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Home country: USA
Current location: Southern California
Member since: Sun Mar 20, 2011, 11:05 AM
Number of posts: 27,130

Journal Archives

The Bernie Bros and sisters are coming to Republicans' rescue

By Dana Milbank (Washington Post)

President Trump is woefully unpopular, feuding with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and other Republicans. The GOP can’t manage to repeal Obamacare or do much of anything. Voters say they’d like Democrats to run Congress.

But here come the Bernie Bros and sisters to the Republicans’ rescue: They’re sowing division in the Democratic Party and attempting to enact a purge of the ideologically impure — just the sort of thing that made the Republican Party the ungovernable mess it is today.

Bernie Sanders’s advisers are promoting a “litmus test” under which Democrats who don’t swear to implement single-payer health care would be booted from the party in primaries. Sanders pollster Ben Tulchin penned an op-ed with a colleague under the headline “Universal health care is the new litmus test for Democrats.” Nina Turner, head of the Sanders group Our Revolution, told Politico this week that “there’s something wrong with” Democrats who won’t “unequivocally” embrace “Medicare-for-all.”
But to force Democrats to take some kind of single-payer purity oath would set back the cause. Democrats need to pick up 24 seats to take control of the House, yet there are only 23 Republicans in districts won by Clinton — and only eight of those were won by President Barack Obama in 2012. There are a dozen Democrats in districts Trump won. In such swing districts, it would be suicidal to pledge support for something Republicans will brand as socialism.


Dear potential alerter:

This WaPo opinion piece is not an attack on Democratic public figures or groups, it is a criticism of STRATEGY regarding how best to win back Congress and get to universal health coverage. Much more facts and reasoning are presented at the link, but I am limited to 4 paragraphs in the OP. If you think Dana Milbank is wrong, please present your case in a reply so that we can have a substantive discussion on this important issue.


Gunfire sparked blaze that destroyed 63 homes outside Yosemite

Source: LATimes.com

Fire investigators say gunfire caused a wildfire near Yosemite National Park that destroyed 131 structures, including 63 homes, last month.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Friday that a gun fired on public lands caused the wildfire that burned 127 square miles (331 square kilometers) on July 16.

The fire prompted evacuations in several areas, including the town of Mariposa.

Cal Fire is offering a $2,000 reward for information about the person responsible for starting the fire.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-yosemite-fire-20170805-story.html

Trump defends national security adviser H.R. McMaster amid calls for his firing

Source: CBS News

President Trump is standing up for his national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, calling him a "good man" amid calls for his ouster by conservatives.
"He has determined that, at this time, a different set of experiences is best-suited to carrying that work forward," a statement released by the White House said of Cohen-Watnick's release. "General McMaster is confident that Ezra will make many further significant contributions to national security in another position in the administration."

Last week, McMaster also removed Middle East director Derek Harvey from his position at the NSC due to a "difference in vision," according to a White House source. Harvey was also hired by Flynn, whose short-lived tenure as national security advisercame to an end in February. 
The attacks directed at McMaster came from conservative news sites and grew on social media. The hashtag #FireMcMaster has been tweeted more than 50,000 times since Wednesday, the Times reported, including by accounts linked to Russian cyber operations.

Read more: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/trump-defends-national-security-adviser-h-r-mcmaster-amid-calls-for-his-firing/

Posted this for that nugget in the last paragraph. Is this the first time Putin has unleashed the Russian bots to try to undermine a Trump decision?

A harbinger of things to come?

I guess it's "live by the bot, die by the bot"!

Border Patrol Sadistically Kills Teen By Making him Drink Meth - Waits half hour to call Medics.

While it is unclear whether Velazquez knew exactly what he was carrying, the officers had reason to be suspicious. In March, the agency issued a press release after a Juarez woman was caught attempting to smuggle 26 pounds of liquid methamphetamine through the border in bottles in El Paso.

Two minutes later, the officers appear to encourage Velazquez to drink more. He took two more swigs.

Baird and Perallon exchanged smiles.

In total, Velazquez swallowed four sips of a solution tests would later reveal to be more than a hundred times stronger than the typical dose of methamphetamine. According to Dr. Ben Nordstrom, chief clinical officer of the drug addiction treatment center Phoenix House, those drinks constituted a “truly massive overdose,” the biggest he had ever seen, but the effects would have been delayed as the drug was absorbed into his bloodstream.
At one point, his temperature reached 105 degrees and his heart was beating 220 times per minute.
Velazquez lost consciousness in the ambulance on the way to the Sharp Medical Center in nearby Chula Vista, where doctors tried and failed to resuscitate him. Velazquez was pronounced dead, at age 16, less than a half hour after his arrival.


"We haven't had a general in the US Army win a war...since 1945"

With exception of General Norman Schwarzkopf (1991 Gulf War), US generals haven't won a war since 1945. That is what Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson wanted to remind everyone about on Joy Reid's show this morning.

Joy was asking him about Trump's appointment of General Kelly to be White House Chief of Staff. He though Trump surrounding himself with "the current crop of generals" was "dangerous." He thinks it signals an abandonment of diplomacy. Wilkerson thought diplomacy was the only solution to the Korean crisis.

Our current crop of generals only know how to start wars. Winning them or avoiding them? Not so much.

It is HOT in Seattle! There's a heat advisory for the area.

I'm visiting from L.A. and didn't even bring shorts. But I did bring an unmbrella that went unused all week. The temperature gauge on my rental car read 86 today. Yes, it was really cool getting shots of the Space Needle without a cloud in the sky, but this heat is scary. Global warming seems like it's accelerating.

The Worst Thing That Happened to Donald Trump this Week

It was not Comey's testimony (although that was indeed bad for Trump--and Sessions). It was what Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller did::

Robert Mueller hired Michael Dreeben. Dreeben is, according to Lawfare, one of the top criminal appellate attorneys in the country. He has argued more than 100 cases before the Supreme Court. He will also be extremely powerful in advocating for the right to information from Trump and his associates, should Trump and/or his associates go to court to try to block subpoenas, depositions, or other actions by Mueller. The man writes extremely effective briefs--which is how cases are won. Mueller is assembling an All-Star team of legal experts. That also includes Andrew Weissmann:

"Weissmann was director of Justice's Enron Task Force, where he oversaw the prosecutions of Jeffrey Skilling, Ken Lay, and Andrew Fastow. While at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan, Weissmann helped prosecute high-ranking members of the Genovese, Colombo and Gambino crime families, and fought the infiltration of organized crime on Wall Street. Mueller is amassing the talent arsenal you'd build to bring criminal charges."

These are not the actions of a man who is looking at the investigation and seeing nothing. To argue the case for treason of high level officials, you only want the best. The best don't sign on to lose. When this unfolds it will be historic.

May's UK election gamble backfires as Tories lose majority

Source: ABCNews.com

British Prime Minister Theresa May's gamble in calling an early election backfired spectacularly, as her Conservative Party lost its majority in Parliament and pressure mounted on her Friday to resign.

The shock result throws British politics into chaos and could send Britain's negotiations to leave the European Union — due to start June 19 — into disarray. The pound lost more than 2 cents against the dollar.

With 636 of 650 seats in the House of Commons declared, the Conservatives had 310 to the Labour Party's 258. Even if the Conservatives won all the remaining seats, the party would fall short of the 326 needed for an outright majority. Before the election the Conservatives had 330 seats and Labour 229.
The results confounded those who said Labour's left-wing leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was electorally toxic. Written off by many pollsters, Labour surged in the final weeks of the campaign. It drew strong support from young people, who appeared to have turned out to vote in bigger-than-expected numbers.

Read more: http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/mays-uk-election-gamble-backfires-tories-lose-majority-47931750

May called the snap election in the hope of increasing her majority and strengthening Britain's hand in exit talks with the European Union. She clearly overplayed her hand...by holding Trump's.

WaPo: Trump's Paris speech needs a serious fact check

Unlike its predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris accord did not legally bind nations to emissions targets. The only thing keeping a nation in check was pressure from its international peers. Under the agreement, the United States could miss an emissions goal and face no penalty. It could reset that goal, too, with no formal consequence. It's unclear what other concessions the United States could gain from a renegotiation.
China cannot "do whatever they want" until then, as Trump said, at least if China wants to meet that voluntary 2030 target. It needs to begin acting now to control emissions — and in fact, is signaling to the world it is already doing so by announcing in January the cancellation of plans to build more than 100 coal-fired power plants.
The Paris deal "is more fair to the U.S. than previous agreements because it includes all the major economies of the world, not just the rich countries, so both developed countries and developing countries have skin in the game," Jody Freeman, a Harvard Law School professor and director of the school's Environmental Law and Policy Program, said. Trump's "portrayal is at odds with reality," she added. While it's true that current commitments are not enough to meet the two-degree goal, Trump's figures are off. As my Post colleague Chris Mooney writes, reporting on an analysis from an MIT researcher: "The current country level pledges under the Paris agreement would reduce the planet’s warming by the year 2100 down from 4.2 degrees Celsius (7.6 degrees Fahrenheit) to 3.3 degrees Celsius (5.9 degrees Fahrenheit), or nearly a full degree Celsius.
The Green Climate Fund contains $10.3 billion not $100 billion. And the U.S. share comes from the Treasury, not any pool or money set aside for anti-terrorism purposes.



Saw this on Facebook. Couldn't resist reporting.

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