trump and Yang posed together while rooting for the Patriots, authorities would charge Kraft with soliciting prostitution at a spa in Jupiter that Yang had founded more than a decade earlier.

Yang says she had long since sold Orchids of Asia Day Spa, the massage parlor where authorities say they caught Kraft on camera paying for oral sex the morning of the Jan. 20 AFC Championship game — his second visit in 24 hours. (Kraft has denied breaking the law.) Yang, who goes by Cindy, was not charged in the multi-agency anti-human trafficking operation last month that shut down 10 Asian day spas in Florida, none of which are registered to her or her family.

The Kraft bust brought global attention to the proliferation of Asian day spas across the country, some of which are thinly disguised houses of prostitution — and experts say could be engaged in human trafficking to fill demand.

In a brief phone interview, Yang said she and her family have never broken the law, but did not answer questions about whether she knew of the allegations that therapists in her spas were offering sex. She added that she was out of the business, would soon be moving to Washington, D.C., and didn’t want any negative press.

Before the 2016 general election, Yang offered no evidence of political engagement. She hadn’t voted in 10 years, records showed. But she has now become a fixture at Republican political events up and down the East Coast. Her Facebook is covered in photos of herself standing with President Trump, his two sons, Eric and Donald Jr., Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Rick Scott, Sarah Palin, the president’s campaign manager and an assortment of other high-level Republican operators she has met at charity events, political fundraisers and galas, many of which require hefty donations to attend. She sometimes carries a rhinestone encrusted MAGA clutch purse.

Yang has shown considerable political largesse. Since 2017, she and her close relatives have contributed more than $42,000 to Trump Victory, a political action committee, and more than $16,000 to the president’s campaign.

Read more here:

March 08, 2019 12:21 PM  
Anonymous heterosexuality should be encouraged by special preferences to preserve life said...

A dean at Rider University in New Jersey announced her resignation from her position this month after the school declined to pursue a contract with Chick-fil-A for a new restaurant on campus. The university explained that it had removed Chick-fil-A from consideration specifically because of “the company’s record widely perceived to be in opposition to the LGBTQ+ community.” The dean, Catherine Newman, told the conservative site Campus Reform that she resigned rather than parrot the school’s talking points about Chick-fil-A’s unwelcome “corporate values.” “I am not willing to compromise my faith and Christian values,” Newman said.

Newman quit because she understands what many other conservative Christians do: The Chick-fil-A brand is so strongly associated with their values that the restaurant serves as a kind of avatar for conservative American Christianity as a whole.

Not so long ago, that was something that most progressives believed too. In 2012—when only a handful of U.S. states allowed same-sex-marriage—Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy famously made several comments in the press about his opposition to the unions. “We are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage,’ ”. Facing backlash, he doubled down a few days later, saying he was “guilty as charged” and that he supported “the biblical definition of the family unit.” It turned out that Chick-fil-A’s charitable organization had donated millions to conservative organizations, including “ex-gay” ministry Exodus International.

Cathy’s 2012 remarks turned a fast-food joint into a loyalty test. Many progressives quickly said they would boycott the chain. GLAAD staged a “kiss-in” at Chick-fil-A restaurants across the country. Hardly anyone showed up for the kissing and Chik-Fil-A sales boomed.

March 08, 2019 1:02 PM  
Anonymous heterosexuality should be encouraged by special preferences to preserve life said...

And over the years, many progressives have slunk back through the restaurant’s doors. The editorial director of HuffPost Personal, Noah Michelson, wrote last year in an essay lamenting the slump in resolve, “For some strange reason I still don’t fully understand, some queer people and their friends and families began eating at Chick-fil-A again and are still eating there.” A Daily Beast columnist called for queer people to “forgive Chick-fil-A” in 2015. When Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted last June—Pride Month—about ordering from the restaurant, he later confessed that he “completely forgot about their background.”

How did Chick-fil-A become uncanceled? For one, the chain has gotten harder for urban progressives to avoid. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in 2012 that the company’s values “are not Chicago values,” but there are now multiple Chick-fil-A outlets in Chicago, and they seem to be thriving. The first New York City Chick-fil-A opened in 2015, and the chain opened “the world’s largest Chick-fil-A” in downtown Manhattan a few years later. It is now planning its first outlets in Boston and Brooklyn. Anecdotally, many progressives still feel vaguely guilty about eating at Chick-fil-A—but they eat there anyway, citing factors like convenience, picky kids, and the universally acknowledged excellence of its food compared with fast-food competitors.

The company's efforts to leave its anti-gay reputation behind have been minimal. It often reminds critics that anyone is welcome to eat there, the lowest bar imaginable for a national consumer-facing business. The company now focuses its corporate giving on youth and education programs, rather than on political activism. Many of the organizations it supports, including the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, are not LGBTQ-friendly. And the company still rates 0 on the Human Rights Campaign’s Buyers Guide. Among other issues, it does no diversity training for employees on LGBTQ cultural competence, and its nondiscrimination policy does not include LGBTQ people.

As it turns out, it’s hard to stay mad at a ubiquitous and popular brand. A fair summary of the reason progressives seem increasingly comfortable eating at Chick-fil-A: The product is irresistible. That may be a reasonable moral calculation. But it still seems worth a little guilt.

March 08, 2019 1:02 PM  
Anonymous more on the civil war the gay agenda is trying to provoke said...

On February 19, the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump announced a new international gay-rights campaign, which will focus on fighting laws in 72 countries that still treat same-sex relationships as criminal acts.

Most of the targeted countries are in the Middle East and Africa. But it is widely suspected that the policy was formulated with one specific country in mind: Iran, a long-time U.S. adversary that ranks as one of the worst gay rights abusers in the world. Indeed, Iran is one of only four countries where the death penalty for homosexuality is codified under Sharia and implemented on a countrywide basis. This is not simply a case of archaic old laws that the Iranian government just never rescinded. In fact, a 31-year-old man was hung in the Iranian city of Kazeroon on homosexuality-related charges as recently as January.

Given all this, one might think that a campaign against the criminalization of homosexuality would present a rare instance in which even progressives would give Trump credit for doing the right thing. But some on the left have abandoned the opportunity for common cause, and instead have argued that this move only proves Trump’s status as a bigot and hypocrite.

One column on the subject that went viral, for instance, was titled “Trump’s Plan to Decriminalize Homosexuality Is an Old Racist Tactic.” Author Mathew Rodriguez claimed that Trump’s move is “part of an old colonialist handbook,” and an example of the “racist, paternalistic process by which colonizing powers would decry the way men in power treated oppressed groups…to justify attacking them.”

"Rather than actually being about helping queer people around the world, Trump's campaign looks more like another instance of the right using queer people as a pawn to amass power and enact its own agenda,

It’s tempting to laugh off such rhetoric as a symptom of “Trump Derangement Syndrome.” But there is a deeper trend at play—one that won’t end when Trump leaves office. Gay writers and progressive LGBT activists have become so consumed with partisan politics and intersectional ideology that they cannot concede the possibility that their opponents may have done some good in the world.

The fact that the new initiative is being led by a gay man, U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, means little to these ideologues. In their narrative, Grenell is either a sellout or a stooge. A left-wing writer at Teen Vogue dismissed the ambassador as a “pawn.” And even some prominent elected Democrats have joined in on the backlash. Rep. Robin Kelly (D-IL) took to Twitter to bash the president after his announcement.

March 08, 2019 1:16 PM  
Anonymous more on the civil war the gay agenda is trying to provoke said...

Even established gay-rights groups joined in on the anti-Trump pile-on. The Human Rights Campaign bills itself as America’s largest “national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization,” with a mission to build “a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.” But while Trump’s move is entirely consistent with these goals, the HRC response to the Feb. 19 announcement was bizarre, as they put out a scathing Twitter thread attacking Trump for a laundry list of actions unrelated to his recent initiative (including a one-off joke the president reportedly made in regard to criticism of his record on LGBT issues).

Why is this the HRC’s same-day reaction to a pro-LGBT initiative? To an outside observer, it seems that the HRC is more fixated on attacking Republicans than addressing the fact that a third of the countries in the world treat gays as criminals.

The narratives behind social justice, “intersectionality,” and decolonization typically emphasize the need to consider the race, gender and sexual orientation of everyone involved in a discussion, or affected by an underlying rule, decision or policy. That might sound like a recipe for understanding and tolerance at first glance, but the reaction to Trump’s initiative shows how such doctrines can have destructive consequences. This thinking leads to an all-consuming focus on the identity of the people championing a new idea, as opposed to the merits of the idea itself: And so it becomes more satisfying to excoriate a Republican president standing up for gay rights than to acknowledge the vicious homophobia of a Muslim-majority foreign country that can be cast as oppressed or disadvantaged.

Identity politics warps the objectivity of many progressives within the LGBT community. Gay people (and their “allies”) now are routinely scared to agree with an orthodox Christian or traditional conservative on an issue like tax policy or internet censorship, lest the gesture somehow be construed as support for homophobia or opposition to gay marriage. As with the reaction to Trump, under this worldview the issue under discussion doesn’t matter—just the identity of the person arguing it. Given all this, why would future conservative lawmakers ever bother to compromise or reach across the aisle? Their critics will condemn them anyway. Intersectionality has given everyone an incentive to “stay in their lane”—including when that lane is undilute conservatism.

I don’t agree with Trump on everything. But all reasonable people must be able to give credit when its due. So I, for one, thank his administration for promoting a long-overdue gay-rights initiative on the international stage, even if the president also sees it as a convenient pretext for scoring points against Iran. As for the progressives who opposed the initiative on the basis of who happens to be sitting in the White House, they need to look in the mirror: Their ad hominem reflexes reveal a political sickness that’s tearing liberalism apart.

March 08, 2019 1:16 PM  
Anonymous the future of the gay agenda is grim said...

In his closing remarks after the only presidential debate of the 1980 campaign, Ronald Reagan famously looked into the camera and asked the voters, “Are you better off than you were four years ago?” This boiled down that year’s contest to a question that most voters eventually ask themselves, consciously or not, in every election involving an incumbent president. The obvious answer in 1980 was, “No,” and Jimmy Carter became unemployed. The same implicit question will determine the outcome of the 2020 election, and President Trump’s fate. Fortunately for the nation, the clear answer will be an unequivocal, “Yes.”

Indeed, according to Gallup, the general public has already decided on the answer: “Fifty percent say they are better off today than they were a year ago… the first time since 2007 that at least half of the public has said they are financially better off than a year ago.” To put this in historical perspective Gallup points out, “Only 11 times in 109 polls stretching back to 1976 have at least half of those polled said they were in better financial shape than they had been a year prior.” And the good news doesn’t end there. A record number of Americans are optimistic about where their personal finances are headed during the next 12 months:

Americans’ optimism about their personal finances has climbed to levels not seen in more than 16 years, with 69% now saying they expect to be financially better off “at this time next year”… only two percentage points below the all-time high of 71%, recorded in March 1998 at a time when the nation’s economic boom was producing strong economic growth combined with the lowest inflation and unemployment rates in decades.

This is why the Democrats in the House have doubled down on their investigative overreach and hysterical characterizations of the President. It is why House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) has taken to suggesting that Trump is a “dictator.” This is indicative of sheer panic. Nadler and the rest of the Democratic leadership know that, unless the economy takes a dive in the next twelve months or they somehow manage to force the President out of office, the voters will pull the lever for the presidential candidate whom they trust most on the economy. And that candidate’s name will be Donald J. Trump.

But the Democrats and their friends in the media have done their best to spin the nation’s economic gains as bad news for ordinary Americans. After they tried to give erstwhile President Obama retroactive credit for the improved economy and the howls of laughter stopped, they exhumed many of the moldering arguments they used when the economy improved during the Reagan era — even such withered clichés as “trickle-down economics” and “income inequality.” And, all too predictably, economist cum columnist Paul Krugman has suddenly spotted a worldwide recession looming ominously on the horizon:

There is a significant chance the world economy is headed for a recession in 2019, according to Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman.… When asked whether investors should expect to see a recession in the coming months, Krugman replied: “I think that there is a quite good chance that we will have a recession late this year (or) next year.” He highlighted President Donald Trump’s tax cut stimulus as one area of concern, saying the program was “not very effective.”

March 08, 2019 2:08 PM  
Anonymous the future of the gay agenda is grim said...

But the people who have benefited most from Trump’s economic policies don’t read the New York Times. Nor do they devote a lot of angst to the value of the euro. Democratic propaganda notwithstanding, the beneficiaries of tax reform are not “rich.” They are, in fact, working people who had enormous difficulty finding jobs during the anemic economy that the Democrats and Obama told them was the “new normal.” And those who were lucky enough to be employed don’t see the raises, bonuses, and tax cuts they have received during the past year as the “crumbs” Nancy Pelosi sneered at in January of 2018.

Out here in the real world beyond the Beltway, working people don’t enjoy the luxuries that people like Pelosi take for granted. They certainly can’t count on the lucrative lifetime jobs that congressional Democrats call “public service.” When the demand for employees increases to the point at which it exceeds the supply of workers — and that’s where we are now — wages go up for those with jobs as well as those seeking them. This makes a real difference in the lives of real people. And these are the very people the Democrats claim to represent — blacks, Hispanics, Asians, women, etc. As the Wall Street Journal points out:

All sorts of people who have previously had trouble landing a job are now finding work. Racial minorities, those with less education and people working in the lowest-paying jobs are getting bigger pay raises and, in many cases, experiencing the lowest unemployment rate ever recorded for their groups. They are joining manufacturing workers, women in their prime working years, Americans with disabilities and those with criminal records, among others, in finding improved job prospects after years of disappointment.

All of this has happened on Trump’s watch. This is not a coincidence. The President is an unapologetic advocate of free-market capitalism. He understands that tax cuts for individuals and businesses — combined with aggressive deregulation — stimulate economic growth and job creation. That translates into improvements in the lives of real people and a general sense of optimism about the future. Are the voters going to give that up for pie-in-the-sky promises from a leftwing Democrat who can’t explain how to pay for them, yet insists that the President is a crook? Nope. Trump, warts and all, will win in 2020.

March 08, 2019 2:09 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Wyatt/Regina said "heterosexuality should be encouraged by special preferences to preserve life."

Sigh...Wyatt and Regina so desperately want a war between gays and heterosexuals, and yet they accuse gays of wanting to start the civil war. They think gays making factual, moral, and convincing arguments for fair treatment is a behaviour that they need to respond violently to.

March 08, 2019 2:28 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Wyatt/Regina said "heterosexuality should be encouraged by special preferences to preserve life."

I remember learning in high school biology how many (most? all?) species go through boom/bust population cycles. All resources are finite. Wyatt/Regina don't seem/want to understand that and so advocate for continuously growing the human population.

When resources are plentiful the population breads and grows rapidly, then it reaches a point there there are so many individuals in the population there aren't enough resources to keep every individual alive. The dwindling resources start disappearing at an ever more rapid pace and the vast majority of the population dies from starvation and a tiny remaining group of individuals then have enough resources to survive, the animal/plant resources start to grow again, and bit by bit so does the species population.

Or at least that's the way its worked as long as there's been life on earth. Humans are going to put an end to that. Humans are growing our population at an exponential rate with the outcome being inevitable.

This is the malice of conservatives, they won't acknowledge this simple and existential reality. They have a cave-man mindset - resist change unconditionally and they are a big enough minority of the population to prevent the action needed to deal with these existential threats.

I've often said on this blog, "Liberalism always wins out in the end." And that's the way it has always worked, up until now. We've never repealed major liberalization events of society like democratization, the freedom to worship as you choose, ending slavery, women getting the vote, etc. (the evangelicals slowly implementing Jim Crow laws for lgbts aside).

But I see now, conservatism is going to win ultimately. The want a civil war on liberals because their cave-man ideology is losing at the ballot box. As Jim pointed out, that's a pretty difficult civil war to wage from a logistics perspective. So conservatives can't arrange an effective direct attack on liberals, so they attack liberals indirectly, by attacking our biggest concern - the planet that sustains humanity and all life we know of.

Right Wing Authoritarians are a large minority of the population. They can't win at the ballot box because, as we see in these TTF threads, liberal ideology is logically defendable while conservatism is not. All conservatives bring to the debate is bully tactics to disrupt and prevent a real rational, fact based discussion as to what's best for humanity and our earth bound companions.

It is so easy to disrupt rational fact based debate that takes complicated thinking...

Conservatism will win in the ultimate end, not liberalism. Conservatives want to destroy the planet to spite liberals and they are not open to discussion on that being a bad idea.

March 08, 2019 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know for me, if it comes down to promoting heterosexuality or promoting homosexuality, with an exploding population threatening the survival of all life on earth, I'm going to go with promoting homosexuality.

March 08, 2019 3:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The human population is growing at an exponential rate, our food supply is declining or soon to begin declining.

The Tribulations are coming.

March 08, 2019 3:07 PM  
Anonymous heterosexuality should be encouraged by special preferences to preserve life said...

"with an exploding population threatening the survival of all life on earth, I'm going to go with promoting homosexuality"

I thought you guys thought sexuality is innate and unalterable

were you lying?

"The human population is growing at an exponential rate, our food supply is declining or soon to begin declining."

food supply is elastic, depending on demand

it's not fixed, there is plenty of space to produce more

btw, how low is your IQ?

"The Tribulations are coming."

well, get ready

March 08, 2019 3:24 PM  
Anonymous Exodus International is closed said...

"Chick-fil-A’s charitable organization had donated millions to conservative organizations, including “ex-gay” ministry Exodus International."

Exodus Head Alan Chambers' Full Apology to the LGBT Community | Our America with Lisa Ling | OWN

The Downfall of the Ex-Gay Movement

March 08, 2019 3:37 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Evangelical christians like Wyatt/Regina and Tony Perkins tend to avoid questions about their religious beliefs because they know from experience they can't rationally defend the unjust policy objectives that arise from those beliefs.

It's "I am unconditionally opposed to change and I'm not open to discussion on why I wrongly believe that's a good idea because I know my reasoning is flimsy and specious at best."

You saw how that dishonest evangelical tactic for derailing rational debate played out in the previous thread. University educated Wyatt and Regina Hardiman made the specious argument that any counts that are necessarily estimates are no better than a blind guess. That is gross and dishonest distortion of the scientific and statistical reality and they are well aware of it given their university education. You'll regularly see anti-fairness evangelical spokespeople like Tony Perkins on TV doing the exact same sort of dishonest pitch, knowing full well their deceiving their followers.

They make such arguments knowing they are specious and wrong because they know their fellow Right Wing Authoritarians are probably not aware of that being 98% false and they will blindly go along with denying troubling realities like fish stocks are declining around the world or that choosing to punish individual "A" by massively and continuously assaulting their life and happiness is not a better balancing of citizen rights than requiring person "B" to perform a rare trivial unpleasantry.

And yes, I'm talking about Wyatt/Regina saying "If society has to criminalize someone so petty as to not want to serve all customers in their business


criminalize gayness, I choose to criminalize gayness."

Their vision of society is one in which some are massively privileged and other innocent people are severely oppressed. That's what morality is to them.

March 08, 2019 3:56 PM  
Anonymous LMAO Not FOXY enough for IQ45 said...

Bill Shine, the former Fox News executive who joined the White House eight months ago as President Trump’s top communications adviser, has resigned abruptly and said he's "looking forward to working on President Trump’s reelection campaign and spending more time with my family.”

March 08, 2019 4:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Priya said "My highest priority goal for society is to maximize the happiness and minimize the pain for all in an equal and fair way."

Wyatt/Regina said "more on the civil war the gay agenda is trying to provoke said..."

Again, note the duplicity of the Right Wing Authoritarian - two decades of calling harmless gays a threat to civilization, of calling for lgbt schoolchildren to have their heads stuck in toilets filled with urine and feces, demanding that "homosexuality be forced back into the shadows"...

They are the bully or wife-beater that uses their fists when confronted with reasoned requests for fair treatment...and then later justifies their unprovoked violence by saying "She was asking for it.".

March 08, 2019 5:49 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

The subtext of Wyatt/Regina's posts here, and with christians wanting gay marriage bans, who say "Muslims will throw you off the roofs of buildings, you should side with us." is....

"Accept the level of injustice we now force on you, or we'll make it a lot worse."

March 08, 2019 5:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wyatt/Regina said "food supply is elastic, depending on demand it's not fixed, there is plenty of space to produce more"

The available surface area of the planet is fixed.

That's another example of "finite" and your willfull stupidity.

You advocate encouraging further exponential growth of the earth's population, infinite growth of the earth's population.

Nature has taught us from the beginning that is a death sentence for the majority of humanity from mass starvation. And logic shows people who score low on the Right Wing Authoritarian scale, this mass death of humanity is inevitable if we don't get to zero population growth almost immediately.

So, you'll get your way, the death of all the liberals you hate, at the expense of the death of all conservatives too.

March 08, 2019 6:23 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Can it really be that Wyatt/Regina don't understand the difference between "infinite" and "finite"?

Is that why they don't grasp that the ultimate in immorality is their god meting out infinite punishment for finite crimes?

March 08, 2019 6:25 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

The only infinite thing I know of in the universe is change.

March 08, 2019 6:33 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Cave-man psychology, which we all have, is that the cycles we've seen in our lives will never end. That will be the death of earth.

March 08, 2019 6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And as ocean levels rise from Human Caused Global Climate Warming, there will be less and less land available for raising food.

The tribulations are coming.

March 08, 2019 6:43 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I mean, what possible hope for humanity is there when 25-40% of the population won't even admit the earth's resources are finite?

March 08, 2019 6:54 PM  
Anonymous Isaac Asimov said...

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance" is just as good as your knowledge.

March 08, 2019 8:24 PM  
Anonymous I, Robot said...

"There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been"

Isaac, we've done pretty well for ourselves, have we not?

defeated the Nazis, invented jazz, built Disney World, landed on the moon, and one of our doofiest comedians, Al Gore, started the internet

pretty good for a bunch of ignorant morons!

March 08, 2019 11:28 PM  
Anonymous rhymin simon said...

we came on a ship they called the Mayflower

we came on a ship that sailed the moon

we came in the age's most uncertain hours

and sang an American tune

March 08, 2019 11:31 PM  
Anonymous think about this time you read a sexuality study that says homosexuality is mentally healthy said...

If you are an American college professor, the way you get a raise or tenure is by getting papers published in "academic journals."

The stupidity of these journals says a lot about what's taught at colleges today.

Recently, three people sent in intentionally ridiculous "research" to prominent journals of women studies, gender studies, race studies, sexuality studies, obesity studies, and queer studies.

"The scholarship in these disciplines is utterly corrupted," says Dr. Peter Boghossian of Portland State University. "They have placed an agenda before the truth."

To show that, hoaxer and mathematician James Lindsay says, "We rewrote a section of Mein Kampf as intersectional feminism" and got it published in Affilia: Journal of Women and Social Work.

For another paper, they claimed to have "closely" examined genitals of 10,000 dogs in dog parks to learn about "rape culture and queer performativity."

Boghossian had assumed, "There's no way they're gonna believe that we did this!"

But the journal Gender, Place & Culture did, calling the paper "excellent scholarship."

Seven journals accepted the absurd papers.

Hoaxers Boghossian, Lindsay, and Areo magazine editor Helen Pluckrose explain the reason for their trick.

"We think studying topics like gender, race and sexuality is worthwhile and getting it right is extremely important," says Lindsay

But researchers of these topics have gotten lazy and political, they say. "A culture has developed in which only certain conclusions are allowed—like those that make whiteness and masculinity problematic," Lindsay says.

Reach politically "correct" conclusions and you can get most anything published.

"Kind of a last straw happened," says Lindsay. "There was this paper well-funded by the National Science Foundation that studied 'feminist glaciology.' It said glacier science is sexist."

As a glaciologist giving a TED Talk put it, "the majority of glaciological knowledge that we have today stems from knowledge created by men about men within existing masculinist stories."


One paper suggested the solution to sexism in glacier science is "feminist paintings of glaciers and feminist art projects," says Lindsay. They praised art projects like one where they "hooked up a phone line to a glacier so you could call the glacier on the phone and listen to it." That was "the last straw" for him.

Lindsay adds, "What appears beyond dispute is that making absurd and horrible ideas sufficiently politically fashionable can get them validated at the highest levels of academic grievance studies."

The hoaxers didn't get to finish their experiment because The Wall Street Journal's Jillian Kay Melchior noticed the absurdity of the paper on dog humping. She exposed the hoax before all 20 journals weighed in.

What upsets me most is what happened—or rather, didn't happen—next.

No university said it would stop using those journals, and no journal editor publicly said, "We must raise our standards."

March 08, 2019 11:42 PM  
Anonymous think about this time you read a sexuality study that says homosexuality is mentally healthy said...

"Think about if you did this to civil engineers with bridge building," says Boghossian. "They would've thanked us, right? Because they're driving over the bridges with their families, so they don't want the bridges to collapse."

But the journal editors, instead of admitting that they sometimes publish nonsense, attacked the hoaxers. They accused them of doing "unethical research."

A dozen of Boghossian's colleagues at Portland State University criticized him anonymously in the school newspaper, which depicted him as a clown. He's become a pariah at his own school.

"I've been spat on...physically threatened," he says.

Instead of applauding him for exposing nonsense, Portland State threatened him.

I called the school asking for an interview, but it declined.

How can a college criticize the hoaxers but revere ridiculous journals that publish nonsense?

"When you live in these tight ecosystems, this stuff makes total sense," says Boghossian. For people in the tiny bubble of academic thinking, "there's a pervading rape culture; men are bad—the whole ball of wax."

It's been going on for some time. A physicist once submitted a nonsense paper claiming gravity is just a "social construct." The journal Social Text published it. That embarrassed the journal, but 20 years later, it is still going strong.

At universities, "scholarship" has gotten even crazier.

The real "hoax" is on students who pay thousands of dollars for useless degrees in fields that end in "studies."

March 08, 2019 11:43 PM  
Anonymous pass the popcorn, the Dem demo on how to lose an election is just beginning said...

Americans love a good political brawl, and that’s terrible news for Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Her Democratic Party has commenced a full throw-down—with itself.

Few things have benefited Democrats more in the past few years than the Donald Trump show. Mrs. Pelosi this week accomplished the remarkable feat of sidelining Mr. Trump and owning most of the unpleasant headlines herself. House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler explained that his sprawling Trump investigation was primarily designed to convince voters that Democrats were “not just trying to steal the last—to reverse the results of the last election.” This required his colleagues to deny furiously that the party has already decided on impeachment.

Then there was the crackup between House party elders who wanted Democrats to condemn the anti-Semitism of Rep. Ilhan Omar, and woke freshmen who wanted to turn smears against Jews into a fuzzy discussion of hurt feelings. Members battled for days, only for Mrs. Pelosi on Thursday to roll over to the progressive left’s demand that any resolution condemn “hate” in general and not anti-Semitism specifically. Even CNN described all this as “chaos.”

These are not the only incidents. They follow a high-profile moment in which moderate Democrats bucked their party to vote with Republicans on gun control, as well as furious backlash to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s threat last week to put those Democrats on a “list” for a primary challenge if they don’t get with her program. And of course radical-left House members for weeks have overshadowed the Pelosi agenda with their own proposals for a Green New Deal, Medicare for All, giant tax hikes and more.

It’s hard to ignore how huge and fundamental the fissures are becoming in the Democratic Party. This isn’t a tea-party moment, which was fueled by conservatives who felt their Republican members weren’t living up to principles that most in the party share. The Democratic Party is moving in two different directions.

Ideologically, how do you mesh a party whose members variously embrace and reject capitalism? Hillary Clinton, in a remarkable moment last year, said she believes her decision in 2016 to call herself a “capitalist” hurt her in places like Iowa, where “41% of Democrats are socialists or self-described socialists.” In other words, well over a third of Iowa caucus-goers reject the economic and political basis upon which the Democratic Party was founded.

The moderates who won Mrs. Pelosi the gavel ran on deficit reduction, border security and market reforms. Today’s progressive movement subscribes to “modern monetary theory,” in which debt no longer matters; wants to abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement; and believes markets are immoral. These aren’t degrees of separation. They’re completely separate philosophies.

That the party is going in opposite directions was beautifully illustrated this week by the heated public fight between Wisconsin Democrats who want the 2020 convention in Milwaukee and Florida Democrats who want it in Miami. The Wisconsin contingent says the party needs to stop snubbing labor unions and the white working class Mr. Trump won over in the 2016 election. The Florida crowd says the party needs to embrace more passionately the multicultural, minority, progressive microcosms of coastal America. What nobody is admitting is that no Democratic politician has yet to articulate a strategy for catering to both. Because it is impossible.

The reigning political wisdom is that none of this will matter in the end. Democrats will brawl, but their anti-Trump fervor will ultimately unite them around a standard-bearer. Then again, these are not usual political times. And it seems equally possible that the same anti-Trump contempt will push them to overreach in their investigations and indulge in policy prescriptions that prove too extreme for a center-right country.

It’s too soon to know. For now, all we can do is sit back and enjoy the Democratic show.

March 09, 2019 6:35 AM  
Anonymous I got 2020 vision ! said...

This week marked the takeover of the House Democrats by socialists in their party after they managed to avoid a vote on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism.

House Democrats initially moved to vote on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, after Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., rattled off a series of anti-Semitic tweets. But instead, Democrats rewrote the resolution so it condemned most imaginable forms of hate speech and bigotry, including efforts by white supremacists to put down most racial groups.

Omar was never named in the resolution.

March 09, 2019 8:47 AM  
Anonymous I reeeeeally like our current Supreme Court said...

As the House of Representatives demonstrated Thursday with an awkward vote against bigotry itself, a big tent may contain a party or a circus. A resolution against anti-Semitism and a smorgasbord of other prejudices did produce, if nothing else, Democratic unanimity, a growing challenge for Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s ungainly majority.

The vote was the San Francisco Democrat’s attempt to paper over a flareup of religious, racial, political and generational divides in her caucus.

The Democrats’ resolution aimed a garbled rebuke at one of their own. Minnesota freshman Ilhan Omar, a Somali refugee who became one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, who has difficulty criticizing Israel without the aid of anti-Semitic chestnuts.

Several more senior Democrats, some of them Jewish, demanded a formal rejection of anti-Semitism.

Omar’s defenders — including Kamala Harris, the California senator and presidential contender — objected that she was being unfairly targeted, leading to the broadened resolution condemning hatred of “people of color, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, the LGBTQ community, immigrants, and others.”

Pelosi and her fellow Democratic leaders, who hoped the resolution would put the matter behind them in favor of more substantive legislation, might have accomplished the opposite by drawing attention to a watered-down waste of their taxpayer-compensated time.

March 09, 2019 8:52 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

1. Gregory Brower was Jim Comey’s FBI congressional liaison, and left the agency in 2018. Brower was in Comey’s inner circle, and like many in Comey’s inner circle, Brower played the game of claiming things were classified when they were not, in order to label Republican investigators as leakers and hide how the FBI used the “dossiers.”

2. Kevin Clinesmith, a former FBI lawyer, wrote anti-Trump texts with former top FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page. Clinesmith “worked on the 2016 probe into Hillary Clinton’s email use [known as Mid-Year-Exam], then worked on the FBI’s original investigation into the Trump campaign [known as Crossfire Hurricane] and, eventually, with the special counsel’s investigation into Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign.”

But Clinesmith, like Strzok, was let go from Mueller’s investigative team once his anti-Trump texts were uncovered by the FBI inspector general (IG), who is tasked with uncovering wrongdoing at the FBI. “Viva le resistance,” Clinesmith said in one text.

3. Joseph Pientka, an FBI official,was the go-between for Fusion GPS and the FBI. Pientka interviewed Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr on at least 12 occasions, who passed on the information Ohr’s wife Nellie (who worked for Fusion GPS) was receiving from Christopher Steele (who also worked for Fusion GPS), and who was using Edward Baumgartner, a British national with ties to Moscow, to compile the dossier for the Clinton campaign.

Steele was originally the direct FBI source, despite his ties to the Clinton campaign through Fusion GPS, but when Steele was caught leaking to the media to paint Trump as a Russian stooge just before the election, official FBI rules said that Steele’s use as an FBI source had to be discontinued. The FBI top brass worked around these rules, which are in place to prevent this very kind of abuse, by using Pientka to interview Ohr, who was getting his information from Steele.

Pientka also played a role in the interview of former Trump national security advisor Mike Flynn, where Pientka and Strzok interviewed Flynn, and Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI officials (including former deputy attorney general Sally Yates) used that interview to entrap Flynn for a completely non-nefarious conversation with the Russian ambassador. The pretext for the interview was the Logan Act, a 200-year old law that has never led to a conviction and is probably unconstitutional. Plus, it is violated by every incoming administration, as they seek to begin conducting foreign policy during the transition period.

All Flynn did was talk to the Russian ambassador and try to get Russia to not retaliate against sanctions Obama placed on Russia right before leaving the White House, and to not allow an anti-Israel vote at the United Nations. The Obama administration was going to allow this vote in the final days of Obama’s presidency, an unprecedented move.

Although Flynn was never charged with violating the Logan Act, he was later charged with lying to the FBI investors sent to interview him, under the pretext of a possible Logan Act violation—even though the agents didn’t think he was lying at the time, and even though the FBI had wiretapped access to the record of Flynn’s conversation with the Russian ambassador.

What happened to Flynn is a disgrace, and a total perversion of our justice system. And it is just one example in the dangerous trend of the left using our justice system to take out political opponents, where Democrat politicians point out a target or a supposed crime, and the federal bureaucracy dutifully moves into action.

March 09, 2019 9:00 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

4. Tashina Gauhar is a Department of Justice attorney who was deeply involved in applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (FISA) Court, which were used to spy on the Trump campaign using the dossiers. Gauhar was also one of the few people to see or be notified of the existence of missing Hillary Clinton emails found on Anthony Weiner’s computer. Weiner was being investigated for pedophilia and was married to top Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

Gauhar and Andrew McCabe sat on those emails, and a cursory investigation—led by anti-Trump FBI agent Strzok—was only conducted when FBI field agents in New York threatened to go public. Gauhar later played a role in recommending former attorney general Jeff Sessions’ recusal from overseeing Mueller’s probe.

5. John Carlin is the head of the Justice Department’s National Security Division, and got out of the DOJ in late 2016. He was the former chief of staff to Mueller, when Mueller led the FBI in the 2000s. Carlin was involved in the FBI’s systemic abuse of the FISA surveillance laws, which included spying on the Trump campaign.

Gauhar later played a role in recommending former attorney general Jeff Sessions’ recusal from overseeing Mueller’s probe.
This included omitting information on FBI wiretap abuse to the FISA court, and omitting information when applying to spy on Trump campaign official Carter Page to the FISA court. Carlin was also regularly briefed on and involved with the FBI’s overall investigation into the Trump campaign, called Crossfire Hurricane.

6. David Laufman is a high-level DOJ official in the national security division. Laufman worked with FBI counterintelligence guy Strzok on both the Clinton email investigation and the investigation into the Trump campaign based on the still-unproven, Clinton-paid, and Russian-sourced “dossier.”

7. Mary McCord was the acting assistant attorney general for a time, replacing Carlin as the head of the DOJ’s national security division. She left the DOJ in 2017. McCord played a role in Yates’s plan to spy on Flynn and entrap him with the Logan Act.

8. George Toscas, a senior official in the Justice Department, was in charge of the “Mid-Year-Exam” investigation into Clinton’s email abuses. Toscas had a front seat to both McCabe and Comey’s efforts to hide the fact that Clinton’s emails were found on Weiner’s computer, and former Obama attorney general Loretta Lynch’s efforts to stymie the Clinton email investigation.

The importance of Hillary’s emails wasn’t just her flouting security rules. Many have speculated that Hillary’s 30,000 missing emails, which were stored on her home-brew server, would have shown pay-to-play activities Clinton conducted while Obama’s secretary of state.

March 09, 2019 9:02 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

9. Victoria Nuland was a top Obama State Department official, and potentially Clinton’s secretary of state. Nuland had a role in pushing Fusion GPS conspiracy theories in the State Department, and in the broader Obama administration.

She received the Steele dossier just after it was created, via Jonathan Winer, in July 2016. That was possibly two months before the document was in the hands of the FBI, unless the FBI had it sooner than we currently know. She then ultimately gave permission for the FBI to make the contact with Steele, which was initiated by Michael J. Gaeta, an FBI agent based in Rome who became Steele’s handler.

Steele even came to the State Department to directly brief officials on his work, paid for by the Clinton campaign. Nuland had an awkward exchange with Sen. Richard Burr, where she claimed she “actively” avoided this Steele briefing, but also said she didn’t hear about the briefing until after it occurred.

Safe to say that if Nuland was tied to the Trump campaign, she would already be indicted for perjury by Mueller’s team of angry Democrats.

10. Jonathan Winer was a top Obama State Department official. Winer received documents alleging Trump-Russia collusion from notorious Clinton guy Cody Shearer, through another even more notorious Clinton guy named Sidney Blumenthal, and received the Steele dossier from Steele in summer 2016.

She claimed she ‘actively’ avoided this Steele briefing, but also said she didn’t hear about the briefing until after it occurred.

Winer shared the contents of these documents with his boss, Nuland, and prepped a summary of these docs for the State Department. He also gave the Shearer document to Steele, who then gave it to the FBI. That both Shearer and Blumenthal are known Clinton cronies and hatchet-men never seemed to be important to Winer. Winer was also a source for at least two journalists who wrote articles prior to the election based on the Steele dossier.

11. Jonathan Finer was another Obama State Department official, and the chief of staff to former secretary of state John Kerry. Finer got the so-called dossier from Winer, and gave it to John Kerry. This of course, among several other pieces of information, raises questions as to whether President Obama saw the dossiers and knew about what was being done to the Trump campaign.

March 09, 2019 9:08 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

12. Elizabeth Dibble was the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in London. She was reported to be one of the State Department officials who received information from Australian ambassador to the U.K. Alexander Downer, who has ties to the Clinton Foundation, about George Papadopoulos saying to Downer that Joseph Misfud—a European professor with potential ties to western intelligence agencies—told Papadopoulos that Russia had dirt on Hillary Clinton.

This of course, among several other pieces of information, raises questions as to whether President Obama knew what was being done to the Trump campaign.

Misfud allegedly told Papadopoulos this in April 2016, and Papadopoulos allegedly told Downer what Misfud had said in early May. It is entirely possible that Papadopoulos was set up by Misfud, who has now disappeared and is hopefully just in hiding and not at the bottom of some body of water.

This chain of events became important when the FBI began using the Papadopoulos tip as an excuse for its “Crossfire Hurricane” investigation into the Trump campaign, in order to say why they didn’t rely on the Clinton-funded dossier.

But the FBI didn’t open Crossfire Hurricane until several months after the Dibble-Downer tip was received, and that tip, if it ever even occurred, didn’t go through the normal and proper chain of intelligence (others have claimed that the tip wasn’t taken seriously until the Democratic National Committee hack was made public).

More damning for the FBI’s Papadopoulos excuse was that they didn’t interview Papadopolous until after the 2016 election, and went after Carter Page for FISA surveillance instead. This was no damning piece of firsthand information, or emergency. It was hearsay, and what Papadopoulos said to Downer, and what Misfud said to Papadopoulos, is still disputed.

The reality is that the Clinton-funded dossier started the FBI’s investigation into Trump, at least the official Crossfire Hurricane investigation.

13. Thomas Williams is another State Department guy in the London embassy.

14, 15, 16. Colin Kahl, Kathleen Kavalec, and Lewis Lukens were all State Department officials who had some sort of interaction with the dossier, or Fusion GPS people.

March 09, 2019 9:11 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

Perkins Coie, a law firm, was paid by the Clinton campaign to serve as a go-between to hide the fact that Hillary’s campaign was paying Fusion GPS to push the Trump-Russia smear.

17. Marc Elias is a lawyer at Perkins Coie, who hired Fusion GPS for the Clinton campaign.

18. Michael Sussmann is another lawyer at Perkins Coie, who received a story about a Russian bank, Alphabank, communicating with a server in Trump Tower from Fusion GPS. Sussmann went directly to the FBI with that story—to James Baker, who was general counsel of the FBI under Comey—prompting reports midway through the 2016 campaign that hinted Trump had nefarious ties with Russia.

Although it was widely debunked, the server angle again showed up in media stories, including in New York Times and Slate articles, right before the election in September of 2016. Hillary Clinton even tweeted that Slate article when it posted.

19. Robbie Mook was a top Hillary Clinton campaign official. As Fusion GPS was working on the dossier, Perkins Coie was getting the information from Steele and briefing Mook. It is important to note that Mook was the first Hillary official to publicly say that Russia wanted to help Trump win. Mook said this right before the Democratic National Convention.

This is more evidence that Clinton’s campaign is the entity that started the Russia investigation, by alleging that Trump had nefarious ties with Russia to distract from the DNC and Clinton campaign’s mistreatment of Bernie Sanders, as was revealed by the DNC email theft that was leaked by WikiLeaks right before the Democrats’ 2016 national convention.

20. Jake Sullivan is another top advisor in Clinton’s campaign, who played a role in forming the Trump-Russia collusion narrative.

21. Cody Shearer is a longtime Clinton dirty tricks guy, with a record of smearing the Clintons’ political opponents. He authored a “dossier,” largely based on Steele’s work, that was picked up by Winer at Obama’s State Department.

22. Sidney Blumenthal is an even more infamous Clinton stooge. “Sid” is so infamous that Obama told Hillary that he didn’t want Blumenthal associated with the Obama administration. Blumenthal got the Trump-Russia conspiracies written by Shearer into the Obama State Department, when only the Clinton campaign was talking about Trump-Russia collusion.

March 09, 2019 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

Fusion GPS is a D.C. based opposition research and public relations firm with a history of representing less-than-savory actors, including Planned Parenthood, the Venezuelan dictatorship of Nicolas Maduro, and Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Fusion has been shown in court documents to have paid still-unknown journalists, likely for the placement of stories or to push a certain narrative.

23. Rinat Akhmetshin is the aforementioned Russian spy guy who was working with Fusion GPS when he showed up in Trump Tower. Get him under oath and ask him how much he knew about Fusion’s work for the Clinton campaign.

24. Edward Baumgartner is the British national, fluent in Russian and with ties to the Kremlin, who actually worked on most of Steele’s dossier. To compile the dossier, Baumgartner used unknown Russian sources that were paid and totally unverified, possibly tied to the Kremlin.

25. Peter Fritsch is a partner at Fusion GPS.

26. Mary Jacoby is the wife of Fusion GPS head Simpson, and has bragged publicly that her husband started the Russia investigation.

27. Shailagh Murray was a senior advisor to the Obama administration. Her husband is Neil King Jr., who works at Fusion GPS.

28. Neil King Jr., a Fusion GPS guy married to Murray, was also Obama’s top communications advisor. On a related story, Politico quoted King without mentioning he worked for Fusion GPS. This is just one of many examples of the endless ties between reporters and Fusion GPS, and between so-called journalists and prominent Democrats.

29. Thomas Catan is a Fusion GPS executive. He pled the Fifth in front of Congress when asked questions about the role of the dossier for the Hillary campaign.

March 09, 2019 9:19 AM  
Anonymous Dems have colluded to deceive America and overthrow the elected government - here's 35 people who need to be investigated said...

30. Daniel Jones, a former staffer to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, heads the Penn Quarter Group, a D.C. “consulting firm.” He also heads a “nonprofit” called the “Democracy Integrity Project.” Jones’ groups have received millions from the likes of George Soros and Tom Steyer, two leftwing billionaires, to continue investigations into Trump via Fusion GPS. It appears as if Jones began picking up the tab for Fusion to continue its work as soon as the Clinton campaign and the DNC stopped paying Fusion after the election.

31. Glenn Simpson is the head of Fusion GPS. There are lots of indications that he lied to Congress during his testimony about Nellie Ohr, the wife of DOJ official Bruce Ohr, before it was publicly known that Nellie worked for Fusion GPS. Specifically, Simpson told Congress that only Baumgartner spoke Russian at Fusion. But Nellie spoke Russian, and she was largely hired because she was a Russia expert (and because her husband worked at DOJ).

Simpson also lied about the timing of his contacts with Bruce Ohr. Again, if he were associated with Trump, he would have been indicted by Mueller already.

32,33, 34, 35. former director of national intelligence Jim Clapper, Comey and Andrew McCabe at FBI, and former CIA director John Brennan.

Comey and McCabe are leakers, and should be prosecuted as such. Brennan is a particular bad actor, and did much to spread the dossiers around the federal government and our intelligence community. It is also thought that Brennan pushed the FBI to investigate Trump, or at least increase the intensity of its spying on Trump’s campaign.

Will any of these guys ever be prosecuted? Better said, does new Attorney General Bill Barr care about the rule of law or not?

Was the Kremlin behind this whole thing, in order to sow distrust in the American political process? If so, that would make far too many Democrats their “useful idiots.” Why isn’t there more uproar about the fact that Fusion GPS was working for Russia while it was working for the Clinton campaign?

The other gnawing problem is the timeline to all of this. In early June 2016, the DNC publicly said that it had been hacked, two days after WikiLeaks announced that it had information that showed Clinton and the DNC were mistreating Sanders. Right away, Steele began his work for Fusion GPS in June.

The DNC says it first noticed that it was hacked on April 28, 2016. But DNC staffers weren’t forced to turn over their presumably infected equipment until June 10, 2016. And numerous set-up attempts of Trump campaign people occurred during 2016, possibly as early as April 2016.

You don’t have to think that the Clintons killed Seth Rich to think something stinks to high heaven here. Justice has been grossly miscarried, on a high and far-reaching level. If this is what America is to be like going forward, it will be only a shell of what it once was in the past. The only hope is for Barr’s DOJ to swing into action.

March 09, 2019 9:24 AM  
Anonymous homosexuality doesn't produce life, two of 'em ain't ever a marriage.....ever said...

Here is the tragedy of the Democratic party in 2019: its partisans are left to hope that personal hatred of Donald Trump will do for them in 2020 what the Iraq War and the Great Recession did in 2006 and 2008. The first time Nancy Pelosi became speaker of House of Representatives, her party was the party of second thoughts about Iraq. The fact that Democrats won control of the Senate with the 2006 election was even more clearly tied to that misbegotten war: the victory of James Webb over George Allen gave Democrats their 51st seat. Webb was a former Republican – a Reagan cabinet official – who switched parties and challenged Allen out of disgust with the George W. Bush administration’s foreign policy.

By the final year of Bush’s presidency the country was in the midst of its worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Barack Obama symbolized a break from the immediate past – a new foreign policy and new stewardship of the economy. He ran not as a socialist but as an alternative to the party that held the White House when the financial system cracked. John McCain was imply Bush with a more valorous Vietnam record. Not only did Obama rout McCain, the Republicans bled more seats in the House and Senate that November.

That was a long time ago. The Democratic party of a decade after Barack Obama’s inauguration is not running against Republican wars or mishandling of the economy. President Trump has not started any wars and continues to make noises – quickly shushed by his own Bush-type advisers – about getting out of Afghanistan and ending intervention in Syria. America has lately been enjoying record-low unemployment and wages are rising.

This deprives Democrats of their winning issues of the first decade of the 21st century. President Trump – who ran in large part on those very issues himself in 2016, beating Republicans and Hillary Clinton alike on the other side – has stolen the turf on which their party won in 2006 and 2008. That leaves the post-Obama Democrats having to run not against a bad economy, but for a different kind of economy: democratic socialism in place of the improving economic conditions we have under Trump.

Democrats are also left to make an incoherent case in foreign policy, claiming both that Trump is too much of a non-interventionist and that they don’t really want more interventionism themselves. They attack Trump for taking nasty world leaders seriously, but what, exactly, do they propose to do differently about Kim Jong-un or Vladimir Putin? No more talk? Bombs away?

March 09, 2019 9:39 AM  
Anonymous homosexuality doesn't produce life, two of 'em ain't ever a marriage.....ever said...

The difficulty the Democrats face is not in the details, but the big picture: voters want to know whether a party means war or peace, not what little mind games its leaders think they can play with foreign powers. Democrats have a hell of a problem answering this big-picture question: just look at the vote on Congress’s recent resolution to affirm keeping troops in Syria and Afghanistan. Most Democrats voted in favor of the resolution; most of the party’s prospective presidential nominees, however, opposed it. The strongest position a Democrat can run on in 2020 would be one that says Trump is right but he has not gone far enough – that America needs Trump’s policies without the Trump’s administration’s neocon personnel. The only Democrat from whom you might hear anything so bold, however, is Tulsi Gabbard, the Hawaiian congresswoman much demonized by otherwise Democratic-friendly media for her irenic foreign-policy views. Even she probably dare not go that far.

Democrats in the 21st century have won when a great theme has given them an opening. They are hoping that next year that theme of Donald Trump himself will be enough to elect whatever confused or leftist politician they wind up nominating. A Trump backlash served them well in last year’s midterms, after all. But midterm defeats have a way of not guaranteeing the opposition party’s victory in the following presidential election: Bill Clinton’s congressional rout in 1994 was a prelude to a re-election victory in 1996. Barack Obama lost even bigger – than Clinton or Trump – in 2010, yet still won in 2012. The Obama of that year was still coasting on the themes that had brought him victory over McCain four years earlier, and Mitt Romney had nothing to run on but dividing America into ‘job-creators’ versus the ‘47 percent’ and talk about Russia as our greatest ‘geopolitical foe.’ Romney’s losing message of 2012 won’t sound any better coming from a Democrat in 2020.

Part of the Democrats’ predicament is Obama’s fault: he failed to resolve the great economic and strategic issues that brought him to office, and that kept him in office so long as the only alternative was the Massachusetts (and now Utah) Bush-substitute. Obama was and is a lot like Romney, just without the baggage of Romney’s party affiliation. Obama had a chance to exorcise the spirit of Clinton from his party: the spirit, that is, of terrible trade agreements and an interventionist foreign policy, including Hillary Clinton’s vote for the Iraq War. Instead he made Mrs. Clinton his secretary of state and brought regime change to Libya. Along with regime change, as usual, came Islamism and a refugee crisis, as well as a return to Libya of slavery. Economically, Obama’s biggest domestic initiative was a national version of Romney’s Massachusetts health-insurance scheme, while he pressed ahead with CAFTA, TPP, and T-TIP, free-trade deals with Central America, the Pacific, and Europe. Obama ran as the anti-Bush and non-Clinton, but in the practice he was more of the same.

March 09, 2019 9:41 AM  
Anonymous homosexuality doesn't produce life, two of 'em ain't ever a marriage.....ever said...

There’s a warning here for President Trump and his party: the GOP will reap the whirlwind if Trump does not succeed in living up to voters’ expectations for change better than Obama did. Obama still won re-election in 2012, but his party suffered steep decline: losing first the House (2010), then the Senate (2014), then the White House (2016). Trump’s party will follow this same pattern, and faster, if the agenda that elected Trump gets dropped.

But if Trump doesn’t forget why he was elected, and if Republicans in Congress start behaving like the party of Trump’s agenda, and not just a party Trump happens to lead, Democrats will have nothing to run on but personality and hard-left politics. They should take up the Trump mantle if Republicans won’t. They should – but I wager they won’t – become the party of the nation, the party of jobs, rising wages (and not just mandated minimum wages), and peace.

That’s what Americans were looking for when they elected Democrats in 2006 and 2008, but it’s not what the Democratic party offered with Hillary Clinton in 2016.

March 09, 2019 9:42 AM  
Anonymous anti-Semitism is not the only Dem bigotry said...

In June 2018, Justice Anthony Kennedy issued a 7-2 ruling in the case of cake artist Jack Phillips. Phillips was being sued for his refusal on religious grounds to design a cake to celebrate a same-sex wedding.

The case, Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, was a very big deal at the time and one of Kennedy’s last written opinions on the Supreme Court. The Colorado Civil Rights Commission had sued Phillips, a bakery owner, charging him with violating the state’s nondiscrimination laws.

The commissioners, a small handful of self-important bureaucrats, had made little secret in their public meetings of what they thought of Phillips’ Christian religion and its tenets. And in fact, their bigoted disparagement of Phillips’ constitutionally protected exercise of religion became a key part of Kennedy’s ruling.

“The Civil Rights Commission’s treatment of his case has some elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs that motivated Phillips’ objection,” Kennedy wrote.

He cited the words of Commissioner Diann Rice:

“Freedom of religion and religion has been used to justify all kinds of discrimination throughout history, whether it be slavery, whether it be the Holocaust, whether it be—I mean, we—we can list hundreds of situations where freedom of religion has been used to justify discrimination. And to me it is one of the most despicable pieces of rhetoric that people can use to—to use their religion to hurt others.”

This quotation could hardly be more absurd. "Freedom of religion" was used to justify slavery? By whom? "Freedom of religion" was used to justify repression of a minority religion and mass murder of its adherents in the Holocaust? Really?

Rice's outburst revealed not only deep historical ignorance but also deep anti-religious hostility. This prompted Kennedy to note dryly, “The Court cannot avoid the conclusion that these statements cast doubt on the fairness and impartiality of the Commission’s adjudication of Phillips’ case.” Kennedy was consequently unwilling to let the commission exercise such power, given its clear prejudice against Christians.

March 09, 2019 9:51 AM  
Anonymous anti-Semitism is not the only Dem bigotry said...

Less than a year later, however, the commissioners were at it again. Despite having just lost in the Supreme Court, they decided they would use the power of the state to harass and persecute Phillips until he went out of business.

So, they took up a second complaint against Phillips: He had refused to create a cake for a “transition ceremony” for a lawyer who was changing his gender identity to female. This lawyer had deliberately placed his cake order after Phillips’ original case was well-known, for the express purpose of bringing further litigation against Phillips in order to ruin him.

Commissioners should have learned their lesson after Masterpiece Cakeshop. The only thing that made them back down this week was the threat of losing another major court case.

Part of the reason the commissioners chickened out was that new evidence emerged demonstrating just how little the commissioners had learned from Kennedy’s tongue-lashing — that their hostility toward religion remains alive and well.

This included a transcript from a commission meeting less than three weeks after Kennedy’s ruling. “I support Commissioner Diann Rice and her comments,” said Commissioner Rita Lewis. “I don't think she said anything wrong. ... So, I was very disappointed by the Supreme Court's decision.”

In other words, commissioners still have a clear animus against Phillips and other Christians, whose religion they still find “despicable." And thus they still cannot be trusted to uphold the law fairly.

Although it is nice to see the commission drop this case, again vindicating Phillips’ First Amendment rights, it’s a bit of a shame the commissioners didn’t hang in there. Had they pushed it back up to the Supreme Court, Kennedy’s successor, Justice Brett Kavanaugh, might have been willing to go even further than Kennedy in repudiating their anti-religious bigotry. It would have been nice to see the court create a longstanding precedent to nip this sort of bureaucratic repression in the bud.

Still, at least for now, the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s evident bigotry has the salutary effect of neutering these little Napoleons. They can hardly bring similar cases now that they are so thoroughly tainted by their open hostility toward the free exercise of religion by business owners.

March 09, 2019 9:53 AM  
Anonymous History is out there for all to read said...

This quotation could hardly be more absurd. "Freedom of religion" was used to justify slavery? By whom? "Freedom of religion" was used to justify repression of a minority religion and mass murder of its adherents in the Holocaust? Really?

The part about "freedom of" should have been omitted before "religion." In that case, Rice's statements about slavery and the holocaust would have been correct.

It was Christian nations that invaded African non-Christian nations, kidnapped families, forced them into slavery, and conveniently used passages from the Bible to justify and help control their unwilling subjects.

And it was centuries of anti-semitic sentiment festering in Catholic and Protestant dominated Europe that provided fertile ground for Hitler to fertilize with even more animus. It was the Catholic church that forced Jews to wear yellow badges and severely restricted where they could live and work, sometimes barring them from even owning land - centuries before Hitler forced them to wear yellow stars and moved them into ghettos.

March 09, 2019 10:20 AM  
Anonymous Yawn said...

"Will any of these guys ever be prosecuted? Better said, does new Attorney General Bill Barr care about the rule of law or not?"

Republicans had control of both houses of Congress and the Judiciary committee for two years after the 2016 election. Did they not go after these people because:

A) Despite herculean efforts to build a vast conspiracy theory around Fusion GPS, they never had enough evidence of an actual crime to warrant an investigation?

B) Republicans were too lazy to do anything about it?


C) Republicans are too incompetent to run an investigation that actually leads to criminal findings (the 10 Benghazi investigations come to mind).

March 09, 2019 10:32 AM  
Anonymous peer review ....LOL! said...

"The part about "freedom of" should have been omitted before "religion." In that case, Rice's statements about slavery and the holocaust would have been correct. "

but you concede the statement was correct, as stated, right?

"It was Christian nations that invaded African non-Christian nations, kidnapped families, forced them into slavery,"

slavery is present in the history of all nations throughout the world, including the African ones that were the source of the Atlantic slave trade

it's not something that is exclusive to Christian nations

of course, Christian nations are were it was abolished and that came through Christians who applied scripture

emancipation began in the Christian world, and nowhere else

"and conveniently used passages from the Bible to justify and help control their unwilling subjects."

at the time, everything had to have a biblical rationale so those wanted to defend had no choice but to warp scripture

a modern parallel is abortion

the Constitution says nowhere that these innocent children should not have equal protection under the law

but evil people who want to free people to kill inconvenient children have quoted the Constitution to defend their bloodthirsty beliefs

that doesn't mean future generations, when they look back in horror, should blame this on our Constitution

"And it was centuries of anti-semitic sentiment festering in Catholic and Protestant dominated Europe that provided fertile ground for Hitler to fertilize with even more animus."

while Hitler too had to warp scripture to manipulate the crowds, his philosophy was more influenced by Darwin, Nietsche, the gay community in postwar Berlin, and the eugenics movement that was embraced by 97% of scientists at the time

March 09, 2019 11:10 AM  
Anonymous Lock her up -- LOL! said...

"it's not something that is exclusive to Christian nations"

No. But it was only Christian nations that built it into an intercontinental, industrial scaled enterprise that lasted the better part of 3 centuries, enslaving an estimated 10 to 12 million people. Everyone else was small peanuts compared to that.

"of course, Christian nations are were it was abolished and that came through Christians who applied scripture"

Those were LIBERAL Christians, not the conservative ones arguing that all people should be treated with equal dignity and respect. Conservative Christians, as they always do, found passages in the bible to try and keep the status quo. It is really no surprise to anyone that the region of the country with the most blatant racial discrimination (and Jim Crow laws) lines up perfectly with the most conservative religious region.

"the Constitution says nowhere that these innocent children should not have equal protection under the law"

And nowhere in the Constitution does it say that gay people shouldn't be allowed to marry each other, but Christian dominionists keep claiming the Constitution gives them no right to marry. Go figure.

"the gay community in postwar Berlin"

That trope has already been debunked by even by other Christians. But some Christians can't pass up any opportunity to try and marginalize and denigrate gay people ad nauseum.

"and the eugenics movement that was embraced by 97% of scientists at the time"

Can you cite a reference for that figure, or is it another one you just pulled out of your...?

March 09, 2019 11:55 AM  
Anonymous Max Boot said...

On the moment he decided to leave the Republican Party

"That moment occurred the day after the last presidential election. I was somebody who was viscerally and instantly opposed to Donald Trump from the moment that he came down that escalator at Trump Tower attacking Mexicans as rapists and murderers. I couldn't believe that you had a mainstream candidate who was talking like that, and I never imagined that he would win the Republican nomination, much less the presidency. So I was very dismayed to see Trump's progress first in the Republican primaries and then in the general election. It was the shock of my life — and I think many people's lives — to see Donald Trump actually win the presidency. And the next day I knew what I had to do which was after a lifetime as a Republican, as a movement conservative, I re-registered as an independent because I knew — I just knew at that point — I could not be part of this Trump-ified Republican Party.

"I was part of what was know as the conservative movement a fairly early age. I was a conservative columnist at the University of California, Berkeley, I was an op-ed editor at the Wall Street Journal editorial page, I was a regular writer for Commentary and The Weekly Standard, I was a foreign policy adviser to three presidential candidates, so I was fairly deep within the conservative bubble working for what I thought was the good of America, and I was shocked — and perhaps I shouldn't have been shocked, I should have seen this all along — but I was just so dismayed to see the kind of message that Donald Trump won on, which was completely antithetical to the brand of conservatism that I championed which I associate more with people like Ronald Reagan or George Will. Kind of a much more optimistic, open and inclusive brand of conservatism that doesn't stigmatize minorities, that focuses on American global leadership, on free trade, on limited government at home. That's the kind of conservatism that I signed up for, but that's not the kind of conservatism that Donald Trump espouses. I mean he is someone who uses bigotry and prejudice, caters to racism and sexism and xenophobia, divides America and spreads conspiracy theories. It was truly a soul-crushing event for me to see somebody like that take over the Republican Party, and in fact, the conservative movement. And that's why I exited the Republican Party and I'm not even sure I want to call myself a conservative anymore, because I don't know what Conservative means anymore other than 'Trump toady.' "

March 09, 2019 12:00 PM  
Anonymous Max Boot said...

On his experience in a "conservative bubble"

"I would just quote to you the line form George Orwell where he said, 'The hardest things see is what's directly in front of your nose.' And that's certainly something that was true for me. And I do ask myself now, 'How could I have been blind to all this?' And I think the explanation is essentially that I was deep in this conservative bubble. I was very much prey to this tribalistic instinct which I think dominates American politics and that causes one to overlook the faults of your fellow partisans. I don't think it's just conservatives and Republicans who are guilty of that. Look at the way that a lot of Democrats, for example, excised Bill Clinton's misbehavior, but I think it's definitely a larger problem on the right. I had this moment of clarity when Donald Trump took office — for years, for example, I had denied that Republicans were racist. I thought this was a horrible libel. I said, you know, 'I'm not racist, my friends aren't racist, why do you say this?' And then, Donald Trump made it so obvious that I couldn't deny it anymore because he went from dog whistles of the kind that Republicans had employed before, to a wolf whistle. And it made me realize, 'Wait a second, the Republican coalition is not what I thought it was, there are not people who are necessarily thrilling to the ideas that are formulated by policy analysts like me.' A lot of them were simply looking for a party that would bash minorities, that would bash immigrants. That's not what I want to be a part of, and of course that was very obvious to a lot of people, including I'm sure you and a lot of your listeners all along, and I was willfully blind to it. There's no excusing my blindness over all these years. All I can say is that at least I'm waking up to the reality now, and most Republicans, most conservatives I know, they're still in denial."

On President Trump "toadies"

"All of the people who basically flatter his ego, including people like Lindsey Graham who once called him a crook and now talks about how Donald Trump is a superb golfer. I mean, I have chapter and verse in my book of the sycophants of Donald Trump who literally refer to him as if he were the second-coming, who think that he is the savior of humanity. It's unbelievable, this is a president who only has the support of about 40 percent of Americans — and that's too high in my book — but most people recognize that he is not an admirable figure. But what's really shocking to me is the extent to which the Republican Party has transformed itself into a Donald Trump cult. So many people have drunk the KoolAid, including people that I once had respect for. It's really been a gut-wrenching and soul-crushing experience for me to see this going on."

March 09, 2019 12:03 PM  
Anonymous Max Boot said...

On why a counter-balancing third party is not an option in American politics

"I would love it if that could happen. The problem is that our entire political system is designed to entrench this two-party duopoly. In my book, I do lay out some faint hope — I would love to see somebody like Emmanuel Macron, the centrist who became president of France by running against the major parties, it would be awesome if somebody could do that here, and I think there is the possibility of somebody doing that. I don't know who that person is. But if you look at party affiliation, there are more independents than there are Republicans or Democrats, so clearly there is a giant mass of centrist voters who are not being represented, especially as you see the Republican Party going to the right and the Democratic going to the left. A lot of people like me are feeling politically homeless in the middle. So it would be awesome if there could be a third wave that would arise to represent a more centrist band of politics, but we just have to recognize it's very, very difficult because there has not been a third party that has succeeded in America since the 1850s when the Republican Party was born."

March 09, 2019 12:05 PM  
Anonymous Paul Bolin, M.D. (physician) said...

Why did you leave the Republican Party?

My answer may not be satisfying to you, since although I left the Republican Party, I definitely did not become a left-winger — although perhaps some of my positions have become more centrist as I’ve gotten wiser. I’m still pro-life, pro-intervention, and pro-NAFTA. If you’re looking to read about how I left the Republican Party and embraced leftism, you might as well stop here.

If you’re still reading, I’ll tell you a story. 2012. I was a newly-minted doctor and it was an election year. I had volunteered with the Republican Party since the Bush campaign in 2004 and had served on-and-off as precinct chair since 2006, the year I became old enough to vote. Re-districting had just happened and there was a new state senate seat opening up where I lived. Some people I volunteered with suggested I run, as the anti-establishment sentiment (that would ultimately culminate in what we call “Trump”) was beginning to grow. So, I obliged. I spent my days and weekends off in the sweltering summer heat going door-to-door meeting voters in my district — a district which is so red, getting the Republican nomination was equal to winning the election. I met all sorts of voters. But this was a primary — and in primaries (especially midterm ones) only a certain type of people vote. Those people are usually the hardcore ideologues. I learned very quickly that the only way I could appeal to these people was to use small words, short sentences, and think and speak with emotion. Basically everything they teach you not to do in college. My academic pedigree (which I mistakenly believed would be an asset) was something I had to apologize for. I was told that something as superficial as photos of myself at a gun range would help my electability, even though I filled out the NRA questionnaire they send to all candidates and was given an A-rating. I was told that something as inconsequential as my religion (Catholic) was a disqualifier by people who were Protestants (Really? What is this? 1960?). I was forced to hide certain positions. I had to hide something as simple as the fact that I don’t believe in discriminating against gay people — in order to not appear like I was trying to homosexualize the God-fearing community. Absolutely preposterous.

By the time the primary season had ended, I was ready to be done with all of it. I lost the primary — although I lost to a former secretary of state, sitting state representative, and someone who’s been a fixture in state politics since well before I was born. Someone who spent over $10,000 on this little local race. But I managed to muster up about a third of the vote. I was proud of that.

What I wasn’t proud of is how dirty I felt. I went to college and medical school for eight years and I’m proud of that. I’m Catholic and I’m proud of that. I don’t take tacky, staged political pictures with guns and I’m proud of that. And, hell, I support gay marriage and I’m proud of that. What I’m not proud of is the caricature I was forced to turn myself into. If I were a Democrat in a blue district, I probably would have had to do something similar. I quit party politics at that point.

Becoming an independent has allowed me the intellectual and personal freedom to embrace whatever the hell positions I think are most sound and are justified on logic and fact, regardless of party platform. Yes, I voted straight ticket Republican in 2014, and I felt I could justify it. Last year, not so much. Trump was not my cup of tea and he isn’t even actually a real Republican, though a lot of Republican voters (the party-over-principle crowd) have been duped into thinking he is. In short, my party left me — becoming this pathetic, anti-science, anti-trade, xenophobic, populist shitshow that, for reasons that elude me, is still obsessed with Hillary Clinton. I want nothing to do with this incarnation of the Republican Party. So I’m gone.

Where that leaves me? I don’t know. But I know what I believe in.


March 09, 2019 12:13 PM  
Anonymous Rep. David Jolly, Former Congressman said...

You can’t be never-Trump and be a Republican. That’s the clearest and most unequivocal conclusion to which I’ve regrettably, but genuinely, arrived. And it took something more than politics to finally convince me that the fight for the heart and soul of the Republican party has been lost to darker angels — to a darker leader.

My wife and I are celebrating the imminent arrival of our first child, a daughter. Through no choosing of her own, our little girl will inevitably be born into a political household, a household in which her mom and I hope to live the political and moral principles we believe are right, and to prepare our daughter to someday make her own informed choices.

Three years ago, I was a sitting Republican member of Congress who took to the House floor and called on then-candidate Donald Trump to drop out of the presidential race over his proposal to ban immigrants and asylum-seekers based on their religious faith.

I had not previously supported Trump during the presidential primary, nor did I ever come around to supporting his candidacy or his presidency, despite the overwhelming majority of Republican leaders who have dutifully fallen in line behind the brash, irreverent and often offensive leader of the party.

Three years later I find myself fully immersed in a dwindling coalition of Republicans often referred to as never-Trumpers. That is, I was immersed in that coalition — last month I came to the conclusion that it was time to finally leave the Republican Party and registered with no party affiliation.

My reason is simple: Never-Trumpism must also be a rejection of today's GOP orthodoxy, not just the president himself.

Three years into the cultural and political phenomenon that is Donald Trump, we each can recall in vivid and anxious detail clear moments of his personal and presidential failings. This is a man who is well known for his misogyny, his equivocation and manipulation on matters of race and racial justice, a man largely unable to tell the truth or accept accountability, a man of little intellect, conviction or ideology who is often willing, and at times seemingly longing, to display his lack of temperament and fitness on the world stage.

March 09, 2019 12:18 PM  
Anonymous Rep. David Jolly, Former Congressman said...

The verdict is in, and it is clear. You either support Trump or you oppose him. You either find valor in his no-nonsense, boorish approach, or you find weakness and shamefulness both in the man and in the image he projects on the nation.

But Trump did not, as many have suggested, merely hijack a political party in order to rise to the most powerful position in the world. He walked right through the front door into the welcoming arms of a coalition that was eagerly awaiting his leadership and his ascendency, a coalition that had long since abandoned conservatism for the more satisfying ideology of angry populism.

It was a Faustian bargain. He used the GOP for his own purpose, and the GOP used him for its own agenda in return.

n the decade that has produced Republican voices like Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity and others, Trump cemented within the party a culturally lethal combination of sheer ignorance and raw indifference to responsible policy. Together with legislative and industry insiders looking to unapologetically advance their own priorities and those of deep pocketed corporate interests, the Republican party willingly, knowingly and deliberately shaped itself in Trump's image.

Thus, what was once a party that embraced classic conservative political and economic theory — and believed this ideology was a way to empower Americans — has instead evolved into a callous political coalition willing to leave some of the most vulnerable behind.

The examples are many. To abandon any legitimate attempt to solve pressing healthcare problems for the American people simply because of entrenched opposition to Barack Obama displays not only heartless indifference, but intellectual bankruptcy. To condone the separating of children and parents and the detention of youths seeking freedom invalidates any rational positing that a party cherishes and values human life.

To knowingly overlook racial animus and the stoking of racial division undermines not just a party’s moral authority but the personal integrity of those who support it. To ruthlessly pursue economic policies that exacerbate class disparity and needlessly limit opportunity for the least fortunate among us, while enriching the wealthiest and rewarding large donors, reflects not a spirit of humanity, but a spirit of both greed and spite. To speak of personal responsibility but laughingly cast our own generation’s debt obligations upon our children is not leadership. It’s selfishness.

These are ideological reflections not of Donald Trump's governance, but of the Republican party under today's GOP leadership. Trump has given free rein to these elements within the party that in the past had remained at least tempered by more sensible voices. But he did so in coordination with long-standing traditional Republican leaders, who despite notionally speaking to broad concerns of tone and tenor, eagerly accepted his leadership as a means to an end — a way to accomplish an economically and culturally divisive Republican agenda focused on self-enrichment and a disdain for the natural diversity of the nation.

My leaving the party is thus a personal rejection of Donald Trump, but it is also a rejection of today’s GOP orthodoxy and the partisanship it craves. Though parties have their important and proper roles, we know that George Washington warned against their contribution to factions, and two centuries later Barack Obama was still warning of the din of partisanship.

March 09, 2019 12:22 PM  
Anonymous TTFers .....LOL said...

"But it was only Christian nations that built it into an intercontinental, industrial scaled enterprise that lasted the better part of 3 centuries, enslaving an estimated 10 to 12 million people. Everyone else was small peanuts compared to that."

well, nations of Christian heritage were more advanced than other nations and were the first to travel widely and enter the industrial age and form trading companies

but slavery was common throughout the world then and always had been

have you read the Bible? slaves from another country were used to build Egyptian monuments

that was long before Christianity was founded

"Those were LIBERAL Christians, not the conservative ones arguing that all people should be treated with equal dignity and respect. Conservative Christians, as they always do, found passages in the bible to try and keep the status quo."

so, you agree with me that religion didn't cause slavery but that twisted people twisted scripture, right?

btw, those anti-slavery Christians were socially conscious but pretty conservative at the same time

they were also at the head of the temperance movement and supported traditional moral values because sobriety and strong families helped the poor they ministered to

many conservative churches still maintain inner city missions started then

"And nowhere in the Constitution does it say that gay people shouldn't be allowed to marry each other, but Christian dominionists keep claiming the Constitution gives them no right to marry. Go figure."

OK, I'll go figure. That was a pretty weak way to twist logic. No one has said the Constitution says that gay people shouldn't be allowed to marry each other. Just that it isn't a constitutional right. Feel free to seek it by law. That was never successful though.

My point, which you're trying to obscure, stands. People twist the Constitution but no one blames the Constitution. Why blame religion because someone twists the Bible? Especially when the Bible makes that people will do that.

March 09, 2019 2:06 PM  
Anonymous TTFers .....LOL said...

"That trope has already been debunked by even by other Christians."

OK, Hitler was an struggling artist in Vienna in the early 20s. He lived with a guy and was once arrested for homosexual solicitation. Coming back to Germany he fell in with some gays in the Weimar Republic and they began to form a philosophy. It was informed by the sick BDSM fantasies combined with eugenics and master race theories. He put these gays in charge of his security ad they started the nasty traditions. He later purged them, afraid he'd be exposed, but the influence remained.

Can you show me where and when this "trope" was exposed?

me: "and the eugenics movement that was embraced by 97% of scientists at the time"

you: "Can you cite a reference for that figure, or is it another one you just pulled out of your...?"

well, the 97% was a tongue-in-cheek comment, alluding to the AGW propaganda line currently in vogue, so you could say I just pulled that out of my....

but surely not unaware that after and prior to WWII, eugenics was considered settled science

it was in US textbooks, it was the basis of government laws, and there even state fairs that had babies displayed like animals competing for race improvement ribbons

here's a good breakdown of the history:

and here's something from the National Library of Medicine:


"These examples come from the 1923 report of the Second International Congress of Eugenics, titled Eugenics, Genetics, and the Family.2 In the opening address, Henry F. Osborn, then president of the American Museum of Natural History in New York (the site of the meeting), stated,

'In the US we are slowly waking to the consciousness that education and environment do not fundamentally alter racial values. We are engaged in a serious struggle to maintain our historic republican institutions through barring the entrance of those unfit to share in the duties and responsibilities of our well-founded government. … In the matter of racial virtues, my opinion is that from biological principles there is little promise in the melting-pot theory. Put three races together (Caucasian, Mongolian, and the Negroid) you are likely to unite the vices of all three as the virtues. … For the worlds work give me a pure-blooded … ascertain through observation and experiment what each race is best fitted to accomplish. … If the Negro fails in government, he may become a fine agriculturist or a fine mechanic. … The right of the state to safeguard the character and integrity of the race or races on which its future depends is, to my mind, as incontestable as the right of the state to safeguard the health and morals of its peoples.'

It is important to appreciate that within the U.S. and European scientific communities these ideas were not fringe but widely held and taught in universities. The report of the Eugenics meeting was the lead story in the journal Science on October 7, 1921, and this opening address was published, in its entirety, beginning on the first page of the issue.

March 09, 2019 2:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Scott Lively has made a ministry career that spans two decades and three continents, in part by preaching that the Nazi Third Reich was helmed and orchestrated by gay men. That’s the central thesis of his book The Pink Swastika, and it played a pivotal role in Lively’s co-founding of the international anti-gay hate group Watchmen on the Walls. For years now, historians, watchdog and gay civil rights groups have called Lively out on his slander. But now, the anti-gay crusader faces a formidable new critic on his own home turf. Warren Throckmorton, a well-respected conservative Christian psychology professor, has been exposing Lively’s false claims in evangelical Christian magazines and blogs.

What set Throckmorton off was Lively’s March appearance at an anti-gay rights conference in Uganda, where homosexuality is already a crime punishable by life in prison. In the capital city of Kampala, Lively rehashed his gay Nazi stump speech and called for Ugandan gays and lesbians to be forced into so-called “conversion therapy.” Since then, as Throckmorton notes, “lists of people suspected to be gay have been included in tabloids, various ministers have accused other ministers of being homosexual, and Christian groups are calling for the government to create a commission to eliminate homosexuality — all supported by American Christian ministries.”

“[T]here is a disturbing parallel with the Nazis, but it is not with the homosexuals,” Throckmorton writes in the Christian web magazine Crosswalk. “In Uganda among Christian groups and government leaders, and encouraged by Mr. Lively, homosexuality is considered the root of society’s evils.” In response, Throckmorton has launched an ambitious project to discredit Lively’s books and analyze how the anti-gay rights leader came to formulate his idea that “the Nazi Party was entirely controlled by militaristic male homosexuals throughout its short history.”

Throckmorton says Lively’s obsession with linking gay men to Nazi fascism began in 1992 with Oregon’s Ballot Measure 9, which would have mandated that public schools teach that homosexuality is “abnormal, wrong, unnatural and perverse.” The ballot measure was drafted and supported by the Oregon Citizens Alliance, whose communications director was Scott Lively. As gay rights activists drew comparisons between Measure 9 and the Nazi treatment of homosexuals, Lively and his Pink Swastika co-author Scott Abrams sought to make, in Throckmorton’s words, the “massive leaps of logic and fact required to make National Socialism an invention of a cohesive homosexual plot.”

March 09, 2019 4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Engaging Lively in his own shaky logic, Throckmorton posed this question to Lively: “If homosexuality was so associated with National Socialist ideals and aims, then shouldn’t the current Nazis be dominated by homosexuals?” Throckmorton then digs up several websites from the National Socialist Movement, the largest and most high-profile neo-Nazi group in the U.S. He finds that all NSM chapters ban non-white and non-heterosexual members; one of the chapters, in fact, puts it explicitly: “Homosexuality is a social degeneracy that must be expunged from our society.”

Taking it a further step, Throckmorton invited Grove City College history professor Jon David Wyneken to analyze the claims of The Pink Swastika. Wyneken, a scholar of German history between 1933 and 1955, picks apart Lively’s distorted and cherry-picked quotes to conclude that “Lively’s book is simply not good history and is, in fact, not really history at all.” The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum notes that between 5,000 and 15,000 homosexual men were forced into Nazi concentration camps where they were beaten, castrated and killed.

Throckmorton may seem like an unlikely person to confront Lively’s ideas. In 2004, he produced the video “I Do Exist,” profiling teens and young adults who claim to have become “ex-gay” — a “conversion” idea that is also embraced by Lively. (Most medical and psychological professional associations say that homosexuality is not a pathology and cannot, in any event, be “cured.”) But Throckmorton has also been a vocal critic of several therapies pushed by the ex-gay movement and has an audience among conservative and evangelical Christians. He has also called on schools to prevent bullying of gay students. Throckmorton cautions that his video should not be purchased by anyone “looking for a way to express to gay people that they should change their sexual feelings to be acceptable to God.”

As for Lively and those who believe his revisionist allegations, Throckmorton warns fellow believers: “When Christians make spurious comparisons to the Nazis, they should not be surprised when the targets of those comparisons lash back and consider them hateful. There should be little wonder why they don’t feel the Love.”

March 09, 2019 4:19 PM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

"Scott Lively has made a ministry career that spans two decades and three continents, in part by preaching that the Nazi Third Reich was helmed and orchestrated by gay men"

I thought the story was that they were instrumental in the beginning and that Hitler had them murdered on the Night of the Long Nights

"For years now, historians, watchdog and gay civil rights groups have called Lively out on his slander."

and what do historians say?

"But now, the anti-gay crusader faces a formidable new critic on his own home turf. Warren Throckmorton, a well-respected conservative Christian psychology professor, has been exposing Lively’s false claims in evangelical Christian magazines and blogs.

What set Throckmorton off was Lively’s March appearance at an anti-gay rights conference in Uganda, where homosexuality is already a crime punishable by life in prison. In the capital city of Kampala, Lively rehashed his gay Nazi stump speech and called for Ugandan gays and lesbians to be forced into so-called “conversion therapy.” Since then, as Throckmorton notes, “lists of people suspected to be gay have been included in tabloids, various ministers have accused other ministers of being homosexual, and Christian groups are calling for the government to create a commission to eliminate homosexuality — all supported by American Christian ministries.”

so, Throckmorton isn't objective

"Engaging Lively in his own shaky logic, Throckmorton posed this question to Lively: “If homosexuality was so associated with National Socialist ideals and aims, then shouldn’t the current Nazis be dominated by homosexuals?”"

there's really no comparison

Nazis took over a major European country

current Nazis are a fringe group

"Taking it a further step, Throckmorton invited Grove City College history professor Jon David Wyneken to analyze the claims of The Pink Swastika. Wyneken, a scholar of German history between 1933 and 1955, picks apart Lively’s distorted and cherry-picked quotes to conclude that “Lively’s book is simply not good history and is, in fact, not really history at all.”"

any details to go with that generalization

"The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum notes that between 5,000 and 15,000 homosexual men were forced into Nazi concentration camps where they were beaten, castrated and killed."

yes we know Hitler eventually turned on his gay associates, that's common knowledge

"As for Lively and those who believe his revisionist allegations, Throckmorton warns fellow believers: “When Christians make spurious comparisons to the Nazis, they should not be surprised when the targets of those comparisons lash back and consider them hateful. There should be little wonder why they don’t feel the Love.”"

Warren, the gay advocates have been doing this for years

indeed, this here conservation because liberals in the Colorado government made comments comparing Christianity to Nazism

this has going on for year and is unprovoked

March 10, 2019 12:42 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Right Wing Authoritarians like the sort of everyday people that supported Hitler can be found in any sub-group of humanity - gay, straight, black white, atheist, relgious.

Any society has people with the sort of psychology that can allow that society to become like Nazi Germany, or Venezuela, or Russia, this is part of our evolutionary psychology.

If you want to see for real which groups in society have the highest percentage of high-scorers on the Right Wing Authoritarian scale, Read the research

One thing I do know, If you believe the bible, the christian and Islamic gods are guilty of infinitely more heinous crimes than any Nazi ever committed.

One key thing to know about conservatives in general, and Right Wing Authoritarians, they fear the world much more than liberals do and feel threatened much more quickly and easily than liberals do, even feeling threatened when social signals are ambiguous rather than being actually threatening.

March 10, 2019 4:19 AM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

What the court ruled in the Colorado Human Rights Commission vs Masterpiece cake shops was:

If a christian (not a muslim) breaks the law and the prosecutors correctly state that many a person acting out of unjust animus has falsely claimed their crime was motivated by a desire to adhere to religious dogma...

the christian law breaker gets away with it.

Just another example that, as the research shows, the Court’s conservatives’ “votes cannot be explained by any consistent theory of constitutional interpretation” but are instead driven by their own policy preferences.

March 10, 2019 5:14 AM  
Anonymous Brett Kavanaugh said Congress should hold presidents accountable. William Barr agreed. said...

Since taking control of the House, Democrats have launched wide-ranging investigations into President Trump, his campaign, his administration and his family business operations. Republicans in Congress have criticized the moves as part of an effort to disrupt Trump’s presidency and argued that they cover the same ground as special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia probe. But by conducting their own investigations, Democrats are taking the exact course of action two of Trump’s most prominent nominees previously proposed.

During Kenneth Starr’s investigation into President Bill Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, Brett M. Kavanaugh and William P. Barr argued that waiting on the counsel’s report would be an abdication of Congress’s constitutional duty. Both men unequivocally supported rigorous congressional oversight apart from — or perhaps even instead of — a counsel investigation. But with Trump in office, Republicans have spent two years defying that very argument.

“When Congress learns of a serious allegation against a president, it must quickly determine whether the president is to remain in office,” Kavanaugh wrote for The Washington Post in a piece that ran Feb. 26, 1999, under the headline “First Let Congress Do Its Job.”

Kavanaugh, then a top lawyer for the Starr investigation, was averse to the idea of a badly behaved president and the independent counsel statute. For Congress to sit idly by and defer to the counsel’s investigation, he said, is “not what the Constitution contemplated.”

“There simply was no need for this mess to have occupied the country for 13 months,” Kavanaugh suggested, because Congress could have “gotten to the truth” much faster.

In a March 1998 article published by the conservative magazine American Spectator, Kavanaugh wrote that because “Congress is the entity constitutionally assigned to determine whether the president should remain in office, it follows that a congressional inquiry should take precedence over a criminal investigation of the president.”

He added, “It is more important for Congress to determine whether the president has committed impeachable offenses or otherwise acted in a manner inconsistent with the presidency than for any individual to be criminally prosecuted and sentenced to a few years in prison.”.

Similarly, Barr, who was recently confirmed as U.S. attorney general, once expressed dissatisfaction with Congress’s shrinking role in presidential investigations...

Good to know for the coming Congressional oversight investigations.

March 10, 2019 8:59 AM  
Anonymous the Obama economy..,LOL!! said...

"Since taking control of the House, Democrats have launched wide-ranging investigations into President Trump, his campaign, his administration and his family business operations. Republicans in Congress have criticized the moves as part of an effort to disrupt Trump’s presidency and argued that they cover the same ground as special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia probe."

Barr and Kavanaugh said Congress shouldn't wait until a special prosecutor is done

in Mueller's Russian probe, neither the Senate or House has done that - both have had extensive investigations

further, it's an irrelevant point since Mueller's investigation has concluded and the report is being written

but that's not the argument against the current investigations

the current investigations are extensive fishing expeditions of a President's life and business prior to election without any indication of a crime being committed

no other President has ever been subject to anything close to this

the Dems have screwed themselves royally

their moderate wing has no message other than harass Trump

the increasingly influential left-wing has a message but America will never vote for Marxism

"But by conducting their own investigations, Democrats are taking the exact course of action two of Trump’s most prominent nominees previously proposed."

they were referring to a President who:

1. committed criminal perjury

2. used his office, literally, the Oval Office to take advantage of a young female intern out of college

"During Kenneth Starr’s investigation into President Bill Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, Brett M. Kavanaugh and William P. Barr argued that waiting on the counsel’s report would be an abdication of Congress’s constitutional duty."

this is why the special counsel statute was eliminated by Congress soon after

there was never any reason to appoint Mueller to begin with

if Jeff Sessions was suspected of something that didn't allow him to do his job, he should have resigned

"Both men unequivocally supported rigorous congressional oversight apart from — or perhaps even instead of — a counsel investigation. But with Trump in office, Republicans have spent two years defying that very argument."

oversight has never meant a thorough examination of every business dealing a President ever had

Congressional oversight refers to actions as President

"“When Congress learns of a serious allegation against a president, it must quickly determine whether the president is to remain in office,” Kavanaugh wrote for The Washington Post in a piece that ran Feb. 26, 1999, under the headline “First Let Congress Do Its Job.”"

both Houses have already had investigations

of course, they never do anything "quickly"

also, the allegations weren't "serious"

if is they all were true, which they weren't, they wouldn't constitute a crime

March 10, 2019 9:51 AM  
Anonymous the Obama economy..,LOL!! said...

"“There simply was no need for this mess to have occupied the country for 13 months,” Kavanaugh suggested, because Congress could have “gotten to the truth” much faster."

it's already gone on for 26 months and the Dems fully intend for it to go on for another 20 months

they don't want to do anything quickly at all

"In a March 1998 article published by the conservative magazine American Spectator, Kavanaugh wrote that because “Congress is the entity constitutionally assigned to determine whether the president should remain in office, it follows that a congressional inquiry should take precedence over a criminal investigation of the president.”"

indeed, it should

there's been no problem here

Congress and Mueller both investigated the spurious Russian hoax simultaneously

Mueller was never charged with the current sweeping investigation in Trump's entire life

nor is Congress

they haven't seen any indication of criminal activity

if they did, the media would immediately treat it as conclusive proof

all Dems has is a faint hope they will find something

their Judgment Day is in November 2020

"Similarly, Barr, who was recently confirmed as U.S. attorney general, once expressed dissatisfaction with Congress’s shrinking role in presidential investigations..."

that was the 90s

anyone who think congressional investigations have been shrinking needs to see a shrink

reality is a terrible thing to waste

"Good to know for the coming Congressional oversight investigations."

good to watch Congress spontaneously combust

while Trump creates jobs, Congress tries to stop him

sounds like a good slogan for Fall 2020

March 10, 2019 9:52 AM  
Anonymous 70,000 in February, the courts are overwhelmed - it's a national emergency!! said...

President Trump is getting closer to issuing his first veto, which could happen as early as next week after the Senate votes to revoke his declaration of a national emergency at the border.

At least four of the Senate’s 53 Republicans will join Democrats to provide a simple majority needed to pass the measure, which was written after Trump declared a national emergency in order to spend $3.6 billion in military construction funding on physical barriers along the southern border.

Senate Republicans have not announced whether they’ll try to amend the measure, and they have not said which day next week the vote will take place.

If they amend it, it would go back to the House. If they pass the House version, the measure heads directly to President Trump, who has promised to veto it.

The vote against the border emergency in the GOP-led Senate will sting Trump, but the president will ultimately get his way in Congress. Once he vetoes the resolution, a two-thirds majority in the House and Senate would be needed to override Trump, and the numbers just aren't there.

The override effort would have to start in the House, where it is unlikely that 50 Republicans will cross the aisle to vote against Trump.

That's why the resolution will at most serve as a meaningless public rebuke to Trump's decision to shift military spending, even though there are Republicans in the House and Senate who support it.

Most Republicans say they agree that the southern border needs barriers, and quickly, but don’t like how the president is finding the money to accomplish that goal.

Nearly 70,000 illegal immigrants were picked up along the southern border in February alone

March 10, 2019 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Tom Nichols said...

Unlike Senator Susan Collins, who took pages upon pages of text on national television to tell us something we already knew, I will cut right to the chase: I am out of the Republican Party.

I will also acknowledge right away what I assume will be the reaction of most of the remaining members of the GOP, ranging from “Good riddance” to “You were never a real Republican,” along with a smattering of “Who are you, anyway?”

Those Republicans will have a point. I am not a prominent Republican nor do I play a major role in Republican politics. What I write here are my views alone. I joined the party in the twilight of Jimmy Carter’s administration, cut my teeth in politics as an aide to a working-class Catholic Democrat in the Massachusetts House, and later served for a year on the personal staff of a senior Republican U.S. senator. Not exactly the profile of a conservative warrior.

I even quit the party once before, briefly, during what I thought was the bottom for the GOP: the 2012 primaries. I didn’t want to be associated with a party that took Newt Gingrich seriously as presidential timber, or with people whose callousness managed to shock even Ron Paul. It was an estrangement, not a break, and I came back when the danger of a Trump victory loomed. I was too late, but as a moderate conservative (among the few left), the pre-2016 GOP was the only party I could call home.

Small things sometimes matter, and Collins is among the smallest of things in the political world. And yet, she helped me finally accept what I had been denying. Her speech on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh convinced me that the Republican Party now exists for one reason, and one reason only: for the exercise of raw political power, and not for ends I would otherwise applaud or even support.

I have written on social media and elsewhere how I feel about Kavanaugh’s nomination. I initially viewed his nomination positively, as a standard GOP judicial appointment; then grew concerned about whether he should continue on as a nominee with the accusations against him; and finally, was appalled by his behavior in front of the Senate.

March 10, 2019 11:28 AM  
Anonymous Tom Nichols said...

It was Collins, however, who made me realize that there would be no moderates to lead conservatives out of the rubble of the Trump era. Senator Jeff Flake is retiring and took a pass, and with all due respect to Senator Lisa Murkowski—who at least admitted that her “no” vote on cloture meant “no” rather than drag out the drama—she will not be the focus of a rejuvenated party.

When Collins spoke, she took the floor of the Senate to calm an anxious and divided nation by giving us all an extended soliloquy on … the severability of a clause.

It took almost half an hour before Collins got to the accusations against Kavanaugh, but the rest of what she said was irrelevant. She had clearly made up her mind weeks earlier, and she completely ignored Kavanaugh’s volcanic and bizarre performance in front of the Senate.

As a newly minted independent, I will vote for Democrats and Republicans whom I think are decent and well-meaning people; if I move back home to Massachusetts, I could cast a ballot for Republican Governor Charlie Baker and Democratic Representative Joe Kennedy and not think twice about it.

But during the Kavanaugh dumpster fire, the performance of the Democratic Party—with some honorable exceptions such as Senators Chris Coons, Sheldon Whitehouse, and Amy Klobuchar—was execrable. From the moment they leaked the Ford letter, they were a Keystone Cops operation, with Hawaii’s Senator Mazie Hirono willing to wave away the Constitution and get right to a presumption of guilt, and Senator Dianne Feinstein looking incompetent and outflanked instead of like the ranking member of one of the most important committees in America.

The Republicans, however, have now eclipsed the Democrats as a threat to the rule of law and to the constitutional norms of American society. They have become all about winning. Winning means not losing, and so instead of acting like a co-equal branch of government responsible for advice and consent, congressional Republicans now act like a parliamentary party facing the constant threat of a vote of no confidence.

March 10, 2019 11:31 AM  
Anonymous Tom Nichols said...

That it is necessary to place limitations, including self-limitations, on the exercise of power is—or was—a core belief among conservatives. No longer. Raw power, wielded so deftly by Senator Mitch McConnell, is exercised for its own sake, and by that I mean for the sake of fleecing gullible voters on hot-button social issues so that Republicans can stay in power. Of course, the institutional GOP will say that it countenances all of Trump’s many sins, and its own straying from principle, for good reason (including, of course, the holy grail of ending legal abortion).

Politics is about the exercise of power. But the new Trumpist GOP is not exercising power in the pursuit of anything resembling principles, and certainly not for conservative or Republican principles.

Free trade? Republicans are suddenly in love with tariffs, and now sound like bad imitations of early-1980s protectionist Democrats. A robust foreign policy? Not only have Republicans abandoned their claim to being the national-security party, they have managed to convince the party faithful that Russia—an avowed enemy that directly attacked our political institutions—is less of a threat than their neighbors who might be voting for Democrats. Respect for law enforcement? The GOP is backing Trump in attacks on the FBI and the entire intelligence community as Special Counsel Robert Mueller closes in on the web of lies, financial arrangements, and Russian entanglements known collectively as the Trump campaign.

And most important, on the rule of law, congressional Republicans have utterly collapsed. They have sold their souls, purely at Trump’s behest, living in fear of the dreaded primary challenges that would take them away from the Forbidden City and send them back home to the provinces. Yes, an anti-constitutional senator like Hirono is unnerving, but she’s a piker next to her Republican colleagues, who have completely reversed themselves on everything from the limits of executive power to the independence of the judiciary, all to serve their leader in a way that would make the most devoted cult follower of Kim Jong Un blush.

Maybe it’s me. I’m not a Republican anymore, but am I still a conservative? Limited government: check. Strong national defense: check. Respect for tradition and deep distrust of sudden, dramatic change: check. Belief that people spend their money more wisely than government? That America is an exceptional nation with a global mission? That we are, in fact, a shining city on a hill and an example to others? Check, check, check.

March 10, 2019 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Tom Nichols said...

But I can’t deny that I’ve strayed from the party. I believe abortion should remain legal. I am against the death penalty in all its forms outside of killing in war. I don’t think what’s good for massive corporations is always good for America. In foreign affairs, I am an institutionalist, a supporter of working through international bodies and agreements. I think that our defense budget is too big, too centered on expensive toys, and that we are still too entranced by nuclear weapons.

I believe in the importance of diversity and toleration. I would like a shorter tax code. I would also like people to exhibit some public decorum and keep their shoes on in public.

Does this make me a liberal? No. I do not believe that human nature is malleable clay to be reshaped by wise government policy. Many of my views, which flow from that basic conservative idea, are not welcome in a Democratic tribe in the grip of the madness of identity politics.

But whatever my concerns about liberals, the true authoritarian muscle is now being flexed by the GOP, in a kind of buzzy, steroidal McCarthyism that lacks even anti-communism as a central organizing principle. The Republican Party, which controls all three branches of government and yet is addicted to whining about its own victimhood, is now the party of situational ethics and moral relativism in the name of winning at all costs.

So I’m out. The Trumpers and the hucksters and the consultants and the hangers-on, like a colony of bees that exist only to sting and die, have swarmed together in a dangerous but suicidal cloud, and when that mindless hive finally extinguishes itself in a blaze of venom, there will be nothing left.

I’m a divorced man who is remarried. But love, in some ways, is easier than politics. I spent nearly 40 years as a Republican, a relationship that began when I joined a revitalized GOP that saw itself not as a victim but as the vehicle for lifting America out of the wreckage of the 1970s, defeating the Soviet Union, and extending human freedom at home and abroad. I stayed during the turbulence of the Tea Party tomfoolery. I moved out briefly during the abusive 2012 primaries. But now I’m filing for divorce, and I am taking nothing with me when I go.

March 10, 2019 11:36 AM  
Anonymous Don't worry, it's not illegal -- LOL!!! said...

The woman who founded the “day spa” where New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was arrested and later charged with soliciting prostitution has a business that offers access to President Donald Trump to fee-paying Chinese investors.

GOP donor Li Yang, who uses the name Cindy, has posted selfies on social media with Republican Party leaders and politicians — including Trump. She snapped a photo of herself with the president at a Super Bowl viewing party last month at Trump’s West Palm Beach club. (Trump cheered for the team owned by his pal Kraft.)

She has also posted selfies with Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Kellyanne Conway, Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), among several others.

Yang owns a string of spas and massage parlors in Florida with a “reputation” of providing sexual services, the Miami Herald reported. She denies that she has ever broken the law.

The “consulting company” GY US Investments LLC, owned by Yang and her husband, Zubin Gong, offers fee-paying clients the “opportunity to interact with the president, the [U.S.] Minister of Commerce and other political figures,” according to the magazine’s translation of the firm’s web site, which is mostly in Chinese.

The site also claims it can arrange a “White House and Capitol Hill Dinner.”

The head of a Chinese electric car company posed with Eric Trump in a photo on New Year’s eve at Mar-a-Lago. He had hoped to meet the president, but Trump skipped a trip to the club then due to the government shutdown. The Chinese executive told Mother Jones the trip was organized by a public relations company that he did not name.

Yang’s business website was shut down Friday, the day the Miami Herald story about her was published. Yang’s Facebook page packed with photos of her with leading Republicans was also taken down then.

Her consulting site featured Yang posing next to Trump in a signed photo, and said she was on the “Presidential Fundraising Committee.”

Yang’s consulting company promoted an upcoming event at Mar-a-Lago featuring Trump’s sister, Elizabeth Trump Grau, the magazine reported. The pitch touts the event as a “once-in-a-lifetime publicity opportunity” where “Chinese elites” can mingle with Trump’s sister and members of Congress.

March 10, 2019 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Don't worry, it's not illegal -- LOL!!! said...

Yang is a registered Republican, the Herald reported. Since 2017 she and her relatives have donated more than $42,000 to a Trump political action committee and more than $16,000 to Trump’s campaign, according to the newspaper.

Yang’s business is troubling because it raises the specter that only the wealthy can have the president’s ear. The elite few members of Mar-a-Lago, who pay $200,000 for a membership, have clearly been given special treatment by the president. ProPublica reported Wednesday that a policy suggestion written on a Mar-a-Lago napkin by a Pennsylvania dentist and member that began “Dear King,” was ordered by the president to be passed onto the secretary of Veterans Affairs.

ProPublica reported last year that Trump granted sweeping influence over Veterans Affairs to resort member Ike Perlmutter, chairman of Marvel Entertainment and was a major Trump campaign donor.

But also troubling, a security expert noted, is that a woman linked to massage parlors and Republican leaders could be in a position to blackmail powerful politicians.

It could present a “textbook story of how foreign actors gain leverage over senior officials,” David Rothkopf, a visiting scholar of the Carnegie Endowment and CEO of the Rothkopf Group.

If the president is allowing Yang to sell access at Mar-a-Lago to Chinese business people “while his friends are getting serviced at businesses she started, he is making himself and the country vulnerable to massive blackmail risk,” Rothkopf warned.

March 10, 2019 11:59 AM  
Anonymous Welcome to Trumplandia said...

"the Obama economy..,[sic]LOL"

Trump's Big "Win": The Largest Budget Deficit With A Strong Economy....I'd be LMAO if the artful dealer's performance didn't suck so much.

March 10, 2019 12:40 PM  
Anonymous Reality bites said...

49 words in Article I of the Constitution.

“No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”


March 10, 2019 12:57 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Tom Nichols said "I initially viewed [Supreme Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh] nomination positively, as a standard GOP judicial appointment; then grew concerned about whether he should continue on as a nominee with the accusations against him; and finally, was appalled by his behavior in front of the Senate. It took almost half an hour before Collins got to the accusations against Kavanaugh, but the rest of what she said was irrelevant. She had clearly made up her mind weeks earlier, and she completely ignored Kavanaugh’s volcanic and bizarre performance in front of the Senate.

Thank you for your rational and socially beneficial judgment, Tom.

Tom Nichols said "Maybe it’s me. I’m not a Republican anymore, but am I still a conservative? Limited government: check. Strong national defense: check. Respect for tradition and deep distrust of sudden, dramatic change: check."

Unconditional opposition to change was evolutionarily adaptive back in the tenuous existence of cave man days, when a tribe absolutely needed to avoid changing what had always allowed it to survive and thrive in generations past. Now our caveman resistance to sudden, dramatic change combined with the natural but dangerous belief that the cycles we've seen throughout our lives will never end is evolutionarily maladaptive in our modern age when we are confronted by the existential threats of technology and Human Caused Global Climate Warming. If humanity continues to act according to its natural psychology (and I'm sure it will) we will destroy ourselves and most, if not all complex life on earth. Fermi Paradox.

Tom Nichols said "Does this make me a liberal? No. I do not believe that human nature is malleable clay to be reshaped by wise government policy."

We've seen this gross mischaracterization of what liberals think constantly from conservatives. As you can see here with Wyatt/Regina, gross mischaracterization is a standard weapon in the conservative arsonal of derailing rational debate for positive change.

In general, liberals do not believe that human nature is malleable clay in the sense that our basic nature can be dramatically changed by force or heavy coercive pressure. Its religious conservatives that think that. For example, they against all we've learned, destructively promote society trying to pressure gays into behaving heterosexually and punishing them severely if they try to live the way they want. Its conservatives that demand ever harsher punishments in the sadly mistaken belief that the government can force people to behave dramatically differently if only they find a severe enough level of retributive force. The reality is that harsher punishments increase recidivism rates.

March 10, 2019 3:22 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Tim Nichols said "Many of my views, which flow from that basic conservative idea, are not welcome in a Democratic tribe in the grip of the madness of identity politics.".

Oh dear.

Where to begin...

How about for starters, what do you mean by "Identity Politics"? That's a too broadly general phrase that can refer to a wide range of behaviors with very different moral accountability. Every time I've seen conservatives use it, they deceptively claim to be opposing something bad that most people can agree is bad, but all their actions allegedly motivated by "stopping this bad identity politics thing" is actually aimed at, what their real motivation is, is to prevent the government from attempting to redress real injustices perpetuated on the basis of people's identity, be it skin colour, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

"I oppose identity politices", just like "I don't see skin colour", boils down to "I am opposed to rectifying any historical and ongoing societal injustices perpetuated on people solely because of harmless personal characteristics like skin colour, sexual orientation or gender identity.

So, Tom, Ouch! It is a gross misrepresentation of reality for you to assert Democrats attempts to redress historical and ungoing societal injustices is "identity politics madness'. Its madness for Republicans like you to be willfully blind to injustices perpetuated because of people's identity/harmless personal characteristics.

I saw a deeply disturbing discussion about "Identity Politics" on Real Time With Bill Maher, friday night. A deeply deceptive and disingenous Republican falsely asserted that "liberal" "identity politics" is "an attempt to organize government around people's identities as gays, black people,transgender people, etc."

That's a straw man, liberals want nothing of the sort. We want ongoing government sanctioned abuse of people based on harmless characteristics to end and religious conservatives like Wyatt/Regina want to make that abuse even harsher.

March 10, 2019 3:23 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Another example of this current popular conservatve deception this guy trotted out was the false and slanderous claim that "Liberals want to, and do punish people solely for being successful. To "support" his claim, he gave an anecdote of two women who went to mexico, got a local recipe for tacos, came back to their home city, opened a taco business using that recipe and the business was a roaring success.

Then, along came the liberal "Social Justice Warriors" who angrily condemned these two business women for stealing the intellectual property of these poor mexicans and getting all the benefits from that stolen intellectual property rather than the poor mexicans who came up with the recipe in the first place. The claim, if I remember correctly, was that these liberals unjustly drove these two successful American women out of business and "this is how liberals are evily punshing people solely for being successful.

That's a HUGE lie. Now we can debate wether or not it was morally correct for liberal social justice warriors to drive these two successful American business women out of business for basing their business on the stolen intellectual property of others. But what is certainly unethical and dishonest is for Republicans to go refering to anecdotes like this as "proof" "liberals punish people merely for being successful" - that is a bald faced lie.

And then Bill Maher agreed with this Republican that "lots of anecdotes like this show liberals are behaving irrationally and unfairly! Bill, Bill, Bill - you're smarter than that! Bill says "I've heard lots of anecdotes like this, so I believe liberalism is getting out of hand.". This is caveman mentality once again, and its terrible at deciding what reality is. Republicans slanderously claim "Liberals are opposed to success, and this/these anecdotes are proof" when every person with a basic understanding of statistics knows that cherry picked anecdotes can tell us nothing about what is going on in the real world in general. And Republicans employ this dishonest tactic to manipulate the public for their own enrichment, again and again.

March 10, 2019 3:23 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

This is the same sort of grossly deceptive tactic Wyatt and Regina have used here, standard conservative fair, conflate things that are not related and deceive people. Then scream blue murder when someone correctly points out your heinous deception and hang your hat on your extremely deceptive comment not technically being a lie. Pretend to be the victim when people point out your sickening dishonesty.

I've been severely critical of a minority of Tom Nichols' post. If I'm not around to catch Wyatt/Regina, please do not let them grossly mischaracterize this post of mine as in general discrediting the main theme of Tom's post, which was:

"But whatever my concerns about liberals, the true authoritarian muscle is now being flexed by the GOP, in a kind of buzzy, steroidal McCarthyism that lacks even anti-communism as a central organizing principle. The Republican Party, which controls all three branches of government and yet is addicted to whining about its own victimhood, is now the party of situational ethics and moral relativism in the name of winning at all costs."

Thank you Tom Nichols for taking a strong stand for fairness, even if I think there's a bit of room for improvement in your perspective :)

March 10, 2019 3:23 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Oh yeah, that Republican that was on Bill Maher that falsely claimed "the left" wants to use people's identities as an organizing principle for government?...

He was really good at his straw man attack on "the left". He said all kinds of things every fair minded person would agree with about society should be a fair meritocracy and so on. He said "I believe something liberals have rejected, that value statement, value statement, value statement, etc."

I yelled at my husband when he finished his sentence "I agree 100%!".

This is the type of sickening deception and slander that is the only weapon Republicans have. They make a bunch of positive general statements about what they allegedly stand for and liberals allegedly don't but the truth is shown through actions. Those actions and the never fail exposure of Republican rhetoric as grossly dishonest upon careful examination, consistently show its liberals pursing fairness and not Republicans.

Religious conservatives like Wyatt/Regina teach their children that complicated thinking is a tool of the devil to separate them from their "loving" god.

Understanding the real world and whats best for all takes complicated discussion and deep thinking. You can see from Wyatt/Regina's two decades of posts here that they post solely to prevent such thinking and discussion.

The only "faith" I don't hate is good faith debate. Right Wing Authoritarians like Wyatt/Regina, 25-40% of the population, abhor the only unconditionally moral Faith.

March 10, 2019 3:42 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Liberals want to address historical and ongoing societal injustices against minorities.

Republicans angrily oppose that and want society to pattern all its laws based on what's best for middle aged white male conservative christian rich business owners.

They strongly believe any attempt by society to consider a legal framework that isn't highly biased towards them is "Identity politics madness".

No, its just consideration of others in the honest pursuit of a more perfect union.

March 10, 2019 6:08 PM  
Anonymous homosexuality doesn't replenish life, there is no reason to give it special preferences said...

In the wake of the deadly twister outbreak last week, Sen. Bernard Sanders declared that climate change is making tornadoes worse, to which researchers say: Not so fast.

Purdue University professor Ernest Agee, who has studied tornadoes for 50 years, said his research and that of other scientists shows that the number of violent U.S. tornadoes has in fact tapered off in recent decades.

“My opinion is that strong and violent tornadoes have actually leveled off,” said Mr. Agee. “They’re definitely not increasing with time over the last few decades. In fact, there’s a ...decline in the number of violent and strong tornadoes.”

What’s more, 2018 was the first year since record-keeping began in 1950 without an EF4 or EF5 tornado, the most devastating twisters, as rated on the Enhanced Fujita Scale from EF0 to EF5, according to the NOAA/NWS Storm Prediction Center.

“We’re definitely not seeing a trend of increase. If anything, we’re seeing a decrease in the number of strong and violent tornadoes,” Mr. Agee said. “And that’s in papers that I’ve published and my students and other colleagues that are prominent in the field.”

March 10, 2019 11:28 PM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

""Trump's Big "Win": The Largest Budget Deficit With A Strong Economy....I'd be LMAO if the artful dealer's performance didn't suck so much."

also, another reason to laugh: Obama had bigger deficits and had a lousy economy

"49 words in Article I of the Constitution.

“No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”"

I used to think Dems were right on this point

however, rereading and looking up some definitions, I think that Trump's hotel is fine

it's not unconstitutional

Last Sunday in Selma, Alabama, Hillary Clinton opened a speech at the Brown Chapel AME church with a Bible verse. “This is the day the Lord has made,” she began. “Let us rejoice and be glad in it. And then let’s get to work.”

Drawing parallels between the South and elsewhere throughout the country, Clinton took the opportunity to assert that changes to the Voting Rights Act can make a “really big difference” in states like Wisconsin, where she said between 40,000 and 80,000 people were “turned away from the polls because of the color of their skin.” She lost the state to Donald Trump, in what was the first time a Democratic presidential nominee lost to a Republican there in 30 years.

But this paints a wholly inaccurate picture of Clinton’s Wisconsin loss. And until the Democratic Party reckons with what happened in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, it’s doomed to repeat history.

The attempt to analogize the Southern struggle for voting rights with her fate in Wisconsin subordinates some uncomfortable, and likely more relevant, truths — in the service of a narrative offered by an element of the Democratic Party that would prefer to see cheating and illegality, rather than politics and policy, as the causes of its collapse. That narrative glosses over a remarkable, decades-long decline in black economic conditions and political disillusionment outside the Southern, black Democratic firewall.

Wisconsin embodies these trends perhaps more acutely than anywhere else in the country.

March 10, 2019 11:41 PM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

After having had three years to grapple with the realities of a vital Democratic base in the Midwest, it seems Clinton still hasn’t learned her lesson. If this is any indication of the party’s 2020 strategy, it may be handing Trump another victory.

“IT’S LIKE THE soul left it. There’s no life,” Earl Ingram Jr., 64, told me, describing a once-thriving black, middle-class community that bordered the former A.O. Smith factory site on West Hopkins Street in Milwaukee. Ingram was a union worker who assembled car frames for the company. We stood next to one of the lone remaining buildings, an empty concrete tower that housed A.O. Smith’s research and engineering arm. On a sunny day last fall, the golden hour cast an amber light beyond the shadows of the formidable building, but there was little else that glistened. Most of the factory site was torn from its foundation and replaced by a sprawling field of yellowing grass. The nearby commercial strip that once bustled with mom-and-pop stores had become a collage of wooden boards and abandoned sidewalk churches.

As if corporate managers were all carbon copied on a memo, they plucked their manufacturing facilities from Milwaukee’s urban core and dropped them into foreign countries and Southern states, a trend that accelerated through the 1980s and ’90s. A factory job had meant union labor, including high wages and benefits that disproportionately benefited the city’s black, male population. In 1970, 73 percent of working-age black men in Milwaukee were employed, and half of them worked in manufacturing. By 2010, only 45 percent of working-age black men had a job. Offshoring directly undermined black labor and killed hopes of economic prosperity that many black families sought after leaving the debt servitude of the South.

Today, according to research by sociologist Marc Levine, Milwaukee’s joblessness rate among black men in their prime working years is higher than any major city’s in the country. The median black household income in the state is about half that of whites, the third-highest disparity in the country. Jobs were essentially replaced with prisons, giving Wisconsin the highest black male incarceration rate in the U.S.

In the face of disintegrating economic conditions, most of which could be attributed to the Democratic Party’s own neoliberal strategy, liberal legislators fumbled. Wisconsin’s Republican interests grew mightier with funding from the Charles and David Koch, the billionaire fossil fuel industrialists who buttressed the political ambitions of former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

March 10, 2019 11:45 PM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

Yet — as Dan Kaufman notes in “The Fall of Wisconsin: The Conservative Conquest of a Progressive Bastion and the Future of American Politics” — Democrats failed to counter the conservatives’ vast political infrastructure with one of their own. Instead of broadly advancing progressive candidates and interests, according to Kaufman, Democratic leaders discouraged grassroots action amid Walker’s attack on collective bargaining, though protestors defied their orders. They also made “a fundamental political calculation to move rightward and support Republican priorities such as welfare reform and school vouchers,” Kaufman wrote in his book. In the face of extreme wealth and income disparities between Wisconsin’s black and white residents, state Democrats have taken the black vote for granted, as Milwaukee community activist Angela Lang told NPR last fall.

The ground was fertile for Clinton to dig in and excite black Milwaukee voters once inspired by Obama’s messages of hope and change. However, she canceled a planned Green Bay, Wisconsin, appearance, reportedly because of concerns about the optics of a splashy campaign rally after the Pulse nightclub massacre. Even without a grand personal appearance, her team made relatively few efforts to connect with voters on the ground in Wisconsin throughout the entirety of her campaign. As Vox reported, Clinton opened 40 campaign offices in the state. This was just over half of Barack Obama’s total of 69 offices in 2012. “In Milwaukee County, the largest source of Democratic votes in the state,” read the Vox report, “Clinton opened only four offices compared to Obama’s 10.”

In the summer of 2016, less than three months before the general election, frustrations among black residents boiled over in days of unrest after the police killing of Sylville Smith. The spark lit by Smith’s death was all that was needed to engulf some of Milwaukee’s black neighborhoods in flames, already teeming from the pressure of persistent racial inequality.

With voting rights on the brink and a frustrated community over the edge, this was even more reason for Clinton and her team to campaign hard in Wisconsin. They didn’t. And in November 2016, the black voter turnout rate dropped from 79 percent in 2012 to 47 percent, the lowest black voter turnout in the state’s recorded history.

YEARS LATER, INSTEAD of studying how these myriad factors likely contributed to her defeat, the party seems intent on avoiding substantive critique of their failings, while Clinton has perpetuated misinformation that renders her blameless.

March 10, 2019 11:46 PM  
Anonymous I reeeeeeeeally like our Supreme Court.and the best is yet to come!!!!!!! said...

Her Selma remarks, as a preliminary matter, were simply inaccurate. As the Washington Post noted, Wisconsin was not a state covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act preclearance requirements. So changes to the Voting Rights Act had no effect on Wisconsin. Further, Wisconsin’s voter ID law passed in 2011, before the Shelby decision. Given that the legislation went into effect in 2016, after years of being stalled by litigation, Democrats had several years to arm themselves with the appropriate tools to combat possible voter suppression and make genuine efforts to organize black voters.

The limited academic research that directly assesses Wisconsin’s voter ID law on the black vote is inconclusive as to its effect on Clinton. A University of Wisconsin-Madison study estimates that black nonvoters in Wisconsin were more affected by the voter ID law in comparison to whites, but it also shows that lack of interest in the candidates was a much more frequent reason why nonvoters stayed home. Fourty-two percent of respondents, across race, said they were unhappy with the choice of candidates or issues or that they simply were not interested. Responses indicating possible voter suppression — long lines, not being able to get an absentee ballot, not having an adequate ID, or being told at a polling place that their ID was inadequate — made up a combined 5 percent of the responses.

Census data released after the election also provides some insight about national trends of lower black turnout. In a survey of over 2.5 million black nonvoters around the country, an estimated 20 percent of them did not vote because they “did not like candidates or campaign issues.” This comprised the highest share of respondents’ answers. The second-most frequent reason at 19 percent was that they were “not interested.” “Registration problems” and “inconvenient polling place,” comprised a total of 7 percent.

March 10, 2019 11:50 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

If you don't like trans people using the bathroom...just look away like you do with corruption, war, poverty, environmental destruction and homelessness.

March 11, 2019 2:52 AM  
Anonymous Sean Galway said...

An odd comment from a very odd individual. I've never heard anyone suggest that they don't like those afflicted with gender delusion syndrome using the bathroom. Virtually all restrooms are owned by private businesses and individuals. If they give you permission to use their facilities, which most will, go right ahead. If they provide different rooms for male and female, they may require you to use the one assigned to your birth gender but simply comply with their requirement and there should be no problem. All the restrooms work the same.

Perhaps the idea that no one likes them using the bathroom is another delusion.

March 11, 2019 6:36 AM  
Anonymous and, wait, there's more said...

and, wait, there's more...

if you ever watch late night TV, you've seen the ads

we'll give you a knife sharpener that can also shave your dog AND a food chopper that will also cook french fries and can also be used as a remote for your TV for a low monthly payment of 39 dollars a month over 63 months

and, wait, there's more...

if you act now, we'll throw in three more as a gift for the same price

this is the Dems' slogan for 2020

we'll give you free health care, free college, reparations for everyone whose ancestors had any grievance, AND a green new deal, all for the low tax rate of 75%

and, wait, there's more...

if you elect us now, we'll use our new Modern Money Theory, which means the government can spend unlimited amounts of money because the dollar is the global currency and we'll just print more of them

March 11, 2019 6:55 AM  
Anonymous Golden Oldie said...

“Reagan proved that deficits don’t matter,” Vice President Dick Cheney said when the Bush administration sought a second round of tax cuts in 2003. This fits with a rich tradition of conservative tax-cutters abandoning deficit hawkery when they want to hand money to favored groups.

March 11, 2019 8:54 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

So, you're in with the Dem pitch?

March 11, 2019 9:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Democrats should never follow the same self-destructive spending path the Republicans have blazed.

March 11, 2019 9:43 AM  
Anonymous watch for Obama deniers !! said...

well, there are Holocaust deniers

and there are Obama deniers

you remember Barry, right?

he borrowed more in eight years than all the previous Presidents in history....COMBINED

and, despite that stimulus, and the stimulus of zero interest rates

the Obama economy reeeeeeallly sucked!!

as for Holocaust deniers, most of whom are Democrats these days (hi, Omar!!)

Then there are climate deniers. These are usually teenagers who wear shorts outside when it is below freezing. Or old ladies who wear fur coats during summer months.

And then there is the mix of the two — perhaps the dumbest of the lot: the famed history deniers.

These are people who fell off the back of a turnip truck two weeks ago and believe history began the moment they had their first conscious thought. These people also, often, happen to be Holocaust deniers and are, especially, climate deniers. They are forever holding anti-global warming rallies when it inexplicably snows outside.

One of the most famous history deniers alive today is a person named Bill Nye. He is not a scientist and, really, is not very smart. But a lot of people listen to him because he is selling a brand of hysteria about the end of the world that is, well, pretty engaging for people who believe him and pretty entertaining for those of us who know he is lying.

It is like pro wrestling — something for everyone.

Mr. Nye refuses to acknowledge history or science, which taken together proves conclusively that planet Earth has been naturally warming and cooling for millions of years. We even once had an ice age, known as the Ice Age!

This terrible age to be alive occurred despite woolly mammoth flatulence.

But seeing as this undermines the whole point of his End-of-the-World terror threat, Mr. Nye simply cannot afford to believe this. Same with Albert Gore, a former vice president and current global warming hysteria gasbag.

You know, since these fellows are so concerned about all of the rest of us going to work and grilling hamburgers and — shall we say — “making wind,” wouldn’t it be a great idea if they if the both of them stopped all their emissions and talking and flatulence and took a deep breath and held it, well, forever, wouldn’t that be a net loss of carbon dioxide?

Anyway, Mr. Nye does not care about the planet because he refuses to stop exhaling. This weekend he found himself a fellow history denier in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the socialist Democrat congresswoman from New York who is also unfamiliar with the Ice Age.

Being young and stupid — and I mean that with all jealousy — means that you do not have to know about the Ice Age and you just assume that everything going on in the world is all about you. Winters getting shorter and summers getting longer? Must be something I did! After all, everything is all about me!

“AOC gets it,” Mr. Nye said of his fellow compatriot’s refusal to acknowledge the Ice Age. “She sees that fear is dividing us.”

You see, these people may not believe in history but they have read “Lord of the Flies.” In order to sell their End-of-the-World hysteria, they first have to sow fear in everyone and turn everyone against each other.

Indeed, if Mr. Nye is the old crank spinning hysterical yarns, AOC is the young, earnest believer who intends to weaponize the claptrap into the deadly serious.

You see, people today erroneously talk about socialism as some kind of economic system. It is not. Socialism is a political construct that replaces individual liberty with government control over everything.

Global warming hysteria is just the pretext these people need to justify the eradication of individual rights.

Some earnest fellow on the side of liberty decided to take AOC’s plan to address global warming seriously. He sat down and calculated that enacting her Green New Deal would cost Americans over $90 trillion.

This, of course, is absurd.

In fact, AOC’s “Green Old Deal” would not cost a dime. That is what prison labor camps are for

March 11, 2019 9:58 AM  
Anonymous How soon they forget said...

Google search for BIKINI GRAPH yields 6.2 million hits showing the graph of the Great Bush Recession plunge and the Obama lift out of it.

March 11, 2019 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Wikipedia: Great Recession in the United States said...

The Great Recession in the United States was a severe financial crisis combined with a deep recession. While the recession officially lasted from December 2007 to June 2009, it took several years for the economy to recover to pre-crisis levels of employment and output. This slow recovery was due in part to households and financial institutions paying off debts accumulated in the years preceding the crisis[1] along with restrained government spending following initial stimulus efforts.[2] It followed the bursting of the housing bubble, the housing market correction and subprime mortgage crisis.

The U.S. Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission reported its findings in January 2011. It concluded that "the crisis was avoidable and was caused by: Widespread failures in financial regulation, including the Federal Reserve's failure to stem the tide of toxic mortgages; Dramatic breakdowns in corporate governance including too many financial firms acting recklessly and taking on too much risk; An explosive mix of excessive borrowing and risk by households and Wall Street that put the financial system on a collision course with crisis; Key policy makers ill prepared for the crisis, lacking a full understanding of the financial system they oversaw; and systemic breaches in accountability and ethics at all levels."[3]

According to the Department of Labor, roughly 8.7 million jobs (about 7%) were shed from February 2008 to February 2010, and real GDP contracted by 4.2% between Q4 2007 and Q2 2009, making the Great Recession the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. The GDP bottom, or trough, was reached in the second quarter of 2009 (marking the technical end of the recession, defined as at least two consecutive quarters of declining GDP).[4] Real (inflation-adjusted) GDP did not regain its pre-crisis (Q4 2007) peak level until Q3 2011.[5] Unemployment rose from 4.7% in November 2007 to peak at 10% in October 2009, before returning steadily to 4.7% in May 2016.[6] The total number of jobs did not return to November 2007 levels until May 2014.[7]

March 11, 2019 11:01 AM  
Anonymous Merrick Garland ... LOL said...

a sad couple of Obama deniers

March 11, 2019 12:20 PM  
Anonymous Trump's plan to eliminate the deicit by the end of Pence's second term said...

President Trump will unveil his fiscal 2020 budget request to Congress on Monday which calls for $2.7 trillion in spending cuts and balances in 15 years, according to the White House budget office.

Trump’s spending plan highlights a number of his priorities, including strengthening border security to address the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border, and tackling the opioid crisis.

“In the last two, President Trump and this administration have prioritized reining in reckless Washington spending,” acting Office of Management and Budget Director Russ Vought said in a statement. “The budget that we have presented to Congress and the American people, ‘A Budget for a Better America,’ embodies fiscal responsibility, and takes aim at Washington’s waste, fraud, and abuse.”

The 2020 budget, Vought added, “will balance in 15 years, end runaway spending, and secure prosperity for future generations.”

The president’s budget takes aim at government spending by calling for a 5 percent reduction in nondefense discretionary spending that will keep the budget under statutory spending caps. With the proposals included in the request for Congress, projections indicate the budget would be balanced by 2034, according to the Office of Management and Budget.

The spending plan seeks to boost border security and immigration enforcement to address the crisis at the southern border. Trump has long urged Congress to provide him with money to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. An impasse over wall funding led to a 35-day partial government shutdown that stretched from just before Christmas until the end of January.

Trump’s fiscal 2020 budget proposal will seek an additional $8.6 billion for the border wall.

To further address the situation at the southern border, the president’s budget calls for increases in the workforce for Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection, as well as policy changes to end sanctuary cities.

To combat the opioid epidemic, a key priority for the Trump administration, the fiscal blueprint envisions continued investments in prevention, treatment, research, and recovery. It also calls for the creation of new platforms “for delivering services to the American people” as part of the administration’s efforts to modernize the federal government.

Taking aim at higher education institutions, Trump’s fiscal 2020 spending plan requires colleges and universities “to share a portion of the financial responsibility associated with federal student loans.”

It also allocates $80 billion for veterans, roughly a 10 percent boost from fiscal 2019, and, with an eye on defense, provides investments “in the capabilities and domains critical to future conflicts," including space, artificial intelligence, and hypersonics.

If the Dems reject this prudent plan, citing Modern Money Theory, maybe Dem Congressmen can hawk stuff on late night for their next job.

and, wait, there's more!


March 11, 2019 12:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"and the Obama lift out of it."

Which he did in spite of Senator Mitch McConnell who laughed when he spoke at the Heritage Foundation and said, "Our top political priority should be to deny Obama a second term."

See for yourselves

March 11, 2019 12:37 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Trump is the first president since the beginning of polling to have failed to get above a 50% approval rating at this point in one's term.

All this "Oh, its hopeless for the Democrats, Trump is Crushing it", is just yet another example of Wyatt/Regina claiming reality is virtually 180 degrees opposite of what it is.

It was the same thing throughout every federal election every 2 years since 2006.

Wyatt/Regina during the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections gleefully exclaimed every couple of weeks or so "Obama's poll numbers are in freefall!" and then pointed to some outlier poll that "proved" this.

Or Wyatt/Regina would post "This is why obama can't win [posts similarly distorted rigth wing b.s.]

Its just the standard Right wing "Our unconditional position is we will admantly deny any reality that doesn't favour us, and no amount of evidence will stop us from admantly falsely claiming reality is virtually 180 degrees opposite from what it is.

March 11, 2019 1:18 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

And then when called on their massive distortion of reality and called liars they'll get faux indignant and repeatedly exclaim "We said no such thing! It's YOU who are lying about me!", their excuse to themselves and the world being "I didn't technically lie and God only said literally bearing false witness against your neighbour is one of the ten commandments so I'm good here.".

They're like the Pharisees, Wyatt and Regina.

March 11, 2019 1:22 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Oh Oh!

Wyatt/Regina said "
Anonymous Sean Galway said...

An odd comment from a very odd individual..."

after my last post last night Wyatt and Regina responded to it despite in the previous thread adamantly insisting there is no way on god's green earth they'd ever respond to one of my posts again - they're slipping!

In the previous thread when I was humiliating them when they were trying to defend their beliefs in a heinously immoral god, it was "We're not responding to Priya because she was disrespectful (despite their two decades of massively disrespectful posts)", "Priya is immorally trying to trick us into responding to her (despite their own two decades of pretending to be more commenters distinct from Wyatt/Regina (like Northdallas30?), and "[concerntroll]we're not responding because we don't want to hurt her fragile mental health[/concerntroll]

What do you think the odds are that "Patrick Greene" who so fortunately alerted the world of my malignant narcisism is really one of the couple of hundred thousand Patrick Greenes around the U.S.?

Judging by the hostility of "Patrick Greene" and their unwillingness to actually confront me on any advocacy they were "sure" I got wrong...I think the odds are pretty slim that "Patrick Greene" was actually a real "Patrick Greene".

I never did get that email from "Patrick Greene" after I offered to discuss his concerns about my history of mental illness and present "malignant narcisism" - gee I wonder why?


March 11, 2019 1:39 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I guess I never did clearly make the point I wanted to make in my previous two posts.

What I was trying to say in my long-winded way was that Wyatt/Regina's adamant and hypocritical reasons why they unconvincingly claim they won't respond to "any and all" posts by me only apply to discussing the validity of their religious justifications for persecuting lgbt people, they can't resist responding to any comment Priya Lynn makes about fairlytreating/punishing harmless lgbt people.

Wyatt/Regina's long and deeply held "sincere" religious beliefs, like 90% of religious conservatives, flip flip like a piece of paper in the wind depending on whatever they think works best to mislead people into going along with their desire for heavy on the punishment side when society interacts with lgbt people (and damn light on the interaction with society for lgbt people too! Force them to live in the shadows!)

And they've made clear, back in the third of the three TTF links I've been spreading around, that like so many things they unjustifiably conflate, they conflate their desire for society to punish lgbt people in general with their impotent fury at me and desire to severely punish me in particular.

Do you think that Wyatt/Regina, like Anne Coulter does about Richard Dawkins, fantasize about me screaming in pain in their god's "Just" lake of fire for eternity?

Unlike them,I believe society's punishment (and any benevolent God's) should be proportional to the crime committed.

Most conservatives have no use for any less than black and white thinking so they favour maximal punishment, or even infinite mind-shocking torture for finite crimes. They think what worked in cave man days can't fail in our complex modern times - "toughness solves all."

So, I have no doubt they fantasize regularly about their "Just" god putting me through unimaginable pain for eternity for doing what angers them and threatens them (real or imagined) - that's human nature.

But human nature is also fairness and complicated thinking about complicated and varied realities that can either harm and destroy us and benefit us. I hope that's what wins out in the figuratively speaking culture "war"

Rather than the uncompromising severe punishment for lgbt people conservatives like Wyatt/Regina want to design the structures of government around, I much prefer Christians who promote fairness as indistinguishable from fealty to their benevolent God.

Surely every religious person of good conscience can agree with that, right?

Can we please be the rare exception to the Fermi Paradox?

March 11, 2019 2:05 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Yep, that pretty much sums up Wyatt/Regina/bad anonymous - angry, crude, deceptive, arrogant, and sadistic.

March 11, 2019 2:12 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

Say it with me now everyone:

In my faith fairness is indistinguishable from loving God.

March 11, 2019 2:17 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

12 years folks, we've got 12 years to get Human Caused Global Climate Warming mitigated enough to keep from getting Fermi Paradoxed.

The last global meeting of climate scientists formally stated that if we don't stop emitting human created green house gases we are not going to be able to stop the global climate warming feedback loops (like the replacment of heat reflecting white sea ice with heat absorbing black water), the rate of human caused climate warming will accelerate and the already catastrophic results for life on earth will get much, much worse.

March 11, 2019 2:32 PM  
Blogger Priya Lynn said...

I'm 100% behind AOC's Green New Deal

A "Green New Deal" is a general idea about taking on a massive re-vamping of the economy. Implementing that will be a massively complex and and varied task needing input from local stakeholders in order to be done well.

A "Grean New Deal" is a long term strategy similar to what allowed the Japanese autoindustry to go from a joke to highly competitive at a global level - "Kaisen".

Kaisen is the gradual consistent improvement of the existing system. The theory is that lots of little improvements every where over a long time add up to gigantic improvements to the system.

It clearly worked for the Japanese. I'm all in for AOC's Green New Deal, I'm certainly not going to get worked up at this stage over arguments about how best to proceed.

March 11, 2019 2:43 PM  

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