HomeMeta3/27 News Roundup & Open Thread
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la58

Happy Bday for TPW, you’ve done great with the learning curve on running your own site.

humphrey

You can fool people some of the time……..

$15 An Hour Minimum Wage Vetoed By Democratic Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh

On Monday, Baltimore’s city council, which is composed of 15 Democrats, voted 11-3 to raise the city’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2022, local NBC affiliate WBAL 11 reports. One city council member did not vote.

Despite popular support among the city council and many Baltimore voters for the $15 minimum wage, Democratic Mayor Catherine Pugh vetoed the minimum wage bill.

The veto came as a shock to the bill’s supporters, especially since Pugh had pledged to support a minimum wage increase to $15 an hour when she campaigned to become mayor.

jcitybone

Lying Dem. Probably something to do with where the mayor’s donations are coming from.

polarbear4

teh usual. DPO establishment candidate won here, although there is a Berner head of the enviro caucus. Huge smear campaign against the Berner. And some pretty bad dissing of our delegates at the state meeting, too, I hear. I’m getting closer and closer to going Indie. It berns me up that every time we get a great candidate of the people, in states or nationally, they go out and find one of their own and stick them in the race and smear their opponent. Sad to say, even Merkley endorsed her. I wrote him about it, but it’s just so infuriating.

Good does happen, too, though. Lobby day for our platform committee (and anyone) is coming up, for the Elliott Forest, redoing our state govt. retirement system, mental health, etc. I likely won’t be going for a couple of reasons, but I love that people are doing this and hope to join the next one.

polarbear4

The Democrats Will Get Us All Nuked Before They’ll Admit They Robbed Us Of President Sanders

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: there is no proof of collusion between Trump and Russia to win the 2016 election, and there never will be. If such proof existed, the intelligence community’s mass surveillance network would have found it and leaked it to the Washington Post months ago. If Russia wanted to tilt the election in Trump’s favor they wouldn’t have to coordinate with Trump in order to do so; basic common sense says that there is no reason for such a thing to have happened. Combine all this with the fact that we have still to this day been shown not one shred of proof of Russians hacking Democratic party emails, the revelation that the CIA had been actively cultivating the ability to forge signs of Russian cyber intrusions, and the fact that the validity of part of the CrowdStrike report on the alleged Russian hacking has been cast into serious doubt, and there is no reason at all for the Democratic party to be constantly babbling about Russia.

But babble they will, and babble they must, with all the effort and intensity of a drowning man struggling to reach the air. The implications behind what the elites of their party have inflicted upon the American people are far too damning for them to do otherwise; there is now a climate-killing, military industrial complex crony corporatist in the White House because of what these people chose to do in the last election cycle, and the survival of their establishment depends upon people not looking at this blatant fact. Despite being shown every reason to believe that Bernie Sanders was the man to beat Trump, the DNC violated the Impartiality Clause of their own Charter (a promise they’d made to the American people to prevent a DemExit after the 1968 fiasco in Chicago) by colluding against Sanders, while the same Democratic officials yammering about Russia endorsed his unelectable opponent, and the same establishment press that keeps popularizing the Russia narrative caused a campaign-crippling media blackout where they deliberately choked off information about Sanders from the American public.

These actions are unforgivable. What the Democratic establishment inflicted upon the American people is simply unforgivable. If the Democratic primary process had happened the way the American people were promised it would happen, Bernard Sanders, the single most popular politician in America, would be President of the United States right now. The same Democratic party loyalists who voted for Clinton would have voted for Sanders over Trump, the Bernie-or-Busters who refused to support Clinton would have voted for Sanders over Trump, and all the Rust Belt voters who backed Sanders in the primaries would have backed him again in the generals instead of voting for Trump. You McResistance keyboard warriors can put your fingers in your ears and pretend you don’t know that this is true, but we’ll both know that you’re lying. The Democratic establishment’s actions are unforgivable, which is why they’re ramping up their hawkish Russia rhetoric.

jcitybone

Not good news for filibuster chances if Leahy won’t do it. Sen. Leahy please explain how eliminating the filibuster hurts the Dems. They’re always afraid to use it anyway. Let the Republicans be the ones to nuke the filibuster if they can.

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/325890-dem-senator-not-included-to-filibuster-gorsuch

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is signaling that he could buck Democratic leadership and help President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee clear a 60-vote threshold in the Senate.

“I am not inclined to filibuster, even though I’m not inclined to vote for him,” Leahy — the former ranking member on the Judiciary Committee — told a Vermont news outlet.

Neil Gorsuch will need 60 votes — including the support of at least eight Democratic senators — to overcome an initial procedural hurdle. GOP leadership has refused to rule out using the “nuclear” option, which would allow Gorsuch and future Supreme Court nominees to clear the Senate with only a simple majority.

Leahy warned Republicans against going nuclear, saying that eliminating the 60-vote threshold to end debate on a nominee “hurts everybody.”

polarbear4

I do not want the end of the filibuster, and this seems to make no sense. He doesn’t want it eliminated, but he won’t use it? Guess I never really knew what he’d do in a pinch. He’s really disappoint me, starting with the primaries.

And remember, Reid and the Dems already did away with most filibusters. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/senate-poised-to-limit-filibusters-in-party-line-vote-that-would-alter-centuries-of-precedent/2013/11/21/d065cfe8-52b6-11e3-9fe0-fd2ca728e67c_story.html?utm_term=.095aa65d0e3a

Most Dems are useless or downright harmful.

jcitybone

Another wishy-washy dishrag “both sides” Dem

Sen. Coons: GOP Will ‘Almost Certainly’ Go Nuclear If Dems Filibuster Gorsuch

Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) said Monday that he was worried that Democratic opposition to Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch would lead Republicans to trigger a “nuclear option,” eliminating the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees.

“I doubt he’s going to get 60 votes,” Coons told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has said that Gorsuch will need 60 votes to be confirmed, implying that Democrats will filibuster his nomination.

“And the question then, Joe, becomes, ‘What do we do?’” Coons continued. “There’s a lot of finger-pointing. There’s a lot of Democrats justifiably still very mad about the treatment of Merrick Garland.”

Senate Republicans have indicated that they are willing to invoke the so-called “nuclear option” – shorthand for changing the Senate’s rules with a simple majority vote – to eliminate the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees.

In 2013, in response to Republican obstruction, the then-Democratic Senate majority invoked the nuclear option to eliminate the filibuster for all executive branch positions and judicial appointments, except for Supreme Court nominees.

Coons said Senate Republicans would “almost certainly” eliminate the Supreme Court nominee filibuster.

“And I think this is tragic,” he continued. “And in talking to friends on both sides of the aisle, we’ve got a lot of senators concerned about where we’re headed. There’s Republicans still very mad at us over the 2013 change to the filibuster rule, we’re mad at them about shutting down the government, they’re mad at us for Gorsuch, and we are not headed in a good direction. I’m very concerned about where we’re headed.”

jcitybone

Good news from Florida

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/political-pulse/os-nelson-gorsuch-filibuster-20170327-story.html

Florida U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said Monday he will vote against confirmation of President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch – and would also back a Democratic filibuster to keep a vote from happening.

Gorsuch was nominated by Trump in January to fill the vacancy left by Associate Justice Antonin Scalia’s death in 2016.

“Deciding whether to confirm a president’s nominee for the highest court in the land is a responsibility I take very seriously,” Nelson said in a statement.

“Over the past few weeks, I have met with Judge Gorsuch, listened to the Judiciary Committee’s hearings and reviewed his record with an open mind,” Nelson said. “I have real concerns with his thinking on protecting the right to vote and allowing unlimited money in political campaigns.”

In addition, Nelson said, “the judge has consistently sided with corporations over employees, as in the case of a freezing truck driver who, contrary to common sense, Judge Gorsuch would have allowed to be fired for abandoning his disabled rig during extreme weather conditions.”

humphrey

No surprise here!

http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/326042-path-to-60-narrows-for-trump-pick

Much in the article has already been mentioned. It just adds some clarity.

Gorsuch’s prospects for ending a filibuster got a boost later on Monday when Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) told a reporter for NBC that he would vote to end debate on the nomination. Manchin said he had not yet decided whether he will back Gorsuch’s nomination.

Those states are home to five of 2018’s most vulnerable Democratic incumbents: Sens. Manchin, Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), Claire McCaskill (Mo.), Jon Tester (Mont.) and Joe Donnelly (Ind.). Four of the five have kept a tight lip on whether they’ll back Gorsuch.

The two other Democrats who backed Alito are Sen. Tom Carper (Del.), who says he will oppose Gorsuch, and Maria Cantwell (Wash.). Cantwell’s spokesman told the Seattle Times that she’s undecided and will meet with Gorsuch this week.

polarbear4

Remember when Cantwell was thought of as progressive! Joke’s on us.

jcitybone

Perhaps Leahy is feeling the pressure. Plus Spicer at his press conference cited him as a no filibuster vote. Have to believe that will actually make him more likely to filibuster. From his twitter account:

Unless #JudgeGorsuch provides REAL answers to written Qs & senators are given ample time for review & debate, he will be filibustered.

For a #GOP #POTUS official to assail Democratic ‘obstructionism’ of the Gorsuch nom. is the height of unbridled hypocrisy. #MerrickGarland

humphrey

Pressure is the only thing that works on some of these Senators. He should have been a no vote in the first place!

Benny

LD — I have a question: what is “code” supposed to do? Does it help for posting non-YT or Vimeo videos or post pictures? And do we need “spoiler” that much for replies?

Thanks! And Happy B-day, TPW!

Benny

polarbear4

Happy Birthday, TPW and to all of you, especially LD, JD and “the weekenders” for providing a place for our radical souls to roam free.

humphrey

I wonder if Rachel is going to have him on her show? They seem to be on the same wavelength.

http://thehill.com/policy/cybersecurity/325928-cheney-russian-election-interference-could-be-act-of-war

Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday that Russia’s attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election could be considered an “act of war” against the U.S.

“There’s no question there was a very serious effort made by Mr. [Vladimir] Putin and his government, his organization, to interfere in major ways with our basic fundamental democratic processes,” Cheney said Monday during a speech at the Economic Times’ Global Business Summit 2017 in New Delhi.

polarbear4

50+ Economists Warn Against Neoliberalism’s Return in Ecuador
Ahead of upcoming elections, a call for austerity and economic policies structured for the elites to be left in the nation’s past

Important reforms over the past decade have distributed oil revenues more equitably. Oil agreements that previously gave away Ecuador’s oil wealth to foreign companies were renegotiated, leading to increased revenues for the people of Ecuador (without these renegotiations, the rise in oil prices would not have generated substantially greater revenues to the government). These government revenues have been channeled into responsible state spending with impressive results: middle and secondary school enrollment shot up dramatically as higher education spending increased from 0.7 to 2.1 percent of GDP. As government spending on health services doubled, as a percentage of GDP, from 2006 to 2016, some 40 percent more patients were treated at public hospitals in 2014 than had been in 2006. The Ecuadorian government enacted a stimulus of about 5 percent of GDP that allowed it to weather the 2009 Global Recession with lost output of only about 1.3 percent.

The “Washington consensus” era in Ecuador did not benefit most Ecuadorians, and a majority of Ecuadorians let their feelings be known, through mass protests that helped to oust several presidents; and finally in the 2006 elections that ushered in an era of real change ― a historic break with the economic policies that had, in part, put the interests of Ecuador’s elite, of Washington, and of powerful international capital, ahead of the majority of Ecuadorians.

Our goal is not to tell Ecuadorians whom to vote for, or to interfere in Ecuador’s political processes. With the proliferation of misinformation and misunderstanding about Ecuador’s economy, however, we felt it necessary to correct the record.

Ecuador deserves leaders who will implement policies that benefit all Ecuadorians ― whoever they may be. It would be tragic for Ecuador’s next government to return to a less prosperous, less inclusive past.

As always, more at the link.

Benny

This looks to be a book I may wish to read. Won’t come out until almost mid-summer.

humphrey

The title is very appealing.

I wonder if the cover will have a picture of Obama and Holder?

humphrey

He was quick to take credit for the Wall Street bounce. I wonder how he will react to this?

http://thehill.com/policy/finance/325925-trump-slump-stocks-fall-as-investors-lose-optimism-in-new-administration

Stocks in the United States are sinking as the market loses confidence in Washington’s ability to deliver on President Trump’s campaign promises.

Wall Street’s core stock indices hit their lowest levels in six weeks Monday morning, according to Reuters, the first full day of trading since Republicans abandoned a bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

Wall Street Journal reports that the Dow Jones Industrial Average is on track to have its longest losing streak since 2011.

Benny

From USA Today, released about an hour ago. Bernie lays out what Trump’s draconian budget plan could mean for a single mother, using his budget director’s vision of “compassion”.

Bernie: Trump’s morally repugnant budget must be defeated

Mick Mulvaney, Donald Trump’s budget director, recently made a truly remarkable and cynical statement. He claimed the draconian cuts in the president’s budget were “one of the most compassionate things we can do” for a single mother living in Detroit.

Really? Let’s look at what Trump’s “compassion” actually means for that mother, her two children and tens of millions of other working-class Americans.

If Trump’s budget becomes law, the after school programs that provide both enrichment and a safe space for Mick Mulvaney’s hypothetical mother’s children while she is still at work would be ended.The Trump budget eliminates the federally-funded afterschool program— the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program. “Compassion,” according to the Trump administration, would throw 1.1 million children into the streets or leave them home alone instead of in a safe environment for care and learning when the school day ends.

In the classroom, teachers would be less prepared because this “compassionate” budget eliminates funding for professional development and support for teachers in high-need schools.

As a single mother in Detroit, her greatest hope is that her children will be able to attend college. That dream is even more distant because this budget would slash Pell grants and eliminate the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, putting education further out of reach for at least 1.5 million students.

Read the rest here:
http://usat.ly/2n9Oqlo

polarbear4

In Bizarro/Neolibcon on Steroids world, “help” means make her so miserable that (in their minds) she’ll marry. Or their “help” will speed up the process of putting her and/or her child into the lowest ranks, where they can be ignored and/or jailed. They could even die early, if not immediately.

polarbear4

“Thunderous Applause” Welcomes Sanders’ Call for Medicare-for-All

In a piece published Sunday, Mokhiber quoted pediatrician and PNHP member Margaret Flowers, who co-directs the group Health Over Profit for Everyone. She said:

Introducing a public option will divide and confuse supporters of Medicare-for-All. Senators who should co-sponsor Medicare-for-All will be divided. Sanders seems to be urging a public option to please the Democratic Party, but Sanders cannot serve two masters—Wall Street’s Chuck Schumer and the people. Sanders must decide whom he is working for.

While it might seem politically pragmatic to support a public option, it is not realistically pragmatic because a public option will not work. Senator Sanders knows that and he knows that the smallest step toward solving the healthcare crisis is National Improved Medicare for All. This would fundamentally change our health system that currently treats health as a commodity so that people only have access to what they can afford to a system that treats health as a public necessity so that people have access to what they need. Medicare-for-All achieves the savings needed to provide comprehensive coverage to everyone.

“We look to Senator Sanders to act on what he promised during his presidential campaign, a national improved Medicare-for-All now, not tomorrow,” Flowers said. “Tomorrow never comes. It is not up to him to decide if single-payer can pass in Congress. That task is for the people to decide.”

humphrey

This is how Democrats can make good legislation not worth a pinch.

Md. Senate passes controversial redistricting reform bill

WASHINGTON — A bill backed by Democrats that could change the way Maryland draws its boundaries for congressional districts passed through the state Senate Thursday, with many Republicans saying it is hollow legislation that is unlikely to lead to any meaningful reform.
The 30 to 16 vote came one day after the Senate gave the measure initial approval. It now moves to the House of Delegates.

Here is the kicker

The redistricting reform bill creates a pact between Maryland and five other mid-Atlantic states including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia and North Carolina. If all six states pass similar legislation, each state would have a nonpartisan independent commission draw congressional lines.

“The only way we do it, and we have a significant impact, is if we do it together with our partner states,” Ferguson said.

polarbear4

cuz we too scared to do it alone. and did things this way even when we had majorities. be we better than the other guy so pleez votes for us.

humphrey

I guess the killing of civilians is OK if you are the Pentagon.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-mosul-usa-idUSKBN16Y2BA?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=Social

After civilians killed in Mosul, Pentagon denies loosening rules.
The Pentagon, facing accusations that a coalition air strike may have killed scores of civilians in the Iraqi city of Mosul, said on Monday it was not loosening its rules of engagement in the fight against Islamic State but that resources to investigate claims were limited.

Eyewitnesses from Mosul and Iraqi officials have said last week’s strike on Islamic State targets may have collapsed homes where rescue officials say as many as 200 people were buried in the rubble.

The U.S. military does not intend to change the way it carries out strikes, even as the fighting in Mosul enters more densely populated areas, Colonel John Thomas, a spokesman for U.S. Central Command, told reporters.

humphrey

I think that this tweet sums up the Republicans quite well.

Benny

Bernie Sanders Is Here to Win the Health Care Reform Debate That Donald Trump Lost

Let’s be clear: Republicans control the White House and both houses of Congress, and after suffering last week’s high-profile embarrassment, there is a 0.0 percent chance that Paul Ryan will have any interest in the an alternative proffered by Bernie Freaking Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist who has been one of the most vocal critics of Donald Trump since, well, the moment Donald Trump became a thing. And as Dana Bash correctly pointed out, not even President Obama and a Democrat-led House and Senate could get a public option done back when the Affordable Care Act was still in its planning stages.

That said, there’s never been a better time for Sanders and other would-be reformers to make their pitches to prospective voters. The last year of frenzied debate over the future of Obamacare has created what must be the most informed electorate in history on the subject, and although Trumpcare had the best chance on paper of passing—seriously, how did they blow that?—its failure begs the question of what other options might be out there. By throwing his hat into the ring this early, Sanders is sending a clear message ahead of the 2018 midterm elections: If you didn’t like Trumpcare, come help me make this happen instead.

Read the rest of the article here.

Whoever thought Bernie would make GQ five times in the past couple of months, including most appropriately dressed man at the Inaugural Ceremony?

Benny

Thinking about Bernie being in GQ makes me think of the ZZ Top song, “Sharp Dressed Man.” Here’s a clip of David Cook (the winner of American Idol in 2008) and ZZ Top entertaining the crowd at the finale of 2008.

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