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lostnfound

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Member since: Sat Sep 6, 2003, 03:28 AM
Number of posts: 11,605

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Schools as armed camps. Fing Chuck Todds picture painting..

Oh he is SO good at spinning conversations rightward. That’s the solution he’s talking about. The “solution is going to look like more guns, armed guards and metal detectors”? Oh, he will say that isn’t HIS opinion, he was just expressing the views of republicans that might want to actually do something. Parents aren’t going to want armed camps, he admits. But he’s shifting the ground. Now he’s asking “what’s realistic when it comes to this issue?”

1. “Schools as armed camps” is a FAILURE.
2. It does NOTHING to stop guns at concerts, soccer games, movie theatres.

“If we had a magical way to search social media...” another f’ing straw man, Chuck. COMPANIES DO BACKGROUND CHECKS THAT INCLUDE SOCIAL MEDIA ALL THE TIME. You can’t get a JOB without one. That doesn’t require MAGIC, Chuck. It requires the will to do it.

But we had an assault weapons ban from 1994 to 2004, which the Democrats gave us, until the Republicans took it away. That’s not MAGIC either.

But hey, don’t let the facts interfere with your agenda, which is to chronically paint the democrats as weak or ineffective or idealistic, and to paint Washington as a bipartisan gridlock caused by both parties.

One edit: his “I’m obsessed segment” afterward was somewhat better but I am tired of his constant false equivalence and his lack of fairness in recognizing the strengths of Democrats.

My family, Our family

In 15 and 20 years, I hope to have my brother visit me at a house on a lake, sit on my porch when we are old, play cribbage or cards, and remember our parents and growing up together in the 60s. I want my son to still have an uncle then, and my future grandkids to have a GREAT-uncle, one who can tell them about resourcefulness and self-sufficiency and working hard and being honest. He has many good traits.

If that happens, we will occasionally look back and remember last week, when his heart stopped twice in the same day, the second time while I sat beside him. That was the week that the nurses and doctors rescued him and tormented him and encouraged him and put an expensive little device in his chest, all paid for by Obamacare.

We don’t know why this crisis befell him. He eats healthy, exercises daily, and has never smoked. His heart got big and ineffective, or sparks flew where they shouldn’t, or he caught a virus, and in a span of just a few months he went from daily 5 mile walks and chopping down trees, to two horrible days on a ventilator.

This week, he is home — walking, talking, working on his computer— on his road to a full recovery. His focus is on getting better, not on paying a flood of unexpected and indecipherable medical bills. What might have cost $250;000 will instead total only $600. There was PLENTY of fear last week, but no extra layers of fear consisting of “how will this get paid for?” Or “how deep in debt will we go?”

Politics don’t enter into love for a family member facing a health crisis. We united in pulling for him, taking turns at his side. Our circumstances are different. One of us gladly pays a couple thousand dollars a year in extra Medicare taxes to support Obamacare; one of us pays none of that, but pays a lot for their own company-sponsored plan; and one of us benefits from Obamacare. We are children of the same parents, and it is a no-brainer that we look out for each other now. Among other reasons: the important and perhaps most meaningful last gift that I can give to my long-dead parents is to be there for their son or daughter when they cannot be. It is a privilege.

We will argue about politics on that porch in twenty years, and I will be grateful. A grand-nephew yet to be born might get taught the game of cribbage — and hear stories about my own father — by a great uncle, who will enrich that child’s life in subtle ways that will only be appreciated decades later. We never know where our later lives will lead.

We are all family. The doctors, the nurses, the researchers, the patients — not only now, but the ones that came before us — contributed to the evolution of life-saving technologies and to the bank of knowledge on which modern medicine depends, and in most cases they did it for the sake of humanity, not just for the sake of a paycheck. We share in that human legacy, regardless of who has since purchased the patents or cornered a market. We all need that human legacy.

Oh, to all of my brothers and sisters in the great extended human family, I hope your lives are treasured, long and healthy. I hope you all grasp that life and health are bigger than theoretical ideologies. We owe it to ourselves, to each other and to our long-dead ancestors to fight to defend the compassionate spaces in our public institutions, to not fail in preserving and nourishing our basic humanity.

Jennifer Palmieri, please refine your message.

Chuck Todd, Mr. false equivalence, threw a question at you related to the fact that Republicans wanted Bill Clinton to be impeached at one point during his presidency... you replied saying that “yeah, but Bill Clinton wasn’t a threat to the democracy”. That part was a good, quick, sharp and true answer.

BUT... you then launched into the Democrats need to do this, need to do that, and democrats need to be a check on the presidency...I do not think that is the correct approach.

Rather -
yeah, but Bill Clinton wasn’t a threat to the democracy...
and *not only democrats recognize the threat* — scores of leading right wing thinkers are saying it too — even very conservative thinkers like David Frum and Max Boot and Bill Kristol are warning the country that he is unfit and a threat to democracy...

It’s not only Trump though — the entire GOP Congress is looking the other way — here’s evidence of serious crimes including money laundering and possible treason...but the GOP is willing to enable trump, to be sycophants, tearing down the reputations of people like Mueller.

If there’s any patriotism left on the other side, then they will do the hard thing and the right thing. Republicans can’t leave it up to the other party to clean up this mess.

Fascinating

Several thoughts.
God damn WSJ... now we always have to second guess the reason for an article and the truth of it.

in a world where Trump admires Xi, what protection does the Uighur filmmaker have in Virginia?

Choice of words...where the Israeli government has created a system of checkpoints and biometric surveillance to keep tabs on Palestinians.”Keep tabs on” is a friendly thing you do with your young children. “Monitor” is what you do for the sake of security or danger. What a brilliant editor to use such diction.

Fascinating.

Pass-Thru Income explanation

Those as such a useful explanation of types of pass-thru income. By the way, it mentions that Georgia Pacific — owned by the Koch Brothers —is a rare example of a very large business that operates as a pass-through entity.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/12/20/us/politics/small-business-tax-cut-pass-throughs.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=b-lede-package-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Worse than the low rates for capital gains, how about 0% tax for earnings on dynasties?

This is fascinating. We all have heard about the estate tax exemption increasing to $11 Million per person. But according to Mother Jones, it also includes a step up in basis.

A WHOLE LOT OF INCOME FOR WEALTHY PEOPLE WILL NEVER BE TAXED.
So if you have SO much money that you can buy millions in Apple stock (or whatever) and keep it until the next generation inherits it, they are never going to have to pay tax on that gain either. Even when they sell it, never any tax on the gain that occurred before your death.

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2017/12/six-things-you-might-not-know-about-the-republican-tax-bill/
Estate Tax

The estate tax exemption was raised to $11 million per person or $22 million per couple. You probably knew that. But there’s more.

First, that exemption amount is now indexed to inflation. When it comes to things like the minimum wage, Republicans flatly refuse to consider inflation indexing. But for millionaires and their heirs? Why of course we have to index.

Second, the bill provides a truly massive and inexplicable gift to heirs of the rich. Suppose you inherit some Apple stock that’s increased in value from $1 million to $30 million. Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign tax plan would have exempted the first $22 million, but then you’d have to pay capital gains taxes on the remaining $8 million. In other words, you had to pay taxes on something. Not anymore, though. Not only has the estate tax been eliminated for estates under $22 million, but the Republican bill keeps the current “step-up” law, which means assets are automatically revalued upon death and no capital gains taxes are due. If dad sells off his holdings himself, he has to pay capital gains on the profit. But if he dies and you sell it, you’re free and clear. Even the biggest proponents of killing the estate tax never imagined a gift this brazen.

So who wanted this, anyway? You don’t have to ask, do you? This has been an obsession of the ultra-wealthy for decades. They have long loathed the fact that they can’t control their fortunes even in death, and they loathe it even more that the federal government will get a cut of their hard-earned riches. With this tax bill, they have almost reached their goal of eliminating not just the estate tax, but taxes of any kind on their accumulated wealth.

Did Chris van Hollen just say that 48% of stock owned by foreign investors? So $ goes abroad?

On Laurence O’Donnell. So middle class loses out big time, and wealthy investors abroad get the benefit?

What did wealthy Democratic donors feel about Franken?

Who has been annoyed at Franken?
Telecoms?
November 8th
Franken Calls for Big Tech Algorithms to Be More Transparent

Franken “delivered a speech to the group in which he compared the power of the big tech platforms to that of internet-service providers, or ISP’s, to "pick and choose which content reaches consumers and which doesn’t." Franken supported a rule change designed to deny the ISP’s such control. "Facebook, Google and Amazon, like ISP’s, should be neutral in their treatment of the flow of lawful information and commerce on their platforms," he said.”
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-08/franken-calls-for-big-tech-algorithms-to-be-more-transparent

Billionaires?
Al Franken Drops A Truth Bomb And Calls The GOP Health Care Bill A Tax Cut For Billionaires
By Jason Easley on Thu, Jun 22nd, 2017 at 3:51 pm
Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) is calling the Republican health care bill what it really is. Franken described the bill as a thinly disguised tax cut for billionaires.
http://www.politicususa.com/2017/06/22/al-franken-republicans-wont-health-care-bill-thinly-disguised-tax-cut-billionaires.html

Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Franken Renews Push for Wealthiest Americans to Pay their Fair Share in Taxes
Today, U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) joined a group of his colleagues in reintroducing key tax fairness legislation—commonly known as the "Buffett Rule"—to require that America's top earners pay their fair share of taxes just like middle-class Minnesotans.

The Paying a Fair Share Act would ensure that millionaires and billionaires pay at least a 30 percent effective federal tax rate, which means they can't pay a lower rate than what middle-class Minnesotans pay. The legislation, often called the "Buffett Rule," was put forth after billionaire investor Warren Buffett realized that he paid a lower tax rate than his secretary.

Banks?
Franken Fights Back against Big Banks & Corporate Special Interests That Want to Limit Consumer Justice

Says Congressional Attempt to Roll Back CFPB Arbitration Rule is Great News for Wall Street Billionaires, Bad News for Minnesota Families and the American Consumer

Climate deniers?
Al Franken’s devastating strategy for taking on Trump’s team of climate science deniers
Knowledge of climate science plus mastery of storytelling is a rare combination.
https://thinkprogress.org/al-franken-strategy-for-trump-climate-deniers-fd9a6502f9cb/

Al’s “mastery of storytelling” makes him a great communicator on a lot of issues, by the way.

So, who has a lot of influence over leaders of our own party? Even more than voters..
One such person has done great things for Democratic causes, donating $1 M to Hillary’s campaign, and $100,000 to Kamala Harris (who I think is a great addition even though I’m disappointed with her over the Franken issue), clearly wants democrats to win but clearly does not appreciate those who talk about the billionaires. I was watching the interview when he said it, and was intrigued by how much bitterness or anger he displayed toward statements of economic class in the Democratic Party.
On November 7, 2017 Cloobeck appeared on MSNBC and said he told Democratic leaders he would "cut your money off" if they criticize the wealthy, saying: "I’ve talked to Schumer, I’ve talked to [Dem. Senator Ron] Wyden [Oregon], I’ve talked to [House minority leader] Pelosi and I’ve said if you use the term 'billionaire' again, I’m done. We should be a party of business".
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Cloobeck

Cloobeck wants to run for governor of Nevada. Great, I hope he succeeds. But if you want to look for why some Dems were willing to throw Al under the bus (while justifying it on the basis of larger strategic objectives or standing up for some ill-considered zero tolerance policy), don’t overlook the influence of a man who can afford to throw $1M at a presidential campaign. I have a feeling there might be a connection. He doesn’t have to whisper in the ears of every one of them, just one or two. Letting Al go might have been a popular move (with Cloobeck or other wealthy donors). How painful it is for congress members to raise campaign funds every day, versus getting the promise of major funds from one very wealthy and very motivated donor.

The guy seems sincere in his centrist patriotic fervor, but the outsized influence of a man like him can make certain words verboten from our elected leaders. (And yes, I know Warren also uses these words all the time. So what?)

How do we reprogram a cult with 30% in its spell, which billionaire media machines reinforce daily?

They are a cult, and the cultmakers’ organizational power is growing. Its biggest strength has been in the brainwashing mechanisms that have been set up to immerse people in right wing ideology, and program them like robots to interpret everything in the same ways. Breitbart on Sirius? Oh, yeah, that’s what we need. Pre-packaged and filtered content after net neutrality rules are reversed? Great. Expansion of Sinclair into more markets? Check. Witch hunts helpful in taking down or intimidating outspoken countervailing voices? Got them too.

This cult is led not by Jim Jones or even by Trump, but by voices coming over Fox News and Breitbart. Well funded voices, and their funding may become self sustaining if the Koch Brothers and Mercers and Adelsons get their wish to leave their massive estates tax free in the hands of ideological organizations. The mechanisms to defend the cult have been perfected, because cult members have been trained to reject all other sources of information, particularly major news media of NY Times and Washington Post.

It would be hard to overestimate the danger the country and its democracy is in. Authoritarianism and extremist ideologies are solidifying their position every day. The Resistance needs brave, loud voices in Congress and the Senate who can break through the spell. The Resistance needs methods to drive “paradigm shifts” en masse. The Resistance needs tools to stop the automatic funneling of our resources through the very channels that are holding us captive (I.e., cable bills that put FOX News on every TV in the country, for example; or oil and gas lobbyists that twist legislation and legislators to suit their needs).

Does anyone know how to reprogram a cult?

This whole healthcare fiasco very telling: Discussion CAN'T focus on excess profits driving cost

The country spends almost DOUBLE per capita what other countries spend.
💰We have $10,000 injectable opioid antidotes that used to cost $65.
💰We have $70,000 per year MS drugs that cost $7,000 in the U.K.
💰We have kickbacks to doctors, who themselves are in deep debt due to unfunded universities and medical schools.
💰We have trumped-up dieseases wherein the limits for saying you have high blood pressure or high cholesterol were artificially lowered due to lobbying from drug companies that simply wanted to expand their market.
💰We have direct-to-consumer drug advertising every 5 minutes on TV.
💰We have very well-paid executives, like the United Healthcare CEO who received annual compensation between $30 M and $100 M per year -- whose MAIN job is to increase profits, increase revenue, and increase value back to shareholders.
💰We have at least $100 Billion dollars in dividends going back to stockholders in the for-profit healthcare industry.

Even on MSNBC, the debate isn't -- and CAN'T be -- seriously focused on why medical costs are so high, because, well, there is direct-to-consumer drug advertising every 5 minutes .

How much of the $4.5 trillion health care cost in the US is turning into profit for the top 1%? How much of it is unnecessary treatment driven by a desire to increase revenues to for-profit companies?
The Powell memo has been so successful that the only argument allowed is "some people want free stuff and they want ME to pay for it through higher taxes". do they teach the
Powell memo in school now? Ha. I doubt it -- and if they did, any person in the state of Florida has the legal right to challenge it, even non-parents.
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