I thought Wahid Azal and his Bayani cultists were alone in their insane extremism and conspiracy theories, but now I see where Azal actually got some of his absurdities from. Introducing…..
Read this story:
Over the last week, new reporting has provided corroborating evidence for a decades-old allegation of sexual assault against former Vice President Joe Biden, a charge that has been denied by the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee’s campaign.
Timeline of the allegations
In March, former Biden congressional staffer Tara Reade told podcaster Katie Halper that in the spring or summer of 1993 that the then-senator from Delaware had cornered her in a private hallway when she was delivering a duffel bag. Reade alleges that Biden began kissing her, propositioned and reached under her skirt and began touching her.
The Biden campaign has denied the allegations.
“Vice President Biden has dedicated his public life to changing the culture and the laws around violence against women,” Kate Bedingfield, Biden’s communications director, said in a statement to the New York Times earlier this month. “He authored and fought for the passage and reauthorization of the landmark Violence Against Women Act. He firmly believes that women have a right to be heard — and heard respectfully. Such claims should also be diligently reviewed by an independent press. What is clear about this claim: It is untrue. This absolutely did not happen.”
The Associated Press contacted 21 former Biden staffers, none of whom said they remembered any complaints filed by Reade, who was a 29-year-old staff assistant at the time. Reade said that after complaining, her duties were scaled back and she was eventually told she wasn’t a good fit before being given a month to find another job. Reade said that she filed a written complaint at the time with a Senate personnel office, which could be with the rest of Biden’s senatorial papers at the University of Delaware. The university has said that an archive related to the former vice president “will remain closed to the public until two years after Mr. Biden retires from public life.”
Last year, Reade said in multiple interviews that Biden had touched her shoulders and played with her hair but did not mention assault.
On Monday, Business Insider published a story from veteran investigative reporter Rich McHugh that included an on-the-record interview with two women who said that Reade had told them about the incident in the mid-’90s.
“I remember her saying, here was this person that she was working for and she idolized him,” Lynda LaCasse, Reade’s former neighbor, said. “And he kind of put her up against a wall. And he put his hand up her skirt and he put his fingers inside her. She felt like she was assaulted, and she really didn’t feel there was anything she could do.”
“I don’t remember all the details,” added LaCasse, who said she was a Democrat who still supported Biden. “I remember the skirt. I remember the fingers. I remember she was devastated.”
Another woman, Lorraine Sanchez, told McHugh that she recalled Reade complaining to her in the mid-’90s that her former boss in Washington, D.C., had sexually harassed her and that she had been fired for raising concerns. Sanchez and Reade worked together in the office of a California state senator.
In March 2019, former Nevada lawmaker Lucy Flores alleged that Biden had kissed and touched her inappropriately in 2014. In response to Flores’s allegation, Biden said it “was never my intention” to make Flores or another woman feel uncomfortable.
“In my many years on the campaign trail and in public life, I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort. And not once — never — did I believe I acted inappropriately,” he said in the statement. “If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully. But it was never my intention.”
He added that he did not recall the alleged interaction with Flores, but said, “We have arrived at an important time when women feel they can and should relate their experiences.”
Shortly after those allegations were made, a half dozen other women spoke up to say that Biden had made remarks or touched them in ways that made them uncomfortable, although none alleged assault. One was Reade, who told a local California newspaper that Biden had inappropriately touched her and made her uncomfortable. She did not raise an accusation of assault. In 2019 interviews with the Washington Post, Reade said that Biden “touched her neck and shoulders but did not mention the alleged assault or suggest there was more to the story.”
On April 9, Reade filed a report with the Washington, D.C., police accusing Biden of sexual assault. She said she did not mention the assault at the time because she was scared of retribution, and though she twice voted for the Obama-Biden presidential ticket, she said she doesn’t plan to cast a vote for president in November. Reade has had her credibility questioned due to positive comments she wrote about Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In an April 12 story on the allegations, the New York Times talked to a number of staffers who said they had not heard of the incident and said it was out of character for Biden. However, two former interns told the Times that they “recalled that she abruptly stopped supervising them in April, before the end of their internship,” which echoes Reade’s claim that her duties were scaled back.
The mother’s call
Last week, the Intercept published an August 11, 1993, call to Larry King’s CNN show. Although not identified at the time, the caller was Reade’s mother, Jeanette Altimus, who Reade says she told about the alleged assault at the time it occurred.
“I’m wondering what a staffer would do besides go to the press in Washington?” said the caller, who was identified as a woman living in San Luis Obispo, Calif., where Altimus resided at the time. “My daughter has just left there, after working for a prominent senator, and could not get through with her problems at all, and the only thing she could have done was go to the press, and she chose not to do it out of respect for him.”
King replied, “In other words, she had a story to tell but, out of respect for the person she worked for, she didn’t tell it?”
“That’s true,” said the caller.
Congressional records list Reade’s last month of employment as August 1993.
It is possible that Biden does indeed have some personal boundary issues, but so do lots of other men, including Donald Trump, he who said he wanted to grab a woman by her “pussy”. That did not stop Trump from getting elected in 2016, however. So why throw similar accusations at Biden? And more to the point, why NOW?
Since this incident was said to occurred in 1993, the proper time to bring it forward would have been in 2008, when Barack Obama had just chosen Joe Biden as his running mate. Then Obama could have dropped Biden and chosen someone else to be the next Vice-President, increasing the chances of Obama winning later. But not a peep about the matter came out…..until THIS year, when Biden is running for President against a man who is KNOWN to be a pervert. Could this be a desperate last ditch effort by Republicans to ensure the reelection of Trump?
Democrats have a problem I call “moral puritanism”, which one would have expected Republicans to have had with their conservative ideology. But clearly morality is no longer an issue if Republicans are willing to elect to the Presidency a twice divorced serial adulterer with scandalous business practices and NO political experience at all. As long as Trump can ramrod the right-wing agenda through the Congress and the Supreme Court, Republicans can overlook moral issues. By contrast, Democrats are often willing to turn on their own politicians for similar issues, which is why Sen. Al Franken resigned after he was accused of sexual misconduct. In hindsight, I think THAT WAS A CRITICAL MISTAKE. Franken should have kept his seat in the U S Senate and faced the voters in the next election.
By making similar allegations at Joe Biden, Republicans hope Biden can be discredited enough to force the Democratic Party to reject him and choose another candidate, who might turn out to be weaker. Biden won the primaries because the rank and file Democratic voters consider him the strongest candidate; they themselves would be less likely to support wholeheartedly anyone else, and the centrist non-partisan voter even less so.
We hit absolute rock bottom with Donald Trump and even if the allegations against Biden are true, he is still better than Trump. After Biden purges the Presidency of Trump’s filth, we can then elect an even better person as Biden’s successor, and ultimately raise up an entire generation of young men who will know better than to violate the bodily autonomy of women. It’s too late for older men like Franken, Trump, and Biden who were raised with different standards and we need to be realistic about that. As long as Democrats and Republicans are NOT on an even playing field, this bloodletting among Democrats must end! We can move forward only by ensuring that Republicans and fellow Democrats can’t make political issues out of private behavior.
Read this shocking story:
GOP Congressman: Lawmakers Must “Put On Our Big Boy and Big Girl Pants” and Let Americans DieAccording to Rep. Trey Hollingsworth, between dying of the coronavirus and a recession, dying “is the lesser of two evils.”
Even as the novel coronavirus continues to kill an incomprehensible number of people, many a policymaker, business leader, and president alike want to know one thing: How soon can we get people back to work and everyday life, and can it be sooner than whenever you’re going to tell me because honestly that doesn’t really work for my schedule or the economic platform I was hoping to run for reelection on. While Donald Trump wants to “reopen” the country as soon as possible, actually knowledgable person Dr. Anthony Fauci has said the government is “not there yet” when it comes to having measures in place that could conceivably allow some businesses to safely reopen, like significantly expanded testing capacities and the ability to trace every individual who has been infected.
Also urging caution are a number of Democratic governors, including New York’s Andrew Cuomo, California’s Gavin Newsom, and their counterparts in Washington, Oregon, New Jersey, and Connecticut, who have said that many other conditions will have to be met before relaxing restrictions, including the ability of hospitals to handle a spike in patients; a reduction in the exposure of vulnerable groups; a plan for businesses, schools, and other groups to implement social distancing measures; and a plan to reimpose restrictions if infections begin to rise again. And while we would absolutely hate to draw some sort of distinction between the approach of the two political parties, it would appear that whereas Democrats are urging vigilance, science, and an emphasis on preserving human life, the general take of Republicans might be summed up as: Screw it, some people are going to have to take one for the team. You’ve had a good run, but them’s the breaks.
On Tuesday, that take was summed up by Indiana congressman Trey Hollingsworth, who told a radio-show host that it’s Congress’s job to sit Americans down and explain to them that dying in a pandemic isn’t as bad as the havoc said pandemic is wreaking on the economy. “We are going to have to look Americans in the eye and say, ‘We are making the best decisions for the most Americans possible,’” Hollingsworth told WIBC. “And the answer to that is unequivocally to get Americans back to work, to get Americans back to their businesses.”
Asked by host Tony Katz how he will respond to the critics who will inevitably say he’s anti-science and is going to get people killed, Hollingsworth—who strangely did not mention which of his family members he’d be willing to let the virus knock off for the greater good—replied: “It is policymakers’ decision to put on our big boy and big girl pants and say, ‘This is the lesser of these two evils. And it is not zero evil, but it is the lesser of these evils, and we intend to move forward in that direction.’ That is our responsibility, and to abdicate that is to insult the Americans that voted us into office.” Sure, some might argue that the bigger insult is to suggest that people should be willing to die to save the economy—which won’t be in a great place if infections and deaths start surging again as a result of relaxed restrictions—but potato, potahto.
Hollingsworth—whose parents must have had a sixth sense that he’d give this interview one day when they named him Trey—is of course far from the only member of the Grand Old Party making such proclamations. In March, White House National Economic Council chairman Larry Kudlow said in an interview that “The cure can’t be worse than the disease, and we’re gonna have to make some difficult trade-offs” because the “economic cost to individuals is just too great.” Later in the month, Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick claimed on live television that “lots of grandparents” are willing to “take a chance” on their survival for the good of the economy, saying “Those of us who are 70-plus, we’ll take care of ourselves. But don’t sacrifice the country, don’t do that, don’t ruin this great America.” After all, it’s like the founding fathers said: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and sorry if you’re over 70 or have asthma but I refuse to spend another Saturday not strolling the aisles of Bob’s Big Lots followed by a dine-in experience at the Cheesecake Factory, you selfish pricks.”
Bankruptcy and unemployment are lesser evils than DEATH, you bastard? Absolutely not so. If you are bankrupt, unemployed, or even homeless, you can reverse these problems. But you cannot rise yourself from the dead. And even sacrificing your lives would make sense if we were being invaded by an enemy army, instead of an extremely contagious virus. The best way to combat the virus is to stay home and avoid contact with people. Rep. Trey Hollingsworth(less) is actually a TRAITOR!
We need to start auditing our politicians, because I suspect most of them, especially the Republican ones, own stock in corporations that are losing money in this present crisis. So……they want others to sacrifice their very lives so they can continue to make profits?! We should make it illegal for state and federal representatives to own stock in such corporations, to end the obvious conflicts of interests that result from them owning some of the very private companies the government is supposed to regulate on behalf of the people.
I can’t wait for November to come! #voteoutallrepublicans
Read this story:
THE HAGUE (Reuters) – Equatorial Guinea argued on Monday that a luxury mansion in central Paris used by the son of the country’s president was protected by diplomatic immunity when it was raided by French authorities in 2012.
The case at the International Court of Justice is seen as a test for the limits of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Immunity, which shields government officials from prosecution abroad.
Equatorial Guinea launched the case in 2016 after the residence of Teodorin Obiang on the grand Avenue Foch was raided as part of a corruption investigation that resulted in a conviction for embezzlement, confirmed last week.
The conviction came after a collection of 25 supercars he owned, including a Ferrari Enzo and a Bugatti Veyron, were confiscated by the Geneva prosecutor’s office under a deal ending a money-laundering inquiry. The cars fetched nearly 27 million Swiss francs ($27 million) at auction in September.
Obiang, 50, is the son of President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who has ruled Equatorial Guinea, a former Spanish colony, for more than three decades.
A representative for Equatorial Guinea told the court’s judges on Monday that the luxury apartment, in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the world, had been bought by the African nation in 2011 and was part of its embassy.
“France has refused to recognize the diplomatic pretext of the building under the false pretence it belongs to the private domain”, ambassador Carmelo Nvono Nca, Equatorial Guinea’s agent, told the judges.
In coming days France will present its side before the United Nation’s highest court for disputes between states. A ruling is expected later this year.
In earlier hearings the French argued Equatorial Guinea was attempting to shield Obiang, known for posting pictures of his glamorous lifestyle on Instagram, by retroactively adding his opulent 101-room home to its diplomatic mission.
Police raided Obiang’s residence as part of a corruption investigation, eventually seizing 100 million euros worth of assets including paintings by Renoir and Degas and another fleet of luxury vehicles.
Obiang was convicted last week by a French court of embezzlement of public funds and ordered to pay a 30 million euro ($33 million) fine.
Diplomatic immunity in any case is a concept by which officials representing a country are allowed to openly violate the laws of another country while living there. It is a form of disrespect for the second country’s government and the people there that are subject to those laws. A basic standard of ethics and justice is that NO ONE should be above the law.
And this is not about some young idiot that didn’t know that he was doing wrong.
Obiang, 50, is the son of President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who has ruled Equatorial Guinea, a former Spanish colony, for more than three decades.
Being 50 myself, I know damn well if I were not the son of a ruler who has been in power for far too long, there would be no question of me being imprisoned for my crimes. This case angers me too!
I hope the International Court of Justice rejects this appeal and ultimately abolishes the concept of diplomatic immunity completely. And also that the people of Equatorial Guinea themselves rise up and force their corrupt leader into retirement, and also prevent his son from ever ruling. Sheesh!
Well, it finally happened!
New era for divided Britain as it leaves EU
London (AFP) – Britain on Friday ended almost half a century of European Union membership, making a historic exit after years of bitter arguments to chart its own uncertain path in the world.
There were celebrations and tears across the country as the EU’s often reluctant member became the first to leave an organisation set up to forge unity among nations after the horrors of World War II.
Thousands of people waving Union Jack flags packed London’s Parliament Square to mark the moment of Brexit at 11 pm (2300 GMT) — midnight in Brussels.
“We did it!” declared Nigel Farage, the former member of the European Parliament who has campaigned for Brexit for years, before the crowd began singing the national anthem.
But Britons remain as divided as they were nearly four years ago, when 52 percent voted to leave and 48 percent voted to remain in the EU.
“Rise and shine… It’s a glorious new Britain” said the Brexit-supporting Daily Express. The i, in contrast, headlined: “What next?”
In Scotland, where a majority voted to stay in 2016, Brexit has revived calls for independence and there were protests Friday outside parliament.
And in a sign of potential constitutional trouble ahead First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: “Scotland will return to the heart of Europe as an independent country — #LeaveALightOnForScotland.”
In Northern Ireland, where there are fears Brexit could destabilise a hard-won peace after decades of conflict over British rule, a billboard read: “This island rejects Brexit.”
Irish foreign minister Simon Coveney tweeted: “Goodbye & good luck.”
– ‘Glad it’s over’ –
Johnson, who remains a polarising figure accused of glossing over the complexity of leaving the EU, has avoided any big official celebrations that might exacerbate divisions.
“What happens now marks the point of no return. Once we have left, we are never, ever going back,” Farage told the crowd of cheering supporters.
At a “Big Brexit Bash” in Morley, northern England, Raymond Stott described the four years since the referendum as “a right cock-up”.
“I am just glad it’s all over. We will look after ourselves. We don’t need Europe,” said the 66-year-old.
But for many pro-Europeans, Friday marks a day they hoped would never come.
“Today is a day of mourning,” said Katrina Graham, 31, an Irish women’s rights activist who lives in Brussels, at a protest in central London.
If I had to choose between staying in the EU and leaving it only to have the UK itself fall apart, I’d choose to remain in the EU.
Only an idiot (or an English hypernationalist, which might be one and the same) can expect the Scots to take this insult to them lying down. The problem with nationalism is that it can apply to Scots as much as to the English.
Since both Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain in the EU, their defection from the UK will most likely cause the Union Jack to be retired, due to it representing a combination of the Scottish, English and Irish flags.
It will likely be replaced by something like a combination of the original English and Welsh flags.
A smaller version of the Welsh flag might appear in the upper left of the new UK flag (Wales is not even represented at all in the present Union Jack).
As for the United States, my contempt for the concept of “states’ rights”, which started the American Civil War, has only intensified, to the point that I no longer want to see states represented in the U S flag. Instead, I want only the Union to be shown as one brilliant sun. Like this:
Because a united, peaceful people, in either North America or Europe, is preferable to conflict resulting in chaos, death, destruction and tyranny over minorities.
I remember many years ago seeing the comic strip Mallard Fillmore in my local newspaper, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Mallard Fillmore is a comic strip written and illustrated by Bruce Tinsley that has been syndicated by King Features Syndicate since June 6, 1994. The strip follows the exploits of its title character, an anthropomorphic green-plumaged duck who works as a politically conservative reporter at fictional television station WFDR in Washington, D.C. Mallard’s name is a pun on the name of the 13th president of the United States, Millard Fillmore.
I guess I should have paid better attention to it, because…..
Mallard yearns for the “good old days,” and views himself as a victimized underdog in a world that is being overrun with political correctness, religious secularism, and hypocrisy. He is often in a state of outrage over the news item of the day, usually involving liberals.
Mallard’s politics are very close to, if not one and the same as, cartoonist Bruce Tinsley’s; Tinsley told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that “Mallard really is about as close to me as you can get,” in an October 2005 interview.
Other characters from the strip:
- Mr. Noseworthy is Mallard’s boss at WFDR. He is a parody of political correctness in America, afraid of offending anyone or anything. He is also a parody of the mainstream media, which is portrayed in the strip as having a liberal bias. Noseworthy’s catchphrase is, “If you’d gone to journalism school, you’d know this stuff.” He has a daughter in college who “came out” as a conservative.
- Chet is a co-worker of Mallard’s at WFDR. He is an arrogant, vain, superficial, Botox-injecting, clothes-obsessed Caucasian male. In a series of strips in late 2003, he discovered he is a “metrosexual.”
- Chantel, an African-American woman reporter, is a co-worker of Mallard’s at WFDR. She is described as “smart, aggressive, and liberal.” Unlike most liberals depicted in “Mallard Fillmore,” she is presented as an intelligent, competent person. She is usually used whenever a scene calls for a minority or a minority perspective – although she is offended when her colleagues assume she speaks on behalf of all African-Americans. On average, she appears about once or twice a year.
- Dave Quat, a conservative Vietnamese man, is Mallard’s best friend, who generally agrees with Mallard’s politics. He is the owner of his own diner, aptly named “Dave’s Diner.” His wife has never been seen.
- Rush Quat is Dave’s young son. Rush is in the fourth grade and hopes to someday become a professional basketball player; he sometimes plays basketball with Mallard. Unlike most of the kids in his class, he does not take Ritalin.
- Eddie is Mallard’s pet fish. Unlike Mallard, he does not speak but only comments in thought balloons.
- Congressman Pinkford Veneer is a fictional Washington, D.C. Democratic Congressman. He is a spineless, hypocritical, out-of-touch politician who enjoys tax hikes and opposes school vouchers, even though he sends his own children to a private school. In April 2000, he authored a bill that would require criminals to “give their victims a 30-second waiting period to unlock their trigger-locks” on their guns.
- OSHA-Boy is a guardian of workplace safety and safe working conditions who is authorized to “annoy virtually anyone suspected of violating a regulation.” He appears to be a flying, glasses-wearing dwarf (or other creature) with a superhero-like costume, and a clipboard in hand. He appears to be a physical manifestation of OSHA.
- Dr. Dilton Twinkley, an education expert, often appears as a guest on WFDR to talk about education issues. He appears to be an exaggerated parody of the NEA and U.S. public school system officials.
- Larry, a co-worker of Mallard’s who gets agitated whenever Mallard does not purchase candy from his son for his school’s annual fundraisers.
- Mr. or Ms. P.C. Person, a superhero-like physical manifestation of political correctness who prides hirself on being gender-neutral.(This character has come under fire from transgender rights groups because they felt the character promoted bigotry and mockery of transgender individuals.)
I wanted to learn more about the strip’s creator, so I went to:
And then read THIS:
In 2006, Tinsley was arrested twice for driving while intoxicated, once in August and again in December, both Class A misdemeanors. After the December incident, he attacked the sentencing judge, Roderick McGillivray, in several of his comics.
And he’s a conservative? Shouldn’t he be a supporter of law enforcement and not a drunk trying to justify himself even if he screws up?
Clearly, his strip shouldn’t be running in newspapers if those incidents are true!
Read this story:
Brexit: MPs back Boris Johnson’s bill
MPs have backed the Prime Minister’s plan for the UK to leave the European Union on 31 January.
They voted 358 to 234 in favour of something called the Withdrawal Agreement Bill, that’s a majority of 124.
Boris Johnson said the bill will allow the UK to “move forward”.Getty Images
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told his MPs to vote against the deal, he said there was a “better and fairer way” to leave the EU.
It had been expected that the bill would pass, because the Conservative Party won an 80-seat majority in the general election.
The bill will be discussed again in January after MPs come back after the Christmas break. The details will be looked at at the Committee stage and any proposed changes will be decided on.
The final stage of the bill in the Commons will then take place on Thursday, 9 January, before it heads to the Lords for approval.
Only then can it be made into law.
In a previous blog entry, I pointed out the hypocrisy of English nationalists wanting to leave the EU.
Ironically, the overwhelming majority of the people in Scotland voted AGAINST Brexit. Wouldn’t it be fitting if the UK did leave the EU only to have Scotland revolt and leave the UK? What goes around comes around!
Because of this, Prime Minister Johnson does NOT have an actual mandate for Brexit; he would only have that if BOTH English and Scottish majorities have voted for it.
If Johnson pushes ahead with his obsession with brexit next year, it is certain that the Scots will revolt and leave the United Kingdom, causing it to dissolve. The Scots have fought for their independence before.
The First War (1296–1328) began with the English invasion of Scotland in 1296, and ended with the signing of the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton in 1328. The Second War (1332–1357) began with the English-supported invasion by Edward Balliol and the ‘Disinherited’ in 1332, and ended in 1357 with the signing of the Treaty of Berwick. The wars were part of a great crisis for Scotland and the period became one of the most defining times in its history. At the end of both wars, Scotland retained its status as an independent state. The wars were important for other reasons, such as the emergence of the longbow as a key weapon in medieval warfare.
Obviously, Boris Johnson flunked history courses in school!
Watch this video:
Infomercials featuring techniques for “house-flipping” are often shown on TV late at night. I wonder if we should start protesting such crap. For my own view of “censorshit” on YouTube, see:
NOTE: That blog entry is now obsolete; YouTube no longer shuts down questionable videos due to copyright claims so quickly. Here’s hoping they won’t again.
Rebecca bashes another feminist for bullshitting:
Of course, opponents of feminism use such incidents to claim feminism itself is bullshit, so this fact checking is extremely important.
And can we PLEASE have fewer idiots and lunatics running for President of the United States? We already elected one such train wrecker in 2016!
Not to mention her condemnation of former friend Michael Shermer:
She also slams warped and bigoted religious crap:
It is incredible how much alike the two of us are. Could we be siblings?
Read this article:
Progressives want to censure Kyrsten Sinema, the first Arizona Democrat to win a Senate seat in 30 years. Genius idea: Hurtle left, right off a cliff.
A group of Arizona Democrats are demonstrating why President Donald Trump will more than likely be a two-term president.
The party’s liberal wing simply cannot resist the temptation to shoot itself in its Birkenstocks.
Witness the liberals riding in on their unicorn, hoping to censure the first Arizona Democrat elected to the U.S. Senate in 30 years.
It seems Sen. Kyrsten Sinema is just not Democratic enough. So the party’s progressive caucus is asked the Arizona Democratic Party to censure her on Saturday. The party has decided to push the vote to its annual meeting in January.
“We really support Kyrsten Sinema, we want her to succeed, we want her to be the best senator in the country,” Dan O’Neal, state coordinator for Progressive Democrats of America, told The Republic’s Yvonne Wingett Sanchez. “But the way she is voting is really disappointing. We want Democrats to vote like Democrats and not Republicans.”
Sinema won because she’s a centrist
The problem is, that’s not what the people who decided last year’s Senate race — the ones who quite likely will decide next year’s presidential race — want.
Sinema won last year because she ran as a centrist, one who could appeal to moderates who are sick to death of the long-running, never-ending trench war between the Republican and Democratic parties.
Why government needs to pop our bubbles: My social media feeds look different from yours and it’s driving political polarization
She won GOP-rich Maricopa County, as moderates saw in Sinema someone who would abandon the fox holes and go in search of that rare earth called middle ground.
But the progressives complain she’s too quick to throw in with Republicans. They cite her vote to confirm William Barr to be U.S. attorney, among other things.
Indeed, Sinema was one of three Democrats to vote for Barr’s confirmation.
But she also has voted against Trump’s positions 81% percent of the time this year, according to the FiveThirtyEight Trump Tracker.
In June, she voted yes on a bill to provide $4.5 billion in emergency humanitarian aid to migrants on the U.S-Mexico border. In March, she voted to block Trump from declaring a national emergency in order to divert funds on the border wall.
This is no way for Democrats to win
During last year’s campaign, Sinema made no secret of her desire to be seen as independent. She’s more pragmatist than party loyalist.
That was the secret sauce that allowed her to defeat Martha McSally, who hopped into Donald Trump’s hip pocket on the day she announced for the Senate.
Don’t play into his hands: Trump wants you to think he’s racist so you won’t notice he’s corrupt and killing jobs
Rather than taking a lesson from Sinema’s success, the Democratic Party nationally seems determined to do a reverse-McSally, embracing candidates who have pushed even its centrist candidates to the left.
Removing criminal penalties for illegal immigration, Medicare for all, the Green New Deal, free college, free child care, mandatory gun buybacks, slave reparations and impeachment impeachment impeachment.
Democrats seem determined to hurtle left, right over the cliff.
Just don’t expect Kyrsten Sinema to follow them.
Infighting within a political party happens all the time. There are many Republicans who are anti-Trump, yet the media pays little attention to them. Why then does USA Today make a big deal out of a few left-wing extremists among Democrats merely expressing their dissenting opinions? They may call themselves Progressives, but I don’t, because I would call nearly all Democrats Progressives or Liberals. The hard-core left is outside the political mainstream of the USA and always has been. In order to win a Presidential election, Democrats MUST appeal to the center. That’s obvious! Appealing only to the left has always been a formula for failure.
This clearly shows the bias among media outlets like USA Today. Because the media paid so much attention to Trump’s laughable campaign in 2015 and 2016, he gained public attention and respectability, enabling him to take over the Republican Party and then America itself. And that seems to be happening again. Quarreling within an opposing party in one state has nothing to do with Donald Trump’s chances of being reelected next year. Shame on USA Today for claiming otherwise! Stop misrepresenting the Democratic Party and Progressivism, USA Today! STOP TELLING YOUR READERS WHO TO VOTE FOR AND WHAT TO THINK!
Especially with crap like this:
Removing criminal penalties for illegal immigration, Medicare for all, the Green New Deal, free college, free child care, mandatory gun buybacks, slave reparations and impeachment impeachment impeachment.
Implying, of course, than only the left-wing extremists advocate these things. No, mainstream Democrats do too. Including me! They only look extremist if you are a hard-core conservative bigot.
As dedicated as I am to left-wing, liberal, and progressive politics, it is obvious that the extremism of some on the left has in turn enabled right-wing extremists under Donald Trump to take over America and start running it into the ground. We simple cannot afford a repeat of what happened in 2016……EVER! And therefore, we must defeat those who have unrealistic and even treacherous positions and tactics among the American left.
Katy Perry is one of the world’s biggest pop stars. Early in her career, before she became really respectable, she put out a song that struck me as profoundly stupid and this video of her performing it live didn’t help:
MALE peafowl have those massive tail feathers, not the females. And the song is clearly a metaphor. Buckley figured that one out fast enough. Jump ahead about nine minutes on this video and watch the Peacock song, referred to there as 2nd Place on the list:
As increasing amounts of damning evidence of Donald Trump’s corruption, incompetence, and cruelty as President of the USA piles up, it is finally starting to have an effect upon even his most loyal supporters and the critics of the previous President, Barack Obama.
Read this blog entry. I will copy passages from it in green italics and my responses will be in blue bold.
On October 20, 2018, I gave a talk about 50 minutes long at Westside Unitarian Universalist Church of Fort Worth detailing my life and religious and political views and how they evolved over the course of my life. I spent the first half of the discussion merely speaking for myself in general, and the last half answering questions from the audience to focus more on specific topics.
For a short version of that story see:
I made reference to other issues that I have also dealt with on this blog, including:
This article would make me laugh if it wasn’t so damn tragic.
For most of American history, the federal government in the USA, including its Congress, has been a haven for elitist jerks with no interest in relating to the average American. Most members of Congress are millionaires, after all.
Enter Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a young New York woman who was a waitress only a year ago, but who this year upset all expectations by overthrowing a member of the Democratic establishment in the primaries and then went on to win a seat in the House of Representatives. And what is she doing now to change things?
One of the biggest problems with our modern society is the limited vision far too many people seem to have and their unwillingness to look beyond that vision and outside their comfort zone to see all of reality and what it involves.
For example, the average white person in the USA rarely deals with black people on a personal level and thus has no idea of how racism affects blacks on a frequent basis. Because their dealings with police are usually pleasant or at least respectful, they assume that blacks are treated the same way by police. So when they hear of cops shooting unarmed blacks, they assume that the black suspect must have provolked the cop in some way. But even if that were true, being defiant towards a cop should not merit the death penalty, so the excusing of the killings is racist on its face.
Let me emphasize one important point about those in the media who defend the political status quo and those who are privledged because of that status quo; they are ALL liars. Because those in power want to feel comfortable about their power, these media thugs rush to tell their followers what they already assume to be true, thus the followers express confirmation bias rather than looking for objective truth to take all the facts into account.
Rush Limbaugh is a liar.
Ann Coulter is a liar.
Bill O’Reilly is a liar.
Shawn Hannity is a liar.
Michael Savage is a liar.
Dinesh D’Souza is a liar.
I could go on with dozens more names of media personalities as well as hundreds of names of officials in our various federal, state, and local governments, but you get the point, right?
And what are all these different conservatives lying about? One basic concept, which can be summed up as follows.
“There is no need to reform or improve society, what we have right now (or had in the past at some point) is what we should have forever in the future, because change will be too painful for us to endure.”
Doesn’t that sound like self-serving cowardice to you?
In the 1960s, there was a tremendous struggle over civil rights for blacks in America, especially in the south where they were kept in dire poverty and even denied voting rights in most cases, as well as cut off from the same opportunities whites enjoyed. The U S Supreme Court ruled against these racist institutions and forced most of them to change. Afterwards, most whites across America thought the racial problems had been solved. But the white supremacists, while they were down, were certainly not out and they began to strike back.
Indeed, I have come to believe that the Religious Right of the 1980s and the Tea Party that rose up in response to Barack Obama becoming President were both scams that enabled white supremacists to sneak into and take over the Republican Party and then through that to grab control of the entire political apparatus of the United States federal government, not merely taking back control of the southern states. And with Donald Trump they have finally succeeded.
Why is conservatism so harmful to society? Because human nature is corrupt and abusive. When people allow themselves to act according to their default biological programming, the result is always tribalism, the placing of members of your own group above outsiders instead of promoting equal justice for everyone.
Ironically, Christianity, which most American conservatives claim to believe in, teaches this very thing, that we are all sinners who can’t be trusted to control ourselves without guidance from above. However, it is clear that even authorities in conservative forms of Christianity can’t always be trusted; they promote religious bigotry rooted in the past instead of ethical standards that fit the real needs of real people in this present age (ironic, considering that Christianity itself started as a rebellion against Jewish legalism). That’s what secular humanism does. And democracy is a humanist ideal.
Whenever people believe, for any reason, that society is good enough and needs no improvement, they actually open the door for society to become corrupt and abusive later; the only sure way to protect the people is to constantly look for ways and means to improve society. I am therefore a champion of “perpetual revolution”; the American Revolution of the 18th Century was only the beginning of reforms and progress and should never end as long as we have viable societies of any kind. There should be NO place whatsoever for Conservatism in American politics, period. To be consistent, the aforementioned conservatives in the media should be bowing down to the British government that Americans rebelled against in 1776, but they don’t because they are hypocrites.
Look at this disturbing news story:
Rigging the vote: how the American right is on the way to permanent minority ruleUnderhand Republican tactics – gerrymandering, voter suppression, more – underpin a vice-like grip on power
The American right is in the midst of a formidable project: installing permanent minority rule, guaranteeing control of the government even as the number of actual human beings who support their political program dwindles.
Voter suppression is one, but only one, loathsome tactic in this effort, which goes far beyond just winning one election. Minority rule is the result of interlocking and mutually reinforcing strategies which must be understood together to understand the full picture of what the American right wants to achieve.
Examples are everywhere. Take North Dakota. In 2012, Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat, won a surprise victory in a Senate race by just 2,994 votes. Her two largest county wins were in the Standing Rock and Turtle Mountain Reservations, where she won more than 80% of the vote. Her overall vote margin in counties containing Native reservations was more than 4,500 votes.
Observing that Heitkamp literally owed her seat to Native voters, North Dakota’s Republican legislature enacted a voter ID law that requires voters to present identification showing their name, birth date and residential address. There’s the rub: many Native voters do not have traditional residential addresses, so this law effectively disenfranchises them.
Or take Georgia, where the Republican nominee for governor, Brian Kemp, is the secretary of state and in that capacity has placed more than 50,000 voter registrations on hold, many from urban areas with high black populations. That is in keeping with Kemp’s privately expressed “concern” that high voter turnout will favor his opponent – Stacey Abrams, running strongly to be the first black female governor in US history.
Exacerbating voter suppression is the ongoing partisan gerrymandering effort – the redrawing of electoral maps to favor one party over another. After the 2010 census, the Wisconsin legislature (controlled by Republicans) drew a map for the state’s legislative districts explicitly designed to ensure they would retain control of the legislature even if they received a minority of votes. It worked: in 2012, despite receiving only 48.6% of the vote, they won 60 of 99 seats. Democrats won an outright majority of votes cast but secured just 39 seats.
To this, Wisconsin added a voter ID requirement designed to make it harder to vote at all. Voila: voter turnout in the 2016 presidential election was the lowest since 2000 and Donald Trump carried the state. (To be sure, there were other factors at work.) The combined, national effect of partisan gerrymandering is such that in the 2018 midterms, the Democrats might win the popular vote by 10 points and still not control the House.
Legislative maps designed to promote minority rule plus voter suppression of the constituencies opposed to it is a potent combination. And there’s more.
The two most recent Republican presidents have entered office despite receiving fewer votes than their opponent in a national election, thanks to the electoral college, which systematically over-represents small states. (California gets one electoral vote per 712,000 people; Wyoming gets one per 195,000.) With the presidency in hand in the run-up to the 2020 census, minority rule will be further entrenched by adding a citizenship question to the census. This will result in systematic undercounting of the population in heavily Democratic areas, which will in turn further reduce their influence as legislatures draw maps based on the data.
Then there’s the Senate. Because of its bias toward smaller, rural states, a resident of Wyoming has 66 times the voting power in Senate elections as one in California. Thus, in 2016, the Democratic party got 51.4 million votes for its Senate candidates. The Republicans got 40 million. And despite losing by more than 11 million votes, the Republicans won a supermajority (22 of 36) of the seats up for election, holding their majority in the chamber.
The hideously malapportioned Senate and electoral college permit the last piece of the minority rule puzzle to snap into place: the supreme court. In 2016, after losing the contest for the presidency and the Senate by millions of votes, the Republicans were able to install two supreme court justices. There may be more.
In fact, when the Senate confirmed Trump’s first nominee, Neil Gorsuch, it was a watershed moment in American history. For the first time, a president who lost the popular vote had a supreme court nominee confirmed by senators who received fewer votes – nearly 22 million fewer – than the senators that voted against him. And by now, it will not surprise you to discover that the senators who voted for the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh represent 38 million fewer people than the ones who voted no.
With the supreme court in hand, all those other tactics – partisan gerrymandering, voter ID and the rest – are protected from the only institution that could really threaten them. But it doesn’t stop there. The supreme court can be used to do more than approve the minority rule laws that come before it. It can further the project on its own.
In 2015, the court came within one vote of holding that independent redistricting commissions (which reduce partisan gerrymandering) are actually unconstitutional. The swing vote in that case, Anthony Kennedy, is gone. And the court in 2013 famously invalidated a major portion of the Voting Rights Act which put checks on voter-suppression efforts of the kind now taking place all over the country.
Taken together, this is a powerful set of tools. Draw maps that let you win even when you lose. Use the resulting power to enact measures to suppress the vote of the other side further. Count on a minority rule president to undercount your opponents in the census, and a minority-rule Senate to confirm justices who will strike down any obstacles to the plan.
With the deck this stacked, it isn’t enough to win. Wresting control back from the entrenched minority will take overwhelming victory. It may take, in other words, a genuine political revolution.
- Ian Samuel is Associate Professor of Law at Indiana University Bloomington’s Maurer School of Law. He is also the co-host of @FirstMondaysFM
The title of this blog entry refers to this earlier one:
It’s time to revisit that issue. Look at this meme:
The whole premise of that meme is a lie. Capitalism and corporatism are one and the same and have been for at least 300 years. The attempt to make a distinction between them is profoundly dishonest, implying that “real” capitalism does not exist. If so, it never did and never will. The only real alternative to crony capitalism is Democratic Socialism, period.
Here’s what really happens:
A individual has an idea.
That individual forms a company and makes a product with that idea.
Consumers give the company money for the product.
The company becomes successful.
Someone else has a better idea and creates a better product.
The first company uses its money to buy out the new product from its inventor and sells it in addition to or even instead of the original product, increasing its profitability and leaving the actual inventor with almost nothing later.
As a result, the company makes money no matter what product it sells.
Always remember this: Those who already have a lot of money will always have an unfair advantage over those who don’t.
Government corruption does NOT produce corporatism. Tyranny and abuses can also come from economic forces too if government does nothing to stop them with policies such as “trust-busting” and progressive income taxation, among other tools at government’s disposal to redistribute wealth. That is why Libertarianism is worthless.
In my younger days, I was often rejected by girls and young women even though I tried to be as loving towards them as possible. I assumed that it might have been because they thought I was ugly or weak. But the real issue seems to be something I often see in politics too.
Women naturally want men that are strong to protect them and their children, and our culture seems to depict men that have a strong sense of empathy and compassion for others to be “weak”, therefore such men are not considered as suitable for a domestic partnership as men that are highly aggressive towards others.
Likewise, people generally want a leader that is highly aggressive for the same reason. That explains why George McGovern lost so badly to Richard Nixon in 1972 despite having a much better character and this was repeated with Jimmy Carter losing to Ronald Reagan in 1980, and Donald Trump winning his election in 2016.
But what people often fail to consider is that the same aggressive attitude that makes a man look strong can be twisted to hurt or abandon the very ones the man is supposed to be protecting, including his love partner and their children. By contrast, a loving, empathic man can encourage a woman to stand up for herself rather than just let a man fight for her. And he would not leave her as long as she loved him just as deeply.
I have known several cases of women who used to see me as just a friend who after being abused and/or neglected by the men in their life, later took another look at me and decided I would have been the better partner for them after all. And I would consider it an honor to help care for them.
Likewise, I am hopeful that the American people will stop being seduced by the mere appearance of strength and seek in future Presidents the most powerful character trait anyone can have: LOVE! Its being seen as weakness is sheer ignorance. Have you ever seen a mother bear fight to protect her cubs?
I would like right wing conservatives to read the following. It explains my beliefs in a nutshell and in an even tempered, logical way.
Let’s break it down, shall we? Because quite frankly, I’m getting a little tired of conservatives lying about what liberalism is or should be. Spoiler alert: Not every Liberal is the same, though the majority of Liberals I know think along roughly these same lines:
1. I believe a country should take care of its weakest members. A country cannot call itself civilized when its children, disabled, sick, and elderly are neglected. Period. No one is disposable, period!
In an earlier blog entry, I referred to the Articles of Confederation as the ultimate expression of Libertarian thought and noted their complete failure. Of course, the term libertarian was not used back then; what we call Libertarianism now is merely a repackaged form of “classical Liberalism”, much like today’s Tea Party is merely a repackaged form of the “Religious Right” that plagued American politics in the 1980s. Same shit, different label. Now two channels on YouTube, Extra Credits and the Alternative History Hub, have teamed up to give the Articles of Confederation the public beatdown they so deserved but never seemed to have gotten. Why not? Perhaps because their failure shows that the Founding Fathers of the USA were not after all the nearly infallible saints they are often depicted as, though I suppose George Washington comes close. Anyway, here are those videos:
The same idiotic impulses that drove American voters to elect Donald Trump to the Presidency seems to have fueled the vote last year in the United Kingdom over “Brexit”, the possible departure of the UK from the European Union. The EU was formed to promote free trade and end travel and residence restrictions between its members. Many British people hate the EU because it seemed to be a threat to British sovereignty. But just as the rights of INDIVIDUALS in the USA should be more important than that of its STATES (that’s what the American Civil War was all about), so should that same issue be in Europe! People matter, countries do not!
Some in Britain may have realized that and are making a backlash against that earlier vote. Read this story:
UK General Election: Political turmoil awaits after shock results
London (CNN) UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s future is looking uncertain after her election gamble appears to have backfired. The opposition Labour Party, led by Jeremy Corbyn, has performed far better than polls indicated and has cost May her majority in the UK Parliament.
Britain has been plunged into political chaos overnight.
- The ruling Conservative Party lost its majority, resulting in a hung parliament.
- With 646 of the 650 seats declared, the Conservatives have 315 and Labour has 261. See the full results here.
- PM Theresa May called the election to strengthen the Conservatives ahead of Brexit talks. That gamble failed, calling her future into question.
- The Conservatives will have to link up with other parties – most likely Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party — to form a majority.
- Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party has done far better than expected, but is unlikely to be able to form a coalition.
- Leading political figures including former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond and former Deputy PM Nick Clegg lost their seats.
- The results could derail upcoming Brexit negotiations, which are due to start in just 10 days time.
- The pound fell sharply against the dollar, dropping about 2% as investors were spooked by the growing political uncertainty.
Theresa May favored Brexit and she is clearly a moron for taking so strongly a position that made her country look like a hotbed of bigotry.
Record number of female MPs
As well as being an astonishing election, it has also been a record breaking one with more than 200 women elected to Parliament, the highest number in history.
In 1918 only one of the 707 Members of Parliament (MPs) elected was a woman. That was Sinn Feinn’s Constance Markievicz, who did not take up her seat.
For the curious, Nancy Astor was the first woman to take up a seat at Westminster after winning a by-election in 1919.
In 2012, 145 out of 650 MPs were female, while in 2015 a then record number of 196 women were elected in the general election and subsequent by-elections.
Britain also elected its first female Sikh MP Thursday when Labour’s Preet Kaur Gill won the Birmingham Edgbaston seat.
Women tend to be more liberal/progressive than men, so this shows the actual trend in British politics. But that one woman that is the current Prime Minister has got to go!
Ironically, the overwhelming majority of the people in Scotland voted AGAINST Brexit. Wouldn’t it be fitting if the UK did leave the EU only to have Scotland revolt and leave the UK? What goes around comes around!
In the past, I have been harshly critical of popular music trends and their being so centered on teens and their shallow interests.
But then I found an incredible exception! Remember these people?
Their daughter, Sarah Copus, is now 13 and has put out a solo album. In addition to singing so beautifully that her voice nearly rips my heart out (Listen to her on a 2002 song here on a YouTube video I made), she can play various instruments, though she seems to prefer the harp the most.
This is a direct sequel to Two Reasons for Public Ignorance
Read this article, of which I will provide summaries:
A couple of nights ago, some transphobe made a comment on my blog under Transphobics get busted by crime victim they tried to take advantage of.
I rejected it for the filth that it was, but I made a screenshot of it in order to make an example of it.
What an idiot!
First, transgendered people are not trying to be shocking or scary towards anyone; they just want to live their lives without being a target of others’ hate. It is the transphobes who choose to react with hostility to the open existence of transgendered people. If there was no hostility, what would be the problem?
Second, who the hell made this guy an expert on mental illnesses? Most psychologists decades ago classified homosexuality as a mental illness, but they eventually stopped doing that once it became clear that the mental disorder that supposedly caused homosexuality could not be clearly defined and treated. The same may well be true of the transgendered condition. If being homosexual or being transgendered are not themselves harmful, why call them illnesses at all?
Third, if people’s rights are being violated, it does not matter if it is 50% (women) or less than 1% (transgendered). This looks like the reverse of the popularity fallacy, in which there being very few of a non-privileged group somehow justifies discriminating against them. If 100 transgendered people had been exterminated by the Nazis during World War II instead of six million Jews, it still would have been a horrible thing for them to do.
How nice of the asshole to use the slur for transgendered people that is the same as “nigger” for African-Americans!
I am a champion of tolerance for gays, lesbians, and transgendered people. Ironically, that means I have to be INTOLERANT of conservatives who express bigotry towards those types of people. Does this mean I am a bigot towards conservatives? Of course not!
The concept of bigotry towards someone’s OPINIONS is nonsense. When conservatives accuse their liberal opponents of bigotry towards them, that is merely a silencing tactic. It is the same sort of arrogance that leads to them referring to the “regressive left”. A pathological liar named Jonah Goldberg even wrote a book as right-wing propaganda titled “Liberal Fascism” based on that lame fallacy.
To explain the concept of false bigotry a little more clearly, consider this analogy: “Men fear that women may laugh at them for not being manly, while women fear that men may beat them nearly to death for not being ladylike.” Trust me, being publicly ridiculed for one’s bigotry is nothing compared to being MURDERED for being gay, transgendered or even being in the wrong place at the wrong time if you are black in a mostly white neighborhood and get confronted by a cop or some vigilante with a gun.
SO GROW THE FUCK UP, CONSERVATIVES! I am having NONE of your shit anymore!
I’m against all forms of bigotry, which is simply judging all members of one group as if they all have the same moral failings instead of judging human beings strictly as individuals. I do not assume all Muslims are terrorists, that all women deserve to be sex slaves to their husbands, or that all French people are alcoholics.
Recently, various states in the United States have either tried to pass laws allowing discrimination against transgendered people or tried to repeal laws prohibiting discrimination against them. The rationale behind such absurdities is that all transgendered women are actually still men pretending to be women so they can attack and rape women and girls in bathroom stalls. Where they get that crazy idea from is anyone’s guess, but it actually encourages hatred against all who happen to be transgendered, often making THEM targets of violence. Quite simply, people need to stop equating sexual deviancy with immorality. Just because someone is homosexual or transsexual does not mean they are inclined to violate the personal autonomy of anyone else.
Now someone who was abused TWICE, first by an actual criminal and then by opportunistic transphobes, has decided to fight back against both types of bastards.