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peggysue2

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Name: Peg
Gender: Female
Hometown: New Jersey
Home country: USA
Current location: Tennessee
Member since: Sat Feb 6, 2016, 07:31 PM
Number of posts: 1,195

Journal Archives

Color Me Suspicious but This is Disturbing

Three Days after the Hawaii false alarm of an impending missile strike, Japan sends out a false alarm of their own.

WTF?


https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/01/16/578283950/japan-also-sends-out-then-retracts-a-false-missile-warning

Did You Know: Anyone Opposing Chelsea Manning's Senate Bid Has An Old Straight White Man Fetish?

According to Glenn Greenwald this is absolutely the case because:

“ . . . Democrats [have] so quickly decided to back a white, straight male politician steeped in privilege, while devoting themselves to opposing a candidate who would make history by becoming the first trans woman ever elected to the U.S. Senate, in the process inspiring trans youth around the world and helping to erode the stigma that has made them so vulnerable to discrimination and violence?”

They’ve decided to do this presumably because they find Cardin’s centrist ideology and politics more appealing than Manning’s more radical politics, and believe that this trumps what could be the historic value of Manning’s candidacy. They’ve apparently decided to prioritize their own centrist ideology over the important gender, sexual orientation and trans equality progress that Manning’s victory would ensure.”

Greenwald also states that Cardin’s career has been unremarkable with few accomplishments. But far worse: he’s a . . . vile centrist!

Ben Cardin’s unremarkable career can be found in his official Senate bio here:

https://www.cardin.senate.gov/about

I find his advocacy for the Chesapeake Bay Project particularly irritating. I mean who needs clean water or National parks?

And here:

"He led the fight for the Patients' Bill of Rights and, because of his efforts, the law ensures that individuals in private health insurance plans have the right to choose their primary care provider, women have direct access to an ob/gyn, and patients with medical emergencies are guaranteed coverage for necessary ER visits."

Horrific!

But just take a gander where Cardin ranks according to Govtrack:

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members/benjamin_cardin/400064

The tracking graph is based on voting history and where in the leadership pack an individual falls. Curiously, Cardin is at the top of the leadership graph. Really! The grotesque nerve of the man wheedling his way to Ranking Member of the Foreign Relations Committee, he Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works or the Committee on Finance, yada, yada.

Then, unlike some Senators I could mention, he was a primary sponsor of 18 bills that were actually enacted, as in:

S.1221 Countering Russian Influence in Europe and Eurasia Act of 2017
S.284 Global Magnitsky Human Rights Acountability Act
S.599 Improving Access to Emergency Psychiatric Care

A glance at the graph indicates that Cardin’s overall voting history puts him in the same category as Leahy, Wyden and Booker. Should we primary these senators as well? How about Kaine, Coons or Duckworth because these members are to the right of Cardin?

His voting record has afforded him a 100% by the Human Rights Campaign, 100% by the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and 92% by the League of Conservation Voters.

He must be stopped!!

This is why I rarely pull up Greenwald’s columns anymore.

Btw, when I mused about who exactly was backing/advocating Ms Manning’s primary bid?

I think I found my answer.


https://theintercept.com/2018/01/15/centrist-dems-launch-smear-campaign-against-young-trans-woman-all-to-keep-an-old-straight-white-man-in-power/

The Strange Battle of the Pussyhats

Anyone who attended last year’s Women’s March in DC or the satellite marches across the country and world, recall the endless ocean of pink hats. An awesome sight. I was at the March 2017 protest in DC and it was . . . emotional, thrilling.

However, the controversy over the Pussyhat Project designed and promoted by Krista Suh and Jayna Zweiman started well before the 2017 March. Some feminists believed the whole idea was vulgar, symbolizing women by a single body part, their genitalia. Others believed that women were taking back the word 'pussy' after the Trumpster had demeaned its meaning in the crassest sense. Grab ‘em by the pussy became a rallying cry. Millions of women donned the pink-eared caps as a symbol of unity on women’s issues and human rights.

That did not stop the controversy.

The current line of attack is based on accusations of TERF, Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminism. Because, as I’ve read online recently, “not all women have a vagina and not everyone who has a vagina is a woman. Or so the argument goes.

I don’t buy into this line of thinking because this was a Women’s March, by and for women but a March that was open to anyone and everyone protesting the installation of the Trumpster in the WH. What I saw on the faces of marchers of all ages, colors, shapes and sizes was determination and joy.

The protestors have been proven right x1000 since the original March on DC. We all see and know what The Trump is: unfit for Office. If anything, we know more now than we did then. And it’s far worse than many imagined.

The second line of argument is presumably from women of color. It’s been claimed in several articles that the pink color of the hats exclude women of different races.

Really?

We all wear pink ribbons for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I don’t recall anyone objecting to that, even though men can, in fact, be diagnosed with breast cancer and breasts come in many skin tones. For all the hoopla, the color pink is feminine in nature. The color of the hat IMHO doesn’t read: white women’s genitalia. Because trust me as a white woman: if I turned hot pink in the nether regions, I’d run to the doctor. Rather the color reads:

Sisters United. A Force to be Reckoned With. We Will Not Stand Down.

So, how do these stories of division and controversy start? The first article I read this year was written by an Emily Zanotti at the Daily Wire, a conservative outlet led by no other than Ben Shapiro, former editor of Breitbart. Then it was picked up by the Detroit Free Press. Now, the Daily Mail and Washington Times have run the same article with few changes. Out of the four publications only the Detroit Free Press is considered Left-of-Center.

So why would the conservative press want to fan the flames of division with the Second Women’s March approaching on 20 January?

Because the original Women’s March was enormously successful. The event inspired more people to show-up, march and protest than attended the Trumspter’s fraudulent inauguration. I was there; I saw The Donald's poor showing.

As for the pussyhats?

I remember standing inside the Maryland House off Rt 95, waiting to purchase water on my way back to Philly. A large group of women entered the rest stop, all donning their hats. A spontaneous round of applause started then grew into a thundering roar. People stamped their feet. Fists punched the air. Electric!

That’s the excitement we generated. That’s what the GOP's right-right wing is afraid of, again.

Fortunately, not everyone is taking the conservative cue on pussyhat donning. See here:

https://www.amny.com/news/pussyhat-knitty-city-1.16068536

And the Pussyhat Project? Glad to say, it’s alive and well.

https://www.pussyhatproject.com

Another blast on January 20th, people!



Anagrams and Revelation

Anagrams

plural noun: a word, phrase, or name formed by rearranging the letters of another, such as cinema, formed from iceman.

Anagrams have been around since the ancient Greeks who believed in the mystical and revelatory nature of letter rearrangement. Victorians saw anagramming as a form of literary entertainment.

So why shouldn’t we have fun, particularly on a day when there's little fun to be had?

And today’s word? Shithole, of course.

Anagram: his hotel.

How very ourious!


The Trumpster's Very Bad Day

Trump’s comments yesterday about ‘shithole countries’ has ignited a firestorm, rightly so. Despite the man’s protests to the contrary—I’m the least racist person in the world—his words and past behavior on all things race-related is evidence of who the man is.

Obama’s birth certificate. Mexican immigrants are all rapists, criminals. Judge Curiel. Khizr and Ghazala Khan, Gold Star family. To mention a few.

We see you, Mr. Trump.

So, forgive us for scoffing at your lame excuse about your cancelled trip to the UK, blaming President Obama once again. Or rejecting your obvious lie about the vile words that actually spilled from your mouth. There were witnesses in the room, sir. No number of sycophants claiming the remarks were not racist or merely economics will ever wash this stain away.

Nor should the interview you gave to the Wall Street Journal be overlooked or minimized. In a jumbled ramble you beat your own drum—the best president ever; excoriated the FBI for doing the investigative work it is mandated to do; accused FBI agent Peter Strzok (relieved of his position on Mueller’s team) of treason; proved beyond a doubt that you have no understanding or respect for the Rule of Law, let alone capable of putting a cogent thought together:

"There was no obstruction. Of course there was no obstruction. But there was no crime. So now they're saying, could there be -- now, I haven't even heard that they're looking at obstruct -- I don't know that they're looking at obstruction. But how can you -- I'm sorry, this is the most open dialogue ever, I've given everything, number one. That's not obstruction.”

We see you, Mr. Trump.

The press/media sees you though for too long they were blinded by the glare, patiently waiting, predicting the ‘pivot’ that never came, never could come because Hillary Clinton was right: what you see is what you get. Nevertheless, the morning cable shows and newspaper headlines have taken up yesterday’s racist comments like a banner, some angry, some emotional. With the exception of Fox News, all disgusted. The countries you slandered are demanding official apologies/explanations and former Mexican President Vicente Fox tweeted out a suitable metaphor for the raucous occasion.

The Wall Street Journal has curiously defended you in the past. But this recent interview has been neither edited nor smoothed over. Your words in all their jumbled glory are on the page—the incoherent thoughts, half-baked ideas and incessant self-aggrandizement.

We see you, Mr. Trump. The whole damn world sees you.


Wall Street Journal summary below. Though I read the interview in its entirety last night, it’s now behind a paywall. Frankly, if I were Trump, I would want this Q&A hidden in an undersea vault. In any case, CNN has picked up the main topics/excerpts here:

http://www.cnn.com/2018/01/12/politics/trump-wsj-interview/index.html







The Great Republican Abdication

Greg Sargent has a piece up today in the Washington Post. The above headline is as it appears above the article.

In my mind, those four words encapsulate what we’ve been witnessing over the last year but made particularly striking in the last few weeks. Gone are the criticisms of Bob Corker, he of adult-daycare fame. Forgotten are Jeff Flake’s comments on the floor of the Senate where he insisted he ‘would not be complicit or silent.’

And yet, complicity and silence is the Republican response to the Trumpster’s antics: his performance art, masquerading as serious immigration negotiation; his twisting in the wind regarding FISA’s renewal vote or his contentious attacks against our traditional institutions—the FBI, DOJ, any and all intelligence agencies. Not to mention his calls for private citizens to be thrown in jail.

Banana Republic, anyone?

Yesterday, I posted an OP on the release of The Foreign Relations Committee’s Report, specifically citing Putin’s asymmetric assault on democracies around the world and recommendations to defend ourselves and our allies from on-going and future threats.

Republicans remained silent, refusing to sign onto the report. Because . . . Trump. Because . . . Russia. And as Sargent contends, they’re hoping the report itself will be seen as a partisan document, evidence lending credence to the Trumpster’s whine: WITCH HUNT, WITCH HUNT.

Our national security as a country, as a people is being risked for the sake of political gamesmanship. This is a glaring, chilling example of Republican complicity, enabling the disgraceful and treacherous behavior/actions of Donald Trump. Even in light of Michael Woffe’s scathing expose’, Republicans have remained largely silent about the book’s details. Rather, they’ve spent the debate time trashing Wolff as a betrayer, a con-man. Irony is having a rebirth!

There’s more, of course.

Diane Feinstein’s release of the Fusion GPS testimony proves the GOP’s dueling narrative regarding Simpson and Steele was always false, that Republicans knew it, that Grassley and Graham certainly knew they were grandstanding and lying when they referred a criminal investigation request to the DOJ on Steele.

And yet, they did it anyway.

Which begs the question: Who are they protecting? The Donald, for whom few have respect? Vladimir Putin, who has made no secret of his antipathy toward the United States and our Allies?

Or themselves, the silent partners in How to Sell Your Soul and Pretend It Doesn’t Matter.

Sargent suggests the Foreign Relations Committee’s Report and Diane Feinstein going rogue is a new phase in the Democratic Party’s resistance and push-back to all things Trump/Russia.

For the sake of us all, I hope he’s right.

WAPO link here:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2018/01/10/the-great-republican-abdication/?utm_term=.8d0671a436b1

Just One More Thing to Put a Twist in the Trumpster's Panties

Democratic Senator Ben Cardin released a report from the Foreign Relations Committee detailing Two Decades of Putin’s Attacks on Democracy.

The Report includes more than 30 recommendations for the US and its Allies. Key points:

1. Mr. Trump must demonstrate presidential leadership in declaring US policy to deter Russian threats and attacks mobilizing our government in defense.

2. The US should provide assistance in concert with Allies in Europe, to build democratic institutions within those European and Eurasian states most vulnerable to Russian interference.

3. The United States and our Allies should freeze and expose Kremlin-linked dirty money.

4. The US Government should designate countries that employ malign influence to assault democracies . . . and subject them to a preemptive, escalative sanctions regime . . .

5. The US government and NATO should lead a coalition of countries committed to mutual defense against cyberattacks, to include the establishment of rapid action teams to defend allies under attack.

6. US and European governments should mandate that social media companies make public sources of funding for political advertisements along the same lines as TV channels and print media.

I took particular notice of “Mr. Trump” in the first recommendation. The Foreign Relations Committee is saying: ENOUGH ALREADY! Add this to the naming of a Boris Nemtsov Square adjacent to DC’s Russian Embassy and I can easily imagine this:



At 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Happy days, Mr. Trump.

For more on the report:

https://www.foreign.senate.gov/press/ranking/release/cardin-releases-report-detailing-two-decades-of-putins-attacks-on-democracy

The Flunky Nominees Just Keep A-Coming

There’s something to be said about an Administration in meltdown, a group so toxic that no one with a real reputation or genuine set of professional credentials is willing to hop aboard the Runaway Train. This has been demonstrated repeatedly with a number of nominees, even the Trumpster’s legal team, 3rd tier at best.

And now we have yet another embarrassment: the candidate for leading the Indian Health Services Agency. Robert Weaver, a 39-year old member of Quapaw Tribe claims he is qualified to head the agency serving 2 million Native Americans in 26 hospitals and clinics with a budget of roughly $6 billion. His resume’ indicated a history of supervisory and management positions from 1997-2006 at St John’s Medical Center, Joplin, MO.

Only problem?

No one recalls the dude working at the hospital in anything beyond an entrance-level capacity. As for his employment records? Well, coincidentally both his personal records and those of the hospital were destroyed by the tornado that ripped through Joplin in 2011.

There’s also some question about his educational qualifications. As in, did he ever graduate from Southern Missouri State University with a major in International Business. Or why a business degree would substitute for a medical degree, a requirement for former Agency heads.

Oh, happy days!

These people really have no shame.

Full article from WJS can be found here:

https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-nominee-to-lead-indian-health-services-faces-claims-of-misrepresentation-1515170335

Dumped Like A Dog. What Does Trump Have Against Dogs?

According to the Trumpster’s latest tweet storm, Sloppy Steve Bannon was dumped like a dog from his WH position, then begged and cried in the aftermath.

Variations on the Trumpster’s simile usage: Mitt Romney choked like a dog when he lost the 2012 election to Barack Obama. Keith Olbermann reminded me that Trump said Marco Rubio sweated like a dog during his infamous water-bottle rebuttal to President Obama’s STOU address.

Somewhat confounding, of course, since dogs don’t sweat.

There are other references to individuals begging for money—like a dog—though in all my doggy experiences I’ve never seen a canine begging for dollars. For attention, yes. For food, absolutely. Never cash. Presumably Kristin Stewart cheated on Robert Pattinson . . . like a dog.

Really?

Mr Smart, Stable Genius appears to be hung up on the dog analogies without understanding the nature of dogs. Or anything else.

Puppies are loyal to a fault, seeking the love and approval of even the most despicable human beings. Hitler loved his dogs and they loved him right back. Dogs are devoid of judgments about their owners. Whether you’re sick, old, beautiful or downright ugly, fat or thin, rich or poor, your dog doesn’t care and will adore you regardless. Bad breath or BO? No biggie because any dog worth his/her salt will outdo you in that department. Whatever smalls bad or unusual, dogs generally love. Because it’s all about the nose.

So what is the Trumpster’s real beef with the dog world?

Well, I’ve read he’s a germaphobe. He might think dogs are dirty, germ-laden creatures invading his space. Of course, the truth is that we’re all swarming with bacteria, actually share the world, a symbiotic relationship with our unseen but very prevalent cousins. Try reading “I Contain Multitudes, the Microbes Within Us” by Ed Yong for a wakeup tutorial.

But then, The Donald would need to read a book, believe in science, catch up to the Enlightenment.

Dogs love unconditionally, demonstrate joy with complete and utter abandon. Anyone coming home after work (or even a 15-minute absence) to their dog knows what I’m talking about. All a pooch asks in return is a square meal, a roof to share, some gentle pats on the head and a scratch behind the ears. These traits are obviously foreign to the Trumpster and his ilk who demand obedience and obeisance in all things, no questions asked. I can easily imagine The Donald believing that dogs are suckers, inferior creatures serving no useful purpose beyond objects to be kicked, choked, cheated on and/or dumped. His sons appear to think that animals in the wild exist for their own amusement and blood sport.

Here’s a newsflash for The Donald and his clan:

You can’t pay, intimidate or threaten anyone to to love you more than a dog loves on his or her worst day. And Americans love their dogs right back. So watch it on the inane dog references.

Because words matter. And your words could end up biting you in the ass. Like a pack of dogs. Or their irritated, disgusted owners.

Btw, I don’t know if Bob Mueller owns a dog but he does have a ‘pit bull’ named Andrew Weissmann, a prosecutor with expertise in bringing down N.Y Mob bosses, Enron crooks and more recently oversaw that pre-dawn raid of Paul Manafort’s Virginia home. The Trumpster may disrespect the dog world in general but he and his enablers do fear the breed-specific instincts of Weissmann, his persistent, never-let-go prosecutorial skills.

Oh, the irony!

Our Post-Literate Presidency

The stunning reveals of Michael Wolff’s expose’ is the center point of nearly every article I’ve read this morning. But none was quite as shocking to me than Wolff’s statement here:

Trump didn’t read. He didn’t really even skim. If it was print, it might as well not exist. Some believed that for all practical purposes he was no more than semiliterate  . . . . Some thought him dyslexic; certainly his comprehension was limited. Others concluded that he didn’t read because he didn’t have to, and that in fact this was one of his key attributes as a populist. He was postliterate—total television.

Let that sink in—The Donald is ‘postliterate—total television.

Of course, that factoid begs the question: exactly what is the Trumpster, Tweeter extraordinaire, watching on television? Where is he getting his ‘facts’ and slant?

Matthew Gertz over at Politico asked the same question. All these tweet storms, the rat-a-tat-tat nature of the Trumpsters’ concerns, rages, perpetual attacks appear erratic and all over the board. Unless you check Fox News programming, which Gertz did over a 3-month period, only to find that tweet after tweet could be lined up with the networks ‘beef-of-the-moment.’

I’m sure a lot of people would say, Duh. We knew that already. Where’s the surprise?

Here’s Gertz explaining:

Everyone has a theory about Trump’s hyper-aggressive early morning tweetstorms. Some think they are a deliberate ploy the president uses to distract the press from his administration’s potential weaknesses, or to frame the public debate to his liking. Others warn his rapid shifts from one topic to another indicate mental instability.

But my many hours following the president’s tweets for Media Matters for America, the progressive media watchdog organization, have convinced me the truth is often much simpler: The president is just live-tweeting Fox, particularly the network’s Trump-loving morning show, Fox & Friends.


So, here we have a man installed in the WH, handed the extraordinary powers of the Executive Branch of the United States and his working knowledge comes from a propaganda-driven network blasting out ideological nonsense 24/7. The man sits in front of the TV—he has three in his bedroom. He consumes Fox-laden news—probably has ‘fake news’ CNN and MSNBC running in the background—while wolfing down cheeseburgers. Then he makes decisions that ultimately affect the entire world. As Gertz describes it: "we’ve been experiencing a continuous Trump/Fox feedback loop for months."

But certainly the Trumpster has advisors to tap, experts to outline, analyze and discuss the weighty issues of the world, you might ask?

Michael Wolff speaks to that:

But not only didn’t he read, he didn’t listen. He preferred to be the person talking. And he trusted his own expertise—no matter how paltry or irrelevant—more than anyone else’s. What’s more, he had an extremely short attention span, even when he thought you were worthy of attention.

This Know-Nothing, the post-literate Trump, trusts his own take/opinion over anyone else’s. And this is one of his key attributes as a populist because according to the spin, educated men or women are not to be admired or emulated. Their very education, their intellectual natures mark them as members of the dreaded ‘elite.’

Instead what we have squatting in the White House is someone arrogantly ignorant, an entitled asshole and flimflam artist all rolled into the shape of a human being.

Hooray for us!!!

Is there any doubt this creature needs to be ejected from the WH, sooner rather than later, or that the Republican Party never be permitted to pretend they were hoodwinked, hijacked, taken for a ride?

Never Forget. Never Forgive.

Excerpts for Wolff and Gertz here:

https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/michael-wolffs-withering-portrait-of-president-donald-trump

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/01/05/trump-media-feedback-loop-216248
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