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Mc Mike

Mc Mike's Journal
Mc Mike's Journal
March 29, 2016

The accomodation that Zubik is attacking now was actually USED to justify the 5-4 Hobby Lobby

decision by the 5 member conservative majority.

"The debate was important because it cut to the heart of what the conservative majority promised in their 2014 Hobby Lobby decision, the last Supreme Court challenge concerning Obamacare’s contraceptive regulations. The 5-4 decision saying certain for-profits didn't have to cover birth control pointed to the very accommodation for religious nonprofits that the nonprofits are objecting to now.

“The effect of the HHS-created accommodation on the women employed by Hobby Lobby and the other companies involved in these cases would be precisely zero,” Alito wrote then."


Now the same rightwing court members (minus Scalia) are lining up to mad-dog that accomodation with unknowledgeable pot shots. So they used it as an excuse for their abysmal Hobby Lobby decision, saying 'see, our ruling won't hurt anything, because there's this HHS accomodation'. Now that they rammed Hobby Lobby through with those specious arguments, they suddenly don't know why the accomodation should even exist. Apparently, in their mind, it existed only to justify their Hobby Lobby ruling.

March 27, 2016

What 'Democrats for dRumpf'?

Here's a nice piece of hopeful analysis, from Josh M Marshall's blog, telling us about the fake idea that dRumpf will appeal broadly to low income resentful whites. It has some not-pie-in-the-sky, useful reality-based data observations, which refutes the mass media's pretense that the moderate income white American electorate will switch in embittered droves to the gop's far-right candidate:



" We can see from the polls and the rallies that Trump draws heavily from the white middle and working classes. A more specific marker is voters who do and don't have a college degree. But this isn't 1950 or 1965. The vast majority of those people are already Republican voters, if not always registered Republicans.

Here's the more operative question: if we're using the stereotype of 'white working class' voters, how many white working class voters do you think Trump will pull in the general election who voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012? That second part of the equation is the critical one. Because if it's voters who were already in the Republican column it doesn't really matter in terms of reevaluating the 2000-2012 era electoral map. (Democrats would certainly love to get back some of those white voters; but that's a different question.) My gut sense is that the Obama '08, '12/Trump '16 number is pretty small. Maybe extremely small. If nothing else that hunch is backed up by a lot of highly suggestive if not dispositive polling data.

Let's consider some data.

In 2012, Mitt Romney won 59% of the white vote to Obama's 39%. And he lost. (In 2008, with McCain, it was 55% to 43%.) The most notable number is that Trump currently seems to be substantially underperforming that number. An ABC/Washington Post poll from early March found that Trump was winning white voters by a margin of 49% to 40% against Clinton. That's definitely winning the white vote. But it is not even close to the margin Mitt Romney got and still lost.

That number alone, if it holds up at all, should stop a lot of the 'reshuffling the deck' thinking in its tracks. That theory posits a sort of Braveheart-esque raging last gasp of white people putting Trump over the top. But at least at the moment, he's doing dramatically worse among whites than either of the last two guys who lost. That is, to put it mildly, a big problem for Trump.

The truth is that Trump would not only need to win dramatically more white voters than Romney (who lost); he'd need to expand the white electorate. Indeed, this claim comes up again and again. Trump, we're told, can motivate demoralized white voters who haven't voted recently or ever. But as Romney campaign strategist Stuart Stevens notes, this is fantasy. There aren't any missing white voters. The voting rate among whites has been going up like other demographic subgroups in recent years. There just aren't any missing ones out there, unless you opt for heroic/unicorn theories of turnout. "

This isn't to say that we shouldn't take dRumpf or any other far right creep nominee seriously. But this piece struck me as important and positive because though I've been paying attention to the unusual deference to (and shilling on behalf of) dRumpf by the media, I hadn't been seeing through the scary threatening bogeyman the same media was crafting about 'the massive legion' of angry white disaffected Americans who were going to put the dRumpenfuhrer over the top. The same media who's dishonestly pushing him is also dishonestly lying about demographics, in order to push him. It's 2 + 2, and I had been misreading it.

On an unrelated note, the blog's Tierney Sneed has been turning in some fantastic, very enjoyable reporting on TPM for a while now, and I just wanted to mention how good both her info and style are.

March 25, 2016

We're on very different wave-lengths, here.

I don't mind if one attacks Islam as a philosophy, or if one finds that many good and wonderful people can be found within the g o p. Neither of those issues form the basis of my reply to the o.p.

The simple issue for me is that these terror attacks occurred, then certain 'critical thinkers' in the right wing began stating that the religion of Islam and all its adherents made them happen, which is wrong. The o.p.s implication that the victims' own 'incorrect' critical thought analysis -- that 'Islamic refugees and Islamic people in general aren't murderous terrorists' -- is what tragically led to their deaths -- that implication is also just wrong.

I frankly DO indict millions of repuglican people, because they see the ideas and performance of their leaders, and wholeheartedly back them anyway. Or they don't have the tiniest scintilla of a clue about those leaders' ideas and performances, and vote to put them in power anyway. And no such endorsement of those terrorist attackers by hundreds of millions of Islamic religious adherents occurred; the small number of terrorists didn't run on a platform of terrorist action, then get the go-ahead supportive endorsement or vote 'in favor' from the rest of Islam. So one who conflates anti-repug sentiments with anti-Islam sentiments on this issue (or any other) is way off base, staggeringly so. The super super majority of Islam's adherents are simply practicing their faith and not committing violent massacres, but the practice of boosting promoting adhering to the repugs is an attack on billions of other people, as it aims to put our country's very considerable power in the hands of people with abhorrently bad ideas who promise to do very bad things with that power.

I'm hard pressed to come up with 'democratically elected' sharia governments you may be thinking about, when you discuss "Islamic leaders who promise policies and enact laws that are fascist and they are supported by people who vote them into power in the name of Islam", in your post. I do know about a ton of western backed feudal monarchies, Standard Oil installed strongman dictators, beaucoup west-sponsored coups that toppled democratically elected leaders in Islamic nations, one party elections with mandatory participation, weapons shipments to and intel backing of radical islamic sects for geopolitical purposes, the elimination of moderate oppositional leaders, etc. Which democratic Islamic countries are you thinking of here, obe? I've been paying attention for a long time, but apparently I'm playing catch up.

Despite what the american taliban repug party aims for, there is a very big difference between religion and political party, at least according to the people who founded our system of government. That's a key reason for our separation of church and state. Under our system, one can feel free to criticize any and all religions, for whatever reason they want, and speak freely about their critical thinking on the subject. Where the boundary exists is that religous zealots can't take control of our gov and use its tremendous powers to go after people who have the 'wrong' religious philosophies/belief systems, to enforce their own zealous religious beliefs. And secular political parties can't circumscribe peaceful legal religious practice. Religion can't take over gov, and gov can't take over religion, which is how it should remain.

So what exactly is the 'appropriate action one should take' regarding this terrorist attack, in your estimation, obe? The way I have it figured, determining the right course of action won't come from the unclear thinking and spur of the moment gut reaction feelings discussed in the o.p., and it certainly won't resemble anything that our kind opponents in the gop are pushing for, now.

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