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Member since: Sun Jul 11, 2004, 07:58 PM
Number of posts: 39,405

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TOON: Trump gets behind GOP elephant

Props to http://caglecartoons.com/

Democrats Exploring Deal With McConnell On Gorsuch Nomination

I hope this story isn't true because

A) They have no reason to believe McConnell will keep his word

B) The truck case alone shows that Democrats should oppose him as an anti-worker extremist.

Democrats might lose anyway if they filibuster Gorsuch, but at least they will have stood for something, which might inspire more people to stand in line to vote for them.

WASHINGTON ― Democratic senators are quietly contemplating cutting a deal with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.): giving him an up-or-down vote on Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch if he restores the 60-vote requirement for advancing district and circuit court nominees.

Thatís just one proposal being floated as part of ongoing conversations between more than half a dozen Senate Democrats, according to two Democratic aides familiar with the talks. Another proposal is offering to confirm Gorsuch in exchange for a commitment from McConnell to preserve the 60-vote threshold just for future Supreme Court nominees, a source told The Huffington Post, and which Politico also reported on Wednesday.

So far, the talks remain very preliminary. Leadership isnít a part of the group exploring such an arrangement, and there havenít been any conversations with McConnell himself or other GOP senators. Instead, it is more of an organic dialogue among rank-and-file Democrats looking ahead to Gorsuchís confirmation vote in the next two weeks.

But the objective among these Democrats is to preserve the filibuster ― the partyís only real leverage while in the minority, with the fear being that McConnell will remove it if Gorsuchís nomination is blocked. The thinking among the group is that McConnell will end up just shy of the 60 votes he needs to advance the Gorsuch nomination, with all 52 Republicans likely to vote for him and a handful of moderate Democrats likely to join. McConnell has hinted that heís prepared to nix the filibuster rule altogether if he canít hit 60 votes. That would mean that going forward, it would only take 51 votes to advance a Supreme Court nominee.


a thought on surveillance state & mind of financial elites

Whites in the South in the Jim Crow era feared black men raping white women because they had raped black women with impunity for centuries and expected retribution.

Likewise, as Wall Street tries to take over public education, they think they can win over teachers with competition and "merit pay." A variation of this was just proposed in California, with tax relief for teachers to prevent them from taking jobs in other states.

In both instances, the very wealthy imagine the rest of us think and act exactly as they do.

So it is with the surveillance state that we find out more and more about with each new leak.

The intent of the mass surveillance is likely as much to catch us plebes plotting to storm the castle and take over through elaborate secret machinations because that is exactly what they would do.

However, the vast majority of us, even those who want change, don't want to take the place of the wealthiest individuals in the country and have no secret plans.

We would like to have a decent standard of living, a safe place to live, education and health care for ourselves and our kids, and a reasonable chance of decent world for our descendants to live in.

That aint no secret, and most of us don't have the time or means to plot to disrupt the Bilderburgers or whatever.

What will happen is what is already happening. People are refusing to cooperate here and there in increasing numbers, including the middle managers for the financial elite, both in and out of government. And those middle managers are the ones leaking the stuff that is ruining things for the ruling class.

What those at the top should really be worried about is all that surveillance infrastructure being turned on them.

If they cannot plot, and threaten, and buy politicians out of public view, much of their power is gone--especially if they depend on the rest of us buying stuff their company makes or borrowing money from them.

And I say, the sooner we turn the cameras and bugs the other way, the better.

Republican Senator Sends Cease-and-Desist Letter to Constituent for Calling Too Much

What a change one election has made.

If more politicians had this problem more of the time, we would have a better country.

WISCONSIN GOP SENATOR RON JOHNSON has been avoiding his constituents lately. Last week, a group of constituents even held a town hall about health care without him, after he declined to attend. (He held a telephone town hall instead).

Now one of Johnsonís constituents has received a cease-and-desist letter from the senatorís office, demanding that he stop calling the senator and stop trying to meet with his staff. The letter to Earl Good of Milwaukee instructs him to only contact the office in writing from now on.

Good is a Vietnam veteran and attentive constituent who, in an interview with his local CBS station, acknowledged that he has been very persistent in his attempts to get through to the office and talk to the senatorís staff about issues that concern him, including the possible privatization of the Veterans Administration.

He acknowledged that he once called 83 times before someone picked up the phone.


Trump's increase in the Defense budget is almost as much as cost for free public college for all

who want to go.

One study put the cost of free public university education at around $62 billion a year (IF we stopped public funding of for profit Trump Universities).

We already spend more on our military than nearly all of the rest of the world combined, have bases in more countries than everyone else combine, and in several categories of weapons, we have no peers.

We have twice as many aircraft carriers as the rest of the world combined.

Only Russia has thousands of nukes like we do.

The UK, France, China, India, and Pakistan around 100-300 each.

Estimates about Israel's stockpile vary, but like four of the five above, they are our allies.

Russia and China are primarily threats to us if we go to them. Apart from Russia's nukes, both countries' military might shrinks exponentially the farther they get outside their own borders.

I think there's near zero chance of Trump proposing or signing off on free public higher education.

But this needs to be said.

On Trump & Russia: divide & conquer

If those in DC are more concerned about the Trump half of the Trump/Russia relationship, I wonder if Russia wouldn't be willing to throw Trump under the bus in return for a written non-aggression pact that includes covert and overt means of destabilizing Russia's immediate neighbors (by us and them) and guarantees not to interfere in elections covertly or overtly by Russia in the US and vice versa.

To the degree that Russia meddled in our election, they were likely reacting to some of the belligerent actions we have taken since the end of the Cold War and Hillary's rhetoric and record seemed like it would lead to armed conflict between us and them at least in Syria.

Of course if Russia is the primary target and Trump is just a pawn for BOTH sides, then it wouldn't matter if Putin was willing to do this.

Poll question: who do DC insiders want to punish more, Trump or Russia?

Note: average Americans who oppose Trump care about the Russia stuff, but attacks on minorities and civil rights, cutting crucial government programs, and open corruption probably loom larger.
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