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Shemp Howard

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Member since: Mon Sep 9, 2013, 01:10 AM
Number of posts: 867

About Me

I'm sticking to the union. That about sums it up.

Journal Archives

Two Gaza Rockets Fired at Tel Aviv, One Intercepted

Source: Haaretz

The Israeli army said at least two rockets were fired at Israel on Thursday night, causing rocket alerts to blare throughout central Israel.

According to the Israeli military, the Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted one of the rockets, while the other is likely to have landed in an open area.

Read more: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/rocket-alerts-blare-in-tel-aviv-1.7022326

Broward Sheriff Scott Israel tells staff he's being suspended over Parkland response

Source: Miami Herald

It appears that Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel is preparing to pack up his office.

The two-term sheriff, the object of fierce criticism over BSO’s handling of the Parkland massacre, told his top commanders that he will be removed from office by Gov. Ron DeSantis, sources have told the Miami Herald.


Read more: https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/broward/article224080655.html



Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis is evidently going to remove Democrat Sheriff Scott Israel. Does Israel deserve this, or is he just being made the fall guy?

This is why sexual harassment will never end.

If he's our guy (D or R), he must be innocent. Facts don't matter. The accuser must be crazy/a liar/part of a conspiracy.

Examples: Bill Clinton, Donald Trump, Brett Kavanaugh.

There are some exceptions. When the evidence is overwhelming - like with Harvey Weinstein - society will condemn the predator. Otherwise, it's "if he's our guy, he must be innocent".

And that's what the predator counts on.

My take on the latest Hillary "scandal".

According to a recent New York Times article (link below), back in 2008 a Hillary Clinton employee by the name of Burns Strider sexually harassed a female staffer. This was reported to Ms. Clinton. Hillary decided not to fire Strider. Instead she decided to punish Strider. But Hillary did not fire him. The female employee was reassigned.

What did Hillary do right?

1. She believed the accuser.
2. She punished the offender.

What did Hillary do wrong?

1. She reassigned the accuser, not the offender. The accuser had to take a new position.
2. The offender was not fired. He stayed in his position.

As I see it, it's a wash. Those who defend Hillary are wrong. She did NOT stand up for the victim. But those who attack Hillary are also wrong. She did NOT ignore the story. She took action.

Here's the article:

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/01/26/us/politics/hillary-clinton-chose-to-shield-a-top-adviser-accused-of-harassment-in-2008.html?referer=https://newrepublic.com/minutes/146790/hillary-clinton-reportedly-protected-alleged-sexual-harasser-2008-campaign



Al's punishment should fit the crime.

For the sake of argument, let's assume that everything Al Franken is accused of is true. The one-time groping (captured in a picture), the kissing, the squeezing.

Notice that this list of Al's "crimes" does not include murder, rape, attempted rape, kidnapping, treason, bribery, felony theft, or lying under oath. Al is accused of bad behavior to be sure, but nothing serious.

Al apologized. He sincerely apologized. He apologized for things he wasn't sure he even did. That is the mark of a man, a man trying to do the right thing.

So let the punishment fit the crime. And that would be probation. A letter of admonishment in your file. Not the loss of your livelihood. Not the loss of your job.

There is NO REASON why Franken should resign. At most, the Senate should pass a resolution of disapproval. Why even Democrat senators are calling for Al's head, that is beyond me. Is a misdemeanor now a capital offense?

I believe Al Franken's accusers...

...and I think that he should NOT resign.

As to my first statement, I believe Al Franken's accusers because:

1. That is my default position in cases like this. False accusations can cause great harm. I acknowledge that. Nevertheless, my default position is to believe the accuser.
2. The so-called groping picture. It is what it is. A 50+ year old man behaving very inappropriately.
3. There are just too many women coming forward, anonymous or not.

As to my second statement, I believe Al Franken should NOT resign because:

1. Franken's transgressions (if true) are relatively minor. Yes, they are upsetting. And they should not be tolerated. But we are not talking rape, attempted rape, gross indecency, theft of public funds, bribery, or anything like that. Any of those charges would warrant a resignation, or an expulsion. Patting someone's butt is wrong, but it is not close to that level.
2. Franken quickly apologized for any wrong he might of done. His apology seemed genuine, very genuine.
3. A resignation invalidates an election. Such a thing should happen in only the most extreme of cases.

So here's my suggestion:

The Senate should pass a resolution of reprimand, chastising Franken for certain past behavior. Don't get it all tied up with Moore, Trump, etc. Those are truly separate issues. Just pass a resolution of reprimand. Franken is a stand-up guy. I'd bet he'd even vote for that resolution. Then let's all move on.

(Not that anyone noticed, but I haven't posted for a long time. I'm still in shock from the 2016 election. But this over-kill directed at Franken has me really upset. The punishment should fit the crime. Accept a reprimand Al; don't resign!)









Why I am taking a break from DU.

I have posted parts of this post elsewhere. I've now decided to put it all together in one place. Apologies to those who have seen it elsewhere.

One reason I joined DU is that it's a progressive site. The word "progressive" means many things to me. One thing it means, to me, is kindness. Not weakness, but kindness; trying to see the best in people.

This includes the way I see most people who voted for Trump. There are certainly evil people who voted for Trump. I have no sympathy for those people.

But there are also many stupid people who voted for Trump. It is simply wrong, morally, to treat all these stupid people as if they were evil.

As an example, good friend of mine went from working for Hillary in the 2008 primaries to voting for Trump in 2016. Why the change? He lost his job. I do not consider my friend evil. But perhaps he's stupid for falling for Trump's empty slogans.

Unfortunately, post after post here on DU treats all Trump voters as evil beings. No exceptions. They are all very horrible people who deserve to have very horrible things happen to them.

As a progressive, this pains me. Stupid does not equal evil in my book. It just doesn't. I would hope to help educate these stupid people. I do not wish that bad things would happen to them.

But as of now I seem to be in the minority here. So I think I need to take a little break. Perhaps when things settle down a bit, I'll be back.

Yes, I know that with less than 1000 posts, I'm not a key player here. I won't be missed. And yes, I won't let the door hit me on the way out.

Best wishes to you all. Stay strong, and stay vigilant. Going forward, DU will be part of what (hopefully) puts the brakes on Trump.

Regarding the Russian hacking, what is really going on here?

I've read the Washington Post article about the Russian hacking, and I'm still confused. As I see it, there are four possibilities. Which one is it?

1. Since the Post provided no real hard evidence, it's all just a guess and a rumor. No big deal unless more evidence is forthcoming.

2. The Russians really did hack the DNC. But they released only the emails that would hurt Hillary. If so, it's on the DNC for having terrible email security.

3. The Russians really did hack the DNC, and also the RNC. But they released only those (legitimate) emails that would hurt Hillary. If so, that's repulsive, but it doesn't quite rise to the level of demanding a do-over election.

4. The Russians fabricated DNC emails, and/or they hacked into the voting booths to ensure a Trump win. If so, President Obama needs to present evidence to the public, and to the Electors, and to the Supreme Court. And Obama needs to do this immediately! Don't waste a day.

If I had to bet, I'd bet on possibility #3.

An argument for the Electoral College

I've been active in unions for most of my adult life, so I'm going to make my argument using unions as an analogy.

Suppose there is a union work site that employs 20 carpenters, 10 plumbers, and 8 electricians. It's now contract time. Under a simple one person, one vote system, management only needs to make the carpenters happy.

Of course, that's not the way it works. Management must make the carpenters happy, and the plumbers happy, and the electricians happy. Management must offer something to each of the three unions.

The Electoral College system operates much the same way. And yes, it sometimes leads to very some unpleasant results. But it does make some sense.

The main problem with the EC, as I see it, is that it gives the smaller states too many EC votes. This can be remedied by giving each state an EC total based on its House of Representative membership only. Not likely that will happen, I know.
Posted by Shemp Howard | Thu Dec 1, 2016, 10:46 PM (6 replies)

Obama voters switching to Trump

I live in a dark blue region of a rust-belt state. In 2008 and 2012 many of my friends and acquaintances supported Obama. But I was surprised, and shocked, to hear how many of them went for Trump this time around. These people were the children and grandchildren of factory workers. Democratic party policies from FDR forward gave their families a comfortable middle-class lifestyle.

Bernie was the FDR in this election, IMHO. But Trump was the Robber Baron. So the choice between Hillary and Trump should have been easy, a Democrat vs. a Robber Baron.

So why did so many go for Trump? Trump appealed to the baser instincts of some of them, I'm sure. But here's what many said to me during our polite arguments: There are no good jobs around here anymore. Trump will bring them back. (Trump ran ads in my state to that effect. Hillary did not.)

All of this is just what I, one person, observed. And it certainly doesn't tell the whole story. But Michael Moore was right. Worried people will follow a Pied Piper. To negate this, the Democratic Party must bring back a focus on jobs, and emphasize that fact. Just putting position papers on some internet site will not be enough.

The Democratic Party used to be known for championing both social justice AND good middle class jobs. We need to be known for that again.
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