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JonLeibowitz's Journal
JonLeibowitz's Journal
January 17, 2016

Why has HRC's campaign spent ~$300k of party committee money opposing other dems?

I am basing this OP on the data that opensecrets.org has on outside spending, available at: https://www.opensecrets.org/outsidespending/summ.php?cycle=2016&disp=C&pty=N&type=A

Please do independently verify the screenshots below.

These two pictures pretty much say all that needs stating:

$3,607,885 - $3,306,964 = $300,921

This is ignoring the $20,886 spent by candidate(?!?!?) Bill Clinton.

Okay I actually do have one (obviously rhetorical) question as a follow up:
Why is Party Committee money being used against other democratic candidates in a primary contest?

January 14, 2016

Politifact: Chelsea Clinton mischaracterizes Bernie Sanders' health care plan


Chelsea Clinton said Sanders’ health care plan would "empower" governors "to take away health insurance for low-income and middle-income working Americans."

Under Sanders’ plan, Americans would lose their current health insurance. However, his proposal would replace their health insurance and cover the currently uninsured. The program would auto-enroll every citizen and legal resident, all of whom would be entitled to benefits. While the plan would give governors authority to administer health insurance within their states, it includes provisions to allow federal authorities to take over if the governors refuse to implement it.

It’s impossible to predict with certainty how Sanders’ plan would play out in real life. But Clinton’s statement makes it sound like Sanders’ plan would leave many people uninsured, which is antithetical to the goal of Sanders’ proposal: universal health care.

We rate her claim Mostly False.

Much more at:
January 6, 2016

Bernie on Wall St: And the award for unintentionally saying more than one should goes to...

Les Funtleyder, a portfolio manager at E Squared Asset Management, said that Mrs. Clinton’s remarks about regulating companies tended to move the market more than those of Mr. Sanders.

“This suggests to me The Street is more interested in what Hillary says at this point,” Mr. Funtleyder said.


Yes, I am quite sure Wall St. is keenly interesting in what Hillary says and does. After all, they are shareholders in her!
January 3, 2016

100% Pure Anadulturated Bullshit.

Now it’s true that Clinton faced an extremely hostile Republican Congress for the last six years of his presidency. But his administration actively encouraged the big deregulatory legislation, and squashed its own dissenters, like Brooksley Born, who saw disaster ahead.

Clinton would have you believe that he signed those bills because his administration was forced to by a GOP that was beholden as usual to Big Business, but then what about the deregulatory legislation he signed in 1994, before Gingrich & Co. took Congress?

Riegle-Neal hasn’t got a tenth of the press that the CMFA and Gramm-Leach-Bliley have, but it was a milestone in the creation of Too Big to Fail, allowing banks to cross state lines, effectively gutting state regulation of banking. The Christian Science Monitor that year quoted a Wall Street analyst saying that, “‘It also didn’t hurt that NationsBank president Hugh McColl has a working relationship with President Clinton or that the comptroller of the currency, Eugene Ludwig, was a successful lawyer at Covington & Burling and NationsBank had been a major client.’” Hugh McColl gave us Bank of America.

From across the pond, The Independent wrote in a piece that was prescient in more ways than one:

“In effect, Congress has said let the merger mania begin. There is virtual consensus that the legislation will allow both the big US banks and their foreign rivals in America - British banks among them - to grow much bigger.
Nor was that the only thing the banks got that year. The American Banking Association wrote about Riegle-Neal, the Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1994, and the Community Banking Development Act that “the 103rd will be remembered as the first Congress in recent memory to pass “clean” pro-banking legislation.”

Clinton, on signing Riegle-Neal, praised McColl and the head of Chase Manhattan, and said, ” It represents another example of our intent to reinvent Government by making it less regulatory and less overreaching and by shrinking it where it ought to be shrunk and reshaping it where it ought to be reshaped.”

Again, this was before the Republicans took over Congress.

In 1999, on signing Gramm-Leach-Bliley into law, Clinton said, “This is a day we can celebrate as an American day” and that ” the Glass-Steagall law is no longer appropriate for the economy in which we live” and “today what we are doing is modernizing the financial services industry, tearing down these antiquated laws and granting banks significant new authority” and “This is a very good day for the United States.”


In June, I attended a dinner for Bill Clinton, which was educational. Clinton spoke passionately about his foundation, about African wildlife, inequality, childhood obesity, and much else with enormous factual command, emotion, and rhetorical power. But he and I also spoke privately. I asked him about the financial crisis. He paused and then became even more soulful, thoughtful, passionate, and articulate. And then he proceeded to tell me the most amazing lies I've heard in quite a while.

For example, Mr. Clinton sorrowfully lamented his inability to stop the Commodity Futures Modernization Act, which banned all regulation of private (OTC) derivatives trading, and thereby greatly worsened the crisis. Mr. Clinton said that he and Larry Summers had argued with Alan Greenspan, but couldn't budge him, and then Congress passed the law by a veto-proof supermajority, tying his hands. Well, actually, the reason that the law passed by that overwhelming margin was because of the Clinton Administration's strong advocacy, including Congressional testimony by Larry Summers and harsh public and private attacks on advocates of regulation by Summers and Robert Rubin.

December 24, 2015

CNN Poll: Who has broader favorability with registered democrats, broken down by gun owner?

This is based on the December 23 CNN/ORC poll (1). First of all, why am I ignoring question #14 which directly asks a question about the gun issue? The answer is that I don't trust the data in question #14 at all, as I have mentioned before on DU (see source (5)):

A very suspicious thing was that for question #13 the directive was to read candidate's names in a random order, but not for #14. That makes the results of #14 suspect, don't you think? See sources (2), (3), (4).

So I turn to the favorability numbers which don't have the same methodology errors. I created the following table so you can easily compare favorability amongst registered democrats:

Interesting indeed! Sanders has the numbers you would expect of a candidate tougher on gun control, and by margins that exceed his overall favorability advantage (registered democrats think more of Bernie than Hillary). I found this result from the crosstabs surprising, since the popular narrative is that Bernie is "weak" on guns to democratic voters. But that may be false. Perhaps.

I look forward to constructive discussion about my reasoning and what this means. I will not respond to posters I consider as trolling. This is a serious post meant to raise the petty level of bickering on DU's GDP forum. There has been entirely too much sniping of late.

P.S. Personally I am pro-RKBA so I find Clinton unsatisfactory for other reasons on this issue; but I am not a typical registered dem voter so I left my own feelings out of the discussion.

Sources & Links:

(1): http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2015/images/12/23/cnnpoll2.pdf

(2): http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/04/opinion/04krosnick.html

(3): http://www.centerforpolitics.org/newslet_909cb.html

(4): http://www.yalescientific.org/2008/11/the-mind-and-the-ballot-the-role-of-psychology-in-elections/

(5): http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1251&pid=942726

December 23, 2015

Bernie Sanders NYT Opinion Page: To Rein In Wall Street, Fix the Fed

WALL STREET is still out of control. Seven years ago, the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department bailed out the largest financial institutions in this country because they were considered too big to fail. But almost every one is bigger today than it was before the bailout. If any were to fail again, taxpayers could be on the hook for another bailout, perhaps a larger one this time.

To rein in Wall Street, we should begin by reforming the Federal Reserve, which oversees financial institutions and which uses monetary policy to maintain price stability and full employment. Unfortunately, an institution that was created to serve all Americans has been hijacked by the very bankers it regulates.


What went wrong at the Fed? The chief executives of some of the largest banks in America are allowed to serve on its boards. During the Wall Street crisis of 2007, Jamie Dimon, the chief executive and chairman of JPMorgan Chase, served on the New York Fed’s board of directors while his bank received more than $390 billion in financial assistance from the Fed. Next year, four of the 12 presidents at the regional Federal Reserve Banks will be former executives from one firm: Goldman Sachs.

These are clear conflicts of interest, the kind that would not be allowed at other agencies. We would not tolerate the head of Exxon Mobil running the Environmental Protection Agency. We don’t allow the Federal Communications Commission to be dominated by Verizon executives. And we should not allow big bank executives to serve on the boards of the main agency in charge of regulating financial institutions.


Much much more in the full article.
Full opinion piece link: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/23/opinion/bernie-sanders-to-rein-in-wall-street-fix-the-fed.html

Go Bernie Go!
December 11, 2015

A question to my fellow primary voters: Do you believe in the oath of office of the President?

Let me add the oath below to remind (I expect most of us don't know the oath by memory), and the emphasis is mine:

Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Source: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html

We now have a primary candidate (two actually, Trump as well) who is openly dismissive of the First Amendment, specifically the Freedom of Speech. How can we as Americans in good conscience vote to nominate and elect anyone who is unrepentantly defiant of, and opposed to protecting, the bill of rights to the constitution, yet still seeks to take the oath of office of These United States?


This is a serious question to all my fellow Democratic voters who plan to vote in these upcoming primaries and caucuses. I await serious answers.
December 9, 2015

Sanders has long had a gripe with the press leading off topic at topical press conferences

Sanders has spoken before, 30 years ago, about the media intentionally leading him off topic to pursue a story they see as more sensational rather than the substantive topic he has been working on and discussing with others.

See the following link at 1h17m0s, 1h00m0s, and the big one is at 54m20s. I highly recommend watching this because it completely informs the media's perspective on the ISIS questions (and puts the Hillary supporter's whining into perspective).

Perhaps a GD OP is in order? I think I'll let someone else wade into that unhappy place.
December 8, 2015

Yes, EMILY's List has quite the record

For instance they backed candidates who show blatant anti-semitism, including this actual ad (yes, from the 2008 election, not 100 years ago; shocking):

More at: http://downwithtyranny.blogspot.com/2014/06/oh-please-not-more-emilys-list-anti.html

Or in Hawaii:

Last Thursday night, backward and reactionary congressional candidate Donna Kim told PBS Hawaii viewers she opposes marriage equality based on her Catholic faith. The very next morning she was endorsed by EMILY's List, a nominally pro-choice organization.

When Stephanie Schriock described Kim as “pro-choice” in the group’s endorsement statement, it was more than a desperate stretch; many in Hawaii were shocked. That term has rarely, if ever, been used to describe to Kim, a state senator who's been in various elected offices for 30 years. Kim has never been endorsed by the Patsy T. Mink PAC, which supports pro-choice women seeking election to the Hawaii state legislature. Kim regularly campaigns at vehemently anti-Choice fundamentalist churches, and even partners with them in her official capacity.

Indeed, it hasn't been clear Kim is even pro-contraception. In 2012, when seeking the endorsement of the anti-choice Hawaii Family Forum, she described herself as undecided on whether rape victims should be entitled to emergency contraception. She very pointedly hasn’t commented on the Hobby Lobby decision.


Or how about when they ran this ad backing a candidate who Elizabeth Warren publicly opposed:

Quite the record indeed.

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