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    • ‘Huge victory’: progressives vow to keep fighting GOP health bill after vote delay

      Progressive activists hailed a “huge victory” and a “giant step toward single-payer healthcare” on Tuesday, after Senate Republicans were forced to postpone a vote on their proposed healthcare bill.

      Many warned, however, that the battle was not over, promising continued attempts to pressure Republican senators over the Fourth of July recess and beyond.

      Thousands of activists from groups including Our Revolution, Indivisible and Planned Parenthood had spent the past week mounting frantic efforts to derail the legislation, which the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said would leave 22 million more people without health coverage over the next 10 years.

      “It’s beyond a victory,” said RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United, which encouraged members to pressure Republican senators to vote against the bill. “What people are saying is, ‘We want a society, we don’t want a market to protect our health.’”

      The bill would have been a victory for insurance companies, DeMoro said, and senators’ apparent distaste for the legislation was a blow for both those companies and Republicans.

      “I think this is a giant step toward single-payer healthcare – the fact that they defeated the Republicans – because ultimately, embedded in that is a defeat for free-market fundamentalism.”

    • Not sure this video will stay up (as CNN has not posted it on their official page but found time to put up the entire Clinton speech to the ALA) but if it comes down I’ll try and find another copy:

      • He shut down the interviewer pretty well at the end when she brought up the investigation against his wife.

        • Bernie Sanders says reported investigation into his wife stems from ‘pathetic’ attack

          Sen. Bernie Sanders on Tuesday defended his wife, Jane Sanders, amid reports of a potential federal investigation related to her time helming the now-defunct Burlington College.

          Sanders declined when asked on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront” to say whether or not his wife was under investigation by the FBI.

          “My wife is about the most honest person I know,” Sanders said.


          In the interview on Tuesday, Sanders claimed Toensing instigated the potential probe for political reasons, saying it began five years after his wife’s time at the college but just as his presidential campaign was going on — “coincidentally, no doubt,” the senator said.

          “I think it’s fairly pathetic that when people are involved in public life, it’s not only that they get attacked, but it’s their wives and their families that get attacked,” Sanders said.

          Theres a lot more on this in the VPR link further down the thread.

    • Greg Gianforte got over $116,000 in donations after assaulting Guardian reporter

      The Republican congressman Greg Gianforte may have earned himself a head start on fundraising for his next campaign when he “body-slammed” a Guardian reporter on the eve of his victory in Montana’s special election, according to a recent filing.

      The report from the Federal Election Committee shows that the day after the incident, Gianforte’s campaign brought more donation money than it had in the prior five days combined, including 25 donations of the maximum $2,700 allowed by law from an individual to a given candidate. For perspective, the day before the assault, Gianforte had received two such maximum donations. The day before that, he received none. In total, the campaign collected more than $116,000 after the attack.


      Gianforte filed for his 2018 re-election campaign on 2 June, before he had even been sworn into Congress. The post-assault windfall will presumably roll over into his re-election fund, unless the congressman uses it to settle outstanding debts from the special election.

    • Mayors of 7,400 cities vow to meet Obama’s climate commitments

      Mayors of more than 7,400 cities across the world have vowed that Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris accord will spur greater local efforts to combat climate change.

      At the first meeting of a “global covenant of mayors”, city leaders from across the US, Europe and elsewhere pledged to work together to keep to the commitments made by Barack Obama two years ago.

      Cities will devise a standard measurement of emission reductions to help them monitor their progress. They will also share ideas for delivering carbon-free transport and housing.

      Kassim Reed, the mayor of Atlanta, told reporters he had travelled to Europe to “send a signal” that US states and cities would execute the policies Obama committed to, whether the current White House occupants agreed or not.

    • Wag the Dog? Offering No Proof, Trump Threatens New Attacks Against Syria

      In the wake of new reporting suggesting that the Trump administration’s decision to target the Syrian government with cruise missiles in early April was conducted without sufficient evidence and over the objections of some in the U.S. intelligence community, the White House on Monday night threatened President Bashar al-Assad’s government with further military action.

      In a message that, according to the New York Times, “appeared designed to set the stage for another possible military strike,” the White House statement made a claim (though it offered no evidence to support it) that the Syrian military appeared to be planning a chemical attack similar to one that took place in the village of Khan Sheikhoun on April 4. If “another” such attack took place, said the tweeted statement, there would be a “heavy price” for Assad to pay.


      In the U.K. on Monday, the Stop the War Coalition issued a warning against any further moves by the Trump administration to escalate the war in Syria.

      “There can be no justification for the use of chemical weapons, and we condemn any use of them,” the group said in a statement. “Trump’s claim that he knows of a proposed chemical weapons attack to be carried out by the Assad government, and that he will use military action to prevent this, should also worry everyone who wants peace in the Middle East. We do not know what evidence he has, and it is clear that at least some US military sources are skeptical of his claims. But we do know that Trump has built up U.S. support for Saudi Arabia in recent months, and at the same time increased his verbal attacks on Iran, one of Syria’s main allies.”

      While condemning the bombing of civilian populations by all sides—the U.S., Russia, Syria, the U.K., and others—Stop the War said ending the war would not be “achieved through further intervention,” but only through ” genuine attempts to win a peace which benefits the people of the region who are suffering so much.”

      • Google fine: EU is not waging underhand trade war against ​​US tech firms

        This finding will have far-reaching consequences if Google or others have also been privileging their products in areas such as travel and hotels. If so, consumer-friendly action by regulators should be applauded: the commission is saying dominance in new fields should be earned on merit, not by seeking to choke rivals.

        Such a strict pro-competition view of the world would benefit consumers everywhere, including the US. The wonder is that US regulators, who once upon a time had an honourable record of acting against powerful monopolists, have been so supine with the technology giants.

    • Trump’s Chaos is Covering for Stealth Escalation Overseas by Katrina vanden Heuvel

      While Washington is fixated on President Trump’s tweets, antics, lies and Russiagate, the administration is ramping up a stealth escalation of our military involvement across the Middle East. As Naomi Klein warns, Trump’s “rolling shock of the chaos and spectacle” distracts from radical actions both at home and abroad. Across the Middle East, the administration drives the United States ever further into wars without end, increasing the dangers of direct military confrontation with Russia and Iran, with little awareness and no mandate from the American people. This is a recipe for calamity.

      The deepening military involvement has accelerated in recent weeks. The administration will dispatch 4,000 more troops to Afghanistan, plus 400 to Syria. The president fired 23 cruise missiles at a Syrian air base in retaliation for alleged Syrian use of chemical weapons against civilians. In recent weeks, U.S. forces have bombed Iranian-supported militia forces moving forward in southern Syria and shot down a Syrian jet flying over Syrian airspace. Russia has cut off coordination designed to avoid air collisions and announced that U.S. planes flying west of the Euphrates would be targeted. As the battle against the Islamic State reaches its final stage, the Pentagon seems intent on sustaining a presence in Syria, aimed at preventing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from regaining control of the country.


      the reality is that we are headed into more war without public support, without a sensible strategy or a clear purpose. Americans are tired of wars without end. The response is to fight wars on the quiet: substituting technology for troops to lower our casualties. What is needed now is not a blank check but public hearings that will expose the increasingly dangerous reality to the American people. We don’t need a rubber-stamp Congress. We need someone with a backbone to stand up as Sen. J. William Fulbright (D-Ark.) did in 1966, convening hearings that exposed the folly in Vietnam and explored ways to bring the conflict to an end. Where is the Republican Fulbright of today who will question our current course before it is too late?

    • Is the UK or the US more of a disaster at the moment? It’s a fair and serious question

      or the past year or so the US and the UK appear to have been engaged in a race to the bottom: each trying to underperform the other with their electile dysfunction issues. The Brits are Brexiting? Well, we’re electing a toupee with a Twitter account as president. The US is still hung up about possible Russian involvement in its election? Quick, let’s hold an expensive and unnecessary general election in Britain and hang our parliament!

      This week both sides of the Atlantic are, to use technical geopolitical jargon, even more of a hot mess than usual. In the low-budget reality show that is UK politics, Theresa May stands accused of basically bribing the DUP with £1bn, sourced from the mythical magic money tree, to prevent herself from being evicted from the Big Brexit House. Meanwhile, in the blockbuster dystopian drama that is the contemporary US, God-loving Republicans, flush with family values, are trying to take away health insurance from as many vulnerable people as possible by passing a new wealthcare bill.

      All of this raises the question: which country is more of a disaster at the moment?

    • California to Officially List Key Ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup as Cancer-Causing

      Glyphosate, the main ingredient in Monsanto’s widely used herbicide Roundup, will be added July 7 to California’s list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer, according to a Reuters report Tuesday. This news comes after the company’s unsuccessful attempt to block the listing in trial court and requests for stay were denied by a state appellate court and California’s Supreme Court.

      California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced the designation on Monday under the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, or Proposition 65.

    • Teenagers See Renewables as Fuel of Their Generation

      America’s kids don’t believe the president and his fossil fuel hype. To today’s young, the oil industry is yesterday’s fuel. And coal belongs to their grandparents.

      Another top level survey by global accountants Ernst & Young, into U.S. attitudes towards the oil and gas industries, stated, “The perception that the oil and gas industry is good for society decreases with each new generation.”

      The survey found that well over two thirds—71 percent—of teen respondents believe renewable fuels such as solar and wind are the fuels of their generation, while 56 percent said oil and gas are the fuels of their parents’ generation. Interestingly, over half of teens also see coal as the fuel of their grandparent’s generation.

      So the oil industry is in deep trouble. Faced with rising global temperatures, a resurgent renewables industry, decreasing oil demand and fairly stagnant prices, it also faces an image problem amongst the young.

      According to Ernst and Young, “Overall, the survey showed young people increasingly feel shunted by the industry and their environmental values, especially, are not matched by oil and gas companies.”

    • E.P.A. Official Pressured Scientist on Congressional Testimony, Emails Show

      The Environmental Protection Agency’s chief of staff pressured the top scientist on the agency’s scientific review board to alter her congressional testimony and play down the dismissal of expert advisers, his emails show.

      Deborah Swackhamer, an environmental chemist who leads the E.P.A.’s Board of Scientific Counselors, was to testify on May 23 before the House Science Committee on the role of states in environmental policy when Ryan Jackson, the E.P.A.’s chief of staff, asked her to stick to the agency’s “talking points” on the dismissals of several members of the scientific board.

      “I was stunned that he was pushing me to ‘correct’ something in my testimony,” said Dr. Swackhamer, a retired University of Minnesota professor. “I was factual, and he was not. I felt bullied.”

      • Uh oh, a hot, sweaty, overtired, Jordan=extra pissed off.

        (It was ridiculously humid at the end of last week in this area, on top of the heat, and was incredibly uncomfortable. The word I used on Saturday was “crushing” humidity.)

        Poor Red Fawn. I’m so glad Jordan is getting her story out there! It sounds like prosecutors have nothing. The judicial system can move so slowly. They put trial dates so far in the future and put pressure on everyone to settle. They’re probably trying to get her to agree to some bogus charge to save face.

    • Bernie Sanders’ projection of ‘thousands’ of deaths from lost health coverage is well-supported (Politifact)

      Our ruling

      Sanders said, “When you throw 23 million people off of health insurance — people with cancer, people with heart disease, people with diabetes — thousands of people will die. … This is study after study making this point.”

      Sanders’ statement on Meet the Press was phrased generally enough to be defensible. We found ample evidence in the academic literature to suggest that legislation on the scale of the House bill would produce “thousands’ of additional deaths.

      That said, we can’t say with any specificity how many deaths will occur. It’s important to note that the studies provide estimates only, and each study found a slightly different result. On balance, we rate the statement Mostly True.

      Shorter Politifact: “We find ample evidence in academic literature to support the thousands of deaths claim… but despite that it might just be 999 deaths so we’re going to lower our Truth-O-Meter ranking”

      • And on the other side Lying Ryan


        Our ruling

        Ryan paraphrased the CBO as saying that millions more would not be insured basically because they would be free not to buy a policy they didn’t want. Some people won’t buy policies due to simple choice, but many others will become uninsured because they’re no longer eligible for Medicaid. The CBO said two-thirds of the 22 million without insurance would lose out through cuts in the Medicaid program.

        For the remaining 7 million, some portion of those would have chosen not to buy coverage, but some portion would want to buy but find insurance unaffordable.

        Ryan’s claim contains an element of truth but ignores a lot of what the CBO said.

        We rate this claim Mostly False.

        As usual they can’t bring themselves to admit it’s a bald faced lie (or it’s the truth, nothing but the truth)

      • I didn’t max out, but I came close.

      • Looking back, I worked on 2 historical POTUS campaigns: Howard Dean’s and the Bernster’s. Dean’s campaign pointed the arrow at successful internet campaign financing. The Bernster and BO before him refined it into roaring successes. It also proved an enormous threat to the fossilized PTB as We the People donated the coin and backed these unknown candidates.

    • The GOP Is Trying To Make The Burlington College Investigation About Bernie

      The federal investigation into a financing deal orchestrated by Jane Sanders when she was president of Burlington College has become a political liability in Washington, D.C. for her husband, Sen. Bernie Sanders.

      The investigation hinges on what claims Jane Sanders made to People’s United Bank as Burlington College was applying to borrow money to finance the purchase of its North Avenue headquarters in 2010.

      In a June 22 article, Politico Magazine provided an extensive account of Sanders’ past at Burlington College and the questions surrounding the land deal that some say doomed the small liberal arts school. Now, the Republican National Committee is sending email blasts to Vermont reporters calling for more coverage of the investigation and Sanders’ unwillingness to talk about it.

      Jane Sanders’ tenure at Burlington College has been the source of controversy – and Republican criticism — for years in Vermont. Now, after VTDigger revealed in April that Jane Sanders is the target of a federal investigation, the Republican Party apparatus is trying to draw increased attention to the investigation and make it a political problem for Sen. Sanders.

    • Surveillance at Standing Rock exposes heavy-handed policing of Native lands

      The technology TigerSwan used at Standing Rock may be state of the art, but the use of policing to suppress indigenous protest is as old as the United States itself

      • Dakota Access security firm operated in ND without license, board says

        A North Dakota regulatory board has accused a security firm hired by the company that built the Dakota Access Pipeline of operating in the state without a license.

        In a complaint dated June 12, attorneys for the North Dakota Private Investigative and Security Board said the agency denied an application to James Patrick Reese, the founder of North Carolina-based TigerSwan, to become a licensed private security provider earlier this year. But Reese “and/or” the firm have “illegally continued to conduct private investigative and/or private security services in North Dakota following the denial of their application of licensure.”

        The complaint said TigerSwan “maintains roving security teams” to monitor valve sites in North Dakota, and the firm’s personnel are armed with semiautomatic rifles and sidearms “while engaging in security services.” The firm continues to provide private investigative services, including “monitoring of persons affiliated with the DAPL protests,” the complaint alleges.

        The board is asking a state district court for an injunction against TigerSwan and Reese and for an administrative fine for each violation they have allegedly committed. Providing private investigative or private security services without a current license issued by the board is a Class B misdemeanor under state law.

    • Mountain Valley Pipeline opponents target bank with latest protest

      Opponents of the Mountain Valley Pipeline have opened a new front in their fight against the controversial project.

      Tuesday afternoon, more than a dozen people protested outside the Wells Fargo Tower in downtown Roanoke.

      Pipeline opponents say Wells Fargo is one of the six major banks financing construction of the natural gas pipeline.

      The protestors were urging customers to close their accounts.

      Carolyn Reilly is a Franklin County landowner, whose property lies in the path of the proposed natural gas pipeline.

      “I’m here out of gratitude to someone who is saying I am choosing to move my money and close my accounts with Wells Fargo.”

    • LA City Council Takes Step Toward Divesting City Funds From Wells Fargo

      The Los Angeles City Council took a step Tuesday toward divesting city funds from Wells Fargo over the bank’s fake accounts scandal and its support of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

      The city does the majority of its banking with Wells Fargo through 800 accounts and holds more than $40 million in securities with the company.

      The motion approved on a 14-0 vote does not cancel the city’s contract with Wells Fargo, but directs the Office of Finance and other departments to report on options for doing so and outline criteria and standards the city would have in any future agreements with banks.

      “It’s time for us to endeavor to only do business with ethical financial institutions that have high standards and ethical standards. This is a very fiscally sound approach to looking at what divestment will mean, and it’s a very complicated and intricate matter,” said Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who introduced the motion with Councilman Paul Koretz.

      The motion cites the bank’s support of the Dakota Access Pipeline as a reason for the possible divestment, as well as a lawsuit the city settled with Wells Fargo last year after some of the bank’s employees created more than two million unauthorized accounts as a way to meet aggressive sales goals set by management.

    • Tree sitters seek to prevent Sunoco from working on a pipeline in Huntingdon County

      Since March, tree sitters on Ellen and Stephen Gerhart’s 27-acre wood lot have been perched on their piney platforms, 50 feet in the air, to protest, oppose and block construction of Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 pipeline.

      They might be coming down soon if Sunoco has its way.

      On Tuesday morning, Sunoco attorney Alan Boynton asked Huntingdon County Common Pleas Court Judge George Zanic for an injunction that would allow the company to call in county sheriffs to remove the protesters and their tree stands.

      Mr. Boynton told the court that it is the clear intent of pipeline opponents to block construction.

      Judge Zanic said he would rule on the injunction request within 48 hours.

      If granted, the injunction would restrain the Gerharts and their supporters at what has been dubbed “Camp White Pine” from interfering with clearcutting on the 3.2 acre right-of-way and installation of two 24-inch pipelines on the easement Sunoco acquired through an eminent domain claim in January 2016. That claim also was approved by Judge Zanic.

    •  Why Are Young People Voting for Old Socialists?

       Sarah Leonard on Bernie Sanders, Jeremy Corbyn, and the surge of youth support for socialism.

      • I wish that I was half as well-spoken as Sarah Leonard! I am envious with the ease with which she conveys her thoughts and shares information.

        I found this on her twitter feed (I follow her), it’s the launch of a new web site.

        Which brings us to today, and the launch of Topic.com. Last year, a few of us who love popular culture, politics, and, yes, the internet got together to figure out how to create a digital media brand devoted to developing, programming, acquiring, and licensing stories providing considered points of view—not rapid-fire reactions—about the current social and political climate. We decided to focus on visual stories because, for one thing, some of us are tired of words typed angrily and quickly into a void.

        It’s intensely visual, very well done, quite interesting, and I love that they opened their first issue, which is called ‘State of the Union’ with Mouseland.


    • Memo to Democrats: You Need A Clear Message for Universal Health Care

      In 2009, the noted Republican strategist Frank Luntz wrote a memo to GOP members of Congress, advising them on how to resist the Democrats’ health care reform bill that would go on to become Obamacare. “Stop talking economic theory,” he said, use “words that work,” and offer a viable conservative alternative. “It’s not enough to just say what you’re against,” instructed Luntz. “You have to tell them what you’re for.”

      Fast forward eight years. The tables have turned and Democrats have spent the past few weeks trying to resist Trumpcare — in the form of a now-postponed health care bill from Senate Republicans that was supposed to “repeal and replace” Obamacare. The bill was condemned by a wide array of nonpartisan health care groups, including the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and, according to the independent Congressional Budget Office (CBO), would strip 22 million people of health insurance by 2026.

      How did we get to this point? A point where Harvard researchers are warning of 217,000 additional deaths over the next decade from a loss of health coverage? Part of the blame has to lie with the Democrats, who failed to heed Luntz’s advice to the Republicans.

      First, in defending Obamacare, they lacked “words that work.” For instance, how many people know, understand or even care what an “individual mandate” is? How about insurance “exchanges”? Or the “public option”? These technical terms and phrases have obscured more than they have clarified. They have also played into the hands of the Republicans, who have worked hard to ensure that the public view health care only through a partisan lens.

    • Trump’s EPA chief met with chemical CEO before dropping pesticide ban: report

      Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt met privately with the CEO of a top chemical company before deciding to drop a ban on a widely-used pesticide that has been shown to harm children’s brains, The Associated Press reported Tuesday.

      Pruitt, President Trump’s top environmental official, reportedly met with the CEO of Dow Chemical, Andrew Liveris, for 30 minutes at a Houston hotel on March 9, according to records obtained by the AP.

      Pruitt announced later that month that he would no longer pursue a ban on Dow’s chlorpyrifos pesticide from being used on food. An EPA review found that even minuscule amounts of the pesticide could impact fetus and infant brain development.

      • I learned to read at a very young age from books and WaPo. Back then WaPo had one of the best reps in the country for genuine clear and balanced news. Not anymore. It has deteriorated 180 degrees from the publication I recall from my childhood. I certainly wouldn’t let my kid learn on it now!

    • Warren Buffett calls ObamaCare repeal bill ‘Relief for the Rich Act’

      Warren Buffett is attacking the Republican Party’s plans to repeal and replace ObamaCare, claiming bills in the House and Senate would provide tax cuts for the rich.

      Legislation passed by the House, he said, should be called “Relief for the Rich Act.”

      Buffett, one of the wealthiest men in the country, claimed his tax bill would have been reduced by $679,999 or 17 percent from the House bill.

    • Hopefully, he likes his power position


      As the Supreme Court unleashed a flurry of orders and opinions on Monday and allowed parts of the travel ban to go into effect it left one major question unresolved.

      Is Anthony Kennedy preparing to retire?

      Liberals hope Kennedy — who votes with them on many hot button social issues — will stay on.

      Conservatives want the 80-year-old centrist to step down and give President Donald Trump a chance to reshape the court in a more conservative mold.

      “Justice Kennedy is the most powerful jurist in the world,” said law professor Jessica Levinson of Loyola Law School. “The longer he stays on the court the greater the chance he can shape the legal doctrine for years to come.”

      But Kennedy didn’t say anything in public Monday, and the court’s actions might provide good reasons for him to stay.

    • Go, Chokwe!

    • It’s Official: Any Future Gas Attacks In Syria Are Definite False Flags

      The United States has a well-documented history of using false flags, lies and propaganda to manufacture support for evil acts of military aggression. From the false flag in the Gulf of Tonkin to justify the Vietnam War, to the false “babies out of incubators” Nayirah testimony used to justify the Gulf War, to the lies about weapons of mass destruction and the media propaganda campaign which married the unrelated concepts of Saddam Hussein and 9/11 so successfully in the minds of the public that six months after the invasion of Iraq 70 percent of them thought Saddam was personally responsible for the September 11 attacks, to the lies which magically transformed America’s military involvement in Libya from a “humanitarian” effort into a deliberate regime change intervention, you can count on the US power establishment to lie and deceive at every turn to manufacture support for its military power grabs.

      Democracy Now interview with Wesley Clark on this Caitlin page, in case you want a review of the PNAC plan.

  • Colleen DeLaney became a registered member 11 hours, 43 minutes ago

  • Joy of Fishes changed their profile picture 14 hours, 57 minutes ago

  • Do you ever notice when Bernie is listening to an opponent or some misguided TV personality makes an unsubstantiated comment that borders unfairness? Bernie’s ears prick up and one can see the waggling of the […]

    • Bacon bits jar…

    • CBO exposes piggy bank plan to throw 22 million out of health insurance, and suddenly, there isn’t a vote this week. In fact, not until after firecracker day!

      Moderates are also starting to defect from the Senate plan
      But McConnell has problems on the other ideological end of his conference, too.

      Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV), a swing vote in a swing state who faces the toughest reelection race of any Republican next year, said Friday he would oppose the bill. He was joined by Nevada’s exceedingly popular Republican governor, Brian Sandoval, who has also spoken out against the Senate plan for its Medicaid cuts.

      “In this form, I will not support it,” Heller said, adding that he would also vote against the procedural motion to start debate on the bill. “It’s going to be very difficult to get me to a yes.”

      Then on Monday evening, after the CBO report projected 22 million fewer Americans would have insurance under the Senate bill, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), another crucial moderate vote, said she would oppose the bill and the motion to start debate.


    • Pharma Bro’ Martin Shkreli trial hits speed bump: Finding jurors who don’t already dislike him

      About this piggy executive:

      After striking out on his own, he developed a reputation for aggressive tactics, including betting a company’s stock price would fall and then berating its executives on social media.

      His battles earned him a spot on Forbes’ list of “30 under 30” after Shkreli torpedoed a health-care industry merger and “antagonized” pharmaceutical giant Pfizer into removing its former chief executive from the company’s board of directors, the magazine said. Shkreli, now 34, is a “boy genius,” his attorney has said.

      But one of Shkreli’s most aggressive moves changed that narrative when, as chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, he raised the price of Daraprim — a 62-year-old drug primarily used to treat newborns and HIV patients — from $13.50 to $750 a pill. When critics pounced, the live-out-loud Shkreli did not do his reputation any favors by calling a journalist a “moron,” quoting defiant rap lyrics on Twitter and defending the price increase as a “great business decision.”

      “Our shareholders expect us to make as much money as possible,” Shkreli said during a health-industry summit in 2015, dressed nonchalantly in a hooded sweatshirt and sneakers. “That’s the ugly, dirty truth.”

      So, is he sort of reaping what he sowed? Potentially.

      These two images of the Brooklyn native are playing out in federal court this week as Shkreli faces eight charges that could land him in prison for years.

      Packed into the second-floor courtroom in Brooklyn, several potential jurors said they had already formed strong opinions of Shkreli. One potential juror told U.S. District Judge Kiyo Matsumoto that Shkreli is “the price gouger of drugs. My kids are on some of these drugs.”

      Another said, “I know he’s the most hated man in America,” while another asserted that “from everything I’ve read, I believe the defendant is the face of corporate greed in America.” All were excused from the jury.


    • Related to the oligarch “stars” of that video in the main post…

      The Daily 202: Thwarted in Washington, the Koch network racks up conservative victories in the states

      COLORADO SPRINGS—The wealthy donors who finance the Koch network are frustrated that national Republicans are not doing more to capitalize on having unified control of the federal government. But at their summer seminar here in the Rocky Mountains, which wrapped up last night, many were ecstatic—even giddy—about significant conservative gains that have been made this year in state capitals across the country.

      Republicans now control the governorship and legislature in 25 states, compared to only six states for Democrats. Last November, the GOP seized all the levers of lawmaking in four new states – Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri and New Hampshire – making it much easier to pass far-reaching legislation.

      The network, led by the billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, has spent hundreds of millions of dollars on low-profile races and building out grassroots operations in 36 states over the past decade.

      So what have the Bros accomplished with their oligarchy?

      In 2017 alone, several of these states have reduced union power, scaled back regulations, cut taxes, blocked Medicaid expansion, promoted alternatives to public education, loosened criminal sentencing laws and eased requirements to get occupational licenses.

      But the 400 donors who descended on the Broadmoor resort over the past few days have been paying close attention and are keenly interested in the outcome of these state-level fights.

      “Even in the past six months we’ve seen a lot of success: We have two new right-to-work states, school choice wins in five states, and a dozen states have reduced spending or taxes,” Roger Pattison, director of member relations for the Koch network, said at a dinner on Saturday night. “I could go on and on.”

      “We’re coming off the most successful legislative session that this network has ever had, and it’s a result of your investments,” added Luke Hilgemann, chief executive of Americans for Prosperity, which is part of the constellation of Koch-funded groups.

      So what are their upcoming acquisition plans for 2018?

      Koch network officials reiterated plans to spend between $300 million to $400 million on policy and politics in the 2018 cycle and said it will probably be in the higher end of that range. A lot of that will go toward state efforts.

      Since most state legislatures are part-time and have now adjourned for the year, the network is already sketching out ambitious plans to hit the ground running in early 2018.

      Tim Phillips, the president of AFP, noted that more progress has been made to limit the power of organized labor, which he describes as “worker freedom,” “in the last five years than in the previous five decades.” Bevin and Greitens have both signed right-to-work laws this year, which ban labor unions from collecting mandatory dues from employees they represent in collective bargaining. Six states have now enacted such legislation since 2012, including longtime union strongholds like Wisconsin and Michigan. “Did you think that would have been possible five years ago?” Phillips said.

      Phillips revealed at a strategy session that the network’s next targets include Ohio, Minnesota and New Hampshire. “


    • 3 Chicago Officers Charged With Conspiracy in Laquan McDonald Case

      CHICAGO — Three police officers were charged on Tuesday with conspiracy, official misconduct and obstruction of justice in connection with the investigation that followed the death of Laquan McDonald, a black teenager fatally shot by a white Chicago police officer three years ago.

      The three officers are accused of conspiring in the hours and days after the shooting to “conceal the true facts” to protect Jason Van Dyke, a fellow officer, who fired 16 times at Mr. McDonald, who was 17.

      The long-awaited release in late 2015 of dashboard camera video of the shooting set off night after night of demonstrations across Chicago, led to the removal of the city’s police superintendent, and prompted a broad investigation by the Justice Department into the Chicago Police Department, its treatment of black residents and what some in the city describe as a “code of silence” between officers.

      Officer Van Dyke, who was charged with murder in the shooting, was the only one to fire a weapon the night Mr. McDonald died along a Southwest Side street in 2014. But other officers — including the three now charged with crimes — backed up Officer Van Dyke’s account of what happened that night: that Mr. McDonald had moved menacingly toward him with a knife. The dashboard video, however, contradicted those accounts, showing Mr. McDonald, who was clutching a knife, seeming to veer away from the police when Officer Van Dyke began firing. The shooting continued as Mr. McDonald lay crumpled on the street.

      “The indictment makes clear that these defendants did more than merely obey an unofficial ‘code of silence,’” said Patricia Brown Holmes, a special prosecutor who announced the new charges. “Rather, it alleges that they lied about what occurred to prevent independent criminal investigators from learning the truth.”

      Who are the defendants and why are they being charged?

      According to the indictment, charged are Detective David March, a police veteran of more than 30 years; Patrol Officer Joseph Walsh, with about 20 years as an officer; and Thomas Gaffney, also a patrol officer with nearly two decades of experience on the force.

      The three officers were accused not only of lying about what had happened during the shooting, but also of “coordinating their activities” to protect one another, and of preparing, reviewing or approving false police reports, court documents say. They also conspired, the special prosecutor alleges, to fail to find witnesses or to preserve evidence in an effort to help Officer Van Dyke.

      Should be interesting to see if they settle for a plea or if they really do have a trial.

    • EPA seeks to scrap rule protecting drinking water for third of Americans

      The Environmental Protection Agency is poised to dismantle the federal clean water rule, which protects waterways that provide drinking water for about a third of the US population.

      The EPA, with the US army, has proposed scrapping the rule in order to conduct a “substantive re-evaluation” of which rivers, streams, wetlands and other bodies of water should be protected by the federal government.

      “We are taking significant action to return power to the states and provide regulatory certainty to our nation’s farmers and businesses,” said Scott Pruitt, administrator of the EPA.

      Green groups, however, said the move pandered to fossil fuel and farming interests and was part of an agenda to weaken clean water protections.

      “Once again, the Trump administration has agreed to do the bidding of the worst polluters in our country, and once again it’s putting the health of American families and communities at risk,” said Michael Brune, executive director of Sierra Club. “We will fight this and every other attempt by polluters and the Trump administration to destroy our water resources.”

    • Is Giant Sequoia National Monument Next on the Hit List?

      Sequoiadendron giganteum. That’s the scientific name for the giant sequoia: the mammoth trees found in California’s Sierra Nevada that are the largest organisms on Earth, and among the longest-lived. Biologists estimate that about half of all sequoias live in Giant Sequoia National Monument, a 328,000-acre preserve in the Southern Sierra Nevada established by President Clinton in 2000.

      Now that national monument is in jeopardy.


      The fight over the future of Giant Sequoia will intensify Tuesday, June 27, as supervisors in two California counties vote on measures to roll back protections for forests within the monument. Supervisors in Tulare County will consider a resolution urging Sec. Zinke to “clearly permit the removal of dead or dying hazard trees and to allow the U.S. Forest Service to actively manage the groves”—a demand that echoes the wishes of logging companies, which for years have sought to cut timber in the monument. Also Tuesday, supervisors in Kern County will vote on a resolution calling on Sec. Zinke to reduce Giant Sequoia National Monument by 200,000 acres.

      While the Kern County proposal to slash the monument by two-thirds would still protect the groves where the giant sequoia are found, conservationists say the idea ignores the biological necessity of protecting the entire ecosystem. For the sequoias to thrive, the forests surrounding them also have to thrive, too.

      “This is the remaining extent of the largest trees on the planet, the largest living things on the planet, and they exist within the context of an area that has been heavily logged,” said Peter Ringgold, chief program officer of Save the Redwoods League. “In addition to the 90,000 acres that are specific to the giant sequoia groves, we believe that the rest of the area is deserving of protection so that it can function as a whole ecosystem, and not just as a zoo or a bell jar placed over these remaining sequoia groves and calling it good.”

    • As piggie as can be. Definitely in hoggie territory.



      More than 15,000 Americans were losing their jobs each day in June 2009, as the US struggled to climb out of a painful recession following its worst financial crisis in decades.

      But Jay Sekulow, who is now an attorney to Donald Trump, had a private jet to finance. His law firm was expecting a $3m payday. And six-figure contracts for members of his family needed to be taken care of.

      Documents obtained by the Guardian show Sekulow that month approved plans to push poor and jobless people to donate money to his Christian nonprofit, which since 2000 has steered more than $60m to Sekulow, his family and their businesses.

      Telemarketers for the nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (Case), were instructed in contracts signed by Sekulow to urge people who pleaded poverty or said they were out of work to dig deep for a “sacrificial gift”.

      “I can certainly understand how that would make it difficult for you to share a gift like that right now,” they told retirees who said they were on fixed incomes and had “no extra money” – before asking if they could spare “even $20 within the next three weeks”.

      In addition to using tens of millions of dollars in donations to pay Sekulow, his wife, his sons, his brother, his sister-in-law, his niece and nephew and their firms, Case has also been used to provide a series of unusual loans and property deals to the Sekulow family.

    • Interesting conversation by NYT’s Gail Collins and environmentalist Bret Stephens (formerly with WSJ). I am cherry picking the part on health insurance as I am surprised by their comments.

      Gail: This liberal friend would say that Obamacare could quickly be repaired if the two sides worked together on it. It would still be a deeply imperfect program, of course. (Listen and you will hear the trees whispering, “Single-payer option!”)

      But about requiring everyone to have health insurance: It’s the only possible way you can have a plan that allows people with pre-existing conditions to buy coverage. Otherwise they can just coast while they’re healthy and opt in when they’re looking at large bills.

      Also, we’re committed as a nation to providing emergency health care to all — I believe our current president came out very strongly against letting people “die in the streets.” And it’s a crushing burden for hospitals when the people come into ER.s uninsured.

      The most sensible answer is to have national health care for all. But if that isn’t going to fly I think part of being an adult citizen should be having at least adequate health insurance to pay for a crisis. Otherwise, we’re … encouraging spongers.

      Bret: For those of us on the conservative side of politics, the chief problem of the Senate bill is that it is basically an Obamacare rescue package, as Philip Klein pointed out in The Washington Examiner. The Senate bill promises a lot of spending in the next three or four years to sustain Medicaid’s current expansion. The spending is pared only after that, which is to say, sometime during the Warren-Booker administration (or is that Harris-Sanders?). Which is all another way of saying, it’s never going to happen. That’s why I’ve been so skeptical of the whole G.O.P. exercise.

      I suspect you’re going to get your wish for single payer, sooner or later. Even if the G.O.P. bill goes through, it won’t survive the eventual Democratic wave election, whenever it hits. And to me single payer sounds like a lousy outcome: a two-tier system in which middle-class Americans get lower-quality medicine while the fortunate few maintain access to expensive private clinics.

      To Mr. Stephens–I think you missed the first memo when you worked at WSJ. Obamacare is precisely that now, it is a two, if not three tiered system.

      Gold insurance for those who can afford the out of pockets, medical savings accounts, etc.

      Silver & Bronze–still big premiums and out of pockets

      Zirconian–those who can’t get full time work, thus no insurance and still have to pay the fine for not being enrolled. That’s what is being argued right now in the Senate bill. They want to penalize those who wish to give up their phantom plans and make them wait 6 months to re-enroll, thus they would get penalized no matter what. No one should be penalized for wanting good health insurance. They want it guaranteed.

    • http://trustedadvisor.com/public/Bloated-Pig-Approaching-Trough-300×232.jpg


      More than 15,000 Americans were losing their jobs each day in June 2009, as the US struggled to climb out of a painful recession following its worst financial crisis in decades.

      But Jay Sekulow, who is now an attorney to Donald Trump, had a private jet to finance. His law firm was expecting a $3m payday. And six-figure contracts for members of his family needed to be taken care of.

      Documents obtained by the Guardian show Sekulow that month approved plans to push poor and jobless people to donate money to his Christian nonprofit, which since 2000 has steered more than $60m to Sekulow, his family and their businesses.

      Telemarketers for the nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (Case), were instructed in contracts signed by Sekulow to urge people who pleaded poverty or said they were out of work to dig deep for a “sacrificial gift”.

      “I can certainly understand how that would make it difficult for you to share a gift like that right now,” they told retirees who said they were on fixed incomes and had “no extra money” – before asking if they could spare “even $20 within the next three weeks”.

      In addition to using tens of millions of dollars in donations to pay Sekulow, his wife, his sons, his brother, his sister-in-law, his niece and nephew and their firms, Case has also been used to provide a series of unusual loans and property deals to the Sekulow family.

    • Apparently, my congressman, Rodney Davis of IL-13, held some FB session concerning a TF he is on concerning opioid addiction in the US. One of our IL state reps who lives in my district floated out this tweet in response:

      Yep, they talk about the problem, but won’t help solve it. I guess they still hope that charity will take this issue on. But they can’t when they don’t have a private-public partnership to rely on (Medicaid).

    • Bernie took to the streets this afternoon, talking to the Resistors against the disastrous GOP Health Care proposal.

    • Here’s another piggy, donating to Gianforte’s campaign the day after he assaulted Ben Jacobs of The Guardian:

      The vice president and director of Sinclair Broadcasting Group, which has often been criticized for its conservative slant, donated to Rep. Greg Gianforte’s campaign the day after the Montana Republican was charged with assaulting a reporter.

      The donation of $1,000 by Frederick G. Smith, a member of the family that owns the company, came on May 25, the day Gianforte was elected, according to Federal Election Commission reports. Smith also gave $1,000 to Gianforte’s campaign in March.

      Why is Sinclair Media a piggy:

      Sinclair Broadcasting Group recently struck a $3.9 billion deal to obtain Tribune Media’s dozens of television stations, making Sinclair the largest owner of television stations in the country. For years, Sinclair has been pegged by critics as a company with conservative leanings. The Smith family has long been supporters of conservative causes, and the network has been known to send “must run” packages to its local affiliates, segments that sometimes come with a conservative political bent. Sinclair also recently hired Boris Epshteyn, formerly the White House director of surrogate operations, to be its chief political analyst.

      POLITICO in December reported that Trump’s son-in-law and adviser, Jared Kushner, told business executives the campaign had struck a deal with Sinclair for better media coverage. Sinclair disputed the characterization, saying it was an arrangement for extended sit-down interviews that was offered to both candidates, though Clinton never sat down with the network.


    • What the piggies want with that tax cut they would get–not having to pay for Veterans care. Our Revolution has a good tweet about it:

    • Rick Snyder is another piggy who deserves to be recalled from his job as Governor of Michigan. Jordan has the goods on it in this video. It’s entitled, “BREAKING: Rick Snyder Helps Keep Tax Liens On POISONED Flint”.

    • How Two Generics became one $455 Specialty pill

      From Truthdig:

      At first I shrugged it off. This had been my first visit with an orthopedic specialist and he, Dr. Mohnish Ramani, hadn’t been the chatty type. He’d barely said a word as he examined me, tugging my arm this way and bending it that way before rotating it behind my back. The pain made me squirm and yelp, but he knew what he was doing. He promptly diagnosed me with frozen shoulder, a debilitating inflammation of the shoulder capsule.

      But back to the drugs. As an investigative reporter who has covered health care for more than a decade, the interaction was just the sort of thing to pique my interest. One thing I’ve learned is that almost nothing in medicine — especially brand-name drugs — is ever really a deal. When I got home, I looked up the drug: Vimovo.

      The drug has been controversial, to say the least. Vimovo was created using two readily and cheaply available generic, or over-the-counter, medicines: naproxen, also known by the brand Aleve, and esomeprazole magnesium, also known as Nexium. The Aleve handles your pain and the Nexium helps with the upset stomach that’s sometimes caused by the pain reliever. The key selling point of this new “convenience drug”? It’s easier to take one pill than two.

      But only a minority of patients get an upset stomach, and there was no indication I’d be one of them. Did I even need the Nexium component?

      Of course I also did the math. You can walk into your local drugstore and buy a month’s supply of Aleve and Nexium for about $40. For Vimovo, the pharmacy billed my insurance company $3,252. This doesn’t mean the drug company ultimately gets paid that much. The pharmaceutical world is rife with rebates and side deals — all designed to elbow ahead of the competition. But apparently the price of convenience comes at a steep mark-up.

      So how does this add up?

      Think about it another way. Let’s say you want to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich every day for a month. You could buy a big jar of peanut butter and a jar of grape jelly for less than 10 bucks. Or you could buy some of that stuff where they combine the peanut butter and grape jelly into the same jar. Smucker’s makes it. It’s called Goober. Except in this scenario, instead of its usual $3.50 price tag, Smucker’s is charging $565 for the jar of Goober.

      So if Vimovo is the Goober of drugs, then why have Americans been spending so much on it? My insurance company, smartly, rejected the pharmacy’s claim. But I knew Vimovo’s makers weren’t wooing doctors like mine for nothing. So I looked up the annual reports for the Ireland-based company, Horizon Pharma, which makes Vimovo. Since 2014, Vimovo’s net sales have been more than $455 million. That means a lot of insurers are paying way more than they should for their Goober.

      And Vimovo wasn’t Horizon’s only such drug. It has brought in an additional $465 million in net sales from Duexis, a similar convenience drug that combines ibuprofen and famotidine, AKA Advil and Pepcid.

      More ways to squeeze the health care dollars anonymously

      This year I have been documenting the kind of waste in the health care system that’s not typically tracked. Americans pay more for health care than anyone else in the world, and experts estimate that the U.S. system wastes hundreds of billions of dollars a year. In recent months I’ve looked at what hospitals throw away and how nursing homes flush or toss out hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of usable medicine every year. We all pay for this waste, through lower wages and higher premiums, deductibles and out-of-pocket costs. There doesn’t seem to be an end in sight — I just got a notice that my premiums may be increasing by another 12 percent next year.

      With Vimovo, it seemed I stumbled on another waste stream: overpriced drugs whose actual costs are hidden from doctors and patients. In the case of Horizon, the brazenness of its approach was even more astounding because it had previously been called out in media reports and in a 2016 congressional hearing on out-of-control drug prices.

      Health care economists also were wise to it.

      “It’s a scam,” said Devon Herrick, a health care economist with the National Center for Policy Analysis. “It is just a way to gouge insurance companies or employer health care plans.”

      Unsurprisingly, Horizon says the high price is justified. In fact, the drug maker wrote in an email, “The price of Vimovo is based on the value it brings to patients.”

      Thousands of patients die and suffer injuries every year, the company said, because of gastric complications from naproxen and other non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Providing pain relief and stomach protection in a single pill makes it more likely patients will be protected from complications, it said.

      And Horizon stressed Vimovo is a “special formulation” of Aleve and Nexium, so it’s not the same as taking the two separately. But several experts said that’s a scientific distinction that doesn’t make a therapeutic difference. “I would take the two medications from the drugstore in a heartbeat — therapeutically it makes sense,” said Michael Fossler, a pharmacist and clinical pharmacologist who is chair of the public-policy committee for the American College of Clinical Pharmacology. “What you’re paying for with [Vimovo] is the convenience. But it does seem awful pricey for that.”

      Read the rest here. http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/how_two_common_medications_became_one_455_million_specialty_pill_20170627

      ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom.

    • http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/3e/19/e4/3e19e424bf703aa98c4539d5b7cee1c2.jpg
      One sign that rapture is drawing nigh


      A website dubbed “The Rapture Index” that claims to monitor the “end of times” — or the second coming of Jesus — is warning the general public to “fasten your seat belts” in the era of the Trump administration.

      “You could say the Rapture index is a Dow Jones Industrial Average of end time activity, but I think it would be better if you viewed it as prophetic speedometer,” Todd Stranberg, the website’s creator, told the Daily Mail.

      “It seems like we are heading into the eye of a hurricane and I am fascinated with what’s going on with Donald Trump – both sides are whirling faster and faster,” Stranberg said.

    • T and R, Benny! A Beatles Historical Tidbit: George Harrison hated the British Tax System especially after the band made it. The Piggies are the tax collectors as well as the rich who inherited their wealth. The British class system has always been much more sharply defined than ours. “Taxman” was his most famous tune on the subject. 🙂

  • Elizabeth Warren has been on a campaign footing to push back against Republican efforts to bestow enormous tax breaks on millionaires and billionaires by decimating health-care coverage for ordinary […]

    • Thank God. As long as she does more than campaign on it. And not shove it under the bus as soon as she’s elected.

      • I think Warren’s on board, and I hope other Ds join her as well. Bernie has definitely moved the needle on this one.

        • It seems so. I recall last week, watching the Sanders/Warren Q&A on healthcare, that it sounded like something they were going to take on the road.

    • An article from a few weeks ago–but relevant. As usual in U.S. politics, it’s down to whether the Senators and Representatives will listen to the popular good ideas or the $$$ provided by those opposed to those ideas.

      Yet as Democrats regroup from their 2016 defeat, leaders say the party has plainly shifted well to the left on the issue, setting the stage for a larger battle over the health care system in next year’s congressional elections and the 2020 presidential race. Their liberal base, emboldened by Senator Bernie Sanders’s forceful advocacy of government-backed health care last year, is increasingly unsatisfied with the Affordable Care Act and is demanding more drastic changes to the private health insurance system.

      In a sign of shifting sympathies, most House Democrats have now endorsed a single-payer proposal. Party strategists say they expect that the 2020 presidential nominee will embrace a broader version of public health coverage than any Democratic standard-bearer has in decades.

      Representative Rick Nolan of Minnesota, a populist Democrat whose district voted for President Trump by a wide margin, said he had rarely seen core Democratic voters as enthusiastic about an issue as they were about single-payer health care. Mr. Nolan said he would support creating a state-level system in Minnesota, but believed the party’s goal should be a national law.

      He said he supported creating a single-payer system in his state but believed the party’s goal should be a national law.

      He warned Democrats against being too cautious on health care or trusting that they could passively reap the benefits of Republican missteps, saying that his party needed a more boldly “aspirational” health care platform.

      Rank-and-file Democrats, Mr. Nolan said, “are energized in a way I have not witnessed in a long, long time.”

    • Single Payer?! So just how are those poor, poor insurance executives going to get by without their multimillion dollar salaries?

    • I’m still very wary of Warren. I’m wary of any Repuke, ex- as well as current. Rec’d, subir. 🙂

      • I’m not going to judge anyone’s journey on politics. When I was young, I described myself as a libertarian. Given the right audience, I still will, but want it understood in way Chomsky uses the term.

    • This is a positive development!

    • Oops! Wrong thread. Post deleted.

    • Bernie warns about being overconfident after the temporary setback.

      • Yeah, they are clearly going to come back from the recess and try something. They have $200 Bn to play with since their cuts are even more invasive than they themselves expected. So they can dole out $20 Bn a head to keep 10 votes.

    • Throwing this in just for context.

  • Hello friends! Starting the day off with Nina Turner being excellent as always during a CNN appearance. In just a few minutes she manages to highlight the losses of the Democratic Party over the past decade and […]

    • Tips, Comments, Complaints, Etc!

        • Rational National and The Humanist Report are my favorite independent, progressive pundits/analysts. Wish we had more independent female pundits. Sane Progressive and Caitlin Johnstone skew a little too conspiracy theory for me. I do like Yvette Carnell with Breaking Brown. Any other independent, progressive women I should be following?

          • Good question! I can’t think of many offhand but know they exist! (most just do not post as much content as the likes of humanist report, secular talk, tim black, jimmy dore, etc etc..) When I get home this afternoon I’ll comb through my youtube listings and get back to you with some links (as well as put them on the link page I still haven’t managed to put up yet, sorry!)

        • But CNN keeps trying to bury Nina’s wisdom!

    • Is Nina planning on running for either the U.S. House or Senate? I love her. T and R to the usual suspects!!

      • I’m thinking she will go for Ohio Gov. much to the displeasure of Jerry Springer and his Dem establishment backers.

        • Honestly, I cannot fathom preferring Jeffrey Springer to Nina Turner! I don’t watch him, but from what I’ve heard of the behavior he encourages, is this the kind of person we want representing the Dem Party? Barf. Go Nina!

          • But, but Jerry Springer can bring $$$$$$ into the party! And he’s rich! And he can appeal to the lowest common denom…I mean, he has wide appeal!

            p.s. Jerry Springer’s show is trash and the mental & societal health equivalent of drinking soda all day while sitting on your couch while eating junk food. You’ll feel like crap afterwards and wonder why you’re depressed and unhappy. He’s a bottom feeder who has lowered the level of discourse to an appalling degree.

            Would you ever be tempted to return to politics?

            (Laughs.) If I ran against Trump there really would be a wall built, because you’d have to build a wall to keep Americans from trying to get out. Secondly, I could never run for President from Day One, because I was born in England. In fact I left England when I found out I couldn’t be King.

            Interesting that, when asked about ‘returning’ to politics, Jerry responds as though the interviewer asked him if he’d run for president. Not short on ego! Especially for a person whose political peak was being installed as mayor of Cincinnati for a short time.

            • I thought Trumps presidency and everything going on behind the secenes would have made several good Springer episodes. Until now thought springer was an R.

    • Bernie Sanders’ plan to save Obamacare

      Shortly after he finished his rib-eye steak and baked potato on Saturday night, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was interrupted by his Outback Steakhouse waitress. “I just wanted to thank you for all you’ve done,” she said. “All of us fought over who would get to take this table.”

      Sanders was in the middle of doing something notable, and perhaps a bit awkward. He was on a campaign-style trip through western Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia, well before anyone might reasonably be campaigning for the next presidential election. And at each stop, he was rallying to save Obamacare, a health law he criticized relentlessly in his rise through the Democratic primaries in 2016, but which now hangs in the balance in the Senate.

      Sanders was trying to find a way to fuse his calls for a single-payer health care system with a plea to save the system he wants it to replace.

      His bridge was Medicaid. In his speeches, Sanders cast the Republican health care bill now pending in the Senate as cutting Medicaid for the poor to pass tax cuts for the rich rather than as a way to repeal many of the controversial and complicated policies embedded in the Affordable Care Act.

      If Democrats can make this battle a referendum on Medicaid rather than one on Obamacare, Sanders seemed to suggest, they’ll have a shot at saving both — and building toward a single-payer future.

      • Wish I could have been sitting at the table next to Bernie. The questions I would have about all the BS in DC he had to put up with would be interesting

        • You’re not alone la58 on sitting with Bernie. Bernie, Nina and Tulsi would be 3 I would like to sit with and question.

      • I guess they didn’t have the votes!

    • Ironworker looks to unseat Paul Ryan in 2018

      Randy Bryce, an Army veteran and ironworker, has announced that he will challenge Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, in 2018.

      Bryce, a Democrat who is active on Twitter under the handle @IronStache, has already run for office twice before, losing state House races in 2012 and 2014. But his first campaign ad quickly went viral, and is already turning heads in what could prove to be a major contest in next year’s midterms.


      Ryan has represented the district since 1999, and became Speaker in 2015. Since then, he has always been reelected with more than 50 percent of the vote. In 2016, he won 65 percent of the vote.

      Bryce, however, insists that Ryan is vulnerable, and is expected to campaign with a message centered on health care. “It’s not the same Paul Ryan that initially ran,” Bryce told NPR over the weekend. “He – I mean, even now he’ll come across as a nice guy, but it’s been over 600 days since the man has had any kind of public listening session in the district.”

      Bryce supported Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vermont, in last year’s contentious Democratic presidential primary. His run could indicate whether Democrats will be successful in adopting a more progressive message, particularly in working class districts that went for Mr. Trump in the last general election.

    • The Man Behind Bernie Sanders 2016 Reveals The Secret To Winning 2020

      Bernie lost, but his creative director believes that he changed presidential messaging forever.

    • ‘Absolutely Devastating’: CBO Predicts 22 Million Less Insured Under Trumpcare

      The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on Monday concluded the Senate’s version of Trumpcare would leave 22 million more people uninsured by 2026, a verdict that was immediately characterized as a “devastating” blow to a party scrambling to secure the support necessary to pass the legislation by the end of this week.

      The New York Times reported that the bill, if implemented, would have dramatic short-term effects, as well.

      “Next year,” the Times noted, “15 million more people would be uninsured compared with current law.”

      The analysis comes as doctors and resistance groups across the country forcefully express their outrage at a plan that would thoroughly gut Medicaid over the long-term, eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood, and leave children and the elderly without access to lifesaving care.

    • Why exactly were the police spying on Jeremy Corbyn?

      At the tail end of the general election campaign, the Daily Telegraph reported that undercover police officers had monitored Jeremy Corbyn for two decades. It was claimed that he had been put under surveillance “amid fears that he was attempting to undermine democracy”.

      It was part of a barrage of stories from the rightwing press intended to damage his attempt to win the election.

      But those with more sceptical minds are asking a different question – why were the police spying on an elected MP who has been committed to nonviolent protest?

      Corbyn has previously said:“I am a democratically elected person and it turns out I was put under surveil­lance for a long time because I campaigned on human rights issues and was involved in justice campaigns.”

      • The Telegraph article was based on the testimony of an unnamed former police officer who was quoted as saying that Corbyn was monitored because he was “deemed to be subversive”.

        However, the justification for spying on the MP was noticeably thin. The Telegraph said it was unclear exactly why he could have been categorised as a subversive. The former police officer is quoted as saying that Corbyn was not monitored because of his “alleged sympathies with Irish republicans”.

        My bold. Ok, if it wasn’t because of Corbyn’s “sympathies” with those who think Ireland should be an independent republic, why indeed?

        Another person who was also being spied on may have a clue:

        (Ken Livingstone) said at the time (March 2015): “I wish I could have been a threat when I was an MP but I was completely powerless. My phone was being bugged in the 80s when I was on the Greater London council. MI5 always denied it was them. So this was done by special branch?

        Did they think we were a threat to the western system? If only this were true. What a load of crap. What’s so ridiculous is that we were being subjected to IRA bombings right the way through that period and they were wasting officers spying on me and Tony Benn.

        “It’s a complete waste of police resources. People like me and Tony Benn were sadly never a threat to capitalism because we never had the powers.

    • Syria: Assad preparing chemical weapons attack, US claims

      The White House has declared that it believes Bashar al-Assad’s regime is preparing to carry out another chemical weapons attack, and warned that the Syrian leader and his military would “pay a heavy price” if it went ahead.

      The unusual public warning on Monday night appeared to be intended to deter the regime from repeating its use of chemical weapons against rebel-held cities and towns.

      It may also have been aimed at the regime’s backers in Moscow and Tehran, who have resolutely backed Assad and denied the regime’s responsibility for chemical weapons use.

      The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, tweeted: “Any further attacks done to the people of Syria will be blamed on Assad, but also on Russia and Iran who support him killing his own people.”

      The Kremlin described the warning as an unacceptable threat and said Russia had no information about a new chemical attack.

      • Donald Trump’s bloodlust for war in the Middle East risks chaos

        Lost among the deluge of stories about the Russia investigation and the Republicans’ push to take healthcare away from millions of people, the Trump administration is laying the groundwork for a disastrous regional proxy war against Iran in Syria and possibly beyond.

        Foreign Policy reported recently that key officials within the Trump administration are “pushing to broaden the war in Syria, viewing it as an opportunity to confront Iran and its proxy forces on the ground there.” The strategy was being advocated over objections from the Pentagon, but it doesn’t seem to be deterring White House.

        As the Washington Post made clear just a few days ago: Iranian and US forces have already been directly clashing in the region, and officials are busy planning the “next stage” of the Syria war once Isis is defeated – a plan that centers around directly attacking the Iranians.


        The White House is almost looking for a reason to launch yet another potentially catastrophic war in the Middle East, right in the middle of the most complex civil war we’ve seen in decades. There is no telling what chaos and destruction such a move would bring, but you can see the war wagons aligning within Trump administration circles as they prepare to move ahead with it anyways.

      • This is typical Trump distraction/propaganda tactics in play. BIG BIG YUUUGE LOSS in the Senate over health care looming large, LOOK LOOK OVER HERE SHINY THING BE AFRAID! BE VERY AFRAID! THE ENEMY…

      • I know that Caitlin isn’t for everyone, but she sure does speak her mind!

      • We knew this was coming, right?

      • Ripe for a “false flag” attack. Just like the last one.

      • deleted double comment.

      • And there has always been doubt over whose sarin has even been used in Syria. Back in the Obama administration British intelligence was that traces tested were not of the government stores.

        Seymour Hersh also stated that the Obama adminstration including SoS Clinton ensured that the Syrian rebel forces had access to the banned weapon: Seymour Hersh Says Hillary Approved Sending Libya’s Sarin to Syrian Rebels

      • Heavy Price? you mean inform the Russians when and where were going to bomb again?

    • US Mayors: Instead of War, Spend Big on ‘Human and Environmental Needs’

      Hundreds of U.S. mayors have rejected the ongoing militarism supported by the present and Congress and instead called for a budget that supports “human and environmental needs.”

      Over 250 Democrat, Republican, and Independent city leaders that make up the U.S. Conference of Mayors delivered their rebuke to the administration’s agenda with the passage of a series of resolutions Monday at their gathering in Miami.

      President Donald Trump has proposed increasing the Pentagon budget by $54 billion, asking for $603 billion. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees, meanwhile, are set to ask for even more: $640 billion for 2018. (And those costs are unlikely to raise the eyebrows of so-called deficit hawks.)

      In one adopted measure, called the “Opposition to Military Spending Resolution,” the mayors say that such proposals are the wrong way forward. It calls on “Congress to move our tax dollars in exactly the opposite direction proposed by the President, from militarism to human and environmental needs.”

    • Will These Studies Finally Make Betsy DeVos Admit School Vouchers Are a Total Scam?

      As President Donald Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos gear up to dump hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars into vouchers and other private education initiatives denounced by critics as ineffective and immoral, two new studies released on Monday reveal that, in many cases, voucher programs result in significantly worse academic performance than public schools.

      The studies were conducted in two states—Louisiana and Indiana—that have experimented substantially with vouchers, which are dubbed as financial “scholarships” ostensibly designed to help low-income and middle class families to send their children to private schools.

      Both analyses produced similar findings: Students who participated in voucher programs performed significantly worse in their first two years attending a private school, only to see their results return to baseline by the third and fourth years. Overall, as the Washington Post reported, the studies “do not show that vouchers led to significantly stronger math and reading performance”—a fact that appears to undermine the crucial argument in favor of further privatizing American education.

    • Potential Martin Shkreli jurors: we can’t be impartial over ‘most hated man’ in US

      Several potential jurors at the federal securities fraud trial of Martin “Pharma Bro” Shkreli were excused on Monday after telling the judge they couldn’t be impartial toward the flamboyant former pharmaceutical CEO because of his notoriety for raising the cost of a life-saving drug 5,000%.

      At jury selection in a Brooklyn courtroom, US district judge Kiyo Matsumoto questioned the potential jurors at sidebars out of earshot from Shkreli.

      One called him “the face of corporate greed”, another labeled him “the most hated man in America” and a third gestured as if wringing his neck.

      Yet another was sent home after confiding that when she saw Shkreli sitting at the defense table, “I said in my head, ‘That’s a snake’.”

      Opening statements could come as soon as Tuesday.

      • (Im grouping these guys together as they seem quite perfect for each other)

        Trump lawyer’s firm steered millions in donations to family members, files show

        More than 15,000 Americans were losing their jobs each day in June 2009, as the US struggled to climb out of a painful recession following its worst financial crisis in decades.

        But Jay Sekulow, who is now an attorney to Donald Trump, had a private jet to finance. His law firm was expecting a $3m payday. And six-figure contracts for members of his family needed to be taken care of.

        Documents obtained by the Guardian show Sekulow that month approved plans to push poor and jobless people to donate money to his Christian nonprofit, which since 2000 has steered more than $60m to Sekulow, his family and their businesses.

        Telemarketers for the nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (Case), were instructed in contracts signed by Sekulow to urge people who pleaded poverty or said they were out of work to dig deep for a “sacrificial gift”.

    • Trump doesn’t want Muslims in the US. That’s OK with the supreme court

      The US supreme court has decided that parts of Donald Trump’s Muslim ban can take effect, lifting lower court injunctions on his executive order and noting that it would hear the case in October. Days earlier, Trump’s White House broke with decades of tradition by refusing to host a traditional dinner, an iftar, for Muslim Americans during the holy month of Ramadan.

      While failing to host a dinner seems minor compared to establishing the law of the land, these two events are closely related – and bode terribly for Muslim Americans. Why? Because both actions chip away at the essential idea that Muslims are a legitimate presence in the United States.

      • Supreme Court Delivers a Bad Omen for Immigrants in Detention

        Alejandro Rodriguez was a year old when he arrived in the United States. Twenty-four years later, he landed in immigration detention. In between, he’d become a permanent legal resident, a dental assistant, and a father. He’d also acquired a criminal record.

        The crimes weren’t particularly serious—convictions for “joyriding” in 1998 and drug possession five years later—but they were enough for the Department of Homeland Security to detain him in 2004. He spent the next three years in immigration detention.

        On Monday, the Supreme Court announced that it would rehear arguments in Rodriguez v. Jennings in its next session, with a full court that includes its newest member, Justice Neil Gorsuch. The decision, at least temporarily, leaves in place a lower court ruling that detained immigrants have the right to a bond hearing every six months. But it’s not an encouraging sign for immigrants in detention.

    • France to Ban All New Development of Shale Oil and Gas

      There is a growing feeling within European capitals that a quiet, but deeply positive, revolution is happening under Emmanuel Macron in France.

      Macron’s opinion poll rating is high, especially boosted in how the young French president has reacted to Donald Trump on the international stage.

      On Friday, there was further evidence of Macron’s anti-Trump stance, when former governor of California and star of the “Terminator” film, Arnold Schwarzenegger, posted a selfie video of himself with Macron, where they mocked Trump’s withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris agreement.

      The video shows Schwarzenegger saying the pair talked about “talking about environmental issues and a green future,” before Macron adds: “We will deliver together to make the planet great again.”

      And in another sign that things are changing in Paris, France’s new celebrity “Ecological Transitions” minister, Nicolas Hulot, has said the country will issue a moratorium on new oil and gas exploration licenses. “There will be no new exploration licenses for hydrocarbons, we will pass the law this autumn,” Hulot told a French news channel.

    • Huge Milestone: Renewables Now Provide More Electricity Than Nuclear Power

      The latest issue of the U.S. Energy Information’s “Electric Power Monthly” (with data through April 30) reveals that—for the first time since the beginning of the nuclear era—renewable energy sources (i.e., biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar—inc. small-scale PV, wind) are now providing a greater share of the nation’s electrical generation than nuclear power.


      For the first third of this year, renewables and nuclear power have been running neck-in-neck with renewables providing 20.20 percent of U.S. net electrical generation during the four-month period (January to April) compared to 20.75 percent for nuclear power. But in March and April, renewables surpassed nuclear power and have taken a growing lead: 21.60 percent (renewables) vs. 20.34 percent (nuclear) in March, and 22.98 percent (renewables) vs. 19.19 percent (nuclear) in April.

      While renewables and nuclear are each likely to continue to provide roughly one-fifth of the nation’s electricity generation in the near-term, the trend line clearly favors a rapidly expanding market share by renewables. Electrical output by renewables during the first third of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016 has increased by 12.1 percent whereas nuclear output has dropped by 2.9 percent.

    •  The Economic System That Made the Grenfell Tragedy Possible

       s raging flames consumed the Grenfell Tower housing complex, London’s genteel facade of civility melted away, exposing a hidden human tragedy at its urban core. The immediate cause of the blaze earlier this month was a lack of basic building safeguards, but the underlying tinder was decades of social disinvestment and callous neglect of the poverty and unrest simmering deep inside one of the world’s richest cities.

      There will be, in the coming months, much recrimination surrounding the systemic regulatory failures that led to the tragedy. Street marches have unleashed rage at the erosion of working-class neighborhoods’ social services through budget slashing, and the political failures of government ministers to provide essential emergency response and restore community confidence, including identifying the victims. The Guardian has reported that the Tory-controlled council of tony Chelsea and North Kensington had over the years “stockpiled” hundreds of millions in funding reserves in order to subsidize wealthier constituents with tax breaks, even as the authorities simultaneously starved their public-housing budgets.

      But however broken the budget, however dilapidated the buildings, the ideological underpinnings of the Grenfell tragedy were solid and rooted in London’s architectural and social history. The city has long practiced a form of modern “urban planning,” now replicated in hyper-developed cities around the world, that embraces structured inequality as social engineering.

      • Shares of US-based aluminum company fall after report it supplied flammable panels to Grenfell Tower

        Shares of Arconic dropped more than 6 percent in early trading on Monday after Reuters reported the U.S. company formerly called Alcoa knowingly supplied flammable panels for use at London’s Grenfell Tower.

        Reuters said six emails sent to and by an Arconic manager raised questions about why the company supplied the combustible panels despite a public warning that they posed a risk.

        Grenfell Tower, which is more than 200 feet tall, was badly damaged in a June 14 fire that killed at least 79 people. London police said Friday the fire started after an appliance malfunction, adding they were considering manslaughter charges over the disaster.

        Arconic, a former Dow Jones industrial index component, told CNBC in a statement that it is discontinuing the sales of the panels around the world.

        • They will be going all the way down, see Takata for an example. Good time to “short” futures of this stock.

      • Britain to test schools and hospitals after 75 out of 75 high-rise buildings fail fire safety tests

        Britain on Monday confronted a rapidly growing ­fire-safety crisis after tests of the exterior cladding on dozens of public-housing towers revealed a 100 percent failure rate, raising fears that this month’s deadly inferno in London could be replicated elsewhere.

        Out of 75 high-rise buildings tested since last week, Communities Secretary Sajid Javid told Parliament late Monday afternoon, not one passed. That’s up from 60 failures out of 60 on Sunday — with hundreds more towers yet to be examined.

        Javid said the government will immediately expand testing to ­include schools, hospitals and private residential buildings — suggesting that the scope of the problem could be far beyond what was suspected even days ago.

    • Guardian Liveblog

      The dispute over the UK government’s £1bn sweetener for the DUP is escalating sharply with Scottish government making a formal protest to the Treasury over its failure to share any new funding with the devolved administrations in Edinburgh and Cardiff.

      Derek Mackay, the Scottish finance secretary, is writing to Liz Truss, the chief secretary to the Treasury, today to complain “in pretty strong terms” that the £1bn deal breaches the funding mechanisms for devolved governments because it is one-sided.

      Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister, is likely to further ratchet up the pressure on Theresa May’s government when she makes a formal statement at Holyrood on the impact the general election has on her quest for a new Scottish independence referendum. She is likely to focus very heavily on May’s failure to win a majority on 8 June, and her need to strike a “grubby deal” with the DUP to hold power.

    • The Trump Administration Just Greenlit a Project That Will Devastate California’s Most Fragile Ecosystems

      Over the strong objections of environmental groups and concerns raised by some of their own scientists, federal wildlife agencies on Monday approved the construction of $14-billion set of tunnels that will on average divert 20 percent of California’s ecologically sensitive Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers to Southern California cities and farms. “It’s farcical,” said Barbara Barrigan-Parilla, the director of Restore the Delta, a group that represents environmentalists, fishermen, and farmers in the Sacramento Delta region east of San Francisco. “It’s an insult to the people who have tracked these projects all these years because we remember the science that has been performed.”

      The tunnel project, known as California WaterFix, is designed to replace two huge pumps that have been blamed for sucking up and killing Delta smelt, a federally protected species that was once a major food source for Northern California’s dwindling salmon population. In 1993, the US Fish and Wildlife Service listed the smelt as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act, setting the stage for severe limits on the pumping during California’s recent drought. The twin, 40-foot-wide, 35-mile-long tunnels, which will be permitted to carry up to 67,000 gallons of water per second, have been marketed by California Governor Jerry Brown as a way to guarantee Southern California a more reliable water supply while also saving the smelt by diverting water further upstream in the Delta.

      But environmental groups have adamantly opposed the plan based on concerns that the massive tunnels will cause more salt water to intrude into the Delta—a position that the Environmental Protection Agency agreed with as recently as January

      • The spotlight needs to be kept on the eco-crooks. A lot of voters across the political spectrum are paying very close attention now. Getting real interesting.

      • Democratic Governor Brown has backed this tunnel plan all the way. Typical corporate Dem sell out. You know it’s bad when even Jerry Brown has sold out.

      • A writer that I always appreciated at TOP, Dan Bacher, is super-passionate about this issue.

        I just got this off his twitter feed, a story he published in Counterpunch this past February that is heavy in complex details:

        Extinction 2017: California Edition

        It’s crucial to understand that these two neo-liberal processes, the MLPA Initiative and the California Water Fix, are the environmental “legacy” that two Governors, Arnold Schwarznegger and Jerry Brown, have devoted their energy, staff and money to, rather than doing the mundane but necessary process of maintaining and repairing the state’s water infrastructure, including Oroville Dam.

        And here is Dan yesterday:

        As I predicted on election night, the President Donald Trump and Governor Jerry Brown administrations have apparently made a deal to fast-track Brown’s legacy project, the Delta Tunnels, considered by opponents to be the most environmentally destructive public works project in California history.

        In April 2017, the findings of an Independent Review Panel found serious deficiencies in the Draft Biological Opinion.

        “The Independent Review Panel report suggested that the biological opinion had serious flaws and that the Delta Tunnels will be terrible for Delta fish—those that live here year-round as well as those just passing through on their way to and from the Pacific Ocean,” said Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst for Restore the Delta.

        Yet the final decision by the Trump’s NOAA found “No Significant Impact” (FONSI), according to Stroshane. This is exactly the opposite from the conclusion made by the Independent Review Panel.

        Stroshane said NOAA’s decision of “no jeopardy” comes despite the 12 percent reduction in salmon smolt due to reduced water flows through the Delta. Another 7 percent of salmon smolt are killed by faulty fish screens. Other threatened and endangered species continue to decline as more water is taken out of the Delta.

    • New U.K. Government Held Together by Fear — of a Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn

      After weeks of wrangling, Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party agreed on Monday to give Prime Minister Theresa May the votes she needs to stay in office and push through legislation ensuring that the United Kingdom exits the European Union.

      While the Democratic Unionist leader, Arlene Foster, spoke of the deal being “in the national interest” of the U.K. as a whole, commentators pointed to what looked like a massive concession to Northern Ireland’s local government — an additional 1 billion pounds in social welfare spending.

      The money, though, was probably less important to the D.U.P. than staving off what it sees as a nightmarish alternative: the specter of Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition Labour Party, becoming prime minister.

      • After all this time and all these campaigns, I honestly do not get that there are enough people in this world–that love money more than people (so much so that they are AFRAID of people who want to help people)–that there always seems to be enough of them to pull something off, either in the public eye or hidden–there are always enough of them to pull a “victory” out and to continue to “punish” the 99%. To cause people to die, either from lack of medical care here or from a bomb so many other places.

        WTFrack is so hard about this concept? If I ever do just quit working for a better world through politics, it will be because of this. Because this very thought is just too much. I refuse to believe that people don’t want to help people. I refuse to believe that they can carry this much dissonance around in their heads and hearts, to actually believe they are helping when all they are doing in killing us and lining their pockets.

        • In my very modest personal opinion, I think that one of the reasons for how unexpectedly well Bernie did, is still doing, is that when all of those people went to rallies they were strengthened by rubbing elbows with so many like-minded people.

          A welcome reminder that there are actually a lot of people out there that care!

          If it wasn’t for you all here, I’m not sure that I’d still be agitating.

          • True that and a good reminder for me to get OUT there more, even if it’s for some march that won’t make a diddly squat worth of difference but will allow me to laugh with my fellow Berners. And I consider all who want Medicare for all and stuff like that to be a Berner.

    • Flimsy Evidence and Fringe Sources Land People on Secretive Banking Watchlist

      A corporate database used by banks and other institutions to screen clients for crimes such as money laundering and terror financing has labeled dozens of U.S. citizens as connected to terrorism on the basis of outdated or unsubstantiated allegations. An analysis of a 2014 copy of the database, which is known as World-Check, also indicates that many thousands of people, including children, were listed on the basis of tenuous links to crime or to politically prominent persons.

      The database relied on allegations stemming from right-wing Islamophobic websites to categorize under “terrorism” people and groups like the Council on American-Islamic Relations, several mosques, and national and regional Islamic organizations.

      Political activists also had World-Check listings originating from old, minor infractions. For instance, 16 Greenpeace activists who were arrested for protesting the “Star Wars” missile-defense program in 2001 were listed under the general “crime” category, though they ultimately pleaded guilty to misdemeanor trespassing and never served time.

    • Prominent Democratic Fundraisers Realign to Lobby for Trump’s Agenda

      After President Donald Trump’s upset election victory, Democratic insiders who worked on Hillary Clinton’s failed presidential bid weren’t necessarily relegated to the sidelines. Many, in fact, are cashing in as lobbyists — by working to advance Trump’s agenda.

      Lobbying records show that some Democratic fundraisers, who raised record amounts of campaign cash for Clinton, are now retained by top telecom interests to help repeal the strong net neutrality protections established during the Obama administration.

      Others are working on behalf of for-profit prisons on detention issues, while others still are paid to help corporate interests pushing alongside Trump to weaken financial regulations. At least one prominent Clinton backer is working for a health insurance company on a provision that was included in the House Republican bill to gut the Affordable Care Act.

      While Republican lobbyists are more in demand, liberal lobbyists are doing brisk business that has them reaching out to fellow Democrats to endorse — or at least tamp down vocal opposition to — Trump agenda items.

      • As a reminder from yesterday, the people that Jerry listens to don’t want it to work

        Corporate Democrats Sabotage Single Payer Bill in California for Wealthy Donors

        In 2015, the Sacramento Bee reported that Rendon received over $36,000 from drug makers. In April 2017, IBTimes reported that House Speaker Anthony Rendon, Senate President Kevin De Leon and Gov. Jerry Brown—all Democrats—have received a combined $370,000 from groups opposing single-payer health care legislation. Since 2010, these lawmakers have received $3.4 million in campaign donations from the health insurance industry. While California voters and progressive groups demand single-payer health care in the state, the Democratic establishment in California has been bought and paid for by the pharmaceutical and health care industries to prevent it from becoming a reality.

      • https://www.commondreams.org/news/2017/06/27/urging-democrats-go-bold-warren-says-next-step-single-payer

        Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is calling on Democrats to embrace a single-payer healthcare system in order to win back Congress and the White House in upcoming elections.

        Warren argued that simply blocking the Republican rollback of the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare, is not enough to distinguish Democrats from their GOP counterparts in the minds of voters.

        “It’s time for the next step. And the next step is single payer.” —Sen. Elizabeth Warren

        “President Obama tried to move us forward with health-care coverage,” Warren said, “by using a conservative model that came from one of the conservative think tanks that had been advanced by a Republican governor in Massachusetts. Now it’s time for the next step. And the next step is single payer.”

      • I will be accused of misogyny, but how much plastic surgery has this woman had??? Her eyes are straight out of a horror movie! She always looks startled or terrorized.

        • She believes it’s the wide-eyed look of youth.

          I’ve often thought that if I were in a different situation, I might change a couple of things, but I know that I’d want to find a doc that did “face lift lite.” I wouldn’t try to get back to 20. And you’re right, she looks like a mannequin and she does look scared. I imagine these people carry a fair amount of fear around inside. It’s part of what makes them mean. Like if I see a black widow, I smash that creature. These people likely see black widows everywhere–two of the main ones apparently being fear of a lack of power and fear of a lack of money.

        • She looks very gaunt.

          I’ve often wondered how anyone could vote for Scott in Florida. He looks very gaunt and “startled” as well I find. It’s somewhat unsettling.

          • Don’t mention Gov. Indicted Medicare Crook. I live there, and the whole stupid, corrupted Tallahassee swamp makes me sick as well as mad.

    • Republicans eye billions in side deals to win Obamacare repeal votes

      White House and Capitol Hill officials are exploring potential deals to divvy up billions of dollars to individual senators’ priorities in a wide-ranging bid to secure votes for the imperiled GOP health care bill.

      A Congressional Budget office score that projected 22 million fewer Americans would have insurance under the plan sent some members fleeing Monday and left the bill in jeopardy of failing to have enough votes to even be called to the Senate floor this week.

    • Trump’s First Guantanamo Trial Is FUBAR From Day 1

      Even Trump administration officials admit that trying terrorists in military courts “doesn’t work.” That’s not stopping the Trump administration from doing it anyway. It’s charging an Indonesian terrorist with war crimes, even as officials concede that the new case is likely to become the latest procedural disaster facing U.S. military commissions.

      Riduan Isamuddin, known as Hambali, has been in U.S. custody since 2003, when the CIA captured him, took him to an undisclosed black site prison and tortured him. Since 2006, Hambali, the former al Qaeda leader in Southeast Asia, has been held at Guantanamo Bay, alongside other black site veterans whose torture has turned their military prosecutions into a morass of legal challenges.

      “The decision to charge Hambali after six years of unsuccessful prosecutions in other military commissions cases suggests the U.S. has not learned from its mistakes in [pursuing] military commissions in the first place,” said James Connell, an attorney for 9/11 defendant Ammar al-Baluchi.

      • Maybe it’s the jailing them first for years that’s not working. If we have the evidence, seems like a military court makes it even easier to convict.

        We know how to gather evidence without torture, and we’ve heard from the tortured and many in the military that torture, generally, does not work. Has the CIA completely forgotten how to gather evidence that can convict?

      • Well certainly not the Dem establishment ones. Unfortunately, the Republican variety seem to be doing fine.

    • Congressional Black Caucus has a duty to meet with President Trump

      Dealing with this White House and administration may be a challenge, but it is no excuse not to meet. Dare I say, it is their duty to meet with the president and to continue the good fight for the districts and communities they represent because Rep. Richmond is correct — the millions of people they represent have a lot to lose.

      Working with this White House is not easy, but not engaging on behalf of fragile communities is more painful to the communities that the Congressional Black Caucus represents. Perhaps this is a strategy to give up Beltway politics and endorse a more grassroots progressive activism. But I doubt it, and it won’t work.

      Cynicism aside, the Congressional Black Caucus is essential. Its voice in the legislative process is critical, and many of its constituents living on the margins find solace in that voice. As former Rep. William Clay Sr. (D-Mo.) declared when the CBC was founded, “Black people have no permanent friends, no permanent enemies…just permanent interests.” Even in this Trump era, the caucus must live by this edict.

      • I’m conflicted on this. It’s ridiculous to think that any meeting with Trump is going to get Trump to move one inch toward anything the Black Caucus wants. Has the writer been napping since January? He assumes that Trump actually will come to a meeting with any purpose other than to use it to score political points. Therefore, the question is: Will the meeting be a better photo op for Trump to show he’s reaching out or a better photo op for the Black Caucus to show they are reaching out.

    • Pediatricians’ group ‘deeply alarmed’ at EPA’s pesticide decision

      A national group representing pediatricians says the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) put children at significant risk by refusing to restrict uses of the pesticide chlorpyrifos.

      In a letter Tuesday to EPA chief Scott Pruitt, the American Academy of Pediatrics, along with the Environmental Working Group, accused the EPA of ignoring its own findings that chlorpyrifos poses specific risks to children, infants and developing fetuses.

      “We are deeply alarmed by EPA’s decision not to finalize the proposed rule to end chlorpyrifos uses on food — a decision that was premised on the need for further study on the effects of chlorpyrifos on children before finalizing a rule,” the two groups wrote to Pruitt.

    • Chaffetz calls for $2,500 legislator housing stipend

      Just days before he resigns from Congress, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) said Monday that House and Senate lawmakers should receive a $2,500 per month housing allowance — something he explained would help ease housing costs for members who can’t afford two mortgages or rents.

      “I really do believe Congress would be much better served if there was a housing allowance for members of Congress,” Chaffetz told The Hill in an interview in his Capitol office, where he sleeps whenever he’s in Washington. “In today’s climate, nobody’s going to suggest or vote for a pay raise. But you shouldn’t have to be among the wealthiest of Americans to serve properly in Congress.”


      “Washington, D.C., is one of the most expensive places in the world, and I flat-out cannot afford a mortgage in Utah, kids in college and a second place here in Washington, D.C.,” Chaffetz said. “I think a $2,500 housing allowance would be appropriate and a real help to have at least a decent quality of life in Washington if you’re going to expect people to spend hundreds of nights a year here. …

      “There are dozens upon dozens of members living in their offices, and I don’t know how healthy that is long term.”

      • How about just building them a barracks? Or something like the “bachelor officers’ quarters” the military provides? It would be cheaper in the long run.

      • Um, when us peons get a job in another state, we generally move. If we make enough money, we get to keep two homes. Cry me a river.

      • Chaffez’s request is for slop for those who deserve the least at the trough. Here’s why it is a burden of unfairness:

        District of Columbia (DC) 2017 Hourly Minimum Wage
        $11.50 / hour

        DC Weekly Minimum Wage 1
        $460.00 / 40-hr week

        DC Yearly Minimum Wage 2
        $23,920.00 / year

        And Chaffez is asking for a $30,400 rental stipend? Why doesn’t he ask for political charity? Seems to me he can get it pretty easily.

      • You mean Chaffetz lobbyist hasn’t paid him yet?

    • Pastor Leads Lawsuit Opposing Bayou Bridge Pipeline to Protect Louisiana Cancer Alley Community

      Pastor Harry Joseph of the Mount Triumph Baptist Church in St. James, Louisiana, is taking legal action to prevent the Bayou Bridge pipeline from being built in his community, roughly 50 miles west of New Orleans. He is named as a plaintiff in a case filed by the Tulane Environmental Law Clinic, petitioning the Parish Court to overturn the coastal permit that the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) gave Energy Transfer Partners, the company that built the controversial Dakota Access pipeline.

      The Bayou Bridge pipeline will be the last leg of the Dakota Access, carrying oil fracked in North Dakota to Louisiana. The final stretch of the project, if built, will span 162.5 miles from Lake Charles to St. James, cutting through the Atchafalaya Basin, a national heritage area and the country’s largest wetland.

      This pipeline will transport crude oil from the oil and gas hub in Nederland, Texas, to a terminal in St. James Parish’s Fifth District, a small, predominately low-income African-American community of fewer than 2,000 in a stretch of land along the Mississippi River known as Cancer Alley.

      • ICYMI: Prayer and Resistance Camp Launches in Louisiana to Challenge Pipeline Connected to DAPL

        A new resistance camp, called L’eau Est La Vie (Water Is Life), opened over the weekend, on June 24. Based in southern Louisiana, the camp is against the 163-mile long Bayou Bridge Pipeline.

        The camp, according to a press release emailed to Colorlines, is made up of indigenous and environmental justice communities. Described as a “floating camp,” it sits among Louisiana’s wetlands and contains numerous indigenous art structures that are on rafts. The camp’s name, L’eau Est La Vie, is in the indigenous-colonial Houma French language. The United Houma Nation is one of the tribes whose members are challenging the pipeline.

        For these first two weeks, the camp will be full of prayerful ceremony, says Cherri Foytlin, state director of Bold Louisiana and an indigenous woman. “Someone is praying at all times at the camp for the next two weeks,” she said in a phone interview with Colorlines about the space which she considers a prayer and resistance camp.

    • http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/neil-gorsuch-is-the-anti-lgbtq-nightmare-his-gay-friends-hoped-he-wasnt_us_5951d0d3e4b0da2c731e1684?ncid=engmodushpmg00000004

      And now we have the proof of just how wrong Gorsuch’s friends were, looking at the actions of the court this week. Gorsuch revealed a dangerous disregard for the Obergefell marriage equality decision, in the 6-3 ruling that overturned an Arkansas law that prevented both parents in a same-sex marriage to be on the birth certificate when one gives birth to a child ― as is the case for heterosexual marriages in the state. Gorsuch took pride in writing the dissent, joined by far-right Justices Thomas and Alito, clearly supporting flat out discrimination and ignoring precedent ― something even Justice John Roberts, who dissented in Obergefell but joined the majority in the case, would not do.

      Last week I thought that the first case to be the test of the reach of Gorsuch ’s view of religious liberty might be the abominable Mississippi law that a federal appeals court allowed to go into effect ― considered the worst anti-LGBTQ law ever by many LGBTQ activists and legal experts.

      But obviously that will likely be the second act, after the Colorado baker case. All of this is part of the long-term strategy I’ve written about, interviewing those on the right and attending their conferences, in which religious conservatives, dealt a blow by Obergefell, will now work ― as they did regarding Roe v. Wade ― to weaken the decision, and try to turn same-sex marriage in second-class marriage.

      • A lot of people thought Gorsuch would be Scalia II. He’s proving to be dumber than AS. If Capt. Corporo-Roberts is having 2nd thoughts, how about Kennedy?

    • It’s a global thing. TPTB hold the power. They’ll do anything and everything to hold on to it.

      • A friend became active with her fellow union members where she works and quickly became amazed at how her union resisted every request/demand the union members made. They weren’t listened to at all. Their union told them to shut up and take whatever crumbs (a raise of 0.10/hr) they got and be happy about it.

        Then she rallied her fellow union members into looking for a different union to represent them (since their union was not), got to the point where she had over 50% of the members in her corner, even began meeting with a different union rep, lawyers got involved, and then the shenanigans really started!

        Threats, underhanded behavior, intimidation tactics, whisper campaigns, you name it. She was unprepared for it.

        I eventually had to remind her that those in power do not give up their power willingly or easily. She said that she kept that truth in her mind to help her deal with it all. So far, though, nothing but trickery and brick walls.

        • Good on your friend for keeping up the good fight! She’s got lots of support here! Yeah, some unions seem like “fronts.” And yeah, there’s likely a lot more “unions” that need new leaders or diff unions completely.

          Interesting that there’s blowback about IronStache. If he runs on the stuff he talks about, I’d like that. I hope he’s not for TPP and the like. Doubtful.

    • Forget Breitbart and Fox, TMZ is the worst media menace


      Trump was the ideal vehicle for TMZ to break into political coverage. A reality TV host and a creature of celebrity culture pursues the most powerful position in the world — all while dishing out TMZ-friendly sound bites on a daily basis.

      As Trump has risen, TMZ has quietly emerged as, arguably, the most important pro-Trump outlet in America. Fox News is the largest and best known, but its audience is older and already inclined to support Trump. Breitbart is the most aggressive and strident, but its connection to white nationalism limits its appeal. TMZ attracts a large and diverse audience — precisely the folks Trump needed to reach to stitch together a winning coalition.

      The power of TMZ comes not from its focus on political news, but its ability to attract an apolitical — and thus more malleable — audience. Viewers and readers come for Kanye West, Lady Gaga, and Amber Rose. And they get plenty of that.

      But they also get a steady stream of pro-Trump coverage. It’s coverage that treats Trump as he wants to be treated — as the biggest celebrity in the world, worthy of your admiration. Like Trump, TMZ doesn’t spend much time picking through the policy details. But when TMZ does, it generally takes Trump’s side.

      With the election in the rearview mirror, things don’t seem like they are changing.

      “It just became about now promoting him as president, rather than promoting him as a candidate. So it didn’t stop after the election at all; if anything it probably got even crazier,” a TMZ staffer told ThinkProgress.

    • I wonder if they were using US created intelligence software again?

    • Call me cynical but I’ll bet that they will be found not guilty.

    • SAD!!


      A Republican congressman lost close to $17 million on Tuesday when stock in an Australian pharmaceutical company he allegedly promoted to other lawmakers plunged to pennies per share.

      Shares of Innate Immunotherapeutics fell more than 90 percent in Sydney after a multiple sclerosis drug being tested by the pharma company showed no signs of working.

      Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), the largest stockholder in the company, lost roughly $17 million as Innate’s stock price sunk after the news broke Tuesday morning, according to Bloomberg. Collins sits on the company’s board of directors.

    • I can’t believe that this actually occurred.

      I thought it was from “The Onion” at first glance.

    • I looked at Dan Bacher’s twitter feed to get the info on Trump working with Jerry Brown to get those water tunnels in CA and found this:

      If they had an ounce of courage they’d all turn on their cameras at once. I saw someone sent in a sketch artist the other day. Ridiculous.

    • Plenty appeal to Stupid. All that counts.

  • This week, Hannity and Hume rushed to tell us that colluding with Putin to subvert the results of an American election is entirely legal. The National Review thinks evidence of collusion would be “an enormous ca […]

    • The supposed Republican internal opposition to the Healthcare Bill is only a charade.McConnell will pull a “rabbit out of his hat” by allowing a few weak amendments and voila the votes will appear and it will pass. The MSM is giving cover to this happening.

    • I certainly agree with your last paragraph Subir.

      Also, I agree with this article. It rings true.

      Progressives, Take Hold of American History

      The election results may have been different had Democrats embraced America’s past and its radical imperative of freedom, equality and democracy.

      We need to take hold of and lay claim to American history.

      And we need to advance a progressive American historical narrative.

      Apparently haunted by the worst of our national experience, Democrats, liberals and progressives have for too long simply run from the past. But by doing so we merely compound the tragedies and ironies. We turn our backs on the story of the nation’s democratic creed, democratic imperative and democratic struggles and achievements — a story both inspiring and compelling that has been written from the bottom up by Americans in all their diversity.

      We need to take hold of and lay claim to American history. And we need to advance a progressive American historical narrative.

      Fleeing the past, we have allowed conservatives and reactionaries from Ronald Reagan to Donald Trump to concoct a nostalgic narrative.

      If the members of a newly reconstituted Democratic National Committee do not know about America’s radical, progressive and social-democratic traditions — and I bet that many of them do not — they must study up fast. And if they don’t appreciate that progressive change requires more than smart policies and programs, they must be educated to do so. As FDR said in 1935, “New laws, in themselves, do not bring the millennium.” In fact, the DNC ought to issue history syllabi for new members and organize classes for party leaders and prospective Democratic candidates high and low.

      Like Lincoln, FDR and Dr. King, we liberals and progressives have got to remind our fellow citizens who we have been, who we are and of what we are capable. We need to articulate and cultivate a narrative that affirms and encourages democracy’s hopes, aspirations and energies. We need a narrative that compels and propels democratic action and political victories.

  • The Supreme Court announced today that they would hear Trump v. International Refugee Assistance Project. This is the Muslim ban, Travel ban case.

    In it’s decision to hear the case, the court also lifted the t […]

  • Bernie Sanders denounces GOP health-care bill during Columbus visit

    Americans could be forced to decide between sending their children to college or their parents to nursing homes, Sen. Bernie Sanders told a […]

    • Tips, Comments, Complaints, etc!

    • 2,200 gather at Bernie Sanders rally to oppose Senate health care bill

      Ohioan Kate Christman lived her entire adult life — into her 60s — without health insurance, all while suffering from chronic illness related to diabetes through much of that time.

      Then came “Obamacare.”

      The Affordable Care Act — commonly referred to as “Obamacare,” after former President Barack Obama — was signed into law in 2010, during Obama’s second term as president and allows for citizens to purchase health insurance plans with federal vouchers, a practice that began in early 2014.


      Christman said she drove an hour-and-a-half from Morgan County, where she lives, to voice opposition to proposed legislation which she fears would hurt future people in her shoes by lessening the voucher amounts for insurance policy purchases.

      “I hope that our politicians pay attention to all the public support for health care for poor Americans,” she said.

      She was among 2,200 people who gathered at the EXPRESS LIVE! concert hall Sunday morning to show that support, as Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders led a Columbus rally — part of a three-city bus tour organized by advocacy group Moveon.org — to voice opposition to the recently unveiled Republican-backed Senate healthcare bill which critics say would cut key components of Obamacare.

    • Bernie Sanders speaks against Republican health care bill at rally in Columbus

      In front of 2,200 people, Sanders addressed a large crowd at Express LIVE concert hall in downtown Columbus.

      “We will not allow 23 million Americans to be thrown off of the health insurance they currently have in order to give $500,000,000,000 in tax breaks to the wealthiest two percent, to the insurance companies and to the drug companies,” said Sanders.

      In a last-ditch effort to pressure Senate Republicans like Ohio Senator Rob Portman to vote against a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. The measure would cut and revamp Medicaid, the healthcare program for low-income and disabled people.

      Young mother Brittany Scott fears her she won’t be able to afford her current health insurance plan if the bill passes.

      “Right now I am six months pregnant and if this bill passes I have no idea what I am going to do for health insurance for my son,” said Scott.

      • This points out the different way of handling controversial legislation.


        Maybe the Democrats could learn from this. But I have my doubts.

        • I recall thinking that the Dems did not handle a lot of the criticism of ACA very well at the time.

          For example, one (imo childish) ploy Repubs utilized was holding up the draft mocking how long it was. “Look at this!”, (insert Repub name here) would cry, “It’s over 1,600 pages! How can we possibly read all of this in time?!”

          I wanted to yell at the tv, ‘It’s double-spaced with huge borders and a lot of duplicate information! I read most of the key points myself in my free time, while you’re getting paid to do it!’

          Dems should have mocked them right back. Said, ‘Do your job and read it! Then sit down with us to knock this thing out! It’s too important for the welfare of our citizens to do anything less!’.

    • Sanders tries to sway GOP colleague on Obamacare repeal

      Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) was in Charleston, W.Va., Sunday for a Protect Our Health Care Rally where he urged GOP Sen. Shelley Moore Capito to vote against what he called a “barbaric and immoral” bill, The Charleston Gazette-Mail reported.

      “It turns out that the legislation that is coming before the Senate in a few days, the so-called health care bill, will be the most devastating attack on the working class of this country in the modern history of the United States of America,” Sanders said to a crowd of about 2,000, according to the Gazette-Mail.

      “This legislation will cause devastating, unprecedented harm to millions of people in my state, in your state and all across the country.”


      So far, five GOP senators have said they won’t support the current form of the bill.

      Sanders used his appearance to urge Capito to join their ranks.

      “Right now, nobody knows whether this bill will pass or fail. It will come down to a handful of votes. I believe that if Sen. Capito votes no, this bill will in fact go down,” Sanders said. “If she votes no, the Republicans likely will not have the votes to pass this disastrous legislation.”

    • Bernie Sanders ‘extremely disappointed’ by stalling of California’s single-payer health care bill

      Sen. Bernie Sanders is not happy with Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, who on Friday called a proposed California universal health bill “woefully incomplete” and killed it for the year.

      “I am extremely disappointed that the speaker of the California Assembly is refusing to allow S.B 562, the single-payer health care bill passed by the state Senate, to come to the Assembly floor for a vote,” Sanders said in a statement issued Saturday.

      Having recently urged California to be the nation’s leader in instituting universal health care policy, Sanders has been a strong supporter of Senate Bill 562, which would create a universal, publicly funded health care system for the state.

      “If the great state of California has the courage to take on the greed of the insurance companies and the drug companies, the rest of the country will follow,” Sanders continued in Saturday’s statement.

    • Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn sitting down with President Bernie Sanders no longer sounds so outlandish

      Unlike many of us, Bernie Sanders never doubted Jeremy Corbyn. The week before the general election, the independent US senator from Vermont was addressing a crowd of progressive voters in Brighton during a whirlwind tour of the UK. An audience member asked him what advice he might have for the leader of the Labour Party. “I don’t think Jeremy Corbyn needs my advice,” Sanders replied. “I think he’s doing quite well.”

      The week after the election, a delighted Sanders invoked Corbyn’s election performance in a New York Times op-ed. “The British elections should be a lesson for the Democratic Party,” he wrote, urging the Democrats to stop holding on to an “overly cautious, centrist ideology” and explaining how “momentum shifted to Labour after it released a very progressive manifesto that generated much enthusiasm among young people and workers”.


      Just as it was a mistake to write off Jeremy Corbyn, it would be wrong to dismiss Bernie Sanders.

      Despite media bias, and even though he doesn’t have a party machine behind him, Sanders today is still the most popular politician in the United States. And so this may be only the beginning of a new, transatlantic partnership between the two self-declared socialists. Those of us on the left who grew up watching Reagan and Thatcher, then Clinton and Blair, then Bush and Blair, may wish to pinch ourselves to check we’re not dreaming.

      “I think by 2021,” Sandberg says, “we may see Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn sitting down with President Bernie Sanders.”

      Don’t say you weren’t warned.

      • Wouldn’t this be a grand start? I’ll write his Senate page and cheer this on.

        What’s with Ireland siding with May, though???? We’re going to need a visible, global coalition to stop these kinds of things.

        • re: Ireland

          Are you referring to those 10 DUP MP seats? Perhaps I misunderstand you.

          The second largest party in Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein, actually made gains in this last election against DUP:

          Having entered the election 10 seats ahead of Sinn Fein, the DUP saw that gap slashed to a solitary seat as the republican party’s support surged.

          The nationalist Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) also fared better than many expected, replacing the UUP as the third largest party in the Assembly.

          I don’t know how those assembly seats converted into 10 MP seats for DUP and 7 MP seats for Sinn Fein but, nevertheless, Sinn Fein is being pressured to take the oath of allegiance to the monarch (something that they are currently against doing) and ‘take’ those 7 seats:

          Why Sinn Féin Could Benefit Ireland By Taking Their Seats In The Houses Of Parliament

          (Sinn Fein) might demonstrate that they are a mature party capable of governance not just in the Ireland of the here and now, but also in the united country that might emerge from a border poll. There should be more important considerations that transcend the national question for the time being. If Sinn Féin have an opportunity to take their seats in the event of a No Confidence Vote which would bring an end to austerity and usher in a new government, then they should seize the moment rather than being held to ransom by ideals out of place in this century. For a start though they should look back on history and remember that abstentionism originated as a tactic rather than a policy set in stone. New tactics are badly needed in the changed ball game of today’s politics for the sake of both Britain and Ireland.

          • Good news, that!

            Yes, I was talking about the DUP and May. Could mean the difference b/w a growing populist movement worldwide and more austerity.

      • Bernies first foreign trip abroad as President to start cleaning up the Trump inc mess.and regain our respect as leader of the free world

    • Why Bernie Sanders needs a lawyer

      Don’t make too much of the news that Sen. Bernie Sanders and his wife Jill have lawyered up: It’s just what you have to do when you’re facing an FBI investigation.

      That is, retaining private counsel is obligatory even if you truly have done absolutely nothing wrong. On the other hand, real questions do surround Jill Sanders’ actions as president of now-closed Burlington College.

      Back in 2010, Sanders arranged a $10 million loan for the school to buy 32 acres of lakefront property. At issue is whether she falsely inflated the number of donors who’d promised to help cover the loan payments.

      The FBI is also said to be looking at whether Sen. Sanders put political pressure on the bank to OK the loan. Politico reports the evidence for that so far is “thin at best,” but Sanders (like anyone in that situation) is wise to have a lawyer handling the probe for him.

    • Bernie Sanders: FBI inquiry into 2010 bank loan will clear wife

      Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who has retained counsel as the FBI investigates whether his wife, Jane Sanders, committed fraud to acquire a 2010 loan for a now-shuttered Vermont college, predicted Saturday night that the probe would be a political fizzle.

      “This was a story that just, amazingly enough, came out in the middle of my presidential campaign, initiated by Donald Trump’s campaign manager in Vermont,” Sanders said in an interview, between rallies in Pennsylvania and Ohio organized to defeat Senate Republicans’ health-care bill. “That’s about it. I don’t think it’ll be a distraction.”


      Sanders himself is not under FBI investigation, but for some Clinton supporters, the attack comes as a belated revenge for the investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server as U.S. secretary of state that dragged through her presidential campaign and resurfaced in its final week.

      No charges were brought. But although some Sanders surrogates and delegates warned that the Democrats should not have a nominee “under FBI investigation,” neither Bernie nor Jane Sanders made much of the story; in April 2016, Jane Sanders suggested “it would be nice if the FBI moved it along” but emphasized that her husband was not using the email probe to attack Clinton.

      “That’s one of the things that’s very sad about our politics today,” Jane Sanders told The Washington Post this month when asked about the Burlington College probe. “The Sanders Institute will not be taking any potshots at people.”

    • Seriously, why isn’t the fact that the PPACA/’Obamacare’ is based on a Repukelican plan designed by the FRightwing Heritage Foundation????? It needs to be yelled and screamed over all white noize generated by the Far Right. “Alt-Right” my arse, they are FAR Right. Call out the truth for a change! 🙁 T and R to the usual suspects!! Good morning LD/JD, you guys staying cool down there?

      • Morning Orl! It’s been pretty warm for sure! Because it seems to rain about 3 days a week lately the humidity has been extra gross, but I’m sure you know all about that in your part of the world!

    • Ire for Democrat Who Pulled Plug on California’s Single-Payer Bill

      Advocates of the single-payer healthcare proposal which has been steadily advancing through the California legislature were voicing outrage and disappointment on Saturday after Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, a Democrat, announced he was pulling the bill from further consideration this year.

      Known as the Healthy California Act, or SB 562, the measure had already passed the state Senate and was making its way through the lower chamber when Rendon said Friday it was being shelved by the Assembly Rules Committee, which he chairs, “until further notice.”

      Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who has vocally promoted SB 562 amid a broader call for a national Medicare-for-All system, said he was”extremely disappointed” and called on Rendon to reverse his decision.

      “At a time when the United States is the only major country on earth not to guarantee health care for all, and when tens of millions of Americans are uninsured or underinsured because of outrageously high costs, California has the opportunity to lead this nation in a very different health care direction,” Sanders said. “If the great state of California has the courage to take on the greed of the insurance companies and the drug companies, the rest of the country will follow. The eyes are on California today.”

      It is time “go forward,” Sanders added. “Allow the Assembly to vote.”

      • Hope they vote him out.

      • As usual, follow the $$$

        Corporate Democrats Sabotage Single Payer Bill in California for Wealthy Donors

        However, given his ties to the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries, it’s not surprising that Speaker Rendon shut down the bill. In an election swung by fraudulent votes, his senior adviser, Eric Bauman, was recently elected by party insiders to chair the California Democratic Party Chair. Bauman received over $100,000 in 2016 lobbying for the pharmaceutical industry against Prop 61, which would have capped prescription drug prices in California.

        In 2015, the Sacramento Bee reported that Rendon received over $36,000 from drug makers. In April 2017, IBTimes reported that House Speaker Anthony Rendon, Senate President Kevin De Leon and Gov. Jerry Brown—all Democrats—have received a combined $370,000 from groups opposing single-payer health care legislation. Since 2010, these lawmakers have received $3.4 million in campaign donations from the health insurance industry. While California voters and progressive groups demand single-payer health care in the state, the Democratic establishment in California has been bought and paid for by the pharmaceutical and health care industries to prevent it from becoming a reality.

    • Sentence for “Valve-Turner” Climate Activist Ken Ward: No More Jail Time

      Climate activist Ken Ward, the “valve turner” who was arrested and prosecuted for closing the emergency valve on an oil sands pipeline, and who argued in front the jury with considerable success that the urgency of climate change compelled him to act, was sentenced Friday in Skagit County Superior Court in Washington State. His sentence of two days in jail has already been fulfilled.

      After a first trial ended in a hung jury, in a second trial earlier this month, the jury found Ward technically guilty of second degree burglary, but deadlocked (for the second time) and failed to find him guilty of the charge of sabotage.

      The facts of Ward’s action were not in dispute, only whether his motive of helping prevent harm to the climate and calling attention to the climate crisis can be used in court as justification for acting as he did. Ward and his legal team were not permitted by the judge to argue a “necessity defense,” which means they could not call expert witnesses or submit expert testimony about the harms that carbon-intensive oil sands do to the climate, and how climate change will affect the region, to justify Ward’s action. But in his own testimony, Ward got enough of his point across that one jury refused to convict him of burglary, and two juries refused to convict him of sabotage. In the second trial, the second jury did reluctantly convict him of burglary.

      For that conviction, Judge Michael Rickert used the “First-Time Offender Waiver” and sentenced Ward to 32 days, including 2 days in custody (served when he was arrested) and 30 days (240 hours) community service in Skagit County, plus six months’ community supervision. The state may still file for restitution. The judge dropped bail, and released Ward on his own Personal Recognizance. The State declined to re-file the sabotage charge.

    • FERC Repeats Failure on Mountain Valley Pipeline Review

      The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) released its Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Mountain Valley Pipeline, a controversial 303-mile pipeline that would carry 2 billion cubic feet of fracked gas per day from West Virginia through Virginia. As has been the pattern at FERC, the review fails to adequately assess whether the pipeline is needed in the first place, while sweeping aside the project’s serious threats to water resources, the safety of communities, and the climate.

      Oil Change International Research Analyst Kelly Trout had the following response to FERC’s deeply flawed climate assessment:

      “In this utterly insufficient review, FERC ignores both science and economics to sweep aside the Mountain Valley Pipeline’s significant climate impact. FERC severely undercounts climate pollution by ignoring methane leakage across the gas supply chain, which makes gas as dirty or dirtier than coal, and by omitting emissions from upstream fracking. FERC also wrongly assumes that gas supplied by the project is likely to replace coal, when it’s just as likely to lock out the clean energy and efficiency alternatives we urgently need.

      “If FERC was doing its job, it would find the Mountain Valley Pipeline will cause an unacceptable increase in climate pollution and reject this dirty project. A proper analysis shows that this pipeline will cause as much climate pollution as 26 coal plants per year. This project is the last thing we need in the face of worsening heatwaves and flooding, and when clean alternatives are readily available now.

    • Parade on the Pipeline near Rio reminds residents of oil risks

      —In the midst of fair season, one parade was shorter than usual and with a few devoted supporters, but with a clear message from start to finish.

      Members of the Sierra Club and Wisconsin Safe Energy Alliance (WiSE) came together on Saturday to celebrate a Party for the Planet capped with a Parade on the Pipeline.

      “This weekend there was a statewide day of action to stand back and appreciate the places that are at risk from the pipeline,” said Elizabeth Ward, Conservation Programs Coordinator for the John Muir Chapter of the Sierra Club. “In Rio it is a lot of agricultural land that is threatened, and families and communities, so they decided to pull together a picnic and just a fun family event.”

      The Enbridge Line 61 pipeline carries oil from Superior to the company’s Flanagan Terminal near Pontiac, Illinois. The line, which is in the last stages of ramping up to full speed, carries 1.2 million barrels of crude oil per day across the state, including through Marquette and Columbia counties, with one pump station north of Portage on Dumke Road.

      Activists have opposed an as-yet-hypothetical “evil twin” which would run parallel to Line 61, bringing together a diverse coalition of those making a point to fight for water quality, against climate change and those in opposition to eminent domain.

    • 8 protesters arrested at Massachusetts gas pipeline project

      Massachusetts State Police say eight demonstrators were arrested for trespassing into restricted areas at a natural gas pipeline project.

      Police say the protesters were arrested Saturday at Otis State Forest in Sandisfield without incident. They were among others protesting an easement that allows the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. to widen its right of way through the forest.

      • 98 year-old woman is arrested for attempting to stop a pipeline

        A 98 year-old woman, from Northampton, Massachusetts, known for her peaceful activism in the Berkshires was arrested earlier Saturday for trying to put a stop to a pipeline.

        NEWS10 ABC had a chance to talk to her over the phone about what might sound like a harrowing ordeal to many, but to this veteran activist, it was just another day in standing up for what’s right.

        With a smile on her face…and her legs in her wheelchair, Frances Crowe was not your typical Berkshire arrest. The 98 year-old surrounded by Massachusetts state troopers, was escorted away from the pipe line work she was trying to stop at Otis State Forest.


        she doesn’t feel it was wrong that she was arrested.

        “No, no well that would be nice if their policies were different but they need to be challenged and I feel the only way we can bring about the change is for us to act on our conscious and challenge them and maybe willing to be arrested,” Crowe said.

        Crowe is no stranger to handcuffs. She’s been arrested multiple times for other activism work throughout her lifetime including anti-nuclear efforts.

        • Here’s a pic of Ms. Crowe for those who cannot/don’t have time to watch vid. Not the best screenshot, so I’ll tell you that her t-shirt says ‘WE WILL NOT BE SILENT’.

          Thank you Frances Crowe!

    • Politician Working to Curb Pipeline Protestors Has Ties to Shadow Lobbyists

      A recent intensification in protests against Williams Partners’ planned Atlantic Sunrise pipeline in Pennsylvania prompted a state senator to propose legislation aimed at limiting demonstrations.

      Last month, Pennsylvania Sen. Scott Martin (R-Norman) announced his intention to introduce legislation that would pass the costs of law enforcement responding to protests onto the demonstrators. Martin also helped introduce a different bill that would criminalize protests at natural gas facilities.

      A DeSmog investigation has found, however, that Martin is intimately tied to an obscure group of lobbyists recently hired by Williams Partners.

    •  The Senate GOP Isn’t Fixing Health Care. It’s Waging Class War.

       After a writing process unprecedented in secrecy and speed, Republican leaders in the Senate have released a draft of a bill intended to repeal Obamacare. In short, the bill doesn’t do that: It just makes Obamacare worse. And while the basic structure of Obamacare survives—albeit in withered form—the Senate bill radically reshapes the traditional Medicaid program, which covers 59 million Americans.

      The Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act” follows the regressive contours of the House bill: It’s a tax cut for the rich paid for by gouging coverage for the poor and the elderly. One of the most significant tax cuts is on investment income earned by people making more than $200,000 a year. That giveaway—which, tellingly, was omitted from the summary of the bill—is made more egregious by the fact that it’s retroactive (with an effective date of December 2016), a detail that serves no purpose other than funneling extra cash to wealthy investors. Pharmaceutical companies, insurers, and other corporations also benefit from tax cuts in the bill. (By the way, the 13 men responsible for writing it received an average of $214,000 in campaign contributions from insurance and pharmaceutical companies between 2010 and November of last year.)

    • Why Are America’s Suburbs Becoming Poorer?

      O ver the past quarter-century, tens of millions of American families have made the big move to the suburbs. They probably didn’t expect that poverty was moving in right behind them.

      New research shows how the landscape of poverty has shifted dramatically since the 1990s, from stereotypical urban “ghettos” to the boarded-up yards of faded blighted commuter towns. Poverty rates across the country have grown at a markedly faster rate in the suburbs than in cities, upending common wisdom about why and where people are getting poorer. Since the early 1990s, poverty has grown by 50 percent, leading to a doubling of the number of poor folks in places previously associated with soccer fields and shiny malls.


       Though the reasons for the suburban crisis aren’t necessarily different from the problems facing cities—a lack of good jobs and weakening social programs—an historical cultural and political neglect of the suburban poor means that new frontiers of inequality are exploding invisibly where we least expect them. Urban poverty, measured by Census tract, has grown from about 18 to 20 percent between 1990 and 2014, but risen more drastically in the suburbs, from about 8 percent to over 12 percent of tracts. And in the last decade, a “tipping point” has been reached in which “the number of poor people living in suburban areas has increased more quickly.”

      • Check out Strong Towns

        Sat next to founder Chuck about 4 years ago. Almost every town in US is bankrupt. Used federal money and finance to build suburbs but no money for upkeep. His article on this describes it as a Ponzi scheme.
        strong towns

        And they are on twitter

        Another bottom up movement that is gaining traction

        Many of the rich oligarchs made their money on construction. Others made their money taking houses away from the poor.

        • And now they’re buying them at auction and selling them for ridiculous prices. Used to be that regular people could buy homes in foreclosure (though never the ideal way). Now the big boys come in and snap up the best and probably the not so best.

    • Google Will Stop Scanning Content of Personal Emails

      Google, which was scanning the content of personal emails sent by Gmail users in order to target users with personalized advertisements, has announced it will stop the practice, according to a post on the search giant’s blog. Google made the decision in an attempt to reassure customers that their communications were confidential.

      • LOL! Users communications weren’t confidential until this decision was made. A bit late if you ask me.

    • Why Dems can’t break through on Obamacare repeal

      Even before Senate Republicans released their Obamacare repeal plan last week, a call went out from liberal activists: Head to the airport and greet departing senators with a furious protest.

      About five dozen demonstrators showed up at Reagan National Airport, chanting loudly and hoisting signs that read “Don’t Take Away Our Health Care” and “Resist.” Organizers hailed the turnout given the short notice, but the contrast with the thousands of people who flocked to the last airport protests — against President Donald Trump’s travel ban — was inescapable.

      And compared with the tea party fervor aimed at Democrats when they worked to pass Obamacare seven years ago, this year’s liberal defense of the law hasn’t mustered the same energy to seize, and stay in command of, the nation’s attention.

      For weeks now, liberal activists and Democratic senators have struggled to capture the public’s focus in their campaign to halt Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s momentum to repeal Obamacare. Now that the GOP bill is public, its expected coverage losses are likely to make it as deeply unpopular as the House’s plan — yet the left is facing a perilously narrow window to pick off wavering Republican senators and sink the bill before this week’s vote.

      That messaging crisis is not for lack of trying. But progressives have been stymied by Republicans’ strategy of keeping the bill behind closed doors as well as a crowded media landscape fixated more on Trump’s tweets and Russia scandal than on the intricacies of Medicaid spending.

    • ‘Trump Is What Happens When a Political Party Abandons Ideas’

      As surprising as Trump’s young presidency has been, it’s also the natural outgrowth of 30 years of Republican pandering to the lowest common denominator in American politics.

    • Candidate for Md. governor says state should start single-payer health program

      Maryland gubernatorial candidate Ben Jealous (D) told a gathering of progressive activists in Western Maryland this week that he plans to push for a state-run, single-payer health-care system if he wins the governorship — assuming the federal government doesn’t already have such a program in place.

      Jealous, who co-chaired Sen. Bernie Sanders’s Maryland presidential campaign last year and helped launch the national progressive activist group Our Revolution, confirmed his plans in an interview Thursday, shortly after Republicans in the U.S. Senate unveiled plans to roll back the federal government’s support for health care with a repeal of the Obama-era Affordable Care Act.

      “We have to make sure every Marylander who currently lacks health care gets it,” Jealous said. “I’m committed to getting single-payer.”

    • Swearengin prepares for campaign fight against Manchin

      Swearengin — whose grandfather, father, stepfather and uncle were coal miners — said coal mining has been damaging to her family and communities across the state.

      “I’ve seen the regression, the boom and bust,” she said. “I’ve buried a lot of my family members because of coal. If they are still around, they are suffering from black lung.”

      Swearengin moved back to West Virginia in 2001 after her grandfather was diagnosed with black lung disease. That spurned Swearengin to researching and advocating against mountaintop removal, going to political town halls and reaching out to elected officials about providing clean resources.

      All of this led to Saturday when the 43-year-old, single mother-of-four Swearengin was handing out fliers and knocking on doors in Charleston as part of a canvassing event for her 2018 U.S. Senate campaign. Swearengin said after years of advocacy, something else had to be done.

      “It’s gone on deaf ears,” she said. “We’ve had community support, but we haven’t had any support from our leadership.”

      One of those political leaders is Sen. Joe Manchin, who Swearengin is challenging for the Democratic nomination.

    • ‘The system was set up to fail’: tribes try to regain control of their land and futures

      The Standing Rock protests symbolized their empowerment struggle, but a quieter push to strengthen tribal governments has been gaining traction for years

    • Grand Canyon is our home. Uranium mining has no place here

      The Havasupai, “people of the blue-green waters,” live in Supai Village, located at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. Today, our lives and water are being threatened by international uranium mining companies because the United States government and its 1872 Mining Law permit uranium mining on federal lands that surround the Grand Canyon.

    • Civil war has broken out inside the Democratic party. Does the future belong to the populist left or the centrists?

      One might have thought that the November election would have drawn a clear line under Democratic centrism. But the defeat of Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s 6th congressional district may have been its true death wheeze. Even with six times as much funding as his opponent and a crazed and incompetent Republican president, Ossoff could not get enough of the district’s wealthy and well-educated Republicans to vote for him to flip the district.

      When Bernie Sanders remarked that he wasn’t sure that Ossoff was a true progressive, it wasn’t a kind thing to say, but it also wasn’t inaccurate. The future of the Democratic party is not men like Ossoff. We must learn from the comeback of Jeremy Corbyn in the UK election and start putting our might and money behind candidates who are truly on the left.

      We scoff at accounts of the 45th president still presenting visitors to his office with a map that lays out his electoral victory, but many Democrats are also preoccupied with the details of the election and the reasons for Hillary Clinton’s defeat. It’s clear that sexism was a significant factor, as was the intervention from ex-FBI director James Comey and possible interference from Russia. But those in the party who are willing to do real soul-searching must admit that the lack of the anticipated Democratic party landslide must also be blamed on the failure of the party’s policies to resonate with people in the states that decided the election – places in the middle of the country that have seen their livelihoods dry up, rather than flourish, under late capitalism.

      Trump’s promises that he would solve the problems that plague their communities – problems such as unemployment, poverty and the opioid crisis – seem to be empty promises. But the Democrats could have done a far better job of showing that they cared about these middle-American communities: for example, through actually turning up in them.

      • What? One of the writers also has this to say. Yes it’s definitely time for the most popular politician-the one who is most likely to get crowds and media coverage–to step aside.

        Though his continued engagement with the DNC shows Bernie Sanders’s ambition to promote this agenda, it’s time for him to step aside. His refusal to register as a Democrat invalidates any true claim he has to be at its helm. Many of his critiques of the party are legitimate, but if Sanders is not willing to commit to working on the inside for change, he needs to support someone who is willing to do it.

        Elizabeth Warren is the obvious choice: compared to the likes of Nancy Pelosi or Joe Biden, she’s an outsider, but she’s still a Democrat who has shown her commitment to the party. Her economic populism speaks to many of the same concerns that Trump claimed he would alleviate, but she offers solutions that will buoy the middle class by making the wealthy contribute more, rather than promising to drive growth through deregulation that simply makes the ultra-wealthy more so. And her commitment to progressive social values is clear, unlike Sanders, whose remark that “you just can’t exclude people who disagree with us on [reproductive rights]” elicited blowback from women on the left who do not want their rights to be regarded as something to bargain with.

      • This is a new youtube channel to me but I’ll definitely be going back after that rant!

        • To see Paul Ryan walk on to a job site would be hilarious. But then again he would also be a danger to him self and everyone else on the job.

      • This is a good rant! “Even when you make ads spouting their verbatim” fracking talking points….. :O)

    • Why am I not surpised this was written by a former Obama FTC appointee?

      Democrats must end fiery rhetoric against AT&T Time Warner merger

      The recent letter opposing the merger of AT&T and Time Warner Inc., signed by a scattering of U.S. senators including Al Franken (D-TK), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), epitomizes a powerful and emerging far-left economic fringe with its sights set on changing antitrust law.

      Over the past several decades, there has been resounding and bipartisan agreement — amongst mainstream antitrust economists, practitioners, enforcement agencies, and even politicians — that while mergers between vertically aligned companies, like AT&T and Time Warner, can in rare circumstances harm competition, they usually make consumers better off. The opposition letter is a call to disrupt that consensus with a “new” view that vertical mergers are presumptively a bad deal for consumers and violate the antitrust laws.

      The call for an antitrust revolution with respect to vertical mergers should not go unanswered. Revolution actually overstates things. The “new” antitrust is really a thinly veiled attempt to return to the antitrust approach of the 1960s where everything “big” was bad and virtually all deals, vertical ones included, violated the antitrust laws. That approach gained traction in part because it is easy to develop supporting rhetoric that is inflammatory and easily digestible.

    • Democrats Face Failing Russia-gate Scheme

      The plan for Democrats to run against Russia may be falling apart.

      After squandering much of the last six months on faulting Russians for the horrific presidency of Donald Trump… After blaming America’s dire shortfalls of democracy on plutocrats in Russia more than on plutocrats in America… After largely marketing the brand of their own party as more anti-Russian than pro-working-people… After stampeding many Democratic Party-aligned organizations, pundits and activists into fixating more on Russia than on the thousand chronic cuts to democracy here at home… After soaking up countless hours of TV airtime and vast quantities of ink and zillions of pixels to denounce Russia in place of offering progressive remedies to the deep economic worries of American voters…

      Now, Democrats in Congress and other party leaders are starting to face an emerging reality: The “winning issue” of Russia is a losing issue.

      The results of a reliable new nationwide poll — and what members of Congress keep hearing when they actually listen to constituents back home — cry out for a drastic reorientation of Democratic Party passions. And a growing number of Democrats in Congress are getting the message.


      If there is to be a human future on this planet, it will require real diplomacy between the U.S. and Russia, the world’s two nuclear-weapons superpowers. Meanwhile — even if the nuclear threat from continuing to escalate hostility toward Russia doesn’t rank high on the list of Democrats’ concerns on Capitol Hill — maybe the prospects of failure in the elections next year will compel a major change. It’s time for the dangerous anti-Russia fever to break.

      • LOL It actually may be better for everyone of if THIS Congress is prevented from tackling vital issues.

        The poll “reveals the risks inherent for the Democrats, who are hoping to make big gains — or even win back the House — in 2018,” The Hill reported. “The survey found that while 58 percent of voters said they’re concerned that Trump may have business dealings with Moscow, 73 percent said they’re worried that the ongoing investigations are preventing Congress from tackling issues more vital to them.”

    • Philando Castile’s family settles with city for $3M

      The mother of Philando Castile, a black motorist who was killed by a Minnesota police officer last year, has reached a nearly $3 million settlement in his death.

      The settlement was announced Monday by attorneys for Valerie Castile and the city of St. Anthony.

      “Under the terms of the settlement, Valerie Castile, as Trustee, will receive a payment in the amount of $2.995 million. The settlement will be paid through the City’s coverage with the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust. No taxpayer monies from the City of St. Anthony Village will be used to fund this settlement,” reads a joint statement from Valerie Castile and the City of St. Anthony posted on the city’s website. “The City and the Trustee (Valerie Castile) were able to reach this agreement avoiding a federal civil rights lawsuit which may have taken years to work its way through the courts exacerbating the suffering of the family and of the community.”

    • Bernie Sanders rallies opposition to Republican healthcare reform plan

      As Donald Trump celebrated the marriage of Wall Street executive-turned-treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin in the Washington swamp he repeatedly pledged to drain, Bernie Sanders stepped onstage in Pittsburgh.

      In a city the president last month said he was elected to represent rather than Paris, home of the global climate accord from which Trump has withdrawn, the Vermont senator denounced a “moral outrage that this country will never live down”.

      In Washington, Senate Republican leaders pushed for a vote to dramatically reshape the US healthcare system, ignoring pleas from within their own party to allow more time for debate. In the Rust Belt, Sanders spent the weekend rallying opposition to their plan.

      In Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, Sanders was unsparing in his attack on the Republican healthcare bill, which would likely leaves millions of people without insurance cover.

      “The so-called healthcare bill passed in the House last month is the most anti-working class legislation in the modern history of our country,” he said in Pittsburgh, at the first of three rallies organized with the progressive group MoveOn.org, aiming to mobilize opposition ahead of an expected Senate vote this week.

    • Supreme Court Will Rule On President Trump’s Travel Ban

      The nation’s highest court says it will decide the fate of President Trump’s travel ban, agreeing to hear arguments over cases that were heard in federal courts in Hawaii and Maryland.

      “We grant the petitions for certiorari and grant the stay applications in part,” the court said Monday. The court’s clerk will set a date for the cases — which will be consolidated — to be heard in the session that begins in October.

      The court said, “Both petitions for certiorari and both stay applications are accordingly ripe for consideration.”

      • No shock with this Court


        The Supreme Court is letting the Trump administration enforce its 90-day ban on travelers from six mostly Muslim countries, overturning lower court orders that blocked it.

        The action Monday is a victory for President Donald Trump in the biggest legal controversy of his young presidency.

        • Supreme Court Rules Religious School Can Use Taxpayer Funds For Playground

          The Supreme Court ruled Monday that taxpayer-funded grants for playgrounds available to nonprofits under a state program could not be denied to a school run by a church.

          “The consequence is, in all likelihood, a few extra scraped knees. But the exclusion of Trinity Lutheran from a public benefit for which it is otherwise qualified, solely because it is a church, is odious to our Constitution all the same, and cannot stand,” Justice John Roberts wrote for the majority.

          In her dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote, “If this separation means anything, it means that the government cannot, or at the very least need not, tax its citizens and turn that money over to houses of worship. The Court today blinds itself to the outcome this history requires and leads us instead to a place where separation of church and state is a constitutional slogan, not a constitutional commitment.”

          Two justices, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas, refused to sign on to a footnote explicitly stating that the court’s approval applied only to playground funding and should not be read as applying to parochial schools in general.

          • Thomas and Gorsuch seem to be on the same page on most everything..


            The Supreme Court declined to review a case about the right to carry firearms outside the home, but two justices publicly dissented from their colleagues’ decision not to take up the issue.

            The high court said Monday it would not hear a National Rifle Association-supported legal challenge by California resident Edward Peruta, who challenged a state law limiting gun-carrying permits to those showing “good cause” and a San Diego County policy that says concern about personal safety is not sufficient to fulfill the requirement.


            However, the case could not muster the votes of four justices, which is the threshold to add it to the court’s docket.

            The most notable aspect of the action announced Monday was that President Donald Trump’s newest appointee to the court—Justice Neil Gorsuch—joined conservative stalwart Justice Clarence Thomas in lamenting the court’s decision to dodge the issue for now. Gorsuch’s views on gun-rights issues were not well established by his writing or his earlier decisions as a judge on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.

            However, on Monday, Gorsuch joined Thomas’s opinion calling “indefensible” the 9th Circuit’s rationale in ruling against Peruta.

          • Um, the “separation” comes to mind. Churches, tithing, all that?

    • UK prime minister wins N Ireland party’s support govt

      Prime Minister Theresa May struck a deal Monday with Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party to support her minority government and ensure passage of her legislative agenda later this week.

      As part of the deal, the government will provide funds to boost Northern Ireland’s economy, while investing in infrastructure, health and education. The package includes 1 billion pounds ($1.27 billion) of new funding and 500 million pounds ($638 million) of previously announced funds.


      The leaders of Wales and Scotland were quick with their fury following the announcement about the Democratic Unionist Party partnership, wondering aloud why one part of the United Kingdom should get special treatment at the expense of the rest.

      Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted that any sense of fairness was “sacrificed on the altar of grubby DUP deal.” Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones tweeted that the deal “flies in the face of the commitment to build a more united country.”

      Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn said the agreement might suit May’s wish to stay in power, but would do little for the country.

      “Where is the money for the Tory-DUP deal coming from?” the Labour leader asked. “And, will all parts of the U.K. receive the much-needed additional funding that Northern Ireland will get as part of the deal?”

    • Trump‘s Red Line
      Seymour Hersh

      On April 6, United States President Donald Trump authorized an early morning Tomahawk missile strike on Shayrat Air Base in central Syria in retaliation for what he said was a deadly nerve agent attack carried out by the Syrian government two days earlier in the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun. Trump issued the order despite having been warned by the U.S. intelligence community that it had found no evidence that the Syrians had used a chemical weapon.

      The available intelligence made clear that the Syrians had targeted a jihadist meeting site on April 4 using a Russian-supplied guided bomb equipped with conventional explosives. Details of the attack, including information on its so-called high-value targets, had been provided by the Russians days in advance to American and allied military officials in Doha, whose mission is to coordinate all U.S., allied, Syrian and Russian Air Force operations in the region.

      Some American military and intelligence officials were especially distressed by the president’s determination to ignore the evidence. “None of this makes any sense,” one officer told colleagues upon learning of the decision to bomb. “We KNOW that there was no chemical attack … the Russians are furious. Claiming we have the real intel and know the truth … I guess it didn’t matter whether we elected Clinton or Trump.“

      from an article by Caitlin

    • More Reasons Have Emerged To Doubt The Official Narrative About Syria

      We can all be forgiven at this point, I think, for indulging in a little feigned astonishment at the fact that a damning report on some deeply reprehensible behavior by Donald Trump has been forced to seek publication in Germany instead of at the Washington Post or the New York Times. The story has everything these outlets have become known for since November: it makes Trump look evil, it hints at the possibility of a hidden conspiracy that the US public is not privy to, its assertions are reportedly based on the testimony of anonymous insiders, and it describes conflict and a lack of cohesion within the administration. Oh, oops, except this one contains highly critical information about a despicable act of war, something these mainstream outlets have consistently stumped for and which they unequivocally applauded on April 6. …

      Predictably, there was an instant attack on this article from the intensely shady neocon propaganda outlet Bellingcat. You may remember Bellingcat as the outlet which has defended the known Al Qaeda propaganda network White Helmets and made the absolutely pathetic and indefensible argument that Bana Alabed is a perfectly legitimate Twitter account and not the blatant psy-op that it unquestionably is.

      Bellingcat is run by a man named Eliot Higgins, who is thoroughly exposed for the establishment propagandist he is in this excellent piece by Graham Phillips. Higgins is a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, an extremely suspicious virulently anti-Kremlin think tank which is funded by both Saudis and a Ukrainian billionaire, which Paul Craig Roberts has labeled “the marketing arm of the military-security complex”. You may also remember the Atlantic Council as the home of the chief technical director of CrowdStrike, the cyber security firm which to this day is the only organization which has ever directly examined the servers alleged to have been hacked by Russia.
      So things are already being shaken up a bit. It is absolutely infuriating that a mere 14 years after the US and coalition forces perpetrated the evil and unforgivable invasion of Iraq based on lies there is so little public skepticism of the narratives being promoted about the US war machine’s next target. I’m glad there are still a few real journalists like Seymour Hersh out there trying to get people asking the questions they should be asking.

      Here’s a hyperlink to Hersh’s article again, here’s a link to Weld’s article about their involvement in its publication, and here’s a link to a chat protocol Hersh provided of a security advisor and an active American soldier on duty at a key base near the Syria strikes.

    • Well-funded anti-Citizens United group backs O’Rourke in Senate challenge against Cruz

      The 2018 Senate election in Texas remains more than 16 months away, but Rep. Beto O’Rourke picked up his first major organizational endorsement Monday in his long-shot bid to challenge Sen. Ted Cruz.

      End Citizens United PAC, a progressive group focused on reducing the role of money in politics with three million members across the country, threw its support behind the El Paso Democrat, choosing O’Rourke as the first Senate challenger the group is endorsing in the 2018 cycle.

      “Our decision to endorse Beto was an easy one,” Tiffany Muller, the PAC’s president and executive director, said in a written statement. “He stands as a progressive champion and the future of our party with a determined focus to give the people a voice in our democracy. He’s running against the worst of Washington in Senator Ted Cruz who has sold out Texans for the special interests at every opportunity.”

      • The first two stories about O’Rourke that I went to both compared him to Ossoff with centrist traits:

        Cruz, aligned with the Tea Party and the House Freedom Caucus, is a paragon of partisan politics and dysfunction in Washington, while O’Rourke—like Ossoff—makes plenty of centrist noises. The congressman characterized the enduring reluctance in Congress to reach across the aisle as a “pretty f–ked up way to run a country” and said, “I am not a rocket scientist, but the only way you can get something done in D.C. when you have Republican majority control in the House and the Senate is to work with Republicans, so I am going to work with Republicans.”

        But, because:

        -O’Rourke seems to be trying to do it without using consultants (the use of which got to a ridiculous point in Ossoff’s campaign), and,

        -I like that O’Rourke is fluent in Spanish, and,

        Per NYT:

        (Beto) is liberal and progressive, but also technologically and economically literate in a way that should appeal to business. He speaks fluent Spanish. He has served his district well, especially by touting the charms and economic opportunities (as opposed to the crime) on the El Paso-Juarez border.

        Older Democrats like to compare him to the Kennedys, in his politics and looks. (He is handsome and toothy, with a thatch of shimmering brown hair.) Millennials like him because he once played in a punk band called Foss, because he started a software company, and because he has a few things in common with Bernie Sanders. Like him, Beto promises to go it alone, without support from consultants and political action committees.

        -I’m certainly no millennial (lmao) but I also like that he was in a punk band 😉 (for me, that’s a good sign), I hope he wins.

        And, of course, I hope it goes without saying, Cruz is awful..

    • Corker to block future arms sales to Gulf nations

      Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker on Monday said he would block future U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and four other Gulf nations until a regional conflict is resolved.

      • Why does Corker want to hurt American workers?

        Can we turn our weapons manufacturing plants into wind power/solar power/geothermal plants? I’d like that.

      • Its all for show. The word “FUTURE” takes away any power that might be achieved.

    • I wonder how much Hillary is charging for spewing her greul.

    • Here’s that gawd-forsaking building I had to look at every morning.

      Clinton’s publisher is paying for her appearance tomorrow. Trust me, I checked on that right away. I didn’t want my conference fees paying for her pity party speech. But maybe she’ll surprise the crowd and be more positive.

    • https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/imminent-cbo-report-could-prove-pivotal-for-senate-republicans-health-care-bill/2017/06/26/cb8d61e2-59f7-11e7-a9f6-7c3296387341_story.html?pushid=59516d72f07ec1380000001d&tid=notifi_push_breaking-news&utm_term=.fb6a9a61feda

      Senate Republicans’ bill to erase major parts of the Affordable Care Act would cause an estimated 22 million more Americans to be uninsured in the coming decade — about 1 million fewer than similar legislation recently passed by the House, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

      The forecast issued Monday by Congress’s nonpartisan budget scorekeepers also estimates that the Senate measure, drafted in secret mainly by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and aides, would reduce federal spending by $321 billion by 2026 — compared with $119 billion for the House’s version.

      Over the weekend, the senior Democrat on the Senate subcommittee that oversees the CBO said in a tweet that he had asked the budget office to estimate the Senate bill’s effect on insurance coverage over a longer time horizon. “GOP is hiding the worst Medicaid cuts in years 11, 12, 13 and hoping CBO stays quiet,” wrote Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.)

      • https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/democrats-argue-over-how-to-attack-senate-health-care-bill/2017/06/26/08b12b04-5a92-11e7-9b7d-14576dc0f39d_story.html?utm_term=.ac5f5ccae8fb

        Sanders, who wants Democrats to delay any vote on the bill past the July 4 recess — allowing more time for voter information, and more protests — is the one member of the Democratic caucus capable of pulling together big crowds in a hurry.

        The Sanders tour tested that theory, carried out by a politician who still has high favorability ratings — unlike the leaders of the Democratic Party. His dinner Friday night, in territory that had voted solidly for Trump, was interrupted six times by well-wishers who recognized him and wanted photos. One asked him to reconsider his position on abortion (“think of the babies”) before saying he had impressed her with his bluntness. Others asked him to run for president again.

        Sanders was focused on more than the health-care vote and the 2018 election. At each stop, he repeated his call for “Medicare for all” to replace the existing health-care system– and at each stop, he got loud cheers. When the Republicans’ health-care fight ends, with passage or failure, Sanders intends to release a single-payer bill that could take the place of the House legislation as a rallying point for Democrats and activists.

        The special elections, he said, had proved the need to go large. “Democrats have to meet people where they are,” he said, pointing to polling that showed support for a “single payer” concept ticking up, even after California — and his own Vermont — bottled single-payer bills over worries about cost. The larger worry, about the Senate health-care bill and about 2018, was that Republicans had enough money to stop a backlash.

        “My sense is that the Republicans understand that this bill is a disaster,” Sanders said. “You can’t throw 23 million people off health insurance, give tax breaks to millionaires and not know it’s a disaster. But I think what they believe is that with the Koch brothers, and with unlimited amounts of money, they will be able to survive. What Citizens United has done is change the dynamics of American politics so that anybody who runs against any of these incumbents will see massive amounts of personal attacks from Day One.”

    • From Bernie:

      This is what oligarchy looks like. As the attached article points out Tim Phillips, the president of the Koch-affiliated political advocacy group, Americans for Prosperity, reiterated a previously stated Koch network goal of spending between $300 million and $400 million on policy and political campaigns in 2017 and 2018, up from the roughly $250 million invested in the 2016 campaign season.

      The Koch brothers, the second wealthiest family in the country, probably have more political power today than the entire Republican Party. Their goal is to move the country toward their extreme right-wing billionaire ideology. It’s not just that they think the disastrous and immoral Republican health care plan does not go far enough. They want to repeal virtually every major piece of legislation passed in the last 80 years which helps working people, the elderly, the children, the sick and the poor. They want to take us back to the time when working people had no rights at all.

      Our job. Fight for democracy, not oligarchy. Fight for a government which represents all of us, not just the one percent.


    • LOL! Just imagine that holding an all night protest when no one is watching is the proper tactic.


      I’ll bet that the Republicans were shaking in their boots.

    • Thanks, Bernie! Sounds like it was good for the heart and the soul. :O)

    • Greetings Birdies,

      I just got back from a conference of folks who care about human rights, health care and other progressive ideas. Yesterday on the bus back to the hotel, I sat next to someone who lives in Wichita and we got on the subject of Clinton speaking at this particular conference tomorrow. Both of us had made plans only to stay until today so we will be missing the secret service security measures fun of (not)seeing Clinton speak in person.

      As it turned out, the person from Wichita supported James Thompson in that special election and loves Bernie! And not a Hill fan.

      There were some great speakers and some awards given out to folks who defended the First Amendment and also for creative works exploring the challenges of disabilities, immigrants, LGBTQ. I missed the Pride Parade (this conference was also in Chicago), but got to meet Ron Chernow, who wrote Hamilton, which inspired the musical. I also scored a free copy of his forthcoming book, Grant, and personally got his autograph in the book.

      Boo to the SCOTUS who partially gave Trump some muscle on his executive orders regarding the Muslim ban! I had to stay in a hotel that had to look at his building everyday. I’ll post a pic in a moment, but it was comical to see gawkers snap selfies with the building in the background and flipping a middle finger while in the photo. Heh heh.

  • Paris Air Show

    This year’s International Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport finishes today, after one week of spectacular surprises.

    Perhaps the standout of many competitors is Aeromobil’s Flying Car […]

  • Cathy just announced, so she’s a little bit behind the curve at the moment.  But I like the way she handled inquiries about her stances in this tweet.

    And she may prove to be less divisive than her opponents, […]

    • Home

      She seems pretty solid and well spoken.

      I’d love to see her on stage with Bryce and Yankovich in a debate!

    • Thanks, mags!

    • Don’t know much about her but whom ever wins the primary is a major upgrade to lie”n Ryan. By the way we need someone to take on the Koch puppet Walker as well.

  • Sign up to support Randy

    • Bernie Sanders Slams ‘Moral Outrage’ Of Trumpcare At Pittsburgh Rally

      Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) headlined the start of a campaign against Republican efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare Saturday night before some 1,000 people in the Pittsburgh Convention Center, calling the GOP proposals an unconscionable “moral outrage.”

      “This so-called health care bill passed in the House last month is the most anti-working-class piece legislation passed by the House of Representatives in the modern history of this country,” said Sanders. “And the Senate bill … is even worse.”

      “We will not allow 23 million Americans to be thrown off of the health insurance they currently have in order to give over $500 billion in tax breaks to the top two percent, to the insurance companies, to the drug companies, and to other multi-national corporations,” he said, referring to the effects of the House bill as reported by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

      “What kind of a country are we if anyone can come before you and talk about cutting health care for children with disabilities in order to give tax breaks to the richest people on earth?”

      The 30-minute speech was the first of Sander’s “Don’t Take Away Our Healthcare” tour to rally opposition to the GOP proposals that, among other things, would slash funding for Medicaid.

    • Not sure use LDs thread is specific or can be used for any topic IE open thread but found this little tid bit

      This is what Trump Inc. has really been doing since the Republican occupation began on Jan 20 2017:

      • Employers can no longer be held accountable for keeping accurate workplace injury records for at least five years.
      • Student loan companies can levy hefty fees on borrowers trying to get out of default. • Internet service providers can collect and sell information about customers’ browsing habits without their permission.
      • About 75,000 mentally ill people determined by the Social Security Administration to be incapable of handling their own finances won’t be barred from purchasing guns.
      • Coal companies don’t have to obey new restrictions on pollution, nor do they have to monitor water quality in nearby streams.
      • Federal contractors won’t have to disclose safety, health and labor violations prior to being awarded government contracts, a requirement companies have criticized as a “blacklisting rule.”
      • Publicly traded oil, gas and mining companies won’t have to disclose payments to foreign governments.
      • Financial advisers get a reprieve from stricter standards designed to prevent conflicts of interest when they make investment recommendations to people saving for retirement.
      • Replaced EPA scientists with corporate industry hacks
      • On the verge of stealing healthcare from millions of American citizens. (Still in progress)
      • 20 states have restricted certain forms of peaceful protest. A clear violation of the constitution.
      • Mandatory minimums for drug usage reinstated. (It’s a medical issue not a criminal one.)
      • Election integrity commission to be headed by architects of voter suppression.
      • The illegality of a President of the United States seeking to intimidate a potential witness in a congressional investigation.
      • The illegality of a President potentially intimidating current FBI personnel who are investigating that president or his aides, by firing the former FBI head who was leading such an investigation and now threatening retaliation against him.
      • Illegally giving classified information to the Russians.
      • Granted ethics waivers to 17 top staffers.
      • Trump’s FCC head Ajit Pai announced his plan to roll back net neutrality rules. The FCC just voted to start dismantling net neutrality regulations. Meaning, content will be throttled, voices will be silenced, and innovation stifled.
      • Congress voted to eliminate pesticide regulations for America’s food supply.
      • Rolled back birth control coverage for women.
      • Pulls out of Paris Global Warming Treaty hastening the end of civilization and abdicating the US power as a global leader.
      • House voted to roll back Dodd-Frank banking rules and consumer protections (the very cause of the 2008 financial crisis).
      • Scraps protections for endangered whales and sea turtles.
      • Attorney General Sessions is rolling back consent decrees in an effort to roll back civil rights enforcement. They are key to civil rights enforcement.
      • The Education Department last week reversed an Obama-era reform that broadened the agency’s approach to protecting rights of students.

      Think of the damage he’ll do by Jan 20 2018. Mid terms are so important to get at least one house back to slow him down.

    • Trumpcare sucks!

    • Mike Pence addresses the 1% who will benefit from Trumpcare.

      • Pence forgot to list the tax breaks that the 1% will enjoy on his tweet. Paying for health care is the least of the 1%s problems.

    • While Pence dines with the 1%, here’s what some of the 99% are focused on:

    • This certainly will be a jumbled comment but I am trying to make a point.


      Over the past several months, you’ve read how all the Blue America-backed candidates are proponents of single payer health insurance. Some, like Illinois emergency room physician, David Gill, have been working towards it for many years. Our newest endorsee, Randy Bryce, the progressive Democrat running for the swing district Wisconsin seat Paul Ryan has been in, did an interview with the New Republic and explained why he favors single payer health insurance. This morning he built on his statement by telling us that “our very health is literally under attack. I am outraged by what I see going on in our government.

      Thursday, conservative New Dem (former Blue Dog) Adam Schiff became the latest (and 113th) House Democrat to sign on as a co-sponsor of John Conyers’ Medicare-For-All bill (H.R. 676). The Blue Dogs and New Dems– the Republican wing of the Democratic Party– have tended to stay away from the bill but as election season approaches and the popularity of the approach, particularly among Democrats and independents– becomes manifest, even conservative politicians like Schiff are jumping on the train. Schiff is interested in running for the California Senate seat Dianne Feinstein told him she would be giving up next year. ( bolding by me) No one’s going to win statewide office in California without being committed to single-payer.

      I tried to make my point that one should be concerned about Schiff’s motives.

    • I don’t like these odds at all!

    • Bernie keeps drawing big crowds!

  • I will add the link and a small portion of it in the comment section.

    Why the Democratic Party is doomed!


    • Here is the link to the complete article.


      Although I don’t agree with all of it it is certainly food for thought and a conversation.

      1. The Democratic establishment has vortexed the party’s narrative energy into hysteria about Russia (a state with a lower GDP than South Korea). It is starkly obvious that were it not for this hysteria insurgent narratives of the type promoted by Bernie Sanders would rapidly dominate the party’s base and its relationship with the public.

      2. The Trump-Russia collusion narrative is a political dead end. Despite vast resources, enormous incentives and a year of investigation, Democratic senators who have seen the classified intelligence at CIA HQ such as Senator Feinstein (as recently as March) are forced to admit that there is no evidence of collusion

      3. The Democrat establishment needs the support of the security sector and media barons to push this diversionary conspiracy agenda, so they ingratiate themselves with these two classes leading to further perceptions that the Democrats act on behalf of an entrenched power elite.

      There are a total of 6 points and I only included a portion of the first few.

    • The Democratic establishment has proven time and time again that it is unwilling to let go of power. It is true on the national level, the state level and the local level.

      They have screwed Bernie, Keith Ellison, numerous aspirants to state leadership positions and progressive candidates who have attempted to challenge those in power.

      I could add examples but most of you are aware of many of them. The latest example was the torpedoing of the California Single Payer Bill as diaried by “magsview”.

    • Just imagine the coalition between Bernie and Jeremy Corbyn.

      But the PTB in both countries want no part of that possibility!

      • Corbyn’s reception at the Glastonbury festival was great!

        I love that saying – “Build Bridges no walls”.

    • Jimmy Dore with regards to Russia! Russia! Russia!

    • Maureen Doud says dems suck

      Have not read Maureen Dowd for years —

      Was following the AP story that Republicans won in 2016 by gerrymandering.

      Went to NY Times web site and the top viewed story at 7:45 is by Dowd about how the dems strategy of Trump is the devil is not working. It is a simple minded story about the establishment holding onto power

      Donald Skunks the Democrats

      And Glenn Greenwald tweeted column today by David Brooks that Russia story is 971 on his list of Trump unfit for presidency

      Really tame stuff but the word is getting out that the democrats have to do something

      One of the issues to work is election integrity

      And of course, to take the issue of poverty, income inequality seriously

      and, Gaia

  • So, I opened up twitter this morning:


    and so on, and so on. Tweet after tweet after tweet about it. I gather the people I follow are pretty upset.

    Jimmy was responding to yet another Joy Reid tweet […]

    • When you are in edit mode under the body of the post there is a list of checkboxes for Weaver. Click “Display as full post”. Ive started a posting tutorial for the faq but like the link page.. still in the works.

      • Thanks! I like it but now realize that my post is maybe a bit too long.

        I don’t want to be a screen hog!

        Will try to do better next time.

    • So exactly why should we give the dems our money and support?

    • I am curious about what the 2 California Senators have to say about this development.

    • Too bad that this is true.

    • Colbert announces run for us presidency on russian tv. Absolutely fucking hilarious.


      Next week’s shows will be historic.

      • Am so grateful for anything that makes me laugh! These days I’m in fear of losing what little sense of humor I have. 😉

    • Hit them where it hurts!

      • Thank the gods for RoseAnn DeMoro! She’s a brave and feisty one.

        As always, follow the moolah!

      • Four legged weasels have more more honor and care for their young and community.

    • At least one candidate takes a stand!

      I would not have been quite so polite.

    • And then there is Nancy Pelosi. If you ask me she is in with the wrong crowd.

      • I’ll bet Joy Reid will defend Rendon. Wait, she’ll probably just ignore it totally.

        Checking her twitter feed:
        retweeted David Frum (ick!!), twice
        Jared Kushner
        one good one about state voting restrictions

      • They both should retire from their jobs

    • Of course Bernie weighs in on this issue!

      • Obama weighs in also! (snark alert!).


        Former President Obama and his family landed on the resort island of Bali in Indonesia on Friday to begin a nine-day trip to the country that Obama called home for several years.

        Obama’s trip coincides with a major effort by Indonesia’s Tourism Ministry to promote travel to the country, especially from the United States. The Jakarta Post reported that the Tourism Ministry will display promotional material in Times Square in New York City during the Obamas’ vacation.

        • To me Obama is history, don’t care what he thinks or does as its up to the Millennials to save the planet at this point and our democracy too , if that is possible . Yes i’m scared right now for my kids and the future.

        • Oh yeah, I almost forgot, the cure for living in an undemocratic country is to go shopping? How could I? Now where’s that extra dollar I had….

    • Good morning everyone! Nice day here in CT. Hot, but not with the crushing humidity we had yesterday (thank goodness!).

      LD, can I please have a posting tutorial? 🙂

      I don’t like how my post is all squished looking on the front page.

      Thank you LD for all of the posts today!

      I hope everyone has a Very Happy Saturday!!

    • Not sure if this was posted elsewhere but it is worth a read.

      View story at Medium.com

      A bill to establish single-payer healthcare in the state of California, HB 562, has been killed. The man who officially stuck the knife in it, Democratic Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, has assured Californians in a statement that the bill is not dead but merely sleeping while further “discussion and debate” is had over the bill and its merits. He is lying. Possibly to himself, and certainly to the people of California, but on one level or another Anthony Rendon is aware that HB 562 has been deliberately killed, and is choosing to lie about it.
      How can I be so certain that Rendon is lying? Easy: he’s taken a tremendous amount of money from powerful corporate entities that officially and unofficially oppose the bill. He killed the bill on purpose, and he will do everything within his power to make sure it stays dead. He will do so while tooting the horn of progressivism, he will do so while pretending to support universal health care, but when it comes down to actually making it happen he’ll act like a keyboard warrior on a martial arts forum who suddenly finds himself challenged to a fight in real life. In a nation where money fully dictates government policy and congressional candidates who outspend their opponents almost always win, you only need to follow the money.

      There is more at the above link. As per usual Caitlin is spot on.

      • Thanks Humphrey! Caitlin does not pull punches!

        Remember, it’s Republicans who are the “real” threat, don’t mind us over here, don’t pay attention to what we are doing, who is giving me money, look over there instead.

        (I read this morning that Rendon got a lot of money from those who want to maintain the status quo in the health insurance industry. But I can’t find the link, so let’s just say for now that the $475k he got last year is hearsay.)

    • Thank you to Magsview for posting this.

      Like so many others I am both disgusted and saddened to see the California single-payer initiative go down. I’ve given up thinking there’s any essential difference btwn Dems and Repubs–with very few exceptions.

      Does anyone know what happened to the single-payer bill in the NY legislature? It got such a silent treatment in the MSM that I was surprised to learn there even WAS a NY single payer bill until Subir’s post here, when I learned that not only was there a bill working through the NY legislature, but it had passed the Assembly mightily and was only 1 vote shy of having enough votes in the NY Senate! So by this time nada has happened (it is the NY dysfunctional legislature, after all) and all our lawmakers have gone home.

      With CA failing, chances for the bill coming up again in NY are that much less, not that I think the pro-single-payer forces have given up. But the media silence on this has been positively deafening!

      Happy weekend to all.

    • Just F***ing sad I had high hopes for Cali to lead the way – to start the trend towards a NHC (national Health Care) for all -AKA Berniecare-medicare for all. I’m pissed off to say the least

      • Very disappointing. But, keep in mind that the first province to enact (near) universal health care in Canada was Saskatchewan (1947). One would have though it’d be Quebec or BC. Those provinces are traditionally quite ‘liberal’.

        But it was ‘the Prairies’, land of the wheat, that was the pioneer (under the helm of the NDP party). Soon after that (1950) Alberta created similar program (their Social Credit party and then, perhaps seeing the prevailing winds, the in-power-at-the-time Liberal govt created a program that covered 50% of any program created at the provincial level and the rest is history. By 1961 all 10 provinces adopted programs.

        So maybe the first state will be an unexpected one.

        Or maybe Rendon will either have been persuaded to allow it to be put to the vote:

        Or Rendon will be replaced with someone who will?

    • Sooo sorry to hear this!

    • Remember when Bernie took major heat for including the political wing of PP in his ‘establishment’ group?

    • Yay!

    • The battle is still not over,

    • Will Rendon blink?

    • Tim Black comments on Healthcare Bill.

  • After months and months of criticizing those who believe that the 24/7 focus on all things Russia by the Democratic party establishment instead of a substantive discussion of issues that actually touch on everyday […]

    • Tips, Comments, Complaints, Etc!

      Any issues can be reported to twphelpdesk @ the gmail dot com if you cannot post them here for whatever reason!

    • You’ll Never Believe This, but Republicans are Starting a Bernie Sanders Witch Hunt

      Good news, politics fans—if you loved Benghazi, or if you loved Whitewater, or, hell, if you loved the Birther movement, you are going to go nuts for Burlington College-gate. (Or Burling-gate? Or Burlinghazi?)

      If you’re unfamiliar with this newest GOP inquisition, you can read a story by Harry Jaffe on Politico that promotes the “scandal” as a byzantine, mysterious, and potentially sordid affair with no easy answers. However, I recommend that you do not read that story, because it’s godawful in its desperate attempt to paint this as something more than drummed-up political hackery. Jaffe manufactures fog for fog’s sake, all to give the story a veneer of something more substantial than the baseless partisan witch hunt of the kind that Republicans adore. I advise you to skip it entirely.


      Amazingly, he then waits THE ENTIRE STORY to tell us what the accusations really are. We have to wade through thousands of words of “context” before he finally gets to the basis of Toensing’s witch hunt, which really should have been in the third paragraph:

      The evidence for that charge seems to be thin, at best. According to sources familiar with the matter, the alleged “pressure” may have simply been a casual suggestion—perhaps chatter by a Sanders staffer over lunch, instead of a written document or email—and though such a suggestion might still be improper, it would be difficult to prove a direct connection to the senator.

    • Democrats love bashing Trump. But that alone won’t help them win again

      the wheels of Trumplandia continue to spin, it’s been easy to overlook one glaring reality: Democrats in Congress are doing almost nothing other than finding new and creative ways to resist the Republicans. As a political tactic, that may be smart, but it leaves the public and voters with no clear or viable alternative as attention slowly begins to turn to mid-term elections in 2018.

      The attempt of Democrat Jon Ossoff to stage an upset in the special Georgia House election may have floundered in part because he offered scant policy specifics. For the Democrats as a whole, becoming the new Party of No does nothing for a public that across the spectrum demands actual solutions to real problems of income, healthcare, jobs and some coherent vision for the future.

      The strategy of no, no, no worked well for the Republicans under Obama, and borrowing from the same script may make political sense for Democrats in the short term, adding to the woes of the White House and weighing on congressional Republicans in the majority who feel pressed to do something and have as yet done little.

      That doesn’t mean it is ultimately wise. And it certainly doesn’t engender any prospect of altering the toxic dynamic at play in Washington.

      • Democrats can’t compete with the Repukes in the ‘Party of No’ infotainment war. They better get back to running on democratic public servant issues. No bribes needed there. Hey, LD/JD, Happy Saturday! 🙂 T and R to the usual suspects!!

    • The Rise and Fall of Coal in America

      Two years ago—long before coal became one of the most dominant and controversial symbols of the 2016 presidential election—Bloomberg Philanthropies approached production company RadicalMedia with the idea of creating a documentary exploring the U.S. coal mining industry. Last spring, they brought on Emmy-nominated director Michael Bonfiglio, tasked with forging a compelling story out of the multitudes of facts, statistics and narratives underlying the declining industry.

      The production team spent the next year traveling from Appalachia to the West’s Powder River Basin, and beyond, to mine coal’s effects on our economy, health and climate. They wrapped From the Ashes just one week before its April 26 world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival, where it was introduced by New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg—a longtime supporter of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign. The film depicts Americans across the country as they wrestle with the legacy of the coal industry, its future under the Trump administration, and the direction of U.S. energy policy.

      Right before the film’s June 2 premiere in New York and California, Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Paris climate accord. So, the team tweaked the film accordingly. On June 25, at 9/8 p.m., the final version will air globally on National Geographic; audiences in 171 countries will be privy to this intimate glimpse into the cultural zeitgeist that is coal.

      From the Ashes highlights the complexity of coal by shedding light on the lived experiences of those closest to it.

    • World’s Biggest Coal Company Closes 37 Mines as Solar Prices Plummet

      The rapid growth in renewable energy continues to put a dent in the demand for coal.

      Coal India, the world’s biggest coal mining company and producer of 82 percent of the country’s coal, announced the closure of 37 mines that are financially “unviable.”

      The sites make up roughly nine percent of the total mines operated by Coal India. The company is expected save Rs 800 crore ($124 million) from the closures.

      • This is very good YUGE environmental news. India is drop dead serious about getting off pollution. David Letterman hosted a documentary about it.

    • Yellowstone Grizzlies Lose Federal Protection

      the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service removed grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone region from the Endangered Species List.


      the decision comes despite serious concerns from the environmental and scientific community, and Tribal Nations about a declining, isolated grizzly bear population with diminishing food resources and record-high mortalities.

      According to Sierra Club’s Executive Director Michael Brune, “The Trump administration turned a deaf ear to repeated calls for consultation from dozens of Tribal Nations. States have already made it clear that without endangered species protections, immediate steps will be taken to reduce the number of bears in the area, including through trophy hunting—a move that will reverse grizzly bear recovery in the region.”

    • UN Expert Touts Universal Basic Income as “Bold and Imaginative Solution’ to Poverty

      Amplifying the call for a universal basic income, a United Nations expert has presented a report describing the idea as “a bold and imaginative solution” at a time of growing economic insecurity.

      “People feel exposed, vulnerable, overwhelmed, and helpless and some are being systematically marginalized both economically and socially,” Philip Alston, U.N. Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, told the Human Rights Council. “But the human rights community has barely engaged with this resulting phenomenon of deep economic insecurity,” he said.

      His report challenges the human rights movement to broaden its scope and recognize “the profound challenges” of economic insecurity, which represents “a fundamental threat to all human rights,” and “now afflicts not just the unemployed and the underemployed, but also the precariously employed and those likely to be rendered unemployed in the foreseeable future as a result of various developments.”

      “There’s a clear right to be able to live in dignity, to enjoy a decent standard of living to get access to education, healthcare, and so on. All of these things are fundamentally linked to human rights,” he said during a Facebook live event earlier this month.

      • I’m beginning to think that this needs to happen. And the sooner the better.

        It took me awhile to wrap my brain around the concept, but last night I was reading aloud to hubby about the origin of Luddites (I had called him one in jest and he wasn’t sure what it meant) and it occurred to me that if the authorities at that time (1811) had just helped out all of those people who had been adversely affected by the then-new automation appearing in mills/factories, all of the destruction probably wouldn’t have happened!

        With the oncoming explosion in robots and automation coming around the corner, we need to figure out how to take care of all the people who will be displaced, are already being displace, and fast.

    • Elizabeth Warren Says Key Thing to Know About Trumpcare Bill: ‘This Is Blood Money’

      Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has now read the Republican bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act and says that it contains “one flashing neon light after another” that signals who this piece of legislation is designed to serve: the very rich and the very powerful.

      “This is blood money,” the senator said both on the floor of the Senate on Thursday and in a video posted to social media. “They’re paying for tax cuts with American lives.”

    • Don’t Let Trump Silence Communities of Color by Keith Ellison

      Thanks to the open internet, a new generation of activists fighting for civil rights and equality has been able to make their voices heard in ways previously unimaginable.

      Now the Trump administration is trying to turn back the clock and silence them by undoing the Net Neutrality rules. That is simply unacceptable.

      We have fought and won this fight before, and now it’s time to get organized again. Send your comment to the FCC today.

      The open internet has decentralized the media, allowing historically marginalized communities to bypass traditional gatekeepers and share their stories.

      Net Neutrality has enabled Black Lives Matter activists to shine a national spotlight on injustices from Baltimore to Minneapolis to Oakland, helped Dreamers organize, and given Americans everywhere a platform to build power and make progress.

      In our increasingly digital world, protecting Net​ Neutrality is the new frontier for safeguarding free speech and promoting American innovation.

      • I sure do hope that the people of West Virginia heard about that anti-democratic pledge Manchin signed and were as disgusted as I was to hear about it.

        With all the talk about ‘collusion’ nowadays, what about that pledge?! It was basically a promise to help his buddies (and himself) stay in power. The only thing keeping it from being legal collusion was the fact that the pledge was done publicly.

        But the only reason that it was done publicly was to use it for political purposes, to be able to boast that it was intended to ‘get things done’.

        In fact, they may even try to accuse those colleagues who are not ‘playing along’ of obstructing progress! A win-win for the bastards.

    • Will losing health insurance mean more US deaths? Experts say yes

      The Republican healthcare bill announced on Thursday would cause thousands of Americans to die each year, according to physicians who study government data.

      Using national health surveys, doctors and academics have tested whether a lack of health insurance increases the probability of death. Most have concluded that it does.

      • Better do another study! Glad to have the study, but ya gotta admit it’s kinda funny. Kind of a no-brainer that if you don’t get medical care, you often get sick and die. We’ve been pointing this out for how many years?

        • Yea wasted money on an expert when it is a no brainer that most people can figure out,well except for the most fanatical cheeto supporters.

    • lol look at the topic that made its way to MSNBC…

      • From above, “nobody speaks, trials of” the media (or something like that), apparently by the guy Joe and Mika were interviewing, on Netflix. Interesting. Starts tomorrow.

        • No edit button bc i’m having to use captcha code. Adding that Mike saying the media is moving from “objectivity” to “transparency.” What objectivity, Mika? It’s not objectivity to report what both sides say, if they’re both lying. It’s no objectivity to have a half an hour of empty stage waiting for Trump when Bernie is lighting crowds on fire.

    • Democrats’ Piling Defeats Signal Russia Focus Is a Losing Strategy

      Several weeks ago during an interview on CNN’s State of the Union, Sen. Bernie Sanders surrogate and former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner said that the Democratic Party needed to start focusing less on Russia and more on issues that impact voters.

      Her comments incited immense backlash from establishment Democrats who insisted Turner was undermining the investigation. However, her comments were not revolutionary.


      On June 20, Rev. Jesse Jackson said during an interview on Chicago WVON 1690, “I don’t know what the Democrats are doing, they’re focusing too much on Russia and the FBI.”

      On June 15, Sen. Ron Wyden said during a press conference that he would start protesting the mainstream media’s obsession with the Russia story: “When reporters ask me a question about Russia, I now say, ‘I’m happy to talk about it, but you’re going to have to listen to me talk about the health care challenge ahead first.’”

      Of course, now that many Democrats are coming around to Nina Turner’s way of thinking, criticism has subsided. The obsession with Russia may provide sensationalism for Democrats’ public relations efforts, but it does little to encourage voters to support the the party. Instead, it has alienated people and turned them off from from participating in democracy. At the same time, it has provided cover for the Trump administration and Republicans to push through their policies under much less public scrutiny.

    • Go Jimmy.

    • This is old, but it shocked even me. Matt Taibbi exposes some articles where the political class pundits are saying we need LESS democracy–that basically the trouble is us dumb voters–really! Saying we need more elites deciding things in back rooms. OhMyGod.

      In Response to Trump, Another Dangerous Movement Appears

      Just a tiny bit:

      Rauch compares “outsiders” and “amateurs” to viruses that get into the body, and describes the institutions that failed to prevent the likes of Trump from being nominated as being like the national immune system. Revolt against party insiders is therefore comparable to “abusing and attacking your own immune system.”

    • Long interview with Stephen Cohen, the expert on Russia, from a Caitlin article.

    • The Rebirth of the Liberal Class

      “Genuinely people-serving politics is making a comeback.”

      Haven’t read the whole thing yet, but it looks good, by Rainer over at newslogue (Caitlin’s old home).

      I’m off to work.

      • Article references Chris Hedges’ 2010 book “Death of the Liberal Class”

        Read that years ago and found it insightful

        One thing I remember is that Fred Smith, the founder and CEO of FecEx got a rider on a US Senate bill that they didn’t have to unionize. And Fred Smith was one of Obama’s hero CEO’s.

        After Obama won the 2012 election, Chris published another article days after the election. I posted it on TOP/DK and people were pissed. How dare you say this after the wonderful victory of Obama

        The presidential election exposed the liberal class as a corpse. It fights for nothing. It stands for nothing. It is a useless appendage to the corporate state. It exists not to make possible incremental or piecemeal reform, as it originally did in a functional capitalist democracy; instead it has devolved into an instrument of personal vanity, burnishing the hollow morality of its adherents. Liberals, by voting for Barack Obama, betrayed the core values they use to define themselves—the rule of law, the safeguarding of civil liberties, the protection of unions, the preservation of social welfare programs, environmental accords, financial regulation, a defiance of unjust war and torture, and the abolition of drone wars. The liberal class clung desperately during the long nightmare of this political campaign to one or two issues, such as protecting a woman’s right to choose and gender equality, to justify its complicity in a monstrous evil. This moral fragmentation—using an isolated act of justice to define one’s self while ignoring the vast corporate assault on the nation and the ecosystem along with the pre-emptive violence of the imperial state—is moral and political capitulation. It fails to confront the evil we have become.

        Easy to see why they didn’t like to hear that.

        And for me, and many I know, it took the 2016 elections to truly understand what Clinton’s had done and Obama fighting to the end for TPP showed his true colors.

        Once Again—Death of the Liberal Class

        It was published on Nov 11, 2012.

        • i was fooled. remember TIME mag had a cover of Obama as FDR? I actually believed it, and I’m pretty seasoned, as they say. 😉

    • Centrist Democrats are now the great defenders of social justice? Please.

      A really good one by Ryan Cooper!

      The left half of the American political spectrum is in the middle of a big fight between the left and the center-left, which will surely get more intense as the midterms approach. Much of the battle, writes Franklin Foer in a very long piece at The Atlantic, will be between economic issues and social justice ones: “Two of the party’s largest concerns — race and class — reside in an increasing state of tension, a tension that will grow as the party turns toward the next presidential election.”

      This way of framing things is utterly mistaken, both on the history and on the policy merits. There is no trade-off between race — or any other social justice issue — and class. This is an idea the center-left invented to beat back the leftist challenge to their dominance of the Democratic Party.

      To see why, let’s review some history.

      Preach it brother!

      Now, of course the left, like any political faction, has its problems with race, gender, and so on. But in terms of history, theory, and practice, it has been the left that has fought most consistently in favor of social justice, and the center-left which has not. Actual leftist organizations, like the Democratic Socialists of America, have stringent policies to ensure adequate representation and good treatment of women and minorities, both at the chapter and national level. It’s a live issue, but they are unquestionably doing better than the Democratic Party.

      But fundamentally, when it comes to actually making America a more decent place, there is no getting around the desperate need for strong class policy. Don’t let center-left dissembling obscure this truth.

    • It is certainly worth a try. That is if we are still around by then.

    • Not quite the way to get someone’s attention. LOL

    • For the next time a Hillary diehard attacks Jill Stein!

      Democrats are still obsessed with Jill Stein. They should start obsessing over nonvoters instead.

      here’s another number, one that ought to change your perspective: 87,810. That’s how many Michigan voters showed up to the polls, cast ballots, and declined to vote for a presidential candidate at all.

      That compares to 49,840 such “undervotes” in 2012. It was a veritable phenomenon last year — people stood in line and performed their civic duty, but simply abstained from marking a preference for commander in chief. An analysis published by The Washington Post tallied 1.7 million undervotes in 33 states. The number was up in most states, they concluded, by an average of 2.5 times as much as in 2012.

    • At least they are consistent Assholes!

    • So, Kushner ‘relayed Israeli demands’, eh?

      Who will relay Palestinian “demands” to Israel? Anyone?

    • This will never make the news.

  • Randy Bryce for Congress 2018 – Wisconsin’s 1st District

    • Tip Jar

    • Can this progressive ironworker (and his mustache) swipe Paul Ryan’s seat?

      A progressive, mustachioed Bernie Sanders supporter has shot to fame after announcing a challenge to Republican house speaker Paul Ryan.

      Democrat Randy Bryce, who goes by @IronStache on Twitter, is an ironworker, union organiser and veteran who launched his bid for Wisconsin’s first congressional district on Monday.

      Since then, his evocative campaign advert, which shows a denim- and boot-clad Bryce discussing healthcare with his mother and engaging in various forms of metalwork, has been watched more than 330,000 times, and the 52-year-old has attracted a level of internet acclaim rarely seen among political candidates.

      “I knew that we would have a successful launch,” Bryce told the Guardian on Thursday. “But I honestly did not have any kind of idea it would blow up as big as it has.”

      His popularity has been fuelled by his progressive agenda – he is in favor of a single-payer healthcare system and spoke at a Sanders event during the Democratic primaries – but appears to have also been aided by his all-American appearance and luxuriant moustache.

      • With that district it would be one hell of an uphill climb for Randy, as that district is as red as it can be and gerrymandered as well. but I’m pulling for him as we have nothing to loose in WI at this point.

    • Wisconsin Ironworker Challenges Paul Ryan For House Seat (NPR Audio)

      NPR’s Audie Cornish talks to Randy Bryce, a Wisconsin ironworker, who announced this week he will challenge House Speaker Paul Ryan in the 2018 midterm election.

    • “I’m A Working Person. That’s My Life”: A Q&A with Paul Ryan Challenger Randy Bryce

      Bryce has one Democratic primary challenger so far: David Yankovich, who announced his candidacy on May 30. In this interview, Bryce explains to the New Republic his reasons for running and how he plans to win a district the Democratic Party hasn’t held since 1995. This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

      Tell me why you decided to challenge Paul Ryan.

      I’m a lifelong resident of Southeastern Wisconsin. I graduated from public schools, went into the Army after that. When I came back, I was diagnosed with cancer and I didn’t have insurance, and now it’s considered a preexisting condition. I worked sometimes two full-time jobs to make ends meet. Finally, I joined the union, the Ironworkers Union, which had an apprenticeship. I got my journeyman’s card and I’ve been doing that for 20 years now. As I drive through the district I can look and see, “I worked on that, I built that.” So literally I spent the last 20 years of my life building the district. Looking over at Paul Ryan, I’m wondering what he’s been doing.
      Things have been taken away from us. Autoworkers used to have a lot of great-paying jobs building cars. Right now they’re tearing down the UAW plant—the General Motors plant—in Kenosha, there’s a huge abandoned facility in Janesville, and some of the best-paying jobs in Waukesha County are going up to Canada.

      People are working harder these days and having less to show as a result for it. Paul Ryan hasn’t been in the district for a town hall in over 600 days and it’s time to make a change. If I can’t perform my job I get fired at work. And it’s time to get someone who can do the job Paul Ryan was hired to do.

      • If I can’t perform my job I get fired at work

        People have been given the false narrative that if your a Union Worker that your job is safe, Bullshit!

    • He is certainly off to a good start. It will be interesting to see if the Democratic establishment gets behind a progressive candidate for a change.

      • As weak as the Dems are in WI other than Bernie supporting him(Randy) the Cluster F*** aka as the Dem Party in this state should leave Randy alone unless they would support him under the table —hate to say that but true at this point in WI. Bat shit crazy Walker has total control of the media thx to Koch Inc. The media in this state is scared shitless to ask governor Dipshit an honest straight forward question–sad to say as we don’t get an honest answer thru the WI mwdia.

  • Sanders: ‘Thousands will die’ under GOP health bill

    Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Friday said that “thousands of people will die” if the new GOP ObamaCare repeal-and-replace bill passes in the Senate. […]

    • Tip Jar

    • ‘This is barbaric’: Bernie Sanders lambastes GOP healthcare bill

      Sen. Bernie Sanders called the Senate Republican healthcare bill, the details of which were released on Thursday, “barbaric” and promised to introduce Medicare-for-all legislation during an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

      Sanders tweeted on Thursday that the bill, which would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare), is “the most harmful piece of legislation I’ve seen in my lifetime.”

      Cooper asked him to elaborate on that claim.

      “If you throw 23 million people off of health insurance, if you cut Medicaid by over $800 billion, there is no question, but that thousands of Americans will die,” Sanders said. “This is barbaric. Frankly, this is what oligarchy is all about.”

    • Bernie Sanders: Senate healthcare plan is ‘ugly, anti-working class’

      Sen. Bernie Sanders is coming to Pittsburgh on Saturday as part of a MoveOn.org bus tour that is holding rallies in the region to urge lawmakers to vote against the GOP health care plan introduced Thursday in the U.S. Senate.

      The independent U.S. senator from Vermont and former presidential candidate will be speaking at rallies in Pittsburgh; Columbus, Ohio; and Charleston, W.Va.

      The group is specifically targeting Republican Sens. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Rob Portman of Ohio and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia.

      The Pittsburgh rally will begin at 7 p.m. in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown.

      “The immediate task is to defeat one of the worst pieces of legislation ever presented in the history of this country,” Mr. Sanders said in an interview, “legislation that would raise premiums on older workers [and] defund Planned Parenthood.

      • Bernie needs to bottle whatever elixir he uses to keep on truckin’ 🙂 like he does. I get worn out just following him and I’m a decade younger! Hey LD, yeow, posting on a Saturday? Hey, way cool as you youngsters say! I get to read posts by you, Benny, humphrey, bebimbob, and subir. Did I miss anyone? T and R to the usual subjects!!

    • Bernie Sanders calls for healthcare mobilization in three key states

      Following is the text of a letter Sen. Bernie Sanders sent out on an emergency basis yesterday to the members of MoveOn.org.:

      This weekend, I am partnering with MoveOn and going back on the road to visit states where there are Republican senators who can and should vote against the effort by Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell to throw 23 million people off of health insurance and, in the same bill, give huge tax breaks to multinational corporations and the rich.

      They call it a health care bill, but how can it be a health care bill when it throws 23 million people off of insurance, cuts $834 billion from Medicaid, and defunds Planned Parenthood? God knows what the implication of this legislation will be on our children, the elderly, and those of us with chronic illnesses.

      It is literally insane. I have a hard time understanding what kind of world these guys are living in sometimes.

      This is a bill that impacts a sixth of the American economy and touches every single American family. Yet until this morning, they kept the bill secret, kept it hidden. And now, in the last possible second, they are going to rush it before the U.S. Senate to get a vote.

      We’re going to be visiting Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia on Saturday and Sunday. If you can, please show up. But we cannot pull off this tour alone. We need your help.

    • Bernie Sanders to headline ‘Don’t Take Our Health Care’ tour

      Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders will headline MoveOn.org’s “Don’t Take Our Health Care” bus tour this weekend, making stops in various East Coast states to challenge the newly released Senate health care bill.
      With planned stops in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Columbus, Ohio and Charleston, West Virginia, Sanders and leaders at MoveOn — a progressive public policy advocacy group — will speak at rallies urging GOP senators to save the Affordable Care Act and challenging Republican talking points that the alternative to Obamacare is a better option for Americans, according to Brian Stewart, director of media relations at MoveOn.
      The tour is additionally designed to put pressure on the Republican senators in those states — specifically, Sens. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Rob Portman of Ohio and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia — to vote against the Senate bill when it comes to the floor next week.

      Sanders has called the Senate’s health care bill “the most harmful piece of legislation” he’s ever seen, and in the past warned that “thousands would die” if it passes.

    • Sen. Sanders to be at Municipal Auditorium for health care rally Sunday

      Those who didn’t get a chance to “feel the Bern” in March will have another chance Sunday.

      Bernie Sanders, the independent Senator from Vermont and former Democratic presidential candidate, is returning to Charleston for the Protect Our Health Care Rally at the Charleston Municipal Auditorium at 3 p.m. Sunday.

      The announcement comes after Senate leadership released the legislative language of its version of the American Health Care Act, which turned out to be similar to the House-passed version of the bill, despite some rhetoric pointing to an overhaul.

    • Bernie Sanders to host Columbus health care rally

      Senator Bernie Sanders will headline an event in Columbus Sunday with the goal of saving the Affordable Care Act.

      The event is happening June 25 at Express Live in downtown Columbus.

      According to the event announcement, Senator Sanders hopes to put pressure on Senator Portman and other Republicans to vote against a repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

      Event doors open at 10am and the program begins at 11:30am.

    • Elizabeth Warren Says Key Thing to Know About Trumpcare Bill: ‘This Is Blood Money’

      Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has now read the Republican bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act and says that it contains “one flashing neon light after another” that signals who this piece of legislation is designed to serve: the very rich and the very powerful.

      “This is blood money,” the senator said both on the floor of the Senate on Thursday and in a video posted to social media. “They’re paying for tax cuts with American lives.”

    • GOP ‘Health’ Bill: Death, Disaster, and Gilded Age Greed

      The Republican Senate’s draft health bill differs from the House version, but its basic purpose is the same: give millionaires and billionaires a massive new tax cut by slashing health benefits for millions of Americans, and take care away altogether from millions more.

      People will die if this bill becomes law, but that doesn’t seem to trouble the Republicans’ conscience. The only thing they seem to fear is losing their jobs. That’s why this bill was written in unprecedented secrecy. That’s why it, like the House version, obfuscates and misdirects to conceal its true goals.

    • Senate Health Bill Would Revamp Medicaid, Alter ACA Guarantees, Cut Premium Support

      Republicans in the U.S. Senate on Thursday unveiled a bill that would dramatically transform the nation’s Medicaid program, make significant changes to the federal health law’s tax credits that help lower-income people buy insurance and allow states to water down changes to some of the law’s coverage guarantees.

      The bill also repeals the tax mechanism that funded the Affordable Care Act’s benefits, resulting in hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts for the wealthy and health care industry.

    • I am sure that Bernie’s tour will get wall to wall coverage in the MSM! LOL

  • Sanders warns of ‘authoritarian direction’ under Trump

    Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) warned that the Trump administration’s approach to governance was putting the United States on “a drift toward authori […]

    • Tip Jar

    • On a related note:

      Bernie Sanders explains why Trump is so dangerous

      Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders may have lost his bid for the White House in 2016, but he’s sure as hell not ready to fade into obscurity anytime soon. Instead, he’s emerged as a gadfly, loudly and publicly sounding the alarm on what he sees as the country’s troubling descent into authoritarianism under President Donald Trump.

      “I can’t remember a president who has had more authoritarian tendencies than Trump,” Sanders told me in an interview on Wednesday. “What is going on is not only this rise of authoritarianism but also, simultaneously, you are seeing this country move very rapidly toward oligarchy.”

      As Sanders prepared to give a big speech on Thursday at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, he got on the phone with me to talk about Trump’s admiration for authoritarian leaders, his attacks on the media, the Russia investigation, and more.

      Sanders told me he believes Trump has a basic disrespect for the fundamental pillars of democracy — the press, the judicial system — that mimics the authoritarian regimes the Trump administration has cozied up to around the globe. And that combination, he says, is dangerous.

      • Trump inc Aka the Orange Cheeto is only worried about his bottom line not about the rest of us Americans !!! Ooops unless he can profit by it.

      • Bernie is spot on -Grand slam, Hail Mary — well TPw’ers you get the point

  • We’ve had four House special elections this year. Democrats have lost all four. All four were tough races to replace Republicans from very safe districts who were appointed to posts within the Trump adm […]

    • That VICE column is priceless. I tend to think Pelosi does have something to do with it, but there were plenty of other reasons in that column that are somewhat accurate. But the number one is related to Clinton: why was he running?

    • I’m placing a tip jar for the diarist. One forgets we don’t have an automatic tip jar like TOP.

    • Argh, I’m sorry the tables aren’t coming out right. They look okay on my site, which is also WordPress but has a different theme. The tables also look fine when I’m drafting the diary, but then come out as lists when I publish. Sorry, I tried twice….

      • Hmm, Ill see if I can do anything about that (but dont expect any miracles right away :D)

      • Thanks for putting all of that together Subir! It looks like a lot of work. I find it had to glean much from the recent results, so I appreciate your efforts.

    • If Ossoff hadn’t switched positions on Medicare for All, he would have literally mopped the floor with Handel. The SC-05 race is the one that got my attention. I know that area of SC. I’ve driven through it over the years. It’s a deep red they don’t have a word for. What did the Democrat run on? He scared the crap out of the Repukes there and nationally. If that’s not a heads-up to senile Nancy P and the rest, forget them!

      • Not just a heads-up, but a wakeup call!

      • Parnell is a really interesting candidate. He’s a tax attorney who’s worked for some big names in banking. Part of his campaign was about tax reform/simplification. He had some progressive stances, but came out against Medicare for All. It’s a conservative district, so some of it may have been calculated.
        The best part of his campaign were the ads. He’s got a lovely public persona and had some really funny ads.

        • Read this on Parnell this morning (and your opinion on the ads is shared):

          He didn’t build a nationwide army of liberal small donors. He didn’t brandish any weaponry. He had no experience in elective politics. Yet out of the four Democrats nominated in U.S. House special elections this year, Archie Parnell came the closest to snagging a Republican-held seat.

          Haven’t heard of Archie Parnell? That may be because he never got the kind of national media attention of Georgia’s Jon Ossoff, the boy wonder of the Atlanta suburbs, or Rob Quist, the singing cowboy of Montana. Even James Thompson, who lost a surprisingly close Kansas House race in April, got more ink.

          But it’s Parnell, the mild-mannered, globetrotting tax attorney from Sumter, South Carolina, who came closest to shocking the political system—falling just 3.2 percentage points and 2,836 votes short on Tuesday night. And he did it on the cheap. While Ossoff spent $30 million to lose the most expensive House race in history, Parnell reported spending of slightly more than a half-million through the end of May.

          How did he do it? By staying out of the line of fire. He was positive. He was humble. And Republicans barely knew he was there.


        • Not a supporter of Medicare-for-all, but he did run on fixing the ACA according to a SC new story yesterday. So he wasn’t running away from “Obamacare” at least.

          • If he’s an SC cracker who lives there, this race speaks volumes. I’ve gone into restaurants in Charleston where they have signs on the wall saying that Bubba/$hrill are the equal of Satan. This was back in the 1990s when Bubba was POTUS.

    • I think it’s hard to compare the vote margins in the Congressional 2016 races in these states. Some of those Dem candidates may just have been a lot better than others and ran more serious races. I think the Clinton/Trump margin actually is a better indicator because it’s the same Clinton and Trump for all the states. By that indicator, Ossoff did way worse than the other three–he actually lost by more than the 1% that Clinton did.

    • Thanks, Subir!

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