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genxlib

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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Florida
Member since: Thu Aug 16, 2012, 05:52 PM
Number of posts: 5,002

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So I have a question about Campaign Finance Laws

So this article got me to thinking

https://www.salon.com/2020/12/04/rncs-highest-paid-vendor-of-the-2020-election-a-mystery-company-formed-nine-months-ago/

In a nutshell, large outlays to a sketchy company that has no track record or accountability.

Of course the implication here is that this is done to hide the ultimate destination of where the money is going. The mind immediate leaps to the question of whether the actual investment was spent on campaign elements like ads or whether it ended up in somebody's pocket.

But I am asking myself couldn't the inverse also be true. What if a company like this was actually run by a rich scumbag (say Rebekka Mercer) who wanted to outlay more money than legally allowed directly helping a campaign. Couldn't she set up a company like this, absorb some amount of actual campaign cash and then use it as a smoke screen to spend much more than that. Do we have any way of knowing that an outfit like this didn't actually spend $100 million compared to the $42 million they took in?

The former is a grift against a campaigns donors which ultimately only hurts the campaign itself. The latter would be a circumvention of federal law and would hurt all of us.

I am grateful for one thing in this mess

Thank goodness the margin is fairly solid. If this were like 2000 when it all came down to a few hundred votes, I don't think we would survive it.

If we had the 2000 totals in the 2020 environment, it would have been ugly beyond belief. I lived through that shit 20 years ago and this would have been x10.

A plan for the Georgia Senate ground game

Let's flood the state with millions of college kids.

All of them have at least 3-4 weeks off leading up to the election.

Many of them have been cooped up at home or in dorms all semester.

Many of them are actively engaged and motivated.

They are the safest cohort in the COVID environment

They shouldn't be going to visit their grandparents during that time anyway.

We will have more money than we know what to do with so lets leverage a few thousand paid staff into 10's of thousands of adult volunteers bolstered by an army of college kids.

What Trump is doing is incredibly dangerous

We knew all along that he planned to declare victory even when it was not valid. We just hoped that we had a large enough lead that he would be obviously pissing in the wind.

But here we are with a few states representing the margin of victory and he has made the outrageous claims that he is the winner and that the vote counting is illegitimate.

It isn't about the validity of his argument or the chance of his success (although we would be foolish to discount what the courts might be willing to do for him)

This is incredibly dangerous because we have two sets of people ready to throw down at the drop of a hat. Either way it goes, there will be a danger of violence. If it goes against him, his followers will be ready to declare revolution because they will have been told that he is the righteous winner. If he shows even a whisper of success, the BLM and friends crowd will be in the street also overflowing with righteous anger. Worse case scenario, both are out and clashing with each other.

Part of me even believes he wants it this way to set the backdrop for a power move.

It looks like we have won this thing but I think it is going to get ugly before it gets fully resolved.

I am shocked by this

https://www.salon.com/2020/10/20/trumps-business-appears-to-have-cut-matt-gaetz-a-rnc-hotel-discount-that-went-unreported-to-the-fec/

The campaign to re-elect Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., a reliable ally of President Donald Trump, appears to have received a deep discount on lodging at Trump International Hotel in Washington during the Republican National Convention in August, federal records show. Such a discount would violate federal election law barring corporations from contributing directly to campaigns, according to campaign finance experts.

Recent Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings show the Gaetz campaign made four separate payments, ranging from $216.20 to $261.47, for lodging at Trump's hotel on Aug. 27, the last of four nights of the convention when Trump gave his acceptance speech from the White House lawn.

On that evening, the price for rooms for one adult through Hotels.com began at $795 and ran as high as $2,070, The Daily Beast reported. On the three convention dates prior to Trump's keynote address, the hotel priced its cheapest room at $695 a night. (Rates for rooms this week range from $695 to $895.)

It appears the hotel cut the Gaetz campaign a discount far below market rates. Even if the campaign had booked the cheapest room available, it appears to have paid about one-third of the market rate, saving anywhere between $470 and $530. Such a discount would represent an in-kind donation to the Gaets campaign, courtesy of Trump Old Post Office LLC. (The FEC treats any item of value as money.)


Don't get me wrong, I certainly believe that Gaetz and Trump are doing something illegal.

I am just shocked that Trump would give a discount to ANYBODY for ANYTHING. I would be more likely to believe that he charged more since it was suckers (ie donors) paying for it.

Meanwhile, the evil continues in the background

This just pisses me off

https://news.yahoo.com/u-sues-yale-university-over-222728025.html

The U.S. Department of Justice sued Yale University on Thursday, accusing the Ivy League school of illegally discriminating against Asian and white applicants in undergraduate admissions.

The lawsuit escalates the Trump administration's push against affirmative action in admissions to elite universities, after it publicly supported a lawsuit by Asian-American students accusing Harvard University of discriminating against them.

...

Applicants must be "judged by their character, talents, and achievements and not the color of their skin," said Eric Dreiband, an assistant attorney general for civil rights. "To do otherwise is to permit our institutions to foster stereotypes, bitterness, and division."


So our Justice Department is using the Civil Rights Division to sue a private university under the Civil Rights Act to disallow diversity admissions.

That is just evil. And I am a white guy who just had a white daughter go through an college admissions.


Let's game this out

Assuming for the moment he actually does go back to the White House today...one of three things will happen.

Possibility #1 - he actually gets better. So be it. This was always going to be the statistical probability. Even old and unhealthy people have a good chance of survival. Then we can go on and talk about all of his other failings including the several hundred thousand that were not so lucky.

Possibility #2 - He takes a turn for the worse and needs to go back. The progress of this disease is not always linear so it is a definite possibility. The optics of this would be even worse than before.

Possibility #3 - He takes a turn for the worse and needs to go back but refuses to out of stupidity and concern for optics. This would put him at higher risk than necessary and could end up making him worse.

#1 has always been a probability. But he has increased the chances for #2 or #3 by being a terrible patient with awful motivations for everything he does.



The inverse relationship of the health of Trump and our Nation

From a purely social science perspective, I see a dichotomy unfolding.

If Trump is asymptomatic or has a mild case, it will reinforce the message that Covid is nothing to worry about and the Country will accelerate into a disastrous fall that is primed for a widespread outbreak and more death.

If Trump has a bad case or succumbs, it might be a reality check that forces his minions to take this shit seriously and could really bend the curve towards fewer cases and deaths nationwide.

No matter how I look at it, I see this inverse relationship. The better he does, the worse we do.

The GOP narrative on the Senate and Supreme Court is bullshit

Of course we know it is hypocritical and power mad. That goes without saying.

But even the stated excuses are BS. I won't repost it here but the turtle claims the right to fill the seat because the American public voted for the Senate Republicans in 2016 and 2018.

So here are the actual vote totals from the last two Senate elections

2016 - Democratic Candidates 51,653,808
Republican Candidates 41,324,322

2018 - Democratic Candidates 46,712,691
Republican Candidates 39,333,695

It is the on-going effect of small states getting disproportionate representation in the Senate. Even when we supposedly "lose", we really represent a great deal more Americans than the Republicans do. This is the travesty of American politics and I think it is vastly underappreciated. I have described these things to people before and they look at me like I am speaking Greek.

The counter narrative needs to be that the MINORITY party fronted by the 3 million vote loser backed by a Senate representing 10+million fewer Americans is trying to change the landscape of American politics for a generation. Couple this with an honest assessment of all the popular policies that are at risk and I think we can ratchet up the public response and outrage.

I don't think it will work because I think they will accept the electoral price to get this seat. But damn it, people need to be angry about this.

Dan Le Batard: With football's return, we can't forget past 4 years of NFL's cowardice

Great article from Dan LeBetard. He can be a goofball on his sports talk show but he can be very well spoken when the topics turn to serious subjects. He has gotten in trouble with ESPN a number of times for being too political

https://www.miamiherald.com/sports/spt-columns-blogs/dan-le-batard/article245683045.html#storylink=mainstage_lead

...

As the excitement and enthusiasm for football finally returns, now we’re supposed to just forget about the past four years of historic cowardice from the power in this sport and resume our cheering because the NFL painted some new slogans in the end zones that make the big, bold, brazen statement that racism is bad? The Miami Dolphins clearly haven’t forgotten. Via a slick video released Thursday, one punctuated by their Black coach, they announced their disgust and distrust with the league’s owners — and that they’d be staying in the locker room during the anthem Sunday — because they are tired of superficial symbols and gestures, and they demand real and substantive action against racism. They did this because they know how good the owners are at hiding behind their pillars of money in shadowy silence, rarely pressed to answer any difficult questions about how they can at once support their players with sanitized statements and support their president with unsanitary dollars.

When Kaepernick kneeled, we all saw where and how the NFL stood, and that can’t be unseen. It echoes and haunts four years later, the unprecedented way Kaepernick suffered the strangest of career-ending knee injuries. No amount of jellyfish flip-flopping from the league changes the following: Kaepernick is back in Madden, raising a Black fist, no less, but him being a part of “EAsportsit’sinthegame” isn’t the same as being in the actual game-game, no matter how realistic we can make the virtual.

The NFL’s owners not only refused to be on Kaepernick’s side regarding protests but exercised an obvious institutional pressure upon him and his peers ... choosing en masse, really, to kneel before Trump instead. These owners, with all their power and F-you money, either didn’t have the stomach for any kind of public fight or chose the wrong side, and they did so for almost four damn years, while Trump was at the height of his powers but they were also at the height of theirs. That the NFL has totally about-faced on this is not an act of nobility; it is the spineless swaying blown in by the day’s wind because of all the unrest in their huddles, in their banks, in their streets. Even as pińata Roger Goodell goes on an apology tour on their behalf, Kaepernick remains unemployed. The Dolphins are wondering: How can these owners be trusted to exert their power over anything in America when they can’t even get Kaepernick a job in their own sport?

...


Too many great paragraphs to quote. Worth a read in full
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