A debate. An election. A debate. An election. It seems like that is the new rhythm for 2020. Oh yeah, and the fact that Trump is still president, so a never-ceasing news cycle.
Feel like you might have missed something? Don’t worry, we’ve got you.
How do you begin to do justice to the Greatest Debate of All Time? Let’s start with a simple list.
1. Elizabeth Warren won, and won big. It wasn’t even close. THIS was the Warren that so many of us love and support, and it’s the Warren that has been systematically erased by the political media.
The story of the week really was just how stunning Senator Warren’s debate performance was. How her campaign has consistently been under-appreciated. How she really is the definition of persistence. Now we wait to see if her performance on the Nevada debate stage will have a ripple effect on the rest of the country.
In South Korea, President Moon Jae-in has raised the health alert level to its maximum “Level 4,” after another day of triple digit growth of infections in that nation. This level empowers the military to forcibly quarantine areas, close businesses, and restrict travel within the nation. At a emergy meeting, President Moon declared this a “watershed” moment, saying that the “coming few days will be a critical time for us.”
In Italy, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has imposed “extraordinary measures” to contain an outbreak that is now in multiple regions, and which grew by another 55 cases on Saturday. For the moment, Conte has said he will not suspend the Shengen agreement—the agreement by which members of the European Union can move freely with neighboring states—but he is getting criticism for that move both inside and outside Italy. On Saturday, 12 towns in the northern regions of Veneto and Lombardy were placed on lockdown as testing continued.
And in Iran the cases and the deaths increased, but the news did not.
It is not common for Supreme Court Justices to come out and publicly go against fellow justices. They keep that commentary for their written dissents to cases before the Supreme Court. But, after a despicable ruling that was decided along party lines (5-4) which allowed the Trump administration to implement a "wealth tax" on immigrants in all 50 states, Justice Sonia Sotomayor could not hold back.
ABC News reports that the dissent, written by Justice Sotomayor, called out the conservative wing of the Supreme Court in such a public fashion, accusing them of being "biased toward the Trump administration." Here is why that matters — it is expected for justices to vote in a conservative or liberal fashion, but to call them deferential to a particular president is stark commentary. They are being called MAGA/Trump Cult all the way.
Trump Administration Proposes Another Social Security Rule That Violates The Law, Hurts The Disabled
The Trump administration has been making a low-key but concerted attack on Social Security in the past weeks, not in public pronouncements, but in attacks on the program through the rule-making process. While the proposal intended to kick Social Security Disability claimants off of benefits has received attention, a second rule that would make the appeals process harder to navigate has flown under the radar. Administrative law judges and Democrats in Congress have been paying attention, though.
Conservative religious pundits on Fox News recoiled in outrage on Sunday after a left-leaning guest suggested that Jesus Christ was "more of a socialist" than a capitalist.
During a Fox & Friends segment designed to cast doubt on the faith or Democratic presidential candidates, evangelical pastor Robert Jeffress argued that socialism is "antithetical to Christianity."
But St. Paul Reverend Dee Dawkins-Haigler reminded the other panelists that scriptures seemed to point to what people now call socialism.
"We believe in things like, what did you do to the least of them?" Dawkins-Haigler explained. "You fed the hungry, you clothed the naked, you went to see those who are in prison."
"You do not have to be a socialist to be a Christian!" Jeffress shot back. "Socialism is antithetical to Christianity and if they nominate Bernie Sanders, they are not going to be able to attract any faith voters."
"I totally disagree," Dawkins-Haigler retorted. "People would have said that Jesus was more of a socialist than anybody we're talking about today."
The remarks stopped Fox News host Pete Hegseth cold.
"Why was Jesus a socialist?" he exclaimed.
"Because Jesus did not sit with the establishment, he overturned tables of the tax collectors, he sat with people who were lepers," Dawkins-Haigler explained. "He made sure he healed people who people thought should not have been healed."
"So we have to be very careful how we use this language and try to take ownership of who God is," she added.
The purge of those who are not Trump loyalists in the intelligence community continues. CNN is reporting that there are more departures expected, and that Shelby Pierson, the person in charge of evaluating intelligence regarding election security with the ODNI, may be the next to go now that Trump has his flunky, Richard Grennell as temporary Director of National Intelligence:
Some top intelligence officials are looking to leave following the recent upheaval at the office that oversees the 17 intelligence agencies of the US government, including the controversial appointment of Richard Grenell as the nation's top intelligence official, a US official told CNN.
Grenell has said he is only temporarily filling the position of acting director of American spy agencies, but he is already making his mark. Grenell, a President Donald Trump loyalist, is also still serving as the US ambassador to Germany. After his appointment to the intelligence post this week, officials at the office of the director of national intelligence (ODNI) made calls to US diplomats in Germany inquiring about Grenell's leadership style, two sources familiar with the matter told CNN.
By Judith Lewis Mernit
For Elsa Mengistu, it all began with guns. The 18-year-old North Carolina native first found her way into organizing for a cause through the Winston-Salem chapter of March for Our Lives, the youth activist movement formed after the 2018 shooting that killed 17 people at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. But in coming to understand the factors that cause guns to proliferate in American society, Mengistu, who is black, started to see racism and poverty and gun violence as all part of the same problematic system that puts corporate profits over people’s well-being—how lower-income people live in more polluted communities, for example.
“That kind of got the gears turning,” says Mengistu, who at the time was in 11th grade in High Point, North Carolina. “I just started seeing how everything—literally everything on this Earth is interconnected.” One day she was scrolling through social media when she came across a post about the youth-led Global Climate Strike. “I just felt like they were building a new future,” she says. “And I ended up joining them in Washington, D.C., organizing for this giant march.”
Chris Wallace Busts Marc Short On Russian Attacks: ‘You Can’t Say It Didn’t Happen And Then Say They Leaked It’
Fox News host Chris Wallace called out Marc Short, an aide to Mike Pence, after he insisted that there is no intelligence that shows Russia has a preference for Donald Trump in the 2020 election.
"There's not intelligence that said the Russians are trying to help Donald Trump win elections," Short said during an interview on Fox News Sunday.
"I know that's the White House argument," Wallace acknowledged. "There is a consistent story that came out this week and we've heard it from members of the committee, from members of the intelligence community, we've heard it from people in your own White House."
"And that is that Shelby Pierson, who is the intelligence community's election security czar, told Congress that the Russians are trying to help Donald Trump," he added. "The president's reaction was to call in her boss -- acting DNI chief Joe Maguire -- to fire him and to replace him with Ambassador Richard Grenell. a Trump partisan who has almost no intelligence experience."
"You say none of this happened?" Wallace asked Short.
The White House aided, however, pivoted to complain that information about Pierson has been leaked from the House Intelligence Committee.
Every news story about the vetting process for John Bolton's book implies that the vetting is being done by career professionals according to long-established standards. I don't believe it. I believe the career pros may be trying to uphold standards -- but is it even possible that they're not feeling intimidated? Is it conceivable that this president will allow them to exercise independent judgment, even if they conclude that the book is publishable before November?
President Trump has directly weighed in on the White House review of a forthcoming book by his former national security adviser, telling his staff that he views John Bolton as “a traitor,” that everything he uttered to the departed aide about national security is classified and that he will seek to block the book’s publication, according to two people familiar with the conversations.
The president’s private arguments stand in contrast to the point-by-point process used to classify and protect sensitive secrets and appears to differ from the White House’s public posture toward Bolton’s much-anticipated memoir. The National Security Council warned Bolton last month that his draft “appears to contain significant amounts of classified information,” some of it top secret, but pledged to help him revise the manuscript and “move forward as expeditiously as possible.”
Blue Mass Group: Democratic House primaries in March pit some progressive women against some conservative men.
The Rectification of Names: For the Trump national security team, printouts of tweets have replaced Powerpoint presentations.
Off the Charts: What gig workers need to know for tax season.
Just Above Sunset: The truth? Trump can’t handle the truth.
Speaking of which, your quote of the day:
"One thing I can promise you is this: I will always tell you the truth." (Donald Trump, August 18, 2016.)
Guest blogging Mike's Blog Round Up for the last time this week is Jon Perr from Perrspectives. Send your tips, recommendations, comments and angst to mbru AT crooksandliars DOT com.
The WaPo tells us that Facebook decided to not take down disinformation after the 2016 election for fear of alienating conservatives:
“This is what they know about Republicans: Tell them ‘yes’ or they will hurt us.”
Facebook created “Project P” (P for propaganda) —after the 2016 Goat Rodeo— to identify pages that had spread fake news reports during the 2016 election that helped the Russian Usurper’s improbably win. They found dozens of pages, mostly coming from overseas and all coming from the hard-right.
Joel Kaplan (VP of global public policy) argued that the pages shouldn’t be deleted:
“We can’t remove all of it because it will disproportionately affect conservatives.”
You don’t say?
Kaplan said that conservatives didn’t regard fake news as fake news, and there would be a backlash if they removed those pages. Because when it is fake in conservatives’ favor it is good news, I guess?
So you can see how this could snowball. To keep the peace with Possum Hollar and allow the lies to remain (and reproduce like bunnies in clover) brought us to where we are today: Facebook is the platform preferred by our Rage Uncles where they can promote their favorite conspiracy theories and where politicians pay Faceberg a lot of Ameros to lie to Possum Hollar.
There are times when black folks need joy. No matter the pain, the suffering, the obstacles, the discrimination, the disillusionment we face—we must make music, we must dance, we must celebrate our color, our ancestors, and a way of life. The black citizens of New Orleans, Louisiana, (NOLA) have faced many travails in their history as part of this nation, and before that, as colonial subjects of Spain and France. Yet, despite it all—enslavement, Jim Crow, repression, climate change, disasters like Hurricane Katrina, and gentrification—the spirit of the people lives on.
Known as the birthplace of jazz, the American home of vodou and hoodoo, and the largest U.S. celebration of Carnival culminating with Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday), New Orleans wears many faces. To most outsiders, it is simply an exciting destination, where tourists can drink in the streets. To those who still manage to call it home, there are deep roots dating back to the original Indigenous inhabitants, Spanish and French colonial ownership, and a three-tiered racial hierarchy that developed due to a large population of free people of color (gens de couleur libres) living alongside the enslaved. The acquisition of New Orleans by Americans in 1803 heralded drastic changes, and harsh attempts to suppress and abolish many of the African-Caribbean traditions in the city. Ultimately, those traditions survived.
In case you missed it this week, we have an entry for our rare Score One For The Good Guys Chronicles.
Michael Fesser, a Black man in Portland, Oregon, father of 8, won his lawsuit against his former boss AND the West Linn Police Department for a total of $1.15 million. Fesser was the victim of racism and harassment at his job, and when he reported it to his boss, Eric Benson, Benson decided to call in his buddy — Chief of Police at the West Linn PD at the time — to try to build a false case against Fesser that he was stealing from the company. Police Chief Terry Timeus was totally down with that idea, and had no trouble finding help with his racist cop crew to fake up a case and even try to get Fesser arrested in Clackamas County, to "make sure he was with some real racist boys." That police chief retired in 2017 amid allegations of drunk driving.
Read all the details here, including the mayor's long apology. You can also see a video of Mr. Fesser discussing why he felt he needed to go through with this lawsuit, and how he had the strength after what he'd been through. It's quite a story.
Here are your Sunday morning talk show guests and panelists, via Politico:
For the life of me, I don't understand the value Chris Matthews brings to MSNBC.
His "politics for the sake of politics" is not only dumb and shallow, but it's actively destructive to journalism and democracy. His lack of filter means he can't shut up and not interrupt guests. He's often sexist and misogynistic towards female politicians and panelists. On more than a few occasions, other MSNBC hosts have had to step up and save him from himself.
Night Owls, a themed open thread, appears at Daily Kos seven days a week
Harold Meyerson at The American Prospect writes—Bernie Blowout Highlights Latino Liberalism. His performance among Hispanics shouldn’t have been a surprise:
[...] The Sanders sweep was as qualitative as it was quantitative—that is, he did better in a range of constituencies where he hadn’t done that well before. Chief among those was Nevada’s Latino voters, who made up a fifth of caucus participants, and who according to the exit poll gave Sanders 53 percent of their votes.
As usual, some of my fellow pundits are expressing surprise at Sanders’s performance among Latinos. They shouldn’t be.
First, as in all communities throughout American history with a disproportionate share of immigrants, it’s the young—most born and schooled here, often more fluent in English than their elders—who not only are the most active politically but who also guide their elders through the labyrinth of American politics. As Bernie and Bernie’s policies speak more compellingly to the young than do any of his rivals and their policies, it’s no surprise that Latinos have tilted so sharply Berniewards in these caucuses.
Second, and even more fundamentally, the level of backing among Latinos for governmental support for economic equity and advancement has long exceeded that of any other demographic group in the electorate. One look at the exit polls on California ballot measures over the past quarter-century shows that, when voters have been asked to approve funds for schools or parks, and to decide on minimum-wage levels and the rights of unions, Latinos have been the most liberal voting bloc there is—more so, even, than African Americans. On one 1998 California ballot measure that would have greatly curtailed unions’ ability to involve themselves in elections (fortunately, it lost big), Latinos voted no at a higher rate than union members.
There’s an old conventional wisdom that says that because Latinos are supposedly more conservative on issues like choice or preserving the traditional family, they’re not all that liberal. It’s wrong. First, younger Latino voters aren’t conservative on those issues. Second, and more important, election after election has shown that when it comes to their choice of candidates, Latinos consider the candidate’s position on economic questions to be far more decisive than that on any cultural issue [...]
“No Statue of Liberty ever greeted our arrival in this country...we did not, in fact, come to the United States at all. The United States came to us.”
We will 'fight to the death' to save the Amazon rainforest https://t.co/Ld8UJVuV4P— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) February 23, 2020
At Daily Kos on this date in 2012—Super PACs got 25% of their cash from just five donors:
In the immortal words of California's Jesse "Big Daddy" Unruh, "Money is the mother's milk of politics." This year, billionaire donors have turned it into cream. Just five of the ultra-wealthy have contributed a fourth of all the money received by Super PACs that are having a powerful impact on the elections.
Individuals are limited to $2500 direct contributions to a candidate's campaign. But there is no limit on contributions to Super PACS. These aren't supposed to coordinate with the campaigns, but that is a joke.
Monday through Friday you can catch the Kagro in the Morning Show 9 AM ET by dropping in here, or you can download the Stitcher app (found in the app stores or at Stitcher.com), and find a live stream there, by searching for "Netroots Radio.”LINK TO DAILY KOS STORE
Suppose you’re talking to someone who says, sure, they hate Trump personally (the tweets, the rallies, etc.) but they like his policies. So they’re going to vote for Trump unless someone can convince them that his policies are bad or that Democratic policies are better. Let’s think about this. What are Trump’s major policies?
- Cutting taxes.
- Installing conservative judges.
- Getting rid of Obamacare and replacing it with something else.
- A border wall and, more generally, tough restrictions on immigration.
- Tariffs on countries that are taking advantage of us.
- Cutting regulations in ways that are friendly to big business.
- More money for the military.
- Strong support for Israel.
- Opposition to gun control, abortion, and restrictions on religious practice.
It’s worth noting that almost all of these are just bog standard Republican policies. The two exceptions are the border wall and the tariffs. However, the wall is popular among the Republican base and the tariffs, judging from how they’ve been received, were always opposed more in word than deed.
Bottom line: if you’ve already decided that (a) Trump’s bluster isn’t enough to turn you off and (b) his “corruption” is mostly just a bunch of bogus partisan hysterics from Democrats, what is there for an ordinary Republican voter to dislike?
And neither am I.
The post Steve is Not in the Fucking Mood for Your Post Nevada Hot Takes appeared first on Balloon Juice.
I’ve been keeping a naturalist diary. I go out with the cats almost every day, and now I know their likely actions well enough that, along with the leashes attached to their harnesses, I can fairly easily catch them if they decide to do something foolish or get to somewhere I can’t.
My yard is not extraordinarily large, but it sits on top of a little hill and has at least three microclimate zones. I’ve got some flowerbeds, but a lot of native plants growing where they care to. I also distributed half a pound of wildflower seed and additional native grass seed last fall. The geology is interesting – Santa Fe formation is the composite of a changing lake that was here when the Jemez volcano stopped up the Rio Grande.
So there’s lots to see, and being out with the cats gives me time to look. I come in and sit down at my computer and write up what I’ve seen in the yard.
I knew that a bobcat has come to the yard – I saw it one delightful day – but I didn’t realize how frequently. The snow has been good for tracks, and today there were some in the soil. Keeping the diary helped me to realize how often it comes. I think it comes to the yard about twice or three times a week, mostly at night. Here are a couple of the better tracks. The one in the red soil is on a slope, and the soft soil gave way to the cat’s weight.Cat footprint in brown soil with three toes and pad clearly visible, another indentation next to it that is probably another footprint, but not clear. Cat footprint in soft red soil. Two toes visible. Another probable footprint in back of the deeper one.
I don’t know about you, but I am really tired of hashing out the Nevada primary. Are you writing, painting, doing crafts, fixing up your house? No-politics open thread!
Snarky Puppy - What About Me
From the live DVD "We Like It Here"
Recorded and filmed live (free of overdubs) from October 7-10 at Kytopia Studios in Utrecht, the Netherlands, for GroundUP Music. For more information and upcoming tour dates, please visit http://groundup.ropeadope.com or http://www.snarkypuppy.com.
Written, arranged, and produced by Michael League.
Michael League - bass
Shaun Martin - keyboards
Bill Laurance - Fender Rhodes
Cory Henry - keyboards
Justin Stanton - trumpet
Mark Lettieri - guitar
Bob Lanzetti - guitar (solo)
Chris McQueen - guitar
Nate Werth - percussion
Larnell Lewis - drums (solo)
Mike Maher - trumpet
Chris Bullock - sax
Bob Reynolds - sax
Jay Jennings - trumpet
Engineered by Eric Hartman, Roy Van Rosendaal, Mike Harrison, & Colin Benders.
Filmed by Andy LaViolette, Brad Holt, Emily Schwarting, Joseph Lafond, and Christi LaViolette.
Mixed by Eric Hartman in Dallas, Texas.
Mastered by Scott Hull at Masterdisk New York, NY.